Gryphon Trio © Bo Huang

At Special Travel International we are proud to have the Gryphon Trio be part of our Classical Music Travel family. In 2019 we embarked together on a journey on the Rhine, from Amsterdam to Basel, Switzerland. Wonderful performances on board the AmaSerena river boat were paired with truly legendary concerts by the trio – Roman Borys, Annalee Patipatanakoon and Jamie Parker – in the concert hall at Beethoven Haus in Bonn (where the great composer was born), Schloss Engers along the Rhine and St. Peter Church in Zurich.  

Left: Beethovenhaus, Bonn 
Right: From left to right, Roman Borys, Graham Campbell, Jamie Parker, Annalee Patipatanakoon, Gery Valtiner from STI and James Campbell on STI's 2019 Rhine cruise 

The audience got to experience the award-winning trio along with Canadian artists, James and Graham Campbell. Apart from the exquisite musical adventure, we were treated to being able to spend time with these great individual personalities throughout our Rhine journey. Their love for music is matched by their love for travel, sense of humour and interaction with the audience. Some of the pictures attached show them “off duty”, having fun and simply being… well, wonderful, friendly Canadians, eh?  

Left: From front to back, Jamie Parker, Graham Campbell, Annalee Patipatanakoon, James Campbell and Roman Borys on STI's 2019 Rhine cruise 
Right: Rainy day on STI's 2019 Rhine river cruise 

We are thrilled to be travelling with them along the Danube soon. If you have not heard from this great chamber music ensemble yet, here are some of the official “observations” on their career.  

The Gryphon Trio formed in 1993, shortly after meeting as music students at Banff Centre, and has firmly established itself as one of the world’s preeminent piano trios, garnering acclaim and impressing international audiences with its highly refined, dynamic and memorable performances. With a repertoire that ranges from traditional to contemporary and from European classicism to modern-day multimedia, the Gryphons are committed to redefining chamber music for the 21st century.  

Left: Gryphon Trio © James Whittall 
Right: Rhine Gorge, Germany © AmaWaterways  

Creative innovators with an appetite for discovery and new directions, the Gryphon Trio has commissioned over 85 new works, and frequently collaborates on projects that push the boundaries of chamber music. The trio tours regularly throughout North America and Europe, and their 22 recordings are an encyclopedia of works for the genre. Honours include three Juno Awards for Classical Album of the Year – most recently, that of 2019 – and the prestigious 2013 Walter Carsen Prize for Excellence in the Performing Arts from the Canada Council. 

Deeply committed to music education and audience development, the Gryphons conduct master classes and workshops at universities and conservatories, and are artists-in-residence at the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Music and Trinity College. Dr. Jamie Parker is the Rupert E. Edwards Chair in Piano Performance and Annalee Patipatanakoon is Associate Professor of Violin and Head of Strings at the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Music. Since 2010, the trio’s multi-faceted arts creation program Listen Up! has engaged elementary school students, teachers and parents in 16 Canadian communities and provided them with the experience and knowledge required to participate actively in the arts. 

The Gryphon Trio has had a long association with Ottawa Chamberfest, one of the world’s largest chamber music festivals. Cellist Roman Borys served as Artistic and Executive Director from 2007 to 2020 while Ms. Patipatanakoon and Dr. Parker served as Artistic Advisors.  

From left to right: Annalee Patipatanakoon, Roman Borys, Jamie Parker  

When Annalee isn’t playing or teaching, her personal obsession is keeping her much-loved Ganaraskan, Lola, entertained and baking her treats. She also “grows things” in her garden, makes her own all-natural Nutella, and hangs stickers on her patio doors so birds don’t fly into the glass.  

Roman is a burn-the-candle-at-both-ends-and-blowtorch-the-middle kind of guy. Whatever his formal biography says, he does all of it and adds 70 new activities. During his (extremely limited) free moments, Roman is an instructor at a high-performance driving school. This is true. Also true: his latest student is 77 years old and won her lessons at an Ottawa Chamberfest fundraiser. 

King of the comic selfie; Star Trek, craft beer and lucha libre enthusiast; viola skeptic – pianist Jamie Parker spends his free time watching Avengers movies with his beloved family. It might also be said that Jamie frequently forgets sheet music in his hotel room.  

Please check the Gryphon Trio’s website for more information on this wonderful ensemble:  
Join the Gryphon Trio on Special Travel International’s upcoming classical music cruise on the Danube (Sep 27 - Oct 7, 2022):