North East Post
A Voice of the Free Press
Andrew Palmer
Group Editor
1:39 PM 18th February 2023

Classical Music: Haydn Piano Trios Vol 2

Haydn The Complete Piano Trios

Haydn: Piano Trios, Hob XV:8, 19,21,29 and 41
Leonid Gorokhov: For Gaspard

Trio Gaspard
Jonian Ilias Kadesha violin
Vashti Mimosa Hunter cello
Nicholas Rimmer piano

Chandos CHAN 20270

In this, the second volume of Trio Gaspard’s complete recordings of Haydn’s piano trios, they show profundity with a composer that has been central to the Trio since its inception in 2010. Having experimented with programming the group decided to record the trios neither chronologically nor in the groups in which they were first published, opting for an interesting and contrasted ‘programme’ of trios for each volume.

I enjoy listening to Trio Gaspard, the precision and depth of understanding is conveyed through delightful playing where the attention to detail is fluently defined, each nuance superbly crafted. In doing so, Trio Gaspard creates a sound bubble in which the listener can be immersed in performances that demonstrate insight and genius that one has come to expect from musicians of their calibre.

The warmth and brightness of each individual member comes together, coupled with delicate phrasing and a lightness of touch that is seductive.

Trio Gaspard begin volume 2 with Haydn's 1795 Trio No 35 dedicated to Princess Marie Hermenegild, the wife of Prince Nikolaus II of Esterházy. Its brief slow instruction has all three players in unison before they erupt into a vibrant vivace movement. A slower second movement begins with a charming melody on the violin that is then passed to the piano. There is, according to Marc Vignal, a whiff of romanticism inconceivable in the late 1780s but typical of the mid 1790. The Finale, a Presto in 2/4 with its trills in the right hand and horn life effects in the left, summons back the rustic atmosphere of the first movement.

The Trio in G minor is one of fifteen trios that postdate 1790 and once again the articulation and tonal texture is perfect. The phrasing in the beautiful melodic adagio is enchanting the underlying pulse provided by triplet semiquavers captivating.

Trio in G Major No 7 is the only one of the eleven of Haydn's youthful works to comprise four movements rather than three and has an attractive adagio in C.

Trio Gaspard closes the programme with Trio 45 composed in London in 1795 and one of three Bartolozzi trios which, Vignal reminds us, are pianistically speaking Haydn’s most challenging. Not a problem for Nicholas Rimmer whose virtuosity is delivered with style and poise. The confident rhythmical dance of the presto close this volume’s survey of Haydn piano trios

However, as in volume 1, Trio Gaspard has commissioned a contemporary work reflective of the programme. For Gaspard is composed by the cellist-composer Leonid Gorokhov. A five-minute piece that embraces the spirit of Haydn. Gorokhov included little quotations intended to resemble the sharing of a little joke and exchanging of a smile. The first movement ‘Hidden D’ is a play on the popular reference to the Haydn D major Cello Concerto.

A disc of great distinction. Trio Gaspard impresses with crisp playing communicated with beauty; an outstanding addition to the collection and one that conjures up a smile of enjoyment.