September 24, 2010

Claude Terrasse and Pierre Bonnard : a family spirit

Claude Terrasse (1867-1923) met the Bonnard family through the eldest son Charles, while doing civic service time. In 1890 he married Andrée Bonnard, also a musician. The couple moved to Arcachon where Terrasse is a piano teacher. He worked very early with his brother in law, the painter Pierre Bonnard. At that time, is published Petites Scènes Familières pour Piano (Familiar Little Scenes for piano). Pierre Bonnard takes pleasure in playing with the austere chromatic of lithography while Claude Terrasse already demonstrates his talent as a composer of light music with 'La fête au village" (the village party), set of four humorous partitions.
Appointed in Paris in 1896, Claude Terrasse uses the workshop adjoining his apartment to create the Théâtre des Pantins (puppet's theatre). All the Parisian artistic avant-garde is involved in this adventure. Claude Terrasse continues to work with Alfred Jarry for whom he has just composed the music for Ubu Roi, whose first representation made scandal. In 1898, is published Repertoires des Pantins (Puppet's repertory) which includes the songs created for the Claude Terrasse's puppet theatre. In this set of nine booklets, illustrated with six original lithographs by Bonnard, one can find the opening of Ubu Roi and the famous "Song of brainwashing" (full text here.)

Currently, the librairie Loliée offers :
  • Bonnard (Pierre) - Terrasse (Claude). Petites Scènes familières pour piano. Illustrations de Pierre Bonnard. Paris, Fromont, s.d., huge in-4, half-levant binding, folder and case (Alain Devauchelle). Rare music sheets by Claude Terrasse, illustrated with 19 charming original lithographs by Pierre Bonnard.
  • Bonnard (Pierre) - Jarry (Alfred) - Franc-Nohain - Terrasse (Claude). Répertoire des Pantins. Musique de Claude Terrasse. Lithographies originales de Pierre Bonnard et Jarry. Paris, Mercure de France, 1898, 9 booklets in-4, folder and case. 6 original lithographs by Pierre Bonnard et 3 by Alfred Jarry illustrate the music of Claude Terrasse.