Trio for Violin, Horn and Piano in d minor, Op.28
“A particularly charming work written in true chamber style is the trio in d minor for piano, violin and horn.” —the critic R.H. Walthew writing in Cobbett’s Cyclopedic Survey of Chamber Music.
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.
Holbrooke’s Trio for Violin, Horn and Piano dates from 1904. Despite the fact that it was very well received at its premiere that year, it had to wait eight years before it saw publication and then by a low budget publisher. The combination is unusual and there are not a great many works for it, the most famous being Brahms’ Op.40 Trio in E flat Major. Perhaps only in the spaciousness of the writing is there any similarity between the two works. Holdbrooke’s ideas, his melodies and harmonies, in no way recall those of Brahms. The opening movement begins with a sizeable slow introduction, Larghetto sostenuto. The main part of the movement is a genial and rather lyrical Allegro con brio. The themes of the middle movement, Adagio non troppo, are noble and dignified while the finale, Molto vivace, is bright and playful, full of excitement.
This Trio is for a combination for which very few works have been written and fewer yet have been of real quality. Here is a work which can be performed on the same program as the Brahms without fear of disparagement. In addition we also offer a few other fine works for this combination: Carl Czerny Trio for Violin, Horn & Piano, Robert Kahn Serenade for Violin, Horn & Piano, Donald Tovey Trio for Violin, Horn & Piano, and Carl Reinecke Trio for Violin, Horn & Piano.It is a top flight work which we cannot recommend enough. Unavailable for decades, we are very pleased to make it available once again.