Ian Wilson: Mais quand elle sourit...

  • Piano trio no. 1 (1993)
  • for violin, violoncello and piano
  • Duration: 14’
  • Instrumentation details:
    contrabass (optional instead of violoncello)
  • Composer: Ian Wilson
  • Dedication: pour ma femme, Judith
  • Commission: Commissioned by the Trio Sonata Concert, France with funds from the Arts Council of Northern Ireland
  • Remarks: Also available in version for violin, double bass and piano

Work introduction

Mais quand elle sourit... began as a musical portrait of my wife, the intention being not to amplify specific characteristics but to take general contours from her personality and life and use these as a source of musical ideas. The resulting single-movement piece is in three main sections: The restless opening finds a resolution in the last part, while the more reflective central section is a song without words based on the poem i am a little church by e. e. cummings. The technical demands are perhaps more obvious in this work than in the others, although the language is straightforward; there is even a hint of Debussy near the end in homage to the French ensemble Trio Sonata Concert, who commissioned the piece.

Ian Wilson

Wilson’s first piano trio is a portrait of his wife; the music intends to delineate her personality and her life in music. It is divided into three parts; the middle one is a song without words, based on the poem “I am a little church” by e. e. cummings (1894-1962). Towards the end of the composition there is a short homage to Debussy – a thank-you to the French ensemble Trio Sonata Concert, which commissioned the piece.

World première

Salle Cortot, Paris (FR)
Trio Sonata Concert

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