Designed as a companion volume to the author's earlier study The Piano Trio, this book surveys the development of the piano quartet and quintet from their relatively modest beginnings in the mid-eighteenth century to the present day. Developments during the first four decades of the nineteenth century resulted not only in Schubert's renowned `Trout' quintet, but also in works of much brillinace by Dussek, Hummel, weber, and others in which the piano
predominates in a concerto-like role. Subsequently, Schubert's epoch-making quintet of 1842 initiated a broadly `symphonic' style, with large-scale structures and closely integrated textures, which was taken up by many later composers, including Brahms, Dvorak, Cesar Franck, Faure, and Elgar. the author also
examinines the numerous changes in the nature of the genres which have occurred in recent times, and gives special consideration to a number of works by leading 20th-century composers, in which `mixed' media are formed by combining wind instruments with the normal strings-and-piano ensemble.
Within his broad historical narrative, Professor Smallman provides descriptive analyses of key works, many with music examples, and also comments perceptively on local trends and developments. his book is likely to be of interest to all those who rae fascinated by this important repertoire - performers, students, and listeners, as well as the general reader.