28 Feb 2019

BEETHOVEN: Triple Concerto in C Op 56

From Music Alive, 8:00 pm on 28 February 2019

Beethoven's charming Concerto for violin, cello and piano soloists, written to highlight the talents of his new student, the Archduke Rudolph of Austria.

This audio is not downloadable due to copyright restrictions.

Performed by Tianwa Yang (violin), Gabriel Schwabe (cello), Nicholas Rimmer (piano), and the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra conducted by Giordano Bellincampi.

Sporting an appropriate t-shirt, our recording engineer Rangi Powick is with the three soloists for Beethoven's Triple Concerto, Tianwa Yang, Nicolas Rimmer, and Gabriel Schwabe

Photo: RNZ/Tim Dodd

With the name "Triple Concerto", you might expect a three-for-the-price-of-one concerto experience, with the violin, cello and piano all happily co-existing as genuine soloists. But Beethoven gives us something slightly different.

When the young Rudolph, Archduke of Austria, turned up among his Viennese pupils, the composer knew he might have struck it lucky. To take advantage of tapping this high ecehelon of European society, Beethoven wrote the young man his very own composition, a piece that made a grand noise and showed off his piano skills, in a sympathetic setting.

To ensure a good first performance, Beethoven called in two of the best players of the day to share the stage with Rudolph — violinist Carl August Seidler and cellist Anton Kraft.

But the Concerto wasn’t performed publicly until five years after it was written – at a summer music festival in Vienna in 1808 with other musicians. According to Beethoven’s friend Schindler, this trio ‘undertook it too lightly’ ... in other words, they made a bit of a botch of it.

Recorded by RNZ Concert in Auckland Town Hall, 28 February 2019
Producer: Tim Dodd; Sound Engineer: Rangi Powick

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