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Debussy, Faure, Ravel Piano Trios [Import]

Claude Debussy , Gabriel Faure , Maurice Ravel , Richard Lester , Susan Tomes , Anthony Marwood Audio CD
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Performer: Richard Lester, Susan Tomes, Anthony Marwood
  • Composer: Claude Debussy, Gabriel Faure, Maurice Ravel
  • Audio CD (December 14, 1999)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Hyperion
  • ASIN: B000038I6C
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #221,898 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Piano Trio in D minor, Op. 120: Allegro, ma non troppo
2. Piano Trio in D minor, Op. 120: Andantino
3. Piano Trio in D minor, Op. 120: Allegro vivo
4. Piano Trio, L. 3: Andantino con moto allegro
5. Piano Trio, L. 3: Scherzo; Intermezzo: Moderato con allegro
6. Piano Trio, L. 3: Andante espressivo
7. Piano Trio, L. 3: Finale: Appassionato
8. Piano Trio in A minor: Pantoum (Assez vif)

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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 5 STARS FOR CHRISTMAS November 28, 2010
Format:Audio CD
Honesty is the best policy, so let me say that as a matter of my own personal taste this disc is only a 4-star issue. However I also know that this is a highly subjective sentiment of mine, I am not aware that it is a sentiment felt by anyone else, and indeed the general feeling seems to be unqualified rapture. Under the circumstances I do not think it best to hold out defending my own viewpoint like Horatius at the bridge but rather to say that I can perfectly well understand why this recital is so highly regarded.

These three performances tick all the right boxes, and not just in the sense of getting everything right in matters of technique, taste and comprehension. There is real insight here as well, and the slow movement of the Faure trio is as outstandingly beautiful and as tenderly expressed as I had been led to believe. The outer movements also show a real sense for this composer's aristocratic and ultra-refined idiom, but I shall explain in a moment what it is about them that leaves me very slightly uncomfortable. Debussy's trio is a very early composition and I wonder how many experienced music-lovers would have known who its author was without being told. Myself, I might have guessed Elgar, in the certain knowledge that I must be wrong but having no better clue. In the circumstances it would be absurd to rate this performance in terms of Debussyan idiom as we would normally understand that, but I suppose it deserves full marks as a beautiful, lively and sympathetic rendering of the work such as it is.

The jewel of the recital, for me, is Ravel's celestial trio. Again, here it is done with taste, insight and the extreme delicacy that it deserves, the kind of delicacy with which one might handle a Ming vase.
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Format:Audio CD
This very well recorded disc from 1999 makes an ideal coupling of the three piano trios by Faure, Debussy and Ravel. The Faure is a late work, the Debussy an early work and the Ravel is a masterpiece written at the height of his very considerable skills. As such they make an interesting group.

The disc starts with the Faure trio written in 1923 the year before his death. By this time, Faure had finally been granted the chair of composition in 1896 at the Paris Conservatoire and in 1905 he became the Director of the Conservatoire. During this time he was a controversial figure as he followed his own paths of composition and did not follow the current thinking of the time. In particular he was interested in the detail of composition rather than the overall flow of ideas. Many of his works are therefore less accessible than works written by his contemporaries and this trio is typical of that gulf. However, the Florestan's play with such evident empathy and commitment that the work is able to communicate far more easily than usual.

The Debussy work is the work of a much younger man and dates from 1880. It is a much lighter work written at a time before Debussy had matured as a composer and developed his own style of writing. The early piano trio is essentially designed to give immediate pleasure and that it certainly does here. There is a considerable contrast to be heard between this pice, somewhat akin to 'salon music' of the time and the more complex world of Faure.

The final item is the Ravel Trio from 1914 and here we encounter a true masterpiece with the composer showing off his compositional skills in terms of construction while at the same time providing a deeply rewarding level of musical satisfaction.
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