The Eliot Trio

Late piano trios of Mozart and Brahms to highlight concert March 15

Washington University’s Eliot Trio will highlight late piano trios by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Johannes Brahms at 8 p.m. Tuesday, March 15, in the auditorium of Uncas A. Whitaker Hall for Biomedical Engineering.

Seth Carlin
Seth Carlin

Tickets are $15; $10 for seniors and Washington University faculty and staff; $5 for students; and free for Washington University students. Tickets are available at the Edison Theatre Box Office, (314) 935-6543; through all MetroTix outlets; and at the door. Whitaker Hall is located at the intersection of Forest Park Parkway and Hoyt Drive. For more information, call (314) 935-4841.

The Eliot Trio consists of Seth Carlin, professor of music and director of the piano program in Washington University’s Department of Music in Arts & Sciences; David Halen, concertmaster for the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra; and guest cellist Michael Haber, professor of music at the University of Akron.

The program opens with Mozart’s “Trio in E Major, K. 542,” written in 1788 as the first in a set of three piano trios. Known for the simple, affecting melody of its second movement, the piece was intended for performance in the home of Michael Puchberg, a wealthy merchant and Mozart’s frequent benefactor.

The concert continues with Brahms’ “C minor Piano Trio” (1886), the middle movement of which — like the Mozart trio — is characterized by passages of striking simplicity. The program concludes with Anton Arensky’s “Piano Trio in D minor,” the Russian composer’s best-known work.

Carlin has performed with orchestras around the world and with conductors such as Nicholas McGegan, Leonard Slatkin and Roger Norrington. He has appeared in recital with Pinchas Zukerman, Anner Bylsma and Malcolm Bilson, and at the Festival of Two Worlds in Spoleto, Italy; the Newport Music Festival in Rhode Island; Lincoln Center’s “Great Performers” series; and New York’s Merkin Hall series “On Original Instruments.” In 1991-92, Carlin performed the complete Schubert fortepiano sonatas in New York City (the concerts were broadcast nationally on National Public Radio). In 1989, he was one of only two recitalists to receive a full grant from the National Endowment for the Arts.


WHO: The Eliot Trio

WHAT: Concert

PROGRAM: Music of Mozart, Brahms and Arensky

WHEN: 8 p.m. Tuesday, March 15

WHERE: Uncas A. Whitaker Hall for Biomedical Engineering, intersection of Forest Park Parkway and Hoyt Drive

COST: $15; $10 for seniors; $5 for students; free for Washington University students

INFORMATION: (314) 935-4841

Carlin graduated cum laude from Harvard University with a bachelor’s degree in music, later earning a master’s in piano from the Julliard School. He received his Licence de Concert from the Ecole Normale de Musique de Paris and has studied piano with Rosina Lhevinne, Jules Gentil and Morton Estrin, as well as interpretation with Wilhelm Kempff.

Halen has been with the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra since 1991 and was appointed its concertmaster in 1995. He frequently performs concertos with the orchestra, and his violin solo in the orchestra’s performances of Strauss’ Ein Heldenleben received acclaim in London and Frankfurt. Prior to coming to St. Louis, Halen was a member of the Houston Symphony Orchestra, where he served as assistant concertmaster. He performs on a 1753 Johannes Baptiste Guadagnini violin made in Milan, Italy.

Halen earned a bachelor’s degree from Central Missouri State University at the age of 19. He earned a master’s degree from the University of Illinois and in 1979 was the youngest recipient ever of a Fulbright Scholarship for study at the Freiburg Hochschule für Musik in Germany.

Haber, a former member of Cleveland Orchestra under George Szell, has performed with such noted ensembles as the Casals Festival Orchestra under Pablo Casals, the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra and the Mostly Mozart Festival Orchestra at Lincoln Center. His chamber music activities include numerous performances at the Marlboro Festival in Vermont and recording as cellist for both The Composers Quartet and of The Gabrielli Trio.

Raised in New York, Casablanca and Geneva, Haber graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Brandeis University and did graduate work at Harvard’s Russian Studies Institute. Over the years he has taught at some of the country’s finest music schools, including Oberlin College in Ohio, the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston, Indiana University — Bloomington and the Aspen Music School in Colorado. He joined the University of Akron, where he heads the strings department, in 1983.