Members Anna Besson Louis Creac’h Robin Pharo Jean Rondeau
The love and passion of ancient repertoire and music from all horizons led Anna Besson, Louis Creac’h, Robin Pharo and Jean Rondeau to create the group Nevermind in 2013. Together they share and present works they love to a wider and more varied audience, transcending the quartet repertoire (flute, violin, viola da gamba and harpsichord) of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. The concerts given by the quartet have only reinforced their conviction: the friendship that emerges from these four musicians appears through passion and a real pleasure of playing, all carried by a striking complicity and devout collaboration.
In 2014, Nevermind won the third prize and special festival prize at the Van Wassenaer Competition in Utrecht. The ensemble have performed throughout France and Europe, as well as in the United States at the Boston Early Music Festival and at the esteemed Oberlin Conservatory in Ohio. Furthermore the quartet have travelled to and performed in Canada with Pro Musica, in Iceland and Russia, namely in Saint Petersburg and in the Sverdlovsk Philharmonic Concert Hall of Yekaterinburg.
Nevermind have had the opportunity to perform at prestigious venues such as the Auditorium of the Louvre, the Salle Cortot and the Theater des Champs-Elysees in Paris. Touring is key to Nevermind’s success and they have had the pleasure of also performing at the Hong Kong City Hall, Warsaw Philharmonie, Hamburg Philharmonic, Alte Oper Frankfurt, Muziekgebouw in Amsterdam, Concertgebouw Bruges, BOZAR in Brussels, LSO St Lukes and at the Barbican in London.
Festivals include the Rheingau Musik Festival, the Schleswig-Holstein Musik Festival, Festival of Saintes, the Terpsichore festival, Musiq3 festival in Belgium, Gstaad Menuhin festival in Switzerland and the Gregynog festival in Wales.
In 2016, Alpha / Outhere released Nevermind’s first album, Conversations, which focuses and aims to give an insight on French quartets from the first half of the 18th century and highlights almost completely unknown pieces composed by two virtuoso violinists: Jean-Baptiste Quentin and Louis-Gabriel Guillemain. The second album of the group, Quatuors Parisiens, was dedicated to the work of Georg-Philipp Telemann and was released in 2017 on the Alpha / Outhere label.
Nevermind was in residence at the Abbaye aux Dames de Saintes during the 2016 and 2017 seasons for the preparation of several programmes and their second album.
Highlights of the 2019/20 season included a successful and fruitful tour in Australia to cities such as Melbourne, Sydney, Canberra, Adelaide, Newcastle and Brisbane and other performances at the Bel-Air clavier festival and in Hong Kong at the Premiere Performances series.
The quartet, who continue to demonstrate their virtuosity, delved into the world of contemporary music for the first time in 2019 and launched works for violin, flute, viola da gamba and harpsichord entitled La Harpe de David, especially composed for Nevermind by Philippe Hersant. The work was premiered at the International Festival of Sacred and Baroque Music of Froville, the Saintes Festival, the La Chaise-Dieu Festival and the Sinfonia Festival in Périgord.
Nevermind continue to pursue their successful recording projects with their anticipated third album, currently being recorded for the Alpha / Outhere label, with works devoted to Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach’s quartets.
“The Paris-based ensemble of flautist Anna Besson, violonist Louis Creac’h, viola da gamba player Robin Pharo and harpsichordist Jean Rondeau brought a delicacy to early numbers by Marin Marais and Francois Couperin; a soothing ambience on a blustery Canberra night. The soft focus of the baroque flute and the intangible quality of natural strings made for a barely there, beguiling sound. And self-deprecating humour from the artists was icing on an exotic cake.”
(The West Australian, David Cusworth, October 2019)
“In Sydney on their first national tour for Musica Viva Australia, the group certainly didn’t disappoint, delivering stylish, refined performances of music by Marais, Couperin and Telemann – as well as lesser known composers Quentin and Guillemain – with easy panache and formidable technique.
The musicians whet the audience’s appetite with four movements from the fourth suite in Marin Marais’ 1692 Pièces en trio, showing off a polished, complex sound, limned at the upper end by the sweetness of Besson’s baroque flute and the darker, penetrating sound of Louis Creac’h’s violin. Lean viola da gamba lines from Robin Pharo offset rolling flourishes from Jean Rondeau in the lyrical La Marianne while the almost agonisingly drawn out Plainte once more highlighted the rich, floral sound of the ensemble.
The ornate filigree of François Couperin’s L’Espagnole suite from the 1726 Les Nations ramped up the intensity, the group’s ensemble work impeccable (and beautifully balanced) across tripping and lilting dance movements, the musicians dextrous in the fast passagework. A moment in the final Passacaille when the continuo of harpsichord and viola da gamba suddenly dropped away to reveal exquisitely duetting flute and violin was simply breath-taking.”
(Limelight Magazine, Angus McPherson, October 2019)
“Indeed, the playing throughout the disc is first-rate, and in Guillemain Nevermind pip Ensemble Barockin’ at the post”