Piano Concerto No 3 in A minor Op 107 (1829) is dedicated ‘à son Excellence le Prince Talleyrand’, no less (Kalkbrenner was an incorrigible name-dropper). It has the same conventional line-up as No 2, retaining the trombone but adding a piccolo and parting with the timpani. As in Op 85, Kalkbrenner sets out his stall not with themes that lodge in the memory but with motifs that act as springboards for a dizzying succession of constantly varying étude-like passages: rapid repeated notes, lightning arpeggios in thirds and sixths, athletic octaves, and filigree flights to the top of the keyboard and back. The martial nature subsides at 6'52'' into a quieter legato e cantabile solo in 9/8, reminiscent of a Field nocturne. Thus far, the more than eleven minutes of music have been in A minor/C major. After a quasi-cadenza and 360 bars, Kalkbrenner modulates to A major and stays there for the remainder of the movement which ends in a riot of octaves and extended trills, reminiscent of Hummel. A brief recitative section (Maestoso sostenuto) entitled ‘Introduzione del Rondo’ replaces a slow movement. The Rondo itself (Allegro vivace) is as graceful and charming as anything Kalkbrenner penned. It demands a delicate leggiero touch and refined technique to bring it off with the requisite debonair twinkle.
from notes by Jeremy Nicholas © 2012