GOUNOD, Charles François, letters, autographs, documents, manuscripts

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GOUNOD, Charles François (1818-1893). French composer.
Autograph Letter Signed to Henriette, 2 pages 8vo, Monday 31 March 1884. Having just returned from the rehearsal of La rédemption, he feels half dead. Sapho and La rédemption are crushing.
'... You do not know what a burden I bear... and there are still changes to be made in Sapho! What a life!...'
Sapho was Gounod's first opera, dating from 1858, but for the Opéra revival in 1884 Gounod completely revised it, from two to four acts. The first performance of La rédemption had been given at Birmingham in 1882. 'A generation that regarded the oratorios of Handel and Mendelssohn as the twin peaks of musical achievement found Rédemption a model worthy to set beside them ... One can only assume that [it] answered a contemporary need and spoke to the minds and hearts of its heroes with a directness that overwhelmed them' (Harding, Gounod, p.208). It had a worldwide success.
[No: 21647]

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