Edgar Tinel

Edgar Pierre Joseph Tinel (27 March 1854 – 28 October 1912) was a Belgian composer and pianist.

Edgar Tinel in 1911

He was born in Sinaai, today part of Sint-Niklaas in East Flanders, Belgium, and died in Brussels. After studies at the Brussels Conservatory with Louis Brassin (piano) and François-Auguste Gevaert (composition), he began a career as a virtuoso, but soon abandoned this for composition. In 1877 his cantata Klokke Roeland won him the Belgian Prix de Rome, and in 1881 he succeeded Jacques-Nicolas Lemmens as director of the Mechelen Institute of Religious Music.

He devoted himself to a study of old church music, and his ideas gave rise to Pope Pius X's Motu proprio. Appointed inspector of music education in 1889, he moved to the Brussels Conservatory to become professor of counterpoint and fugue in 1896, and director at the end of 1908. He was made maître de chapelle to the king in 1910, having been elected to the Belgian Royal Academy in 1902.

His liturgical music is polyphonic in the Palestrina style, but this technique conflicted with Tinel's lyrical and mystical temperament, and he had much greater success in his two concert settings of the Te Deum, the oratorio and the religious dramas. These works indicate his total admiration for Bach, but the orchestration, dominated by the strings, is Romantic. Tinel's piano pieces and songs recall Schumann, Mendelssohn and Brahms. He published Le chant gregorien (Mechelen, 1890).



  • Godelieve, Op. 43
  • Katharina, Op. 44


  • Klokke Roeland, Op. 17, cantata
  • Kollebloemen, Op. 20, cantata, 1879, rev. 1889–90
  • Vlaamsche stemme, Op. 25, 4 male vv
  • Te Deum, Op. 26, 4vv org, 1883
  • Psalm vi, Op. 27, 4 male vv 1891
  • 4 Adventsliederen, Op. 35, SATB
  • Franciscus, Op. 36, oratorio, 1890, libretto by Lodewijk de Koninck
  • Aurora, Op. 37, 4 male vv (1885)
  • Psalm xxix, Op. 39, 4 male vv
  • Missa in honorem BMV de Lourdes, Op. 41, 5 vv 1892
  • Cantique nuptial, Op. 45, S/T, org, pf/harp
  • Te Deum, Op. 46, 6vv, org, orch, 1905
  • Psalm cl, Op. 47, 4 male vv, 1907

Keyboard musicEdit

  • Four Nocturnes (voice and piano), Op.1
  • Three Fantasy Pieces, Op. 2
  • Scherzo in C minor, Op. 3
  • Two Pieces, Op.7
  • Piano Sonata in F minor, Op. 9
  • Au Printemps, Five Fantasy Pieces, Op. 14
  • Piano Sonata in G minor, Op. 15
  • Organ Sonata in G minor, Op. 29
  • Bunte Blätter, six pieces for piano, Op. 32[1]

Orchestral music, songsEdit

Tinel also wrote a treatise on plain-song.


See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Catalogue des Œuvres d'Edgar Tinel (1854–1912)". MUSICA SACRA 32e année – Novembre – Décembre 1912 – Janvier 1913 MUSICA SACRA 32e année – Novembre – Décembre 1912 – Janvier 1913 – Numéros 4, 5 et 6. Retrieved 6 October 2015.
  2. ^ Handelsblad (Het) 9 May 1900
  • E. Closson: Sainte Godelieve de E. Tinel (Leipzig, 1879)
  • A. van der Elst: Edgar Tinel (Ghent, 1901)
  • P. Tinel: Edgar Tinel: Le recit de sa vie et I'eregese de son oeuvre de 1854 a 1886 (Brussels, 1923)
  • Le 'Franciscus' d'Edgar Tinel (Brussels, 1926)
  • Edgar Tinel (Brussels, 1946) J. Ryelandt: 'Notice sur Edgar Tinel', Annuaire de I'Academie royale de Belgique, cxvi (1950), 207
  • C. van den Borren: Geschiedenis van de muziek in de Nederlanden, ii (Antwerp, 1951), 239ff, 287ff, 335f, 367f
  • F. van der Mueren: 'Edgar Tinel', Musica sacra, 1xiii (1962), 113
  • J. Vyverman: 'Tinel, Edgar', BNB
  • Hugo Riemann, Musik-Lexikon, 9th ed., Max Hellers Verlag, Berlin, 1919.
  • S.A.M Bottenheim, Prisma Encyclopedie der Muziek, Het Spectrum, Utrecht, 1957.
  • Sylvia van Ameringen, Elseviers Encyclopedie van de muziek, Elsevier, Amsterdam, 1962.
  • Percy A. Scholes, John Owen Ward, The Oxford Companion to Music, 10th ed., Oxford University * Press, London, 1974.
  • New Groves Dictionary (1981), Volume 18

External linksEdit