Monday, July 29, 2013

Beaux Art Trio, George Pieterson
"Brahms, Beethoven: Clarinet Trios" (Vinyl)

Among the catalog of odd chamber music composed, the clarinet trio is a funny bird that has enjoyed attention by two of music's greatest titans. Brahms wrote his trio for the clarinetist Richard Mühlfeld (to which the two sonatas and clarinet quintet are also dedicated) and Beethoven indicated in his score that the two higher voices in his trio could be played either by violin or clarinet, or by a bassoon or cello (respectively.)

Brahms' work benefits from being amongst his late output, emerging from retirement to compose these works for Muhlfeld while Beethoven's work is relatively early in his development.  The imaginative and creative use of instruments seemed to be a trademark of Beethoven's phase as a developing composer. (Think: septet)

The performance here is beautiful.  Bernard Greenhouse and Pressler are as wonderful as in any Beaux Art recording. I am able to learn little about George Pieterson except of his one-time position with the Royal Amsterdam Concertgebouworkest.

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