Boulanger, Lili


Boulanger, Lili

Pie Jesu pour Chant, Quatuor à Cordes, Harpe et Orgue (score and parts)


Lili Boulanger

Pie Jesu

(b. Paris, 21 August 1893 – d. Mézy, 15 March 1918)

Lili Boulanger, Nadia Boulanger younger sister, is one of the greatest illustrations in the history of music and arts that a living spirit transcends all barriers and goes far beyond time. Her artistic legacy both testifies of the presence of a genius and a visionary artist. In spite of the tragic fact that she passed away at the age of twenty four years, Lili Boulanger has given the world a rare artistic treasure through her outstanding music and singular voice.
The masterpieces that are left of Lili’s remarkable production were created within a period of seven years between
1911 and 1918. Just seven years… She almost entirely destroyed the rest of her works that she had composed between 1905 and 1910.
In such short period of activity, Lili has achieved an amazing catalogue of diverse works while being awarded the « Premier Prix de Rome » in 1913 for her Cantata « Faust et Hélène » which gave her instant international recognition in the music world. Ricordi, the music publishing house, signed her immediately and provided the guarantee that her music would soon be published apart of the financial support she would get for her work as a composer. Being the first woman to obtain such price undoubtedly was a significant indication that times had changed with her presence in a so called « man world ». But further to that turning point in the history of music, Lili Boulanger, in spite of her dramatic health issue, continued to create further other masterpieces that I invite you to discover on the various links given below.

Pie Jesu for vocal, string quartet, harp and organ is the last piece Lili composed in 1918. Too weak to be able to write down this piece, she dictated the entire score to her beloved sister, Nadia.

Nadia Boulanger, the world renowned pedagogue who lived until the age of ninety three years, described in her Mémoires that Lili was incredibly clear about how her music should sound in spite of the last moments of hers. Without any sign of hesitation, Lili dictated to Nadia what would be her testimony. This last composition is all about hope, love and compassion, which makes it so heart-rending. In a feeling of absolute tranquility and effortless expressive effect it condenses the state of Lili’s own soul…
In this contemplative and religious piece, the three tempi are like the sound of her heart beats and suggest somehow the three steps of her surrendering to God.


Read preface / Vorwort > HERE

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Set Score & Parts


225 x 320 mm

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