Written at the request of Louis XIV in honour of his sister-in-law, Henrietta of England, Le Ballet royal de la Naissance de Vénus was performed in 1665 with Henrietta herself as the goddess of love and youth. In twelve entrées, this grandiose spectacle combining dancing, music and poetry served the power of the king, while attesting to the magnificence of his court. Musically very inventive, it shows the culmination of the ballet genre, on which Lully was to draw in creating the tragédie en musique. To complete the programme, excerpts from Le Ballet royal des Amours déguisés (Armida’s famous lament “Ah! Rinaldo, è dove sei?”), Psyché, Le Bourgeois gentilhomme and Le Carnaval – from the latter a piece recycled from Les Noces de village, a burlesque aria sung by the boastful village schoolmaster Barbacola, a basso buffo role that Lully wrote for himself.
This recording was made possible thanks to the generous support of Madame Aline Foriel-Destezet.
In partnership with the Philharmonie de Paris.
© Aparté – Les Talens Lyriques
1CD Aparté / AP255
18 June 2021