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The Janáček Trio
Founded in 2001 by pianist Markéta Janáčková, the Janáček Trio made its first public appearance in the same year. Since then the Trio has been representing Czech music in successful concert performances both abroad and in its home country. The Trio is composed of violinist Irena Jakubcová (Czech Philharmonic 1st assistant concertmaster), cellist Jan Keller (Czech Philharmonic member), and Markéta Janáčková (the Trio’s pianist). The Trio assumed the name of the famous Czech composer in 2005 with the agreement of the Leoš Janáček Foundation.
The Janáček Trio’s most prestigious performances include their concert as part of the “Concerts autour de Janáček” in the Opera National-Studio Bastille in Paris; a concert of the Fundación Juan March in Madrid where the Trio was invited as the only Czech ensemble to perform in conclusion of a Czech Music series; the Trio’s appearances in the Prague Premieres series held by the Czech Philharmonic in the Prague’s Rudolfinum Concert Hall; a concert in the Suk Hall of the Rudolfinum as part of the Czech Chamber Music Society where the Trio performed the Piano Trio by Alfred Schnittke at a Czech premiere; participation in the Janáček’s May festival, in the Nocturna of Třeboň festival, the Ludwig van Beethoven’s Festival, to name a few.
The Janáček Trio has also been presented at the MIDEM Music Fair in Cannes, France, where it appeared in the Talent Only series. The Trio made concert tours in Canada, Germany, and Denmark. With the support of the Allianz Insurance Company, the Leoš Janáček Foundation and the Artist’s Life Foundation, the Janáček Trio held a series of chamber music concerts in Prague’s St Lawrence Church, a traditional Prague Spring venue, where it also performed complete works for violin, cello, and piano by Leoš Janáček.
The Trio’s repertoire spans musical styles from baroque to the 21st Century, focusing on the works of Czech composers, and also premiering contemporary Czech music. Thus in February 2007 the Trio premiered Trio Boemo by Zdeněk Lukáš in the Opera National, Paris. In 2008, new compositions were dedicated to the Trio, written by Jiří Gemrot, Ivo Bláha, and Milan Slavický respectively.
The Janáček Trio makes frequent recordings for the Czech Radio, and has cooperated with such orchestral bodies as the Prague Chamber Orchestra and the Moravian Philharmonic Olomouc. In 2006, with the support of the Allianz Insurance Company, the Trio made their first album of the works by Antonín Dvořák, Josef Suk, and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. This successful release paved the way to another recording, this time an album of Alfred Schnittke’s chamber works for Praga Digitals (Harmonia Mundi stores, the French label) which was made to mark the 10-year anniversary of the composer’s death. This album has received high critical acclaim in prestigious international music magazines such as Diapason, Ensemble, Strad, Opus Haute Definition, as well as in local publications such as Hudební rozhledy, and in the Czech Radio program Rondo. The Trio’s most recent album is a digital recording of complete piano trios by the Czech composer Josef Bohuslav Foerster which was released under the Supraphon label in 2012 to positive critical acclaim.
The Janáček Trio also appeared at a concert in the Prague Spring Festival and at a concert marking the 120th anniversary of the Czech Chamber Music Society in the Dvořák Hall of the Rudolfinum in Prague.
Irena Jakubcová (violin): The Czech Philharmonic 1st assistant concertmaster, Irena Jakubcova came from a musical family and performs as a chamber player at concert venues both in her native Czech Republic and abroad. She has been a member of Janáček Trio since 2011.
Jan Keller (violoncello): Czech Philharmonic member Jan Keller is also involved in jazz (Night Optics, Transitus Irregularis, Jana Koubková Quartet). Since 2016 he has also been a member of the chamber orchestra Haydn ensemble. He has been teaching at the Prague Conservatory of Jaroslav Ježek.
Markéta Janáčková (piano): As music director, Markéta Janáčková has been cooperating with the Czech Radio since 2009. As a pianist she performs at concerts and makes recordings for Czech Radio. Her teaching activities include piano instruction at the English International School of Prague