Gilbert Amy

Gilbert Amy (born 29 August 1936) is a French composer and conductor.


Born in Paris, he entered the Conservatoire de Paris in 1954, where he was taught and influenced by Olivier Messiaen and Darius Milhaud and studied piano with Yvonne Loriod and fugue with Simone Plé-Caussade. His first composition (Œil de fumée) dates from 1955. In 1957 he met Pierre Boulez, under whose direction he composed his Piano Sonata. A year later Boulez commissioned from him a work called Mouvements, which was performed in Darmstadt by the Orchestre du Domaine Musical. From 1958 to 1961 he attended the courses given by Karlheinz Stockhausen in Darmstadt.[1]

In 1962 Jean-Louis Barrault named him adjunct music director of the Odéon Theater in Paris. At the same time he undertook a career as conductor in Europe and Argentina. Between 1967 and 1973 he was the director of the Domaine Musical, succeeding Pierre Boulez. From 1973 to 1975 he was music advisor to ORTF and worked to "reform" the music heard on the radio. From 1976 to 1981, he was music director of the Nouvel Orchestre Philharmonique of Radio France. In 1984, Amy succeeded Pierre Cochereau as Director of the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique at Lyon, while continuing to compose music. One of his notable students is composer Micheline Coulombe Saint-Marcoux.

Amy's talent as a composer has won him a number of awards including the Grand Prix National de la Musique in 1979, the Grand Prix of SACEM in 1983, the Grand Prix Musical of the City of Paris in 1986 and the Prix of the President of the Republic from the Academy Charles Cros in 1987.

List of works

TitleMediumDate of compositionPublisher
VariationsFlute, clarinet, cello, and piano1956unpublished (Éditions Durand-Salabert, for hire)
Inventions I et IIFlute, marimba/vibraphone, harp, and piano/celesta1961Heugel
RelaisBrass quintet1969Heugel
Trois InterludesViolin and two percussionists1984Amphion
En trioClarinet, violin, and piano1985Amphion
PosaunenFour trombones1987Amphion
MémoireCello and piano1989Universal Edition
String quartet No. 1String quartet1990–92Amphion
Brèves - String quartet No. 2String quartet1995Amphion
Le Temps du souffle (I)Two clarinets1993–96Amphion
Le Temps du souffle (II)Violin, saxophone, and trombone1993Amphion
Symphonies pour cinq cuivresBrass quintet1992Amphion
Trio AltoClarinet, percussion, and viola1994unpublished
Après Ein... Es PraeludiumCello quartet2006unpublished
String quartet No. 3String quartet2009Éditions Durand-Salabert
ÉpigrammesSolo piano1961Heugel
Cahiers d'ÉpigrammesSolo piano1964Heugel
Obliques ISolo piano1987Amphion
Obliques IISolo piano1990Amphion
Obliques IIISolo piano1989Amphion
Etude-VariationSolo piano2001unpublished
Hai KuSolo piano1997–2005Éditions Henry Lemoine
Sept BagatellesSolo organ1976Amphion
Quasi una toccataSolo organ1981Universal Editions
Trois InventionsSolo organ1993-2001Éditions Musicales transatlantiques
En-HarmoniesSolo harp1995Amphion
Quasi scherzandoSolo cello1981Universal Editions
Petit thèma variéViolin2002Éditions Henry Lemoine
6 Duos, for 2 violinsTwo violins2002Éditions Henry Lemoine
D'ombre et lumièreSolo viola2002unpublished
D'ombre et lumièreVersion for two violas2003unpublished
Trois ÉtudesSolo flute1977Éditions Musicales transatlantiques
5/16Flute and one wooden percussion1986Éditions Billaudot
JeuxOne or four oboes1970Universal Editions
La StravinskienneSolo marimba1996François Dhalmann Editions
CyclePercussion sextet1966Heugel
Seven SitesChamber ensemble1975Universal Editions
Echos XIIIFrench horn, trombone, harp, piano, and ensemble1976Universal Editions
Écrits sur toilesNarrator and ensemble1983Amphion
La Variation ajoutéeTape and 17 instruments1984Amphion
La temps du souffle IIIFrench horn and ensemble2001Amphion
Cors et CrisEnsemble and electronics2011Éditions Durand-Salabert (for hire)
TrajectoiresViolin and orchestra1966Heugel
RefrainsOrchestra1972Universal Editions
Adagio et strettoOrchestra1978Universal Editions
Trois ScènesOrchestra1994–95Amphion
ConcertoCello and orchestra1999-2000Amphion
ConcertoPiano and orchestra2003–05Éditions Durand-Salabert (for hire)
L'espace du souffleOrchestra2007Éditions Durand-Salabert (for hire)
Après...Ein 'Es praeludium'Two horns and string orchestra2008Éditions Durand-Salabert (for hire)
Oeil de fuméeVoice and piano1955Amphion
Oeil de fuméeVoice and orchestra1957Amphion
StropheSoprano and orchestra1965–66Amphion
Cette étoile enseigne à s'inclinerMen's voices, two pianos, instruments, and tape1970Heugel
Recitatif, air et variationTwelve voices1970Universal Editions
D'un désastre obscurMezzo-soprano and clarinet1971Universal Editions
D'un espace déployéSoprano, two pianos, and two orchestral groups1972–73Universal Editions
Après... D'un désastre obscurMezzo-soprano and ensemble1976Universal Editions
Shin'Anim Sha'AnanimMezzo-soprano, cello, clarinet, and ensemble1979Universal Editions
Une Saison en enferSoprano, piano, percussion, and tape1980Éditions Durand-Salabert (for hire)
Missa cum jubiloVocal quartet, children's choir, mixed choir, and orchestra1981–83Universal Editions
ChorosContra-tenor, tenor, bass, grand mixed choir, and orchestra1989Amphion
Quatre MélodiesSoprano and orchestra2003-05Éditions Durand-Salabert
Trois MélodiesSoprano and piano2003-04unpublished
Dessin animéBaritone and cello2003unpublished
Litanies pour RonchampTwo male singers, vocal ensemble, percussion, and string quartet2004-05unpublished
Le Premier CercleOpera in four acts1996–99Éditions Durand-Salabert


  1. Kennedy, Michael (2006), The Oxford Dictionary of Music, ISBN 0-19-861459-4
Cultural offices
Preceded by
Charles Bruck
Music Directors, Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France
Succeeded by
Marek Janowski
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