Messages are conveyed quickly and intelligently across the universe through music. This is because music is one of the most spread art compared to others such as drawings and paintings. Further, most populace across the globe have access to some music. Pitch (tune and harmony), rhythm (tempo, meter, and articulation), dynamics, sonic qualities of resonance and texture are the most common essentials of any music. Thus, this reflective treatise discusses the elements of rhythm and composition in the music of the Archduke Piano Trio during a live concert on June 2014 at the Laidlaw Performing Arts Centre. The paper will dwell on scope of their performance, songs that were played, strengths and weaknesses of the performance. The paper concludes by rating the Archduke Piano Trio on a scale of ten.
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The Archduke Piano Trio Concert
The concert was held on 3th June 2014 at the Laidlaw Performing Arts Centre. The concert lasted for two hours from 7.30 pm to 9.30 pm. This being my first attendance to such a big concert, the spectacular recitals by the Archduke Piano Trio, consisting of cellist Guo-Sheng, pianist Robert Holm, and violinist Enen-Yu, really captured my attention just like it did to the jovial audience.
The first performance by the trio featured G Major (1880) and consisted of pieces such as Scherzo-Intermezzo, Andantio con molto, Appassianoato, and Andante espressivo which were created by Debussy Claude. The talented trio artistically fused piano sound to the violin and cello to create a deep soul music. Gradually, the tempo of their performance increased and harmonized proficiency and controlled energy as the audience cheered on through the swings between moderate, allegro and andante.
Based on my judgment, the number of fans in attendance of the two hour event was roughly about six thousand. The background of the performance stage was illuminated with a mixture of bright colors and decorations. The trio systematically and frequently changed their tempo as different records were performed. The main attires they wore were black dance suits, red costumes, white suits, and yellow stockings. Most importantly, the performers’ attires were matched with the background colors.
Archduke Piano Trio group is known for its unique performance style, which it clearly showcased at the concert. The hypnotic quality of the music perfectly suited the modern performance style of the group. The musical instruments played in the mix included drums, xylophones, guitar and piano among others. The concert started with the group’s debut-single Scherzo-Intermezzo, with dancers camouflaged in black suits entering the stage while wearing bright red colored hair-do. Throughout this time, the trio kept the beats to the maximum with slow to moderate tempo. Song after song, the trio demonstrated emerging and entertaining performance styles. The fans appeared charged, and would burst into singing and shouting whenever they felt thrilled by the alterations in the tempo.
The trio had good choreography with composition abilities that were nearly faultless. Although the trio had accidental vocal variances, that were a little off by fraction of beats, it was understandable given that the context of the performance was live, and such errors could be noticed easily. However, the fans seemed to have never noticed these negligible discordances in the trio’ choreographed instrumentation tempo. On the stage, the trio appeared ‘hot’ and striking, and I would judge them as successful performers. Generally, one of the failures of performers in live performance is their inability to communicate and engage audience.
For the Archduke Piano Trio’s live performance, the performers constantly engaged the fans through their actions and chanting of words that the fans were expected to repeat. The trio acknowledged the fact that they never had a concert facilitator who would psych-up fans, thus, they kept asking the fans for activities such as standing up and imitating their style of dance. To their advantage, the crowd followed like a flock of sheep, making the concert more entertaining.
The second performance was characterized by harmonic sound of the cello after which violin sound ushered in the piano. Among the pieces in the second performance included Andnte un poco mosso and Allegro vivase, which were composed by Franz Schubert. The pianist was the most outstanding especially in balancing moderato to andante tempo before progressing to a more vigorous allegro tempo. Reflectively, the violinist introduced the andante tempo of the second performance after which the pianist gradually ushered in the cello player to create a harmonized and entertaining piece. The trio employed artistic skills, acquired after long period of training, to thrill the audience with their unique balance of andante and moderato rhythms.
On the periphery of music as a tool for expression, communication models such as tripartite, including listener, performer, and composer were well presented in the concert. Over time, this concept has been expounded to include constituent parts which are elegantly arranged to embrace elucidation for every existing interrelationship. Specifically, to achieve this intention, the trio conveyed message of the composer to the audience or listeners with a lot of enthusiasm.
This process involves multiple interactions among the concepts of decoding and coding of the balanced moderato and andante rhythms. In the trio’s musical composition, they succeeded in arranging emotions and relieved tension in their speed of tunes and manipulation of words. Reflectively, music composition defines cultural perceptual artifact expected to be understood by ‘acculturated listeners’ who share almost similar explicit and implicit structures of knowledge. Therefore, the degree of success in use of music to communicate musical concept is congruent to magnitude of agreement and interpretation between expressive intent and emotional attachments which the message contains against the perception by the audience. The trio’s concert was very successful in displaying artistic prowess, outstanding performance, and stage command. From my evaluation, I can rate the group at 9 out of 10.
The traditions and social context of a community have a sturdy sway on the formation, performance, significance, and even definition of music. The Archduke Piano Trio’s music contained elements of syncopation in their characteristic flow that entertains. For instance, while performing the songs Andantio con molto and Appassianoato, the Archduke Piano Trio displayed prowess in a compound and straight forward tempo. The Archduke Piano Trio adopted repetition in stating rules of friendship. Across the two hour concert, the rhythm and melody of the Archduke Piano Trio’s compositions moved people to like the information being relayed. An emotion is a way of creating a strong connection between the target audience and the message, especially, if the beats and tempo of the music are arranged in an alluring style. The Archduke Piano Trio appealed to their audience who somehow live within the culture displayed in the music.
Based on my evaluations, the actual good moments of the concert came towards the end as the trio prepared to leave the fans. Even as I joined others to dance in these last entertaining minutes of the show, the group only did two compositions and stopped. Having realized that the crowed was charged, and given that the time for closing the Laidlaw Performing Arts Centre had not yet elapsed, the trio would have continued with five or so songs to exhaust the charged audience at that moment. Secondly, the concert was rather short, lasting for only two hours. However, this could be as a result of the limited number of hits the group has, or as a result of the trio’s physical nature and limitations.
Generally, the concert was very refreshing. For instance, the fast adventurous harmony tempo and enlightening mood made the two hours concert a standout event. The audience was moved by the energetic and experienced trio. This concert was the biggest ever organized by the local music and art organization. Across the concert, I learnt the importance of culture in music composition and mixture of sounds to create a perfect piece. The trio’s harmony of enlighten mood and tempo created a perfect musical notation. Coherently, the level of auditory components have different audience repertoire for sensory connection, commonly referred to as context modality which the trio showed with little struggle. I must admit that my expectations were surpassed by the trio. Although the concert only lasted for two hours, everyone in the audience was thrilled as evident by their excessive jubilation.