Debussy’s Grand Hotel, Vue sur La Mer

In june 1904 Claude Debussy fled Parijs direction Jersey. By that time he was already a renowned and celebrated musician. It is there he finished La Mer, a magnificent symfonic poem focussing on the primal force of water, including concealed sexual connotations.

In this period his music bears the subcutaneous marks of a deep, personal crisis, clearly reflected as well in L’Isle Joyeuse as Masques for piano solo. The opposition between both speaks of torment: the joy he experienced with his mistress – his future wife Emma Bardac – fervently contrasts with his feelings of guilt because of the imminent divorce from Lily Texier.

This performance presents the ‘Jersey music’ by Claude Debussy with an astounding arrangement of La Mer for an intimistic piano trio.

Browsing through Debussy’s letters, Lily as well as Emma muse accompanied by a new composition by Dominique Pauwels, as a faint echo of times long gone by, in search of the man behind the composer.

Programme & credits


Dominique Pauwels
Grand Hotel (2019)
commissioned by SPECTRA

Claude Debussy (1862-1918)
La Mer (1903-1905)
L'Isle joyeuse (1904)
Masques (1904)


SPECTRA conducted by Filip Rathé
Reinhilde Decleir of Sara De Bosschere, voice


Sunday 13 October 2019, 11:00
Roeselare, CC De Spil
Sunday 01 December 2019, 19:00
Ronse, CC De Ververij
Thursday 16 January 2020, 20:00
Izegem, CC De Leest
Saturday 01 February 2020, 12:00
Antwerpen, deSingel
Sunday 18 October 2020, 16:30
Antwerpen, Amuz
voor festival Tutti Fratelli