2 CDs for the price of 1! "Murray...makes this music speak with uncanny directness and persuasion...Here is playing of great skill, artistry and integrity." —Gramaphone
César Franck (1822-1890) composed more than one hundred pieces for the organ, but it is for twelve masterworks that he is recognized as one of the most important contributors to the organ repertoire. Michael Murray, unparalleled as an interpreter of Franck, has recorded these twelve pieces for Telarc in a two-disc set that demonstrates the warm expressiveness, great lyricism, and deep spirituality that make the organ music of Franck among the best loved in the instrument's repertoire.
Michael Murray is well qualified to interpret authentically Franck's organ music. He was trained in Paris by Marcel Dupré and spent the second year of their collaboration studying the works of Franck. Dupré, in turn, had studied Franck's work with Alexandre Guilmant, a friend of the composer. Guilmant questioned Franck on every detail concerning his music and its interpretation. Dupré thus inherited and ultimately passed on to Murray a performance tradition of exceptional validity.
The Complete Masterworks for Organ was recorded at the Basilica of Saint Sernin in Toulouse, France, using the magnificent organ built in 1890 by Aristide Cavaillé-Coll, whose instruments Franck played during his own career. Because the organ is one of the few large Cavillé-Coll instruments to remain almost exactly as the builder left it, it conveys to today's listeners the sonorities that Franck intended. These ravishing tonal colors are captured with Telarc's customary clarity.