Classical Editor: Rob Barnett                               Founder Len Mullenger:

François Couperin
1. Septième Prélude
2. Les Baricades Mistérieuses
3. Les Bergeries
4. Le Moucheron

Antoine Forqueray
5. La Forqueray
6. La Leclair

François Couperin

7. Les Délices
8. Le Petit-Rien

Jean-Phillipe Rameau
9. La Livri
10. L'Enharmonique
11. L'Egyptienne

Jean-François Dandrieu
12. L'Harmonieuse
François Couperin

13. Premier Prélude
14. La Ténébreuse
15. Seconde Courante
16. La Lugubre
17. La Favorite
18. La Lutine

Jacques Duphly
19. La Forqueray

Terence Charlston (harpsichord)
Deux-Elles DXL 917 [70 mins]

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This is a pleasing selection by Terence Charlston of 19 pieces of 18th Century French harpsichord music, a dozen by François Couperin, many of them quite well known and including Les Délices, from which the CD takes it title Les Délices de la Solitude. They are chosen from the Suites in which these composers arranged their pieces for publication, and played on modern copies of Ruckers and Taskin instruments.

Forqueray worked at the court of Louis XIV, as did Couperin, and they played together. Rameau's pieces were mostly published posthumously. Dandrieu was a Parisian. Duphly died in 1789, a day after the French Revolution broke out, 'symbolically bringing to a close the epoch of the clavecinistes'.

Terence Charlston inaugurated the Historical Practice course as Head of Early Music in the Royal Academy of Music, and he brings musicological knowledge and fluent fingers to this music, the first of a projected series for Deux-Elles. Charlston writes his own introductory notes which are adequate; track timings might be useful for broadcasters. A very pleasing introduction to the genre, as well recorded as played.

Peter Grahame Woolf

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