André Laporte

Oplinter, 12.07.1931


André Laporte was born on 12 July 1931 in Oplinter near the city of Tienen in Flemish Brabant. He was self-taught as a musician, quickly mastering the piano, clarinet and organ, while enthusiastically acquainting himself with modern music — as did his contemporary, Karel Goeyvaerts - through the radio programs of Paul Collaer, Louis De Meester, Vic Legley and David Van de Woestijne.

After completing secondary school he entered the Interdiocesan Higher Institute for Church Music (known as the Lemmens Institute) in Mechelen, where he studied under Edgard de Laet, Flor Peeters (organ) and Marinus De Jong (piano, counterpoint, fugue). Between 1953 and 1957 he was also a student at the Catholic University of Leuven, where he studied modern philosophy and musicology. He completed his studies in musicology with a comparative study of Ludus Tonalis and the Unterweisung im Tonsatz by Paul Hindemith. In 1953 he became a teacher of musical education and aesthetics at the Secondary Normal School of the St Thomas Institute (Middelbare Normaalschool van het Sint-Thomasinstituut) in Brussels. In this same period he composed his first works, folksong arrangements along the lines of Hindemith and Bartok, as well as a piano sonata and works for organ.

Laporte became acquainted with the music of Schönberg, Stravinsky and Messiaen and was from 1960 to 1964 an annual participant at the Internationale Ferienkurse in Darmstadt, as well as the Kurse für Neue Musik in Cologne in 1964 and 1965. These courses gave him the opportunity to meet leading figures in the New Music movement (including Boulez, Maderna, Berio, Ligeti, Stockhausen, Kagel and Gielen). Like so many Belgian composers, he worked at the Belgian Radio (BRT, now VRT), first as a producer, later as a program coordinator, a production leader of the BRT Philharmonic Orchestra (1989) and ultimately as director of Artistic Ensembles (1993-1996), functions in which he was surrounded by such figures as D. Van de Woestijne, V. Legley, K. Goeyvaerts, L. De Meester, B. Buckinx, W. Westerlinck and L. Brewaeys. This position also gave him the chance to broadcast programs on “highlights of contemporary music” and “young Belgian performers”. Together with individuals from the Institute for Psycho-Acoustic and Electronic Music (IPEM), which had recently been set up by the BRT, he founded the SPECTRA work-group, which existed from 1963 to 1967.

Laporte also won his spurs in music education. As early as 1968 he taught the New Techniques course at the Royal Conservatory in Brussels; this teaching position took on more solid form with his appointment as a teacher of music analysis, theory of musical form, harmony and counterpoint-fugue. In 1988 he became a teacher of composition, a position to which was added an appointment as teacher of composition at the Queen Elisabeth Music School (Muziekkapel Koningin Elisabeth) in Waterloo. Among his students may be mentioned Luc Brewaeys, Daniël Capelletti and Peter Swinnen.

In 1972, together with Herman Sabbe, he set up a new Belgian branch of the International Society for Contemporary Music (ISCM), of which he has remained the chairperson to this day.

André Laporte became a member of the Belgian Royal Academy for Sciences, Arts and Fine Art (1991), a member of the Flemish Music Board (Muziekraad voor Vlaanderen) and assistant chairperson of the Association of Belgian Composers (Unie van Belgische Componisten). He has won numerous prizes. Besides the Lemmens-Tinel prize, he won the Prix Italia in 1976 for his oratorio La vita non è sogno. The premiere of this work at the Flanders Festival in 1972 in Ghent attracted the attention of festival assistant Gerard Mortier, who as intendant at La Monnaie in Brussels would subsequently invite him to write an opera. His work has been performed both in Belgium and abroad; in particular, his Kafka opera, Das Schloss, was premiered at La Monnaie in 1986 and received its German premiere in the Saarländisches Staatstheater in Saarbrücken in 1991.

©2001 Tom Wylin, for Flanders Music Centre and MATRIX

Selective bibliography
- G. DEFEVER, Sleutel tot Laporte in Muziek en Woord, jg. 29, nr. 345, p. 8-10
- M. DE SMET, André Laporte - een overbodige situering?, in De Nieuwe Muziekgroep, 1986, 9, p. 17-21
- H. HEUGHEBAERT, Ontmoetingen met Vlaamse componisten: André Laporte, in Vlaams Muziektijdschrift, 1970, 7, p. 195-203
- Y. KNOCKAERT, Onvermijdelijk beeldend. Vlaamse componisten (21): André Laporte, in Kunst & Cultuur, 26, 1993, p. 20-21
- Y. KNOCKAERT, Visser-Neerlandia-Prijs voor André Laporte in Kunsttijdschrift Vlaanderen, jg. 52/4, nr. 297, 2003
- C. MERTENS, art. Laporte André, in The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, uitg. dr. S. SADIE, Londen, 1980, p. 466
- H. SABBE, Nachtmuziek van André Laporte, in Vlaams Muziektijdschrift, 1971, 4, p. 117-118
- H. SABBE, De Vlaamse componist André Laporte: overzicht van een evolutie, in Mens en Melodie, 1972, april
- H. SABBE, art. André Laporte, in Algemene muziekencyclopedie, uitg. dr. J. ROBIJNS en M. ZIJLSTRA, 1981, p. 350-351
- H. SABBE, André Laporte. Mimus ecclecticus. Een overzicht van het werk en een bespreking van de opera Das Schloss, in Programmaboek Das Schloss, Brussel, 1986, p. 21-36
- H. SABBE, André Laporte, in Nieuwe Muziek in Vlaanderen, uitg. dr. M. DELAERE, Y. KNOCKAERT, H. SABBE, Brugge, 1998, p. 69-74
- H. SABBE, Laporte André: Ascension (1967) in Contemporary Music in Flanders II: Flemish Piano Music since 1950, uitg. dr. M. DELAERE en J. COMPEERS, Leuven, 2005, p. 26-27
- H. WILLAERT, André Laporte - 30 jaar muziek van nu, in Tijdschrift Vlaanderen, 1994, 43, p. 33-37
- O. CORNELIS, Over de evolutie in het werk van André Laporte aan de hand van typerende composities, proefschrift voor de graad van licenciaat in de Kunstwetenschappen, RUGent, 1999-2000, (Tekstgedeelte: 123 p.; Bijlage I: Sequenza I, Jubilus, Nachtmusik, La vita non è sogno; Bijlage II: Icarus' flight, Transit, Fantasia-Rondino, Seven Visions from the Apocalypse of Saint John)

©2001 Tom Wylin, for Flanders Music Centre and MATRIX
©2005 Rebecca Diependaele, for Flanders Music Centre and MATRIX (update)

Selective discography

André Laporte - Symphonic & vocal worksAndré Laporte - Symphonic & vocal works (2007)
20th century
Vlaams Radiokoor (VRK), André Laporte, Vlaams Radio Orkest, André Laporte, Koen Kessels, Vic Nees
Vlaamse Hedendaagse MuziekVlaamse Hedendaagse Muziek
20th century, 21st century / contemporary
Claude Coppens, ChampdAction, Rolande Van der Paal, Vlaams Radio Orkest, HERMESensemble, Apsara, Vlaams Radiokoor (VRK), Jan Michiels (...)
E. Gistelinck - A. Laporte - L. DebrasE. Gistelinck - A. Laporte - L. Debras
20th century
Nationaal Orkest van België, Elias Gistelinck, Elias Gistelinck, Het Radio Dans Orkest, André Laporte, André Laporte, Kamerorkest van de BRT, Louis Debras (...)

Selectieve discografie als componist

Fingerprints #2Fingerprints #2 (2016)
21st century / contemporary
Diverse componisten, Diverse uitvoerders, Bart Verstraeten, Koen Dejonghe, Felix Vermeirsch, Benjamien Lycke, Bart Vanderbeke, Ward De Vleeschhouwer (...)
DarknessDarkness (2008)
20th century
Emanon ensemble, André Laporte, Stéphane Vande Ginste, Henryk Górecki, Raf De Keninck
André Laporte - Symphonic & vocal worksAndré Laporte - Symphonic & vocal works (2007)
20th century
Vlaams Radiokoor (VRK), André Laporte, Vlaams Radio Orkest, André Laporte, Koen Kessels, Vic Nees
Koningin Elisabethwedstrijd voor zang 2000Koningin Elisabethwedstrijd voor zang 2000 (2000)
20th century, romanticism, classicism, Baroque
Daniel Blumenthal, Symfonieorkest van de Koninklijke Muntschouwburg, Jan Vande Weghe, André Laporte
Miniaturen voor archipelMiniaturen voor archipel (2000)
20th century
Kris Matthynssens, Pieter Stas, Goeyvaerts Strijktrio, Jan Van Landeghem, Bart Meynckens, Stefaan De Bruyne, Bart Van Kerchove, Boudewijn Buckinx (...)
André Laporte - Orchestral worksAndré Laporte - Orchestral works (1998)
20th century
BRTN Filharmonisch Orkest, André Laporte, Alexander Rahbari, Karl Anton Rickenbacher
Das Schloss - André LaporteDas Schloss - André Laporte (1997)
20th century, 21st century / contemporary
BRTN Filharmonisch Koor, BRTN Filharmonisch Orkest, Lena Lootens, Lucienne Van Deyck, André Laporte, Jaak Gregoor, Alexander Rahbari
Nog klaarder dan die zonneNog klaarder dan die zonne (1994)
Traditional folk
Griet De Volder, Lieve Van Lancker, Karen Peeters, Kristiaan Van Ingelgem, Vic Nees, Flor Peeters, Piet Stryckers, Juliaan Wilmots (...)
Een jong geluidEen jong geluid (1992)
20th century, romanticism
Dirk Herten, Filip Martens, Peter Verhoyen, Dimitri Baeteman, Steven Kolacny, Piet Van Bockstal, Katrijn Friant, Guido De Neve (...)
Koningin Elisabethwedstrijd voor viool - 1989Koningin Elisabethwedstrijd voor viool - 1989 (1989)
20th century
Ulrike-anima Mathe, Catherine Cho, Eugène Bouchkov, Nationaal Orkest van België, André Laporte, Jean Sibelius, William Walton, Georges-Elie Octors (...)

Author of

Herinneringen aan de meester
Herinneringen aan de meester

Related Items

News:Componist André Laporte wordt 80! (12.07.2011)
Documents:Contemporary Music in Flanders II (book)
Contemporary Music in Flanders V (book)