Charles Gounod (1818-1893)

A French composer who is best known for several operas and Romantic sacred music in the Catholic tradition.  His most famous operas, "Faust" and "Romeo et Juliette," remain in the opera repertory today.  "Faust" was first composed as a lyric opera with spoken dialogue and was later reworked in its present form with sung recitatives.  Gounod's music abounds in sentimental lyricism and a type of mild Romanticism that was imitated by many lesser talents of his time.