Jean-Philippe Rameau, one of the most important French composers and music theorists of the Baroque era died on this day 248 years ago. Rameau replaced Jean-Baptiste Lully as the dominant composer of French opera and is also considered the leading French composer of his time, alongside François Couperin.
Rameau’s music has been described as graceful and attractive, allegedly contradicting the public image of the composer. When he embarked on his operatic career he caused quire a stir for his revolutionary use of harmony, however his music went out of fashion by the end of the 18th century. Today, Rameau enjoys renewed appreciation with performances and recordings of his music ever more frequent.
To remember the impact of Rameau’s work, we’ve made a selection of some of the many recordings of his compositions, all of which are available through Europeana.
These public domain recordings have been made available thanks to the French National Library, many more can be found archived in Europeana. Enjoy this extensive collection and we invite you to share your favourite works from Rameau or recordings from many of the other musicians that can be found in Europeana.