Hyperion Records

Sonata for flute and piano, Op 52

'Koechlin: Music for flute' (CDA66414)
Koechlin: Music for flute
Movement 1: Adagio molto tranquillo
Movement 2: Mouvement de Sicilienne: Allegretto très modéré mais sans traîner
Movement 3: Finale: Animé et gai

Sonata for flute and piano, Op 52
Opus 52 is Koechlin’s most extended and ambitious work for the flute. His designation ‘Sonata for piano and flute’ acknowledges the substantial role of the piano—much of the first movement requires three staves for Koechlin’s far-reaching chordal progressions. He perhaps felt that his writing taxed the expressive and coloristic resources of the piano, for he briefly contemplated an arrangement of Op 52 for flute and orchestra. In the first two movements, Jan Merry’s ‘restrained emotion’ prevails—each rises only briefly to mezzoforte, and numerous performance indications encourage both players to a maximum of expressive variety within a prevailingly soft dynamic range. The improvisatory yet shapely melodic line, and the luminous harmonies with which the piano supports them, combine in a voice distinctively Koechlin’s own. In the Finale, restraint yields to an exuberant contrapuntal romp which grows out of the interval of a falling fourth. After an interlude recalling the mood of the first movements, the triplet motion steals back in, building this time to a brilliant conclusion. Koechlin dedicated the sonata to the pianist Jeanne Herscher-Clément, who premiered the work with Adolphe Hennebains, professor at the Paris Conservatory.

from notes by Fenwick Smith © 1990

Track-specific metadata
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Details for CDA66414 track 20
Finale: Animé et gai
Recording date
12 June 1989
Recording venue
Jordan Hall, New England Conservatory of Music, Boston, Massachusetts, USA
Recording producer
James Donohue
Recording engineer
Joel Gordon
Hyperion usage
  1. Koechlin: Music for flute (CDA66414)
    Disc 1 Track 20
    Release date: June 1990
    Deletion date: July 2003
    Archive Service
  2. Koechlin: Music for flute (CDH55107)
    Disc 1 Track 20
    Release date: July 2003
    Deletion date: September 2009
    Helios (Hyperion's budget label) — Superseded by CDA66414
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