Roussel - Bacchus et Ariane, Debussy - 6 Epigraphes antiques, Poulenc - Les biches (2016)

Roussel, Debussy, Poulenc

L'Orchestre de la Suisse Romande

Kazuki Yamada

Claude Debussy based the version for piano duet of his Six épigraphes antiques (= six ancient epigraphs), dating from 1914, on a work he had written in 1900 – 1901. Debussy (1862 – 1918) had composed a kind of incidental music for 2 harps, 2 flutes, and celesta, to be played during the recitation of the poems Les Chansons de Bilitis (= songs of Bilitis) by Pierre Louÿs. The performance was also accompanied by tableaux vivants (with actresses adopting poses to match the poems), and took place on February 7, 1901. Debussy’s initial concerns about this composition probably stemmed from the fact that his art would now be linked to a type of “lighter salon entertainment”. He kept his musical accompaniment to the minimum, playing the celesta part himself, for which he noted only the basics in the score (incidentally, Pierre Boulez reconstructed the celesta part in 1954). In 1914, Debussy had another go at the chansons, using seven of the original 12 interludes to compose his Épigraphes for piano duet, as well as arranging a version for piano solo. 

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Kazuki Yamada

Yamada appears regularly with such orchestras as Orchestre de Paris, Philharmonia Orchestra, Dresden Philharmonic, Rundfunk Sinfonieorchester Berlin, St Petersburg Philharmonic, Czech Philharmonic, City of Birmingham Symphony, Royal Stockholm Philharmonic, Gothenburg Symphony, Orchestre de Chambre de Lausanne, Orquesta Sinfonica y Coro de RTVE and Tonku?nstler-Orchester at the Vienna Musikverein. He is Principal Guest Conductor of Orchestre de la Suisse Romande and also holds the same title with Orchestre Philharmonique de Monte Carlo, starting in the 2014/2015 season. In Japan, he holds further titles of Principal Conductor of Japan Philharmonic Orchestra, Music Partner with Sendai Philharmonic and Orchestra Ensemble Kanazawa and Music Director of Yokohama Sinfonietta, an ensemble he founded whilst still a student. Passionate about choral repertoire, he is Tokyo Philharmonic Chorus’s Music Director. The chorus have released ten CDs with Yamada.

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Roussel - Bacchus et Ariane, Debussy - 6 Epigraphes antiques, Poulenc - Les biches (2016)

Roussel, Debussy, Poulenc

L'Orchestre de la Suisse Romande

    Stereophile Magazine

"These works play to what has long been the Suisse Romande Orchestra's strength — Impressionism and its heritage — but none is often performed. Debussy's Six épigraphes antiques is a series of charming miniatures that look to the past and sound as if he were writing in the style of Satie's Gymnopédies. It's classic Debussy, but with a stylized formality that sets these performances apart. Roussel's most famous work, the ballet Bacchus et Ariane (1930), looks back to Ravel's Daphnis et Chloé (1909–12), but is distinguished not only by its beauty but also a between-the-wars busyness and anxiety. But I embrace this album because I welcome any and all recordings of music by Poulenc, for his wit and playfulness and his ability to spoon out some of the sweetest melodies. Finally, here is a modern multichannel recording of the amiable suite from the ballet Les biches, played with élan and cleanly recorded in the SRO's famous hall, in Geneva."

Kal Rubinson[read full review]

    HRAudio.net -

The charismatic young Japanese conductor Kazuki Yamada has already made an impressive series of recordings for Pentatone with L'Orchestre de la Suisse Romande of music associated with the dance. Though this latest release is not designated as being part of that series it could well have been, since two of the works – Albert Roussel's 'Bacchus et Ariane' and Poulenc's 'Les Biches' are ballets, while the third offering – Debussy's 'Six épigraphes antiques' in its orchestral version was used by choreographer Jerome Robbins for his 1984 ballet 'Antique epigraphes'. All three works on this disc are appearing in the DSD format for the first time making this an especially welcome issue. Roussel's ballet 'Bacchus et Ariane' appeared in 1931. Yamada directs an incisive and thrilling account of the score, revelling in both Roussel's stamping motor rhythms as well as the sumptuously romantic passages. The OSR players respond with playing of tremendous vitality and enthusiasm, as if their very lives depended on it. The Polyhymnia International BV engineering team working in the fine acoustic of Victoria Hall, Geneva in October 2015 have achieved an outstanding DSD recording with a beautifully judged balance between detail and generous hall ambience. This outstanding release is enthusiastically recommended. Performance and Multichannel Sonics: 5 out of 5 Stars.

Graham Williams[read full review]

Roussel - Bacchus et Ariane, Debussy - 6 Epigraphes antiques, Poulenc - Les biches (2016)

Roussel, Debussy, Poulenc

L'Orchestre de la Suisse Romande

Producer: Job Maarse
Recording Engineer: Erdo Groot
Recording location: Victoria Hall, Geneva, Switzerland
Recording Software: Merging
Recording Type & Bit Rate: DSD64

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PTC5186558: Roussel - Bacchus et Ariane, Debussy - 6 Epigraphes antiques, Poulenc - Les biches
01:15:15   Select quality & channels above
Tracks.
1.
Bacchus et Ariane Suite Op. 43 No. 1 - Bacchus et Ariane Suite Op. 43 No. 1
Roussel
00:17:27   Select quality & channels above
2.
Bacchus et Ariane Suite, Op. 43 No. 2 - I. Introduction. Andante
Roussel
00:02:47   Select quality & channels above
3.
Bacchus et Ariane Suite, Op. 43 No. 2 - II. Reveil d'Ariane. Moderato
Roussel
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4.
Bacchus et Ariane Suite, Op. 43 No. 2 - III. Bacchus reprend avec Ariane. Poco piu allegro
Roussel
00:00:48   Select quality & channels above
5.
Bacchus et Ariane Suite, Op. 43 No. 2 - IV. Bacchus danse seul. Allegro
Roussel
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6.
Bacchus et Ariane Suite, Op. 43 No. 2 - V. Le baiser. Andante
Roussel
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7.
Bacchus et Ariane Suite, Op. 43 No. 2 - VI. Le thiase d_file. Allegro deciso
Roussel
00:00:36   Select quality & channels above
8.
Bacchus et Ariane Suite, Op. 43 No. 2 - VII. Danse d'Ariane. Andante
Roussel
00:03:45   Select quality & channels above
9.
Bacchus et Ariane Suite, Op. 43 No. 2 - VIII. Danse d'Ariadne et de Bacchus. Moderato e pesante
Roussel
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10.
Bacchus et Ariane Suite, Op. 43 No. 2 - IX. Bacchanale. Allegro brilliante
Roussel
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11.
Bacchus et Ariane Suite, Op. 43 No. 2 - X. Le couronnement d'Ariane
Roussel
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12.
6 Epigraphes antiques, L. 131 - No. 1. Pour invoquer Pan, dieu du vent d'ete
Debussy
00:02:43   Select quality & channels above
13.
6 Epigraphes antiques, L. 131 - No. 2. Pour un tombeau sans nom
Debussy
00:03:30   Select quality & channels above
14.
6 Epigraphes antiques, L. 131 - No. 3. Pour que la nuit soit propice
Debussy
00:02:21   Select quality & channels above
15.
6 Epigraphes antiques, L. 131 - No. 4. Pour la danseuse aux crotales
Debussy
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16.
6 Epigraphes antiques, L. 131 - No. 5. Pour l'egyptienne
Debussy
00:03:10   Select quality & channels above
17.
6 Epigraphes antiques, L. 131 - No. 6. Pour remercier la pluie au matin
Debussy
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18.
Les biches, FP 36 - I. Rondeau
Poulenc
00:03:40   Select quality & channels above
19.
Les biches, FP 36 - II. Adagietto
Poulenc
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20.
Les biches, FP 36 - III. Rag-Mazurka
Poulenc
00:06:10   Select quality & channels above
21.
Les biches, FP 36 - IV. Andantino
Poulenc
00:03:25   Select quality & channels above
22.
Les biches, FP 36 - V. Final
Poulenc
00:03:42   Select quality & channels above

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