Observations and insights into the life and vocal work of Joseph Bologne (Chevalier de Saint-Georges)
Chevalier de Saint-Georges, the brilliant swordsman, unequalled equestrian, athlete, dancer, violin virtuoso, composer and orchestral conductor is, and remains a singularly unique historical figure of the 18th century French Court of Louis XVI. Believed to be the first man of mixed race to compose classical music, Saint-Georges, who was frequently invited to the court at Versailles to make music with Marie Antoinette not only thrived, but excelled during the height of an appalling slave trade and one of the most explosive periods in European history: the French Revolution. Saint-Georges’ ever evolving talent, and without preamble composed six operas. This research document will introduce to the reader important milestones that influenced the direction of his life, as well as a survey of two arias and duet from the opera L’Amant Anonyme using the paradigm of dance metrics as described in “Rhythmic Gesture in Mozart, Le Nozze di Figaro and Don Giovanni,” by Wye Jamison Allanbrook and “Classical Music, Expression, Form and Style” by Leonard Ratner.