François Couperin: Quatrième livre de pièces de clavecin - Guillermo Brachetta (harpsichord) - Resonus Classics - RES10240

François Couperin: Quatrième Livre de Pièces de Clavecin

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Total playing time [156:42]

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Guillermo Brachetta (harpsichord)

Acclaimed harpsichordist Guillermo Brachetta returns to Resonus to begin a major recording of the complete Pièces de Clavecin by the French Baroque master, François Couperin, starting with the fourth book of this monumental collection.

Often wistful and valedictory in tone, the fourth and final book of this landmark collection of keyboard music was completed at the very end of Couperin’s life and in the grip of failing health. Containing many vivid musical representations of real characters, Couperin’s grace and elegance in writing for this instrument is evident to the very end.

For this recording, Brachetta uses a two-manual instrument by Keith Hill (2010) after an instrument by Pascal Taskin from 1769.

Album Booklet (PDF)

Tracklist

DISC ONE

Vingtième Ordre
1. La Princesse Marie
2. La Boufonne
3. Les Chérubins ou L’aimable Lazure
4. La Croûilli ou la Couperinéte
5. La Fine Madelon
6. La douce Janneton
7. La Sézile
8. Les Tambourins

Vingt-Unième Ordre
9. La Reine des coeurs
10. La Bondissante
11. La Couperin
12. La Harpée
13. La Petite Pince-sans-rire

Vingt-Deuxième Ordre
14. Le Trophée
15. Le point du jour
16. L’Anguille
17. Le Croc-en-jambe
18. Menuets croisés
19. Les Tours de Passe-passe

Vingt-Troisième Ordre
20. L’Audacieuse
21. Les Tricoteuses
22. L’Arlequine
23. Les Gondoles de Délos
24. Les Satires, Chevre-Pieds

Vingt-Quatrième Ordre
25. Les Vieux Seigneurs
26. Les Jeunes Seigneurs

DISC TWO

Vingt-Quatrième Ordre (continued)
1. Les Dars-homicides
2. Les Guirlandes
3. Les Brinborions
4. La Divine-Babiche ou les amours badins
5. La Belle Javotte
6. L’Amphibie

Vingt-Cinquième Ordre
7. La Visionaire
8. La Misterieuse
9. La Monflambert
10. La Muse Victorieuse
11. Les Ombres Errantes

Vingt-Sixième Ordre
12. La Convalescente
13. Gavote
14. La Sophie
15. L’Epineuse
16. La Pantomime

Vingt-Septième Ordre
17. L’Exquise
18. Les Pavots
19. Les Chinois
20. Saillie

'Brachetta is certainly a fine harpsichordist, capable of pristine clarity of texture (just listen to the lucid interplay of ‘Les Gondoles’), impressive dexterity in both hands of the sort that makes it possible to execute the music’s many trills and turns with unfailing neatness and control, so that none seems an intrusion [… ] His way of spreading chords is often ravishing.'

- Gramophone

'He handles the unequal rhythms and meticulous ornamentation of the French Baroque smoothly and subtly. His speciality, though, is his imaginative, if sometimes speculative, spin on Couperin’s notation to characterise each piece […] Overall, there’s a lovely sense of Brachetta in conversation with Couperin through the printed page. This is enhanced by a recording which places you in the room with the player, and aided by Jane Clark’s expert note.'
BBC Music Magazine

'Guillermo Brachetta projects the French style very well, combining detailed expression with precise ornamentation and fluent phrasing. Tempi are, for the most part, well judged, although one could argue for more vitality in particular pieces.'
Choir & Organ

'Brachetta’s performance is extremely focused and reflects the continuous nuances that Couperin infuses into his ordres. He instinctively knows how to pace the registral changes that give the pieces life without making them merely mechanical, as is the danger. He brings out the subject matter, whether it is overt or rather more of a vague indication in the titles, and his ornamentation is exact. If you are looking for an excellent example of this most important set of pieces, look no further than Brachetta’s sensitive and lively renditions. Highly recommended.'
Fanfare

'Brachetta is certainly a fine harpsichordist, capable of pristine clarity of texture (just listen to the lucid interplay of ‘Les Gondoles’), impressive dexterity in both hands of the sort that makes it possible to execute the music’s many trills and turns with unfailing neatness and control, so that none seems an intrusion [… ] His way of spreading chords is often ravishing.'
Gramophone

'Tempos are calm and nicely judged, inégalité gentle and fluide, and ornaments almost unobtrusively absorbed into the musical lines.'
Early Music Review

Credits
© 2019 Resonus Limited
Ⓟ 2019 Resonus Limited
Catalogue No. RES10240
Producer, engineer & editor: Adam Binks
EAN: 5060262791486
Cover image: Der rupsen begin, voedzel en wonderbaare verandering, part III (1717) by Maria Sibylla Meriam (1647–1717)
Release date: 3 May 2019