top of page

Sun, 23 Aug


Gladstone Park Pleasure Grounds

Bologne: The First Known Classical Composer of African Descent

Get to know the music of Joseph Bologne (1745-1799) – the first known classical composer of African Descent – and of those who shaped his fascinating life & times!

Registration is Closed
See other events
Bologne: The First Known Classical Composer of African Descent
Bologne: The First Known Classical Composer of African Descent

Time & Location

23 Aug 2020, 13:00 – 14:50

Gladstone Park Pleasure Grounds, Dollis Hill Lane, London NW2 6HT, UK

About the event

Join Les Bougies Baroques (in collaboration with Cricklewood Library & Friends of Gladstone Park) as they take you on an 18th-century journey (in the form of a donation-based charity event benefitting the National Black Arts Alliance [registered charity 1065810] – to whom you can donate either via PayPal or by getting in touch directly, both through the following e-mail address: featuring the music of Joseph Bologne, Chevalier de Saint-Georges (1745-1799) – who was a composer, champion fencer, virtuoso violinist, and conductor of the Concert de la Loge Olympique (the leading symphony orchestra in Paris at the time).

Born in the French colony of Guadeloupe, Joseph Bologne was the son of George Bologne de Saint-Georges (a wealthy married planter) and Anne (dite Nanon), his wife’s African slave. After being taken to France to be educated there by his father, Bologne would go on to become a champion fencer and lead the first all-black regiment in Europe (the Légion St.-Georges) as colonel on the side of the French Republic during the French Revolutionary Wars. Despite frequently encountering racism during the 18th-century, his high-profile patrons as both composer & fencing champion included Queen Marie Antoinette and Philippe, Duc d’Orleans. Other than Bologne’s music, the music of those who shaped his life and times will be also be included in this event, namely that of: his mentor François-Joseph Gossec (1734-1829), his Paris flatmate of two months Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791), and that of acclaimed Austrian composer Franz Joseph Haydn (1732-1809) – who was commissioned by Bologne to write a group of 6 Symphonies (now collectively known as the ‘Paris Symphonies’) for the Concert de la Loge Olympique. 'Les Bougies Baroques'

Conductor: Ian Peter Bugeja

Leader: Sam Kennedy

Featuring singers Louisa Petais & Gareth Davies


SET 1 (1pm-1.20pm):

J. BOLOGNE (1745-1799) – Overture to L’Amant Anonyme (1780)

F. J. GOSSEC (1734-1829) – Symphony in D major [Op. 4, No. 1] (1774?)

SET 2 (1.30pm-1.50pm)

F. J. HAYDN (1732-1809) – Symphony No. 85 in B-flat major, ‘La Reine’ (1785) [Movts. I & II]

SET 3 (2pm-2.20pm)

F. J. HAYDN (1732-1809) – Symphony No. 85 in B-flat major, ‘Le Reine’ (1785) [Movts. III & IV]

W. A. MOZART (1756-1791) – ‘Se al labbo mio non credi’ [K. 295] (1778)

SET 4 (2.30pm-2.50pm)

J. BOLOGNE (1745-1799) – ‘Du tendre amour’ from L’Amant Anonyme (1780)

J. BOLOGNE (1745-1799) – Symphony in G major [Op. 11, No. 1] (1779)


Test & Trace: in accordance with NHS England's 'Test & Trace' guidelines, we will be holding on to your e-mail addresses in case you come into contact with anyone who has/develops COVID-19 at the event. This will apply for 21 days following the event. If you develop COVID-19 symptoms over the course of these 21 days, please email us on Also, when booking a ticket/time-slot, please note that each attendee's name needs a different e-mail address attached to it unless the attendee you're booking for is from the same household as yourself. You can read more about 'Test & Trace' here.

Share this event

bottom of page