Piano Trio No.2 in E flat Major, Op.14
"Andreae's Piano Trio No.2 is in four movements. Its big opening Allegro moderato shows a new receptivity and influence from the French impressionists. What is particularly striking is that each of the voices, for great stretches at a time, works quite independently of the others. In the slow movement, Molto adagio, which follows, a dark meditative stillness descends. After the theme is given out, an impressive set of variations follows. A scherzo, Presto, with its tremendous tempo, gives the music a gossamer-like quality. The trio could not be more different, very slow and reflective, it completely washes away the light, nervous mood of the scherzo. This is a highly original and very inventive movement. The expansive and exciting finale, Allegro con brio, is music of movement. The main melody, a hunting theme, is played over a strong rhythm in the piano. The second subject creates a very fine contrast. Like the first trio, this trio is first rate and it is a very great shame it has not taken its place on the concert stage and on the stands of amateurs.---The Chamber Music Journal
Volkmar Andreae (1879-1962) was born in the Swiss capital of Bern. He studied at the Cologne Conservatory under Carl Munzinger and after a short stint at Munich working as an opera coach, he moved to Zurich where he lived for the rest of his life, becoming one of the most important figures on the Swiss musical scene. From 1906 to 1949, he was conductor of the renowned Zurich Tonhalle Orchestra and headed the Zurich Conservatory from 1914 to 1939. He conducted throughout Europe as was regarded as one of the foremost interpreters of Bruckner. In addition to his work as a conductor and teacher, he devoted considerable time to composing. While his works received praise from contemporary critics, like those of so many other modern composers, his works were not given a place in the standard repertoire.
Piano Trio No.2 first appeared in 1908. It has been out of print for the better part of a century and we are pleased to bring it back and hope that both professionals and amateurs will make its acquaintance.