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17 February 2017
"(...) Some time during 1937-38 he recorded the Piano Sonata, Op.2 of the wealthy industrialist Robert Forkardt, a grouchily romantic piece that stands up to scrutiny well as does his Paraphrase on Guter Mond. (...)"Music Web International, 25-4-2017
KARLROBERT KREITEN was born on 26 June 1916 in Bonn and grew up in Düsseldorf, where he gave his first public performance at the age of ten in the auditorium that has now become the Tonhalle.
In 1933 he became immediately known to a wider audience: as one of the youngest participants in the Vienna International Piano Competition he was awarded the Silver Badge of Honour; soon thereafter he won the Mendelssohn Prize in Berlin.
After having studied in Cologne and Vienna, Karlrobert was admitted to the class of Claudio Arrau in Berlin, where he studied from 1937 to 1940. Soon he was invited to perform in major concert venues: for instance, he appeared twice with the Berlin Philharmonic. Kreiten’s repertoire extended from Classical and Romantic works to Prokofiev and Stravinsky; audiences and the press hailed him as a piano phenomenon. Claudio Arrau was deeply shaken by his death: more than four decades later, he still pointed out his former pupil’s exceptional artistic rank.
Karlrobert Kreiten is one of the greatest piano talents I ever met. If the Nazi regime had not put him to death, he undoubtedly would have earned his rightful place among the great German pianists of his day. He belonged to the ‘lost generation’ of those who could have taken up the gauntlet of the likes of Kempff and Gieseking. Kreiten possessed an incredible ease; nothing was difficult for him. Moreover, his playing always revealed a profound musical intention. Kreiten was always an artist, never a mere ‘virtuoso’.
To trace the essence of sound with the joy of discovery and open-minded versatility – that is the musical credo of Tobias Koch, one of the most fascinating current performers in the area of historical keyboard instruments. Koch never ceases to surprise his audiences with a series of exceptional projects, featuring an extensive variety of repertoire and a pronounced curiosity for discovering rare historical instruments and unknown musical gems.
A comprehensive musical career as soloist, chamber musician, and vocal accompanist has led him to tour throughout Europe. He appears as a guest artist in leading festivals such as Schleswig-Holstein, Ludwigsburg, Verbier, and the Warsaw Chopin Festival.
Important musical partners include Andreas Staier, Joshua Bell, Steven Isserlis, Concerto Köln, Collegium 1704 Prag, Hofkapelle München, Frieder Bernius with Hofkapelle Stuttgart, the choirs of the broadcasting entities WDR (Cologne) and BR (Munich), and singers such as Dorothee Mields, Jan Kobow, Thomas E. Bauer, and Markus Schäfer, with whom he has been collaborating for many years. Tobias Koch works in tandem with instrument makers and restorers, as well as with some of the most important musical instrument museums;
He is on the faculty of the Robert Schumann Hochschule in Düsseldorf and imparts masterclasses on an international level. A wide range of publications and a great number of broadcast productions for radio and television round out his work in the field of music, along with over 40 CD releases of works ranging from Mozart to Brahms.
Johann Strauss II was an Austrian violinist and composer of many waltzes and operettes. His father, the composer Johann Strauss sr., did not want him to become a musician. As a child, he studied in secret under his father's biggest rival's guidance, Joseph Lanner. Johann Strauss jr. could really focus on a career as a composer once Johnn sr. left the family. His two brothers, Josef and Eduard, were composers two, but Johann jr. was by far the most succesful. This led to an enormous jealousy among the brothers, especially with Eduard. Yet, musically too, Johann jr. was far better equipped then his two brothers. During his lifetime, he was already known as the king of waltzes and the growing popularity of the Viennese waltz is partly due to him as he was able to lift the genre from the regular dance halls to concert stages. He was regarded as one of the most prominent composers of his time, among others by Johannes Brahms who was a personal friend of his. At the age of 73, Strauss II died of pneumonia.
Frédéric Chopin is one of the greatest composers of the Romantic piano tradition. He was a master in making the small form great. His ballades, mazurkas, polonaises, preludes, etudes and nocturnes all belong to the most popular standard works for piano ever written.
As a child prodigy, Chopin grew up in a middle class family, who lived among the literati of Warsaw. When in 1830 the November Uprising broke out in Poland, the twenty year old Chopin stayed in Vienna. He became an exile and never returned to his mother country. He eventually settled in Paris.
He avoided public concerts, but he did like performing in small settings, such as salons and at home for his friends. This way, Chopin built a reputation as an exceptional pianist, teacher and composer.
Chopin brought a unique synthesis between the Viennese bravado and the French/English lyric style. Even though his pieces often are technically very demanding, the focus was always on creating a lyric expression and poetic atmosphere. He invented the instrumental ballade, and brought salongenres to a higher level with his many innovations and refinements.
(...) Some time during 1937-38 he recorded the Piano Sonata, Op.2 of the wealthy industrialist Robert Forkardt, a grouchily romantic piece that stands up to scrutiny well as does his Paraphrase on Guter Mond. (...)
Music Web International, 25-4-2017