Four Hands for France: Music for Piano Duet

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Catalogue No: TOCN0007
EAN/UPC: 5060640070073
Release Date: 2021-08-20
Composer: Benjamin Godard, Cécile Chaminade, Charles-Valentin Alkan, Ernest Chausson, Guy Ropartz, Jules Massenet
Artists: Erin Helyard, Stephanie McCallum

Playing four-hands piano was both vital in the dissemination of music in the nineteenth century and also a popular domestic activity. The French composers recorded here span the Romantic century, from the salon charm of Chaminade and Massenet and the virtuosity of Alkan’s wild dance to the innocence of the family music-room in pieces by Chausson, Godard and Ropartz. The original 1853 Parisian Erard piano on which this recording was made combines warmth with bell-like clarity due to its straight stringing, allowing it to produce a surprising variety of appealing, expressive textures.

Stephanie McCallum (primo) and Erin Helyard (secondo)
Piano Erard 1853

    Sonatines pour quatre mains, Op. 2 (1879)*
    Sonatine No. 1 in G major (1878)

  1. I Gaîment
  2. II Andante
  3. III Finale
  4. Sonatine No. 2 in D minor (1879)

  5. I Mouvement de marche
  6. II Variations sur un thème danois, transcrit par Niels Gade
  7. III Rondeau
    Petites Pièces (1903)*

  9. No. 1 Andante
  10. No. 2 Lento
  11. No. 3 Allegretto
  12. No. 4 L’Angelus
  13. No. 5 Le Glas
  14. No. 6 Cloches du Soir
  15. No. 7 Choral
  16. No. 8 Tristesse
  17. No. 9 Intimité
  18. No. 10 Par les Champs
    Pièces pour le Piano à 4 Mains: 1re Suite, Op. 11 (1867)*

  20. No. 1 Andante
  21. No. 2 Allegretto quasi allegro
  22. No. 3 Andante
    Saltarelle, Op. 47 (1856)

  24. Saltarelle, Op. 47
    Pièces romantiques, Op. 55 (1890)

  26. No. 1 Primavera
  27. No. 2 Idylle Arabe
  28. No. 3 Sérénade d’automne
    Deux morceaux, Op. 137 (1893)*

  30. No. 1 Pastorale mélancolique
  31. No. 2 Marche villageoise


1 review for Four Hands for France: Music for Piano Duet

  1. :

    ‘The only word for the performances of Stephanie McCallum and Erin Halyard is “perfection”. Stephanie McCallum has many 19th Century French discs to her credit, and her fellow Australian Erin Helyard has demonstrated expertise in a variety of musical spheres, including his duo with Ms. McCallum. In terms of musicianship, coordination of performance, and sympathy for the repertoire, this recording is a stand-out and I can easily imagine the composers themselves applauding it if they were here today.’

    —William Kreindler, MusicWeb International

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