By Simon Trezise
L. a. mer stands on the centre of Debussy's fulfillment: defined via the composer as 'a seascape with out figures', it really is arguably the best and most unusual French symphony. during this research l. a. mer is taken into account within the context of Debussy's own and musical improvement, and within the French musical renaissance often, in retrospect to César Franck and ahead to the orchestral photographs and Jeux. the writer makes use of new biographical details and a variety of assets to bare the interval of l. a. mer's composition as one among severe emotional turbulence. distinct dialogue of functionality kinds attracts on present recordings, and analytical chapters hint the expansion of principles in the course of the paintings. stories of rhythm, motif and tonality exhibit how Debussy generates 'narratives' around the 3 hobbies, which provide los angeles mer a structural integrity remarkable in French track on the flip of the century.
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Extra resources for Debussy: La Mer (Cambridge Music Handbooks)
I'm trying to do some quick sketches of this upheaval, because it's marvellous'. There are anticipations of Debussy's sea experiences here. A few days later Monet described the strength of his feelings for the sea: 'You know my passion for the sea, and it is so beautiful here . . I feel that every day I'm understanding it better . . its effect is quite terrifying . . 11 Among his paintings, works like Storm, Coast of Belle-Isle (1886)12 must be accounted forerunners of 'Dialogue du vent et de la mer'.
The sea is often not the main subject; rather, it provides the context for human actions, or acts as a metaphor for human emotions. A rare exception is Mendelssohn's exquisite Hebrides overture, which seems to place the changing character of the sea at the heart of the composition. Debussy had a low opinion of Mendelssohn in general, describing him as an 'elegant and facile notary',1 but it is difficult to imagine so popular a water piece failing to make some impression on him. The sea is an important element in Wagner's operas, as are the River Rhine and other inland waters, but perhaps the most important work in the evolution of French musical Impressionism (however little one may like the term, it is invariably used in historical writing to characterise this period and works by Chabrier, Debussy, Dukas, and others) was a short orchestral piece that is not much concerned with water at all.
The discarded title of the last movement, 'Le vent fait danser la mer', bears little relation to the character of the present movement, though like the one Debussy finally opted for, it does indicate the presence of two interacting forces. It seems likely that the original title had some significance for Debussy encoded into it that we can only guess at. 21 This was written only two months after the attempted suicide of Lilly and the commentary in his notebook. Is it possible that since the original titles were conceived when Lilly was still in favour, the subsequent changes reflect Emma's ascendancy?
Debussy: La Mer (Cambridge Music Handbooks) by Simon Trezise