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La Bonne Chanson/French Chambe

Anne Sofie/Forsberg; Von Otter Audio CD
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
Price: CDN$ 23.95
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1. 1. Ravel: Trois Poemes de Stephane Mallarme I. Soupir
2. II. Placet futile
3. III. Surgi de la croupe et du bond
4. Chausson: Chanson perpetuelle
5. Martin: Trois chants de Noel I. Les cadeaux
6. II. Image de No l
7. III. Les Bergers
8. Delage Quatre Poemes hindous I. Madras
9. II. Lahore
10. III. Benares
11. IV. Jeypur
12. Saint-Saens: Une flute invisible
13. Poulenc: Rapsodie negre I. Prelude
14. II. Ronde
15. III. Honoloulou
16. IV. Pastorale
17. V. Final
18. Faure: La bonne chanson Op 61 I. Une sante en son aureole
19. II. Puisque l'aube grandit
20. III. La lune blanche luit dans les bois
See all 26 tracks on this disc

Product Description

Amazon.ca

Taking its name from Fauré's famous La Bonne Chanson cycle, this is a collection of French songs for voice and diverse chamber ensemble. It includes not only the Fauré but Ravel's Three Poems of Stéphane Mallarmé, Frank Martin's Three Christmas Songs and, strangest of all, Poulenc's Rapsodie négre, an early, misguided attempt at Gauguin-esque exotica. Most of it is tasty stuff, particularly for those who have a high tolerance for musical radiance and don't need that much shade with their light. Performances by Otter are, as always, smart and fastidious, though perhaps a tad cool. -- David Patrick Stearns

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Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Otherworldly June 29 2001
By Rodrigo
Format:Audio CD
Anne Sofie Von Otter's vocalism is simply one of the most sophisticated these days and, in this disc, she sings music of a very sophisticated nature. The Mallarmé songs are, in its own right, some of the most creative and exquisite in the French repertoire and here Von Otter produces sounds of instrumental and yet most expressive nature. The Chanson Perpetuelle is also sung in the most expressive and wide tonal range and the Swedish mezzo's French couldn't be more idiomatic. It is no wonder that her Mélisande in the Paris Opera was considered to be a complete success. She offers highly virtuosistic and sensitive performances in the Hindu songs and the Fauré are all delicious. My only doubt is about the inclusion of Poulenc's Rhapsodie Nègre in this recital. It has nothing to do with the rest of the pieces and it is an uninspiring piece, especially today when épater la bourgeoisie is something nobody cares about anymore. It is a minor problem in such a nice disc, but I regret that she didn't record here more Fauré and why not some Debussy? Forsberg is the usual nicest pianist and the rest of the team offer great ensemble performances. Wonderfully recorded sound by DG.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 5.0 out of 5 stars  1 review
13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of von Otter's most enjoyable efforts. Buy It. May 5 2006
By B. Marold - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
'La Bonne Chanson' by mezzosoprano Anne Sophie Von Otter is the kind of album I really enjoy from today's great female classic vocalists. Next to interpretations of Kurt Weill's German works, the French art song is by far my favorite. It sounds less stilted than the English chamber song and far less heavy than the German Lieder from Shubert and his compatriots. It is neck and neck in my mind with good interpretations of Italian love songs.

I was fortunate to be able to compare this album with the Dawn Upshaw effort, 'The Girl With Orange Lips', on which she performs Ravel's 'Trois Poemes de Stephane Mallarme', which also open Von Otter's disk. I have to say that on these pieces, the two artists sound virtually identical, although Von Otter has just the slightest greater strength and authority in her voice. Picking between the two on these pieces would require a fair coin toss.

On the other hand, Von Otter's other material on this disk is far better than the material on Upshaw's disk, even though they also share performances of Maurice Delage's 'Quatre Poemes hindous'.

Von Otter's performances of Poulenc's 'Rapsodie negre' and Gabriel Faure's 'La Bonne Chanson' are especially good at having me sit up and take notice.

This is especially more enjoyable than her celebrated recordings of Edvard Grieg's songs.
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