Feininger Trio

Brahms & Korngold, Piano Trios

Price: € 19.95
Format: CD
Label: CAvi
UPC: 4260085535132
Catnr: AVI 8553513
Release date: 23 September 2022
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Label
CAvi
UPC
4260085535132
Catalogue number
AVI 8553513
Release date
23 September 2022
Album
Artist(s)
Composer(s)
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DE

About the album

Korngolds Relationship with Brahms

Volker Michael talked with pianist Adrian Oetiker

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.

…….In certain passages we note his need to call tonality into question: already at age twelve, he must have started to feel that the expressive power of tonality had run its course. He would have no problem, however, with resorting to tonality in his later works. Perhaps due to his youthful naiveté, Korngold was able to scrape at the limits of tonality without having to flesh out the consequences. That is what makes this work fascinating beyond the mere fact that its composer was so young when he wrote it. Korngold viewed himself as a thoroughly modern composer: it was only later that he consciously turned his back on the Second Viennese School.

An important element that differentiates Korngold from Brahms is Korngold’s dramatic, almost operatic manner of handling musical progression: Brahms would never have allowed himself such a dramatic approach. The piano chords in the first movement suggest this, along with a kind of Impressionism in the Larghetto, when the music starts to slip into chromaticism. These are not mere effects: they always occur for an inherent musical reason. The last movement’s exalted mood and the way the work ends have a daring cheekiness about them, which at the same time is profoundly conceived. Korngold does not merely write boldly: he carries out his boldness to its utmost consequences.

The Feininger Trio have been able to craft a unity out of a work such as this one, which sounds so unusual at first, thanks to the fact that the three musicians already know one another quite well. Nevertheless, in their playing, you can still hear how astonished they are in the face of this staggering accomplishment achieved by a twelve-year-old boy. (Excerpt of the booklet notes ater Volker Michael).

Korngolds Beziehung zu Brahms

Volker Michael unterhält sich mit Adrian Oetiker

Das Feininger Trio hat die drei Werke von Johannes Brahms, die er für diese Besetzung geschrieben hat, in seinem Aufnahmezyklus mit jeweils einem Werk einer nächsten Musikergeneration aus Wien kombiniert: Alexander Zemlinsky (1), Ernst Krenek (3) und Erich Wolfgang Korngold (2). Die drei Klaviertrios von Brahms gehören zu den Spitzenwerken dieser Literatur.

…….Deutlich hört man dem Trio Erich Wolfgang Korngolds an, aus welcher Zeit es stammt. Einige Ideen erinnern an Richard Strauss, doch eigentümlich ist die Art, damit umzugehen, diese sozusagen zu konterkarieren oder zu kontrastieren. Zum Beispiel die dissonanten Klavierakkorde im ersten Satz, die abzubrechen scheinen, was gerade aufgebaut wurde. Und nicht erstaunlich ist das Wienerische, was bei Korngold viel leichter erscheint und nichts Morbides hat, wie es dem Walzer bisweilen eigen ist. Es sind sind lokal verortete Gedanken, die er äußert. Was Korngold nicht zuletzt auch mit Brahms verbindet. Denn auch bei dem Wahlwiener finden wir Momente dieses „Parfums“, das plötzlich als „Wiener Charme“ zwischen den Zeilen auftritt. Korngold wird es aufgesogen haben, ohne das Kaffeehaus zu besuchen. Durch seine Begabung besaß er offene Ohren und eine Leichtigkeit, alles aufzunehmen und sich anzueignen und daraus etwas Eigenes zu machen. Und an einigen Stellen schimmert das Bedürfnis durch, die Tonalität in Frage zu stellen, weil schon der 12 Jahre alte Korngold spürte, dass die Ausdruckskraft des Tonalen ausgereizt sein könnte. Später sollte er ja damit keine Probleme mehr haben.

Es war vielleicht die „Unbedarftheit" seines jungen Alters, dass er die Grenzen der Tonalität ankratzen konnte, ohne gleich Konsequenzen daraus ziehen zu müssen. Das macht das Stück besonders faszinierend über die Jugend des Komponisten hinaus. Er hat sich durchaus als modernen Komponisten gesehen; erst später wandte er sich von der Zweiten Wiener Schule bewusst ab. (Auszug aus dem Gespräch im Booklet von Volker Michael).

Artist(s)

FEININGER TRIO

Christoph Streuli, Violin . David Riniker, Cello .Adrian Oetiker, piano

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 recorded the cycle of Brahms Trios,
combined with the trios by Zemlinksy, Korngold and Krenek.

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

Press

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