On the Verge: The Chartreuse Trio Performs at Georgia Southern

On the Verge: The Chartreuse Trio Performs at Georgia Southern

Julia Fechter

Georgia Southern students and Statesboro locals alike will have the chance to listen to an electric but classical music group this Tuesday.  

The Chartreuse trio, formed by cellist Helen Newby, violist Carrie Frey and violinist Myra Hinrichs, will perform several music compositions at Georgia Southern University’s Statesboro campus as part of the “On the Verge” concert series.

Specifically, GS will host the concert inside the Carol Carter Reception Hall of the Foy Building from 7:30 to 8:30 p.m. The concert is free and open to the public.

For those who may not be familiar with Chartreuse, Frey described the trio’s music as reminiscent of movie music.

The trio have pieces like Kaija Saariaho’s “Cloud Trio (2009)” in their repetier which seem to evoke this sense. In their rendition of the song, the high-pitched, nuanced sound of the violin leads into eerie soundscapes constructed by the mellower viola and the deep, resonant sounds of the cello.

The group members also explained how travelling and living in different cities influences their sound and repertoire. Hinrichs, Frey and Newby live in the cities of Chicago, New York City and San Francisco respectively.

“If you’re all in the same place, you’re all meeting the same people [to collaborate with],” Newby said. “So, if you’re in three different cities, you get to meet three different sets of people and experience different things all the time and bring all of those ideas back to the group.”

They also have toured venues from California in the United States to Norway in Europe. Newby explained that has allowed Chartreuse to be more of a project ensemble, opening opportunities for collaborative projects.

Frey added that working with different musicians helps her and the others challenge themselves, such as when they played a piece by their violinist friend Leah Asher.

“So when we were learning her piece, it pushed us to find these sounds that we would not have thought of on our own, just improvising,” Frey said. “It was this cool in-between place where we were creating something to try to get closer to the shapes she had put on the page.”

Photo courtesy of Chartreuse

Why bring them to GS?

GS music professor Martin Gendelman, Ph.D, is the main organizer for “On the Verge.”

Gendelman, who is the head of the Statesboro campus’ music theory and composition area, elaborated on how he decided to invite Chartreuse to GS.

Gendelman met Frey, Hinrichs and Newby in 2015 at a music festival where the trio was performing.

“They’re always programming interesting music by contemporary composers whose music is performed in the major cultural centers here [in America] and in Europe and South America,” Gendelman said, “but not so much in our region [Southeast Georgia].”

For the concert, Chartreuse has four pieces planned. These pieces are Sofia Gubaidulina’s “String Trio”, Marcos Balter’s “Vision Mantra”, Salvatore Sciarrino‘s “Codex purpureus” and the “Cloud Trio (2009)” piece. In terms of classical music, Frey said that all of these composers and their music are relatively well-known.

After the concert, students will be able to discuss Chartreuse’s music with the trio members.

Hinrichs said, “If you have any questions, please ask us after the concert or come talk to us or look at our music.”