Clapisson, (Antoine-) Louis

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Clapisson, (Antoine-) Louis

Clapisson, (Antoine-) Louis, French composer, curator, and pedagogue; b. Naples, Sept. 15, 1808; d. Paris, March 19, 1866. He received training in violin in Naples. In 1830 he entered the Paris Cons., where he studied violin with Habeneck (second prix, 1833), and also took lessons in counterpoint and fugue with Reicha. From 1832 to 1838 he was a violinist in the Paris Opéra orch., and then was notably successful as a composer of opéras-comiques. In 1847 he was named a Chevalier of the Légion d’honneur and in 1854 he was elected over Berlioz to replace Halévy at the Académie des Beaux-Arts. He acquired and restored a collection of early instruments, which he later oversaw as curator at the Paris Cons., where he also was a prof, of harmony from 1862. Clapisson’s opéras-comiques were quite popular in his lifetime, but they failed to retain a place in the repertoire.


DRAMATIC (all opéras-comiques and 1st perf. in Paris unless otherwise given): La figurante, ou L’amour et la danse (Aug. 24, 1838); La symphonie, ou Maître Albert (Oct. 12, 1839); La perruche (April 28, 1840); Le pendu (March 25, 1841); Frère et mari (July 7, 1841); Le code noir (June 9, 1842); Les bergers trumeaux, opéra bouffon (Feb. 10, 1845); Gibby la cornemuse (Nov. 19, 1846); Don Quixotte et Sanche, musical sketch (Dec. 11, 1847); Jeanne la folle, opera (Nov. 6, 1848); La statue équestre (1850; not perf.); Les mystères d’Udolphe (Nov. 4, 1852); La promise (March 17, 1854); Dans les vignes (Dec. 31, 1854); Le coffret de Saint Domingue (1855); Les amoureux de Verrette (Baden-Baden, 1855); La fanchonnette (March 1, 1856); Le sylphe (Baden-Baden, Aug. 18, 1856); Margot (Nov. 5, 1857); Les trois Nicolas (Dec. 16, 1858); Madame Grégoire (Feb. 8, 1861); La poularde de Caux, operetta (May 17, 1861; in collaboration with others). other: Chamber music; over 200 songs.

—Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire