Jules Massenet

Jules Émile Frédéric Massenet (French pronunciation: ​[ʒyl emil fʁedeʁik masnɛ]; 12 May 1842 – 13 August 1912) was a French composer of the Romantic era best known for his operas, of which he wrote more than thirty. The two most frequently staged are Manon (1884) and Werther (1892). He also composed oratorios, ballets, orchestral works, incidental music, piano pieces, songs and other music.

While still a schoolboy, Massenet was admitted to France's principal music college, the Paris Conservatoire. There he studied under Ambroise Thomas, whom he greatly admired. After winning the country's top musical prize, the Prix de Rome, in 1863, he composed prolifically in many genres, but quickly became best known for his operas. Between 1867 and his death forty-five years later he wrote more than forty stage works in a wide variety of styles, from opéra-comique to grand-scale depictions of classical myths, romantic comedies, lyric dramas, as well as oratorios, cantatas and ballets. Massenet had a good sense of the theatre and of what would succeed with the Parisian public. Despite some miscalculations, he produced a series of successes that made him the leading composer of opera in France in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

Like many prominent French composers of the period, Massenet became a professor at the Conservatoire. He taught composition there from 1878 until 1896, when he resigned after the death of the director, Ambroise Thomas. Among his students were Gustave Charpentier, Ernest Chausson, Reynaldo Hahn and Gabriel Pierné.

By the time of his death, Massenet was regarded by many critics as old-fashioned and unadventurous although his two best-known operas remained popular in France and abroad. After a few decades of neglect, his works began to be favourably reassessed during the mid-20th century, and many of them have since been staged and recorded. Although critics do not rank him among the handful of outstanding operatic geniuses such as Mozart, Verdi and Wagner, his operas are now widely accepted as well-crafted and intelligent products of the Belle Époque.

Birth and Death Data: Born May 12, 1842 (Saint-Étienne), Died August 13, 1912 (Paris)

Date Range of DAHR Recordings: 1901 - 1947

Roles Represented in DAHR: composer

= Recordings are available for online listening.
= Recordings were issued from this master. No recordings issued from other masters.

Recordings (Results 626-636 of 636 records)

Company Matrix No. Size First Recording Date Title Primary Performer Description Role Audio
Columbia (U.K.) WL2987 10-in. approximately April 16, 1931 Ouvre tes yeux bleus Armand Bernard ; Edmond Rambaud Tenor vocal solo, with orchestra composer  
Columbia (U.K.) WL3066 10-in. January-July 1931 Quand apparaissent les étoiles Eugène Bigot ; Fred Bordon Bass vocal solo, with orchestra composer  
Columbia (U.K.) WL3387 10-in. 12/1/1931 Élégie Pierre Chagnon ; Robert Krabansky ; Georges Thill Tenor vocal solo, with orchestra and cello composer  
Columbia (U.K.) WL3748 10-in. 6/3/1932 Ne me refuse pas Henri Büsser ; Germaine Cernay Mezzo-soprano vocal solo, with orchestra composer  
Columbia (U.K.) WL3968 10-in. 11/4/1932 Nuit d'Espagne Maurice Faure ; Georges Thill Tenor vocal solo, with piano composer  
Columbia (U.K.) CL4802 10-in. 4/11/1934 Le rêve de Des Grieux Marcel Carivan ; Tino Rossi Tenor vocal solo, with orchestra composer  
Columbia (U.K.) CL5881 10-in. 10/6/1936 Manon (parodie du duo du 1èr acte "la rencontre") Charpini et Brancato ; Lao Silésu Vocal duet, with piano composer  
Columbia (U.K.) CL5882 10-in. 10/6/1936 Manon (parodie du duo du 1èr acte "la rencontre") Charpini et Brancato ; Lao Silésu Vocal duet, with piano composer  
Columbia (U.K.) CL7053 10-in. 5/1/1939 Pensee d'automne Marcel Carivan ; Tino Rossi Male vocal solo, with orchestra composer  
Columbia (U.K.) CL8038 10-in. 7/16/1945 Les larmes Gustave Cloëz ; Germaine Pape Mezzo-soprano vocal solo, with orchestra composer  
Columbia (U.K.) WLB323 10-in. June 1-13, 1931 Le rêve des Grieux Andre d'Arkor ; Maurice Bastin Tenor vocal solo, with orchestra composer  
(Results 626-636 of 636 records)

Citation

Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Massenet, Jules," accessed April 21, 2024, https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/103068.

Massenet, Jules. (2024). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved April 21, 2024, from https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/103068.

"Massenet, Jules." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2024. Web. 21 April 2024.

DAHR Persistent Identifier

URI: https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/103068

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