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GOUNOD Charles (Gounod Charles)

( French composer.)

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Biography GOUNOD Charles (Gounod Charles)
photo GOUNOD Charles (Gounod Charles)
(1818-1893)
Charles Francois Gounod was born June 17, 1818 in Paris. His father was a painter, mother - the gifted pianist, who encouraged him in his childhood interest in music. After graduating from the LycцLe Saint-Louis, Gounod entered the Paris Conservatoire, where he studied counterpoint with HalцLvy, and composition at F. Paera and JF Lesyuera. In 1839 he was awarded the Rome Prize. In Rome he studied the great spiritual music of the Italian Renaissance, he wrote two masses, a requiem and cantata. I became acquainted with the works of German romantics, but also in the works was affected mainly by the Italians. Returning to Paris, Gounod decided to become a priest. He served as organist and regent in the Church of foreign missions in Paris. Over time, the love of music beat: refusing to accept the spiritual dignity, he devoted himself entirely to creativity and became a professional composer. In 1851 in London was full of his Mass in G major, whose success has opened up new opportunities. Paris Theater 'Opera' took first opera production of Gounod's Sappho (Sapho, 1851), but it was not a success. Nevertheless composer seriously carried away by the operatic genre.
Next opera Gounod - bloody nun (La Nonne sanglante, 1854), which rejected the libretto of five composers, including G. Spontini and H. Berlioz. And this time, waiting for the premiere of failure. Doctor in Spite of Himself (Le medcin malgr lui, 1858) attracted more attention to the opera, and has expressed interest in the London public, but only by Faust (1860), the composer was able to consolidate its position in the theater. The premiere took place on the stage 'theater lyricist' (1859), Gounod and then expelled her from the repertoire and rewrote. The new version of Faust, who won the sympathy of the audience, was staged in 1869 in the Imperial Academy of Music (then called the Paris 'Opera').

The relative success was the opera Philemon and Baucis (Philmon et Baucis, 1860), after which up to this production of Romeo and Juliet (Romo et Juliette, 1867), his compositions are encountered in opera houses very cautious reception. In 1864, some recognition of the opera Mireyl (Mireille). In addition to the operas of Gounod constantly writing and spiritual writings, but none of them has left its mark in the French music.

When in 1870 began the Franco-Prussian War, the composer moved to England, where he soon became known. For the International Exhibition of 1871, he wrote a cantata Gaul (Gallia). To fulfill it, was a special choir, which still exists today as the Royal Choral Society. Influenced by the religious-mystical moods Gounod increasingly drawn to church music, the two most important works of this time - Redemption (La Redmption, . 1882) and The Death and Life (Mors et Vita, . 1883) - Trilogy for the Singers, soloists, . choir and orchestra,
. Later was created Requiem (1893), the author did not actually get to hear his creation, although he kept asking Concert Society to perform at least a fragment.

Despite numerous setbacks in the operatic works, Gounod played a crucial role in the formation of a truly French opera (at the time she was born, except for comic opera and little-known works by Berlioz). Faust once prevailed in the contest with a great opera, Dzh.Meyerberom being introduced and promoted the development of lyric opera.

The advantages of Gounod include his ability to create vivid scenes. The scenes in the garden and in the prison of Faust's excellent, and the vivacity of French waltzes convey character. When the poetic text inspired by the composer, he could throw his inherent restraint - so it was with the verses Mephistopheles (Faust), or with a song Vulcan (Philemon and Philemon).

Ave Maria - probably the best spiritual writing Gounod - inspired by the prelude in C major by JS Bach. Study of music of Palestrina and other composers, as well as work with a great chorus, known as 'Orpheon' (1852-1860), allowed Gounod master choral writing. It is perfectly written for the choir, while his creative imagination gave way to his technical skills.

The composer worked in chamber genres: he was the author of several charming songs, and his two small symphony proved that, if not enthusiasm for opera and religion, he would have become one of the best French symphonists.

Gounod's descendants will be remembered as the creator of a work. Faust is always popular and, in essence, occupies the same place in the Paris repertory, as Carmen Bizet. Gounod died in Saint-Cloud near Paris October 18, 1893.


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