This duo set unites all of Brahms’ Piano Trios, masterpieces of the genre, in performances of integrity and beauty from the Trio Fontenay.
This recording of Beethoven Trios follows the Van Baerle Trio’s album dedicated to Mendelssohn’s piano trios, and their debut CD, which featured works by Saint-Sa ns, Loevendie and Ravel, received an Edison Award in 2013.
This is a very fine delivery of these dances in their original 4-handed version. As many collectors will be aware, there are quite a few examples of composers initially writing works for the piano in various formats. This might be for solo piano (Ravel’s Alborada or La Valse for example), for two pianos (Rachmaninov’s Symphonic dances for example) or for two pianists at one piano such as here or as in the Brahms Hungarian Dances. In all these cases the original piano version was not written as a practice version for an orchestral version.
Brahms’ Piano Concertos present challenges to even the most seasoned performer, and so it is a testament to the confidence and abilities of the young French pianist, Adam Laloum, having recorded both works together for his Sony debut. Laloum is the recipient of a number of prestigious awards including first prize for the Clara Haskil Piano Competition in 2009 and more recently the Victoire de la Musique Classique (Instrumental Soloist of the Year) in 2017. Adam says about the Second Concerto: “The Second Concerto to me contains […] fantasy, with an extraordinary sense of noblesse and maybe a different type of generosity: it is warmer and more human. Although it is an immense work, sometimes in it [Brahms] talks about simple things and even about humour – always with a lot of tenderness.