CD Duration: 65.22 / Year: 2017
At the Cavaillé-Coll Organ of Abbaye Saint-Étienne, Caen, Normandy, France.
Recorded in Stereo (for normal CD players), plus 5.1 surround sound.
Contains a 28-page booklet in English, French, German and Japanese.
Prélude, Fugue et Variation (8:49)
Deuxième Choral en Si Mineur (11:19)
Troisième Choral en la Mineur (12:23)
Premier Choral en mi Majeur (13:09)
Recording Location: Abbaye Saint-Étienne, Caen, Normandy, France.
Organ: Cavaillé-Coll 1884.
Date: July 12th-13th, 2017.
Producer and Recording Engineer: Jacob A Purches.
5.1 Channel Audio (Six-Channel Surround Sound), Plus Two-Channel High-Resolution Stereo.
Recorded in 176.4 kHz 24 bit PCM to DSD.
The Organ of Saint Étienne of Caen
Inaugurated in 1885 by Alexandre Guilmant, the organ of Saint Étienne’s abbey was built by Aristide Cavaillé-Coll, the most significant French organ builder of the 19th century. He constructed it to specifically take advantage of the abbey’s great acoustics. It is integrated into the enormous nave on a stone gallery, which was specially raised below the vaults for the previous instrument, which was made in 1737 by the famous Lefèbvre builders from Rouen. It consists of 50 stops divided between three manuals of 56 notes and a pedal-board of 30 notes. In 1999, the organ was restored to its original state by Renaud-Menoret of Nantes, making it one of the best remaining examples of a Cavaillé
Jean-Paul IMBERT was born in Clermont-Ferrand in 1942. He studied piano and organ and at the age of 15 he became the organist of the church of Saint Joan of Arc. He studied in Paris from 1962 to 1965 and received tuition from Pierre Cochereau and Jean Guillou. In 1971 he became a substitute for the great organ of Saint-Eustache in Paris and remained so until 1993.
In 1988 he had the honour of playing at the opening concert of the World Congress of Organists on the great organ of Kings College in Cambridge. In 1993 he was appointed the titular organist of the Kleuker organ of Notre-Dame des Neiges in Alpe d’Huez, responsible for the organisation of concerts with renowned organists from all over the world. From 1997 to 2006 he was the organist of Notre-Dame du Perpétuel Secours in Paris. He has performed in many countries (France, Germany, Switzerland, Spain, Italy, Russia, Poland and England) and is a professor at the Schola Cantorum in Paris.
Jean-Paul has made several organ transcriptions of symphonic works: Liszt’s Preludes, Prokofiev’s Excerpts from Romeo and Juliet, Richard Wagner’s Prelude de Tristan and Isolde, Verdi’s Ave Maria and Introduction to the Seven Last Words of Christ by Haydn. In 2004 he was appointed Knight of Arts and Letters and in 2010 he was promoted to the rank of Arts and Letters Officer by the Minister of Culture. In 2014, he was awarded the medal of Knight of the Palmes Académiques.
César Franck (1822-1890)
César Franck spent most of his long career as the organist at Saint Clotilde in Paris, where he inaugurated the organ constructed by Cavaillé-Coll in 1859. It was this instrument which inspired the main part of Franck’s work, notably the three chorals that he composed in his last months. Although the organ at Saint Étienne represents a significant advance in organ building, there is no record confirming that Franck played this or other Cavaillé-Coll organs in Normandy. César Franck was also inspired by another Cavaillé-Coll organ, in the concert hall of the Palais de Trocadéro in Paris. For its inauguration, he composed three pieces, including Cantabile and Fantasie en la (Fantasia in A).