Cécile Chaminade

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Cécile Chaminade
Portrait of Cécile Chaminade.jpg
Portrait of Cécile Chaminade, by Guessford
Born (1857-08-08)8 August 1857
Paris, France
Died 13 April 1944(1944-04-13)
Monte Carlo

Cécile Louise Stéphanie Chaminade (8 August 1857 – 13 April 1944) was a French composer and pianist.[1]

Biography[edit]

Born in Paris, she studied at first with her mother, then with Félix Le Couppey on piano, Marie Gabriel Augustin Savard, Martin Pierre Marsick on violin, and Benjamin Godard in music composition, but not officially, since her father disapproved of her musical education.[2][3]

Her first experiments in composition took place in very early days, and in her eighth year she played some of her sacred music to Georges Bizet, who was much impressed with her talents. She gave her first concert when she was eighteen, and from that time on her work as a composer gained steadily in favor. She wrote mostly character pieces for piano, and salon songs, almost all of which were published.[1]

She toured France several times in those earlier days, and in 1892 made her debut in England, where her work was extremely popular.[2]Isidor Philipp, head of the piano department of the Paris Conservatory championed her works. She repeatedly returned to England during the 1890s and made premieres there with singers such as Blanche Marchesi and Pol Plançon, though this activity decreased after 1899 due to bad critical reviews.[3]

Chaminade married a music publisher from Marseilles, Louis-Mathieu Carbonel, in 1901, and on account of his advanced age the marriage was rumored to be one of convenience. He died in 1907, and Chaminade did not remarry.[3]

In 1908 she visited the United States, and was accorded a very hearty welcome from her admirers there.[1] Her compositions were tremendous favorites with the American public, and such pieces as the Scarf Dance or the Ballet No. 1 were to be found in the music libraries of many lovers of piano music of the time. She composed a Konzertstück for piano and orchestra, the ballet music to Callirhoé and other orchestral works. Her songs, such as The Silver Ring and Ritournelle, were also great favorites. Ambroise Thomas once said of Chaminade: "This is not a woman who composes, but a composer who is a woman."[4] In 1913, she was awarded the Légion d'Honneur, a first for a female composer.[2][3] In London in 1903, she made gramophone recordings of seven of her compositions for the Gramophone and Typewriter Company; these are among the most sought-after piano recordings by collectors, though they have been reissued on compact disk.[3] Before and after World War I, Chaminade recorded many piano rolls, but as she grew older, she composed less and less, dying in Monte Carlo on 13 April 1944.

Chaminade was relegated to obscurity for the second half of the 20th Century, her piano pieces and songs mostly forgotten, with the Flute Concertino in D major, Op. 107, composed for the 1902 Paris Conservatoire Concours, her most popular piece today.[1]

Chaminade's sister married Moritz Moszkowski, also a well-known composer and pianist like Cécile.

Critical reception[edit]

Though many of her piano compositions received good reviews, many of her other endeavors and more serious works did not receive good reviews from critics, though this may be due to gender stereotypes.[2] Overall, most of her compositions were published during her lifetime and were financially successful.[1][2]

Compositional style[edit]

Chaminade's music has been described as tuneful, highly accessible, mildly chromatic and typically follows most aspects of late-Romantic French music.[1]

Works[edit]

Works with opus number[edit]

  • Op. 1, Etude in A-flat major
  • Op. 1, 2 Mazurkas for piano
  • Op. 2, Presto for piano
  • Op. 3, Scherzo-étude
  • Op. 4, Caprice-étude
  • Op. 5, Menuet
  • Op. 6, Berceuse
  • Op. 7, Barcarolle
  • Op. 8, Chaconne (1879)
  • Op. 9, Two piano pieces: 1 Pièce romantique; 2 Gavotte (1879)
  • Op. 10, Scherzando
  • Op. 11, Piano Trio No. 1 in G minor (1881)
  • Op. 12, Pastorale enfantine (1881)
  • Op. 13, Les Noces d'Argent, Petite Fantaisie for piano (1881)
  • Op. 18, Capriccio for violin and piano (1881)
  • Op. 19, La Sévillane, comic opera
  • Op. 20, Suite for orchestra (1881)
  • Op. 20, Intermezzo in A-flat major (Extract from Suite for orchestra) (1881)
  • Op. 21, Sonata for piano in C minor (1881)
  • Op. 22, Orientale
  • Op. 23, Minuetto (1881)
  • Op. 24, Libellules (Dragon Flies) (1881)
  • Op. 25, 2 Piano Pieces
  • Op. 26, Symphonie Dramatique 'Les Amazones' (first pub. 1888)
  • Op. 27, Deux morceaux: 1 Duetto; 2 Zingara
  • Op. 28, Étude symphonique for piano (1883)
  • Op. 29, Sérénade (1884)
  • Op. 30, Air de ballet (1884)
  • Op. 31, 3 Morceaux for violin and piano (ca. 1885)
  • Op. 32, Guitare (1885)
  • Op. 33, Valse caprice (1885)
  • Op. 34, Piano trio #2 (a): 1 allegro moderato; 2 lento; 3 allegro energico (1887)
  • Op. 35, 6 études de concert: 1 (C) scherzo; 2 (D–)automne; 3 fileuse; 4 Appasionato 5 (F) impromptu; 6 (D) tarantelle (1886)
  • Op. 36, 2 pieces: 2 pas des cymbales (1887)
  • Op. 37, 5 Airs de Ballet : 1 danse oriental; 2 Pas des amphores; 3 Pas des echarpes; 4 Callirhöe;5 Danse pastorale(1888)
  • Op. 38, Marine (1887)
  • Op. 39, Toccata (1887)
  • Op. 40, Concert piece for piano and orchestra
  • Op. 41, Air de ballet. pierrette (E–) (1889)
  • Op. 42, Les Willis,caprice (1889)
  • Op. 43, Gigue (D) (1889)
  • Op. 44, Les Feux de la St. Jean for chorus, soli and piano
  • Op. 45, Sous L'Aile Blanche des Voiles for chorus, soli and piano
  • Op. 46, Pardon Breton for chorus, soli and piano
  • Op. 47, Noce Hongroise for chorus, soli and piano
  • Op. 48, Noel des Marins for chorus, soli and piano
  • Op. 49, Les Filles d'Arles for chorus, soli and piano
  • Op. 50, La lisonjera (G–) (1890)
  • Op. 51, La livry,air de ballet (1890?)
  • Op. 52, Capriccio appassionato (1890)
  • Op. 53, Arlequine (F) (1890)
Lolita (Caprice espagnole), Op. 54
  • Op. 54, Caprice espagnole. lolita (D–) (1890)
  • Op. 55, 6 pièces romantiques: 6 rigaudon (1890)
  • Op. 56, Scaramouche (1890)
  • Op. 57, Havanaise (1891)
  • Op. 58, Mazurk-Suedoise (1891)
  • Op. 59, Andante et Scherzettino de Callirhoe for 2 pianos, 4 hands (ca. 1891)
  • Op. 60, Les sylvains (1892)
  • Op. 61, Arabesque (1892)
  • Op. 62, Barcarolle for 2 voices and piano (1892)
  • Op. 63, Les Fiancés for 2 voices and piano (1892)
  • Op. 64, L'Angélus for 2 voices and piano (1892)
  • Op. 65, Marthe et Marie for 2 voices and piano (1892)
  • Op. 66, Studio (1892)
  • Op. 67, Caprice espagnole. la morena (1892)
  • Op. 68, Duo d'Etoiles for 2 voices and piano
  • Op. 69, A Travers Bois for 2 voices and piano
  • Op. 70, Le Pêcheur et l'Ondine for 2 voices and piano
  • Op. 71, Nocturne Pyrénéen for 2 voices and piano
  • Op. 73, Valse carnavalesque (1894)
  • Op. 74, Pièce dans le style ancien (1893)
  • Op. 75, Danse ancienne (1893)
  • Op. 76, 6 romances sans paroles: 1 souvenance; 2 (E) élévation; 3 idylle; 4 eglogue; 5 chanson brétonne; 6 méditation (1894)
  • Op. 77, Deuxieme vals (1895)
  • Op. 78, Prelude for organ (1895)
  • Op. 79, Two Pieces for orchestra
  • Op. 80, Troisieme valse brillante (1898)
  • Op. 81, Terpsichore, sexieme air de ballet (1896)
  • Op. 82, Chanson napolitaine (1896)
  • Op. 83, Ritournelle (1896)
  • Op. 84, Trois prèludes melodiques for piano (1896)
  • Op. 85, Vert-Galant (1896)
  • Op. 86, Romances sans paroles: 1 souvenance; 2 élévation;
  • Op. 87, 6 pièces humoristiques: 2 sous bois; 3 inquiétude; 4 autrefois; 5 consolation; 6 norwegienne (1897)
  • Op. 88, Rimembranza (1898)
  • Op. 89, Thème varié (A) (1898)
  • Op. 90, Legende (1898)
  • Op. 91, Waltz #4 (D–) (1898)
  • Op. 92, Deuxieme arabesque (1898)
  • Op. 93, Valse humoristique (1906)
  • Op. 94, Havanaise #2 danse créole (1898)
  • Op. 95, Trois dances anciennes: 1 passepied; 2 pavane; 3 courante; (1899)
  • Op. 96, Chant du Nord for violin and piano (1899)
  • Op. 97, Rondeaus for violin and piano (1899)
  • Op. 98, 6 feuillets d’album: 1 promenade; 2 scherzetto; 3 (D–) élégie; 4 valse arabesque 5 chanson russe; 6 rondo allegre (1900)
  • Op. 99, 6 Poèmes evangéliques for chorus and piano (1900)
  • Op. 100, Aux Dieux sylvains for chorus (1900)
  • Op. 101, L'ondine (1900)
  • Op. 102, Joie d'Aimer for mezzo-soprano and piano (1900)
  • Op. 103, Moment musical (1900)
  • Op. 104, Tristesse (c+) (1901)
  • Op. 105, Divertissement (1901)
  • Op. 106, Expansion (1901)
  • Op. 107, Concertino for flute and orchestra in D major (1902)
  • Op. 108, Agitato (1902)
  • Op. 109, Cinquieme valse (1903)
  • Op. 110, Novelette (1902)
  • Op. 111, Souvenir lointains (1911)
  • Op. 112, Sixieme valse, valse-ballet (1904)
  • Op. 113, Caprice humoristique (1904)
  • Op. 114, Pastorale (1904)
  • Op. 115, Waltz #7 valse romantique (1905)
  • Op. 116, Sous le masque (1905)
  • Op. 117, Duo Symphonique for 2 pianos
  • Op. 118, Étude mélodique (G–) (1906)
  • Op. 119, Valse tendre (F) (1906)
  • Op. 120, Variations sur un theme original (1906)
  • Op. 121, Gavotte for piano (1906)
  • Op. 122, 3 contes blues: 2 (1906)
  • Op. 123, Album d’enfants: 2 (A–) intermezzo. pas de sylphes; 4 (F) rondeau; 5 (a) gavotte; 9 (e) orientale; 10 (a) tarantelle (1906)
  • Op. 124, Étude pathetique (b) (1906)
  • Op. 125, Sommeil d'enfant; transcription pour violoncelle avec acc. de piano (1907)
  • Op. 126, Album d’enfants: 1 (C) idylle; 2 (E) aubade; 3 (a) rigaudon; 4 (G) eglogue; 5 (g) ballade; 6 (D) scherzo-valse; 7 (d) élégie; 8 (F) novelette 9 (g) patrouille; 10 (A) villanelle; 11 (a) conte de fées; 12 (B-) valse mignonne (1907)
  • Op. 127, 4 poèmes provençales: 2 solitude; 3 (D–) le passé; 4 pêcheurs de nuit (1908)
  • Op. 128, Pastel for piano
  • Op. 129, Menuet galant for piano
  • Op. 130, Passacaille (E) (1909)
  • Op. 131, Marche américaine for piano (1909)
  • Op. 132, Etude romantique for piano (1909)
  • Op. 133, Ronde du Crépuscule for chorus (1909)
  • Op. 134, La retour (1909)
  • Op. 135, La Barque d'Amour for piano
  • Op. 136, Capricietto for piano
  • Op. 137, Romance (D) (1910)
  • Op. 138, Etude humoristique for piano (1910)
  • Op. 139, Étude scholastique (1910)
  • Op. 140, Aubade for piano
  • Op. 141, Suédoise for piano
  • Op. 142, Serénade aux étoiles for Flute and piano
  • Op. 143, Cortège (A) (1911)
  • Op. 144, Gavotte for piano
  • Op. 145, Scherzo for piano
  • Op. 146, Feuilles d'Automne for piano
  • Op. 147, Les Bohémiens for piano
  • Op. 148, Scherzo-valse (1913)
  • Op. 149, Gavotte for piano
  • Op. 150, Sérénade espagnole (G) (1925)
  • Op. 151, Ecossaise for piano
  • Op. 152, Interlude for piano
  • Op. 153, Caprice Impromptu for piano
  • Op. 154, Sérènade vénitienne for piano
  • Op. 155, Au pays dévasté (1919)
  • Op. 156, Berceuse du Petit Soldat Blessé for piano (1919)
  • Op. 157, Chanson d'Orient for piano (1919)
  • Op. 158, Danse païenne (1919)
  • Op. 159, Les Elfes des Bois for voice and piano
  • Op. 160, Les Sirènes for chorus, soli and orchestra
  • Op. 161, Chanson Nègre for piano (ca. 1921)
  • Op. 162, Gavotte for piano
  • Op. 163, Romanesca for piano
  • Op. 164, Air à danser (1923)
  • Op. 165, Nocturne (1925)
  • Op. 166, Berceuse arabe for piano
  • Op. 167, Messe pour deux voix égales for voices and organ (1927)
  • Op. 168, Danse l'Aeéne for piano
  • Op. 169, Valse d'Automne for piano
  • Op. 170, Air Italien for piano
  • Op. 171, La Nef Sacrée for organ

Works without opus number[edit]

Chaminade at the keyboard
  • Les rêves (1876)
  • Te souviens-tu? (1878)
  • Auprès de ma mie (1888)
  • Voisinage (1888)
  • Nice-la-belle (1889)
  • Rosemonde (1890)
  • L'anneau d’argent (1891)
  • Plaintes d’amour (1891)
  • Viens, mon bien-aimé! (1892)
  • L'Amour captif (1893)
  • Ma première lettre (1893)
  • Malgré nous! (1893)
  • Si j’étais jardinier (1893)
  • L'Été (1894)
  • Mignonne (1894)
  • Sombrero (1894)
  • Villanelle (1894)
  • Espoir (1895)
  • Ronde d’amour (1895)
  • Chanson triste (1898)
  • Mots d’amour (1898)
  • Alleluia (1901)
  • Écrin! (1902)
  • Bonne humeur! (1903)
  • Menuet (1904)
  • La lune paresseuse (1905)
  • Je voudrais (1912)
  • Attente. au pays de provence (1914)

Media[edit]

Concertino Op. 107
Performed by Alex Murray (flute) and Martha Goldstein (piano)

Notes[edit]

References[edit]

  • This article incorporates text from a publication that prior to 1923, is in the public domain: The Etude (Philadelphia: Theodore Presser Company) 
  1. ^ a b c d e f Ambache, Diana. "Cecile Chaminade". Women of Note. Retrieved 26 February 2014. 
  2. ^ a b c d e "Cécile Chaminade". Encyclopedia Britannica. Encyclopedia Britannica. Retrieved 26 February 2014. 
  3. ^ a b c d e Summers, Jonathan. "CECILE CHAMINADE". NAXOS. NAXos. Retrieved 26 February 2014. 
  4. ^ The Etude, which calls Thomas "the celebrated composer and writer". Thomas appears to have left no published writing.

External links[edit]