Piano Trio No.7 in F Major, Op.167
Heinrich Marschner (1795-1861), rival of Weber and friend of Beethoven and Mendelssohn, was widely regarded as one of the most important composers in Europe from about 1830 until the end of the 19th century. Even today, he is generally acknowledged as the leading composer of German opera between Weber's death and Wagner. Though he considered himself primarily a composer of opera, he did write 7 piano trios and 2 piano quartets. These did not escape the notice of Schumann who praised the piano trios lavishly and for good reason. Marschner did not just toss off these works as an afterthought but clearly devoted considerable time and effort writing them. To each of his works for piano, violin and cello he gave the title "Grand Trio", indicative of the importance he attached to them. In these fine works, one finds all of the emotions prevalent in the romantic movement during the mid-19th century expressed in a fresh, original and captivating manner.
The Seventh Piano Trio is the last in the series of Marschner's Grand Trios. It begins with an energetic and at times dramatic Allegro giusto. Next comes an Andantino, quasi allegretto grazioso which begins with a dancing piano solo. The strings are given a very sweet melody, a kind of lovers' duet. The third movement is a very fine Scherzo, Presto. This chromatic, ghostly galloping music is fresh and captivating; a more relaxed trio completes the picture. The main theme to the Finale, Vivace, is a restatement of the opening theme to the work, but dressed up quite differently. A lyrical second subject follows. The bravura coda is exciting and effective.
Out of print for more than a century, we have reprinted the first and only edition,but we have added rehearsal numbers and corrected mistakes. Players should keep in mind that while this edition is a performance edition and quite readable, as an early 19th century edition, it is not the equal of works type set in the late 19th or 20th centuries.