Science Ficta: Ronde de Saisons


First recordings of rare viol consort music from the Belle Epoque.


Encouraged by Camille Saint-Saëns, violist/composer Henri Casadesus founded the Société des Instruments Anciens in 1901. Casadesus played viola d'amore, his brother Marius played quinton, and additional Casadesus family members and friends played viols, keyboards, and plucked strings. Unlike other early period-instrument revivals, the Casadesus ensemble performed not only baroque pastiche, but also new works which they commissioned and composed for their rediscovered instruments. This disc presents the premiere recordings of music written in the first decades of the twentieth century by Henri Casadesus and Ottorino Respighi for a "quartet of viols."

Engineered and produced by Spiff Wiegand

Edited by Charles Mueller, Loren Ludwig, and Kivie Cahn-Lipman

Mastered by Ryan Streber, Oktaven Audio

Design by Loren Ludwig

Science Ficta

Science Ficta (Loren Ludwig, Caitlin Hedge, Kivie Cahn-Lipman, Zoe Weiss, and Doug Balliett) tackles the thorniest polyphonic challenges, old and new. The ensemble’s arcane but rewarding repertory comprises new commissions, music from forgotten (but wonderful) chapters of the early music revival, and a wealth of sixteenth-century works that have been unjustly neglected by modern performers and listeners. Science Ficta’s first album, Through Lines: new works for viola da gamba ensemble, featuring compositions by Molly Herron, was released in 2021 to critical acclaim. Their second album, Ronde de Saisons, was released on Olde Focus Recordings in 2023.

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