Albumblatt, the short piece which lasts two minutes was written in 1853 when Brahms was just 20. Musicologist Christopher Hogwood 'stumbled across' the piece as he looked through a music collection in the United States. The piece was originally found by Michael Struck when a book it was hidden within was being prepared for auction and he was asked for verification.
Radio 3 recorded Christopher Hogwood's shortly-to-be-published edition for the first time with the celebrated Hungarian pianist Andras Schiff and, in what will be a broadcast premiere, will play Albumblatt as part of an interview with Christopher Hogwood about the importance of the piece in advance of it being published for the first time by Barenreiter.
The work features the same theme as that in the Trio section of the 2nd movement of Brahms' Horn Trio op.40. However Hogwood, who has edited a forthcoming new edition of the Horn Trio op.40, says the piano piece precedes the Horn Trio by 12 years.
Controller of BBC Radio 3, Roger Wright, commented: "As the home of classical music, BBC Radio 3 is honoured to be the first to broadcast this rare work. I know that our millions of listeners will enjoy this exclusive broadcast premiere. Albumblatt is an incredible discovery which gives a fascinating insight into the workings of this great composer."
Following the broadcast premiere on Radio 3 on the 21st January at 12:15pm, a behind-the-scenes video of the recording will be available on the Radio 3 website from 21st January after the programme transmits.
Music Matters is Radio 3's topical weekend music magazine programme. Presented by Tom Service and Suzy Klein the show covers a wide range of current classical musical topics and debates spanning politics, events, education and interviews with well-known industry names.
(BBC Radio 3 press release issued by Alexandra Heybourne, 13 January 2012)