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Georges Bizet

Georges Bizet (1838-1875), was a French composer.

Born Alexandre-César-Léopold Bizet on October 25, 1838, a child prodigy, Georges Bizet entered the Paris Conservatory of Music[?] at the age of 9.

- Georges Bizet -
In 1857 he shared a prize offered by Jacques Offenbach for a setting of the one-act operetta Le Docteur Miracle and won the Prix de Rome.

Following a three year stay in Rome, he returned to Paris where he dedicated himself to composition. Early into his return to Paris, Georges' mother died. In 1863 he composed the opera Les pecheurs de perles (The Pearl Fishers) for the Theatre-Lyrique.

Taken from an 1846 novel by Prosper Mérimée titled Carmen, Georges Bizet wrote an 1875 opera. Influenced by Giuseppe Verdi, he composed the title role in Carmen for a mezzo-soprano. Not an immediate success, Bizet became despondent over the perceived failure but praise came from such luminaries as Camille Saint-Saëns, Peter Tchaikovsky, and Claude Debussy who recognized its greatness. Their views were right, as the public made Carmen one of the most popular works in operatic history.

Bizet had long suffered from quinsy, a painful inflammation of the tonsils associated with Angina and never got to enjoy Carmen's success. Just a few months after the operas debut, he died on June 3, 1875, the official cause of death listed as a failed heart due to "acute articular rheumatism." He was interred in the Pere Lachaise Cemetery, Paris, France.

The 1954 motion picture Carmen Jones , adapted from the opera, won the Golden Globe Award for Best Motion Picture Musical.



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