Digital resources for French Romantic music

CHARPENTIER, Gustave (1860-1956)

Following his music studies in Tourcoing and Lille, Gustave Charpentier entered the Paris Conservatoire in 1879, studying violin with Massart, harmony with Pessard (1881) and lastly composition with Massenet (1885). He was awarded the Prix de Rome in 1887 for his cantata Didon. Charpentier is largely famous for his opera Louise, composed in 1900, for which he also wrote the libretto. This opera, a typical example of “Naturalism” in music, paints a detailed picture of fin-de-siècleParis and deals with the clash between generations and social tensions. The work’s realism and touching sentimentality came in for its fair share of criticism; however, it remains a key watershed in French opera, despite the score’s obvious Wagnerian influences. Charpentier lived to a ripe old age, which meant that he was able to conduct the Couronnement de la Muse from the third act of Louise to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the opera (and his 960th representation), in December 1950. Charpentier was not the most prolific of composers, but Louise has eclipsed some important works: these include the symphonic suite Impressions d’Italie of 1889 and the art songs with piano, some of which were orchestrated and had choral parts, which set poems by Verlaine, Baudelaire and Mauclair and were composed between 1885 and 1895. Charpentier was involved in the defence of musicians’ rights, founding, with Alfred Bruneau, the Chambre des Artistes Musiciens in 1901. A firm believer in his social mission, he founded the Conservatoire Populaire Mimi Pinson in the following year. This conservatory, which gave free musical tuition to young women, continued to be active until World War Two, spreading its message throughout France by means of concerts conducted by Charpentier. In 1912, the crowning achievement of the musician’s academic career was his entrance into the Institut de France, to replace Massenet.

    Images - 33
  • Gustave Charpentier
  • Gustave Charpentier
  • Gustave Charpentier
  • Gustave Charpentier
  • Gustave Charpentier (par Henri Martin)
  • Charles Rousselière en Julien (Charpentier)
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    Works - 7
  • Didon (Augé de Lassus / Charpentier)
  • Fleurs du mal, Les (Baudelaire / Charpentier)
  • Impressions d’Italie, suite symphonique (Gustave Charpentier)
  • Julien ou La Vie du poète (Gustave Charpentier)
  • Louise (Gustave Charpentier)
  • Poëmes chantés (Gustave Charpentier)
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    Themes - 2
  • Institution – Académie des beaux-arts (Institut)
  • Prix de Rome – Concours de composition musicale
  • Person - 1
  • CHARPENTIER, Victor (1867-1938)
  • Symposia - 2
  • Exotisme et art lyrique (2012)
  • The Fantastic in French Romantic Opera (2009)
  • Studies - 4
  • Dratwicki, Alexandre – Didon, un exemple de relecture des mythes antiques
  • Dratwicki, Alexandre – Les Impressions d’Italie à l’heure des symphonies « pittoresques »
  • Niccolai, Michela – Charpentier et la « symphonie-drame » : annotations en marge de La Vie du poète
  • Niccolai, Michela – De Dieuze à Rome, en passant par Montmartre : portrait d’un compositeur bohémien
  • Libretto - 1
  • Vie du poète, La (Gustave Charpentier)
  • Press articles -  11
  • L’Art musical, 30 juin 1887 [prix de Rome]
  • L’Art musical, 31 octobre 1887 [séance publique de l’Institut]
  • Le Ménestrel, 26 juin 1887 [prix de Rome]
  • Le Ménestrel, 3 juillet 1887 [Gustave Charpentier]
  • Le Ménestrel, 30 octobre 1887 [séance publique de l’Institut]
  • Le Ménestrel, 6 novembre 1887 [séance publique de l’Institut]
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    Documents - 2
  • Charpentier, Gustave – Mémoires (extraits)
  • Rapports de l’Académie des beaux-arts sur les envois de Rome de musique (1812-1910)