Georges Mathias

Georges Amédée Saint-Clair Mathias (French: [matjas]; 14 October 1826 – 14 October 1910) was a French composer, pianist and teacher. Alongside his teaching work, Georges Mathias was a very active concert pianist.

Georges Mathias
Georges Mathias par Marie-Alexandre Alophe
Georges Mathias
Born14 October 1826
Died14 October 1910 (aged 84)
Paris, France


Mathias was born in Paris. He studied at the Conservatoire de Paris with François Bazin, Auguste Barbereau, Augustin Savard and Fromental Halévy. Privately, he studied composition with Friedrich Kalkbrenner and piano with Frédéric Chopin.[1][2]

After finishing his studies, he taught piano at the Conservatoire from 1862 to 1893.[3] Among his notable students were Teresa Carreño, Camille Chevillard, Paul Dukas, Camille Erlanger, James Huneker, Henri O'Kelly, Isidor Philipp, Raoul Pugno, Alfonso Rendano, Erik Satie, Eugénie Satie-Barnetche, Ernest Schelling, José Tragó, and Alberto Williams.

Mathias and another Chopin's student Karol Mikuli had an important impact on passing his style on the next generations of musicians.[3] Besides teaching, he was also active as a concert pianist. On 14 March 1864, he was the principal pianist at the premiere of Gioachino Rossini's Petite messe solennelle.[4]

He was the recipient of the Legion of Honour in 1872.[5] He died in Paris in 1910, on his 84th birthday.


Mathias, Georges, par Pierre Petit, BNF Gallica
Georges Mathias

His compositions include overtures to Hamlet and Mazeppa, five morceaux symphoniques for piano and strings, two piano concertos, six piano trios, a symphony, Oeuvres choisies pour le piano, Études de genre, Études de style et de mécanisme, a collection of two and four-hand piano pieces, and transcriptions including the one of some scenes from Mozart's The Magic Flute.[2]


  1. ^ Baron, John H. (1998). Intimate Music: A History of the Idea of Chamber Music. Pendragon Press. p. 330. ISBN 1-57647-100-4.
  2. ^ a b "All about musicians: Mathias, Georges Amedee Saint Clair". Retrieved 2009-12-02.
  3. ^ a b Samson, Jim (1995). The Cambridge companion to Chopin. Cambridge Companions to Music. Cambridge University Press. p. 194. ISBN 0-521-47752-2.
  4. ^ Philip Gossett. "Rossini's Petite Messe solennelle and Its Several Versions". Retrieved 2009-12-06.
  5. ^ "Annuaires des titulaires de la Légion d'Honneur" (in French). Archived from the original on 2009-06-06. Retrieved 2009-12-02.

External links

1826 in music

This article is about music-related events in 1826.

Alberto Williams

Alberto Williams (23 November 1862 – 17 June 1952) was an Argentine composer, pianist, pedagogue, and conductor.

Alfonso Rendano

Alfonso Rendano (5 April 1853 – 10 September 1931) was an Italian pianist and composer. He is mostly renowned for inventing the "third pedal", which augmented the interpretative resources of the piano.

Rendano was born in Cosenza. He was particularly precocious and at the age of ten he was admitted to the Naples Conservatory, where he was noticed by Sigismund Thalberg who sent him to Paris, recommending him to Rossini.

In 1866 he studied under Georges Mathias, Chopin's pupil. For about 15 years, he carried out an intense musical activity; he then devoted himself to teaching, first in Naples, then in Rome.

Rendano wrote the opera Consuelo, successfully staged in Turin and in Germany. He held his last concert at Rome's Teatro Valle in 1925. He died in Rome in 1931.

The main theatre of Cosenza is named after him.

Arístides Chavier Arévalo

Arístides Chavier Arévalo (1867–1942) was a Puerto Rican pianist, modernism composer, musicologist and music author from Ponce, Puerto Rico.

Camille Chevillard

Paul Alexandre Camille Chevillard (14 October 1859 – 30 May 1923) was a French composer and conductor.

Camille Erlanger

Camille Erlanger (25 May 1863 – 24 April 1919) was a Parisian-born French opera composer. He studied at the Paris Conservatory under Léo Delibes (composition), Georges Mathias (piano), as well as Émile Durand and Antoine Taubon (harmony). In 1888 he won the Prix de Rome for his cantata Velléda. His most famous opera, Le Juif polonais, was produced at the Opéra-Comique in 1900.

Erlanger died in Paris and was buried in the Père Lachaise Cemetery.A street in Quebec City, Avenue Erlanger, is named after Erlanger.

Erik Satie

Éric Alfred Leslie Satie (French: [eʁik sati]; 17 May 1866 – 1 July 1925), who signed his name Erik Satie after 1884, was a French composer and pianist. Satie was a colourful figure in the early 20th-century Parisian avant-garde. His work was a precursor to later artistic movements such as minimalism, Surrealism, repetitive music, and the Theatre of the Absurd.An eccentric, Satie was introduced as a "gymnopedist" in 1887, shortly before writing his most famous compositions, the Gymnopédies. Later, he also referred to himself as a "phonometrician" (meaning "someone who measures sounds"), preferring this designation to that of "musician", after having been called "a clumsy but subtle technician" in a book on contemporary French composers published in 1911.In addition to his body of music, Satie was "a thinker with a gift of eloquence" who left a remarkable set of writings, having contributed work for a range of publications, from the dadaist 391 to the American culture chronicle Vanity Fair. Although in later life he prided himself on publishing his work under his own name, in the late 19th century he appears to have used pseudonyms such as Virginie Lebeau and François de Paule in some of his published writings.

Henri O'Kelly

Henri O'Kelly (full name: Joseph Pierre Henri O'Kelly) (23 June 1859 – 15 March 1938) was a Franco-Irish composer, pianist, organist and choir director, based in Paris. A minor composer in the Impressionist school, as a conductor he made outstanding contributions to French church music.

Isidor Philipp

Isidor Edmond Philipp (first name sometimes spelled Isidore) (2 September 1863 – 20 February 1958) was a French pianist, composer, and pedagogue of Jewish Hungarian descent. He was born in Budapest and died in Paris.

James Huneker

James Gibbons Huneker (January 31, 1857 – February 9, 1921) was an American art, book, music, and theater critic. A colorful individual and an ambitious writer, he was "an American with a great mission," in the words of his friend, the critic Benjamin De Casseres, and that mission was to educate Americans about the best cultural achievements, native and European, of his time.

Jan Kleczyński Sr.

Jan Kleczyński (8 June 1837 – 15 September 1895) was a Polish pianist, composer, journalist, and chess master.

Born into a Polish noble family in Janiewicze, Volhynia (then Russian Empire), he graduated from a conservatory of music in Paris (1855–1862) and then played several pianist concerts in France. In 1866, he returned to Poland to live in Warsaw.

He lectured and published on the interpretation of the works of Frédéric Chopin. His work in this field was (he claimed) endorsed by pupils and friends of Chopin's, including Marcelina Czartoryska, Camilla O'Meara and Georges Mathias, and by Natalia Janotha, Princess Czartoryska's pupil, who translated some of his lectures for English publication.

He came 2nd, behind Szymon Winawer, in the first Warsaw City Chess Championship in 1868, and came 3rd, after Józef Żabiński and Artur Popławski, in the second Warsaw-ch in 1884.

Jan Kleczyński Senior wrote a weekly chess column for Tygodnik Ilustrowany (1859–1884), and Kurier Warszawski (1877–1895). His son Jan Kleczyński Jr. continued his work in 1897–1939.

Jules Gentil

Jules Charles Henri Gentil (10 February 1898 – 25 May 1985) was a French pianist and pedagogue.

List of former students of the Conservatoire de Paris

This is a partial list of alumni of the Conservatoire de Paris.

Paul Dukas

Paul Abraham Dukas (French: [dykas]; 1 October 1865 – 17 May 1935) was a French composer, critic, scholar and teacher. A studious man, of retiring personality, he was intensely self-critical, and he abandoned and destroyed many of his compositions. His best known work is the orchestral piece The Sorcerer's Apprentice (L'apprenti sorcier), the fame of which has eclipsed that of his other surviving works. Among these are the opera Ariane et Barbe-bleue, a symphony, two substantial works for solo piano, and a ballet, La Péri.

At a time when French musicians were divided into conservative and progressive factions, Dukas adhered to neither but retained the admiration of both. His compositions were influenced by composers including Beethoven, Berlioz, Franck, d'Indy and Debussy.

In tandem with his composing career, Dukas worked as a music critic, contributing regular reviews to at least five French journals. Later in his life he was appointed professor of composition at the Conservatoire de Paris and the École Normale de Musique; his pupils included Maurice Duruflé, Olivier Messiaen, Manuel Ponce, and Joaquín Rodrigo.

Petite messe solennelle

Gioachino Rossini's Petite messe solennelle (Little solemn mass) was written in 1863, possibly at the request of Count Alexis Pillet-Will for his wife Louise to whom it is dedicated. The composer, who had retired from composing operas more than 30 years before, described it as "the last of my péchés de vieillesse" (sins of old age).The extended work is a missa solemnis, but Rossini labeled it, not without irony, petite (little). He scored it originally for twelve singers, four of them soloists, two pianos and harmonium. The mass was first performed on 14 March 1864 at the couple's new home in Paris. Rossini later produced an orchestral version, including an additional movement, a setting of the hymn "O salutaris Hostia" as a soprano aria. This version of the mass was not performed during his lifetime because he could not obtain permission to perform it with female singers in a church. It was first performed three months after his death, at the Salle Ventadour in Paris by the company of the Théâtre-Italien on 24 February 1869.

While publications began that year, the first critical edition appeared only in 1980, followed by more editions in 1992, the bicentenary of the composer's birth.

Raoul Pugno

Stéphane Raoul Pugno (23 June 1852 – 3 January 1914 [O.S. 21 December 1913]) was a French composer, teacher, organist, and pianist known for his playing of Mozart's works.

Teresa Carreño

María Teresa Gertrudis de Jesús Carreño García (December 22, 1853 – June 12, 1917) was a Venezuelan pianist, singer, composer, and conductor. Over the course of her 54-year concert career, she became an internationally renowned virtuoso pianist and was often referred to as the "Valkyrie of the Piano." Carreño was an early adopter of the works of one of her students and friend, American composer and pianist, Edward MacDowell (1860–1908) and premiered several of his compositions across the globe. She also frequently performed the works of Norwegian composer and pianist, Edvard Grieg (1843–1907). Carreño composed approximately 75 works for solo piano, voice and piano, choir and orchestra, and instrumental ensemble.

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