QUARTET in A Minor for Violin, Viola, Cello and Piano
TRIO for Violin, Cello and Piano (1921)
PRELUDE, ALLEGRO AND PASTORALE for Clarinet and Viola (1941)
CONNECTIONS for Clarinet, Violin, Viola, Cello and Piano (2001) (Written for the Orion Ensemble)
Composed for Orion in 2001, Connections for clarinet, violin, viola, cello and piano by Chicago-based composer Robert Kritz is a highly original work that sparkles with personalized craftsmanship. Kritz, who spent many years in the corporate world by day while composing into the wee hours of the morning, has been hailed by the Chicago Tribune as “a strong and engaging musical personality.”
The program includes two works by Rebecca Clarke. Dating from 1921, the Trio for violin, cello and piano is a passionate and restless work that recalls the graciousness of Schubert, the relentless nature of Beethoven and the darkly hued musings of Brahms. The greatly melodious Prelude, Allegro and Pastorale for clarinet and viola from 1941 features a prelude of mystical yearnings, a spirited allegro of skillful counterpoint and an equally mesmerizing pastorale of otherworldly charms.
For anyone even remotely familiar with Gustav Mahler’s unmistakable symphonic masterpieces, the restless and brooding Quartet in A minor for violin, viola, cello and piano from 1876 will immediately bring to mind the endlessly expressive musical landscapes of this late Romantic Era master. Mahler composed this individualized chamber music gem toward the end of his first year of study at the Vienna Conservatory, when he was about 16 years old.