Henri Monteux

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Henri Philippe Moïse Monteux (born Paris, 23 February 1874, died Sachsenhausen, 12 April 1943) was a French theatre and film actor, and an elder brother of the conductor Pierre Monteux.[1] [n 1]

Life and career[edit]

Born at 16 rue de la Grange Batelière, he was the fourth child of Gustave and Clémence Monteux who had moved to Paris from Marseille in 1864. It was a modest household, his father being a shoe-maker and his mother a piano teacher. His younger brother Pierre later recalled as children spending afternoons observing the passers-by in the local square laid the foundations of the future actor's characterisations.[2]

Monteux made his debut at the Théâtre National de l'Odéon on 30 September 1895 as Georges Bréval in La Vie by Adolphe Thalasso, having won the prize for tragedy at the Paris Conservatoire (pupil of Gustave Worms) with his performance as Othello the previous July.[3] He played the same part to considerable praise in a production of de Vigny's More de Venise at the same theatre in December that year.[3] He played in the revue at the Folies Bergère in 1903: a most amusing pantomime with dogs "une pantomime extrêmement amusante, jouée par des chiens" The Merian Dogs.[4]

He followed these with leading roles such as Molière in Le Prêcheur converti, the title rôle in Britannicus, Oreste in Andromaque, and Robert Morel in the premiere of Les Irréguliers. He later became famous at the Théâtre Sarah-Bernhardt and was considered a specialist in the plays of Rostand[5] and went on to make several films and records.

In 1937 Monteux starred in « Pas de ça chez nous » at the Théâtre de la Renaissance (Théâtre du Peuple) as the President. A reviewer commented that Henri Monteux reminded everyone what a remarkable actor he was, displaying dramatic intensity coupled with fantasy.[n 2][6]

At the time of his arrest in Paris he was playing with acclaim the drunken father in Gorky's The Mother.[2]


Theatrical work[edit]

This includes:[7]

Notes and references[edit]

  1. ^ John Canarina in his book Pierre Monteux, Maître (2003) gives the year and place of death as 1944.[2]
  2. ^ « qui a mené le tableau avec fantaisie et aussi à certains instants une intensité dramatique fort impressionnante.»
  1. ^ List of deaths following deportation (Arrêté du 31 janvier 1997 portant apposition de la mention << Mort en déportation >> sur les actes de décès), retrieved 24 June 2013.
  2. ^ a b c Monteux, Doris. It's All in the Music: The Life and Work of Pierre Monteux. William Kimber & Co Ltd, London, 1965, chapter 1.
  3. ^ a b Noel E & Stoullig E. Les Annales du Théâtre et de la Musique, 21eme édition, 1895. G Charpentier et E Fasquelle, Paris, 1896, p121-51.
  4. ^ La Soirée parisienne. Revue illustrée des théâtres. January 1903 (no.3). Concerts et Music-Halls
  5. ^ Mousnier, Jean-Philippe. Pierre Monteux. L'Harmattan, Paris, 1999 (in French), p163.
  6. ^ Le Monde illustré 10 April 1937 p281 (review by Antoine). The play was based on It Can't Happen Here by Nadine Landowski.
  7. ^ Les Archives des Spectacles, retrieved 24 June 2013.