Monday, 23 July 2012

Périgord - Baroque Music Festival - 2012

Music has no boundaries,
but it can express itself differently across borders.

Welcome to our annual Baroque Music Festival,
taking place every July in the well renowned region of Aquitaine, the Périgord.

This year's ITINERAIRE BAROQUE, a Festival, born with the third millennium, 
will be an
Homage to Gustav Leonhardt

As we began to write these few lines we heard of the death of Gustav Leonhardt,
whom we had asked this year to open the festival with his long-standing friends
the Kuijken Brothers.       .

With the elegance we expected from him he said that he was honoured by the invitation.
We were happy to have him back for the second time to Itineraire Baroque
as we remembered that marvelous concert in 2005
which left us in a state of amazement.

We have therefore decided that Itineraire Baroque will honor him in 2012

 Gustav Leonhardt - 30 May 1928 - 16 January 2012

 Gustav Leonhardt was a highly renowned Dutch keyboard player, conductor, musicologist, teacher and editor.
Leonhardt was a leading figure in the movement to perform music on period instruments.
He played professionally the harpsichord, pipe organ, claviorganum
(a combination of a harpsichord and an organ), clavichord and fortepiano.

A man of great talent, dedication, passion and strong conviction,
Gustav Leonhardt brought an essential impetus to the development of Baroque music which,
without him, would not have won the popularity which it has today.
Unrivalled master of this baroque Renaissance it was he who,
between 1980 and 1990, showed how to play Bach's music on period instruments.
He was also the first to have recorded with Nicholas Harnoncourt all Bach's cantatas,
still a work of reference today.
A pains-taking master far removed from any personality cult
he passed his skill on to several generations of followers.

 Gustav Leonhardt In memoriam - J.S.Bach Harpsichord Concertos

You will find this year during the different concerts which take you from
Brantôme to Saint-Astier via the rural by-roads of the Mareuillais,
the Verteillacois and Riberacois a repertoire which Gustav Leonhardt loved,
musicians with whom he enjoyed to play and, even more, a discussion
of the history of the harpsichord since its rediscovery by Wanda Landowska.

President of honor - Artistic director
Robert-Nicolas HUET
President and Director of the Organizing Committee



OUVERTURE  -  Thursday 26 July 2012

Abbey in Brantôme - Périgord, South West France

see also about the history of Brantôme and the Abbey

20h30 > Eglise abbatiale de Brantôme

BUXTEHUDE : Sonate en la mineur Op. I n°3
TELEMANN : Sonate en sol mineur
BACH : Sonate en sol Majeur d’après BWV 1027
MARAIS : Chaconne et Tombeau de M. Méliton
COUPERIN: 10ème concert (extrait des “Goûts réunis” 1724)
RAMEAU : 1er concert, extrait de “pièces de clavecin en concert”

Painting by Johannes Voorhout, 1674

This programme incorporates typical works, written for violin,
viola da gamba and harpsichord between around 1685 to 1740.
We discover a style mostly Italian with Buxtehude, Telemann and Bach
contrasted with a French style with Marais and Rameau and the mixed style,
proposed by Couperin in the “Goûts Réunis”.

Sigiswald KUIJKEN, violon
Wieland KUIJKEN, viole de gambe
Benjamin ALARD, clavecin

all about Sigiswald and Wieland Kuijken

Dieterich Buxtehude
c. 1637 to 1639 - 9 May 1707
German-Danish organist and composer of the Baroque period

The only surviving portrait of Buxtehude, 
from A musical party by Johannes Voorhout (1674).

more    here


 Vendredi 27 juillet 2012

Village et Abbatiale de Cercles

see 11h à 23h.....

12h > Eglise de Cercles


BACH : Sonate IV en do mineur, BWV 1017
Sonate V en fa mineur, BWV 1018
Sonate VI en sol Majeur, BWV 1019

Catherine MANSON, violon
Ton KOOPMAN, clavecin

These sonatas are among the earliest masterworks in the genre
completed by Bach between 1718 and 1722.
For reasons which we do not know, he returned to revise
the 5th and 6th sonatas twice ten years later, he finally added two more movements
to the last sonata to form a structure which is quite unique.



'The harpsichord's rebirth'  
from Wanda Landowska to Gustav Leonhardt

Rucker's Harpsichord, 1643

A roundtable discussion with...

  Benjamin Alard
Born in 1985, Benjamin Alard began his piano studies at the age of seven.
He later studied the organ and more.... here

and Ton Koopman


 Wanda Landowska 1879 - 1959

Wanda Landowska (5 July 1879 – 16 August 1959)
was a Polish (later a naturalized French citizen) harpsichordist whose performances,
teaching, recordings and writings played a large role in reviving the popularity of the harpsichord
in the early 20th century. She was the first person to record
Johann Sebastian Bach's "Goldberg Variations" on the harpsichord (1931).
read more     here

in 1907

see also:


 16h30 > Eglise de Cercles
Une itinérance musicale du XIIème au XVème siècle


This Programme, drawn from very well known manuscripts is based on the wealth of meetings,
trade and artistic and human interactions during the Pilgrimage to Compostella,
between the 12th and 15th centuries.

Catherine JOUSSELLIN, direction


The Way of St. James or St. James' Way
(Spanish: El Camino de Santiago, Galician: O Camiño de Santiago,
French: Chemins de Saint-Jacques-de-Compostelle,
German: Jakobsweg, Basque: Done Jakue bidea) is the pilgrimage route to the...

Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela in Galicia in northwestern Spain,
where tradition has it that the remains of the apostle Saint James are buried.



 20h30 > Eglise de Cercles



BACH Concertos brandebourgeois 2 et 4
Cantate Jauchzet Gott, BWV 51
Cantate Weichet nur, BWV 202

The works in this concert are linked:
they were designed for members of, or connected with, the court.
The Brandenburg Concertos, written for the Markgraf of Brandenburg,
the cantata BWV 51 being composed for Faustina Bordini,  the celebrated Viennese soprano,
 wife of the composer Johann Adolf Hasse, chapel master in Dresden;
finally the cantata BWV 202 is a marriage cantata
very probably composed for a well known princess.

Bettina PAHN, soprano
Ton KOOPMAN, direction et orgue

Ton Koopman and the Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra


The Brandenburg concertos by Johann Sebastian Bach (BWV 1046–1051,
original title: Six Concerts à plusieurs instruments)
are a collection of six instrumental works presented by Bach to
Christian Ludwig, Margrave of Brandenburg Schwedt, in 1721 (though probably composed earlier).
They are widely regarded as among the finest musical compositions of the Baroque era.

Christian Ludwig of Brandenburg-Schwedt, 1710 by Antoine Pesne

Bach's dedication to the Margrave was dated 24 March 1721. Most likely, Bach composed the concertos over several years while Kapellmeister at Koethen, and possibly extending back to his employment at Weimar (1708–17). The first sentence of Bach's dedication reads:
"As I had the good fortune a few years ago to be heard by Your Royal Highness, at Your Highness's commands, and as I noticed then that Your Highness took some pleasure in the little talents which Heaven has given me for Music, and as in taking Leave of Your Royal Highness, Your Highness deigned to honour me with the command to send Your Highness some pieces of my Composition: I have in accordance with Your Highness's most gracious orders taken the liberty of rendering my most humble duty to Your Royal Highness with the present Concertos, which I have adapted to several instruments; begging Your Highness most humbly not to judge their imperfection with the rigor of that discriminating and sensitive taste, which everyone knows Him to have for musical works, but rather to take into benign Consideration the profound respect and the most humble obedience which I thus attempt to show Him."

The dedication page Bach wrote for the collection indicates they are  
Concerts avec plusieurs instruments (Concertos with several instruments).
Bach used the "widest spectrum of orchestral instruments ... in daring combinations,"
as Christoph Wolff has commented.
"Every one of the six concertos set a precedent in scoring, and every one was to remain without parallel."

Heinrich Besseler has noted that the overall forces required
(leaving aside the first concerto, which was rewritten for a special occasion)
tallies exactly with the 17 players Bach had at his disposal in Köthen.

  ...King Frederick William I of Prussia   -2-
 was not a significant patron of the arts,
Christian Ludwig seems to have lacked the musicians in his Berlin ensemble to perform the concertos.
The full score was left unused in the Margrave's library until his death in 1734,
when it was sold for 24 Groschen (as of 2008, about US $ 22.00) of Silver.
The autograph manuscript of the concertos was only rediscovered in the archives of Brandenburg
by Siegfried Wilhelm Dehn in 1849; the concertos were first published in the following year.

In the modern era these works have been performed by Orchestras with the string parts each played by a number of players, under the batons of, for example, Karl Richter and Herbert von Karajan. They have also been performed as chamber music, with one instrument per part, especially by (but not limited to) groups using baroque instruments and (sometimes more, sometimes less) historically-informed techniques and practice. There is also an arrangement for four-hand piano duet by composer Max Reger.


J.S.Bach -Cantate Jauchzet Gott, BWV 51


Brandenburg Concerto No. 2
Ton Koopman and the Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra


Best wishes for a joyous soundful week to all of you,
 what ever part of our planet in which you live.

I shall be busy organizing the decoration for the churches....

...but will continue.....

-1- painting by Adolph Menzel, c. 1850
-2- painting by Antoine Pesne


  1. Karin,
    As the quote goes "Music washes away from the soul, the dust of everyday life". I do not know who said this, but certainly they must have "felt" music as you portray it here. I will have to go back again and spend more time with each item you posted in this blog. What a soulful effort!

    1. Thank you, my dear Martha! You are always in my heart and mind.

  2. Karin, This post is a feast for anyone who enjoys Baroque music. The wealth of photographs, paintings, informative texts and music clips makes me feel like I'm actually participating in the festival.
    And to know that there is a connection (so logical!) with the Way to Santiago --- like the icing on the already rich and delicious cake!
    How fitting that you, who love beauty so much and create it in your surroundings, including right here on your blog, will be decorating these wonderful churches.

  3. That was such fun to listen and scroll throught your beautiful pics at the same time.

  4. Thank you for wonderful music and pictures. i felt in love whit this golden Harpsichord whit paintings!
    wonderful way to enjoy morning whit this music!

  5. What a beautiful post and so much to see and hear ! Thankyou..Gail x

  6. Beautiful music selections Karin I've listened to two and will listen to the rest while sewing. We have a music festival taking place right now too, every July. I bet the music sounds wonderful in your church.


  7. Hello Karin

    What a wonderful post and the festival honouring Gustav Leonhardt promises to be so exciting. I love the harpsichord and thank you for posting all the links to the various performers. I always learn from your blog. Now I am returning to listen once again.

    Have a great week

    Helen xx

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