The court of Louis XIV’s younger brother, Philippe I d’Orléans (called “Monsieur”), offers insights not only into the musical life of the largest French princely establishment outside Versailles, but also into aristocratic negotiation with royal image-making and the changing role of patronage across the reign of the Sun King. Philippe, like many members of the high nobility, used music as a tool of courtly cultivation and self-promotion. For this purpose, he maintained a multi-faceted musical institution that performed a variety of musical functions. He employed at least thirty-seven musicians, both official officers of household musique and additional outside members, including a male vocal ensemble, keyboardists, players of the viol and lute, a violin band, a group of choirboys, and a small chamber ensemble. Because of the young prince’s dependence on his brother in the 1660s, musical events at his court generally followed those of the king’s. Monsieur’s increasing independence allowed his rise as provider of courtly entertainments that reflected his desire to distinguish himself from his brother. This role greatly increased in the 1680s with the completion of his chateau at Saint-Cloud, and with the coming of age of a younger generation of princes whose tastes he cultivated. Monsieur’s court supported various composers who wrote both for court contexts and for the Parisian music scene. The most active of these include Jean Grenouillet de Sablières, Pierre Gillier, François Martin, and Jean Martin. Monsieur and his court valued stylistic variety over purity, and the music of these composers thus reflects a greater degree of freedom than that written for the royal court or the Paris Opéra in the period.
La Musique et la Symphonie,
Par une excellente harmonie,
Y ravissoient l’Ouye aussi
Et l’on peut enfin dire ici,
A la gloire de ce grande PRINCE,
En qui l’on ne void rien de mince,
Que, comme il prime en DIGNITÉ
Aprés l’auguste MAJESTÉ,
Il prime en la MAGNIFICENCE
Pour être en tout UNIQUE EN FRANCE
Comme UNIQUE FRÉRE du Roy,
Auguste Titre, en bonne foy.
—Charles Robinet, Lettre en vers à Madame, July 5, 1665
1.0.1 Despite Robinet’s address “to Madame” (Henrietta of England, wife of the “only brother of the king,” Philippe I d’Orléans), the description of Philippe’s gloire (and by extension the contribution of his musique thereto) is almost backhanded in its comparison to Philippe’s elder brother, Louis XIV. One has to feel a little sorry for Robinet, whose task of relating court news in “Letters in Verse” to the Orléans could certainly not have been an easy one. He had to please Madame and her husband (from whom his colleague Jean Loret openly acknowledged having received money for similar services), but he also had to acknowledge Philippe’s secondary status and defer to the cultural “machine” of king, about which so much has been written.
1.0.2 In part because of the royal mastery of media that Peter Burke so richly documented, much of the early research on the cultural history of Louis XIV’s reign focused on royal patronage and its political usage. These studies, following ample documents, largely overlooked the activities of the nobility, whose importance had been minimized in the glorification of the king. Beginning in the 1980s, however, historians began to question the notion of “absolutism” in politics and in patronage and demonstrated the critical role played by the nobility in the political and cultural life of the period. In the field of music, Georgia Cowart has recently shown that royal domination was challenged on an allegorical level in a number of theatrical productions, and tensions also occurred in the area of patronage, particularly as Louis aged and his concerns turned increasingly away from theatrical entertainments under the influence of his morganatic wife, Madame de Maintenon, in the 1680s. This was a period in which other members of the princely nobility began taking an increased role in musical patronage, sometimes coming into conflict with the king. In contrast to the much-studied royal court, the music of these princely houses has until relatively recently remained largely terra incognita.
1.0.3 Robinet’s difficulty praising Philippe I d’Orléans in 1665 underlines two major problems in understanding the cultural legacy of this period: how to distinguish between the “mythistoire” of royal dominance created by Louis XIV’s image makers and the reality of actual practice, and how to understand the contributions of others to this cultural legacy in relationship to the system of royal image making. Although the court of Philippe I (called “Monsieur”) never approached the artistic influence of the king’s, it offers insights into the musical life of one of the largest French princely establishments, the negotiation with royal patronage on the part of the aristocracy, and the changing modes of patronage across the reign of the Sun King.
1.0.4 Monsieur’s court presents a number of advantages for the study of these issues. First, given the relative importance of the prince and his family, their activities are not infrequently commented on by journalists and memorialists providing a relatively rich fund of sources to draw upon. Second, the Orléans family was heavily involved in the court politics of the era and had a history of being at the forefront of conflicts with royal authority. Finally, the musical activities of Monsieur’s court further explode the royal authoritarian model of the princely mécène as someone who, out of both musical and political interests, acts alone, directly commissioning and approving the composition of musical works and commanding performances. In fact, the role and activities of the princely mécène—even of the king himself—were not autonomous, as they involved the input, ideas, agendas, and efforts of many individuals. Music at Monsieur’s court is a perfect example of this principle of shared patronage in that Philippe was not particularly interested in music for its own sake, but nevertheless maintained a complex institution where differing powers and interests provided an umbrella of support to various musicians and musical genres that extended outward to Parisian institutions and cultural life.
1.0.5 The political role of the Orléans stemmed from their position as the cadet branch of the royal family (that of the younger brother of the king), which frequently was in tension with the aîné, the older brother. The split between the Orléans and the crown would haunt French history through the nineteenth century, beginning with Philippe Egalité’s siding with the revolution and culminating in Louis-Philippe’s succession following the revolution of 1830. The problems in the seventeenth century were no less vexing: the younger brother of Louis XIII, Gaston d’Orléans (1608–1660), along with his daughter, Marie-Louise d’Orléans (1627–93, called “Mademoiselle”)—both of whom were intelligent and vigorous in their political activities and their patronage—openly sided with rebels against the crown during the Fronde. Thus, one of the most important political aims of the crown under Richelieu, Mazarin, and finally under Louis XIV himself, was to marginalize rebellious members of the royal family by harnessing their interests to royal service.
1.0.6 Philippe I d’Orléans therefore found himself in the difficult position of having to defer to his brother in matters both political and cultural. While needing to assert his own interests within the limits prescribed by his brother, he at times pushed those limits—in almost adolescent fashion—to see how far he could go. In the case of the performing arts, and music in particular, Monsieur seems, at least initially, to have deferred to Louis, who regarded spectacles and the arts as an important part of his gloire as king, and who did not, at least until the latter part of his reign, tolerate competition. Monsieur learned relatively early, through a number of run-ins with his brother, not to challenge him directly, particularly since his own interests lay elsewhere (largely in the safer realms of art collection and finery). Philippe gradually found his niche in the 1670s and ’80s as an organizer of entertainments for the Dauphin and others, and it was in this position that his activities as patron took on an increasingly influential dimension.
1.0.7 The music of the Orléans was particularly important because of its size and because of the family’s relative independence from the crown. Although Monsieur and his spouse (“Madame”) spent a good portion of their days paying court to the king, Philippe’s special position as the king’s brother meant that he and his family had considerably more freedom than other royal courtiers to come and go as they wished. He enjoyed holding his own court at his palaces where he would often sojourn for weeks at a time. On these visits, the prince openly displayed his love for entertainments of all kinds, and his generosity was frequently remarked upon. Philippe I’s interest in fêtes gave him a central place in courtly circles that supported theater and entertainment in the increasingly bigoted environment of the royal court during the 1680s and ’90s. In support of these entertainments, he maintained one of the largest musical forces in France, and his court provided a haven to various composers who wrote music both for Monsieur and for the Parisian music scene. These composers included Jean Grenouillet de Sablières, Pierre Gillier, François Martin, and Jean Martin. Because these composers were not employed at the royal court or the Académie royale de musique, but instead operated largely in the private sphere, they did not acquire the same recognition or connections as other composers. At the same time, their independence allowed them a greater degree of stylistic freedom.
2.0.1 As Louis XIII’s younger son, Philippe I (Figure 1) was granted his uncle Gaston’s titles (including the right to be called “Monsieur”) on his uncle’s death in 1660, but he inherited Gaston’s legacy in other ways as well. Cardinal Mazarin, Louis XIV’s regent, was determined not to make another Gaston out of Philippe and did everything he could to make sure that Philippe developed neither the knowledge nor the ambition to challenge his brother. Philippe was discouraged from pursuing a rigorous education and was showered with presents whenever he rebelled against his secondary status.
2.0.2 The young prince proved a good foil for his older brother; he was largely uninterested in physical prowess or political power, and he was homosexual, which automatically qualified him as an outsider. According to the Abbé de Choisy, Mazarin cultivated Philippe’s inclinations by encouraging the women of the court to dress him in female clothing. Monsieur’s second wife, Elisabeth-Charlotte, reports the effects of this upbringing in contrasting the characters of the two brothers:
There have never been two brothers more different than [Louis XIV] and Monsieur; nevertheless, they loved one another very much.… Monsieur had the manners of a woman more than a man; he did not like either horses or hunting; he took pleasure only in gambling, holding court, eating well, dancing, and dressing; in a word, he took pleasure in everything women like. The king liked hunting, music, theater; Monsieur liked only great gatherings and masked balls; the king liked to be gallant with the ladies; I don’t think that Monsieur, in his entire life, was ever amorous.
The duc de Saint-Simon, whose memoirs are the source of many a tartly phrased portrait, says that Philippe had “more society than wit, no reading, and although [he had] an extensive and accurate knowledge of houses, births, and alliances, he was not capable of anything.” Indeed, Monsieur seems not to have been personally fond of music for its own sake. Reminiscing about her late husband toward the end of her life, Elisabeth-Charlotte wrote: “Monsieur loved the sound of bells so much that he came expressly to Paris to pass the night of All-Saint’s because all the bells rang during that night. He liked no other music.” In contrast to his music-loving brother, Monsieur is not recorded as having played an instrument or having participated directly in the creation of ballets or operas.
2.0.3 Louis XIV continued Mazarin’s lead in excluding Philippe from any political role and discouraging his interests in areas that came into conflict with the establishment of royal gloire, not only in military endeavors but as a connoisseur and patron of the arts. Nevertheless, Monsieur’s ambitions were not entirely crushed, and tensions with his brother occasionally boiled over. When allowed a command in the battle of Kassel in 1677, for example, Monsieur took considerable risks by remaining in the field, leading French forces in the defeat of the Spanish Dutch. Louis publicly commended Monsieur but never again gave him a major military command. Like Gaston, Philippe had a cabal with whom he enjoyed his pleasures and who, in turn, controlled him (in part at the behest of the king), receiving for their pains a continual round of pensions and presents.
2.0.4 The tensions between Philippe and his brother played out in the arena of artistic patronage as well. Despite being dismissed by Saint-Simon as having “no reading,” Monsieur was nevertheless influential in the early career of Molière. In 1658, the young prince promised protection for Molière’s troupe and a 300-livre-per-year pension for each actor (which was, it seems, never actually paid); the group was named the “Troupe de Monsieur, Frère Unique du Roi.” The next year, Philippe introduced Molière to the king, and in 1661 the troupe received the rights to play at the theater in Monsieur’s Parisian home, the Palais-Royal. Molière expressed his gratitude to Philippe by dedicating L’Ecole des maris to him in 1662. By 1665, Molière’s fame was such that the king, who evidently preferred to be the patron of such an illustrious group, obliged his brother to relinquish it. After that, the troupe became known as the “Comédiens du Roi” with a yearly stipend of 6,000 livres. Nevertheless, Molière’s troupe retained its home at the Palais-Royal until being pushed out by Lully, and a number of Monsieur’s musicians maintained contacts with the company long after it came under royal patronage. Philippe also acted as patron to Isaac de Benserade; he provided Benserade lodging in the Palais-Royal, and the poet played a role in the intrigues of his court during the 1660s.
2.0.5 In the 1680s, Monsieur found a new niche at court by positioning himself as a softer, more welcoming alternative to the king. “It was he who introduced the amusements, the soul, the pleasures, and when he departed everything [at court] seemed without life or action,” says Saint-Simon before he begins to list Monsieur’s bad qualities. Monsieur’s immense fortune allowed him free range in his entertaining. In the early part of his life, Monsieur often took refuge in his chateaux, where he could be the center of courtly attention, especially when he lost an argument with his brother. Daniel de Cosnac, Monsieur’s aumonier in the 1660s, wrote that when Monsieur was displeased with his brother:
He preferred to take the path of silence and to content himself in letting the king know that he was not satisfied by the trips to Paris he came to make every week for one or two days. These trips were very much to his taste.… They gave him the joy of having a court of his own because he was overjoyed when he saw at the Palais-Royal a large crowd of high society.… He never forgot to praise everyone, and it was evident that he was more or less happy, depending on whether he had a larger or smaller court. 
2.0.6 Monsieur’s palaces were the scene of many fêtes, particularly Saint-Cloud (Figure 2), whose large gardens and famous cascade rivaled Versailles. Emile Magne calculated that Monsieur organized over 1,000 entertainments of various sorts during the period between 1680 and 1698 at Saint-Cloud alone, earning the château the reputation as the prince’s “lieu de plaizance.” The natural beauty of the place made it a perfect location for outdoor celebrations. Even the duc de Saint-Simon said of Saint-Cloud that “the games, the singular beauty of the location, the music, and the good food made it a palace of delights with much grandeur and magnificence.” In addition, the Palais-Royal had the attraction of the theater (and, eventually, the Opéra), and since Monsieur’s private box could be reached directly from his apartments, the palace became the setting for many entertainments that combined feasts, balls, and theatrical and musical performances by Molière’s troupe or the Académie Royale de Musique. Monsieur was particularly fond of Paris, and the Parisians of him, in contrast to the king who always associated the city with the humiliations he suffered during the Fronde and spent as little time as possible there.
2.0.7 If Monsieur was not a great patron of music or theater, he was not without artistic interests, expressing them according to his own personality. He learned in his youth to sublimate his secondary status through acquisition, and he became a consummate collector of jewels and objets d’art. He displayed his collection of curiosités in two rooms at Saint-Cloud, along with a third room for his jewels, the Cabinet des bijoux. Monsieur employed a curator to care for his collections, and the inventory after his death records 139 items under jewelry, valued at over 1.6 million livres. He also collected paintings, owning upon his death more than 400 works, including The Family of Charles II by Van Dyck and canvases by Tintoretto, Titian, Velasquez, alongside native French artists, and a very large number of tapestries, porcelains, silver, and other objets d’art.
2.0.8 Monsieur’s desire to make an impression at times bordered on the obsessive. An example of this concern was described in the journal kept by his intendant, Paul Fréart de Chantelou, during the visit of Gian Lorenzo Bernini to France in 1665. Chantelou reports Monsieur’s concern for what others said about his projects with a certain degree of detached irony:
I went to the lever of Monsieur. His Royal Highness called for me and whispered in my ear, “Is it true that the Cavalier [Bernini] found my cascade at Saint-Cloud too artificial?” I told him yes. Monsieur responded saying, “Boisfranc [another of Monsieur’s intendants] told me that the Cavalier found that for my water spout, it would be possible to do something more beautiful. I would be very happy if you would ask for a design for that, and from yourself as well.” I assured Monsieur that I would do this, and that I had already asked the Cavalier to work on it.
Nevertheless, the prince ultimately found the “artificial” qualities of his cascade more pleasing than the “rustic” and less ornamented proposal by Bernini, a taste that Monsieur’s courtiers were only too quick to reaffirm:
I had taken the design for the cascade of Saint-Cloud to His Royal Highness, which he had painted by Bourson. He asked me right away, “Where will this go?” I told him, “in place of the grand water jet.” “But my water jet?” said Monsieur. I replied that it would be conserved, and so that it would be possible to better execute the intention of the Cavalier, he had promised me that, as soon as he was in Rome, he would have a model of the cascade made in clay that would be copied in wood in order that it could be brought here. His Royal Highness spoke after this about [Bernini’s] design for the Louvre, and said that to reduce the court—and to remove all the ornaments that are there—displeased him greatly, that one only wanted to do simple things with it. I responded that the things that were to be done would have the ornament that they should have. M. le maréchal de Plessis said that in Italy, it was right to hide the attics because they did not use slate roofs, that their size was meager, but that roofs here had their own beauty. I did not debate this question, and I went instead to the Cavalier.
This was essentially the end of the matter; Monsieur’s decision was made, and Bernini’s design for the cascade was never executed. Chantelou’s story thus provides a picture of the young Monsieur’s patronage that corroborates other sources regarding his personality: his insecurity about the opinions of others and his dependence on the advice of those around him for his decisions, but also his taste for the decorative.
2.0.9 Monsieur’s approach to artistic patronage was thus quite different from his brother: rather than discussing the project with the artist himself (having been well informed beforehand) as Louis often did, the less educated Monsieur worked through courtiers, Boisfranc and Chantelou, acting as intermediaries. This continued under Boisfranc’s replacement, Louis de Béchamel, who was not only the gourmand for whom the famous sauce was named, but also a major connoisseur of everything related to decoration. According to Saint-Simon, it was he who was largely responsible for the decoration of Saint-Cloud, and he often advised Louis XIV:
He was an intelligent man … who organized a delicate and well-chosen table, both in its dishes and in its company, and he hosted at his home the best of Paris and the most distinguished of the court. His taste in paintings, jewelry, furniture, buildings, and gardens was extremely exquisite. It was he who created what was most beautiful at Saint-Cloud. The king, who treated him well, often consulted him about his buildings and gardens, and occasionally invited him to Marly.
2.0.10 Monsieur likewise expressed his passion for the decorative in his main creative endeavor, the transformation of the house and grounds at Saint-Cloud into a massive chateau and gardens. Philippe had acquired the château in 1658, and he extended it considerably by buying up adjacent lands over a number of years. Construction on the new château began in earnest in the 1670s and was completed shortly before Versailles, around 1680. Unlike the Palais-Royal, which the crown owned until 1692, Saint-Cloud was Monsieur’s property, and he had the freedom to do with it as he pleased. Thus he made an artistic statement that was his own, choosing not to employ the Académie-sanctioned artists who worked for the king. Monsieur’s architect was the young Jules Hardouin de Mansard, whose fame was made by Saint-Cloud. The Italian-trained Pierre Mignard decorated the château’s public rooms with enormous frescoes on subjects drawn from classical mythology:
At first sight can be seen the heavens as Homer describes them; Olympus, where all the gods are assembled, fills the center of the vault, but the arcades, arranged with admirable artifice, separate it into different parts and form five pictures from a single one.
With its emphasis on color and its sensuous Baroque air, the decoration of the château presented a contrast to the official academic style employed by Le Brun at Versailles. Monsieur was not, however, above receiving advice from his brother on the decoration of his château, as long as that advice came with funds to execute the king’s ideas.
2.0.11 Little remains of this artwork but engravings and tapestry copies; Saint-Cloud burned during the German invasion of 1870. Its destruction, along with that of the “Aeneas gallery” painted by Antoine Coypel at the Palais-Royal in 1704, thus present a significant impediment to our understanding of the Orléans’ contribution to the visual arts, or as Antoine Schnapper put it, the loss of Saint-Cloud “seriously falsifies our judgment of Mignard and of the history of monumental decoration in France.”
2.1.1 Monsieur’s two wives also played important roles as mécènes, although in quite different ways. Monsieur’s first wife, Henriette, was the youngest daughter of Charles I of England and Henriette Marie of France. After Charles’s defeat in 1646 the two Henriettas took refuge in France, and Monsieur’s desire to marry the daughter was supposedly so great that he temporarily put aside his interest in men to woo her.
2.1.2 The portraits of Henriette painted by writers and memorialists of the time describe a young woman of great beauty and pleasing manners who had acquired “a thousand agreeable abilities.” These included not only a taste for literature in three languages, but also the ability to sing and to play harpsichord. According to Mary Evelyn, Henriette was a particularly talented harpsichordist:
Besides her voice, conducted with such skill and naturally sweet, she touches the harpsicals [sic] to the astonishment of the profoundest masters; who willingly acknowledge, that she gives those relishes and graces to her play that it is impossible for them to reach; when she dances, it is with so much ease and unconcernment as one would imagine in her figures the motion of some goddess descended.… Religion and virtue give the rule to all her actions, yet does not the severity of either lessen the vivacity of her humour, which is so universally charming and agreeable.
She played throughout her life, and she attracted to the court a number of prominent harpsichordists, including Chambonnières.
2.1.3 She was likewise an avid singer and guitarist who cultivated major figures in each of these areas. A portrait of her attributed to Jean Nocret presents her holding a book of manuscript music open to the air “J’avois déja passé un jour sans la voir,” by Michel Lambert. In a letter dated May 29, 1665, Charles II of England indicates that he had sent her compositions for guitar by Francesco Corbetta, who later composed a “Tombeau sur la mort de Madame d’Orléans” that he included in the first volume of La Guitarre royale (1671). The sarabande that follows in the same key had verses mourning Henriette (“Falloit-il, ô dieux, qui la fîtes si belle, la faire mortelle?”) composed to it by “Mademoiselle des Jardins.” Corbetta set the sarabande melody with the new verses as an air for soprano and bass voices with guitar and continuo.
2.1.4 Henriette also supported the work of major literary figures, including Molière (with whom she was connected through Monsieur), and Racine, who dedicated Andromaque to her in 1667, declaring that she had “honored [the play] with some tears at my first reading of it.” Finally, Madame cultivated a lifelong friendship with Marie-Madeleine Pioche, comtesse de La Fayette (1634–1693), author of La Princesse de Clèves and other novels. Henriette convinced her to write a biographical Histoire de Madame Henriette d’Angleterre, which remains one of the primary sources of details on her life. Henriette became close to Louis XIV, and there were whispers of an affair, supposedly covered up by Louis’s dalliance with Louise de La Vallière, one of Madame’s ladies. Whatever the truth of the matter, the early 1660s was a period in which the life of Philippe’s court was most integrated with that of Louis’s: both Madame and Monsieur were frequently at court where they took part in ballets de cour and other entertainments.
2.1.5 After Henriette’s death in 1670, Monsieur married his second wife, Elisabeth Charlotte, in 1671. The new Madame was a reluctantly converted Lutheran, a German princess who was suspicious of French finery and liked nothing better than to be out hunting in the fresh air. Initially, the marriage was happy, but Monsieur’s favorites began to criticize Madame’s behavior at every turn. Her relationship with the king was damaged when he invaded and laid waste to her homeland, and it deteriorated further when he took Madame de Maintenon, whom Madame despised, as his mistress and then morganatic wife. A perpetual outsider, Madame kept up an extensive correspondence throughout her life, which became an important source of information on the French court.
2.1.6 Although she was certainly no intellectual, she was well read and curious. Her reputation was such that by the time of her death, the Mercure could declare in eulogy:
True savants and men of letters have suffered a particular loss. This august Princess liked them, considered them, and protected them with discernment through her great knowledge of all aspects of the arts, and above all, those that involved beautiful antiquity. Her particular taste for antiquities made her cabinet one of the richest and most magnificent in the world of learning.
The “cabinet” contained a large collection of medals, both ancient and modern, which numbered nearly 1,000 pieces by the time of her death.
2.1.7 Her main artistic interest was the theater, of which she was a discerning connoisseur. She was both the dedicatee of a number of plays and collections of poetry and one of the theater’s staunchest defenders at court when Louis XIV turned against it under the influence of Madame de Maintenon. An admirer of Lully, she nevertheless participated in the French trend of regarding opera as an extension of spoken theater, and she admitted that her favorite music was that of the birds and horns she heard while hunting. Nevertheless, she played guitar and took lessons, following the example of Louis XIV. When it came to sacred music, she could never accustom herself to the Catholic style that was so different from the Protestant chorales she had sung in her childhood and continued to sing when no one was listening.
3.0.1 If neither Monsieur nor Elisabeth Charlotte shared Louis XIV’s fascination with music, they evidently relished fêtes of all kinds in which music played a role, and both avidly participated in and staged court entertainments throughout their lives. From his youth, Monsieur was given to hosting frequent fêtes. The largest of these involved many of the same elements as those organized at the royal court: promenades in the gardens with hidden musicians, elaborate light effects, concerts, plays, divertissements, and (occasionally) operas, ballets, balls, boat trips on the nearby Seine, and a great deal of eating and drinking.
3.1.1 Much of the music for these events was provided by musicians employed on a permanent basis, both officers of Monsieur’s maison (official household) and others. The largest intact body of documents describing the musical forces employed by the Orléans are the official listings of the maison, both published registers, such as L’État de la France, and manuscript “États de la maison.” These sources indicate Philippe I’s maison had already been established by the time he was twelve, in 1652, and was expanded some time before 1655, its composition and pay scale being based upon that of Gaston d’Orléans. Thereafter the basic composition of Monsieur’s household music remained essentially unchanged; one prominent alteration was the disappearance of a teacher of the guitar, Bernard de Jourdan, who had also been Louis XIV’s teacher since 1650. A manuscript état for the household dated 1655 lists him without pay.
3.1.2 Although the états are important sources of information on the musical forces employed by the Orléans, they present several problems. Not only it is impossible to determine precise dates of service for many of their musicians because of multiple-year gaps between editions of L’État de la France and the scattered manuscript états that survive, but the earliest états also do not provide complete listings of the musicians (see Appendix 1 for a listing of the sources and their contents). In Monsieur’s case, the first extant document listing musicians’ names (rather than just positions) is a manuscript dated 1655, and the first edition of L’État de la France to record names appeared in 1665. The listings in L’État de la France also are not entirely trustworthy; for example, Etienne Richard, who died in 1669, continued to be listed as Monsieur’s player of dessus de viole until 1680.
3.1.3 Lacunae in the états become particularly apparent when comparing their information with the rare surviving documents issued by the Orléans and their musicians. One such document, the brevet (contract) of one of Monsieur’s tailles-basses, not only provides the exact date of his employment but also notes that the position had been opened by the resignation of its previous possessor. The document further informs us that the musicians of Monsieur’s chamber were required to live at his court, and evidently thus spent considerable time there:
Today, the thirtieth day of the month of September 1663, Monseigneur fils de France, only brother of the king, duke of Orléans, Valois, and Chartres, being at Paris, being well informed of the capacity that Damien Le Vert has acquired in music, His Royal Highness has retained and retains him in the position of one of the two tailles-basses of his music (which was heretofore occupied by Jean Gourlin, and is vacant at present by his resignation), to have, hold, and henceforth exercise the said position. The said Le Vert is to enjoy and use the honors, powers, privileges, exemptions, liberties, income [gages], rights, fruits, profits, revenues, and remunerations thereto appertaining. The said Royal Highness wishes and orders that the said Le Vert will in the future be housed and employed in the said quality in the états of his maison, by virtue of the present contract which testifies to his wishes, signed by his hand and countersigned by me, his comptroller and the secretary of his orders, household, and finances.
We also know that at least some of these offices were purchased: a series of notarial documents records that Jean Henry d’Anglebert borrowed 1,000 livres from Jean Grenouillet de Sablières, the intendant of Monsieur’s Musique de la Chambre, in order to purchase the office of harpsichordist previously held by Henry Du Mont, and subsequently had difficulty paying him back.
3.1.4 By far the greatest problem presented by the états is that the maison they describe was by nature a largely fixed entity while the reality of practice was quite flexible. This situation was no different from that of the royal Musique de la Chambre, where offices were not infrequently repurposed as needs changed over time. Philippe also hired a considerable number of extra musicians who turn up in documents as “ordinaire” or simply “musicien du duc d’Orléans.” In some cases, their exact status and function is impossible to determine, but many of these musicians formed relatively stable ensembles outside the official maison.
3.1.5 The relative lack of information concerning the artistic patronage of the Orléans family is in part due to their position in history. Not only did they have a greater desire for privacy than the king’s court afforded (and thus there were fewer witnesses to report artistic events at their court), but it was their misfortune to have had their seat in Paris. The turbulent history of that city did their memory a disservice: the main archives of the family were destroyed in the chaos of 1848 and, along with it, many sources that might have allowed a more complete picture of their patronage. The largest remaining body of documents, the “fonds de Dreux” at the Archives Nationales, yields little in the way of evidence about their artistic activities. A history of the Orléans’ musique must therefore rely on a combination of information gleaned from the états along with scattered pay records and documents that were preserved largely outside of the family’s archives.
3.1.6 These surviving documents indicate that the Orléans household, like those of most of the royal family, was modeled upon that of the king in its basic division into Chapelle [Chapel], Chambre [Chamber], and Écurie [Stable]. In Monsieur’s maison, however, musicians appear only as members of the Écurie and the Chambre, the latter group possibly serving double duty in the Chapel when required (see Table 1). The musical activities of the Chambre were overseen by a maître de la musique (also called intendant). The musicians under his direction consisted of eight singers divided variously between the usual adult male voice types of the period (haute-contre, taille-haute, taille-basse and basse), two viol players (usually subdivided into basse- and dessus de viole), and a joueur de clavecin. L’État de la France refers to this group as the “douze musicians ordinaires.” Monsieur also employed, at least from 1688 onwards, six enfants de chœur to sing in the chapel at Saint-Cloud.
3.1.7 The Écurie expanded from its initial force of one trumpet and a lute sometime between its founding and 1663. It was modeled upon the royal household’s division between the Swiss and French guards, the Swiss employing players of the fife and kettledrum, and the French two trumpeters and a drummer. The household of Madame, an institutionally separate but functionally connected entity, originally employed a lutenist, but the position was quickly converted to a harpsichordist, designated either as joueur or maître de clavecin. In all, Monsieur employed a total of thirty-seven musicians, making his musique the largest of any noble house in France after that of the king.
3.1.8 The composition of maisons of the royal family was fixed by the crown according to rank and the king’s “wishes,” as many états describe it. The musical forces allotted to Philippe’s maison were based on that of Gaston, which had been founded in the 1620s, and designed for the needs of an early seventeenth-century princely household in which singing the part-music of airs de cour and motets would have been its main occupation. This design proved to be insufficient for Monsieur’s entertainment regimen of balls, chamber music, and theatrical pieces. This problem seems to have been solved through at least three different means: 1) assembling two ensembles outside of the maison: a violin band of nine members and a chamber group of three members; 2) employing musicians who either were courtiers or who were employed by courtiers, including an oboe band; 3) engaging musicians who were either quite flexible in their performance abilities or having musicians perform functions different from their positions’ designations.
3.2.1 Like the musiques of the Chambre and Écurie, Monsieur’s violin band and Petite musique were modeled upon the royal Twenty-Four Violins and small ensembles that performed at the Coucher du roi and other occasions. This practice of employing musicians outside of the official household was not limited to Monsieur. An “Abregé des estates de la maison de la reyne” (Maria Theresa of Spain) for 1676 lists a musique consisting of eight singers in pairs (two boys, two hautes-contres, two tailles, and two basses) and two instrumentalists (basse de viole and harpsichord), but continues that
besides the musicians who have brevets, there is a voix concordant, a voix de taille, two dessus de violon, two tailles de violon, and a basse de violon who serve continually and are paid by ordonnances.
In other words, beyond the ordinaires of the official maison, who were issued brevets, the queen regularly employed two extra singers and a band of five violinists. Thus, it was not unusual for members of the royal family to employ musicians in addition to those assigned to their households, indicating the important place of music in their activities. Even Monsieur, who was not particularly interested in music for its own sake, needed to supplement his forces in order to satisfy the requirements of his position.
3.2.2 Judging from the number of reports of performances, the most active of Monsieur’s ensembles was his violin band, a reflection of the prince’s interest in balls and entertaining. The bande was probably in existence as early as 1660, when the Gazette de France describes “un charmant Concert de Violons” playing during a fête at Saint-Cloud. Over time, Monsieur’s violins became a well known institution: Laurent, in his Lettres en vers to Monsieur, referred to the group as “tous vos violons la bande” in 1677, and the Mercure describes them as “les violons de Monsieur” in reports of various events in the 1690s. The only extant pay record, a receipt dated 1694, lists the group as “les neuf violons de Monsieur frère du Roy,” indicating that it was a standing ensemble with a fixed number of members. The group received 1,800 livres for the second half of that year, meaning that each of the members earned 400 livres per year in Monsieur’s service. The seven musicians who signed the receipt were Jean-Baptiste Anet père, Guillaume Dufresne, Edme Dumont, Jacques Duviver, Pierre Marchand, Jacques Nivelon, and Jean-Baptiste Prieur. Few biographical details concerning Dufresne, Dumont, Duvivier, Nivelon, and Prieur remain, apart from what can be gleaned from scant archival materials.
3.2.3 Archival records of the band’s members indicate they held positions in the Orléans’ music for some time. Indeed, the musicians employed in the violin band and Petite musique seem in general to have led complex musical lives, leaving behind them a considerable fund of documents that allow partial reconstruction of their ensembles. These documents invariably refer to Monsieur’s violinists as officier rather than ordinaire: bass violinist Jean Converset is listed as “officier de la musique de chambre de Monsieur” in a series of notarial records dating from 1673 through 1687. His son Noël (b. 1674) served Monsieur at an unknown date, but it is not clear whether he was acting as a replacement for his father. Either violinist therefore may have been among the “camarades” not named in the pay receipt of 1694. Jean-Baptiste Anet père (1650–1710) was serving Monsieur by 1673 according to his marriage contract, and he continued, earning 400 livres per year, until his death in 1710. Another member of the group, Pierre Marchand (d. ca. 1730), declared himself an officer of the music of Monsieur in notarial documents in 1678, in 1684, and in 1700.
3.2.4 The group seems to have been well enough regarded to be hired or loaned for special occasions: on June 14, 1679, for example, the bande of Monsieur and the Twenty-Four Violins of the king were combined for a performance of a Te Deum and a motet by Jean Mignon at the church of the Augustinians in Paris. Monsieur likewise loaned his violins to members of his household for entertainments. They played at Boisfranc’s chateau in July of 1679 for a gathering to welcome the escort for Marie Louise d’Orléans (1662–1689), who would shortly marry Charles II of Spain. According to the report in the Mercure, Monsieur’s violins played “during the meal” and “continued for a kind of a little ball” in which Monsieur, Madame, and Mademoiselle “danced a number of times” along with members of their court. The ball concluded in “Spanish” flavor with “several sarabande entrées” performed “by the best dancers of the Opéra” to “the sound of guitars,” and by “bohemian dances” with “basque drum and castanets.”
3.2.5 A number of Monsieur’s violinists combined their duties with performances for Molière’s troupe. After concluding a now-lost agreement with Molière, three of Monsieur’s violinists—Duvivier, Pierre Marchand, and Jean Converset—signed an agreement among themselves stipulating that they had to be hired as a group except in cases where musical requirements prevented all three (“tous trois violons de Monsieur frère unique du roi”) from being engaged. Pay records in the archives of the Comédie Française and scattered indications of performers in Charpentier’s manuscript scores indicate the participation of these violinists in productions of several of the composer’s comedies for Molière’s theater: Le Malade imaginaire (May 1674), Circé (March 1675), L’Inconnu (November 1676), and Les Fous divertissants (May 1681). It appears, therefore, that a group from Monsieur’s violin band played for the Comédie at least on an irregular basis, a situation that probably began with Molière’s connection to Monsieur and continued under Charpentier. According to the livret for the premiere of La Princesse d’Élide in 1664, the continuo group for the ensemble also consisted of a number of players employed by Monsieur and Louis XIV: d’Anglebert and Etienne Richard (harpsichord), Leonard Itier (lute), and Pierre Antoine Le Moine (viol).
3.2.6 The second ensemble employed by Monsieur outside the maison was the “Petite musique du cabinet.” Its existence is attested by the 1683 marriage contract of Jean Balthazar Quicler (or Kuicler) in which he and Claude Jacquesson, a lutenist, are listed as ordinaires belonging to the group. The ensemble also appears in two reports of entertainments given for Monsieur’s court. The latest, an account of a fête staged at Saint-Cloud in 1681, describes the ensemble as consisting of Jacquesson, playing together with “Sr. Balthazar” (presumably Quicler) on harpsichord and a treble viol player named Garnier. An earlier account from 1668 describes a concert given in the presence of Monsieur and Madame by a similar trio ensemble (consisting of Garnier, a keyboardist, and a lutenist), indicating that the membership of the Petit musique was fairly stable over considerable spans of time:
|Un rare Concert ou ouit||A rare concert, where were heard|
|De Clavessin, Théorbe et Viole||harpsichord, theorbo, and viol|
|Que jusques au Ciel on extole.||that are praised to the skies.|
|Les Amphions qui les touchoyent||The Amphions who played|
|Aussi de grands Maîtres êtoyent;||were masters just as great;|
|C’est Méliton, Garnier, le Moine||it was Méliton, Garnier, le Moine|
|Et Richard, Personnage idoine||and Richard, the ideal person|
|A toucher l’Orgue, de façon||to play the organ in a way that|
|Que de luy chacun prend leçon||everyone takes a lesson from him.|
“Méliton” is probably Pierre Méliton, who would be organist at St.-Jean-en-Grève from about 1670 until 1682; he was thus probably the harpsichordist. “Le Moine” undoubtedly refers to a member of the well-known lute-playing family, perhaps Pierre Le Moine, who sang basse-taille in Monsieur’s chamber from 1655 until some time before 1669 and still appears in the capitation records as Monsieur’s musician in 1695. The gambist is presumably the Jean Garnier “still among the renowned masters of the viol” living “close to the Palais-Royal” in 1692. A full listing of the musicians who can be identified as having worked for Monsieur in ensembles both inside and outside of the maison can be found in Table 2.
3.2.7 The augmentation of Philippe I’s forces for large-scale entertainments probably also involved the temporary hiring of musiciens extraordinaires (although no records of such hirings are extant), as well as the use of musicians employed by courtiers. Indeed, the third ensemble that performed in Monsieur’s entertainments, an oboe band, was evidently drawn from such musicians. A report in the Mercure galant on Monsieur’s activities at the château of Montargis in October of 1699 says that during meals, “the trumpets of Monsieur and the oboes of Mr de Rosmadec, his premier gentilhomme de la chambre, could be heard.” Although no other document mentions this group, its existence may shed light on the composition of musical forces in large noble houses. The musique of Monsieur’s cousin, Mlle de Guise, employed servants who doubled as musicians (or, sometimes, vice versa), but there is little indication that the Orléans did so, and the reason may be that they called upon musicians employed by courtiers like Rosmadec.
3.3.1 The frequent contradictions between official listings of Monsieur’s maison and other archival documents reflect the particular needs of Philippe I’s court musique. It was nowhere near as large as the king’s, yet it served many of the same functions. There are in fact no records of any performances by singers of the Musique de la Chambre in their named positions. Many were players of the lute, guitar, and/or viol, and they may have been engaged for their abilities as instrumentalists. These musicians include Pierre Lemoine as well as François Martin père, who were employed as singers in Monsieur’s chambre from before 1655 but published a book of Pieces de guitairre, à battre et à pinser (1663) and whose sons played viol and harpsichord. Nicolas Fleury, employed briefly around 1665, was well known for his Méthode pour apprendre facilement à toucher le théorbe sur la basse continüe (1660). He was replaced in 1669 by the lutenist Léonard Itier, who served as haute-contre and taille-basse while also being a member of the royal Musique de la Chambre as theorbist and viol player. His son-in-law, Pierre Henry Lagneau, was almost certainly both a lutenist and a singer because he succeeded Itier in the royal music, served side by side with him in Monsieur’s Chambre from 1694 in the position of haute-contre, and was considered “the best singing master in Paris” in 1722.
3.3.2 Flexibility was also common among Monsieur’s instrumentalists, especially the players of the viol, who frequently doubled on lute and/or theorbo (which was not uncommon) but also on harpsichord. The position of dessus de viole seems to have been particularly labile. The first extant état in fact lists the position as including theorbo; it was held by the famous gambist and theorbist, Nicolas Hottman (1613–63). By 1665, the position was filled by the organist Etienne Richard (ca. 1621–1669), who had already been serving as harpsichordist to Henriette from at least 1663. It is not clear what happened after Richard’s death, since L’État de la France continues to list him in the position, but sometime around 1681 it was filled by François Beaumavielle (d. 1689), famous for his basse-taille roles at the Académie Royale de Musique (see Appendix 1). Although it is possible that Beaumavielle played viol or theorbo, he could have been hired to participate as a singer in the divertissements staged by Monsieur during this period. After Beaumavielle’s death, the position was taken by Jean Balthazar Quicler, who the manuscript états for 1700 and 1701 indicate played instead basse de viole, presumably to provide more continuo players. Quicler seems also to have been a generalist musician: although all the états list him as a viol player, he played harpsichord in the Petite musique, and a “Balthazar” paid his capitation tax as an organist in the employ of Monsieur in 1694. If Quicler did indeed double on harpsichord and viol, he was apparently not the first of Monsieur’s musicians to do so. His colleague, Jean Martin, who took the other position as gambist, is listed in his inventaire après décès as “claveciniste ordinaire de la musique de Monsieur, frère du Roi,” and his name appears next to Balthazar’s in the capitation lists as Monsieur’s organist. Martin’s inventaire après décès, in fact, indicates that he owned two harpsichords, including a Flemish double, as well as several gambas.
3.3.3 Thus, throughout at least the later part of Monsieur’s life, the musicians of his maison seem to have been engaged for maximum flexibility. The result was a musique particularly rich in players of continuo instruments: theorbo, viol, and keyboards. That this body of instrumentalists did in fact play together, at least on occasion, is supported by an unusually detailed report of a fête given by the Orléans at Saint-Cloud on November 26, 1686. Among the events described was a “fort beau Concert composé de Clavessins, Violes, Tuorbes, & Dessus de Violon” that lasted for over an hour. Nearly twenty years earlier, Robinet described a similar group of instruments playing for a gathering organized for Henriette. Such events demonstrate that Monsieur combined members of his different ensembles.
3.3.4 In fact, Monsieur never had fewer than three keyboard players (counting the harpsichordist in the Petite musique), a practice that may relate to the nature of the musicians who held the official position of harpsichordist. Unlike the generalist viol players and singers, the harpsichordists of Monsieur’s chamber were usually well-known keyboard specialists. At the same time, these figures often combined service to Monsieur with other positions, both in Paris and at the royal court. Henry Dumont (1610–84), who later achieved fame as sous-maître in the royal chapel, was harpsichordist to Monsieur’s Chamber in 1655, and the title page of his Meslanges (1657) refers to him as “Organiste de son Altesse Royale le duc d’Anjou, Frère unique du Roy.” His position was purchased in 1660 by Jean-Henry d’Anglebert, who is likewise called “organiste du duc d’Orléans” in the record of his son’s baptism. Since no official position of “organist” is ever mentioned in records of the maison and because d’Anglebert appears in all other documents as harpsichordist, it is likely that his position required performance on both instruments. D’Anglebert held the post until his death, but (like Etienne Richard) also served the royal court: he was harpsichordist of the king’s chamber from 1662 onward, and from 1680 until 1690 was joueur d’épinette to the Dauphine. D’Anglebert’s successor, Gabriel Garnier (d. ca. 1730), served simultaneously as organist at the chapel of the Invalides in Paris. Like d’Anglebert, Garnier is called “organiste du duc d’Orléans” in a baptismal record of 1693, while L’État de la France for that period lists him as harpsichordist.
3.3.5 Thus, it would appear that, unlike the other keyboardists in Monsieur’s service, the musicians who held the official position of harpsichordist were hired for their abilities as organists (for their knowledge of liturgy and ability to play service music), as well as harpsichordists. Nevertheless, their duties and musical activities in the service of the Orléans remain largely unknown, as there are very few detailed descriptions of music in the Orléans chapels. There is no indication of how Du Mont, d’Anglebert, and Garnier negotiated the duties of their multiple posts, but the most obvious solution was that one of the other keyboardists in Monsieur’s service replaced them when duties elsewhere called them away.
3.3.6 Monsieur’s organists were not his only musicians who needed to negotiate this problem of multiple and potentially conflicting duties. A few well-known musicians in Monsieur’s Chamber were simultaneously active at the royal court. Most of these joined at the time of the founding of the maison and left sometime in the ten years between the 1655 and 1665 états, including Hottman and Guillaume d’Estival, who served the queen in 1661, then in the royal Chapel and Chamber in 1663.
3.3.7 The complex interactions between the musique of Monsieur and that of the king seem to have declined after the 1660s. The reasons for this were probably several, including the gradual abandonment of ballets de cour (in which Monsieur and Madame frequently participated as dancers) and the dominance of opera, which they often saw at the Palais-Royal (hence not requiring the involvement of their own musicians). The death of Henriette, who shared an interest in music with Louis XIV and who often organized musical events, probably contributed as well. From the 1670s onward, Monsieur seems generally to have avoided engaging musicians who simultaneously served in the royal music. Indeed, a number of musicians used a post in Monsieur’s musique as a jumping-off point to royal service, particularly the violinists, a number of whom later joined the Twenty-Four Violins.
3.3.8 The intendants led equally complicated lives. Beginning with the establishment of the household, the position was held by Jean Grenouillet de Sablières (1627–1684). A member of the generation of courtier-musicians who flourished under Louis XIII, Sablières held aristocratic titles along with offices in the royal household. He composed a number of airs, as well as motets and devotional pieces, which are largely no longer extant. He is perhaps most famous for his role in the early history of the Académie Royale de Musique, for which he wrote Les Amours de Diane et d’Endymion (1671). It is not clear what became of Sablières’s position. In 1676, he succeeded Étienne Moulinié as intendant et maître de musique des États de Languedoc in Montpellier, and lived comfortably in the region until his death in 1684. The État de la France nevertheless continues to record Sablières as intendant of the musique of Philippe I until 1699, perhaps succeeded by his son (Appendix 1). Editions of L’État de la France from 1692 to 1699 record him as sharing the position with an otherwise unknown “Charle Lalouette” (who may be related to the composer Jean-François Lalouette). According to two manuscript états, Philippe II’s protégé, Charles-Hubert Gervais, took over in 1700.
3.3.9 The position of joueur de clavecin in Madame’s household, although initially occupied by renowned musicians, seems to have been only intermittently held after her death in 1670. Etienne Richard served as harpsichordist to Henriette from 1663, and his playing was the centerpiece of a number of concerts she held in the mid-to-late 1660s. After Richard’s death, Jacques Hardel (1643–1678) held the position until the end of his life. One of the most famous keyboardists of his day, Hardel also served as harpsichord teacher to Monsieur’s daughter by Henriette, Marie-Louise d’Orléans (1662–1689), and probably also to Anne-Marie d’Orléans (1669–1728). Charles Couperin (II) seems to have been employed by Madame, as suggested by an archival document issued January 15, 1679, that refers to him as “organiste de St Gervais et officier de Madame la Duchesse d’Orléans,” perhaps replacing Hardel. After Couperin’s death and Marie-Louise’s marriage in 1679, the position of harpsichordist to Madame seems to have suffered from Elisabeth-Charlotte’s lack of interest in the instrument. No one is listed in the états of her household until François Baron appears in a manuscript état of 1692, perhaps serving as harpsichord teacher to Madame’s daughter, Elisabeth-Charlotte d’Orléans (1676–1744). L’État de la France indicates the position was held by Gabriel Cordier in 1695, then by Gaspard Le Vasseur, who retained it from around 1702 until Elisabeth-Charlotte’s death in 1722. None of these musicians played an important role in the French musical scene, and almost nothing is recorded of their lives.
3.3.10 The precise roles and duties of the members of the Musique de la Chambre in the musical life of Monsieur’s court remain unclear. Certain members seem to have made considerable careers for themselves outside Monsieur’s court, taking an active part in Parisian musical life. Claude Oudot, for example, served Monsieur in the position of basse from around 1669 and then haute-contre from around 1689 until his death in 1696, but he also simultaneously held positions as maître de chapelle for the Jesuits and maître de musique for the Académie Française, writing numerous pieces for various patrons and institutions. Lagneau, Anet, and Duval all played in the Opéra orchestra, at least in 1704. Others, such as Sablières, Gillier, and Gervais, seem to have composed for the Orléans when the family called upon them.
3.3.11 The engagement of Monsieur’s musicians in multiple activities beyond their prince’s court may have been a result of their financial situation. A manuscript listing of the maison made sometime around 1689 includes marginal notes indicating that various offices were not paid, and next to the listing of the Musique de la Chambre it notes that “Toute la musique est sans gages,” in other words, that its members did not benefit from the income generated from the purchase of their offices. A note at the beginning of the listing of Monsieur’s officers explains that:
Sometimes the maisons of the fils de France and other princes, which record their états with the Cour des aydes, have suffered the revocation of their privileges, which have also been reestablished. The maison of Monsieur has never been curtailed since its establishment, but because he has a large number of useless officers who, having neither gages nor function, may not enjoy these privileges, it would be possible to remove them from [the list of] those of this type. They will be marked below.
Because the Musique de la Chambre had musicians listed as officeholders throughout Monsieur’s lifetime, because some (such as Damien Le Vert) were issued brevets outlining their privileges, and some (such as d’Anglebert) were known to have paid for their offices, and finally, because the états indicate that offices not infrequently changed hands during the period in question, this pronouncement is difficult to understand. Given that this document seems to have been written around 1689 and that records of economic and musical activity of the musicians in the Chambre stem mostly from the 1660s, it may be that they at some point became “useless” and their offices converted to nominal appointments. This might explain why many of its members played active musical roles in other positions in Monsieur’s maison (such as the Petite musique) or in Parisian institutions, and it could shed light on the fate of Sablières, who seems to have left Paris around 1676. Unless other documents surface to clarify the matter, however, this can only be a speculative conclusion.
3.3.12 What became of Monsieur’s musical forces after his death is equally unclear. In his testament, Monsieur asked Philippe II to retain all his officers or to pay them the cost of their office. Although Louis XIV gave Philippe II the same rights and household as his father, the listings of the future regent’s household in L’Etat de la France include musicians only in the Écurie but not the Chambre, perhaps because its musicians were no longer officially officers. By then Philippe II had formed his own musique, which included Gervais, Anet père, and probably Baltazar Quicler, all of whom he remained in his service after Monsieur’s death.
3.4.1 Like the rest of the royal family, the Orléans generally seem to have taken a personal interest in the lives of their favorite musicians, and numerous documents record the involvement of Philippe II and Madame in weddings and baptisms. While this was relatively rare in Monsieur’s case, presumably since he had only a passing interest in music, he nevertheless employed multiple members of several musician families during his nearly fifty years as head of the Orléans household. A number of members of the violin band were succeeded by their sons, as in the case of Anet, Converset, and Nivelon. This was also the case for members of the Chambre like Leonard Itier and his son-in-law Pierre Lagneau, as well as family members of servants who became musicians, such as Charles-Hubert Gervais.
3.4.2 One of the main families to serve Monsieur was the Martins, who have received very little attention despite having published composers among them. Numerous Martins worked as musicians between the sixteenth and the eighteenth centuries, making it difficult to trace the family. The first member to serve Monsieur was François Martin père, who probably joined the Musique de la Chambre at its inception; the first complete listing in 1655 indicates he was already serving as taille-haute, and L’État de la France continues to record a “François Martin” in that position through 1699. He was well known as a guitarist and composer, having published a collection of technically demanding Pièces de guitairre à battre et à pinser (Paris, 1663) and a collection of vocal airs (Airs de François Martin [Paris, 1668]). Although the date of François’s birth remains unknown, a “young Martin” was already a famous musician when Charles Coypeau d’Assoucy published L’Ovide en belle humeur in 1650, in which Martin is mentioned along with Michel Lambert in a description of Apollo’s employment of various musicians for the seduction of Daphne:
|Luy faire entendre la Musique||To have performed for her the music|
|De La Pierre et de Constantin,||of La Pierre and of Constantin,|
|Luy mener le jeune Martin||to bring her the young Martin|
|Et Monsieur Lambert son compere||and Monsieur Lambert, his friend|
It seems likely that this Martin was in fact François, the most renowned member of the family at that point. His being “young” around 1650 would put the date of his birth after 1630, which would make him about age thirty at the baptism of his son, François Martin fils, on November 27, 1661. Like Sablières and Chambonnières, he was an aristocrat, as the privilège in his book of guitar pieces identifies him as “noble homme François Martin ordre de la Musique de Monseigneur le Duc d’Orléans.” Like Sablières, he (and several of his sons) held non-musical administrative positions in addition to their role as musicians.
3.4.3 François père had at least three relatives who served Monsieur as musicians, all of whom were harpsichordists, viol players, or both: François fils (ca. 1660–bef. 1710), Pierre (active ca. 1660–ca. 1672), and Jean (ca. 1650–1710). A manuscript état from 1700 indicates that “François Martin fils” had taken over his father’s position as taille-haute in Monsieur’s chamber. Given the inexactitude of the entries in L’État de la France, which simply list “François Martin” in the position through 1699, it is possible that François fils replaced his father earlier. Indeed, he seems to have been active as a musician from 1678, when the Mercure printed an air composed by “Mr. Martin le fils” and described him as “having acquired esteem for the manner in which he plays harpsichord as well as bass and treble viol.” François fils died sometime before 1710, when the inventory made at Jean’s death indicates that François’s spouse, Marie Magdaleine Durin, was a widow.
3.4.4 Pierre Martin served as player of the basse de viole in Monsieur’s Chambre in the late 1660s, according to L’État de la France. He had been replaced by the time of the 1672 edition by Jean, who served Monsieur through 1701, and whose inventaire après décès identifies as the brother of François. Jean was clearly a multifaceted musician: despite his official position as viol player, the inventaire declares him “claveciniste ordinaire” to Monsieur, and Du Pradel’s Livre d’adresses (1692) calls him “still a famous harpsichordist.” Likewise, the inventory indicates he owned a single manual French harpsichord, a double manual Flemish, a basse de viole, and no fewer than eight dessus de viole. Given the large number of dessus, some of which were not yet strung, and the presence of a 600-livre receipt for the sale of a harpsichord signed by a [Marie-Françoise?] “Certain,” Martin may have been dealing in instruments.
3.4.5 Jean’s musical interests were broad, as demonstrated by his library: he owned “about two reams [1,000 pages] of paper, including cantatas, sonatas, operas, etc., both French and Italian, some printed and some copied by hand” along with “four bound books of operas with four other bound books [of] notated [music].”  He was apparently more active as a composer than his brothers: he published a collection of airs, the Premier livre d’airs sérieux et à boire (Paris: Christophe Ballard, 1688), as well as several airs in the Mercure. Like a number of Monsieur’s musicians, he also took part in Parisian musical life, organizing weekly concerts offered during the summer of 1689 by Nicholas Malebranche, a member of the parliament of Paris and father of the famous philosopher. According to the Mercure, Martin had performed a “pastorale” of his own composition during these concerts, in celebration of Louis XIV.
4.0.1 At once courtiers to the king and members of the royal family with courts of their own, Monsieur and Madame staged musical and theatrical events that reflected a courtly balance between cultivating their own tastes and accommodating those of the king and courtiers accustomed to royal amusements. The Orléans also had to negotiate the problem of providing entertainments with enough novelty—which enhanced their courtly position as providers of plaisirs and patrons of the arts—but not outshining those offered by the king. Thus, although occasions involving music at the Orléans court tended to follow a similar pattern, music played an important part, especially after the 1670s, to suit Monsieur’s interest in “great gatherings and masked balls” as Elisabeth-Charlotte put it.
4.0.2 From the very beginning of Monsieur’s adult life, reports of the prince’s entertainments mention musical performances, especially when the music-loving king was present. The Gazette de France of June 1659, for example, describes a journey to Saint-Cloud by the royal court, including the king, queen, and Cardinal Mazarin, during which the teenage Monsieur “entertained with a marvelous splendor and magnificence, good food accompanying delicious concerts and many other festivities.” On a number of occasions during the next summer, Monsieur, in pursuit of Henriette’s hand in marriage, treated the king and his court to even more elaborate amusements. Several reports of these events indicate that the prince staged unspecified “concerts,” at least some of them by the violin band that is mentioned on one particular occasion:
The 12th [of August], His Majesty having gone to the delicious house of Monsieur at Saint-Cloud, where the princess [Henriette] of England, the nieces of His Eminence [Cardinal Mazarin], and a number of lords and ladies also were. After this illustrious company promenaded in the gardens where there was a charming concert of violins, they were diverted by the Spanish comedy, and after that treated to a meal in which this prince’s usual magnificence and etiquette shone equally brightly. Finally, there was a ball with the best and most pleasant illuminations.
These fêtes and music continued throughout Monsieur’s lifetime in more or less the same vein, playing an important part in his position as the “soul of the pleasures” at court. Such fêtes regularly included promenades with hidden musicians, dinners or collations, “concerts of violins” (less frequently other instruments), and theatrical productions. Most of the records of such fêtes place them at Saint-Cloud, which was not only Monsieur’s main residence (the Palais-Royal belonged to the crown until 1692), but boasted the natural beauty of large gardens, wooded hills and the river Seine.
4.0.3 Although many of these fêtes have the same elements, the more elaborate grandes fêtes attempted to surprise the court by novelty and magnificence. One of the most well-chronicled fêtes was staged on August 11, 1672, to celebrate the king’s victory in Flanders, to which was devoted an entire special number of the Gazette de France. The detailed account gives a sense not only of the attempt to show off the pleasing aspects of the chateau to their best advantage, but to evoke pleasure through profusion, wonder, and surprise:
The charming chateau of S. Cloud being one of the most pleasing and agreeable places, [His Majesty] proposed to come for a promenade, and having told Monsieur and Madame, their Royal Highnesses went there from S. Germain[-en-Laye] the next day, the 11th of this month, in order to prepare everything to receive His Majesty.… [The king] arrived around five in the evening, in extraordinarily beautiful weather. A party of lords and ladies of the court also came to contribute to the celebration with all of the wit and playfulness imaginable, in order to please this so worthy Hero.
The arrival of the company occurred at the vestibule, which presented them with everything that might fully satisfy the senses of sight and smell, as it and the balustrade of the staircase were decorated with a large number of bowls and pots of flowers, completely around the perimeter, from bottom to top. From this vestibule … one went toward the waterway, which is opposite the apartment of Monsieur; this, too, was full of many vases and flowers … disposed along the water basins in a symmetry that increased its beauty,… and so that none of the senses could complain about the pleasure of the others, there were hidden oboes … that played lovely airs, which charmed the ears, adding to the joy of the royal company.
There the company boarded carriages that had been prepared for the promenade, [which] went past the cascade, the large water jet…, and the basin of thirteen fountains, all objects capable of making a promenade completely charming. From there, the company descended in order to enter a room called the Cabinet de l’Aigrette. It is hidden by a fence that surrounds it and forms a labyrinth that prevents entrance in such a manner that one cannot find it until after searching through paths that are confused with one another, but it is so pleasant to get lost that one has no less pleasure in being lost than in finding oneself afterward in this room, which furnishes the view with a marvelous diversity of objects that almost enchant it. It is decorated all around with seats and squares of lawn, with pyramids in the four corners; and in the middle there spurts a feather of water, from which the room derives its name.… While this august company allowed their sense of sight and smell to be charmed by the decoration and the perfumes of such a delicious hidden place, they were agreeably surprised by an excellent concert of violins hidden behind the fence, by which the ear was also well diverted.
Among the pleasures caused by so many galant things, there was only taste that could feel jealous of the other senses, not yet having, until then, found the satisfaction it was due, but … in order to satisfy it, there was served in a charming pavillion, a meal in which magnificence and politesse were equally apparent.… The oboes and violins that were heard playing separately now played together, then responded to one another in echoes, to which the surrounding spaces contributed so agreeably that there had never been such pleasure in the hearing.
As the pleasant surprises in this place succeeded one another, there was a marvelous one at the end of this superb celebration, on leaving the pavilion, by an illumination.… The source of this brightness, which appeared in the depths of the night [was] an infinite number of lights that filled, as far as the eye could see, both sides of the allées.
Following this could be seen the great water jet, lighted at seven different levels.… But, of so many illuminations, that of the cascade appeared the most surprising. There were seen to shine a prodigious number of lights that were redoubled by the reflection of opposing mirrors. Thus the torrents of water seemed to flow, pell-mell, with those of fire, and these so contrary elements seemed to harmonize with one another for the satisfaction of the Monarch.
After the entertainment of all of these brilliant and admirable things, accompanied by fanfares of trumpets and the sound of drums, which mingled with those of the waters, the company went to see the superbly furnished apartments of the chateau.
As pleasures accumulated there in crowds, in order to complete the delights, all of the senses were filled, again, on this very galant stage, by a play, given by the royal troupe, and this piece appeared so pleasant and so well performed that it made the best possible epilogue to all the entertainments. Thus, the illustrious gathering departed afterward to return to Saint-Germain-en-Laye as satisfied as one might imagine by this great number of enchantments. It is thus that one could call so many pleasures, which had been prepared in a single day by the work of Sieur Guichard, gentleman ordinary of Monsieur; the zeal that he continually reveals in the service of His Royal Highness having made up for the little time he had to execute his orders.
4.0.4 Like many events staged by Monsieur, the grande fête of 1672 was organized at very short notice, responding to the king’s wish for a promenade. As good courtiers to the king, Monsieur and Madame hastened to demonstrate their zeal to serve him and to fulfill the wishes of their sovereign, but also to demonstrate their cultivation of courtly pleasures. The main officer responsible for the organization was their intendant, Henry Guichard (1634–after 1703), a prominent figure in the early history of French opera. The short notice presumably did not allow for the composition or production of new works, but rather employed Monsieur’s standing ensembles—the violin and oboe bands, and the trumpets of the Écurie—and the Comédie Française, presumably engaged at the last minute. As such, the different instrumental ensembles were disposed to give maximum variety and pleasure, but essentially following their typical usage in royal fêtes.
4.0.5 Having deployed these various entertainments for the king, Monsieur reused them in a fête for Madame de Guise, the princess of Monaco, the English ambassador, and various courtiers on May 4, 1673, prompting a report in the Mercure remarking on the originality of Guichard’s light show. The same elements appear in fêtes staged for Monsieur by his courtiers, for example, a fête given by his surintendant des finances in 1673, which included hidden violins, musettes, and oboes, a “magnificent meal” accompanied by a concert of violins, a performance of a piece by Racine, and a comedy that “Monsieur wished because he had already seen it, and was amused.”
4.0.6 Despite the similar design of many fêtes staged at the Orléans court, its musical life saw the development of a number of different trends over the course of Monsieur’s lifetime, giving rise to several distinct periods of activity. After Philippe’s marriage in 1661, the Orléans not only took part in court ballets and other entertainments staged for Louis XIV, but their court became the scene of a number of ballets and concerts. Many of these seem to have stemmed from Henriette’s love of music and dancing, which she shared with the king. After Monsieur’s 1671 marriage to the less musically inclined Elisabeth-Charlotte and the development of French opera, court music seems to have taken a back seat to the Opéra, which could be reached directly from the apartments in the Palais-Royal. It was only in the early 1680s, with Monsieur’s reconstruction of Saint-Cloud—as well as the development of an anti-Lully cabale and the staging of musical events by other princely patrons—that Monsieur and members of his court returned to staging musico-dramatic events.
4.1.1 Monsieur participated with his brother in court ballets beginning with his appearance at the age of eleven in the Ballet des fêtes de Bacchus (1651) representing a girl, and two years later in the Ballet de la nuict (1653) as a one of two “galands” dancing with two cross-dressed “coquettes.” These cross-dressing roles ceased, at least in ballets staged at the royal court, by the time of his marriage to Henriette, and the two danced frequently in ballets organized for Louis XIV, including the Ballet des saisons (1661), Ballet des arts (1663), Plaisirs de l’ile enchantée (1664), the Ballet de la naissance de Vénus (1665), and the Ballet des muses (1666). La Naissance de Venus was created as an homage to Henriette, who directed the design, “conducted,” and danced the title role of the ballet.
4.1.2 Monsieur’s and Madame’s involvement in ballets at the royal court led them to stage several of their own in the early 1660s. These ballets served as entertainments during the king’s visits to their chateaux, and in at least one case a ballet was ordered by Louis himself. Three reports indicated that the ballets were impromptus, “composed the previous day.” The first, on January 19, 1662, was a “ballet à neuf entrées” for the visit of the king and several courtiers “chez Madame.” The second ballet, about which neither the Gazette nor Loret gives any details, was danced on April 17, 1664, at Saint-Cloud. Two very similar events were staged at Monsieur’s country château at Villers-Cotterêts; the first during the summer of 1664 and the second on September 26, 1665. Both were impromptu ballets of nine entrées “danced by the king, Monsieur, Madame, and a number of their principal courtiers.” A livret exists only for the earlier ballet, which the marquis de Dangeau wrote at short notice at the request of the king who was visiting the chateau. The ballet consisted of nine entrées and two récits whose texts appear in Bacilly’s Nouveau recueil des plus beaux airs de cour (1666) without indication of composer.
4.1.3 Henriette’s interest in harpsichord and singing inspired a number of performances of chamber music by well-known musicians, particularly in the mid 1660s (see Table 3). Since the Gazette and the Mercure rarely reported on such intimate events, most of the descriptions of them come from the Lettres en vers, whose writers had access to private Orléans events. They reveal that many of the performances for Madame were by courtier-musicians of the Louis XIII period, and Madame performed herself on more than one occasion. Robinet, for example, reports a concert chez Madame on November 1, 1665, given by Chambonnières, who played solo harpsichord pieces and afterward accompanied mlle de Saint-Christophe in an air sérieux. Shortly thereafter, on December 12, Robinet reports that “le sieur [Leonard] Itier…, le Roy des Théorbes” played for Madame, and all the listeners were women (“Madame et de maintes Belles”), presumably her ladies. Itier had begun serving Monsieur as haute-contre in the Musique de la Chambre the year before, according to L’État de la France.
4.1.4 Another set of concerts for Madame’s circle took place around Catherine-Henry Menardeau-Champré, who was the wife of a controlleur-général des finances du roi and a well-known lutenist. She performed on her instrument for Madame on October 24, 1666, and played with an ensemble of instruments in December of 1665. Madame herself became involved in the music making during Christmas of 1667 when Etienne Richard played noëls on a regal and accompanied her singing. These performances thus seem to indicate that Henriette employed music for her own entertainment and that of her courtly circle of women in a quasi-salon context, where noble amateurs mixed with professional musician-courtiers for the performance of harpsichord and lute music as well as solo airs.
4.1.5 Chamber music also took place as part of larger celebrations. On November 26, 1667, during a fête for the king and queen at the Palais-Royal, Etienne Richard “directed” an “excellente symphonie.” Another such concert, on January 14, 1668, mentioned above, involved the Petite musique. After Henriette’s death there are few descriptions of such chamber music performances, but very few of the main sources of information on such performances, the Lettres en vers de Madame, have survived for Elisabeth-Charlotte’s period.
4.2.1 Despite Monsieur’s disinterest in music for its own sake, he nevertheless found himself drawn into the quarrels over the founding of the Académie Royale de Musique. The central figures in this story were his officers, Grenouillet de Sablières and Guichard. Guichard, an architect by trade, became gentilhomme ordinaire to Monsieur and intendant général des bâtiments et jardins, overseeing the reconstruction of Saint-Cloud and the organization of Monsieur’s fêtes.
4.2.2 According to a document in the famous suit against Lully, Monsieur commissioned Guichard to stage an opera for his coming marriage to Elisabeth-Charlotte in 1671:
In the month of October 1671, Monsieur commanded Guichard—whom he honored by ordinarily giving him the oversight of that which regarded his pleasures—to have an opera composed for performance before Madame [Elisabeth-Charlotte] when he received her at Villers-Cotterets after the celebration of the wedding of Their Highnesses in the town of Challons. Guichard engaged the sieur de Sablières, intendant of Monsieur’s music, to work on this opera. His Royal Highness having changed his mind, the King wished it to be performed at Versailles, which was done according to the order of His Majesty through the agency of Guichard on the third of November of that same year, 1671.
The opera in question was the pastorale Les Amours de Diane et d’Endymion, whose libretto Guichard wrote. The opera followed on the heels of Pomone, the first opera for Pierre Perrin’s Académie Royale de Musique, whose privilège Sablières had purchased in August. Where Monsieur got the idea to have an opera composed for his marriage is not clear, but it was evidently suggested by Sablières, or by Guichard, who purchased a share of the privilège for the Académie in November 1671. The score is unfortunately lost, but the libretto reveals the work to be a fully sung pastorale with an overture, a prologue, and some unusual elements, including a prelude for Diana written for two hunting horns, Elisabeth-Charlotte’s favorite instrument. The new opera was a success, despite having only been two weeks in preparation, and a revised version was performed for Carnival celebrations at Saint-Germain-en-Laye on February 18, 1672.
4.2.3 Monsieur’s involvement in the venture seems to have ended after his “change of mind,” when all the support for the project was taken over by the king. It is not clear what sparked this change of mind, but it fits Philippe’s indecisive character. Monsieur likewise chose not to assist Sablières in his attempts to help Robert Cambert—the composer of Pomone—by dividing the position of Intendant between the two musicians. In a notarial document dated March 21, 1673, Sablières agreed to share his charge with Cambert, an agreement that required the prince’s consent. Monsieur presumably refused because Cambert went off to London to try his luck establishing an opera; Sablières himself seems to have relocated to the south three years later.
4.2.4 The complex and unpleasant machinations that followed were a subject of considerable interest in the period and have been described in detail, most recently by Jérôme de La Gorce. Lully having taken over the Académie Royale de Musique, Guichard sublimated his operatic ambitions in the founding of an academy for the performance of outdoor fêtes—carousels, fireworks, etc.— for which his elaborate light effects at Saint-Cloud in 1672 and 1673 served as a demonstration of his abilities. Louis XIV granted Guichard a privilege to found his Académie Royale des Spectacles in August of 1674, no doubt with Monsieur’s support. Guichard then apparently signed an agreement in February of 1675 to employ the machinist Carlo Vigarani, whose work had previously been devoted to Lully’s Opéra. Lully, disquieted by these developments, accused Guichard to the king of having tried to poison him, hoping to have Guichard exiled. Monsieur interceded on behalf of his intendant with his brother, who, much to Lully’s dismay, referred the matter to the courts. There began a long and complex legal process that lasted more than three years, from May of 1675 to June 1678. Guichard initially lost the process, losing along with it his court appointments, and he sat in prison for more than a year before being released.
4.2.5 In 1679 Guichard used his influence with Philippe one final time to open a new avenue for his ambitions as operatic impresario: the creation of a musical troupe for Monsieur’s daughter, Marie-Louise d’Orléans (1662–89), which she would take with her to Spain as the bride of King Charles II. On September 26, Guichard signed two contracts with the Spanish ambassador directing him to assemble the group that would serve the king and queen of Spain “en qualité d’officiers de leur musique.” This musique included thirty-two members—fourteen singers, twelve violinists (some of whom were also dancing masters), four oboists, and two machinists. Among them were a number of refugees from Lully’s empire, including its resident composer, Michel Farinel (1649–1726), its harpsichordist, Marie-Anne Cambert (Farinel’s wife and daughter of the composer), and its soprano soloist, Anne Baucreux, whom Guichard purloined from the Opéra. A false report of Guichard’s death in the Mercure underlined Guichard’s well-known desire to establish an opera:
Sieur Guichard, whose dominant passion was to put everything to use in order to stage operas, and to establish them in whatever part of the world he could, is dead in Madrid, after believing that he achieved the ends of his plans.
The queen’s musique did not have great success in Spain due to Spanish resistance, and Guichard began petitioning to return in 1680. Although he eventually resettled in Valence in 1684, Guichard’s move to Spain ended his direct connections to Monsieur.
4.2.6 Thus Monsieur’s interest in the whole affair seems to have been less artistic than political. He acted to assist his protégés, Sablières and Guichard, whose interests he protected and whose projects he fostered when they suited his needs, but he seems not to have cared much about the staging of new operas or the furthering of an anti-Lully cabale, because he chose not to protect those, such as Cambert, who were not part of his household. Indeed, after the opera fiasco, Philippe seems to have agreed with the sentiment that Lully’s genius legitimized his power play. In February of 1679, the discussion during a dinner for the Dauphin given by Monsieur at the Palais-Royal turned to the performance of Lully’s Bellérophon, which they had just seen:
As they were still filled by the beauties of the opera, it was talked about at length during dinner. All the beautiful parts of which it was composed were praised separately. Mr de Lully, who arrived during this time, received the praise he merited from the mouth of Monseigneur the Dauphin, and the cleverest connoisseurs say publicly that this piece was very logically organized.
Such a welcome and praise for Guichard’s and Sablières’s old enemy would not have sat well with Monsieur’s intendants, who in any case were no longer at court at this point. Monsieur’s warm reception of Lully was thus probably orchestrated by someone greater in the prince’s esteem, either the Dauphin or the chevalier de Lorraine, who was one of Monsieur’s lovers and one of Lully’s closest friends during the last years of his life. Thus, Philippe’s involvement in the opera quarrels, like many of his other decisions, seems to have been more a response to the suggestions and pleas of his various courtiers than the product of long-term planning.
4.3.1 The turn in Monsieur’s thinking about the use of fêtes with elaborate operatic music seems to have begun through his relationship to his nephew, Louis, the Grand Dauphin (1661–1711). The two shared a passion for gambling and were a fixture at the card tables during appartements at Versailles. The Dauphin was a devotee of music, and he made frequent trips to Paris for the opera, visiting the Palais-Royal where Monsieur invited him to his private box and staged evenings of banquets, balls, and gaming in his honor. The two princes also became the center around which festivities and theatrical performances were held at Versailles. The king, who had grown increasingly disinterested in theatrical events, nevertheless knew his son’s and brother’s tastes, and he staged such events particularly when they were present. Dangeau records in his journal of court events on November 21, 1697, that: “in the evening [at Versailles] there was theater; there has not been any since Fontainebleau because Monsieur and Madame remained in Paris, and it is principally for them that the king wishes there to be plays.” The king had a similar consideration for the Dauphin: Dangeau recorded on several occasions that the king discontinued the jours d’appartements in the Dauphin’s absence and reinstituted them upon his return. When the two princes were both absent, there were often no entertainments at Versailles.
4.3.2 Monsieur seems to have been influenced by the operatic interests of his nephew, and he came along when the Dauphin heard music in private settings in Paris. For example, he accompanied him to a private performance of Molière’s Amphitrion, furnished with new intermèdes by Lallouette in February of 1681. Like the Dauphin, Monsieur became one of the Opéra’s most public supporters, being frequently in attendance and making special trips from Saint-Cloud to see premieres.
4.4.1 Although the profusion of pleasures, music, and light effects of the grande fête of 1672 demonstrated Monsieur’s use of the arts to cultivate the king and his court, the transformation of Saint-Cloud into a massive pleasure palace and showplace for Monsieur’s baroque tastes presented him with renewed opportunity to stage fêtes, to rival Versailles, and to establish himself as a provider of entertainment for an increasingly dull royal court. The prince used his new chateau as the primary location of his entertainments in which music played an increasing role, particularly in grandes fêtes staged for the king and the Dauphin over the course of the next two decades. One of these grandes fêtes, which ran from April 15 to 23, 1681, incorporated a veritable orgy of music and theater, the latter largely avoided by the king. Every day included a play or ball, music played by an ensemble of violins and oboes during dinner, and a concert. Most of these events did not include the king’s musicians, who had been given the time off, but involved a combination of Monsieur’s musique—including the violin band and Petite musique—and that of the Grand Dauphin. In particular, the music for the chapel included motets composed by Marc-Antoine Charpentier, then head of the Dauphin’s music:
Their Majesties spent eight days in the superb and delicious house at Saint-Cloud during which His Royal Highness did the honors with an air that charmed all those who were witness to it.… The king, accompanied by the entire court, arrived there on the 15th of the month between 4 and 5 in the evening. The companies designated for His Majesty’s guard were already at their posts, of which the trumpets and drums held the forward-most positions. Monsieur and Madame received the King, Queen, Monseigneur the Dauphin, and Madame the Dauphine at the bottom of the stairs when they descended from their carriages. Violins and oboes were at the top of the stairs.
They went into a large room, called the audience chamber … where Mr [Nicolas-Antoine] Lebègue, famous organist of His Majesty, played a portative organ with an unusual inventiveness. The pleasure of listening to this halted the court for some time.
Next, their Majesties passed into the gallery, at the end of which was found Monsieur’s instrumental ensemble [la Symphonie ordinaire de Monsieur]. It is comprised of a harpsichord, a treble viol, and a lute; the former played by Sr. Baltasar, the second by Sr. Garnier, and the lute by Sr. Jaqueson. This instrumental music having finished, everyone went to see his apartment.
Their Majesties, having ascended into open carriages, rode through the gardens and admired the beauty of the waters. There was theater in the evening on a superb stage that Monsieur had decorated with gold. There were performed Zaïd, Princesse de Grenade,and Les Précieuses ridicules. The king did not attend any of these pieces that diverted the court.… Every day there was a ball or a play. Besides the two I have already named, Iphigène by Mr Racine, the treasurer of France, with the Comtesse d’Escarbagnas by the late Mr Molière; Dom Bertrand de Sigaral by [Thomas] Corneille the younger, and Les Usuriers by the Italian players were performed. On the day of his arrival, the King honored the ladies by dining with them. Violins and oboes played during the entire meal. After supper, there was a concert in the gallery that lasted until bedtime.
In arriving at Saint-Cloud, [the king] gave leave to his entire music, and wanted to hear that of Monseigneur the Dauphin until his return to Saint Germain. Monseigneur’s music sang motets by Charpentier every day at Mass, and His Majesty did not want to hear others although this had been proposed to him. [These motets] have been sung for the Dauphin for two years. The violins were always heard at dinner where the crowd of people who came from Paris to see the king was so large that this prince could hardly pass through to seat himself at table.
4.4.2 In May of the next year, Monsieur staged yet another fête at Saint-Cloud with many of the same musical elements, and the Mercure again took particular note of Charpentier’s involvement:
The king having given leave to all his music, that of Monseigneur the Dauphin served alone during the Mass, at which Sieur Frison sang every day. This music had the sieurs Converset and Martinot for accompaniment and sieur Garnier as organist. It is said that this music is composed of the Piesche family, because the family is made up of five people, two girls and three boys. Nothing was sung in chapel during the stay that Their Majesties made at Saint-Cloud that was not composed by Mr Charpentier.… At Mass, Mr Lebègue had an instrumental work performed that the violins of Monsieur played in echo with the organ. It was found very beautiful. The same violins of His Royal Highness played during meals. Every day there was an extraordinarily large crowd.… Each day was taken up by three kinds of entertainments: Italian and French theater, and a ball. The French comedians performed Nicomede, Oedipe, and Polieucte by Mr de Corneille the elder; Venceslas by the late Mr de Rotrou; Britanicus and Phedre by Mr Racine; Le Geolier de soy-mesme, D. Bertrand de Cigaral, and Le Baron d’Albikrac by Mr de Corneille the younger.
While the Mercure emphasizes the role of the Dauphin’s musique in these two events, his ensemble was evidently complemented by Monsieur’s musicians. Converset played basse de violon in Monsieur’s violin band, while “Martinot” is probably Robert Martineau who was a player of the basse de violon in the royal Violons du cabinet and also served the Dauphin. Gabriel Garnier, although listed in the États as working for Monsieur in 1692, held no known position in 1681–82. Lebègue, who appears in both reports, was at that point organist of the royal chapel and thus must have been in the service of the Dauphin on these occasions. The piece for organ in which Monsieur’s violins served as his echo is not extant, but may well be an “orchestration” of one of his organ dialogues in which the grand jeu and plein jeu alternate in just this way. The attention that these large-scale fêtes attracted makes accounts of them the most detailed sources of information on musical events at the court of the Orléans after the 1670s. They mark the early period of the close relationship not only between Monsieur and the then twenty-one-year-old Dauphin, but also between the Orléans and Charpentier, which continued under Philippe II.
4.5.1 The grandes fêtes of 1681 and 82 generated the most detailed descriptions of sacred music at Philippe’s court, which otherwise goes largely unmentioned in journalistic accounts. Since these events were exceptional—the king was visiting and the Dauphin’s music combined with that of Monsieur to provide service music—they provide little information about the regular practice in Monsieur’s chapel. Various sources do indicate that both the Palais-Royal and Saint-Cloud possessed chapels. Plans of the latter chateau after its reconstruction show the presence of an organ (Figure 3); this was probably the instrument on which Lebegue played in 1682.
4.5.2 Monsieur employed a number of keyboardists designated as “organists,” including d’Anglebert (1662), Gabriel Garnier (1693), and Balthazar Quicler (1694). The chapel likewise had a staff of clerics, headed by a “maître de chapelle et de musique,” and included a premier aumonier, an aumonier ordinaire, four aumoniers honoraires, two predicateurs, a chapelain ordinaire, four chapelains, and two clercs. In 1688 Monsieur established a fund for the maintenance of six enfants de chœur, which might indicate the increasing importance of sacred music in the musical life of the Orléans, presumably reflecting Monsieur’s attempts to set up Saint-Cloud as a rival to Versailles. This fund also maintained six clerics of the Lazarist order “to serve his chapel” at Saint-Cloud. According to the Gazette, they were to “perform the same functions as those who serve the chapel of the king at Versailles,” which was essentially to hold Mass and serve the religious needs of those at the chateau and its surroundings. The year of their establishment, Monsieur heard the Lazarists celebrate the offices of Tenebrae, which they presumably sang in chant, as was their practice.
4.5.3 Other evidence also indicates that chant was probably the main repertoire of Monsieur’s chapel. The books named in the inventaire après décès of Philippe II as belonging to the the chapel at Saint-Cloud were entirely service books for the performance of chant: five missals, two of which were folio size, a breviary, a large gradual and antiphoner, and a second large pair described as “very old.” Other volumes are noted but there is no mention of books containing concerted music, typically indicated in such inventories as “motets.” Unlike Gaston d’Orléans, whose musical intendant, Etienne Moulinié, produced a wealth of sacred music, we have very little church music from composers associated with Philippe I: Pierre Gillier indicated that he had composed motets as well as nine Tenebrae lessons and a Miserere for 1–3 voices with instruments, and Sablières composed four “Cantiques et chansons latines” whose texts are found in Perrin’s Recueil de paroles (bef. 1666). None of these works survives, however.
4.5.4 Reports on the religious activities of Monsieur and Madame most frequently mention their attendance at services on major feast days in Parisian churches, either Saint Eustache (their parish church), the church of Sainte-Anne-la-Royale (home to the Théatin order), or that of the Feuillants, both known as fashionable places to hear elaborate concerted sacred music. Reports mentioning liturgical music in the Orléans’ chapels themselves are too few and too contradictory to provide a clear picture of daily practice, but seem to confirm that much of the music heard in their chapels was chant. After the death of Henriette at Saint-Cloud, the Gazette reports that:
The abbé de Montaigu, her first chaplain, placed himself to the right of the bed, accompanied by Madame’s other chaplains, along with the Ladies of Honor, on the left. After dinner, the canons and priests of [the town of] Saint-Cloud came to chant over the body, along with the Capuchin and Feuillant monks. The next day, the queen, who was at Versailles, arrived around 10 in the morning.… The ladies of the deceased princess received [the queen] upon her descent from her carriage and led her to the chamber where the body was.… Her Majesty rested on a prie-dieu that had been prepared for her while the De profundis was sung.
While clerics from the town chanted over Henriette’s body, the De Profundis sung “the next day” may have been performed by members of the Orléans’ chapel. If chant was the regular staple of their chapel (at least until 1688), this might explain the employment of organists, who would have served the alternatim performance prescribed in the Ceremoniale parisiense.
4.5.5 The Orléans did employ elaborate music on special occasions: the baptism of Elisabeth-Charlotte’s first son in 1671 was celebrated in the chapel of the Palais-Royal by Monsieur’s clerics “accompanied by an excellent Music, with the sound of drums and trumpets, in a manner lacking nothing to render [the ceremony] among the most pompous.” This work was thus probably a Te Deum, presumably not by a well-known musician because the report does not mention a composer, while it goes on to note the company heard Lully’s Alceste at the Opéra, dined, and heard a concert of violins. While it is possible that this work was one of Monsieur’s composers, no such work by an Orléans musician is extant.
4.6.1 Another indication of Monsieur’s increasing involvement in music in the 1670s was the important role it played in the education of his children. Despite, or perhaps because of, the limitations imposed on Monsieur by his spotty education, the prince saw to it that his children received thorough training in the subject in order to maintain their social position in a royal court where music played a central role and connoisseurship was an important quality. Both of Monsieur and Henriette’s daughters were accomplished in music. By the time of her marriage in 1679, Marie-Louise d’Orléans (1662–1689) “knew enough about music to sing at sight” and played harpsichord with “grace.” She had studied “music” (i.e., fundamentals) with a “Mr Clement,” singing with Michel Lambert, dance with “des Airs,” and harpsichord with Hardel and d’Anglebert, according to the Mercure. Anne-Marie d’Orléans (1669–1728) was similarly well educated, as the Mercure reported that “she plays the harpsichord” and “sings perfectly well.” She collected a number of both print and manuscript volumes of French operas, particularly by Lully, now housed in the national library at Turin, having been incorporated into the library of the Duke of Savoy, whom she married in 1684. While we know relatively little about the basic musical education of the duc de Chartres (Monsieur’s son, the future Philippe II d’Orléans), he must have had fairly extensive training: he sang in performances of motets and operas with other members of the royal family, played flute and gamba, and went on to study composition with Marc-Antoine Charpentier sometime before 1697, composing motets, cantatas, and three operas. In the selection of music teachers, the musicians of Monsieur’s Chambre thus seem to have been largely passed over in favor of more famous figures from outside the maison, with the exception of Hardel and d’Anglebert, who were part of Madame’s household.
4.7.1 Although Monsieur intended the grandes fêtes of 1681–82 to impress his brother by showing off the new château and its elaborate decorations, they provide little indication that the prince had changed his mind about the commissioning of new musical compositions and theatrical spectacles. Nevertheless, if Monsieur had no interest in music for itself, as Elisabeth-Charlotte claimed, he at least sponsored it in constructing his image as “welcoming” provider of entertainment for the opera-loving Dauphin. In this, Monsieur seems to have participated in a general trend for organizing musical divertissements that took hold in the early 1680s. Divertissements were staged with much fanfare by such figures as the duc de Vendôme at his chateau of Anet and the prince de Condé at Chantilly, among others. During this period there are a number of reports of performances of operatic music at Monsieur’s court (see Table 4, below), and a few indications that Monsieur, or his courtiers, commissioned new works, largely identifiable through texts celebrating the family.
4.7.2 The first report of operatic music at Monsieur’s court dates from October 5, 1676, when the Gazette reported that Monsieur’s guests at Saint-Cloud had the “divertissement de l’Opera.” A later instance of Monsieur having “given the opera” was reported by a Parisian agent of the Elector of Bavaria, in 1685. A more specific report appeared in the Mercure in an article concerning a fête held at Saint-Cloud to celebrate the birth of the Dauphin’s son, the duc de Bourgogne, in August of 1682. It included a “play in music” with a prologue that involved a competition between Saint-Cloud and Versailles, evoked in allegory by a dialogue between two nymphs and their followers:
Some lovely and witty young ladies represented at S. Cloud a comédie en musique composed on the events that had occurred there. This piece was entitled L’Automne de Saint Cloud, and was embellished by ballets, machines, and changes of scenery. The prologue concerned the birth of Monseigneur the duc de Bourgogne.… It is said that Mr. Compoint the younger wrote the verse for it.… The decoration for this prologue represented woods and plains on the sides of the theater, and at the back a magnificent palace filled with fireworks and surrounded by fountains gushing wine. The Nymph of Versailles and the Nymph of Saint-Cloud appeared on this stage and sang the following dialogue.
The Mercure printed the entire text of the prologue, in full operatic length and form, with airs, ensembles, dances, and chorus, which took up ten pages. The two nymphs take turns praising the king and the Dauphin for their contributions to the prosperity of France. The text also indicates that there was a series of entrées in which “numerous foreigners, with different costumes, demonstrate by their dances the joy that the birth of this prince inspired in them.” The piece finished with duets and choruses, the first of which, sung by “two inhabitants of Versailles” and repeated by “the chorus of the inhabitants of Versailles,” exhorts all to drink:
|Réservons nos amours||Let us reserve our loves|
|Au retour du Printemps,||for the return of Spring,|
|Et dans un si bon temps||and in such good weather|
|Ne songeons plus qu’à boire.||think of nothing more than drinking.|
This rather unladylike exhortation is followed by a burlesque dance of four shepherds and four drunkards but is ameliorated by the more polite “inhabitants of Saint-Cloud” who sing a more standard operatic encomium:
|Servons-nous de ce jour heureux||Let us use this happy day|
|Pour celébrer nos plus beaux jeux,||to celebrate our nicest games,|
|Et que tout cede||and let everything give place|
|Au zele genéreux||to the generous zeal|
|Qui nous possede.||that possesses us.|
The prologue ends in a “danse générale of the different peoples on stage.”
4.7.3 This piece represents, therefore, an extension into music of Monsieur’s “charm offensive” against Versailles that began with the construction of Saint-Cloud. Although ostensibly a prologue that unites the two nymphs, its use of the distinction between the two chateaux clearly underlined the competition between them in Compoint’s mind, if not Monsieur’s. The report says nothing of the following play or its performance, which was presumably written not by “Compoint” but separately for the ladies. While this divertissement was evidently not directly instigated by Monsieur, he must at least have commanded the complex decorations and the music, not only to please the ladies but to flatter the father of the new prince, the Dauphin. The roles indicated in the prologue required six solo singers (the two nymphs and an additional two pairs of voices for “two inhabitants of Versailles” and “two inhabitants of Saint-Cloud”), and enough singers to make up the two choruses. It is not clear who the musicians were or how they were hired.
4.7.4 Nothing is known of the author of the libretto, Compoint the younger, and the report says nothing about the music or its composer. However, it seems likely that the work was composed by an Orléans musician, because the text of the prologue, with its two nymphs representing the two great chateaux, served as a model for at least two later divertissements that were in fact set to music by two Orléans musicians: the young Charles-Hubert Gervais and Pierre Gillier. These two divertissements were probably both written around a decade later, when a new political concern served as the subject: the glory of the Orléans princes in the War of the League of Augsburg. Both divertissements thus use the character of the nymph to welcome home a “hero” to the chateau.
4.7.5 In the case of Gervais’s divertissement—whose text appeared in the Mercure in November of 1692 but whose music is lost—the “hero” is openly acknowledged as Philippe II, then called the duc de Chartres. The text of the divertissement was the longest of a number of pieces published by the Mercure in his honor, taking up ten pages. The report indicates that the piece was performed at the Palais-Royal and its verse was composed by “Mr Pagot,” a valet de chambre in the service of both princes, with music by Gervais:
I send you an Idyll on the return of the Monsieur the Duke of Chartres. It is composed by Mr. Pagot, valet de chambre of their Royal Highnesses, Monsieur and Monsieur the Duke of Chartres. Mr. Gervais the younger set these words to music, and they were sung at the Palais-Royal at the beginning of this month.… [It] has as its subject Winter who brings back Monsieur the Duke of Chartres to the Nymph of Saint-Cloud, his absence having continually alarmed her because of the perils he encountered.
Gervais, who had grown up in the service of the Orléans because his father served (like Pagot) as valet de chambre, became by 1697 “ordinaire de la musique” to Philippe II and intendant of the Musique de la Chambre of Monsieur in 1700. Gervais’s divertissement, like the “play in music” of 1682, takes the form of an operatic prologue in which “the Nymph of Saint-Cloud” awaits the return of her hero. “Glory” then announces his arrival, and the nymph and shepherds celebrate his return. The plot of Gervais’s fête, however, is organized around a dispute between Glory and “Winter”: Winter claims that it is his arrival (and the cessation of military activity) that causes the hero’s return, but Glory insists that it is Philippe’s love for his new wife. Their debate ends in agreement to praise their prince, whose actions raise him above all other “demy-dieux” (members of the royal family). This divertissement required forces similar to those of 1682: three main soloists who sang both récits and ensembles, two choruses (the followers of Winter and Glory), and four other solo voices. The text mentions no dances or other instrumental music besides a “bruit de guerre” that “should precede the arrival of Glory.”
4.7.6 This little divertissement is very similar to a series of pieces included in Pierre Gillier’s Livre d’airs et de simphonies mélez de quelques fragmens d’opera (1697), dedicated to Philippe II. Among the “fragments,” arranged into suites of vocal and instrumental movements, are airs sung by the “Nymph of Saint-Cloud,” who laments the absence of her “hero,” and by “Glory,” whose fanfares announce the hero’s return. The two characters are joined by a petit chœur who celebrates the hero as banishing sadness and bringing “pleasures and love” (see Table 5 for the complete content of this divertissement.) This almost certainly refers to the return of Monsieur or, more likely Philippe II, from the War of the League of Augsburg (in which both princes participated). The date of composition cannot be established with certainty, but it was probably written between 1692, when Gillier first appears as a member of Monsieur’s musique, and 1697, when the collection was published. Like the divertissement of 1682, neither Gervais’s nor Gillier’s divertissements can be traced to a commission by Monsieur or Philippe II, and the encomiastic character of the plots seems to indicate that they were organized by a courtier seeking to gain the favor of their prince.
4.7.7 A fourth divertissement also uses the character of the Nymphe de Saint-Cloud, an “Idille pour le mariage de Madame la duchesse de Lorraine.” This title refers to Madame’s daughter, Elisabeth-Charlotte d’Orléans (1676–1744), who became Duchess of Lorraine on her marriage in 1698. The text was composed by Louise-Geneviève de Saintonge (1650–1718), author of several opera libretti, who published it in the second edition of her Poésies diverses, dedicated to Madame. Saintonge once again has the Nymph lamenting, in this case at the departure of the new duchess, but she attaches a pastoral in which Tircis and Climene, along with a number of other pastoral characters and a chorus, hail the beauties of fidelity in love. The piece requires the same large forces as the other Orléans divertissements, and there is no indication of a composer. Saintonge’s volume also contains an “Idille sur le retour de Madame au Palais-Royal,” which involves similar pastoral characters, including a “Troupe des nymphes et faunes des jardins du Palais-Royal.”
4.7.8 Saintonge’s idylls may have been inspired by an earlier divertissement that uses the same idea of attaching a prologue to pastoral dialogues, preserved in a printed libretto dated September 6, 1679, and entitled Concert divisé en deux parties et précédé d’un prologue de la composition du Sieur Farinel l’aîné. This concert was almost certainly composed for a very similar event: the celebrations surrounding the wedding of Marie Louise d’Orléans with Charles II of Spain, which took place by proxy on August 30. The Concert’s connections to the Orléans are several: the action takes place in “the gardens of Saint-Cloud,” and the libretto indicates that it was “the composition of” Michel Farinel. Farinel would shortly become composer to the troupe of French musicians assembled for the new queen by the indefatigable Guichard, who presumably wrote the libretto.
4.7.9 The prologue of the Concert focuses on the goddess Venus, who, “having left the Island of Cythera in order to establish her court in these superb gardens,… applauds herself for a conquest she has made.” She “invites Hebe, Flora, the Zephyrs, and a number of pastoral divinities … to celebrate her victory.” This conquest, it is shortly revealed, is shared by L’Amour and Hymen, clearly referring to the royal wedding. Like the other divertissements staged for Monsieur, it involves several soloists, a “chœur des Zephyrs,” and “plusieurs instrumens” that play an “agréable symphonie.” The two pastorals form the “deux parties” mentioned in the title; both consist of five short scenes, each with several soloists and chorus. The first is a conversation between an unhappy shepherd who complains to his shepherdess of her infidelity; the two then debate the question of whether it is better to leave an inconstant lover than to pine uselessly, joined by several other pastoral characters. The debate is interrupted by a chorus of sylvains, shepherds, and shepherdesses who “arrive running in a crowd” in order to stop this conversion that “is not appropriate to a fete” and introduce a general celebration. The second part is similar, presenting another shepherd who “attempts to profit from the public celebration to persuade Dorinde [a shepherdess] to get involved” with him. The dialogue between the two is similarly joined by other pastoral types, and it ends in the return of Venus to celebrate her glory.
4.7.10 The Concert was performed on September 7, the same day the Gazette reports that the Marquis de los Balbasez, a member of the Spanish delegation, gave a dinner for the new queen to which Monsieur, Madame, and their other daughter were invited. According to the report, the evening included “Symphonie, Comédie, & Opera.” At least some of the music formed part of “La Serenade de la Reine au palais mazarin à paris le 7e septembre 1679″ found in the manuscript Concerts choisis de M. Farinelly de Cambert conseiller du roy recueillis par l’auteur 1707. This manuscript, which is the bass part to a now lost multipart collection, begins with the chorus “Publions la victoire,” included as the third item in the libretto of the Concert. The attribution to Farinel in the libretto evidently served as part of a secondary purpose of the Concert: the politicking of Guichard for his choice of composer to the new queen. As an advertisement for Farinel’s suitability for the position, the Concert was a success: Farinel was officially acknowledged as composer in notarial documents dated twenty days later.
4.7.11 As Table 4 summarizes, there seems to have been a considerable increase in the size and complexity of musical divertissements performed at the Orléans court toward the end of the 1670s, a period in which Monsieur began competing with the king as a purveyor of entertainments. These divertissements coincide with the assembling of a musique heavy in the continuo instruments required for such quasi-operatic productions. Most of the works of this kind that can be identified celebrate important events in the lives of their patrons or other members of the royal family: departures, returns, births, and marriages. They not only borrow the pastoral and allegorical characters of operatic prologues but make use of the same rhetorical stratagems to celebrate their intended dedicatees. This politics of divertissement was probably not, however, an original idea of Monsieur’s: since the Dauphin “liked only those people who procured entertainment for him” (as Elisabeth-Charlotte put it), a number of courtiers staged such divertissements for him in this period.
4.7.12 The connections between the Orléans—both Philippe I and II—and the Grand Dauphin continued into the period following the War of the League of Augsburg (1697), when the younger members of the royal family, freed from military service, took their pleasures in a round of balls, operas, divertissements, and other entertainments involving music, centered both at the royal court and around the “cabale” of the Dauphin. Balls, especially those for Carnival, frequently involved masquerades with multiple, often burlesque, entrées. Monsieur contributed to such festivities, staging, for example, a ball at the Palais-Royal during the Carnival of 1699:
The Dauphin will go tomorrow to the ball that Monsieur is supposed to give at the Palais-Royal.… It is said that in this ball, which is supposed to be given again at Marly [a royal residence], there will be two entrées: the first, conducted by Monsieur le Duc and Madame the duchesse de Chartres [wife of Philippe II d’Orléans], the duc de Gramont, and the duc de Guiche, dressed as Basques with drums and bells, the second will represent a wolf hunt conducted by Monseigneur [the Dauphin]. It will present a man dressed as a wolf and four others [dressed as] dogs, and a number of hunters who will make a loud noise, after which the wolf, the dogs, and the hunters will dance a branle.
Such masquerades with bizarre costumes, one of which was “imagined” by Philippe II himself, were popular with the Dauphin and his clique during this period.
5.0.1 Despite showing no personal interest in music, Monsieur employed a number of musicians whose compositional abilities earned them renown. This was particularly the case with the keyboardists at his court—d’Anglebert, Richard, and Hardel—and august visitors, like Chambonnières, probably attracted to the Orléans court by Henriette. Unfortunately, none of the compositions by these figures can be connected directly to commissions by the Orléans or to performances for their court, with the possible exception of Chambonnières’s “Courante de Madame.”
5.0.2 Composition by Orléans musicians falls into the same two main periods as musical activity at Monsieur’s court: the 1660s and the period after 1680. Judging from the records of performances of largely keyboard, ensemble, and dance music, the court seems to have favored instrumental music, with vocal music rarely reported until the 1680s. The 1670s, after the death of Henriette, brought the advent of opera, in which Monsieur seems at least initially reluctant to take a direct role as a patron of new works. Nevertheless, with the construction of Saint-Cloud and the shift in musical interests from the king to the younger generation of princes in the 1680s, Monsieur’s interest in cultivating his courtly position lead him to accede to, if not to organize, the composition of operatic divertissements.
5.0.3 Exactly how the musical activities at the Orléans court affected the lives of its composers is not easy to gauge, as there are relatively few records of performances. Since the performing forces in the service of the Orléans seem to have been quite flexible, there is no way to identify music for a characteristic ensemble, or set of performers. A number of Monsieur’s singers were known as composers of vocal music, including Sablières, Pierre Gillier, François and Jean Martin, Charles-Hubert Gervais, Nicolas Fleury, and Claude Oudot. Of these, there is evidence that compositions by Sablières, Gillier, and Gervais were performed for —if not commissioned by— the Orléans, largely identifiable through texts that celebrate a member of the family.
5.1.1 It would seem reasonable to assume that one of the duties of the intendant might be to compose for the Musique de la Chambre, as did the holder of the equivalent royal post. In spite of Sablières’ long tenure as intendant, we know very little about his activities, and very few of his works have survived. He was the author of a number of airs, many of which are lost (see Appendix 2). According to indications in Pierre Perrin’s collections of lyric poetry, Sablières had already set at least forty of Perrin’s poems by the first years of the 1660s, including twenty chansons, one récit, six dialogues, three airs à boire, and three “serenades,” as well as two noëls and four sacred Latin songs. That Sablières composed several of these works for the Orléans is demonstrated by Perrin’s collections, which refer to the circumstances of their composition. The Œuvres de poésie (Paris, 1661) contains a pair of airs designated “pour Monsieur” and set by “le Sieur D[e] S[ablières],” the first lamenting Henriette’s absence from Saint-Cloud and the second celebrating her return. Pierre Perrin’s manuscript Œuvres de Poësie (ca. 1662) contains an air addressed to Henriette, which Perrin likewise indicates was set to music by Sablières. It seems to have been written in aid of Philippe’s attempts to woo Henriette into the marriage he greatly desired at that point:
|Belle Princesse,||Beautiful princess,|
|Doux charme des yeux,||sweet charm of the eyes,|
|Belle maistresse||beautiful mistress|
|D’un fils de nos dieux.||of a son of our gods [i.e., royal family].|
|Il faut se rendre,||It is necessary to give in,|
|Pourquoy de deffendre||Why defend yourself|
|D’un amant si doux,||against such a sweet lover,|
|Qui brûle pour vous||who burns for you|
|D’un amour si tendre?||with such tender love?|
5.1.2 According to Perrin’s collections, Sablières wrote a number of other pieces for court occasions, which were commissioned during the period in which Monsieur lived largely with his brother under the supervision of Mazarin and the Queen Mother. These pieces include an air for multiple voices “Pour la naissance de Monseigr Le Dauphin” (born in 1661), a four-voice “Concert pour chanter devant la cour, après la paix & le mariage” dated 1660 (therefore probably to celebrate Louis XIV’s wedding), and a dialogue for Iris and Tyrsis composed “Pour la Reyne en 1660”; all of this music is lost. Attributions to Sablières are complicated by confusion with airs set to poems by Antoine de Rambouillet de La Sablière, and only eleven extant works can be attributed to the composer (see Appendix 2). These are short binary airs de cour for two voices, or airs sérieux for voice and instrumental accompaniment, all composed prior to 1670.
5.1.3 There are no records of compositions by Sablières after his failed operatic enterprise, with the exception of a divertissement written in 1679 for Montpellier. Sablières was, after all, a nobleman, and presumably practiced music for the courtly relationships it brought him. Thus his compositional activities seem to reflect the trajectory of his court career: successful in the late 1650s and early 1660s, with publications in collected volumes of airs, commissions by Monsieur, and performances at the royal court, he became less important with the increasing dominance of Lully and with the distance between Monsieur’s court and that of his brother. The opportunity to compose an opera seems to have brought his attention back to music in the early 1670s, but with the failure of Les Amours de Diane et d’Endymion to lead to further opportunities, and Monsieur’s lack of support for his endeavors, Sablières took up his new position in Montpellier in 1676. Although Sablières was famously mocked by Lully and Molière in Le Bourgeois gentilhomme (1670) as a composer of insipid airs (the bourgeois M. Jourdain sings “Je croyais Jeanneton” as an example of a pastoral air “in which there are sheep”), the loss of Sablières’s major works robs us of any real understanding of his capabilities.
5.2.1 Probably the most active composers among Monsieur’s musicians were the Martins (see the list of their works in Appendix 3). The founder of the dynasty of musicians who worked for Monsieur, François père, was active as a composer of guitar music and songs. He acquired a royal privilège to print soon after the beginning of his service to Monsieur, which was recorded on December 28, 1658. He apparently did not use it until 1663, when he published his Pièces de guitairre à battre et à pinser. The first guitar book to be published in Paris in the seventeenth century, the volume is preserved as an unicum. The little book of nineteen pages was engraved by Bonnart and consists of two dance suites, the first largely strummed and the second in plucked lute style (as the title indicates). The pieces are written in standard guitar tablature but make use of advanced notational techniques, including tenuto slurs, marks to indicate courses to be avoided during strumming, and ornament signs. Thus, even the strummed pieces were “as difficult to play as similar pieces in the contemporary lute repertory” and their style “compares most favorably” to the second Guitarre royale (1674) of Francesco Corbetta, according to James Tyler and Paul Sparks. François père seems, however, to have inherited these technical innovations from an older member of the family because Marin Mersenne was already describing their employment by a “Monsieur Martin” in the Harmonie universelle (1636), where he printed two pieces by “Martin” as examples.
5.2.2 Whether any of Martin’s pieces, like those of the Orléans keyboardists, were composed for, or heard at, the Orléans court is unknown. Nevertheless François’s compositional activities do have links to the Orléans: he, like Sablières, used Perrin as a source of texts, and Perrin’s Œuvres contains two poems indicated as having been set to music by “Martin,” one of which (“Je veux bien vous aymer”) is found in the Airs de François Martin. The other was a dialogue for a shepherd and shepherdess, Alcidor and Sylvie, which is lost. Nevertheless, it is clear that Martin actually wrote dialogues of this kind because his book of airs contains two different examples.
5.2.3 Robert Ballard printed Martin’s volume of airs in 1668, and Martin dedicated it not to Monsieur, but to his daughter—Marie-Louise d’Orléans (“Mademoiselle”), who was at that point six years old—perhaps in the hope that he would be asked to take part in her musical education or that she would one day become his patron. The contents include a series of airs for two voices—dessus and basse —without continuo, each followed by an ornamented second couplet for dessus with a continuo part that adapted and simplified the vocal bass (see Example 1a and 1b). This allowed for performance of the airs either without or with continuo, a practice that was then becoming common. The volume concludes with an extended solo récit for soprano and continuo and two semi-dramatic dialogue airs. These dialogues were well known enough to be cited by Ménestrier as important forerunners of operatic recitative. The subtle chromatic inflections and cross-relations on “pleurez” in Example 1a, the conversational back-and-forth of the dialogues (for example, “Hélas, il faut enfin,” Example 2a), and their culmination in largely homophonic duets (Example 2b) were probably what suggested the connection to operatic practice.
5.3.1 Of François’s sons, compositions have survived only from François fils and Jean. François fils published only one air, “Rossignols, que pretendez-vous,” which appeared in the Mercure in 1678. Jean’s extant works are mostly found in his Premier livre d’airs sérieux et à boire à deux, trois & quatre parties, entremeslez de symphonies en triots pour les violons & les flûtes (Paris: Christophe Ballard, 1688). Jean published three further airs in the Mercure, all in the same period as the Premier livre, presumably to attract interest in his collection. He may also be the author of two airs published in the Recueil d’airs serieux et à boire in 1696 whose composer was listed as “Martin” (see Appendix 3).
5.3.2 While the latter are largely conventional airs sérieux and airs à boire for solo voice and continuo, the works in the Premier livre are unusual in that Martin attempted to create “concerts” by adding accompanying instrumental parts and symphonies that serve as introductions. Martin presents his plan in the introduction to the volume:
I have observed that since music has been printed, no one has yet thought to print airs mixed with instrumental pieces and accompaniments in such a manner that it is possible to play and sing a complete book of music without encountering two airs of the same character [modulation], and I imagined that if I made a compilation of trios proper to form a little concert that this might be agreeable to the Public. In order to test this idea, I wrote little instrumental pieces, such as overtures, rondeaux, chaconnes, and free-form pieces [pièces de Caprices] for violins and flutes, with accompaniments for all the vocal récits, and in order to please those who can accompany themselves on the harpsichord, theorbo, or bass viol.… If this work has the good fortune of being well received, I flatter myself that I will assemble others that will please just as much.
The volume was dedicated to Martin’s “fameux MECENE … Monsieur de ….” Since Philippe I was usually addressed simply “Monsieur,” this patron seems likely to have been someone else, from whom Martin was “accustomed to receive … graces and gifts,” perhaps Malebranche. Nevertheless, the pieces in the volume were “very different from those that [the dedicatee] normally examined”—that is, presumably they were not written for him.
5.3.3 That Martin took particular care with the variety of the book, as his preface indicates, is reflected not only in the varying character of the songs’ content but in their style. While accompanied vocal chamber music is rare in this period, Martin’s volume includes a wide variety of it: eight solo airs, two solo airs à boire, one duo à boire, four trios, and two extended monologue récits in quasi-operatic style. Martin not only added introductory simphonies (instrumental pieces) for a trio of strings with continuo, but in the “Sérénade” and the “Dialogue de Silvandre et de Tircis” he created multi-sectional scenas that integrate instrumental music into their structure (see the edition of the former work by the author). This same interest in musical variety is also reflected in Martin’s symphonies, which demonstrate a considerable range of style, sometimes simply providing a motto ritournelle to the following song, but often acting as independent instrumental music.
5.3.4 It cannot be an accident that these pieces were published in 1688, the year after the death of Lully and the year before Lambert issued his famous collection of Airs à une, II, III et IV parties with instrumental ritournelles. Even more evident than in Lambert’s airs, however, is the influence of Italian instrumental music, which the inventory of Martin’s possessions reveals he collected. Several of the symphonies demonstrate a particular interest in imitative textures and in sequential writing, as in Example 3.
5.3.5 Although none of the works in Martin’s book can be connected directly to performances at Monsieur’s court, for which we lack detailed reports of chamber music in this period, the design of the pieces and the demands on the musicians indicate that these airs were intended for a group of professionals who played for an experienced audience, probably that of Monsieur’s court or that of Parisian concerts like those offered by Malebranche. The forces required are large by the standards of the published music of this time—a trio of strings, continuo and three singers, a total of seven musicians. The instrumental parts are for violin—a professional’s instrument rather than an amateur’s—and the writing (as can be seen in “A Force de branler la mâchoire” edited in WLSCM) is more technically demanding than most music of this period. The airs à boire with violins (such as “A Force de branler”) are unusual in that Martin clearly designed them for concert performance rather than for the table, although they may imitate similar works written by Jean Sicard in the late 1660s.
5.4.1 According to his own admission, Gillier trained “under the most capable masters” as a “page of the Musique de Chambre du Roi,” and as such would have been a charge of Michel Lambert. Besides this, little is known about Gillier’s life other than that he was born in 1665 and employed by Monsieur (according to L’État de la France) from around 1693 to 1699. Gillier was the author of a number of pieces that survive largely in a single print, the Livre d’airs et de simphonies meslés de quelques fragmens d’opera (1697), dedicated to Philippe II d’Orléans.
5.4.2 Gillier must have been quite active as a composer because his note “to the reader” promises further volumes, including airs à boire for 1–3 voices with instrumental introductions (perhaps in imitation of Martin), nine Tenebrae lessons, and a Miserere for 1–3 voices with instruments. With the exception of a few airs, none of this promised music appeared in print, nor has it survived. Some of these works could have been composed for the Orléans’ Chamber and Chapel, although Gillier already had some compositions in hand by the time he presumably began his service to Monsieur around 1692, since in that year he received his royal privilège to publish. Gillier was certainly active as a composer during the period prior to his service because the air “Beaux lieux, aimable solitude” was published in the Livre d’airs de différents auteurs in 1688.
5.4.3 The Livre d’airs et de simphonies itself contains vocal and instrumental “fragments,” that Gillier arranged “in a manner to make them possible to play as little chamber concerts.” Some groups of pieces seem to form suites belonging to various divertissements, although the exact demarcations between one suite and the next are not entirely clear. That Gillier composed some of his pieces under conditions typical of the fêtes staged by Monsieur can be deduced from the preface, which warns the reader that:
Not all the words will be found to be equally well written; some of them were made on occasions too precipitous to allow a more delicate turn, and by a deference necessary in my profession, I was obliged to employ them as they were given to me.
Besides the divertissement in which the Nymphe de Saint-Cloud appears, there are four pieces in the collection whose titles may refer to chateaux. It is not clear, however, whether these titles refer to locations of particular performances.
5.4.4 While most of the pieces in the volume are notated as airs and dances for solo voice and/or treble instrument with continuo, the original forces varied considerably, presumably depending on the context of their performance. For example, although the “Overture de Bois de Vicomte” and the “Ouverture de Chessy” are scored for a single instrument and continuo, they have imitative entries notated in the continuo part in soprano, mezzo soprano, and bass clefs, indicating that Gillier probably intended them for orchestra. Indeed, Gillier offers his readers manuscript copies of the “contreparties” (accompanying parts) for violins free of charge. Similarly, the “Fragment du prologue de Méléagre” has a choral movement with subsections labeled “grand chœur” and “petit chœur” scored for two vocal lines, continuo, and an accompanying treble instrument, presumably reduced from their original versions for chorus and orchestra. Thus, a number of the pieces seem to have come from divertissements requiring the kind of large forces Monsieur was known to have assembled for his fêtes.
5.4.5 The divertissement in which the “Nymphe de Saint-Cloud” appears takes up twenty of the volume’s ninety-six pages of music. It consists of ten movements (listed in Table 5), all of which are in C major except the lament, “Arrestez doux printemps,” in C minor. The music of the divertissement largely reflects the Lullian heritage of the operatic prologue, on which its text is based: the piece opens with an overture and presents récits and airs sung by allegorical characters praising their prince. The texts of the airs are repeated by a petit chœur and also a grand chœur with instrumental interludes in Lullian style, as Example 4 demonstrates.
5.4.6 At the same time, Gillier’s music, like Jean Martin’s, demonstrates a certain degree of exposure to the new Italian style currents that were being cultivated by composers under the patronage of the younger generation of the royal family. Gillier himself notes in his introduction that:
If I have been successful enough in finding agreeable melodies, I have not neglected to embellish them further by expressive and elaborate [recherchez] accompaniments, and to consistently maintain a natural progression [modulation].
The appeal to both “elaborate accompaniment” and “natural progression” makes reference to the debates of the time concerning “natural” French melody and recherché Italian counterpoint in which Philippe II became personally involved through his composition lessons with Charpentier in the same period.
5.4.7 The footprint of Charpentier, and perhaps Lalande, is evident in the ritournelle to the lament, “Beaux lieux, aimable solitude” (Example 5). The air proper, for soprano and continuo, begins in measure 34; it had already been composed by 1688 when it appeared in the Ballard’s Livre d’airs de différents auteurs. The ritournelle that introduces it appears only in the Livre d’airs et symphonies and reflects the vogue for composition of such pieces for “divertissements at court” like those published by André Danican Philidor and François Fossard in their 1695 collection of Airs italiens. Like Lalande, Gillier uses the opening vocal melody as a motto, but also as the basis for imitative writing. In Gillier’s case, however, the music continues by sequential suspensions of sevenths (mm. 22–24) and concludes with an augmented mediant chord (m. 31), a rarity in secular vocal music of this period but characteristic of Charpentier and other musicians in the circle of Philippe II. Thus, although this air appears in a suite that has no evident connection to the Orléans, its harmonic language would certainly have been to the taste of the volume’s dedicatee.
5.4.8 The collections of Gillier and Martin thus share a number of unusual features that probably stem from their composers’ connections to Monsieur’s court, despite the uncertainties about performance venues. Both were conceived and issued after the death of Lully and in the period when Monsieur staged considerable numbers of fêtes with theatrical music. Although originally scored for large ensembles of professional musicians, both were published in forms that could serve an amateur public. They demonstrate an interest in musical variety and in compositional innovation: the mixing of vocal and instrumental music in Martin’s case, and a harmonic vocabulary reminiscent of Charpentier in Gillier’s.
6.0.1 Monsieur’s artistic legacy, and the legacy of the artists who worked for him, make a fine object lesson not only in the struggles of the high aristocracy with royal image-making and patronage, but also in the fate of their contributions to French culture. Having position but lacking real power, Philippe I was doubly overshadowed by his brother. During Monsieur’s lifetime, his very personality was affected by his secondary status, as his interest in cultural patronage was limited by the restrictions placed on him by his position. After his death, his palaces and achievements as patron suffered, partly through neglect and partly by accidents of history, but also because they were seen as expendable in comparison to icons of royal (and, later, national) grandeur. While Versailles became a symbol of the great French past—ironically preserved under an Orléans, Louis-Philippe, as a museum and symbol of his own kingship—Monsieur’s and Philippe II’s Palais-Royal and Saint-Cloud suffered multiple indignities: the demolition of Coypel’s Aeneus Gallery during the construction of the Comédie Française in 1784, the sale of the regent’s enormous and publicly displayed collection of paintings by Philippe Egalité in 1790, the burning of the archives of the family in 1848, and finally the destruction of Saint-Cloud itself in 1870. A similar fate of oblivion awaited much of the music by Philippe I’s composers, including Sablières’s Les Amours de Diane et d’Endymion and many of his other works, most of Jean Martin’s Airs, and Pierre Gillier’s sacred music.
6.0.2 The story of Philippe I’s contributions to French cultural heritage is thus certainly less glorious but in some ways more complex than those of his brother. Apart from the construction of Saint-Cloud and the decoration of its rooms, Monsieur rarely demonstrated a great personal interest in using artistic patronage either to enhance his status or to establish his posterity as an important cultural figure. This was almost certainly due not only to Louis XIV’s desire to be the dominant force in this arena—at least in the earlier part of his reign—but also to Philippe’s spotty education, which made it difficult to compete with the construction of a princely image of connoisseurship and mastery of multiple fields established by his brother. In the two cases in which Monsieur had an opportunity to become patron of new innovative artistic projects offered by ambitious and capable artists—Molière’s troupe and the Académie Royale de under Guichard and Sablières—he neither demonstrated sustained interest nor did he apparently resist his brother’s takeover as principal patron. During the 1660s, it was Henriette rather than her husband who functioned as a traditional mécène: she invited both professional musicians, especially well-known keyboardists such as Chambonnières, Richard, d’Anglebert, and Hardel, as well as noble amateur musicians, for her sessions of intimate chamber music. Monsieur seems, at least initially, to have cultivated her interest in music, as the only pieces that can be said to have been directly commissioned by him—airs by Sablières—were addressed to her.
6.0.3 Although Monsieur was not an amateur of music for its own sake, he nevertheless used music for its role in court plaisirs and in his cultivation of others. In the 1660s and ’70s, he employed the arts in hosting the king and the royal court, and—more importantly to him—in entertainments that aided his desire to be the center of courtly attention, impossible at the court of his brother. In the 1680s he found himself the ranking figure among a group of high nobles—among them the Vendôme, Condé, Conty, and Noailles—who turned to the music-loving Dauphin and his followers as objects of courtly cultivation through musical and theatrical divertissements. Partly because of this courtly context in which music played such an important role, Monsieur had his children educated in music by the best musicians in Paris, giving them what had been denied him.
6.0.4 Because of Monsieur’s particular indirect mode of patronage, his reliance on the ideas of others, and his use of the arts to cultivate others’ tastes, the artistic influence of his court depended more on a complex web of relationships than a single individual’s artistic vision. These relationships appear to have been determined largely by the hierarchical nature of court life: Monsieur’s royal guests and family at the top, Monsieur as their host, Monsieur’s intendants, and the musicians who acted on their instructions. This indirect mode of patronage meant that the contributions of the upper ranks in Monsieur’s court hierarchy to its artistic life—and their influence on the artistic choices of their patron himself—were particularly important. Guichard’s role in the increasing artistic activity at Monsieur’s court in the 1670s is particularly evident. The idea of staging an opera had undoubtedly been promoted to Monsieur by Guichard and Sablières, who were at that point the major stakeholders in the new Académie Royale de Musique and, as librettist and composer, its primary artistic leaders. Guichard, in particular, used his influence with his prince to position his career: when Monsieur “lost interest” in the opera, Guichard used his connections to arrange a staging at the royal court; when Lully took over the Académie Royale, Guichard founded his own Académie, using his elaborate fireworks at Saint-Cloud as a demonstration of his abilities; when Lully accused Guichard of poisoning him, Guichard called on Monsieur to intercede with Louis XIV. Guichard’s inability to get his Académie running impelled him to use his pull with Monsieur once more in organizing an opera-oriented musique for Marie-Louise and using the fête for her as demonstration of his composer’s abilities. In the 1690s, with the coming of age of Philippe II who took a personal interest in music and in individual musicians, the influence of the intendants seems to have declined: both Gillier and Gervais addressed themselves directly to their young patron, with success in Gervais’s case, but apparently not in Gillier’s.
6.0.5 To judge by the extant sources, the most common genres of music at the court of the Orléans seem to have been performed in connection with Monsieur’s fêtes and balls, although reports of smaller, more intimate events are mostly lacking for the period after the death of Henriette. Throughout Monsieur’s lifetime, reports of his fêtes record the performance of instrumental “concerts” and dance music played by the ever-present neuf violons, trumpets and drums, and the oboes of his gentleman, Rosmadec. Elaborate sacred music seems to have been reserved for special dynastic occasions, but lack of documentation of the music for such occasions makes any definitive conclusions impossible. The same cannot be said for large-scale operatic music, for which there is evidence in at least a few reports of musical events and in scores and librettos that refer directly to the family and its chateaux. These events seem to have begun gradually in the late 1670s and increased in the 1680s and ’90s when the staging of musical divertissements was adopted by younger members of high nobility as markers of their own gloire, in reflection of Louis XIV’s practice.
6.0.6 It is nevertheless unclear who performed in these divertissements. While the activities of the ensembles formed outside the Maison (the Violons and the Petite Musique) are documented through most of Monsieur’s life, the roles played by the musicians of the Musique de la Chambre remain uncertain because there are very few records of performances by its members. What evidence there is seems to indicate two main periods of activity: an early period in the 1660s and early 1670s, when Sablières and François Martin père were active as composers, and the later period starting in the 1680s with the increasing importance of musical fêtes. The evidence seems to point to a decline or even perhaps a dissolution of the Musique de la Chambre in the 1670s: Sablières left in 1676, and its officers went unpaid, according to one source dating from the end of the 1680s. Nevertheless, according to the états, its offices remained filled and even changed hands during this period. Monsieur then instituted new positions for six choirboys in 1688, indicating a renewed interest in the performance of sacred music. Likewise, several of its members—Gillier, Gervais, and probably Jean Martin—would compose music for the family in the late 1680s and 1690s. The continued presence of many players of keyboard, gamba, and lute, along with occasional reports of concerts involving large numbers of these instruments, seems to indicate the continued—if occasional—performance by its members in events staged by the Orléans.
6.0.7 For the musicians themselves, service to the indifferent Monsieur was clearly not a ticket to fame and fortune. While Guichard seems to have been close enough to his prince to be able to persuade him to stage—or at least to further—artistic projects, the members of Monsieur’s musique do not seem to have regarded their employer as a potential source of patronage for such projects. The only publication dedicated to an Orléans during Philippe I’s lifetime (at least before Philippe II came of age) was François Martin’s Airs, dedicated to the six-year-old Marie-Louise and without any apparent benefit to the composer’s career. Other than Sablières (in the early part of his career) and Oudot (who was largely recognized for his service to Parisian institutions rather than to Monsieur), none of these musicians achieved enough recognition to be regularly named in reports of musical events unless they also worked for the crown
6.0.8 Many of Monsieur’s musicians acted as entrepreneurs, taking other positions and becoming active in the Parisian music scene. Thus service to Monsieur seems to have acted both as the anchor to the careers of those, like Jean Martin or Oudot, who sought additional employment (and also patronage) in Paris, or as a stepping stone to royal service in the case of several of Monsieur’s violinists. At the same time, the increased staging of fêtes with elaborate music at Monsieur’s court—whether personally commissioned by the prince or not—represents the clearest indication of the importance of this institution as a source of opportunity for recognition, especially for composers. In Farinel’s case, it led to an appointment as composer for a royal musique, whereas in Gillier’s it meant an opportunity for self-promotion in the form of a publication dedicated to the object of flattery in his divertissement, Philippe II d’Orléans. Gervais, whose father was valet to Monsieur and therefore a product of Orléans service, used the system of patron/client loyalty most successfully of all Monsieur’s composers, staging his divertissement for Philippe II in 1692, becoming “ordinaire” to the talented young prince sometime before 1697, then intendant to Monsieur around 1699.
6.0.9 Even composers such as Jean Martin and Pierre Gillier, who seem not to have made successful use of their prince as an aid to their careers, benefited from the stability offered by a position in the household, which allowed them the security to compose for various patrons and institutions and to attempt to gain public recognition by publication. Their place on the fringe of French courtly musical life, while it may have prevented their music from becoming well known, seems to have allowed them more leeway to experiment with new musical techniques than some of their colleagues who composed for the royal court or for the Opéra. Thus, Monsieur’s court seems to have been, at worst, a place of benign neglect, where—precisely because the prince himself took little interest in musical fashion—the dominance of Lully and Lullian conventions had less influence. Martin and Gillier nevertheless paid the price for their compositional liberties: their published volumes, which were neither designed to take advantage of current musical tastes nor really suited to the amateur music market, did not achieve the commercial success their authors hoped for them.
6.0.10 Whether or not these compositions were written for, or commissioned by, Monsieur or his courtiers, they are nevertheless a product of the Orléans’ protection. This repertoire presents an alternative view of French musical life in a period whose posterity has been dominated by the products of royal institutions. It thus contributes to our picture of music beyond Versailles—whether of wealthy Parisian connoisseurs such as Malebranche, or the courtly world inhabited by Monsieur and the courtiers who were his guests—especially after the 1680s, when the search was on for a style that derived from, but did not slavishly imitate, that of the recently deceased Monsieur de Lully.
Appendix 1. Sources Listing Musicians in the Orléans Maison
Appendix 2. Attributions of Airs to Jean Grenouillet, Sieur de Sablières vs. Antoine Rambouillet de La Sablière
Appendix 3. Attributions to Members of the Martin Family
Example 1a. François Martin père, “Pleurez mes yeux”
Example 1b. François Martin père, “Pleurez mes yeux,” second couplet
Example 2a. François Martin père, Dialogue, “Hélas, il faut enfin,” opening
Example 2b. François Martin père, “Hélas, il faut enfin,” ending
Example 3. Jean Martin, Symphony 8, from Premier livre d’airs (1688), 2nd violin part reconstructed
Example 4. Pierre Gillier, Petit chœur “Belle nymphe, essuyez vos larmes,” mm. 7–23
Example 5. Pierre Gillier, “Beaux lieux, aimable solitude”
Example 6. “Gillier,” Benedictus à 4 voci C. A. T. B. con 5 strom., incipit
Figure 1. Philippe I d’Orléans, engraving by Robert Nanteuil
Figure 2. Château de Saint-Cloud
Figure 3. Château de Saint-Cloud, detail of the plan for the first floor [Paris, 1738]
Table 1. Musical Positions in the Maison of Philippe I d’Orléans (1650s–1701)
Table 2. Musicians in the Service of Philippe I
Table 3. Recorded Performances of Chamber Music chez les Orléans in the 1660s
Table 4. Recorded Fêtes with Operatic Music Given at the Orléans Court
Table 5. Pierre Gillier, Divertissement of the “Nymphe de Saint-Cloud” from the Livre d’airs et de simphonies (1697)
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