Mumbai will soon be treated to the strains of baroque music as the Amarillis Ensemble, one of the most original baroque orchestras in Europe, is set to perform in the city. Founded in 1994 and led by its artistic director, Heloise Gaillard and the harpsichordist Violaine Cochard, Amarillis is known for its acoustic exploration and its instrumental technique. Both international and French critics have praised the Ensemble’s twelve-CD discography.
The programme will take you back to the historic period between 1680 and 1710 during the reign of Louis XIV at the Versailles palace. For the uninitiated, Baroque music is a style of Western music tracing back to a period starting from 1600 to 1750 and forms an important part of the western classical music canon.
It is thoroughly engaging and includes elaborate melodies. The study of emotion is at the heart of Baroque music and this programme enables one to rediscover the dramatic power of contrasts (the inseparable duo of light and darkness conceived as a sort of tragedy).
The programme will depict two heroic mythological figures caught in the agony of love. The various moods of Queen Didon (first her confusion and pain, then her desire for vengeance and finally her renunciation in choosing suicide) are portrayed along with the story of Orpheus who leaves for the kingdom of the Dead to look for his beloved, Eurydice and succeeds in charming the inflexible, god of the underworld, Pluto.
The ensemble features one singer and five musicians including Maïlys de Villoutreys (soprano), Héloïse Gaillard (recorder), Alice Piérot (violin), Violaine Cochard (harpsichord) and Annabelle Luis (cello).