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Track(s) taken from CDA66856

Violons dans le soir

First line:
Quand le soir est venu, que tout est calme enfin
author of text
Les Eblouissements

François Le Roux (baritone), Graham Johnson (piano), Krysia Osostowicz (violin)
Recording details: January 1996
Rosslyn Hill Unitarian Chapel, Hampstead, London, United Kingdom
Produced by Arthur Johnson
Engineered by Antony Howell & Julian Millard
Release date: January 1997
Total duration: 5 minutes 31 seconds

Cover artwork: À l'ombres des bosquets chante un jeune poète by Jean-Louis-Ernest Meissonier (1815-1891)
Reproduced by permission of The Wallace Collection, London / Bridgeman Art Library, London


'This is the most resounding blow yet to be struck for the mélodies of Saint-Saëns … Le Roux is one of the most charismatic performers of our time … this is certainly one of the best things he has done so far. A double welcome for performers and rare repertory' (Gramophone)

'Musical jewels surface with delightful consistency in this 27-song recital. An absorbing and revelatory disc' (BBC Music Magazine)

'There's hardly a dud among these 30-or-so songs on this well filled, perfectly recorded disc, an ideal accompaniment to a hot summer evening' (The Daily Telegraph)

'Another immensely pleasant recital from Hyperion, both in content and performance. [François Le Roux] is establishing himself as the leading French baritone of the day' (Classic CD)

'François Le Roux est l'interprète prédestiné. Son intelligence des mots, son sens de la juste inflexion font ici merveille' (Diapason, France)

'Apoya magnificamente al baritono, firmando entre ambos un trabajo auténticamente digno de conocerse. Sonido exemplar' (CD Compact, Spain)
It is inevitable that Saint-Saëns should have enjoyed joining the worlds of chamber music and the mélodie. Violons dans le soir (1907) is one of a number of songs with instrumental obbligato and the violin here is deployed to bewitching effect to enhance the atmosphere of Anna de Noailles’ text. As always, one is full of admiration for the composer’s professionalism: the violin has a certain amount of bravura display, and yet it is never in danger of obscuring the voice. The interludes for violin and piano never arrest the progress of the song as a whole, and there is a real sense of dialogue between the two protagonists. The piano writing is gently supportive (standing back to allow the two stars to pirouette around each other). It is as if Debussy’s Le jet d’eau has seeped into the composer’s consciousness against his will, and there are hints that he might well have known another great nocturne, Roussel’s Le jardin mouillé.

from notes by Graham Johnson © 1997

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