François Joseph Gossec

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Gossec, François Joseph

 

Born Jan. 17, 1734, in the village of Vergnies, Hainault Province, Belgium; died Feb. 16, 1829, in Passy, near Paris. French composer. Member of the Institut de France (1795).

Of Belgian origin, Gossec was the son of a peasant. Beginning in 1751 he lived in Paris, where he worked as a choirmaster and directed the Amateur Concerts Society, which he founded in 1770 and reorganized as the Sacred Concerts Society in 1773. In 1784 he founded the Royal School of Singing and Declamation, on the basis of which the National Music Institute was organized in 1793. (In 1795 the institute became a conservatory.) Gossec was a professor and one of the inspectors at the Paris Conservatory when the Bourbons were restored in 1816. A confirmed republican, he was dismissed from his position.

Gossec was a precursor of the French symphony; he wrote 29 symphonies, the first in 1754. The greatest music figure of the Great French Revolution, he was the conductor of the band of the National Guard. Gossec wrote a great number of musical compositions for popular revolutionary festivals and processions, hymns (“Eulogy of the Federation”), songs (“Song of July 14”), and monumental works for brass bands (for example, a symphony, a Te Deum, and a funeral march), which are imbued with revolutionary and patriotic spirit. Among Gossec’s operas (about 20) are Sabinus (1773), Theseus (1782), The Triumph of the Republic, or the Camp at Grandpré (1793), and a series of comic operas. Gossec also wrote oratorios, masses, quartets, and methodical textbooks on music theory.

REFERENCES

Tiercot, J. Pesni i prazdnestva Frantsuzskoi revoliutsii. Moscow,1933. (Translated from French.)
Radiguer, H. Muzykanty epokhi Velikoi frantsuzskoi revolïutsii. Moscow, 1937. (Translated from French.)
Prod’homme, J. F. J. Gossec. Paris, 1949.

B. S. STEINPRESS

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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According to the composer Francois-Joseph Gossec (1734-1829), who in 1780 had been named sous-directeur at the Opera, its school served only to spoil voices, break them, and establish the worst vocal principles.
[13.] Meunier M, Puechal X, Hoppe E, Soubrier M, Dieude P, Berthelot JM, Caramaschi P, Gottenberg JE, Gossec L, Morel J, Maury E, Wipff J, Kahan A, Allanore Y.
Belgian ambassador Bart De Groof said that his country cherishes a rich tradition, culture and heritage in musical composition from such Renaissance pioneers as Orlandus Lassus to classical era giants like Gossec and Gretry or from the 19th to 21st centuries, Cesar Franck, Peter Benoit, Eugene Ysave and more recently Wim Mertens and Dirk Brosse.
(32.) Baillet A, Gossec L, Paternotte S, Etcheto A, Combe B, Meyer O, et al.
While it is acknowledged that these ensembles played for functions and that the music was predominantly transcriptions and arrangements of popular and folk music, a thread of continuity is explained by the continuation of pieces written by famous composers such as Cherubini and Gossec. The implication is that the French military bands and Harmoniemusik are of the same lineage because of the quality of "works" being created.
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It will be augmented by works by Jacques Ibert, Alec Wilder and Franois-Joseph Gossec. At concert's end, the audience will be given a taste of things to come at the quintet's next concert in January.