The Trio for piano, violin and cello in G Major K 564, a simple and graceful work, was born in 1788 from a piano sonata to which Mozart added string parts. Its central movement is an Andante theme and variations whose song is passed among the instruments in various combinations.
Three years earlier, the fifteen-year-old Beethoven had already explored the field of the piano quartet, composing three quartets for piano and strings that were not published until after his death. The third and last of these, in C major, demonstrates the extraordinary maturity of the young composer, opening with an energetic Allegro, then moving to a tender Adagio, and finally a lively Rondo-Allegro.
Dvorak’s famous Quintet for piano and strings in A major, Op. 81 contains, hidden within it, an Opus 5 written fifteen years earlier, for the same number of players and in the same key, but which the dissatisfied composer abandoned, revised, then destroyed. The work survived thanks to a friend’s copy, and was published in 1959. It has since earned acclaim and bears the seed of Opus 81 in its melodic outpouring and in the prominence of folkloric material.