Couperin: Music for two harpsichords

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LABELS: Harmonia Mundi Musique d’abord
WORKS: Music for two harpsichords
PERFORMER: William Christie, Christophe Rousset (harpsichord)
CATALOGUE NO: HMA 1901269 1988
This reissue of a disc first published a decade ago is pure joy. William Christie and Christophe Rousset, acting on Couperin’s own suggestion, play the colourful, artful music of L’apothéose de Lulli, published in 1725, with wit, elegance and abundant grace. Also here is the equally characterful L’apothéose de Corelli (from Les goûts réunis, 1724) as well as Couperin’s only piece originally for two harpsichords, the Allemande from the ninth ordre, and four other solo harpsichord works that lend themselves readily to adaptation. Lithe rhythms (with teasing inégalités), perfect ensemble and sonorous instruments add to the disc’s distinction. Stephen Pettitt