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INDY, Vincent d' (1851-1931)

Born into a family of old nobility from the Cévennes region and raised in the Catholic faith, Vincent d’Indy studied piano under Diémer and Marmontel, and harmony under Lavignac. He began reading law, but his discovery of the works of Beethoven, Berlioz and Wagner was decisive in his choice of vocation. After entering the Paris Conservatoire in 1874, he completed his education with Franck, whose heritage he defended passionately, if not dogmatically—his own works often adopted the cyclic principle. A wealthy man, d’Indy could have devoted himself wholly to composition, but instead he waged war on all fronts: as a conductor to defend certain repertoires, as President of the Société Nationale de Musique on Franck’s death in 1890, as founder in 1894 of the Schola Cantorum, where he taught tirelessly, and as the author of some occasionally polemical books. D’Indy dreamt of a truly French music drama, along the lines of the Wagnerian model, and produced his two works Fervaal (1897) and L’Étranger (1903) as a result. He also subscribed to the “regionalist” perspective, advocating the use of folk tunes, as can be seen by his famous Symphonie “cévenole” (Symphony on a French Mountain Air). D’Indy’s prolific output remains little known, even unloved. His post-Romantic spirit and deliberately Germanic style were at variance with the trail blazed by Debussy or Ravel. His works are, however, inspired and display remarkable mastery. There is little doubt, though, that d’Indy’s inflexibility, chauvinism and anti-Semitism have contributed to the general disaffection for his works.

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    Works - 30
  • Chanson des aventuriers de la mer op. 2, La (Hugo / d’Indy)
  • Chanson et danses. Divertissement pour instruments à vent op. 50 (Vincent d'Indy)
  • Chant de la cloche op. 18, Le (Vincent d’Indy)
  • Chevauchée du Cid op. 11, La (Bonnières / d’Indy)
  • Deuxième Symphonie en si bémol op. 57 (Vincent d’Indy)
  • Étranger, L' (Vincent d'Indy)
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    Themes - 4
  • Courant – L’École franckiste
  • Direction d'orchestre
  • The symphonic poem
  • Piano – Fin-de-siècle Romantic Piano Music
  • Symposia - 2
  • Exotisme et art lyrique (2012)
  • Henri Rabaud et son temps (2013)
  • Studies - 2
  • Saint-Arroman, Gilles – De l’opéra provincial au drame musical régionaliste. Le rôle de la Schola Cantorum
  • Saint-Arroman, Gilles – Vincent d’Indy, témoin et acteur de la création lyrique à Paris
  • Documents - 4
  • Lettre de Vincent d'Indy à Martin-Pierre Marsick (1887)
  • Lettres à Fernand de La Tombelle : Vincent d'Indy (1903-1913)
  • Lettres à Jules Griset : Vincent d’Indy (2 l., 1907-1908)
  • Lettres de Vincent d'Indy à Armand Marsick (2 lettres, 1910-1930)