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CHOPIN // Secret Garden

François-Frédéric Guy,

A dream comes true . . . A secret garden is reborn, with its luxuriant and intimate colours, its intoxicating perfumes, under the fingers of François-Frédéric Guy. For his first-ever recording of music by Chopin, he has chosen a 1905 Pleyel piano, a sublime instrument restored at the workshop of Pianos Balleron. The pieces on this album remind him of the music that enchanted his childhood.


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Yet it was a long wait until he finally took the opportunity provided by the lockdown to make this recording in the splendid acoustics of the Arsenal de Metz. Of course, this pianist, so passionate a champion of the music of today, is not one to renounce the revolutionary dimension of Chopin’s style! It laid the foundations of the modern piano repertory. Nevertheless, François-Frédéric Guy’s poetic imagination combines fantasy and rigour in his phrasing, in dialogue with the unique and bewitching timbres of his instrument. This recital, paying homage to the master pianists of the early twentieth century, revives an art of singing in a way that seems utterly natural, such is the clarity and fluidity of the playing.


CD 1


  • Nocturne in B flat minor op. 9 n°1 5’34
  • Nocturne in E flat major op. 9 n°2 4’05
  • Étude in C major op. 10 n°1 1’55
  • Étude in C minor op. 10 n°12 « révolutionnaire » 2’40
  • Ballade n°1 in G minor op. 23 9’06
  • Nocturne in C sharp minor op. 27 n°1 5’15
  • Ballade n°2 in F major op. 38 6’54
  • Nocturne in C minor op. 48 n°1 6’29
  • Fantaisie in F minor op. 49 12’36


CD 2


  • Sonate n°3 in B minor op. 58 – Allegro maestoso 9’20
  • Sonate n°3 in B minor op. 58 – Scherzo : Molto vivace 2’47
  • Sonate n°3 in B minor op. 58 – Largo 8’46
  • Sonate n°3 in B minor op. 58 – Finale : Presto non tanto 5’28
  • Polonaise-Fantaisie op. 61 12’14
  • Nocturne in E major op. 62 n°2 5’38
  • Valse in F minor op. 70 n°2 1’50
  • Valse in D flat major op. 70 n°3 posthume 2’43
  • Nocturne in C sharp minor op. posthume 3’54
  • Fantaisie-impromptu in C sharp minor op. 66 posthume 5’05

François-Frédéric Guy pursues an international career alongside the leading conductors, among them Philippe Jordan, Kent Nagano, Daniel Harding and Esa-Pekka Salonen, and with prestigious orchestras such as the Wiener Symphoniker, the Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, the NHK Symphony Orchestra in Tokyo and the Philharmonia Orchestra in London.


His intense curiosity about the music of his time leads him to perform many contemporary composers and to give world premieres regularly.


Since 2012, he has often directed ensembles from the piano, including the Liège Royal Philharmonic, Sinfonia Varsovia, the Orchestre National des Pays de Loire, the Orchestre National de Lorraine and the Orchestre de Chambre de Paris, with which he earned triumphal acclaim at the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées in January 2020 for the opening concert of the theatre’s Beethoven Year.


Future orchestral projects will take him to London, Lille, Paris, Cannes, Tokyo and Hamburg with the conductors Sakari Oramo, Jean-Claude Casadesus, Benjamin Lévy and Jurien Hempel, and to the Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks in Munich with Philippe Jordan.


He will also appear as pianist and conductor with the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra, the Orchestre de l’Opéra de Limoges, the Orchestre de Chambre de Paris at the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées, and Sinfonia Varsovia.

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