The Piano Trio No. 7 Op. 97 in B-flat major by Ludwig van Beethoven is a piano trio for piano, violin, and violoncello published in 1811. It is commonly referred to as the Archduke Trio, because it was dedicated to the amateur pianist and composition student of Beethoven, Archduke Rudolph of Austria.
It was written during the "middle" period of Beethoven's compositional career, which spans approximately 1803 until 1814. Composition began in the summer of 1810 and it was completed in March 1811.
The first public performance was given by Beethoven himself, Ignaz Schuppanzigh (violinist) and Josef Linke (cellist) at the Viennese hotel ‘Zum römischen Kaiser’ on 11 April 1814, as his deafness continued to encroach upon his ability as a performer. Of this performance the violinist and composer Ludwig Spohr wrote: "In forte passages the poor deaf man pounded on the keys until the strings jangled and in piano he played so softly that whole groups of notes were omitted." The performance of the piano part in the "Archduke Trio" in 1814 was Beethoven's last performance in the role of pianist.
The work is in four movements:
References in popular culture
The Archduke plays a significant role both in Elizabeth George's mystery A Traitor to Memory (2001); and in Haruki Murakami's novel Kafka on the Shore (2002).