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Charles François Gounod (Composer)

Born: 17th June 1818, Paris

Died: 18th October 1893, Saint-Cloud

Nationality: French

Charles-François Gounod usually known as Charles Gounod, was a French composer. He wrote twelve operas, of which the most popular has always been Faust (1859); his Roméo et Juliette (1867) also remains in the international repertory. He composed a large amount of church music, many songs, and popular short pieces including his Ave Maria (an elaboration of a Bach piece), and Funeral March of a Marionette.

Born in Paris into an artistic and musical family Gounod was a student at the Conservatoire de Paris and won France's most prestigious musical prize, the Prix de Rome. His studies took him to Italy, Austria and then Prussia, where he met Felix Mendelssohn, whose advocacy of the music of Bach was an early influence on him.

Further Reading: Gounod

Recording of the Week, Mark Elder conducts Gounod's La Colombe

Katherine listens to Gounod's charming comic opera, with farce and avian nonsense aplenty.

Recording of the Week, Works for Pedal Piano by Gounod

For the 62nd volume of Hyperion’s The Romantic Piano Concerto series, Roberto Prosseda joins Howard Shelley and the Orchestra della Svizzera Italiana for the Concerto for pedal piano, Suite concertante and Fantaisie sur l’hymne national russe.

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