Today’s track is a brand new release; you are among the first to hear it as it was only released on Spotify and Apple Music this morning!
I recorded Poulenc’s The Story of Babar the Little Elephant with my 84 year-old friend Simon Blumlein narrating, and we have decided to release it as a little lockdown gift – we hope it keeps you entertained for half an hour! We are donating profits to the David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation.
Poulenc conceived the idea in 1940 after spending time with his young nieces and nephews, who, bored by his piano playing, put Histoire de Babar (a story about the adventures of a little elephant by Jean de Brunhoff) on the piano, and said “now play that one!”. Poulenc improvised piano music whilst reading the story, and only wrote it down much later. It has become a firm favourite, and perfectly illustrates the gentle charm, humour and variety of his music.
You can find and listen to this release on Spotify here.