A noteworthy fact: Marais, in his five books of Pièces de viole, published only two suites for two viols and continuo. Aside from the two suites for three viols (Book IV), all the other pieces are intended for the solo instrument with accompaniment of harpsichord, theorbo or a second viol in different combinations.
These two particular suites are both found in Book I (1686). The addition of a second solo viol reinforces the character of the various parts: especially in the slow sections, Marais ideally emphasizes the sound of the two viols with long sostenuto lines and poignant dissonances. The Tombeau pour Mr. Meliton constitutes the absolute height of this.
After Mieneke van der Velden’s recordings Hommages and Images, Dialogues completes the picture of the imposing sound world of Marin Marais’s music, magnified by the collaboration with the master Wieland Kuijken.