Friday, December 11, 2009

Strauss R - Couperin Suite, Capriccio, Divertimento op86 - c Krauss

Strauss R - Couperin Suite, Capriccio, Divertimento op86 - c C Krauss
Orchestral | Eac, flac, cue | no log, cover | 1 CD, 235 MB
released 1988 | amadeo | RapidShare

The note in the booklet accompanying this CD is misleadingly vague about the origins of Strauss's orchestration of Couperin keyboard pieces. A Dance Suite of eight pieces was published in 1923. To these Strauss added six in 1940 for Clemens Krauss, who in 1941 staged a ballet, Verklungene Feste in Munich. These six, with two more added, became in 1943 the Divertimento recorded here. Purists need not apply, they will be affronted by what they hear. Straussians will find nothing on the level of the Bourgeois genti/homme music. In the last three pieces, played as one continuous movement, there is a flavour of real Strauss, but compared with, say, Pulcinella, this work is a bore. In the Bourgeois gentilhomme, Strauss, like Stravinsky with Pergolesi, simultaneously entered into the spirit of the original Lully and yet was wholly himself. No such magic was worked with Couperin, except in the pieces incorporated into the opera Capriccio.

So interest in this issue resides in our having a bit of rare Strauss conducted by one of his favourite interpreters, Clemens Krauss. These are offthe-air performances and therefore not unblemished, but the sound is acceptable and they at least convey the aristocratic touch of a master. We hear this, too, in the tantalizingly short extract from his complete Capriccio—the so-called 'Moonlight Music'—and most revealingly in the set of Rosenkavalier waltzer arranged by Strauss in 1944 because the existing version, "with those atrocious transitions", had got on his nerves. Krauss, a wonderful interpreter of Die Fledermaus, extracts all the juice from these familiar melodies but does it without drawing out the tempos. His fast tempos are vivacious and vital, and when the cantabile passages occur they are all the more seductive for not being too obvious. It's clear why Strauss approved of him. We must now hope for CD reissues of Krauss's performances of the tone-poems. M.K.

CD Content

01. La Visionnaire;
02. Musette De Choisy - La Fine Madelon - La Douce Janneton - La Sezile - Musette De Taverny;
03. Le Tic-Toc-Choc - La Lutine;
04. Les Fauvettes Plaintives;
05. La Trophee - L'Anguille - Les Jeunes Seigneurs - La Linotte Effarouchee
06. Les Tours De Passe-passe;
07. Les Ombres Errantes;
08. Les Brimborians - La Badine
09.Interlude From "Capriccio"
10. Waltzes From "Der RosenKavalier"

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