Paul Abraham Dukas (French: [dykas]; 1 October 1865 – 17 May 1935) was a French composer, critic, scholar and teacher. A studious man, of retiring personality, he was intensely self-critical, and he abandoned and destroyed many of his compositions. His best known work is the orchestral piece The Sorcerer's Apprentice (L'apprenti sorcier), the fame of which has eclipsed that of his other surviving works. Among these are the opera Ariane et Barbe-bleue, a symphony, two substantial works for solo piano, and a ballet, La Péri.
At a time when French musicians were divided into conservative and progressive factions, Dukas adhered to neither but retained the admiration of both. His compositions were influenced by composers including Beethoven, Berlioz, Franck, d'Indy and Debussy.
In tandem with his composing career, Dukas worked as a music critic, contributing regular reviews to at least five French journals. Later in his life he was appointed professor of composition at the Conservatoire de Paris and the École Normale de Musique; his pupils included Maurice Duruflé, Olivier Messiaen, Manuel Ponce, and Joaquín Rodrigo.
Dukas was born in Paris, the second son in a Jewish family of three children. His father, Jules Dukas, was a banker, and his mother, Eugénie, was a capable pianist. When Dukas was five years old, his mother died giving birth to her third child, Marguerite-Lucie. Dukas took piano lessons, but showed no unusual musical talent until he was 14 when he began to compose while recovering from an illness. He entered the Conservatoire de Paris at the end of 1881, aged 16, and studied piano with Georges Mathias, harmony with Théodore Dubois and composition with Ernest Guiraud. Among his fellow students was Claude Debussy, with whom Dukas formed a close friendship. Two early overtures survive from this period, Goetz de Berlichingen (1883) and Le Roi Lear (1883). The manuscript of the latter was rediscovered in the 1990s and the work was performed for the first time in 1995.
Dukas won several prizes, including the second place in the Conservatoire's most prestigious award, the Prix de Rome, for his cantata Velléda in 1888. Disappointed at his failure to win the top prize, he left the Conservatoire in 1889. After compulsory military service he began a dual career as a composer and a music critic.
Dukas's career as a critic began in 1892 with a review of Wagner's Der Ring des Nibelungen conducted by Gustav Mahler at Covent Garden in London. His review was published in La Revue Hebdomadaire; he later wrote also for Minerva, La Chronique des Arts, Gazette des Beaux-Arts and Le Courrier Musical. His Parisian debut as composer was a performance of his overture Polyeucte, written in 1891 and premiered by Charles Lamoureux and his Orchestre Lamoureux in January 1892. Based on a tragedy by Corneille, the work, like many French works of the period, shows the influence of Wagner, but is coherent and displays some individuality.
Although Dukas wrote a fair amount of music, he was a perfectionist and destroyed many of his pieces out of dissatisfaction with them. Only a few of his compositions remain. After Polyeucte, he began writing an opera in 1892. He wrote his own libretto, Horn et Riemenhild, but he composed only one act, "realising too late that the work's developments were more literary than musical".
The Symphony in C major was composed in 1895–96, when Dukas was in his early 30s. It is dedicated to Paul Vidal, and had its first performance in January 1896, under the direction of the dedicatee. In a study of Dukas published towards the end of the composer's life, Irving Schwerké wrote, "The work … is an opulent expression of modernism in classical form. Its ideational luxuriance, nobility of utterance and architectural solidity mark it as one of the most conspicuous achievements of contemporaneous writing, and magnificently refute the generally prevalent notion that no French composer has ever produced a great symphony." Like Franck's only symphony, Dukas's is in three movements rather than the conventional four. Schwerké wrote of it:
Expressed in an individual and spontaneous idiom, the Symphony in C gives free play to the author's creative spirit and to his fund of exalted emotion. The high-spirited, impetuous first movement, Allegro non troppo vivace is intensely rhythmic. Its logical structure, strong thematic material, polyphonic richness and virile instrumentation combine to create an exhilarating effect of life and pageant color. The second movement, Andante, in sharp contrast to the first, reveals the perfect finish of the composer's style and the ineffable charm of his melody. The robust last movement, Allegro spiritoso, so verdant in instrumentation, brings the symphony to a vigorous close.
The work received a mixed reception at its first performance. Désiré-Émile Inghelbrecht, later known as a conductor, was a member of the orchestra at the premiere, and wrote, "the work which nowadays seems to us so lucid aroused not only the protestations of the public, but also those of the musicians of the orchestra." The symphony was better received when the Lamoureux Orchestra revived it in 1902.
The symphony was followed by another orchestral work, by far the best known of Dukas's compositions, his scherzo for orchestra, L'apprenti sorcier (The Sorcerer's Apprentice) (1897), a short piece (lasting for between 10 and 12 minutes in performance) based on Goethe's poem "Der Zauberlehrling". During Dukas's lifetime The Musical Quarterly commented that the world fame of the work not only overshadowed all other compositions by Dukas, but also eclipsed Goethe's original poem. The popularity of the piece became a matter of irritation to Dukas. In 2011, the Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians observed, "The popularity of L'apprenti sorcier and the exhilarating film version of it in Disney's Fantasia possibly hindered a fuller understanding of Dukas, as that single work is far better known than its composer."
In the decade after L'apprenti sorcier, Dukas completed two complex and technically demanding large-scale works for solo piano: the Piano Sonata (1901), dedicated to Saint-Saëns, and Variations, Interlude and Finale on a Theme by Rameau (1902). In Dukas's piano works critics have discerned the influence of Beethoven, or, "Beethoven as he was interpreted to the French mind by César Franck". Both works were premiered by Édouard Risler, a celebrated pianist of the era. There are also two smaller works for piano solo. The Sonata, described by the critic Edward Lockspeiser as "huge and somewhat recondite", did not enter the mainstream repertoire, but it has been more recently championed by such pianists as Marc-André Hamelin and Margaret Fingerhut. Lockspeiser describes the Rameau Variations as more developed and assured ... Dukas infuses the conventional form with a new and powerful spirit."
In 1899 Dukas turned once again to operatic composition. His second attempt, L'arbre de science, was abandoned, incomplete, but in the same year he began work on his one completed opera, Ariane et Barbe-bleue (Ariadne and Bluebeard). The work is a setting of a libretto by Maurice Maeterlinck. The author had intended the libretto to be set by Grieg but in 1899 he offered it to Dukas. Dukas worked on it for seven years and it was produced at the Opéra-Comique in 1907. The opera has often been compared to Debussy's Pelléas et Mélisande which was first performed while Dukas was writing Ariane et Barbe-bleue. Not only are both works settings of Maeterlinck, but there are musical similarities; Dukas even quotes from the Debussy work in his score. Although it won considerable praise, its success was overshadowed by the Paris premiere of Richard Strauss's sensational opera Salome at much the same time. Nonetheless, within a short time of its premiere, Dukas's opera was produced in Vienna, where it aroused much interest in Schoenberg's circle, and in Frankfurt, Milan and New York. It did not maintain a regular place in the repertory, despite the advocacy of Arturo Toscanini, who conducted it in New York three years in succession, and Sir Thomas Beecham, who pronounced it "one of the finest lyrical dramas of our time," and staged it at Covent Garden in 1937. Interest in it revived in the 1990s, with productions in Paris (Théâtre du Châtelet, 1990) and Hamburg (Staatsoper, 1997), and at the Opéra Bastille in Paris in 2007.
Dukas's last major work was the sumptuous oriental ballet La Péri (1912). Described by the composer as a "poème dansé" it depicts a young Persian prince who travels to the ends of the Earth in a quest to find the lotus flower of immortality, coming across its guardian, the Péri (fairy). Because of the very quiet opening pages of the ballet score, the composer added a brief "Fanfare pour précéder La Peri" which gave the typically noisy audiences of the day time to settle in their seats before the work proper began. La Péri was written for the Russian-French dancer Natalia Trouhanova, who starred in the first performance at the Châtelet in 1912. Diaghilev planned a production with his Ballets Russes but the production did not take place; the company's choreographer Fokine staged L'apprenti sorcier as a ballet in 1916.
In 1916, Dukas married Suzanne Pereyra (1883-1947), who was of Portuguese descent. They had one child, a daughter Adrienne-Thérèse, born in December 1919.
In the last years of his life, Dukas became well known as a teacher of composition. When Charles-Marie Widor retired as professor of composition at the Paris Conservatoire in 1927, Dukas was appointed in his place. He also taught at the École Normale de Musique in Paris. His many students included Jehan Alain, Elsa Barraine, Yvonne Desportes, Francis Chagrin, Carlos Chávez, Maurice Duruflé, Georges Hugon, Jean Langlais, Olivier Messiaen, Manuel Ponce, Joaquín Rodrigo, David Van Vactor and Xian Xinghai. As a teacher he was conservative but always encouraging of talent, telling one student, "It's obvious that you really love music. Always remember that it should be written from the heart and not with the head." He said his method of teaching was "to help young musicians to express themselves in accordance with their own natures. Music necessarily has to express something; it is also obliged to express somebody, namely, its composer." Grove observes that his wide knowledge of the history of European music, and his editorial work on Rameau, Scarlatti and Beethoven, gave him "particular authority in teaching historical styles".
After La Péri, Dukas completed no new large-scale compositions, although, as with his contemporary Jean Sibelius, there were frequent reports of major work in hand. After several years of silence, in 1920 he produced a tribute to his friend Debussy in the form of La plainte, au loin, du faune... for piano, which was followed by Amours, a setting of a sonnet by Pierre de Ronsard, for voice and piano, published in 1924 to mark the four hundredth anniversary of the poet's birth. Shortly before his death he had been working on a symphonic poem inspired by Shakespeare's The Tempest, a play of which he had made a French translation in 1918 with an operatic version in mind.
In the last year of his life Dukas was elected to membership of the Académie des Beaux-Arts. Though adhering to neither the progressive nor conservative factions among French musicians of the era, Dukas had the friendship and respect of both. In 1920, Vincent d'Indy published a study of Dukas's music; Debussy remained a lifelong friend, though feeling that Dukas's music was not French enough; Saint-Saëns worked with Dukas to complete an unfinished opera by Guiraud, and they were both engaged in the rediscovery and editing of the works of Jean-Philippe Rameau; Fauré dedicated his Second Piano Quintet to Dukas in 1921.
In 1920, he became a member of the Royal Academy of Science, Letters and Fine Arts of Belgium. 
Ariane et Barbe-bleue (Ariadne and Bluebeard) is an opera in three acts by Paul Dukas. The French libretto is adapted (with very few changes) from the symbolist play of the same name by Maurice Maeterlinck, itself loosely based on the French literary tale La Barbe bleue by Charles Perrault.
Dukas had been impressed by Maeterlinck's play when it was first published in 1899. Maeterlinck had initially reserved the rights to use Ariane as a libretto for Edvard Grieg. When Grieg abandoned his plans to compose the opera, Maeterlinck offered it to Dukas instead. Dukas worked on the score between 1899 and 1906.The work has often been compared to Debussy's opera Pelléas et Mélisande (1902), also based on a Maeterlinck play; Debussy had virtually finished his score by the time Dukas began work on his. The names of Barbe-bleue's five former wives are taken from previous plays by Maeterlinck: Sélysette from Aglavaine et Sélysette (1896), Alladine from Alladine et Palomides (1894), Ygraine and Bellangère from La mort de Tintagiles (1894), and Mélisande from Pelléas et Mélisande. Dukas, who knew Debussy well, actually borrowed three bars from Debussy's opera to accompany the first mention of Mélisande, although the character is minor in Dukas' opera. Ariane takes her name from the legend of Ariadne and the Cretan labyrinth, although she combines the roles of both Ariadne and Theseus, who freed the captive Athenian virgins from the Minotaur just as Ariane liberates—or tries to liberate—the wives from Bluebeard.It received its first performance at the Opéra Comique in Paris, on 10 May 1907. Performances in the latter half of the twentieth century were rare.Cherry Blossom Clinic
"Cherry Blossom Clinic" is a song by British rock band The Move. The song tells the story of a man slipping into madness and what he imagines as he hallucinates in his clinic room. The song features a string and brass arrangement by Tony Visconti. Keeping with the theme of madness, a line in the song about a "teatray in the sky" is a reference from Lewis Carroll's Alice in Wonderland.Although scheduled as the next single after the top 10 hit "Flowers in the Rain", the release was cancelled in the wake of a scandal surrounding a promotional stunt postcard sent out for "Flowers in the Rain". "Cherry Blossom Clinic" was included on The Move's first album, but its b-side "Vote for Me" was not released until 1998.
The song was later revisited and re-recorded by The Move and, under the title "Cherry Blossom Clinic Revisited", was included on their second album Shazam. This version is less psychedelic, more progressive and does not include the wah-wah guitar or the string and brass arrangements. It quotes from J. S. Bach's "Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring", Paul Dukas' The Sorcerer's Apprentice and Tchaikovsky's "Thé" (the Chinese dance) from his ballet The Nutcracker.Edwin Evans (music critic)
Edwin Evans (1 September 1874 – 3 March 1945) was an English music critic.
Evans was born in London. His father, of the same name, was a writer on music and an organist. Edwin's early education was at Lille from the age of nine until eleven, then at Echternach in Luxembourg for another four years. On returning to England, he successively worked in cable telegraphy, the stock exchange and banking, and financial journalism. Then in 1901 he started his career in music criticism, first writing on French music, championing the music of Claude Debussy in particular but also of Henri Duparc, Paul Dukas, Gabriel Fauré and Maurice Ravel. He went on to champion Russian composers, notably those associated with Sergei Diaghilev's Ballets Russes, and British composers: in 1919–20 he wrote a series of articles on British composers for The Musical Times.He was music critic of the Pall Mall Gazette (1912–23), and from 1933 he was music critic for the Daily Mail. In 1938 he was elected President of the International Society for Contemporary Music. He died in London in 1945, aged 70.Jean Hubeau
Jean Hubeau (22 June 1917 – 19 August 1992) was a French pianist, composer and pedagogue known especially for his recordings of Gabriel Fauré, Robert Schumann and Paul Dukas, which are recognized as benchmark versions.Jesús Arámbarri
Jesús Arámbarri Gárate (1902, Bilbao – 1960, Madrid) was a Spanish classical music conductor and composer native to the Basque Country.
Jesús Arámbarri has been classed among the cultural treasures of the region, with Juan Crisóstomo Arriaga, Jesús Guridi, Luís de Pablo, Maurice Ravel, and Pablo de Sarasate. His place in 20th century classical music is part of a tradition which also includes Isaac Albéniz, José Antonio de Donostia, Manuel de Falla, Felipe Pedrell, Joaquín Rodrigo, Joaquín Turina, and José María Usandizaga.After his early music education at the Bilbao Conservatory of Music, Arámbarri's teachers included Paul Le Flem, Paul Dukas and Vladimir Golschmann in Paris and Felix Weingartner in Basel.
Arámbarri composed some of his most important works while he was a student. After his return to Bilbao he was primarily a conductor and composed only a few more works, which included In memoriam for Juan Carlos de Gortázar (1939), Ofrenda (Offering) for Manuel de Falla (1946), and Dedicatoria (Dedication) for Javier Arisqueta (1949).From 1933 in Bilbao, Arámbarri conducted the (then part-time) Bilbao Symphony Orchestra, which he developed into the first full-time civic orchestra in Spain. He also arranged musical activities throughout the country and conducted large-score choral works with Basque choirs in Northern Spain. He was a professor at the Madrid Royal Conservatory, a conductor of the Madrid Symphony Orchestra, and served as president of the Spanish Conductors' Association. In 1953, he was appointed conductor of the Banda Sinfónica de Madrid, which had been founded in 1909.
Jesús Arámbarri died in 1960 at the Parque del Buen Retiro while conducting the Banda Sinfónica de Madrid in concert.Koharik Gazarossian
Koharik Gazarossian (Goharik Łazarosian, Armenian: Գոհարիկ Ղազարոսյան ) (21 December 1907 – 29 October 1967) was an Armenian composer and pianist. She was born in Constantinople (Istanbul) and entered the Paris Conservatory in 1926 where she studied with Paul Dukas and Lazare Lévy. After completing her studies, she performed as a concert pianist in Europe and worked as a composer. She died in Paris.La Péri (Dukas)
La Péri (English: The Peri), or The Flower of Immortality, is a 1912 ballet in one act by French composer Paul Dukas, originally choreographed by Ivan Clustine and first performed in Paris, about a man's search for immortality and encounter with a mythological Peri.List of symphonic poems
This is a list of some notable composers who wrote symphonic poems.Piano Quintet No. 2 (Fauré)
Gabriel Fauré's Piano Quintet in C minor, Op. 115, is the second of his two works in the genre. Dedicated to Paul Dukas, the Piano Quintet No. 2 was given its premiere in Paris at a concert of the Société Nationale de Musique on 2 May 1921.There are four movements
Allegro moltoThe playing time of the quintet is about 30 minutes.Piano Sonata (Dukas)
The Piano Sonata in E-flat minor is a musical work composed by Paul Dukas between 1899 and 1900, and published in 1901.Pierre-Alexandre Monsigny
Pierre-Alexandre Monsigny ((1729-10-17)17 October 1729 – (1817-01-14)14 January 1817) was a French composer and a member of the French Académie des Beaux-Arts (1813).
He is considered alongside André Grétry and François-André Danican Philidor to have been the founder of a new musical genre, the opéra comique, laying a path for other French composers such as François-Adrien Boieldieu, Daniel-François-Esprit Auber, Charles Gounod, Georges Bizet, and Jules Massenet in this genre.
Paul Dukas is quoted as saying, "Of all the composers of our country, he may be the first who had the gift of true, human emotion, of communicative expression and of fair feeling".Polyeucte
"Polyeucte" is also the name of an overture by Paul Dukas.Polyeucte martyr is a drama in five acts by French writer Pierre Corneille. It was finished in December 1642 and debuted in October 1643. It is based on the life of the martyr Saint Polyeuctus (Polyeucte).In 1878 it was adapted into an opera by Charles Gounod, with the assistance of the librettist Jules Barbier. The opera was not a success and is rarely performed except for a number of arias including "Source délicieuse" and the barcarolle "Nymphes attentives". Other works based on the play include a ballet by Marc-Antoine Charpentier (1679), the opera Poliuto (1838) by Donizetti (adapted into French by Scribe as Les martyrs), an overture by Paul Dukas (1891) and a composition by Edgar Tinel.
The drama is set in ancient Armenia (in a city, Melitene, which is in present-day Turkey) during a time when Christians were persecuted there under the Roman Empire. Polyeucte, an Armenian nobleman, converts to Christianity to the great despair of his wife, Pauline, and of his father-in-law, Felix. Despite them, Polyeucte becomes a martyr, causing Pauline and Felix to finally convert as well.There is also a romantic subplot: the Roman Severus is in love with Pauline and hopes she will be his after the conversion of Polyeucte. However, she chooses to stay at the side of her husband. Before dying, Polyeucte entrusts Severus with Pauline.
Polyeucte is one of the last 17th-century French dramas with a religious subject—Corneille did also write Théodore in 1645 and Racine wrote Esther (1689) and Athalie (1691), but these were not meant for public performance. Later playwrights were not as willing to mix religious and worldly themes.
One act of the opera was performed under the auspices of the Carthage Institute in the ancient Roman theatre at Carthage, Tunisia in 1906, making it the first modern performance to have taken place in that historic space (which had functioned as an active theatre from ca. AD 150 to AD 439 and was only unearthed in 1904).Polyeucte (Dukas)
Polyeucte is an overture composed by Paul Dukas in 1891 for the tragedy of the same name by Pierre Corneille. Dukas made his public debut with the first performance of this overture on 23 January 1892 at the Concerts Lamoureux.Symphony in C
Symphony in C may refer to:
Symphony in C major (Wagner), Richard Wagner's Symphony in C (1831/1832)
Symphony in C (Bizet), Georges Bizet's Symphony in C (1855)
Symphony in C (ballet), George Balanchine's 1947 ballet to the Bizet symphony
Symphony in C (Dukas), Paul Dukas' Symphony in C (1896)
Symphony in C (Stravinsky), Igor Stravinsky's Symphony in C (1940)
Commissioning a Symphony in C, a song by the band Cake, on the album Comfort Eagle
Symphony in C (orchestra), based in Camden, New JerseySymphony in C (Dukas)
The Symphony in C is a symphony by the French composer Paul Dukas, dedicated to fellow musician Paul Vidal.
The symphony was written in 1896, when Dukas was 30, and was premiered on January 3, 1897, with Paul Vidal conducting. It is written for a standard orchestra comprising three flutes (the third doubling piccolo), two oboes (the first doubling cor anglais), two clarinets in B-flat and A, two bassoons, four French horns in F and E, two trumpets in F, piccolo trumpet in D, three trombones, tuba, timpani, and strings.
Like César Franck's only symphony, Dukas' is in three movements rather than the conventional four:
Allegro non troppo vivace, ma con fuoco, C major, 6/8
Andante espressivo e sostenuto, 4/8, E minor, C major, B major, E minor
Finale. Allegro spiritoso, C major, 3/4 = 9/8The first movement is a sonata form allegro with three themes. The second movement is also in sonata form, but only with two themes. The finale is an ABACA rondo.
The symphony has been described as a "charming and colorful work."The Sorcerer's Apprentice (2010 film)
The Sorcerer's Apprentice is a 2010 American action-fantasy film produced by Jerry Bruckheimer, directed by Jon Turteltaub, and released by Walt Disney Pictures, the team behind the National Treasure franchise. The film stars Nicolas Cage, Jay Baruchel, Alfred Molina, Teresa Palmer, and Monica Bellucci.
The film is named after a segment in Disney's 1940 film Fantasia called The Sorcerer's Apprentice starring Mickey Mouse (with one scene being an extensive reference to it), which in turn is based on the late-1890s symphonic poem by Paul Dukas and the 1797 Johann Wolfgang von Goethe ballad. Balthazar Blake (Nicolas Cage), a "Merlinean", is a sorcerer in modern-day Manhattan, fighting against the forces of evil, in particular his nemesis, Maxim Horvath (Alfred Molina), while searching for the person who will eventually inherit Merlin's powers ("The Prime Merlinean"). This turns out to be Dave Stutler (Jay Baruchel), a physics student, whom Balthazar takes as a reluctant protégé. The sorcerer gives his unwilling apprentice a crash course in the art of science, magic, and sorcery, in order to stop Horvath and Morgana le Fay (Alice Krige) from raising the souls of the evil dead sorcerers ("Morganians") and destroying the world.The Sorcerer's Apprentice (Dukas)
The Sorcerer's Apprentice (French: L'apprenti sorcier) is a symphonic poem by the French composer Paul Dukas, completed in 1897. Subtitled "Scherzo after a ballad by Goethe", the piece was based on Johann Wolfgang von Goethe's 1797 poem of the same name. By far the most performed and recorded of Dukas's works, its notable appearance in the Walt Disney 1940 animated film Fantasia has led to the piece becoming widely known to audiences outside the classical concert hall.Tony Aubin
Tony Louis Alexandre Aubin (born 8 December 1907, Paris – died 21 September 1981, Paris) was a French composer.
From 1925-30, Aubin studied at the Paris Conservatory under Samuel Rousseau (music theory), Noel Gallon (counterpoint), Philippe Gaubert (orchestration and composition), and Paul Dukas (composition). He was awarded the Prix de Rome for the cantata Actaeon in 1930.
He was artistic director at Paris-Mondial from 1937–44, and professor at the Paris Conservatory from 1944-77. He also conducted works for French radio between 1945 and 1960. His works, heavily indebted to the impressionism of Ravel and Dukas, include a large number of film scores.
His pupils included Olivier Alain, Garbis Aprikian, Raynald Arseneault, Jocelyne Binet, Jacques Castérède, Pierre Cochereau, Marius Constant, Ginette Keller, Talivaldis Kenins, Yüksel Koptagel, Ron Nelson and Makoto Shinohara.Variations, Interlude and Finale on a Theme by Rameau
The Variations, Interlude and Finale on a Theme by Rameau (French: Variations, interlude et finale sur un thème de Rameau) were composed by Paul Dukas between 1899 and 1902. The work was first performed in Paris in 1903.