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John Nelson - Berlioz : La Damnation de Faust

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Berlioz : La Damnation de Faust

DiDonato, Spyres, Philharmonique de Strasbourg, John Nelson

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After his spectacular recording of Berlioz’s magnum opus, the opera Les Troyens, which was awarded internationally, the Berlioz enthusiast John Nelson has delivered a new version of La Damnation de Faust which also appears to be on track for dizzying success.
For this recording made in concert by Daniel Zalay and his team of sound engineers in the Erasme Auditorium of the Palais de la musique et des congrès de Strasbourg (Strasbourg Convention Centre) on the 25th and 26th of April 2019, John Nelson reunited with the Strasbourg Philharmonic Orchestra, whose typically French style and German discipline he likes so much. The army of instrumentalists would have pleased Berlioz, with its eight double basses and six harps among others.

John Nelson knows his way round this music like no one else, he knows to inject it with a particular energy all while respecting the musical colour so well defined by the composer. He is surrounded by the cast of dreams, with Faust masterfully portrayed by the tenor Michael Spyres who sings the French perfectly and knows how to embody the character by playing on the quality of his tonality. Joyce DiDonato is an opulent Marguerite, full of fire and totally engaged. Nicolas Courjal plays a very expressive Mephisto; his sombre tone underlines the darkness and bitter irony of the character he plays.
The children’s choir Les Petits Chanteurs de Strasbourg and the powerful Gulbenkian Choir perfectly round off this ideal casting. A new milestone in the recording of Berlioz’s main works under John Nelson’s direction for the label Erato, this accomplished record precedes Roméo et Juliette which the same artists will undertake in 2020. © François Hudry/Qobuz

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Berlioz : La Damnation de Faust

John Nelson

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La Damnation de Faust, Op. 24, H. 111, Pt. 1 (Hector Berlioz)

1
"Le vieil hiver a fait place au printemps" (Faust)
00:05:43

Michael Spyres, Tenor (Faust) - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

2
"Les bergers laissent leurs troupeaux" (Chorus, Faust)
00:03:32

Michael Spyres, Tenor (Faust) - Coro Gulbenkian - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

3
"Mais d'un éclat guerrier" (Faust)
00:00:57

Michael Spyres, Tenor (Faust) - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

4
Marche hongroise
00:04:53

Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

5
"Sans regrets j'ai quitté les riantes campagnes" (Faust)
00:04:58

Michael Spyres, Tenor (Faust) - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

6
"Christ vient de ressusciter !" (Chorus, Faust)
00:05:46

Michael Spyres, Tenor (Faust) - Coro Gulbenkian - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

7
"Hélas ! doux chants du ciel" (Faust)
00:01:31

Michael Spyres, Tenor (Faust) - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

8
"Ô pure émotion !" (Méphistophélès, Faust)
00:02:25

Nicolas Courjal, Bass (Méphistophélès) - Michael Spyres, Tenor (Faust) - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

9
"À boire encor !... Oh ! qu'il fait bon" (Chorus, Méphistophélès, Brander)
00:02:55

Nicolas Courjal, Bass (Méphistophélès) - Alexandre Duhamel, Baritone (Brander) - Coro Gulbenkian - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

10
"Certain rat, dans une cuisine" (Brander, Chorus, Méphistophélès)
00:02:20

Alexandre Duhamel, Baritone (Brander) - Nicolas Courjal, Bass (Méphistophélès) - Coro Gulbenkian - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited

11
"Amen" (Brander, Chorus)
00:01:27

Alexandre Duhamel, Baritone (Brander) - Coro Gulbenkian - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

12
"Vrai Dieu, messieurs" (Méphistophélès, Chorus)
00:01:16

Nicolas Courjal, Bass (Méphistophélès) - Coro Gulbenkian - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

13
"Une puce gentille" (Méphistophélès, Chorus)
00:01:37

Nicolas Courjal, Bass (Méphistophélès) - Coro Gulbenkian - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

14
"Assez ! fuyons ces lieux" (Faust, Méphistophélès)
00:02:16

Michael Spyres, Tenor (Faust) - Nicolas Courjal, Bass (Méphistophélès) - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

15
"Voici des roses" (Méphistophélès)
00:02:28

Nicolas Courjal, Bass (Méphistophélès) - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

La Damnation de Faust, Op. 24, H. 111, Pt. 2 (Hector Berlioz)

16
"Dors, dors, heureux Faust" (Chorus, Méphistophélès, Faust)
00:06:10

Nicolas Courjal, Bass (Méphistophélès) - Michael Spyres, Tenor (Faust) - Coro Gulbenkian - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

17
Ballet des sylphes
00:02:10

Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

18
"Margarita !" (Faust, Méphistophélès)
00:01:17

Michael Spyres, Tenor (Faust) - Nicolas Courjal, Bass (Méphistophélès) - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

19
"Villes entourées" (Chorus)
00:01:27

Coro Gulbenkian - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

20
"Jam nox stellata velamina pandit" (Chorus)
00:01:06

Coro Gulbenkian - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

21
"Villes entourées ... Jam nox stellata" (Chorus, Faust, Méphistophélès)
00:02:23

Michael Spyres, Tenor (Faust) - Nicolas Courjal, Bass (Méphistophélès) - Coro Gulbenkian - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

La Damnation de Faust, Op. 24, H. 111, Pt. 3 (Hector Berlioz)

22
Tambours et trompettes sonnant la retraite
00:01:07

Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

23
"Merci, doux crépuscule !" (Faust)
00:05:25

Michael Spyres, Tenor (Faust) - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

24
"Je l'entends !" (Méphistophélès, Faust)
00:01:02

Nicolas Courjal, Bass (Méphistophélès) - Michael Spyres, Tenor (Faust) - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

25
"Que l'air est étouffant !" (Marguerite)
00:02:55

Joyce DiDonato, Mezzo-Soprano (Marguerite) - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

26
"Autrefois un roi de Thulé" (Marguerite)
00:04:57

Joyce DiDonato, Mezzo-Soprano (Marguerite) - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

27
"Esprits des flammes inconstantes" (Méphistophélès)
00:02:03

Nicolas Courjal, Bass (Méphistophélès) - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

28
Menuet des follets
00:05:58

Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

29
"Maintenant, chantons à cette belle" (Méphistophélès)
00:00:25

Nicolas Courjal, Bass (Méphistophélès) - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

30
"Devant la maison" (Méphistophélès, Chorus)
00:02:09

Nicolas Courjal, Bass (Méphistophélès) - Coro Gulbenkian - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

31
"Grand Dieu !" (Marguerite)
00:00:45

Joyce DiDonato, Mezzo-Soprano (Marguerite) - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

32
"Ange adoré" (Faust, Marguerite)
00:05:09

Michael Spyres, Tenor (Faust) - Joyce DiDonato, Mezzo-Soprano (Marguerite) - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

33
"Allons, il est trop tard !" (Méphistophélès, Marguerite, Faust, Chorus)
00:02:48

Nicolas Courjal, Bass (Méphistophélès) - Joyce DiDonato, Mezzo-Soprano (Marguerite) - Michael Spyres, Tenor (Faust) - Coro Gulbenkian - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

34
"Je connais donc enfin" (Faust, Méphistophélès, Marguerite, Chorus)
00:02:16

Michael Spyres, Tenor (Faust) - Nicolas Courjal, Bass (Méphistophélès) - Joyce DiDonato, Mezzo-Soprano (Marguerite) - Coro Gulbenkian - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

La Damnation de Faust, Op. 24, H. 111, Pt. 4 (Hector Berlioz)

35
"D'amour l'ardente flamme" (Marguerite)
00:08:01

Joyce DiDonato, Mezzo-Soprano (Marguerite) - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

36
"Au son des trompettes" (Chorus, Marguerite)
00:02:08

Joyce DiDonato, Mezzo-Soprano (Marguerite) - Coro Gulbenkian - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

37
"Nature immense" (Faust)
00:03:57

Michael Spyres, Tenor (Faust) - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

38
"À la voûte azurée" (Méphistophélès, Faust)
00:03:27

Nicolas Courjal, Bass (Méphistophélès) - Michael Spyres, Tenor (Faust) - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

39
"Dans mon cœur retentit sa voix désespérée" (Faust, Chorus, Méphistophélès)
00:03:47

Michael Spyres, Tenor (Faust) - Nicolas Courjal, Bass (Méphistophélès) - Coro Gulbenkian - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

40
"Ha ! Irimiru Karabrao !" (Chorus, Méphistophélès)
00:01:55

Nicolas Courjal, Bass (Méphistophélès) - Coro Gulbenkian - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

41
"Tradioun Marexil fir trudinxé burrudixé !" (Chorus)
00:02:14

Coro Gulbenkian - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

La Damnation de Faust, Op. 24, H. 111, Epilogue (Hector Berlioz)

42
"Alors l'enfer se tut" (Chorus)
00:01:19

Coro Gulbenkian - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

43
"Laus ! Laus ! Hosanna ! Hosanna !" (Chorus, Une voix)
00:01:09

Verónica Silva, Soprano (Une voix) - Coro Gulbenkian - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

44
"Remonte au ciel, âme naïve" (Chorus)
00:01:03

Coro Gulbenkian - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

45
"Viens, les vierges divines" (Chorus, Une voix)
00:02:22

Verónica Silva, Soprano (Une voix) - Maîtrise de l'Opéra National du Rhin - Les Petits Chanteurs de Strasbourg - Coro Gulbenkian - Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg - Hector Berlioz, Composer - John Nelson, Conductor

© 2019 Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 2019 Ascanio's Purse under exclusive licence to Parlophone Records Limited, a Warner Music Group Company

Album Description

After his spectacular recording of Berlioz’s magnum opus, the opera Les Troyens, which was awarded internationally, the Berlioz enthusiast John Nelson has delivered a new version of La Damnation de Faust which also appears to be on track for dizzying success.
For this recording made in concert by Daniel Zalay and his team of sound engineers in the Erasme Auditorium of the Palais de la musique et des congrès de Strasbourg (Strasbourg Convention Centre) on the 25th and 26th of April 2019, John Nelson reunited with the Strasbourg Philharmonic Orchestra, whose typically French style and German discipline he likes so much. The army of instrumentalists would have pleased Berlioz, with its eight double basses and six harps among others.

John Nelson knows his way round this music like no one else, he knows to inject it with a particular energy all while respecting the musical colour so well defined by the composer. He is surrounded by the cast of dreams, with Faust masterfully portrayed by the tenor Michael Spyres who sings the French perfectly and knows how to embody the character by playing on the quality of his tonality. Joyce DiDonato is an opulent Marguerite, full of fire and totally engaged. Nicolas Courjal plays a very expressive Mephisto; his sombre tone underlines the darkness and bitter irony of the character he plays.
The children’s choir Les Petits Chanteurs de Strasbourg and the powerful Gulbenkian Choir perfectly round off this ideal casting. A new milestone in the recording of Berlioz’s main works under John Nelson’s direction for the label Erato, this accomplished record precedes Roméo et Juliette which the same artists will undertake in 2020. © François Hudry/Qobuz

Details of original recording : Recorded April 2019, Strasbourg (Salle Erasme), France

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