The Quebec composer, pianist and teacher Clermont Pépin died on September 2 at the age of 80. According to his widow, violinist Mildred Goodman, the cause of death was liver cancer, reports The Ottawa Citizen.
Born in 1926, Pépin studied at the Conservatory of Music in Montreal, the Curtis Institute in Philadelphia and the Royal Conservatory in Toronto. In 1949 he won the Prix d'Europe, a Quebec government scholarship, and from 1949-1955 he studied in Paris with Arthur Honegger and André Jolivet. He also took Olivier Messiaen's famous class in analysis alongside Pierre Boulez and Karlheinz Stockhausen.
He is noted for his String Quartets Nos. 3 and 4, the ballets L'Oiseau-phénix and Le Porte-rêve, and his Symphonies Nos. 3, 4 and 5. Quasars (No. 3, 1967) and Implosion (No. 5, 1983) were commissioned by the Montreal Symphony Orchestra; according to the Citizen, a 1993 revision of La Messe sur le monde (No. 4, 1975) was his last major score.
Pépin was named an Officer of the Order of Canada in 1981 and an Officer of the Ordre national du Québec in 1990.