Le Cercle de l'Harmonie
Bertrand Chamayou, piano - Jérémie Rhorer, Julien Chauvin, conductors
Liszt, Berlioz, Reber
The present recording brings together three composers who knew each other and rubbed shoulders in Paris in the first half of the 19th century: Hector Berlioz (1803-1869), (Napoleon-)Henri Reber (1807-1880) and Franz Liszt (1811-1886). A composer-pianist, Liszt takes his place here alongside Reber, a pupil of Anton Reicha who spent a large part of his career in the field of chamber music. For his part, Berlioz appeared on the Parisian stage in 1830 with his Symphonie fantastique. It was through this symphony that the young Liszt first met the man with whom he would forge a deep friendship. Seduced by his elder's work, the pianist made the transcription for piano in 1834. Active and influential personalities, Reber and Berlioz reached the highest institutional levels of French musical life. While Reber was the only one to join the teaching staff of the Paris Conservatoire in 1851, both of them went on to join the Académie des beaux-arts at the Institut de France. Reber was elected there in 1853, on the death of George Onslow. Berlioz was unlucky on four occasions, competing with Reber in 1853, but Berlioz was elected after the death of Adolphe Adam in 1856. In addition to their activities as composers, conductors and teachers, they were also craftsmen and judges of the most prestigious composition competition, the Prix de Rome. Between virtuosity, works for soloist, lyric repertoire and purely symphonic music, the works proposed in this recording offer a varied panorama characteristic of the musical taste of the French in the 1830s and 1850s.
Conductor: Jérémie Rhorer