This is a delightful programme. Brahms' A minor Trio, composed in 1891, is
a late work, profound yet suffused with an autumnal glow. The mellow tones
of the clarinet and cello blend and contrast, as a friend of Brahms suggested,
"as though the instruments are in love with each other." This intensity of
the Allegro and Adagio is contrasted with the more relaxed material of the
Andantino grazioso with its gently mocking humorous tone and the more bravura
gypsy spirit of the concluding Allegro. This reading is beautifully shaped
and controlled with silken ensemble.
There is a contrasting spring-like freshness about Carl Frühling's lyrical
Trio that is the find of this album; it deserves to be far better
known. It has very appealing melodies particularly in the opening two movements
with the grace and charm of the Viennese waltz informing the second. A more
intense and passionate Andante is followed by a sprightly Allegro vivace.
The mood of enchantment spills over into Schumann's
Märchenerzählungen a work of the world of childhood, full
of whimsical tenderness. One can hear handsome princes romancing beautiful
princesses; gallant soldiers marching to war and, perhaps the child falling
asleep as the stories end - and so, appropriately, the programme's encore
is Schumann's popular Träumerei.