Notes and Editorial Reviews
One of the best records Leonhardt has ever made, and that's saying quite something.
The works here by Couperin-le-Grand's uncle are already in the current catalogue, some played by Blandine Verlet (Telefunken Das Alte Werk AW6 41264, 6/74), others by Alan Curtis (Archiv Produktion 2533 325, 4/76); but good as both these discs were, and although Curtis was the editor (selecting the pieces from the wide choice Couperin left open) whose text Leonhardt uses, I have no hesitation in preferring this new arrival. For a start, the sound of the instrument itself (a Skowroneck copy of a 1680 French model) is exceptionally fine, and has been captured with the utmost fidelity. More importantly, this is one of the best records
Leonhardt has ever made--and that's saying quite something. At the end of the spectrum is the nobility of his elegiac Pavane in F sharp minor and the grandeur of his C major Chaconne (the repetitions of its grand couplet subtly varied in ornamentation, and its final appearance most effectively played quietly after the full-voiced previous section); at the other the crisply pointed, light-hearted pièce croisée Courante in C (with its extraordinary rhythmic complexities) and the bounding joyous energy of La Piemontoise and the Branle de Basque. Wholeheartedly recommended.
-- Gramophone [10/1980, reviewing the original LP release]
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