Movement 1: Con moto agitato – Andante
Movement 2: Allegro con moto
Movement 3: Presto
The opening movement is in five sections, made up of Agitato and Andante material in alternation, with each tonic key presentation of the main Andante idea texturally or dynamically varied. The final unharmonized appearance of this measured theme, coalescing out of tierce de Picardie shadow, is striking. An A major Schubertian Scherzo in 2, with a quaver-motion ‘trio’ in the subdominant, D, comprises the second movement. Its good humour unprepares us for the dramatic contrast of the finale, a study in sonata form calling for consummate pianism to do justice to the storms and stresses of its tidal race. All three movements are linked cyclically by the same descending triadic figure – which, however, Mendelssohn artfully disguises through harmonic change or decorative elaboration.
from notes by Ates Orga © 1998