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Vincent d'Indy Edit Profile

Composer , music educator

Vincent d'Indy was a French composer and music educator.


Vincent d'Indy was born on 27 March 1851 in Paris, France.

He was brought up by his paternal grandmother, a woman of great character and an enthusiastic music lover, and, despite his aristocratic birth, he was destined for the career of a professional musician.


D'Indy became Franck's pupil, ardent propagandist, and his biographer.


After early studies with J. F. Marmontel and Albert Lavignac his further training was interrupted by the Franco-Prussian War, 1870-1871, during which he served in the National Guard.

He was an early member of the Société Nationale de Musique, founded in 1871 to restore the glories of French music, and he numbered Georges Bizet, Jules Massenet, and Camille Saint-Saens among his friends.

Basing his musical creed on Bach, Beethoven, Wagner, and Franck and on Gregorian plainchant and folk song, D'Indy proclaimed an idealistic conception of art founded on Catholic aesthetic principles.

The Symphonie cévénolecevenole (or Symphonie sur un chant montagnard français, francais, "Symphony on a French Mountain Air") of 1886 showed a new interest in French folk song and a retreat from D'Indy's more aggressively Germanic sympathies. This work (for piano and orchestra) remains his finest, though D'Indy's solid craftsmanship and strongly idealistic temperament found powerful expression in two operas--the very Wagnerian Fervaal (1897) and L'Etranger (1903)--the symphonic variations Istar (1896), the B-flat-major Symphony No. 2 (1904), the tone poem Jour d'étéd'ete àa la montagne (1905), and his first two string quartets (1890 and 1897).


  • In 1894 he founded, with Charles Bordes and Alexandre Guilmant, the Schola Cantorum, originally a society for the study and performance of church music but before long a rival to the Paris Conservatory as an institute of general musical education.


Société Nationale de Musique


Georges Bizet