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Cello Music from Proust’s Salons

Composer Henri Duparc
Gabriel Fauré
César Franck
Reynaldo Hahn
Augusta Holmès
Camille Saint-Saëns
Performer Steven Isserlis
Connie Shih
Catalogue Number BIS-2522 SACD
EAN 7318599925226
Format SACD Hybrid

This hybrid disc plays on both CD and SACD players
SACD Surround - SACD Stereo - CD Stereo

Release date Feb 2021
Total time 83'17

With this programme of music for cello and piano, Steven Isserlis and Connie Shih transport us to the world immortalized in Marcel Proust’s À la recherche du temps perdu – the Parisian high society and its glittering salons. For the composers of the time these provided a perfect platform for the introduction of new works, performed by the finest musicians in France for a sympathetic, educated and rich (!) audience.&&& And for the music-loving Proust they offered countless opportunities to meet the composers that he so admired (and others that he may have admired a bit less…)

The first of these to make his appearance in the programme is no one less than Proust’s one-time lover and lifelong friend, Reynaldo Hahn, with a brief set of Variations chantantes on a theme from a baroque opera. He is followed by Gabriel Fauré, whose music Proust gushed about in a letter to the composer: ‘I could write a book more than 300 pages long about it.’ Proust was less expansive about Saint-Saëns’ music even if he admired him as a pianist, but the composer’s First Cello Sonata is nevertheless the centrepiece of the programme, before Henri Duparc and Augusta Holmès make their appearance. These were both students of César Franck, whose iconic Violin Sonata in A major (here in the version for cello) closes this programme of ‘salon music’ – in the best possible sense of the term.
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  Reynaldo Hahn
01 Variations chantantes sur un air ancien 4'54
  Gabriel Fauré
02 Romance, Op. 69 3'41
03 Élégie, Op. 24  6'51
  Camille Saint-Saëns
  Cello Sonata No. 1 in C minor, Op. 32 19'43
04 I. Allegro 8'58
05 II. Andante tranquillo e sostenuto 5'09
06 III. Allegro moderato 5'36
07 Allegro quasi presto (original finale of Cello Sonata No. 1) 8'49
  Henri Duparc
08 II. Lamento, from Cello Sonata in A minor 1'55
  Augusta Holmes
09 Récitatif et Chant, from ‘La Vision de la Reine’ (arr. S. Isserlis) 7'21
  César Franck
  Sonata in A major (arr. Jules Delsart) 28'14
10 I. Allegretto ben moderato 6'31
11 II. Allegro 7'53
12 III. Recitativo-Fantasia. Ben moderato 7'51
13 IV. Allegretto poco mosso 5'59
  Album total 83'17
CelloIsserlis, Steven
PianoShih, Connie
ComposerDuparc, Henri
Fauré, Gabriel
Franck, César
Hahn, Reynaldo
Holmes, Augusta
Saint-Saëns, Camille
ArrangerDelsart, Jules
Isserlis, Steven

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