FAURÉ Gabriel, Cantique de Jean Racine
The Cantique de Jean Racine was performed at one of the celebrated series of chamber music concerts of the Société Nationale de Musique: on 15 May 1875 it was conducted by the work’s dedicatee, César Franck. Fauré had originally composed it in 1865 for a graduation prize at the École Niedermeyer, where he had studied composition with Saint-Saëns. It won the first prize, showing a young composer of winning melodic gifts. The text is Racine’s French paraphrase of a Latin hymn that ends – very aptly – by asking Christ to look kindly on the songs offered to His glory.
Nigel Simeone ©