Gould Piano Trio


Active: 1987
Country: United Kingdom
The Gould Trio slowly but steadily rose to prominence in its early years with second-tier competition successes at the Holland-based Charles Hennen Competition and the Melbourne Competition. But a meteoric boost came in the 1998-1999 concert season when the group was chosen as British Rising Stars, a citation that gave it name recognition not only in the U.K., but across the globe. From the turn-of-the century era the group has regularly toured the U.K., U.S., Europe, and Asia, and has frequently made recordings for major labels like Naxos and Chandos. The repertory is broad, taking in a huge swath of composers: Mozart, Haydn, Beethoven, Schubert, Schumann, Brahms, Smetana, Bartók, Debussy, Stravinsky, Shostakovich, Messiaen, and an array of British composers, including Stanford, Ireland, MacMillan, Adès, and many others. It has also commissioned many important new works, like Judith Bingham's trio Chapman's Pool.

The Gould Trio was formed in 1987 and the members of the group are violinist Lucy Gould, cellist Alice Neary, and pianist Benjamin Frith. The ensemble often performs with other instrumentalists, including clarinetist Robert Plane, who is married to Gould.

Though the Gould Trio had ample success in its first decade or so, owing to its generally well-received concert performances and the aforementioned competition successes, it remained little known on the international scene.

Following its British Rising Stars citation, it quickly established international credentials with acclaimed appearances at Carnegie Hall in 1999 and across Europe in the ensuing years, including at the Amsterdam Concertgebouw, the Palais des Beaux Arts in Brussels, as well as in various major venues in Paris, Vienna, and other European capitals.

In 1999 the group, abetted by Robert Plane, launched the Corbridge Chamber Music Festival in Northumberland, England. The Gould players have since managed and appeared yearly at this three-day event held every August.

Among the Gould Trio's earliest recordings was a 2002 Naxos CD of the Mendelssohn Trios 1 and 2, which drew lavish international critical acclaim. Meanwhile, the group was quite busy on the concert scene, establishing a seemingly ubiquitous presence at British chamber music festivals, like the Aldeburgh, Bath, Cheltenham, City of London, Edinburgh, Spoleto, and others.

The Gould Trio's 2008-2009 concert schedule included two important appearances at London's Wigmore Hall, the first marking Mendelssohn's bicentenary with performances of his two trios, and the latter celebrating the 100th anniversary of Messiaen's birth with a performance of his masterwork Quartet for the End of Time.