Monday, December 7, 2009

Berlioz - La Belle Voyageuse - Correas, Schoonderwoerd

Berlioz - La Belle Voyageuse - Correas, Schoonderwoerd
Vocal | Eac, flac, cue | no log, cover | 1 CD, 307 MB
January 1, 2002 | Alpha | RapidShare

Berlioz's songs should be better known — and this disc fights the worthy cause

Wherever Berlioz went, he was accompanied by the sound of moulds breaking. This was not always appreciated, as we know, by his contemporaries, but personally I can't get enough of it and I look forward to more during the composer's bicentenary in the coming year. Of course if breaking things were all he did, there would be little joy in that. It was what he put in place of the shattered formulae that grips our attention today.

It is surprising that his songs are not better known. Anyone who thinks Les /lairs d'ete constitutes a summary of his vocal production need only listen to this disc to be disabused. And I hope they do, together with anyone else who either loves Berlioz or is interested in 19th-century French song.
JerOme Correas has so far tended to specialise in Baroque music and his dark, warm bassbaritone is surprisingly flexible in its articulation, with an especially tender mezza voce. Berlioz's roots are not generally thought to extend further back than Gluck, but Correas's well-focused tone and shapely phrasing strike me as ideal for this music.

Certainly Berlioz's vocal lines, asymmetrical and often plain weird, have little to do with Viennese Classicism. Correas embraces the asymmetry, but is ingenious in finding some logic in the composer's most outlandish effusions, and (oh joy!) you can hear every word. Arthur Schoonderwoerd draws wonderful sounds from an 1836 Pleyel and in a song like Elegie en prose you can sense Du pare in the making. The other supporting artists are all excellent — I particularly enjoyed Christophe Coin's cello playing in the marvellous 'Premiers transports'. The spacious church acoustic, with up to a three-second echo, is not ideal, but I know traffic-free venues in Paris are hard to find. More puzzling is the running order in which eight of the nine songs of Mande (excluding `Helene') are dispersed among others. But a careful reading of Remy Stricker's informative notes makes everything clear, except the authors of the poems, who are nowhere credited. Roger Nichols

CD Content
La belle voyageuse;
L'origine de la harpe;
Le Chasseur danois;
Chanson a boireb;
Adieu Bessy;
Petit oiseau, chant de paysan;
Le Jeune pare bretonc;
Chant guerrier;
Les champs;
Le Chant des Bretons;
Le matin;
Le coucher du soleil;
Premiers transports;
Elegie en prose;
Chant sacre;

Jerome Correas bass-bar
Arthur Schoonderwoerd pf with
Claire Brua, Marie-Benenedicte Souquet sops
Alain Gabriel, Jean-Francois Novelli, JeanFrancois Lombard tens
Vincent Deliau bar
Claude Maury hn
Christophe Coin vc


  1. Thank you very much! I am very curious for this new experience...

  2. Hi Otto, it seems that the link to part 2 is missing. Could you check this... And thanks for the music I can discover thanks to you

  3. I left a message for Filefactory and the problem has been solved!!!



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