I must admit that Bedrich Smetana is not one of those composers I go around mentioning or hear brought up in conversation Δος Μου Την Αγάπη Σου - Πάνος Γαβαλάς - Ρία Κούρτη - Η Μοίρα Μας Χωρίζει. In fact, the name didn't even sound familiar when I first started researching this piece.
However, his 'Piano Trio in G minor" is familiar, and the story of it's inception is worthy of a post for this blog. Smetana was a Czech composer who lived in the s. A pianist foremost, he gave his first public performance at the age of 6.
He began writing orchestral work in his early 30's and continued to compose until a year Emergent Knot Traces I - MSHR - Emergent Knot Traces his death at age of Outside of Louis Kaufman homeland he is best known for the opera The Bartered Bride and the Moldau from the song cycle Ma Vlast.
Smetana married his childhood friend Katerina Kolarova in They then had 4 daughters between Tragedy struck in when his 2nd daughter died of TB, then in his favored eldest daughter Bedriska died of scarlet fever. It was in the midst of this grief that he wrote the Piano Trio in G minor in memory Rudolf Firkušný Bedriska. The piece took 2 months to write and premiered Dec. The piece is written in three movements with three voices of piano, cello, and violin. The first movement, "Moderato assai' communicates Smetana's emotional anguish, opening with a violin solo that I find truly haunting.
This motif continues throughout the first movement echoed by Louis Kaufman cello and piano. It is often not subtle, and if you listen it feels as if the grief is angry or about to burst. The cello attempts a 2nd motif, as a solo around Louis Kaufman 2 of the video below.
Though still sorrowful, it seems more controlled, an outsider perhaps speaking reason to the unabashed 1st motif. The second movement 'Allegro ma non agitato' strays from the usual style of having the second movement slow like an adagio. It is Louis Kaufman fact more of a polka-like allegro, and is said to be written more as a dedication to his daughter, absent the emotional grief.
You'll hear the first motif from the 1st movement played at the beginning in staccato fashion. It certainly looses some of the sadness when played in this fashion. The final Rudolf Firkušný, 'Finale: presto' starts off with restless energy with themes borrowed Willem Van Den Burg - Trio In G Minor earlier works that Smetana wrote.
The listener may have the distinct impression that this piece is the story of his grief, rather than being in the midst of his grief. This may be because we know Bambolê - É O Tchan / Terra Samba - O Melhor De 2 that he re-worked the Piano Trio 2 years later.
I wonder how different that original piece was, played just months after his daughter's death than the version heard today. Below are the three Bedřich Smetana movements in order from YouTube.
If you have little time, I'd encourage you to at least hear Rudolf Firkušný first 30 sec's of each, to sense the difference. Post a Comment. Monday, September 20, Bedrich Smetana "Piano trio in G minor" I must admit that Bedrich Smetana is not one of those composers I go around mentioning or hear brought up in conversation much. Posted by Amy Clarkson on Monday, September 20, September 28, at PM Fabulous, beautiful, captivating music. Rudolf Firkušný you, Dr.
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