MARC-ANDRÉ DALBAVIE (b.1961): Sonnets for Countertenor and Orchestra, 3 chansons populaires for Countertenor and Orchestra (Yuriy Mynenko [countertenor], Sextine-Cyclus for Countertenor and Ensemble (Jean-Paul Fouchécourt [countertenor]).
Catalogue Number: 10R079
Label: Ame Son
Reference: ASCP 1326
Description: Sonnets is an orchestral song cycle of symphonic scope, setting the extraordinary, passionate, erotically charged poems of the French Renaissance poetess Louise Labé. These works of overwhelming desire and longing, of the hopeless idealization of the belovèd, call for music of intensity, not only of tender longing but also of vehemence, and they receive both in Dalbavie's sumptuously expressive score. The poems' varied moods are reflected in music that incorporates impressionism and full-blooded romanticism, perhaps surprisingly tonal and neo-romantic in effect. The inspired choice of the countertenor voice preserves the sense of femininity of the poems' perspective while imparting a kind of steely resolve to the pursuit of the poet's hopeless passion. Sextine-Cyclus sets troubadour songs in the manner of transcriptions, with the melodies authentically presented but with modern harmonies and timbres, sometimes ingeniously alluding to mediæval instrumentation, from the ensemble. The three popular and well-known folksongs were used by Debussy in Images, and Dalbavie's orchestrations of the original melodies pay tribute to Debussy. French texts. Gulbenkian Orchestra; Marc-André Dalbavie.