The Piano Trio in G Major (K. 564) was completed on October 27. Mozart’s sketches reveal that he had first conceived it as a piano sonata. But the addition of strings in no way makes it sound patched together; on the contrary, they contribute significantly. Mozart had never before given the cello such a beautiful part. From the start, cello and violin support the exposition of the first theme in the piano with sustained notes. The cello then doubles the violin in parallel motion in the repeat of this opening theme, supports the violin with its own countermelody in the exposition of the second theme in the dominant, and, during the recapitulation, it is the cello that reintroduces this second theme in the original key. In the “Andante,” the cello participates in all sections of the theme and variations, whose stripped-down melody is in striking contrast to the richly ornamented cantilenas of the previous trios’ slow movements. But by abandoning the superfluous, this rare scarcity, far from being a weakness, seems rather to show the way to the voluntary simplicity that some contend is the only way to reach true happiness, of which the last, exuberant variation is an illustration. The “Allegretto” that ends the work takes the form of a rondo on a delightful siciliana rhythm.
And with this traditional pastoral metre, often used at Christmas to portray shepherds and angels singing, Amadeus, the “beloved of God,” took his leave of the genre. His stay was brief, but he did not fail to leave his divine, angelic mark.