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Yves Nat

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Yves Nat (born 29 December 1890 in Béziers; died 31 August 1956 in Paris) was a French pianist and composer.

Yves Nat showed an early aptitude for both piano and composition. By the age of seven he was allowed to improvise each Sunday at the organ of Béziers’ cathedral during mass. At the age of ten he conducted his own Fantasie for orchestra.

Both Fauré and Saint-Saens encouraged him to pursue his studies at the Paris Conservatoire in the master class of the pianist Louis Diémer, receiving the class first prize in 1907. He dedicated himself to chamber music, undertook concert tours with the Violinist Jacques Thibaud and George Enescu and appeared frequently in a duo with Eugène Ysaye. In 1911 he made the first of a number of tours of the United States. He was mobilised in the course of the First World War, around which time he produced the first of his published compositions, the Six Préludes pour Piano and the Six chansons à Païney.

In the years which followed, Nat toured and performed extensively. However, he retired from concert life in 1937 to devote himself to teaching in the Paris Conservatoire and composing. However, he emerged from this retirement in 1953 to play a small number of highly successful concerts. The last of these, on the 4th February 1954 was the première of his own Piano Concerto, with the Orchestre National de la Radio-diffusion Française under the conductorship of Pierre Dervaux, at the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées in Paris.

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