Pierre Danican Philidor

Pierre Danican Philidor


• 1681 1731


Pierre Danican Philidor was a member of a musical family originally named Danican. It had been founded by Michel Danican (ca. 1600 - 1659) and his younger brother Jean (ca. 1620 - 1679), who evidently adopted the name Philidor when he was in royal service. Jean had two sons; the younger, Jacques (1657-1708), established the "cadet" line of Danican Philidors. Pierre Danican Philidor (la cadet) was his eldest son and one of the last significant musicians in the family. (The most important musician in the family, François-André Danican Philidor (1726 - 1795), was Pierre's cousin in the senior line; in addition, he was the famous chess player whose name is synonymous with a defensive series of plays.)

Pierre was a wind player, primarily an oboist, in the grand écurie from 1697; an oboist in the royal chapel from 1704; and a flutist in the chambre du roi from 1712. He wrote some attractive compositions that have survived, namely six suites for two flutes; six suites for two flutes, oboes, or violins; and some marches.