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Chamber Music 3
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These five works, from three different stages of Hans Gáls long life (18901987), all show his consummate craftsmanship but are otherwise quite different in character. The passionate Piano Quartet (1914), downstream from Brahms and Dvorák, brings the grand gestures of Romanticism into the early twentieth century. The 1935 Sonatina in F major for violin and piano, recently rediscovered, and the three Sonatinas from 1956 put a premium on textural clarity and lyrical approachability; here the contrapuntal ingenuity, ceaseless thematic development, harmonic freedom and rhythmic unpredictability of Gáls language animate the music from within. Newcastle-born pianist Sarah Beth Briggs was a finalist in the BBC Young Musician competition at the age of eleven and studied with Denis Matthews and Edith Fischer. Katalin Kertesz is the leader of the Kertesz Quartet, with which she recently recorded the four string quartets by the nineteenth century Czech composer heinrich Wenzel Veit. Nichola Blakey, viola, enjoys a busy freelance career, giving performances across the UK. Cressida Nash, cello, is a founding member of Musicians South West.
- Product Dimensions : 5.59 x 4.92 x 0.47 inches; 3.53 Ounces
- Manufacturer : Toccata
- Original Release Date : 2018
- Date First Available : March 13, 2018
- Label : Toccata
- ASIN : B079ZS9PGK
- Number of discs : 1
Best Sellers Rank:
#446,471 in CDs & Vinyl (See Top 100 in CDs & Vinyl)
- #20,839 in Chamber Music (CDs & Vinyl)
- Customer Reviews:
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The earliest (and largest) work is the 1914 Piano Quartet in B-flat major. Gál builds on foundations laid by Brahms and Dvorak. The themes are big and broad. Gal manipulates his material in interesting ways, especially harmonically. It's a wonderful encapsulation of the Viennese aesthetic that war would soon sweep away.
In 1934, Hans Gál wrote a Sonatina in F major for his son. This musical present was composed at a time when the Gáls and other Austrian Jews were in extreme danger. Not a hint of that can be found in this music. The sonatina -- written with his son's abilities in mind -- is simple and charming.
The technical demands of the Three Sonatinas for violin and piano, Op. 71 are set quite higher. Gál composed these in 1956 for professional players. The works are quite tonal, but the harmonies pared down from the lushness of the 1914 Piano Quartet.
Violinist Katalin Kertész plays in a clean, understated manner. Her performances give the late sonatinas a somewhat elegiac and wistful quality. Pianist Sarah Beth Briggs matches her restraint, bringing just the right emotional weight to these violin and piano works.
Not so the Piano Quartet. Here the full ensemble embraces the late-Romantic aesthetic. This is the music of big emotion and big gestures, and the musicians dig into it with gusto.