Bizet: Les Pêcheurs De Perles / Fournet, Simoneau, Alarie

Release Date: 4/8/2003
Label: Philips
Catalog Number: B000520202
Composer: Georges Bizet
Conductor: Jean Fournet
Number of Discs: 2

Physical Format:

Low Stock
$17.99 $15.98
Notes and Editorial Reviews
We could hardly expect the Company to advertize their recording as being 'of the now discredited text', but possibly some reference to textual matters might have been included in the note. The point is that the set deserves to be strongly recommended, but in terms that must be explicit: it could not be a 'building a library' choice for the opera because it is not in fact Les pecheurs de perles as it is now known; instead, it is the performing version that was in general use till comparatively recent times when the original score was re-examined, found to be different in important respects, edited and eventually heard in recordings such as the EMI (1/90) and 1978 Classics for Pleasure (10/91) versions. Yet I should think that the fonder you are of the opera, the less willing you would be to part with this performance.

Conducted and played by musicians who could do it in their sleep, the music is treated with both alertness and affection. The chorus has, by the sound of it, some indispensable veterans in the midst, but here too is conviction and a feeling for idiom. The great asset is the tenor, Leopold Simoneau, who, on each playing, is found to be even better than remembered. Not that he is unnaturally perfect: he had a habit of taking certain notes from below, but there is not much of that here until the high Bs of ''Je crois entendre encore'', while the first test of such matters, at the start of the famous ''Au fond du temple saint'' duet, is triumphantly passed. In the offstage song he is a model of elegance and in ''Ton coeur n'a pas compris'' he is weli matched by his wife, Pierrette Alarie whose small but pure soprano is another of the delights.

-- Gramophone [10/1993]
Works on This Recording
1. Les pêcheurs de perles by Georges Bizet
Performer: Léopold Simoneau (Tenor), Xavier Depraz (Bass), Pierrette Alarie (Soprano), René Bianco (Baritone)
Conductor: Jean Fournet
Period: Romantic
Written: 1863 ; France
Customer Reviews