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Roi Des Sylphes - Rebel, Francouer / Zelindor, Brown, Et Al


Release Date: 10/27/2009 
Label:  Naxos   Catalog #: 8660224   Spars Code: n/a 
Composer:  Francois Rebel
Performer:  William SharpJean-Paul FouchécourtHeidi Grant MurphyAh Young Hong
Conductor:  Ryan Brown
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Opera Lafayette Orchestra
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
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Notes and Editorial Reviews

Rebel and Francoeur's divertissement Zélindor, roi des Sylphes does not seem to have been performed since the end of the 18th century and the performances by Opera Lafayette, on which this recording is based, were the work's modern première.

Francoeur and Rebel met in their teens when they were both members of the Paris Opera orchestra. Their friendship and professional association lasted a lifetime and culminated in their joint directorship of the Opera from 1757.

Along the way, they wrote a series of opera divertissements, all
Read more produced jointly. According to the 18th century musicologist Jean-Benjamin de Laborde, Rebel wrote the dramatic bits and Francoeur the lyrical ones. But when taxed, the composers said that their pieces were by both of them. And they do seem to have hit upon a consistency of approach. Listening to Zélindor or the suite from La Trophée on this disc, the music sounds uniform throughout.

Judging by the photographs in the CD booklet, Opera Lafayette's performances were charmingly staged and it is a shame that a DVD could not have been produced as this is music that cries out for staging and for dance. The plot of Zélindor is slight. Zélindor (Jean-Paul Fouchecourt) is King of the Sylphs and is in love with a mortal, Zirphe (Heidi Grant Murphy). He needs to test her before finally agreeing to marry her. Along the way there are the usual dance episodes, attractive without showing any of the drama and invention of Rameau. The whole manages to stretch to some 50 minutes.

The work was first performed before King Louis XV in 1745 and went on to be popular at the Paris Opera. In 1753 Madame de Pompadour performed the role of Zélindor (suitably transposed up) in her private theatre at Versailles. It seems to have been a work popular for private performances. Voltaire's mistress, Madame du Chatelet, sang the role of Zirphe at performances put on by the Duchesse de Maine. Voltaire himself admired the libretto by Moncrif.

The work is indeed charming and attractively melodic, but lacks the depths and the dramatic vividness that is found in the best of Lully and Rameau.

Jean-Paul Fouchecourt is stylishly excellent in the title role. Heidi Grant Murphy charms as his lover Zirphe, though there were moments when her voice seemed to want to apply more vibrato than is needed. They are well supported by William Sharp and Ah Young Hong.

The Opera Lafayette Orchestra and Chorus are not Les Arts Florissants, but under Ryan Brown's direction they manage to find charm and crisp pungency in the music.

Zélindor is accompanied by an attractive suite from La Trophée, another divertissement premièred the same year as Zélindor.

The CD booklet contains the libretto in French and English, an informative essay and a selection of photographs from the Opera Lafayette production.

This is a performance that successfully evokes the charm - and the shallowness - of Louis XV's Versailles.

-- Robert Hugill, MusicWeb International Read less

Works on This Recording

1.
Zélindor, roi des Sylphes: Ouverture by Francois Rebel
Conductor:  Ryan Brown
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Opera Lafayette Orchestra
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1745; France 
Length: 3 Minutes 12 Secs. 
Notes: This work was written in collaboration with François Francoeur (1689 - 1787). 
2.
Zélindor, roi des Sylphes: Scene 1. Un souverain Génie by Francois Rebel
Performer:  William Sharp (Voice), Jean-Paul Fouchécourt (Voice)
Conductor:  Ryan Brown
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Opera Lafayette Orchestra
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1745; France 
Length: 6 Minutes 56 Secs. 
Notes: This work was written in collaboration with François Francoeur (1689 - 1787). 
3.
Zélindor, roi des Sylphes: Scene 2. Pourquoi me refuser le plaisir de vous voir / Belle Zirphé, que by Francois Rebel
Performer:  Jean-Paul Fouchécourt (Voice), Heidi Grant Murphy (Voice)
Conductor:  Ryan Brown
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Opera Lafayette Orchestra
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1745; France 
Length: 5 Minutes 23 Secs. 
Notes: This work was written in collaboration with François Francoeur (1689 - 1787). 
4.
Zélindor, roi des Sylphes: Scene 3. Prélude / Que vois-je? by Francois Rebel
Performer:  Heidi Grant Murphy (Voice)
Conductor:  Ryan Brown
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Opera Lafayette Orchestra
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1745; France 
Length: 0 Minutes 56 Secs. 
Notes: This work was written in collaboration with François Francoeur (1689 - 1787). 
5.
Zélindor, roi des Sylphes: Scene 3. Air pour les Nymphes by Francois Rebel
Conductor:  Ryan Brown
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Opera Lafayette Orchestra
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1745; France 
Length: 1 Minutes 32 Secs. 
Notes: This work was written in collaboration with François Francoeur (1689 - 1787). 
6.
Zélindor, roi des Sylphes: Scene 3. Il faut que tout seconde by Francois Rebel
Conductor:  Ryan Brown
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Opera Lafayette Orchestra
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1745; France 
Length: 1 Minutes 36 Secs. 
Notes: This work was written in collaboration with François Francoeur (1689 - 1787). 
7.
Zélindor, roi des Sylphes: Scene 3. Air. Légèrement / Sur vos pas, par quel charme admirable by Francois Rebel
Performer:  Ah Young Hong (Voice)
Conductor:  Ryan Brown
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Opera Lafayette Orchestra
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1745; France 
Length: 2 Minutes 51 Secs. 
Notes: This work was written in collaboration with François Francoeur (1689 - 1787). 
8.
Zélindor, roi des Sylphes: Scene 3. Passepied by Francois Rebel
Conductor:  Ryan Brown
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Opera Lafayette Orchestra
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1745; France 
Length: 1 Minutes 54 Secs. 
Notes: This work was written in collaboration with François Francoeur (1689 - 1787). 
9.
Zélindor, roi des Sylphes: Scene 3. C'en est assez by Francois Rebel
Performer:  Jean-Paul Fouchécourt (Voice), Heidi Grant Murphy (Voice)
Conductor:  Ryan Brown
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Opera Lafayette Orchestra
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1745; France 
Length: 7 Minutes 49 Secs. 
Notes: This work was written in collaboration with François Francoeur (1689 - 1787). 
10.
Zélindor, roi des Sylphes: Scene 4. Prélude pour les Génies élémentaires by Francois Rebel
Conductor:  Ryan Brown
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Opera Lafayette Orchestra
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1745; France 
Length: 1 Minutes 28 Secs. 
Notes: This work was written in collaboration with François Francoeur (1689 - 1787). 
11.
Zélindor, roi des Sylphes: Scene 4. Air pour les Gnomes et Ondins by Francois Rebel
Conductor:  Ryan Brown
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Opera Lafayette Orchestra
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1745; France 
Length: 1 Minutes 9 Secs. 
Notes: This work was written in collaboration with François Francoeur (1689 - 1787). 
12.
Zélindor, roi des Sylphes: Scene 4. Air pour les Sylphes et Salamandres by Francois Rebel
Conductor:  Ryan Brown
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Opera Lafayette Orchestra
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1745; France 
Length: 1 Minutes 26 Secs. 
Notes: This work was written in collaboration with François Francoeur (1689 - 1787). 
13.
Zélindor, roi des Sylphes: Scene 4. Que dans les airs by Francois Rebel
Performer:  Jean-Paul Fouchécourt (Voice)
Conductor:  Ryan Brown
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Opera Lafayette Orchestra
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1745; France 
Length: 2 Minutes 0 Secs. 
Notes: This work was written in collaboration with François Francoeur (1689 - 1787). 
14.
Zélindor, roi des Sylphes: Scene 4. Air gai by Francois Rebel
Conductor:  Ryan Brown
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Opera Lafayette Orchestra
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1745; France 
Length: 1 Minutes 10 Secs. 
Notes: This work was written in collaboration with François Francoeur (1689 - 1787). 
15.
Zélindor, roi des Sylphes: Scene 4. Menuets 1 and 2 / Reprise de l'air gai by Francois Rebel
Performer:  Ah Young Hong (Voice)
Conductor:  Ryan Brown
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Opera Lafayette Orchestra
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1745; France 
Length: 5 Minutes 4 Secs. 
Notes: This work was written in collaboration with François Francoeur (1689 - 1787). 
16.
Zélindor, roi des Sylphes: Scene 4. Bourrées 1 and 2 / Reprise de l'air gai by Francois Rebel
Conductor:  Ryan Brown
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Opera Lafayette Orchestra
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1745; France 
Length: 2 Minutes 40 Secs. 
Notes: This work was written in collaboration with François Francoeur (1689 - 1787). 
17.
Suite from 'Le Trophée': Ouverture by Francois Rebel
Conductor:  Ryan Brown
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Opera Lafayette Orchestra
Period: Baroque 
Length: 2 Minutes 57 Secs. 
Notes: This work was written in collaboration with François Francoeur (1689 - 1787). 
18.
Suite from 'Le Trophée': Sarabande by Francois Rebel
Conductor:  Ryan Brown
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Opera Lafayette Orchestra
Period: Baroque 
Length: 1 Minutes 22 Secs. 
Notes: This work was written in collaboration with François Francoeur (1689 - 1787). 
19.
Suite from 'Le Trophée': Gavottes 1 and 2 by Francois Rebel
Conductor:  Ryan Brown
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Opera Lafayette Orchestra
Period: Baroque 
Length: 1 Minutes 57 Secs. 
Notes: This work was written in collaboration with François Francoeur (1689 - 1787). 
20.
Suite from 'Le Trophée': Ariette. Ornez de fleurs vos têtes by Francois Rebel
Performer:  Heidi Grant Murphy (Voice)
Conductor:  Ryan Brown
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Opera Lafayette Orchestra
Period: Baroque 
Length: 2 Minutes 52 Secs. 
Notes: This work was written in collaboration with François Francoeur (1689 - 1787). 
21.
Suite from 'Le Trophée': Gavotte pour les Muses et les Plaisirs by Francois Rebel
Performer:  Jean-Paul Fouchécourt (Voice)
Conductor:  Ryan Brown
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Opera Lafayette Orchestra
Period: Baroque 
Length: 2 Minutes 8 Secs. 
Notes: This work was written in collaboration with François Francoeur (1689 - 1787). 
22.
Suite from 'Le Trophée': Viste / Prélude by Francois Rebel
Conductor:  Ryan Brown
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Opera Lafayette Orchestra
Period: Baroque 
Length: 0 Minutes 44 Secs. 
Notes: This work was written in collaboration with François Francoeur (1689 - 1787). 
23.
Suite from 'Le Trophée': Airs 1 and 2 by Francois Rebel
Conductor:  Ryan Brown
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Opera Lafayette Orchestra
Period: Baroque 
Length: 0 Minutes 59 Secs. 
Notes: This work was written in collaboration with François Francoeur (1689 - 1787). 
24.
Suite from 'Le Trophée': Fanfare by Francois Rebel
Conductor:  Ryan Brown
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Opera Lafayette Orchestra
Period: Baroque 
Length: 1 Minutes 18 Secs. 
Notes: This work was written in collaboration with François Francoeur (1689 - 1787). 

Sound Samples

Zelindor, roi des Sylphes: Scene 1: Ouverture
Zelindor, roi des Sylphes: Scene 1: Un souverain Genie adore une mortelle! (Zulim, Zelindor)
Zelindor, roi des Sylphes: Scene 2: Pourquoi me refuser le plaisir de vous voir? (Zirphe) - Belle Zirphe, que ce qui peut vous plaire (Zelindor)
Zelindor, roi des Sylphes: Scene 3: Prelude - Que vois-je? (Zirphe)
Zelindor, roi des Sylphes: Scene 3: Air pour Les Nymphes
Zelindor, roi des Sylphes: Scene 3: Il faut que tont seconde (Chorus)
Zelindor, roi des Sylphes: Scene 3: Air: Sur vos pas, par quel charme admirable (A Nymph)
Zelindor, roi des Sylphes: Scene 3: Passepied
Zelindor, roi des Sylphes: Scene 3: C'en est assez; Ah! Paraissez enfin (Zirphe, Zelindor)
Zelindor, roi des Sylphes: Scene 4: Prelude pour les Genies elementaires
Zelindor, roi des Sylphes: Scene 4: Air pour les Gnomes et Ondins
Zelindor, roi des Sylphes: Scene 4: Air pour les Sylphes et Salamandres
Zelindor, roi des Sylphes: Scene 4: Que dans les airs vos chants harmonieux (Zelindor, Chorus)
Zelindor, roi des Sylphes: Scene 4: Air gai
Zelindor, roi des Sylphes: Scene 4: Menuet I: Quel amant sous vos lois s'engage! (A Sylphid) - Menuet II: Vos destins changent leur cours (Chorus, A Sylphid)
Zelindor, roi des Sylphes: Scene 4: Bourrees I - II - Reprise de l'air gai
Le trophee Suite: I. Overture
Le trophee Suite: II. Sarabande
Le trophee Suite: III. Gavotte I - II
Le trophee Suite: IV. Ariette: Ornez de fleurs vos tetes (La Muse)
Le trophee Suite: V. Gavotte pour les Muses et les Plaisirs: Que de plaisirs enchanteurs (Le Genie)
Le trophee Suite: VI. Viste - Prelude
Le trophee Suite: VII. Air I - II
Le trophee Suite: VIII. Fanfare

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