Adam, Adolphe-Charles

BORN 24 Jul 1803, Paris - DIED 3 May 1856, Paris
GRAVE LOCATION Paris: Cimetière de Montmartre, 20 Avenue Rachel (division 05, ligne 01, Numéro 14, avenue de Montebello)

Adolphe-Charles Adam was the son of the composer Jean-Louis Adam (1758-1848). His father didn't want him to follow in his footsteps, but he studied in secret under Ferdinand Hérold. Whe nhe was seventeen years old his father allowed him to enter the conservatory under the condition that he wouldn't make music his profession. He studied under Boieldieu and Reicha but he didn't manage to win the Prix de Rome. In 1825 he assisted Boieldieu with his opera "La dame blanche".

He played the organ for a living and he travelled in Europe from the money he earned. In Geneva he met Eugène Scribe and he collaborated with him in later years. In 1829 he married the actress Sara Lescot and they had a son, Adrien-Léopold (1832-1851).

Adam wrote many operas and ballets, among them the ballet "Giselle" (1841). In 1840 he compsed a Marche funèbre for the return of the remains of Napoleon I to France. In 1844 he became a member of the Académie des beaux-arts. After he quarreled with the director of the Opéra of Paris he opened a new opera house in Paris, the Théâtre National. It opened in 1847 but had to close as a result of the Revolution of 1848, leaving him with heavy debts.
In 1851 his wife died and he married Cherie Louise Couraud in 1851. From 1849 until his death in 1856 he worked as a teacher at the conservatory in Paris.

Related persons
• was pupil of Boieldieu, François-Adrien
• was teacher of Chéri, Victor
• was teacher of Delibes, Léo
• was teacher of Garcin, Jules
• was pupil of Reicha, Anton
• cooperated with Scribe, Eugène

28/6/1841Premiere of Adolphe Adam's "Giselle" at the Salle le Peletier in Paris. Carotta Grisi performed the part of Giselle, Lucien Petipa was Albrecht and Adèle Dumilâtre was Myrtha. The choreographers were Jean Coralli and Jules Perrot. the music was written by Adolphe Adam and the libretto by Jules-Henri Vernoy de Saint-Georges and Théophile Gautier. [Gautier, Théophile][Grisi, Carlotta]


The grave of Adolphe Adam at the Cimetière Montmartre, Paris.
Picture by Androom (20 Feb 2016)


Winkler Prins Encyclopedie (editie 1909), 1909
Giselle - Wikipedia
Adolphe Adam — Wikipédia

Adam, Albrecht

Published: 27 May 2018
Last update: 29 Jan 2023