I have for you today an interesting collection of the complete piano trios by Czech composer Bohuslav Martinu.
Piano Trio No. 1 ‘Cinq pièces brèves’, H. 193
Piano Trio No. 2 in D minor, H327
Bergerettes – Five Pieces for Violin, Cello and Piano
Piano Trio No. 3 in C major, H332
Performed by the Smetana Trio: Jitka Čechová (piano), Jiří Vodička (violin) & Jan Páleníček (cello)
This complete set of Bohuslav Martinů’s piano trios offers a fascinating insight into the constant transformations of his musical style from the early 1930’s to the 1950’s.
The first five-movement trio, Cinq pièces brèves (1930), was written in a very carefree manner. The second trio, Bergerettes, comes across as surprisingly light-hearted, given the time of its composition – in February 1939, a month prior to the Nazi occupation of Czechoslovakia and half a year before the outbreak of World War II …
The last two piano trios, composed in the 1950s, bear all the features of Martinů’s mature musical style.
The recording of the complete Martinů trios was made by the renowned Smetana Trio, who masterfully render all the color shades, from airiness to the broad lyrical cantilena typical of Martinů’s late works.