A 3-CD series, pairing Beethoven’s original piano trios with arrangements of one of his orchestral works
Vol. 2 Trio No. 6 Op. 70/2 Symphony No. 2: standard vs. “domestic” music
In a series of 3 CDs, the Beethoven Trio Bonn explores the confrontation between one of Beethoven’s standard
works for piano trio with a further “house music” arrangement of one of his orchestral works.
More than providing an interesting pairing, the Beethoven Trio Bonn was keen on interpreting an original work for
piano trio alongside an arrangement of an orchestral work “downsized” to piano trio format. This new concept
delivers surprising, unforeseen results.
Composers and publishers in Beethoven’s day sought to indulge the pleasures of the middle class: dozens of
arrangements and transcriptions of orchestral works were in wide circulation for domestic use. Haydn, Mozart and
many others had always tried to provide access to the wonders of symphonic music for those members of the
population who could not gain entrance to the grand concerts of the upper classes.
Up to the 1930s, music publishers continued to commission composers to arrange and transcribe symphonies
and other orchestral works, in order to make them readily available as chamber music; no composer found the
task too lowly, since such work was a good source of steady income.
Vol. 2 presents the young fresh Symphony No. 2 in Beethoven own trio arrangement coupled with the less known
but definitely beautiful Trio No. 6. It sounds as if the Symphony was a trio in its original form, natural and
favourable. Also in this arrangement, the piano carries the main load of all the orchestral voices. “BTB”, the
Beethoven Trio Bonn is mastering this major challenge again and makes also this Vol. 2 to a little diamond and
enjoyable CD. Thanks to BTB there is a fascinating, committed tempo and clarity, a major portion of musicality
and joy in the performance.