JULES MASSENET (1842-1912): Complete Solo Piano Works - Grande Fantaisie sur le "Pardon de Ploërmel", 10 pièces de genre, Op. 10, Le roman d'Arlequin - Pantomime enfantine, 7 improvisations, Toccata, 2 impressions, Un Momento musicale, Devant la Madone, Valse folle, Valse très lente, Musique pour bercer les petits enfants, 2 pièces.
Catalogue Number: 03N052
Reference: 618 1729-2
Description: With Aldo Ciccolini's old EMI set out-of-print, this new release is the only available recording of everything here but the Impressions, Valses, Pièces and Toccata. Three pieces weren't even on that set: the 19-year-old composer's Grand Fantaisie, showing an aptitude for the Liszt-Thalberg style of opera paraphrases (the work in question is the original title of Meyerbeer's Dinorah); the charming, five-movement, seven-minute tale of Harlequin and Columbine and the three-minute Momento musicale, full of melody and a big climax even at its short length. Everything here points to Massenet's ability to characterize a scene or character with the quickest and deftest of brush-strokes, elevating what may seem to be salon pieces to Characterstücke worthy of Schumann but with a French touch. Stefan Irmer (1901 Steinway D).