We know very little about Joseph Touchemoulin, a renowned violinist and chapel master to the princely courts of Bonn and Regensburg for more than 50 years, and one of the few 18th-century French composers to have enjoyed a career outside France. Touchemoulin's apprenticeship was largely accomplished at Padua, where he became a pupil of the great violinist and composer Giuseppe Tartini. This is the source of the exuberant Italian idiom which characterises his work, and which he would later combine with the delicacy and ease of the German tradition. This first recording of Touchemoulin on period instruments, or on authentic copies, presents three of the composer's concertos and two of his symphonies — a charming, finely made music, combining Italian influences with the current tastes of the Mannheim school with its conventions of galant style and sensitive style (Empfindsamkeit).
Patrick Ayrton, harpsichord
Alexis Kossenko, traverso
Daniel Sepec, violin
Since its foundation in 2005, the ensemble LES INVENTIONS has been at the heart of a network of musical collaboration embracing the whole of Europe, which has borne fruit in a variety of concerts, artistic exchanges and publications. Taking its inspiration from an older tradition of concert in which elements of music, poetry and dance are blended harmoniously into one performance, the ensemble has sought to embrace and revitalize this rich tradition. Les Inventions has also sought to reawaken interest in forgotten composers, and to restore neglected works to their place in the repertoire. Based in Burgundy, the ensemble regularly takes part in the Saisons Mosaïques at Chalon-sur-Saône and in the Drôme des Collines and Combrailles Bach Festivals. Les Inventions are featured in the Dijon opera season, and in the Bach Concerts at Lutry (Switzerland). The ensemble is sponsored by the Regional Agency of Cultural Affairs in Burgundy (DRAC), the Regional Council of Burgundy, the General Council of Saône-et-Loire, the city of Chalon-sur-Saône, the Chalon Community of Communes, and the Caisse des Dépôts et Consignations.
Patrick Ayrton, direction
Stéphan Dudermel (KM), Joanna Huszcza, Tuomo Suni, Anne-Catherine Fargeix, Mieko Tsubaki, violin I
Lilia Slavny, Satomi Watanabe, Stéphanie Erös, Matthieu Camilleri, violin II
Gudrun Hardardottir, Samantha Montgomery, Céline Cavagnac, viola
Marion Middenway, Blandine Odin, cello
Thomas de Pierrefeu, violone
Alexis Kossenko, Judith Farey, flute
Pierre-Yves Madeuf, Emma Cottet, horn
Raphaël Collignon, harpsichord
PATRICK AYRTON divides his time between performance on keyboard instruments and his work as a conductor. Born in London, he began his musical studies in Switzerland with François Demierre. From 1980 to 1985, he studied sacred music at the Vienna Academy, where he worked with the organist and composer Alfred Mitterhofer and received a soloist degree cum laude. Later he enrolled in Ton Koopman's harpsichord class at the Royal Conservatory of the Hague where he graduated in 1990. He was a laureate of the organ competitions at Innsbruck in 1983, and at Bruges in 1985. Patrick Ayrton teaches thorough-bass, and chamber music at the Royal Conservatory of the Hague. He has given courses in performance in Italy,at the Tchaikovsky Conservatory and at the Gnessin School of Music in Moscow, at the Yonsei University of Seoul, as well as at the summer school of the Salzburg Mozarteum. In 1995 he played the title rôle in Anne Cuneo's documentary film Francis Tregian, Gentleman and Musician. Patrick works regularly with the harpsichordist Wolfgang Glüxam, performing works for four hands. Other frequent collaborators include the singer Jean-Paul Fouchécourt. His association and collaboration with the Dutch conductor Arie van Beek have encouraged him to explore and develop his skills as a musical director. Several associations have invited him to lead projects, including the Orchestra of Chalon-Bourgogne, the Orchestra of the Auvergne, the Chamber Academy of Potsdam, the Dijon Opera Orchestra and the Chamber Orchestra of Munich. In 2004 Patrick Ayrton's researches brought to light important new evidence linking the composer Joseph Touchemoulin (1727-1801) with the town of Chalon-sur-Saône, France. A year later, he founded the ensemble Les Inventions.