Jean Henry D'Anglebert, classical music composer

Jean Henry D'Anglebert image

Jean Henry D'Anglebert


One of the foremost French keyboardists of the seventeenth century, Jean-Henri d'Anglebert helped lay the groundwork for the exemplary achievements of François Couperin. His is principally known for his Pièces de clavecin, the only one of his compositions published during his lifetime, in which intricate counterpoint and rich embellishments forge a lush and elaborate style that is the hallmark of French keyboard music. Included with this publication was a table of ornaments which was the most sophisticated before Couperin's and served as a model for both Johann Sebastian Bach and Jean-Philippe Rameau. Other pieces by d'Angelbert survived in manuscript form, including transcriptions of Lully's orchestral music for harpsichord, as well as arrangement of lute pieces by Ennemond Gaultier and René Mesangeau.

Virtually nothing is known of d'Anglebert's early life or his musical education. Born in 1629, his earliest manuscripts date from the 1650s. It is possible Jacques Champion de Chambonnières was his teacher, whom he also succeeded as harpsichordist at the French court. At the very least, Chambonnières was a highly-respected colleague to whom d'Anglebert paid homage in a well-known tombeau. By this time, he was acquainted with the most prominent of France's harsipchordist, among them Chambonnières and Louis Couperin. His marriage contract, dated 11 October 1659, which described him as bourgeois de Paris, further suggests that he was already well connected and established within Paris. In 1660, he was organist at the Jacobins church in Rue St. Honoré. However, in August of that year, he succeeded Henri Dumont as harpsichordist to Philippe I, Duke of Orleans and younger brother of Louis XIV. After serving as the royal harpsichordist at the court of Louis XVI, he served Dauphine Duchess Maria Anna Victoria of Bavaria. D'Anglebert died in Paris on April 23, 1691.  

Composer Title Date Action
Jean Henry D'Anglebert Sarabande Grave 03/31/2011 Play Add to playlist