Gabriel Fauré

1845 - 1924

Gabriel Fauré is regarded as the master of the French art song, or mélodie. His works ranged from Classical to Romantic, and finally to 20th century aesthetic. His work was based on a strong understanding of harmonic structures which he received at the École Niedermeyer from his harmony teacher Gustave Lefèvre. Faure played with harmonic theory, differing significantly from the classical theory of Jean-Philippe Rameau. Certain chords were no longer considered dissonant to him opening a new musical landscape. In addition, Fauré’s understanding of the church modes can be seen to influence some of the passages in his works, especially in his melodies. He also served as the head of the Pairs Conservatory, a period that saw his compositional output decline.