Classical Spree 17-18

21.La Fontaine’s Fables

21.La Fontaine’s Fables


Cinquième Salle

To celebrate the 350th anniversary of Jean de La Fontaine’s classic Fables, the OSM offers musical settings of a few select excerpts in string quartet form. Music by Jean-Philippe Rameau and Denis Gougeon will accompany narration by Catherine Perrin, for an afternoon of poetry and storytelling.


17 years and under : $10

Adult : from $27*


4:45 PM

Catherine Perrin, harpsichord and narration
Ariane Lajoie, Violin
Joshua Peters, violin
Sofia Gentile, viola
Sylvain Murray, cello


Performance in French

Concert lasting 45 minutes

D. Gougeon, Introduction – Le Corbeau et le Renard
Rameau, Le Lion amoureux
Rameau, Interlude (La Forqueray)
D. Gougeon, Le Lièvre et la Tortue*
D. Gougeon, Le Chêne et le Roseau
D. Gougeon, La Cigale et la Fourmi*
D. Gougeon, Les deux Pigeons
Rameau, Interlude (La Livri)
Rameau, Le Lion et le Rat
D. Gougeon, Le Lièvre et les Grenouilles
Récit, La Grenouille qui veut se faire aussi grosse que le Bœuf
Rameau, Final (Tambourins)


Programme Notes:

Jean de La Fontaine once quipped, “I use animals to instruct men.” Although La Fontaine’s fables were written for educational purposes, they remain a source of entertainment. It was such a great pleasure for me to bring some of the most famous among them to life through music, for they are profoundly enlightening about human nature. With the collaboration of Catherine Perrin, I strove to create a sonic context for each one, echoing my own reading. In all humility, I hope to have stimulated the listener’s imagination by adding a new dimension to these tales, like another mirror reflecting back to us the genius of Jean de La Fontaine. In the latter’s own words, “Toil itself is treasure.” (The Ploughman and His Sons, Book V, Fable 9)


Catherine Perrin

Catherine Perrin leads an active dual career as a harpsichordist and broadcaster. As a harpsichordist, she has performed on Quebec stages with various ensembles including the Ensemble Contemporain de Montréal, Les Violons du Roy, and I Musici de Montréal. With the latter chamber orchestra, she recorded Henryk Gorecki’s Harpsichord Concerto on the Chandos label, which garnered two Opus Prizes. Her first solo album, 24 Préludes, released by Atma, was enthusiastically received, as was her album titled Ah! vous dirai-je maman! For the past ten years, Catherine has performed with Bataclan, a trio comprised of harpsichord, bassoon, and bandoneon, which made two recordings on the Atma label. Since 2011, she has appeared as the host of Médium large, the foremost sociocultural programme on Ici Radio-Canada Première. In the fall of 2013, the Conseil supérieur de la langue française presented Catherine Perrin with an award in recognition of the excellence of her work as a radio host.

Joshua Peters

Born and raised in Winnipeg, Joshua Peters is Second Assistant Principal Second Violin of the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal. He won First Prize at the 2015 Eckhardt-Gramatté National Music Competition, First Prize at the 2014 WMC Doris McClellan Competition, and the 2015 Golden Violin Award from the Schulich School of Music of McGill University. Mr. Peters is particularly drawn to the performance of chamber music, and has collaborated with many renowned musicians including Menahem Pressler, Kim Kashkashian, André Laplante, and members of the Emerson, St. Lawrence, and Guarneri quartets. As a soloist, he has performed with the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra on numerous occasions as well as the San Francisco Conservatory Orchestra.

Sofia Gentile

Sofia Gentile began her career in music the age of 17 as a member of I Musici de Montréal. As a violinist, she recorded a significant number of albums for the Chandos label, and took part in many American, European, and Asian tours. After receiving a bachelor’s degree in performance from the Université de Montréal, she continued her studies at Rice University’s Shepherd School of Music and completed her master’s degree under the direction of Kathleen Winkler in 2002. She went on to serve as Alternate Concertmaster of the New World Symphony under the direction of Michael Tilson-Thomas. A collaborator with the OSM since 2006, she became a member of the viola section in 2012 in addition to receiving a scholarship from the Conseil des arts et des lettres du Québec.

Sylvain Murray

Sylvain Murray studied at the Conservatoire de musique de Chicoutimi, his home town, pursuing his training at McGill University with Antonio Lysy. From 2003 to 2007 he was a member of Les Violons du Roy, an ensemble with which he toured to Europe, the United States, Canada, and Mexico. An esteemed chamber musician, he has performed at the Ottawa International Chamber Music Festival, at the Rendez-vous musical de Laterrière, with Pro Musica, with Musica Camerata Montréal, at the Festival de Lanaudière, at the Orford Festival, and with the Société de musique de chambre de Québec. He is a member of the OSM, and currently plays a cello made by Domenico Montagnana in 1734, with a ca. 1950 Louis Gillet bow, generously loaned by Canimex.