The Imaginative World of Ariosto

Engraving by Larmessin after Nicolas Lancret

The Imaginative World of Ariosto
(Arioste imaginaire, Arioste imaginé)
February 26 to May 18, 2009
Musée du Louvre, Paris.

Ariosto first published his Orlando Furioso in Ferrara in 1516, and the epic poem, telling the adventures of Orlando, quickly became an extraordinary source of inspiration for the arts and literature. The exhibition, featuring works from the Renaissance to the 19th century proposes a reflection on the mutual influences of images and text in artistic and literary creation.

Ariosto's work also influenced a lot the 17th &18th-century operatic world. The character and adventures of Orlando inspired various libretti, and composers like Vivaldi (Orlando Finto Pazzo and then Orlando Furioso), Scarlatti, Händel, Lully (Roland). Orlando Furioso's secondary characters became the central characters of some operas : Alcina (Albinoni, Händel), Ginevra principessa di Scozia/Ariodante (Perti, Pollarolo, Sarro, Händel, Wagenseil). Even Rameau's Les Paladins, based on tale by La Fontaine finds its origins in Orlando Furioso (canto 43). For that reason, the exhibition is completed with a musical program.

Extracts from :
Händel, Orlando, Alcina, Ariodante
Lully, Roland Furieux,
Vivaldi, Orlando Furioso

Solistes de l'Atelier lyrique de l'Opéra national de Paris :
Les Paladins & Jérôme Correas
Auditorium du Louvre - March 4, 2009
Théâtre de Suresnes Jean Vilar - March 6, 2009
More about the concerts

Filmed operas
Alcina, by Georg Friedrich Händel
Scottish Chamber Orchestra - Raymond Leppard,
Chorale Elisabeth Brasseur - Catherine Brilli,

Cast :Ann Murray, Valerie Masterson, Christiane Eda Pierre, Theresa Berganza, Philip Landridge.
Ina/Antenne 2, 1978, 124 min.
Introduction speech on the theme Ariosto and the baroque opera.
March14, 2009 - 3:00 pm

Orlando Furioso, by Antonio Vivaldi
Orchestre de l’Opéra de San Francisco - Randall Behr,
Cast : Marilyn Horne, Kathleen Kuhlmann, Susan Patterson, Jeffrey Gall, Sandra Walker.
Réal : Brian Large, prod : Arthaus, 1989, 147 min.
March 14, 2009 - 7:00 pm

Les Paladins, by Jean-Philippe Rameau
Les Arts florissants - William Christie,
Opus Arte, 2005, 140 min.
March15, 2009 - 3:00 pm

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L'Évasion de Louis XVI

French TV film - a docu-fiction - by Arnaud Sélignac, 90 mn, 2009.

This film recounts the day of June 21, 1791, when King Louis XVI and his family tried to flee France, and failed.

The critic of the film is good, telling that the film, conceived like a thriller, left aside all the clichés about Louis XVI and gives a faithful account of what happened on that very day.
Not really a surprise when we know the historical adviser was Jean-Christian Petitfils.

It'll be broadcast on February 24, by the French channel France 2.

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Symposium in Basel

Musique et Instruments de musique de la Grande Ecurie & des Gardes Suisses à la Cour de France sous Louis XIV et Louis XV

March 18 - 19, 2009
Musik Museum,
Basle, Im Lohnhof 9, Roter Saal

Languages : French / German


Chefs du projet : Thomas Drescher, Thilo Hirsch
Partenaires : Martin Kirnbauer (Musée de la Musique, Bâle), Florence Gétreau (Paris-IRPMF)
Conferenciers : Katharina Andres (Bâle), Boaz Berney (Jaffa), Jürg Buchwalder (Bâle), Walter Büchler (Bâle), Sarah van Cornewal (Bâle), Olivier Cottet (Le Bois des prés), Jean Duron (Paris), Thilo Hirsch (Bâle), Johanne Maitre (Guebwiller), Anne Piejus (Paris), Vincent Robin (Saint Denis)


March 19, 2009 - 8:15 pm
Leonhardskirche, Basle

Musique de la Grande Ecurie & des Gardes Suisses
Works by J.-B. Lully, A. Philidor, L. Couperin, M.P. Montéclair, J.-B. Prin, . Corrette btw others.

Ensemble arcimboldo, Basle
Ensemble des trompettes de la SCB
Direction : Thilo Hirsch


Details and information :
PDF Français - PDF German

scb-basel - rimab - musikmuseum

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Rameau - New Recordings

Rameau - Dardanus

A Pinchgut Opera (Sydney) production, recorded in 2005.
Featuring Paul Agnew, Paul Whelan, Kathryn McCusker,Stephen Bennett, Damian Whiteley and the Orchestra of the Antipodes under Antony Walker.
ABC Classics - 2CD
Find details on the production, the cast, the plot, MP3 samplers, on the Pinchgut Opera Site

Already available in some countries (at least, I guess, for I found it on the internet). It'll be released in France on March 12.

Rameau - Que les mortels servent de modèle aux dieux...
Extracts from Zoroastre & Zaïs

Eugénie Warnier, Arnaud Richard, Ensemble Ausonia
Frédérick Haas

Alpha - 1CD
March 12, 2009

Sounds very promising...

Rameau - Les Indes Galantes

Christophe Rousset
Ambroisie-La Cité de la Musique - 1CD
March 24, 2009

The recording is part of a series which aim is to introduce the Musée de la Musique prestigious historical instruments.
I haven't yet found any information about the recording, but it's likely to be the Suite des Indes Galantes recorded by Rousset on the Jean-Henry Hemsch harpsichord (1761, E.974.3.1) on January 21, 2001.

Coming next in the series :
Sandrine Chatron, Works from the time of Marie-Antoinette - Erard harp (1788).


Rameau - Anacréon & Le Berger fidèle

Originally released on Archiv (1996)

Véronique Gens - Annick Massis - Thierry Félix - Rodrigo del Pozo
Les Musiciens du Louvre - Marc Minkowski
Brilliant Classics: BRIL93930 - 5028421939308 - 1 CD
March 12, 2009

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Court Pomp and Royal Ceremony

Court Pomp and Royal Ceremony
Court Dress in Europe, 1650-1800
(Fastes de Cour - Le Costume de Cour en Europe, 1650-1800)
31 March to 28 June 2009,
Palace of Versailles
The exhibition Court Pomp and Royal Ceremony — Court Dress in Europe, 1650-1800 follows the history of court dress in Europe, revealing France’s major influence from the mid-17th to early 19th centuries.
Over 200 exhibits (dress, jewels, pictures) associated with the great European monarchies are assembled for the first time in an exhibition that will be held only at Versailles.
The Victoria & Albert Museum in London, the Pitti Palace in Florence, the Louvre, Musée Galliera, Les Arts décoratifs and Archives Nationales in Paris, and private collectors have agreed to loan some of their pieces. The royal collections of London, Dresden, Denmark (Rosenborg Castle), Sweden (Royal Armoury), and Portugal (Ajuda Palace), and the imperial collections of Vienna (Kunsthistorisches Museum), the Tsars of Russia (State Hermitage), and Cologne cathedral will for the first time be exhibited outside their countries of origin.
This event is part of the cycle of exhibitions evoking court life in the 17th and 18th centuries, such as Versailles and the Royal Tables of Europe, 17th-19th centuries in 1993-1994.
Court dress developed as a political symbolic language, whose prime function was to display in visual form the hierarchy of power. The costumes exhibited here evoke not only the exceptional circumstances accompanying the beginnings of national monarchy and the lives of European monarchs and courtiers (coronations and ceremonies of orders of chivalry) but also the prestigious events held at all courts, such as weddings. The dress worn on these occasions was strictly bound by the formality of court etiquette. Each special occasion was an opportunity to adapt court dress with the use of luxurious materials, cloth, embroidery, lace, trimmings and a wealth of real and costume jewellery. These costumes became a showcase for the luxury trade, displaying its technical and aesthetic innovations. As fashion became more important and styles changed more rapidly, so court dress also developed. Orders from European courts placed in Paris demonstrated France’s central influence in court dress and fashion and the excellent quality achieved by Paris craft workers.

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The 17th-century Pietà belongs to a small church in Bourgogne. As the painting was damaged they wanted to have it repaired and cleaned. The conservator noticed that on both sides some areas had been repainted. The X-rays revealed the hidden portrait of Anna of Austria and her two sons, Louis XIV and Monsieur. In spite of the bad state of the painting, they decided to restore the painting to its 17th-century state.

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