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A trio of curios pairing harmonium and piano from mid-19th-century France prove divertingly entertaining and pleasing. A welcome first recording of Lefébure-Wély’s Allegro, andante et finale (composed around 1850) finds its opening Chopin-like in sensibility and sonority with Gallic accents provided by harmonium, the finale as virtuosic as it is flowery. In Lefébure- Wély’s arrangement, Saint-Saëns’s Six Duos are variously feisty, fluid and voluptuous, Franck’s Prélude, fugue et variation (c.1865) carries itself with a wistful poetry. Emmanuel Pélaprat, on an 1889 Mustel harmonium, and Jérôme Granjon at a 1902 Érard piano, play with a relaxed rapport and elegant concern for detail, texture and tone.

MICHAEL QUINN Read the full review on Agora Classica

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