Absil, Jean

1893 —

Jean Absil, a Belgian composer, began his musical studies as an organist, but in 1920 turned to the study of composition. His Piano Concerto (1938) brought him international attention. In 1955 he was elected to the Belgian Royal Academy, and in 1964 he received the Prix Quinquennial of the Belgian government. Absil's style is essentially polyphonic and polymodal. Changes in meter and irrational divisions are frequent. His music has great structural clarity, often cast in variation or other conventional forms. Absil's oeuvre includes works for orchestra, chorus, voice, piano, guitar, as well as many works for chamber ensembles, including three important works for saxophone quartet.