Five important compositions of Florent Schmitt to be featured in the upcoming 2020-21 concert season by orchestras in Duluth, Houston, Indianapolis, London, Lucerne, Osaka, Paris, Québec City, Rochefort, St. Louis, Saratoga Springs, Strasbourg and Tokyo.

In a classical music world turned upside down by the COVID-19 pandemic, orchestras are bravely stepping forward in the 2020-21 concert season to commemorate French composer Florent Schmitt’s 150th birthday anniversary. The international Bachtrack website is in the process of uploading its global database of classical music programs for the coming season. Although it doesn’t […]

Late bloomer? Florent Schmitt’s La Tragédie de Salomé (1907/10) is now making a splash with regional orchestras and student ensembles.

Of Florent Schmitt’s major compositions, undoubtedly the one that has achieved the greatest fame over the decades is the ballet La Tragédie de Salomé, which Schmitt created for the dancer Loïe Fuller who presented the hour-long “mimed drama” at the Théâtre des Arts (now the Théâtre Hébertot) in Paris in 1907. That original version of La […]

Canadian soprano Karina Gauvin and French conductor Fabien Gabel talk about becoming acquainted with Florent Schmitt’s choral spectacular Psalm 47 (1904) and preparing the music for performance.

On May 29, 2019, the Orchestre Symphonique de Quebéc and its chorus presented the orchestra’s final concert of the season – one that featured French music exclusively. The event was a red-carpet affair at the Grand-Théâtre in Québec City in which local dignitaries were invited guests of the orchestra.  Also noteworthy was the centerpiece of […]

Experiencing Florent Schmitt’s Antony & Cleopatra (1920) and other orientalist masterpieces from France’s “Golden Age” of classical music live in concert: An eyewitness report from Paris.

American cellist Aaron Merritt and French arts administrator Eric Butruille traveled to the Philharmonie in Paris for the June 2018 event and were interviewed immediately thereafter. On June 9th and 10th, 2018, the Orchestre de Paris presented a program that must rank as one of the most interesting concerts of this year’s artistic season in the […]

Paul Paray: The conductor who popularized Florent Schmitt’s ballet La Tragédie de Salomé (1907/10) for half a century.

Music history tells us that the French conductor Paul Paray (1886-1979) gave more first performances of Florent Schmitt’s compositions than any other director. Indeed, Maestro Paray premiered nearly a dozen of the composer’s creations spanning more than a quarter-century, including the following works: Trois rapsodies, Op. 53, January 29, 1928 Cinq motets, Op. 60, January 21, 1934 In Memoriam, Op. 72, […]

Four important compositions of Florent Schmitt to be featured in the upcoming 2018/19 concert season by orchestras in Bern, Buffalo, Malmö, Mexico City, Norfolk, Paris, Québec City, Warsaw and Washington.

The international Bachtrack website is in the process of uploading its global database of classical music programs for the upcoming season. Although it isn’t an exhaustive listing of every professional group, the site covers nearly all of the major orchestras, opera and ballet companies around the world, making it the “go-to” resource for information about what’s happening […]

French pianist Bruno Belthoise talks about keeping Florent Schmitt’s Une semaine du petit elfe Ferme-l’oeil (1912) part of his performing repertoire over the years.

In 2013, one of the earliest interviews I conducted for the Florent Schmitt Website + Blog was with the French pianist Bruno Belthoise.  I had discovered him from YouTube, where several movements of Florent Schmitt’s piano four-hand suite Une semaine du petit elfe Ferme-l’oeil, Opus 58 had been uploaded from a performance he gave at the […]

Experiencing Florent Schmitt’s Symphony No. 2 (1957) in concert: An eyewitness report from London.

On October 27, 2017, Sakari Oramo and the BBC Symphony Orchestra presented Florent Schmitt’s Symphony No. 2, Opus 137 — the composer’s final orchestral work, which was completed in 1957 when Schmitt was 87 years old. This performance at the Barbican in London was the first time the Symphony No. 2 had been presented in concert […]

French conductor Fabien Gabel talks about Florent Schmitt’s Le Palais hanté (1904) and leading The Cleveland Orchestra in its first performance of this Poe-inspired tone picture.

  On August 19, 2017, French conductor Fabien Gabel led The Cleveland Orchestra in a concert of mainly French music at the Blossom Music Center, the orchestra’s summer home. Not only is Maestro Gabel a tireless advocate for the music of his native country wherever he conducts around the world, the artistry of Florent Schmitt is […]

French conductor Fabien Gabel talks about Florent Schmitt’s Ronde burlesque (1927) … and why he champions the music of this composer around the world.

Fabien Gabel is one of France’s leading conductors of the younger generation, with an international career. He has been music director of the Orchestre Symphonique de Québec since 2012, and this year was also named music director of the Orchestre Français des Jeunes, succeeding David Zinman.  In addition, he guest-conducts regularly in the United States and major […]

Musicians of the Orchestre Symphonique de Québec talk about Florent Schmitt’s Ronde burlesque (1927) and explore the “secret sauce” of the composer’s orchestral writing.

On May 24, 2017, the Orchestre Symphonique de Québec and its music director, Fabien Gabel, presented the North American premiere performance of Florent Schmitt’s Ronde burlesque, Opus 78, a work composed 90 years before (in 1927). Not only was it the first performance of this piece on the continent, it was also the first time […]

Seven important compositions of Florent Schmitt to be featured in the upcoming 2017/18 concert season by orchestras in Bern,Cleveland, Cluj, Guanajuato, London, Lyon, Milwaukee, Mons and Paris.

The international Bachtrack website is in the process of uploading its global database of classical music programs for the upcoming season. Although it isn’t an exhaustive listing of every professional artistic group, the site covers nearly all of the major orchestras, opera and ballet companies and other important ensembles around the world, making it the “go-to” […]

Six important compositions of Florent Schmitt to be featured in the upcoming 2016/17 concert season by orchestras in Asheville, Berlin, Bern, Bordeaux, Liège, London, Metz, Neuss-am-Rhein, Paris, Philadelphia, Québec, Seoul, Spokane, Stockholm and Tokyo.

The international Bachtrack website is in the process of uploading its global database of classical music programs for the upcoming season. Although it isn’t an exhaustive listing of every orchestral group, the site covers nearly all of the major orchestras, opera and ballet companies and other important ensembles around the world, making it the “go-to” […]

A link with history: French composer, teacher and writer Alain Margoni, 81, talks about working with Florent Schmitt in Paris during the 1950s.

Here in the year 2016, it is well over a half-century since French composer Florent Schmitt passed away at the age of nearly 90 years. Consequently, the number of musicians who have first-hand memories of interacting with the master has dwindled to a precious few. But we are fortunate to have French composer and teacher […]

French Conductor Fabien Gabel talks about Rêves (1915), other compositions of Florent Schmitt, and the future of French music in the concert hall.

This month, the French conductor Fabien Gabel revealed his plans to lead the Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra in a December 2016 performance of Florent Schmitt’s tone picture Rêves, Opus 65 (Dreams), composed just over a century ago. In subsequent discussions with the Maestro, I discovered how much he is doing to program French repertoire from the late […]