Romania gave the world four great pianists in the Twentieth century. All four – as it happens - were exiles: Clara Haskill1
, the legendary Dinu Lipatti2
, who died aged only 33, Mindru Katz3
, who rose to prominence in the late '50s, and Radu Lupu4
, winner of the Van Cliburn and Leeds International Piano Competitions.
Of the four, Mindru Katz is generally less known and hardly known at all in Romania, the country in which he was born, and in which he spent all his years of musical study.
heard him play at the age of eight and recommended early admittance to the Royal Academy of Music in Bucharest to study with Florica Musicescu6
Under the war-time racial laws, he was excluded from the Academy but exonerated from labour duties following Enescu’s and Florica Musicescu, his piano teacher’s intercession. He continued his studies at a private music school for Jewish students, only to be reinstated at the Academy in 1944.
In 1947 Katz had his first concert as a soloist of the National Orchestra under the baton of George Georgescu7
, playing Tchaikovsky's piano concerto no. 1.
In the same year, at the age of 22, Katz became the principal soloist of the Romania’s National Orchestra (nowadays The George Enescu Philharmonic Orchestra in Bucharest).
This is the pianist who was to become a non-person in his country, because - prompted by circumstances - he chose freedom.
In the sparse biographical notes available (to a Romanian reader) Mindru Katz is described as an Israeli pianist, born in 1925 in Bucharest, who “emigrated to Israel in 1959.” To find out how he left the country and how he ended up in Israel one must consult three types of files (National tracking file, Prosecution Dossier and Personal file) opened by the communist secret police, the Securitate, and now preserved by the National Council for the Study of the Securitate Archives (C.N.S.A.S.).
The “national tracking file” (I no. 400687) recorded that at the end of May 1959, Mindru Katz, who had just toured London,
”refused to return home and applied for political asylum.”8
Photography from File I 400687
Katz had notified in writing the Romanian Legation, the Ministry of Culture in Bucharest and the Office for artistic visits and performances (OSTA), a state office acting as impresario for Romanian artists, that he was not returning to Romania. The main reason Katz gave was his great love for a young lady, who “sadly, refused” to join him in Romania, that had caused him – as he wrote – “a serious ethical problem.”9
Katz did not complain about life in Romania or the political regime. He stressed he “would do his utmost” not to attract public attention to his decision, and - as he put it
”that it should not be perceived as hurtful or diminishing the Romanian People's Republic10 political prestige.”
He warned the authorities, however, to take into consideration that “his intense artistic effort” made to reach national and international recognition “as a representative of interpretational art in RPR," should be seen as a sign of gratitude for "the support received" in the development of his musical skills. For him, - he wrote –
"disseminating Romanian music has been and remains an artistic aim and an honour."
Moreover, Katz added with subtle irony:
"I hope I will be understood, no abusive label will be attached to me, and that my attitude will not be malevolently interpreted: only an enemy of freedom and the popular-democratic regime could do such a thing.”11
It is through a letter dated 28 May 1959 that the pianist informed his parents about "the serious decision"12
he had taken based on – as he wrote – "this new, strong feeling, unsurpassed by anything" which made him renounce "a peaceful, safe and plentiful life, honours13
and the appreciation of friends, all those who had privately or officially helped me.” He continued in his letter:
“if fate had wanted her not to refuse to follow me in Romania, perhaps you could have been happy, as well, and could have shared in our happiness.”
It is touching that Katz did not forget to mention in his letter his much-loved piano teacher, Florica Musicescu,
“that wonderful human being and unique teacher to whom I owe more than to anybody in this world.”14
Photography from File R 416376
Katz realised that his decision would cause problems for his parents: "I know what a blow this is for you", that the authorities would bother them with investigations, and – more seriously – would do anything legally or illegally, to prevent them from seeing their son again:
“At this moment in time I do not dare to wonder how, when, and whether we would see each other again. Let’s hope.”
A note by Securitate15
Lt. Gheorghe Cernat pre-dating the pianist’s defection recorded that Katz had complained to a friend that, before leaving on tour abroad he had been given his passport and an exit visa "only twenty minutes before take-off."
The same note recorded that the pianist had been most unhappy with the terms he was offered when touring abroad. The terms are spelled out in a copy of the contract between Mindru Katz and the state office OSTA for his 1958 series of concerts. Amongst other duties, the artist had to pay in advance the fees for getting a visa, the cost of the flight, the cost of his "upkeep" during the tour, "the 15% impresario rate of all the gross fees earned from concerts/recordings/radio and TV broadcasts, etc."16
Lt. Cernat concluded:
"seizing the opportunity of a tour abroad Mindru Katz might be tempted not to return home; if he does not do it, it is only because he fears the consequences awaiting his parents, for whom he claimed to harbour the warmest feelings."17
The pianist had also shown signs of discontent while performing in London in 1957. In a report marked "confidential"18
sent on 25 April to the Deputy Foreign Minister T. Rudenko, the Romanian Minister in London N. Korchinski mentioned that Katz was unhappy that the Legation forbade him to have contacts with impresarios and important people in the musical world. This is what he reported:
“”The theory” advanced by comrade Katz, (...) is that it should be left to him to establish connections without the interference or the presence of the Legation, as the Legation can only hinder the development of contacts. Our attempts to persuade comrade Katz that his very presence in London contradicted his assertion, and that his recital at the Legation was the best proof that distinguished representatives from the English music world – with various political views – maintained contacts with the Legation, and therefore he should not try to establish connections with people who do not want to hear about the Legation as we do not want to have contacts with such people – these attempts were rejected by comrade Katz.”
The report refers to the journalist Miron Grindea19
who came to England in the late '30s and had useful contacts with British art circles. This is what the Minister had to say:
"We were not able to find out how Grindea got in touch with comrade Katz and how he knew the name of the hotel he was staying in; the fact is that before leaving for Iceland comrade Katz was visited at the hotel by Grindea who invited by him to his home. After his return from Iceland, we tried as much as possible to set up various programmes for comrade Katz to keep him away from Grindea. We succeeded only to a certain extent because comrade Katz sometimes found more or less plausible excuses to turn down our invitations, at the same time accepting Grindea’s invites (...). We noticed the method used by Grindea towards comrade Katz partly recalled the one he had used towards Silvestri.”20
Constantin Silvestri, Romania’s greatest conductor of the post-war generation, unhappy with the ideological and bureaucratic constraints imposed by the communist regime, had defected to England in 1958.
Given this sort of reporting by the Romanian Legation in London, it is not surprising that the pianist found it more difficult to obtain exit visas.
Besides, several Securitate notes record another so-called "incident" seen as an infringement of the rules. Here is one of the notes by an agent called "David", dated the 18th of December 195821
"The last time he travelled to Paris22, the pianist Mindru Katz also took with him letters from different persons living in Romania to be handed to their acquaintances in France and England. Mindru Katz managed to deliver the letters in France but was not able to take the mail for England as his luggage was transported from Paris to London through the care of the Romanian Legation in Paris. On receiving his luggage in London, Mindru Katz found out nothing was missing except for the envelopes given to him in Romania. Some of those who had given letters to Mindru Katz are now fearing steps would be taken against them by our state authorities.”
The letters, by the way, copied and archived by the Securitate, were innocuous and of a personal nature.
When he discovered his luggage had been “checked” and that the envelopes he was meant to deliver in London had disappeared, Mindru Katz realised that the Securitate were targeting him. Yet he had bestowed prestige on Romania's musical training with his performance at the Sale Gaveau in Paris and alongside the London Philharmonic Orchestra. This must have persuaded the 3rd Directorate of the Securitate to review their negative opinion and allow the pianist to tour again abroad in the following year.
A much more cautious Mindru Katz was back in England in 1958. Lacking funds to hire a place with a piano so that he could rehearse for the forthcoming concerts and recording sessions, he was compelled "to practice daily for several hours on the piano" held by the Romanian Legation.23
The new Minister in London, Petre Bălăceanu, wrote that "without being able to categorically state," he did not notice that Katz had any contacts with exiles. He reported in detail to the Ministry in Bucharest about the concerts and recordings undertaken by Mindru Katz during his stint in England:
“The Romanian pianist obtained a resounding success being recalled for an encore by the public filling the concert hall. The London papers were unanimous in their praise for the Romanian pianist, expressing hope he would play in London as often as possible (…). After that Katz recorded a recital that the BBC was to broadcast at a date to be confirmed, and on 20 November he played on BBC television the Khachaturian Toccata" (…). "We believe Mindru Katz behaved suitably from all points of view and the success he enjoyed contributed to the enhancement of our country's prestige, of Romanian culture in England.”24
For Mindru Katz, this was the beginning of an international career. In the circumstances, The Ministry of Education and Culture in Bucharest and OSTA had to agree to him signing new contracts for concerts and recordings, including an exclusive representation contract for three years with the impresario Wilfrid Van Wick25
Color photo editing by Iony and Andy Katz
The Securitate who regarded Katz with suspicion was facing a new situation. A musician of Katz’s standing, whose playing in Paris and London had been highly praised, could not be prevented any more from honouring his contracts. Not granting him an exit visa, the most common way to block foreign travel could have been seized upon by the Western press. There was an additional factor the Securitate had to consider: if prevented to travel abroad, Katz – who was Jewish – could have asked for permission to emigrate to Israel26
A new strategy was needed, and the 2nd Directorate of the Securitate came up with it. It argued that
"Mindru Katz is considered a great artist in Romania and could provide valuable information on dubious elements amongst artists, musicians, composers, actors, and so on.”
Moreover, it continued:
"Given his frequent visits abroad he could be of real use to our organs. We propose he should be recruited as an agent.”
A January 1959 report by Securitate Captain Rusalim Tîrziu, summarized the way the 2nd Directorate tried to implement its secret plan27
"On 15 January, at 9 o'clock, Cpt. Niculescu reported to the Katz family home and invited him to the Passport and Visas Office for some clarifications. This, because he lived together with his parents, who were present when he called. On arrival, as he objected from the very beginning that he was taken to a different place to the one he had been invited to, I explained that I had used this procedure to avoid generating anxiety for the family. He declared himself happy that I had used this method because the anxiety would have been generated, indeed, had he been told directly that we would go to the Ministry of Internal Affairs.”
After an ordinary conversation about health matters (he was unwell at the time and even had an appointment for hospital tests)”28
, Mindru Katz was quizzed for three hours about the individuals he had met abroad and about his conversations with them. He stated that in 1957 he had met, amongst others, Eduard Lindenberg29
, his former conducting tutor at the Music School for Jews30
and the composer Marius Constant31
, a former classmate at the Bucharest Conservatoire.
The report provides details about these contacts:
“The closest relationship had been the one with MARIUS CONSTANT in whose house he had stayed for a week because he had run out of money and could not pay for a hotel room. (…) The conversations with these generally focused on topics connected to music, each of them avoiding discussion of political issues.”
Katz was also asked about his relationship with Miron Grindea. He stated that “he had met him in 1957 on his first tour in England”, denying that he had been in contact again after being warned by “Comrade CORCINSKI” that Grindea was “a dangerous element.” The Securitate officer went on:
"When I questioned him whether on his travels to France and England he had been asked to render or had rendered services, Mindru Katz categorically stated that he had not carried anything for anybody and that, out of caution or indolence, he avoided taking on such commitments. He told me that he had had such requests from some people, indeed, but that he did not remember their names as they were his parents’ acquaintances with whom he had no personal relations.”32
The author of the report noted in his concluding remarks that Mindru Katz “hid certain facts in connection with his travels abroad”, and “made relatively vague declarations about his connections abroad (…) fearing he might suffer consequences.”
The strategy of the Securitate in calling on Mindru Katz, persuading him to accompany them, taking him to the Ministry of Internal Affairs and switching the conversation to the “links” he had with Romanian exiles during his concert tours relied on instilling fear.
It was meant to exclude any resistance on his part to the surprise which cropped up towards the end of the discussion, the proposal
"he should support the Securitate organs in certain problems, in the interest of our state as well as in his own interest."
According to the Securitate report, faced with this surprising proposal, Katz reacted calmly. He did not ask for details, not even about the "personal interest" he might have had. Neither did he try to negotiate, merely saying that "everything possible should be done for the security of the state," something which had not been raised by his interlocutor.
The report records that Mindru Katz refused to sign a pledge, and the Securitate officer suggested they should meet again.
According to a memo marked "top secret"33
, a second meeting never took place because
"while waiting to depart on tour in England on 4 April 1959 Mindru Katz spent a month in the hospital and for two weeks played in concerts in East Germany.”
The memo also mentions that
"he was not introduced to any of our work problems" and "he was not given any special task to carry out in our field."
It is reasonable to assume that the Securitate's intention to recruit Mindru Katz and the whole scenario of him being taken to the Ministry of Internal Affairs to be put under pressure, played a significant part in his decision not to return to Romania. He must have realised that he would have become the subject of continuous blackmail by the Securitate: the authorisation to travel abroad and honour his contracts would have depended on him providing them with information.
Katz’s “defection” was undoubtedly a setback for the Securitate. To distract their bosses’ attention, the 2nd Directorate opened in haste a “personal file”34
of a so-called “agent” code-named “Mihai Chiriceanu” on the cover of the file. Yet the memo recording the attempt to recruit Mindru Katz did not mention any discussion about a coded name. And on the first page of the file, it noted that he was "abandoned" (as an agent) further to his "defection to England."35
In London Katz embarked on a great career, playing and touring with the Royal London Philharmonic Orchestra, the Halle Orchestra, and the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic.
The public and music critics received well his recitals. His recording of Beethoven's no. 5 concert under Sir John Barbirolli was named disk of the year alongside the recordings made by well-established musicians.
These triumphs were listed in a letter of 21 December 1959 sent by Mindru Katz to Florica Musicescu, the teacher to whom he owed – he wrote – all his achievements.
The letter, alongside others, never reached Florica Musicescu and remained for nearly 60 years in Mindru Katz’s surveillance file at the Securitate36
Another Securitate document recorded that, the then Major Neagu Cosma
“ordered all mail from or for Mindru Katz should be stopped.”37
Furthermore, Neagu Cosma specified
“the case should be immediately passed on to the Defectors’ Office where all steps applicable to a traitor of his homeland should be taken: sentencing, confiscation of assets, and so on.”38
The search order was issued in July 1959. A few months later the pianist’s assets were confiscated, as listed by the Securitate – beginning with two Steinway pianos and ending with seven handkerchieves. His parents and his brother-in-law were interrogated as witnesses by the Criminal Investigation Directorate of the Ministry of Internal Affairs. The Great National Assembly (as Parliament was then called) withdrew the orders and medals bestowed on him for his artistic merits. On 8 December 1959 "the trial of Mindru Katz” by the Military Court of the 2nd Region, began.39
And this is how it ended: Based on Article 194, paragraph 5 of the Criminal Code, the Court, by unanimous decision, sentenced Mindru Katz in absentia to
"15 years of Penal Servitude, demotion of civil rights for eight years” and “the total confiscation of his personal property.”40
There were serious consequences for his family, as well. His parents were not allowed to travel abroad and were not able to see their son for many years. Several Securitate notes documented the pianist’s intention of bringing his parents over to England, including a marked “top secret” one of October 196141
which referred to a letter that Yehudi Menuhin had sent to Romania's Minister of Culture, Constanța Crăciun, in which "he pleaded" for Katz's parents to be allowed to join their son.” The note carried a firm conclusion:
"Bearing in mind Mindru Katz betrayed his homeland, we do not agree that his parents should be authorised to leave the country.”
A memo from September 1962 marked top-secret, in which Katz is described as "an element open to provocation," recalls he is a defector and maintains contacts with prominent Romanian exiles, amongst them Miron Grindea and Iancu (Ion) Rațiu42
Finally, on 9 February 196343
, a Securitate official proposed
"the closure of the country-wide search file of the defector Mindru Katz."
From the same memo, it was clear that his parents, his sister, and brother-in-law were still in Romania, four years after the pianist had left the country.
The sentence meted out on Mindru Katz meant severing all his links to Romania, a country he never returned to. It also meant his name was not to be mentioned and his recordings not to be played on radio or TV. Romanian music thereby lost a great artist who, once freed from constraints and obstacles, went on to become an internationally sought piano virtuoso. According to Gramophone, Katz’s playing called for superlatives.
Mindru Katz died in 30th of January 1978 in Istanbul during a recital while playing Beethoven's piano sonata op 31 no. 2 "The Tempest."
Up to his premature death, Katz was also a professor at the Rubin Academy of Music in Tel-Aviv. He settled there renouncing a more lucrative career in England to be together with his family who was finally allowed to emigrate or instead bought out. Mindru Katz counts among his pupils Jeremy Menuhin, Yehudi Menuhin's son and the Israeli - American pianist Mordechai Shehori44
, who has done more than anybody in recovering and preserving Mindru Katz’s musical profile.
The totalitarian regime under which Katz grew up restricted foreign travel and contacts with Western countries. In the circumstances, no reliable cooperation could be established between Western impresarios and Romanian artists.
Mindru Katz understood this and refused to collaborate with such a regime for the sake of an international career. He built it on his own at the price of forsaking the country in which he had been born and where he had studied and left behind his family.
Katz played in forty countries but never again in Romania.
His recordings, distributed mainly through Cembal d'amour45 by his disciple Mordecai Shehori, are still rated by connoisseurs as some of the best available.
1 Clara Haskil (1895-1960) was born into a Sephardic Jewish family in Bucharest (Romania), and studied in Vienna under Richard Robert and briefly with Ferruccio Busoni. She later moved to Paris, where she studied with Gabriel Fauré's pupil Joseph Morpain, whom she always credited as one of her greatest influences. The same year she entered the Conservatoire de Paris, officially to study with Alfred Cortot although most of her instruction came from Lazare Lévy and Mme Giraud-Latarse and graduated at age 15 with a Premier Prix. She also graduated with a Premier Prix in violin. Upon graduating, Haskil began to tour Europe, though her career was cut short by one of the numerous physical ailments she suffered throughout her life. In 1913 she was fitted with a plaster cast in an attempt to halt the progression of scoliosis. Frequent illnesses, kept her from critical or financial success. It was only after World War II, during a series of concerts in the Netherlands in 1949, that she began to win acclaim.
2 Dinu Lipatti (1917-1951) was born in Bucharest into a musical family: his father was a violinist who had studied with Pablo de Sarasate and Carl Flesch, his mother a pianist. He then attended the Bucharest Conservatoire, studying under Florica Musicescu and composition with Mihail Jora. In June 1930, the best pupils at the Conservatoire gave a concert at the Bucharest Opera, and the 13-year-old Lipatti received a huge ovation for his performance of the Grieg Piano Concerto in A minor. In 1932 he won prizes for his compositions: a Piano Sonatina, and a Sonatina for Violin and Piano. He entered the 1933 Vienna International Piano Competition but finished second to Polish pianist Bolesław Kon, some say controversially. Alfred Cortot, who thought Lipatti should have won, resigned from the jury in protest. Lipatti subsequently studied in Paris under Cortot, Nadia Boulanger (with whom he recorded some of Brahms's Waltzes Op. 39), Paul Dukas (composition) and Charles Munch (conducting). At eighteen, Lipatti gave his recital debut in Paris at the École Normale. On 17 May 1935, three days before the concert, his friend and teacher, Paul Dukas, died and in his memory, Lipatti opened his program with J. S. Bach's Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring in the transcription by Myra Hess, the first piece he publicly performed as an adult pianist. With the aid of Edwin Fischer, he emigrated to Switzerland where he accepted a position as professor of piano at the Geneva Conservatory. In 1947 he was diagnosed with Hodgkin's disease. In 1948 Lipatti's health continued to decline, and as a result, his public performances became considerably less frequent after the war. His collaboration with record producer Walter Legge between 1947 and 1950 resulted in the majority of the recordings of Lipatti's playing. Lipatti gave his final recital, also recorded, on 16 September 1950 at the Besançon Festival in France. Despite severe illness and a high fever, he gave superb performances of Bach's Partita No. 1 in B-flat major, Mozart's A minor Sonata, K. 310, Schubert's G-flat major and E-flat major Impromptus, Op. 90, and thirteen of the fourteen Chopin Waltzes which he played in his integral order. Coming to the last one, No. 2 in A-flat, he found he was too exhausted to play it, and offered instead Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring, the piece with which he had begun his professional career only fifteen years before. He died less than three months later in Geneva aged 33. Lipatti is buried at the cemetery of Chêne-Bourg next to his wife Madeleine (1908-1982), a noted piano teacher.
3 Mindru Katz was born at 3 June 1925 in Bucharest. After defecting Romania he played under Sir John Barbirolli, Sir Adrian Boult, Sergiu Celibidache, Constantin Silvestri, etc. His discography includes works by Bach, Haydn, Beethoven, Khachaturian and Prokofiev, as well as violin sonatas of Brahms and Franck (with violinist Henryk Szeryng).
4 Radu Lupu was born in Galați (Romania) on 30 November 1945. He began piano studies in 1951, as a six-year-old, making his public debut in 1957, at age 12, in a concert featuring his compositions. After graduating from the Popular School for the Arts in Brașov, Lupu continued his piano studies at the Bucharest Conservatory (1959-1961) with Florica Musicescu and Cella Delavrancea, also studying composition with Dragos Alexandrescu. At the age of 16, in 1961, he was awarded a scholarship to the Moscow P.I. Tchaikovsky State Conservatory, where he studied with Galina Eguiazarova (a pupil of Alexander Goldenweiser), Heinrich Neuhaus, and Stanislav Neuhaus, graduating in 1969. He won the first prize in the Van Cliburn International Piano Competition (1966), the first prize in the George Enescu International Piano Competition (1967) and the first prize in the Leeds International Pianoforte Competition (1969). He was awarded by the Italian Critics' Association with the Abbiati prize (1989), Edison Award for Schumann’s Kinderszenen, Kreisleriana and Humoresque (1995), Grammy Award for Best Instrumental Soloist Performance for Schubert’s Piano Sonatas B Flat Major and A Major (1996) and Arturo Benedetti Michelangeli prize (2006).
5 George Enescu (1881-1955) was born in Liveni (Romania), and he showed musical talent from early in his childhood. On 1888, at the age of seven, he became the youngest student ever admitted to the Vienna Conservatoire, after only Fritz Kreisler (in 1882, also at the age of seven), and the first non-Austrian. Here he studied violin with Joseph Hellmesberger Jr. In 1891, the ten-year-old Enescu gave a private concert at the Court of Vienna, in the presence of Emperor Franz Joseph. He graduated before his 13th birthday. In 1895 he went to Paris to continue his studies. He studied violin with Martin Pierre Marsick, harmony with André Gedalge, and composition with Jules Massenet and Gabriel Fauré. On 6 February 1898, at the age of only 16, George Enescu presented in Paris his first mature work, Poema Română, played by the Colonne Orchestra (at the time, one of the most prestigious in the world) and conducted by Édouard Colonne. He was a remarkable violinist acclaimed in Europe and America. He was also a prestigious composer, and many of Enescu's works were influenced by Romanian folk music, his most popular compositions being the two Romanian Rhapsodies (1901–2), the opera Œdipe (1936), and the suites for orchestra. He also composed five symphonies (two of them, no.4 and no. 5 finished later by Pascal Bentoiu), a symphonic poem Vox Maris, and chamber music (three sonatas for violin and piano, two for cello and piano, a piano trio, two string quartets and two piano quartets, The Dixtuor for winds instruments, The Octet for strings, a piano quintet, and Chamber Symphony for twelve solo instruments). Enescu was also a noted violin teacher. He was Yehudi Menuhin’s most influential teacher. Also, Christian Ferras, Ivry Gitlis, Arthur Grumiaux, Serge Blanc, Ida Haendel, Uto Ughi and Joan Field, were among his pupils. After World War II when Romania became a Soviet satellite, Enescu chose to leave Romania and settle in Paris. He died in 1955 and was interred in the Père Lachaise Cemetery in Paris.
6 Florica Musicescu (1887-1964) was a renowned Romanian pianist and piano teacher, daughter of the composer, conductor and musicologist Gavriil Musicescu. She studied piano at Leipzig Conservatoire with Robert Teichmüller, and after the World War II, she became for decades piano teacher at the Bucharest Conservatoire (known as Royal Music Academy before World War II). For her authoritative guidance and mentorship, she is considered to be one of the founders of the Romanian School of Piano. Many of the famous pianists of the 20th century emerged from this school.
7 George Georgescu (1887–1964) was a well-known Romanian conductor. He was the moving force behind the Bucharest Philharmonic Orchestra for decades beginning shortly after World War I, a protégé of Arthur Nikisch and a close associate of George Enescu.
8 File I no. 400687, p. 14, C.N.S.A.S. Archive. This file was opened on 25 September 1959.
9 Ibid., p.128.
10 The official name of Romania, from the 30th of December 1947 (the date of forced abdication of the last king of Romania) until the 21st of August 1965 when it was changed to “The Socialist Republic of Romania” (R.S.R.).
11 Under article 194 of the Criminal Code of 1959, Mindru Katz could have been indicted for "treason" and given a prison sentence.
12 Prosecution Dossier P. 100647, vol. 1, p.21, C.N.S.A.S. Archive.
13 He was untitled The Emeritus Artist and was prised with Estate Prise of R.P.R. (The Romanian People's Republic)
14 File P. 100647, vol. 1, p.22, C.N.S.A.S. Archive.
15 This Note of 22nd of May 1959 records a conversation between Ana (Anita) Revici, a friend of Mindru Katz and his family, and an acquaintance. File I 400687, p. 55, C.N.S.A.S. Archive.
16 The Minute of the 8th of July 1959 search recorded: “we took away the personal documents with a view to instituting criminal charges.” Ibid., pp. 115-116.
17 Ibid., p.55.
18 Ibid., pp. 175-180.
19 Miron Grindea (Mondi Miron Grunberg) was born in 1909 in Romania, in Târgu Ocna town. Grindea and his wife arrived in Britain in September 1939, two days before the outbreak of The Second World War. He was a literary journalist and the editor of ADAM International Review (the acronym of "Arts, Drama, Architecture and Music"), a literary magazine published for more than 50 years.
20 Constantin Silvestri (1913-1969) was a Romanian born conductor, composer and pianist. He rose to international recognition in the late '50s after his remarkable debut conducting the LPO’s first centenary concert (1957). He had been recommended by Malcolm Rayment, who had previously seen him perform in Bucharest. Silvestri defected to France (1958), and in 1962 was appointed principal conductor of the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra. He toured Western Europe, the US, Japan, and Australia. His recordings cover a broad repertoire, from Mozart to Shostakovich. Many bear witness to the metamorphosis of the BSO under Silvestri’s six-year guidance.
21 File I 400687, p. 60, C.N.S.A.S. Archive.
22 This concerts tour had been in 1957.
23 File I 400687, pp. 173-174, C.N.S.A.S. Archive.
25 Wilfrid Van Wyck (1904 – 1983) was a British impresario of famous opera singers and chamber music groups.
26 A 1961 document records that Mindru Katz’s father “applied in 1951 for permission to emigrate to Israel together with his wife.” File R 416376, pp. 2-5. C.N.S.A.S. Archive.
27 A memo of the 31st of December 1958, signed by Securitate Cpt. Constantin Ioana, Rusalim Tîrziu and sanctioned by the Lt. Col. Isidor Holingher, head of the 2nd Directorate of the Securitate. (He held this position between 1957-1959.). Ibid.
29 Eduard Lindenberg (1908-1972) was a Romanian conductor and professor. After the Second World War he moved to France and became professor of Paris Conservatoire.
30 In the early ‘40s, under the Romnania’s racial laws, Mîndru Katz was excluded from the Music Academy, but was able to continue his studies at a private music school for Jewish students. În 1943, George Enescu and Florica Musicescu interceded to alleviate the sort of forced labour Mîndru Katz had to carry out as a Jew. After he was reinstated as a student at the Music Academy in 1944, he graduated with “Magna cum laude.” In: Victor Eskenasy, Scrisoare pentru melomani – Din nou despre Mindru Katz, Suplimentul de cultură nr. 178.
31 Marius Constant (1925-2004), was a Romanian-born French - American composer and conductor. He studied piano (with Florica Musicescu) and composition at the Royal Academy of Music in Bucharest. In 1946, he moved to Paris, studying at the Conservatoire de Paris with Olivier Messiaen, Tony Aubin, Arthur Honegger and Nadia Boulanger. His compositions earned several prizes. From 1950 on, he was increasingly involved with electronic music and joined Pierre Schaeffer's Groupe de Recherche de Musique Concrète.
32 File R 416376, pp. 6-11, C.N.S.A.S. Archive.
36 File I 400687, pp. 100-101, C.N.S.A.S. Archive.
37 Document dating the 21st of September 1959. Ibid., p.125.
39 File P 100647, vol. 1, pp. 24-25, C.N.S.A.S. Archive.
40 Ibid., p. 36.
41 File I 400687, pp. 21-23, C.N.S.A.S. Archive.
42 Ion Rațiu (1917 – 2000) was a prominent Romanian exile in London during his country’s communist period. He was critical of Western attitudes towards the Soviet Union and communism. After the collapse of the regime, Ratiu returned to Romania in 1990 and unsuccessfully ran for the presidency of the country on behalf of the Christian Democratic National Peasants' Party
43 File I 400687, pp. 165-166, C.N.S.A.S. Archive. This document again refers to Menuhin’s letter.
44 Mordecai Shehori (born 20 April 1946) is an Israeli - American pianist, born in Israel. Shehori made his New York debut after winning the 1974 Jeunesses Musicales Competition and, received also, first prize in the Beethoven Competition. He was studied in Tel Aviv at Rubin Academy of Music with Mindru Katz and and also graduated from the Juilliard School in New York. He cites Mindru Katz his most influential teacher.
45 “Cembal d’amour” is a collection of classical music recording created by the pianist Mordecai Shehori.