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Françix, Jean

Françix, Jean

Françix, Jean, significant French composer; b. Le Mans, May 23, 1912; d. Paris, Sept. 25, 1997. He was born into a musical family. His father was a composer and pianist who served as director of the Le Mans Cons., and his mother taught voice. He settled in Paris, where he studied at the Cons., taking the premier prix in 1930. His mentor in composition was Nadia Boulanger. Although he made some appearances as a pianist, principally as a exponent of his own works, he devoted himself mainly to composition. In his large output, he demonstrated his remarkable craftsmanship in writing scores with Gallic refinement and wit.

Works

DRAMATIC Opera : Le diable boiteux, comic chamber opera (1937; Paris, June 30, 1938); L ’Apostrophe, musical comedy after Balzac (1940; Amsterdam, July 1, 1951); La main gloire (1945; Bordeaux, May 18, 1951); Paris a nous deux (ou Le Nouveau Rastignac), comic opera (Fontainebleau, Aug. 7, 1954); La princesse de Cleves (1961–65; Rouen, Dec. 11, 1965). B a l l e t: Beach (Monte Carlo, April 18, 1933); Scuola de Ballo (Monte Carlo, April 25, 1933); Le roi nu (1935; Paris, June 15, 1936); Les malheurs de Sophie (1935; Paris, Feb. 25, 1948); La lutherie enchantee (Antwerp, March 21, 1936); Le jugement d’un fou (1937; London, Feb. 6, 1938); Verreries de Venise (1938; Paris, June 22, 1939); Les demoiselles de la nuit (Paris, May 20, 1948); Die Kamelien (Wiesbaden, Oct. 15, 1950); A la Frangaix (N.Y., Sept. 11, 1951); Le Roi Midas (1952); La dame dans la lune (1957–58; Paris, Feb. 18, 1958); Adages et Variations (Paris, Dec. 10, 1965); Le Croupier amoureux (1967); Pierrot ou Les Secrets de la nuit (1980; Salzburg, March 27, 1988). ORCH.: 2 syms.: No. 1 (Paris, Nov. 6, 1932) and No. 2 (La Jolla, Calif., Aug. 9, 1953); Piano Concertino (1932; Paris, Feb. 13, 1934); Sérénade for Small Orch. (1934); Suite for Violin and Orch. (1934; Paris, Nov. 27, 1937); Fantaisie for Cello and Orch. (Paris, May 23, 1935; new version, 1951); Divertissement for Violin, Viola, Cello, and Orch. (Paris, Dec. 22, 1935); Quadruple Concerto for Flute, Oboe, Clarinet, Bassoon, and Orch. (1935; Paris, Jan. 22, 1936); Piano Concerto (Berlin, Nov. 3, 1936); Musique de cour, duo concertante for Flute, Violin, and Orch. (Paris, Dec. 2, 1937); Divertissement for Bas-soon and Strings (1942; Schwetzingen, May 5, 1968; also for Bassoon and String Quintet); Rhapsodie for Viola and Small Orch. (1945; London, Jan. 1946); La douce France (Paris, Nov. 21, 1946); Les bosquets de Cythére, 7 waltzes (1946; Paris, July 8, 1947); L’heure du berger for Piano and Strings (1947); Symphonic d’archets for Strings (BBC, London, Nov. 1948); Les zigues de mars (Paris, Feb. 19, 1950); Variations de Concert for Cello and Strings (1950; 1st perf. in a recording, Paris, Sept. 15, 1952); Scuola de ballo, suite after the ballet (1950; Clichy-la-Garenne, Feb. 25, 1968); Si Versailles m’etait conté (Paris, May 5, 1954); Sérénade BEA for Strings (1955; Paris, Feb. 23, 1966); Au musée Grévin, suite (Paris, March 1, 1956); Six grandes marches (Paris, June 25, 1957; also for Piano); Harpsichord Concerto (1959; Paris, Feb. 7, 1960); L’Horloge deflore for Oboe and Orch. (1959; Philadelphia, March 31, 1961); Divertimento for Horn and Orch. (1959; Paris, March 13, 1968; also for Horn and Piano, Paris, March 15, 1968); Le dialogue des carmelites, symphonic suite (1960; Paris, April 4, 1969); Sei preludi for Small String Orch. (1963; Lucerne, Sept. 3, 1964); Concerto for 2 Pianos and Orch. (Maastricht, Nov. 26, 1965); Flute Concerto (1966; Schwetzingen, May 13, 1967); Clarinet Concerto (1967; Nice, July 30, 1968); 2 violin concertos: No. 1 (1968; Quebec, Jan. 26, 1970; rev. version, Paris, Nov. 22, 1970) and No. 2 for Violin and Chamber Orch. (Braunschweig, Nov. 30, 1979); Jeu poétique en six mouvements for Harp and Orch. (1969; Dresden, Oct. 12, 1972); Thème et variations (1971; Bochum, Dec. 12, 1974); 15 Portraits d’enfants d’Auguste Renoir for Strings (Paris, May 25, 1972; also for Piano, 4-Hands, 1971); La ville mystérieuse (1973; Nuremberg, March 15, 1974); Double Bass Concerto (Frankfurt am Main, Nov. 1, 1974); Divertimento for Flute and Chamber Orch. (Braunschweig, Nov. 29, 1974); Le gay Paris for Trumpet and Winds (1974; Wiesbaden, April 27, 1975); Cassazione for 3 Orchs. (Salzburg, Aug. 12, 1975); Prelude, Sarabande et Gigue for Trumpet and Orch. (1975–86; also for Trumpet and Piano); Concerto grosso for Flute, Oboe, Clarinet, Bassoon, Horn, String Quintet, and Orch. (1976; Mainz, Feb. 6, 1977); Tema con variazioni for Clarinet and Strings (Florence, Sept. 14, 1978); Concerto for 2 Harps and 11 Strings (1978; Schwetzingen, May 11, 1979); Ouverture anacréontique (1978; Recklinghausen, Feb. 22, 1981); Concerto for Bassoon and 11 Strings (1979; Frankfurt am Main, May 20, 1980; also for Bassoon and Piano); Concerto for Guitar and Strings (1982–83; Schwetzingen, May 25, 1984); Concerto for Trombone and 10 Winds (1983); Impromptu for Flute and Strings (Paris, Sept. 8, 1983); Ode à la Liberté for Wind Orch., Timpani, Percussion, Celesta, and Harp (1985); Pavane pour un génie vivant (Montpellier, July 23, 1987); Concerto for 15 Soloists, Timpani, and Strings or Orch., Suivi d’une surprise (1988; Vienna, May 16, 1990); 85 mesures et un Da capo for Small Orch. (1991); Double Concerto for Flute, Clarinet, and Orch. (1991; Schwetzingen, June 8, 1992); Accordion Concerto (1993; Montreux, Nov. 18, 1994). CHAMBER: Trio for Violin, Viola, and Cello (1933); Septet for Flute, Oboe, Bassoon, 2 Violins, Cello, and Piano (Paris, June 20, 1933); Quartet for Flute, Oboe, Clarinet, and Bassoon (1933; Paris, April 26, 1936); 2 quintets for Flute, Violin, Viola, Cello, and Harp: No. 1 (1934; Paris, May 24, 1935) and No. 2 (1989; Berlin, Oct. 15, 1992); Sonatine for Piano and Violin (1934; Paris, Feb. 17, 1936); Petit Quatuor for 4 Saxophones (1935; also for 2 Clarinets, Basset Horn, and Bass Clarinet, 1992; Itzehoe, July 23, 1993); Quartet for 2 Violins, Viola, and Cello (1938); Divertissement for Bassoon and String Quintet (1942; also for Bassoon and String Orch., Schwetzingen, May 5, 1968); Divertissement for Oboe, Clarinet, and Bassoon (1946; Paris, Jan.

26, 1947); 2 quintets for Flute, Oboe, Clarinet, Bassoon, and Horn: No. 1 (1948; Paris, Dec. 2, 1954) and No. 2 (Neumiinster, July 18, 1987); Les vacances for 2 Violins, Cello and Piano (Paris, Dec. 1953); Divertimento for Flute and Piano (1953; Paris, Jan. 12, 1955); Divertimento for Horn and Piano (1959; Paris, March 15, 1968; also for Horn and Orch., Paris, March 13, 1968); Scuola di cello for 10 Cellos (1960); Cinq danses exotiques for Alto Saxophone and Piano (1961; Paris, Feb. 21, 1967); Suite for Flute (Paris, May 5, 1962); Quartet for English Horn, Violin, Viola, and Cello (1970; London, March 21, 1971); Trio for Flute, Harp, and Cello (1971); Octet for Clarinet, Horn, Bassoon, 2 Violins, Viola, Cello, and Double Bass (Vienna, Nov. 7, 1972); 9 Pieces caracteristiques for 2 Flutes, 2 Oboes, 2 Clarinets, 2 Bassoons, and 2 Horns (1973; Schwetzingen, May 8, 1974); Tema con variazioni for Clarinet and Piano (Paris, May 31, 1974); Aubade for 12 Cellos (1974; Berlin, Sept. 30, 1975); Cinque piccoli duetti for Harp and Flute (1975); Prélude, Sarabande et Gigue for Trumpet and Piano (1975–86; also for Trumpet and Orch.); Théme varié for Double Bass (Paris, June 17, 1976); Variations sur un thème plaisant for Piano and Wind Ensemble (1976; Mainz, May 9, 1977); Chaconne for Harp and 11 Strings (1976; Gargilesse, Sept. 1, 1977); Quintet for Clarinet, 2 Violins, Viola, and Cello (1977; Munich, June 18, 1978); Sept impromptus for Flute and Bassoon (1977; Seattle, Oct. 12, 1978); Suite for Harp (1978); Serenata for Guitar (1978; Florence, Nov. 19, 1986); Les petits Paganini for Solo Violin and 4 Violins (1979); Petite valse européenne for Tuba and Double Wind Quintet (1979; Schwetzingen, May 14, 1980); Tema con 8 variazioni for Violin (1980; Paris, March 19, 1981); Duo baroque for Double Bass and Harp (1980; Frankfurt am Main, Aug. 11, 1982); 8 Bagatelles for String Quartet and Piano (1980; Montreal, Jan. 16, 1983); Danses Exotiques for 11 Winds and Percussion (1981; Landau, Oct. 29, 1982); Mozart new-look for Double Bass and Winds (1981; Kloster Eberbach, June 5, 1983); Onze Variations for 9 Winds and Double Bass (Kloster Eberbach, June 6, 1982); Sonata for Recorder and Guitar (1984; Paris, Oct. 23, 1986); Hommage à I’ami Papageno for Piano and Wind Ensemble, after Mozart (1984; Wiesbaden, Oct. 11, 1987); Passacaille for Guitar (Geneva, March 1, 1985); Trio for Violin, Cello, and Piano (1986; Cheltenham, July 11, 1987); Noël nouvelet“—et “II est ne, le Devin Enfant for 12 Cellos (1987); Dixtour, double quintet for Winds and Strings (Kissingen, July 8, 1987); Notturno for 4 Horns (Mainz, May 21, 1987); Quintet for Recorder, 2 Violins, Cello, and Harpsichord (London, April 12, 1988); Le Colloque des deux perruches for Flute and Alto Flute (1989); Trio for Clarinet, Viola, and Piano (1990); Suite for 4 Saxophones (Boutigny-sur-Essone, Oct. 20, 1990); Elegie for Wind Ensemble (1990; Schwetzingen, May 18, 1991); Wind Sextet (1991; Neumiinster, July 3, 1992); Pour remercier I’Auditoire for Flute, Clarinet, Horn, Violin, Cello, and Piano (1994; Tokyo, Jan. 21, 1995); Quartet for Clarinet, Basset Horn, Bass Clarinet, and Piano (1994; Husum, July 1, 1995); Trio for Oboe, Bassoon, and Piano (1994; Rotterdam, Aug. 29, 1995); Trio for Flute, Cello, and Piano (1995; Fautenbach, Sept. 26, 1998); Deux pieces for Bassoon and Piano (Paris, May 8, 1996); Flute Sonata (1996; Chicago, Aug. 15, 1997); Celestes Schubertiades for 2 Flutes, 2 Oboes, 2 Clarinets, 2 Bassoon, and 2 Horns, after Schubert (1996; Meran, April 4, 1997). KEYBOARD: Piano: Scherzo (Paris, March 5, 1932); Cinq portraits de jeunes filles (1936; Mans, Oct. 26, 1938); Éloge de la danse (1947; Montreux, Sept. 15, 1954); Si Versailles m’était conté… (1953); Napoléon for Piano, 4-Hands (1954; Paris, April 23, 1955); Six grandes marches (1957; also for Orch., Paris, June 25, 1957); Huit danses exotiques for 2 Pianos (Paris, Nov. 15, 1957); Danse des trois arlequins (1958); Sonata (1960); Cinq “Bis” (1965; Schwetzingen, May 16, 1986); Scuola de Ballo, after the ballet (1966); 15 Portraits d’enfants d’Auguste Renoir for Piano, 4-Hands (1971; also for String Orch., Paris, May 25, 1972); Zehn Stücke für Kinder zum Spielen und Träamen (1975); Acht Variationen uber den Namen Johannes Gutenberg (Mainz, Dec. 2, 1982); La Promenade d’un Musicologue Eclectique (1987; Rouen, May 2, 1990); Nocturne (Paris, June 30, 1994). O r g a n: Marche solennelle (1956); Suite carmelite (1960); Suite profane (1984); Messe de Manage (Oberalm, Aug. 5, 1988). Harpsichord : L’Insectarium (1953; Royaumont, July 14, 1957); Deux pieces (1977). VOCAL: Cinq chansons pour les enfants for Children’s Chorus and Orch. (1932); Trois épigrammes for Chorus and String Quintet or String Orch. (Nantes, Nov. 30, 1938; also for Soprano or Tenor and Piano); L’Apocalypse selon St. Jean, fantastic oratorio for 4 Soloists, Chorus, and 2 Orchs. (1939; Paris, June 11, 1942); L’Adolescene Clementine for Voice and Piano (1941); Cinq poemes de Charles d’Orleans for Voice and Piano (1946); Invocation à la volupté for Baritone and Orch. (1946); Juvenalia for Soprano, Alto, Tenor, Bass, and Piano, 4-Hands (1947); Prière du soirChanson for Voice and Guitar or Piano (1947); Huit anecdotes de Chamfort for Low Voice and Piano (Royaumont, June 26, 1949); Scherzo impromptu for Voice and Piano (N.Y., Nov. 6, 1949); La cantate de Méphisto for Bass and String Orch. (1952; N.Y., Jan. 25, 1953); Deploration de tonton, humorous cantata for Mezzosoprano and String Orch. (1956); La chatte blanche for Tenor and Piano (Aix-en- Provence, July 27, 1957); Le grenouille qui veut se faire aussi grosse que le boef for Soprano or Tenor and Piano (1963); Le coq et le renard for Men’s Chorus or Men’s Vocal Quartet and Piano (1963); Les inestimables chroniques du bon geant Gargantua for Speaker and String Orch. (Paris, May 17, 1971); La promenade à Versailles, cantata for 4 Men’s Voices and 11 Strings (1976); La Cantate des Vieillards for Tenor, Bass, and Strings (1978); Psyche for Speaker and Orch. (1981; Radio Geneva, Sept. 3, 1982); Trois Poémes de Paul Valery for Chorus (1982; Darmstadt, June 29, 1984); Triade de toujours for Soprano, Baritone, Wind Quintet, String Quintet, and Harp (1991; Bad Urach, Sept. 28, 1992); Neuf Historiettes for Baritone, Tenor Saxophone, and Piano (Paris, May 25, 1997). OTHER: Film scores.

Bibliography

M. Lanjean, J. F. (Paris, 1961).

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire

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