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Fauré: Piano Trio, Piano Quartet / Beaux Arts Trio

Release Date: 04/07/2008 
Label:  Philips   Catalog #: 422350   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Gabriel Fauré
Performer:  Isidore CohenPeter WileyMenahem PresslerKim Kashkashian
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Beaux Arts Trio
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 0 Hours 52 Mins. 

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This CD is reissued by ArkivMusic.

Notes and Editorial Reviews

Quietly touching music that sticks in the mind.

Faure may still not be the best known composer of chamber music, but this issue with two of his major works tells us yet again what a good one he was. The excellent craftsmanship we may take for granted, but although he did not wear his heart on his sleeve there is a real passion in this writing too, as the surging opening movement of the C minor Piano Quartet (written in his early thirties) reminds us. Performers need to convey this while remaining within the bounds of his civilized language, and it seems to me that he is in good hands with the Beaux Arts Trio and Kim Kashkashian. The overall shape and flow of the musical thought is presented clearly and yet no expressive
Read more detail escapes these artists, and an initial movement that can seem discursive never loses urgency here although there is no sense of hurry either. The wry humour of the scherzo is tautly presented too, not least in the trio where dry piano arpeggios neatly set off the strings' more expansive phrases, while in the Adagio we rightly have a deeper mood (although, as always, a little reticent) that suggests romantic young hearts beating vigorously beneath well-tailored nineteenth-century clothing. The finale at once establishes a mood of agitation and mystery, so that this elusive composer seems to pose questions and then leave them unanswered.

The Gramophone Award-winning performance for Hyperion by Domus is also finely expressive, and fleeter too in the scherzo and especially the finale, but I find the new issue still more stylish and compelling. On EMI, Dumay, Lodeon and Collard are much more overtly dramatic than the other ensembles and have been given a full, immediate sound, but ultimately I think they rather overstate Faure's score.

The D minor Piano Trio is a shorter work that Faure completed in 1923, over 40 years later than the Piano Quartet, but although his utterance here is more elliptical it is no less rewarding. Peter Wiley's cello solo at the start is rightly interrogatory, and in some ways it sets the tone for much of what follows, quietly touching music that sticks in the mind.

-- Christopher Headington, Gramophone [6/1990]
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Works on This Recording

Trio for Piano and Strings in D minor, Op. 120 by Gabriel Fauré
Performer:  Isidore Cohen (Violin), Peter Wiley (Cello), Menahem Pressler (Piano)
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Beaux Arts Trio
Period: Romantic 
Written: France 
Date of Recording: 05/1988 
Venue:  The Maltings, Snape, Aldeburgh 
Length: 21 Minutes 16 Secs. 
Notes: Composition written: France (1922 - 1923). 
Quartet for Piano and Strings no 1 in C minor, Op. 15 by Gabriel Fauré
Performer:  Kim Kashkashian (Viola)
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Beaux Arts Trio
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1876-1879; France 
Date of Recording: 05/1988 
Venue:  The Maltings, Snape, Aldeburgh 
Length: 31 Minutes 10 Secs. 

Sound Samples

Piano Quartet No.1 in C minor, Op.15: 1. Allegro molto moderato
Piano Quartet No.1 in C minor, Op.15: 2. Scherzo (Allegro vivo)
Piano Quartet No.1 in C minor, Op.15: 3. Adagio
Piano Quartet No.1 in C minor, Op.15: 4. Allegro molto
Piano Trio in D minor, Op.120: 1. Allegro, ma non troppo
Piano Trio in D minor, Op.120: 2. Andantino
Piano Trio in D minor, Op.120: 3. Allegro vivo

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