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Gaubert: Les Chants De Mer - Recordings 1927-1940


Release Date: 09/01/2007 
Label:  Alpha Productions   Catalog #: 801   Spars Code: ADD 
Composer:  Philippe GaubertMaurice RavelJohann Sebastian BachCarl Maria von Weber,   ... 
Performer:  Philippe Gaubert
Conductor:  Philippe Gaubert
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Orchestre de la Société du Conservatoire ParisOrchestra
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Mono 
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Notes and Editorial Reviews

Philippe Gaubert: an all-round artist! The true calibre of Philippe Gaubert - a man who was a close friend of Honegger, Caplet, Lubin, Cortot, Thibaud, Paul Valéry, Barthou, Giraudoux and Tristan Bernard, to name but those - can only be fully appreciated when he is set in his historical and cultural context. His musical activities were multiple, but his teacher Paul Taffanel described him as 'the greatest flautist of his time'. The pieces presented on this recording show the ease and boldness of his playing and his wonderfully mellow tone. Of his interpretation of Madrigal, Edward Blakeman wrote: 'This is a highly individual performance with supple control of legato phrasing and changes of tempo. The warm flute tone displays an Read more effective but very discreet use of vibrato.' Through Paul Taffanel Gaubert was engaged to stand in for musicians of the Orchestra of the Paris Opéra (violin and later, when he was only sixteen, principal flute). In 1905 Philippe Gaubert became assistant conductor to Messager at the Société des Concerts du Conservatoire, and succeeded him in 1919. In 1922, he gave up playing the flute as a virtuoso because his lips were too sensitive. The recordings presented on this CD show the qualities that made him one of the great conductors of the French school. We notice, amongst other features, the perfect melodic line and admirable clarity (he guides the musicians firmly but without constraint); the absolute control (no trace of immoderation); the fine rendering of dynamics; the excellent balance between the different groups of instruments - quite a feat, considering recording conditions at that time!; and it is clear that he had a perfect overall view of each work. He also devoted a considerable part of his life to composition. Undertaking so many different activities concurrently meant that he had to be not only exceptionally healthy, but also very well organised in his working life. After winning the Second Grand Prix de Rome in 1905, he went on to compose almost eighty (unnumbered) works, including music for three films, a 'drame lyrique' (Sonia, 1912), two ballets and an 'épopée chorégraphique', chamber works, and a large quantity of orchestral music, some of which is presented on this recording. As a composer, conductor, instrumentalist and teacher, Gaubert was a fine example of the all-round artist. Indeed, specialisation was uncommon at that time. The change came about after the Second World War, with the arrival of LPs, and the subsequent glorification of conductors, Herbert von Karajan being a prime example. Exceptions, such as Leonard Bernstein or Esa Pekka-Salonen, nevertheless show that a great conductor can also be a first-rate composer. Gaubert's orchestral pieces show a perfect mastery of the instruments, fine melodic inspiration, a bold use of harmony, sparkling rhythms, and a well thought-out overall structure. It is high time that he - like many other French musicians whose reputations as composers have been eclipsed by their activities as conductors, Inghelbrecht, for example, or Martinon, to name but two - was given the credit he deserves as a composer. Read less

Works on This Recording

1.
Inscriptions pour les portes de la ville by Philippe Gaubert
Conductor:  Philippe Gaubert
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Orchestre de la Société du Conservatoire Paris
Period: 20th Century 
2.
Les chants de la mer by Philippe Gaubert
Conductor:  Philippe Gaubert
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1929; France 
3.
La valse by Maurice Ravel
Conductor:  Philippe Gaubert
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1920; France 
4.
Suite for Orchestra no 2 in B minor, BWV 1067: Badinerie by Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer:  Philippe Gaubert (Flute)
Period: Baroque 
Written: Leipzig, Germany 
5.
Soir sur la plaine by Philippe Gaubert
Performer:  Philippe Gaubert (Flute)
Period: 20th Century 
6.
Madrigal for Flute and Piano by Philippe Gaubert
Performer:  Philippe Gaubert (Flute)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1908; France 
7.
Der Freischütz, J 277: Overture by Carl Maria von Weber
Conductor:  Philippe Gaubert
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1817-1821; Dresden, Germany 
8.
Danse macabre in G minor, Op. 40 by Camille Saint-Saëns
Conductor:  Philippe Gaubert
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1874; France 
9.
Poème nocturne: no 1, Aux étoiles by Henri Duparc
Conductor:  Philippe Gaubert
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1874/1910; France 

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