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The name of Francis Poulenc (1899-1963) was first brought to prominence in the 1920s as a member of Les Six, a group of young French composers encouraged by Satie and Cocteau. His subsequent fame spread well beyond France, and he is coming to be regarded as one of this century's most significant composers. His compositions are heard constantly in concert halls the world over, and numerous recordings, including complete sets of songs and piano music, have been released. Books, articles and more than a dozen doctoral dissertations have discussed his music. Carl Schmidt's catalogue of Poulenc's works represents the first comprehensive attempt to list an oeuvre which numbers approximately 185 compositions written from his teenage years until his death at the age of 63. The Catalogue indentifies a number of unpublished works, and adds a small group of compositions to his musical canon for the first time. Each work, whether complete or unfinished, published or unpublished, is described fully. Catalogue entries list and describe all known printed editions (including reprints) and manuscript copies of each work. In addition, they provide detailed compositional histories based on numerous letters, documents, and press accounts, many of which have not been published previously. Russian interest in Poulenc's music, manifested in press runs exceeding one million copies, is also revealed for the first time.
’He plays the piano well,’ wrote the society hostess Mme de Saint-Marceaux in her diary on 18 March 1927. ’His compositions are not devoid of talent but he’s not a genius, and I’m afraid he thinks he is.’ Intelligent though the lady was, she got this one spectacularly wrong. Poulenc has in fact outpaced his colleagues in Les Six by many a mile, as singers and instrumentalists all over the world will attest, and while he would never have accepted the title of ’genius’, preferring ’artisan’, a genius is increasingly what he appears to have been. Part of the answer lay in always being his own man, and this independence of spirit shows through in his writings and interviews just as brightly as in his music, whether it’s boasting that he’d be happy never to hear The Mastersingers ever again, pointing out that what critics condemn as the ’formlessness’ of French music is one of its delights, voicing his outrage at attempts to ’finish’ the Unfinished Symphony, writing ’in praise of banality’ - or remembering the affair of Debussy’s hat. And in every case, his intelligence, humour and generosity of spirit help explain why he was so widely and deeply loved. This volume comprises selected articles from Francis Poulenc: J’écris ce qui me chante (Fayard, 2011) edited by Nicholas Southon. Many of these articles and interviews have not been available in English before and Roger Nichols's translation, capturing the very essence of Poulenc’s lively writing style, makes more widely accessible this significant contribution to Poulenc scholarship.
An acknowledged master of mélodie, Francis Poulenc’s prolific song œuvre exceeds the collections of all other French composers who wrote in this genre. Yet despite Poulenc’s prolific output and its significance to art song repertoire, few volumes dedicated to study of Poulenc’s works have appeared in print. This text offers a theory on the marginalized popularity of Poulenc’s songs and strategies for their study that can assist performers in their appreciation and interpretation of his work. The Mélodies of Francis Poulenc is the first work to contain the complete collection of Poulenc’s song compositions, providing IPA transcriptions and word-for-word translations in an easy reference format. Also included are the highly regarded poetic translations of Winifred Radford. In their introduction to the songs, Deeter and Peavler formulate a methodology for the proper interpretation and study of the Poulenc’s works. Finally, this work features a musical terms index, select discography of downloadable sound files, and a song title index. Teachers of singing, vocal coaches, professional singers, accompanists, and students of art song will find the The Mélodies of Francis Poulenc an invaluable tool for the study and instruction of Poulenc’s songs.
This collection of essays provides vivid new insights into Poulenc's world, his particular rapport with painters, writers and fellow musicians, and with the social élite who promoted his music through their salons. Contributions from international Poulenc scholars include the influence of various artists on his music, the nature of his affinity for Eluard's poetry, his response to texts by Cocteau and Bernanos, and his constant search for suitable libretti. New light is thrown on two friendships, the first with his childhood friend Raymonde Linossier who introduced him to the world of books, the second to his teacher Charles Koechlin who greatly influenced his choral style. A detailed study is also provided of Poulenc's four choral works with orchestra. Finally, the reader is allowed a rare view of Poulenc at the microphone, not as interviewee but as radio presenter, in his 1947-1949 series of programmes 'A bâtons rompus'.
(Piano). Francis Poulenc (1899-1963) was one of the great French composers for piano, following in the tradition of Debussy and Ravel. Contents: Valse * Valse-Improvisation sur le nom de Bach * Villageoises, Petites pieces enfantines * Humoresque * Bourree, au Pavillon d'Auvergne * and more.

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