Review from: Le Monde De La Musique
Charles Gounod (1813-1893)
Le Monde De La Musique
Reviewer: Franck Mallett.
Grade: Very good
Charles Gounod the composer of the operas "Faust” (1859), “Romeo & Juliet” (1867), “Mireille ” (1864), wrote as well many oratorios and over a hundred melodies from which sixteen are in Italian and twenty in English. We find in this C.D almost a complete collection of Londonienne melodies performed by the Soprano Varda Kotler. If the Orchestral pieces of Charles Gounod suffer of comparison to ones of Berlioz, here the melodies appear in bright and clear line, which capture the listener from the first note. The sound rolling, flying and leaping naturally (which is close to the composer Rossini) in the songs: “My Beloved Spake”, “If Thou Art Sleeping”. In similarity to Gabriel Faure some melodies suggest a colorful - glowing harmony: “Maid Of Athens”, “Sweet Baby”. The English inspiration (Gounod lived in London between 1870-1874) is sensed and projected in nineteen melodies in which the Victorian period puts its mark by repeating the religious theme. Varda Kotler and the pianist Veronique Barraud performed this program in June 1999 at the Gounod festival in Ville-Davray (Paris) and afterwards recorded this C.D. The outcome is intelligent and completes the first C.D – the French songs of Charles Gounod, which are performed by Bariton Francois Le Roux and was published in 1994 by R.E.M Company.
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