Conductor Maestro Georges Pretre Dies

Longtime Classical music conductor Georges Pretre died January 4 in his home in Naves, France at the age of 92. No official cause of death was announced.

Pretre was still conducting orchestras up until a few months before his death with his final performance in October with the Vienna Symphony Orchestra at the Musikverein.

He was born August 24, 1924 in Waziers, France. Like all conductors, Petre played an instrument before picking up the baton. He studied the trumpet as a child.

Pretre studied at the Conservatoire National Supérieur in Paris before going on to conduct orchestras around the world including Paris, New York, Chicago, London, Tokyo, and Vienna. He made his conducting debut with an operetta in 1946 with the Marseilles Opera’s performance of “Le Roi d’Ys” by Lalo when he was but 22 years old.

It was composer Francis Poulenc himself who chose Petre to conduct the premiere performance of “Le Voix Humaine” in 1959. He was the conductor for the world premiere performances of Marcel Landowski’s “Symphony No 4” and Francaix’s “Concerto for 15 Soloiss and Orchestra”.

Opera diva Maria Callas often requested that Petre be the conductor for her performances.

Petre has been presented with the Officer of the Legion d’Honneur, the Victoire de la Musique Award, and the Europea Prize.

Predeceased by his son Jean-Reynald, he is survived by his second wife of over 50 years Gina and daughter Isabelle.

Georges Pretre discography:
“Bizet: Carmen”
“Donizetti: Lucia did Lammermoor”
“Bizet: The Pearl Fishers”
“Gounod: Faust”
“Charles Gounod: Faust (Highlihts)”
“Poulenc: La Voix Humaine; Cocteau: Le Bel Indifferent”
“Puccini: Tosca”
“Wagner: Wesendonk-Lieder; Orchesterstucke Das Liebesverbot, Tannhauser & Gotterdammerung”
“Saint-Saens: Samson et Dalila”
Poulenc: Oeuvres orchestrales”
“Charpentier: Louise”
“Hector Berlioz: Symphonie Fantastique; Arnold Schonberg: Verklarte Nacht”
“Massenet: Werther”
“Georges Bizet: Carmen (Highlights)”
“La Damnation De Faust/Les Troyens”
“Poulenc: Aubade; Concerto pour piano; Concerto pour 2 pianos”
“Georges Pretre Conducts Debussy, Caplet & Schmitt”
“Richard Strauss: Rosenkavalier Suite; Till Eulenapiegels lustige Streiche; Don Juan”
“Samson Et Dalila/Les Troyens”
“Mascagni: Cavalleria Rusticana; Leoncavallo: Pagliacci”
“chaikovsky: Swan Lake; Symphony No. 5 in E minor”
“Ravel: Daphnis et Chloe Suite No. 2; La Valse; Georges Bizet: Symphony in C”
“Dukas: I L’Apprenti Sorcier/Debussy: Prelude/Satie: Gymnopedies Nos. 1 & 2/Saint-Saens: Danse Macabre/Ravel: Pavane/L”
“Berlioz: Symphonie Fantastique; Mussorgsky: A Noght on the Bare Mountain”
“Puccini: Tosca (Highlights)”
“Camille Saint-Saens: Symphonies Nos. 1 & 2; Piano Concerto No. 4; La Jeunesse d’Hercule; Le Rouet d’Omphale”
“Saint-Saens: Samson et Dalila”
“Bizet: Carmen (Highlights)”
“Jules Massenet: Werther”
“Debussy: Images; Rimsky-Korsakov: Capriccio Espagnole; Borodin: Prince Igor”
“French Orchestral Favorites”
“Richard Strauss: Capriccio”
“Poulenc: Figure humaine; Messe en sol majeur”
“Bizet: Carmen”
“Prokofiev: Pierre et le loup; Saint-Saens: Le Carnaval des animaux; Poulenc: Histoire de Babar”
“Saint-Saens: Symphony No 3 ‘Organ’; Carnival of the Animals; Poulenc: Les Animaux modeles”
“Charles Gounod: Faust”
“Saint-Saens: Samson et Dalila”
“Berlioz: La Damnation de Faust”
“Richard Strauss: Der Roenkavalier”
“Berlioz: Symphonie fantastique; Harold en Ialie; Romeo et Juliette; La mort de Cleopatre”
“Massenet: Werther”
“Berlioz: Symphonie Fantastique; Schoenberg: Verklarte Nacht”
“Poulenc: Concert champetre; Concerto for two pianos; Organ Concerto”
“Massenet: Werther”
“Berlioz: Les troyens (Abridged)”
“Poulenc: Les Biches; Pastourelle; Aubade; Les Animaux modeles”
“Poulenc: La voix humaine”
“Darius Milhaud: Scaramouche; Paris; Le Carnaval d’Aix; Suite francaise; Suite provencale”
“Poulenc: L’oeuvre pour piano”
“Massenet: Herodiade”
“Berlioz: La Damnation de Faust”
“Saint-Saens: Symphony Nos. 2 & 3”
“Richard Strauss: Capriccio”
“Jules Massenet: Werther”
“New Year’s Concert 2008”
“Gounod: Messe Solennelle de Sainte Cecile”
“New Year’s Concert 2010”
“Gounod: Faust”
“Bizet: Les Pecheurs dePerles (Highlights)”
“Saint-Saens: Carnival of the Animals”
“Hommage a Georges Pretre”
“Massenet: Manon
“Gounod: Faust”
“Poulenc: Gloria; Stabat Mater”
“Leoncavallo: Pagliacci”
“Rachmaninoff: Concerto No. 3”
“Saint-Saens: Le Caraval des animaux; Poulenc: Les Animaux modeles; Les Biches; Milhaud: La Creation du monde”
“Gounod: Messe Solennelle de Sainte Cecile”
“Saint-Saens: Symphonie No. 3 avec orgue; La Jeunesse d’Hercule”
“Hommage a Georges Pretre: Orchestral Recording for RCA Red Seal – Berlioz, Sibelius, Strauss”
“80th Birthday Album”
“Massenet: Don Quichotte”
“Bizet: La Jolie Fille de Perth”
“Modest Mussorgsky: Bilder einer Austellung; Maurice Ravel: Daphnis et Chloe Ballet Suite Nr. 2; Bole”
“Brahms: Integrale des danses hongroises”
“Puccini: Tosca (Highlights)”
“Camille Saint-Saens: Symphonies 1 & 2”
“Roussel: Bacchus Et Ariane”
“Hector Berlioz: La Damnation de Faust”
“Saint-Saens: Samson et Dalila”
“Georges Pretre: he Symphonic Recordings
“Verdi: La Traviata”

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