Cesar Auguste Franck

Cesar Auguste FranckCesar Franck was born at Liege, Belgium, December 10, 1822, and died at Paris, November 8, 1890.

He studied first in the town of his birth, but in his fifteenth year he went to Paris and entered the Conservatoire, then under the direction of Cherubini.

In 1838 he gained an accessit in counterpoint and fugue, and subsequently the first prize for piano playing.

He then entered the composition class of Berton, and in 1840 won the first prize for counterpoint and fugue.

In October, 1840, Franck entered the organ class of Benoist and in 1841 obtained the second prize.

He then returned to Belgium, but two years later found him again in Paris, where he established himself with his family in 1844.

From that time he worked hard, frequently giving ten one hour lessons a day in piano, accompaniment and harmony, besides composing steadily.

In 1858 he became organist at St. Clothilde, a position he fulfilled until he died.

In 1872 he became professor of the organ at the Conservatoire, but, in spite of his arduous duties, continued to compose great works.

Franck is a singular instance of a man, confident in his own ability, a master of every musical resource, who was alike indifferent to the criticisms and praises of all outside his own immediate circle.

People are still arguing as to whether his music is good or bad, but there can be no doubt that it has come to stay.

His most famous composition is his oratorio Les Beatitudes.