Green: Mélodies françaises sur des poèmes de Verlaine

Green: Mélodies françaises sur des poèmes de Verlaine

by Philippe Jaroussky



As with Opium, countertenor Philippe Jaroussky's earlier collection of French art songs, some could raise all kinds of objections to Green, which is devoted to settings of texts by Paul Verlaine. There's zero historical justification for having a countertenor sing this music, or moreover for having it accompanied by a string quartet as it is in some of the transcriptions made here by piano accompanist Jérôme Ducros. There is a vast body of unreleased music in the Baroque and Renaissance repertories in which Jaroussky specializes, and the countertenor voice can't match the production of the true soprano. And...all the objections evaporate once again when one starts listening to the music. Is it just the sheer beauty of Jaroussky's tone? The fact that at this point in his career he could sing a list of URLs and sound pretty good? All this is apposite, but there's more. The poetry of Verlaine, already ambiguous as to gender, is possibly even better suited to Jaroussky than were the drug-inspired materials on the earlier release. Check out the three versions of the extravagantly romantic title poem, in French despite its English title, by Gabriel Fauré, André Caplet, and Claude Debussy for starters. A good deal of this material is fairly obscure, and although Jaroussky is not the first singer to mix the art-song mélodie with semi-popular French song by the likes of Léo Ferré, he paces the contrast with uncommon effectiveness. The moody playing of the Quatuor Ebène amplifies the mood rather than interfering with it. A wonderful release.

Product Details

Release Date: 02/24/2015
Label: Erato
UPC: 0825646166930
catalogNumber: 2564616693


  1. Colombine
  2. Colloque sentimental, for voice & piano
  3. Promenade sentimentale, for voice & piano
  4. Mélodies (3), for voice & piano, Op. 4: Il pleure dans mon cœur
  5. Mandoline, for voice & piano
  6. Chanson d'automne
  7. Colombine, for voice & piano
  8. L'heure exquise, for voice & piano
  9. Ecoutez la chanson bien douce

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