Three String Trios, Op.3 Nos.1-3
For 2 Violins & Cello
Opus 3 No.1
Opus 3 No.2
Opus 3 No.3
John Antes (1740-1811) was born in Frederick, Pennsylvania, the second generation of a German Moravian family. He became somewhat of a Renaissance Man and had careers as a violin maker, watchmaker, inventor, missionary, theoretician, businessman and composer. He met and knew Haydn personally. He was educated at the local Moravian Boys School where his talent for precision wood-working led to his being briefly apprenticed as a violin maker He made several instruments, some of which are still in existence. Traveling to Germany in 1765, he worked for four years as a watchmaker. In 1769, he was ordained as a minister and served as a missionary in Egypt. In 1781, ill health forced him to return to Europe and he lived in England for the rest of his life. He wrote a considerable number of compositions, mostly religious works for voice. Just when his three trios for two violins and cello were composed is the subject of some dispute. Most scholars believe they date from sometime between 1770 and 1781.
Haydn's several trios for this instrumental combination probably served as Antes' model. But unlike Haydn's trios, Antes treats the three instruments as equals which was perhaps without parallel for the time, especially since Antes was not writing in the concertante style which was then still prevalent. Of particular note is the fact that the cello does not take the role of basso continuo, but plays a part almost as important as the violins.
We must comment that our sound-bites were made from the only recording which has ever been made of these works. It was done with period instruments which is a pity because Antes' writing was well in advance of the time these trios were written. The period instruments hide their more modern quality, almost making them sound baroque, which they certainly are not. We have performed these works on modern instruments and there is no question that they sound far better this way.
(A) Trio No.1---Parts $16.95 (B) Trio No.1---Parts & Score $19.95 (C) Trio No.2---Parts $16.95 (D) Trio No.2---Parts & Score $19.95 (E) Trio No.3---Parts $14.95 (F) Trio No.3---Parts & Score $17.95 (G) All 3 Trios---Parts Only $33.95 (H) All 3 Trios---Parts & Scores $39.95