The Trio Pardessus (Tina Chancey, Annalisa Pappano and Joanna Blendulf) was created in 2014 to celebrate the 18th century pardessus de viole, an intriguing ‘women’s instrument’ that took all of Paris by storm. The pardessus was invented in the 1730s so that French aristocratic women amateurs could play the violin sonatas of Corelli without resting an instrument on their shoulders.
A hybrid of the violin and its cousin, the more genteel viola da gamba, the pardessus was played on the lap and bowed underhand. In spite of its pragmatic beginnings, the pardessus went viral: it was played until the French Revolution, when it was no longer wise to be considered an aristocrat. The Trio’s first recording of Boismortier’s Sonates en Trio, Opus 7 is available on CDBaby.