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Couperin: L'Apothéose de Lulli ~ Works for two harpsicords / Christie, Rousset
Francois Couperin, William Christie, Christophe Rousset
Couperin: L'Apothéose de Lulli ~ Works for two harpsicords / Christie, Rousset
Genre: Classical
 
  •  Track Listings (25) - Disc #1

Francois Couperin is considered by many to be a composer of lighthearted, and therefore only lightly considered, music. It goes without saying that Couperin has, as a result, been underestimated. These recordings won't rec...  more »

     
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Francois Couperin is considered by many to be a composer of lighthearted, and therefore only lightly considered, music. It goes without saying that Couperin has, as a result, been underestimated. These recordings won't rectify the matter, but they do show how Couperin adapted a terrific sense of humor to the task of composition. The thesis of the two apotheoses (composed in 1724) is that one was for Corelli and one for Lulli, and that the pair addressed the debate between the Italian and French styles of composition in the 18th century. Couperin went to great lengths to make his intent clear, although he peppered the discursive titles here with humorous mythological associations. Musically, these are scintillating pieces--especially for fans of the harpsichord, but even for those who react negatively to the instrument's sometimes-tingly sensations. William Christie and Christophe Rousset move very quickly across the keyboards, following Couperin's pacing brilliantly. But they also play exceptionally hard, especially on parts of the Lulli piece, sometimes whipping the piece to a feverish intensity. This is also a fine point of contrast with the Astree chamber version of these pieces. --Andrew Bartlett