Florent Schmitt

Composer. Born 28 September 1870. Died 17 August 1958
Florent Schmitt
https://static.bbc.co.uk/music_clips/3.0.29/img/default_artist_images/classical1.jpg
1870-09-28
https://musicbrainz.org/artist/c37baf13-2cb0-41a4-a76a-ad4d024146d9
Florent Schmitt

Florent Schmitt Biography (BBC)

The close intermingling of French and German-speaking populations in Lorraine and Alsace, which were mostly lost to Germany in the Franco-Prussian War, accounts for Florent Schmitt’s German-sounding surname. Within the first year of his life, his birthplace (Blâmont in Lorraine) found itself only a few miles from the redrawn border with Germany. The son of a cloth manufacturer, he was something of a late-starter as a musician. After lessons in Nancy, in 1889 he entered the Paris Conservatoire. There ensued military service as a flautist in an army band, after which Schmitt won the Prix de Rome in 1900; his first public success was his major choral work, Psalm 47, composed at the Villa Medici, the French Institute’s headquarters in Rome.

In fact Schmitt was seldom in residence, and spent much of his time travelling throughout Europe sampling the contemporary music on offer. The music of Muslim countries, especially Turkey, fascinated him, and its influence can be felt in Psalm 47, whose monumental and exotic aspects led to him being dubbed ‘the new Berlioz’ by the French musical press.

A stream of ambitious and forceful compositions followed which confirmed Schmitt as the French composer most directly influenced by German late-Romantic music, and by the Russian nationalist composers. Schmitt was an ardent champion of new music and was an early advocate for Stravinsky, an attitude which (for a time) attracted Stravinsky’s friendship and praise, especially for Schmitt’s most famous work, the ballet La tragédie de Salomé.

Throughout a long and highly productive life, Schmitt continued to compose a host of highly-coloured stage, orchestral, vocal, chamber and piano works. During his career he was President of the Société Nationale de Musique, and a member of the Société Musicale Independante. In 1914 he was enlisted into military service, and sent to serve in the front line at his own request. After the war, from 1921 to 1924 he was Director of the Lyons Conservatoire, and in 1929 became music critic for Le temps, a position which he occupied in the manner of a high arbiter of national taste. In 1936 Schmitt was elected to the Institut de France and the Académie des Beaux-Arts.

He remained, on the whole, true to the compositional ideals which had brought him his early successes, but he began to feel increasingly disenchanted with the directions that music was taking between the wars. Always a passionate French nationalist, his political leanings took an ever more pronounced rightward turn. During the war, Schmitt remained in Vichy France and accepted honours from Pétain’s government. Such behaviour was sufficient for him and his music to fall into comparative obscurity after the war, though he continued to compose. In 1952 he was awarded the Légion d’honneur, and in 1957 he received the Grand Prix de la Ville de Paris, less than a year before his death.

Profile © Calum MacDonald

Florent Schmitt Biography (Wikipedia)

Florent Schmitt (28 September 1870 – 17 August 1958) was a French composer. He was part of the group known as Les Apaches. His most famous pieces are La tragédie de Salome and Psaume XLVII (Psalm 47).

He has been described as "one of the most fascinating of France’s lesser-known classical composers".

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.


Florent Schmitt Tracks

Sort by

Florent Schmitt
La Tragedie de Salome - symphonic poem Op.50
https://ichef.bbci.co.uk/images/ic/256x256/p05mgbfm.jpg
link
La Tragedie de Salome - symphonic poem Op.50
Florent Schmitt
Chant élégiaque, Op. 24
https://static.bbc.co.uk/music_clips/3.0.29/img/track_fallback.png
link
Chant élégiaque, Op. 24
Florent Schmitt
Suite en rocaille for flute, harp, violin, viola and cello, Op.84
https://static.bbc.co.uk/music_clips/3.0.29/img/track_fallback.png
link
Suite en rocaille for flute, harp, violin, viola and cello, Op.84
Florent Schmitt
Symphony No. 2, Op. 137
https://ichef.bbci.co.uk/images/ic/256x256/p02tvmqb.jpg
link
Symphony No. 2, Op. 137
Florent Schmitt
Psalm 47, Op 38
https://ichef.bbci.co.uk/images/ic/256x256/p05mgbfm.jpg
link
Psalm 47, Op 38
Florent Schmitt
Psalm 47 (excerpt)
https://ichef.bbci.co.uk/images/ic/256x256/p04jpqv5.jpg
link
Psalm 47 (excerpt)
Florent Schmitt
Symphony No. 2 Op. 137 ii. Lent sans excès
https://ichef.bbci.co.uk/images/ic/256x256/p02tvmqb.jpg
link
Symphony No. 2 Op. 137 ii. Lent sans excès
Florent Schmitt
Antoine et Cleopatre Suite No. 2
https://ichef.bbci.co.uk/images/ic/256x256/p02tvmqb.jpg
link
Antoine et Cleopatre Suite No. 2
Florent Schmitt
Antoine et Cleopatre Suite No.1
https://ichef.bbci.co.uk/images/ic/256x256/p02tvmqb.jpg
link
Antoine et Cleopatre Suite No.1
Florent Schmitt
Andantino, Op 30 No 1
https://static.bbc.co.uk/music_clips/3.0.29/img/track_fallback.png
link
Andantino, Op 30 No 1

Andantino, Op 30 No 1

Performer
Harry Cameron-Penny
Simon Callaghan
Last played on
Florent Schmitt
Symphony No.2
https://ichef.bbci.co.uk/images/ic/256x256/p02tvmqb.jpg
link
Symphony No.2
Florent Schmitt
Veni Creator, from 'Trois Liturgies Joyeuses', Op. 116
https://ichef.bbci.co.uk/images/ic/256x256/p05w0072.jpg
link
Veni Creator, from 'Trois Liturgies Joyeuses', Op. 116
Florent Schmitt
Une semaine du petit elfe Ferme, Op. 58: La ronde des lettres
https://static.bbc.co.uk/music_clips/3.0.29/img/track_fallback.png
link
Une semaine du petit elfe Ferme, Op. 58: La ronde des lettres
Florent Schmitt
Anthony and Cleopatra Part 2
https://ichef.bbci.co.uk/images/ic/256x256/p02tvmqb.jpg
link
Anthony and Cleopatra Part 2
Florent Schmitt
Psaume XLVII, Op. 38
https://ichef.bbci.co.uk/images/ic/256x256/p05mgbfm.jpg
link
Psaume XLVII, Op. 38
Florent Schmitt
Psalm 47
https://static.bbc.co.uk/music_clips/3.0.29/img/track_fallback.png
link
Psalm 47
Florent Schmitt
Le Palais hante, Op. 49
https://ichef.bbci.co.uk/images/ic/256x256/p04hplyq.jpg
link
Le Palais hante, Op. 49
Florent Schmitt
Etude pour Le Palais Hante
https://ichef.bbci.co.uk/images/ic/256x256/p04k54b4.jpg
link
Etude pour Le Palais Hante
Florent Schmitt
The Tragedy of Salomé
https://ichef.bbci.co.uk/images/ic/256x256/p0383xgr.jpg
link
The Tragedy of Salomé
Florent Schmitt
Psalm 47 Op.38
https://ichef.bbci.co.uk/images/ic/256x256/p03kk0ys.jpg
link
Psalm 47 Op.38

Psalm 47 Op.38

Performer
BBC National Chorus of Wales
BBC National Orchestra of Wales
Thierry Fischer
Christine Buffle
Women of the Royal Welsh College Of Music And Drama Chamber Choir
Royal Northern College of Music Wind Orchestra
Dionysiasques, Op 62 (feat. Timothy Reynish)
https://ichef.bbci.co.uk/images/ic/256x256/p03zc0z3.jpg
link
Dionysiasques, Op 62 (feat. Timothy Reynish)
Florent Schmitt
Le Palais hanté, Op.49
https://static.bbc.co.uk/music_clips/3.0.29/img/track_fallback.png
link
Le Palais hanté, Op.49
Florent Schmitt
La tragédie de Salomé, op. 50
https://static.bbc.co.uk/music_clips/3.0.29/img/track_fallback.png
link
La tragédie de Salomé, op. 50
Florent Schmitt
Piano Quintet, op.51
https://static.bbc.co.uk/music_clips/3.0.29/img/track_fallback.png
link
Piano Quintet, op.51
Florent Schmitt
Anthony and Cleopatra - suite no.1
https://static.bbc.co.uk/music_clips/3.0.29/img/track_fallback.png
link
Anthony and Cleopatra - suite no.1
Florent Schmitt
A contre-voix, No1-3
https://static.bbc.co.uk/music_clips/3.0.29/img/track_fallback.png
link
A contre-voix, No1-3
Load more tracks

Performances & Interviews from Similar Artists

Back to artist