Boulanger, Lili (Juliette Marie Olga)

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Boulanger, Lili (Juliette Marie Olga)

Boulanger, Lili (Juliette Marie Olga), talented French composer, sister of Nadia (Juliette) Boulanger; b. Paris, Aug. 21, 1893; d. Mézy, Seine-et-Oise, March 15, 1918. She studied composition with Vidal at the Paris Cons. (1909–13), attracting considerable attention when she won the Grand Prix de Rome at graduation with her cantata Faust et Hélène, becoming the first woman to receive this distinction. Her early death at the age of 24 was lamented by French musicians. Her talent, delicate and poetic, continued the tradition of French Romanticism on the borderline of Impressionism. Besides her prize-winning cantata, she wrote 2 symphonic poems, D’un soir triste and D’un matin de printemps-, her opera to Maeterlinck’s play La Princesse Maleine remained incomplete. She also wrote several choral works with orch.: Soir sur la plaine; Hymne au soleil; La Tempête; Les Sirènes; Sous bois; La Source; Pour les funérailles d’un soldat; 3 psaumes; Vieille prière bouddhique; Pie Jesu, sacred chorus for Voice, Strings, Harp, and Organ; cycle of 13 songs to texts of Francis Jammes, Clairières dans le ciel; some flute pieces.


E. Lebeau, L. B. (Paris, 1968); L. Rosenstiel, The Life and Works of L. B..(Rutherford, 1978); P. Gallo, L. B.: L’innocenza del sogno simbolista (Treviso, 1996).

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire

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