Les Berceaux (Cradles)
Clair de lune (Moonlight) Soir (Evening) Nell
Mazurka, Op. 32
Impromptu, Op. 91
Valse Caprice, Op. 30
GABRIEL FAURÉ , known to us as the composer of many beautiful songs and of chamber music which takes a high place in its class, was even more distinguished as a teacher. Himself a pupil of Saint-Säens, ho succeeded, at the age of sixty, to one of the most important posts, if not, indeed, the most important, in the mitsic-teaching world-that of Director of the Paris Conservatoire. He held it for fifteen, years, until 1920, resigning four years before his death. Many of the leading French composers of the younger school were taught there by him, amofig them Ravel, who is now regarded as the foremost French musician of his day. He was one of those, too, who inspired a warm-hearted affection in all who came under his hands, and he was friend as well as teacher of a whole generation of French musicians. Of his songs, it has been said by a French critic that their popularity, growing day by day as they are more widely sung, can never make them commonplace ; in them his art, instead of coming down to the level of the crowd, can raise the spirits of those who listen to its own high plane. The pianoforte pieces, less well known to the world at large, are inspired by the same poetio thought as everything else he wrote: his countrymen accord them a place beside the music of Chopin and Liszt. There is nothing mysterious about them nor any affectation : a clear, effortless expression, and, even in the slightest of them, a concise dignity, mark them as genuine music, so typical of the French spirit that it is difficult to speak of them in any other tongue.
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