Debussy and the Veil of TonalityBy Mark DeVoto
This new book on Debussy's music comprises analytical studies of individual works not widely examined previously, including the Fantaisie for piano and orchestra, La demoiselle elue, Nuages, and Gigues. A discussion of the tonal structure of the first movement of La mer finds new relevance in the overused term symphonic in relation to Debussy's position in the history of French orchestral music. An extensive essay documents Debussy's aural images in his propensity for recycling his own musical ideas and quoting the music of other composers. A final lighthearted chapter, Debussy and Ravel: How to Tell Them Apart, systematically addresses this century-old critics' conundrum.