The well of Franz Schubert’s genius is deep—amounting to 1,000 opus numbers—and picking favorites is difficult, but for many the most beloved of his chamber works is the Piano Quintet in A Major, known as the “Trout” Quintet. Written in 1819 when Schubert was on a walking tour of western Austria, and first performed in the town of Steyr by a group of fine amateurs, the score captures the air of the Austrian mountains, the rushing streams, the slippery grace of fish eluding the fisherman’s net, and the wit of friends in a tavern after a day’s hike.


On Friday, November 18, at Wesley United Methodist Church in Hadley, MA, and Sunday November 20, at Wistariahurst Museum, in Holyoke, MA, members of the Chamber Music Society at Wistariahurst will perform this masterpiece in the society’s seventh annual “Schubertiad,” an all-Schubert program in the style of the lively musical gatherings of the composer and his friends in 1820s Vienna. The musicians will perform in period costume.

The program includes songs, a duet, and a rarely heard vocal quartet (“Gebet”) performed by Junko Watanabe, soprano, Eileen Ruby, mezzo-soprano, Peter W. Shea, tenor, and David Perkins, baritone.  Edward Rosser, pianist, will perform one of the delicate Moments musicaux. Gary Steigerwalt and Dana Muller, the distinguished piano duo performing for the first time in the series, will play one of Schubert’s grandest four-hand pieces, the Divertissement on French Themes. The “Trout” Quintet will be performed by Monica Jakuc Leverett, piano, Sarah Briggs, violin, Delores Thayer, viola, Wayne Smith, ’cello, and Yasu Suzuki, bass.

This is the second of five programs in the society’s 2011-12 series.  For more information, please go to


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