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Koechlin, Charles (1867-1950)

Charles Koechlin

born: 27 November 1867
died: 31 December 1950
country: France

Charles Koechlin (1867–1950) was, until recently, better known as a teacher and pedagogue than as a composer. But as more musicians discover the delights of his vast and varied output through recordings, new publications and the efforts of his family and devotees, Koechlin has now become accepted as a powerful composer of great vision and originality, as well as a master orchestrator (Fauré’s Pelléas et Mélisande Suite, Debussy’s ballet Khamma) and a pioneer of polytonality.

Although born in Paris, Koechlin’s family background was Alsatian, rich and bourgeois. He inherited what he termed an Alsatian temperament—a mixture of energy, naivety and an absolute, simple sincerity that lies at the heart of his music and character. The key words in his artistic credo were freedom and independence, tempered of course by discipline and craftsmanship. In some respects, Koechlin was similar to Charles Ives in that music flowed from him in a ‘stream of consciousness’, completely without concessions or thoughts of commercial success, and both composers admired the transcendentalist philosophies of Emerson and Thoreau. Like Ives, Koechlin left a large corpus of sensitive and original songs that are still not widely known.

from notes by Robert Orledge © 2010

Albums

Koechlin & Pierné: Cello Sonatas
CDA66979Archive Service
Koechlin: Le cortège d'Amphitrite & other songs
CDH55163Helios (Hyperion's budget label)
Koechlin: Music for flute
CDA66414Archive Service
French Cello Music
CDA67244Archive Service
Heroic and Ceremonial Music for brass and organ
CDA66275Archive ServiceDownload currently discounted
Pierné & Koechlin: Cello Sonatas
CDA66979Archive Service

Alphabetical listing of all musical works

Alain-le-Renard  
Améthyste  
Amphise et Melitta  
Assis au bord du lac, où baignent leurs pieds nus  
Au Bois de Boulogne, l'Hiver  
Aux temps des fées  
Avec ses caprices, la Lune  
Azénor-la-Pâle  
Chansons bretonnes sur d'anciennes chansons populaires, Op 115 (Koechlin)
Chant de la Résurrection, Op 173 No 2 (Koechlin)
Cinq Mélodies, Op 5 (Koechlin)
Cinq Rondels, Op 1 Nos 2-6 (Koechlin)
Dans l'Air s'en vont les ailes  
Dans le mortel soupir de l'automne  
Déclin d'amour  
Deux Mélodies, Op 68 (Koechlin)
Fatum  
Fourteen Pieces for flute and piano, Op 157b (Koechlin)
Gladys! Gladys!  
Hymne à Vénus  
Iannik Skolan  
Il brille, le sauvage Été  
La Ceinture de Noces  
La chanson des Ingénues  
La chanson du Pilote  
La colombe  
La conversation de Merlin  
La Lune  
La marche d'Arthur  
La naïade  
La Nuit  
La Prophétie de Gwene'hlan  
L'Air  
Le baron Jaouioz  
Le cortège d'Amphitrite  
Le cyclone  
Le faucon  
Le page de Louis XIII  
Le Printemps  
Le repas préparé  
Le rossignol  
Le Seigneur Nann et la Fée  
Le Thé  
Le Vin des Gaulois  
L'enfant suppose  
L'épouse du Croise  
Les laboureurs  
Les trois Moines rouges  
L'Été  
L'Hiver  
L'Homme ne peut rien contre l'Amour, la Femme non plus  
L'ombre noyait les bois. C'était un soir antique  
M'a dit Amour  
Ma fille, laisse là ton aiguille et ta laine  
Merlin au berceau  
Miss Ellen, versez-moi le Thé  
Morceau de lecture, Op 218 (Koechlin)
Notre-Dame du Folgoat  
Nous bénissons la douce Nuit  
Nous sommes les Ingénues  
Ô Vénus, au charmant visage  
Poèmes d'automne, Op 13 (Koechlin)
Premier album de Lilian, Op 139 (Koechlin)
Prise au piège  
Quand tu nageois emmy Syrènes et Tritons, gente naïde au corps souëf  
Quatre mélodies, Op 22 (Koechlin)
Quatre Mélodies, Op 35 (Koechlin)
Quatre Poèmes d'E Haraucourt, Op 7 (Koechlin)
Saint-Eflam et le Roi Arthur  
Second album de Lilian, Op 149 (Koechlin)
Sept Chansons pour Gladys, Op 151 (Koechlin)
Sept Rondels, Op 8 (Koechlin)
Si tu le veux  
Six Mélodies, Op 31 (Koechlin)
Sonata for cello and piano, Op 66 (Koechlin)
Sonata for flute and piano, Op 52 (Koechlin)
Sonata for two flutes, Op 75 (Koechlin)
Te voilà, rire du Printemps!  
Tu croyais le tenir  
Tu croyais prendre et tu es prise  
Un cyclone?  
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