- Rita Benton
Austro-French family of composers, musicians, publishers and piano makers, active in France. (For the firm of piano makers, see Pleyel.)
(b Ruppersthal, June 18, 1757; d Paris, Nov 14, 1831). Composer, music publisher and piano maker. He founded a major publishing house and a piano factory and his compositions achieved widespread popularity in Europe and North America.
Pleyel’s baptismal certificate in the parish office names his father Martin, a schoolteacher, and his mother Anna Theresia (Maria Christina Theresa in MGG1). He is said to have studied with Vanhal while very young, and in about 1772 he became Haydn’s pupil and lodger in Eisenstadt, his annual pension being paid by Count Ladislaus Erdődy, whose family at Pressburg was related to Haydn’s patrons, the Esterházys. The count showed his pleasure at the progress of his protégé by offering Haydn a carriage and two horses, for which Prince Esterházy agreed to provide a coachman and fodder....