Entre elle et lui
Two French powerhouses join to produce an unforgettable evening as Natalie Dessay, world renowned opera virtuoso, joins the legendary Michel Legrand, composer of some of the most famous musical soundtracks in history.
Weaving together the voice, piano, bass, and drums, Legrand and Dessay bring to life famous film scores from Hollywood and French Cinema including a duet from Les Parapluies de Cherbourg (The Umbrellas of Cherbourg), the Lilac Fairy’s song from Peau d’ane, and the sisters’s duet from Les Demoiselles de Rochefort (The Young Girls of Rochefort), performed by Dessay and fellow soprano Patricia Petitbon. The collaboration also embraces selections from Legrand’s Oscar-winning compositions from the 1983 Barbra Streisand film Yentil and the 1968 Steve McQueen movie The Thomas Crown Affair. Special guests include distinguished harpist Catherine Michel, Michel Legrand’s wife and the bass-baritone Laurent Naouri, the husband of Natalie Dessay. Together it is a tribute to a legend of modern French composing with one of the most complete and adaptable French opera stars of her generation.
Dessay describes her gravitation to and affinity for the world of popular song as “an art that can demand great refinement. A song like Georges Brassens ‘Saturne’ has as much value, for me, as an opera by Bellini. In opera, you open up and let go. In a popular song, like when you’re singing German lieder or French art-song, you have to concentrate your voice – to learn to say a lot with less power, especially if you are using a microphone.” She first became aware of Legrand at the age of six or so, when she saw the film directed by Jacques Demy, the fairy tale Peau d’âne. “At the time, I would never have imagined singing with him…I think Michel Legrand is a genius, just as Mozart was a genius. He is also a melodic virtuoso. You hear two notes and you know it’s one of his songs.”
Dessay and Legrand will be touring from September 15-30, 2014 and will feature the songs from the album “Entre elle et lui” which include: Legrand Chanson de Delphine, Le Cinema, Chanson de Delphine a Lancien, Papa can you hear me, Recette pour un Cake d’Amour, La valse des lilas, Les Moulins de Mon Coeur, L’ame soeur a l’hamecon, What are you doing the rest of your life?, Chanson des jumelles, Le rouge et le noir, Conseil de la Fee Lilas, Duo de Guy et Genevieve, La chanson de Louba, La chanson, Paris Violon, The summer knows, Mon dernier concert.
More about Natalie Dessay and Michel Legrand
After more than 45 years of composing Michel Legrand has succeeded in meeting one singular challenge, the living of several lives in one lifetime. Not content staying within the bounds of the Paris Conservatory where he had studied since he was ten under the likes of Nadia Boulanger, he has played Jazz with Miles Davis, composed film scores with Jacques Demy, and worked with classical greats such as Maurice André. As composer, conductor, pianist, singer, writer and producer he is at home in any musical situation tearing down the barriers between jazz, classical music and easy listening.
French soprano Natalie Dessay is one of the stars of today’s operatic world, thrilling audiences as both a singer and an actress. Born in Lyons in 1965, Natalie Dessay grew up in Bordeaux where she first dreamed of becoming a dancer, but later studied acting and singing at the Bordeaux Conservatoire. Now an admired interpreter of bel canto and lyric heroines such as Violetta (La traviata), Lucia di Lammermoor, Marie (La Fille du régiment), Amina (La sonnambula), Pamina (Die Zauberflöte), Manon, Juliette, Ophélie (Hamlet) and Cleopatra (Giulio Cesare), Dessay originally made her reputation with showpiece coloratura roles such as Offenbach’s Olympia, Mozart’s Queen of the Night and Strauss’ Zerbinetta. Currently she is on sabbatical from the Opera world through 2015 and is now engaged in new challenges and passions.
Natalie Dessay and Michel Legrand will be presenting their unique partnership in South America in the second half of September, 2014.
Media Release 23 February 2015
Opera’s shining star Natalie Dessay makes her National Concert Hall debutOne of the biggest stars of today’s operatic world, soprano Natalie Dessay, will make her National Concert Hall debut as part of the National Concert Hall’s International Concert Series 14/15, Thursday 26 March 8pm in one of the most anticipated events of the year.
Accompanied by the ever popular French pianist Philippe Cassard, together they perform a delectable recital of French melodies and German Lieder, by Mendelssohn, Schubert, Duparc, Poulenc, Faure and Debussy.
The French opera star continues to thrill audiences, both as a singer and an actress in her dramatic roles. Now an admired interpreter of bel canto and lyric heroines such as Violetta (La traviata), Ophélie (Hamlet) and Cleopatra (Giulio Cesare), originally she established her reputation with showpiece coloratura roles such as Offenbach’s Olympia, which she first sang in 1992 in Contes d’Hoffmann at the Opéra Bastille, Paris in a staging by Roman Polanski.
Throughout her career, she has performed in many great opera houses around the world, including a new production of Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor for the opening of the New York Metropolitan’s 2007/8 season which was broadcast on giant screens at Lincoln Centre and Times Square.
In 2008 Natalie returned to the Metropolitan for a revival of La Fille du régiment, which was broadcast live in high definition to hundreds of cinemas around the world. It was for her role in this opera that she was awarded a Laurence Olivier Award for Outstanding Achievement in Opera.
Natalie signed her first exclusive contract with EMI Classics/Virgin Classics in 1994 and her catalogue includes discs of Mozart, songs and arias by Strauss, works by Monteverdi, Bach and Handel. Her 2-CD and DVD compilations Le Miracle d’une voix, released in 2006, have proved an enormous success, selling over 250,000 copies.
She and Philippe collaborated on a recording of Debussy Songs in 2012. Philippe’s has established an international reputation as concerto soloist, recitalist and chamber musician and in 1988 he was the first winner of the Dublin International Piano Competition. His concerto appearances include performances with the London Philharmonic Orchestra and BBC Philharmonic.
The National Concert Hall’s International Concert Series 2014/2015 is supported by The Irish Times.
Natalie Dessay Programme (Thursday 26 March, 2015, 8pm)
MENDELSSOHN : 4 Lieder
Die Liebende schreibt
SCHUBERT : 8 Lieder
Am Bach im Frühling
Nacht und Traüme
Die junge Nonne
Gretchen am Spinnrade
Au pays où se fait la guerre / Extase
Fiançailles pour rire (Louise de Vilmorin)
La Dame d'André
Mon cadavre est doux comme un gant
Clair de lune (Verlaine) / Prison (Verlaine)/ Mandoline (Verlaine)
Apparition (Mallarmé) / Romance d'Ariel (Bourget)
Prices: €35, €45, €55, €60 (€25 Choir Balcony)
NCH Box Office Tel: 01 417 00 00 or www.nch.ie
For further information please contact: Ruth Moloney, Marketing Executive, National Concert Hall, Earlsfort Terrace, Dublin 2. Tel: 01 417 0084 / 087 278 6382