Prix : 14,10 €
to Daniel Bimbi and Stéphane Coutable
French composer Jean-Michel Damase has an extensive catalogue of chamber music for winds, and this is a fine addition to the surprisingly rare combination of clarinet and bassoon. While the fourth movement has a song-like melody/accompaniment style, the other five short movements all utilize a very conversational style, with lots of counterpoint, canons and one voice filling in the other's rests. Damase's gentle charm and wit are on display throughout the piece.
The duet is interesting enough for any professional team, and is easily playable by college and advanced high-school students, excepting a very fast passage at the end of the finale. I particularly enjoyed the rhythmic interplay in the mixed-meter fifth movement. The harmonic language is neo-classic and pleasant, though it does tend to dwell on the same sounds for too long. The bassoon part is constantly switching clef, and the use of treble clef for the bassoon is something most players will find needlessly troublesome. It is a fine piece, particularly suitable to those who like this style.
Jean-Michel Damase, who was born in Bordeaux in 1928, belonged to a family of musicians; his mother, the renowned harpist Micheline Kahn premiered works by Fauré, Ravel and Caplet. He died April 21th, 2013.
Precociously gifted, Jean-Michel Damase was only nine when Colette wrote three short poems for him [...]