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Jean-Pierre Mathez (1938-2023)


Jean-Pierre Mathez

Jean-Pierre Mathez (1938-2023) played trumpet in his high school band and was a great fan of jazz. He continued his trumpet studies in London with Ernest Hall and at the Geneva Conservatory, where he received his diploma in 1961 in the class of Paolo Longinotti, principal trumpet of the Orchestre de la Suisse romande.

In 1955 he was active in chamber music with a brass quartet (2 tps, 2 tbs) that he founded and for which he commissioned several original works.

As a professional trumpeter he played with the Bienne Opera Orchestra and the Berne Symphony Orchestra; he was principal trumpet with the Niedersächsische Sinfonie-Orchester of Hanover, Germany, and then with the Lausanne (Switzerland) Chamber Orchestra.

He has made recordings with I Musici di Roma (Vivaldi - Philips), Michel Corboz Ensemble Vocal et Instrumental de Lausanne (I Dolci Frutti - Erato), Edward Tarr (Trumpet) Ensemble (Gabrieli - CBS; Bach/Richter - DGG).

From 1971 to 1973 he produced and played a one-man-show (music theater) called "The Demilitarisation of the Trumpet”, about 40 performances, a.o. in Denver, CO at the 1973 National/International Trumpet Conference organized by Legh Burn.

In 1962 he was appointed trumpet teacher at the Lausanne Conservatory, and in 1971 was also named to the faculty of the Fribourg (Switzerland) Conservatory. His dynamic investigations into new pedagogical methods attracted the interest of Universal Editions in Vienna, which then commissioned him to produce an completely new instrumental pedagogical work that was published in 1977 in the Wiener Instrumentalschulen series (in French, English and German).

In 1969 he founded BIM (an information center for brass players), first a sheet music store and professional music center for brass musicians that grew to be one of the major European centers for brass music distribution (this department has been sold to Editions A. Leduc, Paris beginning of 1993 under the name of "Diffusion Bim”). Thanks to the strong and constructive cooperation of his wife Gabi the family enterprise took wings and became well-known world wide. In 1977 they added the publishing company Editions Bim which has strongly developed a large catalogue of mainly contemporary brass works, teaching material and books whose international expansion to date has seen the publication of nearly 2000 musical works (pieces, pedagogical works, books) from over 200 authors.

In 1971 they launched Brass Bulletin, an international magazine for brass players in five languages: French, English, German, Italian, and Spanish), which was distributed in 72 countries and five continents, reaching some 45,000 readers. Jean-Pierre Mathez was founder, editor-in-chief and publisher.

He was Director of Brass Publications of Editions G. Billaudot of Paris from 1972 to 1977. He acted as a jury member or invited reporter in numerous international brass competitions (Tokyo, Paris “Maurice André Competition”), Prague, Budapest, Geneva, Munich, Markneukirchen, Porcia, Spain, Kiev, etc.) and has cooperated for many years with the ITG editorial staff.

He has been a member of the advisory council of SUISA (Swiss society for composers' and author's rights) from 1993 to 2013, and is still on the SUISA Foundation Music Council for the promotion of music in Switzerland.

In 1999 he acquired the American publishing house The Brass Press and keeps adding new works to that catalogue when they correspond to the spirit of Steve Glover, the former owner.

His numerous journalistic reports and continual contact with the brass musical scene internationally or with many famous artists have made him a privileged and attentive observer of the evolution of the world of brass during the second half of the 20th and beginning of the 21th century.

From 1973 Jean-Pierre Mathez was too busy to keep practicing the trumpet, but since 2013, after 40 years, he has picked up the instrument to rebuild his playing technic, just for his own and private pleasure…


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