String Trio in C Major, Op.2
“I the undersigned hereby testify that I have found the bearer, Mr. Joseph Eybler, a worthy pupil of his famous master Albrechtsberger, a thorough composer, equally skilled in chamber and church styles, very experienced in compositional technique, as well as an excellent organ and piano player—-in short a young musician such as regrettably has few peers.”--- So wrote Mozart in a letter of recommendation for his good friend and student, Joseph Eybler (1765-1846). And Eybler’s reputation and prominence in Vienna were such that the Empress made him Music Master to the Imperial Family in 1801 and in 1804 he was promoted to Vice-Kapellmeister, a position he held until 1824, at which time he succeeded Salieri as Imperial Kapellmeister. He held this post until his death. He was, like most of his contemporaries a prolific composer in most genres, and has leftg a considerable amount of chamber music.
"Brought out in 1798 by the Viennese publisher, Johann Traeg, as ‘Grand Trio,’ the String Trio Op.2 in C Major in five movements is no slight work. It seems fairly obvious that Mozart's own string trio, K.563 served as Eybler’s model. An introductory Adagio begins with a theme played by both viola and cello. This adagio is more than a mere prelude and is complete in and of itself. Further it is used to close the movement after a lengthy, rollicking Allegro written in concertante style, much like K.563. Each voice is given a rather substantial chance to shine and the writing is more ‘violinistic’ Mozart's trio for the two lower voices who are not asked to try and duplicate what the violin has just played before them. The Andante which follows is a well-crafted movement, not in concertante style, with a clever unison pizzicato ending. Next comes a typical Austrian ländler that serves as the main theme to the Menuetto allegro which features three charming and contrasting trios. The first trio is rhythmically similar to the main theme of the minuet and its lovely melody is entirely given over to the cello in its tenor and treble registers. The second trio reverses the rhythm of the minuet with the melody this time being entrusted to the viola. The third trio has the violin playing brisk triplets to the pizzicato accompaniment in the lower voices. This is a very fine movement in the noble tradition of the 18th Century serenade. A short Adagio, in which the violin is tacet, comes next. This somber interlude in the lower two voices is an ingenious ‘palette cleanser’ which provides just enough contrast from the preceding minuet so that the taste of the melodically delicious finale, Rondo, is not lost. It is a bouncing, joyful affair which brings this satisfying work to a close. This trio deserves performance in the concert hall where it will undoubtably bring pleasure to its audience and it should certainly not be missed by any amateur trio party. From an ensemble standpoint, it is far easier to put together than either Mozart’s K.563 or Beethoven’s Op.9 trios. Despite the concertante writing in some of the movements, the technique required of the players is well within the reach of competent amateurs."---The Chamber Music Journal
Our new edition is based on the Diabelli edition of 1825, which in turn was based on the original 1798 edition by Johann Traeg.