Compact Discoveries®
a series of one-hour radio programs produced, written, hosted, and edited by Fred Flaxman
©2004 by Compact Discoveries, Inc.

Program 68
"Chaminade, Part 2"

MUSIC: Chaminade: excerpt from Concert Etude III: Fileuse performed by Enid Katahn, pianist [Gasparo GSCD-247, track 5] [under the following]

The music in the background is by the French composer, Cécile Chaminade. It is called Fileuse, which means Spinner, as in the person who uses a spinning wheel to make fabric out of thread, not a politician who turns bad situations into good ones.

Welcome to Compact Discoveries. I'm your guide Fred Flaxman, and during the next hour I'm going to play more of my very latest compact discoveries for you by this exceptionally talented female composer of the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

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As I mentioned at the beginning of the first hour that I devoted to her music, Chaminade was born in Paris in 1857 and she died in Monte Carlo in 1944, during World War Two.

She was amazingly successful as a pianist playing her own compositions. She even had a perfume named after her which was sold with her portrait on it.
The public loved her in France, England and the United States, where her rarity as a female composer was a distinct advantage. Clubs were set up to promote her music.
She composed some 200 works including piano sonatas, trios, pieces for piano and orchestra, and a mass. But she was best known for her short pieces for piano and her songs.

In the first part of this hour I'm going to feature pianist Enid Katahn playing some of these beautiful piano pieces. Then we'll hear her Concertino for Flute and Orchestra, which is still a standard part of the flute repertoire. Next we'll listen to some more of her piano pieces, this time performed by Eric Parkin. And we'll conclude the hour with three of Chaminade's delightful songs as sung by Anne Sofie von Otter.

Let's start with three piano pieces played by Enid Katahn. First the opening Scherzo from Chaminade's Six Concert Etudes. Then a piece called The Fauns. And the set will conclude with a Valse-Caprice.

MUSIC: Chaminade: Concert Etude I: Scherzo performed by Enid Katahn, pianist [Gasparo GSCD-247, track 3]

MUSIC: Chaminade: The Fauns performed by Enid Katahn, pianist [Gasparo GSCD-247, track 8]

MUSIC: Chaminade: Valse-Caprice performed by Enid Katahn, pianist [Gasparo GSCD-247, track 9]

Three piano pieces by Cécile Chaminade: the Scherzo from her Six Concert Etudes; then The Fauns; and finally Valse-Caprice. The pianist was Enid Katahn on a Gasparo compact disc. We are exploring Chaminade's tuneful music together on this hour of Compact Discoveries. I'm your guide, Fred Flaxman.

Next I'd like to share with you one of my very favorite piano pieces by Chaminade, her beautiful and appropriately named Etude Symphonique. Once again, Enid Katahn is the pianist.

MUSIC: Chaminade: Etude Symphonique performed by Enid Katahn, pianist [Gasparo GSCD-247, track 10]

Cécile Chaminade's Etude Symphonique. Enid Katahn was the pianist, and this was from a Gasparo compact disc which I obtained online from ArkivMusic.com.

I'll conclude this part of the hour with two more piano pieces played by Enid Katahn from this CD: Contes bleus 1 and 2. "Contes bleus" means "blue tales," not in the sense of dirty stories, but rather meaning sad or melancholy tales, "bleu" being used in the same sense we talk about having the "blues."

MUSIC: Chaminade: Contes bleus 1 et 2 performed by Enid Katahn, pianist [Gasparo GSCD-247, tracks 11 and 12]

Enid Katahn played Contes bleus 1 and 2 by Cécile Chaminade. All the music I have played so far in this hour has been from the same Gasparo compact disc.

You are listening to Compact Discoveries. I'm your guide, Fred Flaxman, and we are exploring the music of the French composer, Cécile Chaminade.

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Although Chaminade is known mostly for her piano pieces and songs, she also composed a ballet, a symphony and other large-scale works, including the piece we'll listen to next: the Concertino for Flute and Orchestra in D Major, Op. 109. This piece was originally written for piano and orchestra, and Chaminade was the soloist in many performances throughout her life. But we'll hear it now in her well-known transcription for flute. In this recording, Marilyn Maingart is the flutist with the Mendelssohn Chamber Orchestra conducted by James Brooks-Bruzzese.

MUSIC: Chaminade: Concertino for Flute and Orchestra in D Major, Op. 109 ["Mendelssohn and more," Summerfest 2003, track 2]

The Concertino for Flute and Orchestra by Cécile Chaminade. Marilyn Maingart was the flutist with the Mendelssohn Chamber Orchestra conducted by James Brooks-Bruzzese.

Let's get back to Chaminade's piano music now and five pieces performed by Eric Parkin. I'll give you the titles before each piece. First Minuetto, Opus 23.

MUSIC: Chaminade: Minuetto, Op. 23; Eric Parkin, piano [Chandos CHAN 8888, track 3]

Danse créole -- Creole Dance, Op. 94.

MUSIC: Chaminade Danse créole; Eric Parkin, piano [Chandos CHAN 8888, track 4]

Pierrette.

MUSIC: Chaminade: Pierrette performed by Eric Parkin, pianist [Chandos CHAN 8888, track 1]

Air de ballet.

MUSIC: Chaminade: Air de ballet, performed by Eric Parkin, pianist [Chandos CHAN 8888, track 6]

La Lisonjera -- The Seductress.

MUSIC: Chaminade: La Lisonjera performed by Eric Parkin, pianist [Chandos CHAN 8888, track 1]

Five piano pieces by Cécile Chaminade performed by Eric Parkin on a Chandos release.

I mentioned earlier that Chaminade was best known for her salon pieces for piano and for her songs. I'm going to conclude this hour with three of her songs, all performed by Anne Sofie von Otter with Bengt Forsberg at the piano. First, Ma première lettre -- My First Letter.

MUSIC: Chaminade: Ma première lettre sung by Anne Sofie von Otter; Bengt Forsberg, piano [Deutsche Grammophon 289 471 331-2, track 6]

Ronde d'amour.

MUSIC: Chaminade: Ronde d'amour sung by Anne Sofie von Otter; Bengt Forsberg, piano [Deutsche Grammophon 289 471 331-2, track 1]

Sombrero.

MUSIC: Chaminade: Sombrero, sung by Anne Sofie von Otter; Bengt Forsberg, piano [Deutsche Grammophon 289 471 331-2, track 3]

Three charming, very French songs by Cécile Chaminade sung by Anne Sofie von Otter accompanied on the piano by Bengt Forsberg on a Deutsche Grammophon compact disc.

MUSIC: Chaminade: excerpt from Concert Etude III: Fileuse performed by Enid Katahn, pianist [Gasparo GSCD-247, track 5] [under the following]

I hope you agree with me that the romantic music of Chaminade deserves to be rediscovered and that these pieces are true compact discoveries! I'd love to hear your reaction to this all-but-forgotten French female composer. You can contact me, Fred Flaxman, through the Compact Discoveries website: www.compactdiscoveries.com. The website has short descriptions and complete scripts for each Compact Discoveries program. There are also articles, a list of stations carrying the program, and a section for listener response. The website address again is www.compactdiscoveries.com.

I would like to thank ArkivMusic.com once again for supplying most of the recordings used in this program.

Compact Discoveries is a registered trademark and production of Compact Discoveries, Inc., and a presentation of WXEL-FM, West Palm Beach, Florida.

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