Savage Amusement

This bright and sunny Monday (though still bitterly cold and windy, I must say) I felt like getting off to a lively start. Last week a follower commented how he rarely gets much enjoyment from dance, so this little excerpt from Rameau’s 1735 opera-ballet Les Indes galantes will hopefully set him off on the right foot.



Incidentally, this piece is commonly known as the Dance of the Savages, not terribly PC these days. However, note that it is knocking on for 300 years old and was inspired by Louis XV’s meeting with chiefs of the Illinois Metchigamea tribe when they sealed a pact by dancing in the Theatre Italien. Does this treasure we have inherited justify the French invasion of Illinois? Not in my book, but we can still enjoy it as a product of the times.


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