Magnard, (Lucien-Denis-Gabriel), Albéric

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Magnard, (Lucien-Denis-Gabriel), Albéric

Magnard, (Lucien-Denis-Gabriel), Albéric, distinguished French composer; b. Paris, June 9, 1865; d. (killed by German soldiers at his home) Baron, Oise, Sept. 3, 1914. He was born into an intellectual family of means, his father being the publishing director of Le Figaro.He pursued training in law (graduated, 1887) and was a student at the Paris Cons., where he studied counterpoint with Dubois and attended the classes of Massenet (premier prix in harmony, 1888). He completed his training with d’lndy (1888–92), mastering fugue and orchestration. In 1896 he became a tutor in counterpoint at the Schola Cantorum in Paris. Magnard was an early victim of World War I. When a German cavalry detachment entered his estate, he opened fire upon it and killed at least one soldier. The detachment returned his fire and then torched his home. Magnard, as well as a number of his MSS, perished in the conflagration. He was a composer of discernment and a master of orchestration. His 3rd and 4th syms. are remarkable for their dramatic power and rhapsodic sweep.

Works

opera:Yolande (1888–91; Brussels, Dec. 27, 1892); Guercoeur (1897–1900; orch. partially reconstructed by G. Ropartz; Paris, April 24,1931); Bérénice (1905–09; Paris, Dec. 15, 1911). orch.:Suite d’orchestre dans le style ancien (1888; rev. 1889); 4 syms.: No. 1 (1889–90; Paris, April 18, 1891), No. 2 (1892–93; rev. version, Nancy, Feb. 9, 1896), No. 3 (1895–96; Paris, May 18, 1899), and No. 4 (1911–13; Paris, May 16, 1914); Ouverture (1894–95); Chant funèbre (1895); Hymne à la justice (1902); Hymne à Vénus (1903–04). chamber:Piano Quintet (1894); Violin Sonata (1901); String Quartet (1902–03); Piano Trio (1904–05); Cello Sonata (1909–10). p i a n o :3 Pièces (1887–88); Promenades (1893); Pièces, En Dieu mon espérance et mon espée pour ma défense (1889). vocal: 6 Poèmes (1887–90); A Henriette (1890 or 1891); 4 Poèmes en musique (1902); 12 Poèmes (1913–14).

Bibliography

R. Barres, Une défense heroïque: La mort d’A.M.(Paris, 1915); M. Boucher, A. M.(Lyons, 1919); C. Carraud, La Vie, l’oeuvre et la mort d’A. M.(Paris, 1921); B. Bardet, A.M., 1865–1914 (Paris, 1966).

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire