Piano Trio No.3 in D Major, Op.27
Donald Tovey (1875-1940) was born in the English town of Eton. He studied piano privately and subsequently attended Oxford and the Royal Academy of Music in London where he studied composition with Hubert Parry. He enjoyed a career as a concert performer as well as a composer and served as a Professor of Music for more than 25 years at Edinburgh University. Today he is best remembered for his essays on music, but he regarded himself first and foremost as a composer. Tovey wrote in most genres and his compositions were not only respected but regularly performed in such important venues as London, Vienna and Berlin. But like the works of so many others, it has inexplicably disappeared from the concert stage. He wrote several chamber music works, most dating from the last decade of the 19th century up to the First World War.
Tovey's first two piano trios were early works, Piano Trio No.3 was composed in 1910. The opening Allegro con brio has for its main theme a heroic subject full of drive and confidence. The lovely main subject of the middle movement, Larghetto maestoso, is presented first by the piano and then the strings. It is developed in a rhapsodic fashion. The finale, Allegro energico, non presto, though marked non presto nevertheless is lively and exciting. One can hear that Beethoven is not far from the composer's thoughts in some of the fugal episodes.
An absolutely first rate work which was popular for a short time, but then like so many other fine works from the Romantic era disappeared from the concert stage and the literature. It is a fresh alternative to the often heard "War Horses" and is sure to make a strong impression in the concert hall as well as impressing amateur players. Long out of print, we are pleased to reintroduce it and have added rehearsal letters to the original edition.