Piano Trio in B-flat major Op. 34 (score and parts)
Philippe Bartholomé Rüfer
(b. Liège, 7 June 1844 – d. Berlin, 15 September 1919)
Trio for Piano, Violin and Violoncello in B-flat major, Op. 34
I Allegro moderato (p. 2)
II Allegro vivace (p. 16) – Trio (p. 20) – Tempo primo (p. 23)
III Molto adagio (p. 28)
IV Allegro assai (p. 33)
Today the Wallonian composer of German origin Philippe (Philipp) Rüfer who settled down in Berlin is completely unknown. Only his Organ Sonata in G minor can be heard occasionally, and none of his works is available in commercial recordings despite the fact that his music is excellently crafted and is thoroughly rewarding for the listener.
Rüfer’s father Philipp Rüfer was an organist, a talented improviser and piano teacher. Born in Rumpenheim (today a district of Offenbach am Main) he moved to Liège already at a young age and died there in 1891. Philippe Rüfer jr. showed considerable musical talent as a child. When he was six years old he decided to become a musician. Soon he became a fine pianist, acquired the ability to improvise and learned the basics of compositional technique. The eleven-year-old boy knew all the Beethoven symphonies by heart. From 1856 on, he studied in Aachen with Karl Haack, director of the evangelic school. He returned to Liège in 1858 and – while he was still going to school – composed his Sonata for Violin and Piano Op. 1, a string quartet, a Symphony in C minor directly linked to Beethoven’s Fifth, overtures, cantatas and fruther chamber music works. From 1860 on, he studied piano, organ and harmony at the Liège Conservatory. His composition teacher was Étienne Soubre (1813-71), an ex-student of the Cherubini pupil Louis-Joseph Daussoigne-Méhul (1790-1875, nephew and later on adopted son of Étienne-Nicolas Méhul), director of the Société Philharmonique de Bruxelles for a time, and director of the Liège Conservatory from 1862 on. In 1865 Rüfer left the Conservatory with gold medals as pianist and organist, and winning the first prize in composition. He went to Leipzig in 1867 and studied for a short time at the Conservatory with the legendary Spohr pupil Moritz Hauptmann (1792-1868), whereupon Carl Reinecke (1824-1910) recommended him for the post of music director in Essen where Rüfer took over in 1869. In 1871, he settled in Berlin where he taught piano and score reading at the Sternsches Konservatorium until 1872 and at the Kullak’sches Konservatorium from 1872 to 1875. In 1881, the Scharwenka Conservatory was founded, and Rüfer was a faculty member from the beginning. In 1893 this institution merged into the Klindworth-Scharwenka Conservatory that was closed down as late as 1960. Among Rüfer’s noteworthy composition students we should mention: Georgy Catoire (1861-1926), Selmar Janson (1881-1960, pianist & teacher of Earl Wild), Arnulfo Miramontes (Mexico, 1881-1960), Charles Tomlinson Griffes (1884-1920), Georg Bertram (concert pianist, 1884-1941), Constantin Brunck (1884-1964), Otto Besch (1885-1966), Edward Ballantine (1886-1971), Fritz Schedler (1889-1937), Hans Schindler (1889-1974), Fritz Behrend (1889-1972), and ahead of all the others the East Prussian Heinz Tiessen (1887-1971), who should become a leading expressionist composer in Berlin in the 1920s and go down in history as the main teacher of Eduard Erdmann (1896-1958) and Sergiu Celibidache (1912-96).
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225 x 320 mm
Set Score & Parts