French Impressions

Vive la differénce! Music with French connections both old and new

The Lesher Center for the Arts

1 hour and 55 minutes, with intermission

COVID Safety

What’s Interesting About This Program

  • Three Studies after Couperin by British composer Thomas Adès is an ingenious arrangement of three harpsichord pieces by the French Baroque master, François Couperin.
  • World Premiere: California Symphony Young American Composer-in-Residence Katherine Balch (2017-2020) hand selected the three voices for this work, which is based on Les Illuminations by French poet Rimbaud. Balch’s narrative intertwines the original French words with the English translation.
  • Often categorized as “impressionist composers”, Debussy and Ravel were the two most important and influential French composers of the early 20th century. Nostalgic and fantastical, Ma mère I’Oye (Mother Goose) is Ravel’s charming musical homage to scenes from fairy tales including Sleeping Beauty, Tom Thumb, and the Enchanted Garden.

Patrons must be fully vaccinated and masks are required. For details, please visit www.californiasymphony.org/COVIDsafety.  Thank you for your cooperation!

The Program

Thomas AdèsThree Studies from Couperin

BalchIlluminate (World Premiere)

Debussy Danse (orch. Ravel)

Ravel Ma Mère l'Oye (Mother Goose)

Featured Artists

Music Director, Donato Cabrera

Katherine Balch,

Kelly Guerra, mezzo-soprano

Molly Netter, soprano

Alexandra Smither, soprano

Show Support By

Diablo Regional Arts Association Logo

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