Rameau in Caracas

The Simón Bolívar Symphony Orchestra bring out the best in French Baroque music. Drive Featured Album, 8 April 2013.

The Soloists of the Simón Bolívar Symphony Orchestra of Venezuela invited Bruno Procopio to conduct a programme dedicated entirely to Jean-Philippe Rameau. It's their first foray into 18th century French classical music, and it’s also a taste of the celebrations to come in 2014 to mark the 250th anniversary of the composer’s death.

But you don't have to wait until next year to immerse yourself in this composer's exciting works. From the stately opera Zoroastre, with its refined French dances and elegant airs, to lively tambourine-fuelled moments in Castor et Pollux, this album uncovers some undiscovered gems from across the Channel, shedding some much-deserved light on this golden age of French Baroque music.

The Simón Bolívar Symphony Orchestra are known for bringing energy and vibrancy to their playing, and this album is no exception. Royal and regal, or lively and lilting, it's a treat to hear the musicians bringing the dotted dance rhythms to life, and adding a sense of excitement to every note.