We love Louise Farrenc and all her wonderful music!  In honor of her birthday today, May 31, we are featuring a Youtube  video introduction about Farrenc, recorded by Dr. Liane Curtis in 2021 and lightly edited for this re-release.  This TIMELINE  is referred to in the Youtube video at 4:36

Louise Farrenc (born Jeanne-Louise Dumont) b.  Paris, May 31, 1804; d Paris, Sept 15, 1875 

Year Selected compositions Events
1819 Begins study of composition with Anton Reicha
1821 Marries Aristide Farrenc.
1825 First publications for piano
1826 Birth of Daughter, Victorine
1835 Portrait (in oil) by Luigi Rubio
1834 Overture No. 1 in E minor, op. 23 First orchestral work
1836 Solo Piano — Air russe varié Acclaimed by R. Schumann
1839-40 Piano Quintets, both works praised
1840 Solo Piano — 30 Études in all the major and minor keys  Acclaimed by critic Maurice Bourges
1841 Symphony no. 1 in c minor
1842 Appointed by Auber to Conservatoire as Prof. of Piano
1845 Her Études adopted as required study for all piano classes at Conservatoire
1846 Symph. No. 1 premiered in Brussels, at same concert, Victorine performs Beethoven’s “Emperor” concerto
1849 Premiere of her Symphony Nr. 3 op. 36, performed by the Société des concerts du Conservatoire
1850 Premiere of Nonet (for strings and winds) in E-flat major, Op. 38 After the success of the Nonet, Louise petitions the Conservatory to pay her the same as her male colleagues
1854-56 Trio in E♭, Op. 44 (piano, clarinet and cello)

Trio in E minor, Op. 45 (piano, flute and cello)

1859 Death of her daughter, Victorine. From this time, she focusses on scholarship, editing and teaching, rather than composing
1860 With Aristide, begins publishing Trésor des pianists, 23-volume collection of harpsichord/ piano music of 16th to 19th centuries
1861, 1869 Institut de France honors her with the Chartier Prize for her contributions to chamber music.
1872 At end of year retires from Conservatory

This video was made at the request of Chamber Orchestra of the Springs (Colorado) in 2021, when they performed Farrenc’s Symphony n. 3. Thank you to the 92nd Street Y, whose brilliant one-minute video “This is how Louise Farrenc won equal pay in the 1800s” is included. Special thanks also to Insula Orchestra and their music director Laurence Equilbey. We love their Farrenc performances (see below), and we’ve borrowed their short animation of the Farrenc portrait (made for their CD release video).

Last year we celebrated Farrenc’s birthday by announcing the release of our editions of her Symphonies n. 1 and 3.  That essay is here and those editions may be purchased here.  Most recently, our edition of Symphony n. 1 was led by Nisan Ak in Istanbul!

So celebrate Farrenc’s birthday by enjoying her wonderful symphonies — here are links to some performances by the Insula Orchestra!

Symphony n. 1 (complete)

Symphony n.3, Mvt . 1


Symphony n.3, Mvt. 2

Symphony n. 3, Mvt. 3 Scherzo