Dutilleux: L’arbre des songes, Mystere de L’instant, Deux sonnets de Jean Cassou, La geole

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COMPOSERS: Dutilleux
LABELS: Arte Nova
ALBUM TITLE: Dutilleux
WORKS: L’arbre des songes, Mystere de L’instant, Deux sonnets de Jean Cassou, La geole
PERFORMER: Francois Le Roux, Olivier Charlier, Bordeaux Aquitaine National Orchestra, Hans Graf
CATALOGUE NO: 82876 63825 2
This rewarding coupling of Dutilleux’s

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violin concerto L’arbre des songes with

Mystère de l’instant highlights many

resonances, despite their belonging

to different phases of his creativity.

That both use cimbalom is only the

most obvious, for there are numerous

moments in Mystère that feel like halfforgotten

memories of the gestures of

the concerto.

This is Olivier Charlier’s second

recording of L’arbre des songes, and has

greater urgency than his stylish but

occasionally languid performance as

part of Yan Pascal Tortelier’s Dutilleux

survey with the BBC Philharmonic

(Chandos). The Bordeaux Aquitaine

orchestra may not match the finesse

or the recorded sound of the British

ensemble, but they more than

compensate with their forthright

passion, moulded by Hans Graf to the

ebb and flow of the score’s undulating

textures. It is surprising, then, that

the climax of the crucial ‘tuning-up’

Interlude underwhelms, especially

when set alongside Renaud Capuçon’s

spine-tingling version with Myung-

Whun Chung at the helm (Virgin).

The ten orchestral snapshots that

comprise Mystère de l’instant suggest

a more fragmentary approach. In

Graf’s hands it is not so much the

surface contrasts that impress, but

the underlying unity that others

find elusive. Neal Davies gave a fine

account of the two Cassou Sonnets

for Tortelier’s set, but François Le

Roux adds an entirely new dimension,

living every word of the poems. An

equally stirring first recording of the

orchestral version of La geôle is the

icing on the cake of a most welcome

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disc. Christopher Dingle