Cello Sonata No.2 in e flat minor, Op.83
Robert Fuchs (1847-1927) was born near the Styrian capital of Graz and attended the University of Vienna Conservatory studying with Otto Dessoff and Joseph Hellmesberger. By 1875, he himself was teaching at the Conservatory, eventually rising to the rank of Professor of Composition. He was one of the most famous and revered teachers of his time. Mahler, Sibelius, Hugo Wolf, Franz Schmidt, Alexander Zemlinsky, Franz Schrecker and Richard Heuberger were among his many students. That his compositions did not become better known was largely due to the fact that he did little to promote them, living a quiet life in Vienna and refusing to arrange concerts, even when the opportunity arose, in other cities. He certainly had his admirers, including many famous conductors such as Arthur Nikisch, Felix Weingartner and Hans Richter, who championed his works when they had the opportunity.
The Sonata No.2 for Violoncello and Piano in e flat minor was published in 1907. It looks back to the Vienna of the 1880's and 1890's, genial and lyrical and gives no ground to the developments of the Second Vienna School. In three movements, the work opens with a leisurely but intense Allegro moderato assai. The second movement, Adagio con sentimento, has a valedictory, autumnal mood. The finale, Allegro vivace, could almost be styled a tribute to his friend Johannes Brahms.
This is a powerful sonata, by turns lyrical and impassioned. Another fine substitute for the often played Brahms sonatas. Out of print for nearly a century, we are pleased to make it available once again