Top Five Must-Listen Pieces by Debussy

Byvu lita

Jul 17, 2023

Prélude à l’après-midi d’un faune

This seductive and sultry orchestral masterpiece quietly wrought a revolution more profound than Wagner’s Tristan.


Three contrasting orchestral tone poems – by turns languid, lively and seductive – which impressed not only Ravel but also composers outside France.

La mer

A vivid portrait of the sea in all its moods, La mer is the nearest that Debussy came to writing a symphony, with a lively scherzo (‘Play of the waves’) and a rousing finale.

Preludes Books 1 & 2

On one level a series of miniature tableaux – ranging from landscapes and atmospheres to thumbnail sketches of literary characters – these piano piece also provide a superb overview of Debussy’s range as a composer.

Pelléas et Mélisande

Debussy’s understated, almost dream-like opera about young lovers caught up in an extra-marital affair exerts an extraordinary and unforgettable spell on its listeners.

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