1886 - 1971
The French organist and composer Marcel Dupré (1886-1971) came from a musical family. Both his grandfathers were organists and choirmasters, his mother a pianist and cellist, and his father organist at St. Ouen in Rouen. He studied at the Paris Conservatory with Diemer, Guilmant, Vierne and Widor, and, as well as First Prizes for the piano, organ and fugue, he won the Prix de Rome in 1914. He became a famous organ virtuoso especially when, in 1920, he performed the entire organ works of Bach by heart; by 1953 he had given some 1900 concerts throughout the world. In 1934 he succeeded Widor at the organ of St. Sulpice, a post which he retained until his death. He began teaching at the Paris Conservatory in 1926 and had such pupils as Messiaen, Langlais, J. Alain, Cochereau, R. Falcinelli, M.-Cl. Alain, Chapuis, J. Guillou and Odile Pierre. He has composed numerous works for organ as well as instrumental and vocal music. He has written several important pedagogical works.