Hyperion Records

Prélude, Fugue et Variation, M30 Op 18
1860/2; the third of Six pièces

'Organ Dreams, Vol. 4' (CDA67436)
Organ Dreams, Vol. 4
Buy by post £13.99 (ARCHIVE SERVICE) CDA67436  Archive Service   Download currently discounted
Track 2 on CDA67436 [9'54] Archive Service

Prélude, Fugue et Variation, M30 Op 18
Like Widor, César Franck (1822–1890) was a Parisian organist, presiding from 1858 until his death at the Cavaillé-Coll organ at Ste-Clotilde. Prélude, Fugue et Variation, Op 18, the third of his Six Pièces (1860–62), is dedicated to Saint-Saëns. Coming as it does directly after Franck’s Grande Pièce Symphonique, Op 17, its title might suggest a contrasting work of neo-Baroque severity, but what could be more Romantic than the haunting oboe melody of the first movement? A typical Franckian theme, moving largely by step and emphasizing particular notes of the scale, it has two limbs, the first a flowing theme of five-bar phrases, the second a dogged affair ascending the scale in four-bar phrases (and taken up in quasi-canonic fashion by the pedals). A short bridge passage introduces the second movement, a sober fugue on a subject, vocal in character, marked cantando. Assisted by stretti, a muted climax is reached, and the music proceeds without a break to the Variation, in which the hautbois, taking the stage again, has the ‘flowing’ and ‘dogged’ themes of the first movement, but here set against rippling semiquavers.

from notes by Relf Clark © 2005

Track-specific metadata
Details for CDA67436 track 2
Recording date
5 May 2004
Recording venue
St Nikolai, Halmstad, Sweden
Recording producer
Paul Spicer
Recording engineer
Simon Eadon
Hyperion usage
  1. Organ Dreams, Vol. 4 (CDA67436)
    Disc 1 Track 2
    Release date: February 2005
    Deletion date: June 2011
    Archive Service
   English   Français   Deutsch