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 ŕ l'aprčs-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 ŕ l'aprčs-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
Roussel, Debussy & Poulenc: Orchestral Works / Yamada, Orchestre de Suisse Romande
Release Date: 09/09/2016   Label: Pentatone  
Catalog: 5186558   Number of Discs: 1
On sale! $19.99
SuperAudio CD: $17.99
In Stock
On sale!   $19.99   SuperAudio CD:  $17.99 Add to Cart

Ravel & Debussy: Music for 2 Guitars / ChromaDuo
Release Date: 09/09/2016   Label: Naxos  
Catalog: 8573286   Number of Discs: 1
On sale!
CD: $11.99
In Stock
On sale!     CD:  $11.99 Add CD to Cart

Debussy: Pelleas et Melisande / Gilfry, Rey, Welser-Most
Release Date: 11/13/2012   Label: Arthaus Musik  
Catalog: 107285   Number of Discs: 2
On sale! $39.99
DVD: $37.99
In Stock
On sale!   $39.99   DVD:  $37.99 Add DVD to Cart

Debussy: Pelléas Et Mélisande / Pierre Boulez
Release Date: 12/13/1991   Label: Sony  
Catalog: 47265   Number of Discs: 3
On sale!
ArkivCD $28.99
Low Stock
On sale!   $33.98   ArkivCD:  $28.99 Add to Cart

Debussy: Pelléas Et Mélisande / Dutoit, Henry, Alliot-lugaz
Release Date: 10/15/2008   Label: Decca  
Catalog: 430502   Number of Discs: 2
On sale! $29.98
ArkivCD $21.99
Low Stock
On sale!   $29.98   ArkivCD:  $21.99 Add to Cart

Work: String Quartet

Browse 26-50 of 75 Available Recordings
1 2 3
  • 26.
    Debussy, Janacek, Shostakovich / Vogler Quartett
    Label: Rca Victor Red Seal   Catalog: 61816 Release Date: 05/30/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Claude Debussy,  Leos Janácek,  Dmitri Shostakovich
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vogler String Quartet
    Recommendation
    ArkivCD $16.99
    Special Order
    ArkivCD:  $16.99 Add to Cart

  • 27.
    The Claude Debussy Collection
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 193179 Release Date: 05/01/2012   Number of Discs: 18
    Composer:  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  Gervase de Peyer,  Ann Murray,  Nathalie Stutzmann,  Leslie Caron  ... 
    Conductor:  Charles Munch,  Pierre Boulez,  Michael Tilson Thomas,  Esa-Pekka Salonen
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Boston Symphony Orchestra,  New Philharmonia Orchestra,  Cleveland Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $62.49
    In Stock
    CD:  $62.49 Add CD to Cart

  • 28.
    The Debussy Edition [18-CD Set]
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 001676372 Release Date: 05/01/2012   Number of Discs: 18
    Composer:  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  Franklin Cohen,  Jean-Rodolphe Kars,  Vera Badings,  Krystian Zimerman  ... 
    Conductor:  Pierre Boulez,  Sir Alexander Gibson,  Bernard Haitink,  Eduard Van Beinum  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra,  Cleveland Orchestra Chorus,  London Symphony Orchestra  ... 
    Recommendation
    CD: $85.99
    In Stock
    CD:  $85.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 29.
    Debussy: String Quartet, Piano Trio, Deux Danses / Brodsky Quartet
    Label: Chandos   Catalog: 10717 Release Date: 04/24/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  Chris Laurence,  Jean-Efflam Bavouzet
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Brodsky String Quartet
    Recommendation
    CD: $18.99
    Low Stock
    CD:  $18.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 30.
    Debussy, Ravel, Stravinsky: Works For String Quartet / Alban Berg Quartet
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 85202 Release Date: 01/24/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Claude Debussy,  Maurice Ravel,  Igor Stravinsky
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Alban Berg String Quartet
    Recommendation
    CD: $12.99
    Back Order
    CD:  $12.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 31.
    The London String Quartet: 1917-1951 Recordings
    Label: Music & Arts   Catalog: 1253 Release Date: 09/13/2011   Number of Discs: 8
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Johannes Brahms,  Claude Debussy,  Franz Joseph Haydn  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London String Quartet
    CD: $88.99
    In Stock
    CD:  $88.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 32.
    Live From Marlboro - Debussy, Ravel: String Quartets
    Label: Marlboro Recording Society   Catalog: 80003 Release Date: 07/05/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Claude Debussy,  Maurice Ravel
    Performer:  Judy Kang,  Joseph Lin,  Richard O’Neill,  David Soyer  ... 
    Recommendation
    CD: $17.99
    In Stock
    CD:  $17.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 33.
    Debussy, Dutilleux, Ravel: String Quartets / Arcanto Quartet
    Label: Harmonia Mundi   Catalog: 902067 Release Date: 09/14/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Claude Debussy,  Henri Dutilleux,  Maurice Ravel
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Arcanto String Quartet
    Recommendation
    On sale! $18.98
    CD: $16.99
    In Stock
    On sale!   $18.98   CD:  $16.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 34.
    Dominant Curve / Brooklyn Rider
    Label: In A Circle   Catalog: 3 Release Date: 04/06/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Claude Debussy,  Dmitri Yanov-Yanovsky,  John Cage,  Colin Jacobsen
    Performer:  Justin Messina
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Brooklyn Rider
    CD: $13.99
    Low Stock
    CD:  $13.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 35.
    Debussy: 3 Sonatas, String Quartet, Syrinx / Grumiaux, Gendron, Quartetto Italiano
    Label: Philips   Catalog: 442655 Release Date: 01/28/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  Roger Bourdin,  Annie Challan,  Colette Lequien,  István Hajdu  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Quartetto Italiano
    Recommendation
    ArkivCD $16.99
    Low Stock
    ArkivCD:  $16.99 Add to Cart

  • 36.
    Debussy, Ravel: String Quartets / Dante Quartet
    Label: Hyperion   Catalog: 67759 Release Date: 01/12/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Maurice Ravel,  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  Simon Crawford-Phillips,  Krysia Osostowicz
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Dante Quartet
    Recommendation
    CD: $18.99
    Back Order
    CD:  $18.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 37.
    Dohnanyi, Glink, Puccini: String Quartets / Acies Quartett
    Label: Gramola   Catalog: 98843 Release Date: 11/10/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Giacomo Puccini,  Friedrich Gulda,  Claude Debussy
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Acies Quartet
    CD: $18.99
    In Stock
    CD:  $18.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 38.
    Debussy, Ravel: String Quartets / Lasalle Quartet
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 469591 Release Date: 10/21/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Claude Debussy,  Maurice Ravel
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  LaSalle String Quartet
    Recommendation
    ArkivCD $16.99
    Low Stock
    ArkivCD:  $16.99 Add to Cart

  • 39.
    String Quartets Of The Early 20th Century / Quatuor Sine Nomine
    Label: Genuin Classics   Catalog: 89141 Release Date: 06/30/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Maurice Ravel,  Igor Stravinsky,  Claude Debussy
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Sine Nomine String Quartet
    CD: $18.99
    In Stock
    CD:  $18.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 40.
    Impressions - Debussy, Ravel / Tokyo String Quartet
    Label: Rca Victor Red Seal   Catalog: 62552 Release Date: 04/23/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Claude Debussy,  Maurice Ravel
    Performer:  Sadao Harada,  Kazuhide Isomura,  Peter Oundjian,  Kikuei Ikeda  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Tokyo String Quartet
    ArkivCD $16.99
    Low Stock
    ArkivCD:  $16.99 Add to Cart

  • 41.
    Debussy, Ravel: String Quartets / Borodin Quartet
    Label: Erato   Catalog: 91077 Release Date: 01/07/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Claude Debussy,  Maurice Ravel
    Performer:  Valentin Berlinsky,  Dimitri Shebalin,  Andrei Abramenkov,  Mikhail Kopelman
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Borodin String Quartet
    ArkivCD $17.99
    Low Stock
    ArkivCD:  $17.99 Add to Cart

  • 42.
    Ravel, Debussy, Faure: String Quartets / Quatuor Ebene
    Label: Erato   Catalog: 19045 Release Date: 10/14/2008   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Claude Debussy,  Gabriel Fauré,  Maurice Ravel
    Performer:  Mathieu Herzog,  Pierre Colombet,  Raphael Merlin,  Gabriel Le Magadure
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Quatuor Ebčne
    Recommendation
    CD: $17.99
    In Stock
    CD:  $17.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 43.
    Ravel, Debussy: String Quartets / Melos Quartet
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 419750 Release Date: 08/05/2008   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Claude Debussy,  Maurice Ravel
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Melos String Quartet Stuttgart
    ArkivCD $16.99
    Special Order
    ArkivCD:  $16.99 Add to Cart

  • 44.
    Debussy, Ravel: String Quartets / St. Petersburg String Quartet
    Label: Marquis   Catalog: 81379 Release Date: 07/08/2008   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Claude Debussy,  Maurice Ravel
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  St. Petersburg String Quartet
    CD: $16.99
    In Stock
    CD:  $16.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 45.
    French Trios & Quartets / Caecelian Trio
    Label: Vox Box   Catalog: 3031 Release Date: 05/20/2008   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Maurice Ravel,  Gabriel Fauré,  Claude Debussy,  Edouard Lalo  ... 
    Performer:  Jacqueline Eymar,  Bernard Braunholz,  Günter Kehr,  Sally O'Reilly  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Caecelian Trio,  Loewenguth String Quartet,  New Hungarian String Quartet
    On sale! $29.98
    ArkivCD $24.99
    Special Order
    On sale!   $29.98   ArkivCD:  $24.99 Add to Cart

  • 46.
    Debussy, Fauré, Caplet / Leipzig String Quartet
    Label: Md&g (Dabringhaus & Grimm) Gold   Catalog: 3071430 Release Date: 09/25/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  André Caplet,  Claude Debussy,  Gabriel Fauré
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Leipzig String Quartet
    On sale! $17.98
    CD: $14.99
    In Stock
    On sale!   $17.98   CD:  $14.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 47.
    Ravel, Debussy: String Quartets / Ysa˙e Quartet
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 430434 Release Date: 06/25/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Maurice Ravel,  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  Michel Poulet,  Miguel Da Silva,  Luc-Marie Aguera,  Christophe Giovaninetti
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ysa˙e String Quartet
    ArkivCD $16.99
    Low Stock
    ArkivCD:  $16.99 Add to Cart

  • 48.
    Cypress String Quartet: Debussy, Suk, Cotton
    Label: Cd Baby   Catalog: 5637260755 Release Date: 01/16/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Josef Suk,  Claude Debussy,  Jeffery Cotton
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cypress String Quartet
    CD: $26.99
    Special Order
    CD:  $26.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 49.
    Haydn, Debussy, Webern, Et Al / Rubin String Quartet
    Label: Arte Nova   Catalog: 900690 Release Date: 11/14/2006   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Jean-C. Feldhandler,  Anton Webern,  Claude Debussy,  Franz Joseph Haydn
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Rubin Quartet
    CD: $8.99
    Low Stock
    CD:  $8.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 50.
    Debussy, Borodine, Wolf: String Quartets / Quartour Alcan
    Label: Analekta   Catalog: 23019 Release Date: 10/26/2006   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Hugo Wolf,  Alexander Borodin,  Claude Debussy
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Alcan String Quartet
    CD: $18.49
    Special Order
    CD:  $18.49 Add CD to Cart

1 2 3