Chamber Music - Released March 2, 2018 | Signum Records

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason
For a good third of a century, the Fretwork ensemble has been constantly sifting through the immensely rich repertoire for consort of violas, generally from the British sphere, from Taverner to Purcell — so, the 16th and 17th centuries — while never hesitating to commission entirely new works from modern-day composers. The combination of the viola's "ancient" sound with modern writing brings forth the most unlikely sonic spheres... This album keeps both feet firmly in England's 17th century with John Jenkins (1592-1678), famous in his own day, and consistently one of the most essential composers for any self-respecting viola player from the very start of his career — both in England and abroad, which is unusual in itself — thanks to his output of literally hundreds of pieces for various viola ensembles. A number of them were written for "family"-style consorts, in large part due to the ban on all forms of public music implemented by Cromwell's religious dictatorship. Once the monarchy was restored, the fashion for groups of amateurs playing concert violas would endure long enough to bring fame and fortune to composers such as Jenkins. Here we will discover a language which is at once conservative in terms of form, and very daring, explosive even, in terms of content, rather like the work of a 17th century Haydn. © SM/Qobuz

Chamber Music - Released January 12, 2018 | Mirare

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - Gramophone Editor's Choice
Marin Marais, "chamber viola player to the King", and a talented composer is the author of this rich work full of contrasts, which forms the bridge, in the French viola tradition, between the generation of pioneers (with Saint-Colombe at their head) and the generation of the last French viola players (such as Forqueray or Caix d'Hervelois). This selection gives us an insight into the art of Marais - who was recognised in his own time as a technically gifted and brilliant musician - by way of his two Livres de viole, published in 1717 and 1725 respectively. It was in this period, which was both especially artistically fruitful but also unstable and subject to all sorts of political, economic and social turmoil, that Marais brought out his two last works. This album brings together a good number of strikingly original pieces, in particular from the Suite d’un goût étranger, a real introduction to the world of tonalities. The viola responds very differently to different tones: each tonality has its own very particular effect in terms of musical rhetoric: the Paraza in D minor sounds opulent and full, the Badinage in F sharp minor fragile and uncertain. Special mention should also go to a rare and stunning piece called Le Tact, which requires a curious sort of left-handed pizzicato without any help from the right (which he calls "tact", a forerunner of very modern techniques). This is where Marais shows his particular genius, because he loves the instrument's sensitive, vulnerable instrument, which he explores with great poetry. Founded by theorbist Benjamin Perrot and the viola player Florence Bolton, La Rêveuse (taking its name from the final piece of this album) is an ensemble which specialises in the artistic heritage of the 17th and 18th Centuries, periods which are rich in experiences and artistic inventions of all kinds. © SM/Qobuz

Classical - Released May 20, 2016 | CPO


Chamber Music - Released October 20, 2006 | Natives


Chamber Music - Released April 1, 2014 | Glossa


Classical - Released December 1, 2012 | Brilliant Classics


Classical - Released November 2, 2010 | Alia Vox

Booklet Distinctions 4 étoiles de Classica

Classical - Released September 6, 2010 | Ricercar


Classical - Released May 15, 2008 | Mirare

Distinctions Diapason d'or - Choc de l'année du Monde de la Musique - Choc du Monde de la Musique - 10 de Classica-Répertoire - Exceptional sound

Chamber Music - Released June 28, 2005 | Signum Records

Distinctions Diapason d'or

Chamber Music - Released January 1, 2003 | Alia Vox

Distinctions Diapason d'or - 10 de Répertoire