Sunday, February 1, 2015

Claude Debussy - Nocturne

James McNeill Whistler - Nocturne in blue and silver
Chopin popularized the Nocturne which became so popular that more or less everyone dabbled in it.  Debussy was no exception, writing a collection of three at the very end of the nineteenth century.

Unsurprisingly, Debussy was inspired to write these pieces by an exhibition of impressionist paintings, most notable being the nocturnes by James McNeill Whistler, one of which is shown here.

The music was not received with excitement by the Parisian public, but these have had staying power, gaining popularity over time.  Maurice Ravel scored the pieces for two pianos, and now no collection of nocturnes is complete without these.

1 comment:

libertyman said...

What makes for relaxing music? The visual association of the artwork? Melodies that evoke a certain pleasant memory? A tempo that signals a break in the action?

Wonderful music in any event, thanks for this morning's class.