Berton, Pierre-Montan, French tenor, conductor, and composer, father of Henri-Montan Berton; b. Maubert-Fontaines, Ardennes, Jan. 7, 1727; d. Paris, May 14, 1780. He studied organ, harpsichord, and composition at the Senlis Cathedral choir school, and then completed his training in Paris. After singing at the Paris Opéra and in Marseilles, he became director of the Bordeaux Grand Théatre. In 1755 he returned to Paris as conductor of the Opéra, serving as its general director (1775–78). Under his leadership, the Paris Opéra orch. attained notable distinction. Berton was an adept arranger of the operas of Lully, Rameau, and Gluck, in which he interpolated his own music.
DRAMATIC: Opera-ballet: Deucalion et Pyrrha (Paris, Sept. 30, 1755). opera:Silvie (Fontainebleau, Oct. 17, 1765); Erosine (Paris, Aug. 29, 1766); Théonis, ou Le toucher (Paris, Oct. 11, 1767; in collaboration with Trial); Adèle de Ponthieu (Paris, Dec. 1, 1772; in collaboration with Laborde); Linus (unfinished). VOCAL: A cantata, a motet, and songs.
—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire