Nicolas-Joseph Platel

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Nicolas-Joseph Platel (* 1777 in Versailles ; † August 25, 1835 in Brussels ) was a Franco-Belgian cellist and composer , he is considered the founder of the Belgian violoncello school.


Nicolas-Joseph Platel was the son of a musician in the court orchestra of Louis XVI. As a child he was a singing pageant in court music and from the age of 10 received cello lessons from Jean-Louis Duport . When Duport fled to Berlin in 1789 because of the turmoil of the revolution, Platel had no classes for two years. It was not until 1793 that he found a new teacher in his older classmate Jacques-Michel de Lamare (1772-1823). In 1796 Platel came to the orchestra of the Théâtre Feydeau , in which his father was director of the choir. But just a year later he followed a singer he had fallen in love with to Lyon. From 1801 he lived again in Paris, gave numerous concerts there and enjoyed the reputation of being the best cellist in the city.

In 1805 he had planned a trip to England, but made friends with an amateur cellist in Quimper and stayed in the small town for two years. In 1807 Platel gave concerts in Nantes and Brest before embarking on a journey that would take him to Holland and Germany. After giving several successful concerts in Ghent , he changed his travel plans and settled in the city as a cello and singing teacher. After a few years he moved to Antwerp, where he became the first cellist at the opera, only to settle again a few years later in Brussels, where he worked in the same position at the Monnaie Theater .

Employed by the Prince of Chimay, he was one of the first teachers of the newly founded Brussels “ École royale de Musique ” in 1824 , which was renamed and reorganized as “ Conservatoire royal ” in 1831 after Belgium's declaration of independence under François-Joseph Fétis . In addition to his playing the cello, Nicolas-Joseph Platel was praised for his excellent pedagogical qualities, so Brussels was able to become one of the three important centers of cello education in 19th century Europe alongside Paris and Dresden. Platel also used the French playing technique of his teacher Duport in Belgium, which was then adopted by his students. Important students were Adrien-François Servais , Alexander Batta (1816-1902) and François de Munck (1815-1854), who in 1840 took over Platel's professorship at the Brussels Conservatory.


Platel mainly composed works for his instrument that have been almost completely forgotten today, including 5 concertos for cello and orchestra, several sonatas for cello and bc, 6 duos for violin and cello, 3 trios for violin, viola and cello, huit Airs Variés for cello, Caprices ou Preludes for cello, six romances for voice and piano, as well as other singing pieces in the Album des Dames .

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. ^ François-Joseph Fétis: curriculum vitae of Jacques-Michel Hurel de Lamare
  2. ^ François-Joseph Fétis: Biographie universelle des musiciens et bibliographie génèrale de la musique (1864)
  3. Thierry Levaux: Le Dictionnaire des Compositeurs de Belgique du Moyen Age à nos jours , p 490, Editions: "Art in Belgium" in 2006, ISBN 2-930338-37-7