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Every day we post 10 new Classical CD and DVD reviews. A free weekly summary is available by e-mail. MusicWeb is not a subscription site. To keep it free please purchase discs through our links.

  Classical Editor Rob Barnett    


MASSENET, Jules
b Montaud, 12 May 1842
d Paris, 23 August 1912, aged seventy

He was the son of an ironmaster. He took piano lessons from his mother, and at the age of eleven was able to enter the Paris Conservatory. As a student he earned pocket-money by playing in the percussion section of orchestras in various theatres. He won a first prize for piano, and in 1863 he won the Prix de Rome, which took him to the Villa Medici. In Rome he met Liszt, through whom Massenet was to meet his future wife. His teacher, Ambroise Thomas, used his influence to obtain performances of Massenet's early work, and from then on there was no looking back - his success as an opera writer was unbroken until his death. From 1878 onward he was professor of composition at the Paris Conservatory.

1863 (21)

Ouverture de Concert

David Rizzio, cantata

1865 (23)

Suite for orchestra, No 1

1871 (29)

Suite for orchestra, No 2, Scenes hongroises

1873 (31)

Suite for orchestra, No 3, Scenes dramatigues

Phédre, concert overture

1874 (32)

Suite for orchestra, No 4, Scenes pittoresques

1875 (33)

Eve, oratorio

1876 (34)

Suite for orchestra, No 5, Scenes napolitaines

1877 (35)

Le Roi de Lahore, opera

Narcisse, cantata

1879 (37)

Suite for orchestra, No 6, Scenes de feerie

1880 (38)

La Vierge, oratorio

1881 (39)

Suite for orchestra, No 7, Scenes alsaciennes

Herodiade, opera

1884 (42)

Manon, opera

1885 (43)

Le Cid, opera

1887 (45)

Parade Militaire

1890 (48)

Visions, symphonic poem

1892 (50)

Werther, opera

1894 (52)

Thais, opera

La Navarraise, opera

1897 (55)

Marche solennelle

Fantaisie, for cello and orchestra

Sappho, Lyric play

Devant la Madone, opera

1899 (57)

Brumaire, overture

Cendrillon, opera

1900 (58)

La Terre promisee, oratorio

1902 (60)

Piano Concerto

Le Jongleur de Notre Dame, opera

1910 (68)

Don Quixote, opera

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