Georges Bizet

Biography

Born: 1838   Died: 1875   Country: France   Period: Romantic
Known for one of the world's most popular operas, Carmen, Georges Bizet deserves attention as well for other works of remarkable melodic charm. Many of his works received cool receptions on their premieres but are now considered central to the repertory of classical music.

Bizet was born in Paris on October 25, 1838, and grew up in a happy, musical family that encouraged his talents. He learned to read music at the same time he learned to
Read more read letters, and equally well. Entering the Paris Conservatory before he was ten, he earned first prize in solfčge within six months, a first prize in piano in 1852, and eventually, the coveted Prix de Rome in 1857 for his cantata Clovis et Clotilde. His teachers had included Marmontel for piano and Halévy for composition, but the greatest influence on him was Charles Gounod, of whom Bizet later said "You were the beginning of my life as an artist." Bizet himself hid away his Symphony in C, written when he was 17, feeling it was too much like its models, Gounod's symphonies. The two years spent in Rome after winning his prize, would be the only extensive time, and a greatly impressionable one, that Bizet would spend outside of Paris in his brief life. When he returned to Paris, he lost confidence in his natural talents and began to substitute dry Germanic or academic writing for his own developing idiom. He composed a one-act opera for production at the Opéra-Comique, but the theater's director engaged him to write a full-length opera instead, Les pęcheurs de perles (The Pearl Fishers). It was not a success at the time, but despite a few weaknesses, the work was revived in 1886, and its sheer beauty has earned it a respected position among the lesser-played operatic repertory. In 1863 Bizet's father bought land outside Paris where he built two bungalows, one of which Bizet frequently used as a compositional retreat. He began a friendship (apparently not a physical one) with a neighbor-woman named Céleste Mogador, a former actress, author, courtesan, circus rider, and dance-hall girl. She is said to have been the model for his masterpiece's title role of Carmen. Bizet earned his living as an accompanist and publishing house arranger. Meanwhile, he poured his creative efforts into an immense five-act opera in the grand tradition, Ivan IV, but it was never performed. This proved to be a pattern for the rest of his career. Bizet would work hard to get an opera produced, and even if he did, it would usually receive only a handful of performances. Bizet's corpus of unfinished works is large, and testifies to his unsettled existence and his difficulty in finding a place in France's notoriously hierarchical and conservative musical world. In 1869 Bizet married Genevičve Halévy, daughter of his teacher. The marriage did not turn out to be a happy one, primarily due to her family's history of mental illness. In 1872, Bizet's splendid incidental music for the play L'arlčsienne was poorly received, but when the composer assembled the music into an orchestral suite for a November performance, it found great acclaim. At last confident of his creative vision, Bizet was able to steer his final masterpiece through various obstacles, including the objections of singers and theater directors who were shocked by Carmen's subject matter. When the opera had its premiere on March 3, 1875, it was received barely well enough to hang on for future productions. Although it took audiences only a few weeks to catch on, Bizet died convinced it was a failure. Read less
Bizet: Les pecheurs de perles / Ferro, Orchestra del Teatro di San Carlo
Release Date: 04/29/2016   Label: C Major  
Catalog: 719508   Number of Discs: 1
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Bizet: L'arlésienne Suites, Etc / José Serebrier
Release Date: 03/30/2004   Label: Bis  
Catalog: 1305   Number of Discs: 1
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Work: Les pêcheurs de perles: Au fond du temple saint

Browse 51-75 of 92 Available Recordings
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  • 51.
    Original Masters - The Art Of Fritz Wunderlich
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 000480702 Release Date: 09/13/2005   Number of Discs: 7
    Composer:  Gioachino Rossini,  Hübsch,,  Traditional,  Osman Perez Freire  ... 
    Performer:  Fritz Wunderlich,  Hermann Prey,  Hubert Giesen,  Ingeborg Hallstein  ... 
    Conductor:  Hans Carste,  Kurt Eichhorn,  Robert Stolz,  Horst Stein  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Graunke Symphony Orchestra,  Munich Radio Symphony Orchestra,  Die Spilar-Schrammeln (salon orchestra)  ... 
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  • 52.
    The Classical Album 2005
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 000529102 Release Date: 09/13/2005   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Joaquin Rodrigo,  Agustín Lara,  Giacomo Meyerbeer,  Traditional  ... 
    Performer:  Andrea Bocelli,  Lorin Maazel,  Bryn Terfel,  Luciano Pavarotti  ... 
    Conductor:  Lorin Maazel,  Oliviero de Fabritiis,  Nicholas Cleobury,  Sir Georg Solti  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra,  National Philharmonic Orchestra,  English Chamber Orchestra  ... 
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  • 53.
    Essential Opera
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 000491402 Release Date: 08/09/2005   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Gioachino Rossini,  Charles Gounod,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Giacomo Puccini  ... 
    Performer:  Cecilia Bartoli,  Leo Nucci,  Michael Kraus,  Mirella Freni  ... 
    Conductor:  Giuseppe Patané,  Richard Bonynge,  Sir Georg Solti,  Herbert von Karajan  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bologna Teatro Comunale Orchestra,  Ambrosian Opera Chorus,  London Symphony Orchestra  ... 
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    CD: $13.99
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  • 54.
    100 Best Opera Classics
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 862112 Release Date: 02/15/2005   Number of Discs: 6
    Composer:  Carl Maria von Weber,  Gioachino Rossini,  Richard Wagner,  Georges Bizet  ... 
    Performer:  Gary Lakes,  Maria Callas,  Tito Gobbi,  Nicolai Gedda  ... 
    Conductor:  James Conlon,  Alceo Galliera,  Lamberto Gardelli,  James Levine  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cologne Philharmonic Orchestra,  Philharmonia Orchestra,  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
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  • 55.
    Bandstand - A Musical Walk In The Park
    Label: Gift Of Music   Catalog: 1129 Release Date: 02/01/2005   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Lionel Monckton,  Traditional,  Georges Bizet,  Franz Schubert  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Corps of Royal Engineers Fanfare Trumpeters
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  • 56.
    A Night At The Opera / Rosenkrans, Thomas, Jepson, Et Al
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8557309 Release Date: 11/16/2004   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Giuseppe Verdi,  Vincenzo Bellini,  Richard Strauss,  Georges Bizet  ... 
    Performer:  Indra Thomas,  Valerian Ruminski,  Mariusz Kwiecien,  Kristine Jepson  ... 
    Conductor:  Charles Rosekranz
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 57.
    Prima Voce - Bjorling, Caruso, Gigli
    Label: Nimbus   Catalog: 7913 Release Date: 03/02/2004   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Ruggero Leoncavallo,  Georges Bizet,  Giacomo Puccini,  Eduardo Di Capua  ... 
    Performer:  Beniamino Gigli,  Jussi Björling,  Enrico Caruso,  Giuseppe de Luca
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  • 58.
    The Opera Band - Mozart, Puccini, Et Al / Amici Forever
    Label: Rca   Catalog: 52739 Release Date: 01/13/2004   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sir Edward Elgar,  Georges Bizet,  Adelmo Fornaciari,  George Frideric Handel  ... 
    Performer:  Jo Appleby,  Tsakane Valentine,  Nicholas Garrett,  David Habbin  ... 
    Conductor:  Nick Ingman
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Budapest Film Orchestra,  Amici Forever
    CD: $9.99
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  • 59.
    The Pearl Fishers And Other Famous Operatic Duets
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8555797 Release Date: 08/19/2003   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gioachino Rossini,  Giacomo Puccini,  Giuseppe Verdi,  Gaetano Donizetti  ... 
    Performer:  Janez Lotric,  Igor Morozov,  Kaludi Kaludov,  Miriam Gauci  ... 
    Conductor:  Johannes Wildner,  Alexander Rahbari,  Will Humburg
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Slovak Radio Symphony Orchestra,  Brussels Belgian Radio & TV Philharmonic Chorus,  Jaak Gregoor Chorus  ... 
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  • 60.
    Neil Shicoff Live
    Label: Orfeo   Catalog: 561031 Release Date: 07/29/2003   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Giuseppe Verdi,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Jules Massenet,  Charles Gounod  ... 
    Performer:  Neil Shicoff,  Vladimir Chernov
    Conductor:  Frédéric Chaslin,  Marcello Viotti,  Fabio Luisi
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Munich Radio Symphony Orchestra
    CD: $22.49
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  • 61.
    Great Voices Of The Past - Favorite French Excerpts
    Label: Opera D'oro   Catalog: 8016 Release Date: 07/01/2003   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Georges Bizet,  Jacques Halévy,  Gustave Charpentier,  Edouard Lalo  ... 
    Performer:  Rosa Ponselle,  Emmy Destinn,  Lawrence Tibbett,  Enrico Caruso  ... 
    Conductor:  Erno Rapée,  Carlo Sabajno,  Alberto Erede,  Lorenzo Molajoli  ... 
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  • 62.
    Rapture - Opera's Most Heavenly Moments
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 471717 Release Date: 10/08/2002   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Richard Wagner,  Vincenzo Bellini,  Georges Bizet,  Giacomo Puccini  ... 
    Performer:  Marilyn Horne,  Dame Joan Sutherland,  Teresa Berganza,  Mirella Freni  ... 
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan,  Richard Bonynge,  Giuseppe Sinopoli,  Sir Colin Davis  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Deutsche Oper Chorus,  Berlin Deutsche Oper Orchestra,  London Symphony Orchestra  ... 
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  • 63.
    Classics Explained - An Introduction To Bizet: Carmen
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8558010 Release Date: 07/16/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Georges Bizet
    Performer:  Janez Lotric,  Boris Morozov
    Conductor:  Johannes Wildner,  Alexander Rahbari
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Czecho-Slovak State Philharmonic Orchestra,  Czecho-Slovak Radio Symphony Orchestra Bratislava
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  • 64.
    Lebendige Vergangenheit - Jussi Björling
    Label: Preiser Records   Catalog: 89553 Release Date: 06/25/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Ruggero Leoncavallo,  Umberto Giordano,  Giacomo Puccini,  Amilcare Ponchielli  ... 
    Performer:  Jussi Björling,  Robert Merrill,  Emil Markow
    Conductor:  Renato Cellini,  Nils Grevillius
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  RCA Victor Symphony Orchestra,  Orchestra,  Royal Stockholm Opera Orchestra
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  • 65.
    Opera Obsession! - Opera D'oro's Greatest Hits
    Label: Opera D'oro   Catalog: 1001 Release Date: 03/05/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Giuseppe Verdi,  Georges Bizet,  Alfredo Catalani,  Jules Massenet  ... 
    Performer:  Placido Domingo,  Martina Arroyo,  Fiorenza Cossotto,  Alfredo Kraus  ... 
    Conductor:  Claudio Abbado,  Armando La Rosa Parodi,  Arturo Basile,  Peter Maag  ... 
    CD: $8.99
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  • 66.
    Giuseppe Di Stefano - Early Treasures
    Label: Preiser Records   Catalog: 93432 Release Date: 01/29/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Vincenzo Ciampi,  Stanislas Gastaldon,  Ernesto De Curtis,  Bianca,  ... 
    Performer:  Henri Ottone,  Giuseppe Di Stefano,  Edoardo Moser,  Luigi Marchiň
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Orchestra
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  • 67.
    Rca Red Seal Century - Vocalists
    Label: Rca Victor Red Seal   Catalog: 63860 Release Date: 11/06/2001   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Gioachino Rossini,  Ruggero Leoncavallo,  Jean-Philippe Rameau,  Giuseppe Verdi  ... 
    Performer:  Luisa Tetrazzini,  Titta Ruffo,  Giovanni Martinelli,  Alma Gluck  ... 
    Conductor:  Josef Pasternack,  Rosario Bourdon,  Renato Cellini,  Marcello Viotti  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Orchestra,  RCA Victor Symphony Orchestra,  Munich Radio Symphony Orchestra  ... 
    On sale! $29.98
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  • 68.
    Great Voices Of The Past - Legendary Opera Duets
    Label: Opera D'oro   Catalog: 8001 Release Date: 08/07/2001   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Giuseppe Verdi,  Charles Gounod,  Vincenzo Bellini,  Pietro Mascagni  ... 
    Performer:  Herva Nelli,  Ramon Vinay,  Lawrence Tibbett,  Rose Bampton  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Orchestra
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  • 69.
    Lebendige Vergangenheit - Alessandro Bonci
    Label: Preiser Records   Catalog: 89525 Release Date: 04/24/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Georges Bizet,  Ruggero Leoncavallo,  Giacomo Puccini,  Amilcare Ponchielli  ... 
    Performer:  Alessandro Bonci,  Ferruccio Corradetti,  Antonio Magini-Coletti
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  • 70.
    The #1 Opera Album Vol 1
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 467632 Release Date: 02/27/2001   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Gioachino Rossini,  Ruggero Leoncavallo,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Giacomo Puccini  ... 
    Performer:  Leo Nucci,  Andrea Bocelli,  Luciano Pavarotti,  Michele Pertusi  ... 
    Conductor:  Giuseppe Patané,  Leone Magiera,  Sir Georg Solti,  Zubin Mehta  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bologna Teatro Comunale Orchestra,  National Philharmonic Orchestra,  Chamber Orchestra of Europe  ... 
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  • 71.
    Lebendige Vergangenheit - Dino Borgioli
    Label: Preiser Records   Catalog: 89508 Release Date: 12/19/2000   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gioachino Rossini,  Dino Borgioli,  Tommaso Giordani,  José Padilla  ... 
    Performer:  Gino Vanelli,  Dino Borgioli,  Rosetta Pampanini,  Maria Zamboni  ... 
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  • 72.
    Prima Voce Vol 2 - Treasury Of Opera - Historic Recordings
    Label: Nimbus   Catalog: 1738 Release Date: 11/28/2000   Number of Discs: 5
    Composer:  Alexander Borodin,  Félicien César David,  Jacques Offenbach,  Ruggero Leoncavallo  ... 
    Performer:  Nina Koshetz,  Feodor Chaliapin,  Clement Barone,  Amelita Galli-Curci  ... 
    Conductor:  Josef Pasternack,  Franco Ghione,  Rosario Bourdon,  Hans Lange  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Milan Teatro alla Scala Orchestra,  Orchestra,  London Symphony Orchestra  ... 
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  • 73.
    A-z Of Opera
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8555037-38 Release Date: 10/17/2000   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Carl Maria von Weber,  Gioachino Rossini,  Ruggero Leoncavallo,  Erich Wolfgang Korngold  ... 
    Performer:  Roberto Servile,  Nicola Matinucci,  Thomas Sunnegardh,  Katarina Dalayman  ... 
    Conductor:  Johannes Wildner,  Will Humburg,  Alexander Rahbari,  Leif Segerstam  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Slovak Philharmonic Choir,  Bratislava Slovak Radio Symphony Orchestra,  Failoni Chamber Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $11.99
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  • 74.
    Il Mito Dell'opera - Nino Ederle, Luigi Fort
    Label: Bongiovanni   Catalog: 1094 Release Date: 10/17/2000   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gioachino Rossini,  Franco Vittadini,  Giacomo Puccini,  Jules Massenet  ... 
    Performer:  Leo Picciňli,  Luigi Fort,  Nino Ederle
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  • 75.
    Label: Avid Master Series   Catalog: 551 Release Date: 07/18/2000  
    Composer:  Eduardo Di Capua,  Ruggero Leoncavallo,  Georges Bizet,  Ernesto De Curtis  ... 
    Performer:  Enrico Caruso,  Beniamino Gigli,  Joseph Schmidt,  Tito Schipa  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir Eugene Goossens,  Dino Olivieri,  Giuseppe Antonicelli,  Franz Lehár  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Milan Teatro alla Scala Orchestra,  Berlin State Opera Orchestra
    CD: $14.99
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