AMUSE-BOUCHE – I Fagiolini’s new French CD & film

Here you will find:


Below is an introduction to the project. (For full ‘Ode’ film, clickez-moi)


Director’s Note

Robert Hollingworth by Matt Brodie

Robert Hollingworth

I Fagiolini has been performing 20th century music since its first concert, and French music has long been part of this.  The Poulenc and Milhaud have appeared in our concerts for years.  The Daniel-Lesur, Jean Francaix and Ravel arrangement have not – and were put together specially for this recording (though we are singing all three in concerts this summer).

The two larger-scale works on this disc are both for 12-voices and were written within two years of each other – in 1950 and 1952 – but couldn’t be more different in intent.  We believe this is the first recording of Jean Françaix’s Ode à la gastronomie, a humorous hommage to Brillat-Savarin’s famous 1825 tome, La Physiologie du goût, which encapsulated the French attitude to food and dining.  The whole concept is so utterly French that it is not really a surprise that the work has rarely been attempted – and never released on LP/CD.   It is a joy to sing and practically a meal in itself to learn.

Daniel-Lesur’s ravishing 12-voice setting of Song of Songs texts are so beautifully-crafted.  The layout of voices constantly shifts to produce a kaleidoscopic range of colours. In his research for the sleeve note, Hugh Keyte unearthed fascinating layers of meaning to this piece – but sleeve notes are short and Hugh is a chatty fellow. So here you can find the full notes on the pieces – crucial for anyone wanting to dip further into this great work of 20th century choral music.

Meanwhile, if you’re already fed-up, lie back, light up and…


Hôtel (Guillaume Apollinaire, Le Guetteur mélancolique, 1913) by Francis Poulenc

Ma chambre a la forme d’une cage,
Le soleil passe son bras par la fenêtre.
Mais moi qui veux fumer pour faire des mirages,
J’allume au feu du jour ma cigarette,
Je ne veux pas travailler — je veux fumer.


My room is shaped like a cage,
the sun slips its arm through the window.
But I, who want to smoke to make mirages,
I light my cigarette with the day’s fire;
I don’t want to work – I want to smoke.



Buy your copy!

Amuse Bouche - Robert Hollingworth & I Fagiolini

Get it on Google Play

I Fagiolini on Twitter