|Various Artists / André Mathieu: Concerto No. 3. George Gershwin: An American In Paris|
|Add Date:||2017-11-19|| ||Pull Date:||2018-01-21|| ||Charts:||Classical/Experimental|
|Week Ending:||3 Dec|
Andre Mathieu (1929-1968), “the Canadian Mozart,” completed his Concerto No. 3 in 1943,
and it had a “hybrid” life as the Concerto de Quebec in a movie, Whispering City. In 2008,
Georges Nicholson and Jacques Marchand consulted the Mathieu archives in Ottawa and
discovered the composer’s original autograph copy of a two piano version. Marchand
restored the adolescent composer’s original intentions, adding a first mvmt cadenza in
order to “compensate for a lack of development.” |
The performance with Lefevre and Falletta celebrates Canada’s 150th
anniversary. Mathieu conceived the work as a composition for two pianos, with virtually no
knowledge of orchestration. So, the Marchand edition provides an educated guess as to how
the music ought to sound. Mathieu’s 14-year-old gift lay in his natural sense of melody.
When the melodies soar or make the “big splash,” they convey a Hollywood sense of drama,
an amalgam of Rachmaninov, Gershwin, and Alfred Newman. The last mvmt Allegro con
brio has a jazzy, thrusting energy.
The bustling taxis and hustling Parisian crowds from Gershwin’s 1928 symphonic poem An
American in Paris liven up a familiar score. Dennis Kim provides a piquant solo accompanied by horns and flutes, creating an ambling, haze-filled luster that saunters along the “Boul Miche.”
The blues element has its liquid expression, a touch of New York nostalgia superimposed on the Paris byways. Trumpet, trombones, and exuberant strings bear witness to a deep-seated
affection for this elegant picture postcard by one of our most eloquent melodists.