Gamba players have a healthy respect for Franois Couperin’s ‘Pices de Viole’; they are not pieces to be casually included in one’s repertoire. Couperin himself was not a gamba player, and he wrote these impressive suites without realizing the technical consequences of his writing; sometimes it takes the performer a long time to find an adequate fingering or bowing. Besides, it is impossible to make a selection of the ‘Pices de Viole’ for a program (as one could, for example, with the compositions of Marin Marais, which fill five books), because only two suites for gamba and continuo by Couperin have survived. Either you play the complete suites, or you don’t play them at all. Nevertheless, we have decided to perform these pieces; the hard work which they demand is amply rewarded by the greatness and sheer richness of the music.Download booklet
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