- Capriccio for 2 pianos (after Le bal Masqué), FP 155
- Sonata for 2 pianos, FP 156
- Élégie (en accords alternés), for 2 pianos, FP 175
- L'embarquement pour Cythère, valse-musette for 2 pianos (from film, Le voyage en Amérique), FP 150
- Sonata for piano, 4 hands, FP 8
- Sonata for 2 clarinets, FP 7
- Sonata for clarinet & bassoon, FP 32
- Sonata for horn, trumpet & trombone, FP 33
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For the third volume in Naxos' budget-priced cycle of Francis Poulenc's reliably appetizing chamber music, the menu includes works for two pianists (at one keyboard or two), woodwind duos, and brass trio. (Anyone who has enjoyed the Nash Ensemble's excellent two-disc set of Poulenc's "complete" chamber music on Hyperion, which does not include the works for piano duo, will especially appreciate this thrifty supplement.) Alexandre Tharaud and François Chaplin dispatch the keyboard pieces with all due panache. The major work among these, the Sonata for Two Pianos (1953), is an especially appealing example of the synthesis of wit and touching sentiment that Poulenc achieved in much of his late work. By contrast, the impish Sonata for Piano Duet (1918) captures the exhilarating flippancy of the composer as a teenager. (The Capriccio d'après Le bal masqué sounds like it could have used a bit more rehearsal time; Tharaud and Chaplin seem to have trouble coordinating their playing in this brief work, a problem that doesn't surface in any of their other performances here.) The remaining works for winds are early Poulenc at his most piquant, occasionally showing a debt to the austerity of certain pieces by Stravinsky. The composer always had a weakness for the bright sounds of woodwinds in particular, and in these sonatas he presented them unadorned by the accompaniment of a piano -- the edgy, brittle quality of the instruments creates an outdoorsy, almost circus-like atmosphere in each of these tremendously fun works. They receive performances here that fully capture this exuberance along with the occasional touches of nose-thumbing vulgarity that Poulenc, still an enfant terrible in his early 20s, couldn't resist throwing in as deliberate protest against bourgeois propriety.