RESTORING A SACRED
RODERIC DUNNETT listens to
Les Petits Motets de Sébastien de Brossard
<< Continued from page 1
Brossard is classic of his time : a sort of refined vocal Couperin, or
Daquin. Not as dramatic or ornamented as Lully, though every bit as passionate;
not as forward-looking as Rameau, but a gorgeous expression of early l7th
century France tastefully infiltrated by just the right measure of Italian
Four solo motets and one ensemble piece are included on this disc, accompanied
by theorbo and cello (the instrumental playing is exquisite - affectionate
and laid back). Tenor Hervé Lamy is touching in Silentium dormi,
and baritone Alain Buet (a lovely voice) [listen - track
2, 9:18 - 9:48] fervent and impassioned in the frenzied O plenus
irarum dies - Sturm und Drang before its day. But the disc's
star is fourteen (now fifteen) year old soprano Cyrille Dubois (O Jesu!
quam dulce nomen tuum and the extended closing Miserere) [listen - track 1, 0:00 - 0:30] : a voice of remarkable
allure and suppleness, and a sensitive interpreter whose musical alertness,
lucid enunciation and gift at mastering problematic long line sound like
a young Scholl in the making.
The ensemble in the closing sequence is tenderly supportive, with beautiful
clear words, good intonation and an attractive feel for cadence and phrasing
[listen - track 5, 10:09 - 11:04]. One's only regret
is that alongside them, or interspersed, one would have liked to hear something
of the full choir : In Convertendo, for instance, or Retribue
servo tuo (recorded with the Stabat Mater and Christmas Missa
quinti toni by Les Pages et les Chanteurs de la Chapelle on Auvidis-Astrée).
Most importantly with this Caen recording, it is Brossard who wins out.
There is little enough in the catalogue - apart from those mentioned above
- and this disc on a new French label is a heart-warming demonstration of
what the new French boys' tradition can achieve.
Copyright © 4 June 2000 Roderic Dunnett,
CD INFORMATION - ASSAI 207582
Available in the UK from Discovery Records, +44 (0)1672 563931
& Vision home Penderecki >>
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