Hanssens, Charles Louis


Distinguished Belgian composer of modern times, who has produced a large number of works. At the age of ten he entered the National Theatre at Amsterdam as violoncellist, at twenty he became second chapelmaster; two years later holding a like position in Brussels. In 1827 he was appointed professor of harmony in the Royal School of Music, returning to Holland in 1830 on account of the political events of that year. Four years later he played the cello at the Theatre Ventadour in Paris, afterwards becoming second leader of the orchestra and composer. He was director of the French Opera at The Hague in 1835, again in Paris and Ghent, and in 1848 became leader of the Theatre de la Monnaie, Brussels, where he remained until 1869. He was a member of the Royal Academy of Belgium and belonged to the Order of Leopold. He wrote some operas, many ballets, symphonies, overtures, orchestral fantasias, concertos for cello, for violin, and for piano, two concertos for clarinet, a symphony cqncertante for the clarinet and violin; masses, and a requiem.