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Born on January 10, 1910 in Lyon, the French conductor and composer, Jean Martinon entered the Lyon and Paris conservatoires to study the violin. At Lyon, his teacher was Maurice Foundray and at the Paris Conservatory, he studied violin technique with Jules Boucherit. While at the Paris conservatory, Martinon took composition with Albert Roussel and Vincent d’Indy. After completing the composition courses, he studied conducting with Charles Munch and Désormière. He graduated from the Paris Conservatory in 1928, winning a premier prix.

Martinon’s familiarity with conducting started in France, followed by various appointments in Europe, the Middle East, and the United States. In 1946, he embarked on a conducting career directing the Concerts du Conservatoire in Paris and the Bordeaux Symphony. The successful debut with the LPO led to his appointment as associate conductor of the orchestra in 1947. From 1947-1950 Martinon directed the Radio Eireann orchestra, Dublin and in 1951, he returned to Paris to conduct the Concerts Lamoureux until 1957. From 1957-1959, Martinon conducted the Israel Philharmonic. His appointment as the next conductor of the Düsseldorf Symphony occurred in 1959. Martinon was in Düsseldorf until 1963 when the Chicago Symphony Orchestra selected him as their music director, a position he held until 1968. During that same year, he returned to France to direct the French National Radio Orchestra and served as the principal conductor of the Hague Residentie–Orkest from 1974 until shortly before his death in 1976.

Martinon’s extensive experience as a composer led to his approach to conducting. The Symphoniette pour orchestre á cordes, piano, harpe et timbales, op. 16, from 1935, is one of three first attempts at composition. After enlisting in the war, Martinon’s imprisonment in a German camp, Stalag IX A, resulted in several new compositions, Psaume 136, le Chant des Captifs, Musique d’Exil, Sonatina No.3, Sonatina No. 4 for wind instruments, and various choral works. In 1946, the city of Paris awarded a prize to his composition le Chant des Captifs. After the war, other notable compositions include Symphonie no. 3 (Irlandaise), the Concerto no. 2 pour violin et orchestre, op. 5, dedicated to Szeryng, and the Concerto pour cello et orchestre, op. 52, composed for Pierre Fournier. For the stage Martinon composed two works, the ballet Ambohimanga ou la Cité Bleue and in 1949 the opera Hécube with a libretto by Serge Moreux. Symphony no.4 Altitudes was the outcome of a commission from the Chicago Symphony to commemorate its 75th anniversary.

Martinon had recently taken on a position at the Paris Conservatory to teach conducting when he died from a serious illness on March 1, 1976.

From the guide to the Jean Martinon papers, 1923-1994, (Music Library)

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
creatorOf Jean Martinon papers, 1923-1994 Music Library
creatorOf Čajkovskij, Petr Ilʹič, 1840-1893. Casse-Noisette, op 71. suite n °1 : ballet. Bibliothèque nationale de France, BnF
referencedIn Harriss, Robert Preston,. Oral history interview, 1977. Maryland historical society
referencedIn Rothschild, Randolph S., 1909-2003. Randolph S. Rothschild collection, 1942-1992 (bulk 1973-1985). Library of Congress
referencedIn Mennin, Peter,. Interview conducted by Oliver Daniel, Dec. 7, 1976 [sound recording]. University of Pennsylvania Libraries, Van Pelt Library
referencedIn Remo Bolognini papers, 1929-1973 The New York Public Library. Music Division.
referencedIn Randolph S. Rothschild Collection, 1942-1992, (bulk 1973-1985) Library of Congress. Music Division
referencedIn Meyerhoff, Lenore P. (Lenore Pancoe), 1927-1988. Lenore P. Meyerhoff papers, 1919-2001 and undated. Jewish Historical Society of Maryland Library
referencedIn Keefer, Lubov Breit, 1896-1982,. Oral history interview, 1977. Maryland historical society
referencedIn Feldman, Sarah, 1907-. Oral history interview, 1977. Maryland historical society
referencedIn Henry Cowell collection of noncommercial recordings [sound recording], 1940-1953 The New York Public Library. Rodgers and Hammerstein Archives of Recorded Sound.
referencedIn Johnny Green additional papers, 1923-1989. Harvard Theater Collection, Houghton Library, Harvard College Library, Harvard University
referencedIn Van Hulsteyn, Ruth, 1905-. Oral history interview, 1977. Maryland historical society
creatorOf Bolognini, Remo. Remo Bolognini papers, 1929-1973. New York Public Library System, NYPL
referencedIn Ross Lee Finney collection : sound and video recordings, 1938-1986 The New York Public Library. Rodgers and Hammerstein Archives of Recorded Sound.
referencedIn Marbury, William L. (William Luke), 1901-. Oral history interview, 1977. Maryland historical society
referencedIn Leavitt, Joseph, 1916-. Oral history interview, 1976. Maryland historical society
referencedIn Jacob Druckman collection of noncommercial sound recordings [sound recording] The New York Public Library. Rodgers and Hammerstein Archives of Recorded Sound.
creatorOf Čajkovskij, Petr Ilʹič, 1840-1893. Casse-Noisette, op 71 [Multimédia multisupport]. suite n °1 : ballet. Bibliothèque nationale de France, BnF
Role Title Holding Repository
Relation Name
associatedWith Barraud, Henry, 1900-1997 person
associatedWith Baudo, Serge, 1927- person
associatedWith Berliner Philharmoniker corporateBody
associatedWith Böhm, Karl, 1894-1981 person
associatedWith Bolognini, Remo person
associatedWith Bolognini, Remo. person
associatedWith Borsari, Amédée, 1905-1999 person
associatedWith Boston Symphony Orchestra corporateBody
associatedWith Brisson, Pierre, 1896-1964 person
associatedWith Canarina, John, 1934- person
associatedWith Casadesus, Francis, 1870-1954 person
associatedWith Charles, Edouard person
associatedWith Chicago Symphony Orchestra corporateBody
associatedWith Chouraqui, André, 1917-2007 person
associatedWith Comissiona, Sergiu person
associatedWith Cowell, Henry, 1897-1965 person
associatedWith Cziffra, Georges, 1921-1994 person
associatedWith Drake University. College of Arts and Sciences corporateBody
associatedWith Druckman, Jacob, 1928-1996 person
associatedWith Düsseldorfer Symphoniker corporateBody
associatedWith Dutilleux, Henri, 1916-2013 person
associatedWith Feldman, Sarah, 1907- person
associatedWith Ferras, Christian, 1933-1982 person
associatedWith Finney, Ross Lee, 1906-1997 person
associatedWith Fournet, Jean person
associatedWith Fournier, Jean, 1911-2003 person
associatedWith Fournier, Pierre, 1906-1986 person
associatedWith Francescatti, Zino, 1902-1991 person
associatedWith Gavoty, Bernard person
associatedWith Gingold, Josef person
associatedWith Green, Johnny, 1908-1989 person
associatedWith Haitink, Bernard, 1929- person
associatedWith Hamon, Jean person
associatedWith Harriss, Robert Preston, person
associatedWith Hasselmann, Roland person
associatedWith Henze, Hans Werner, 1926-2012 person
associatedWith Hétu, Pierre, 1936-1998 person
associatedWith Indiana University. School of Music corporateBody
associatedWith Inghelbrecht, D. E. (Désiré Emile), 1880-1965 person
associatedWith Jean Martinon Society corporateBody
associatedWith Jolivet, André, 1905-1974 person
associatedWith Karajan, Herbert von person
associatedWith Keefer, Lubov Breit, 1896-1982, person
associatedWith Kubelík, Rafael, 1914-1996 person
associatedWith Landowski, Marcel, 1915-1999 person
associatedWith Leavitt, Joseph, 1916- person
associatedWith Lees, Benjamin, 1924-2010 person
associatedWith Leinsdorf, Erich, 1912-1993 person
associatedWith Le Roux, Maurice person
associatedWith Lescuyer, Christian person
associatedWith Loewenguth, Alfred person
associatedWith Lumbroso, Nelly, b. 1877 person
associatedWith Malraux, André, 1901-1976 person
associatedWith Marbury, William L. (William Luke), 1901- person
associatedWith Martinon, Jean, 1910-1976 person
associatedWith Mennin, Peter, person
associatedWith Menuhin, Yehudi, 1916-1999 person
associatedWith Messiaen, Olivier, 1908-1992 person
associatedWith Meyerhoff, Lenore P. (Lenore Pancoe), 1927-1988. person
associatedWith Mihalovici, Marcel, 1898-1985 person
associatedWith Moreux, Serge, 1900-1959 person
associatedWith Munch, Charles, 1891-1968 person
associatedWith Norddeutscher Rundfunk corporateBody
associatedWith Nussy Saint-Saëns, Marcel person
associatedWith Ohana, Maurice, 1913-1992 person
associatedWith Orchestre des concerts Lamoureux corporateBody
associatedWith Otterloo, Willem van person
associatedWith Peck, Donald person
associatedWith Proffit, André person
associatedWith Radiodiffusion française. Orchestre national corporateBody
associatedWith Reiner, Fritz, 1888-1963 person
associatedWith Remoortel, Edouard van, 1926-1977 person
associatedWith Rosenthal, Manuel, 1904-2003 person
correspondedWith Rothschild, Randolph S., 1909-2003. person
associatedWith Roussel, Albert, 1869-1937 person
associatedWith Rózsa, Miklós, 1907-1995 person
associatedWith Ruchpaul, Eva, 1928- person
associatedWith Schmidt-Isserstedt, Hans, 1900-1973 person
associatedWith Schoenberg, Gertrud person
associatedWith Serkin, Rudolf, 1903-1991 person
associatedWith Solti, Georg, 1912-1997 person
associatedWith Starker, Janos person
associatedWith Stern, Isaac, 1920-2001 person
associatedWith St. Louis Symphony Orchestra corporateBody
associatedWith Stravinsky, Igor, 1882-1971 person
associatedWith Szeryng, Henryk person
associatedWith Van Hulsteyn, Ruth, 1905- person
Place Name Admin Code Country

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Active 1929

Active 1973




Ark ID: w6wm59xt

SNAC ID: 12192205