J acques-François-Fromental-Élie Halévy’s name is probably longer than his footnote in musical history, but his tale is one worth the telling and a hundred years on throws up an unexpected Proustian connection.

Halevy J acques-François-Fromental-Élie Halévy

Fromental for short – meaning ‘oat grass’, hardly a name auspicious of genius – Halévy was born in 1799 and accepted into the Paris Conservatoire aged nine as a protégé of Berlioz’s nemesis...

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