Claude Debussy

Biography

Born: 1862   Died: 1918   Country: France   Period: Romantic
Claude Debussy (born Achille-Claude Debussy) was among the most influential composers of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. His mature compositions, distinctive and appealing, combined modernism and sensuality so successfully that their sheer beauty often obscures their technical innovation. Debussy is considered the founder and leading exponent of musical Impressionism (although he resisted the label), and his adoption of Read more non-traditional scales and tonal structures was paradigmatic for many composers who followed.
The son of a shopkeeper and a seamstress, Debussy began piano studies at the Paris Conservatory at the age of 11. While a student there, he encountered the wealthy Nadezhda von Meck (most famous as Tchaikovsky's patroness), who employed him as a music teacher to her children; through travel, concerts and acquaintances, she provided him with a wealth of musical experience. Most importantly, she exposed the young Debussy to the works of Russian composers, such as Borodin and Mussorgsky, who would remain important influences on his music.
Debussy began composition studies in 1880, and in 1884 he won the prestigious Prix de Rome with his cantata L'enfant prodigue. This prize financed two years of further study in Rome -- years that proved to be creatively frustrating. However, the period immediately following was fertile for the young composer; trips to Bayreuth and the Paris World Exhibition (1889) established, respectively, his determination to move away from the influence of Richard Wagner, and his interest in the music of Eastern cultures.
After a relatively bohemian period, during which Debussy formed friendships with many leading Parisian writers and musicians (not least of which were Mallarmé, Satie, and Chausson), the year 1894 saw the enormously successful premiere of his Prélude à l'après-midi d'un faune (Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun) -- a truly revolutionary work that brought his mature compositional voice into focus. His seminal opera Pelléas et Mélisande, completed the next year, would become a sensation at its first performance in 1902. The impact of those two works earned Debussy widespread recognition (as well as frequent attacks from critics, who failed to appreciate his forward-looking style), and over the first decade of the twentieth century he established himself as the leading figure in French music -- so much so that the term "Debussysme" ("Debussyism"), used both positively and pejoratively, became fashionable in Paris. Debussy spent his remaining healthy years immersed in French musical society, writing as a critic, composing, and performing his own works internationally. He succumbed to colon cancer in 1918, having also suffered a deep depression brought on by the onset of World War I.
Debussy's personal life was punctuated by unfortunate incidents, most famously the attempted suicide of his first wife, Lilly Texier, whom he abandoned for the singer Emma Bardac. However, his subsequent marriage to Bardac, and their daughter Claude-Emma, whom they called "Chouchou" and who became the dedicatee of the composer's Children's Corner piano suite, provided the middle-aged Debussy with great personal joys.
Debussy wrote successfully in most every genre, adapting his distinctive compositional language to the demands of each. His orchestral works, of which Prélude à l'après-midi d'un faune and La mer (The Sea, 1905) are most familiar, established him as a master of instrumental color and texture. It is this attention to tone color -- his layering of sound upon sound so that they blend to form a greater, evocative whole -- that linked Debussy in the public mind to the Impressionist painters.
His works for solo piano, particularly his collections of Préludes and Etudes, which have remained staples of the repertoire since their composition, bring into relief his assimilation of elements from both Eastern cultures and antiquity -- especially pentatonicism (the use of five-note scales), modality (the use of scales from ancient Greece and the medieval church), parallelism (the parallel movement of chords and lines), and the whole-tone scale (formed by dividing the octave into six equal intervals).
Pelléas et Mélisande and his collections of songs for solo voice establish the strength of his connection to French literature and poetry, especially the symbolist writers, and stand as some of the most understatedly expressive works in the repertory. The writings of Mallarmé, Maeterlinck, Baudelaire, and his childhood friend Paul Verlaine appear prominently among his chosen texts and joined symbiotically with the composer's own unique moods and forms of expression. Read less
The Best Of Debussy
Release Date: 02/15/1994   Label: Naxos  
Catalog: 8556663   Number of Discs: 1
On sale!
CD: $8.99
In Stock
On sale!     CD:  $8.99 Add CD to Cart

Songs Of Debussy And Fauré / Benita Valente, Lydia Artymiw
Release Date: 01/30/1996   Label: Centaur Records  
Catalog: 2220   Number of Discs: 1
On sale! $16.99
CD: $15.49
In Stock
On sale!   $16.99   CD:  $15.49 Add CD to Cart

Debussy: Complete Works For Orchestra / Yan Pascal Tortelier
Release Date: 01/20/2004   Label: Chandos  
Catalog: 10144   Number of Discs: 4
On sale! $34.99
CD: $26.99
In Stock
On sale!   $34.99   CD:  $26.99 Add CD to Cart

Debussy: Complete Works For Piano Vol 1 / Bavouzet
Release Date: 06/26/2007   Label: Chandos  
Catalog: 10421   Number of Discs: 1
On sale! $18.99
CD: $13.99
In Stock
On sale!   $18.99   CD:  $13.99 Add CD to Cart

Debussy: Complete Works For Piano Vol 2 / Bavouzet
Release Date: 01/15/2008   Label: Chandos  
Catalog: 10443   Number of Discs: 1
On sale! $18.99
CD: $13.99
In Stock
On sale!   $18.99   CD:  $13.99 Add CD to Cart

Work: Préludes, Book 2

Browse 1-25 of 93 Available Recordings
1 2 3 4
  • 1.
    Debussy: Preludes II / Pollini
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 002790402 Release Date: 03/16/2018   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  Maurizio Pollini,  Daniele Pollini
    Recommendation
    CD: $18.99
    In Stock
    CD:  $18.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 2.
    Debussy: Preludes / Zimerman [Vinyl]
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 4798520 Release Date: 03/09/2018   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  Krystian Zimerman
    LP: $44.49
    Back Order
    LP:  $44.49 Add to Cart

  • 3.
    Debussy: 24 Preludes / Gulda
    Label: Mps   Catalog: 300973 Release Date: 03/02/2018   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  Friedrich Gulda
    CD: $22.49
    In Stock
    CD:  $22.49 Add CD to Cart

  • 4.
    Debussy: 24 Preludes / Gulda [Vinyl]
    Label: Mps   Catalog: 0301022MSW Release Date: 03/02/2018   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  Friedrich Gulda
    LP: $24.99
    In Stock
    LP:  $24.99 Add to Cart

  • 5.
    Debussy: Piano Music / Lasry
    Label: Arcana   Catalog: 445 Release Date: 02/16/2018   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  Stany David Lasry
    CD: $27.49
    In Stock
    CD:  $27.49 Add CD to Cart

  • 6.
    Debussy Centenary (1918-2018) / Larderet
    Label: Ars Produktion   Catalog: 38240 Release Date: 01/19/2018   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  Vincent Larderet
    SuperAudio CD: $19.99
    In Stock
    SuperAudio CD:  $19.99 Add to Cart

  • 7.
    Debussy: Preludes & Children's Corner / Jumppanen
    Label: Ondine   Catalog: 1304 Release Date: 01/12/2018   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  Paavali Jumppanen
    Recommendation
    CD: $17.99
    In Stock
    CD:  $17.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 8.
    Debussy: The Complete Works
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 565660 Release Date: 01/05/2018   Number of Discs: 33
    Composer:  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  Aldo Ciccolini,  Cécile Ousset,  Michel Béroff,  Samson François  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir Neville Marriner,  François-Xavier Roth,  Armin Jordan,  Jean Martinon  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Quatuor Ebène,  Nash Ensemble,  Academy of St. Martin in the Fields  ... 
    Recommendation
    CD: $92.99
    Back Order
    CD:  $92.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 9.
    Decca Sound: The Piano Edition
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 4832243 Release Date: 11/17/2017   Number of Discs: 55
    Composer:  Robert Schumann,  Franz Liszt,  Johannes Brahms,  Sergei Prokofiev  ... 
    Performer:  Martha Argerich,  Julius Katchen,  Vladimir Ashkenazy,  André Previn  ... 
    Conductor:  Riccardo Chailly,  Ataulfo Argenta,  Bernard Haitink,  André Previn  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra,  London Philharmonic Orchestra,  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $210.99
    In Stock
    CD:  $210.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 10.
    Debussy: Preludes, Books 1 & 2 / Brownridge
    Label: Challenge   Catalog: 72727 Release Date: 11/10/2017   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  Angela Brownridge
    Recommendation
    SuperAudio CD: $18.99
    In Stock
    SuperAudio CD:  $18.99 Add to Cart

  • 11.
    Pathways: Debussy, Chopin, Feigin / Robert Cassidy
    Label: Msr   Catalog: 1604 Release Date: 09/18/2017   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Frédéric Chopin,  Joel Feigin,  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  Robert Cassidy
    On sale! $16.98
    CD: $11.99
    In Stock
    On sale!   $16.98   CD:  $11.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 12.
    Debussy: The Complete Piano Works / Gieseking
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 563136 Release Date: 08/18/2017   Number of Discs: 5
    Composer:  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  Walter Gieseking,  Geraint Jones
    CD: $14.99
    On Order
    CD:  $14.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 13.
    Debussy & Rameau: The Unbroken Line / LaDeur
    Label: Msr   Catalog: 1654 Release Date: 08/08/2017  
    Composer:  Jean-Philippe Rameau,  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  Jeffrey LaDeur
    On sale! $16.98
    CD: $11.99
    Low Stock
    On sale!   $16.98   CD:  $11.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 14.
    John Browning: The Complete RCA Album Collection
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 88985395032 Release Date: 06/16/2017   Number of Discs: 12
    Composer:  Samuel Barber,  William Schuman,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Sergei Prokofiev  ... 
    Performer:  John Browning,  Leonard Rose
    Conductor:  George Szell,  Erich Leinsdorf,  Seiji Ozawa
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra,  Boston Symphony Orchestra,  London Symphony Orchestra
    On sale!
    CD: $44.49
    In Stock
    On sale!   $46.98   CD:  $44.49 Add CD to Cart

  • 15.
    Arturo Benedetti Michelangeli: Complete Recordings on Deutsche Grammophon
    Label: Dg Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 002559502 Release Date: 09/23/2016   Number of Discs: 10
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Franz Schubert,  Frédéric Chopin  ... 
    Performer:  Arturo Benedetti Michelangeli
    CD: $61.49
    In Stock
    CD:  $61.49 Add CD to Cart

  • 16.
    Debussy: Preludes Book 2; Suite Bergamasque
    Label: Ondine   Catalog: 1269 Release Date: 11/13/2015   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  Marita Viitasalo
    CD: $17.99
    In Stock
    CD:  $17.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 17.
    111 - The Piano - Legendary Recordings
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 002281002 Release Date: 04/21/2015   Number of Discs: 40
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Robert Schumann,  Frédéric Chopin,  Johannes Brahms  ... 
    Performer:  Pierre-Laurent Aimard,  Géza Anda,  Martha Argerich,  Daniel Barenboim  ... 
    CD: $168.99
    In Stock
    CD:  $168.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 18.
    Debussy: Piano Works
    Label: Gega New   Catalog: 369 Release Date: 04/07/2015   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  Ivo Kaltchev
    On sale! $20.98
    CD: $17.99
    In Stock
    On sale!   $20.98   CD:  $17.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 19.
    Debussy: Images, Preludes Book 2 / Hamelin
    Label: Hyperion   Catalog: 67920 Release Date: 11/11/2014   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  Marc-André Hamelin
    Recommendation
    CD: $21.99
    Low Stock
    CD:  $21.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 20.
    Debussy: Preludes
    Label: Neos   Catalog: 21303 Release Date: 09/30/2014   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  Gilead Mishory
    On sale! $29.98
    CD: $25.99
    Special Order
    On sale!   $29.98   CD:  $25.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 21.
    Debussy: Preludes For Piano, Books 1 & 2   / Catherine Kautsky
    Label: Centaur Records   Catalog: 3308 Release Date: 09/09/2014   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  Catherine Kautsky
    Recommendation
    On sale! $16.99
    CD: $15.49
    In Stock
    On sale!   $16.99   CD:  $15.49 Add CD to Cart

  • 22.
    Debussy: Preludes, Book 1 & 2
    Label: Piano Classics   Catalog: 64 Release Date: 04/29/2014   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  Hiroko Sasaki
    CD: $17.99
    In Stock
    CD:  $17.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 23.
    Legato - The World of Piano / Hamelin, Aimard...
    Label: Euroarts   Catalog: 2059848 Release Date: 03/25/2014   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Nikolai Medtner,  Dafydd Llywelyn,  Leopold Godowsky  ... 
    Performer:  Boris Berezovsky,  Roland Pöntinen,  Marc-André Hamelin,  Pierre-Laurent Aimard
    DVD: $36.99
    Low Stock
    DVD:  $36.99 Add DVD to Cart

  • 24.
    Debussy: Beau Soir - Preludes Book 2, Etc / Lewin [CD & Blu-ray Audio
    Label: Sono Luminus   Catalog: 92175 Release Date: 01/28/2014   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  Michael Lewin
    Recommendation
    Blu-ray Audio: $24.99
    In Stock
    Blu-ray Audio:  $24.99 Add to Cart

  • 25.
    Debussy: La Cathedrale Engloutie - Organ Transcriptions / Wiebusch
    Label: Audite   Catalog: 97699 Release Date: 01/28/2014   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  Carsten Wiebusch
    Recommendation
    CD: $18.99
    In Stock
    CD:  $18.99 Add CD to Cart

1 2 3 4