Magazine article Gramophone

Brahms * Schubert: Brahms Piano Trio No 3

Magazine article Gramophone

Brahms * Schubert: Brahms Piano Trio No 3

Article excerpt

Brahms * Schubert

Brahms Piano Trio No 3, Op 101

Schubert Piano Trio No 2, D929

Sitkovetsky Trio

Wigmore Hall Live [M] WHLIVE0070 (69' * DDD)

Recorded live, September 19,2013

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

An impressive opening to Brahms's Trio, Allegro energico as specified. Instrumental balance too is just. But Wu Qian tends to over-pedal the strenuous piano line, and mildly congested sound in this movement further diminishes clarity. The finale, cohesively held together, is of similar standard. Unsuitable tempi, however, compromise the two middle movements. The second is certainly Presto but the qualification non assai is ignored; and the music is hurried. Conversely, the third is too slow for Andante grazioso, more turgid than gracious. Eugene Istomin, Isaac Stern and Leonard Rose or Julius Katchen, Josef Suk and Janos Starker are far better attuned to the work as an entity.

Wu as primus inter pares often rises to the occasion in Brahms but doesn't measure up to the bewildering kaleidoscope of power, poetry and turbulence that characterises Schubert. …

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