Desmazures, Laurent, famous French organist;b. Marseilles, Nov. 10, 1714; d. while playing the organ at the church of St. Ferreol there, April 29, 1778. He was the son of Charles Desmazures (b. 1670; d. Marseilles, Feb. 13,1736), an organist and composer who served as organist at Marseilles Cathedral. In 1737 he began his career as an organist at the Moissac Abbey, and subsequently was organist at the Cathedral of St. Lazare d’Autun (1750–52), at Notre Dame Cathedral in Rouen (1758–77), and at the church of St. Ferreol in Marseilles (from 1777). Although he lost 3 of his fingers on his left hand, he overcame this handicap by learning to play with false fingers that in no way diminished his dexterity as a virtuoso. He also was a composer and wrote the opéra- ballet Les fetes de Grenade (Dijon, Jan. 12, 1752).
—Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire