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Festival Series 1 — Berners, Reich and Brahms

  • Gesa Power House Theatre 111 North 6th Avenue Walla Walla, WA, 99362 United States (map)

The 2016 Festival Series gets underway with the first performance at the Gesa Power House Theatre. As is our tradition, we begin with the World Premiere of a work commissioned for the occasion, a set of duos for two violins by composer, John Berners. Each piece is a miniature paying homage to the collections of violin duos by Béla Bartók and Luciano Berio respectively.

Next, we encounter an American masterpiece of minimalism by Steve Reich, Different Trains for string quartet and tape. Words become melodies that weave together in sometimes hypnotic repetitions. However, the repetitions change subtly, and Reich creates an emotional documentary of heartbreakingly different journeys by train during the 1940’s in America and Europe.

To bring the performance to a close, WWCMF is delighted to welcome back the Volta Piano Trio for the Brahms Piano Trio in B, Op. 8. Nowhere is the Romanticism of Brahms as optimistic or unbridled as in this early masterpiece. Though Brahms revisited the work later in life to correct the “mistakes” of his 21 year-old self, the youthful exuberance of the work’s origin shines through all the same.

Artists: John Berners, Composer; Jennifer Caine, violin; Timothy Christie, violin/viola; Oksana Ezhokina, piano; Andrew Jennings, violin; Norbert Lewandowski, cello; Christina McGann, violin; Stephen Miahky, violin; Maria Sampen, violin; Sally Singer Tuttle, cello; and Volta Piano Trio.

Doors open at 6:30pm

Festival Series 1 Program

Tonight’s performance has been made possible by the generosity of John Jamison and Kathy Wildermuth.


John Berners (b. 1961)

Duos for Two Violins (2016)

The 2016 WWCMF Commission and World Premiere has been made possible by the generosity of John Jamison and Kathy Wildermuth.


Steve Reich (b. 1936)

Different Trains for string quartet and tape (1988)

   1. America—Before the war

   2. Europe—During the war

   3. After the war


Johannes Brahms (1833-1897)

Piano Trio in B Major, Op. 8 (1889)

   1. Allegro con brio – Tranquillo – In tempo ma sempre sostenuto

   2. Scherzo: Allegro molto – Meno allegro – Tempo primo

   3. Adagio

   4. Finale: Allegro