Personalities | Michel-Richard de Lalande | Late Baroque | Classical
(Me-shel’ Re’-share de La-län-de) 1657–1726
During the mid-1660s Lalande, along with Marais, was a member of the choir at St Germain-l’Auxerrois in Paris and later, as an organist, he was the mentor of Couperin. In 1683 he was appointed one of four sous-maîtres of the Chapelle Royale, gradually acquiring all the other major musical positions at Versailles following Lully’s death in 1687. He composed music for the stage and for the church. An attractive by-product of his theatre music is the collection of instrumental dances put together in the mid-twentieth century under the title Symphonies pour les soupers du Roi (‘Symphonies for the King’s Supper’).
Lalande’s greatest talent lay in the sphere of the grand motet, of which 64 have survived. This was the favoured musical style of Louis XIV during the services at the Chapelle Royale and one to which Lalande introduced a rewarding stylistic diversity, ranging from supple, often contrapuntal choruses to the tender intimacy of recitatives and airs with obbligato instruments.
Te Deum, Motets, soloists, Les Arts Florissants (cond) William Christie (Harmonia Mundi)
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