Symphonic Piano Quartet in g minor, Op.21
“Joseph Holbrooke's Piano Quartet No.1 in g minor, Op.21 started off life as a piano trio. He revised it and it was published in 1905. He titled it Symphonic Quartet No.2 telegraphing that it was a piece which might burst the boundaries of chamber music. It is a grandiose affair. The first movement, Allegro moderato, ma non troppo, opens ominously. One can almost hear an orchestra performing it. The middle movement, Lament, largo e molto espressione, is just that, a lament, clearly based on English folk melody. This is extremely well done. The finale, Maestoso, allegro, again begins in ominous fashion with the strings trumpeting an alert, interspersed by lightening bolt chords from the piano. Finally, the music takes off. It is by turns highly energetic, bordering on the frenetic, but there are also several appealing lyrical sections which provide a fine contrast. This is without doubt one of the very best English piano quartets from the period. It is indeed a first rate work deserving of concert."---The Silvertrust Guide to the Piano Quartet Literature.
Joseph Holbrooke (1878-1958) born near London in the town of Croydon. Both his parents were musicians and his early lessons were with his father. He was sent to the Royal Academy of Music in London and after graduating worked as a pianist and conductor, all the while composing. Eventually his big works for orchestra and chorus and his operas brought him considerable fame, however, after the First World War, he and his works fell into obscurity. He composed a considerable amount of chamber music, most of which is of a high quality and awaits rediscovery.
Unavailable for decades, we are very pleased to make it available once again.