30 Famous French Clarinetists

Happy Bastille Day – vive la France!

I will always consider France my adopted country, so to celebrate this French national holiday I’ve listed 30 famous French clarinetists.

As always, this list is not intended to be comprehensive. I have tried to include notable clarinetists who spent their formative years in France, but many of these clarinetists later moved to perform in other countries.

  1. Michel Arrignon
  2. Nicholas Baldeyrou
  3. Frédéric Berr
  4. Philippe Berrod
  5. Daniel Bonade
  6. Jacques Jules Boufil
  7. Louis Cahuzac
  8. Lucien Cailliet
  9. Florent Charpentier
  10. Philippe Cuper
  11. Alain Damiens
  12. Guy Dangain
  13. Ulysse Delécluse
  14. Guy Deplus
  15. Pierre Gennison
  16. Georges Grisez
  17. Gaston Hamelin
  18. Florent Héau
  19. Paul Jeanjean
  20. Hyacinthe Klosé
  21. Jacques Lancelot
  22. Jean-Xavier Lefèvre
  23. Paul Meyer
  24. Prosper Mimart
  25. Pascal Moraguès
  26. Auguste Périer
  27. Cyrille Rose
  28. Alexandre Selmer
  29. Émile Stiévenard
  30. Michèl Yost

Which famous French clarinetists would you add to your list?


  • Robert Monie

    Henri Druart, Andre Boutard (in the 60s and 70s, his recording of the Poulenc Sonata on the Nonesuch label was the one most American players heard, and A. Jolivet wrote his Sonatine for Flute and Clarinet (1961) for Boutard), Henri Sarlit (dedicated his challenging transcriptions of Chopin and Schumann to August Perier), Henri Leroy (principal cl. in the New York Philharmonic in 1912, and premiere performer of the Debussy Rhapsody in America, also developed a mouthpiece on a Chedeville blank that is a collector’s item today), and Ferdinand Capelle (has a street in France named for him, and wrote a book, 20 Grand Etudes).