I encourage you get the ‘Cleartune’ app, and set it to A=415 – ‘Violin Family’. Use Cleartune to tune-up whenever you practice. It is important to practice tuning so you can quickly tune accurately, and to learn to manipulate the pegs efficiently. After your first string is in-tune, try tuning the other strings by ear – and only then check Cleartune to see how accurate you are – adjust as necessary.
FRANCE – 17th century
In the 17th century, music played an important part at the French royal court. The first permanent string orchestra in France, called ‘The Twenty-four ordinary violins of the King’, was established in 1618, and played for royal balls, celebrations, and official ceremonies. In the families of the nobles, and the wealthy, children were taught to sing and to play musical instruments, such as harp, violin, viola da gamba, flute, guitar, and harpsichord, either in the convent schools, or at home with private tutors.
In 1647, Lully was brought to Paris from his native Florence to be in the service of the French court. Under Lully, music became not simply entertainment, but an expression of royal majesty and power.
The young Louis XIV was an avid dancer and participant in ballet. Ballet was commonly practiced by young nobles, along with fencing and horsemanship. Only men danced, except in ballets given by the ladies of the Queen. Louis practiced several hours a day, and made his first ballet appearance in the Ballet de Cassandre at the age of thirteen. In 1653, Louis was featured in the Ballet Royal de la Nuit by Lully. This court ballet lasted 12 hours, from sundown until sunrise, and consisted of 45 dances. Louis appeared in five of them, the most famous of which saw the young king in the role of Apollo – the Sun King – a title he subsequently adopted for himself.
During 1660’s, Lully collaborated with the playwright Moliere to produce comedie-ballet which combined theater, comedy, incidental music, and ballet – such as Le bourgeois Gentilhomme, and also wrote incidental music for plays by Moliere. Lully initiated his own tragédie en musique with the opera Cadmus et Hermione, in 1673.
The most popular gathering place for street musicians and singers, as well as clowns, acrobats, and poets, in Paris was the Pont Neuf. All the carriages of the aristocracy and the wealthy crossed the bridge, and since it was the only bridge not lined by houses, there was room for a large audience. Listeners could hear comical songs about current events, romantic poems set to music, and the latest melodies by Lully
Louis Couperin, 1626-1661. Organist, harpsichordist, and keyboard composer.
Monsieur Sainte Colombe,1640-1700. Viola da Gamba player and composer (featured in the movie: Tous les matins du monde).
Jean-Baptiste Lully, 1632-1687. Composer to the French court of Louis XIV.
Marc-Antoine Charpentier 1643-1704, Composer and organist.
– Richard Webb 10-19-18