Label: DAL SEGNO 012Genevieve Pitot, piano
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MORET: Brides & Butterflies Waltzes; TERSCHAK: Murillo, Op. 138; LEYBACH: My Solitudes, Op. 36 No. 1; J. STRAUSS: Tales from Vienna Woods, Op. 325; SVENDSEN: Romance, Op. 26
OFFENBACH: Overture from “Orpheus in the Underworld”Geneviieve Pitot and Robert Armbruster, piano
CHAMINADE: American March, Op. 131; 3rd Concert Waltz, Op. 80; Gavotte No. 5 Op. 162; Elevation, Op. 76 No. 2; Autumn Leaves, Op. 146; Fauns, Op. 60; Guitar, Op. 32; Autumn, Op. 35Cecile Chaminade, piano
Recording her playing only for the Duo-Art reproducing piano, Genevieve Pitot was a pupil of Alfred Cortot. Born in New Orleans of French parents she began her musical studies at the age of eight. She made her debut in Paris and toured Europe and the United States extensively. She recorded fifty-five items for the Duo-Art. Pitot’s performance of Strauss’s Tales From the Vienna Woods is marvelously refreshing. Seventy-five years ago when this roll was first issued it was not easy to obtain satisfactory recordings of the orchestral version of such works, let alone those delightful café orchestra versions complete with zither. So piano roll manufacturers released straight forward performances, which are now unique. We all know the exciting arrangements of Strauss waltzes by such men as Godowsky, Rosenthal and Cherkassky, but here is a simple version, which is direct and uncomplicated. Pitot’s playing, generally, is natural; it is ideal for the kind of repertoire that this disc contains. All of the performances of Mme. Chaminade’s music on this disc are by the composer. They were recorded in the London laboratories of the Aeolian Company for the Duo-Art reproducing piano in 1921. These sessions were the only ones that she made for any reproducing piano. A quick grasp of the style to be found in her work may be had from hearing her play Guitar from Op.32. The crisp, brilliant playing found here is typical of her playing. The best-known piece on this disc is her Concert Study Op.35 Autumn, which she plays confidently and with considerable charm. She toured the world as a concert pianist from the 1890's to the 1930's having great success wherever she went. More than seventy of her pieces were available to owners of reproducing pianos, many of them played by the finest pianists of the day - Rudolph Ganz, Yolanda Mero, Fanny Bloomfield Zeisler, Michael von Zadora and Marguerite Volavy all played her pieces.