Thursday, October 15, 2015

The queen played the harp

The much-maligned queen of France, Marie Antoinette loved her clothes, hunts, privacy, scandals, affairs, bitchiness and the harp.

She was a harpist and a simple woman, thrust into the French court and it's compulsory political pettiness.

Yet, we have been taught in schools, probably to bite monarchy in favour of our democracy, that Marie was a villain
; when told that the French people had no bread to eat, Marie stated “Qu’ils mangent de la brioche”—“Let them eat cake.”

She never did so by most historical accounts. (Here's one)

Marie met the great composer Mozart when he was 7 and showing off his prodigious talent. Apparently, he sat in her lap after the program. She may or may not have kissed the boy.

In recognition of this, and since we don't have Marie's music, I will put up the prodigious Alisa Sadikova's harp magic.
The queen's harp - preserved well.

“Glorious is the Voice of Man, and sweet is the music of the harp.” ― Richard Llewellyn 
“A harp can be a dangerous as a sword, in the right hands.”
― George R.R. Martin 
A harp is a nude piano. And a piano is a harp in a coffin. 
"My soul is dark! oh quickly string The harp I yet can brook to hear." ― Lord Byron
I find this a great video to be introduced to the instrument. Listen to the sounds, watch and catch the finger movements of the girl, and be sent to a good world.

For a very well-written piece on Marie Antoinette, refer 'Scandalous Woman'.
Image courtesy: A Covent Garden Gilflurt's Guide to Life

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