Cambert, Robert, French composer; b. Paris, c. 1628; d. London, c.Feb. 1677. He was a pupil of Cham-bonnières. In 1652 he became organist at St. Honore in Paris. He then was made composer to the queen mother, Anne of Austria, in 1662. His first venture on the lyric stage was La Pastorale, written with the librettist Perrin and successfully produced at the Château d’Issy in 1659; it was followed by Ariane, ou Le Manage de Bacchus (rehearsed in 1661) and Adonis (1662; not perf.; MS lost). In 1669 Perrin received letters patent for establishing the Académie Royale de Musique (the national operatic theater, now the Grand Opéra); he brought out, in collaboration with Cambert, the opera Pomone (1671); another opera, Les Peines et les plaisirs de l’amour, was written, and produced in Paris in March 1671, before Lully secured the patent. In 1673, after Lully secured the patent in violation of the agreement with Molière, Cambert went to London. With his former pupil Louis Grabu, he founded a Royal Academy of Musick in 1674 for the production of stage works.
A. Pougin, Les Vrais Créateurs de l’opéra français, Perrin et C. (Paris, 1881).
—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire