« Singular Brahms! There are few composers who go down in the history of music as laden with labels, burdened with debts and stamped with various genealogies as he is. His place is central, but it is intermediate: between Beethoven and Dvořák, between classicism and romanticism, between High Period Vienna and fin de siècle Vienna. Brahms is also with Mozart against Wagner, with Schumann against Bruckner. He wears the mists of the North, the mysteries of a romanticism of the forests and the Alps, but also the heritage of gypsy wanderings and the bohemia of the cabarets where one improvises in the clatter of the bocks. The very contours of Brahms' face are lost in the infinite filiations, fading into a posterity that never ceased to capture or deny his heritage. All this distances him from us. The danger is that we simply no longer have ears to hear him; that indifference and misunderstandings make us deaf to his voice.
Hence the grace of a project that does not claim to find a "truth" about Brahms but a "closeness" to him. It is not a question of claiming to add an extra layer to the successive palimpsests; of opposing visions or "conceptions" to one another. It is simply a matter of listening again, of being silent, of listening better. When Jérémie Rhorer and his Cercle de l'Harmonie play Brahms, one does not perceive the scholarly gesture of a supposedly new interpretation or the feverish desire to score points with Karajan or Harnoncourt, but rather the experience of a rediscovered "presence". »
« From the very beginning of the symphony, there is a hint of tension that makes my eyes glaze over. There is nothing routine about these performances. The sound has an athletic lightness that immediately catches your attention. In the Brahms Violin Concerto with Stéphanie-Marie Degand, the finale really dances. » BBC Radio 3
« This disc couples the deeply expressive First Symphony with one of the peaks of the violin repertoire: the Concerto in D major, performed here by Stéphanie-Marie Degand, one of the few musicians to have mastered the techniques and codes of a repertoire ranging from the seventeenth century to contemporary creations, and who is particularly attached to performance on a historical instrument. » France Musique
« This double CD album is both a curiosity and a delight. A curiosity, first of all, with Johannes Brahms' Symphony No. 1 in C minor, Op. 68, created in 1876, rendered in its simplest orchestral form, and for which the word "decanting" reflects only one facet of this approach, which is not without its seductive qualities. Then a real, unexpected delight with the Concerto for violin and orchestra in D major Op.77 under the inspired fingers of the violinist Stéphanie-Marie Degand. » Opus Magazine
Conductor: Jérémie Rhorer
Label: PIAS / NoMadMusic