Marc-Antoine Charpentier: Motets pour le Grand Dauphin

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As eldest son of Louis XIV, Louis of France, nicknamed le Grand Dauphin, was marked out to become king of France at his father's death. He was therefore given the education of a monarch, as this would have been conceived in the 17th century: running the affairs of the kingdom required knowledge of diplomatic and commercial relations, but also the acquisition of the external manifestations the Sun King had resorted to so skilfully, subjecting architecture, drama, painting and music to the requirements of his government. Just like his father, the Dauphin surrounded himself with chosen personalities, amongst whom the composer Marc-Antoine Charpentier. Removed from an official position at court by the talent and the intrigues of Lully, he was not allowed to write for the opera, for which the 'Surintendant de la musique' had obtained a royal privilege. He therefore concentrated his creative activity primarily on sacred music, giving it the 'Italian style' expressivity he had learned in Rome, where he had studied with Carrissimi. This religious lyricism deploys itself in the motets composed for Monseigneur's religious services. The later would remain Dauphin for eternity since he died in 1711, four years before his father.


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Marc-Antoine Charpentier [1643-1704]
Ensemble Pierre Robert / Frederic Desenclos
Marc-Antoine Charpentier
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