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Melodies Francaises / Gerard Souzay, Dalton Baldwin

Faure / Poulenc / Souzay / Baldwin
Release Date: 07/27/2010 
Label:  Newton Classics   Catalog #: 8802007   Spars Code: ADD 
Composer:  Gabriel FauréFrancis PoulencJacques LeguerneyReynaldo Hahn,   ... 
Performer:  Dalton BaldwinGérard Souzay
Number of Discs: 4 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 4 Hours 47 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews



MÉLODIES FRANÇAISES Gérard Souzay (bar); Dalton Baldwin (pn) NEWTON 8802007 (4 CDs: 288:28)


Songs by FAURÉ, POULENC, RAVEL, LEGUERNEY, HAHN, DUPARC, and GOUNOD


The internationally famed teacher and composer Jean Berger once wrote: “Claire Croiza gave a recital. … For years it had been said of her, she had no voice and what she does have is ugly. … But I, as all Read more present, walked out in a trance. We had been given the songs, to perfection. … The more improvised it seemed, the more studied it had to be.” Croiza was Souzay’s teacher in learning the art of interpreting mélodies . Vanni-Marcoux and Etcheverry built the baritone’s technique, but it was Croiza who provided the tools to understand what he sang, and communicate that understanding. Souzay, a most conscientious artist, followed along this path through the rest of his life.


The better part of two discs are devoted to Fauré’s songs, of whom Souzay was a master. (Croiza studied these with Fauré, and performed the eponymous role in the composer’s opera Pénélope when it was revived following his death. A case can be made for a direct line of transmission out of this.) They are almost without exception outstanding. Listen, for example, to the floating tone in Fauré’s Mandoline , to the purity of the vowels in “écouteuses,” to the perpetually light tone that goes so well through three verses—only to become lighter still at the start of the fourth verse, “Tourbillonent dans l’extase.” The surface, here, is the depth, and Souzay allows nothing to disturb that surface even as he carefully articulates the text, and accomplishes marvels with his well-supported breath.


There are many other songs where a different set of virtues come to the fore, conveying a naturalness of expression that is the product of artifice itself. This occurs repeatedly in the causal, conversational rise and fall of the tone on the lines “Éclos de candeurs de cygne / Et des rougeurs de femme-enfant” in Une Sainte en son aureole ; in the extraordinary articulation and carefully controlled dynamics of Prison , with its focused outbursts; and in the subtle way Souzay has with word rhythms in Eau vivante . It all comes together perhaps best in Crépuscule , with the balance between line, text, color, and shifting dynamics providing an interpretative experience that deserves detailed analysis in an essay, not a review.


As much can be said of many of the 12 songs he performs by Duparc, and the song cycles by Fauré’s favorite pupil, Ravel, with especial praise for the Chanson romanesque from Don Quichotte à Dulcinée . It shows Souzay digging deeply into the roots of his voice, as he would put it, sounding more like a resonant bass, achieving an undercurrent of humor through a most earnest emphasis of Morand’s text: the heavy Ms in “ma Dame,” “le blame,” and “Et je mourrais” across successive lines, for instance, and the almost alveolar trill of the R in the last of the three, as well.


That humor is for the most part missing from the Poulenc selections, however. Slower pieces of a more serious musical mien, such as C’est le joli printemps and Tout disparut , receive distinguished interpretations, but the Dadaist silliness that was another, very prominent side of the composer goes almost unnoticed. Souzay studied with Bernac, but that had more to do with singing than interpretation, and he misses a sense of vivacity, as well as a chameleon-like emotional range, that’s required in Aussi bien que les cigales , and Les Gars qui vont à la fête . The articulation is certainly there; you can almost transcribe what the baritone sings, but the vein of light-hearted nonsense doesn’t get mined. Still, the Poulenc only forms one part of a single CD, and these pieces less than half of that. It would be unrealistic to expect any artist to get the full measure of every song he or she sings across a very full lifetime, and mean-spirited to demand this from one who has delivered the last word on so much he committed to disc.


The sound quality is in general fine, well balanced between singer and accompanist, with just enough resonance to make the voice “take” in the studio or hall, yet not drown Souzay’s fine enunciation. Analog hiss is kept to a minimum. Newton Classics includes full texts without translations on its own Web site. Lovers of French song would do well to consider purchasing this collection, especially at its budget price.


FANFARE: Barry Brenesal
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Works on This Recording

1. La chanson du pêcheur, Op. 4 no 1 by Gabriel Fauré
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: Romantic 
Written: ?1872; France 
Date of Recording: 06/1960 
Venue:  Vevey, Switzerland 
Length: 3 Minutes 43 Secs. 
2. Poème d'un jour, Op. 21 by Gabriel Fauré
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1878; France 
Date of Recording: 06/1960 
Venue:  Vevey, Switzerland 
Length: 5 Minutes 42 Secs. 
3. Les berceaux, Op. 23 no 1 by Gabriel Fauré
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1879; France 
Date of Recording: 06/1960 
Venue:  Vevey, Switzerland 
Length: 2 Minutes 53 Secs. 
4. Le secret, Op. 23 no 3 by Gabriel Fauré
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1880-1881; France 
Date of Recording: 06/1960 
Venue:  Vevey, Switzerland 
Length: 2 Minutes 23 Secs. 
5. Aurore, Op. 39 no 1 by Gabriel Fauré
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1884; France 
Date of Recording: 06/1960 
Venue:  Vevey, Switzerland 
Length: 2 Minutes 12 Secs. 
6. Fleur jetée, Op. 39 no 2 by Gabriel Fauré
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1884; France 
Date of Recording: 06/1960 
Venue:  Vevey, Switzerland 
Length: 1 Minutes 32 Secs. 
7. La rose, Op. 51 no 4 by Gabriel Fauré
Performer:  Gérard Souzay (), Dalton Baldwin (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1890; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1964 
Venue:  Switzerland 
Length: 2 Minutes 13 Secs. 
8. Madrigal, Op. 35 by Gabriel Fauré
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1883; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1964 
Venue:  Switzerland 
Length: 1 Minutes 15 Secs. 
9. Mélodies (5), Op. 58 "de Venise" by Gabriel Fauré
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1891; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1964 
Venue:  Switzerland 
Length: 11 Minutes 3 Secs. 
10. La bonne chanson, Op. 61 by Gabriel Fauré
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1892-1894; France 
Date of Recording: 06/1960 
Venue:  Vevey, Switzerland 
Length: 18 Minutes 35 Secs. 
11. Le parfum impérissable, Op. 76 no 1 by Gabriel Fauré
Performer:  Gérard Souzay (), Dalton Baldwin (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1897; France 
Date of Recording: 06/1960 
Venue:  Vevey, Switzerland 
Length: 2 Minutes 46 Secs. 
12. Arpège, Op. 76 no 2 by Gabriel Fauré
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1897; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1963 
Venue:  The Netherlands 
Length: 2 Minutes 11 Secs. 
13. Prison, Op. 83 no 1 by Gabriel Fauré
Performer:  Gérard Souzay (), Dalton Baldwin (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1894; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1963 
Venue:  The Netherlands 
Length: 2 Minutes 30 Secs. 
14. Soir, Op. 83 no 2 by Gabriel Fauré
Performer:  Gérard Souzay (), Dalton Baldwin (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1894; France 
Date of Recording: 06/1960 
Venue:  Vevey, Switzerland 
Length: 2 Minutes 32 Secs. 
15. Dans la forêt de Septembre, Op. 85 no 1 by Gabriel Fauré
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1902; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1964 
Venue:  Switzerland 
Length: 3 Minutes 18 Secs. 
16. La fleur qui va sur l'eau, Op. 85 no 2 by Gabriel Fauré
Performer:  Gérard Souzay (), Dalton Baldwin (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1902; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1964 
Venue:  Switzerland 
Length: 2 Minutes 19 Secs. 
17. Le don silencieux, Op. 92 by Gabriel Fauré
Performer:  Gérard Souzay (), Dalton Baldwin (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1906; France 
Date of Recording: 06/1960 
Venue:  Vevey, Switzerland 
Length: 2 Minutes 9 Secs. 
18. La chanson d'Eve, Op. 95: no 6, Eau vivante by Gabriel Fauré
Performer:  Gérard Souzay (), Dalton Baldwin (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1909; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1964 
Venue:  Switzerland 
Length: 1 Minutes 16 Secs. 
19. La chanson d'Eve, Op. 95: no 9, Crépuscule by Gabriel Fauré
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1906; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1964 
Venue:  Switzerland 
Length: 2 Minutes 42 Secs. 
20. Le jardin clos, Op. 106: no 1, Exaucement by Gabriel Fauré
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1914 
Date of Recording: 07/1964 
Venue:  Switzerland 
Length: 1 Minutes 22 Secs. 
21. Le jardin clos, Op. 106: no 4, Je me poserai sur ton coeur by Gabriel Fauré
Performer:  Gérard Souzay (), Dalton Baldwin (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1914 
Date of Recording: 07/1964 
Venue:  Switzerland 
Length: 1 Minutes 40 Secs. 
22. Mirages, Op. 113 by Gabriel Fauré
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1919; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1964 
Venue:  Switzerland 
Length: 13 Minutes 4 Secs. 
23. L'horizon chimérique, Op. 118 by Gabriel Fauré
Performer:  Gérard Souzay (), Dalton Baldwin (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1921; France 
Length: 8 Minutes 16 Secs. 
24. Chansons villageoises (6) by Francis Poulenc
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1942; France 
Date of Recording: 09/1966 
Venue:  Switzerland 
Length: 9 Minutes 26 Secs. 
25. Calligrammes by Francis Poulenc
Performer:  Gérard Souzay (), Dalton Baldwin (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1948; France 
Date of Recording: 09/1966 
Venue:  Switzerland 
Length: 9 Minutes 41 Secs. 
26. Le travail du peintre by Francis Poulenc
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1956; France 
Date of Recording: 09/1966 
Venue:  Switzerland 
Length: 10 Minutes 18 Secs. 
27. La fraîcheur et le feu by Francis Poulenc
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1950; France 
Date of Recording: 09/1966 
Venue:  Switzerland 
Length: 6 Minutes 52 Secs. 
28. Airs (4) chantés: no 4, Air vif by Francis Poulenc
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1927-1928; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1963 
Venue:  The Netherlands 
Length: 0 Minutes 59 Secs. 
29. La grenouillère by Francis Poulenc
Performer:  Gérard Souzay (), Dalton Baldwin (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1938; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1963 
Venue:  The Netherlands 
Length: 1 Minutes 56 Secs. 
30. Métamorphoses (3): no 1, Reine des mouettes by Francis Poulenc
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1943; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1963 
Venue:  The Netherlands 
Length: 0 Minutes 52 Secs. 
31. Priez pour paix by Francis Poulenc
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1938; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1963 
Venue:  The Netherlands 
Length: 2 Minutes 33 Secs. 
32. Ma douce jouvence est passée, for voice & piano by Jacques Leguerney
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: Modern 
Date of Recording: 07/1963 
Venue:  The Netherlands 
Length: 2 Minutes 22 Secs. 
33. A Son Page for baritone & piano (or orchestra) by Jacques Leguerney
Performer:  Gérard Souzay (), Dalton Baldwin (Piano)
Period: Modern 
Date of Recording: 07/1963 
Venue:  The Netherlands 
Length: 1 Minutes 24 Secs. 
34. Chansons grises (7): no 5, L'heure exquise by Reynaldo Hahn
Performer:  Gérard Souzay (), Dalton Baldwin (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: by 1893; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1963 
Venue:  The Netherlands 
Length: 2 Minutes 37 Secs. 
35. L'absent by Charles Gounod
Performer:  Gérard Souzay (), Dalton Baldwin (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1877; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1963 
Venue:  The Netherlands 
Length: 3 Minutes 53 Secs. 
36. Sérénade by Charles Gounod
Performer:  Gérard Souzay (), Dalton Baldwin (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1857; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1963 
Venue:  The Netherlands 
Length: 4 Minutes 0 Secs. 
37. Mélodies (6): no 5, Les cigales by Emmanuel Chabrier
Performer:  Gérard Souzay (), Dalton Baldwin (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1890; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1963 
Venue:  The Netherlands 
Length: 2 Minutes 55 Secs. 
38. Chanson pour Jeanne by Emmanuel Chabrier
Performer:  Gérard Souzay (), Dalton Baldwin (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1886; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1963 
Venue:  The Netherlands 
Length: 3 Minutes 41 Secs. 
39. Chanson d'avril by Georges Bizet
Performer:  Gérard Souzay (), Dalton Baldwin (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: by 1867; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1963 
Venue:  The Netherlands 
Length: 2 Minutes 8 Secs. 
40. Poèmes (4), Op. 3: no 3, Le jardin mouillé by Albert Roussel
Performer:  Gérard Souzay (), Dalton Baldwin (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1903; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1963 
Venue:  The Netherlands 
Length: 3 Minutes 10 Secs. 
41. Mélodies (2), Op. 20: no 1, Le bachelier de Salamanque by Albert Roussel
Performer:  Gérard Souzay (), Dalton Baldwin (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1919; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1963 
Venue:  The Netherlands 
Length: 1 Minutes 41 Secs. 
42. Mélodies populaires grecques (5) by Maurice Ravel
Performer:  Gérard Souzay (), Dalton Baldwin (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1904-1906; France 
Date of Recording: 05/1968 
Venue:  Switzerland 
Length: 6 Minutes 51 Secs. 
43. Épigrammes (2) de Clément Marot by Maurice Ravel
Performer:  Gérard Souzay (), Dalton Baldwin (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1896-1899; France 
Date of Recording: 05/1968 
Venue:  Switzerland 
Length: 4 Minutes 24 Secs. 
44. Histoires naturelles by Maurice Ravel
Performer:  Gérard Souzay (), Dalton Baldwin (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1906; France 
Date of Recording: 05/1968 
Venue:  Switzerland 
Length: 16 Minutes 13 Secs. 
45. Chansons madécasses by Maurice Ravel
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1925-1926; France 
Date of Recording: 05/1968 
Venue:  Switzerland 
Length: 11 Minutes 36 Secs. 
46. Mélodies hébraïques (2) by Maurice Ravel
Performer:  Gérard Souzay (), Dalton Baldwin (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1914-1919; France 
Date of Recording: 05/1968 
Venue:  Switzerland 
Length: 6 Minutes 24 Secs. 
47. Don Quichotte à Dulcinée by Maurice Ravel
Performer:  Gérard Souzay (), Dalton Baldwin (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1932-1933; France 
Date of Recording: 05/1968 
Venue:  Switzerland 
Length: 7 Minutes 9 Secs. 
48. Les grands vents venus d'outre-mer by Maurice Ravel
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1907; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1963 
Venue:  The Netherlands 
Length: 2 Minutes 12 Secs. 
49. Sainte by Maurice Ravel
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1896; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1963 
Venue:  The Netherlands 
Length: 2 Minutes 22 Secs. 
50. Sur l'herbe by Maurice Ravel
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1907; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1963 
Venue:  The Netherlands 
Length: 1 Minutes 53 Secs. 
51. Nocturne, M 85 by César Franck
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1884; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1963 
Venue:  The Netherlands 
Length: 4 Minutes 5 Secs. 
52. L'invitation au voyage ("Mon enfant, ma soeur"), song for voice & piano (or orchestra) by Henri Duparc
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: Post-Romantic 
Written: 1870; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1962 
Venue:  Vevey, Switzerland 
Length: 4 Minutes 24 Secs. 
53. Sérénade florentine ("Étoile dont la beauté luit"), song for voice & piano (or orchestra) by Henri Duparc
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: Romantic 
Written: ?1880-83; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1962 
Venue:  Vevey, Switzerland 
Length: 2 Minutes 20 Secs. 
54. La vague et la cloche ("Une fois, terrassé par un puissant breuvage"), song for voice & piano (or or by Henri Duparc
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1871; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1962 
Venue:  Vevey, Switzerland 
Length: 5 Minutes 46 Secs. 
55. Extase ("Sur un lys pâle"), song for voice & piano (or orchestra) by Henri Duparc
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: Post-Romantic 
Written: 1874 
Date of Recording: 07/1962 
Venue:  Vevey, Switzerland 
Length: 3 Minutes 24 Secs. 
56. Le manoir de Rosamonde ("De sa dent soudaine et vorace"), song for voice & piano (or orchestra) by Henri Duparc
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: Post-Romantic 
Written: 1879 
Date of Recording: 07/1962 
Venue:  Vevey, Switzerland 
Length: 2 Minutes 58 Secs. 
57. La vie antérieure ("J'ai longtemps habité..."), song for voice & piano (or orchestra) by Henri Duparc
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: Post-Romantic 
Written: 1884; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1962 
Venue:  Vevey, Switzerland 
Length: 3 Minutes 48 Secs. 
58. Lamento ("Connaissez-vous la blanche tombe"), song for voice & piano by Henri Duparc
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1883; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1962 
Venue:  Vevey, Switzerland 
Length: 4 Minutes 20 Secs. 
59. Testament ("Pour que le vent te les apporte"), song for voice & piano (or orchestra) by Henri Duparc
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: Post-Romantic 
Written: 1883; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1962 
Venue:  Vevey, Switzerland 
Length: 3 Minutes 15 Secs. 
60. Phidylé ("L'herbe est molle au sommeil"), song for voice & piano (or orchestra) by Henri Duparc
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: Post-Romantic 
Written: 1882; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1962 
Venue:  Vevey, Switzerland 
Length: 5 Minutes 30 Secs. 
61. Chanson triste ("Dans ton coeur..."), song for voice & piano (or orchestra), Op. 2/4 by Henri Duparc
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: Post-Romantic 
Written: 1868 
Date of Recording: 07/1962 
Venue:  Vevey, Switzerland 
Length: 3 Minutes 18 Secs. 
62. Elégie ("Oh! ne murmurez pas son nom!"), song for voice & piano (or orchestra) by Henri Duparc
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: Post-Romantic 
Written: 1874; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1962 
Venue:  Vevey, Switzerland 
Length: 3 Minutes 28 Secs. 
63. Soupir ("Ne jamais la voir"), song for voice & piano (or orchestra), Op. 2/1 by Henri Duparc
Performer:  Dalton Baldwin (Piano), Gérard Souzay ()
Period: Post-Romantic 
Written: 1869 
Date of Recording: 07/1962 
Venue:  Vevey, Switzerland 
Length: 3 Minutes 40 Secs. 

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