Marc-Antoine Charpentier: Motets pour le Grand Dauphin

Marc-Antoine Charpentier: Motets pour le Grand Dauphin

by Frederic Desenclos


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Marc-Antoine Charpentier: Motets pour le Grand Dauphin

Although Marc-Antoine Charpentier never held an official position at the French court, he wrote a significant amount of service music for the chapel of Louis de France, the Grand Dauphin, the son of Louis XIV, while he was employed by the de Guise family. This album gathers six motets written for the Dauphin, as well as four organ works by Charpentier's contemporary Louis Marchand. Charpentier's work is notable for the elegance, grace, variety, and expressiveness of his vocal writing. These motets are also distinctive for their instrumentation. Several are scored for three flutes in addition to voices and continuo, and the use of a bass flute provides a tone color not usually associated with vocal music of this period, and it is darkly haunting. Others use a small chamber ensemble, always applied with great delicacy and sensitivity to maintaining transparent textures so that the vocal lines are easily comprehensible. "Supplicatio pro defunctis ad beatam Virginem" is an especially lovely and deeply felt example of the composer's lyrical text setting. Ensemble Pierre Robert performs with elegance, but also with passionate fervor. Soprano Anne Magouët, mezzo-soprano Sarah Breton, and bass Edwin Crossley-Mercer sing with light, pure tone that's well suited to this repertoire. Frédéric Desenclos, who directs the ensemble, plays the Marchand organ works, which stylistically mesh with the Charpentier, with directness and simplicity. The sound is clean and well balanced.

Product Details

Release Date: 03/10/2009
Label: Alpha Productions
UPC: 3760014191381
catalogNumber: 138
Rank: 94345


  1. Deus judicium tuum regi da, motet for 5 voices, instruments & continuo, H. 166
  2. Fugue sur les anches, for organ
  3. Sola vivebat in antris, motet for 2 voices, 2 flutes & continuo, H. 373
  4. Pièces d'orgue, Premier livre, for organ: Fond d'orgue
  5. Supplication pro defunctis ad beatam Virginem, motet for 3 voices, 3 flutes & continuo, H. 328
  6. Pièces d'orgue, Premier livre, for organ: Tierce en taille
  7. Quemadmodum desiderat cervus, motet for 5 voices, 2 treble instruments & continuo, H. 174
  8. O salutaris hostia, motet for bass, 2 treble instruments & continuo, H. 248
  9. Pièces d'orgue, Premier livre, for organ: Fugue
  10. Gratiarum actiones ex sacris codicibus excerptae pro restituta serenissimi Galliarum delphini salute, motet, H. 326

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