Maffré, Joseph

Joseph Maffré. Bandmaster, teacher, fl 1840-55. He was a leading musical figure in the Montreal of his time. In 1840 he was bandmaster of the 71st regiment, a position he may have held during the entire stay in Montreal of the 71st Highland Light Infantry, 1838-52. An advertisement in 1841 proclaimed his 'perfect knowledge' of the piano, organ, and string and wind instruments and his ability also to teach the elements of singing, thorough bass, and orchestration. In the same year he proposed the formation of choral and orchestral societies. These hopes were not realized fully, but Maffré is known to have led the orchestra in a Montreal Choral Society concert in 1844. He trained and led the amateur singers at the Récollets Church 1843-6 and at St Patrick's Church 1847-8. He also led a quadrille band (in 1855 jointly with Henry Prince). The Literary Garland, (May, Nov 1840) includes quadrilles composed by Maffré, and his Original Canadian Quadrilles (J.W. Herbert 1847) were dedicated to the Countess of Elgin. Some music from his personal library survives at McGill University.