This week’s listening assignment is a standard piece of saxophone repertoire, Tableaux de Provence. This piece was composed by Paule Maurice, and takes a musical tour through the Provence region of France. Maurice dedicated the piece to her friend Marcel Mule, one of the first saxophone virtuosos, considered the founder of the French school of saxophone playing.
Here is the first movement of Tableaux de Provence. Listen to the wide variations in dynamics (loudness) throughout the piece, and the precise way that the performer moves through the melodic lines. The back-and-forth conversation between the piano and saxophone is very important in this first movement. The performer is Claude DeLangle, one of the best classical saxophonists playing today. He teaches at the National Superior Conservatory of Music in Paris, France.
The entire piece is 5 movements and approximately 15 minutes. For this week we’ll focus on only the first movement.