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Otto Barblan (Composer)

Born: March 22, 1860 - Scanfs, Switzerland
Died: December 19, 1943 - Geneva, Switzerland

The Swiss organist, conductor, teacher, and composer; Otto Barbian, studied organ, composition and piano at the Stuttgart Conservatory from 1878 to 1884.

Otto Barblan made his debut as an organist at Augsburg in 1885. He taught at Chur from 1885 to 1887. In 1887 he he became organist at the Cathedral of St. Peter in Geneva, a post he held until 1942, the year before his death. In 1887 he was appoited Professor of composition and organ at the Conservatory of Geneva. Since 1892 he was also conductor of the Societe de Chant Sacré. In this capacity he introduced the works of J.S. Bach, L.v. Beethoven, Georg Frideric Handel and Franck to Geneva's musical society.

Otto Barbian wrote an Ode patriotique (1896); a Festspiel (Chur, May 28, 1899) commemorating the 400th anniversary of the battle of Calven, and containing the chorus Terre des monts, which attained great popularity, placing it next to the national anthem as a patriotic song; Post tenebras lux, cantata for the Calvin jubilee (1909); String Quartet; Variations and Triple Fugue on B-A-C-H; Passion According to St. Luke (Geneva, April 9, 1919). His compositions are in a neo-Baroque style and are most successful in his patriotic works for organ and choir.


Source: Baker’s Biographical Dictionary of 20th Century Classical Musicians (1997); All Music Guide (Author: Lynn Vought); German Wikipedia (March 2011)
Contributed by
Aryeh Oron (August 2011)

Otto Barblan: Short Biography | Arrangements/Transcriptions: Works | Recordings

Links to other Sites

Otto Barblan - Biography (AMG)

Otto Barblan (Wikipedia) [German]


E. Chaponnière: Barblan (Geneva, 1917)
Otto Barblan: Erinnerungen (Chur, 1929)
Elisa Perini: Das kompositorische Schaffen von Otto Barblan. (Werkverzeichnis). In: Bündnerische Monatsblätter (1949)
Elisa Perini: Otto Barbian (Zürich, 1960)
Antoine-Elysée Cherbuliez: Otto Barblan. in: Bedeutende Bündner (Chur, 1970)
Roger Vuataz: Otto Barblan (Neuchâtel, 1976)

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