Beck, Franz Ignaz

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Beck, Franz Ignaz

Beck, Franz Ignaz, German violinist, organist, conductor, teacher, and composer; b. Mannheim, Feb. 20, 1734; d. Bordeaux, Dec. 31, 1809. He studied violin with his father, an oboist and rector of the choir at the court of the Elector Palatine in Mannheim, and later studied there with J. Stamitz. Following service at the court, he went to Venice. About 1760 he went to Marseilles, where he was active in the theater orch. In 1761 he settled in Bordeaux and became a conductor at the Grand Théâtre and organist at the church of St. Seurin. Beck publ. several syms. (1758–66) whose inventive style render them of more than just historical interest in the development of the genre. His other works include the opera La Belle Jardinière (Bordeaux, Aug. 24, 1767), the mélodrame Pandore (Paris, July 2, 1789), a Stabat Mater (1783), violin quartets, and keyboard sonatas.


B. Carrow, The Relationship Between the Mannheim School and the Music of F. B., Henri Blanchard, and Pierre Gaveaux (diss., N.Y. Univ., 1956); M. Stahl, F. B.: Un élève de Stamitz à Bordeaux (Bordeaux, 1991).

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire