Desmarets, Henri

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Desmarets, Henri

Desmarets, Henri, important French composer; b. Paris, Feb. 1661; d. Luneville, Sept. 7,1741. He was a boy soprano in the Paris royal chapel, subsequently becom-

ing one of the most highly regarded musicians of his day. Many of his works were performed at the court of Louis XIV. He served as maitre de chapelle at the Jesuit Coll. of Louis-le-Grand. His personal life was stormy. After the death of his wife, he became involved with one of his students; when the girl’s father objected, the lovers fled to Brussels in 1699. In 1701 he was made maitre de musique de la chambre to Philip V in Madrid, and in 1707 became surintendant de la musique to Leopold I, Duke of Lorraine, in Luneville. Having been sentenced to death in absentia for personal indiscretions, he was unable to return to France until he was pardoned by the regent in 1720. For the most part, he spent his remaining years in Luneville.


DRAMATIC opéra (all 1st perf. in Paris): Didon (Sept. 11, 1693); Circe (Oct. 1, 1694); Venus et Adonis (March 7, 1697); Theagene et Cariclee (Feb. 3, 1695); Iphigenie en Tauride (May 6, 1704); Renaud, on La Suite d’Armide (March 5, 1722). B a 1 1 e t : Les Amours de Momus (May 25, 1695); Les Fetes galantes (May 10, 1698).


M. Antoine, Henry D. (Paris, 1965).

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire

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Desmarets, Henri

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