Who ever could have claimed to have been praised by Brahms? Gustav Jenner, the compositional talent before whom even the grumpy Hamburg native took off his hat, penned two fascinating but unknown chamber works being presented here for the first time on CD. The Trio in E flat major for Clarinet, Horn, and Piano and the Clarinet Sonata op. 5 are performed by a trio of the younger generation making its MDG debut on this production: Martin Litschgi (clarinet), Nadja Helble (horn), and Iryna Krasnovska (piano).
Born in Keitum on the German isle of Sylt in 1865, Gustav Jenner spent his school years first in Mülheim an der Ruhr and then, beginning in 1884, in Kiel. He learned to play the piano as a young boy and took additional instruction in composition. A positive response from Brahms (“I stand in full measure at your service”) occasioned Jenner’s move from Kiel to Vienna in February 1888, and he became the only composition student ever accepted by the master.
Jenner’s years in Vienna lasted, with brief interruptions, until 1895, when he applied for the post of academic music director at the University of Marburg. In Jenner Marburg obtained a most highly competent and agile university teacher; he was appointed professor in 1901 and awarded an honorary doctoral degree in 1904.
After his studies at the Basel Academy of Music, the clarinetist Martin Litschgi launched his career as a soloist, which quickly earned him dedications of contemporary solo works by renowned composers. The hornist Nadja Helble received her training at the Freiburg Academy of Music. Her stupendous technique and artistic elegance have enabled her to perform on concert tours throughout Europe, Asia, and America. Iryna Krasnovska early obtained successes at international solo and chamber competitions. In 2001 she began her studies at the Basel Academy of Music. Numerous concerts have brought her together with renowned orchestras for performances as a soloist. In 2004 she was awarded the first prize at the RAHN Music Prize Competition in Zurich.