Jean-Joseph de Mondonville


Jean-Joseph de Mondonville

Jean-Joseph de Mondonville, also known as Jean-Joseph Cassanéa de Mondonville, (baptised December 25 1711, Narbonne - died October 8 1772, Belleville near Paris) was a French violinist and composer. He was a younger contemporary of Jean-Philippe Rameau and enjoyed great success in his day. Pierre-Louis Daquin (son of the composer Louis Claude Daquin) claimed: "If I couldn't be Rameau, there's no one I would rather be than Mondonville". [Quoted in the booklet to "Titon et l'Aurore"]

Life

Mondonville was born in Narbonne in Southwest France to an aristocratic family which had fallen on hard times. In 1733 he moved to Paris where he gained the patronage of the king's mistress Madame de Pompadour and won several musical posts, including violinist for the Concert Spirituel.

His first opus was a volume of violin sonatas, published in 1733. He became a violinist of the royal chapel and chamber and performed in some 100 concerts; some of his "grands motets" were also performed that year receiving considerable acclaim. He was appointed sous-maître in 1740 and then, in 1744, intendant of the Royal Chapel. He produced operas and grands motets for the Opéra and Concert spirituel respectively, and was associated with the Théatre des Petits-Cabinets, all the while maintaining his career as a violinist throughout the 1740s. In 1755, he became director of the Concert Spirituel on the death of Royer. He died in Belleville at the age of sixty. [Biographical information: Viking, various booklet notes]

Music

acred music

Between 1734 and 1755 Mondonville composed 17 "grands motets", of which only nine have survived. The motet "Venite exultemus domino", published in 1740, won him the post of "Maître de musique de la Chapelle" (Master of Music of the Chapel). Thanks to his mastery of both orchestral and vocal music, Mondonville brought to the grand motet -- the dominant genre of music in the repertory of the "Chapelle royale" (Royal Chapel) before the Revolution -- an intensity of colour and a dramatic quality hitherto unknown.

Operas

Although Mondonville's first stage work, "Isbé", was a failure he enjoyed great success with the lighter forms of French Baroque opera: the "opéra-ballet" and the "pastorale héroïque". His most popular works were "Le carnaval de Parnasse", "Titon et l'Aurore" and "Daphnis et Alcimadure" (for which Mondonville wrote his own libretto in his native Languedocien dialect). [Viking] "Titon et l'Aurore" played an important role in the Querelle des Bouffons, the controversy between partisans of French and Italian opera which raged in Paris in the early 1750s. Members of the "French party" ensured that "Titon"'s premiere was a resounding success (their opponents even alleged they had guaranteed this result by packing the Académie Royale de Musique, where the staging took place, with royal soldiers). [Booklet notes to "Titon et l'Aurore"] Mondonville's one foray into serious French opera - the genre known as "tragédie en musique"- was a failure however. He took the unusual step of reusing a libretto, "Thésée", which had originally been set by the "father of French opera", Lully in 1675. Mondonville's bold move to substitute Lully's much loved music with his own did not pay off. The premiere at the court in 1765 had a mixed reception and a public performance two years later ended with the audience demanding it be replaced by the original. Yet Mondonville was merely slightly ahead of his time; in the 1770s, it became fashionable to reset Lully's tragedies with new music, the most famous example being "Armide" by Gluck. [Viking]

elected works

Instrumental

* Sonates pour violon op.1 (1733)
* Sonates en trio op.2
* Pièces de clavecin en sonates op.3 (1734, later orchestrated as "Sonates en symphonie")
* The preface of op.4 contains the first evidence of a written text concerning playing with harmonic sounds, "Les sons harmoniques (Paris and Lille, 1738)
* Pièces de Clavecin avec voix ou violon op.5 (1748)

Operas

* "Isbé" (1742)
* "Bacchus et Erigone" (1747)
* "Le carnaval du Parnasse" (1749)
* "Vénus et Adonis" (1752)
* "Titon et l'Aurore" (1753)
* "Daphnis et Alcimadure" (1754)
* "Les fêtes de Paphos" (1758)
* "Thésée" (1765)
* "Les projets de l'Amour" (1771)

Grands Motets

Mondonville's nine surviving "grands motets" are:

* "Dominus regnavit decorum" (Psalm 92) (1734)
* "Jubilate Deo" (Psalm 99) (1734)
* "Magnus Dominus" (Psalm 47) (1734)
* "Cantate domino" (Psalm 149) (1743)
* "Venite exultemus Domino" (Psalm 94) (1743)
* "Nisi Dominus aedficavit" (Psalm 126) (1743)
* "De profundis" (Psalm 129) (1748)
* "Coeli enarrant gloria" (Psalm 18) (1750)
* "In exitu Israel" (Psalm 113) (1753)

Recordings of works by Mondonville

* "Titon et l'Aurore" Les Musiciens du Louvre, Marc Minkowski (Erato, 1992)
* "Les fêtes de Paphos" Les Talens Lyriques, Christophe Rousset (Decca L'Oiseau-Lyre, 1997)
* "Les Grands Motets" ("Dominus regnavit, In exitu Israel, De profundis") Les Arts Florissants, William Christie (Erato, 1997)
* "Venite Exultemus, De Profundis (Grands Motets)" Oxford New College Choir, [Edward Higginbottom] (Helios, 1999)
* "Six sonates Op. 3" Les Musiciens du Louvre, Marc Minkowski (Deutsche Grammophon, 1998)
* The aria "Désirs toujours détruits" from "Isbé", sung by Véronique Gens on the collection "Tragédiennes" (Virgin Classics, 2006)
* "Pieces de clavecin avec voix ou violon Op.5" Judith Nelson, William Christie, Stanley Ritchie (Harmonia Mundi, 1980)

References

ources

* The first draft of this article was based on a translation of an article on Mondonville in the French Wikipedia.
* Brief biographical entry in the Grove Concise Dictionary of Music, 1994, published by Oxford University Press, Inc. on the [http://www.gramophone.co.uk/ Gramophone] site.
*Booklets to the above recordings
* "The Viking Opera Guide" ed. Amanda Holden (Viking, 1993)

External links

*IckingArchive|idx=Mondonville|name=Jean-Joseph de Mondonville
*IMSLP|id=Mondonville, Jean-Joseph Cassanéa de|cname=Jean-Joseph Cassanéa de Mondonville


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  • Jean-Joseph de Mondonville — Jean Joseph de Mondonville. Jean Joseph de Mondonville, también conocido como Jean Joseph Cassanéa de Mondonville (bautizado en Narbona el 25 de diciembre de 1711 fallecido en Belleville, cerca de París …   Wikipedia Español

  • Jean Cassanea de Mondonville — Jean Joseph Cassanéa de Mondonville (* 25. Dezember 1711 in Narbonne; † 8. Oktober 1772 in Belleville bei Paris) war ein französischer Violinist und Komponist. Der junge Mondonville erhielt ersten Musikunterricht von seinem Vater, einem Musiker… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Jean Cassanéa de Mondonville — Jean Joseph Cassanéa de Mondonville (* 25. Dezember 1711 in Narbonne; † 8. Oktober 1772 in Belleville bei Paris) war ein französischer Violinist und Komponist. Der junge Mondonville erhielt ersten Musikunterricht von seinem Vater, einem Musiker… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Jean-Joseph Cassanea de Mondonville — Jean Joseph Cassanéa de Mondonville Pour les articles homonymes, voir Mondonville (homonymie). Jean Joseph Cassanéa de Mondonville …   Wikipédia en Français

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  • Jean-joseph cassanéa de mondonville — Pour les articles homonymes, voir Mondonville (homonymie). Jean Joseph Cassanéa de Mondonville …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Jean-Joseph Cassanéa de Mondonville — (* 25. Dezember 1711 in Narbonne; † 8. Oktober 1772 in Belleville bei Paris) war ein französischer Violinist und Komponist. Leben …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Jean-Joseph Cassanéa de Mondonville — Pour les articles homonymes, voir Mondonville (homonymie). Jean Joseph Cassanéa de Mondonville …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Mondonville — For the French composer, see Jean Joseph de Mondonville. Mondonville …   Wikipedia

  • Joseph Cassanéa de Mondonville — Jean Joseph Cassanéa de Mondonville Pour les articles homonymes, voir Mondonville (homonymie). Jean Joseph Cassanéa de Mondonville …   Wikipédia en Français