Hans Gál & Hans Krása: Complete String Trios
Ensemble Epomeo Avie AV2259****
Hans Gál (1890-1986) and Hans Krása (1899-1944) were both targeted by the Nazis. At the height of his success, Gál was dismissed from the directorship of the Mainz Conservatory and returned to his native Vienna, from where he later fled to Scotland. Prague-born Krása was less fortunate, ending up in the Terezin concentration camp and dying in Auschwitz. The trios by Krása were written in the months before his death. Tanec (Dance) mixes light and dark, the Passacaglia and Fuga shift from sombreness into agitation.
Gál’s 1932 Serenade (a genuflection to Beethoven’s serenades) and 1971 Trio in F sharp minor are much lighter. The Serenade at times doesn’t so much seem neo-classical as an attempt to re-settle in a lost world, and the gravity of the Trio’s opening movement is followed by music in an altogether lighter vein. The performances by members of Ensemble Epomeo are highly persuasive. url.ie/e8oo