A Pole apart: the remarkable music of Auschwitz survivor Szymon Laks

It is vital to record music that was once suppressed, works by composers who remain marginalised

A mixture of talent, training and luck usually determines a composer's success. But for Jewish composers banned during the Hitler years, the nature and quality of their music generally had little if anything to do with their exclusion. It was the Reich's unhinged 'racial' ideology that defined them as artistically worthless and, in their attempt to participate in a tradition to which they had no right to belong, fraudulent as well. The musical casualties were enormous. Literally hundreds of composers fled Germany, Austria and Nazi-occupied territories, and their exile was usually accompanied by a struggle to re-establish careers in a new and sometimes ..............


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