(Achille) Claude Debussy (1862–1918) was a French composer who is sometimes seen as the first Impressionist composer, although he vigorously rejected the term. He was among the most influential composers for piano and orchestral works of the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
With early influences including Russian and Far Eastern music, Debussy developed his own style of harmony and orchestral colouring, derided – and unsuccessfully resisted – by much of the musical establishment of the day. His works have strongly influenced a wide range of composers including Béla Bartók and Olivier Messiaen.
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