Cesar Franck

   Cesar Franck (1822-1890), Belgian-French composer and organist, was born in Liège, Belgium, and received his musical education at the Liège and Paris conservatories. Franck led a retíred life, devoted almost entirely to composing and teaching. He served as a church organist, first at Saint-Jean-Saint-Francois and then at Sainte-Clo­tilde. In 1872 he was appointed professor of the organ at the Paris Conservatory. The following year he became a French citizen. His death was caused by complications of injuries incurred when he was struck accidentally by an omnibus.
   Franck exerted a great influence on later composers and is today considered the founder not only of modern French instrumental music but also of the French school of organ music. Nevertheless, few com­posers of Franck's reputation have received so little recognition during their lifetimes. It was not until the last year of his life that a perform­ance of his work was received with unqualified enthusiasm.
   His works include the opera Hulda; the symphonic poem The Accursed Hunter; the oratorios Ruth, The Redemption, and The Beatitudes; a string quartet; and a sonata for piano and violin. Perhaps best known are his single symphony in D minor and his compositions for the organ.