Trio Imàge

Hans Sommer Chamber Music

Format: CD
Label: CAvi
UPC: 4260085533299
Catnr: AVI 8553329
Release date: 20 November 2015
1 CD
Catalogue number
AVI 8553329
Release date
20 November 2015

About the album

Very few people gathered at Braunschweig Central Cementary in early 1922 to bury 'the old man from the Gaussberg district' - Hans Sommer, a composer who died at the age of 84 and had obviously almost passed into oblivion. For decades it remained thus: apart from a monograph published in 1939 and a Braunschweig street christened in his name, only a brief mention of his life and works can be found in the most comprehensive reference works. Since no one makes a fuss over this musical figure, we would assume that he is not worth the trouble. But we start to wonder: why did major German composers of the day make an effort to send their condolences, albeit from afar - luminaries such as Richard Strauss, Hans Pfitzner, Eugen d'Albert or Max von Schillings? We take a closer look and find that a day truly existed when this musician, whose full name was 'Hans Friedrich August Zincken aka. Sommer' - a man of the same generation as Brahms, Dvorak and Tchaikovsky - secured himself an excellent reputation as a composer of Lieder. Several of his ten operas earned him a name all across Europe while, alongside his longtime friend Richard Strauss, he served as Chairman of the Genossenschaft Deutscher Komponisten, which represented the financial interests of a great number of renowned German and Austrian composers around the turn of the century. It is difficult to categorize a man such as Hans Sommer: after having written certain major works for the desk drawer, he stepped into the spotlight as a composer relatively late in an exceptionally long lifespan and only started publishing works on a large scale in the early 1880's, when he was already in his mid-40's. Thus he had to complete with a considerably younger generation of composers born around 1860, major figures such as Gustav Mahler and Richard Strauss. And over the next two or three decades he admirably succeeded in establishing himself as a progressive composer thanks to his Lieder, which are 'immediately prior to Hugo Wolff' in terms of style.


The Trio Imàge created a sensation with its debut recording of the complete piano trios of Argentinian composer Mauricio Kagel. It was awarded the ECHO Klassik prize 2014 as best world premiere recording of the year, it was nominated for the Award of the German Music Critics and it received enthousiastic reviews in the German and the international press. The Trio's remarkable musical qualities had already attracted international attention previously, as attested by a 2011 review in the New York Times, which speaks of their "blazing performance" at a concert in New York. The Trio Imàge appeared in its present format on the musical scene in 2008, with violinist Gergana Gergova, pianist Pavlin Nechev and cellist Thomas Kaufmann, and the young ensemble has lost no time in making a name for itself, performing in Europe, Australia, Asia, and the Americas. The Trio's concerts in Berlin's
famous Philharmonic Hall and Konzerthaus were received with applause and praise by audiences and critics alike. Trio Imàge have also played at reputed festivals, such as the Lockenhaus Kammermusikfest, the Verbier Festival, the Schubertiade, the Teatro del lago, the Varna Summer Festival, the Herrenchiemsee Festspiele, the Chelsea Music Festival New York and the Festival de Mexico. During the 2015 season Trio Imàge is programmed to play concerts in Chile as well as in Germany, Belgium, Ireland, Austria and Bulgaria. The Trio has also won prizes in several major competitions (Schubert und die Musik der Moderne, Joseph Joachim, the chamber music competition of the Commerzbank-Stiftung), and it has been selected
to represent German art in the international cultural programmes of the Goethe Institute. Gergana Gergova and Pavlin Nechev, childhood friends from Bulgaria, and Austrian cellist Thomas Kaufmann share a passion for exploring sound images, making music together and rendering the shimmering diversity of musical works, which inspired them to choose the name 'Imàge'. Professors Eberhard Feltz and Andreas Reiner were a major influence during the Trio's musical studies. The Trio has further benefited from the guidance of Menahem Pressler, Heinrich Schiff, Gabor Takacs-Nagy, Hatto Beyerle, Anner Bylsma, Shmuel Ashkenazy and Ferenc Rados. Today the Trio are themselves active as musical pedagogues, teaching masterclasses in Germany, India, Venezuela, Bulgaria and Chile.



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