Give Now

Harmonia Early Music

Simple Pleasures, Hidden Treasures

L'Ensemble Portique of Chicago plays Boismortier Trio Sonatas on recorder, violin, viola da gamba, violoncello and harpsichord.

Detail from a portrait of Boismortier, (1689-1755), by Jean Ranc.

Joseph Bodin de Boismortier lived a life of fame and luxury in 18th century France without ever holding an official post. From the time he moved to Paris in about 1723 until his death in 1755 he had a royal privilege to engrave and publish his own works. His vocal works combine agreeable melodies with virtuoso vocal writing in the Italian style that was all the rage. Boismortier’s instrumental music, always pleasant and skillfully mingling Italian and French elements, was eminently accessible technically to amateur players. He composed for unusual combinations of instruments, such as five flutes, or two bassons and four flutes, and for instruments that were fashionable, such as the musette and hurdy-gurdy. Thus was Boismortier able to enjoy a very comfortable existence as a prolific and popular composer.

L’Ensemble Portique‘s name is taken from a sculpture that is a visual representation of the independence and interdependence of the music worlds of early and contemporary music. On this 2011 Centaur recording, they explore trio sonatas and concerti of Boismortier using varying combinations of recorder, violin, cello, viola da gamba and harpsichord.  Let’s hear an excerpt from his Opus 37 sonatas for one melody instrument and two basses, played on recorder, viola da gamba and harpsichord.

[playlist-item 1]

Wendy Gillespie

Wendy Gillespie is Professor of Music, teaching early bowed strings and performance studies, at the Early Music Institute of the Jacobs School of Music, Bloomington, IN and President of the VdGSA. As a viola da gamba player, she has made more than 80 CDs and performed on five continents.

View all posts by this author »

What is RSS? RSS makes it possible to subscribe to a website's updates instead of visiting it by delivering new posts to your RSS reader automatically. Choose to receive some or all of the updates from Harmonia Early Music:

More Subscription Options

Follow Us

Support For Indiana Public Media Comes From

About Harmonia Early Music

Search Harmonia Early Music