HONEGGER & IBERT: L'AIGLON

HONEGGER & IBERT: L'AIGLON

Anne-Catherine Gillet
Marc Barrard
Étienne Dupuis
Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal
Kent Nagano
Int. Release 04 Mar. 2016
2 CDs
0289 478 9502 2


Track List

CD 1: Honegger & Ibert: L'Aiglon

Jacques Ibert (1890 - 1962), Arthur Honegger (1892 - 1955)
L'Aiglon

Act 1: Les ailes qui s'ouvrent

1.
4:54

Isaiah Bell, Étienne Dupuis, Marie-Nicole Lemieux, Hélène Guilmette, Anne-Catherine Gillet, Marc Barrard, Pascal Charbonneau, Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, Kent Nagano

L'Aiglon

Act 1: Les ailes qui s'ouvrent

2.
3:59

Anne-Catherine Gillet, Hélène Guilmette, Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, Kent Nagano

L'Aiglon

Act 1: Les ailes qui s'ouvrent

3.
1:32

Anne-Catherine Gillet, Tyler Duncan, Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, Kent Nagano

L'Aiglon

Act 1: Les ailes qui s'ouvrent

4.
4:24

Anne-Catherine Gillet, Étienne Dupuis, Philippe Sly, Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, Kent Nagano

L'Aiglon

Act 1: Les ailes qui s'ouvrent

5.
6:25

Marc Barrard, Anne-Catherine Gillet, Philippe Sly, Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, Kent Nagano

L'Aiglon

Act 1: Les ailes qui s'ouvrent

6.
4:27

Anne-Catherine Gillet, Marc Barrard, Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, Kent Nagano

L'Aiglon

Act 2: Les ailes qui battent

7.
2:43

Marc Barrard, Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, Kent Nagano

L'Aiglon

Act 2: Les ailes qui battent

8.
5:47

Étienne Dupuis, Marc Barrard, Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, Kent Nagano

L'Aiglon

Act 2: Les ailes qui battent

9.
5:56

Marc Barrard, Étienne Dupuis, Anne-Catherine Gillet, Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, Kent Nagano

Total Playing Time: 40:07

CD 2: Honegger & Ibert: L'Aiglon

Jacques Ibert (1890 - 1962), Arthur Honegger (1892 - 1955)
L'Aiglon

Act 3: Les ailes meurtries

1.
1:15

Philippe Sly, Isaiah Bell, Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, Kent Nagano

L'Aiglon

Act 3: Les ailes meurtries

2.
9:01

Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, Kent Nagano

L'Aiglon

Act 3: Les ailes meurtries

3.
0:00
3:15

Anne-Catherine Gillet, Hélène Guilmette, Philippe Sly, Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, Kent Nagano

L'Aiglon

Act 3: Les ailes meurtries

4.
4:57

Tyler Duncan, Anne-Catherine Gillet, Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, Kent Nagano

L'Aiglon

Act 3: Les ailes meurtries

5.
3:18

Étienne Dupuis, Anne-Catherine Gillet, Jean-Michel Richer, Julie Boulianne, Marc Barrard, Isaiah Bell, Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, Kent Nagano

L'Aiglon

Act 3: Les ailes meurtries

6.
4:07

Julie Boulianne, Anne-Catherine Gillet, Kimy McLaren, Isaiah Bell, Marc Barrard, Pascal Charbonneau, Philippe Sly, Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, Kent Nagano

L'Aiglon

Act 4: Les ailes brisées

7.
13:33

Anne-Catherine Gillet, Marc Barrard, Philippe Sly, Kimy McLaren, Jean-Michel Richer, Choeur de l'Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, Kent Nagano

L'Aiglon

Act 5: Les ailes fermées

8.
12:53

Étienne Dupuis, Marie-Nicole Lemieux, Hélène Guilmette, Tyler Duncan, Anne-Catherine Gillet, Pascal Charbonneau, Les Petits Chanteurs Du Mont-Royal, Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, Kent Nagano

Total Playing Time: 52:19

. . . tenor Jean-Michel Richer is a Comte de Sedlinsky whose brief presence in the drama lingers in the memory, the character's lines poured out in a stream of silvery tone. Fellow tenors Isaiah Bell and Pascal Charbonneau are similarly effective in their respective rôles . . . As L'attaché militaire, Charbonneau's slender, pointed voice chills and calms in equal measures, his timbre perfect for the character who clings to the periphery of the plot with ambiguous intentions . . . Alongside such a strong cast of male singers, the female contingent of DECCA's "L'Aiglon" command admiration for their own finely-judged, capably-voiced portrayals . . . Philippe Sly enriches the performance with every note that he sings . . . the heart of this recording of "L'Aiglon" is cooperation: respect among artists for themselves, one another, and the score in their hands yields a performance that enchants and enlightens.

It benefits from both a French-speaking cast and the playing of the Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, who sound energised by Kent Nagano's conducting, especially in the quasi-mad scene on the Wagram plain.

. . . [done] with charm, and touchingly . . . Kent Nagano conducts the OSM with evangelical flair and authentic French style.

. . . a delightful performance . . . Conducted with care and palpable affection by Kent Nagano, it boasts a fine, mostly francophone ensemble cast, with not a weak link anywhere . . . [Anne-Catherine Gillet's Duke is] bright in tone and wonderfully subtle in her response to the complexities of both text and character. Marc Barrard is the touchingly funny Flambeau, while Etienne Dupuis makes Metternich all the more sinister by singing his music so beautifully. The orchestral sound is gorgeous, as is the recording itself . . .

. . . this performance by a French cast does all that can be done, and audio quality is state-of-the art. This is a handsome presentation with a 118-page booklet with program notes, track listings and the complete libretto. A worthy issue . . .

. . . "L'Aiglon" is back on disc and it is here to stay! . . . The exciting performances that Kent Nagano gently coaxes out of Anne-Catherine Gillet, Marc Barrard, Etienne Dupuis and Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal make certain that this eagle has landed to uniform applause . . .

. . . excellent . . .

There has been no complete recording until this, and it was worth the wait. Kent Nagano conducts in a flurry of strings, but also pares down the emotions as the piece gets darker. Anne-Catherine Gillet really seizes her chances as "L'Aiglon", her soprano vibrant and emotional . . . her voice has a forward-placed ease that speaks eloquently. Marc Barrard is an excellent Flambeau and Hélène Guilmette a stylish Therese. In fact, a Francophone cast ensures that there's an idiomatic sheen to the whole event.
Francis Muzzu
CD review L'Aiglon
Honegger, Ibert
L'Aiglon
Barrard, Dupuis, Sly, Gillet, Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal
478 9502

. . . [the splendid sounding Montréal Symphony is] led with verve and flexibility by Kent Nagano . . . [the role of the Duke] is sung with agility and fine dramatic engagement by the Belgian soprano Anne-Catherine Gillet. The other outstanding voice here is that of the Québec soprano Hélène Guilmette, whose duets with Gillet provide the loveliest moments of the score . . . [baritone Phillipe Sly is outstanding] as Marshall Marmont. His authoritative delivery and excellent diction suggests that he could be an excellent Golaud . . . In Kent Nagano, the Montréal Symphony has a conductor with a commitment to out-of-the way 20th-century opera, French and otherwise . . . [Decca gives the work] the benefits of vibrant, detailed recorded sound. The generous booklet containing a libretto, biographies, and supplementary written material is a throwback to a more gracious era of recording production . . . I highly recommend "L'Aiglon".

. . . the new Montreal recording makes a richly rewarding addition to the operatic catalogue . . . The general impression left by Nagano's conducting and by the orchestra, chorus and a large cast dominantly though not entirely French-Canadian, is of unfailing finesse and, beyond that, a radiantly lyrical responsiveness to notes and words equally: the performance is almost entirely a pleasure to absorb oneself in . . . The singing is of near-uniformly high quality, with particular stand-out contributions from the baritone Étienne Dupuis and bass-baritone Philippe Sly . . . my last words must be of high enthusiasm . . . and abundant gratitude to Decca . . .

. . . [the alacrity of Anne-Catherine Gillet's] musical attack gives sharp definition to her phrasing and thoroughly conveys boyish energy. For all the essential femininity of Gillet's tone, she remains completely true to the character of a young man. Her portrayal is superb . . . [the cast is accomplished] and the clarity they bring to the text gives the performance the conversational naturalness of a stage play . . . Hélène Guilmette's warm, cherry-tinged soprano here contrasts nicely with Gillet's citrusy instrument. As the Duke's antagonist Metternich, baritone Étienne Dupuis conveys both the "suavité" and the menace of a born political animal. By contrast, baritone Philippe Sly suggests the sympathetic nature of the Bonapartist general Marmont through the tenderness of his tone and his firm command of legato . . . The estimable contralto Marie-Nicole Lemieux makes the most of her few brief moments as l'Aiglon's mother, Marie-Louise. Kent Nagano maintains finely gauged balances throughout, and his pacing lets the drama unfold with the spontaneity of breathing.

This recording -- conducted by Kent Nagano, leading a lovely performance by the Montreal Symphony Orchestra -- gets all the little details right and builds the opera to a taut finale; there's exquisitely idiomatic singing by sopranos Anne-Catherine Gillet and Helene Guilmette and baritones Marc Barrard and Etiene Dupuis.

. . . touching and accessible and splendidly done by Nagano and the OSM.

The prettiest music, aside from some charmingly Viennese waltzes by Ibert, is the angelic music that accompanies Napoleon II on his deathbed, including a touchingly harmonized version of the chant "Ubi caritas".

Aus Gründen des Repertoirewerts als auch der passionierten künstlerischen Umsetzung nicht nur für Liebhaber der französischen Oper eine klare Empfehlung.

Die Musik ist wunderbarer französischer Lyrismus, geschmackvoll in der Melodie und raffiniert in der Harmonik. Den beiden Komponisten gelingt eine erstaunliche stilistische Vereinheitlichung der Sprache. Das Finale ist unglaublich berührend. Die Aufnahme unter Kent Nagano glänzt in schlackenloser Schönheit und plädiert nachhaltig für ein Werk, das mehr geteilter Geniestreich als Kuriosum ist.

Immer wieder aufhorchen lässt diese hervorragend musizierte, gut gesungene, mit Verve und Sensibilität geleitete Produktion - mit einem spannenden Sujet: Napoleon II. im Exil.

Bravourös und exzellent.

Luxuriös besetzt . . . Frühlingsgefühle also bei der französischen Oper des 20. Jahrhunderts! Ungeahnt.

. . . c'est avec bonheur qu'on accueille ce nouvel enregistrement d'une très belle oeuvre . . . L'oeuvre étant écrite à quatre mains, bien malin qui réussira à dire qui de Honegger ou de Ibert a écrit quoi, tant l'unité musicale que Kent Nagano expose dans sa direction d'orchestre est surprenante. Le chef japonais imprime une légèreté admirable à l'Orchestre symphonique de Montréal . . . [Catherine Gillet]: avec l'extrême clarté de sa diction, c'est un régal. Elle est particulièrement touchante dans la scène de l'agonie du Duc . . . Une redécouverte musicale trop longtemps oubliée. Sa parfaite traduction musicale rend incompréhensible qu'un tel chef d'oeuvre soit resté si longtemps inconnu des scènes . . . et du disque.

. . . la publication d'une intégrale de "L'Aiglon" d'Ibert et Honegger est une aubaine inespérée . . . Merci Decca, donc, pour cette nouveauté providentielle, dûment saluée par la critique. Formidable! . . . A la tête d'un superbe Orchestre symphonique de Montréal, Kent Nagano . . . tout cela est très bien . . .

. . . sous la direction de Kent Nagano, ardent défricheur à la posture globale, impliquée donc convaincante . . . . . . [la superbe Marc Barrard] profite de sa connaissance antérieure du personnage à Tours et à Lausanne justement : son aisance, le souffle du chant, l'intelligence expressive s'en ressentent évidemment . . . Justement, le choix des solistes étaye globalement la réussite de l'interprétation où rayonne la clarté d'un francais toujours audible: Anne-Catherine Gillet, qui chante Juliette chez Gounod, éblouit dans le rôle-titre . . . [le excellent Etienne Dupuy chante] ombré, sarcastique, souterrain du ténébreux Prince de Metternich . . . Au mérite de Kent Nagano, revient tout l'art de rendre une partition Belle Epoque et Modern style, expressive et palpitante sans affectation (parfois idéalement suave: la valse du III). Très belle réussite globale, et belle redécouverte d'un opéra très peu joué.