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Rameau: Ouvertures / Christophe Rousset, Les Talens Lyriques


Release Date: 07/15/1997 
Label:  L'oiseau Lyre   Catalog #: 455293   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Jean-Philippe Rameau
Conductor:  Christophe Rousset
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Talens Lyriques
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 10 Mins. 

CD not available: This title is currently only available as an MP3 download.  

Notes and Editorial Reviews



This recording received the 1998 Gramophone magazine award for Best Baroque Non-Vocal recording.

What a splendid idea it was to make a programme of overtures by Rameau; I’m surprised nobody has done it until now. Christophe Rousset has assembled a fairly comprehensive list of pieces from among Rameau’s stage works, with only a handful or so unrepresented. Rameau was an orchestrator of rare and individual genius and his operas, ballets and smaller entertainments are generously provided with some of the most original and alluring dances, overtures and assorted ‘symphonies’ to emerge from the eighteenth century, or indeed, any other.

Roughly speaking, the music on this disc
Read more was written between 1733, the date of Rameau’s first opera Hippolyte et Aricie and 1761 when he produced his comedie-lyrique, Les Paladins. The other major work of his old age, Les Boreades has not been included here and is the only important piece to have been omitted from the list. Lovers of Rameau’s music will be thoroughly familiar with most of the music played on the disc but will be delighted, as I was, to find some rarities, too. The most remarkable of these is the overture to the pastorale-heroique, Acante et Cephise. It was commissioned to celebrate the birth of the Duke of Burgundy in 1751. High hopes of him were entertained as a future king of France but in fact he died ten years later. Adulatory prologues were out of fashion by the 1750s but instead Rameau attempted something entirely new – a portrayal in music of the good wishes of the nation, and the public rejoicing at the news of the Prince’s birth. Rameau had already experimented with programmatic elements and vivid tone-painting in his overtures, notably in those of Platee (1745), and Zais (1748), both of which are included in this anthology. The overture to Acante et Cephise, is different again with its inclusion of specific ‘occasional’ references. Its three sections are marked “Voeux de la Nation”, “Feu d’Artifice” whose bass-line is punctuated by cannon-fire and “Fanfare”. “Feu d’Artifice” is the most original of them both for this startling effect – thunderously captured in the recording, by the way, and for Rameau’s wonderfully colourful and free wind textures, especially those of flute and clarinet.

Les Talens Lyriques respond admirably to this music, relishing every bar of it in performances which are refined in ensemble and articulate in speech. Rousset has proved himself a fine exponent of this hugely rewarding repertoire. An outstanding disc. Overlook it at your peril.

--Gramophone Magazine Read less

Works on This Recording

1. Les Indes galantes: Overture by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Conductor:  Christophe Rousset
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Talens Lyriques
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1735/1761; France 
Date of Recording: 10/1996 
Venue:  Bon Secours Church, Paris, France 
Length: 4 Minutes 2 Secs. 
2. Castor et Pollux: Overture by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Conductor:  Christophe Rousset
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Talens Lyriques
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1737; Paris, France 
Date of Recording: 10/1996 
Venue:  Bon Secours Church, Paris, France 
Length: 4 Minutes 15 Secs. 
3. Zoroastre: Overture by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Conductor:  Christophe Rousset
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Talens Lyriques
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1732; France 
Date of Recording: 10/1996 
Venue:  Bon Secours Church, Paris, France 
Length: 4 Minutes 3 Secs. 
4. Dardanus: Overture by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Conductor:  Christophe Rousset
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Talens Lyriques
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1739/1744; France 
Date of Recording: 10/1996 
Venue:  Bon Secours Church, Paris, France 
Length: 4 Minutes 6 Secs. 
5. Les Paladins: Overture by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Conductor:  Christophe Rousset
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Talens Lyriques
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1760; France 
Date of Recording: 10/1996 
Venue:  Bon Secours Church, Paris, France 
Length: 3 Minutes 58 Secs. 
6. Hippolyte et Aricie: Overture by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Conductor:  Christophe Rousset
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Talens Lyriques
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1733; Paris, France 
Date of Recording: 10/1996 
Venue:  Bon Secours Church, Paris, France 
Length: 2 Minutes 53 Secs. 
7. Pygmalion: Overture by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Conductor:  Christophe Rousset
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Talens Lyriques
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1748; Paris, France 
Date of Recording: 10/1996 
Venue:  Bon Secours Church, Paris, France 
Length: 4 Minutes 35 Secs. 
8. Les Surprises de l'Amour: Prologue - Overture by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Conductor:  Christophe Rousset
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Talens Lyriques
Period: Baroque 
Date of Recording: 10/1996 
Venue:  Bon Secours Church, Paris, France 
Length: 2 Minutes 27 Secs. 
9. Les Surprises de l'Amour: Prologue - Overture by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Conductor:  Christophe Rousset
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Talens Lyriques
Period: Baroque 
Date of Recording: 10/1996 
Venue:  Bon Secours Church, Paris, France 
Length: 5 Minutes 20 Secs. 
10. Les fêtes de Polymnie: Overture by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Conductor:  Christophe Rousset
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Talens Lyriques
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1745; France 
Date of Recording: 10/1996 
Venue:  Bon Secours Church, Paris, France 
Length: 2 Minutes 40 Secs. 
11. Zaïs: Overture by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Conductor:  Christophe Rousset
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Talens Lyriques
Period: Baroque 
Date of Recording: 10/1996 
Venue:  Bon Secours Church, Paris, France 
Length: 5 Minutes 15 Secs. 
12. Naïs: Overture by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Conductor:  Christophe Rousset
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Talens Lyriques
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1749; France 
Date of Recording: 10/1996 
Venue:  Bon Secours Church, Paris, France 
Length: 3 Minutes 49 Secs. 
13. Platée: Overture by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Conductor:  Christophe Rousset
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Talens Lyriques
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1745; France 
Date of Recording: 10/1996 
Venue:  Bon Secours Church, Paris, France 
Length: 3 Minutes 39 Secs. 
14. Les fêtes d'Hébé: Overture by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Conductor:  Christophe Rousset
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Talens Lyriques
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1739; Paris, France 
Date of Recording: 10/1996 
Venue:  Bon Secours Church, Paris, France 
Length: 4 Minutes 20 Secs. 
15. Les fêtes de l'Hymen et de l'Amour: Overture by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Conductor:  Christophe Rousset
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Talens Lyriques
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1747; France 
Date of Recording: 10/1996 
Venue:  Bon Secours Church, Paris, France 
Length: 4 Minutes 3 Secs. 
16. Acante et Céphise: Overture by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Conductor:  Christophe Rousset
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Talens Lyriques
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1751; Paris, France 
Date of Recording: 10/1996 
Venue:  Bon Secours Church, Paris, France 
Length: 5 Minutes 1 Secs. 

Sound Samples

Les fêtes de Polymnie: Overture
Les indes galantes: Overture
Zaïs: Overture
Castor et Pollux: Overture
Naïs: Overture
Platée [ou Junon jalouse]: Overture
Les fêtes d'Hébé: Overture
Zoroastre: Overture
Dardanus: Overture
Les Paladins: Overture - Menuet - Air gai
Hippolyte et Aricie: Overture
Le temple de la gloire: Overture
Pygmalion: Overture
Les surprises de l'Amour: Prologue (le Retour d'Astrée)
Les Fêtes de l'Hymne et de l'Amour (ou Les Dieux d'Egypte): Overture
Les surprises de l'Amour / Act 1 (Enlèvement d'Adonis): Ouverture - II Adagio - III -
Acante et Céphise, ou La sympathie: Overture: Voeux de la Nation

Customer Reviews

Average Customer Review:  1 Customer Review )
 Poorly Prepared Digital Version May 6, 2014 By Brian Murphy (McLean, VA) See All My Reviews "This album was previously available as a CD. This digital version has the same content. However, the tags in the digital version were not adjusted for the proper display of characters in the US. In addition, the sequence of tracks shown on the album page do not match the tracks on the digital download. Be prepared to make many adjustments to the tags for titles and tracks if you want a decent display on your player device." Report Abuse
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