Henry Du Mont

(c. 1610—1684)

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(b Looz [now Borgloon], nr Hasselt, c.1610; d Paris, 8 May 1684). French composer, organist, and harpsichordist. He and his brother Lambert entered the choir school at Maastricht, where in 1629 Henry became organist, then studied at the Jesuit College. From 1643 until his death he was organist of St Paul, Paris, and he was granted French nationality in 1647. In 1652 he was named harpsichordist to the Duke of Anjou, in 1660 organist to the queen, and in 1663 one of the four maîtres of the royal chapel. He became compositeur de la musique de la chapelle royale, and, in 1673, maître de la musique de la reine. Additional ecclesiastical responsibilities enhanced his distinguished career. Du Mont composed chansons, airs, and keyboard music, but is best known for his prolific output of sacred music, notably his petits motets and grands motets. The latter, highly influential in the development of the genre, were for a petit choeur of up to seven voices, a five-part grand choeur, and an orchestra of varying sizes; choruses, solo récits, vocal ensembles, and instrumental ritornellos alternate within these large-scale works, many of which were composed for the royal chapel.

From The Oxford Companion to Music in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: Music.

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