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Rameau: Concerts Mis En Simphonie

Rameau / La Simphonie Du Marais / Reyne
Release Date: 01/12/2010 
Label:  Musiques Chabotterri   Catalog #: 605006   Spars Code: n/a 
Composer:  Jean-Philippe Rameau
Performer:  Hugo Reyne
Conductor:  Hugo Reyne
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 11 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews



RAMEAU (orch. Rameau) Pièces de clavecin (1741) La Simphonie du Marais (period instruments) MUSIQUE À LA CHABOTTERIE 605006 (71:32)


Jean-Philippe Rameau (1683–1764) was one of the greatest figures in not only the French Baroque, but also in the entire history of French music. Rameau’s vocal compositions and especially his operas can stand in the presence of those of Lully and Gluck as the finest composed in pre-revolutionary France. Read more


Unlike Sebastian Bach, Rameau didn’t come from a long line of musicians. His father appears to have been the first in the line of a number of distinguished keyboard players including Jean-Philippe’s younger brother, Claude, and his sister, Catherine.


Not much is known about the first several decades of Jean-Philippe’s life, as most of it was spent in the French provinces, but around the time that Jean-Philippe turned 40, he began to establish himself as a theorist and later on as a composer. He never spoke much about his early years, not even to his wife!


In the 1730s Rameau’s reputation as a composer of works for the stage began to emerge with Hippolyte et Aricie , described as a tragédie lyrique, and his operas enjoyed pride of place in the French repertoire for several decades. Some of his latest and perhaps greatest works, including his generally acknowledged masterpiece, Les Boréades , remained unperformed at his death. However, Rameau was also an undisputed master of the harpsichord, publishing several collections of Pièces de clavessin (sic), culminating with a 1741 collection that he later morphed into the arrangements heard on this release.


The adaptations make use of a number of appealing and shifting wind/string combinations that show that Rameau’s music is wholly adaptable for and effective when performed on a variety of instrumental combinations, including flutes, oboes, violins, and bassoons. Listeners must place aside any preconceptions about how they think the music should sound and allow their ears to take in the sonorities, which are quite pleasant and rewarding. The readings also fall gently on the ears, and while period instruments are employed, I found no musical mannerisms that would classify these readings as eccentric. That said, I feel that in the interest of full disclosure I should say that I consider all French Baroque music quite “fussy” and can’t listen to it for an extended period of time.


There is a single, highly annoying thread that runs throughout this disc, save for the Gavotte et ses doubles that completes the release, and that is that the titles of the individual movements in each suite are spoken before the music is played. I’m not sure why this was done, but frankly I find it aggravating. It also makes for difficulties when programming the music for broadcast, as the spoken portions must (should?) be removed, allowing the music to “speak” for itself. The origins of the titles are long lost and without the requisite background information they become quite meaningless in our time.


An English friend of mine who shared the listening experience with me concurred, but was also quick to note that the readings were “spot on,” an observation that I would unquestionably second. The performances are indeed superb; they offer ample tonal beauty, an impeccable sense of ensemble, and incontestable mastery of what appears on the printed page. The sound is warm and inviting and provides the auditor with an excellent sense of intimacy.


I can’t say this is for everyone, but once you are past those annoying spoken introductions, there is bound to be an appeal for lovers of the French Baroque as well as those who are attracted to the music of Jean-Philippe Rameau.


FANFARE: Michael Carter
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Works on This Recording

1. Pièces de clavecin en concerts: 1st Concert by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Performer:  Hugo Reyne (Flute)
Conductor:  Hugo Reyne
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1741; France 
Venue:  Salle Akustika, Paris, France 
Length: 9 Minutes 38 Secs. 
2. Pièces de clavecin en concerts: 2nd Concert by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Performer:  Hugo Reyne (Flute)
Conductor:  Hugo Reyne
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1741; France 
Venue:  Salle Akustika, Paris, France 
Length: 17 Minutes 4 Secs. 
3. Pièces de clavecin en concerts: 3rd Concert by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Performer:  Hugo Reyne (Flute)
Conductor:  Hugo Reyne
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1741; France 
Venue:  Salle Akustika, Paris, France 
Length: 3 Minutes 27 Secs. 
4. Pièces de clavecin en concerts: 4th Concert by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Performer:  Hugo Reyne (Flute)
Conductor:  Hugo Reyne
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1741; France 
Venue:  Salle Akustika, Paris, France 
Length: 10 Minutes 25 Secs. 
5. Pièces de clavecin en concerts: 5th Concert by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Performer:  Hugo Reyne (Flute)
Conductor:  Hugo Reyne
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1741; France 
Venue:  Salle Akustika, Paris, France 
Length: 13 Minutes 27 Secs. 
6. Nouvelles suites de pièces de clavecin: no 7, Gavotte [with 6 Doubles] in A minor by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Performer:  Hugo Reyne (Flute)
Conductor:  Hugo Reyne
Period: Baroque 
Written: circa 1729-1730; France 
Venue:  Salle Akustika, Paris, France 
Length: 8 Minutes 19 Secs. 

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