Whilst I spent hours with my father playing mostly transcriptions of
orchestral works for piano duet, I longed for the chance of hearing them
in their original, for which the opportunity eventually arose.
Engrained therefore was the feeling of duets poised at an intermediate stage
between that and the orchestral originals.
But a repertory of original duets that grew over the 19th and 20th centuries,
a nucleus of which can claim merit as good music in its own right, has also
established favour in orchestral versions. This programme is entirely French,
embracing the delicious Jeux d'enfants by Bizet and Ravel's Ma
mère l'Oye with duet versions of Debussy's Prélude
à l'aprés-midi d'un faune and Ravel's La Valse
[listen -- track 19, 11:45-12:45].
Playing much gossamer texture is a trial of endurance for piano duettists,
who need more control than ever in balanced projection. Moore and Crawford-Phillips,
fully aware of the challenges, give an impressive display of their ability
to play as one. It is an achievement, although many will still prefer orchestral
versions to the steely glitter of a piano duet.
Copyright © 5 January 2002
Basil Ramsey, Eastwood, Essex, UK
CD INFORMATION - DEUX-ELLES DXL 1040
PURCHASE THIS DISC FROM CROTCHET
& Vision home Recent reviews
Record Box is Music & Vision's regular Saturday series
of shorter CD reviews