Claude Paul Taffanel

Tchaikovsky Research
Claude Paul Taffanel (1844-1908)

French flute virtuoso, composer, conductor and teacher (b. 16 September 1844 [N.S.] in Bordeaux; d. 21 November 1908 [N.S.] in Paris), sometimes known just as Paul Taffanel.

Taffanel received his first flute lessons at the age of nine, and gave his first recital aged ten. After graduating from the Paris Conservatory in 1860, he became well established as an orchestral player, soloist and conductor in conservatory concerts and at the Paris Opéra. From 1893 he was professor of flute at the Paris Conservatory, and head of its orchestral class from 1896.

Tchaikovsky's long-standing intention to write a Flute Concerto for Taffanel (first mentioned in 1888) was not carried out by the time of his death in 1893, although some very short sketches were found among his manuscripts.

Correspondence with Tchaikovsky

One letter from Tchaikovsky to Claude Paul Taffanel has survived, dating from 1888, and has been translated into English on this website:

2 letters from Claude Paul Taffanel to the composer, dating from 1888 and 1889, are preserved in the Tchaikovsky State Memorial Musical Museum-Reserve at Klin (a4, Nos. 4274–4275).


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