Following their recordings devoted to Piazzolla and to Bartók, Jean-Marie Zeitouni and the Violons du Roy now turn their attention to one of the dominant musical figures of 20th-century England, Benjamin Britten.
Britten was living in Amityville, Long Island, when he finished the song cycle Les Illuminations, based on poems and prose by Arthur Rimbaud. For this new recording of one of Britten’s most effective works, soprano Karina Gauvin employs the full range of her expressive palette and great virtuosity.Ms. Gauvin also sings ‘Now sleeps the crimson petal,’ a poem by Alfred Tennyson set to horn accompaniment.
Also on this CD are two works for string orchestra: Prelude and Fugue, Op. 29, which Britten composed when he was 30, and the Variations on a Theme of Frank Bridge, Op. 10, which he wrote in homage to one of the English composers he most admired.