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Fêtes galantes – February 19, 2006 | Walter Hall, Toronto
Songs of Claude Debussy (1862-1918)

date: February 19, 2006

Song was of great importance to Debussy throughout his composing career  –  this programme spanned the years from 1880 to 1918.  Of the poets whom he set, Paul Verlaine was one of the most significant, so we took as our title Verlaine’s collection of 1869, Fêtes galantes.  A number of settings of poems from that volume were included, while the centrepiece of the concert was formed by the Chansons de Bilitis, perhaps his greatest cycle.  Due attention was paid to Debussy’s affection for much earlier poets  –  Charles d’Orléans and François Villon  –  and the crowning glory was the Trois Poèmes de Stéphane Mallarmé, almost modernist in style.  An unusual item was the composer’s own reduction for 2 pianos of Prélude à l’Après-midi d’un faune.

Song Artist Composer Poet
Mandoline Clark, Jesse, baritone; Ralls, Stephen, piano Debussy, Claude Verlaine, Paul
Fête galante Keith, Gillian, soprano; Ubukata, Bruce, piano Debussy, Claude Banville, Théodore de
Souhait Bogdanowicz, Michèle, mezzo; Ubukata, Bruce, piano Debussy, Claude Banville, Théodore de
Apparition Keith, Gillian, soprano; Ralls, Stephen, piano Debussy, Claude Mallarmé, Stéphane
Chevaux de bois (Ariettes oubliées) Clark, Jesse, baritone; Ralls, Stephen, piano Debussy, Claude Verlaine, Paul
De rêve (Proses lyriques) Bogdanowicz, Michèle, mezzo; Ubukata, Bruce, piano Debussy, Claude Debussy, Claude
En sourdine (Fêtes galantes I) Clark, Jesse, baritone; Ralls, Stephen, piano Debussy, Claude Verlaine, Paul
Fantoches (Fêtes galantes I) Keith, Gillian, soprano; Ralls, Stephen, piano Debussy, Claude Verlaine, Paul
Clair de lune (Fêtes galantes I) Keith, Gillian, soprano; Ralls, Stephen, piano Debussy, Claude Verlaine, Paul
La Flûte de Pan (Chansons de Bilitis) Bogdanowicz, Michèle, mezzo; Ralls, Stephen, piano Debussy, Claude Louÿs, Pierre
La Chevelure (Chansons de Bilitis) Bogdanowicz, Michèle, mezzo; Ralls, Stephen, piano Debussy, Claude Louÿs, Pierre
Le Tombeau des Naïades (Chansons de Bilitis) Bogdanowicz, Michèle, mezzo; Ralls, Stephen, piano Debussy, Claude Louÿs, Pierre
INTERMISSION
Prélude à l’Après-midi d’un faune Ralls, Stephen / Ubukata, Bruce, 2 pianos Debussy, Claude n/a
Le Faune (Fêtes galantes II) Clark, Jesse, baritone; Ubukata, Bruce, piano Debussy, Claude Verlaine, Paul
Colloque sentimental (Fêtes galantes II) Clark, Jesse, baritone; Ubukata, Bruce, piano Debussy, Claude Verlaine, Paul
Le Temps a laissié son manteau (Trois Chansons de France) Bogdanowicz, Michèle, mezzo; Ubukata, Bruce, piano Debussy, Claude Charles d’Orléans
Pour ce que Plaisance est morte (Trois Chansons de France) Bogdanowicz, Michèle, mezzo; Ubukata, Bruce, piano Debussy, Claude Charles d’Orléans
Ballade des femmes de Paris (Trois Ballades de François Villon) Clark, Jesse, baritone; Ralls, Stephen, piano Debussy, Claude Villon, François
Soupir (Trois Poèmes de Stéphane Mallarmé) Keith, Gillian, soprano; Ubukata, Bruce, piano Debussy, Claude Mallarmé, Stéphane
Placet futile (Trois Poèmes de Stéphane Mallarmé) Keith, Gillian, soprano; Ubukata, Bruce, piano Debussy, Claude Mallarmé, Stéphane
Eventail (Trois Poèmes de Stéphane Mallarmé) Keith, Gillian, soprano; Ubukata, Bruce, piano Debussy, Claude Mallarmé, Stéphane
Fête galante – ENCORE Keith, Gillian, soprano; Bogdanowicz, Michèle, mezzo; Clark, Jesse, baritone; Ralls, Stephen / Ubukata, Bruce, piano Debussy, Claude Banville, Théodore de