Piano Trio No.3 in C minor Op.1/3

Composer: Ludwig van Beethoven (b. 1770 - d. 1827)
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Composer: Ludwig van Beethoven (b. 1770 - d. 1827)

Performance date: 07/07/2017

Venue: St. Brendan’s Church

Composition Year: -

Duration: 00:30:38

Recording Engineer: Richard McCullough, RTÉ lyric fm

Instrumentation Category:Trio

Artists: Dénes Várjon - [piano]
Camille Thomas - [cello]

Beethoven came to Vienna in 1792 to
study with Haydn, who remained his teacher until his departure for
England in 1794. Haydn then arranged for him to continue his studies
with Johann Albrechtsburger, a noted teacher of counterpoint. Many of
Beethoven’s exercises survive and they show him as having trouble
with the subtleties of the rules of counterpoint. His teacher
described him as so bent on having his own way that he had to
learn many things through hard experience, which he had refused
earlier to accept through instruction.
He had three lessons a
week from this stern teacher, as well as thrice-weekly violin lessons
from Schuppanzigh. All this instruction left little time for
completing new works, but for 1795 Beethoven had different plans:
This year must determine the complete man – nothing must remain

The works completed in 1795 include the
three piano trios Op.1, the three Op.2 piano sonatas, the String Trio
Op.3, two extended songs including Adelaide and the C major
Piano Concerto. His plan was to publish these works in quick
succession, thus making a determined assault on the Viennese public,
who already knew him as a virtuoso pianist. This was so successful
that Beethoven made enough money from this one venture to live on for
the next year. The set of trios was dedicated to his patron Prince
Lichnowsky, who ordered no fewer than twenty copies.

The grand and elevated style of these
trios is in direct contrast to those of Haydn and Mozart, which are
much more domestic affairs. This was probably the reason for Haydn’s
famous criticism of the C minor Trio. The richness of the texture,
the elegance of the melodies and the urgency of the rhythmic drive
all set these trios apart from what had gone before. Beethoven at
this early stage in his career is already employing specific features
that we associate with the mature composer. He uses lengthy codas to
resolve thematic instabilities; he adds a scherzo to the
traditional three movements; he sets out to explore remote key
relationships and to contrast a wide range of moods; and he always
seems to be looking at the far side of the horizon.