Anne of Hannover was taught music theory and harpsichord by G.F. Handel in London. When she resided in Leeuwarden, in the Netherlands, she had Jean Marie Leclair come over from Paris to teach her. Frederik the Great, with whom she corresponded, visited her at Soestdijk Palace to make music together. Many were deeply impressed by her sharp artistic insight and qualities. She was an accomplished singer, could play the harpsichord and the flute and composed and painted. She also advised her husband Willem IV on state affairs and took over his duties as regent after his death.
Both Handel and Leclair dedicated compositions to her and she came into contact with the works of J.S.Bach through her friendship with Frederik the Great.
The Apollo Ensemble puts the spotlight on this remarkable woman in a concert program that could have been conceived by Anne of Hannover herself. The concert program features a concerto grosso from opus 3 by Handel (Handel presented this as a wedding gift), the overture ‘Parnasso in Festo’ that was performed at their wedding party; a work from the Quatrième Livre by Leclair (dedicated to Anna) and the triosonate from the ‘Musikalisches Opfer’ by Bach (Bach gave this as a gift to Frederick the Great, a good reason to correspond with Anna about this). Schickhardt and the Orange-Nassau family were friends and Anna was well acquainted with his work. Thanks to Van Wassenaer we know that Schickhardt came to visit the family in The Hague. In addition, he frequently came to Friesland, because of his work. We don’t know if Anna knew this concerto armonico, but she would certainly have appreciated it. Finally, as Handel’s star student she must almost certainly have known and played his organ concerts. In this program, in her honor, we play the 5th concert on harpsichord.
U. van Wassenaer
|Overture ‘Parnasso in Festo’ HWV 73
Triosonata in c BWV 1079 (Musikalisches Opfer)
Concerto Armonico in B-flat
Concerto for harpsichord in F, opus 4/5 Concerto Grosso opus 3/5
Sonata for violin and bc from quatrième livre
Concerto à 9
David Rabinovich, Lilia Slavny, Daphne Oltheten, Agnieszka Papierska – violin
Yoshiko Morita – viola
Cassandra Luckhardt – cello
Jesse Solway – double bass
Ofer Frenkel and Peter Tabori – oboe
Kate Clark – traverso
Thomas Oltheten – bassoon
Marion Boshuizen – harpsichord