The New Jersey Chamber Music Society's first out-of-state concert, at the Corcoran Gallery yesterday afternoon, included a rousing performance of "Paterson Songs: A Work in Seven Parts," by Loretta Jankowski. Tenor George Shirley was expressive and powerful throughout, balanced with flute, clarinet, violin, cello and piano in settings of William Carlos Williams' poems.
The piece, rich with imagery, included trilling lines that suggested river currents in "Jostled." Listeners enamored of labels might note traces of "minimalism" in the final part, but the hypnotic blend of pulsing tones was not a clumsy borrowing from Philip Glass; it fit well with her personal music.
The concert began with Katherine Hoover's "Lyric Trio" for flute, cello and piano (including Hoover on flute). A playful dance of dissonances in the allegro was followed by a "Serenade," which, although in a modern idiom, reflected an emotive link to the Romantic era.
Brahms' furiously energetic Piano Trio, Op. 87, could hardly have been more beautiful. Bernice Silk's piano, sometimes laying a structural groundwork for dazzling string interplay, at times more prominent, was appropriately explosive. Violinist Masao Kawasaki's tone was exquisitely suited to Brahms. Cellist Gerald Appleman, who had studied with Leonard Rose, played at a level his teacher would have been proud of. Somehow the trio created music even greater than the sum of its considerable parts.