Legendary French Pianists · Monique Haas · Madeleine de Valmalète ∙ 2CD

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Two notable French pianists, Monique Haas and Madeleine de Valmalète, are featured on a double album that includes many pieces they never recorded commercially. The album includes rare chamber performances by Haas, such as Mozart’s two piano quartets and wind quintet, which were recorded during the Ludwigsburg festival commemorating the bicentennial anniversary of Mozart’s birth in 1956. Additionally, the album includes Franck’s Symphonic Variations, which is a valuable addition to Haas’s discography. Valmalète, on the other hand, is a pianist who has unfortunately been largely forgotten today, despite being highly deserving of exploration. Her talent and artistry were recognized and admired by prominent composers like Saint-Saëns and Ravel. Her representation in the catalogue is minimal.

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LEGENDARY FRENCH PIANISTS · Monique Haas · Madeleine de Valmalète

CD 1

SAINT-SAËNS: Piano Concerto No 2 in G Minor, Op 22
Madeleine de Valmalète ∙ piano
Orchestre Symphonique de France
André Audoli ∙ conductor

Recorded · 11 July 1959 · Marseille · Opéra · RTF · Live Recording

MOZART: Piano Concerto No 9 in E-flat Major, KV 271
Madeleine de Valmalète ∙ piano
Orchestre Philharmonique de la RTF
Eric Paul Stekel ∙ conductor

Recorded · 20 August 1962 · Paris · Salle Pleyel · RTF · Live Recording

FRANCK: Symphonic Variations, M 46
Monique Haas ∙ piano
Amsterdams Kunstmaandorkest
Anton Kersjes ∙ conductor

Recorded · 05 January 1964 · Amsterdam · Grote Zaal · NCRV · Live Recording

CD 2

MOZART: Piano Quartet in G Minor, KV 478
MOZART: Piano Quartet in E-Flat Major, KV 493
Monique Haas · piano
Jean Pasquier · violin
Pierre Pasquier · viola
Étienne Pasquier · cello

Recorded · 02 July 1956 · Ludwigsburg · Schloss Ordenssaal · SDR · Live Recording

MOZART: Piano Quintet in E-flat Major, KV 452
Monique Haas · piano
Fritz Fischer · oboe
Walter Triebskorn · clarinet
Werner Büttner · horn
Herbert Anton · bassoon

Recorded · 02 July 1956 · Ludwigsburg · Schloss Ordenssaal · SDR · Live Recording

RAMEAU: Gavotte variée
COUPERIN: Les Barricades mysterieuses
COUPERIN: Le Tic-Toc-choc

Monique Haas ∙ piano
Recorded · 13 May 1950 · Stuttgart · Studio VI · SDR · Radio Studio Recording

Article number: MC 1052
UPC barcode: 791154050644
Release date: 14 September 2020
Booklet: 8 Pages
Total timing: 71:58 CD1 ∙  78:26 CD2
From the Original Masters ∙ © 2020 Meloclassic

October 2021 ∙ French Diapason ∙ Laurent Muraro ∙ Legendary French Pianists · Monique Haas · Madeleine de Valmalète
Ecole française pour finir, avec un double portrait de Madeleine de Valmalète (1899-1999) et de sa cadette Monique Haas (1909-1987). Si la première est à côté de son sujet dans le « Jeunehomme » (1962) et met du temps à démarrer dans le 2e de Saint-Saëns (1959), la seconde séduit dans de somptueuses Variations symphoniques de Franck (1964), et délivre, à Ludwigsburg en 1956, une belle leçon de musique de chambre dans les Quatuors KV 478 et 493 (avec les frères Pasquier) et le Quintette pour piano et vents KV 452.
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January 2021 ∙ British Gramophone ∙ Rob Cowan ∙ Legendary French Pianists · Monique Haas · Madeleine de Valmalète
After the fairly dry Amar Trio, the Pasquier brothers (violinist Jean, viola player Pierre and cellist Etienne) sound more vibrant, most specifically in support of the Parisian pianist Monique Haas on broadcast recordings of Mozart’s two piano quartets. These memorably stylish performances find Haas a model of elegance, the Pasquiers providing her with a richly expressive backdrop. The performance is followed by the Wind Quintet, K452, where Haas is joined by some fine players in Ludwigsburg. All three recordings date from 1956. Also included is a trio of solo pieces by Rameau and Couperin (1950, including Rameau’s Gavotte variée) and Franck’s Symphonic Variations with the Amsterdam Kunstmaandorkest under Anton Kersjes (1964). But perhaps the main attraction is a fine musician who made even fewer recordings than Haas: Madeleine de Valmalète, a prize-winning pianist who impressed the likes of Fauré and Ravel. We hear her play Saint-Saëns’s Second Concerto (1959, France Symphony Orchestra, André Audoli), where the approach contrasts a rich tone with a light touch in the Scherzo, and Mozart’s Concerto K271 (1962, RTF Philharmonic, Eric Paul Stekel), where the first two movements are taken at an uncommonly broad tempo, the opening more contemplative than heroic. The sound quality throughout is good for the period, if a little muted, the transfers excellent, and the comprehensively informative notes.
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