The Italian Influences on French Music and on the Music of Bach
The subject of this new CD is The Italian Influences on French Music and on the Music of Bach. It follows on from my previous Taskin CD Bach and the French Baroque. This programme is played on a copy of a 17th-century French harpsichord, built by David Rubio (1980) after an instrument by Vaudry (1681). The Vaudry instrument with its characteristic French timbre and a more Italian mode of construction is a specific early French instrument and is therefore, in my opinion, more suitable for this music than the Taskin instrument of the previous CD. Taskin is more based on a continuation of the Franco-Flemish tradition.
Johan Brouwer has made various CDs, including a CD with his collection of harpsichords, built by David Rubio. 2012 saw the release of a CD with works played on the famous Arp Schnitger positiv (1695) in Nieuw-Scheemda and on his Italian harpsichord, built by David Rubio (1977) after Giovanni Giusti (1679). In 2014 a CD with mostly French baroque music was recorded, played on his French harpsichord, built by David Rubio (1979) after Pascal Taskin (1769)
Johann Sebastian Bach was a German composer and musician of the Baroque period. He enriched established German styles through his skill in counterpoint, harmonic and motivic organisation, and the adaptation of rhythms, forms, and textures from abroad, particularly from Italy and France. Bach's compositions include the Brandenburg Concertos, the Goldberg Variations, the Mass in B minor, two Passions, and hundreds of cantatas. His music is revered for its technical command, artistic beauty, and intellectual depth.
Bach's abilities as an organist were highly respected during his lifetime, although he was not widely recognised as a great composer until a revival of interest in and performances of his music in the first half of the 19th century. He is now generally regarded as one of the greatest composers of all time.
François Couperin was a French composer. He is the most imporant and best known member of the Couperin family, which consisted of a whole dynasty of composers. Couperin was nicknamed 'Le Grand' (the Great), and is considered to be one of the most seminal composers of the Baroque period, especially in regard to his music for harpsichord. His keyboard music is characterised by a strong idiomatic nature, both in its personal style and in its close relation to the instrument's features.
Next to his harpsichord music, Couperin composed music for organ, vocal music, both sacred and secular, and chamber music. Moreover, he published several theoretical treatises on the playing techniques on the harpsichord and its role in the accompaniment of music.