He was professor of trumpet at the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique in Paris where he introduced the teaching of the piccolo trumpet including the Baroque repertoire on trumpet. André inspired many innovations on his instrument, and his technical mastery and profound artistry has contributed over fifty years to popularize the trumpet worldwide.
Maurice André has performed and recorded all the great concertos of the trumpet repertoire with the most illustrious conductors of his time. He is generally recognized by his peers as the greatest classical trumpet player of the century.
André was born in Alès in the Cévennes, into a mining family. His father was an amateur musician; André studied trumpet with a friend of his father, who suggested that André be sent to the conservatory. In order to gain free admission to the conservatory, he joined a military band. After only six months at the conservatory, he won his first prize.
At the conservatory, André's professor beat him out of frustration and told him to return when he could excel in his playing. A few weeks later, he returned to play all fourteen etudes found in the back of the Arban's book without a single mistake. Maurice André won the Geneva International Music Competition in 1955, together with Theo Mertens, and the ARD International Music Competition in Munich in 1963. He was made an honorary member of the Delta chapter of Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia at Ithaca College in New York in 1970.
André rose to international prominence in the 1960s and 1970s with a large series of recordings of Baroque works on piccolo trumpet for Erato and other labels. Not content to limit himself to the standard Baroque trumpet repertoire, André also performed many transcriptions of works for oboe, flute, and even voice and string instruments. These recordings were (and remain) very popular, and were a strong component of the rebirth of interest in Baroque music in the 1960s. André had over 300 audio recordings to his name, from the mid-1950s to his death.
He had three children: Lionel (1959-1988), trumpeter and music teacher; Nicolas, who plays the trumpet; and Béatrice, who plays the oboe. All three performed with their father in concert. He also made several recordings with his brother Raymond (b. 1941).
André spent the last few years of his life in retirement in southern France. He died at the age of 78 in a hospital in Bayonne on 25 February 2012. He is buried in the cemetery of the village of Saint-André-Capcèze (in the Lozère).
- Steven Chenette (2001). ""It's My Greatest Joy" : An Interview with Maurice Andre". International Trumpet Guild Journal 30: 08–19.
- "Obituary by Michel Laplace" (PDF). Retrieved 2013-05-09.
- "Raymond André". Retrieved 2013-05-09.
- Cummings, Robert. "Guy Touvron". AllMusic. Retrieved 2010-12-15.
- BBC News (26 February 2012). "Trumpet player Maurice Andre dies aged 78". Retrieved 26 February 2012.
- Maurice André website, part of the French Ministry of Culture's portal (French/English)
- Webpage with rich information about Maurice André
- Maurice André and Prague. Documents and reminiscences on the recording of the Brandenburg Concerto No. 2 in F major in 1965 (Maurice André, Milan Munclinger, Ars Rediviva)
- AllMusic Guide to Maurice Andre Discography