Nielsen and the French Press (1903-1951)


  • Jean-Luc Caron
  • Michelle Assay



Nielsen loved the French capital, its touristic riches and its abundant artistic life. He went there several times following his first trip in 1890-1891 in the course of studies that also took in Germany and Italy. At the time of his trip to Paris in October 1926 his name was better known than his works themselves. For the greater part of those in French musical life he was the dominant figure in contemporary Danish and Scandinavian music, apart from Edward Grieg, who had been dead nearly twenty years. The concert at the Salle Gaveau, which was entirely devoted to his works and which took place in his presence, enjoyed a wide resonance in the media. The majority of Danish artists who lent their services to his music on this memorable evening did not fail to make a strong impression on the Parisian audience. The press announced and commented on the event extensively.

Author Biographies

Jean-Luc Caron

Jean-Luc Caron is founder and editor of the Bulletins of the AFCN (French Carl Nielsen Association, 1985-2005), and author of studies and biographies dedicated to Nordic music, in particular its connections with France. He has published life-and-works studies of Carl Nielsen (1990), Jean Sibelius (1997 and 2007), Edvard Grieg (2007) and Allan Pettersson (2007), as well as Niels Gade et la presse parisienne (2016), La musique danoise et l’esprit du XIXe siècle (2017), Regards sur Carl Nielsen et son temps (2018), and La musique romantique suédoise (2019).

Michelle Assay

Michelle Assay is a Leverhulme Early Career Research Fellow at the University of Huddersfield, working on the topic of ‘Shakespeare and Censorship in Soviet/post-Soviet Music, Film and Theatre’. She is currently preparing her PhD dissertation on the topic of ‘Hamlet in the Stalin Era’ for publication by Routledge. Alongside numerous published articles in this area, she is co-ordinator of an international research group on ‘Shakespeare and Music’. Alongside concert appearances as a solo and chamber pianist, for the past seven years she has been currently collaborating with David Fanning on a major life-and-works study of Mieczyslaw Weinberg for Toccata Press (forthcoming), and the couple also published Carl Nielsen: Selected Letters and Diaries (Museum Tusculanum, 2017). Since April 2018 she has been part of the reviewing team for Gramophone magazine.




How to Cite

Caron, J.-L., & Assay, M. (2020). Nielsen and the French Press (1903-1951). Carl Nielsen Studies, 6.