Francis Poulencby Benjamin Ivry
Francis Poulenc (1899-1963) fought the label of 'charming, minor master' all his life, but today his oeuvre has achieved worldwide respect and popularity. Admired for his fine songs and religious works, he is perhaps best known for humorous, insouciant pieces. From the freshness of Les Biches, composed for Diaghilev in 1924, to his ambitious 1956 opera, Dialogues des Carmelites, the author discusses Poulenc's work in the context of his colourful personal life and turbulent times. The composer's affairs with working-class younger men, which inspired major compositions, and his sensitivity about his role in the wartime occupation of France, have always been somewhat obscured; in this book the author uses recently published documents to shed new light on the composer and the man.
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