January 2017 is set to record Fêtes Galantes

Six performers and four pardessus will come together in Spencerville, MD to record a two-disc set of French and Italian baroque chamber music. Some of it is written for pardessus or mentions the instrument on a title page as an alternate instrument, some we’ve borrowed from the repertoire for harpsichord, bass viol, violin or flute, in true Baroque fashion.

The project will include favorites like a chamber version of Vivaldi’s perennial Spring concerto, originally for hurdy gurdy, and one of Michel Corrette’s Concertos Comique. There will be sonatas by Corelli and Rebel; suites by Marais, Heudelinne, Barrière; variations by L’Abbé le Fils and Guignon, and a character piece by Couperin, Le Tic-Toc Choc.

One particular piece deserves some special attention. Antoine Forqueray mentioned on the title page that his challenging bass viol suites were playable on pardessus, and this recording is the first to take him up on it.

The disc should be available by April, in plenty of time for the 2017 Pardessus Conference, to be held at the Boston Early Music Festival.