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Hyperion Records

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A Female Nude by a Lake (1907) by Karel Vitezslav Mašek (1865-1927)
Sotheby’s Picture Library
Track(s) taken from CDH55425
Recording details: November 1998
Henry Wood Hall, London, United Kingdom
Produced by Andrew Keener
Engineered by Tony Faulkner & Mike Dutton
Release date: November 1999
Total duration: 8 minutes 12 seconds

'Superlative. Immaculately and sensitively performed. Sound and presentation are superb. It would be hard to imagine one of music's most neglected byways illuminated with more pianistic ease and affection' (Gramophone)

'This is charming, formidably accomplished stuff. Hamelin gives impeccably stylish and sympathetic readings, as if he's been playing them since the cradle. Probably he has' (BBC Music Magazine)

'A fine conspectus of a captivating composer. Russian champagne of glowing vintage' (Classic CD)

'Un disque rempli de joie, de poésie et de lumière' (Le Devoir)

Trois morceaux, Op 2
No 1: Andante espressivo; No 2: Quasi improvisato

Chant intime  [1'40]
Loin du foyer  [1'58]
Soirée d'hiver  [4'34]

Introduction  EnglishFrançaisDeutsch
The three pieces which make up Catoire’s Op 2 are far superior to the salon-type which was so prevalent at that time. The first, Chant intime, is only twenty-eight bars long. Marked ‘Andante espressivo’, it is in E major, and has a fleeting tendency to move towards the supertonic, but notice the subtle manner in which Catoire allows his simple theme to build a tracery of continuously unfolding melody—in its own way, this is evidence of an impressive skill in post-Wagnerian composition. We hear a similar approach in the second piece, Loin du foyer, thirty bars in length. This also tends towards the supertonic (in this case, F), but the rippling, middle-voiced accompaniment, ebbing and flowing against the two-part writing above and below, in this (as marked) ‘quasi improvisato’ piece is quite compelling. The third morceau, Soirée d’hiver, is more extended than the others, but is simply constructed with a gentle theme framing a central section. What makes this particularly interesting are two factors—the B minor allusions of the opening theme eventually end in a deep D major, and the central section is both in 5/8 and in the very rare key of C flat major. We should not be surprised to learn that this piece impressed Tchaikovsky.

from notes by Robert Matthew-Walker © 1999

Other albums featuring this work
'The Essential Hyperion, Vol. 2' (HYP20)
The Essential Hyperion, Vol. 2
This album is not yet available for download HYP20  2CDs Super-budget price sampler — Deleted  
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