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François Morel, born in Montreal in 1926, belongs to an important group of Quebec composers, all of them students of the late Claude Champagne. Unlike his colleagues, he resisted the idea of going to Europe to further his studies, he stayed in Quebec and met Varèse in New York. This choice did not in any way jeopardize the development of an international career. In 1953, Leopold Stokowski premiered ANTIPHONIE in Carnegie Hall, a work still frequently performed today. Morel's subsequent works have been widely played in Europe, Russia, Japan, China as well as in North and South Americas under the direction of renowned conductors such as Monteux, Ozawa, Metha, Decker and Abbado.
François Morel was also very active on the Quebec music scene, organizing concerts, producing records and composing works for radio, television and theatre.
He worked for over 25 years as a freelance composer and conductor for the CBC French network, was a co-founder of Musique de Notre Temps (Music of Our Times), of Les Éditions Québec-Musique and founder and artistic director of l'Ensemble Bois et Cuivres du Québec.
His work for large wind orchestra AUX COULEURS DU CIEL was commissioned by the Montreal Symphony Orchestra and premiered by this orchestra in January 1988, under the direction of Charles Dutoit to whom the work was dedicated.
François Morel has recently retired from the Faculty of Music of Laval University where he taught from 1979 until 1997 as professor of composition, analysis and orchestration. Among the contemporary music ensembles which he organized and conducted while at the university, were an ensemble of twelve flutes, another of fifhteen brass instruments, as well as the Contemporary Ensemble of winds, brass and percussion.
In 1994, he was honoured with the rank of chevalier of the National Order of Quebec and in 1996, he received the Denise Pelletier prize at the Prix du Québec awards.
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