Hyperion Records

Une chanson de porcelaine, FP169
March 1958; composed for Jane Bathori, on her eightieth birthday
author of text
from À toute épreueve

'Poulenc: The Complete Songs' (CDA68021/4)
Poulenc: The Complete Songs
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'Poulenc: The Complete Songs, Vol. 4' (SIGCD323)
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Une chanson de porcelaine, FP169
This is Poulenc’s last setting of the poetry of Paul Éluard, a song composed as a tribute to that great champion of French modern music, the singer Jane Bathori, on her eightieth birthday. In terms of its tonality (it begins in A minor) and style it recalls Juan Gris from Le travail du peintre, without attempting to match that song’s visionary level. It displays an ease in setting Éluard’s words that could only have been achieved after nearly a quarter of a century’s practice. The poem was chosen from À toute épreuve, the collection of poetry with which Poulenc had begun his musical association with the poet in 1935, a full circle that might have been the result of deliberate choice. As Poulenc wrote in JdmM: ‘I have taken all that I could from Éluard, Apollinaire, Max Jacob etc …’.

from notes by Graham Johnson © 2013

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