This is the second volume of piano music from François Couperin's extensive oeuvre to be issued on Hyperion. Again it is the turn of the sprightly and talented Angela Hewitt to play these pieces, each of which is imbued with nostalgia and at times, eclectic grandeur.
Hewitt also provides the extensive notes for this issue and we also learn that the pieces were written just around three years before the composer's death and are also his last published works. The music does seem to take on a palpable sense of mortality especially in such pieces as 'La Misterieuse' from 'Vingt-Cinquieme Ordre' and the wonderful 'L'Amphibie' from 'Vingt-Quatrieme Ordre'.
Hewitt's playing is definitely committed and at times it also feels that the music is being interpreted with the full force and vigour that one can bring to such noble compositions. After the success of the first volume, I am in no doubt that this second issue of Couperin will be much sought after by fans of this composer and will also bring quite a few converts over the lines.
Copyright © 2004, Gerald Fenech