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Hyperion Records

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Track(s) taken from CDA67523
Recording details: August 2004
All Saints' Church, East Finchley, London, United Kingdom
Produced by Mark Brown
Engineered by Julian Millard
Release date: June 2006
Total duration: 2 minutes 59 seconds

'A disc to treasure' (BBC Music Magazine)

'John Mark Ainsley understands the idiom of these beguiling songs and delivers them with grace, fluency and clear diction … Graham Johnson's playing is as vivid and piquant as his booklet notes. A delectable disc' (The Daily Telegraph)

'Ainsley—urbane, sexy and witty throughout—is at his absolute best' (The Guardian)

'Graham Johnson is quite literally changing the way we hear French mélodie. What a voyage to be invited to join!' (International Record Review)

'How does Graham Johnson do it? Once again, he has explored territory that few today have even considered worthy of investigation, and once again, he has come up with an extraordinary CD' (Fanfare, USA)

'One of the finest examples of Gallic song performance' (MusicWeb International)

'Comme toujours, John Mark Ainsley touche à la perfection tant par le style que pour son impeccable diction, et Graham Johnson poursuit en maître artisan son indefatigable exploration du monde du lied et de la mélodie' (Diapason, France)

Bonjour, Suzon!
author of text
Œuvres posthumes, 1860

Other recordings available for download
Stephen Varcoe (baritone), Graham Johnson (piano)
Alongside Les filles de Cadix, this is Delibes’s most famous song where a musical portrait of the flirtatious Suzon is incorporated into her suitor’s serenade. For this reason it has often crossed the gender barrier—one of its most famous advocates was the Italian soprano Claudia Muzio. The music is written in the castanet-accompanied manner of the south, a prophecy of music to be found in Bizet’s Carmen. Musset’s poem was published in his Oeuvres posthumes (1860) and the composer provided the music a year later. The pendant poem, Adieux à Suzon (she was probably a real girlfriend of the poet in the middle 1840s when Musset visited friends in the Vosges) was set by Georges Bizet in his cycle Feuilles d’album (1866). This is an indication of the friendship between Delibes and Bizet and their mutual admiration.

from notes by Graham Johnson © 2006
English: Richard Stokes

Other albums featuring this work
'La Procession' (CDA66248)
La Procession

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