MILHAUD, DARIUS (1892–1974), French composer. Milhaud was born in Aix-en-Provence and was descended from an old Jewish family that claimed to have been among the first settlers in southern France after the fall of Jerusalem. He entered the Paris Conservatory at the age of 17, was soon attracted by the theater, and between 1910 and 1916 composed La Brebis egarée, Agamemnon, and Le pauvre matelot. He became acquainted with the composer Eric Satie and the writers Paul Claudel and Jean Cocteau and, when Claudel was appointed French minister to Brazil, he asked Milhaud to become his secretary. Milhaud spent almost two years (1917–18) in Rio de Janeiro, and his musical impressions of Brazil echo in many of his compositions. After his return to Paris, he joined a circle of progressive artists, the musicians of which formed an inner circle later known as "Les Six." A versatile and prolific composer, Milhaud wrote music for concert, stage, and screen, and for voice and orchestra. South American rhythms, U.S. jazz, Jewish synagogal traditions (especially those of his native region, the comtat venaissin ), 12-tone music, and trends and styles of great divergence merge in his works. Yet the mixture is always unmistakably his own. Milhaud's most important contributions to 20th-century music are to be found in some of his operas: Les Choëphores (1915); Esther de Carpentras (1925, with text by armand lunel ); Christophe Colomb (1928); Bolivar (1943); and the biblical opera David which Milhaud composed with Lunel for the Jerusalem Festival of 1954. Milhaud wrote concertos for almost every orchestral instrument, ballets, short and full-scale symphonies, chamber music, songs, piano music, and cantatas. Among the best known of his compositions on Jewish themes are his Service Sacré (1947), and two song cycles with piano accompaniment: Poèmes juifs (1916) and Chants populaires hébraïques (1925). He also wrote musical settings of Psalms for solo voices and chorus; the ballet La Création du Monde (1923); a piano suite, Le Candélabre à sept branches (1951); and music for various festival prayers. When France collapsed in 1940 Milhaud immigrated to the U.S. and became a professor at Mills College, Oakland, California. After 1947 he divided his time between the U.S. and Paris, where he became a professor of composition at the Conservatory. The story of his life and musical beliefs was told in Notes sans musique (1949; Notes Without Music, 1953), which also appeared in Hebrew, and in Entretiens avec Claude Rostand (1952). During his later years Milhaud suffered from rheumatoid arthritis which confined him to a wheelchair for long periods of time. -BIBLIOGRAPHY: P. Collaer, Darius Milhaud (Fr., 1947); H.H. Stuckenschmidt, Schoepfer der neuen Musik (1958), 204–16; P. Claudel, Correspondence Paul Claudel and Darius Milhaud 1912–1953 (1961); Grove, Dict.; Riemann-Gurlitt; MGG. (Peter Emanuel Gradenwitz)

Encyclopedia Judaica. 1971.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Milhaud, Darius — born Sept. 4, 1892, Aix en Provence, France died June 22, 1974, Geneva, Switz. French composer. Milhaud studied at the Paris Conservatoire, then at the Schola Cantorum with Vincent d Indy. He became known as one of Les Six, a group of young… …   Universalium

  • Milhaud, Darius — (1892 1974)    composer    Born in Aix en Provence, where he was descended from an old Jewish family, Milhaud studied under a number of noted music professors, and his earliest inclinations were toward the music of claude debussy, Russian music,… …   France. A reference guide from Renaissance to the Present

  • Milhaud, Darius — ► (1892 1974) Compositor francés. Formó parte del Grupo de los seis. A través de la superposición melódica y armónica, crea un estilo politonal. Obras: La creación del mundo (1922) (ballet) y Cristóbal Colón (1928) (ópera), entre otras. * * * (4… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Milhaud, Darius — (4 September 1892, Aix en Provence, France – 22 June 1974, Geneva)    A prolific composer of secular works, Milhaud nevertheless wrote some works exhibiting his Jewish heritage, in particular: Poèmes Juifs (1916), Liturgie Comtadine (1933), and… …   Historical dictionary of sacred music

  • Milhaud, Darius — (1891–1974)    French composer. Dividing his time between France and the United States, Milhaud was a prolific composer, writing music for operas, orchestral concerts, songs, films and ballet. His biblical opera David was composed for the… …   Who’s Who in Jewish History after the period of the Old Testament

  • Milhaud,Darius — Mil·haud (mē yōʹ), Darius. 1892 1974. French composer who experimented with polytonality and jazz styles. His works include the opera The Lost Sheep (1910) and the ballet Moïse (1940). * * * …   Universalium

  • Milhaud, Darius — (1892 1974)    French composer. He was born in Aix en Provence. He served as secretary to the French minister in Brazil in 1917 18. After returning to Paris, he wrote a wide variety of musical compositions including David, Service sacre, Poemes… …   Dictionary of Jewish Biography

  • Milhaud — Milhaud, Darius …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Darius Milhaud — ( 1926), Paris Darius Milhaud (French pronunciation: [daʁjys mijo]; 4 September 1892 – 22 June 1974) was a French composer and teacher. He was a member of Les Six also known as The Group of Six and one of the most prolific composers of the… …   Wikipedia

  • Milhaud — (Darius) (1892 1974) compositeur français: le Boeuf sur le toit (1919), la Création du monde (1923), ballets …   Encyclopédie Universelle

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.