The chamber combination of trombone and piano is unusual and charming. On "Sapphire", Peter Steiner and his pianist partner Constanze Hochwartner give an insight into how this combination can work, thereby exploding the myth of commonly-held preconceptions about what the trombone is capable of. It is not just the instrument that shall sound on the Day of Judgment; it can sing tenderly and sweetly, producing a myriad of timbres that sparkle like a sapphire.
With his trombone, the solo instrument that is rarely featured in the field of classical music, Peter Steiner is at home all over the world. After studying at the Mozarteum and the Juilliard School in New York, the young Austrian not only won three solo instrument competitions staged by the International Trombone Association ITA as the first trombonist ever to achieve the feat; he went on tour round the world, from Brazil via the USA to Japan. In 2017 he got to know the young pianist and organist Constanze Hochwartner, with whom he recorded the album Sapphire in Columbus/Georgia, USA.
The programme of the album combines arrangements of works by Mozart and Puccini with melodies by Bernstein and complements contemporary trombone literature with film music from the movie "The Godfather". Peter Steiner wishes to illustrate how versatile his instrument is, and the sounds he produces are indeed astounding. Soft sounds that range through all the registers alternate with catchy and powerfully mesmerising musical concepts.