Henri-Montan Berton (17 September 1767 – 22 April 1844) was a French composer, teacher, and writer, mostly known as a composer of operas for the Opéra-Comique.
Henri-Montan Berton was born the son of Pierre Montan Berton.He is principally remembered as a composer of operas, most of which were first performed at the Opéra-Comique. Riding a wave of anti-clericalism which arose at the time of the French Revolution, his first real success was with Les rigueurs du cloître (23 August 1790), "in which a young nun is saved from entombment at the hands of a corrupt mother superior." The work has been described as the first rescue opera. Later more notable operas include Montano et Stéphanie (15 April 1799), Le délire (7 December 1799), and La Romance (26 January 1804). One of his greatest early successes was Aline, reine de Golconde (3 September 1803), which was performed internationally. Later in his career he tried tragedy with Virginie, which was premiered by the Paris Opera at the Salle Le Peletier on 11 June 1823, and received a total of 39 performances. His greatest success was Les deux mousqetaires, which was premiered by the Opéra-Comique at the Salle Feydeau on 22 December 1824 and continued to be performed each year up to 1834, receiving a total of 117 representations.
He was the music director of the Théâtre de l'Impératrice from 1807 to 1810 and the chorus master at the Paris Opera from 1810 to 1815. After Étienne Méhul's death on 18 October 1817, Berton was appointed to take over Méhul's composition class at the Paris Conservatoire on 1 January 1818, and continued to teach there until his death in 1844.Among his students were François Bazin, Bernhard Crusell, Louis-Barthélémy Pradher and Adolf Schimon .
Following in the family tradition, his son, Henri François Bertonwas also a composer, and several of his works were performed at the Opéra-Comique.
Étienne Nicolas Méhul was a French composer, "the most important opera composer in France during the Revolution". He was also the first composer to be called a "Romantic".
The Opéra-Comique is a Paris opera company, which was founded around 1714 by some of the popular theatres of the Parisian fairs. In 1762 the company was merged with, and for a time took the name of its chief rival the Comédie-Italienne at the Hôtel de Bourgogne, and was also called the Théâtre-Italien up to about 1793, when it again became most commonly known as the Opéra-Comique. Today the company's official name is Théâtre national de l'Opéra-Comique, and its theatre, with a capacity of around 1,248 seats, sometimes referred to as the Salle Favart, is located in Place Boïeldieu, in the 2nd arrondissement of Paris, not far from the Palais Garnier, one of the theatres of the Paris Opéra. The musicians and others associated with the Opéra-Comique have made important contributions to operatic history and tradition in France, and to French opera. Its current mission is to reconnect with its history, and discover its unique repertoire, to ensure production and dissemination of operas for the wider public. Mainstays of the repertory at the Opéra-Comique during its history have included the following works which have each been performed more than 1,000 times by the company: Cavalleria Rusticana, Le chalet, La dame blanche, Le domino noir, La fille du régiment, Lakmé, Manon, Mignon, Les noces de Jeannette, Le pré aux clercs, Tosca, La bohème, Werther and Carmen, the last having been performed more than 2,500 times.
Opéra comique is a genre of French opera that contains spoken dialogue and arias. It emerged from the popular opéras comiques en vaudevilles of the Fair Theatres of St Germain and St Laurent, which combined existing popular tunes with spoken sections. Associated with the Paris theatre of the same name, opéra comique is not always comic or light in nature; Carmen, perhaps the most famous opéra comique, is a tragedy.
Francesca di Foix is a melodramma giocoso in one act by Gaetano Donizetti with a libretto by Domenico Gilardoni based on one by Jean-Nicolas Bouilly and Emmanuel Mercier-Dupaty for Henri Montan Berton's 3-act opéra-comique Françoise de Foix, inspired by the life of Françoise de Foix.
Ariodant is an opéra comique in three acts by the French composer Étienne Méhul first performed at the Théâtre Favart in Paris on 11 October 1799. The libretto, by François-Benoît Hoffman is based on the same episode in Ariosto's Orlando Furioso that also inspired Handel's opera Ariodante. The work had a profound influence on the development of Romantic opera, particularly in Germany.
Guillaume Tell is an opéra comique, described as a drame mise en musique, in three acts by André Grétry, The French text was by Michel-Jean Sedaine based on a play of the same name by Antoine-Marin Lemierre.
The Théâtre Feydeau, a former Parisian theatre company, was founded in 1789 with the patronage of Monsieur, Comte de Provence, and was therefore initially named the Théâtre de Monsieur. It began performing in the Salle des Tuileries, located in the north wing of the Tuileries Palace, then moved to the Salle des Variétés at the Foire Saint-Germain, and finally, beginning in 1791, settled into its own custom-built theatre, the Salle Feydeau located on the rue Feydeau. The company was renamed Feydeau after the royal family was arrested during the French Revolution.
Auguste Mermet was a French opera composer.
The Salle Ventadour, a former Parisian theatre in the rue Neuve-Ventadour, now the rue Méhul, was built between 1826 and 1829 for the Opéra-Comique, to designs by Jacques-Marie Huvé, a prominent architect. The original theatre had a capacity of 1,106, but was subsequently taken over by the Théâtre-Italien and expanded to a capacity of 1,295 in 1841, thereafter becoming perhaps most noteworthy as the theatre in which the majority of the operas of the Italian composer Giuseppe Verdi were first performed in France. When the Théâtre-Italien company went out of business in 1878, the theatre was converted to offices.
Prosper-Didier Deshayes was an opera composer and dancer who lived and worked in France. In 1764 he was a balletmaster at the Comédie-Française. By 1774 he had become an assistant (adjoint) at the Paris Opéra. His first opera Le Faux serment ou La Matrone de Gonesse, a comédie mêlée d'ariettes in two acts, was first performed on 31 December 1785 at the Théâtre des Beaujolais in Paris and became a popular success. He went on to have another 18 works performed at various venues in Paris, but only two, La faut serment and Zélie, ou Le mari à deux femmes, a 3-act drame first performed at the Salle Louvois on 29 October 1791, were ever published as musical scores. He also participated in the collaborative Revolutionary opera Le congrès des rois, a 3-act comédie mêlée d'ariettes, which combined music written by Deshayes and 11 other composers and was first performed by the Opéra-Comique at the Salle Favart on 26 February 1794. He died in Paris.
Le congrès des rois was a 3-act French Revolutionary opera of the genre comédie mêlée d'ariettes with a libretto by De Maillot, a stage name used by Antoine-François Ève early in his career, and music by a collaborative of twelve composers. It was a satire directed against the "enemies of France". The libretto and most of the music has been lost. The composition of the opera was ordered by the Comité du Salut public to be completed in two days. The opera was first performed on 26 February 1794 [8 vent II] by the Opéra-Comique in the first Salle Favart and was presented a total of 2 times. At the premiere, "the length of the work and its couplets' lack of charm tired the audience, which took out its bad feelings on the ballet. Sharp whistles grew louder still, and the authors were not acknowledged." When the second performance met a similar reception, the management ended its run.
Frédéric Blasius was a French violinist, clarinetist, conductor, and composer. Born MatthäusBlasius, he used Frédéric as his pen name on his publications in Paris.
Jean-Pierre Solié was a French cellist and operatic singer. He began as a tenor, but switched and became well known as a baritone. He sang most often at the Paris Opéra-Comique. He also became a prolific composer, writing primarily one-act comic operas.
Euphrosine, ou Le tyran corrigé is an opera, designated as a 'comédie mise en musique', by the French composer Étienne Nicolas Méhul with a libretto by François-Benoît Hoffman. It was the first of Méhul's operas to be performed and established his reputation as a leading composer of his time. The premiere was given by the Comédie-Italienne at the first Salle Favart in Paris on 4 September 1790.
The Salle de la Bourse was a Parisian theatre located on the rue Vivienne in the 2nd arrondissement, across from the Paris Bourse, hence the name. It was successively the home of the Théâtre des Nouveautés (1827–1832), the Opéra-Comique (1832–1840), and the Théâtre du Vaudeville (1840–1869). The theatre was demolished in 1869.
Baron Auguste Creuzé de Lesser was a French poet, playwright, librettist and politician.
Henri François Berton called Berton fils was an early 19th-century French composer.
Claude-François Fillette-Loraux (1753–1821) was an 18th–19th-century French playwright and librettist for operas and opéras comiques.
Gustave Dugazon was a French classical composer. A contemporary of Boieldieu, Méhul, Kreutzer, Dugazon was the son of singer Louise Rosalie Lefebvre and actor Jean-Henri Gourgaud, called Dugazon.
Louis-Barthélémy Pradher was a French composer, pianist and music educator.
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