I'm thrilled to tell you about the album I've recently begun recording with terrific artists for the Delos Label. I've been performing Franchomme's compositions all over the US since autumn 2011 (check out Update #10 for a recent performance), and now my mission is to get some of the best of Franchomme's compositions recorded, in many cases for the first time ever. We're asking for your support to complete our recording sessions and get the master prepared for Delos.
Auguste Franchomme (1808-1884) was the most renowned Parisian cellist of his day. Many people know that he was a best friend to Chopin and the dedicatee of Chopin’s final work, his cello sonata Op. 65. Fewer people realize that he himself was a composer who wrote over 50 works for his instrument, most of which have been out of print since his death. He was also a masterful arranger of works by Chopin, Beethoven, Mozart, Bellini, and others. Our recording will interest lovers of the cello, Chopin aficionados, and fans of French romantic music.
It's rare a cellist can say that she's making a world premiere recording of a great 19th century work--rare, and also really fun. Even rarer: making the world premiere recordings of TEN such pieces with other fantastic musicians, including cellists Katherine Cherbas (www.katherinecherbas.com), Julia Bruskin (www.claremonttrio.com), and Saeunn Thorsteinsdottir (www.saeunn.com) and pianist Hiroko Sasaki. Read more about all of us by clicking on BIO in the blue box above on your screen.
What remains to be done? And to be funded? I'm asking for your help to pay for the remaining recording expenses. These expenses will significantly exceed our goal, so you can be assured that any donated money will go directly to the project. I personally am not taking any payment for this project, but my expenses include additional recording sessions of cello-piano works and cello duets, and prepping the master to send to Delos (editing, mixing, mastering-- making it sound completely polished). Delos pays for all remaining production expense, like booklet design, printing, marketing and world-wide distribution. The world-class artists listed above and I will be recording in a terrific concert hall, with sound engineer Andrew Bove (you'll see him in video above) and Grammy-winning producer Steven Epstein. They all believe in the project, and they're a dream team! But I can't ask them to do it for free. So, I'm asking for your support.
I recently visited France twice on research grants from Indiana University. There, I met Chopin scholar Sophie Ruhlmann (who also did some important research on Auguste Franchomme and helped advise mine) and Franchomme's direct descendants, who showed me music, letters, paintings and other things they had inherited from Franchomme, showed me his gravestone and other important sites in Paris, and told me some great stories. I was privileged to play Franchomme's own cello in Paris for seven direct descendants of Franchomme:
Some of the Franchomme compositions I found in France were never even published in the first place. This recording includes some of my transcriptions of Franchomme's unpublished cello quartet manuscripts, which we recorded in September 2012.
Our album will expand the reach of the Franchomme Project to many more people. Concurrent with its release will be a republication of Franchomme's out-of-print first editions from Dover Publications, with compositions selected and introduced by me. Cellists will get an idea of Franchomme's adroit left hand, virtuosic bow technique, and Romantic playing style through his markings on these French editions, and also by studying their compositional challenges. (updates to follow--but this fundraiser is for the CD). All of this will expand cello repertoire and offer fresh insights into 19th Century music. PLUS, the Franchomme Project brings this terrific music directly to you, in forms of the enticing rewards listed on the right side of this screen!
Please donate what you can, and help spread the word, via email, Facebook, or Twitter (@weezeedee). Thank you for your support!
Risks and challenges
We plan to complete the recording sessions and prepare the master in the summer of 2013, for an estimated release date of late 2013 or 2014. There is a chance that schedule will be delayed if any participating artist has to reschedule a session due to illness.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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