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Classical Music Review

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Midsummer Nocturne


Performed by: Masaé Gimbayashi-Barbotte
Label: Plaza Mayor Company Ltd
RRP: £13.99
Release Date: 11 September 2017

Masaé Gimbayashi-Barbotte releases her new album, Midsummer Nocturne, through Plaza Mayor Company.

Like Gimbayashi-Barbotte's previous release (La Lune) for the label, Midsummer Nocturne represents another 22 tracks (1 hr, 05 min, 34 sec) of music composed by classical artists. While I'm a huge classical fan, I wasn't overly familiar with some of these pieces, and the label offered no composer breakdown on the tracks. I was, however, familiar with Aaron Copland's 'Four Piano Blues for Piano', which Gimbayashi-Barbotte does a wonderful job of interpreting.

I'm assuming, but can't be sure, that once again the pianist has chosen tracks that represent, to her, a musical interpretation of "midsummer". Again, like her previous album, I have to confess I didn't agree with the majority of her choices for including them under that umbrella, but it's not important as they're all, pretty much enjoyable.

I've never been a huge fan of William Duckworth's 'Imaginary Dances', but Gimbayashi-Barbotte breathes such life into it that it's hard not to be impressed.

Track listing:

01 - Reflections in D
02 - China Gates
03 - In Evening Air
04 - Midsummer Nocturne
05 - Four Piano Blues: I. Freely Poetic
06 - Four Piano Blues: II. Soft and Languid
07 - Four Piano Blues: III. Muted and Sensuous
08 - Four Piano Blues: IV. With Bounce
09 - In a Landscape
10 - Ophelia
11 - Préludes I, L. 117: IV. Les sons et les parfums tournent dans l'air du soir
12 - Sonate No. 2 "Concord": III. The Alcotts
13 - Poppoya
14 - Imaginary Dances No. 1
15 - Imaginary Dances No. 2
16 - Imaginary Dances No. 3
17 - Imaginary Dances No. 4
18 - Imaginary Dances No. 5
19 - Imaginary Dances No. 6
20 - Imaginary Dances No. 7
21 - Imaginary Dances No. 8
22 - Imaginary Dances No. 9


Darren Rea

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