Dreams and Dances: Chamber Music for the Clarinet by the Krein Family

The Krein family, with its origins in Lithuania, became a musical dynasty of considerable importance in Imperial and then Soviet Russia. The seven sons of its patriarch, Abram Krein, were all musicians, with Alexander and Grigory becoming respected composers, and Grigori’s son, Yulian, adding another generation of Krein compositions. The dances and cantillation of their Jewish background was an important part of their musical make-up, combining at various stages with Russian folk-music, Skryabinesque harmony and French Impressionism. All three shared a predilection for the clarinet, developing a repertoire for the instrument that is only now beginning to be discovered – in what one might call a Krein scene investigation.

Anne Elisabeth Piirainen, clarinet
Iryna Gorkun-Silén, flute (tracks 4–6)
Lea Tuuri, violin (Tracks 1, 2, 9–11, 14–16)
Maria Puusaari, violin (Tracks 1, 2, 9–11)
Jussi Aalto, viola (Tracks 1, 2, 9–11)
Pinja Nuñez, cello (Tracks 1, 2, 9–11, 14–16)
Kirill Kozlovski, piano (Tracks 3–8, 12–16)

Alexander Krein
Esquisses Hebraïques No. 2, Op. 13 for clarinet and string quartet (1910) (10:21)

  1. I. Andante con moto (6:01)
  2. II. Allegro non troppo (4:20)

Grigory Krein

  1. Poème for clarinet and piano (1940)* (6:07)

Yulian Krein
Trio for Flute, Clarinet and Piano (1974) (12:11)

  1. I. Allegro alla breve (3:47)
  2. II. Andante tranquillo, alla breve (4:34)
  3. III. Allegro (3:50)

Grigory Krein
Two Pieces on Yakut Themes for clarinet and piano (1940)* (6:03)

  1. No. 1 Liberamente, quasi cadenza (3:02)
  2. No. 2 Allegro moderato (3:01)

Alexander Krein
Esquisses Hebraïques No. 1, Op. 12 for clarinet and string quartet (1909) (11:16)

  1. I. Lento (4:31)
  2. II. Andante con anima (3:15)
  3. III. Allegro moderato (3:30)

Yulian Krein
Sonata for Clarinet and Piano (1961)* (13:54)

  1. I. Andante (6:37)
  2. II. Allegro (7:17)

Grigory Krein
Quartet for Clarinet, Violin, Cello and Piano (1939-40)* (18:11)

  1. I. Moderato (5:39)
  2. II. Andantino (5:20)
  3. III. Allegretto (7:12)

*First Recordings

1 review for Dreams and Dances: Chamber Music for the Clarinet by the Krein Family

  1. :

    ‘In the TOCCATA CLASSICS album DREAMS AND DANCES clarinetist Anne Elisabeth Piirainen gets the lion’s share of the work in a recording that focuses on the music of the Lithuanian Krein family of musicians, playing with sterling technique and sensitive musicality. A superb group of Finnish musicians plays to perfection the lovely music of the Kreins in this splendid album of chamber music works by a neglected family of gifted composers.’

    &mdashRafael de Acha, All About the Arts

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