The consistent wit and charm of the music of Francis Poulenc (1899-1963), has often led to an underestimation of its value, yet there is now a growing recognition of his stature. His music is simple and direct, and neither rhythmically nor harmonically innovative, but he was a distinguished and inventive melodist. In Ivry's biography, Poulenc's work is dicussed in the context of his homosexuality and against the colourful background of Paris in the first half of the century. His love affairs with working-class men and his sensitivity about his role in the wartime occupation of France have been somewhat obscured; in this fresh and amusing biography, however, the author uses recently published documents to shed new light on the composer and the man, and presents a three-dimensional portrait of this complex and sometimes contradictory composer.
Publisher: Phaidon Press Ltd