Seattle Symphony Orchestra: Messiaen’s ‘Poemes pour Mi’ and ‘3 Petite liturgies de la Presence Divine’

Poemes pour Mi is the better of the two performances on Seattle Symphony Orchestra’s latest recording released on 18 August 2017.

Written originally for piano and soprano and scored for orchestra and voice the following year, Poemes are exuberant and colourful settings of Messiaen’s own poetry exploring marital love, the experience of which informed by his marriage to violinist and composer Claire Delbos in June 1932.

That Delbos would go on to suffer multiple miscarriages and succumb to memory loss and live her life in a mental insitution after an operation, makes Poemes pour Mi a bittersweet listen. 

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