Piano Quintet (Elgar)

Piano Quintet (Elgar)

Piano Quintet (Elgar)

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The Quintet in A minor for Piano and String Quartet, Op. 84 is a chamber work by Edward Elgar.

He worked on the Quintet and two other major chamber piecesThe Violin Sonata in E minor, Op. 82 and the String Quartet in E minor, Op. 83. in the summer of 1918 while staying at Brinkwells near Fittleworth in Sussex. W. H. "Billy" Reed considered that all three were ‘influenced by the quiet and peaceful surroundings during that wonderful summer’.

The Quintet was first performed on 21 May 1919, by the pianist William Murdoch, the violinists Albert Sammons and W. H. Reed, the violist Raymond Jeremy and the cellist Felix Salmond. These players included some of the composer's musical confidantes – Reed worked with him on the Violin Concerto and the Third Symphony, and Salmond worked on the Cello Concerto with him. Albert Sammons later made the first complete recording of the Violin Concerto.

The work is dedicated to Ernest Newman, music critic of The Manchester Guardian.

Movements

There are three movements:
  1. Moderato – Allegro
  2. Adagio
  3. Andante – Allegro


In performance, the first movement takes about 14 minutes, the adagio a little under 12, and the last movement a little over 10, making this the longest of Elgar’s chamber works.

His wife's first reaction on hearing the three chamber works was 'E. writing wonderful new music', and more than fifty years later The Gramophone agreed: 'Alice Elgar was quite right: it is a new urgency, pointed and...
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