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Louis Cahuzac - The Great Clarinettist

Cahuzac / Mozart / Nielssen / Brahms / Jensen
Release Date: 08/14/2012 
Label:  Danacord   Catalog #: 722   Spars Code: ADD 
Composer:  Carl NielsenRobert SchumannJohannes BrahmsLouis Cahuzac,   ... 
Performer:  Louis CahuzacFolmer Jensen
Conductor:  John FrandsenMogens Wöldike
Number of Discs: 2 
Recorded in: Mono 
Length: 1 Hours 11 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

There are gems here and long hidden rarities.

A long time ago Danacord released an LP dedicated to the art of the French clarinettist Louis Cahuzac. It was called a ‘Homage’ [Danacord 153] and subtitled ‘Two Immortal Performances’. The cover picture was the same as this CD from the company, only reversed, and the notes on pages two and three of the CD booklet are reprints of Robert Anthony Briggs’s originals. There has, however, been an update in the light of the extra material. No longer is it the case that the focus is Mozart and Nielsen. Now there are extra items and what exciting items they are; major unissued performances.
 
Cahuzac was famed for his Mozart. The Concerto is the famous 1952 Haydn
Read more Society LP with Mogens Wöldike and this classic can be heard in nice, forward sound without scuffing. The tone is very Gallic and the temper of the performance lovely throughout. Cahuzac’s aristocracy is devoid of sentimentality and show, but full of fluidity and finely centred subtly variegated tonal resources. It will not appeal to those brought up on Reginald Kell’s more overtly expressive performances, so rich in vibrato and candour, who may find it rather ‘straight’. A broad church can accommodate a variety of approaches from musicians of differing backgrounds and aesthetics. The same applies to the Quintet, too, with the Koppel Quartet, recorded in 1948 on 78s. This is another clear, pure and rather noble reading, exuding a degree of classical restraint.
 
Cahuzac’s recording of the Nielsen Concerto was made in 1947 with John Frandsen and The Royal Orchestra. This is another discographically important item not merely because it was the premiere recording but also because the ensemble balance is excellent, the percussion vivid, and the solo playing irreproachable in its technical eloquence. A major item is the unissued 1949 Brahms Sonata in F minor with Folmer Jensen. This 78 set is excellently played and the performance is convincing throughout except perhaps for some blustery playing by Jensen in the first movement. The piano sound is rather plummy but I hesitate to suggest that that’s why it wasn’t issued, as I’ve certainly heard plummier released records. From the matrix numbers the Schumann Fantasiestücke were recorded straight after, and they too were unissued. So, unless there was an artistic veto, or there was a problem with the matrices, it’s one of those open-ended questions as to their non-appearance.
 
Fortunately the smaller pieces that make up the rest of the programme were released. Honegger’s Sonatine sees Cahuzac catching quite a lot of the music’s insouciance and wit, though the piano tone is again rather shallow – the Danish Columbia engineers certainly didn’t want to overpower Cahuzac and seem to have over-compensated in this respect. There’s wonderful virtuosity in Jeanjean’s capricious Arabesques and in Cahuzac’s own Cantilène, a lovely piece.
 
Cahuzac admirers can confidently add this twofer. There are gems here and long hidden rarities.
 
-- Jonathan Woolf, MusicWeb International  
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Works on This Recording

1.
Concerto for Clarinet, FS 129/Op. 57 by Carl Nielsen
Performer:  Louis Cahuzac (Clarinet)
Conductor:  John Frandsen
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1928; Denmark 
Date of Recording: 1947 
Length: 24 Minutes 16 Secs. 
2.
Phantasiestücke (3) for Clarinet and Piano, Op. 73 by Robert Schumann
Performer:  Louis Cahuzac (Clarinet), Folmer Jensen (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1849; Germany 
Date of Recording: 10/31/1949 
Length: 10 Minutes 35 Secs. 
3.
Sonata for Clarinet/Viola and Piano no 1 in F minor, Op. 120 no 1 by Johannes Brahms
Performer:  Folmer Jensen (Piano), Louis Cahuzac (Clarinet)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1894; Germany 
Date of Recording: 10/29/1949 
Length: 19 Minutes 34 Secs. 
4.
Cantilène for Clarinet, Viola and Piano by Louis Cahuzac
Performer:  Louis Cahuzac (Clarinet), Folmer Jensen (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Date of Recording: 11/14/1948 
Length: 4 Minutes 32 Secs. 
5.
Arabesques, fantaisie for clarinet & piano by Paul Jeanjean
Performer:  Folmer Jensen (Piano), Louis Cahuzac (Clarinet)
Period: Modern 
Date of Recording: 11/14/1948 
Length: 4 Minutes 6 Secs. 
6.
Canzonetta for Clarinet and Piano, Op. 19 by Gabriel Pierné
Performer:  Louis Cahuzac (Clarinet), Folmer Jensen (Piano)
Written: 1888 
Date of Recording: 11/07/1947 
Length: 3 Minutes 20 Secs. 
7.
Concerto for Clarinet in A major, K 622 by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Performer:  Louis Cahuzac (Clarinet)
Conductor:  Mogens Wöldike
Period: Classical 
Written: 1791; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 1952 
Length: 30 Minutes 8 Secs. 
8.
Quintet for Clarinet and Strings in A major, K 581 by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Performer:  Louis Cahuzac (Clarinet)
Period: Classical 
Written: 1789; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 10/31/1948 
Length: 26 Minutes 14 Secs. 
9.
Sonatina for Clarinet and Piano by Arthur Honegger
Performer:  Folmer Jensen (Piano), Louis Cahuzac (Clarinet)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1921-1922; France 
Date of Recording: 11/07/1947 
Length: 5 Minutes 59 Secs. 

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