Thursday 26 October 2017
Tune of the Day: La Matelotte by Marin Marais
from “Five Old French Dances”
This piece was composed by the famous French viol player Marin Marais. The viol (also called viola da gamba, an Italian expression indicating that the instrument is meant to rest vertically on one's leg) is an old instrument that was primarily used during the Renaissance and Baroque periods. It is similar to a cello, but it has six strings and it is fretted like a guitar.
The matelotte (from the French matelot, ‛sailor’) is a Dutch sailors' dance similar to a hornpipe, performed in wooden shoes, the dancers' arms being interlaced behind their backs.