Personalities | Emmanuel Chabrier | Late Romantic | Classical
(E-ma-el’ Shab-re-a’) 1841–94
After hearing Wagner’s Tristan in Munich in 1879 with D’Indy and Duparc, Chabrier resigned his government post to become a full-time composer. The spectacular success of España (1883), a scintillating symphonic poem, proved him a master orchestrator. He composed two successful opéras comiques, L’étoile (‘The Star’, 1877) and Le roi malgré lui (‘King in Spite of Himself’, 1887), and an opera, Gwendoline (1885), which utilizes Wagnerian leitmotif. His other orchestral works, songs and piano works show great melodic charm and zest, and include the famous Bourrée fantasque (1892), popularized in the orchestral version by his friend, the Wagner conductor Felix Mottl.
España, Bourrée fantasque, etc., Orchestre de la Suisse Romande (cond) Neeme Järvi (Chandos)
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