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Classiscsonline Home » Composers » D » Dupre, Marcel



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Marcel Dupre (5/03/1886 - 5/30/1971)

Marcel Dupré was born on 3 May 1886 in Rouen. His father, Albert, was an organist and his mother, Marie-Alice Chauviére, was a cellist. In 1888 he began his organ studies with Alexandre Guilmant and gave his first public performance in 1894. He was admitted to the Paris Conservatoire in 1902, receiving First Prize for piano in 1905, for organ and improvisation in 1907, and for fugue in 1909. In 1906 he was appointed Widor's assistant at the church of St Sulpice, in Paris, and was awarded the Prix de Rome in 1914 for his cantata Psyché. In 1920, he performed from memory the complete organ works of J. S. Bach in a series of ten recitals at the Paris Conservatoire, an achievement that brought him world recognition. His American début soon followed in 1921, and the first transcontinental tour of America in 1922. In 1926 he was appointed Professor of Organ at the Paris Conservatoire, succeeding Eugené Gigout, and later served from 1954 to 1956 as Director of the Conservatoire. In 1934 he succeeded his long time friend and mentor, Charles-Marie Widor, as organist of the Church of St Sulpice in Paris, a post he held until the last day of his life. He had become widely known for his improvisations, and it was these wonderful works he constructed immediately upon presentation of a theme, that captivated the large audiences he attracted wherever he appeared. He also became a distinguished teacher, among his pupils being Alain and Messiaen. After a long and successful career as a teacher, performer, composer, and one of the

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