Sunday, July 11, 2021

trios for flute, violin, cello

As the orchestra I joined back in 2017 is now reduced to a maximum of four people showing up to play every week (outdoors, while summer lasts), I have been obsessing about chamber music a bit, to make sure we don't get bored. Following up on the duos for cello and flute, here's a list of a some trios we have enjoyed playing in the last two months. I'm dreaming of scaling this up to reach the Schubert octet one day ...

My nascent collection:

Anonymus (Venice, around 1700): Due sonate a due flauti e basso (in F and C)

Bach: Trio sonata in C minor from the Musical Offering.

Corelli: 2 Chamber sonatas for two violins & BC: op 2 No. 4 in E minor, op 4 No. 9 in Bb major.

Haydn: Four London trios for two flutes or violins and cello Hob IV
Very accessible to amateur players and extremely lovely, these are from Haydn's second visit to London in 1794 and may have served as a sandpit where he tried out ideas for his later symphonic works. I discovered the Edition Peters set of trios 1-3 at Oxfam exactly when I needed it. A bit later I also found a different edition including all four trios from Southern Music that also includes parts for Bb clarinet, viola and bassoon (but has the slightly covid-unfriendly aspect that the two flutes are supposed to read from the same score). Combining these two sets, we could turn the trios into very colourful sextets ...

YouTube recordings (see also my new playlist):

London Trio No. 1
London Trio No. 2
London Trio No. 3
London Trio No. 4

Haydn, Trio No. 4 in F for flute or recorder, violin, cello or piano, op 11 No. 4 (Schott). First published by Hummel in 1770, this is presumably an adaptation of one of the 128 baryton trios, but it’s not No. 4.

Gottfried Keller (died 1704) Trio sonata in Bb for treble recorder/violin, oboe/violin, basso continuo

JB Loeillet, sonata No. 1 G major for two violins & piano

JB Loeillet, Trio sonata in C minor (op. II/6) Parts are marked: alto recorder/flute; oboe/violin; b.c./cello/bassoon/viola da gamba.

JM Sperger (1750-1812), terzetto primo a flauto, violino e violoncello

Carl Stamitz, six trios for two violins and violoncello, op 16

Borrowed sets we used (now returned):

JS Bach, Trio sonata Eb major, BWV 1031
A. Corelli Triosonata in d minor from concerto grosso in c minor op 6 no. 3
Matthew Locke, Suite in G from Tripla concordia
JB Loeillet, trio sonata in F major
JC Pepusch, trio sonata Bb major
JJ Quantz, trio sonata A minor - haven't played these two Quantzes yet, tried a different one though.
JJ Quantz, trio sonata C minor
Telemann triosonata in C minor

It amuses me that these three stellar soloist took time out of their world tours to have a bit of fun with the Haydn trios.

Although at least three of the trios were published in Haydn's lifetime, they fell into oblivion and had a somewhat romantic rediscovery. In 1878, a Berlin antiquarian and manuscript collector died - Haydn's complete autograph of the London trios was found among his belongings and transferred to the Berlin Staatsbibliothek. Published in 1909 on the occasion of the centenary of Haydn's death, they arrived just in time for the last flourishing of Hausmusik before it was wiped out by the advent of broadcasting and recorded music.

Edits and updates:
26.7. added the Corelli (just found at Oxfam)
31.7. ditto for Gottfried Keller
10.8. ditto Anonymus
21.4.2022 added Sperger
5.3.2023 added Stamitz
1.4.2023 added Bach
20.4.2023 added Loeuillet C minor trio.

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