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Charpentier : Les Plaisirs De Versailles
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Charpentier : Les Plaisirs De Versailles

12 Sep 2006 | Format: MP3

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Product details

  • Original Release Date: 1 Mar 1996
  • Release Date: 12 Sep 2006
  • Label: Warner Classics International
  • Copyright: 1996 Erato Disques S.A.
  • Record Company Required Metadata: Music file metadata contains unique purchase identifier. Learn more.
  • Total Length: 52:44
  • Genres:
  • ASIN: B001F64680
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 53,225 in MP3 Albums (See Top 100 in MP3 Albums)

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Amazon.com: 4 reviews
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
Delightful 9 Oct 2000
By "hcf" - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
I meant to write a review of this recording when I first got it, but somehow never got around to it. Then I listened to this CD again and got reminded how good it really was. This is an example of quintessential Les Arts Florissants, a group that is best known for their eye-opening recordings of French baroque repertoir. In fact, their very name derives from an eponymous French masque by M-A Charpentier. The CD contains a delightful selection of several of Charpentier's small-scale pieces. The crown jewel is the song cycle Airs sur les Stances du Cid, superbly sung by Paul Agnew. Agnew's voice, naturally expressive and capable of effortlessly soaring high notes, is exactly the kind of voice to do justice to this haute-contre piece. The other two works on this CD are short masques. Les Plaisirs de Versailles (possibly composed for the performance at the king's apartments) is an allegorical contest between Music and Conversation each of whom argues that she is more important to human pleasure. The clever, often tongue-in-cheek, musical writing is given the most idiomatic expression imaginable. Amor Vince Ogni Cosa is an Italianate pastorale, with the usual shepherds and shepherdesses receiving a lesson in love from Pan. Despite the lightness of message, the pastorale is superb musically. Its opening duet in nimble Italianate thirds, and the closing five-part chorus are especially memorable. --gggimpy@yahoo.com
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Buying Tip, Great Deal > Amazon has a 4-CD box set including this CD 3 Aug 2013
By Thomas Ramey - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
This CD is included in a 4-cd box set, from Amazon, for $24.99 ($6.25 per CD!)(August 2013 $). Search Amazon using "William Christie Conducts Charpentier" (product title) or better yet just put in the ASIN number B0002ZBSGS (note 'O's are always zero's in the ASIN Amazon Standard Identification Number). All 4 CD's are outstanding Charpentier disc's. Happy Listening!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Graceful, lyrical, elegant, and proportioned 26 Feb 2012
By C. B Collins Jr. - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Marc-Antoine Charpentier, the French Baroque composer, is performed by William Christie and Les Arts Florissants with utmost skill and sensitivity. The attention to detail and scale allows the listener to hear what the aristocracy of Louis XIV's France would have enjoyed. Charpentier is known primarily as a composer of sacred music which was due to his appointments and patronage which included the pious Mademoiselle de Guise, then appointments as music master at the Church of St. Louis in Paris, then as music master for the chapel of the Grand Dauphin, and then as music master for Sainte-Chapelle.

The greatest number of his works, around 500, is sacred music but he also
composed in other genres, examples of which are found on this excellent CD. It is noteworthy that he also collaborated with Moliere's Troupe du Roy company. The three selections here are operatic but have a single act and are less than a half hour in length. The themes of these selections are the arts and pleasures of leisure. There is some acknowledgement of the greatness of the king but these pass briefly and do not constitute a major theme. It is thought that the Pleasures of Versailles was written for private performance before the king in his royal apartments since the lyrics at one point address him directly.

Music and Conversation argue in the Pleasures of Versailles as to which is the most pleasurable and they are mediated with chocolate pastries and wine. This doesn't work but eventually everyone is reconciled. The lyrics are witty but the soprano Music and the mezzo-soprano Conversation are exceptional. They are joined by Comus, a baritone, and Games, a tenor.

A passage from Le Cid is sung by Paul Agnew. Agnew is exceptional, both perfectly controlled and expressive. The speaker in this selection is Don Rodrigo, a Spanish national hero, who is in a difficult situation since the murderer of his father turns out to be the father of his beloved.

Pastoralettta, a work in Italian, begins with a wonderful two soprano passage
followed by Paul Agnew's response. It is not to have been intended for the stage, it is brief, but was meant for only five singers with minimal accompaniment. The story is of two young women, one of which has a lamb pursued by a wolf and the other is pursed herself by a bear. They appeal to Pan who tells them that their shepherd admirers will save them and they should be rewarded with love.
4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Mechanical noises spoil an otherwise-excellent disc. 8 Sep 2003
By Sir Cecil - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
It is rare that I would give a Christie disc less than top marks. However, there is an unacceptable amount of distracting "clicking" marring the title piece of this CD. This is especially disconcerting if listening on headphones. I assume it is a closely-miked and mechanically-troublesome wind instrument that is to blame, but it is so repetitious, it spoils the enjoyment of several of the 14 tracks making up the beautiful "Les Plaisirs De Versailles."
Fortunately, the other two works do not suffer a similar fate. The relatively brief "Airs Sur Les Stances Du Cid" is very attractive and is sung by the excellent Paul Agnew.
The final piece, "Amor Vince Ogni Cosa," is splendidly realized, with all the attributes we normally expect from Christie and his team.
A pity that this CD must be marked down by one star due to the irritating noises that dilute the pleasures of the early part of the disc.
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