Brailoiu, Constantin

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Brăiloiu, Constantin

Brăiloiu, Constantin distinguished Romanian-born French ethnomusicologist; b. Bucharest, Aug. 25, 1893; d. Geneva, Dec. 20, 1958. He studied music in Lausanne, with Gédalge at the Paris Cons. (1912–14), and in Romania. After a period as a composer and music critic, he turned to ethnomusicological research. In 1921 he became a prof, of music history and aesthetics at the Académie Royale de Musique in Bucharest, and later taught at the Académie de Musique Religieuse de la Sainte Patriarchie (1929–35). In 1926 he became secretary-general of the Soc. of Romanian Composers, where he founded its folklore archives in 1928; it later became the Institutul de Folclor §i Ethnografie. From 1943 to 1946 he served as attaché at the Romanian Embassy in Bern. With Eugène Pittarci, he founded the international folk music archives in Geneva in 1944. In 1948 he went to Paris and in 1956 he became a naturalized French citizen. He was a member of the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, and pursued research at the Musée de l’Homme and at the Sorbon-ne’s Inst. of Musicology. His article “Esquisse d’une méthode de folklore musical (organisation d’archives)” Revue de Musicologie, XI (1931; Eng. tr. in Ethnomusicology, XIV, 1970) is a valuable guide to his approach to the synoptic transcription of music. Among his other important articles were “Le rythme aksak,” Revue de Musicologie, XXX (1951), “Sur une mélodie russe” Musique russe (vol. II, Paris, 1953), and “Le rythme enfantin: Notions liminaires” Cercle international d’études ethno-musicologigues: Wegimont 1954. He also engaged in valuable fieldwork, which he preserved on recordings.


E. Comi§el, G B., 1893-1958 (Bucharest, 1996).

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire