Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Banat Says of Marie-Antoniette: 'her Music Director at Versailles was Sacchini, not Saint-Georges'

[Saint-George/Mozart Quatuors à cordes; Quatuor Antares; Integral Classic INT 221.125 (2003)]

The blog recently discussed the musical life of France's Queen Marie-Antoinette at Versailles: “Her music instructor was the talented Le Chevalier de Saint-Georges, who in his time was called 'The Black Mozart'. In working with Saint-Georges, Marie even composed music! The title of her composition is 'C’est Mon Ami'. If you’ve seen the 2006 Marie Antoinette movie by Sofia Coppola, it's the beautiful song that Kirsten sings while performing in her theatre for Louis. I don’t know why, but this song is not included on the soundtrack from the movie, but I was able to find a copy on YouTube. I turned off the party music for today on my blog, so that you could enjoy hearing Marie's song that she composed...”

The violinist Gabriel Banat is author of the most authoritative biography of Le Chevalier de Saint-Georges (1745-1799) in English, The Chevalier de Saint-Georges: Virtuoso of the Sword and the Bow, Pendragon Press (2006). He makes this comment on the post: The only authentic reference to Saint-Georges and Marie-Antoinette is an entry by Bachaumont: 'He was invited to play music with the Queen.' From that he became her music teacher and according to some, her lover. In fact, while her music teacher in Vienna was Gluck, her Music Director at Versailles was Sacchini, not Saint-Georges. She did have an extensive music library, but it contains no compositions by herself.” [Le Chevalier de Saint-Georges is profiled at]

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