Ernst Krenek (1900-1991) was a prolific, stylistic chameleon of a composer, who made 'good enemies' on all sides and remains hard to evaluate. This is a valuable collection of three concertos involving the violin, played with impressive assurance by Peter Rosenberg, who is joined by his brother Gabriel (they were a prize-winning duo) in the Double Concerto Op 124 of 1950, perhaps the most attractively accessible of the three. The compact first concerto Op 29 (1924)…….Peter Grahame Woolf @ musicweb-international.com
The pieces on this CD span the life of the composer from 1939-1985. It expresses a wide range of emotions. There are sombre moments appropriate for the life Ernst Krenek (1900-1991) at times endured. There are moments of triumph, and some bits of humour. Mostly, though, this is quite serious music. My own training is inadequate for a thorough understanding, and so, I am thankful for the notes from Martin Zenck. They are technical with out being pedantic…..Catherine Guelph @ Amazon.com
These five works for chamber orchestra by Ernst Krenek (1900–91) were written between 1931 and 1979 – both before and long after Krenek abandoned Hitler’s Austria for California. They demonstrate that serial music, in capable hands, does not have to abandon the virtues of more conservative idioms: the emotions embraced here range from translucent lyricism, via powerful dramatic utterance, to uneasy existentialist humour.
Ernst Krenek (1900-91) was nothing if not prolific – the Second Organ Concerto, from 1983, is his opus 235. Born in Vienna as the nineteenth-century ended, Krenek’s long life embraced the twentieth as he studied, first, in his home country and then gravitated to Paris and America, becoming a US citizen. Eclectic in style, Krenek is probably best known for his opera Jonny spielt auf (1926) which is jazz-inspired. He also developed an interest in serialism and, as well as composing ……..Colin Anderson @ classicalsource.com
I got this disc a couple of years ago; a recent hearing showed me it had lost none of its power. Ernst Krenek (1900-91) is a pretty obscure figure, but on the evidence of his 2nd Symphony he ought to be better known. The 2nd is an audacious anarcho-symphony. Two huge, sloppy outer movements surround a rather dour scherzo; a sort of anti-structure is created by filling the piece with masses ……..Scott Spires @Amazon.com
Krenek’s Karl V is the kind of opera that can be appreciated on several different levels. (…) Remarkably, it’s the earliest large-scale opera to use the 12-note system, though Krenek triumphantly refutes the notion that adherence to this technique inhibits creativity and emotional power. The composer’s widow has claimed that this performance, recorded in connection with the Beethoven Festival in Bonn last year, is by far the finest she has ever heard. With wonderful singing from David Pittman-Jennings as Karl and superb commitment from conductor Marc Soustrot and his fine orchestra, there is little reason to disagree with this verdict.
”… an outstanding project of landmark proportions…MDG has produced an excellent warm, intimate, life-sized recording. The composer provides his customarily thorough and enlightening notes … Highly recommended.” (Fanfare)
For many, Ernst Krenek, who spanned almost all of the last century, living from 1900 to 1991, is more of a neglected name than a composer to whom they turn for profound, stimulating and beautiful music……..Here is exciting and technically brilliant playing on a new CD that both helps to illustrate Krenek's place in the pantheon. It draws the listener in; it invites them to look more deeply……………Mark Sealey @ Classical.Net