Albert Clerk-Jeannotte

Albert Clerk-Jeannotte. Tenor, teacher, administrator, b St-Hilaire (now Mont-St-Hilaire), near Montreal, 15 Jan 1881, d New York 21 Jul 1945. He began music study with his uncle, Alexandre-M. Clerk, and with Achille Fortier.

Clerk-Jeannotte, Albert

Albert Clerk-Jeannotte. Tenor, teacher, administrator, b St-Hilaire (now Mont-St-Hilaire), near Montreal, 15 Jan 1881, d New York 21 Jul 1945. He began music study with his uncle, Alexandre-M. Clerk, and with Achille Fortier. In 1898 he went to Paris, where he studied harmony with Xavier Leroux and voice with Jacques Bouhy, Victor Maurel, and Pauline Viardot-Garcia. He returned to Canada in 1900, but poor health forced him to give up singing and he became a journalist. From 1902 to 1904 Clerk-Jeannotte was in Paris again, and auditioned successfully for Albert Carré, director of the Opéra-Comique, but health problems intervened once more and he returned to Montreal, where he became a teacher at the McGill Cons. During several subsequent summers he journeyed to France for study with Jean de Reszke, and during this period he sang Danilo in The Merry Widow in Vienna with Lina Abarbanell. He lived 1906-9 in New York.

Returning to Montreal, Clerk-Jeannotte founded, with the financial assistance of Frank S. Meighen, the Montreal Musical Society, which became the Montreal Opera Company, and 1910-13 he presented three seasons of grand opera in four Canadian cities. In the autumn of 1916 he left Montreal for Paris with his brother-in-law Wilfrid Pelletier. In 1917 he returned to New York after an unsuccessful attempt to revive the Montreal Opera Company; (he nevertheless offered a short season at His Majesty's Theatre in 1933. His pupils included Georges Dufresne, Hope Hampton, Ludovic Huot, Fabiola Poirier, Henri Pontbriand, the pop singer Hildegarde, and the actor Cary Grant.


Further Reading

  • 'M. Albert Clerk-Jeannotte,' Montréal musical, 34, 26 Jan 1913

    Pelletier, Wilfrid. Une Symphonie inachevée... (Montreal 1972)

    Musical Red Book