Gaveaux Pierre

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Gaveaux Pierre

Gaveaux, Pierre, French singer and composer; b. Béziers, Oct. 9, 1760; d. Charenton, near Paris, Feb. 5, 1825. He was a choirboy at the Béziers Cathedral, where he later sang as a soloist. After composition lessons with Abbé Combés, the cathedral organist, he studied with Franz Beck. He settled in Paris, where he sang in opera from 1780. From 1793 he ran a music shop with his brother, and publ. his own works. In 1804 he became a singer at the imperial chapel, but was stricken with mental illness in 1812. In 1819 he entered an asylum. He composed more than 30 works for the stage, principally opéras-comiques. His most notable stage works were Sophie et Moncars, ou L’intrigue portugaise (Paris, Sept. 30, 1797) and Léonore, ou L’amour conjugal (Paris, Feb. 19, 1798). The latter was composed to a libretto by Bouilly, which was also set by Beethoven as Fidelio. Among Gaveaux’s other works were Revolutionary pieces, overtures, and songs.

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire