- Piano Trio No. 1 in D minor, Op. 49
- Piano Trio No. 2 in C minor, Op. 66
The Florestan Trio plays these two gems of the piano chamber music repertoire with superbly flowing movement and energy, so that even though both are in minor keys, there is a sense of vital beauty and radiance to them. Pianist Susan Tomes has a wonderfully light, smooth touch that ripples along in the Scherzos, but has a depth of tone that blends well with Richard Lester's cello. The tone of Anthony Marwood's violin isn't quite as rich, but the sensitivity of each of the musicians to the others and the music makes up for any difference in tone. The three keep the momentum of the music going, even in the Andante movements. They use only the slightest of pauses and ritards for emphasis, where others would use more dramatic and intense gestures. In the first trio alone, they bring out the fairy playfulness of Mendelssohn's "A Midsummer Night's Dream," the singing melodies of his "Songs without Words," and the majesty of his symphonies. The second trio begins more darkly than the first, but the Florestan never is heavyhanded with the storminess and still reveals those more optimistic qualities of Mendelssohn's music. The ensemble work, the music, and a reading that maintains a kinetic liveliness without being forceful in any way, makes these truly pleasing performances.