Marais, Marin



Virtuoso on the bass viol, who improved his instrument by adding the seventh string and increasing the depth of the three lower strings by twisting or covering them. He was born in Paris, where he entered the choir of Sainte-Chapelle, becoming the pupil of Chaperon. Later he began to study the bass viol with Hottemann and Sainte-Colombe, and after six months with the latter he was dismissed as a finished musician. In 1685 he became a soloist of the Royal band, and belonged to the orchestra of the Royal Academy of Music, where he studied composition under Lully and shared the directorship of the orchestra with Colasse. He retired from active work in 1725, and died in 1728. Among his compositions are his book, Pieces de Viole; the Idylle Dramatique, produced at court; his opera, Alcide, written with Lully; Ariane et Bacchus; Alcione; Pantomime des Pages; trios for flute, violin and viol da gamba; and other books of instrumental music.