Italian Arias in Versailles
J.-B. Lully, F. Couperin, M. Pignolet de Montéclair, J.-F. Rebel, A. Campra
Daniela Skorka – soprano (Israel)
LES FOLIES FRANÇOISES (France)
Patrick Cohën Akenine – violin, artistic director
Benjamin Chénier – violin
François Poly – cello
Béatrice Martin – harpsichord
André Henrich – theorbo
Monday 11. 7. 2016, 20.00
With the kind support of the French Institute in Paris, the French Institute in Prague and in collaboration with the Centre de musique baroque de Versailles and the Prague Municipal Gallery and under auspieces of Israel Embassy in Prague.
The Troja Chateau on the outskirts of Prague, built in the late 17th century in the style of a Roman villa by a Franco-Italian team of architects Jean-Baptiste Mathey and Giovanni Domenico Orsi, reflects the ways in which the French Baroque grew out of the Italian Baroque. After all, some “French” masters were even born in Italy. A good example is the Florence-born Giovanni Battista Lulli, known to the world as the French master Jean-Baptiste Lully. The program by the French ensemble Les Folies françoises and the soprano Daniela Skorka from Israel demonstrated that a number of other composers employed at the Versailles court looked up at their Italian “cradle” in awe and with thankfulness. The focus of their admiration was often Venice which begs to be portrayed.
Jean-Baptiste Lully (1632–1687)
La plainte italienne, Psyché
4ème entrée „Les Italiens“ du Ballet des Nations,
Le Bourgeois Gentilhomme
Jean-Féry Rebel (1666–1747)
Tombeau de Monsieur de Lully
Michel Pignolet de Montéclair (1667–1737)
Cantate italienne Morte di Lucretia
André Campra (1660–1744)
Per piacer al mio ben, Carnaval de Venise
Al incanto d'un bel volto, Les Fêtes Vénitiennes
La Farfalla intorno ai fiori, Les Fêtes Vénitiennes
François Couperin (1668–1733)
Sonade La Piémontaise, Les Nations
La Douceur, Neuvième Concert intitulé Ritratto del Amor
The Dancing King and Floating Gondolas. A Festival Full of Ideas Has Just Begun
idnes.cz, 13. 7. 2016, Věra Drápelová
The ensemble’s performance of music by Jean-Baptiste Lully, François Couperin, Michel Pignolet de Montéclair, and André Campra, was exquisite. The greatest surprise, however, came in the form of the beautiful voice of Daniela Skorka, a young soprano from Israel. In the opening piece by Lully, called The Italian Lament, her pleasant, round, and sonorous voice shone, full of healthy sound and brilliance. Thanks to her exquisite technique, the soprano was able to interpret the passionate changes of affect in compositions such as Montéclair’s cantata The Death of Lucretia. Her natural demeanor on the stage suggested that this lady has most likely been also endowed with an actor’s gift.
The Summer Festivities of Early Music Have Started with French Charm
casopisharmonie.cz, 14. 7. 2016, Lukáš Vytlačil
Daniela Skorka captured the great drama of the four recitatives and three arias. Equally persuasive was her rendering of the alternating roles of Lucretia and the narrator who guides the listener through the story. Her refined singing and spotelss technique proved to be ideal for this kind of music. Her choice of tempos, ormaments, her clear articulation, and communication with the rest of the ensemble all confirmed an exceptional talent and musicality. […] The Italian arias by André Campra were just as exquisite. Their incorporation in the programme is to be appreciated all the more considering the fact that they are rarely performed, despite their indisputable musical qualities. […] From the very first notes it was obvious that Les Folies françoises are a foremost ensemble formed by a group of brilliant players who however form a very compact whole. Their musical empathy is such that they only occasionally need to make eye-contact in order to play in perfect harmony.
Operatic Panorama: Venice in Prague
lidovky.cz, 20. 7. 2016, Helena Havlíková
The opening concert of this year’s (seventeenth) Summer Festivities of Early Music confirmed the high renown of this international music festival which takes place in various historical venues of Prague. [...] The manner in which Daniela Skorka was able to render the lament of Lully‘s Psyché, the extensive dramatic scene of the dishonoured Lucretia by Michel Pignolet de Montéclair, but also the joyful lovemaking scenes by André Campra, was breathtaking. Her sonorous, full soprano beautifully carried across the Great Hall of the Troja chateau. The best fitting attribute one can think of in relation to her splendid voice is “juicy”. The palyers of Les Folies françoises led by violinist Patrick Cohën Akenin were all equipped with brilliant technique and thanks to their wonderful mutual collaboration were more than equal musical partners to the soloist.