Jean-Baptiste Lully  
Jean-Baptiste Lully
Jean-Baptiste Lully (French pronunciation: ​[ʒã.ba.tist ly.li]; Italian: Giovanni Battista Lulli; 28 November 1632 – 22 March 1687) was a Florentine-born French composer who spent most of his life working in the court of Louis XIV of France. He is considered the chief master of the French baroque style. Lully disavowed any Italian influence in French music of the period. He became a French subject in 1661.

Giovanni Battista Lulli was born in Florence, Grand Duchy of Tuscany, to a family of millers. His general education and his musical training during his youth in Florence remain uncertain, but his adult handwriting suggests that he manipulated a quill pen with ease. He used to say that a Franciscan friar gave him his first music lessons and taught him guitar. He also learned to play the violin. In 1646, dressed as Harlequin during Mardi Gras and amusing bystanders with his clowning and his violin, the boy attracted the attention of Roger de Lorraine, chevalier de Guise, son of Charles, Duke of Guise, who was returning to France and was looking for someone to talk Italian with his niece, Mademoiselle de Montpensier (la Grande Mademoiselle). Guise took the boy to Paris, where the fourteen year-old entered Mademoiselle's service; from 1647 to 1652 he served as her "chamber boy" (garçon de chambre). He probably honed his musical skills by working with Mademoiselle's household musicians and with composers Nicolas Métru, François Roberday and Nicolas Gigault. The teenager's talents as a guitarist, violinist, and dancer quickly won him the nicknames "Baptiste", and "le grand baladin" (great street-artist).

When Mademoiselle was exiled to the provinces in 1652 after the rebellion known as the Fronde, Lully "begged his leave ... because he did not want to live in the country." The princess granted his request.
By February 1653 Lully had attracted the attention of young Louis XIV, dancing with him in the Ballet royal de la nuit. By March 16, 1653, Lully had been made royal composer for instrumental music. His vocal and instrumental music for court ballets gradually made him indispensable. In 1660 and 1662 he collaborated on court performances of Cavalli's Xerse and Ercole amante. When Louis XIV took over the reins of government in 1661, he named Lully superintendent of the royal music and music master of the royal family. In December 1661 the Florentine was granted letters of naturalization. Thus, when he married the daughter of the renowned singer and composer Michel Lambert in 1662, Giovanni Battista Lulli declared himself to be "Jean-Baptiste Lully, escuyer [squire], son of "Laurent de Lully, gentilhomme Florentin [Florentine gentleman]". The latter assertion was an untruth.

Portrait of Jean Baptiste Lully around the 1670s,
shows the composer in middle age

From 1661 on, the trios and dances he wrote for the court were promptly published. As early as 1653, Louis XIV made him director of his personal violin orchestra, known as the Petits Violons ("Little Violins"), which was proving to be open to Lully's innovations, as contrasted with the Twenty-Four Violins or Grands Violons ("Great Violins"), who only slowly were abandoning the polyphony and divisions of past decades. When he became surintendant de la musique de la chambre du roi in 1661, the Great Violins also came under Lully's control. He relied mainly on the Little Violins for court ballets.
His collaboration with playwright Molière began in 1661 when Lully and Pierre Beauchamp worked on the music and dancing for Les Fâcheux, first performed for Nicolas Fouquet at his sumptuous chateau of Vaux-le-Vicomte. More theatrical collaborations followed, some of them conceived for fetes at the royal court, and others taking the form of incidental music (intermèdes) for plays performed at command performances at court and also in Molière's Parisian theater.
In 1672 Lully broke with Molière, who turned to Marc-Antoine Charpentier. Having acquired Pierre Perrin's opera privilege, Lully became the director of the Académie Royale de Musique, that is, the royal opera, which performed in the Palais-Royal. Between 1673 and 1687 he produced a new opera almost yearly and fiercely protected his monopoly over that new genre.

After Queen Marie-Thérèse's death in 1683 and the king's secret marriage to Mme de Maintenon, devotion came to the fore at court. The king's enthusiasm for opera dissipated; he was revolted by Lully's dissolute life and homosexual encounters. In 1686, to show his displeasure, Louis XIV made a point of not inviting Lully to perform Armide at Versailles. Lully died from gangrene, having struck his foot with his long conducting staff during a performance of his Te Deum to celebrate Louis XIV's recovery from surgery. He was buried in the church of Notre-Dame-des-Victoires, where his tomb with its marble bust can still be seen. All three of his sons (Louis Lully, Jean-Baptiste Lully fils, and Jean-Louis Lully) had musical careers as successive surintendants of the King's Music.

Garnier's engraving of Titon du Tillet's "French Parnassus", 1732

Lully himself was posthumously given a conspicuous place on Titon du Tillet's Parnasse François ("the French Mount Parnassus"). In the engraving, he stands to the left, on the lowest level, his right arm extended and holding a scroll of paper with which to beat time. (The bronze ensemble has survived and is part of the collections of the Museum of Versailles.) Titon honored Lully as:

"the prince of French musicians, ... the inventor of that beautiful and grand French music, such as our operas and the grand pieces for voices and instruments that were only imperfectly known before him. He brought it [music] to the peak of perfection and was the father of our most illustrious musicians working in that musical form. ... Lully entertained the king infinitely, by his music, by the way he performed it, and by his witty remarks. The prince was also very fond of Lully and showered him with benefits in a most gracious way."

Music, style and influence

Lully's music was written during the Middle Baroque period, 1650 to 1700. Typical of Baroque music is the use of the basso continuo as the driving force behind the music. The pitch standard for French Baroque music was about 392 Hz for A above middle C, a whole tone lower than modern practice where A is usually 440 Hz.
Lully's music is known for its power, liveliness in its fast movements and its deep emotional character in its sad movements. Some of his most popular works are his passacaille (passacaglia) and chaconne which are dance movements found in many of his works such as Armide or Phaëton.

The influence of Lully's music produced a radical revolution in the style of the dances of the court itself. In the place of the slow and stately movements which had prevailed until then, he introduced lively ballets of rapid rhythm, often based on well-known dance types such as gavottes, menuets, rigaudons and sarabandes.
Through his collaboration with playwright Molière, a new music form emerged during the 1660s: the comédie-ballet which combined theater, comedy, incidental music and ballet. The popularity of these plays, with their sometimes lavish special effects, and the success and publication of Lully's operas and its diffusion beyond the borders of France, played a crucial role in synthesizing, consolidating and disseminating orchestral organization, scorings, performance practices, and repertory.

"Portrait of several musicians and artists" by François Puget(fr). Traditionally the two main figures have been identified as the composer Jean-Baptiste Lully and the librettist Philippe Quinault. (Musée du Louvre).

The instruments in Lully's music were: five voices of strings such as dessus (a higher range than soprano), haute-contre (the instrumental equivalent of the high tenor voice by that name), taille (baritenor), quinte, basse), divided as follows: one voice of violins, three voices of violas, one voice of cello, and basse de viole (viole, viola da gamba). He also utilized guitar, lute, archlute, theorbo, harpsichord, organ, oboe, bassoon, recorder, flute, brass instruments (natural trumpet) and various percussion instruments (castanets, timpani).
He is often credited with introducing new instruments into the orchestra, but this legend needs closer scrutiny. He continued to use recorders in preference to the newer transverse flute, and the "hautbois" he used in his orchestra were transitional instruments, somewhere between shawms and so-called Baroque oboes.

Lully created French-style opera as a musical genre (tragédie en musique or tragédie lyrique). Concluding that Italian-style opera was inappropriate for the French language, he and his librettist, Philippe Quinault, a respected playwright, employed the same poetics that dramatists used for verse tragedies: the 12-syllable "Alexandrine" and the 10-syllable "heroic" poetic lines of the spoken theater were used for the recitative of Lully's operas and were perceived by their contemporaries as creating a very "natural" effect. Airs, especially if they were based on dances, were by contrast set to lines of less than 8 syllables. Lully also forsook the Italian method of dividing musical numbers into separate recitatives and arias, choosing instead to combine and intermingle the two, for dramatic effect. He and Quinault also opted for quicker story development, which was more to the taste of the French public.

William Christie has summarized the distribution of instruments in Lully's operas: "The orchestra is easier to reconstitute. In Lully's case, it is made up of strings, winds and sometimes brass. The strings, or the grand chœur written for five parts is distinct from the petit chœur, which is the continuo made up of a handful of players, following the formula inherited from the continuo operas of post-Monteverdian composers, Antonio Cesti and Francesco Cavalli. The continuo is a supple formula which minimizes the role of the orchestra, thus favoring the lute, the theorbo and the harpsichord. It therefore permits variation of color of the recitatives, which sometimes seem of excessive length."[13]
Lully is credited with the invention in the 1650s of the French overture, a form used extensively in the Baroque and Classical eras, especially by Johann Sebastian Bach and Georg Friedrich Händel.

Jean-Baptiste Lully and Philippe Quinault's opera Alceste being performed in the marble courtyard at the Palace of Versailles, 1674

Lully's works

Sacred music

Lully's grand motets were written for the royal chapel, usually for vespers or for the king's daily low mass. Lully did not invent the genre, he built upon it. Grand motets often were psalm settings, but for a time during the 1660s Lully used texts written by Pierre Perrin, a neo-Latin poet. Lully's petit motets were probably composed for the nuns at the convent of the Assumption, rue Saint-Honoré.

Motets à deux chœurs pour la Chapelle du roi, published 1684
Miserere, at court, winter 1664
Plaude laetare, text by Perrin, April 7, 1668
Te Deum, at Fontainebleau, September 9, 1677
De profundis, May 1683
Dies irae, 1683
Domine salvum fac regem, grand motet
Exaudiat te Dominus, grand motet, 1687
Jubilate Deo, grand motet, 1660?
Notus in Judea Deux, grand motet
O lacrymae, grand motet, text by Perrin, at Versailles, 1664
Quare fremuerunt, grand motet, at Versailles, April 19, 1685
Petits motets: Anima Christi; Ave coeli manus, text by Perrin; Dixit Dominus; Domine salvum; Laudate pueri; O dulcissime Domine; Omnes gentes; O sapientia; Regina coeli; Salve regina

Ballets de cour

When Lully began dancing and composing for court ballets, the genre blossomed and markedly changed in character. At first, as composer of instrumental music for the King's chamber, Lully wrote overtures, dances, dance-like songs, descriptive instrumental pieces such as combats, and parody-like récits with Italian texts. He was so captivated by the French overture that he wrote four of them for the Ballet d’Alcidiane!

The development of his instrumental style can be discerned in his chaconnes. He experimented with all types of compositional devices and found new solutions that he later exploited to the full in his operas. For example, the chaconne that ends the Ballet de la Raillerie (1659) has 51 couplets plus an extra free part; in Le Bourgeois gentilhomme (1670) he added a vocal line to the chaconne for the Scaramouches.

The first menuets appear in the Ballet de la Raillerie (1659) and the Ballet de l’Impatience (1661). In Lully's ballets one can also see the emergence of concert music, for example, pieces for voice and instruments that could be excerpted and performed alone and that prefigure his operatic airs: "Bois, ruisseau, aimable verdure" from the Ballet des saisons (1661), the lament "Rochers, vous êtes sourds" and Orpheus's sarabande "Dieu des Enfers", from the Ballet de la naissance de Vénus (1665).

Ballet du Temps, text by Benserade, at Louvre, November 30, 1654
Ballet des plaisirs, text by Benserade, at Louvre, February 4, 1655
Le Grand Ballet des Bienvenus, text by Benserade, at Compiègne, May 30, 1655
Le Ballet de la Revente des habits, text by Benserade, at court, January 6, 1655 (or 1661?)
Ballet of Psyché ou de la puissance de l’Amour, text by Benserade, at Louvre, January 16, 1656
La Galanterie du temps, mascarade, anonymous text, February 14, 1656
L’Amour malade, text by Buti, at Louvre, January 17, 1657
Ballet royal d’Alcidiane, Benserade, at court, February 14, 1658
Ballet de la Raillerie, text by Benserade, at court, February 19, 1659
six ballet entrées serving as intermèdes to Cavalli's Xerse, at Louvre, November 22, 1660
Ballet mascarade donné au roi à Toulouse, April 1660
Ballet royal de l’impatience, text by Buti, at Louvre, February 19, 1661
Ballet des Saisons, text by Benserade, at Fontainebleau, July 23, 1661
ballet danced between the acts of Hercule amoureux, text by Buti, at Tuileries, February 7, 1662
Ballet des Arts, text by Benserade, at Palais-Royal, January 8, 1663
Les Noces du village, mascarade ridicule, text by Benserade, at Vincennes, October 3, 1663
Les Amours déguisés, text by Périgny, at Palais-Royal, February 13, 1664
incidental music between the acts of Oedipe, play by Pierre Corneille, Fontainebleau, August 3, 1664
Mascarade du Capitaine ou l’Impromptu de Versailles, anonymous text, at Palais-Royal, 1664 or February1665
Ballet royal de la Naissance de Vénus, text by Benserade, at Palais-Royal, January 26, 1665
Ballet des Gardes ou des Délices de la campagne, anonymous text, 1665
Le Triomphe de Bacchus, mascarade, anonymous text, at court, January 9, 1666
Ballet des Muses, Benserade, at St-Germain-en-Laye, 1666
Le Carneval, mascarade, text by Benserade, at Louvre, January 18, 1668
Ballet royal de Flore, text by Benserade, at Tuileries, February 13, 1669
Le Triomphe de l’Amour, text by Benserade and Quinault, at St-Germain-en-Laye, December 2, 1681
Le Temple de la Paix, text by Quinault, at Fontainebleau, October 20, 1685

Music for the theater (intermèdes)

The intermède was a new genre in 1661, when Molière described them as the "ornaments that [he and Lully] had intermingled with the comedy", Les Fâcheux. They must not, he insisted, "break the thread of the play", and they were careful to "stitch them to the plot as best they could, and make the ballet and the play a single unit." With Le Mariage forcé and La Princesse d’Élide (1664), intermèdes by Lully began to appear regularly in Molière's plays: for those performances there were six intermèdes, two at the beginning and two at the end, and one between each of the three acts. Lully's intermèdes reached their apogee in 1670-1671, with the elaborate incidental music he composed for Le Bourgeois gentilhomme and Psyché. After his break with Molière, Lully turned to opera; but he collaborated with Jean Racine for a fete at Sceaux in 1685, and with Campistron for an entertainment at Anet in 1686.

Most of Molière's plays were first performed for the royal court.

Les Fâcheux, play by Molière, at Vaux-le-Vicomte, August 17, 1661
Le Mariage forcé, ballet, play by Molière, at Louvre, January 29, 1664
Les Plaisirs de l’Ile enchantée, play by Molière, at Versailles, May 7-12, 1664
L’Amour médecin, comedy, play by Molière, at Versailles, September 14, 1667
La Pastorale comique, play by Molière, at St-Germain-en-Laye, January 5, 1667
Le Sicilien, play by Molière, at St-Germain-en-Laye, February 14, 1667
Le Grand Divertissement royal de Versailles (Georges Dandin), play by Molière, at Versailles, August 18, 1668
La Grotte de Versailles, eclogue in music, play by Quinault, April (?) 1668
Le Divertissement de Chambord (Monsieur de Pourceaugnac), play by Molière, at Chambord, October 6, 1669
Le Divertissement royal (Les Amants magifiques), play by Molière, at St-Germain-en-Laye, February 7, 1670
Le Bourgeois gentilhomme, comedy ballet, play by Molière, at Chambord, October 14, 1670
Psyché, tragi-comedy, Molière, play by Pierre Corneille and Quinault, at the Tuileries, January 17, 1671
Les Fêtes de l’Amour et de Bacchus, pastoral, text by Quinault, Molière and Périgny, at the tennis court (jeu de paume) of Bel-Air, November 15 (?), 1672
Idylle sur la Paix, text by Racine, at Sceaux, July 16, 1685
Acis et Galatée, pastoral, text by Campistron, chateau of Anet, September 6, 1686

Operas (tragedies in music)

Lully's operas were described as "tragedies in music" (tragédies en musique). The point of departure was a verse libretto, in most cases by the verse dramatist Philippe Quinault. For the dance pieces, Lully would hammer out rough chords and a melody on the keyboard, and Quinault would invent words. For the recitative, Lully imitated the speech melodies and dramatic emphasis used by the best actors in the spoken theater. His attentiveness to transferring theatrical recitation to sung music shaped French opera and song for a century.

Unlike Italian opera of the day, which was rapidly moving toward opera seria with its alternating recitative and da capo airs, in Lully's operas the focus was on drama, expressed by a variety of vocal forms: monologs, airs for two or three voices, rondeaux and French-style da capo airs where the chorus alternates with singers, sung dances, and vaudeville songs for a few secondary characters. In like manner the chorus performed in several combinations: the entire chorus, the chorus singing as duos, trios or quartets, the dramatic chorus, the dancing chorus.

The intrigue of the plot culminated in a vast tableau, for example, the sleep scene in Atys, the village wedding in Roland, or the funeral in Alceste. Soloists, chorus and dancers participated in this display, producing astonishing effects thanks to machinery. In contrast to Italian opera, the various instrumental genres were present to enrich the overall effect: French overture, dance airs, rondeaux, marches, "simphonies" that painted pictures, preludes, ritournelles. Collected into instrumental suites or transformed into trios, these pieces had enormous influence and affected instrumental music across Europe.
The earliest operas were performed in an indoor tennis court at Bel-Air that Lully had converted into a theater. The first performance of later operas either took place at court, or in the theater at the Palais-Royal, which had been made available to Lully's Academy. Once premiered at court, operas were performed for the public at the Palais-Royal.

Cadmus et Hermione, tragedy by Quinault, at tennis court (jeu de paume) of Bel-Air, April 27 (?), 1673
Alceste ou le Triomphe d’Alcide, tragedy by Quinault, at tennis court (jeu de paume) of Bel-Air, January 19, 1675
Thésée, tragedy by Quinault, at St-Germain-en-Laye, January 11, 1675
Atys, tragedy by Quinault, at St-Germain-en-Laye, January 10, 1676
Isis, tragedy by Quinault ornamented by ballet entrées, at St-Germain-en-Laye, January 5, 1677
Psyché, tragedy by Quinault, Thomas Corneille and Fontanelle, at Palais-Royal, April 19, 1678
Bellérophon, tragedy by Thomas Corneille, Fontenelle and Boileau, at Palais-Royal, January 31, 1679
Proserpine, tragedy by Quinault ornamented with ballet entrées, at St-Germain-en-Laye, February 3, 1680
Persée, tragedy by Quinault, at Palais-Royal, April 18, 1682
Phaëton, tragedy by Quinault, at Versailles, January 6, 1683
Amadis, tragedy by Quinault, at Palais-Royal, January 18, 1684
Roland, tragedy by Quinault, at Versailles (Grande Écurei), Janauary 8, 1685
Armide, tragedy by Quinault, 1686
Achille et Polyxène, tragedy by Campistron, completed by Colasse, at Palais-Royal, November 7 (or 23), 1687

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


Born Giovanni Battista Lulli, a miller's son from Florence, Lully grew up with no significant connections with music. At the age of 14 he was hired by Roger de Loraine (Chevalier de Guise) to go to Paris and help his niece, Mile de Montpensier, practise Italian. In her employment at the Tuileries Court for six years, Lully gained access to balls and court entertainments, building up a knowledge of the dances and themes of the time that became the models for his early works. He also studied various musical instruments, developed his dancing, and was coached in composition.

Mile de Montpensier was exiled when Lully was 20, but the young composer retained his circle of contacts in Paris, to the extent that early in 1 653 he was dancing with the 14-year-old King Louis XIV m a ballet. They were clearly dancing in step; by March Lully was appointed Com-positeur de la Musique Instmmentale dn Roi, responsible for music in court ballets. He became known for his dancing, compositions, conducting, and comic abilities.

In 1661 he started describing himself as "Jean-Baptiste de Lully, esquire, son of Laurent de Lully, Florentine gentleman." Once granted naturalization, he married Madeleine Lambert, daughter of the King's master of chamber music. The marriage contract was signed by Louis XIV.

From 1664 Lully collaborated with the great comic dramatist Moliere. Together they created a series of comedy-ballets, including Le bourgeois gentilhomme, in which Lully turned to good account his years of observing dance and theatre at the court. Lully and Moliere parted company after Le bourgeois gentilhomme, and in 1673 Lully wrote the first of his tragedies lyriques. These featured continuous music, arias, recitative, and choruses, and dominated French opera until the mid-eighteenth century. The librettist for this first venture, Cadmus et Hermione, was Philippe Quinault, who became Lully's regular collaborator and author of the text of their most famous work, Armide. Particularly-significant m the latter opera is its attention to development of character and the attempt to form a psychological portrait of the mam character, Armide. Other collaborations between Quinault and Lully included Alcestc (1674) and Atys (1676).

Lully had already obtained, through royal decree, a monopoly on music performance in Paris; after Moliere's death the King granted him the playwright's old theatre, the Palais Royal, free of charges. He was also granted a number of patents giving him yet more control over French stage performances - any non-Lully production had to limit its musicians to a maximum of just eight players, including the singers. Lully's position of power was the cause of much ill-will against him, but this did not prevent his promotion to the noble rank of Secretaire du Roi.

By the time he died, Lully owned five big houses, his humble beginnings long forgotten. Ironically for so exalted a figure, he suffered a somewhat ignominious end.

The celebration of love and courtly behaviour in Lully's works ensured that he pleased the right people; but he was also responsible for some substantial musical achievements. Lully absorbed elements of both Italian and French styles, and through his annual productions with Quinault became the leading French theatrical composer of the seventeenth century.

Jean Baptiste Lully 1682 Persée H Niquet Le Concert Spirituel
Persée (Perseus) is a tragédie lyrique with music by Jean Baptiste Lully and a libretto by Philippe Quinault, first performed on 18 April 1682 by the Opéra at the Théâtre du Palais-Royal in Paris.
Jean Baptiste Lully - Miserere (1/2)
Soloists, Choeur et Orchestre de la Chapelle Royale
Direction Philippe Herreweghe

Donna Brown, soprano
Guillaumette Laurens, mezzo-soprano
Howard Cook, tenor
Herve Lamy, tenor
Peter Kooy, bass

Jean Baptiste Lully - L' Orchestre du Roi Soleil
Symphonies, Ouvertures & Airs à jouer. "Le Bourgeois Gentilhomme". "Le Divertissement Royal". "Alceste". Chaconne de "L'Amour Médecin".
Le Concert des Nations. Jordi Savall.
  Cadmus et Hermione is a tragédie en musique in a prologue and five acts by Lully Jean-Baptiste . The French-language libretto is by Philippe Quinault, after Ovid’s Metamorphoses. It was first performed on April 27, 1673, by the Paris Opera at the Jeu de paume de Béquet.

The prologue, in praise of King Louis XIV, represents him as Apollo slaying the Python of Delphi. The opera itself concerns the love story of Cadmus, legendary founder and king of Thebes, Greece, and Hermione (Harmonia), daughter of Venus and Mars. Other characters include Pallas Athene, Cupid, Juno, and Jupiter.

With Cadmus et Hermione, Lully invented the form of the tragédie en musique (also known as tragédie lyrique). From contemporary Venetian opera, Lully incorporated elements of comedy among the servants, elements which he would later avoid, as would subsequent reformers in Italian opera.

A contemporary transcription of the overture by Jean-Henri d’Anglebert remains a possible part of the harpsichord repertoire.

In early 2008, the French ensemble Le Poème Harmonique staged a performance of the opera in Paris and Rouen, among other places.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Lully - Cadmus et Hermione
Tragédie en musique - LWV 49

Poème Harmonique
Vincent Dumestre, Conductor

Jean-Baptiste Lully - Ballet des Arts (complete)
Uploaded on Aug 16, 2011
Ouverture, 00:00
L'Agriculture - Dialogue de la paix et de la félicité, 03:27
L'Agriculture - 1er air, quatre bergers et quatre bergères, 09:16
L'Agriculture - 2ème air pour les mêmes, 10:48
L'Agriculture - 3ème air pour le Roy, 11:48
L'Agriculture - 4ème air, bourrée de madame, 13:08
L'Agricolture - 5ème air, bourrée pour les mêmes, 13:34
La Navigation - Récit de Thétis, 14:44
La Navigation - 1er air, un corsaire et quatre pirates, 19:09
La Navigation - 2ème air pour les pirates, 20:18
L'Orfèvrerie - Récit de Junon, 21:18
L'Orfèvrerie - 1er air, les courtisans chargés d'orfèverie, 25:12
L'Orfèvrerie - 2ème air pour les mêmes, 26:55
La Peinture - Dialogue d'Apelle et de Zeuxis, 28:32
La Peinture - 1er air, les vallets des peintres, 32:43
La Peinture - 2ème air pour quatre peintres et deux valets, 34:23
La Peinture - 3ème air pour les peintres et quatre dames ridicules, 35:24
La Chasse - Récit de Diane, 37:02
La Chasse - 1er air, Céphale et les chasseur, 42:11
La Chasse - Air pour les chasseurs, 43:49
La Chirurgie - Récit d'Esculape, 45:21
La Chirurgie - 1er air, un chirurgien, quatre docteurs et huit estropiès, 50:49
La Chirurgie - 2ème air pour les docteurs et chirurgiens, 52:21
La Chirurgie - 3ème air pour les estropiés, 53:34
La Guerre - Dialogue de Mars et de Bellone, 55:59
La Guerre - 1er air, concert des amazones, 59:48
La Guerre - 2ème air, Pallas et quatre amazones, 01:01:54
La Guerre - 3ème et dernier air, les vertus, 01:03:09

La Simphonie du Marais, Hugo Reyne.

Jean Baptiste Lully (1632-1687) - Marche pour la cérémonie des Turcs
Jean-Baptiste Lully (1632 — 1687). "Bellerophon"
J. B. Lully - Král Slunce - HD
Hudebním obsahem je instrumentální suita z Lullyho baletních komedií s názvem Le Divertissement Royal, a dvě nejvýznamnější kantáty ze slavných Grand motets -- Exaudiat Te Dominus a zejména Te Deum. Obsazení orchestru koresponduje s originálním uspořádáním Lullyho historického ansámblu „24 Violons Du Roy" v němž hrají zásadní roli zejména početné nástroje bassa kontinua.

Specifická je také vokální sazba, která je postavena na mužském diskantu „Haute Contre", jež svým typem představuje přechod mezi naturálním tenorem a kontratenorem. Pro tento projekt se podařilo navázat spolupráci s významným sólistou francouzského ansámblu Le Poeme Harmonique Jean-Francois Lombardem.

Soprán 1: Michaela Šrůmová
Soprán 2: Markéta Cukrová
Haute Contre: Jean Francois Lombard
Tenor: Jaroslav Březina
Baryton: Tomáš Král
Koncertní mistr: Peter Zajíček
Sbormistr: Tereza Válková
Choreografie: Hana Litterová
Dirigent: Roman Válek

Baletní skupina Hany Litterové
Czech Ensemble Baroque Orchestra & Choir

Jean Baptiste Lully - Ouverture
Le Concert Des Nations, Jordi Savall
Jean-Baptiste Lully - Dies irae (complete)
Uploaded on Aug 12, 2011
Dies irae dies illa, 00:00
Mors stupebit et natura, 01:37
Liber scriptus proferetur, 01:59
Quid sum miser tunc dicturus, 02:31
Rex tremendae majestatis, 02:55
Recordare Jesu pie, 03:31
Quaerens me sedisti lassus, 04:01
Juste judex ultionis, 04:34
Ingemisco tamquam reus, 05:00
Preces meae non sunt dignae, 06:20
Inter oves locum praesta, 06:53
Confutatis maledictis, 07:28
Oro supplex et acclinis, 08:54
Lacrimosa dies illa, 09:31
Judicandus homo reus, 10:23
Pie Jesu Domine, 11:14

Le Concert Spirituel, Hervé Niquet.

Jean-Baptiste Lully - Atys
Tragédie en musique

-Atys: Bernard Richter
Cybèle: Stéphanie D'Oustrac
Sangaride: Emmanuelle de Negri
Célénus: Nicolas Rivenq
Le Temps: Bernard Deletré
Le Dieu du Fleuve
Sangar: Bernard DeletréPlease

Les Arts Florissants
William Christie, Conductor

Lully - Le Bourgeois gentilhomme
Published on Mar 25, 2013
Molière (1622-1673) et Jean-Baptiste Lully (1632-1687)
Le Bourgeois Gentilhomme, comédie-ballet.

Avec : Olivier Martin Salvan, Monsieur Jourdain ;
Nicolas Vial, Madame Jourdain ;
Louise Moaty, Lucile ;
Benjamin Lazar, Cléonte / le maître de philosophie ;
Anne Guersande Ledoux, Dorimène ;
Lorenzo Charoy, Dorante/ le maître d'armes ;
Alexandra Rübner, Nicole / le maître de musique ;
Jean-Denis Monory, Covielle / le maître tailleur ;
Julien Lubek, Le maître à danser.

Chanteurs :
Arnaud Marzorati, le Mufti / le vieux bourgeois babillard / l'élève ;
Claire Lefilliâtre, la musicienne / la femme du bel-air / l'Italienne ;
François-Nicolas Geslot, le premier musicien / la vieille bourgeoise babillarde / un Espagnol / un Poitevin ;
Serge Goubioud, un Gascon / un Poitevin / un chanteur ;
Jan van Elsacker, un Gascon / un chanteur ;
Emmanuel Vistorky, un Espagnol / l'homme du bel-air / un chanteur ;
Arnaud Richard, l'Italien / le Suisse.

Le Poème Harmonique
(Premier violon : Mira Glodeanu)

Direction musicale et guitare baroque : Vincent Dumestre
Mise en scène : Benjamin Lazar ; Chorégraphie : Cécile Roussat

Jean Baptiste Lully - 1675 - Thésée W - Christie Les Arts Florissants
Lully: Les journées au château de Versailles | Hervé Niquet & Concert Spirituel
Jean-Baptiste Lully: Ballet de Xerxès (LWV 12) - Part II / Aradia Baroque Ensemble
L XERSE, Ballet (LWV 12)
Libretto: Niccolò Minato
Paris, 1660

VII. Deuxième Air pour les Matelots jouans des trompettes marines - 0:05
VIII. Troisième Air pour les Esclaves et Singes dansans - 2:07
IX. Troisième Air pour les Docteurs, Frivelins, et Polichinelles - 2:32
X. Air pour les Esclaves dansans (version minuet and version passepied) - 4:13
XI. Air pour les Matassins - 5:43
XII. Gigue pour Bacchus - 8:08
XIII. Gavotte en rondeau - 9:04

* The famous Italian composer (1602-1676), was commissioned to write an opera, Ercole amante, to celebrate the marriage of Louis XIV to Marie-Thérèse. In the event, Cavalli arrived in Paris with the work unfinished, and so at the last minute, a simplified version of his opera Xersès was substituted. Lully was asked to supply ballet interludes, and because of the short notice, he used material previous productions with no connection to Xerxès. Compared to the under-rehearsed opera, the six intermèdes had a light comedic mood. There are Basques and Spanish peasants (in honour of Marie-Thérèse), clowns, Scaramouche, and ship-owner with with his slaves, who carry monkeys dressed as clowns accompanied by sailors playing on trompettes marines.

Kevin Mallon, Margot Jewell, Stuart Rogers, Catherine Freitag-Hewson (dessus de violon)
Philip Dirks, Christopher Reibling (haute-contre de violon)
Anthony Rapoport, Lawrence Beckwith (taille de violon)
Beverlee Rapp, May Ing Ruehle (quinte de violon)
Allen Whear (violoncello)
J. Tracy Mortimore (violone)
Washington MacClain, Julie Brye (baroque oboe)
Jenny Mallon (traversiere)
Avery MacLean (recorder)
Michael MacCraw (bassoon)
Norman Engel (natural trumpet)
Laura Thomas (timpani)
Stephanie Martin (harpsichord)
Terry MacKenna (theorbo & baroque guitar)
Debbie Waugh (percussion)
Lawrence Beckwith (trompette marine, kazoos, onion flutes, comb & paper)

Aradia Baroque Ensemble / Kevin Mallon (conductor)

J.B: Lully : Pièces de Symphonies
Jean-Baptiste Lully (1632-87) : Pièces de Symphonies (da Amadis, Atys, Thésée, Persée, Acis et Galatée, Phaéton, Bellérophon).
Amadis: Marche pour le combat -I et II airs pour le Combattants; Atys : Le Sommeil-Gavotte et Air pour la suite de Flore ; Amadis: Chaconne ; Thésée : Prélude- Ouverture et trio pour l'Ile Enchantée; Persée: Air pour les jeunes gentes; Acis et Galatée: Entrée de Polyphème ; Phaéton : Air pour le printemps; Bellérophon: Air à danser; Phaéton : Air-Bourée-Gavotte en rondeau pour Triton-Air à danser : Persée; Trio des hautbois; Thésée: Marche des Sacrificateurs et des Combattants
(registrazione da LP Oiseau Lyre SOL 301)
English Chamber Orchestra, dirttore (al cembalo) : Raymond Leppard
Jean Baptiste Lully "Proserpine" Acte III
"Proserpine", Tragédie Lyrique, 1680.
Libretto, Philippe Quinault.

Acte III (1º Parte):

Scené I:"Proserpine,réponde-nous"
Scené II:"N´aurois-je point innocemment"
Scené III:"Ceres revient,ah! quelle peine"
Scené IV:Prelude.
"Je vais revoir ma fille"
J´ay rendu les Humains heureux".

Le Concert Spirituel.
Hervé Niquet.

Proserpine: Salomé Haller, dessus.
Cérès: Stéphanie d´Oustrac, bas-dessus.
Aréthuse: Blandine Staskiewicz, bas-dessus.
Alpheeé: Cyril Auvity, haute-contre.

Synopsis Act III:

Along the Sicilian countryside, laid waste by the eruption of Mt.Etna, Alpheus and Arethusa look in vain for Proserpina, still unaware of the unfortunate maiden´s fate. Arethusa, suspecting Pluto might have abducted the young girl entrusted to her by Ceres, decides to descended to the underworld to find out. At that very moment, Ceres arrives on the scene. She is startled not to see her daugther; upon receiving no responde from the people of Sicily or, what is still more unserttlin, from Jupiter himself despite her invocations, she is overcome by a sudden fit of desperation and rage. In her folly, she destroys the countryside an the farmlands, fruits of her kindness.

Lully: Acis & Galatee (Minkowski) 1/2
Jean Baptiste Lully - Idylle sur la paix
Scene from the movie Le Roi Danse (The King is Dancing). This movie depicts the life of Jean-Baptiste Lully and his relationship with King Louis XIV of France
Lully: Te Deum
Le Concert Spirituel, Hervé Niquet
Lully: "Alceste"
Alceste, ou Le triomphe d’Alcide is a tragédie en musique in a prologue and five acts by Lully Jean-Baptiste . The French-language libretto is by Philippe Quinault, after Euripides’ Alcestis. It was first performed on 19 January 1674 at the Théâtre du Palais-Royal by the Paris Opera.

The opera was presented in celebration of King Louis XIV’s victory against Franche-Comté, and the prologue features nymphs longing for his return from battle. The opera itself concerns Alceste, princess of Iolcos and queen of Thessaly, who in the first act is abducted by Licomède (Lycomedes), king of Scyros, with the aid of his sister Thetis, a sea nymph; Aeolus, the god of the winds; and other supernatural forces. In the battle to rescue her, Alcide (Hercules) is triumphant, but Alceste’s husband, Admète (Admetus), suffers a mortal wound. Apollo agrees to let Admète live if someone will take his place in death. Alceste volunteers herself but is rescued by Alcide, who loves her. The opera ends with a celebration of Alceste’s return from the underworld and of Alcide’s noble gallantry in returning her to her husband and relinquishing any claims to her.
Alceste is Lully’s second tragédie en musique, after Cadmus et Hermione.

Hercules Fighting Death to Save Alcestis by Frederic Lord Leighton
Lully: LWV 50. Alceste - Prologue (1) - Malgoire
Alceste, ou le Triomphe d'Alcide, LWV 50

Opera in five acts and a prologue

Libretto: Philippe Quinault (1635-1688)

Music: Jean-Baptiste Lully (1632-1687)

First performance: 2 January 1674 in Paris (Théâtre du Palais-Royal)


00:08 - Ouverture
02:59 - Le héros que j'attends (Nymphe de la Seine)
04:54 - Prélude de trompette
05:18 - Quel bruit de guerre m'épouvante (Nymphe de la Seine)
05:31 - Air pour la Gloire
06:59 - Hélas, superbe Gloire (Nymphe de la Seine)
08:09 - Pourquoi tant murmurer (La Gloire)

Nymphe de la Seine: Stéphanie d'Oustrac, mezzo-soprano
La Gloire: Judith Gauthier, soprano

Chœur de Chambre de Namur,
La Grande Écurie et la Chambre du Roy,
conducted by Jean-Claude Malgoire

Concert: 22 March 2006 in Paris (Théâtre des Champs-Élysées)

Lully - Suite from Alceste - Jordi Savall

Isis is an opera by Lully Jean-Baptiste. It was the fifth of Jean-Baptiste Lully's tragédies lyriques written with librettist Philippe Quinault, and like most of Lully's operas, it is a tragédie lyrique. It premièred January 5, 1677 at the court of Saint-Germain-en-Laye and was first published in 1719.

The plot is loosely adapted from one of the episodes in Ovid's Metamorphoses. In many of its essentials, the plot of Isis resembles that of Lully's previous opera, Atys. The story of the opera centers around the god Jupiter's love for the nymph Io and the jealousy of Juno.

Io, daughter of the river Inachus, is promised in marriage to Hierax, just as the nymph Sangaride, daughter of the river Sangar, was promised to Celoenus. Like Sangaride, Io is pursued by another love, and yields to this love in spite of her feelings of guilt. Like Sangaride, Io has a goddess as a rival and is vulnerable to her jealousy.
Juno has Io imprisoned and tortured, leading Io to cry out to Jupiter for help. He swears faithfulness to Juno if she will spare Io, and Juno turns Io into a goddess: Isis, the Egyptian goddess.

Lully's contemporaries interpreted this story as representing the volatile situation between two of the King's mistresses. The subsequent scandale of the premiere ended the collaboration between Lully and Quinault for a time, and led to the dismissal of a number of members of Lully's artistic circle.
J.B. Lully: Isis - Ouverture and first aria
Lully - Isis (Le Roi Danse)
Lully: "Armide"
Armide is an opera by Lully Jean-Baptiste. The libretto was written by Philippe Quinault, based on Torquato Tasso's La Gerusalemme liberata (Jerusalem Delivered).
Critics in the 18th century regarded Armide as Lully's masterpiece. Unlike most of his operas, Armide concentrates on the sustained psychological development of a character — not Renaud, who spends most of the opera under Armide's spell, but Armide, who repeatedly tries without success to choose vengeance over love.
The work is in the form of a tragédie en musique, a genre invented by Lully and Quinault.

Rinaldo and Armida by Nicolas Poussin
Performance history
Lully's Armide was first performed on 15 February 1686 by the Paris Opera at the Théâtre du Palais-Royal, with scenery by Bérain, in the presence of the Grand Dauphin. To Lully's great distress, however, the king would not attend the première or any of the following performances. The opera was revived by the Paris Opera in 1703, 1713–14, 1724, 1746–47, 1761, and 1764.

During the First Crusade, Armide ensnares her enemy the Christian knight Renaud with her magic spells. At the moment she raises her dagger to kill him, she finds herself falling in love with him. She casts a spell to make him love her in return. Upon returning to her castle, she cannot bear that Renaud's love is only the work of enchantment. She calls on the Goddess of Hate to restore her hatred for Renaud, but fails to escape from her feelings of love for him. The Goddess condemns Armide to eternal love. Before Armide can return to Renaud, two of his fellow soldiers reach Renaud and break Armide's spell. Renaud manages to escape from Armide, who is left enraged, despairing, and hopeless.

History and analysis

Roughly eight decades following Monteverdi's L'Orfeo, Jean-Baptiste Lully produced Armide with his longtime collaborator, playwright Jean-Philippe Quinault. Together they had developed the tragédie en musique/tragédie lyrique, which served as a new form of opera that combined elements of classical French drama with ballet, the French song tradition, and a new form of recitative. Armide was one of Lully’s last operas and is therefore extremely developed in style.
The opera's instrumental overture is divided into two parts, all with the same highly professional sound, as if to accompany the entrance of a highly revered authority. It is in fact, according to the Norton Anthology of Western Music, a “majesty suitable to the king of France, whose entrance into the theater the overture usually accompanied when he was in attendance” (NAWM p. 520). At points it is playful and bouncy, while always remaining ceremonious. The first section of the overture is in duple meter and comparatively sounds slower than the second section, when the meter division changes into triple. These two different styles switch off until the conclusion of the piece (in duple meter).
The most famous moment in the opera is Act II, scene 5, a monologue by the enchantress Armide, considered "one of the most impressive recitatives in all of Lully's operas". Armide, accompanied by only continuo, alternates between glorying in her own power and succumbing to piercing angst. Clutching a dagger, she expresses her unyielding desire to kill the knight Renaud, who has foiled her plan to keep the knights of the Crusades in captivity. Though not elaborate in terms of orchestration, the techniques of dramatic interpretation of rhythm, impressive use of stressing on downbeats, and exaggerated use of rests beautifully complicate this piece.
Renaud had taken on the heroic and courageous duty of freeing these knights, much to the vexation of Armide, who now plans to murder him as quickly and swiftly as she can, while he is fast asleep under her magical spell. A stark sense of hesitation washes over her, and her voice grows softer and more full of doubt as she finds herself unexpectedly falling in love with her sworn enemy. Her passion for revenge, to which she was originally so committed, gives way to her new-found love: "Let us get on with it… I tremble! Let us avenge… I sigh! / My rage is extinguished when I approach him / He seems to be made for love." The exaggerated use of rests is exemplified perfectly here, in measures 38-42, amidst her rage and vengefulness. Armide is struck by her contradictory and confusing feelings of love, and the use of ellipses conveys this dramatic hesitation and inner turmoil.
She reaches a decision far more humane than murdering Renaud, by casting a further spell to make him fall in love with her. The bass amplifies and is much more emphatic in this part, while the supporting dynamic harmony permits a more melodic style. The idea is elaborated with accompanying music that evokes love and idealism, similar to the structure of a minuet. Repetition is also prevalent with the orchestra first introducing the entire melody, and Armide echoing its sentiment. A variation begins with Armide's changing emotions, resulting in a dance-like feel that contains orchestral preludes and a pair of recitative styles.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


Lully's Armide at the Palais-Royal Opera House in 1761, watercolor by Gabriel de Saint-Aubin
LULLY - ARMIDE -  sottotitoli in italiano
Lully - Armide - "Overture & Suite de dances"
"Overture & Suite de dances" from Armide
by Jean Baptist Lully
Sarabande I
Sarabande II
Air I - Air II
Orchestra of the Vienna State Opera
Edmond Appia, conductor
ca. 1957-60
Classical Music Timeline

Classical Music History

Instruments Through the Ages

Composers and Masterworks