Joseph Bodin de Boismortier Cello Sonatas
- Featured: Brandywine Baroque
- Release Date: 3/18/2008
Sometimes called the "French Telemann," Joseph Bodin de Boismortier (December 23, 1689 - October 28, 1755) is perhaps the most prolific French composer ever. Like Telemann he is often dismissed as a "Vielschreiber," someone who composed too much for it all to be good. Also like Telemann, his popularity dissipated quickly after his death. But it cannot be denied that during his lifetime, Boismortier was one of the most important composers in France. His music represents the height of fashion for it's day, and provides great pleasure not only for the performer, but also the listener. The Cello Sonatas, Opus 26 (1729) and Opus 50 (1734) "Because I do not play the cello well enough to judge these pieces myself, I have asked Mr. L'Abbé, who is celebrated for this instrument, to examine them. His approval has encouraged me to give them to the public, from whom I wish the same favor." With this notice from the title page of his Opus 26, Boismortier introduced the very first book of cello sonatas in France. Perhaps he realized how unusual this was. Thus, he enlisted the approbation of Pierre-Philippe Saint-Sévin, who had by that time made quite a name for himself as a cellist in Paris. As the cello was just beginning it's meteoric rise in popularity, Boismortier indicated on the title page that the five sonatas could be played by cello or viol, or even bassoon, ensuring that his sonatas would have a wider appeal. The cello sonatas of Opus 26 feature the elaborate decoration and insouciance typical of Boismortier's earlier works. Written in the style of Corelli, who was then wildly popular, the sonatas are typically in four movements. Five years later, presumably having received the public's favor, Boismortier produced another collection of sonatas for low instrument(s), Opus 50 Excerpts from notes by Rebekah Ahrendt Cellist Douglas McNames has been a prominent figure in the musical community of the Delaware Valley for over twenty years. As a member of the award winning Delos Quartet, Mr. McNames traveled the U.S. and Europe extensively. Principal cellist with the Delaware Symphony since 2000, Mr. McNames holds the same position with the orchestras of OperaDelaware and the Reading Symphony and was Principal soloist and continuo cellist with the Carmel Bach Festival for 15 years. A regular substitute with the Philadelphia Orchestra, Mr. McNames has performed with the leading conductors and instrumentalists of the world. Having turned to Baroque performance practice, he performs concerti of composers ranging from Vivaldi and Leo to C.P.E. Bach and Haydn. His recordings of the sonatas of Jean Baptiste Masse with Brandywine Baroque have been highly regarded by critics both in the U.S. and abroad. A respected chamber musician and soloist, Mr. McNames is a member of Brandywine Baroque, Arco Voce, and Melomanie and can be heard on the Spectrum, Etcetera, Epiphany, Dorian and Plectra Music recording labels. Mr. McNames resides in Wilmington, Delaware with his wife and daughter. His cello was made by Barak Norman in London, 1708. Karen Flint, harpsichordist and artistic director of Brandywine Baroque since it's founding, has performed as soloist at The Smithsonian Institution and with the Delaware Symphony, Newark Symphony and the University of Delaware Chamber Orchestra. With her ensemble she has made guest appearances with Coastal Concerts, Chorale Delaware, Mid-Atlantic Chamber Music Society and at the Boston Early Music Festival. Ms. Flint has degrees from Oberlin Conservatory of Music and The University of Michigan and teaches harpsichord at the University of Delaware. Her recordings include: Oh! The Sweet Delights of Love: Music by Purcell, The Lass with the Delicate Air and C. P. E. Bach Trio Sonatas on the Plectra label; The Jane Austen Songbook with Julianne Baird on the Albany label, Masse Sonatas for Two Cellos, Books 1 & 2 on the Dorian label, French Baroque Miniatures on the Etcetera label; and Digging for Buried Treasure: Music of Telemann. Ms. Flint's harpsichord was made by Nicolas Dumont in Paris, 1707. Vivian Barton Dozor is music director of the American Society of Ancient Instruments in Philadelphia and performs frequently with Philomel Baroque Ensemble, Tafelmusik, Apollo's Fire, Vox Ama Deus, Brandywine Baroque, Tempesta di Mare and Pro Musica Rara. As a modern cellist, Ms. Dozor has appeared with distinguished artists such as Yehudi Menuhin, Alexander Schneider and Felix Galimir in Carnegie Hall, the Kennedy Center and Symphony Hall in Boston. She has performed with the Philadelphia Orchestra, Brandenburg Ensemble, Marlboro Music Festival, Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, Santa Fe Opera and Orchestra 2001. A graduate of The Curtis Institute of Music, her teachers include Deborah Reeder, David Soyer, Lorne Munroe, Laurence Lesser, and Julius Levine. She won the top cello prize at the Hudson Valley International Competition. Ms. Dozer has performed in concerts internationally and has attended the International Musicians' Seminar in Prussia Cove, Cornwall, England. A faculty member of Princeton University, she has recorded on the RCA, Dorian and PolyGram labels. Ms. Dozor plays a 1785 Thomas Dodd cello.
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