Gondolas on the Seine

Harpsichord Gems Inspired by Venice
(F. Couperin, D. Scarlatti, J.-Ph. Rameau, A. Vivaldi)


Béatrice MARTIN – harpsichord (France)


Tuesday 12. 7. 2016, talk 6.00 pm, concert 7.30 pm
Clam-Gallas Palace


The programme included a short talk by the Artistic Director of the Centre of Baroque Music in Versailles, Benoît Dratwicki, on the topic of "French Harpsichord Music during the Reign of Louis XIV".


In collaboration with the French Institute in Paris, the French Institute in Prague, with the Centre de musique baroque de Versailles and Prague City Archives.


Imagine yourself walking along the Quai des Grands-Augustins at dusk – or on any other of the elegant riverside promenades in Paris – when suddenly you notice a gondola approaching on the Seine. What is more, as it comes closer, you realize that there is a harpsichord aboard the vessel, played by a charming French lady. No wonder! French harpsichordists have always been mesmerized by the beauty of Venice; take for example the Couperin cousins or Jean-Philippe Rameau. On 12 July, one such gondola belonging to the virtuoso player Béatrice Martin dropped anchor in Prague to take us South on the wave of French Baroque sonatas inspired by Venice and Italy. The fearless gondolier and playful Harlequin accompanied us on the way. The recital in Clam-Gallas Palace was be preceded by a short talk on the historical context of the program by the artistic director of the Centre of Baroque Music in Versailles, Benoît Dratwicki.


Concert Programme

Joseph Bodin de Boismortier (1689–1755)
IIe Suite
La Sérénissime – La Gauloise – La Rustique – La Choquante


Domenico Scarlatti (1685–1757)
Sonate en sol majeur K. 144 – Cantabile
Sonate en fa majeur K. 450 – Allegro


Armand-Louis Couperin (1727–1789)
L’Italienne, Pièces de Clavecin, L’Arlequine ou La Adam


François Couperin (1668–1733)
Vingt-troisième Ordre du IVème Livre
L’Audacieuse – Les Tricoteuses – L'Arlequine – Les Gondoles de Délos – Les Satires Chèvre-pied


Antonio Vivaldi (1678–1741)
Concerto en ré majeur (L’Estro Armonico)
úprava / transcrition by J. S. Bach
(Allegro) – Larghetto – Allegro


Jean-Philippe Rameau (1683–1764)
Suite en la
Prélude – Allemande – 2ème Allemande – Courante – Gigue – 1ère Sarabande – 2ème Sarabande – Vénitienne – Gavotte – Menuet


SFEM for the second time: Gondolas on the Seine
casopisharmonie.cz, 16. 7. 2016, Lukáš Vytlačil
The soloist proved to be a real master of her instrumet, combining the full sound of the harpsichord with refined and elegant play, supported by sophisticated registration. Her paly was both precisely articulated and melodious, this being most apparent in the staccatos, the cutting sesquiateras, marked cesuras and dynamic chanes in which she often energetically sunk her fingers into the keyboard. The performed music thus made a very vivid impression. Especially the slow movements were endowed with a markedly airy and relaxed character.