Gérald Calderon’s Le Bestiaire d'Amour (1965) belongs to this category of early soundtracks by Georges Delerue which, despite their great artistic value, have never been released on record, presumably because of the lack of quality master tapes. The disappointing sound of the 2005 DVD reissue of this documentary seems to confirm this hypothesis. A new recording was necessary.
Robert Lafond has already proved his worth with five albums of film music by Delerue produced for Disques Cinémusique. As his expertise and digital sampling techniques evolve constantly, he reconstructed with striking realism this score which was originally performed by some thirty musicians.
Le Bestiaire contains about 45 minutes of music consisting of short segments, most often accompanied by narration. The thirty minutes chosen for our CD will delight the Composer's fans who prefer his French output of the 1960s and 1970s. The original melodic lines and orchestrations have been faithfully reproduced, with some minor exceptions in the second case. For example, we added harpsichord accompaniment in one piece to reinforce its rhythm and Baroque style.
Le Bestiaire d’amour occasionally recalls landmark scores like Jules et Jim and Cartouche, and offers a foretaste of other masterpieces such as The King of Hearts, produced the following year. In addition to the usual melodic vein of Georges Delerue, we find a lesser known facet of his genius: a taste for experimentation. Some passages offer startling sound combinations, close to abstraction, even fantasy.
From the love of animals we pass to that of humans with Mona, l’étoile sans nom (Mona, the Unnamed Star) by Henri Colpi. This accomplished editor turned director called on Delerue for two of his six television series (Thibault and Fortune), as well as three of his four feature films: Une aussi longue absence (1961), Mona, l’étoile sans nom (1966) and Heureux qui comme Ulysse (1970). Mona, co-produced with Romania, was well received by critics, as were other Colpi’s movies, but low audience in France probably explains the lack of a DVD reissue.
Despite Delerue's music for Mona being preserved on an EP, only the short Main Title has been reissued digitally, on several compilations devoted to the Composer. We have reconstructed the full content of this ten minute EP, which actually represents almost the entire soundtrack. Favoring quality over quantity was one of the principles dear to Henri Colpi.
Mona tells the story of the encounter of a young professor and amateur astronomer (Claude Rich) and a ravishing woman (Marina Vlady), who by chance arrives by train in a small Romanian town following an argument with her lover. The young man makes her acquaintance at the station, offers her lodging for the night, and then seduces her with his passion for the stars and his kindness.
Mona’s poetic score wonderfully serves this unlikely love story between two very different people who, thanks to a combination of exceptional circumstances, discover a mutual attraction.
CD in jewel case, 8-page color booklet with liner notes by executive producer Clément Fontaine. -DISQUES CINEMUSIQUE
01 Générique 1:22
02 Extase 1:44
03 La société des termites 2:00
04 Les hermaphrodites 1:01
05 Jeux de tritons 1:29
06 La naissance du désir 1:30
07 Le règne des insectes 1:31
08 Bestiaire d'amour 1:52
09 Les araignées de Camargue 1:05
10 Danse nuptiale des papillons 2:52
11 La parade des hippocampes 1:23
12 Fier comme un paon 1:45
13 La cour des oiseaux 2:11
14 L'amour forcé du crabe 1:45
15 Étreintes de grenouilles 1:41
16 Le marivaudage des poulpes 1:39
17 Poissons d’Indochine 2:09
18 Bestiaire d'amour II 1:15
19 Mona, l’étoile sans nom – Suite I 4:57
20 Mona, l’étoile sans nom – Suite II 4:40