Francis Poulenc  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

Francis Jean Marcel Poulenc (January 7, 1899January 30, 1963) was an openly gay French composer and a member of the French group Les Six. He is known for such works as The Breasts of Tiresias and Les Biches.

Biography

Poulenc was born in Paris. His mother, an amateur pianist, taught him to play, and music formed a part of family life. An outstanding pianist, the keyboard dominated much of his early compositions. He also, throughout his career, borrowed from his own compositions as well as those of Mozart and Saint-Saëns. Later in his life, the loss of some close friends, coupled with a pilgrimage to the Black Madonna of Rocamadour, led him to rediscovery of the Catholic faith and resulted in compositions of a more sombre, austere tone.

Poulenc was a member of Les Six, a group of young French composers, Milhaud, Auric, Durey, Honegger and Tailleferre, who also had links with Erik Satie and Jean Cocteau. He embraced the Dada movement's techniques, creating melodies that would have been appropriate for Parisian music halls.

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Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Francis Poulenc" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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