Jean-Baptiste Lully

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A mini-presentation on Jean-Baptiste Lully for my Music History course.

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Jean-Baptiste Lully

  1. 1. EARLY LIFE• Born in Florence, Italy, November 29, 1632 • Originally named Giovanni Battista• Learned guitar and violin • Likely from Franciscan friars• Left for Paris, France in 1646 at the age of 14
  2. 2. PARIS• Appointed “garçon de chambre” to Anne-Marie-Louise dOrléans • Cousin of Louis XIV • Known as the ‘Grande Mademoiselle’• Completed his musical education while in this post • Studied harpsichord, composition, and dance• Dance • Jean Regnault • Lully’s instructor • Became acquainted with dancers of the royal ballet • Collaborated with Du Moustier in composing the music for Mascarade de la Foire Saint-Germain • Only the libretto survives
  3. 3. LOUIS XIV• Lully entered Louis XIV’s service in 1651 • Jean Regnault became mâitre à danser du roi • Dancing master of the King• Ballet royal de la nuit • Lully was 20 years old • March 16, 1653 • Appointed to post of compositeur de la musique instrumentale • Composer of instrumental music• Lully’s talent for dance attracted Louis’ attention • Lully was several years Louis’ senior • Quickly gained a privileged relationship with Louis
  4. 4. THE 1660’S• May 16, 1661 • Louis XIV begins personal reign of France • Lully appointed surintendant de la musique de la chambre du roi • Superintendent of the music of the king’s chamber• December 1661 • Became naturalized citizen of France• July 24, 1662 • Married Madeleine, daughter of composer Michel Lambert• From the time of his appointment under King Louis XIV, Lully’s reputation as a composer spread throughout Europe
  5. 5. OPERA• Initially, Lully was not optimistic about the chances of French opera • The success of several operas in 1671 changed Lully’s opinion• Used leverage with Louis XIV • Became director of the Académie Royale de Musique • April 28, 1673, was authorized to use the Palais Royal theatre for free • Lully prohibited the use of more than two voices and six violins; rivals were not permitted to use dancers at all • Louis XIV decided to have Lully’s works produced at court and financed by the royal treasury
  6. 6. INNOVATIONS IN OPERA…• Created a new French form of opera • Tragédie en musique/tragédie lyrique • Combination of drama, music, and ballet• Each opera began with an ouverture (overture) • Intended to mark the entry of the king and welcome him to the performance • Comprised of two sections, each played twice • The first is homophonic and majestic, the second is faster and occasionally employs fugal imitation• Divertissement • Appeared at the center or end of each act • Extended episodes that included choruses, dancing, and elaborate costumes and choreography • Direct continuation from French ballet tradition• Adapted Italian recitative to French language• Airs • Lyrical moments • Songs with rhyming text and regular meter • Syllabic, tuneful melody, little text repetition
  7. 7. …AND ORCHESTRA• Dictator-like control over orchestra • Conducted with staff instead of baton• Enforced uniform bowing and coordinated ornaments • Became the typical practice of modern orchestras
  8. 8. REFERENCESBurkholder, J. P., Grout, D. J., & Palisca, C. V. (2010). France, England, Spain, and the new world in the seventeenth century. A history of western music (8th Edition ed., pp. 359-365). New York: W. W. Norton & Company.Jean-Baptiste Lully. (n.d.). Oxford Music Online. Retrieved October 18, 2011, from http://www.oxfordmusiconline.com/subscriber/article/grove/music/4247 7pg1?q=Jean- Baptiste+Lully&hbutton_search.x=0&hbutton_search.y=0&hbutton_sear ch=search&source=omo_t237&source=omo_gmo&source=omo_t114&s earch=quick&pos=1&_start=1#firsthit

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