New CD of the Week | Bonjour Paris

You will rarely hear the oboe played with such artful command as Albrecht Mayer's playing on Bonjour Paris.

Since first visiting Paris with his parents at the age of twelve, Mayer has been in love with France and especially the savoir-vivre of Paris. He now fulfills an ambition to record an all-French collection, Bonjour Paris.  Principal oboist of the Berlin Philharmonic, Mayer has compiled many of the best-loved pieces of French classical repertoire, including Fauré's Pavane, Debussy's Clair de lune and Satie's Gymnopédie.

The French have given the oboe a romantic byname, the "noble wood".  Although the oboe has French origins, none of France's most famous composers - Ravel, Debussy, or Fauré - ever wrote an original piece for the instrument.  For the specially commissioned transcriptions found on Bonjour Paris, arranged by Chris Hazell, Albrecht Mayer is joined by the world-renowned Academy of St Martin in the Field.

Bonjour Paris has everything that Mayer's many fans have come to expect from him: popular melodies interpreted by a master musician.  Yet there is also much here that will be new, including a radiant work by Swiss oboist and composer, Gotthard Odermatt (Été - Summer), dedicated to Mayer and in line with the rich French Impressionist style threaded throughout this enchanting recording.