Francis Poulenc in Paris - 8 August, 1942

from Selected correspondence 1915-1963 / Francis Poulenc, page 129:

May I now defend Messager's orchestration of the Chopin. Apart from the fact that Désormière - excellent in my music - conducted it like a military march, one has to take into account the present complement of strings at the Opéra: disastrous whenever the woodwinds are playing in threes. In the pit on 8 August there were precisely ten first violins, seven second violins, six violas, six cellos and five double-basses. I know there were the holidays to contend with, but as the desks left empty by prisioners or Jews have never been filled, the music has seriously suffered.…   more >>

cite as

Francis Poulenc, and Sidney Buckland (ed.), Selected correspondence 1915-1963 / Francis Poulenc (:London, 1991), p. 129. accessed: 22 May, 2024

location of experience: Paris


Francis Poulenc
Composer, Pianist

Listening to

hide composers
Suite of dances with music
written by Chopin
performed by Roger Desormiere
written by Maurice Ravel
performed by Roger Desormiere

Experience Information

Date/Time 8 August, 1942
Medium live
Listening Environment in the company of others, indoors, in public


Letter from Francis Poulenc to Charles Koechlin, Noizay, Indre-et-Loire, 18 August 1942. When 'Les Animaux modèles' opened at the Paris Opéra on 8 August 1942, the programme included Ravel's 'Boléro' and a suite of dances with music by Chopin, orchestrated by the conductor and composer André Messager (1853-1929).

Originally submitted by verafonte on Mon, 09 Jan 2017 21:49:59 +0000
Approved on Tue, 25 Apr 2017 17:47:43 +0100