Jean Martinon

Biography

Born: January 10, 1910; Lyons, France   Died: March 1, 1976; Paris, France  
In the words of one of his biographers, conductor Jean Martinon's performances "were distinguished by a concern for translucent orchestral textures, and sustained by a subtle sense of rhythm and phrasing." Occasionally, "he stressed a poetic inflection at the expense of literal accuracy."

Martinon's first instrument was the violin; he studied at the Lyons Conservatory (1924-1925), then transferred to the Paris Conservatory, where he won
Read more first prize in violin upon his graduation in 1928. He subsequently studied composition, with Albert Roussel, and conducting, with Charles Munch and Roger Desormière. Until the outbreak of World War II, Martinon was primarily a composer. His early substantial works include a Symphoniette for piano, percussion, and strings (1935); Symphony No. 1 (1936); Concerto giocoso for violin and orchestra (1937); and a wind quintet (1938). At the start of the war he was drafted into the French army. Taken prisoner in 1940, he passed the next two years in a Nazi labor camp. There, he wrote Stalag IX (Musique d'exil), an orchestral piece incorporating elements of jazz; during his internment, he also composed several religious works, including Absolve, Domine for male chorus and orchestra, and Psalm 136 (Chant des captifs), the latter receiving a composition prize from the city of Paris in 1946.

Upon his release from the Nazi camp, Martinon became conductor of the Bordeaux Symphony Orchestra (from 1943 to 1945) and assistant conductor of the Paris Conservatory Orchestra (from 1944 to 1946), then associate conductor of the London Philharmonic (from 1947 to 1949). He toured as a guest conductor as well, although his U.S. debut did not come until 1957, with the Boston Symphony giving the American premiere of his Symphony No. 2. Although he devoted as much time as he could to composing in the early postwar years -- producing a string quartet (1946), an "Irish" Symphony (1948), the ballet Ambohimanga (1946), and the opera Hécube (1949-1954) -- he was increasingly occupied with conducting, working with the Concerts Lamoureux (from 1951 to 1957), the Israel Philharmonic (from 1957 to 1959), and Düsseldorf Symphony Orchestra (from 1960 to 1966). In 1963, he succeeded Fritz Reiner as head of the Chicago Symphony. Martinon's tenure there was difficult. In five seasons, he conducted 60 works by modern European and American composers, and made a number of outstanding LPs for RCA, mostly of bracing twentieth century repertory in audiophile sound. Chicago's conservative music lovers soon sent him packing.

Martinon jumped at the chance to take over the French National Radio Orchestra in 1968; working with this ensemble, he recorded almost the entire standard French repertory for Erato and EMI. His earlier Erato efforts that focused on such secondary but nevertheless interesting figures as Roussel, Pierné, and Dukas, whereas EMI assigned him integral sets of the Saint-Saëns symphonies and the orchestral works of Debussy and Ravel, among other projects. In 1974, he was appointed principal conductor of the Residentie Orkest in The Hague, but he died before that relationship could bear much fruit.

Martinon resumed his career as a composer around 1960, writing his Violin Concerto No. 2 (1960) for Henryk Szeryng, his Cello Concerto (1964) for Pierre Fournier, and his Symphony No. 4 ("Altitudes"), composed in 1965, for the 75th anniversary of the Chicago Symphony. He acknowledged Prokofiev and Bartók as strong influences on his scores, which meld Expressionism with French Neoclassicism. Martinon continued composing into the 1970s, but he seldom recorded any of his own music, with the notable exceptions of the Second Symphony, "Hymne à la vie" (ORTF, for Barclay Inedits) and Fourth Symphony, "Altitudes" (Chicago SO, for RCA). Read less

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Biography

Born: January 10, 1910; Lyons, France   Died: March 1, 1976; Paris, France  
In the words of one of his biographers, conductor Jean Martinon's performances "were distinguished by a concern for translucent orchestral textures, and sustained by a subtle sense of rhythm and phrasing." Occasionally, "he stressed a poetic inflection at the expense of literal accuracy."

Martinon's first instrument was the violin; he studied at the Lyons Conservatory (1924-1925), then transferred to the Paris Conservatory, where he won
Read more
WORKS ALBUMS
TITLE/COMPOSER
LABEL
Nocturnes (2004 - Remaster): II. Fêtes
Nocturnes (2004 - Remaster): III. Sirènes (with women's choir)
Jeux (Poème dansé)
Jeux (Poème dansé)
Ravel: Rapsodie espagnole: Prélude à la nuit
Rapsodie espagnole (1988 Digital Remaster): Malagueña
Rapsodie espagnole (1988 Digital Remaster): Habañéra
Rapsodie espagnole (1988 Digital Remaster): Fería
Ma Mère l'oye - Ballet in six tableaux: Prélude (très lent)
Ma Mère l'oye - Ballet in six tableaux: 1st Tableau: Danse de Rouet et scène
Ma Mère l'oye - Ballet in six tableaux: 2nd Tableau: Pavane de la Belle au bois dormant
Ma Mère l'oye - Ballet in six tableaux: Interlude
Ma Mère l'oye - Ballet in six tableaux: 3rd Tableau: Les entretiens de la belle et la bête
Ma Mère l'oye - Ballet in six tableaux: Interlude
Ma Mère l'oye - Ballet in six tableaux: 4th Tableau: Petit Poucet4th Tableau:
Ma Mère l'oye - Ballet in six tableaux: Interlude
Ma Mère l'oye - Ballet in six tableaux: 5th Tableau: Laideronette, Impératrice des Pagodes
Ma Mère l'oye - Ballet in six tableaux: Interlude
Ma Mère l'oye - Ballet in six tableaux: 6th Tableau: Apothèose: Le Jardin féerique
Le Tombeau de Couperin (1988 Digital Remaster): I. Prélude
Le Tombeau de Couperin (1988 Digital Remaster): II. Forlane
Le Tombeau de Couperin (1988 Digital Remaster): III. Menuet
Le Tombeau de Couperin (1988 Digital Remaster): IV. Rigaudon
Valses nobles et sentimentales (1988 Digital Remaster): Moderé - très franc
Valses nobles et sentimentales (1988 Digital Remaster): Assez lent (avec une expression intense)
Valses nobles et sentimentales (1988 Digital Remaster): Moderé
Valses nobles et sentimentales (1988 Digital Remaster): Assez animé
Valses nobles et sentimentales (1988 Digital Remaster): Presque lent (dans un sentiment intime)
Valses nobles et sentimentales (1988 Digital Remaster): Vif
Valses nobles et sentimentales (1988 Digital Remaster): Moins vif
Valses nobles et sentimentales (1988 Digital Remaster): Epilogue - Lent
Children's Corner Suite (orch. André Caplet) (1998 Digital Remaster): 1. Doctor Gradus ad Parnassum
Children's Corner Suite (orch. André Caplet) (1998 Digital Remaster): 1. Doctor Gradus ad Parnassum
Children's Corner Suite (orch. André Caplet) (1998 Digital Remaster): 2. Jimbo's lullaby
Children's Corner Suite (orch. André Caplet) (1998 Digital Remaster): 2. Jimbo's lullaby
Children's Corner Suite (orch. André Caplet) (1998 Digital Remaster): 3. Serenade for the doll
Children's Corner Suite (orch. André Caplet) (1998 Digital Remaster): 3. Serenade for the doll
Children's Corner Suite (orch. André Caplet) (1998 Digital Remaster): 4. The snow is dancing
Children's Corner Suite (orch. André Caplet) (1998 Digital Remaster): 4. The snow is dancing
Children's Corner Suite (orch. André Caplet) (1998 Digital Remaster): 5. The little shepherd
Children's Corner Suite (orch. André Caplet) (1998 Digital Remaster): 5. The little shepherd
Children's Corner Suite (orch. André Caplet) (1998 Digital Remaster): 6. Golliwogg's cakewalk
Children's Corner Suite (orch. André Caplet) (1998 Digital Remaster): 6. Golliwogg's cakewalk
Petite Suite (orch. Henri Büsser) (1998 Digital Remaster): I: En bateau
Petite Suite (orch. Henri Büsser) (1998 Digital Remaster): I: En bateau
Petite Suite (orch. Henri Büsser) (1998 Digital Remaster): II: Cortège
Petite Suite (orch. Henri Büsser) (1998 Digital Remaster): II: Cortège
Petite Suite (orch. Henri Büsser) (1998 Digital Remaster): III: Menuet
Petite Suite (orch. Henri Büsser) (1998 Digital Remaster): III: Menuet
Petite Suite (orch. Henri Büsser) (1998 Digital Remaster): IV: Ballet
Petite Suite (orch. Henri Büsser) (1998 Digital Remaster): IV: Ballet
Danse sacrée et danse profane (1998 Digital Remaster): Danse sacrée -
Danse sacrée et danse profane (1998 Digital Remaster): Danse sacrée -
Danse sacrée et danse profane (1998 Digital Remaster): Danse profane
Danse sacrée et danse profane (1998 Digital Remaster): Danse profane
La Boîte à joujoux (orch. André Caplet) (1998 Digital Remaster): I: Le magasin de jouets
La Boîte à joujoux (orch. André Caplet) (1998 Digital Remaster): I: Le magasin de jouets
La Boîte à joujoux (orch. André Caplet) (1998 Digital Remaster): II: Le champ de bataille
La Boîte à joujoux (orch. André Caplet) (1998 Digital Remaster): II: Le champ de bataille
La Boîte à joujoux (orch. André Caplet) (1998 Digital Remaster): III: La bergerie à vendre
La Boîte à joujoux (orch. André Caplet) (1998 Digital Remaster): III: La bergerie à vendre
La Boîte à joujoux (orch. André Caplet) (1998 Digital Remaster): IV: Après fortune faite
La Boîte à joujoux (orch. André Caplet) (1998 Digital Remaster): IV: Après fortune faite
Fantaisie (for Piano and Orchestra) (1998 Digital Remaster): I: Andante - Allegro
Fantaisie (for Piano and Orchestra) (1998 Digital Remaster): I: Andante - Allegro
La plus que lente
La plus que lente
Première Rapsodie (for orchestra with principal clarinet)
Première Rapsodie (for orchestra with principal clarinet)
Rapsodie (for orchestra with saxophone solo)
Rapsodie (for orchestra with saxophone solo)
Khamma (Légende dansée - orch. Charles Koechlin)
Khamma (Légende dansée - orch. Charles Koechlin)
Danse (Tarentelle styrienne - orch. Maurice Ravel)
Danse (Tarentelle styrienne - orch. Maurice Ravel)
La Mer (1998 Digital Remaster): I. De l'aube à midi sur la mer
La Mer (1998 Digital Remaster): I. De l'aube à midi sur la mer
La Mer (1998 Digital Remaster): II. Jeux de vagues
La Mer (1998 Digital Remaster): II. Jeux de vagues
La Mer (1998 Digital Remaster): III. Dialogue du vent et de la mer
La Mer (1998 Digital Remaster): III. Dialogue du vent et de la mer
Trois Nocturnes (1998 Digital Remaster): I. Nuages
Trois Nocturnes (1998 Digital Remaster): I. Nuages
Trois Nocturnes (1998 Digital Remaster): II. Fêtes
Trois Nocturnes (1998 Digital Remaster): II. Fêtes
Trois Nocturnes (1998 Digital Remaster): III. Sirènes (with women's choir)
Trois Nocturnes (1998 Digital Remaster): III. Sirènes (with women's choir)
Musiques pour Le Roi Lear (1998 Digital Remaster): I. Fanfare
Musiques pour Le Roi Lear (1998 Digital Remaster): I. Fanfare
Musiques pour Le Roi Lear (1998 Digital Remaster): II. Le Sommeil de Lear
Musiques pour Le Roi Lear (1998 Digital Remaster): II. Le Sommeil de Lear
Symphony No. 4, Op. 29 "The Inextinguishable": Allegro
Poco allegretto
Poco adagio quasi andante
Allegro
Ma Mère l'oye - Ballet in six tableaux: Prélude (très lent)
Ma Mère l'oye - Ballet in six tableaux: 1st Tableau: Danse de Rouet et scène
Ma Mère l'oye - Ballet in six tableaux: 2nd Tableau: Pavane de la Belle au bois dormant
Ma Mère l'oye - Ballet in six tableaux: Interlude
Ma Mère l'oye - Ballet in six tableaux: 3rd Tableau: Les entretiens de la belle et la bête
Ma Mère l'oye - Ballet in six tableaux: Interlude
Ma Mère l'oye - Ballet in six tableaux: 4th Tableau: Petit Poucet4th Tableau:
Ma Mère l'oye - Ballet in six tableaux: Interlude
Ma Mère l'oye - Ballet in six tableaux: 5th Tableau: Laideronette, Impératrice des Pagodes
Ma Mère l'oye - Ballet in six tableaux: Interlude
Ma Mère l'oye - Ballet in six tableaux: 6th Tableau: Apothèose: Le Jardin féerique
Ravel: Rapsodie espagnole: Prélude à la nuit
Rapsodie espagnole (1988 Digital Remaster): Malagueña
Rapsodie espagnole (1988 Digital Remaster): Habañéra
Rapsodie espagnole (1988 Digital Remaster): Fería
Le Tombeau de Couperin (1988 Digital Remaster): I. Prélude
Le Tombeau de Couperin (1988 Digital Remaster): II. Forlane
Le Tombeau de Couperin (1988 Digital Remaster): III. Menuet
Le Tombeau de Couperin (1988 Digital Remaster): IV. Rigaudon
Valses nobles et sentimentales (1988 Digital Remaster): Moderé - très franc
Valses nobles et sentimentales (1988 Digital Remaster): Assez lent (avec une expression intense)
Valses nobles et sentimentales (1988 Digital Remaster): Moderé
Valses nobles et sentimentales (1988 Digital Remaster): Assez animé
Valses nobles et sentimentales (1988 Digital Remaster): Presque lent (dans un sentiment intime)
Valses nobles et sentimentales (1988 Digital Remaster): Vif
Valses nobles et sentimentales (1988 Digital Remaster): Moins vif
Valses nobles et sentimentales (1988 Digital Remaster): Epilogue - Lent
I. Prélude à la nuit
II. Malagueña
III. Habanera
IV. Feria
Daphnis et Chloé: Suite No. 2: Lever du jour
Pantomime
Danse générale
1. Prélude: Lento - Allegro maestoso
2. Intermezzo: Andantino con moto - Allegro presto
3. Andante - Allegro vivace
1. Allegro non troppo
2. Allegretto con moto
3. Un peu moins vite
Introduction and Rondo I.
March and Pastorale II.
III. Passacaglia
Children's Corner Suite (orch. André Caplet) (1998 Digital Remaster): 1. Doctor Gradus ad Parnassum
Children's Corner Suite (orch. André Caplet) (1998 Digital Remaster): 2. Jimbo's lullaby
Children's Corner Suite (orch. André Caplet) (1998 Digital Remaster): 3. Serenade for the doll
Children's Corner Suite (orch. André Caplet) (1998 Digital Remaster): 4. The snow is dancing
Children's Corner Suite (orch. André Caplet) (1998 Digital Remaster): 5. The little shepherd
Children's Corner Suite (orch. André Caplet) (1998 Digital Remaster): 6. Golliwogg's cakewalk
Petite Suite (orch. Henri Büsser) (1998 Digital Remaster): I: En bateau
Petite Suite (orch. Henri Büsser) (1998 Digital Remaster): II: Cortège
Petite Suite (orch. Henri Büsser) (1998 Digital Remaster): III: Menuet
Petite Suite (orch. Henri Büsser) (1998 Digital Remaster): IV: Ballet
Danse sacrée et danse profane (1998 Digital Remaster): Danse sacrée -
Danse sacrée et danse profane (1998 Digital Remaster): Danse profane
La Boîte à joujoux (orch. André Caplet) (1998 Digital Remaster): I: Le magasin de jouets
La Boîte à joujoux (orch. André Caplet) (1998 Digital Remaster): II: Le champ de bataille
La Boîte à joujoux (orch. André Caplet) (1998 Digital Remaster): III: La bergerie à vendre
La Boîte à joujoux (orch. André Caplet) (1998 Digital Remaster): IV: Après fortune faite
La Mer (1998 Digital Remaster): I. De l'aube à midi sur la mer
La Mer (1998 Digital Remaster): II. Jeux de vagues
La Mer (1998 Digital Remaster): III. Dialogue du vent et de la mer
Trois Nocturnes (1998 Digital Remaster): I. Nuages
Trois Nocturnes (1998 Digital Remaster): II. Fêtes
Trois Nocturnes (1998 Digital Remaster): III. Sirènes (with women's choir)
Musiques pour Le Roi Lear (1998 Digital Remaster): I. Fanfare
Musiques pour Le Roi Lear (1998 Digital Remaster): II. Le Sommeil de Lear
Images (1998 Digital Remaster): I: Gigues
Images (1998 Digital Remaster), II: Ibéria: a) Par les rues et par les chemins
Images (1998 Digital Remaster), II: Ibéria: b) Les parfums de la nuit
Images (1998 Digital Remaster), II: Ibéria: c) Le matin d'un jour de fête
Images (1998 Digital Remaster): III: Rondes de printemps
Printemps (Suite symphonique, orch. Henri Büsser) (1998 Digital Remaster): 1ère Partie
Printemps (Suite symphonique, orch. Henri Büsser) (1998 Digital Remaster): 2ème Partie
Ma Mère l'oye - Ballet in six tableaux: Prélude (très lent)
Ma Mère l'oye - Ballet in six tableaux: 1st Tableau: Danse de Rouet et scène
Ma Mère l'oye - Ballet in six tableaux: 2nd Tableau: Pavane de la Belle au bois dormant
Ma Mère l'oye - Ballet in six tableaux: Interlude
Ma Mère l'oye - Ballet in six tableaux: 3rd Tableau: Les entretiens de la belle et la bête
Ma Mère l'oye - Ballet in six tableaux: Interlude
Ma Mère l'oye - Ballet in six tableaux: 4th Tableau: Petit Poucet4th Tableau:
Ma Mère l'oye - Ballet in six tableaux: Interlude
Ma Mère l'oye - Ballet in six tableaux: 5th Tableau: Laideronette, Impératrice des Pagodes
Ma Mère l'oye - Ballet in six tableaux: Interlude
Ma Mère l'oye - Ballet in six tableaux: 6th Tableau: Apothèose: Le Jardin féerique
Ravel: Rapsodie espagnole: Prélude à la nuit
Rapsodie espagnole (1988 Digital Remaster): Malagueña
Rapsodie espagnole (1988 Digital Remaster): Habañéra
Rapsodie espagnole (1988 Digital Remaster): Fería
Le Tombeau de Couperin (1988 Digital Remaster): I. Prélude
Le Tombeau de Couperin (1988 Digital Remaster): II. Forlane
Le Tombeau de Couperin (1988 Digital Remaster): III. Menuet
Le Tombeau de Couperin (1988 Digital Remaster): IV. Rigaudon
Valses nobles et sentimentales (1988 Digital Remaster): Moderé - très franc
Valses nobles et sentimentales (1988 Digital Remaster): Assez lent (avec une expression intense)
Valses nobles et sentimentales (1988 Digital Remaster): Moderé
Valses nobles et sentimentales (1988 Digital Remaster): Assez animé
Valses nobles et sentimentales (1988 Digital Remaster): Presque lent (dans un sentiment intime)
Valses nobles et sentimentales (1988 Digital Remaster): Vif
Valses nobles et sentimentales (1988 Digital Remaster): Moins vif
Valses nobles et sentimentales (1988 Digital Remaster): Epilogue - Lent


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