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Gabriel Fauré
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1845-05-12
https://musicbrainz.org/artist/fa19a8b6-e7f4-40d4-af15-7a7c41ac7d8f
Gabriel Fauré Gabriel Fauré Gabriel Fauré Gabriel Fauré

Biography

Gabriel Fauré’s personality contains a singular mix of contradictory elements. He learnt his craft at the École Niedermeyer in Paris, an institution devoted to raising the standards of church music by studying plainchant and Renaissance music. He then made his ...

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Biography

Gabriel Fauré’s personality contains a singular mix of contradictory elements. He learnt his craft at the École Niedermeyer in Paris, an institution devoted to raising the standards of church music by studying plainchant and Renaissance music. He then made his name with songs and piano music of sensuous melodic allure and an apparently easy fluency, which earned him a reputation as a society composer that he never emerged from in his lifetime as far as the wider world was concerned.

Thanks to the early advocacy of his teacher Saint-Saëns, he made his way in the musical world and rose through the hierarchies of Paris church posts – assistant to Widor at Saint-Sulpice, then organist at the fashionable Madeleine – and teaching positions, eventually becoming director of the Conservatoire. In the latter capacity, he was a reformist; socially, he was an established figure, taking advantage of his apparent popularity with women, though it should be remembered that salons were a prime venue for artistic networking and musical performance: Fauré would there meet Debussy and Ravel, Colette and Anatole France, while his improvised piano duets with Messager were legendary. Overseas he attempted to make himself known in London, with limited success.

For two decades at the end of his life he suffered a hearing affliction that distorted pitch, and progressive deafness. The concentration and introverted nature of his later music is sometimes attributed to this condition, but it is also the logical outcome of the way he had always composed. His Niedermeyer training had instilled the elements of counterpoint and especially the modes, which give his melodies and harmonies their personal flavour. Technically speaking, a fondness for sharpened fourths and flattened sevenths, and a reluctance to use perfect cadences, made for a marked lessening of the dramatic tensions that typified fully tonal music at the turn of the 19th century.

Instead, Fauré’s music expresses its energy in restless, intricate harmonic movement. The even way in which it flows can make it seem bland on the surface, and it demands focused listening (and performing), and an awareness of where the various lines are going, for its full intensity to register. This goes as much for his most familiar work, the Requiem, as for his highly distilled String Quartet.

Fauré continued to compose piano music and songs throughout his life. They are the mediums best matched to an idiom that depends more on the performer’s artistry than on instrumental colour; his equally impressive body of chamber music almost all uses a piano, apart from the String Quartet and two pieces for harp. Little interested in orchestration, he often assigned the task to others, although he was responsible for scoring four-fifths of his only opera Pénélope, a work of ravishing beauty and rather static dramaturgy.

Profile by Robert Maycock © BBC

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Tracks (49)

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Stephane Lemelin & Gabriel Fauré
Nocturne for piano no.1 (Op.33 No.1) in E flat minor
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Nocturne for piano no.1 (Op.33 No.1) in E flat minor Nocturne for piano no.1 (Op.33 No.1) in E flat minor Nocturne for piano no.1 (Op.33 No.1) in E flat minor Nocturne for piano no.1 (Op.33 No.1) in E flat minor
Gabriel Fauré, Robin Ticciati & Sveriges Radios Symfoniorkester
Pelleas et Melisande - suite Op.80
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Pelleas et Melisande - suite Op.80 Pelleas et Melisande - suite Op.80 Pelleas et Melisande - suite Op.80 Pelleas et Melisande - suite Op.80
Gabriel Fauré, Susan Manoff & Sandrine Piau
Apres un reve & Clair de lune
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Apres un reve & Clair de lune Apres un reve & Clair de lune Apres un reve & Clair de lune Apres un reve & Clair de lune
Gabriel Fauré, Jacqueline Bonneau & Gérard Souzay
Arpege, Op. 76 No. 2; En sourdine, Op. 58 No. 2
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Arpege, Op. 76 No. 2; En sourdine, Op. 58 No. 2 Arpege, Op. 76 No. 2; En sourdine, Op. 58 No. 2 Arpege, Op. 76 No. 2; En sourdine, Op. 58 No. 2 Arpege, Op. 76 No. 2; En sourdine, Op. 58 No. 2
Gabriel Fauré, Alban Gerhardt & Cécile Licad
Papillon for cello and piano (Op.77)
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Papillon for cello and piano (Op.77) Papillon for cello and piano (Op.77) Papillon for cello and piano (Op.77) Papillon for cello and piano (Op.77)
Gabriel Fauré, Yan Pascal Tortelier & BBC Philharmonic
Masques et bergamasques - suite (Op.112), Overture
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Masques et bergamasques - suite (Op.112), Overture Masques et bergamasques - suite (Op.112), Overture Masques et bergamasques - suite (Op.112), Overture Masques et bergamasques - suite (Op.112), Overture
Gabriel Fauré, Jacqueline Bonneau & Gérard Souzay
Tristesse, Op. 6 No. 2
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Tristesse, Op. 6 No. 2 Tristesse, Op. 6 No. 2 Tristesse, Op. 6 No. 2 Tristesse, Op. 6 No. 2
Paul Crossley, Arthur Grumiaux & Gabriel Fauré
Violin Sonata No. 1 in A, Op. 13
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Violin Sonata No. 1 in A, Op. 13 Violin Sonata No. 1 in A, Op. 13 Violin Sonata No. 1 in A, Op. 13 Violin Sonata No. 1 in A, Op. 13
Brinton Smith, Akira Eguchi, Gil Shaham & Gabriel Fauré
Piano Trio, Op. 120
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Piano Trio, Op. 120 Piano Trio, Op. 120 Piano Trio, Op. 120 Piano Trio, Op. 120
Gabriel Fauré & Pau Casals
Apres Un Reve
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Apres Un Reve Apres Un Reve Apres Un Reve Apres Un Reve
Gabriel Fauré
Les Berceaux Op 23 No 1
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Les Berceaux Op 23 No 1 Les Berceaux Op 23 No 1 Les Berceaux Op 23 No 1 Les Berceaux Op 23 No 1
Gabriel Fauré
Clair de Lune Op 46 No 2
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Clair de Lune Op 46 No 2 Clair de Lune Op 46 No 2 Clair de Lune Op 46 No 2 Clair de Lune Op 46 No 2
Dalton Baldwin, Gabriel Fauré & Elly Ameling
3 Songs (Op.18), no.1; Nell
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3 Songs (Op.18), no.1; Nell 3 Songs (Op.18), no.1; Nell 3 Songs (Op.18), no.1; Nell 3 Songs (Op.18), no.1; Nell
Gabriel Fauré, Philadelphia Orchestra & Eugene Ormandy
Pelleas et Melisande - suite (Op.80), Sicilienne
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Pelleas et Melisande - suite (Op.80), Sicilienne Pelleas et Melisande - suite (Op.80), Sicilienne Pelleas et Melisande - suite (Op.80), Sicilienne Pelleas et Melisande - suite (Op.80), Sicilienne
Gabriel Fauré, Bengt Forsberg, Andreas Brantelid & Pablo Casas
Apres un reve (Op.7`1) arr. for cello & piano
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Apres un reve (Op.7`1) arr. for cello & piano Apres un reve (Op.7`1) arr. for cello & piano Apres un reve (Op.7`1) arr. for cello & piano Apres un reve (Op.7`1) arr. for cello & piano
Gabriel Fauré, Sir David Willcocks, Bob Chilcott, Philharmonia Orchestra & King's College Cambridge Choir
Requiem Op.48 for soprano, baritone, chorus and orchestra
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Requiem Op.48 for soprano, baritone, chorus and orchestra Requiem Op.48 for soprano, baritone, chorus and orchestra Requiem Op.48 for soprano, baritone, chorus and orchestra Requiem Op.48 for soprano, baritone, chorus and orchestra
Joseph Middleton, Gabriel Fauré & Catherine Wyn-Rogers
Mélisande’s Song
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Mélisande’s Song Mélisande’s Song Mélisande’s Song Mélisande’s Song
Joseph Middleton, Gabriel Fauré & Catherine Wyn-Rogers
Das les ruines d’une Abbaye
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Das les ruines d’une Abbaye Das les ruines d’une Abbaye Das les ruines d’une Abbaye Das les ruines d’une Abbaye
Joseph Middleton, Gabriel Fauré & Catherine Wyn-Rogers
Au cimetière
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Au cimetière Au cimetière Au cimetière Au cimetière
Gabriel Fauré, Tanguy de Williencourt & Marina Koka
Dolly Suite
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Dolly Suite Dolly Suite Dolly Suite Dolly Suite
Joseph Middleton, Gabriel Fauré & Mary Bevan
Hymne
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Hymne Hymne Hymne Hymne
Joseph Middleton, Gabriel Fauré & Mary Bevan
Chant d’automne
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Chant d’automne Chant d’automne Chant d’automne Chant d’automne
Marielle Labèque, Gabriel Fauré & Katia Labèque
Dolly - suite for piano duet (Op.56), no.3; Le Jardin de Dolly
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Dolly - suite for piano duet (Op.56), no.3; Le Jardin de Dolly Dolly - suite for piano duet (Op.56), no.3; Le Jardin de Dolly Dolly - suite for piano duet (Op.56), no.3; Le Jardin de Dolly Dolly - suite for piano duet (Op.56), no.3; Le Jardin de Dolly
Douglas Tang, Gabriel Fauré, Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, Gerald Finley, Choir of King’s College, Cambridge, Stephen Cleobury & Tom Pickard
Requiem, Op 48
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Requiem, Op 48 Requiem, Op 48 Requiem, Op 48 Requiem, Op 48
Gabriel Fauré & Nabuko Imai (vla) and Roland Pontinen (pno)
Apres Un Reve
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Apres Un Reve Apres Un Reve Apres Un Reve Apres Un Reve
Gabriel Fauré, John Georgiadis & RTÉ Sinfonietta
Dolly Suite, Op.56 - Le Jardin de Dolly
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Dolly Suite, Op.56 - Le Jardin de Dolly Dolly Suite, Op.56 - Le Jardin de Dolly Dolly Suite, Op.56 - Le Jardin de Dolly Dolly Suite, Op.56 - Le Jardin de Dolly
Jean-Philippe Collard & Gabriel Fauré
Nocturne in A flat, Op. 33 No. 3
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Nocturne in A flat, Op. 33 No. 3 Nocturne in A flat, Op. 33 No. 3 Nocturne in A flat, Op. 33 No. 3 Nocturne in A flat, Op. 33 No. 3
Erzsebet Tusa, Istvan Lantos & Gabriel Fauré
Dolly - Suite for piano duet (Op.56)
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Dolly - Suite for piano duet (Op.56) Dolly - Suite for piano duet (Op.56) Dolly - Suite for piano duet (Op.56) Dolly - Suite for piano duet (Op.56)
Gabriel Fauré & Jean-Yves Thibaudet
Nocturne No.1 in E flat minor (Op.33 No.1)
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Nocturne No.1 in E flat minor (Op.33 No.1) Nocturne No.1 in E flat minor (Op.33 No.1) Nocturne No.1 in E flat minor (Op.33 No.1) Nocturne No.1 in E flat minor (Op.33 No.1)
Katia Labèque, Gabriel Fauré & Marielle Labèque
Dolly - suite for piano duet (Op.56), no.4; Kitty-valse
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Dolly - suite for piano duet (Op.56), no.4; Kitty-valse Dolly - suite for piano duet (Op.56), no.4; Kitty-valse Dolly - suite for piano duet (Op.56), no.4; Kitty-valse Dolly - suite for piano duet (Op.56), no.4; Kitty-valse
François Salque, Gabriel Fauré & Éric Le Sage
Berceuse Op. 16
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Berceuse Op. 16 Berceuse Op. 16 Berceuse Op. 16 Berceuse Op. 16
Nils-Erik Sparf, Lilli Maijala, Gabriel Fauré, Stefan Forsberg & Andreas Brantelid
Piano Quartet No.2 in G minor (Op.45)
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Piano Quartet No.2 in G minor (Op.45) Piano Quartet No.2 in G minor (Op.45) Piano Quartet No.2 in G minor (Op.45) Piano Quartet No.2 in G minor (Op.45)
Gabriel Fauré, Karina Gauvin, Paul Verlaine & Marc-André Hamelin
En sourdine
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En sourdine En sourdine En sourdine En sourdine
Geraldine McGreevy, Gabriel Fauré & Graham Johnson
La fée aux chansons Op 27 no 2
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La fée aux chansons  Op 27 no 2 La fée aux chansons  Op 27 no 2 La fée aux chansons  Op 27 no 2 La fée aux chansons  Op 27 no 2
Gabriel Fauré, Timothy Ravalde, Graham Walker, The Choir of St John's College, Cambridge & Andrew Nethsingha
Cantique de Jean Racine for chorus and organ [1865] (Op.11)
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Cantique de Jean Racine for chorus and organ [1865] (Op.11) Cantique de Jean Racine for chorus and organ [1865] (Op.11) Cantique de Jean Racine for chorus and organ [1865] (Op.11) Cantique de Jean Racine for chorus and organ [1865] (Op.11)
Gabriel Fauré & Stephen Hough
8 Pieces breves Op.84 for piano
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8 Pieces breves Op.84 for piano 8 Pieces breves Op.84 for piano 8 Pieces breves Op.84 for piano 8 Pieces breves Op.84 for piano
Gabriel Fauré, Guieu, Renaud & Les Phil'Art'Cellistes
Sicilienne
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Sicilienne Sicilienne Sicilienne Sicilienne
Kungsbacka Piano Trio & Gabriel Fauré
Piano Trio in D minor Op120
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Piano Trio in D minor Op120 Piano Trio in D minor Op120 Piano Trio in D minor Op120 Piano Trio in D minor Op120
Gabriel Fauré & Kungsbacka Piano Trio
Trio in D minor Op.120 for piano and strings
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Trio in D minor Op.120 for piano and strings Trio in D minor Op.120 for piano and strings Trio in D minor Op.120 for piano and strings Trio in D minor Op.120 for piano and strings
Gabriel Fauré & Kathryn Stott
Impromptu no. 3 in A flat major Op.34 for piano
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Impromptu no. 3 in A flat major Op.34 for piano Impromptu no. 3 in A flat major Op.34 for piano Impromptu no. 3 in A flat major Op.34 for piano Impromptu no. 3 in A flat major Op.34 for piano
Pascal Rogé & Gabriel Fauré
Tois Romances sans paroles, Op 17
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Tois Romances sans paroles, Op 17 Tois Romances sans paroles, Op 17 Tois Romances sans paroles, Op 17 Tois Romances sans paroles, Op 17
Gabriel Fauré, Seiji Ozawa & Boston Symphony Orchestra
Tendresse
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Tendresse Tendresse Tendresse Tendresse
Lorant Kovacs, Erika Lux & Gabriel Fauré
Fantasy for flute and piano
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Fantasy for flute and piano Fantasy for flute and piano Fantasy for flute and piano Fantasy for flute and piano
Nicholas Rimmer, Gabriel Fauré & Ronan Collett
Reflets dans l'eau from Mirages (Op.113)
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Reflets dans l'eau from Mirages (Op.113) Reflets dans l'eau from Mirages (Op.113) Reflets dans l'eau from Mirages (Op.113) Reflets dans l'eau from Mirages (Op.113)
Steven Isserlis, Pascal Devoyon & Gabriel Fauré
Cello Sonata No. 2 in G minor
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Cello Sonata No. 2 in G minor Cello Sonata No. 2 in G minor Cello Sonata No. 2 in G minor Cello Sonata No. 2 in G minor
Joseph Middleton, Gabriel Fauré & Carolyn Sampson
Les Roses d'Ispahan Op. 39, no 4
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Les Roses d'Ispahan Op. 39, no 4 Les Roses d'Ispahan Op. 39, no 4 Les Roses d'Ispahan Op. 39, no 4 Les Roses d'Ispahan Op. 39, no 4
Gabriel Fauré, Torleif Thedéen & Roland Pöntinen
Sonata no. 2 in G minor Op.117 for cello and piano
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Sonata no. 2 in G minor Op.117 for cello and piano Sonata no. 2 in G minor Op.117 for cello and piano Sonata no. 2 in G minor Op.117 for cello and piano Sonata no. 2 in G minor Op.117 for cello and piano
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