Gresnich, Antoine Frederic

About 1763-1799


Dramatic composer; was born at Liege, and received his fundamental education in music at the Liege College in Rome, finishing under Sala in Naples. By 1780 he had produced several operas in the latter city; in 1785 was in London, where the success of his opera, La donna di cattiva umore, was the means of his obtaining the position of musical director to the Prince of Wales. In 1793 his 1' Amour exile de Cythere met with a pronounced success at the Grand Theatre in Lyons, and from that time the Paris theatres produced his works in rapid succession. From 1795 to 1799 he brought out sixteen operas; in the latter year his Leonidas ou les Spartiates was performed at the Grand Opera, but failed. This, together with the criticisms made on the score of La foret de Brahma, which was returned to him for revision, was a severe humiliation, which is said to have caused his death. Among his operas, over twenty in all, were II Francese bizarro; Demetrio; Alessandro nell' Indie; and Alceste. He also wrote chamber-music and songs.