(Jean Baptiste) Charles Dancla (19 December 1817 – 10 October 1907) was a French violinist, composer and teacher.

Charles Dancla
Charles Dancla.jpg
Charles Dancla
Background information
Birth nameJean Baptiste Charles Dancla
Born(1817-12-19)December 19, 1817
Bagnères-de-Bigorre, Hautes-Pyrénées, France
DiedOctober 10, 1907(1907-10-10) (aged 89)
GenresClassical music, Romantic music
Occupation(s)violinist, composer and teacher


Dancla was born in Bagnères-de-Bigorre. When he was nine years old, violinist Pierre Rode in Bordeaux heard his music; he was so impressed that he sent a recommendation letter to Pierre Baillot, Luigi Cherubini and Rodolphe Kreutzer. Thus Dancla went to the Paris Conservatory and studied with Baillot for violin and Fromental Halévy for composition. He was strongly influenced by Niccolò Paganini, whom he heard in 1830, as well as by Henri Vieuxtemps. From 1835 onward Dancla was solo violinist in the Paris Opéra, and shortly thereafter he became concert master. In 1857 he was made a professor at the Paris Conservatory where he was a successful teacher for over 35 years. He died in Tunis.

His two brothers were Arnaud Dancla (1819–1862), cellist and author of a considerable cello teaching method, and Leopold Dancla (1822–1895), violinist and composer of chamber music.


  • violin concertos
  • string quartets
  • string trios
  • violin duos
  • Airs variés, Op. 89 for violin (each of the six airs are based on themes by different composers: Pacini, Rossini, Bellini, Donizetti, Weigl and Mercadante).
  • Airs variés, Op. 118 for violin (on themes from Montecchi e I Capuletti; La Straniera, Norma, La Sonnambula, Les Puritains, Le Carnaval de Venise).

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