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 […]

Musicologist Megan Varvir Coe talks about the Symbolist roots of Florent Schmitt’s ballet La Tragédie de Salomé (1907/10).

Along with his concert band masterpiece Dionysiaques, La Tragédie de Salomé, Op. 50 is French composer Florent Schmitt’s best-known score.  But most music-lovers know only the version that Schmitt prepared in 1910 for large orchestra.  Three years earlier, an original version twice as long had been created by Schmitt for the American dancer Loïe Fuller, who presented it at […]

Made for the stage: The incredible life and career of dancer and dramatic actress Ida Rubinstein … and her 20-year collaboration with French composer Florent Schmitt.

In every era, there are always a few people in the arts whose life and career seem like something out of a movie or novel. Such a characterization is wholly apt in the case of dancer and dramatic actress Ida Rubinstein, the Russian-Jewish femme fatale who commanded the limelight in Paris for nearly half a century. Born in 1885 […]

Passionate advocate: French conductor Lionel Bringuier talks about the music of Florent Schmitt and La Tragédie de Salomé.

French conductor Lionel Bringuier’s meteoric rise in the classical music field has been noteworthy.  Not yet 30 years old, he has been conducting major orchestras in the United States and Europe since 2006. Currently, Maestro Bringuier is chief conductor of the Tonhalle Orchestra in Zürich, Switzerland.  Prior to that, he was an associate conductor of […]

Musicians of The Cleveland Orchestra talk about the music of Florent Schmitt and La Tragédie de Salomé.

On April 16 and 18, 2015, The Cleveland Orchestra performed Florent Schmitt’s 1907/10 ballet La Tragédie de Salomé for the first time in over 70 years.  Not only was it the first time the Cleveland musicians had played this work with the orchestra, for most, it was their first time ever performing any music of […]

French Pianist Vincent Larderet Talks about Performing and Recording the Music of Florent Schmitt

To say that Vincent Larderet is one of the most accomplished of the younger generation of classical pianists would be an understatement. As a Steinway Artist, Mr. Larderet has attracted international recognition by virtue of the exceptional intensity of his performances and commercial recordings, praised by critics not only in his native France but also in Continental […]

Forgotten Records: Resurrecting noteworthy recordings of Florent Schmitt’s music from the LP era.

There’s no question that in the past two decades, the breadth and depth of French composer Florent Schmitt’s music that has made it to the microphones has increased dramatically. Nearly every year, we are treated to world premiere recordings of more Schmitt works. The most recent examples are the complete works for piano duo and duet as […]

La Tragédie de Salomé: Florent Schmitt’s most famous composition … 15 commercial recordings and counting.

Without question, La Tragédie de Salomé, Op. 50 is Florent Schmitt’s most famous composition.  Composed in 1907 and revised in 1910, this ballet is far more often performed as a symphonic suite these days (although the Mariinsky Ballet revived the stage version in 2013). The composition became famous from the very start – recognized by […]

Youthful Exuberance: Lionel Bringuier’s Thrilling Performance of Florent Schmitt’s La Tragédie de Salomé (Stockholm, 2009)

I always suspected that French conductor Lionel Bringuier’s interpretation of Florent Schmitt’s ballet La Tragédie de Salomé, Op. 50 would be something special. After all, this young conductor has been traveling the globe in the past half-decade, performing the work in numerous locations including England, Scandinavia, Germany and the United States (with the Los Angeles Philharmonic). […]

The Mariinsky Ballet Revives Florent Schmitt’s La Tragédie de Salomé

It’s been several decades since Florent Schmitt’s La Tragédie de Salomé was last presented as a ballet, even as it has been performed in the concert hall quite regularly.  So it is nice to note that the Mariinsky Ballet of St. Petersburg, Russia is including Salomé as part of its 13th Annual Ballet Festival. The Mariinsky is also taking the production […]

Available online: Florent Schmitt’s La Tragédie de Salomé, performed live by Alain Altinoglu and the Orchestre de Paris (2012).

The French-Armenian maestro Alain Altinoglu, along with several other younger-generation conductors, have been traveling the globe in recent years performing Florent Schmitt’s ballet score La Tragédie de Salomé. Conductors Stéphane Denève and Yannick Nézet-Séguin have both performed the score in Canada and France, while Lionel Bringuier has brought the Salomé to Los Angeles, Cleveland, Sweden, Finland, […]

Conductors JoAnn Falletta and Jorge Mester Talk About the Music of Florent Schmitt

Last month, I caught up with music directors JoAnn Falletta and Jorge Mester while observing the fine students at the Conductor Training Workshop in Virginia Beach, VA. Maestra Falletta and Maestro Mester are among the eminent conducting faculty who mentor members of the Conductors Guild in workshops held in various cities in North America and overseas. Both conductors are great proponents […]

Musicologist Dr. Jerry Rife talks about his introduction to Florent Schmitt’s music.

Dr. Jerry E. Rife, a musicologist and professor of music at Rider University, has been a specialist on the music of Florent Schmitt for over 30 years. He has published several articles on the composer, and has just completed a detailed entry on Schmitt for the upcoming  edition of the New Grove Dictionary of Music & Musicians. The early […]

La Tragédie de Salomé: Florent Schmitt’s Sinuous Temptress, Seducing Audiences for 100 Years

“[It] is like a half-hour visit to the pleasure dome in Xanadu, and if it doesn’t give you a few spiritual orgasms, then perhaps you need to insert Viagra® in each of your ears.” — Raymond Tuttle, Music Critic, Fanfare Magazine The ballet La Tragédie de Salomé, Op. 50 is Florent Schmitt’s most famous and […]

Conductor Yan-Pascal Tortelier talks about his Chandos Florent Schmitt recording of Psaume XLVII, La Tragédie de Salomé and Le Palais hanté.

One of more successful Schmitt music albums to be released recently features Yan-Pascal Tortelier conducting the São Paulo Symphony Orchestra and Chorus in Psalm XLVII, Op. 38, with Susan Bullock singing the important soprano part. It’s coupled with the composer’s most famous work, La Tragédie de Salomé, Op. 50, along with a comparative rarity, Le Palais hanté, Op. 49, […]