Guédron, Pierre, important French composer; b. Beauce province, Normandy, between 1570 and 1575; d. probably in Paris, 1619 or 1620. He was a chorister in the service of Cardinal de Guise, Louis II of Lorraine, by 1585. Following the cardinal’s assassination in 1588, he entered the service of the royal chapel. He was given 1st place as maitre des chanteurs de la chambre about 1590, then was made compositeur de la chambre du Roi (1601) and valet de chambre to the king and maitre des enfants de la musique (1603). His son-in-law, Antoine Boesset, succeeded him in 1613 while he took up the post of intendant des musiques de la chambre du Roy et de la Reyne Mere (he is listed as surintendant in court records of 1617 and 1619). He was one of the most significant composers of airs de cour and ballets de cour of his era, some of which were included in a number of the ballets he wrote for the court.
BALLET (all 1st perf. in Paris): Ballet sur la naissance de Monseigneur le due de Vendosme (1602); Ballet de la Reyne (1609); Ballet de Monseigneur le due de Vendosme, ou Ballet d’Alcine (1610); Ballet du maitre à danser (c. 1612); Ballet de Madame, soeur du Roy (1613); Ballet dés Argonautes (1614); Ballet du triomphe de Minerve (1615); Ballet de Monsieur le Prince Conde (1615); Ballet du Roy, ou Ballet de la délivrance de Renaud (1617); Ballet des princes (1618); Ballet du Roy sur I’aventure de Tancrède en la forest enchantée (1619). VOCAL: Airs de cour for 4 and 5 Voices (Paris, 1602; 1 part-book not extant); Airs de cour for 4 and 5 Voices (Paris, 1608); Second livre d’airs de cour for 4 and 5 Voices (Paris, 1613); Troisiême livre d’airs de cour for 4 and 5 Voices (Paris, 1617); Quatrieme livre d’airs de cour for 4 and 5 Voices (Paris, 1618; 1 part-book not extant); Cincjuieme livre d’airs de cour for 4 and 5 Voices (Paris, 1620; 4 part-books not extant). Airs were also arranged for voice and lute and were publ. in various contemporary anthologies; several were also arranged for instruments.
D. Royster, P. G. and the Air de cour, 1600-1620 (diss., Yale Univ., 1972).
—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire