chapter 63 debussy, faure, and boulanger

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Chapter 63 Paris in the Belle Époque: Debussy, Fauré, and Lili Boulanger

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  • Chapter 63Paris in the Belle poque : Debussy, Faur,and Lili Boulanger
  • Belle poque and Impressionism The Belle poque refers to the period in French history before and after 1900 when both popular and serious arts flourished . Impressionist painters/musicians of the 1870s-1880s (notably Claude Monet and Claude Debussy) depicted everyday scenes that reflect the motions and colors of the outdoors. Monets fondness for the image of reflecting water has its musical counterpart in Debussys Reflets dans leau for piano.
  • Impressionism in Painting and MusicWhen we compare a paintingsuch as Claude Monets WildPoppies (above, 1873) to awork by Claude Debussy such asReflets dans leau, we find thesimilarities that have ledaudiences from Debussys timeto our own to refer to both asImpressionists.Both favored subjects drawnfrom nature at its most beautiful,and both use pure colors tobring their scenery alive.A strictness of organizationbeneath the surfaces of theseworks supports an apparentfreedom above.Most of all, both painter andmusician are refined, subtle,and supremely evocative .
  • The Life of Claude Debussy (1862 1918) 1862 - born near Paris 1872 - enters the Paris Conservatory 1885 - wins the Prix de Rome 1887 - returns to Paris 1902 - premiere of opera Pellas et Mlisande 1918 - dies in Paris
  • Claude Debussy Even in his lifetime, Debussy was referred to as a musical impressionist though he did not accept this term as a good description of his music. Debussy major innovations included the suppression of functional harmonies despite his continued use of triads and seventh and ninths chords . Much of his diatonic music alternates with use of: whole tone octatonic (8-note) pentatonic (5-note) scales . Was a true master of orchestral music.
  • Principal Compositions by Claude Debussy Piano: character pieces including Preludes and Etudes Songs: some 60 Chamber music: including String Quartet Sonata for cello and piano Sonata for flute, viola, and harp Sonata for violin and piano Orchestra: tone poems and character pieces including Prelude to The Afternoon of a Faun Three Nocturnes La Mer (The Sea) Opera and ballet: Pellas et Mlisande (opera) Jeux (ballet)
  • Claude Debussy, En sourdine, 1891, from Ftes galantes IThrough-composed or free rounded binary form
  • Claude Debussy, Reflets dans leau from Images I for piano, 1905Free form (with elements of sonata form)
  • Claude Debussy, Nuages, from Three Nocturnes for orchestra, 1900Rounded Binary form
  • The Life of Gabriel Faur (18451924) 1845 - born in a village in south-central France 1854 - studies church music in Paris 1866 - begins the career of church organist and choir director 1874 - appointed choirmaster at Church of the Madeleine in Paris (later becomes its organist) 1905 - appointed professor at the Paris Conservatory (later its Director) 1924 - dies in Paris
  • Principal Compositions of Gabriel Faur Songs: over 100 Dramatic music: operas and incidental music to plays (including Maeterlincks Pellas et Mlisande ) Chorus: motets and a Requiem (1877, later revised) Chamber music : sonatas for violin and for cello, music with piano Piano: nocturnes, impromptus, barcarolles; Dolly for piano four hands
  • Characteristics of Gabriel Faurs Music Debussys older contemporary, Gabriel Faur composed music in a more conventional romantic style . His music was notable for: its warmth lyricism harmonies influenced by the expressive music of Wagner.
  • Gabriel Faur, Dans la fort de septembre, 1902 Rondo form
  • The Life of Lili Boulanger (18931918) 1893 - born in Paris to family of leading musicians 1898 - enrolls at the Paris Conservatory, studies with Gabriel Faur 1913 - wins the Prix de Rome the first female composer to be so honored 1918 - dies in Paris of Crohns disease, age of 24
  • Characteristics of Lili Boulangers Music Lili Boulanger was a younger contemporary of Debussy who more eagerly adopted his advances in harmony and tonality . She was also very much influenced by Faurs melodiousness continued to use him as a model.
  • Principal Compositions by Lili Boulanger Chorus: several pieces for the church; cantata Faust et Helne Piano: preludes, variations, character pieces Songs: include the cycle Clairires dans le ciel
  • Lili Boulanger, Elle est gravement gaie from Clairires dans le ciel , 1914Rounded Binary form