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Michel-Richard Delalande is regarded as one of the great composers of the French Baroque, and so it is not surprising that our prizewinning Boston Early Music Ensemble has now turned to him. Along with his many sacred works, Delalande also wrote for the various court occasions that required secular music. Les Fontaines de Versailles, the work occupying a central position on this release, above all contributed to Delalande's increasing popularity. It was performed on 5 April 1683, some weeks before Delalande was appointed to the coveted post of "Sous-maître de Chapelle." After the court had settled in Versailles with King Louis XIV in 1682, it's musical microcosm also experienced a renewal. Les Fontaines de Versailles numbered among Delalande's efforts to produce an oeuvre perfectly tailored for Versailles, both in it's form as well as in it's poetic content, thereby demonstrating his skill as a composer of »French music« and displaying it in a proper light for the king. It is with refined sophistication that Les Fontaines de Versailles evokes the special relationship between the king and his gardens. Delalande beyond doubt occupied the first place among Louis XIV's favorites: in 1689 the king named the thirty-one-year-old his "Surintendant de la Musique de la Chambre," a post that before only Jean-Baptiste Lully and then one of his sons had held.