Les Délices

Sunday, April 17, 2016 at 4 pm


Caractères de la danse

Simultaneously signaling power and grace, refinement and discipline, the art of dancing held a singular status at the court of Louis XIV. Louis XIV elevated dancing to the level of high art, created the world’s first ballet school (the Académie Royale de la danse), and turned a social pastime into a stylized professional pursuit. Les Délices’s program explores dance from its social roots in the ballroom to the idiosyncratic, highly expressive music written for the first prima ballerinas on the theater stage. Works include Jean Féry-Rebel’s virtuoso “Characters of the Dance,” a scene from Rameau’s Pigmalion, the earthy, rollicking dances of Boismortier’s Ballets de Villages, plus solos for oboe and viola da gamba.

Les Délices (pronounced Lay day-lease) is “an early music ensemble with an avant-garde appetite” (New York Times). The group’s debut CD was named one of the “Top Ten Early Music Discoveries of 2009” (NPR’s Harmonia), and their performances have been called “a beguiling experience” (Cleveland Plain Dealer), “astonishing” (Cleveland Classical.com), and “first class” (Early Music America Magazine). Founded in Cleveland in 2009, Les Délices’s performances on period instruments allows them to explore a rich tapestry of tone colors. Les Délices has been featured on WCPN, WCLV and WKSU in Ohio, WQXR in New York, NPR’s syndicated Harmonia and Sunday Baroque, and had their debut CD featured on the Audio-guide for a special exhibit at New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art (Watteau, Music, and Theater). Les Délices made its New York debut before a sold-out audience at the Frick Collection in May 2010, and has performed for Music Before 1800 (New York), Early Music in Columbus, and at Miller Theater at Columbia University in recent seasons.