Author Topic: Francois Devienne (1759-1803) - Windy Parisian!  (Read 5296 times)

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Offline SonicMan46

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Francois Devienne (1759-1803) - Windy Parisian!
« on: September 05, 2009, 06:02:15 AM »
Francois Devienne (1759-1803) was born in Joinville (Haute-Marne) into a large family; as a child, he became quite proficient on the oboe, flute, & bassoon.  By 1778/9, he moved to Paris and assumed a variety of musical roles including wind performer, composer, and teacher, e.g. being a professor of flute at the Paris Conservatory.  Apparently the toll of his work, the unsettling events of the 1790s following the French Revolution, and likely other factors led to his commitment to a sanatorium, where he died at the early age of 44 yrs. 

His output comprises about 300 instrumental works that are mostly written for wind instruments. There are a dozen of flute concertos, sinfonias for woodwinds, quartets and trios for different ensembles, 12 operas, 4 bassoon concertos, and 6 bassoon sonatas in an elegant melodic style.  Currently, I just own two discs of this composer, i.e. Bassoon Sonatas on period instruments - listening to these works at the moment; Bassoon Concertos coming up next.  But he wrote so much more, esp. for winds - so please comment and provide other recommendations - also, a longer Wiki Article HERE on the composer -  :D

   


Offline SonicMan46

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Re: Francois Devienne (1759-1803) - Windy Parisian!
« Reply #1 on: September 08, 2009, 04:56:38 PM »
Well, after initiating this thread on one of the greatest French flautist at the end of the 18th century, few looks and no posts have resulted -  :-\

For those who might be interested, another brief bio on the Naxos Website HERE:)

Also a quote from the WIKI article on his Flute Works is of interest - I would love to acquire some of these compositions, just not sure what is available, so any recommendations would be appreciated - thanks!  :)

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Devienne’s compositions for flute, revived by Jean-Pierre Rampal in the 1960s, are now better known to flautists, but still not, unfortunately, to the public at large. As well as extensive educational work, including the well-known Méthode of 1794, with its extremely interesting articles on technique and style of the time, his collected work also includes eight books of sonatas for flute or bassoon, a variety of chamber music and no less than seventeen concertos. The brilliant and melodic style of these last makes them perfect examples of the concertante classical genre, comparable only to work by the Viennese composer Franz-Anton Hoffmeister (1754- 1812), who himself wrote some 25 concertos for flute.

Offline SonicMan46

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Re: Francois Devienne (1759-1803) - Windy Parisian!
« Reply #2 on: October 12, 2010, 04:25:25 PM »
Well, this must be one of the shortest threads that I ever started!  ;D

But - guess what?  I just acquired another wonderful disc of this composer's wind music, shown below - Oboe Sonatas w/ Glaetzner on oboe, Schornsheim on fortepiano, & Pank on cello - wonderfully recorded by Berlin Classics from 1990 - for those who enjoy 'classical wind' music this composer is worth exploring - he composed much and was one of the best French virtuoso performers on these instruments of his time -  :)



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Re: Francois Devienne (1759-1803) - Windy Parisian!
« Reply #3 on: October 12, 2010, 04:44:23 PM »
Well, this must be one of the shortest threads that I ever started!  ;D

But - guess what?  I just acquired another wonderful disc of this composer's wind music, shown below - Oboe Sonatas w/ Glaetzner on oboe, Schornsheim on fortepiano, & Pank on cello - wonderfully recorded by Berlin Classics from 1990 - for those who enjoy 'classical wind' music this composer is worth exploring - he composed much and was one of the best French virtuoso performers on these instruments of his time -  :)




Well, Dave, I was wondering where this came from until I looked at the date you started it; I was on vacation and totally missed out. I am a big Devienne fan, actually more-so than Danzi. I'm not overrun with his disks either, since there simply aren't all that many out there, however I will point out that the "6 bassoon sonatas" are actually 12 bassoon sonatas; 6 for bassoon and fortepiano and 6 for bassoon and bass (usually a cello). I have both of them,

this one and this one: .

Danny Bond, in that second disk, is one of the best bassoonists out there. Very nice disk indeed.

As for the disk you just posted, that's one I need. yes, I said it, I need it. It's not a disease, just a disorder... :D

8)

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Re: Francois Devienne (1759-1803) - Windy Parisian!
« Reply #4 on: October 12, 2010, 10:07:08 PM »
that's one I need. yes, I said it, I need it. It's not a disease, just a disorder... :D

We have a Thread for that! :-* ;D

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Re: Francois Devienne (1759-1803) - Windy Parisian!
« Reply #5 on: October 12, 2010, 10:10:15 PM »
Well, this must be one of the shortest threads that I ever started!  ;D

But - guess what?  I just acquired another wonderful disc of this composer's wind music, shown below - Oboe Sonatas w/ Glaetzner on oboe, Schornsheim on fortepiano, & Pank on cello - wonderfully recorded by Berlin Classics from 1990 - for those who enjoy 'classical wind' music this composer is worth exploring - he composed much and was one of the best French virtuoso performers on these instruments of his time -  :)




Jus sayin that Glaetzner has a loooot of really good cds on Berlin. This one looks cool.

Offline The new erato

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Re: Francois Devienne (1759-1803) - Windy Parisian!
« Reply #6 on: October 12, 2010, 11:30:11 PM »
Jus sayin that Glaetzner has a loooot of really good cds
He stole them? :o

snyprrr

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Re: Francois Devienne (1759-1803) - Windy Parisian!
« Reply #7 on: October 13, 2010, 06:56:29 AM »
He stole them? :o

He had to pay for the chicken magnetometer! ;)

Offline SonicMan46

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Re: Francois Devienne (1759-1803) - Windy Parisian!
« Reply #8 on: October 13, 2010, 08:18:48 AM »
Gurn - BTW, that oboe disc on Berlin is at BRO for $6!  There are a few other Devienne discs there but I've not reviewed any more yet!

Just checking Amazon at my lunch break - there appear to be many more Devienne offerings than a year ago when I put together the OP of this thread - would be curious if others may own and/or have heard some of the ones not alreading pictured previously?  Thanks -  :D

Offline SonicMan46

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Re: Francois Devienne (1759-1803) - Windy Parisian!
« Reply #9 on: October 22, 2010, 08:39:04 AM »
Now listening to the disc below of the Bassoon Quartets, Op. 73 et al w/ Mathieu Lussier + string trio; Lussier wrote the liner notes and feels that these are some of the best quartets written for the instrument; he uses a Moosmann Model 222A Bassoon (pic of bassoonist & instrument below) -  :)

The 'bassoon quartets' are well composed and the bassoon used is played beautifully - this is likely one of the best bassoon chamber recordings that I have in my collection (which is not that many!) - listing of the works and a short review of the disc HERE, if interested.


 

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Re: Francois Devienne (1759-1803) - Windy Parisian!
« Reply #10 on: October 22, 2010, 09:54:21 AM »
Now listening to the disc below of the Bassoon Quartets, Op. 73 et al w/ Mathieu Lussier + string trio; Lussier wrote the liner notes and feels that these are some of the best quartets written for the instrument; he uses a Moosmann Model 222A Bassoon (pic of bassoonist & instrument below) -  :)

The 'bassoon quartets' are well composed and the bassoon used is played beautifully - this is likely one of the best bassoon chamber recordings that I have in my collection (which is not that many!) - listing of the works and a short review of the disc HERE, if interested.


 

Dave,
Oh yeah, I forgot; I have that disk too! And I agree, it is a super nice hour of music. I think that Devienne found his métier with the solo wind + string trio/quartet genre. Nice music!

8)
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Offline SonicMan46

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Re: Francois Devienne (1759-1803) - Windy Parisian!
« Reply #11 on: October 22, 2010, 02:47:12 PM »
Dave,
Oh yeah, I forgot; I have that disk too! And I agree, it is a super nice hour of music. I think that Devienne found his métier with the solo wind + string trio/quartet genre. Nice music!

Gurn - unfortunately the last track on my 'new' disc skipped on 2 different machines, so will need a replacement - a wonderful performance by this bassoonist!

Also from the BRO recently, a 3-CD package for just $9 of the Flute Concertos w/ Claudi Arimany & a Russian band - virtually absent liner notes except for listing of the works; these were released on a number of different labels - just listen to part of the first CD - flute is modern (I believe) but the playing is excellent - need to hear the rest of these discs - not sure that this attempt to record 'most' of this composer's flute concertos will be attempted again?  Dave  :)


Offline SonicMan46

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Re: Francois Devienne (1759-1803) - Windy Parisian!
« Reply #12 on: September 19, 2011, 06:14:51 AM »
Well, seems that this is a 'yearly' response thread -  ;D  But if you're into classical wind music, worth pursuing!  :)

Just added a new BRO 2-disc purchase ($12 there) of Oboe Sonatas, Op. 70 & 71 w/ Peter Bree on oboe & Roderick Shaw on fortepiano - these performances complement the other disc shown below (also still at BRO for $6) w/ Burkhard Glaetzner & Christine Schornsheim who play the Op. 71 sonatas but w/ a cello added so the sound is fuller, but both are excellent recordings for oboe lovers out there; the fortepiano keyboard work is well done w/ Schornsheim's instrument having a little more 'up front' sound stage; now doing a 'back to back' comparison; will keep both recordings!   :D


 

Offline Gabriel

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Re: Francois Devienne (1759-1803) - Windy Parisian!
« Reply #13 on: October 08, 2011, 09:34:11 AM »
Now listening to the disc below of the Bassoon Quartets, Op. 73 et al w/ Mathieu Lussier + string trio; Lussier wrote the liner notes and feels that these are some of the best quartets written for the instrument; he uses a Moosmann Model 222A Bassoon (pic of bassoonist & instrument below) -  :)

The 'bassoon quartets' are well composed and the bassoon used is played beautifully - this is likely one of the best bassoon chamber recordings that I have in my collection (which is not that many!) - listing of the works and a short review of the disc HERE, if interested.


I have listened to another recording, but the fact is that Devienne's op. 73 is really excellent chamber music.

Offline SonicMan46

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Re: Francois Devienne (1759-1803) - Windy Parisian!
« Reply #14 on: March 03, 2014, 12:38:51 PM »
Devienne, Francois (1759-1803) - Oboe Sonatas - same works but two different performances, the second w/ cello added - Dave :)

   

Just left the above post in the listening thread except added a 'new' release by Brilliant (which is the same adjacent recording) - the March/April issue of Fanfare arrived today and I was reading a  brief but scathing review on the Brilliant offering by James A. Altena dismissing the music as trite and only worthy as a sleep inducement.  He did not mention that his colleague, George Chien, reviewed the Berlin Classics recording in 1995 with quite a positive conclusion as to the quality of the compositions and their performances - Atena's review quoted below.  Dave :)

Quote
DEVIENNE Oboe Sonatas, op. 70/1; op. 71/1–3 • Burkhard Glaetzner (ob); Siegfried Pank (vc); Christine Schornsheim (fp) • BRILLIANT 94683 (64:31)

Devienne: Oboe Sonatas Audio CD Brilliant Classics

Back in 36:4 I gave a glowing review to a CD on the ATMA label of trios for bassoon, violin, and cello by François Devienne. In so doing, I noted that previous reviews of Devienne’s music by other critics in the magazine has given widely varied assessments of his worth as a composer “ranging from ‘masterful’ and ‘inventive’ to ‘routine’ and ‘trite’” and added: “Perhaps he was indeed a composer of wildly uneven inspiration.” The present disc provides an answer to that conundrum, and confirms my speculation. “Trite” is as good a word as any to describe these four sonatas from 1799, drawn from a total of 12 by the composer; the solo lines for the oboe are unimaginative and banal, and the cello and fortepiano are given the most threadbare and routine of basso continuo accompaniments. It almost surpasses belief that the same composer wrote works of such widely disparate quality. Even an oboist of the renown of Burkhard Glaetzner, supported by his usual accomplished accompanists, cannot infuse an iota of interest here. The recorded sound is bright and forward, giving the soloist prominence; the slender booklet provides basic notes. So, the word from here regarding Devienne is definitely to audition before you buy; this disc is of value only to oboe fans who must have absolutely every scrap of the instrument’s recorded repertoire, and to people who for whatever reason cannot take prescription medications to overcome insomnia. James A. Altena

This article originally appeared in Issue 37:4 (Mar/Apr 2014) of Fanfare Magazine.

Offline SonicMan46

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Re: Francois Devienne (1759-1803) - Windy Parisian!
« Reply #15 on: March 03, 2014, 01:28:09 PM »
Well, I am currently about through listening to the CD in question (i.e. the original Berlin Classics release) and decided to send Fanfare a letter to the editor - of course, if they respond the text will be edited and I'm sure that last paragraph eliminated - will let you know -  >:D  Dave


Quote
RE: Devienne’s Oboe Sonatas released on Brilliant - reviewed by James A. Altena (pgs. 227-8).  In brief, I must disagree with James Altena’s brief but scathing review of Devienne’s oboe sonatas just released on the Brilliant label dismissing the music as trite and only worthy as a sleep inducement.  The oboe writing is intricate and appropriate for the times and Glaetzner plays beautifully; Schornsheim on the fortepiano is as usual a wonderful partner; and Pank on the cello adds a deeper mellowness to the performances.

Furthermore, Altena has failed to do his research - these recordings were made in 1990 and first released on the Berlin Classics label (which I own and am listening to at the moment); also, George Chien reviewed this initial release in Fanfare in 1995 (Jan/Feb issue) with this concluding statement "Not surprisingly, Devienne's strongly melodic sonatas put the protagonist through his paces. Well presented, as they are here, they are quite appealing,” and recommended the recording.

I would suggest that Altena reviewed the recording while in bed, fell asleep during the first movement, and decided to still write his brief comments the next day without a further listen.  Dave XXXXXX

Offline SonicMan46

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Re: Francois Devienne (1759-1803) - Windy Parisian!
« Reply #16 on: June 28, 2019, 06:30:41 AM »
BOY - I started this Devienne thread back in 2009, and no activity for 5 years, so TTT to see what may be new? :)

Francois' Flute Concertos - any thoughts on the offerings below?  I've owned the first 3-disc set w/ Glaudi Arimany for a while (an inexpensive BRO purchase) which includes 10 of Devienne's 12 flute concertos; the second 4-CD box from Tudor w/ Andras Adorjan is a newer set and has received some rather good reviews; finally, there are 4 Naxos CDs w/ Patrick Gallois (2 shown below and not in a 'box' yet) - the Tudor offering has all 12 flute concertos plus 2 'violin to flute transcriptions' (Viotti, I believe).

So, would appreciate any thoughts from those who may own and/or have heard any of these performances - thanks.  Dave