Louis Couperin (1626-1661).

Louis Couperin is considered the most important french keyboard composer in the 1st half of the 17th century, and was born in 1626, in Chaumes, dying in 1661 in Paris. He was the first organist in Saint-Gervais in the family, but his most important contribution is the composition of his "piéces de clavecin"  gathered in five volumes so wonderfully interpreted by Blandine Verlet. 

Couperin's pieces are constituted by preludes and sequences of dances, generally gathered according to their tone. French in taste, these pieces possess a very strong rhythm, and explore an intense game of light and shadow, so typical of french music of the period. More remarkable are the so called "préludes non mesurés", or unmeasured preludes, written in a way that makes possible to understand which notes go where, but do not restrain in terms of rhythm or tempo. They constitute pure musical raw material left to be explored and shaped by the interpreter. 

 

Reccomended recordings: 

"Piéces de Claveçin": Blandine Vérlet, Astrée Auvidis.

 

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