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Philippe Fenelon (Composer)

French composer (born 1952).
On completing his studies in Olivier Messiaen's class at the Paris National Conservatory of Music (Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique de Paris), Philippe Fénelon was awarded the 1977 Prize for Composition.
He has also studied comparative literature and linguistics as well as Bulgarian at the School of Modern Oriental Languages (École des Langues Orientales Vivantes).

Scholar-in-Residence at the Casa Velasquez in Spain from 1981 to 1983, prior to being invited to Berlin in 1988 by the German Academic Exchange Service - Belin Arts Programme (Deutscher Akademischer Austauchdienst - Berliner Künstlerprogramm), he has been awarded many national and international prizes including the Stockhausen Prize, Bergamo, Italy, in 1980 ; the Georges Wildenstein Prize in 1983 ; the Hervé Dugardin (Sacem) in 1984. He held a fellowship from the Beaumarchais Foundation in Paris in 1990, and received the External Villa Médicis Prize in 1991 as well as the Prize for New Talents in Musical Drama of the SACD in 1992. In 2000, he was named Chevalier de l'Ordre National du Mérite.

Philippe Fénelon is interested in almost all forms of music though he has a marked preference for music with solo voices or with instruments (" Du, meine Welt ! " for cello and ensemble ; Saturne for violin and orchestra ; the Mythologies cycle ; two concertos for piano and orchestra) and opera (Le Chevalier imaginaire, after Cervantès and Kafka ; Les Rois, after Cortázar ; Salammbô, after Flaubert).

He has composed more than eighty works which have been interpreted at numerous festivals : Festival d'Automne of Paris, Venice Biennial, Guggenheim Museum of New york, Festival Neur Musik Berlin, Salzburg Mozarteum, Amsterdam, Tokyo, Madrid, Warsaw, Budapest, Geneva,, Odessa, Lisbon...

Intentionally stemming from an original and fertile culture which is at one and the same time musical, poetical and pictorial, Philippe Fénelon's works do not hesitate to revisit traditional musical forms (opera, quartet, concerto or madrigal). After having composed Salammbô, and notably Dix-huit Madrigaux based on Rilke's Duineser Elegien, Fénelon's style follows a pattern where the texts set to music have become increasingly intelligible.

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