One of the most grown-up review sites around

51,000 reviews
and more.. and still writing ...

Search MusicWeb Here



International mailing

  Founder: Len Mullenger             Senior Editor: John Quinn               Contact Seen and Heard here  

Some items
to consider


colourful imaginative harmony
Renate Eggebrecht violin

Leticia Gómez-Tagle
Chopin, Liszt, Scarlatti

Guillaume LEKEU

Book 1 Book 2 Book3
Mota The Triptych: -Website

Acte Prealable returns
with New Releases

Superior performance

Shostakovich 6&7 Nelsons

Verdi Requiem Thielemann

Marianna Henriksson
An outstanding recital

Arnold Bax
Be converted

this terrific disc

John Buckley
one of my major discoveries

François-Xavier Roth
A game-changing Mahler 3


Bryden Thomson


Vaughan Williams Concertos

RVW Orchestral


REVIEW Plain text for smartphones & printers

Support us financially by purchasing this from

Sonates et Suites
Nicolas CHÉDEVILLE (1705-1782)
Sonata VI (from Il Pastor Fido) [08:12]
Anne Danican PHILIDOR (1681-1728)
Sonate pour la flute à bec [08:53]
Charles DIEUPART (after 1667-c1740)
Suite No. 1 in A [16:12]
Marin MARAIS (1656-1728)
Couplets de Folies (Les Folies d'Espagne) [10:36]
Jacques-Martin HOTTETERRE (1674-1763)
3e Suite [09:04]
Jean-Marie LECLAIR (1697-1764)
Sonata in b minor, op. 2,11 [07:16]
Michel BLAVET (1700-1768)
Sonata in b minor, op. 3,2 [09:20]
André CHÉRON (1695-1766)
Sonate III [14:14]
Dan Laurin (recorder)
Domen Marinčič (cello)
Anna Paradiso (harpsichord)
rec. March 2015, Petruskyrkan, Stocksund, Sweden DDD
BIS BIS-2185 [85:25]

The increasing interest in domestic music making, especially among amateurs, is one of the main developments in musical life across Europe after 1700. This explains the many collections with suites and sonatas to be played on whatever instruments were at hand. A large part of Telemann's chamber music was composed for such amateurs and the same goes for the many editions which came from the press in Paris. The title pages often refer to a variety of instruments on which the suites and sonatas can be played. The present disc offers some specimens of what was written in the first half of the 18th century.

One of the features of French culture of the 17th century was a strong amount of restraint. A public display of emotions was not appreciated and this explains why French music was not very theatrical. That was in strong contrast to the Italian music of that time and one of the reasons that the French didn't like it. However, there were several composers who had a more positive attitude towards the Italian style, such as Marc-Antoine Charpentier, Sébastien Brossard and François Couperin. The latter composed his first music in which he incorporated some Italian influences under a pseudonym. After the turn of the century the musical climate started to change. The increased interest in Italian music went along with a slackening of the stranglehold of the court on the music scene. One of the symbols of this was the foundation of the Concert Spirituel, a public series of concerts which started in 1725 and lasted until the French Revolution. A wide variety of music was performed during these concerts, including genuine Italian music. One of the most popular composers was Vivaldi, whose Four Seasons were performed various times.

This explains why Nicolas Chédeville published a collection of six sonatas from his own pen under Vivaldi's name, as Il Pastor Fido. The last sonata from this set opens the programme and sets the tone. Every piece that follows bears witness to the influence of Italian music. Jacques-Martin Hotteterre was a member of a dynasty of woodwind instrument makers, players and composers who were closely associated with the court from the mid-17th century until the Revolution. From 1698 to 1700, Jean-Martin stayed in Rome, and from then onwards he added le Romain to his name. Here the foundation of his interest in Italian music was laid. It was reflected in his music library, which included sonatas by Corelli and Mascitti. The 3e Suite has sonate as its subtitle and includes a grave which has no connection to a dance. In his liner-notes Dan Laurin also mentions the wide leaps in the melody part in the courante which reflect the Italian style.

Another composer who was under Italian influence was Jean-Marie Leclair, who went to Turin to study with Giovanni Battista Somis. His sonatas are almost exclusively written for the violin and many are too idiomatic to be played on other instruments. Among his four books of sonatas, the second is the only one whose title page mentions the transverse flute as an alternative. In most cases that also allows a performance on the recorder; in all but two items in the programme Laurin plays the voice flute.

The alto recorder is played in two items: the sonata by Chédeville and the Sonate pour la flute à bec by Anne Danican Philidor. Like Hotteterre, he was a member of a dynasty of musicians, also closely associated with the court for more than a century since Michel Danican served Louis XIII as an oboist. Anne Danican played the oboe and the violin and acted as royal music librarian. The sonata recorded here is from a collection of sonatas for various instruments. It is notable that this particular sonata has the indication that it is intended for the recorder. Laurin mentions that it is the only French composition of the time for the alto recorder.

Charles (or François) Dieupart made a career in England. He published a set of suites for harpsichord which were also published in a version for a melody instrument and basso continuo. It represents the most French piece of the programme and comprises six dance movements, preceded by an overture in the characteristic ABA form. Marais is also generally considered as a model of the French style. However, his music for the viola da gamba unmistakably shows some Italian traits. The Couplets de Folies - variations on the famous dance folia or, in French, folies d'Espagne - is taken from the second book. Laurin has arranged them for recorder solo. Such arrangements were quite common at the time. In the preface of his third book, Marais himself suggests performances on other instruments, among them flute, recorder and oboe and even harpsichord, organ or guitar. Omitting a basso continuo can also be justified; at least his first pieces - published in the first book - seem originally to have been intended for viola da gamba without any accompaniment; only later did he add a basso continuo part.

Many composers at the time played various instruments, for instance recorder and flute or oboe. Michel Blavet was one of the first who exclusively played the flute and his compositions are specifically intended for this instrument. That does not mean that they can't be played on the recorder. The flute was the more fashionable of the two but one may assume that, especially among amateurs, the recorder was still quite popular. Blavet was one of the great virtuosos of his time and participated in the performance of Telemann's Paris Quartets during the latter's visit to Paris in 1737/38.

The disc ends with the least-known composer in the programme: André Chéron. He was from a family of instrument makers and was educated as a keyboard player. In this capacity he often performed at the Concert Spirituel. He was the teacher of Leclair, who dedicated his violin concertos op. 7 to him. His Sonate III ends with a long chaconne - taking here a little over eight minutes - which was an indispensable part of French music of the 17th and early 18th centuries. Although this sonata is quite modern, the chaconne connects it to a glorious tradition which came to an end towards the mid-18th century.

The increasingly theatrical style of French chamber music - under the influence of the Italian style - is reflected by the way Dan Laurin plays this interesting programme. His playing is full of contrasts, in mood, tempo and dynamics. The recorder has a limited dynamic range but Laurin explores it to the full. These are strongly gestural and dramatic interpretations in which Laurin receives excellent support from Domen Marinčič and Anna Paradiso. This is not just another disc with recorder music. Because of the programme and the performances it is a substantial addition to the discography. The more than generous playing time is another good argument in its favour.

Johan van Veen



We are currently offering in excess of 51,000 reviews

Advertising on

Donate and keep us afloat


New Releases

Naxos Classical

Nimbus Podcast

Obtain 10% discount

Special offer 50% off
15CDs £83 incl. postage

Musicweb sells the following labels
Acte Préalable
(THE Polish label)
Altus 10% off
Atoll 10% off
CRD 10% off
Hallé 10% off
Lyrita 10% off
Nimbus 10% off
Nimbus Alliance
Prima voce 10% off
Red Priest 10% off
Retrospective 10% off
Saydisc 10% off
Sterling 10% off

Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing

Sample: See what you will get

Editorial Board
MusicWeb International
Founding Editor
Rob Barnett
Editor in Chief
John Quinn
Seen & Heard
Editor Emeritus
   Bill Kenny
MusicWeb Webmaster
   David Barker
Jonathan Woolf
MusicWeb Founder
   Len Mullenger