Vierne: Complete Piano Works, Vol. 1 / Monteiro
Louis Vierne is renowned as one of the most brilliant of all French organ composers. His piano works are little known despite their colourful, imaginative and inspiring treatment of the instrument. The early Deux Pièces owe their lyrical style to Mendelssohn, while the Suite bourguignonne exudes an atmosphere of joie de vivre and romantic contentment. Impressionism can be heard in the Trois Nocturnes, the third of which is considered one of Vierne’s masterpieces with its evocative use of birdsong, while the shadows of war echo in the solemn Poème des cloches funèbres. This is the first of two albums covering repertoire that deserves a place in the pantheon of French piano music.
The overall impact of Volume 1 is wide-ranging. The musical style stretches from the Romantic character piece to post-Impressionism. The compositions on this album are placed in chronological order.
The playing by Sergio Monteiro captures the magic of this music. He can seize Vierne’s “colourful, imaginative and inspiring” approach to the piano. The recording is superb. The liner notes by Peter Siepmann are excellent; they give a brief overview of the composer’s life and achievement, detailed notes about each piece, and successfully manages to fit them into Vierne’s overall achievement. Bearing in mind that there are few other sources of information about this music, they make essential reading.
I enjoyed this exploration of Louis Vierne’s piano oeuvre. To whom will this disc appeal? I guess that listeners who appreciate the great tradition of French piano music, from Alkan to Messiaen. It fills a gap that has been ignored by most recitalists and I look forward to the second volume soon.
– MusicWeb International
Catalog Number: 8574296
Number of Discs: 1
Composer: Louis Vierne
Performer: Sergio Monteiro