June 2, 2013
This CD features seven of Alder’s trio transcriptions of the beloved operas by Camille Saint-Saëns (Samson et Dalila), Ambroise Thomas (Mignon), Daniel-François-Esprit Auber (La Muette de Portici), Giacomo Meyerbeer (La Pardon de Ploërmel and Les Huguenots) and Jules Massenet (Le Cid and Werther). The transcriptions are skilfully done and adopt the same formula consisting of a brief introduction, followed by alternating sequences of fast and slow segments ending in a dramatic climax. Even though the composers are different, the music feels like one cohesive piece. Alder brings out both the sweetness and the drama in these transcriptions, combining virtuosic practices of 19th century-writing with more serene and sonorous parts, while using the craftsmanship firmly rooted in the German Romantic tradition.
Trio Hochelaga (Anne Robert, violin; Paul Marleyn, cello; Stéphane Lemelin, piano) is a distinguished Canadian ensemble whose repertoire places an emphasis on lesser known works of French music. Their interpretation of Alder’s transcriptions is playful, sensitive and polished. The ensemble’s use of colours and textures truly captures the romantic essence of these operas.
It is not necessary for the listener to know the operas that inspired Alder – one can just enjoy the wonderful chamber music on this CD and, like the 19th century audience, be entertained by it.
Ivana Popovic - The WholeNote
May 10, 2013
« Les agencements sont habiles et les mélodies s’enchaînent. Dénué de toute vulgarité, le propos est relayé avec tact et jovialité par le trio, d’une tenue (intonation) réjouissante.»
Christopher Huss - Le Devoir
Affaires de gars.com
May 4, 2013
Click HERE to read the article (in French).