Although imported Italian music was contraband at court in late seventeenth-century France, the Italian sonata's rhythmic vitality and harmonic clarity inspired a new generation of French composers eager to try their hand at writing in the Italian style. Les Délices captures the essence of this French-Italian fusion with sonatas by François Couperin, Louis-Nicolas Clérambault, and Jean-Féry Rebel that date from the 1690s, when the style was fresh and still controversial.
Les Délices presents polished, expressive, and dynamic performances of masterpieces and little-known works from the French Baroque. They bring together artists with national reputations who share a passion for this exquisite repertoire. Their performances on period instruments explore a rich tapestry of tone colors, and the group's name conveys their approach to the music of this era: a delight, a fine delicacy, sumptuous and exciting.
Featuring Debra Nagy, baroque oboe; Scott Metcalfe, baroque violin; Emily Walhout, viola da gamba; Lucas Harris, guitar & theorbo; and Michael Sponseller, harpsichord.