Lucien Cailliet

The exceptional French-born American composer, arranger, conductor, and clarinetist, Lucien Cailliet, studied at several French music conservatories before graduating from the Dijon Conservatory. He then studied at the National Conservatory in Paris, graduating in 1913 with first prize on clarinet. He also studied composition privately with Paul Fauchet, Georges Caussades, Fugue with Andre Gedalge and orchestration and band arranging with Gabriel Pares who was then conductor of the Garde Republicaine Band.  Lucien Cailliet gained experience as an instrumentalist and bandmaster in the French Army, and, in 1915, he toured the USA with the French Army Band. In the late 1910s, he emigrated to the USA and in 1923, at age thirty-two, became a naturalized American citizen. In 1919, he joined the Philadelphia Orchestra as a clarinetist, bass clarinetist and saxophonist, and was active as an arranger. He continued to play with the Philadelphia Orchestra under the direction of Leopold Stokowski and Eugene Ormandy until 1937, while attending graduate school at the Philadelphia Musical Academy, receiving his Doctor of Music Degree in 1937. He also taught at the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia. During this time, he founded the Cherry Hill Wind Symphony, which would later become the Wind Symphony of Southern New Jersey.  After receiving his doctorate, Lucien Cailliet move to California, where from 1938 to 1945 he taught orchestration, counterpoint and conducting at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles. He was also conductor of the Symphony Orchestra and Bands at the University. After teaching there for seven years, he decided to devote his time to guest conducting and composing film scores.  In the 1950's Lucien Cailliet lived in Kenosha, Wisconsin, where he served from 1957 to 1976 as Musical Director and Director of Music Publications of the musical instrument producer G. Leblanc Corporation, and Conductor of the Kenosha Symphony Orchestra through 1960. Lucien Cailliet wrote over 200 compositions for band, orchestra and chorus, published by many leading publishers of this country, and has been a member of ASCAP since 1946. He prepared a new orchestration of Mussorgsky's piano suite Pictures at an Exhibition (1937); among his original works were Memories of Stephen Foster for orchestra (1945), Variations on "Pop Goes the Weasel" for orchestra (1938), band music, and clarinet pieces.  Lucien Cailliet is well known among wind musicians for his faithful arrangements of orchestral music for wind ensemble. In particular, his arrangements of Elsa's Procession to the Cathedral (from Wagner's opera Lohengrin) and Finlandia (a symphonic poem by Jean Sibelius) have become staples of the wind ensemble repertory.