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Debussy & Rameau: The Unbroken Line / LaDeur


Release Date: 08/08/2017 
Label:  Msr   Catalog #: 1654  
Composer:  Jean-Philippe RameauClaude Debussy
Performer:  Jeffrey LaDeur

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Works on This Recording

1.
Castor et Pollux by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Performer:  Jeffrey LaDeur (Piano)
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1737; Paris, France 
2.
Images for Piano, Set 1 by Claude Debussy
Performer:  Jeffrey LaDeur (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1905; France 
3.
Préludes, Book 2 by Claude Debussy
Performer:  Jeffrey LaDeur (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1912-1913; France 
4.
Nouvelles suites de pičces de clavecin by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Performer:  Jeffrey LaDeur (Piano)
Period: Baroque 
Written: circa 1729-1730; France 

Customer Reviews

Average Customer Review:  1 Customer Review )
 Fanfare Magazine: Required Listening  September 29, 2017 By New Piano  Collective See All My Reviews "Colin Clarke, Fanfare DEBUSSY Images: Book I. Préludes: Book II. RAMEAU Castor et Pollux: Tristes apprêts (arr. LaDeur). Nouvelles suites de pièces de clavecin: Gavotte et six Doubles ? Jeffrey LaDeur (pn) ? MSR 1654 (69:39) This is a beautiful idea. The title of this disc is Debussy & Rameau: The Unbroken Line. The starting point is Debussy’s admiration for Rameau, specifically Annie Marchand Sherter’s essay on the origins of “Les tierces alternées,” the penultimate prelude of Debussy’s second book of Préludes, in Rameau’s “Gavotte et six Doubles.” In musical terms, the figuration of the former derives from Rameau’s Fourth Double. And, to complete the title, Sherter herself is in her own “unbroken line,” a pupil of Perlemuter and Cortot. LaDeur’s Rameau is spellbinding. In fact, hearing his own transcription of “Tristes apprêts” from Castor et Pollux, one aches to hear more. The aria is a lament for Castor by Télaïre. Interior, infinitely touching, and superbly considered for the instrument (and, one assumes, LaDeur’s own playing), it leads seamlessly to “Reflets dans l’eau,” the first piece of the first book of Images. The traceries of this piece in LaDeur’s hands are magical before the link to LaDeur’s transcription flowers in Debussy’s central “Hommage à Rameau.” In his superb booklet notes, LaDeur posits that the myth of Castor and Pollux is embedded in this entire cycle, as the “Hommage” is the root of the cycle: so much so that LaDeur suggests alternative titles to Debussy’s three movements (“Dioscuri at Sea”; “Castor in the Underworld”; “Gemini Rising”). The way single lines speak in this central panel invites in the concentration one might find in a good live recital; silence, too, has a vital part to play. The potential energy of the rhythmic opening of “Mouvement,” the finale, is soon actualized in a visceral reading. The performance of the second book of Préludes is magnificent. One only needs to listen to the voicing and the placing of the chords that open “Feuilles mortes” to realize the preparation that has gone into this reading (something that also strikes the listener about the chords in “La terrasse des audiences du clair de lune” and “Canope”). The lumbering opening to “La Puerta del Vino” leads into a misty habanera, while Debussy’s fairies dance and flit with an airy ease. Yet every note speaks perfectly. LaDeur’s placement and clarity at the opening of “Bruyères” suggests the pianist is thinking orchestrally as he plays; yet, somehow, “General Lavine” emerges as if it could only be heard on piano. LaDeur revels in the skittish, scherzando side of “Ondine,” as well as the pomposity of Pickwick. This time, we hear the Debussy (“Les tierces alternées”) first before the Rameau; the link is just as clear and well made. The performance of the Debussy is exemplary: clean, with a superb tone, arguably the finest performance on the disc. The actual Rameau Gavotte enters with a purity that verges on the miraculous; LaDeur’s pearly touch brings out the lines clearly, his ornamentation perfectly judged throughout. The appeal of this disc lies in the correspondences it lays bare so effectively. But there is also fabulous playing here, in a superb recording. The Debussy pieces offer huge competition (despite the fact the second book of Préludes is the less recorded of the two), yet not only does LaDeur come through unscathed, he offers a new way of experiencing and appreciating this music. And that, my friends, is like gold dust. Required listening." Report Abuse
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