Jeanne Leleu

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Jeanne Leleu

Jeanne Leleu (29 December 1898 – 11 March 1979) was a French pianist and composer. She was born in Saint-Mihiel in northeastern France; her father was a bandmaster and her mother a piano teacher.[1] She entered the Conservatoire de Paris at the age of nine, where she studied with Marguerite Long, Georges Caussade, Alfred Cortot and Charles-Marie Widor. With Geneviève Durony, Leleu gave the premiere performance of Ravel's Ma mère l'oye in 1910. Ravel had composed his Prelude for a Paris Conservatoire sight-reading competition in 1913 and Leleu won the prize.

Her cantata Beatrix won the Prix de Rome in 1923.[2] (She was only the third women to win this premier Grand Prize after Lili Boulanger and Marguerite Canal.)[3] She went on to win two other prizes: Georges Bizet and Monbinne.[1]

In 1924 she took a position in the Villa Medicis in Rome, staying there for three years before returning to Paris.

After completing her studies, Leleu took a position as professor of sight reading at the Conservatoire and, in 1947, she was named professor of harmony. She died in Paris at 80 years of age.[4][5]


Leleu was known for symphonic and piano works and ballets. Her printed compositions were published in Paris.[1] Selected works include:[1][3]

  • Quatuor pour piano et cordes (1922)
  • Beatrix, cantata (1923) (Winner of the Grand Prize of Rome)
  • Esquisses italiennes (1926)
  • Suite symphonique (1926)
  • Deux danses, (1927)
  • Le Cyclope d'Euridipe (1928)
  • Transparences, symphony (1931)
  • Concerto pour piano (1935)
  • Un jour d'été, ballet (1940)
  • Nantéos, ballet (1947)
  • Femmes, suite (1947)
  • Virevoltes, suite (1950)


  1. ^ a b c d Sadie, Julie Anne; Samuel, Rhian (1994). The Norton/Grove Dictionary of Women Composers. W. W. Norton & Company. ISBN 9780393034875.
  2. ^ "Prix de Rome 1920-1929". Retrieved 2019-11-17.
  3. ^ a b "Jeanne Leleu", Wikipédia (in French), 2018-03-15, retrieved 2019-11-17
  4. ^ Orenstein, Arbie (2003). A Ravel Reader: Correspondence, Articles, Interviews. Dover Publications. p. 112. ISBN 9780486430782. Retrieved 4 January 2011. Jeanne Leleu (1898–1979).
  5. ^ Sadie, Julie Anne; Samuel, Rhian (1994). The Norton/Grove dictionary of women composers. W. W. Norton & Company. ISBN 9780393034875. Retrieved 4 January 2011.