Claire Desert & Emmanuel Strosser, piano duet
Composers have over the centuries sought to relive memories of their formative years through simplicity and childlikeness in music.
Schumann's Scenes From Childhood and Debussy's Children's Corner Suite for piano solo are good examples of this. In the piano duet genre, the French have the field to themselves, represented by these works.
Masterpieces in miniature may describe Gabriel Faure's Dolly Suite, the seamless lyricism of its Berceuse and Dolly's Garden has rarely been matched.
The 12 movements of Georges Bizet's Jeux D'enfants (Children's Games) are also varied delights, whether playing with toy soldiers (Trumpet And Drum), dolls (Little Husband, Little Wife), spinning tops or bounding beach balls.
Both Debussy's Petite Suite and Ravel's Mother Goose have orchestral versions which have become ballet spectaculars, but it is the piano duets that remain true to the original spirit.