CHARLES KOECHLIN (1867-1950): Offrande musicale sur le nom de BACH, Op. 187, Les Bandar-Log, Op. 176.
Catalogue Number: 09L065
Label: Hännsler Classic
Reference: CD 93.221
Description: The ingenious and magnificent Offrande was composed during the Second World War and orchestrated in 1946. Its premiere waited until 1973 (a now-you-see-it-now-it's-gone CD of that performance winked at collectors in 1991) and this is only its second-ever performance. Lasting 48 minutes and using a huge orchestra (with ondes martenot and organ) which, however, only plays all at once in three of the piece's twelve sections, this is a brilliant, almost obsessive homage to Bach in which the four notes of his name are subjected to every possible type of contrapuntal treatment, in what seems like every imaginable instrumentation, from whole orchestra to solo organ, solo piano, organ and string quartet, six voices using carved-out segments of the string groups, adding winds and brass here, subtracting them there... the spatial quality and transparency of the orchestral sonorities are overwhelming, even in their quietest manifestations. This will be a revelation to lovers of late Romantic French orchestral sound and especially to lovers of contrapuntal art. Stuttgart Radio Symphony Orchestra; Heinz Holliger.