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Trio Pohadka & Friends – Doctors with Instruments

March 15, 2019 March 2019 No Comments

The Greytown Music Group opens its 2019 concert programme at 2pm on Sunday 7 April with Trio Pohadka & Friends, a group of talented doctors and musicians connected by a passion for music, friendship, a genuine mission to present high quality music, and help fight cancer at the same time. The group has been acclaimed by Auckland audiences, and now the Wairarapa has the same opportunity.

Cancer is the leading cause of death in New Zealand, but due to the huge progress in cancer research, survival rates for many cancers have increased, with the University of Auckland Cancer Society Research Centre playing its part in this. The Trio has raised close to $25,000 for the Cancer Society to date, and all proceeds from the Greytown concert will go towards cancer research. Their favourably reviewed CD, By Heart & Soul, will be available for purchase at the concert.

The Trio began its story when pianist and cancer research student, now Doctor, Petr Tomek arrived in NZ from the Czech Republic in 2011 to pursue his PhD in Auckland. He met others with an interest in cancer research and music, and so the group was formed.  “Pohadka” means “fairy tale” in Petr’s native Czech language:  it must seem like a fairy tale to the group that they can get huge enjoyment from playing music together, and raise cancer research funds at the same time.

The others in the Trio are cellist Lisa Chung and clarinettist Ryan Cha. Lisa has a Doctorate in cello performance, has given solo recitals in Korea, Japan and NZ, and teaches cello.  She and Petr were married in 2016 – more of the fairy tale! Ryan, who forsook a musical career for medicine despite winning awards for his clarinet and piano performances, has been a very keen member of the group, travelling round for concerts from Palmerston North, where he is a junior surgeon.

Petr soon recognised that bigger is better, and began inviting other musicians to perform with the Trio – hence the “Friends”.   Violinist HaeWon Kim played in orchestras in the UK, Japan and Spain, and is currently with Orchestra Wellington. She also teaches.   

Ye Li is a final year medical student with a passion for playing the violin, and plays with Auckland Youth Orchestra. Violist Veronica Kim studied in Seoul and Auckland, teaches viola and violin, and is a free-lance  chamber musician. Double bass player John Moon, the youngest of the group, now studies at the Sydney Conservatorium, after winning solo competitions in Auckland.

The group will perform two of the most magnificent romantic chamber works, Schumann’s Piano Quintet in E flat major, and the Clarinet Trio in A minor by Brahms. By way of contrast, they will play Canadian composer Srul Glick’s Old Toronto Klezmer Suite, and an exuberant Klezmer Dance by Romanian composer Serban Nichifor.

Trio Pohadka & Friends – Doctors with Instruments: 2pm on Sunday 7 April at 57 Wood St, Greytown. Admission $25, students $10. For bookings, contact Ed and Juliet Cooke, phone 06 304 9497.

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