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Gabriel Fauré

French Composer Gabriel Fauré Born On This Day in 1845


French composer, organist, pianist, and educator Gabriel Fauré was a born on this day in 1845.

Regarded as one of the leading French composers of his era, his musical style left a lasting impact on many composers of the 20th century. Notable among his compositions are the Pavane, Requiem, Sicilienne, his nocturnes for piano, and the songs Après un rêve and Clair de lune. While his earlier works are more widely recognized, Fauré's later compositions, characterized by greater harmonic and melodic complexity, are highly regarded.

Born into a cultured family with limited musical background, Fauré displayed prodigious talent from a young age. At nine, he enrolled in the École Niedermeyer music school in Paris, where he received training as a church organist and choir director. One of his mentors was Camille Saint-Saëns, with whom he developed a lifelong friendship.

Despite earning a modest living as an organist and teacher after graduating in 1865, Fauré struggled to find time for composition. It was only in his later years, when he held prestigious positions such as organist at the Église de la Madeleine and director of the Paris Conservatoire, that he could dedicate more time to composing, often retreating to the countryside during summer breaks.

By the end of his life, he was recognized as France's most famous composer, receiving a national musical tribute in Paris in 1922, presided over by the president of the French Republic.

Fauré's compositions bridge the end of Romanticism with the modernism of the early 20th century. Since he lived during the transition from Chopin's era to the rise of jazz and atonal music, Fauré's harmonic and melodic innovations influenced the teaching of harmony for the following generations.

In his final years, he grappled with increasing deafness, which is reflected in the shifting character of his compositions, ranging from elusive and introspective to turbulent and impassioned. Despite initial slow recognition outside France, Fauré eventually gained widespread acclaim, particularly in the UK, where he had numerous admirers during his lifetime.



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