About the Arists
Hailed as “entrancing” (BBC Music Magazine) and "artists in the deepest sense of the word" (CutCommon), Merz Trio have established themselves at the forefront of the US chamber music scene, with debuts this season at Carnegie Hall, Amsterdam's Concertgebouw, CM Houston, CM Detroit, MN's Schubert Club, Philadelphia’s CMS, and Music Mountain, among others. Winners of the Naumburg, Concert Artists Guild, Fischoff, and Chesapeake Competitions, they have been lauded for their “stunning virtuosity... fresh and surprising interpretations” (Reading Eagle), and “perfection of intonation and ensemble” (Hudson Review).
Merz Trio are passionately committed to reshaping the narrative of classical music through vibrantly dynamic programming and wide-ranging interdisciplinary collaboration. Their narrative programming style juxtaposes classical standards, new music, and their own arrangements of familiar and forgotten works, fluidly interwoven and guided with speaking from the Trio’s members. Their interdisciplinary collaborations include ongoing projects with directors Emma Jaster and Jon Levin, dancer Caroline Copeland, and Sandglass Puppet Theater.
The Trio are equally known for their immersive integrations of music and text in performance, ranging from their recital-theater piece built around Shakespeare’s Macbeth (“Those Secret Eyes,” 2019), to their concert / album interweaving Ravel’s Trio with short pieces, poems, and diaries of the era (“Ink Spills" / "Ink," 2021), to their presentation of Tchaikovsky's Trio alongside unexpected diary excerpts and a range of works from Jeffrey Mumford to Alma Mahler ("undiluted days," 2022). In their prolific arranging, the Trio are committed to uplifting overlooked voices from history, ranging from Hildegard von Bingen to Lili and Nadia Boulanger, from Joséphine Baker to Irish folk melodies.
From Merz Trio's violinist Brigid Coleridge: "The most thrilling thing about our work is the energetic communities that it has produced. Merz Trio loves to be in community with others. We love talking and getting carried away - in the rehearsal room, on stage, after the concert. We understand what we do as a conversation between ourselves, the composer, our audience, and the changing world we step into each day. Our name, Merz, speaks to this: It’s the term coined by German artist and polymath Kurt Schwitters, who once floor-to-ceiling decorated his parents’ house in Hanover with found objects and insisted that art only occurred in shared spaces. So Merz refers to connection, to sharing, to possibility. And yes, we’re very glad Schwitters didn’t live with us."
Merz Trio have been encouraged in their explorations by numerous institutional homes around the world: New England Conservatory, Yellow Barn, Snape Maltings, Avaloch Farm Institute, the Naumburg Foundation, the Lake Champlain, Olympic, and Chesapeake Music Festivals, and the Fischoff Competition, as well as many other venues and hosts around the US, Australia and the UK. They are currently represented by Concert Artists Guild.
In partnership with Naumburg, the Merz trio will receive a fully subsidized New York Recital (Date TBA), as well as a commissioned work (Composer TBA).