- Piano Quintet in E flat major, Op. 44
- Quintet for piano & strings in A minor, Op. 84
These 2007 live performances of the piano quintets of Schumann and Elgar featuring pianist Lars Vogt are big-boned and muscular with plenty of power and energy, but not a lot of subtlety. Certainly, this is the right approach for Schumann's joyous, early Romantic quintet, and from the rambunctious opening Allegro brilliante through to the vivacious closing fugal Allegro ma non troppo, Vogt and the string players give his chamber music masterpiece everything it asks for. Though there have been many fine recordings of Schumann's quintet, this one can stand with all but the very best of them. However, to use the same approach to Elgar's moody late Romantic quintet is less appropriate. Though there is vigor in the closing Allegro, there is also mystery in the opening Moderato and melancholy in the central Adagio, and these qualities are muted in the ensemble's sometimes pell-mell rush to the double bars. The players are highly skilled and manifestly of one mind about the interpretations, but while their Schumann is well worth hearing and re-hearing, their Elgar must defer to the Allegri Quartet's 1970 stereo EMI recording with John Ogdon or the Nash Ensemble's 1992 digital Hyperion recording. The digital sound here is rich, deep, and detailed.