Hyperion Records

Trois Nocturnes caractéristiques, Op 45
dedicated to Mademoiselle Eudoxie Cordel

'Herz: Piano Music' (CDA67606)
Herz: Piano Music
No 1: La dolcezza
No 2: La melanconia
No 3: La semplicità

Trois Nocturnes caractéristiques, Op 45
Herz—described on the cover as ‘Pianiste de S. M. le Roi de France’—offers this blindingly obvious note at the head of the score of the Trois Nocturnes caractéristiques Op 45: ‘To play these Nocturnes in the manner intended by the composer, one must endeavor to make the piano sing and to draw from it a sweet and melodious sound’.

La dolcezza is a Bellini-like aria in A flat major (its central section modulating to B major) and at the very least worthy of revival as an encore. La melanconia, in G minor and marked Moderato parlante, has a similar wistful vocal quality which Herz rounds off with a gentle flurry of arpeggios and a final sighing chord in the major. La semplicità, to be played con certa espressione parlante and dolce semplice innocentemente, employs the same device of a simple, single-note melody with flowing accompaniment, rather in the manner of a nocturne by John Field. All three are well within the reach of the amateur and, one assumes, of their dedicatee, the wonderfully named Mademoiselle Eudoxie Cordel.

from notes by Jeremy Nicholas © 2008

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