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Hyperion Records

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A Busy Riverside Village by Charles Euphrasie Kuwasseg (1833-1904)
Fine Art Photographic Library / Fine Art of Oakham, Rutland, England
Track(s) taken from CDA67180
Recording details: March 2000
Henry Wood Hall, London, United Kingdom
Produced by Andrew Keener
Engineered by Tony Faulkner
Release date: May 2001
Total duration: 10 minutes 48 seconds

‘The best performances of these pieces on disc’ (Gramophone)

‘The performances have all the virtues – clarity, focus, warmth of feeling, superb technique – that have distinguished The Florestan Trio’s discs’ (International Record Review)

‘Anthony Marwood’s high range of colours serves the music’s passions perfectly, and the pianist Susan Tomes is very much an equal partner. Marwood is allowed to sing with rapture’ (The Sunday Times)

‘Recommended, without reservation’ (Fanfare, USA)

'Stylish, full-blooded artistry … matched with impeccable performing' (BBC CD Review)

Romanzen for violin and piano, Op 94
December 1849; originally for oboe and piano; alternative versions for violin or clarinet also published

Nicht schnell  [3'05]
Nicht schnell  [4'03]

Introduction  EnglishFrançaisDeutsch
In the late 1840s Schumann had begun to experiment with various forms of duos for different instruments with piano, as though keen to encourage new areas of domestic music-making. Four such works were composed in the year 1849 alone: in February came not only an Adagio and Allegro for horn and piano, but also a set of Fantasiestücke for clarinet. These were followed in April by a cycle of five Stücke im Volkston (‘Pieces in Popular Style’) for cello; and in December by Three Romances for oboe and piano.

Just as the Adagio and Allegro for horn and piano was published with alternative parts for violin or cello, so the Three Romances appeared with a violin part as a substitute for the oboe. Schumann may have conceived the music for the more melancholy sound of the wind instrument, but it works very well on the violin, and it is worth bearing in mind that one or two of the descending octave leaps in the second piece actually fall below the oboe’s range.

Like the clarinet pieces, the Romances are all in A major or minor. However, their cyclic unity is less in evidence, and they do not offer so strong a contrast in mood or tempo. In fact, all three pieces are played at a similar pace (though the middle section of No 2 is more agitated), so that the cycle gives the impression of unfolding in a single span. Unlike its two companions, the opening piece does not have a clearly demarcated central section. Instead, each phrase appears to grow out of the last, and the music is further bound together by the manner in which it so inextricably weaves together theme and accompaniment.

from notes by Misha Donat © 2001

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