The ALEA Quartet spelled its audience with the premiere of a piece called "Phantasy Quartet" by composer/arranger Gerhard Praesent who had put together four piano pieces from master Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart that fit admirably well. The quartet enjoyed themselves immensly bringing alive this creation to an unheard sound experience. ES/ÖMZ 7/2008 (T)


Gerhard Praesent: "...The
"Sonata regina per S.F." for violin solo - dedicated to his wife Sigrid Praesent and performed by her first-class on her splendid instrument - shows strong relations to the solo-works of Bach with regards to the violin technique (polyphony of the melodic line, chords). The "Sonata al dente" for violoncello and piano (premiere) also proofs to be suitable to the specific possibilities of the cello, the piano acting as partner of equal rights. Notwithstanding it´s inner complexity it is a musically appealing piece.
   After the interval the program went on with the 2nd piano trio by Iván Eröd, an equally intensive and diversified work, performed thrillingly. The closing piece was Praesent´s
"Trio intricato" in three parts (but one mouvement): an intricate composition in details, but with a clear and poignant form striking the audience." (ÖMZ 5/1990-Ingrid Fuchs)(T)

   World Music Festival/Graz: "...of the many composers you could hear from all over the world ... Gerhard Praesent stood out. His "Configurations" for piano and orchestra (premiere) - written in three mouvements - showed clear thematic invention, excellent sounding orchestration and a real message." (Erich Opitz - KTZ 5 Nov.1982)(T)

   "Solo" is a brief exploration of a modern jazz idiom. It feels like improvisation. A successful piece." (PAN, Sept.1989)(O)

   "La Tâche":
"The composers here write lovingly for strings (with Präsent and Iván Eröd, his former teacher, standing out), and the ALEA (quartet) is quick to return the compliment, playing with a focused precision that strikes straight to the music´s emotional core. ...The works all seem inextricable from the very soil that nourished the great string quartet tradition (Ken Smith - "The Strad" 4/1998)(O)

   CD: "...In the quartet "La Tâche" there exists a transparent structure, the untrained listener has melodies for orientation, it is immediately understandable what Praesent intends with his music. ...The selection of the pieces is equally manifold as convincing, all works give proof of the highest compositional abilities and succeed in captivating the listener. [***** for repertory value and interpretation!] ("Music Manual" 1/1998)(T)

   
Concert with quality: "...The deepest impression made the technically very demanding "Rondino" by Gerhard Praesent - teaching at the Graz University of Music - who could be very satisfied with the performances of his wife Sigrid. (Kleine Zeitung/Graz)(T)

"Gerhard Präsent´s
"Toccata" was cast in a modal idiom and exhibited a powerful, almost jazzy rhythmic drive."(Alex Ross- October 14,1996/ New York Times) (O)

                (T) = translation, (O) = original