Debussy: Music cannot be learned

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Debussy: Music cannot be learned



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Release date:

2nd Sept 2013




DVD Video




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Debussy: Music cannot be learned

A Film by Georges Gachot


Children's Corner

Zoltán Kocsis (piano)

DVD Video


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The composer Claude Debussy was born in St. Germain-en Laye, a few miles outside Paris, in 1862. While a pupil at the Conservatoire, he composed music that did not conform to the theory of the times. He contradicted his teachers by claiming that pleasure was the only valid rule of music, and that music could not be learned. Debussy was to become one of the greatest French composers, creating works which threw open entirely new musical horizons.

This fascinating documentary from 2000 gives deep insights into the life of Claude Debussy based on reports by those who encountered Claude Debussy such as Eric Satie, George Copeland and Marguerite Long.

Filmmaker Georges Gachot is famous for his intense portraits of artists and musicians, he is the winner of the prestigious “Prix Italia”.

This documentary includes 3 language versions (English, German, French)

Picture format DVD: NTSC 16:9

Sound formats DVD: PCM Stereo

Region code: 0

Languages: English, French, German

Booklet notes: English, French, German

Running time: 59 mins documentary, 15 mins bonus

German FSK: 0

BBC Music Magazine

December 2013

“A patchwork documentary, loosely stitched from photos, performance clips, camera prowlings, and, most vividly, letters and reminscences. Kocsis plays Children's Corner as an extra.”

MusicWeb International

8th October 2013

“Thankfully, there are no interpolated shots of actors pretending to be Debussy or any of his contemporaries, so it is not a ‘biopic’ type of film. It is simply a brief overview of Debussy’s career illustrated with excerpts from some of his earlier scores. Most of the dialogue is provided by reminiscences of Debussy by his friends and colleagues, with some sections drawn from the composer’s own letters.”

Click here for alternative recordings of this work.

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