Magazine article Gramophone

Marie-Claire Alain

Magazine article Gramophone

Marie-Claire Alain

Article excerpt

Organist

Born August 10, 1926

Died February 26, 2013

Marie-Claire Alain was the doyenne of French organists, the grande dame of the organ world. With more than 260 recordings to her credit, she was arguably the most recorded organist and is only one of two people to have recorded the complete works of Bach three times (in the 1960s, 1978-1980 and the 1990s), as well as the complete works of 12 other composers. She made her first recording, 'Pieces inedites de Bach', in 1954 on the Erato label. It is reckoned that since her debut in 1950 she gave well over 2000 recitals worldwide.

Born, like Debussy, in the Paris suburb of Saint-Germain-en-Laye, Alain was the youngest child of a distinguished musical family and the last link in a direct line of celebrated French organists from Guilmant and Vierne, with whom her organist-composer father Albert studied, to Marcel Dupre and Maurice Durufle, who were her teachers. …

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