A native of Copenhagen, Niels Wilhelm Gade (1817–1890) attracted the attention of Mendelssohn, who performed the young composer’s first symphony at a concert given by the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra; and the success of that work led to Gade becoming assistant to Mendelssohn, whom he eventually succeeded as conductor of the orchestra. His Tre Tonestykker
, Op 22, were written in 1851 and published by Breitkopf & Härtel in 1852–3. The first of them, marked Moderato
, is a tuneful, spirited essay in sonata form whose second subject, fugal in character, generates a momentum maintained unflaggingly to the grand final bars.
from notes by Relf Clark © 2008