- Piano Trio in B flat major, D. 898 (Op. 99)
- Variations on "Trockne Blumen" for flute & piano in E minor, D. 802 (Op. posth. 160)
Schubert: Piano Trio No. 1; Trockne Blumenby Antje Weithaas
Make a list of the 10 least likely venues for a chamber music festival (or just a concert for that matter) and the setting for the Spannungen: Heimbach Festival would probably still not make the list. This festival takes place in a hydroelectric power plant, with the musicians performing right between two massive turbines. The art nouveau-inspired plant was built in 1904 and offers audiences a rather unique and surprisingly beautiful setting for chamber music concerts; the liner notes unfortunately offer only minimal photographs of the plant, but it's well worthwhile doing a quick online search to see some additional photos. Based on what can be heard in this live recording, the acoustics in the plant may be somewhat questionable. In both pieces, the piano clearly dominates and flourishes in the dry acoustic environment. While the flute's more directed sound still manages to be heard in Schubert's "D. 802 Introduction and Variations," the strings struggle mightily to rise above the piano in his "B flat Piano Trio." When they can be heard, their tone is quite thin and nasal, not at all matching the more rotund color produced by the piano. The performances themselves are adequate and likely much more enjoyable to the live audience, but the unbalanced sound quality fails to capture the depth and ethereal qualities inherent in Schubert's late masterpiece.
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Performance CreditsAntje Weithaas Primary Artist
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