Notes and Editorial Reviews
Piano Trios: No. 1; No. 2
LIVE 809 (54:59) Live: Raiding 12/17/2008
The more popular D-Minor Trio No. 1 is coupled with its companion piece in C-Minor (No. 2) in this excellent recording. The later C-Minor Trio may not be as attractive as its older sibling is, but it remains a very interesting and rewarding piece. Both trios have characteristics that make them almost partners in greatness. I say “almost” because in their slow movements and final movements the D-Minor has the more
Brothers Christoph (piano), Georg (violin), and Florian (cello) Eggner founded their trio in 1997. The Trio’s formative teachers included Guenter Pichler of the Alban Berg Quartet, Juri Smirvov of the Vienna Brahms Trio, and the members of the Altenberg Trio of Vienna. All aspects of the Eggner’s treatment of these trios are exemplary. Phrasing, clarity of line, sensitivity of dynamics, and tone quality leave little to be desired. In 31:3, I posted a review of these trios by the Trio Wanderer. The differences between the Eggner Trio’s approach and that of the Wanderer are mostly found in the string technique and in treatment of the slow movements. For the latter, the Wanderer is more lyrical. But these differences are not so important that I found the musical message of one to be preferable to that of the other. The spontaneity offered by the Eggner’s live performance may be preferable to the Wanderer’s studio version, but I found no telltale differences. The Trio Wanderer has a more appealing string sound.
My benchmark for the D-Minor Trio is the Istomin/Stern/Rose (ISR) performance on a trio-collection set of discs. Isaac Stern was a consummate chamber musician, Leonard Rose a cellist with immaculate tone, and Eugene Istomin an ideal chamber-music pianist. The ISR Trio is unmatched here, but only hearing the same approach to a piece is hearing only, not listening. The Eggner disc is worth having.
FANFARE: Burton Rothleder
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