Jean-Pierre Dassonville: Per Il Corno Da Caccia – Bucharest Early Music Festival
Jean-Pierre Dassonville: Per Il Corno Da Caccia

Jean-Pierre Dassonville: Per Il Corno Da Caccia

Starts from: November 4, 2016

Start Time 7:00 pm

Palatul Bragadiru

Jean-Pierre Dassonville presents the magic of an instrument, the horn, together with “Il Gardellino” at Palatul Bragadiru, within the first concert series entitled  Early Music Winds, which will open the current edition of the Early Music Festival in Bucharest.


Jean-Pierre Dassonville is professor of horn at the Conservatoire Royal de Mons and of natural horn at the Koninklijk Conservatorium Brussel. In addition he gives master classes at Anjou and at the festivals of Epsilon à St-Yrieix-la-Perche and Avignon. Since 1997 he has filled the position of solo first horn of the orchestra of the Théâtre de la Monnaie after having been a member of the Harmonie des Guides and the Orchestre symphonique de la RTBF. He was soloist in the horn concerto by Roland Schoelink at the festival of Vire in Normandy with the Orchestre de la Monnaie under the baton of Kazushi Ono. Amongst the many ensembles with whom he is regularly invited to perform are the Danel quartet, Oxalys and Nouvelles Consonances. In addition he performs on natural horn with the wind quintet of Les Agrémens and the ensemble Solstice.


In works composed at the beginning of the 18th century, the most common way of indicating the use of the horn is with the phrase ”per il corno da caccia” – for the hunting horn – and thus it would seem clear enough that the instrument to be used in these works is the hunting horn itself. However, the method of playing it poses certain problems: as with the modern hunting-horn, the instrument can play only the harmonics (partials) of its fundamental note, which note itself is decided by the length of the air-column. According to the air pressure exerted and the size of the lip opening inside the instrument’s mouthpiece, and only with the aid of these two factors, a skillful (and lucky) horn player can produce the following harmonic series from their instrument, if C is the fundamental note: Harmonics 5 and 10 are a little flat, harmonics 7,11, and 13 are totally unacceptable with reference to our modern system of equal temperament. The use of the horn as a rallying instrument in the hunt has a long tradition. In France, particularly during the reign of Louis XV, the horn had a large repertoire of fanfares for the hunts as well as a certain number of ”pièces de divertissement”; many of these fanfares are the work of the Marquis of Dampierre, Master of the Hunt to Louis XV, and of André Philidor, a musician of the Grande Ecurie. When composers first began to take stock the possibilities of the horn, they used it initially with reference to its function as an instrument of the hunt, and it is used thus in numerous operas and oratorios to give colour to hunting scenes – and as such it is used appropriately enough in the ”Jagdkantate”, BWV 208 of Johann Sebastian Bach. What is more striking to the modern listener is the way in which composers quickly sought to exploit the horn’s other possibilities. Indeed, hunting calls only use a part of the natural harmonic series; moreover the 11th harmonic, too high to be an F, gives a particular colour to these fanfares. Harmonically speaking, this sylvan music is somewhat poor, being based on continual progressions of sixths, fifths, and thirds, and therefore not being able to modulate from the principal key. “Currently, horn players are using copies of two horn models for Baroque music, a model with large round like horns and another with spare crooks to change the tone, it is this instrument that I currently use, it is a copy of Leichamschneider, the original is in the museum of Vienna. This horn is used for Baroque and Pre-Classical repertoire.” (Jean-Pierre Dassonville).


Gottfried Heinrich Stölzel (1690 – 1749) – Sonata in F for oboe, violin, natural horn and basso continuo: Andante – Adagio – Vivace Georg Philipp Telemann (1681 – 1767) – Sonata in a minor, TWV 42: a1, for recorder, violin and basso continuo: Affetuoso – Vivace – Grave – Menuet Georg Philipp Telemann (1681 – 1767) – Sonata for cello in D, TWV 41: D 6: Lento – Allegro – Largo – Allegro Georg Philipp Telemann (1681 – 1767) – Concerto à tre, TWV 42: f14, for recorder, natural horn and basso continuo: Allegro moderato – Loure – Tempo di Minuet Georg Philipp Telemann (1681 – 1767) – Triosonata in g minor, TWV 42: g5, for oboe, violin and basso continuo: Mesto – Allegro – Andante – Vivace Johann Friedrich Fasch (1688 – 1758) – Sonata à 4, FaWV N: F3, for oboe, violin, natural horn and basso continuo: Andante – Allegro – Andante – Allegro Georg Philipp Telemann (1681 – 1767) – Concerto in a minor, TWV 43: a2, for recorder, oboe, violin and basso continuo: Adagio – Allegro – Adagio – Vivace

Il Gardellino

Peter van Heyghen – recorder
Marel Ponseele – Baroque oboe
Jean Pierre Dassonville – natural horn
Dirk Vandaele – Baroque violin
Ira Givol – cello Guy Penson – harpsichord

Early Music Winds Concert Series propose the continuation of Early Music Strings mini-season in 2015. Known under the generic term “winds”, wind instruments have accompanied the musical practice since antiquity. In the European “Early music” they are protagonists in solo or chamber recitals, offering great sonority to a baroque orchestra.

Early Music Festival Bucharest takes place between 1 to 28 November and includes three series of concerts and other events: Early Music Winds, a collaboration project with the ensemble Il Gardellino and support from Koninklijk Conservatorium Brussel, Movie Gala and Clavecinissimo, a project dedicated to raising funds for the restoration of the harpsichord Ruckers – Taskin and the Baroque Concerts series consisting of six concerts, held in three concert halls.

Tickets and passes are available in Eventim network (online or in Germanos, Orange, Vodafone, Domo, Carturesti, Humanitas stores) MyTicket (online or in Diverta stores) and