Hyperion Records

Barcarolle, Op 7 No 3
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Some twenty years before his life-changing visit to Venice with Winnaretta Singer (later the Princesse de Polignac) Fauré evokes the haunting bitter-sweet mood of ‘Serenissima’, with its gondolier calls resounding across the lagoons. The vocal bel canto, inspired by Chopin’s great Barcarolle, Op 60, and ornamented with Italianate acciaccature, is launched high in the stave and topples down in conjunct harmonic steps, a procedure which is a distinguishing feature in Fauré’s songs of the early period. The accompaniment is merely an echo of this quasi-improvised vocal flowering; the piano here temporarily withdraws as the driving force behind the composer’s ideas, reculer pour mieux sauter. Once again this song is dedicated to Madame Viardot. Its inclusion in the Second Collection of songs, rather than the first where it truly belongs, results from a complicated piece of publishing history concerning Hamelle’s desire to equalize the number of songs in each of the collections to a round figure of twenty. The heading of the lyric in the 1872 edition of poems by Marc-Monnier (whose name is thus hyphenated by the publisher Lemerre) contains the words ‘Musique de F Gratz’ (Franz Gratz, 1803–1874, a Swiss composer resident in Paris, once well known).

from notes by Graham Johnson © 2005

Track-specific metadata
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Details for CDH55217 track 12
Artists
ISRC
GB-AJY-86-11212
Duration
2'14
Recording date
13 September 1983
Recording venue
St Barnabas's Church, North Finchley, London, United Kingdom
Recording producer
Martin Compton
Recording engineer
Antony Howell
Hyperion usage
  1. Souvenirs de Venise (CDA66112)
    Disc 1 Track 12
    Release date: September 1987
    Deletion date: July 2005
    Superseded by CDH55217
  2. Souvenirs de Venise (CDH55217)
    Disc 1 Track 12
    Release date: September 2005
    Helios (Hyperion's budget label)
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