Hyperion Records

Trio in F
composer
1944

Recordings
'Martinů: Chamber Music' (CDD22039)
Martinů: Chamber Music
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Details
Movement 1: Poco allegretto
Track 4 on CDD22039 CD2 [4'29] 2CDs Dyad (2 for the price of 1) Please, someone, buy me …
Movement 2: Adagio
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Movement 3: Andante – Allegretto scherzando
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Trio in F
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In 1941 Martinu and his wife were forced to flee Paris before the advancing German armies. By way of Aix-en-Provence, Barcelona, Madrid and Lisbon they made their way to New York and for the next seven years remained exiled in America. For much of the time Martinu felt profoundly isolated from his European background but, unlike Bartók, Martinu had a basically optimistic nature which helped to see him through even the worst depressions.

There were periods of considerable happiness, however, especially the holidays spent in New England. In the summer of 1944, after a particularly severe bout of melancholy which produced the third Symphony, the Martinus went to stay at Ridgefield, Connecticut. After a short break doing absolutely nothing—very rare for Martinu—he completed the Trio for flute, cello and piano in the five days between 26 and 31 July. Purged of all his depressions, the Trio, which was commissioned by René le Roy, emerged as a refreshingly effervescent reaffirmation of his Czech roots. After the first performance in February 1945, Virgil Thomson described it as a ‘gem of bright sound and cheerful sentiment’.

Like most of Martinu’s music this Trio is tonal even when the tonality remains fluid. Actually there are only three works—all trios—to which Martinu ascribed key signatures, and this Trio in F is one of them. Its first movement is a buoyant dance-like structure in modified sonata form; the slow movement, a lyrical Adagio in 6/4 time, is in C minor, while the last, which is introduced by a slowish cadenza for the flute, is another dance-orientated movement.

from notes by Kenneth Dommett & Robert Matthew-Walker © 1998

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