César Franck

Belgian-born French composer. Born 10 December 1822. Died 8 November 1890
César Franck
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1822-12-10
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César Franck

César Franck Biography (BBC)

Just about all the music by which César Franck is known today – less than a dozen major pieces – was written in the last 10 years of his life

His early career as a child prodigy and teenage virtuoso pianist-composer, ruthlessly promoted by an over-exploitive father, did not so much hasten his development as retard it. But that was not the only problem. His father did at least see to it that he had a thorough musical training, at the Conservatoires of Liège and Paris, and he was able to break away from overbearing parental influence when he found refuge with the family of his future wife in his early twenties.

The main reason why he did not realise his potential until so late in his life was that – for a Belgian with a largely German parentage, high aesthetic ideals derived from Bach and Beethoven, and an allegiance to Liszt and Wagner – the Parisian musical world was a far from natural environment. Unlike his great contemporary and in many ways his antithesis as a composer, Camille Saint-Saëns, Franck could not easily thrive in it.

He did find a congenial niche as organist of the recently completed basilica of Ste Clotilde in 1858, however, and 13 years later he was appointed professor of organ at the Conservatoire, as a result of which he adopted French citizenship. He also began to attract a following of disciples, the ‘bande à Franck’, young composers impressed by his post-service improvisations on the Cavaillé-Coll at Ste Clotilde and the high-minded but now largely forgotten choral works (Ruth, Rédemption, Les Béatitudes) he was writing at that time.

The list of pupils who attended his organ-improvisation classes at the Conservatoire or went for private lessons to his home in the boulevard St Michel was so numerous and included musicians of such outstanding ability – Chausson, Dukas, Duparc, d’Indy – that over the course of the years he changed the musical climate in Paris. The foundation of the Schola Cantorum in 1894, though ‘le père Franck’ was dead by then, was the direct result of his work and his teaching.

As the climate in French music changed, in the last few years of his life Franck’s creative genius flourished. Classical chamber-music forms long neglected or under-represented in France found new life in the expressive fervour and the integrated thematic organisation of such ‘cyclic’ constructions as his Piano Quintet (1879), Violin Sonata (1886) and String Quartet (1889). Neither Debussy’s nor Ravel’s string quartets would have been written without his example. Remarkably, he was able to reconcile instrumental virtuosity with his high principles in the Variations symphoniques (1885). Above all perhaps, in the Symphony in D minor, his last orchestral score (1886–8), he delivered one of the very few major works of its kind written in France in the whole of the 19th century.

Profile © Gerald Larner

César Franck Biography (Wikipedia)

César-Auguste-Jean-Guillaume-Hubert Franck (10 December 1822 – 8 November 1890) was a composer, pianist, organist, and music teacher who worked in Paris during his adult life.

He was born at Liège, in what is now Belgium (though at the time of his birth it was part of the United Kingdom of the Netherlands). He gave his first concerts there in 1834 and studied privately in Paris from 1835, where his teachers included Anton Reicha. After a brief return to Belgium, and a disastrous reception for an early oratorio Ruth, he moved to Paris, where he married and embarked on a career as teacher and organist. He gained a reputation as a formidable musical improviser, and travelled widely within France to demonstrate new instruments built by Aristide Cavaillé-Coll.

In 1858, he became organist at the Basilica of St. Clotilde, Paris, a position he retained for the rest of his life. He became professor at the Paris Conservatoire in 1872; he took French nationality, a requirement of the appointment. His pupils included Vincent d'Indy, Ernest Chausson, Louis Vierne, Charles Tournemire, Guillaume Lekeu and Henri Duparc. After acquiring the professorship, Franck wrote several pieces that have entered the standard classical repertoire, including symphonic, chamber, and keyboard works.

This entry is from Wikipedia, the user-contributed encyclopedia. It may not have been reviewed by professional editors and is licensed under an Attribution-ShareAlike Creative Commons License. If you find the biography content factually incorrect or highly offensive you can edit this article at Wikipedia. Find out more about our use of this data.



César Franck Tracks

César Franck
Les Eolides
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Les Eolides

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César Franck
Prelude, choral et fugue, M.21
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Prelude, choral et fugue, M.21
César Franck
Piano Quintet in F minor
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Piano Quintet in F minor
César Franck
Le chasseur maudit
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Le chasseur maudit
César Franck
Violin Sonata in A major (3rd mvt)
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Violin Sonata in A major (3rd mvt)
César Franck
Piano Quintet in F minor
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Piano Quintet in F minor
César Franck
Panis Angelicus (Mass, Op 12)
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Panis Angelicus (Mass, Op 12)
César Franck
Quintet for piano and strings (M.7) in F minor
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Quintet for piano and strings (M.7) in F minor
César Franck
Le Chasseur Maudit - symphonic poem (M.44)
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Le Chasseur Maudit - symphonic poem (M.44)
César Franck
Violin Sonata in A major
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Violin Sonata in A major
César Franck
Le Chasseur maudit (The Accursed Huntsman), symphonic poem
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Le Chasseur maudit (The Accursed Huntsman), symphonic poem
César Franck
Symphony in D minor, op. 48
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Symphony in D minor, op. 48

Symphony in D minor, op. 48

Orchestra
Sao Paulo State Orchestra
César Franck
Sonata for violin and piano (M.8) in A major
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Sonata for violin and piano (M.8) in A major
César Franck
Sonata for violin and piano
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Sonata for violin and piano
César Franck
Sonata for Piano and Violin in A Major, FW 8: I. Allegro ben moderato
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Sonata for Piano and Violin in A Major, FW 8: I. Allegro ben moderato
César Franck
Psyche - symphonic poem for chorus and orchestra
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Psyche - symphonic poem for chorus and orchestra
César Franck
Sonata for violin and piano (M.8) in A major
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Sonata for violin and piano (M.8) in A major
César Franck
Les Djinns
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Les Djinns
César Franck
Sonata in A major M.8
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Sonata in A major M.8
César Franck
Panis Angelicus
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Panis Angelicus
César Franck
Symphonic Variations
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Symphonic Variations
César Franck
Sonata in A major for violin and piano, M.8
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Sonata in A major for violin and piano, M.8
César Franck
Sommeil de Psyche: Lento (Psyche - poeme symphonique)
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Sommeil de Psyche: Lento (Psyche - poeme symphonique)
César Franck
Le Chasseur Maudit, symphonic poem [The Accursed Huntsman] (M.44)
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Le Chasseur Maudit, symphonic poem [The Accursed Huntsman] (M.44)
César Franck
Symphony in D minor (2nd mvt)
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Symphony in D minor (2nd mvt)
César Franck
Prelude, Fugue et Variation Op 18
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Prelude, Fugue et Variation Op 18
César Franck
Les Éolides
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Les Éolides
César Franck
Le Chasseur maudit M.44 (The Accursed Huntsman)
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Le Chasseur maudit M.44 (The Accursed Huntsman)
César Franck
Sonata in A major arr Khaner (2nd mvt)
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Sonata in A major arr Khaner (2nd mvt)
César Franck
Symphonic Variations
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Symphonic Variations
César Franck
Symphony in D minor Op.48
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Symphony in D minor Op.48
César Franck
Symphony in D minor (M.48)
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Symphony in D minor (M.48)
César Franck
Quintet for piano and strings (M.7) in F minor
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Quintet for piano and strings (M.7) in F minor
César Franck
Panis Angelicus
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Panis Angelicus

Panis Angelicus

Performer
Emilia Jaques
Cassian Pichler-Roca
César Franck
Sonata for Violin (arr.cello)
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Sonata for Violin (arr.cello)
César Franck
Sonata for Piano and Violin in A Major, FW 8: IV. Allegro poco mosso
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Sonata for Piano and Violin in A Major, FW 8: IV. Allegro poco mosso
César Franck
Piano Quintet in F Minor (2nd mvt)
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Piano Quintet in F Minor (2nd mvt)
César Franck
Cantabile in B major, M.36
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Cantabile in B major, M.36
César Franck
Violin Sonata in A major (4th mvt)
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Violin Sonata in A major (4th mvt)
César Franck
Sonata in A - 4th mvt: Allegretto poco mosso
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Sonata in A - 4th mvt: Allegretto poco mosso
César Franck
Violin Sonata in A major
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Violin Sonata in A major
César Franck
Prelude, Chorale and Fugue (M.21)
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Prelude, Chorale and Fugue (M.21)
César Franck
Violin Sonata in A (1st mvt)
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Violin Sonata in A (1st mvt)
César Franck
Andantino in G minor for organ
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Andantino in G minor for organ

Andantino in G minor for organ

Performer
Hans-Eberhard Ross
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