Having mentioned Vierne's unfairly ignored piano quintet in Andruini's thread on Vierne, I thought it might be interesting to see what piano quintets people here particularly enjoy. (By piano quintet I mean pieces for piano and string quartet, not pieces for five pianos ). The ensemble, largely invented by Luigi Boccherini, who composed a dozen of them (way more than any other composer known to me), seems to invite composers to make especially grand gestures, allowing both the conversational feel of the string quartet and the expansive emotionality of much larger works.
1) Anton Rubinstein, Op. 99, g minor
2) Johannes Brahms, Op. 34, f minor
3) Louis Vierne, Op. 42, c minor
4) Edward Elgar, Op. 84, a minor
5) Antonin Dvorak, Op. 81, A Major (whew! At last a major key quintet)
6) Dmitri Shostakovitch, Op. 57, g minor
7) Cesar Franck, f minor
8) Franz Schubert, Op. 114, 'Trout,' A Major (with a double bass in lieu of a second violin)
Great idea.. The Piano Quintet is a format I've always found fascinating.. Not only because of the possibilities it offers, but also for the intense musicianship it takes to assemble it correctly..
I haven't heard Vierne's but you peaked my interest!
1) Dvorak A Major, Op. 81
2) Schubert Trout Quintet, Op. 114
3) Brahms F minor, Op. 34
4) Borodin C minor
5) Martinu No. 2
6) Shostakovich G minor, Op. 57
that's all i can get off the top of my head.. I've yet to hear the Rubinstein, Elgar, Franck, Fauré(s), Sibelius, etc. etc.
I cannot believe I have never listened to the Dvorak piano quintet until yesterday! I recognized most of the melodies, even though I had no idea they were from this quintet... has it been used frequently in other media?
- Alfonso Rendano
- P.A. Heise
- Reynaldo Hahn
- Atterberg (based on his 6th Symphony)
- Boris Tchaikovsky
- Mendelssohn (as far as I remember)
Should I choose one, the Schnittke is of course the most different from the above-mentioned quintets - and a moving and profound one, like the somewhat Beethovenian Rochberg, very spectacular though sometimes a bit static. I don´t remember the Henze. I have a special fondness of the Franck (with Bernathova or Richter), the Faures and the Shostakovich, Schumann and Brahms quintets. Haven´t heard any of the Martinus, worth investigating, given - for example - his spectacular 2nd Cello Sonata.
As regards the lesser-known italian quintets, the Martucci is a very good work, whereas the Rendano and Respighi are less memorable.
I too am no expert on this genre, but here are some that I know & have enjoyed:
Granados - very light, a mix of French salon, Spanish, Moorish (& even Hungarian?) styles Walton - an early work, the piano has a driving, Bartok like edge, while the strings remind one of the world of Debussy, Ravel & early Vaughan Williams Schnittke- no need to introduce this masterpiece. For me, it's like a fragile ornament that has shattered into a thousand pieces. Schubert 'Trout' - again, needs no introduction. Saw it performed live earlier this year, and it made me realise how much repetition happens in this work, almost as much as (say) in a Bruckner symphony, but obviously in a slightly different way. Brahms (forget which one) - the Hungarian ending is the most memorable aspect to this marvellous music...