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DUKAS, Paul (1865-1935)

Having trained as a pianist, Paul Dukas became interested in composition from 1879 and, two years later, entered the harmony class taught by Dubois at the Paris Conservatoire, where he also studied under Mathias (piano) and Guiraud (counterpoint and fugue). Towards the end of his academic career, he failed to win the Prix de Rome competition twice: he was awarded second prize in 1888 for Velléda; and received nothing in 1889 for Sémélé, despite Saint-Saëns’ support. Nevertheless, the young man had already had the opportunity to hear one of his orchestral works played in Geneva around this time, and was preparing to lead the life of a freelance music critic and composer. After his military service (1891), his Polyeucte overture was performed at the Concerts Lamoureux (January 1892) and he published a review of a London performance of Wagner’s Ring. At the end of the 1890s, his Symphony in C Major (1896), and particularly L’Apprenti sorcier (Sorcerer’s Apprentice, 1897), earned him a truly international reputation. His style, clearly influenced by German Romanticism, also relied on a variation technique borrowed from French Baroque composers. In fact, Dukas worked with Saint-Saëns on an edition of Rameau’s complete works in the late 19th century. His last major pieces were written for the stage: the opera Ariane et Barbe-Bleue, begun in 1889, was staged at the Opéra-Comique in 1907 and the dance poem La Péri was given its first performance at the Théâtre du Châtelet in 1912. In his last years, Dukas became a professor at the Paris Conservatoire, initially teaching orchestration (1910), then composition (1928). 

    Images - 5
  • Paul Dukas
  • Paul Dukas
  • Georgette Leblanc en Ariane (Ariane et Barbe-Bleue de Dukas)
  • Lettre de Paul Dukas à Armand Marsick (1918)
  • L'Apprenti sorcier (Paul Dukas)
  • Works - 13
  • Apprenti sorcier, L’ (Paul Dukas)
  • Ariane et Barbe-Bleue (Maeterlinck / Dukas)
  • Fête des myrtes, La (Toubin / Dukas)
  • Frédégonde (Gallet / Guiraud & Saint-Saëns)
  • Hymne au soleil (Delavigne / Dukas)
  • Pensée des morts (Lamartine / Dukas)
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    Theme - 1
  • Piano – Fin-de-siècle Romantic Piano Music
  • Symposia - 1
  • Henri Rabaud et son temps (2013)
  • Studies - 5
  • Dratwicki, Alexandre – Unknown Paul Dukas
  • Lorent, Catherine – Paul Dukas et Florent Schmitt : convergences et divergences
  • Ritaine, Pauline – Ariane et Barbe-Bleue à l’Opéra- Comique. « Un cadre d’art » idéal pour le conte lyrique de Dukas et Maeterlinck
  • Ritaine, Pauline – Paul Dukas’ approach to orchestration
  • Sérié, Pierre – Velléda and Sémélé: final hesitations of the Institut de France prior to making a reactionary choice
  • Press articles -  4
  • La Chronique des arts et de la curiosité, 2 avril 1898 [L’Île du rêve de Hahn]
  • La Chronique des arts et de la curiosité, 28 décembre 1895 [Frédégonde de Guiraud et Saint-Saëns]
  • La Revue hebdomadaire, 10 juin 1893 [Phryné de Saint-Saëns]
  • La Revue hebdomadaire, avril 1898 [L’Île du rêve de Hahn]
  • Document - 1
  • Dukas, Paul – Notice autobiographique (1899)