Tag Archives: France

Lalo / Isaac Stern, 1956: Symphonie Espagnol in D minor, Op. 21 – Complete (Original Vinyl LP): great compositions/performances


Lalo / Isaac Stern, 1956: Symphonie Espagnol in D minor, Op. 21 – Complete (Original Vinyl LP)

Movements/Sections

5 movements:

  1. Allegro non troppo
  2. Scherzando. Allegro molto
  3. Intermezzo. Allegro non troppo
  4. Andante
  5. Rondo
Composition Year 1874

today’s holiday: Wheat Harvest Festival


Wheat Harvest Festival

The small village of Provins in north-central France celebrates its wheat harvest at the end of the summer. On the last Sunday of August, villagers decorate their homes and shops with wheat and wildflowers. There are also exhibits of antique farming tools and parades featuring harvest floats pulled by tractors. The villagers reenact ancient rituals involving wheat and perform demonstrations of how the grain is separated, ground, and baked to make bread. More… Discuss

this day in the yesteryear: Kellogg-Briand Pact Signed (1928)


Kellogg-Briand Pact Signed (1928)

The Kellogg-Briand Pact was an agreement between the US and France to renounce war and seek settlement of disputes by peaceful means. It took its name from US Secretary of State Frank B. Kellogg and French foreign minister Aristide Briand. Sixty other nations ultimately ratified the pact, but it made no provision for measures against aggressors and proved ineffective, especially given the practice of waging undeclared wars in the 1930s. What role did it play in the Nuremberg Trials? More… Discuss

today’s birthday: Julio Cortázar (1914) “French: a culture of inclusion”


 

Français : Plaque commémorative, 4 rue Martel,...

Français : Plaque commémorative, 4 rue Martel, Paris 10 e . « Ici vécut Julio Cortázar, 1914-1984, écrivain argentin naturalisé français, auteur de Marelle. » (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Julio Cortázar (1914)

Cortázar was an Argentinean novelist who gained recognition as one of the century’s major experimental writers. A permanent resident of France after 1951, his works reflect his interest in French Surrealism, psychoanalysis, photography, jazz, and revolutionary Latin American politics. His masterpiece, Rayuela—translated as Hopscotch—creates a world in which eroticism, humor, and play offer solace for life’s cruelty and despair. What is unique about the novel’s structure? More… Discuss

Led Zeppelin – Immigrant Song (Live Video) : make music part of your life series



from

Led Zeppelin – Immigrant Song (Live Video)


“Immigrant Song”

Ah, ah,

We come from the land of the ice and snow,

From the midnight sun where the hot springs flow.

The hammer of the gods will drive our ships to new lands,

To fight the horde, singing and crying: Valhalla, I am coming!On we sweep with threshing oar, Our only goal will be the western shore.

Ah, ah,
We come from the land of the ice and snow,
From the midnight sun where the hot springs blow.
How soft your fields so green, can whisper tales of gore,
Of how we calmed the tides of war. We are your overlords.

On we sweep with threshing oar, Our only goal will be the western shore.

So now you’d better stop and rebuild all your ruins,
For peace and trust can win the day despite of all your losing.

Claude Debussy – Printemps (Suite symphonique): great compositions/performances


Claude Debussy – Printemps (Suite symphonique)

Orquestra Sinfônica de Minas Gerais – (OSMG)
Regência: Charles Roussin

quotation: To learn to read is to light a fire; every syllable that is spelled out is a spark. Victor Hugo


To learn to read is to light a fire; every syllable that is spelled out is a spark.

Victor Hugo (1802-1885) Discuss

Vladimir Horowitz 1950 / Chopin Piano Sonata No. 2 in B-flat minor, Op. 35 “Funeral March”: unique musical moments



From:  ss sabu  ss sabu

Vladimir Horowitz 1950 / Chopin Piano Sonata No. 2 in B-flat minor, Op. 35 “Funeral March”

Vladimir Horowitz 1950
Chopin
Piano Sonata No. 2 in B-flat minor, Op. 35 “Funeral March”

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Chopin, 1835

Frédéric Chopin‘s Piano Sonata No. 2 in B-flat minor, Op. 35, popularly known as The Funeral March, was completed in 1839 at Nohant, near Châteauroux in France. However, the third movement, whence comes the sonata’s common nickname, had been composed as early as 1837.

The sonata comprises four movements:

  1. Grave – Doppio movimento

  2. Scherzo

  3. Marche funèbre: Lento

  4. Finale: Presto

Funeral march

As noted above, the third movement is structured as a funeral march played with a Lento interlude. While the term “funeral march” is perhaps a fitting description of the 3rd movement, complete with the Lento Interlude in D-flat major, the expression “Chopin’s Funeral March” is used commonly to describe only the funeral march proper (in B-flat minor).

It was transcribed for full orchestra in 1933 by the English composer Sir Edward Elgar (in D minor), and its first performance was at his own memorial concert the next year. It was also transcribed for large orchestra by the conductor Leopold Stokowski; this version was recorded for the first time by Matthias Bamert.

The emotive “funeral march” has become well known in popular culture. It was used at the state funerals of John F. Kennedy, Sir Winston Churchill and Margaret Thatcher and those of Soviet leaders, including Leonid Brezhnev. It was also played in the funeral of the Spanish poet Miguel Hernández and at thegraveside during Chopin’s own burial at Père Lachaise Cemetery in Paris.

 

this day in the yesteryear: First Transatlantic Telegraph Sent (1858)


First Transatlantic Telegraph Sent (1858)

After the introduction of the working telegraph in 1839, the idea that countries and continents could be connected by a communications network became an exciting possibility. A working telegraph could transmit in mere minutes messages that had once taken weeks to deliver by sea. England and France were linked by submarine cable in 1850, but it took several attempts over the next eight years before a lasting connection could be maintained across the Atlantic. How long was this cable operational? More… Discuss

The Cannes Film Festival


The Cannes Film Festival

This prestigious international film festival is held annually in Cannes, France. It takes place at the Palais des Festivals, and its most illustrious award is the Palme d’Or—meaning “Golden Palm“—for the best film. First held in 1946, the festival marked a resurgence for the film industry, which had been shattered by World War II, and became a meeting place for those interested in the art and influence of the movies. Why wasn’t the festival held in either 1948 or 1950? More… Discuss

this day in the yesteryear: End of the Holy Roman Empire: Francis II Abdicates (1806)


End of the Holy Roman Empire: Francis II Abdicates (1806)

 

English: Map of the Holy Roman Empire, 1789, t...

English: Map of the Holy Roman Empire, 1789, translated (somewhat) from original German version on Wikipedia Commons (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Francis II, the last Holy Roman Emperor, came to power just before the outbreak of war with Napoleon’s France. His armies were defeated, and he ceded the left bank of the Rhine to France in exchange for Venetia and Dalmatia. In 1798, he joined the Second Coalition against France, but he was again defeated. He eventually consented to the virtual dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire and assumed the title of emperor of Austria. Though he despised Napoleon, Francis allowed him to marry whom? More… Discuss

this day in the yesteryear: The Statue of Liberty’s Cornerstone Is Laid (1884)


The Statue of Liberty’s Cornerstone Is Laid (1884)

The Statue of Liberty—officially “Liberty Enlightening the World”—is located on Liberty Island in New York Harbor. It was a gift to the US from France to commemorate France’s alliance with the colonies during the American Revolution. Though it is now an iconic landmark, many forget that “Lady Liberty” also served as a functioning lighthouse from 1886 to 1902. Designed by French sculptor F.A. Bartholdi, the statue depicts Libertas, the Roman goddess of freedom. Who served as Bartholdi’s model? More… Discuss

this day in the yesteryear: Feudalism Abolished in France (1789)


Feudalism Abolished in France (1789)

The monarchical absolutism of King Louis XIV of France destroyed the roots of feudalism, but outward feudal forms persisted and became increasingly burdensome. Therefore, just weeks after the storming of the Bastille, the National Assembly held a meeting in which the nobles and clergy—driven partly by fear and partly by an outburst of idealism—relinquished their manorial rights within the course of a few hours. What are the National Assembly’s August 1789 decisions collectively called? More… Discuss

quotation: Wisdom is a sacred communion. Victor Hugo (1802-1885)


Wisdom is a sacred communion.

Victor Hugo (1802-1885) Discuss

this day in the yesteryear: Maximilien Robespierre Guillotined (1794)


Maximilien Robespierre Guillotined (1794)

Known as “the Incorruptible” for his emphasis on civic morality, Robespierre became one of the leading figures of the French Revolution. He was an influential member of the Committee of Public Safety, the political body that controlled France during the bloody revolutionary period known as the “Reign of Terror.” However, popular discontent with the committee’s brutal measures soon grew, and Robespierre was guillotined in the coup of 9 Thermidor. What might have been his last words? More… Discuss

Marlene Dietrich “Je m’ennuie” 1933


Marlene Dietrich “Je m’ennuie” 1933

LilyMarleneDietrich

Marlene Dietrich (1901-1992) enregistrée le 15 juillet 1933 à Paris.

De ce que fut mon enfance,
Je n’ai plus de souvenirs.
C’est peut-être que la chance
Ne m’offrit pas de plaisirs.
Et chaque jour qui se lève
Ne m’apporte aucun espoir.
Je n’ai même pas de rêve
Quand luit l’etoile du soir.

Moi, je m’ennuie,
C’est dans ma vie
Une manie.
Je n’y peux rien..
Le plaisir passe,
Il me dépasse.
En moi sa trace
Ne laisse rien.
Partout je traîne,
Comme une chaîne,
Ma lourde peine,
Sans autre bien.
C’est dans ma vie
Une manie.
Moi, je m’ennuie…

Par de longs vagabondages,
J’ai voulu griser mon coeur,
Et souvent, sur mon passage,
J’ai vu naître des malheurs.
Sur chaque nouvelle route,
A l’amour j’ai dû mentir ;
Et le soir, lorsque j’écoute
La plainte du vent mourir…

Moi, je m’ennuie…
C’est dans ma vie
Une manie.
Je n’y peux rien..
Le plaisir passe,
Il me dépasse.
En moi sa trace
Ne laisse rien.
Partout je traîne,
Comme une chaîne,
Ma lourde peine,
Sans autre bien.
C’est dans ma vie
Une manie.
Moi, je m’ennuie…

this day in the yesteryear: Henry IV of France Converts to Catholicism (1593)


Henry IV of France Converts to Catholicism (1593)

Henry IV was the first of the Bourbon kings of France, reigning from 1589 until his death. A Protestant, Henry was involved in the Wars of Religion before his accession to the throne. He then converted to Catholicism, allegedly explaining his pragmatic philosophy with the statement, “Paris is well worth a mass.” Five years later, he signed the Edict of Nantes, granting religious and civil liberties to Protestants, and ruled as one of the most popular French kings. Who assassinated him in 1610? More… Discuss

La prise de la Bastille (Sketch Guru – my art collection)


Prise de la Bastille (MyArtCollection)

Prise de la Bastille (MyArtCollection) 

I sketch this painting with Sketch Guru on my Android phone :-) http://bit.ly/sketchguru

After that, I turned to Fast Stone Image Editor to resize, adjust colors and crop…

 

today’s holiday: Bastille Day (prise de la Bastille)


Bastille Day

Prise de la Bastille Jean-Pierre Houël (1735-1813) – Bibliothèque nationale de France

The Bastille was a 14th-century fortress that became a notorious state prison in Paris. An angry mob assaulted the Bastille—which had come to symbolize the French monarchy‘s oppression of the people—on July 14, 1789, freeing the political prisoners held there and launching the French Revolution. July 14 has been celebrated since that time in France as Fête Nationale, as well as in French territories in the Pacific, with parades, fireworks and dancing in the streets. In Tahiti and the rest of French Polynesia, it is called Tiurai or Heiva, and is celebrated for most of the month. More… Discuss

 

Great AudioBooks: LES MISERABLES – Victor Hugo Part 1 Livre Audio Francais Audio Book


LES MISERABLES – Victor Hugo Part 1 Livre Audio Francais Audio Book [GreatAudioBooks]

Jean Valjean.JPG

Author Victor Hugo
Illustrator Emile Bayard
Country France
Language French
Genre Epic novel, historical fiction
Publisher A. Lacroix, Verboeckhoven & Cie.
Publication date
1862

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this day in the yesteryear: Hugh Capet Crowned King of France (987)


Hugh Capet Crowned King of France (987)

Capet was the son of Hugh the Great, to whose vast territories he succeeded in 956. After the death of Louis V, the last Carolingian king of France, the nobles and prelates elected Capet king—setting aside the last Carolingian claimant, Charles I, who proceeded to fight Capet through most of his reign. Capet ruled France from 987 to 996 and was succeeded by his son, whom he had crowned in 987 to secure the succession. Today, members of the Capetian dynasty are heads of state in what countries? More… Discuss

quotation: There is nothing like a dream to create the future. Victor Hugo


QUOTATION

There is nothing like a dream to create the future.

Victor Hugo (1802-1885) Discuss

Eleanor of Aquitaine


Eleanor of Aquitaine

Eleanor was the queen consort of Louis VII of France and then of Henry II of England and mother of two kings of England, Richard I and John. She established a court at Poitiers noted for its cultivation of the concept of courtly love and later helped Richard secure the throne. When he was held captive in Europe, she forestalled John’s plots against him and worked to collect ransom for his release. She later facilitated the brothers’ reconciliation. Who was she rumored to have poisoned? More… Discuss

today’s birthday: Jean Moulin (1899)


Jean Moulin (1899)

Jean Moulin was a high-profile member of the French resistance during World War II. At Charles de Gaulle‘s

Logo Résistance française (Jean Moulin et Croi...

Logo Résistance française (Jean Moulin et Croix de Lorraine) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

bidding, he formed the National Council of the Resistance, which coordinated the actions of the different groups that made up the Resistance. A day after his birthday in 1943, he was captured and tortured by the Gestapo and died soon after. He is remembered as a symbol of civic virtues, moral rectitude, and patriotism. Why is Moulin often depicted wearing a scarf around his neck? More… Discuss

this day in the yesteryear: Battle of Waterloo: Napoleon’s Last Battle (1815)


Battle of Waterloo: Napoleon’s Last Battle (1815)

After returning from exile at Elba, Napoleon reinstalled himself on the throne of France. As he traveled to Paris to take power, a coalition of European powers organized against him. On June 18, Napoleon began a direct offensive against British forces, but the British held the line until Prussian troops arrived, marking a turning point in the battle. Routed, the French retreated, and Napoleon left the field and signed his second abdication. To what continent did he allegedly try to escape? More… Discuss

make music part of your life series: Yves Montand – Le temps des cerises


Please access the original video for comments and lyrics!

Le Temps des Cerises

Quand nous en serons au temps des cerises
Et gai rossignol et merle moqueur
Seront tous en fête
Les belles auront la folie en tête
Et les amoureux du soleil au cœur

Quand nous chanterons le temps des cerises
Sifflera bien mieux le merle moqueur
Mais il est bien court le temps des cerises
Où l’on s’en va deux cueillir en rêvant
Des pendants d’oreilles
Cerises d’amour aux robes pareilles
Tombant sous la feuille en gouttes de sang
Mais il est bien court le temps des cerises
Pendants de corail qu’on cueille en rêvant

Quand vous en serez au temps des cerises
Si vous avez peur des chagrins d’amour
Evitez les belles Moi qui ne crains pas les peines cruelles
Je ne vivrai pas sans souffrir un jour
Quand vous en serez au temps des cerises
Vous aurez aussi des chagrins d’amour

J’aimerai toujours le temps des cerises
C’est de ce temps-là que je garde au cœur
Une plaie ouverte
Et Dame Fortune, en m’étant offerte
Ne saura jamais calmer ma douleur
J’aimerai toujours le temps des cerises
Et le souvenir que je garde au cœur

— lyrics by Jean-Baptiste Clément and music by Antoine Renard

 

Georges Brassens: La Prière (The Prayer)


La Prière

Par le petit garçon qui meurt près de sa mère
Tandis que des enfants s’amusent au parterre
Et par l’oiseau blessé qui ne sait pas comment
Son aile tout à coup s’ensanglante et descend
Par la soif et la faim et le délire ardent
Je vous salue, Marie.

Par les gosses battus, par l’ivrogne qui rentre
Par l’âne qui reçoit des coups de pied au ventre
Et par l’humiliation de l’innocent châtié
Par la vierge vendue qu’on a déshabillée
Par le fils dont la mère a été insultée
Je vous salue, Marie.

Par la vieille qui, trébuchant sous trop de poids
S’écrie: ” Mon Dieu ! ” par le malheureux dont les bras
Ne purent s’appuyer sur une amour humaine
Comme la Croix du Fils sur Simon de Cyrène
Par le cheval tombé sous le chariot qu’il traîne
Je vous salue, Marie.

Par les quatre horizons qui crucifient le monde
Par tous ceux dont la chair se déchire ou succombe
Par ceux qui sont sans pieds, par ceux qui sont sans mains
Par le malade que l’on opère et qui geint
Et par le juste mis au rang des assassins
Je vous salue, Marie.

Par la mère apprenant que son fils est guéri
Par l’oiseau rappelant l’oiseau tombé du nid
Par l’herbe qui a soif et recueille l’ondée
Par le baiser perdu par l’amour redonné
Et par le mendiant retrouvant sa monnaie
Je vous salue, Marie.

The Prayer

For the little boy who lays dying close to his mother
While children play on the flower bed
And for the wounded bird that doesn’t know how
His wing became suddenly bloody and falls from the sky
For the thirst and the hunger and the feverous delirium
Hail, Mary

For the beaten children, for the drunk who returns home
For the ass who gets kicked in the stomach
And for the humiliation of the innocents who are punished
For the sold virgin that is undressed
For the son whose mother has been insulted
Hail, Mary

For the old woman who stumbles under too much weight
Exclaiming “My God!”, for the unfortunate ones whose arms
Couldn’t rely on a human love
Like Simon of Cyrene bearing the Cross of the Son
For the fallen horse under the chariot that it drags
Hail, Mary

For the four horizons that crucify the world
For all those whose flesh is torn or dies
For all those who are without feet, who are without hands
For the sick that are operated on and moan
And for the just put among the ranks of killers
Hail, Mary

For the mother learning that her son is healed
For the bird calling the fallen bird back to the nest
For the thirsty grass that gathers rain
For the lost kiss returned by love
And for the beggar who finds his money again
Hail, Mary

this day in history: Last Public Execution in France (1939)


Last Public Execution in France (1939)

Eugen Weidmann, a convicted thief, kidnapper, and murderer, was the last person to be publicly executed in France. After his arrest, Weidmann confessed to murdering five people and was sentenced to death. Shortly thereafter, he was beheaded by guillotine. The “hysterical behavior” of spectators at the event was so scandalous that French President Albert Lebrun immediately banned all future public executions. Executions by guillotine in France continued in private until what date? More… Discuss

this pressed: Dan Munro – The Healthcare Compass – Forbes (the true face of healthcare for profit)


Dan Munro

Dan Munro – The Healthcare Compass – Forbes.

Healthy lives: The U.S. ranks last overall with poor scores on all three indicators of healthy lives — mortality amenable to medical care, infant mortality, and healthy life expectancy at age 60. Overall, France, Sweden, and Switzerland rank highest on healthy lives.

Perhaps the biggest single takeaway was this one:

The most notable way the U.S. differs from other industrialized countries is the absence of universal health insurance coverage. Other nations ensure the accessibility of care through universal health systems and through better ties between patients and the physician practices that serve as their medical homes. The Commonwealth Fund “Mirror, Mirror On The Wall — 2014 Update” 

Unfortunately, many still equate “universal healthcare” with “Government run” or “single payer” healthcare. It isn’t (Universal Coverage Is Not “Single Payer” Healthcare — here).

this day in the yesteryear: France’s Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle Founded (1793)


The Museum of Natural History in the Garden of...

The Museum of Natural History in the Garden of Plants ( Jardin des plantes ), in Paris (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

France’s Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle Founded (1793)

The Jardin des Plantes, the main botanical garden in France, is situated near the left bank of the river Seine in Paris and is home to the Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle, France’s museum of natural history, as well as an elaborate rose garden, numerous hothouses, and a zoo. The museum is now a center for research and education. Although it was founded during the French Revolution, the museum was born out of a medicinal plant garden created by what French monarch in 1635? More… Discuss

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today’s holiday: St. Médardus’s Day


St. Médardus’s Day

St. Médardus, or Médard, who lived from about 470 to 560 CE, was the bishop of Vermandois, Noyon, and Tournai in France. Because he was the patron saint of farmers and good weather, he has come to play a role in weather lore similar to that of the English St. Swithin. In Belgium he is known as the rain saint, and there is an old folk rhyme that says, “If it rains on St. Médard‘s Day, it will rain for 40 days.” More… Discuss

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Leonard Cohen – The Partisan the “…freedom comes from shadows…”


Leonard Cohen – The Partisan

The Partisan.
When they poured across the border
I was cautioned to surrender,
this I could not do;
I took my gun and vanished.
I have changed my name so often,
I’ve lost my wife and children
but I have many friends,
and some of them are with me.

An old woman gave us shelter,
kept us hidden in the garret,
then the soldiers came;
she died without a whisper.

There were three of us this morning
I’m the only one this evening
but I must go on;
the frontiers are my prison.

Oh, the wind, the wind is blowing,
through the graves the wind is blowing,
freedom soon will come;
then we’ll come from the shadows.

Les Allemands e’taient chez moi, (The Germans were at my home)
ils me dirent, “Signe toi,” (They said, “Sign yourself,”)
mais je n’ai pas peur; (But I am not afraid)
j’ai repris mon arme. (I have retaken my weapon.)

J’ai change’ cent fois de nom, (I have changed names a hundred times)
j’ai perdu femme et enfants (I have lost wife and children)
mais j’ai tant d’amis; (But I have so many friends)
j’ai la France entie`re. (I have all of France)

Un vieil homme dans un grenier (An old man, in an attic)
pour la nuit nous a cache’, (Hid us for the night)
les Allemands l’ont pris; (The Germans captured him)
il est mort sans surprise. (He died without surprise.)

Oh, the wind, the wind is blowing,
through the graves the wind is blowing,
freedom soon will come;
then we’ll come from the shadows.

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historic musical moments: Amédée-Ernest Chausson – Poeme for Violin and Orchestra, Op. 25 ( State Symphony Orchestra – Kyrill Kondrashin, David Oistrakh – violin)


Amédée-Ernest Chausson – Poeme for Violin and Orchestra, Op. 25

State Symphony Orchestra – Kyrill Kondrashin, David Oistrakh – violin
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Ernest Chausson, cabinet card photo by P. Frois, Biarritz (France), ca. 1885, Bibliothèque nationale de France
Amédée-Ernest Chausson (French: [ʃosɔ̃]; 20 January 1855 – 10 June 1899) was a French romantic composer who died just as his career was beginning to flourish.

Life

Ernest Chausson was born in Paris into a prosperous bourgeois family. His father made his fortune assisting Baron Haussmann in the redevelopment of Paris in the 1850s. To please his father, Chausson studied law and was appointed a barrister for the Court of Appeals, but had little or no interest in the profession. He frequented the Paris salons, where he met celebrities such as Henri Fantin-Latour, Odilon Redon, and Vincent d’Indy.

Before deciding on a musical career, he dabbled in writing and drawing.

Chausson page-turning for Debussy, Luzancy, 1893

In October 1879, at the age of 25, he began attending the composition classes of the opera composer Jules Massenet at the Paris Conservatoire; Massenet came to regard him as ‘an exceptional person and a true artist’. Chausson had already composed some piano pieces and songs. Nevertheless, the earliest manuscripts that have been preserved are those corrected by Massenet. At the Paris Conservatoire, Chausson also studied with César Franck. Chausson interrupted his studies in 1881, after a failed attempt to win the Prix de Rome. [1] During 1882 and 1883, Chausson, who enjoyed travel, visited Bayreuth to hear the operas of Wagner. On the first of these journeys, Chausson went with d’Indy for the premiere of Wagner’s Parsifal, and on the second trip he went with his new spouse Jeanne Escudier (1862-1936), with whom he was to have five children.

From 1886 until his death in 1899, Chausson was secretary of the Société Nationale de Musique. In his own home (22 Boulevard de Courcelles, near Parc Monceau), he received a great many eminent artists, including the composers Henri Duparc, Gabriel Fauré, Claude Debussy, and Isaac Albéniz, the poet Mallarmé, the Russian novelist Turgenev, and the impressionist painter Monet. Chausson also assembled an important collection of paintings

Death

Chausson’s tomb, Père Lachaise, Paris

When only 44 years old,

Chausson died while staying at one of his country retreats, the Château de Mioussets, in Limay, Yvelines. Riding his bicycle downhill, Chausson hit a brick wall and died instantly. The exact circumstances remain unclear; although apparently a freak accident, there has been the suggestion of suicide, as Chausson had been suffering from depression for some time. This suicide theory was propounded by Debussy’s biographer Edward Lockspeiser,[1] but has been firmly rejected more recently by Chausson’s own biographer Ralph Scott Grover.[2]

Chausson was buried in Père Lachaise Cemetery in Paris, his funeral attended by many leading figures of the arts, including Duparc, Fauré, Albeniz, Redon, Edgar Degas, Auguste Rodin, Henri de Régnier, Pierre Louÿs, and Debussy, although his friendship with Debussy had ended abruptly five years earlier following his disapproval of Debussy’s promiscuity.[3][4]

Eponymy

A small park, Square Ernest Chausson, in the 17th arrondissement of Paris is named in his honour.

Music

Ernest Chausson, photograph by Guy & Mockel, Paris, ca. 1897, Bibliothèque nationale de France.

The creative work of Chausson is commonly divided into three periods. In the first, which was dominated by Massenet, the composer exhibits primarily fluid and elegant melodies. The second period, dating from 1886, is marked by a more dramatic character, deriving partly from Chausson’s contacts with the artistic milieux in which he moved. From his father’s death in 1894 dates the beginning of his third period, during which he was especially influenced by his reading of the symbolist poets and Russian literature, particularly Turgenev, Dostoyevsky, and Tolstoy.

Chausson’s work is deeply individual, but it does reflect some technical influences of both Wagner and his other musical hero Franck. Stylistic traces of Massenet and even Brahms can be detected sometimes. In general, Chausson’s compositional idiom bridges the gap between the ripe Romanticism of Massenet and Franck and the more introverted Impressionism of Debussy.

Several delicate and admirable songs came from Chausson’s pen. He completed one opera, Le roi Arthus (King Arthur). His orchestral output was small, but significant. It includes the symphonic poem Viviane; the Symphony in B-flat, his sole symphony; Poème for violin and orchestra, an important piece in the violin repertoire; and the dramatic, and haunting, song-cycle Poème de l’amour et de la mer.

Chausson is believed to be the first composer to use the celesta. He employed that instrument in December 1888 in his incidental music, written for a small orchestra, for La tempête, a French translation by Maurice Bouchor of Shakespeare‘s The Tempest.[5]

Not at all prolific, Chausson left behind only 39 opus-numbered pieces. Musical creation for him always proved to be a long, painful struggle. However, the quality and originality of his compositions are consistently high, and they continue to make occasional appearances on programs of leading singers, chamber music ensembles and orchestras.

“There are moments when I feel myself driven by a kind of feverish instinct, as if I had the presentiment of being unable to attain my goal, or of attaining it too late.” Ernest Chausson

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Yo-Yo Ma


Yo-Yo Ma

World-famous American cellist Yo-Yo Ma was born in France to Chinese parents in 1955. A musical prodigy, he gave a public recital in Paris at age six and his first performance at Carnegie Hall at age nine. He later attended the prestigious Julliard School of Music and ascended rapidly to the highest rank of international soloists, winning the Avery Fisher Prize in 1978. What became of a centuries-old cello valued at $2.5 million that Ma accidentally left in a New York City taxi in 1999? More… Discuss

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make music part of your life series: GABRIEL FAURÉ – CANTIQUE DE JEAN RACINE (Op. 11) (lyrics in French, English and Romanian)


GABRIEL FAURÉ – CANTIQUE DE JEAN RACINE (Op. 11)

Gabriel Urbain Fauré was a French composer, organist, pianist and teacher. He was one of the foremost French composers of his generation, and his musical style influenced many 20th century composers. Among his best-known works are his Nocturnes for piano, the songs “Après un rêve” and “Clair de lune” and his Requiem.

Cantique de Jean Racine (Op. 11) is a work for mixed chorus and piano or organ by Gabriel Fauré. Written by the nineteen year old composer in 1864-5, the piece won Fauré the first prize when he graduated from the École Niedermeyer and was first performed the following year on August 4, 1866, with accompaniment of strings and organ. It was first published around 1875 or 1876 (Schoen, Paris, as part of the series Echo des Maîtrises) and appeared in a version for orchestra (possibly by the composer) in 1906. The accompaniment has also been arranged for strings and harp by John Rutter.

Jean Racine, baptismal name Jean-Baptiste Racine was a French dramatist, one of the “Big Three” of 17th century France (along with Molière and Corneille), and one of the most important literary figures in the Western tradition. Racine was primarily a tragedian, producing such ‘examples of neoclassical perfection’ as Phèdre, Andromaque, and Athalie, although he did write one comedy, Les Plaideurs, and a muted tragedy, Esther, for the young.

Cantique De Jean Racine

 

Verbe égal au Très-Haut, notre unique espérance,
Jour éternel de la terre et des cieux;
De la paisible nuit nous rompons le silence,
Divin Sauveur, jette sur nous les yeux!

Répands sur nous le feu de ta grâce puissante,
Que tout l’enfer fuie au son de ta voix;
Dissipe le sommeil d’une âme languissante,
Qui la conduit à l’oubli de tes lois!

O Christ, sois favorable à ce peuple fidèle
Pour te bénir maintenant rassemblé.
Reçois les chants qu’il offre à ta gloire immortelle,
Et de tes dons qu’il retourne comblé!

English

Hymn of Jean Racine

Versions: #1#2

Verb equal to God, the Almighty, our only hope,
Eternal day of the earth and heavens;
We break the silence of the peaceful night,
Divine Saviour, look upon us!

Fan the fire of your powerful grace upon us,
So that all Hell may flee at the sound of your voice;
Shake off the sleep of a languishing soul,
Who has forgotten your laws!

O Christ, be kind to these faithful people
Who have now gathered in thanks.
Listen to the chants they offer to your immortal glory,
And may they come away fulfilled with your gifts!

Romanian

Imnul lui Jean Racine

Cuvântul Celui de Sus, singura noastră speranţă,
Ziua veşnică a pământului şi a cerurilor;
Rupem tăcerea acestei nopţi liniştite,
Mântuitor divin, întoarce-Ţi privirea către noi!

Revarsă-Ţi asupra noastră focul slavei tale atotputernice
Astfel ca iadul întreg să fugă la auzul vocii tale;
Alungă somnul unui suflet ostenit,
Care l-a dus la uitarea legilor tale!

O, Hristoase, fii milostiv cu acest popor credincios
Ce acum s-a adunat pentru a te preamări.
Ascultă cântecele pe care ţi le închină pentru slava ta veşnică
Şi fie ca ele să fie întoarse prin harul tău!

(Promoted from http://lyricstranslate.com/en/cantique-de-jean-racine-hymnn-jean-racine.html#ixzz33bGSGChl)
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Jacques Brel | Le Plat Pays (“…Avec des cathédrales pour uniques montagnes, Et de noirs clochers comme mats de cocagne…”)


Jacques Brel | Le Plat Pay

Avec |Ne Me Quitte Pas|, |Quand On N’a Que L’amour| et |La Ville S’endormait|, |Le Plat Pays| restera comme une des meilleures chansons de | Jacques Brel|. C’est aussi un superbe poème d’évocation du pays natal

Chansons: Le Plat Pays – Jacques Brel
Auteurs: Jacques Brel
Compositeurs: Jacques Brel

Avec la mer du Nord pour dernier terrain vague,
Et des vagues de dunnes pour arrêter les vagues,
Et de vagues rochers que les marées dépass’nt,
Et qui ont à jamais le coeur à marée basse.
Avec infiniment de brumes à venir
Avec le vent d’ouest écoutez le tenir
Le plat pays qui est le mien.

Avec des cathédrales pour uniques montagnes,
Et de noirs clochers comme mats de cocagne
Ou des diables en pierre décrochent les nuages,
Avec le fil des jours pour unique voyage,
Et des chemins de pluie pour unique bonsoir,
Avec le vent de l’est écoutez le vouloir,
Le plat pays qui est le mien.

Avec un ciel si bas qu’un canal s’est perdu,
Avec un ciel si bas qu’il fait l’humilité
Avec un ciel si gris qu’un canal s’est pendu,
Avec un ciel si bas qu’il faut lui pardonner.
Avec le vent du nord qui vient s’écarteler,
Avec le vent du nord écoutez le craquer,
Le plat pays qui est le mien.

Avec de l’Italie qui descendrait l’Escaut,
Avec Frida la Blond’ quand ell’devient Margot,
Quand les fils de Novembr’ nous reviennent en Mai,
Quand la plain’est fumant’ et tremble sous Juillet,
Quand le vent est au rire quand le vent est au blé,
Quand le vent est sud écoutez le chanter,
Le plat pays qui est le mien.

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TODAY’S BIRTHDAY: Franz Anton Mesmer (1734)


Franz Anton Mesmer (1734)

Mesmer was a German physician who experimented with an early form of hypnosis, known as “mesmerism.” He developed a doctrine of “animal magnetism,” believing that harmony could be restored in the human body by inducing “crises”—trance states often ending in delirium or convulsions. He carried out dramatic demonstrations of his ability to “mesmerize” his patients using magnetized objects. Accused by Viennese physicians of fraud, he left Austria for France. What scandal plagued Mesmer’s career? More… Discuss

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Make Music Part of Your Life Series: Jean-Philippe Rameau – Naïs


Jean-Philippe RameauNaïs

Jean-Philippe Rameau (1983 – 1764), France:

- Naïs (Suite orchestrale)
I. Ouverture
II. Musette
III. Entrée majestueux des Dieux
IV. Gavotte pour Zephirs
V. Gavotte gracieuse en Rondeau
VI. Rigaudons
VII. Sarabande
VIII. Entrée des Luteurs et Chaconne
IX. Tambourins
X. Loure
XI. Sarabande
XII. Musette

Orchestre de la dix-huitième siècle
(Orchestra of the Eighteen Century)
Frans Brüggen

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HISTORIC PERFORMANCES: Saint-Saens Cello Concerto No.1 Op.33 In A Minor – Jacqueline Du pré


 

Camille Saint-Saëns composed his Cello Concerto No. 1 in A minor, Op. 33 in 1872, when the composer was 37 years old. He wrote this work for the Belgian cellist, viola de gamba player and instrument maker Auguste Tolbecque. Tolbecque was part of a distinguished family of musicians closely associated with the Société des Concerts du Conservatoire, France’s leading concert society. The concerto was first performed on January 19, 1873 at a conservatoire concert with Tolbecque as soloist. This was considered a mark of Saint-Saëns’ growing acceptance by the French musical establishment.

Sir Donald Francis Tovey later wrote “Here, for once, is a violoncello concerto in which the solo instrument displays every register without the slightest difficulty in penetrating the orchestra.” Many composers, including Shostakovich and Rachmaninoff, considered this concerto to be the greatest of all cello concertos.

The work can be split into three different sections as follows:

  1. Allegro non troppo
    The concerto begins unusually. Instead of the traditional orchestral introduction, the piece begins with one short chord from the orchestra. The cello follows, stating the main motif. Soon, countermelodies flow from both the orchestra and soloist, at times the two playfully “calling and answering” each other.
  2. Allegretto con moto
    This turbulent opening movement leads into a brief but highly original minuet, in which the strings are muted, and which contains a cello cadenza.
  3. Tempo primo
    A restatement of the opening material from the first movement opens the finale. While Saint-Saëns uses the finale mainly as a recapitulation of earlier material, he concludes it with the introduction of an entirely new idea for the cello.

Saint-Saëns very often uses the solo cello here as a declamatory instrument. This keeps the soloist in the dramatic and musical foreground, the orchestra offering a shimmering backdrop. The music is tremendously demanding for soloists, especially in the fast third section. This difficulty has not stopped the concerto from becoming a favourite of the great virtuoso cellists.

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TODAY’S BIRTHDAY: Ho Chi Minh (1890)


Ho Chi Minh (1890)

Ho was a Vietnamese nationalist leader, president of North Vietnam, and one of the most influential political leaders of the 20th century. Near the end of World War I, he went to France and became a founding member of the French Communist Party. He studied revolutionary tactics in Moscow and organized revolutionaries in Indochina. During World War II, Ho returned to Vietnam and declared it a republic. Why was news of his death in 1969 initially withheld from the North Vietnamese people? More… Discuss

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TODAY’S BIRTHDAY: Isabella d’Este (1474)


Isabella d’Este (1474)

One of the leading women of the Italian Renaissance, d’Este was a major cultural and political figure. She had a shrewd political acumen and ruled Mantua as regent for her son after the death of her husband. Known as “The First Lady of the World,” she was well-educated, a skilled musician and singer, and a renowned patron of the arts. Her simple style made her a trendsetter, and her fashion was imitated throughout Italy and France. Which artist did she repeatedly ask to paint her portrait? More… Discuss

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TODAY’S BIRTHDAY: Pope Innocent XI (1611)


Pope Innocent XI (1611)

In 1676, Benedetto Odescalchi was elected pope despite the strong opposition of Louis XIV of France, with whom he had a long, bitter quarrel over Gallicanism—a French Roman Catholic tradition of resistance to papal authority. He took the name Innocent XI. As Pope, Innocent lived very parsimoniously and sought to curb nepotism among the cardinals. He closed all of the theaters in Rome—deemed centers of vice and immorality—and brought a temporary halt to the flourishing tradition of what? More… Discuss

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TODAY’S SAINT, MAY 11: Frost Saints’ Days


Frost Saints’ Days

These three consecutive days in May mark the feasts of St. Mammertus, St. Pancras, and St. Servatus. In the wine-growing districts of France, a severe cold spell occasionally strikes at this time of year, inflicting serious damage on the grapevines; some in rural France have believed that it is the result of their having offended one of the three saints, who for this reason are called the “frost saints.” French farmers have been known to show their displeasure over a cold snap at this time of year by flogging the statues and defacing the pictures of Mammertus, Pancras, and Servatus. More… Discuss

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Saint of the Day – May 10: Image of St. Solange St. Solange


Saint of the Day

Image of St. Solange

St. Solange

St. Solange d. 880, Born of a poor family of vineyard workers near Bourges, France, she became a shepherdess whose beauty attracted the lustful attention of a noble in Poitiers. He kidnapped her, but … continue reading

More Saints of the Day

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THIS DAY IN THE YESTERYEAR: Antoine Lavoisier Tried, Convicted, and Guillotined (1794)


Antoine Lavoisier Tried, Convicted, and Guillotined (1794)

Known today as the “father of modern chemistry,” Lavoisier was among the first to use quantitative methods in chemical investigations. He stated the first version of the Law of Conservation of Mass, named oxygen and discovered its role in combustion, and helped to construct the metric system. Lavoisier also worked to improve economic and social conditions in France. He was beheaded during the Reign of Terror because, as a member of the farmers general, one of his duties was to do what? More… Discuss

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This Day in the Yesteryear: Louis XIV of France Moves His Court to Versailles (1682)


This Day in the Yesteryear

 

Louis XIV of France Moves His Court to Versailles (1682)

During his reign, King Louis XIV moved his court and government offices to Versailles. The palace is one of the largest and most lavish ever built. At a time when mirrors were some of the priciest luxury items to acquire, Louis installed an entire hall of them. The grounds feature fountains, reservoirs, sculptures, temples, grottoes, and even two smaller palaces. Louis’s motive for the move is thought to have been a desire to more closely monitor the nobility. Why did he feel this was necessary? More… Discuss

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ARTICLE: Martin Guerre


Martin Guerre

In the 16th century, a French peasant named Martin Guerre abruptly disappeared after being accused of stealing grain from his father. He moved to Spain and joined the army. He was wounded during a military campaign, and his leg had to be amputated. After spending some time in a monastery, Guerre returned to France, only to discover that an imposter had been living with his family. When faced with the real Martin Guerre, his relatives realized they had been had. What happened to the imposter? More… Discuss

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THIS DAY IN THE YESTERYEAR: “RED BARON” SHOT DOWN BY ALLIED FIRE (1918)


“Red Baron” Shot Down by Allied Fire (1918)

Manfred von Richthofen, the “Red Baron,” was the World War I German aviator who commanded the flying squadron that became known as Richthofen’s Flying Circus. He was the war’s most successful flying ace, shooting down 80 aircraft before being killed in action. In April 1918, he was shot in the chest while dogfighting over France. He managed to land his plane but died soon after. The Red Baron has since become a symbol of dexterity, daring, and victory. Who fired the shot that killed him? More… Discuss

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JOYEUSES PAQUES!


horreur j’ai râté le début, il y a pas la musique gggrrrrrr !!!
Je vous prie de bien vouloir m’en excuser, je sais pas ce qu’il s’est passé, je l’ai fait vite ce matin parce que après pas le temps.
Ben voilà je voulais juste vous faire plaisir, pffff !!!!

Une petite Vidéo pour vous souhaiter, petits et grands de très bonne fêtes de Pâques
Soyez sage sur le chocolat et bonne chasse aux oeufs 
Prenez soin de vous
Bisous
AGNES

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Farage: The whole European project is based on a dangerous falsehood



Farage: The whole European project is based on a dangerous falsehood
http://www.ukipmeps.org | http://twitter.com/Nigel_Farage
• European Parliament, Strasbourg, 16 April 2014

• Speaker: Nigel Farage MEP, Leader of the UK Independence Party (UKIP), Co-President of the ‘Europe of Freedom and Democracy’ (EFD) Group in the European Parliament -http://www.nigelfaragemep.co.uk

• Debate: 100 years on from the First World War: lessons to learn and future of Europe
Council and Commission statements
[2014/2670(RSP)]
1 round of political group speakers

Transcript:

In you introduction you said that the First World War was an industrial war. And indeed, you’ve only got to drive two hours up the A4 from here and visit the battlefield at Verdun to see exactly what you were talking about. For those who haven’t visited I think it’s probably the grimmest battlefield I’ve certainly visited on the Western Front or indeed anywhere in the world.

And it was something that had such a huge psychological effect on France that it very much dominated the thinking of Monnet and Schumann post-1945, that this awful think must not happen again. And those of us in politics will all remember the rather famous photograph of quite a large German Chancellor Kohl and a rather small French president Mitterrand, holding hands, standing in front of that ossiary at Douaumont.

And so the whole European project comes from the disaster that was sparked by the First World War and it is entirely understandable that people should have sought ways to prevent such awfulness.

The difficulty is that they chose the wrong target. Monnet and Schumann decided – and it’s shared today by Mr Barroso and the Cohn-Bendits and others – they decided that it was the existence of Nation State that led to war and therefore we have to abolish Nation State.

Actually, what we should have focussed on post-1945, isn’t the abolition of states, it’s to make sure that the European states were democratic, because democratic nation states do not go to war with eachother.

So I have to say that I believe the whole European project is based on a falsehood – and it’s potentially a dangerous falsehood, because if you try to impose a new flag, a new anthem, a new president, a new army, police force, foreign policy, whatever else – if you try to impose that without first seeking the consent of the people, you’re in danger actually of creating the very nationalisms and resentment that you sought to snuff out in the first place. 

We’ve done this all before. We did it after the First World War in the Balkans. We said we can’t have all these little Balkan states go around fighting with eachother – let’s bring them together, let’s give them one flag, one anthem, one president and let’s call it Yugoslavia. And it led to horrific wars since 1990, the deaths of tens of thousands of people, as people have fought to get out of a false state.

The European Union is making a very similar mistake because there is no consent for this project. I’ve heard people this morning, talking about the need for a United States of Europe on a federal model. You can only have that if people give consent for it, and nobody has. 

And when you put the Constitution [Lisbon treaty prototype] to the peoples of Europe – the first time you really come clean with the electors – they rejected it.

I’m not against Europe, but I’m against this Europe. I want a Europe of independent, sovereign nation states that trade together, that work together, that cooperate together, and I believe the European Elections this year will mark a turning point. The tide is turning. You’re backing an outdated model that seeks to get rid of a problem that actually hasn’t existed since 1945.

Thank you.
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Video source: EbS (European Parliament)
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• EU Member States:
Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Germany, Denmark, Estonia, Spain, Finland, France, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden, United Kingdom

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