Feininger Trio

Brahms & Zemlinsky, Piano Trios

Price: € 19.95
Format: CD
Label: CAvi
UPC: 4260085534890
Catnr: AVI 8553489
Release date: 09 July 2021
1 CD
✓ in stock
€ 19.95
Catalogue number
AVI 8553489
Release date
09 July 2021

About the album

Zemlinsky‘s relationship to Brahms
Christoph Streuli in conversation with Volker Michael
In its recording cycle, the Feininger Trio is pairing each of the three piano trios written by Brahms with a work by another Viennese composer: Alexander Zemlinsky, Ernst Krenek, and Erich Wolfgang Korngold, respectively. Brahms’s three piano trios are among the genre’s crowning achievements, and the members of the Feininger Trio were interested in exploring how the piano trio genre developed in the master’s wake.

Younger composers drew on Brahms’s legacy while opening a new window to Modernism and the 20th century, and that was the main criterion in choosing the three pairings. Biographical similarities among Korngold, Krenek, and Zemlinsky in their early years also played a major role in the Feininger Trio’s selection. Despite major stylistic differences, a red thread in their the three composers’ lives connects them all with Brahms.

The connection was strong. As Alexander Zemlinsky put it, young composers attempted to outdo one another by writing in a vein as Brahmsian as possible. Young Zemlinsky knew Brahms and enjoyed the older composer’s support. He was not Brahms’s pupil, but Zemlinsky’s early Piano Trio op. 3 has much in common with Brahms.

It is more widely known as a clarinet trio: in 1896, Zemlinsky submitted it to a competition organized by the Vienna Tonkünstlerverein which required a chamber music work “using at least one wind instrument”.

(Excerpts from the booklet’s liner notes by Volker Michael).



In 2005, Adrian Oetiker (pianist) and the Berliner Philharmoniker Christoph Streuli (violinist) and
David Riniker (violoncellist) founded the Feininger Trio.

The patron saint of The Trio, Lyonel Feininger
is also known as a graphic artist designer, painter and the co-founder of The Bauhaus. Feininger‘s
Berlin studio was not far from the rehearsal site of the ensemble in the district of Berlin-Zehlendorf.
The close proximity allowed him to feel closely connected as a personality as well as to his work.

In addition to the stylistic variety, the three musicians embody warmth, expressiveness and sophistication.
They also explore the border areas as part of the basis of their musical interpretations.

From the critics, the Trio is repeatedly highlighted for their wide range of nuances and timbres, but
also „for their expressive and gripping game as well as intoxicating presentation“ (Fono Forum).
In addition to various concert podiums in Berlin, Hamburg, Salzburg, Munich and also smaller concert
cycles, The Feiningers regularly play at the festivals in Baden Baden and Zurich and played their
debut at the „Prague Printemps“ in 2019.

The Feininger Trio has been setting programmatic priorities for several years. Music from Bohemia
in the center of their performances are released on CAvi-music in November 2013. In 2016/2017,
the Feiningers turned to France with the Trios of Debussy and Ravel (May 2017, also on CAvi-music).

In co-production with Deutschlandfunk Kultur, the Feiningers started to record the Brahms cycle:
the three trios of Johannes Brahms are combined with the trios of Zemlinsky, Korngold and Krenek.

A special treat in German-speaking countries is the collaboration between the three musicians and
the actress Katharina Thalbach.


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