Françoise Nyssen, Minister of Culture, wished to federate all initiatives around the centenary of the disappearance of Claude Debussy on March 25, 1918. The aim is to make the composer better known, to promote the dissemination of his art and to create bridges between the different actors of the show, the arts and music. The Minister also wanted educational activities to be developed for young people.
This centenary Debussy begins tonight on a great weekend of concerts supported by the Ministry of Culture in Paris and throughout France.
In Paris, the Ministry of Culture is opening its doors for the occasion and will present to a varied audience a programme of works performed by the students of the Conservatoire national supérieur de Musique et de Danse de Paris under the direction of Bruno Mantovani: String quartet in G minor op.10, Piano studies (extracts), Sonata for violin and piano, Songs of Bilitis, Sonata for cello and piano in D minor, Preludes (extracts) and Sonata for flute, viola and harp.
Six Directions régionales des affaires culturelles (DRAC) offer moments of tribute to Claude Debussy (concerts, readings, recitals). These concerts will also be open to the widest public in Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes (Lyon), Burgundy-Franche-Comté (Dijon), Grand Est (Strasbourg), Hauts-de-France (Lille), Nouvelle-Aquitaine (Bordeaux) and Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur (Aix-en-Provence).
Radio France also organizes a series of eleven concerts and a complete piano to celebrate the Debussy centenary at the Radio House. France Musique offers programs of all kinds, concerts, readings and interviews, special programs, a dedicated week, a night of archives and a great day, March 25, the anniversary of the composer’s death.
The Debussy year, which ends on March 25, 2019, will be punctuated by many other highlights throughout the year throughout France, including a new production of Pelléas and Mélisande at the Opéra du Rhin, the «Orchestres en fête» meeting dedicated to Debussy in November 2018, a complete set of melodies at the Capitole in Toulouse, a large orchestration competition for students of the Conservatoires Supérieur, the creation of an academy as part of the festival «Le monde de Debussy» in Saint-Germain-en-Laye, the composer’s hometown, from 20 to 24 March 2019 and many other events.
The Ministry of Culture has developed a website dedicated to the centennial, created in partnership with the Bibliothèque nationale de France. It presents resources on Claude Debussy and his work as well as a mapped agenda of all the centennial events in France: www.centenairedebussy.fr