Immerse yourself in Debussy’s sensuous marriage of music and poetry in this MSO.LIVE release featuring the MSO’s Soloist-in-Residence, soprano Siobhan Stagg, whose delicate musical sensibility has been described as ‘ideally suited … to Debussy’s musical language’ (Classic Melbourne). The Ariettes oubliées (Forgotten Songs), composed for soprano and piano between 1885-1887 and published as a collection in 1903, sets six poems by the influential Symbolist writer Paul Verlaine (1844-1896). Debussy’s atmospheric settings, written amidst the turn-of-the-century search for the new, merged text and music with a level of nuance that opened up new expressive possibilities for vocal music. Themes of love, loss, and intrigue guide us through a web of contrasts, from the doleful yearning of ‘C'est l'extase langoureuse’ to the invigorating rush of ‘Chevaux de Bois’ and the fragile yet hopeful love of ‘Spleen’. With their harmonic daring, rhythmic drive, and timbral subtlety, the Ariettes oubliées not only captured the musicality of Verlaine’s poetry but marked a turning point in Debussy's own compositional development. Experience this hypnotic work anew, brought to the symphony stage in a sensitively crafted arrangement by Australian composer Brett Dean (b. 1961).
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