Adolphe Adam (1803 – 1856). Son of a music teacher who did not want his son to go into the trade, Adolphe Adam nevertheless learned to play the piano and became a bright light among the young composers of his era. After gaining a foothold in the popular music world, Adam moved over to ballet (Giselle) before conquering the opera scene with his works Le chalet and Le postillon de Lenjoumeau. The increasing seriousness of his once lighthearted work led to a tiff with the director of Paris’s Opйra-Comique, who swore never to mount any more of Adam’s operas. Defiant in the face of disaster, Adam raised money and built the Opйra-National, which operated for a few seasons only to collapse with the coming of the 1848 Revolution. Adam spent the rest of his life trying to dig his way out of debt.
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