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Hyperion Records

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View of the Pavilion at Morysinka (detail) (1834) by Wincenty Kasprzycki (fl1833-1833)
Muzeum Narodowe, Warsaw / Bridgeman Art Library, London
Track(s) taken from CDD22046
Recording details: May 1994
Henry Wood Hall, London, United Kingdom
Produced by John H West
Engineered by John Timperley
Release date: November 2002
Total duration: 36 minutes 52 seconds

'These world premiere recordings of, I am inclined to say masterpieces, are superbly performed and recorded. Seta Tanyel is beautifully balanced with her colleagues bringing all of her tonal translucency and charm to even the most awkward and strenuous moments. I have seldom heard a pianist on such good terms with her instrument' (Gramophone)

Piano Trio No 2 in A minor, Op 45
composer

Allegro non troppo  [12'22]
Adagio  [11'28]
Molto allegro  [4'50]

Introduction  EnglishFrançaisDeutsch
Both the Piano Quartet, Op 37, and the Piano Trio No 2, Op 45, are mature products of Scharwenka’s most prolific period of creativity, dating from between 1876 and 1878. The Monthly Musical Record for April 1878 reports: ‘At the Chamber Concert at the Royal Academy of Music on the 5th March, Herr Scharwenka played his own quartett in F, his co-executants being Herren Peiniger (violin), Holländer (viola), and Van Biene (cello). The quartet was first introduced to an English audience, we believe, by Mr. Dannreuther, at a recent concert at his own house [3 January 1878], and the good impression then and there created by it was strengthened and deepened by a second hearing. It is unquestionably an artistic and effective work, especially as interpreted by the composer himself, who is a brilliant executant, phrasing with neatness and finish, and presenting the ideas of the composition with more than ordinary intelligence and power’.

In both of these works, the piano is given much prominence, and requires a virtuoso performer. The strings, however, are not merely given the job of accompanying, and in many places have to provide the main thematic material against the energetic piano writing. Both works are cast in the traditional four movements and in each instance Scharwenka places a rather extensive slow movement in second place, following with the scherzo movements in third. Whilst the fourth movement of the quartet has some textural similarity to that of the second piano sonata, Op 36, which was composed at about the same time, and in general reflects the influence of German romanticism in Scharwenka’s musical upbringing, the finale of the trio, by contrast, bears distinct evidence of the composer’s Polish character.

from notes by Martin Eastick © 2002

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