Beaulieu, Marie Desire

1791-1863

French composer and writer on musical subjects. His real name was Martin, his father being an army officer of Niort. Beaulieu was born in Paris and studied at the Conservatory there under Kreutzer, Mehul and others. In 1810 he won the Grand Prize, but he did not take the five years of travel which it gave him but settled instead at Niort. In this place he founded  quartet meetings and a Philharmonic Society in 1829, which became the Association Musicale de 1'Ouest. This Society became one of the most successful musical organizations in France and through the energy and ability of its founder did much for musical culture in that country. Festivals were held each year, in different French cities, where the best musical compositions were performed. Beaulieu also founded, in 1866, a vocal society in Paris, called La Societe de Chant Classique. At his death he left his fortune to endow both of these organizations. Beside his critical writings on musical subjects, Beaulieu composed a large number of works, some of the most important of which are the operas, Anacreon, and Philadelphie; the lyric pieces, Jeanne d'Arc, and Psyche et l'Amour; the oratorios, l'Hymne du Matin, l'Hymne de la Nuit and L'Immortalite de l'Ame. He also wrote orchestral works, hymns, masses and songs. His best work was, probably, a Requiem, composed in 1819, for the death of Mehul.