Four Morceaux for String Trio, Op.5
"Benjamin Godard's Four Morceaux, composed in his youth and published as his Op.5 in 1872 is actually a real string trio. These finely put together charming movements are beautiful and in no way difficult to perform. They are so lovely chamber music players will certainly want to play them. The first movement is entitled Ballad and is a Vivace. Next is an Allegretto entitled Dans le Bois. This is followed by a slow movement, Reve, Andante quasi adagio. The finale, an Allegro is simply entitled, Scherzo."---Wilhelm Altmann, the famous chamber music scholar, writing in his Chamber Music Handbook.
Benjamin Godard (1849-95)was born in Paris. He studied at the Paris Conservatoire composition with Reber and violin with Henri Vieuxtemps. He was somewhat of a prodigy on that instrument, as well as on the viola, and accompanied Vieuxtemps to Germany on concert tours on two occasions. Godard enjoyed chamber music and played in several performing ensembles. This experience stood him good stead when it came to writing effective chamber music compositions. In 1878, Godard was the co-winner with Théodore Dubois, head of the Paris Conservatory, of a musical competition instituted by the city of Paris. He composed music with great facility and from 1878 up to the time until his death Godard composed a surprisingly large number of works, including the opera Jocelyn, from which the famous "Berceuse" has become perhaps his best known work. He also composed several symphonic works, ballets, concertos, overtures and chamber music, including three string quartets and two piano trios.