Eric Satie Musical and Spiritual Mentor to Les Six "I have never written a note I didn't mean." - Erik Satie
Eric Satie, 1866-1925 • Erik Alfred Leslie Satie born in 1866 in Normandy, France • Raised in Paris during age when Wagnerian musical model reached its peak in Europe. • Later, rejected and rejected by Debussy
Compositional Style • Compositions are humorous, satirical bizarre, and aphoristic. • Parody and satire a primary musical impetus. • His music intentionally anti-Romantic and anti-Impressionist • Considered by many (e.g. John Cage) as forebear of minimalism and ambient music.
Furniture Music • Called some of his music “furniture music,” meaning that it was meant to be heard in the background. Gymnopédies and Gnossiennes are primary examples. • Would exclaim “Keep talking amongst yourselves. Whatever you do, don’t listen to the music.”
Works • Trois Gymnopédies (1888), piano • Messe des Pauvres (1895) • Trois morceaux en forme de poire (1901), piano four hands • Descriptions Automatiques (1913), piano • Sonatine Bureaucratique (1917), piano • Parade (1917), ballet, with Cocteau and Picasso • Socrate (1918), symphonic drama • Relâche (1924), ballet
Satie Links • Satie Homepage: features audio clips, manuscripts, articles, pictures, and a newsgroup discussion • Flabby Préludes for a Dog: a Satie Primer: offers an overview of Satie's career, focusing primarily on his musical influence. • Satie’s Crystal Ball: an investigation of Milhaud’s theory that Satie had prophesied the course of music in the 50 years following his death. • Eric Satie: the first Surrealist: a good general site on Satie • Memories of an Amnesiac: Satie’s personal memoirs in English translation.
Manuscripts • Pièces froides
Manuscripts • Vexations
Manuscripts • Gnossienne No. 4
Audio Clips • Trois Gymnopédies • Gnossiennes • Parade