John Denison Champlin.

Cyclopedia of music and musicians (Volume 2) online

. (page 30 of 93)
Online LibraryJohn Denison ChamplinCyclopedia of music and musicians (Volume 2) → online text (page 30 of 93)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook


Allgem. mus. Zeitg., i. seq. ; Hiller, Lebens-
beschreibungen beriihmter Musikgelehrten,
etc. (Leipsic, 1784).

GRAUPNER, CHRISTOPH, born at
Kirchberg, Saxony, January, 1G83, died at
Darmstadt, May 10, 17GO. Dramatic com-
poser, pupil at the Thomasschule in Leipsin
of Kulman ; then studied law, but was
driven by the Swedish invasion of 170G to
Hamburg, where he acted as accompanist
to the opera under Reiser. He was ap-
pointed Vice-Kapellmeister at Darmstadt in
1710, Kapellmeister in 1711, and did much
to elevate musical taste. During the last
ten years of his life he was blind. He was
wonderfully industrious in composition,
working sometimes days and nights, and
he engraved some of his own pieces. He
devoted himself later almost exclusively to
church music. "Works Operas : Dido,
Hamburg, 1707 ; Die lustige Hochzeit
(with Reiser), ib., 1708 ; Herkules mid
Theseus, Anliochus und Stratouice, Bellero-
phon, ib., 1708 ; Simson, ib., 1709 ; Bere-
nice und Lucio, Darmstadt, 1710 ; Tele-



mach, ib., 1711; Bestiindigkeit besiegt Be-
trug, ib., 1719. Eight Parthien f iir Klavier
(1718) ; Monatliche Rlavierfriichte (1722) ;
8 Parthien fiir das Klavier (172G) ; Die vier
Jahreszeiteu (1733) ; Hessen-Dariustadti-
sches Choralbuch. In manuscript : About
1,300 figured chorals and pieces for the
Schlosskirche in Darmstadt ; 194 Tafelmu-
siken, 144 symphonies, and 80 overtures for
pianoforte and other instruments ; 50 con-
certos for various instruments ; trios and
sonatas for pianoforte, strings, and wind in-
struments. His manuscripts are in the court
musical library of Darmstadt. Allgem. d.
Biogr., ix. 609 ; Mendel ; Mattheson, Ehren-
pforte, 410, autobiographical ; Fi'tis ; Win-
terfeld, Der evang. Kirchengesang, iii. 502.

GRAVRAND (Graverand), JACQUES
FRANCOIS URBAIN, born at Caen, France,
April 2, 1770, died there, July 1G, 1854.
Violinist, pupil of Quurii, then in Paris of
Baillot ; after having been violinist in the
theatre orchestra at Caen for several years,
he became chef d'orchestre. Works : 7 col-
lections of duos for violin, op. 1-5, 7, 8 ; 3
trios for 2 violins and violoncello, op. G.
Fetis.

GRAZIANI (Gratiani), BONIFACIO,
born at Marino, near Rome, in 1605, died
there, June 15, 1GG4. Church composer,
maestro di cappella of the Jesuit church in
Rome. He left a quantity of church music,
published after his death by his brother,
consisting of motets for one, two, and six
voices ; Salmi for five voices, etc. ; Masses ;
Litanies ; etc., in all twenty-four works, from
1652 to 1G78. Fetis ; Riemann ; Mendel.

GRAZIANI, Padre TOMMASO, born at
Bagnacavallo, near Ravenna, Italy ; lived in
the latter part of the 16th and beginning
of the 17th century. He was a Franciscan
monk, and became maestro di cappella of
the convent of his order in Milan. Works :
Five-part masses (1569) ; Four-part vesper
psalms (1587) ; Five-part madrigals (1588) ;
Eight-part do. (1G01) ; Sinfouie pertinaci,
litanie a 4, 5, 6 e 8 voci (1617) ; Responses
(1627). Mendel ; Riemann ; Fetis.



1ST



GKAZIOLI



GRAZIOLI, GIOVANNI BATTISTA,
born in Venice about 1755, died there in
1820. Organist, pupil of Bertoni, whom he
assisted in 1778. He succeeded Domeuico
Bettoui at San Marco in ] 782. His sonatas
for harpsichord and violin, etc., were pub-
lished in Germany. Fetis ; Mendel.

GRAZZINI, EEGINALDO, born at Flor-
ence, Italy, Oct. 15, 1848, still living, 1889.
Instrumental and vocal composer, pupil of
Teodulo Mabellini at the Conservatorio,
Florence ; became director of the Conserva-
torio, and maestro di cappella of the theatre
at Reggio d' Emilio in 1881, and professor
and artistic director of the Liceo Benedetto
Marcello, at Venice, in 1882. Works : Can-
tata biblica, 1875 ; Mass for 3 voices, 1882 ;
Symphonies ; Pianoforte music ; Opera
(MS. ). Riemann.

GREAT DAGON HAS SUBDUED OUR
FOE, tenor air and chorus in G major, in
Handel's Hunixon, Part IH.

GREATHEED. SAMUEL STEPHEN-
SON, born near Weston-super-Mare, Eng-
land. Feb. 22, 1813, still living, 1889.
Church composer, rector of Corringham,
Sussex. B.A. Cambridge, 1835 ; M.A.
1838. Works: Enoch's Prophecy, oratorio,
1852 ; Communion services ; Anthems, etc. '

(iUEATOREX, THOMAS, born at North |
Wingfield, Derbyshire, England, Oct. 5,
1758, died in London, July 18, 1831. Or-
ganist, pupil of Dr. Benjamin Cooke in
1772. He found a patron in the Earl of
Sandwich in 1774, and assisted at the ora-
torios given by Joah Bates at Hinchinbrook
House in 1774, 1775, 1776. In 1780-84 he
was organist of Carlisle Cathedral, and in
1786-88 visited Italy and the Netherlands.
He established himself as a teacher in Lon-
don in 1789, and succeeded Bates on his re-
tirement, in 1793, as conductor of the Con-
cert of Ancient Music. In 1801 he joined
Knyvett, Harrison, and Bartleman in reviv-
ing the Vocal Concerts, in 1819 succeeded
George Ebenezer Williams as organist of
Westminster Abbey, and was conductor
many years of the triennial musical festivals



at Birmingham, as well as those at York,
Derby, and elsewhere. Greatorex was the
foremost organist of his time, and of consid-
erable scientific attainments. He published
a collection of psalm tunes harmonized for
four voices, and a few harmonized airs ; and
composed orchestral accompaniments for
many pieces for the Ancient and Vocal Con-
certs which are still in MS. His son,
Henry Wellington Greatorex (born at Bur-
tou-ou-Treut, 1811, died in Charleston,
South Carolina, Sept. 10, 1858), went to
New York in 1839 and was organist of Cal-
vary Church, of St. Paul's Chapel, and later
of a church in Hartford, Connecticut. He
published some church music and compiled
The Greatorex Collection (Hartford, 1851).
He was the husband of Eliza Greatorex, the
artist. Grove ; Brown ; Harmouicon, 1831,
231.

GREAVES, THOMAS, English lutist and
composer, beginning of the 17th century.
He published, in 1604 : " Songs of Sundrie
Kindes ; first, Aires to be sung to the Lute
or Base Violl. Next, Songs of Sadnesse for
the Viols and Voyces. Lastly, Madrigalles
for five Voyces." It consists of 21 pieces, 15
songs, and 6 madrigals. Nothing is known
of his history. Grove.

GREBER, JACOB, lived in the latter
part of the 17th and first part of the 18th
century. He went to London about 1703,
and aided in the introduction of Italian
opera. Madame Pepusch was one of his
pupils. Works Operas : The Loves of Er-
gasto, melodrama, given at the Haymarket
Theatre, London, 1705 ; The Temple of
Love, ib., 1706. Mendel ; Fctis ; Burney,
Hist, of Music, iv. 200 ; Hawkins, Hist, of
Music, v. 154.

GREENE, MAURICE, born in London
about 1696, died there, Sept. 1, 1755. Or-
ganist, chorister in St. Paul's Cathedral
under Charles King, afterwards articled to
Richard Brind, organist of the cathedral.
He soon distinguished himself, and suc-
ceeded Daniel Purcell as organist of St.
Andrew's, Holborn, in 1717, being at the



188



GREEN SLEEVES



same time organist of St. Duustan's in
the West, Fleet Street ; on the death of
Brind, in 1718, he became organist of St.
Paul's, and in 1727 organist and composer
to the Chapel Royal. He was intimate with
Handel and Bououcini. When the latter
was expelled from the Academy, Greene,
believing or affecting to believe that his
friend had been unjustly treated, also with-
drew from it, and, in conjunction with Fest-
iug the violinist, established a rival concert
at the Apollo Rooms. In 1730 he was
elected professor of music in the University
of Cambridge to succeed Dr. Tudway, and
received the degree of Mus. Doc. He suc-
ceeded John Eccles as master of the king's
band in 1735, and wrote many odes for the
king's birthdays and New Year's Day. His
reputation rests mainly on his Forty Select
Anthems (1743), a work which places him
among the best of the English church com-
posers. In 1750 he began the formation
of a collection of the best English cathedral
music in score, which, left unfinished at
his death, was completed by Dr. Boyce un-
der the title of " Cathedral Music." He
was one of the founders of the Society of
Musicians. Works : Music to Pope's Ode
on St. Cecilia's Day (1730) ; Odes for King's
Birthday and New Year's Day (1730) ; Par-
aphrase on part of the Song of Deborah and
Barak (1732) ; Jephthah, oratorio (1737) ;
Florimel, or Love's Revenge, dramatic pas-
toral (1737) ; Addison's ode, The Spacious
Firmament (1837) ; The Judgment of Her-
cules, masque (17-10) ; The Force of Truth,
oratorio (1744) ; Phcebe, pastoral opera
(1748) ; Spencer's Amoretti, for voice, harp-
sichord, and violin ; The Chaplet, collection
of twelve English songs ; Catches and can-
ons for three and four voices ; 2 books,
each containing a cantata and four English
songs ; Church service in C (1737) ; Forty
select anthems in score for 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7,
and 8 voices (2 vols., London, 1743) ; Te
Deum in D (1745) ; Anthems, many in MS.;
Organ voluntaries ; Harpsichord lessons,
etc. Grove ; Fetis ; Buruey, History, iv.



667 ; Barrett, English Church Composers,
117.

GREENSLEEVES, English ballad and
tune of the 16th century, probably as old as
the reign of Henry VIH. The tune is still to
be heard in London streets with the old bur-
den, " Which nobody can deny." It is the air
also of " Christmas comes but once a year,"
and many other songs. In the civil wars it
was one of the party tunes of the Cavaliers,
who had many songs to it, especially "The
Blacksmith," and "The Brewer," or "Old
Noll, the Brewer of Huntingdon," referring
to Cromwell. Shakespeare mentions it in
the " Merry W T ives of Windsor " (ii., Scene
1 ; v., Scene 7), Beaumont and Fletcher in
" The Loyal Subject," and it was introduced
in " The Beggars' Opera." Chappell, Music
of Olden Time, 227.

GREGOIR, EDOUARD GEORGES
JACQUES, born at Turuhout, Belgium,
Nov. 27, 1822, still living, 1889. Pianist,
brother of Jacques Mathieu Joseph Gregoir,
pupil in Bieberich of Rummel on the piano-
forte. He gave concerts in London in 1841
with the violinists Teresa and Maria Mila-
uollo ; went to Amsterdam in 1847, to Paris
in 1849, and in the same year became profes-
sor at Lierre, and later at Antwerp, where he
undertook the task of reforming the meth-
ods for teaching music in the government
schools and institutions of Belgium. Works :
Les Croisades, symphonic historique, Ant-
werp, 1846 ; La vie, drarne lyrique, Ant-
werp, 1848 ; Le Deluge, oratorio sympho-
iiique, Antwerp, 1849 ; Marguerite d'Au-
triche, grand opera, Antwerp, 1850 ; De
Belgeu in 1848, draine national avec ouver-
ture, airs, duos, choeurs, Brussels, 1851 ;
La deruRTe nuit du comte d'Eguiout,
Brussels, 1851 ; Leicester, drarne mele de
musique, Brussels, 1854 ; Willem Beukels,
opera-comique flamand, Brussels, 1856 ;
Willem de Zwyger, opera-comique, 1856 ;
La belle Bourbonnaise, opera-comique,
about 1860. He has published also a Mt-
thode thuorique d'orgue and two Methodes
de Musiques, besides more than a hundred



189



GREG 01 1 1



choruses for male voices ; organ and piano-
forte music ; collections of songs ; a collec-
tion of pieces for the harmonium ; violin
music, and several very popular songs. He
is also a contributor to musical periodicals
and the author of historical works, among
which are : Essai historique sur la musique
et les musicians dans les Pays-Bas (Brussels,
1SG1) ; Galorie biographique des artistes-
musiciens beiges du xviii. et du xix. siecle
(18G2, new ed., 1885) ; Notice sur 1'origine
du celebre compositcur Louis van Beetho-
ven (18G3) ; Les artistes-musiciens neerlau-
dais (1864); Histoire de 1'orgue (18G5) ;
Notice biographique d 'Adrian Willaert ;
Documents historiques relatifs a 1'art mu-
sical et aux artistes-musiciens (4 vols., 1872-
7G) ; Phantlu'on musical populaire (G vols.,
1876-77) ; Bibliothoque musicale populaire
(.'i vols., 1877-7'J) ; Notice biographique sur
F. J. Gosse dit (iossec (1878) ; L'art musical
en Belgique sous les rogues de Leopold
I. et Leopold II. (1879) ; Des gloires de
I'Opera et la musique a Paris ()! vols., 1S80-
8-). Fetis, Supplement, i. 418 ; Ricmaim ;
Larousse.

GREGOIR, JACQUES MATHIEU JO-
SEPH, bom in Antwerp, Jan. IS, IS 17,
died in Brussels, Oct. 29, 1870. Pianist,
showed a precocious taste for music, and
played a difficult concerto by Dussok in
public at the age of eight. Ho studied the
organ under Homans and after the Revolu-
tion of 1830 became a pupil at the Paris
Conservatoire of Heuri Herz, and subse-
quently wont to Germany with his brother
Edouard, and studied under Rummel. On
his return to Antwerp, in IS.'!", ho played at
several concerts, and became widely known
for his compositions. At this period he
brought out a Lauda Sion, for chorus and
orchestra, a musical poem, Faust (1847) ;
and an opera, Le gondolier de Venise,
Antwerp, 1848. He was at that time chef
d'orchestre of the royal theatre, and di-
rector of a German choral society. He
went to Brussels in 1848, became professor
in an English school at Bruges in 1849, and



finally settled in Brussels in 1850, making
nrrusioual professional journeys to other
countries. Among his best works are his
pianoforte compositions, which number
more than one hundred. Works : Marche
solennelle, for the 25th anniversary of Leo-
pold's reign ; Marche triomphale, for the
marriage festivities of the Due de Brabant ;
Aux manes de Meyerbeer, marche funobre ;
Concerto, op. 10 ; Poesies musicales ; Com-
positions nouvelles en forme d'etudes, op.
G6 ; L'otude du diable ; Etudes de moyenne
force ; 24 etudes de style et d'expression, 4
books, op. 101 ; Etudes de style et de meca-
nisme, 4 books, op. 99 ; Six morceaux de
salon, op. 98; etc. Fetis, Supplement, i.
41S.

(iUEGOR, CHRISTIAN, born at Dirs-
dorf, Silesia, Jan. 1, 1723, died at Berthels-
dorf, Nov. G, 1801. Organist, joined the
Moravian Brotherhood in 1742, and was ap-
pninted Bishop of the Briiderkirche at Ber-
thelsdorf. He was organist, teacher, and
music director for the order, and composed
man}' songs for them, besides editing a
Choralbuch. Mendel, iv. 343.

GREGORIO, ANN1BALE, born at Siena
1 about the end of the 16th century. He
was maestro di cappella of the cathedral of
that city and member of the Accademia
dogli Intronati. Works : Madrigals (Venice,
HUT); rimreh music (Siena, 1020). Fe-
tis ; Mendel.

GREISEN, ALBERT, born in Frankfort-
on-the-Oder, April 24, 1814, died in Ber-
lin, April 11, 1836. His compositions at-
tracted the notice of Zelter, who took him
to Berlin ; after his master's death he be-
came the pupil of Rungeuhagen at the mu-
sic school of the Academy. He composed
an oratorio, a symphony, and some chamber
music. Mendel.

GREITH, KARL, born at Aarau, Swit-
zerland, Feb. 21, 1828, died in Munich, Nov.
17, 1887. Son and pupil of Joseph Greith ;
studied in Munich under C. Ett and in
Augsburg under C. L. Drobisch. He be-
came music teacher of schools and director



I'.H)



GRELL



of singing societies in St. Gall, taught in
Frankfort-on-the-Muin for several years
from 1854, and was professor in the College
of Maria Hilf in Schwytz. In 1861 be took
his father's place as choirmaster of the St.
Gall Cathedral, and after ten years settled
as a composer and critic in Munich, where
he subsequently became Kapellmeister of
the cathedral. Works : Der heilige Gallus,
oratorio, Winterthur, 1849 ; Fraueuherz,
melodrama, Die Waise aus Genf, do., both
at St. Gall, about 1850; Symphony, ib.,
and Basel ; Requiem (Winterthur, 1857) ;
7 vocal masses ; 5 instrumental masses ;
Litanies ; Motets ; Many songs to the Holy
Virgin, etc. (since 18G2) ; 3 Singspiele ;
Jung Rubens, Der Mutter Lied, Der verzau-
berte Frosch (Munich, since 1871) ; Two-
part songs for female chorus (ib.). Men-
del.

GRELL, EDUARD (AUGUST), born in
Berlin, Nov. 6, 1800, died at Steglitz, near
Berlin, Aug. 10, 18SG. Organist, pupil of his
father, of Kaufmann, Ritschl, and Zelter ;
became organist of the Nikolaildrche in
Berlin' in 181C; entered the Singakademie
in 1817, and was made vice-director of it
in 1832. In 1839 he was appointed court
organist of the cathedral, in 1811 a mem-
ber of the Berlin Academy, in 1843
teacher of the cathedral choir, and, after
Rungenhagen's death in 1851, teacher of
the composition school of the Academy.
He was also a member of the senate of the
Academy, and first director of the Siug-
akadeiuie ; became professor in 1858, and
received the order pour le merite in 1864.
He relinquished the direction of the Sing-
akademie in 1S7G. In 1883 the Berlin
University conferred on him the honorary
degree of doctor of philosophy. Works :
Die Israelileii in der
Wiiste, oratorio ; Mass
for 1G voices ; Over-
ture for orchestra ; Organ preludes ; Mo-
tets, cantatas, psalms, hymns, and many
songs ; Four-part arrangement of the cho-
ral melodies of the Evangelical Gesaucrbuch



(1833). Riemami ; Mendel; Brockhaus ;
FiHis, iV. 98 ; do., Supplement, i. 420.

GRENET. See Granet.

GRENIER, FELIX, born at Marseilles,
Sept, 27, 1844, still living, 1889. Amateur
instrumental and vocal composer, pupil of
Heckmann, an Alsatian organist, became n
lawyer, but still studied music in Paris
under Labarre, Boe'ly, and Franchomme.
He has lived in Nice since 18G9. His songs
and music are well known, and some of his
choruses have been very popular. He has
translated several German works on music,
and has published works on Sebastian
Bach, Mendelssohn, and other German
musicians. Principal works : La Roussalka,
opera (not performed) ; Trio for strings,
op. 1 ; do. for pianoforte and strings, op.
3 ; Quartet for pianoforte and strings, op.
4 ; 2 quartets for strings, op. 5 and 13 ;
3 preludes and fugues for pianoforte, op.
15 ; 12 songs for soprano, op. 2 ; G songs,
op. 7 ; 4 do., op. 8 ; Four-part songs ; Cho-
ruses for Racine's Esther, for 4 female
voices ; Mass for 4 voices ; The 49th psalm
for double chorus, and orchestra. 1'Ytis,
Supplement, i. 421 ; Mendel, Ergiinz., 135.

GRENIER, GABRIEL, lived in Paris,
last half of the 18th century. Harpist, pub-
lished romances with harp accompaniment,
1793 ; Harp sonatas, and harp and violin
music. Fetis ; Mendel.

GRESNICH (not Gresuick), ANTOINE
FREDERIC, born in LiOge, March 2, 1755,
died in Paris, Oct. 16, 1799. Dramatic
composer, pupil at the College Liegeois,
Rome, and subsequently in Naples of Sala ;
wrote operas for that city before 1780 ; went
to London some time before 1784, again in
1785, was chosen director of music by the
Prince of Wales in 1786, returned to Paris
in 1791, was in Lyons as chef d'orchestre
of the Grand Theatre in 1793 ; his L'Amour
a Cythere, brought out there in that year,
was played also at six of the Paris theatres
in the same year, and made him famous.
Works Operas : II Fraucese bizzarre, opera
buft'a, Savona, 1784 ; Demetrio, Alessaudro



GRESSLEIi



nell' Indie, La donna di cattivo umore, Lon-
don, 1785 ; Alceste, ib., 178G ; L' Amour a
Cythere, Lyons, 1793 ; Le savoir-faire, Les
petits commissionnaires, Paris, Theatre de
la rue de Louvois, 1795 ; jSponiue et Sa-
binus, Les faux mendiauts, Le baiser donne
et rendu, ib., 1796 ; Les extravagances de
la vieillesse, Theatre Montansier, 1796 ; La
Foret de Sicile, Le petit page, ou la prison
d'etat, Les faux mounoyeurs, ou la ven-
geance, Le tuteur original, ib., 1797 ; La
grotte des Ci'vennes, ib., 1798 ; L'heureux
proces, ou Alphonse et Leonore, Tlu'iitre
Feydeau, 1798 ; La tourterelle dans les
bois, Rencontres sur rencontres, Thratre
Montansier, 1799 ; Le rove, Theatre Favart,
1 7'.!'.) ; Leouidas, ou les Spartiates (with Per-
suis), Opera, 1799 ; Symphonic concertante
for clarinet and bassoon, with orchestra,
Paris, Concerts de Feydeau, 1797 ; Ariet-
tas, romances, duos, etc. Pougin, Gresnick
( Paris, 1862) ; Fetis ; do., Supplement, i.
421; Mendel; Schilling.

GRESSLER, FRAN/ ALBERT, born at
Sul/.a, Thuringia, Dec. 14, 1804, still living,
1889. Son of Friedrich Salomon Gressler ;
finished his musical education in the Erfurt
Seminary under M. G. Fischer, L. E. Geb-
hardi, and J. J. Miiller ; became teacher in
a family in 1826, and from 1827 taught in
schools in Erfurt. Composed pianoforte
and organ music and songs. Mendel ;
Ersch und Gruber, i. Section, xc. 24C.

GRESSLER, FRIEDRICH SALOMON.
organist at Triptis, near Meissen, in 1780.
From 1791 he was cantor, organist, and
teacher at Suiza in Thuringia. Composed
pianoforte pieces and songs. Mendel, iv.
355 ; Ersch und Gruber, i. Section, xc. 246.

GRETRY, ANDRE (ERNEST MO-
DESTE), born at Liege, Feb. 8, 1741, died
at " 1'Ermitage " (formerly Rousseau's coun-
try house), near Moutruoreucy, Sept. 24,
1813. The son of a poor violinist, he en-
tered the choir of Saint-Denis at the age
of six, but was dismissed as incapable, and
put under one Leclerc, who made him a
proficient reader of music. Inspired by




the arrival in Liege of an Italian opera com-
pany, he took to composing, and showed
such talent that his
family procured him
good instruction. He
studied harmony un-
der Renekin the or-
ganist, and counter-
point under Moreau ;
but it was too late to
expect patient study,
and he spent most of
his time in composing. Six little symphonies
by him were produced at Liege in 1758, and
a four-voice mass in 1759, with such success
that the Chanoine du Harlez sent him to
Rome, where he studied counterpoint four
or five years under Casali, but he never be-
came a good harmonist, nor a contrapuntist.
His genius was purely dramatic and expres-
sive. Some smaller compositions, notably
an intermezzo, Le Vendemmiatrici, met
with success at Rome, but when he saw the
score of Monsigny's Rose et Colas, he be-
gan to feel that French opera-comique was
to be his real vocation. In 1767 he went to
Geneva, and, failing to get Voltaire to write
him a libretto, set to work to write new mu-
sic to Favart 's Isabelle et Gertrude, which
he brought out with great success the same
year at Geneva. By Voltaire's advice he
then went to Paris, where two years were
thrown away in vain solicitations for a li-
bretto, until at last Du Rosoy confided to
him his Les manages Samuites. The first
rehearsals of the music at the house of the
Prince de Couti, in presence of the court,
persuaded almost everyone that the com-
poser had no talent for dramatic composi-
tion ; but Count Creutz, the Swedish min-
ister, thought otherwise, and, taking Gretry
under his protection, prevailed upon Mar-
montel to confide to him his comedy, Le
Huron. This work was given, Aug. 20,
1768, with the most overwhelming success.
Lucile appeared a few mouths later, and
with Le tableau parlant (1769) Gretry's po-
sition in the foremost rank of French corn-



is?



GENTRY



posers was established. He continued pro-
ducing opera after opera, until very near the
time of bis death. The most famous of his
works are Le tableau parlaut, Zemire et
Azor, L'amaut jaloux, L'epreuve village-
oise, and Richard Cceur de Lion, which last
must be accounted as his masterpiece. In
17S4 the Prince-Bishop of Liege made him
privy-councillor. In 1795 he was admitted
to the Institut, and in 1802 Napoleon made
him chevalier of the Legion of Honour.
He was appointed also one of the inspectors
of the Conservatoire on its foundation, but
held the office for only a year. His funeral
at Paris (Sept. 27, 1813) was splendid, and
Bouilly and Mehul pronounced eulogies
over his grave. Gretry's genius, which was
epoch-making in the annals of French comic
opera, was essentially melodic and dramatic.
He was little of a harmonist, as he himself
knew very well, and was wholly at a loss
when he tried to step out of the limited
frame of opera-comique. His accompani-
ments were in general very meagre, and
although he showed that, when he aimed
at orchestral effects, he knew how to handle
the orchestra intelligently and cleverly, he
rarely attempted anything of the sort.
Graceful melody and, especially, expressive
and dramatic declamation were his forte.
His theatrical sense was of the keenest, and
he has rarely been surpassed as a delineator
of character ; his comic power was also very
remarkable, and his admirers have called
him the " Moliere of music." Works Op-
eras : 1. Le Vendemmiatrici, intermezzo,
Rome, Teatro Aliberti, 17G5 ; 2. Isabelle et
Gertrude, Geneva, 17G7 ; 3. Le Huron,
Paris, Theatre Italien, 1768 ; 4. Lucile,
ib., 17G9 ; 5. Le tableau parlant, ib., 1769 ;
6. Sylvain, ib., 1770 ; 7. Les deux Avares,
Fontainebleau, 1770, Paris, Comedie Ita-
lienne, 1770 ; 8. L'amitie a 1'epreuve, 2
acts, Fontainebleau, 1770, Paris, Theatre
Italien, 1771 ; do., 3 acts, Fontainebleau,



Online LibraryJohn Denison ChamplinCyclopedia of music and musicians (Volume 2) → online text (page 30 of 93)