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Préludes, Book 1, No. 10: The Sunken Cathedral (La cathédrale engloutie)

By 

Claude Debussy

Debussy's "La cathédrale engloutie" (The Sunken Cathedral) from his first book of Préludes is a piano piece that evokes the legend of an underwater cathedral rising and then sinking back into the sea. The prelude, with its rich, impressionistic harmonies and resonant chords, depicts the cathedral's emergence with a grand, gradual build-up, followed by the quiet ebb of the tides. It's a quintessential example of Debussy's ability to paint vivid pictures with music, using the piano to imitate the cathedral's bell chimes and the swell of the ocean.

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Préludes, Book 1, No. 10: The Sunken Cathedral (La cathédrale engloutie)

by:

Jean-Yves Thibaudet

Join Jean-Yves Thibaudet as he submerges himself within Debussy’s majestic Sunken Cathedral, the 10th Prelude from Book I. Moving phrase by phrase through the expansive waters evoked by the music, Thibaudet shows how he manipulates his touch to achieve specific effects that help create the impression of timelessness and infinite space. A master class in creating color and sonority, and a nuanced portrait of an artist immersed in his craft, this video is necessary viewing for pianists and music lovers alike.

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tonebase piano

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