The Late Works: 79
Site Map
Title graphic: Frank Bridge: A Life in Brief
The Late Works: 80

Mrs Coolidge's support continued the following year with a series of performances of the Piano Trio in America by the same ensemble, and it was to attend these concerts that Bridge made his third visit there. The first American performance was given at Chicago on 13 October during a chamber music festival arranged there by Mrs Coolidge. In contrast to Herbert Hughes's scathing criticism of the first English performance, Henry Prunières, writing sympathetically in the New York Times, showed considerable perception:

The great surprise of the festival came to the auditors in the hearing of Frank Bridge's trio .. The trio reveals incessant planning and continuous aptness in original effects. The composer is full of ingenuity and the spirit of invention. In spite of seeming drawn out in the finale, this trio strikes me as being the most modern and significant of contributions produced for a long time by the English school. The author, who was present, received long applause.8

For Bridge, however, the highlight of the tour, which included a performance at the Colony Club, New York, was the one at Washington on 30 October:

The Brosas' [String Quartet] played a Mozart Quartet very well indeed, then my Trio, and the Debussy Quatuor. Such a lovely hall. Beautiful, simple and restful. Comfortable seating and lighting and a marvellous place for sound. I think it is quite the best of any Halls that I've been in. It was packed. That is to say, every seat was occupied. The 'Trio' received its fifth performance, and, as it happened, the best too. I like it. Thank you. After the concert I ate at the station restaurant with Carl Engel. He went off to N[ew] Y[ork] on a night train and I went back to the Hotel, meeting Pini and Toni [Brosa] outside. We then entered a 'neverclosed' restaurant and drank coffee until nearly 2.0 am and talked - and talked - and TALKED. Mostly about the various propositions that have floated towards them during the last fortnight.9

8 New York Times, 19 October 1930.
9 Letter, Frank Bridge to Marjorie Fass, 1 November 1930.