Romanesque for Flute, Viola and Piano
Reynaldo Hahn (1875-1947) today is primarily remembered as a composer of the operetta Ciboulette, but he did devote a fair amount attention to composing chamber music. Born in Venezuela, Hahnís family moved to Paris when he was three. He studied at the Conservatory under Massenet who considered him a genius. Handsome and worldly, Hahn drew his friends from a much wider circle than other musicians, for example Marcel Proust and Sarah Bernhardt, and was greatly interested in the literary scene as well as the theater. Having a gifted voice and being an excellent pianist, Hahn needed no assistant for vocal concert evening. He was also a deft conductor who eventually directed the Paris Opera.
The Romanesque for Flute, Viola and Piano was composed in 1910. The title alludes to an Italian folk dance of that name which was popular in the 16th and 17th centuries. The attractive, yet simple, theme is based on a scale passage which slowly rises and is passed sequentially until all three instruments finally unite, though in octaves, in unison.