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Track(s) taken from CDS44351/66

Piano Trio in G minor, Op 8


Leila Josefowicz (violin), Carter Brey (cello), Garrick Ohlsson (piano)
Recording details: July 2000
Performing Arts Center, Purchase College, State University of New York, USA
Produced by Adam Abeshouse
Engineered by Adam Abeshouse
Release date: November 2008
Total duration: 26 minutes 33 seconds

Cover artwork: Frédéric Chopin in concert at the Hotel Lambert, Paris (1840) by Antar Teofil Kwiatowski (1809-1891)
Bibliothèque Polonaise, Paris / Archives Charmet / Bridgeman Images


‘Hyperion's big deal … Ohlsson is a powerful and committed player, and is afforded very good sound by the engineers … this is almost certainly how these pieces were played in Chopin's time’ (The Mail on Sunday)

‘This is an oustanding achievement, which any genuine Chopin lover and student of Romantic music should own … a landmark in the recording of Chopin's music … Garrick Ohlsson and Hyperion deserve the greatest success in bringing this important undertaking to such a consistently impressive conclusion’ (International Record Review)

‘An attractively priced box set … Ohlsson is in a class of his own’ (Pianist)

‘The collaborative works receive particularly rewarding performances … Ohlsson arguably offers more consistent artistry than Biret, Ashkenazy, Magaloff, and Harasiewicz’ (Classics Today)

‘Garrick Ohlsson’s complete survey of everything Chopin wrote for piano (including chamber music, songs, and for piano and orchestra) will delight the completist and the Chopin connoisseur. Ohlsson (who won the Chopin International Piano Competition in 1970) gives us accounts of this wondrous repertoire in weighty and commanding style, aristocratic and impulsive (but not lacking light and shade or contemplative contrasts) and, at times, very sensitive and searching. These vivid recordings were made in the second half of the 1990s and have previously appeared on the Arabesque label. They now sit very well in Hyperion’s catalogue’ (Classical Source)
The Piano Trio in G minor Op 8 was composed in 1828, for private performance at ‘Antonin’, the home of Prince Radziwill. This is Chopin’s only example of writing for the violin, and it shows a surprising lack of flair (in the first movement, for instance, the violinist rarely moves out of first position). It is a genial work in four movements (Allegro con fuoco, Scherzo, Adagio sostenuto and an Allegretto finale) but there is little of the interplay between the three instruments of the kind that makes the trios of Beethoven, Schubert and Hummel such a delight. Chopin seems hampered by the confines of classical procedures, working ideas through dutifully rather than with individuality and imagination, though various commentators have praised the Trio as ‘one of the most perfect and, unfortunately, most neglected of Chopin’s works’ (Charles Willeby) and wondered why ‘so graceful and winning a piece is not more of a staple in the concert hall’ (Emanuel Ax).

from notes by Jeremy Nicholas © 2010

Le Trio avec piano en sol mineur op. 8 fut en 1828 pour une exécution privée à «Antonin», la propriété du prince Radziwill. Il s’agit là du seul exemple d’écriture violonistique de Chopin et il manque singulièrement de style (dans le premier mouvement, par exemple, le violoniste quitte rarement la première position). C’est une œuvre affable, à quatre mouvements (Allegro con fuoco, Scherzo, Adagio sostenuto et un finale Allegretto), mais où l’on retrouve peu de ce jeu entre les trois instruments qui fait tout le charme des trios de Beethoven, de Schubert et de Hummel. Chopin, comme entravé par les limites des procédés classiques, travaille ses idées consciencieusement, sans grande individualité ni imagination; reste que divers commentateurs louèrent ce Trio comme «l’une des œuvres les plus parfaites et, hélas, l’une des plus oubliées de Chopin» (Charles Willeby), se demandant pourquoi une «pièce si charmante et avenante n’occupe pas plus les salles de concert» (Emanuel Ax).

extrait des notes rédigées par Jeremy Nicholas © 2010
Français: Hypérion

Das Klaviertrio in g-Moll op. 8 war 1828 komponiert worden, und zwar für ein privates Konzert in „Antonin“, dem Wohnsitz von Fürst Radziwill. Es ist das einzige Mal, dass Chopin etwas für die Violine geschrieben hat und bei dem er überraschenderweise das Gespür für dieses Instrument vermissen lässt (im ersten Satz z.B. verlässt der Geiger selten die erste Lage). Es ist ein geniales Werk in vier Sätzen (Allegro con fuoco, Scherzo, Adagio sostenuto und ein Finale Allegro), obwohl man kaum eine Interaktion zwischen den drei Instrumenten erkennen kann, wie man sie bei den Trios von Beethoven, Schubert und Hummel mit so großem Vergnügen findet. Chopin scheint sich durch die Vorgaben der klassischen Kompositionsweise eingeengt gefühlt zu haben und bearbeitet seine Themen mehr nach den handwerklichen Regularien als mit persönlicher Note und Fantasie. Trotzdem lobten viele Kritiker das Trio als „eines der vollendetsten und leider am meisten vernachlässigten Werke Chopins“ (Charles Willeby) und wunderten sich, warum „ein so elegantes und attraktives Stück im Konzertsaal keine größere Rolle spielt“ (Emanuel Ax).

aus dem Begleittext von Jeremy Nicholas © 2010
Deutsch: Ludwig Madlener

Other albums featuring this work

Chopin: Chamber Music
CDH55384Download only
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