Magnificats and pièces d'orgue at the Royal Chapel.
Magnificat du premier ton (ré mineur)
1. Plein Jeu. Gravement
2. Duo. Gaiement et soutenu
3. Trio. Modérément sans lenteur
4. Basse de Trompette. Vivement et marqué
5. Flûte. Tendrement
6. Dialogue. Gravement
7. Tierce en taille en la majeur. Fièrement
8. Muzète en sol majeur. Naïvement et louré
Magnificat du deuxième ton (sol mineur)
9. Plein Jeu. Gravement
10. Duo. Gaiement et soutenu
11. Trio. Tendrement
12. Basse de Cromorne. Gaiement et soutenu
13. Récit de Nazard. Tendrement
14. Dialogue. Vif et marqué
15. À la Venue de Noël. Récit, double, duo, trio, grand jeu
16. Bon Joseph écoutez-moi. Tambourin
17. Or nous dites Marie. Récit, Double, Duo en canon, trio sur les flûtes, le même sur les flûtes
18. Carillon ou Cloches
Magnificat du huitième ton (sol majeur)
19. Plein Jeu. Gravement
20. Duo. Gaiement et flaté
21. Trio. Gracieusement et louré
22. Basse de trompette. Vif et marqué
23. Flûtes. Tendrement
24. Dialogue. Vivement et marqué
25. Fugue (chromatique). Majestueusement
26. Fugue. Hymne Ave maris stella. Majestueusement
Magnificat du troisième ton (la mineur)
27. Plein Jeu. Gravement
28. Duo. Gaiement et soutenu
29. Trio. Modérément sans lenteur
30. Basse et dessus de trompette. Vif et marqué
31. Récit de Trompette séparée. Tendrement
32. Dialogue. Gravement et pointé. Gaiement
33. Offertoire pour le jour de Pâques. O filii et filiæ
Sound recording Jean-Philippe Mesnier. Post-Mastering Olivier Rosset.
Tuning : Bertrand Cattiaux et Itaru Sekiguchi.
Scores : fac-simile aux éditions Jean-Marc Fuzeau.
At barely five years of age, the young Jean-François Dandrieu drew attention to himself at the court of Louis XIV by performing in front of Madame Palatine (the wife of ?Monsieur? the king's brother). He came from a family where music occupied an important place. His sister Jeanne-Françoise and his uncle Pierre were organists and from a very early age he bene ted from the teaching of the composer Jean-Baptiste Moreau (1656-1733), very well known for his activity in Saint-Cyr and for having been the master of both Clérambault and Montéclair.
Dandrieu rapidly became a renowned organist when he succeeded the great Nicolas Lebègue at the organ of Saint-Merry in 1704. In 1721 he became the organist of the Chapel of Versailles where he met Lalande and Campra. At the end of his life, he followed on from his uncle Pierre Dandrieu (1664-1733) in Saint-Barthélemy.
Dandrieu's rst organ book was published posthumously in 1739. e composer's initial project was for two books to include twelve
suites in di erent tonalities, of which half in a minor key, the other half in a major key. Dandrieu explained that « each Suite begins with an O ertory, a er which come several separate pieces, and nishes by a Magni cat in the same tonality. » He goes into the detail of his project: « I have endeavoured throughout to grasp this noble and elegant simplicity which is the speci c character of the organ, and taken care to indicate the movement and the mood of each piece, using terms which seemed to me to be the most appropriate to indicate my intentions. »
A er an in depth examination of the whole of his work, it transpires that this organ book presents two types of composition. e six O ertories and certain duos on the trumpet are transcriptions - sometimes slightly reworked - of earlier works for strings: the Six sonates en trio opus 1 (1705) for two violins, cello and basso continuo and Sonates for violin (1710). ese very Italian and contrapuntal pieces will be presented ?as a mirror re ection' in a second recording.
As far as the present recording is concerned it brings together the « original » works for organ: the Magni cats and isolated pieces of di erent character. All of them cover the liturgical art of the Versailles organist, one of the most prominent in the kingdom since the disappearance of Couperin and Marchand.
As with the organ music of Clérambault, the Italian style is apparent in the whole of Dandrieu's works. We can hear the influence of the Italian composer and violinist Arcangelo Corelli who had an in uence over the whole of Europe from 1700. is in uence is particularly evident in the full organ stops and the bass trumpet where the writing uses repeated notes and predominant arpeggios. e spirit of Dandrieu's works remains nonetheless eminently French by its grandeur and its seriousness. The delicateness and pure re nement of the Louis XV style takes e ect in the quiet pieces on the utes and the swell. e simplicity of it is marvelous thanks to the discerning oramentation and an elegant sense of rhythm.
Jean-François Dandrieu mixes with past traditions in the writing of his duos, trios and fugues which recall the French organists of
the XVIIth century. As with his predecessors his music represents the meaning of a religious text. In the Magni cats the verse deposuit potentes de cede is described by a descending motive on the trumpet and a quiet piece is chosen to illustrate Suscepit Israel.
It is thus that Dandrieu represents a synthesis between the Italian fugal and concertante style, the ornamental and dance music of his predecessors and the taste at that time for lightness and elegance. e Christmas carols are part of this synthesis and originate from those composed by Lebègue in 1685. ose recorded here were rst set to music by his uncle (published in 1714). e carol Bon Joseph écoutez-moi ( Good Joseph, listen to me) would be used again in the extremely well known Noël X (1757) by Louis-Claude Daquin, the organist who would later succeed Dandrieu at the Royal Chapel.
Regarding the sound recording
Dandrieu was organist by a quarter of the Royal Chapel from 1721 and played an instrument which was unique in the kingdom of France. is organ did not possess a rear positive, the mechanism is
directly there and the separating windchests are innovative. ese qualities make this great instrument unrivalled.
The sound recording endeavours to reconstitute the extreme sensitivity of the mechanism, in order that the organist's gestures including the opening of the organ
valve and the production of the sound be as perceptible and detailed as possible. is subtlety appears to be indissociable from Dandrieu's art where - in the guise of « apparent » simplicity - the meticulousness reveals all of its profundity.