In 1857 he shared a prize offered by Jacques Offenbach for a setting of the one-act operetta Le Docteur Miracle and won the Prix de Rome. As per the conditions of the scholarship, he studied in Rome for three years. There, his talent began to mature with such works as Symphony in C (Roma) and the opera Don Procopio. Besides this stay in Rome, Bizet lived in the Paris area for his entire life.
Following his stay in Rome, he returned to Paris where he dedicated himself to composition. Early into his return to Paris, Georges' mother died. In 1863 he composed the opera Les pêcheurs de perles (The Pearl Fishers) for the Theatre-Lyrique. During this period Bizet also wrote the opera La jolie fille de Perth, his well-known L'arlésienne (written as incidental music for a play), and the piano piece Jeux d'enfants (Children's games) He also wrote the romantic opera Djamileh, which is often seen as a percursor to Carmen.
Bizet's best-known work is his 1875 opera, Carmen, which was based on an 1846 novel of the same name by Prosper Mérimée. Influenced by Giuseppe Verdi, he composed the title role in Carmen for a mezzo-soprano. Not an immediate success, Bizet became despondent over the perceived failure, but praise came from such luminaries as Camille Saint-Saëns, Peter Tchaikovsky, and Claude Debussy, who recognized its greatness. Their views were prophetic, as the public made Carmen one of the most popular works in operatic history.
Bizet had long suffered from quinsy, a painful inflammation of the tonsils associated with angina and never got to enjoy Carmen's success. Just a few months after the opera's debut, he died on his sixth wedding anniversary at the early age of 36, the official cause of death being listed as a failed heart due to 'acute articular rheumatism'. He was interred in the Père Lachaise Cemetery, Paris, France.
Although it is not well known, Bizet was an extraordinarily fine pianist, whose playing was praised by no less a judge than Franz Liszt himself. After Bizet flawlessly sightread a complex piece, Liszt said he considered Bizet one of the three finest pianists in Europe.
|Au Fond Du Temple Saint "(Duet From The Pearl Fishers). By Georges Bizet (1838-1875). Edited by Roger Nichols. For tenor/baritone voice duet and piano accompaniment. Classical Period. Difficulty: medium. Vocal score. Duet notation, piano reduction and introductory text. 25 pages|
|Carmen "(Vocal Score). By Georges Bizet (1838-1875). Arranged by Ruth & Thomas Martin. For SATB chorus, 12 solo voices and piano accompaniment (Score). G. Schirmer Opera Score Editions. Classical Period and Opera. Difficulty: difficult. Vocal score. Vocal score,|
|Habanera from the Opera Carmen "By Georges Bizet (1838-1875). Edited by Edwin Mclean. For voice, piano and guitar (chords only). P/V/C. Bizet's ever-popular Habanera from the opera Carmen is presented here in its original piano/vocal form, but with a newly translated English lyric as w|
|44 Original Piano Duets (Haydn to Stravinsky (Easy to Intermediate Grades)). By Georges Bizet Igor Fyodorovich Stravinsky. For Piano 4 Hands. Solo part. Standard notation. 159 pages. Published by Theodore Presser Company|
|Fantasy on Themes From Bizet's Carmen "By Georges Bizet (1838-1875). Edited by Mack Wilberg. For 2 pianos, 8-hands. Late Intermediate. Music book. Published by Neil A. Kjos Music Company"|
|Carmen "(A Concert Suite for Two Pianos/Four Hands). By Georges Bizet (1838-1875). Arranged by Richard Simm. For Piano. This edition: 2 copies required. Duet or Duo; Piano Duo (2 Pianos, 4 Hands). Advanced level piece for the Piano Duo event with the National Fe|
|Bizet -- Jeux d'enfants "By Georges Bizet (1838-1875). Edited by Charles Timbrell. For Piano. Duet or Duo; Masterworks; Piano Duet (1 Piano, 4 Hands). Alfred Masterwork Edition. Masterwork; Romantic. Early Advanced. Book. 72 pages. Published by Alfred Music Publishing"|
|The Rafael Mendez Collection "(Transcriptions, Arrangements and Original Works for B-Flat Trumpet and Piano). By Guiseppe F Verdi Georges Bizet. Arranged by Rafael Mendez. For Trumpet Solo, Piano. Solo part with piano reduction. Standard notation. 256 pages. Published by Carl Fischer|
|Habanera de Carmen By Georges Bizet (1838-1875). Arranged by Luc Levesque. For Guitar Ensemble. 2. 28 pages. Published by Les Productions d'OZ|
|A Carmen Celebration By Georges Bizet (1838-1875). Arranged by Kevin Olson. For piano. The FJH Piano Ensemble Series. Romantic Period. Late Intermediate/Early Advanced. Single sheet. Published by The FJH Music Company Inc|
|Sonatina [No. 6] super Carmen - Kammerfantasie (Kammerfantasie uber Carmen) "By Ferruccio Busoni (1866-1924) and Georges Bizet (1838-1875). For piano solo. Opera; Original Works. Post-Romantic, 20th Century, Italian, German. Score. Composed 1920. Published by Masters Music Publications Inc."|
|Carmen Overture "(1 Piano, 6 Hands/Mid-Intermediate Level). By Georges Bizet (1838-1875). Arranged by Arnoldo Sartorio. Willis. Mid-Intermediate. 16 pages. Willis Music #4489. Published by Willis Music"|
|Church Piano Music (From the Works of the Foremost Masters). By Adolph Friedrich Hesse Georges Bizet. Arranged by Martha Powell Setchell. Piano. For Piano Solo. Solo part. Standard notation. 72 pages. Published by Carl Fischer|
|"Six Etudes in Canon Form, Op. 56" "By Robert Schumann. Edited by Maurice Hinson and Allison Nelson. Arranged by Georges Bizet. For 1 piano, 4-hands. Duet or Duo; Masterworks; Piano Duet (1 Piano, 4 Hands); Technique Musicianship. Alfred Masterwork Edition. Masterwork; Romantic. Early Adva|
|"L'Arlesienne, Suites 1 & 2" "By Georges Bizet (1838-1875). For Piano. Duet or Duo; Masterworks; Piano Duet (1 Piano, 4 Hands). Kalmus Edition. Form: Suite. Masterwork; Romantic. Book. 64 pages. Published by Alfred Music Publishing"|
|"Carmen (Concert Fantasy), Op. 25" "(For Violin and Piano, Op. 25). By Pablo De Sarasate Georges Bizet. Edited by Gustave Saenger. For Violin Solo, Piano. Set of parts. Standard notation. Opus 25. 29 pages. Published by Carl Fischer"|
|My Favorite Duet Album "(25 Selected Duets for Piano-Four Hands). By Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky Georges Bizet. Edited by Maxwell Eckstein. Arranged by Maxwell Eckstein Fritz Spindler. Piano 4-hands. For Piano I, Piano II. Softcover. Standard notation. 159 pages. Published by Carl|
|20 Melodies -- Soprano or Tenor (Contents identical with K06832 (French Language Edition)). By Georges Bizet (1838-1875). For Voice. Masterworks; Vocal Collection. Kalmus Edition. Masterwork; Romantic. Book. 136 pages. Published by Alfred Music Publishing|
|Bizet: 20 Melodies (Mezzo Soprano/Baritone) (Twenty of Bizet's best-known songs (German Language Edition)). By Georges Bizet (1838-1875). For Voice. Masterworks; Vocal Collection. Kalmus Edition. Masterwork; Romantic. Book. 136 pages. Published by Alfred Music Publishing|
|Carmen Fantasy By Georges Bizet (1838-1875). Arranged by Bob Elkjer. Solo. For trombone solo. With piano. From the Slidearea recording. Duration Approx. 10:00. Published by Alessi Publications|