ÎLOT AMERICA AMERICA :
During his childhood years, between 1939 and 1942, Steve Reich regularly crossed the USA, to stay with his mother in New York or his father in Los Angeles. He later said of these train journeys: “While the trips were exciting and romantic at the time, I now look back and think that, if I had been in Europe during this period, as a Jew I would have had to ride very different trains.” It was this tragic insight that provided the motivation for Different Trains, a work for string quartet accompanied by the taped first-hand testimony of Holocaust survivors. In Black Angels, George Crumb focused his attention on the Vietnam War, replacing the traditional string quartet by electric string instruments, maracas and crystal glasses. Two inspired works for original quartets.