Hans Gál (1890-1987) was born in one of the suburbs of Vienna and was one of the mostsuccessful composers in Austria and Germany when Hitler came to power.
The Jewish Gál was forced to flee to Britain with his family in 1938, whereupon a meeting with Donald Tovey brought him to Edinburgh, where he became a much-loved figure in his adoptive town.
These three works demonstrate that he never lost his Viennese fondness for melody: his music is predominantly lyrical, within a contrapuntal framework, appealing to head and heart alike.
The Sonata for Cello and Piano, op.89, was composed in 1953 and the two works for solo cello in 1982, the Suite and Sonata, when he was 92, almost the last music he wrote.
Alfia Nakipbekova, cello, is best known as one of the three sisters who form the Bekova Trio. She studied with Mstislav Rostropovich in Moscow but is also an important cultural figure in her native Kazakhstan.
Jakob Fichert, piano, has recorded for Naxos as well as for Toccata Classics: of his CD, with Vicky Yannoula, of Shostakovich's Ninth Symphony, in the first recording of the composer's own version for piano four hands.
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