Franck, César (opera) (-Auguste-Jean-Guillaume-Hubert)
- John Trevitt
- and Robert Orledge
(b Liège, Dec 10, 1822; d Paris, Nov 8, 1890). French composer of Belgian birth. His childhood and adolescence were scarred by parental exploitation, and this perhaps contributed to the late maturing of his full creative powers. He entered the Liège Conservatory in 1830 where he rapidly gained premiers prix for solfège and piano. Encouraged by his son’s success, Franck’s father organized a series of concerts in Liège, Brussels and Aachen in 1835. Franck’s earliest surviving compositions, trivial showpieces and operatic fantasies à la mode, were written in connection with these and subsequent exhibitions. In 1835 the family moved to Paris where Franck took lessons from Pierre-Joseph-Guillaume Zimmermann and Reicha, before enrolling at the Conservatoire in 1837. He was withdrawn from study by his father in April 1842, without having attempted the Prix de Rome, in order to concentrate on a career as a virtuoso; however, following a serious illness, and the poor reception accorded the first performance of his oratorio ...