Trio Cornwall for Violin, Cello and Piano
“Trio Cornwall by the American Texas born composer Julia Smith is in three movements, the opening Allegro giusto is a bouncy melodic piece that is quite appealing. It has the feel of the New England School of composers, i.e. Beach, Foote, Chadwick et.al. A Theme and Variations comes next and has a sort of early American children’s melody as its theme. The variations are ingenious with a blues-like episode and rumba interlude of particular note. The boisterous and playful finale, Allegro quasi rondo, resembles the first movement in spirit although it is punctuated by an occasional moody interlude before concluding with a catchy hoe-down coda. This is a first rate work rate to which professionals should give serious consideration when searching for an 20th Century American work. And by a woman composer to boot."---The Chamber Music Journal
Julia Smith (1911-1989) was born in Denton, Texas. She studied piano and composition first at the University of North Texas, then at the Julliard School of Music and at New York University where she obtained a doctorate. She enjoyed a career as both a concert pianist and a teacher, holding positions at Juilliard and the Hartt School of Music. She is mostly known for her large scale works such as her operas and orchestra pieces. Her style is eclectic combining elements of folk music, jazz and French impressionism. It is traditionally tonal. The Trio Cornwall dates from 1966 and has nothing to do with the English shire of Cornwall, but rather with Cornwall on the Hudson in New York State where the composer first heard bird calls which she used as thematic material for the work, especially in the first movement.