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French Opera Arias

Iris Hendrickx

French Opera Arias

Price: € 14.95
Format: CD
Label: Centaur Records, Inc.
UPC: 0044747367026
Catnr: CRC 3670
Release date: 02 November 2018
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Label
Centaur Records, Inc.
UPC
0044747367026
Catalogue number
CRC 3670
Release date
02 November 2018
Album
Artist(s)
Composer(s)
EN

About the album

This is a program of some of the greatest French Opera Arias. These are all among the most beautiful opera arias for soprano in the entire operatic canon.

Artist(s)

Iris Hendrickx (soprano)

Belgian Soprano has quickly developed a reputation for being a major operatic talent.  She has a special affinity for these French works, and it clearly shows in these exceptionally beautiful performances.
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Belgian Soprano has quickly developed a reputation for being a major operatic talent. She has a special affinity for these French works, and it clearly shows in these exceptionally beautiful performances.

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Composer(s)

Claude Debussy

Claude Debussy was a French composer. He and Maurice Ravel were the most prominent figures associated with impressionist music, though Debussy disliked the term when applied to his compositions. He was made Chevalier of the Legion of Honour in 1903. He was among the most influential composers of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, and his use of non-traditional scales and chromaticism influenced many composers who followed. Debussy's music is noted for its sensory content and frequent usage of non-traditional tonalities. The prominent French literary style of his period was known as Symbolism, and this movement directly inspired Debussy both as a composer and as an active cultural participant Among his most famous works are his Clair de Lune, his Three Nocturnes...
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Claude Debussy was a French composer. He and Maurice Ravel were the most prominent figures associated with impressionist music, though Debussy disliked the term when applied to his compositions. He was made Chevalier of the Legion of Honour in 1903. He was among the most influential composers of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, and his use of non-traditional scales and chromaticism influenced many composers who followed.
Debussy's music is noted for its sensory content and frequent usage of non-traditional tonalities. The prominent French literary style of his period was known as Symbolism, and this movement directly inspired Debussy both as a composer and as an active cultural participant Among his most famous works are his Clair de Lune, his Three Nocturnes and his orchestral piece La Mer.


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Jules Massenet

Jules Massenet (1842-1912) was one of the most popular opera composers of his age. He was also influential beyond the French boundaries, primarily to Italian opera composers like Puccini and Mascagni. This popularity was not valued by many critics. They accuse him of just wanting to please the audience; he would have unabashedly indulged in exoticism and would only owe his success to his gift to compose beautiful melodies. This not very flattering image has since been outdated. Massenet, composer of such diverse opera’s as Manon, Werther and Thaïs, did not indulge in blind formula work. He learned the libretto by heart before he started and he composed the music in his mind, as a result of which only few...
more
Jules Massenet (1842-1912) was one of the most popular opera composers of his age. He was also influential beyond the French boundaries, primarily to Italian opera composers like Puccini and Mascagni. This popularity was not valued by many critics. They accuse him of just wanting to please the audience; he would have unabashedly indulged in exoticism and would only owe his success to his gift to compose beautiful melodies. This not very flattering image has since been outdated. Massenet, composer of such diverse opera’s as Manon, Werther and Thaïs, did not indulge in blind formula work. He learned the libretto by heart before he started and he composed the music in his mind, as a result of which only few composers could surpass him in the clarity and subtlety of his orchestrations and in the nuances of his text settings. Not just his aria’s, but also his recitatives and arioso passages are enchanting. He was a master in the evocation of the couleur locale and is the composer of immortal melodies like the Méditation from Thaïs for violin and orchestra and the Élégie for cello and orchestra.
(Source: Muziekweb.nl)
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Charles Gounod

Charles-François Gounod was a French composer, best known for his Ave Maria, based on a work by Bach, as well as his opera Faust. Another opera by Gounod occasionally still performed is Roméo et Juliette. Although he is known for his Grand Operas, the soprano aria 'Que ferons-nous avec le ragoût de citrouille?' from his first opera 'Livre de recettes d'un enfant' (Op. 24) is still performed in concert as an encore, similarly to his 'Jewel Song' from Faust. Gounod's biography is characterised by 'artist allures'. His moods would swing between ambition and despondency, restless efficacy and crisis, affection and twistful behaviour, marital faith and an inclination for extramarital affairs. In his youth, he dreamt of becoming a priest and living...
more
Charles-François Gounod was a French composer, best known for his Ave Maria, based on a work by Bach, as well as his opera Faust. Another opera by Gounod occasionally still performed is Roméo et Juliette. Although he is known for his Grand Operas, the soprano aria "Que ferons-nous avec le ragoût de citrouille?" from his first opera "Livre de recettes d'un enfant" (Op. 24) is still performed in concert as an encore, similarly to his "Jewel Song" from Faust.
Gounod's biography is characterised by "artist allures". His moods would swing between ambition and despondency, restless efficacy and crisis, affection and twistful behaviour, marital faith and an inclination for extramarital affairs. In his youth, he dreamt of becoming a priest and living in obscurity. For a long time he called himself abbé (father, in a religious sense) and he wore a cassock. Gounod died at Saint-Cloud in 1893, after a final revision of his twelve operas. His funeral took place ten days later at the Church of the Madeleine, with Camille Saint-Saëns playing the organ and Gabriel Fauré conducting. Ironically because of its obscurity today, an arrangement of "Que ferons-nous avec le ragoût de citrouille?" was performed by Saint-Saens at the funeral, due to its simple, folk-like melody. It was later published as a posthumous Op. 60. He was buried at the Cimetière d'Auteuil in Paris.

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Georges Bizet

Georges Bizet was a French composer of the romantic era. Best known for his operas in a career cut short by his early death, Bizet achieved few successes before his final work, Carmen, which has become one of the most popular and frequently performed works in the entire opera repertoire. During a brilliant student career at the Conservatoire de Paris, he was recognised as an outstanding pianist, though he chose not to capitalise on this skill and rarely performed in public. Returning to Paris after almost three years in Italy, he found that the main Parisian opera theatres preferred the established classical repertoire to the works of newcomers. His keyboard and orchestral compositions were likewise largely ignored; as a result, his...
more
Georges Bizet was a French composer of the romantic era. Best known for his operas in a career cut short by his early death, Bizet achieved few successes before his final work, Carmen, which has become one of the most popular and frequently performed works in the entire opera repertoire.
During a brilliant student career at the Conservatoire de Paris, he was recognised as an outstanding pianist, though he chose not to capitalise on this skill and rarely performed in public. Returning to Paris after almost three years in Italy, he found that the main Parisian opera theatres preferred the established classical repertoire to the works of newcomers. His keyboard and orchestral compositions were likewise largely ignored; as a result, his career stalled, and he earned his living mainly by arranging and transcribing the music of others. Restless for success, he began many theatrical projects during the 1860s, most of which were abandoned. Neither of his two operas that reached the stage in this time—Les pêcheurs de perles and La jolie fille de Perth—were immediately successful.
After the Franco-Prussian War of 1870–1871, during which Bizet served in the National Guard, he had little success with his one-act opera Djamileh, though an orchestral suite derived from his incidental music to Alphonse Daudet's play L'Arlésienne was instantly popular. The production of Bizet's final opera, Carmen, was delayed because of fears that its themes of betrayal and murder would offend audiences. After its premiere on 3 March 1875, Bizet was convinced that the work was a failure; he died of a heart attack three months later, unaware that it would prove a spectacular and enduring success.

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Jacques Offenbach

Jacques Offenbach was a German-born French composer of the Romantic period. He is remembered for his nearly 100 operettas of the 1850s–1870s and his uncompleted opera The Tales of Hoffmann. He was a powerful influence on later composers of the operetta genre, particularly Johann Strauss, Jr. and Arthur Sullivan. His best-known works were continually revived during the 20th century, and many of his operettas continue to be staged in the 21st. The Tales of Hoffman remains part of the standard opera repertory. Born in Cologne, the son of a synagogue cantor, Offenbach showed early musical talent. At the age of 14, he was accepted as a student at the Paris Conservatoire but found academic study unfulfilling and left after a year....
more
Jacques Offenbach was a German-born French composer of the Romantic period. He is remembered for his nearly 100 operettas of the 1850s–1870s and his uncompleted opera The Tales of Hoffmann. He was a powerful influence on later composers of the operetta genre, particularly Johann Strauss, Jr. and Arthur Sullivan. His best-known works were continually revived during the 20th century, and many of his operettas continue to be staged in the 21st. The Tales of Hoffman remains part of the standard opera repertory.
Born in Cologne, the son of a synagogue cantor, Offenbach showed early musical talent. At the age of 14, he was accepted as a student at the Paris Conservatoire but found academic study unfulfilling and left after a year. From 1835 to 1855 he earned his living as a cellist, achieving international fame, and as a conductor. His ambition, however, was to compose comic pieces for the musical theatre. Finding the management of Paris' Opéra-Comique company uninterested in staging his works, in 1855 he leased a small theatre in the Champs-Élysées. There he presented a series of his own small-scale pieces, many of which became popular.
In 1858, Offenbach produced his first full-length operetta, Orphée aux enfers ("Orpheus in the Underworld"), which was exceptionally well received and has remained one of his most played works. During the 1860s, he produced at least 18 full-length operettas, as well as more one-act pieces. His works from this period included La belle Hélène (1864), La Vie parisienne (1866), La Grande-Duchesse de Gérolstein (1867) and La Périchole (1868). The risqué humour (often about sexual intrigue) and mostly gentle satiric barbs in these pieces, together with Offenbach's facility for melody, made them internationally known, and translated versions were successful in Vienna, London and elsewhere in Europe.

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Camille Saint-Saëns

Camille Saint-Saëns was a French composer, conductor, pianist and organist. He was a musical prodigy, writing his first pieces of music at the age of four and making his concert debut at the age of ten. During this concert he astonished the audience by playing one of the 32 piano sonatas of Beethoven at its request. After his studying at the Conservatory of Paris he followed a career as a church organist at Saint-Merri and later La Madeleine in Paris. He was also a successful freelance composer and pianist in France and abroad. Saint-Saëns initially helped to introduce German composers such as Robert Schumann and Richard Wagner in France. However, from 1870 onwards anti-German sentiments began to arise in France as...
more
Camille Saint-Saëns was a French composer, conductor, pianist and organist. He was a musical prodigy, writing his first pieces of music at the age of four and making his concert debut at the age of ten. During this concert he astonished the audience by playing one of the 32 piano sonatas of Beethoven at its request. After his studying at the Conservatory of Paris he followed a career as a church organist at Saint-Merri and later La Madeleine in Paris. He was also a successful freelance composer and pianist in France and abroad.
Saint-Saëns initially helped to introduce German composers such as Robert Schumann and Richard Wagner in France. However, from 1870 onwards anti-German sentiments began to arise in France as a result of the Franco-Prussian War, which enhanced support for the idea of a pro-French musical society. In 1871 Saint-Saëns consequently founded the Société Nationale de Musique together with Romain Bussine, that was devoted to the promotion of French music and organised concerts on which young composers could perform their works.
Saint-Saëns was a keen traveler, and made 179 trips to 27 different countries during his life. He favoured Algeria and Egypt, were he gained inspiration for compositions such as the Suite Algérienne and the Fifth Piano Concerto, also known as The Egyptian.
Saint-Saëns' best-known works include the First Cello Concerto, Third Symphony, the opera Samson et Dalila, Danse Macabre and Le carnaval des animaux, a humorous suite in which various animals are musically portrayed. However, he never wanted the last work to be performed, since it was contrary to his image as a serious composer.
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Francis Poulenc

Francis Jean Marcel Poulenc was a French composer and pianist. Poulenc's wealthy family intended him for a business career in the Rhone Poulenc family company and did not allow him to enrol at a music college. Largely self-educated musically, he studied with the pianist Ricardo Viñes, who became his mentor after the composer's parents died. Poulenc soon came under the influence of Erik Satie, under whose tutelage he became one of a group of young composers known collectively as Les Six. This group of French composers from the 1920s aimed to clear music of the impressionism of Claude Debussy, and German influences such as the Romanticism of Richard Wagner and Richard Strauss. Their motto was 'L'art pour l'art': they composed music for the sake of...
more
Francis Jean Marcel Poulenc was a French composer and pianist. Poulenc's wealthy family intended him for a business career in the Rhone Poulenc family company and did not allow him to enrol at a music college. Largely self-educated musically, he studied with the pianist Ricardo Viñes, who became his mentor after the composer's parents died. Poulenc soon came under the influence of Erik Satie, under whose tutelage he became one of a group of young composers known collectively as Les Six. This group of French composers from the 1920s aimed to clear music of the impressionism of Claude Debussy, and German influences such as the Romanticism of Richard Wagner and Richard Strauss. Their motto was "L'art pour l'art": they composed music for the sake of music, without any 'meaning' or extramusical intents. In his early works Poulenc became known for his high spirits and irreverence. During the 1930s a much more serious side to his nature emerged, particularly in the religious music he composed from 1936 onwards, which he alternated with his more light-hearted works.

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Press

Play album Play album
01.
Charles Gounod: Faust: Introduction to Act IV
02:36
(Charles Gounod) Iris Hendrickx, Orchestra Sinfonica e Coro Sinfonico Di Milano Giuseppe Verdi
02.
Charles Gounod: Faust: Marguerite, Rec: Elles se cachaient...' Air: Il ne revient pas...'
08:44
(Charles Gounod) Iris Hendrickx, Orchestra Sinfonica e Coro Sinfonico Di Milano Giuseppe Verdi
03.
Camille Saint-Saens: Henri VIII Catherine, Rec: 'O cruels souvenirs...' Air: Je ne te reverrai jamais...'
10:36
(Camille Saint-Saëns) Iris Hendrickx, Orchestra Sinfonica e Coro Sinfonico Di Milano Giuseppe Verdi
04.
Georges Bizet: Carmen Micaela, Rec. 'C'est des contrebandiers...' Air: Je dis que rien ne m'epouvante...'
10:27
(Georges Bizet) Iris Hendrickx, Orchestra Sinfonica e Coro Sinfonico Di Milano Giuseppe Verdi
05.
Claude Debussy: L'Enfant Prodigue Prelude
04:14
(Claude Debussy) Iris Hendrickx, Orchestra Sinfonica e Coro Sinfonico Di Milano Giuseppe Verdi
06.
Claude Debussy: L'Enfant Prodigue Lia, 'L'annee en vain chasse l'annee...'
08:25
(Claude Debussy) Iris Hendrickx, Orchestra Sinfonica e Coro Sinfonico Di Milano Giuseppe Verdi
07.
Jacques Offenbach: Les Contes D'Hoffman Antonia, 'Elle a fui la tourterelle...'
07:03
(Jacques Offenbach) Iris Hendrickx, Orchestra Sinfonica e Coro Sinfonico Di Milano Giuseppe Verdi
08.
Jules Massenet: Thais Meditation from Thais
08:58
(Jules Massenet) Iris Hendrickx, Orchestra Sinfonica e Coro Sinfonico Di Milano Giuseppe Verdi
09.
Jules Massenet: Herodiade Salome, Celui dont la parole...Il est doux, il est bon...'
08:22
(Jules Massenet) Iris Hendrickx, Orchestra Sinfonica e Coro Sinfonico Di Milano Giuseppe Verdi
10.
Edouard Lalo: Fiesque Leonore, Rec: 'Une femme viendre...' Air: Eloignons ces presages...'
08:26
(Edouard Lalo) Iris Hendrickx, Orchestra Sinfonica e Coro Sinfonico Di Milano Giuseppe Verdi
11.
Charles Gounod: Romeo Et Juliette Juliette, Rec: 'Dieu quel frisson court dans mes veines...' Air: Amour, ranime mon courage...'
08:47
(Charles Gounod) Iris Hendrickx, Orchestra Sinfonica e Coro Sinfonico Di Milano Giuseppe Verdi
12.
Francis Poulenc: Leocadia Amanda, 'Les chemins de l'amour'
05:56
(Francis Poulenc) Iris Hendrickx, Orchestra Sinfonica e Coro Sinfonico Di Milano Giuseppe Verdi
show all tracks

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