Claude Debussy

January 11. 2021. Icelandic pianist Vikingur Ólafsson’s third release for Deutsche Grammophon captivates with every note and poses an intriguing question. What connects two French masters—Claude Debussy and Jean-Philippe Rameau—despite the difference of over a century, the difference of the keyboard instruments they wrote for, and the difference of two contrasting stylistic eras of music?

January 6, 2020. We're exploring the intimate late works of Claude Debussy this week. Composed at a time when Debussy was struggling with the emotional devastation of WW I and the diagnosis of a terminal illness, creating his final three chamber works gave him hope, and show him at the height of his genius.

October 15, 2018. Pianist Cyrus Chestnut has always been known for swinging us right to church. On Kaleidoscope, he does a bit of that, but mostly adds his touch to the work of classical composers. Bassist Eric Wheeler and drummer Chris Beck help to identify the different styles Chestnut tackles on this album.

July 23, 2018.  A marvelous disc of music by three French composers makes up a new release by the Neave Trio.  On French Moments the chamber ensemble performs three trios: one each, by Debussy, Fauré and Roussel.  In fact,  the CD contains the only piano trios by these composers.

April 2, 2018. The reviews are in! Pianist Seong-Jin Cho has put together a splendid recording of the keyboard music of Claude Debussy. Just listen to his new Debussy album. 

Henri Manuel/ Wikimedia Commons

His set of three Gymnopedies are some of the most requested works (in different versions) here at WRTI, yet his output goes well beyond those. Erik Satie, the eccentric French composer at the intersection of modernism and minimalism in early 20th-century music and art, composed works that are sometimes dreamy, sometimes spare, sometimes quirky or fun or rambunctious, and sometimes all of the above. 

Composer Joseph Bertolozzi's latest musical project turned the Eiffel Tower into a giant percussion instrument. From the basement to the summit, the Paris monument's girders, railings, and rivets were banged, tapped, strummed and thumped. And then, those 10,000 samples were layered into one composition, called Tower Music.

The Philadelphia Orchestra's Principal Clarinet Ricardo Morales shows off his virtuosic skills in two very different and very challenging works in this Philadelphia Orchestra In Concert re-broadcast, Sunday, August 16, 1 to 3 pm.

Competitions have tested serious music students for decades. They also have prompted the composition of works that continue to enrich the repertoire. WRTI’s Susan Lewis has more on Claude Debussy’s Rhapsody No. 1 for Clarinet and Orchestra.

Two French composers, who wrote and circulated in the same artistic circles, are still being explored and considered together today. Now, in advance of this week’s concert broadcast of The Philadelphia Orchestra on WRTI, Susan Lewis looks at two masterworks that conjure imagery – one on the land, and one on the sea.

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