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Thread: Poulenc

  1. #1
    Member vivaciouswagnerian's Avatar
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    Default Poulenc

    I'm starting my summer composer study. I did Mahler last year and had a really good book and set of recordings but I'm having some trouble with what I want to do now.

    I want to study Poulenc, the french composer, but I dont know where to start. Anyone have any ideas for books and/or recordings. Thanks all!!
    "Don't bother to look; I've composed all this already"
    -Gustav Mahler to Bruno Walter, who had stopped to admire mountain scenery in rural Austria

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    Senior Member Daniel's Avatar
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    Hello vivaciouswagnerian!

    Nice to see you here again. How are you? I started with Poulenc with his piano concertos: There is a single piano concerto and one for two pianos. Other great works are his harpsichord organ concertos.

    There are several interprets out there. Just hear through them.

    For example EMI CLASSICS: The harpsichord, double piano and organ concertos
    Aimée van de Wiele: harpsichord
    Francis Poulenc and Jacques Février: pianos
    Maurice Duruflé: organ
    Orchestre de la Société des Concerts du Conservatoire under Pierre Dervaux accompeigns Aimée van de Wiele, Francis Poulenc and Jacques Févriers
    Orchestre National de l'Office de la Radio Télévision Française under Georges Prêtre accompeigns Maurice Duruflé

    Another one in the EMI CLASSICS RED LINE: The organ, harpsichord and piano concertos
    Simon Preston: organ and harpsichord
    Cécile Ousset: piano
    London Symphony Orchestra under André Previn accompeigns Simon Preston
    Bornemouth Symphonie Orchestra under Rudolf Barshai accompeigns Cécile Ousset

    Maybe this is a good starting. Poulenc is so fresh, original and also cantable with surprising ideas.

    All the best!
    Daniel
    Last edited by Daniel; May-20-2006 at 18:24.

  3. #3
    Member vivaciouswagnerian's Avatar
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    Hey. I'm doing fine. As soon as school started I haven't had time to look online. I just recently was looking through my favorites and realized how fun ya'll are. Thanks for the recording ideas. I've changed my summer study to Strauss but I'll def get a hold of those Poulanc recordings. Thanks again!!
    "Don't bother to look; I've composed all this already"
    -Gustav Mahler to Bruno Walter, who had stopped to admire mountain scenery in rural Austria

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    I totally agree that the concertos are the best place to start. If you're interested in approaching Poulenc via a full-length opera, I highly recommend Dialogues of the Carmelites. The Met does it every few years, and it has been beautifully recorded a couple of times, more recently under the direction of Kent Nagano. There's also a wonderful video of an Australian performance in English translation conducted by Richard Bonynge. I believe a great many people would like this moving, lyrical work if they had a chance to hear it.

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    I totally agree that the concertos are the best place to start. If you're interested in approaching Poulenc via a full-length opera, I highly recommend Dialogues of the Carmelites. The Met does it every few years, and it has been beautifully recorded a couple of times, more recently under the direction of Kent Nagano. There's also a wonderful video of an Australian performance in English translation conducted by Richard Bonynge. I believe a great many people would like this moving, lyrical work if they had a chance to hear it.

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    Hello,
    As far as books go, the best place to start is probably 'Francis Poulenc' by Benjamin Ivry, published by Phaidon.
    There is also 'Francis Poulenc: the Man and His Songs' by Pierre Bernac, published by Kahn and Averill

    I love Poulenc, I just eat it up, especially in the summer. It feels like summer music to me, though I couldn't say why.
    Best Wishes,
    Z.W.

    Information is not knowledge
    Knowledge is not wisdom
    Wisdom is not truth
    Truth is not beauty
    Beauty is not love
    Love is not music
    Music is THE BEST

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    Poulenc's Three Novelettes are also good to study , the hardest thing will be getting your hands on a copy though... only one book company publishes the three novelettes (chester hill i think), maybe your nearest music library has a copy, mine did

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