The Camerata Rousseau (CR) is an orchestra that plays the repertoire of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries on historical instruments. Its initiator, Leonardo Muzii, was encouraged and supported in the founding of the orchestra by a group of musicians who were then studying at the early music department of Geneva University of Music (HEM). Their attachment to this city and to the repertoire of the eighteenth century inspired the choice of the name, an explicit reference to Jean-Jacques Rousseau, the Geneva philosopher-musicologist composer of the Age of Enlightenment. The ensemble made its debut in 2014 with concerts in Geneva, Basel and Zurich.
The orchestra is recognised by the Canton of Basel-Stadt as a non-profit association, where many of its musicians have come to the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis (SCB) of the Fach Hochschule Nord West (FHNW) to complete their training in Historically Informed Performance Practice (HIP). As a result, the Camerata Rousseau is an ensemble with an international background in which different languages, cultures and music schools from different Swiss cantons and abroad coexist and complement each other.
Leonardo Muzii's vision is to combine the richness of diversity with interpretative and artistic coherence.
The repertoire - not only Mozart!
The repertoire of Viennese classical music, which is usually performed in concerts, consists of a relatively small number of works, most of which originate from the Mozart-Haydn-Beethoven-Triad. The public's attention is therefore focused on these works, the performers are trained in this repertoire, and it has been a priority on the music stages for generations.
In contrast, the Camerata Rousseau is not only aimed at Mozart, but also at lesser known authors. For example, our project "Mozart versus Kozeluh" has enabled us to deepen our knowledge of the Bohemian composer Leopold Kozeluh and to measure ourselves against some of his works that are still free of the crystallization of interpretative traditions.
This pioneering work brings to light previously unknown works - sometimes masterpieces - and, by juxtaposing them with the consolidated repertoire, opens up new perspectives for judgment and reflection.