Grandjany, Marcel (Georges Lucien)
- Ann Griffiths
(b Paris, Sept 3, 1891; d New York, Feb 24, 1975). American harpist and composer of French birth. He studied with Henriette Renié, then gained a premier prix in 1905 at the Paris Conservatoire, making his début with the Concerts Lamoureux Orchestra and giving his first recital at the Salle Erard when he was 17. He was also an organist, and played at the Sacré-Coeur Basilica for several years during World War I. Thenceforth he devoted himself to the harp, making his London début in 1922 and his New York début in 1924. He settled in New York in 1936, and became an American citizen in 1945. He taught at the Juilliard School from 1938 until a few weeks before his death, and at the Montreal Conservatory from 1943 to 1963. Apart from his faultless technique, the outstanding merit of Grandjany’s playing was the sheer sensuous beauty of the sound he produced with his rather unusual spatula-shaped fingertips. His influence as a teacher was immense, and his many solo and ensemble harp compositions are attractive, and extremely well written for the instrument....