This page lists all recordings of Improvisations (7), Op. 150, by Charles Camille Saint-Saëns (1835-1921) on CD & download (MP3 & FLAC). Generally, more recent releases are listed first, but with priority given to those that are in stock.
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Saint-Saëns: Organ Music Volume 2
Andrew-John Smith (organ)
British organist Andrew-John Smith once again brings his compelling artistry to the service of Camille Saint-Saëns.
Smith’s commanding sense of architecture, breathtaking musicality and astonishing control of dynamics and nuance is thrilling. As with Volume 1, this disc provides a rare opportunity to hear Saint-Saëns’s organ works played on the very instrument for which they were composed - the magnificent Cavaillé-Coll at La Madeleine, Paris.
The art of improvisation was essential for French organists and huge importance was placed on the development of this skill. Saint-Saëns was renowned for his extraordinary organ improvisations and it was said that ‘his genius was of an indescribable splendour’. In committing these extensive improvisations to paper he offers an insight into his instinctive musical logic and dazzling virtuosity. The Preludes and Fugues bear witness to the composer’s improvisatory flare and demonstrate the extent of his vastly imaginative compositional skills.
“The sequence is satisfying and diversified, the affecting charm and delicate catchiness of the G major Prélude et Fugue or A major Improvisation contrasting with the gigantic splendour of the climaxes of the C major and D minor fugues: a majesty of which this Cavaillé-Coll instrument is, one wants to say, uniquely capable.” Sunday Times, 31st July 2011 ***
“The preludes and fugues make a sharply contrasted trio: the first and last, in D minor and C, are grand in scale and conception; the second, in G, is much more compact and relaxed. Smith makes full use of the resources of the Madeleine instrument to colour them all.” The Guardian, 4th August 2011 ***
“[Andrew-John Smith] underlines the imagination and variety Saint-Saëns brought to his organ writing.” The Telegraph, 25th August 2011 ****
“in Andrew-John Smith [Saint-Saens has] an advocate who understands just how to lift from the printed page and project this remarkably rigorous yet beguiling music. The combination of this artist playing this music in such an authentic setting proves to be unbeatable...This disc is a magnificent achievement: the recorded sound is engrossing and is devoid of any hint of the Parisian traffic soundtrack.” Gramophone Magazine, October 2011
“His performance of this repertoire is compelling and absorbs the listener from start to finish. The music is of uniformly high quality, played on a fantastic organ by a supremely accomplished performer and is therefore to be highly recommended.” International Record Review, September 2011
In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.
Saint-Saens: The Complete Organ Works - Volume 2
The first CD in this series (PRCD 872) from St.Ouen in Rouen was greeted with great acclaim. Gerard Brooks follows this with another fascinating release featuring the two sets of Preludes and Fugues, Seven Improvisations and Three Rhapsodies in this well filled two CD set. We have recorded this CD on the little heard Cavaille-Coll organ of St.Antoine in Paris. Gerard Brooks will complete this survey in France and this final volume will appear next year.
“The playing is delightful in its open sincerity and clear affesction for the music, and the recording absolutely honest, even down to the obtrusive action clatter...Delightful music, delightfully played and making a delightful sound, this is a very special addition to the Saint-Saens discography.” Gramophone Magazine, December 2011
Usually despatched in 8 - 10 working days.
Saint-Saens: Organ Music
Robert Delcamp (Stahlhuth/Jann organ at Saint-Martin, Dudelange, Luxembourg)
(also available to download from $6.00)
Usually despatched in 2 - 3 working days. (Available now to download.)
Saint-Saëns - Plus Two
Usually despatched in 4 - 5 working days.
Saint-Saëns: Complete Organ Works
Marche religieuse, Op. 107
Rhapsodies (3) on Breton Themes, Op. 7
Fantaisie en mi
Fantaisie No. 2 for organ in D flat major, Op. 101
Fantaisie No. 3 for organ in C major, Op. 157
Preludes and Fugues (3), Op. 99
Preludes and Fugues (3), Op. 109
Benediction Nuptiale in F major, Op. 9
Improvisations (7), Op. 150
Cyprès, Op. 156 No. 1
Elevation Ou Communion in E major, Op. 13
The infinite cosmos of French organ music is Ben van Oosten's realm, and he now has recorded the complete organ works of Camille Saint-Saens presented in a sumptuous box set. He performs on the Cavaille Coll organ in Ste. Madeleine in Paris. Priced at 3 CDs for 2.
“one of the chief attractions of Ben van Oosten's survey of the (almost) complete organ works is that they are performed on the magnificent Cavaille-Coll in La Madeleine that the composer knew so well...[the recorded sound is] of demonstration quality and wall-shaking sonority, with full and imaginative use made of the vast resources of symphonic colours on offer.” Gramophone Magazine, March 2013
“This Saint-Saëns set is made that bit more special through being performed on an instrument that he would have known very well...The sound is rich and atmospheric, with plenty of juicy bass, gorgeous contrasts of colour and texture and enough detail to communicate the music without sounding overly close and artificial.” MusicWeb International, 22nd April 2013
Usually despatched in 2 - 3 working days.