Fabien Waksman

Composer, Teacher of composition

Fabien Waksman is one of the most important French composers of his generation. 

He is very early called by important conductors and concert halls : mostly inspired by Claude Debussy and Igor Stravinsky, Fabien Waksman is particularly noticed for his orchestration’s talents. In 2009, the conductor Stéphane Denève asked him for two symphonic works : Solar Storm and Le Parfum d’Aphrodite. He conducts the Premieres with the Royal Scottish National Orchestra at the Glasgow Royal Concert Hall. In 2012, Fabien Waksman composed Protonic Games for Radio France, premiered by Daniele Gatti and the Orchestre National de France at the Théâtre des Champs-Elysées. He continues his collaboration with this orchestra in 2019 when he created the music for a Charlie Chaplin’s movie and in 2020 with the composition of the music for a concert-fiction, Moby-Dick, which is edited as a CD-book (Gallimard). A new piece will be premiered in March 2023 by the Orchestre National de France at the Auditorium de Radiofrance.

In 2018 he wrote his first cello concerto, Le Rêve de Tzinacan, dedicated to the cellist Anastasia Kobekina. A second concerto, for piano this time, is commissioned in 2020 by the international piano competition « Piano Campus » in Paris. Fabien Waksman also composed a concerto for the accordionist Félicien Brut and the Orchestre National Bordeaux Aquitaine which will be released on CD in November 2022 by Warner.

As a pianist himself, instrumental and vocal chamber music takes an important part in his work. He collaborates with world-known musicians like Eric Le Sage, Emmanuel Pahut, Paul Meyer, Jérôme Ducros, Jérôme Pernoo, Florent Héau, Mathieu Herzog, Eva Zavaro, Guillaume Vincent, Romain Descharmes, Sarah Nemtanu, Claire-Marie Le Guay, Karol Mossakowsky, Brenda Poupard, and the string quartets Hanson, Hermès and Aquilone. His music can regularly be heard in festivals like Musique à l’Emperi, Auvers-sur-Oise, Les folles journées de Nantes, or the Centre de musique de chambre de Paris. He is currently working on a series of pieces for the duo formed by trumpet player Lucienne Renaudin-Vary and accordion player Félicien Brut.

Fabien Waksman has also composed many operas commissioned by the Opéra National de Paris : L’oiseau de glace (2012) and Epic Falstaff (2013), both written with the director and librettist Florent Siaud. In 2014 he composed a big fresco for children choir and orchestra based on a text by William Blake, Europe, a Prophecy. In 2017, the Orchestre National de Lyon created La Clé d’argent, an operatic trilogy tributed to H.P. Lovecraft’s world. To deal with his approach of vocal music in depth, he imagines Sumanga’ for choir and harp on a commission by the Orchestre de Paris ; it is a work freely inspired by traditional music from the whole world.

Passionated by cosmology, Fabien Waksman collaborates with the astrophysician Jean-Philippe Uzan. Together they created Le Baiser de la mort in 2016, a piano quintet, inspired by the discovery of gravitational waves. They are currently working on a cycle of melodies for soprano and prepared piano, the Hawking Songs, thus paying tribute to the important discoveries of Stephen Hawking on the black holes. Keen on new sounds and musical horizons, Fabien Waksman is also initiated into electro-acoustic composition’s technics at the Centre de Création Musicale Art Zoyd and works on a piece for piano and electronic keyboard for January 2022.

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