Piano Trio No.3 in B flat Major, Op.52
Anton Rubinstein's Third Piano Trio was composed in 1857 and premiered in London with the composer at the piano. It was immediately hailed as one of the best of its kind and for next half century held a place in the standard repertoire. It combines a heroic spirit with radiant lyricism. The opening movement, Moderato assai, begins quietly but the bustling piano part builds tension and leads to a dramatic climax with outcries in the string parts. The second theme contrasts with its lyricism. The pensive Adagio which follows has a Russian flavor as Mendelssohn might have imagined it, while the dialogue in the development anticipates Tchaikovsky elegies. A playful Scherzo, full of humor, comes next. Its trio section section features a lilting waltz. The heroic, memorable main theme of the finale, Allegro appassionato, is full of passion and forward drive while the second and third subject are full of majesty.
Anton Rubinstein (1829-1894) was one of those rare concert virtuosi whose contribution to music went far beyond performing. In 1862, he founded the St. Petersburg Conservatory and served as its first director. His efforts in developing Russian musical talent were perhaps the greatest of any single individual. Not only did he introduce European educational methods but he also established standards that were as rigorous as any conservatory in Europe. Rubinstein was a prolific composer writing in nearly every genre. Chamber music figures prominently amongst his works. He wrote 10 string quartets, at least 5 piano trios, a string quintet and a string sextet as well as several instrumental sonatas.
Our edition is the only one with rehearsal letters. Neither professionals or amateurs will be disappointed by this fine work which is sure to triumph in concert.