Clement Lenom was born in Gilly, Belgium January 6, 1865. At the age of six he began to learn music with his mother and grandfather. He earned a scholarship to the Royal Conservatory of Brussels in 1878 where he studied the oboe under Joseph Dupont, the chef d’orchestra of the Opera de la Mannaie. While at Brussels he won First Prize for oboe, First Prize for Superior Solfege, and First Prize for Harmony. In 1885 he went to the Conservatoire de Paris where he continued his training on the oboe under G. Gillet.
In 1888 Lenom became a member of the Cologne Orchestra. He also played with the Monte Carlo and Nice Orchestras and conducted in Nice, Rouen, Geneva, Biarritz, Brussels, and Aix-les-Bains. While with the Colonne Orchestra he met Georges Longy, who came to Boston in 1900. In 1901 Longy convinced Lenom to come to America for a year-long trial period. He never moved back.
Lenom played English horn and oboe with the Boston Symphony Orchestra from 1901-1925. From 1913-1917 he conducted the Boston Pops Concerts and conducted the MacDowell Club Orchestra from 1926-1929. Lenom played second oboe and English horn in the famous Longy Club, which also included musicians like Georges Longy, Andre and Daniel Maquarre, Georges Grisez, Peter Sedony, and John Helleberg.. He met George W. Chadwick in 1901 when Chadwick convinced him to come to the New England Conservatory of Music to begin a solfege school based on the French training system. He remained at NEC as the head of the Solfege department and an instructor in oboe and woodwind ensemble until 1942.
For “distinguished service to music” Lenom received the honorary award of Offic de L’Instruction Publique in 1911 from the French government and Chevalier de la Couronne from the Belgium government. His compositions include: Ballet-Divertissments; Action L’Astuce des Amants le Royaume de Diable; Musette Canzonetta; Berceuse et Rone Villageoise; Caprice-Mazurka; and Melody for French Horn.
Clement Lenom passed away in 1957 at the age of 91. He died in his home in Brookline, MA, leaving behind his wife Mary (Bartlett) Lenom. They had been married since 1932.
The Lenom collection consists of one manuscript box containing six folders, which include paper materials and photographs, printed music composed by Lenom, and manuscript music composed by Lenom. A second box contains a bust of Clement Lenom created by Bruce Wilder Saville.
This collection of papers and photographs was donated to the NEC Archives in February 1992 by Stevens Hewitt. The bust was donated by his widow, Mary Lenom, in 1992.
In addition to this collection, published books and scores from Clement Lenom’s personal collection were donated by Mrs. Mary Lenom in 1992 and Lenom’s great niece, Ms. Cheryl Bishkoff in 1999. These items were incorporated into the general library collection.
Access to the Clement Lenom Collection is granted by the NEC Archivist. Appointments must be scheduled in advance. There are no restrictions pertaining to this collection. Access to other individual manuscripts by Lenom can be found by searching our online catalog.
All copyrights to this collection belong to the New England Conservatory. Permission to publish materials from this collection is granted by the Director of Libraries. This collection should be cited as the Clement Lenom Collection, New England Conservatory Archives. Boston, MA.
Scope & Content
The Clement Lenom Collection is organized into the following eight series:
1. News Articles
3. The Longy Club
7. Printed music
8. Manuscript music
The News Articles folder spans the years 1913-1957. They highlight Lenom’s career as a musician and NEC instructor. Also included are two obituaries from the Boston Herald and the NEC alumni newsletter.
The Programs folder spans the years 1895-1940. It contains an incomplete collection of musical programs from orchestras where Lenom was the conductor. Also included is a program from the 1935 Symphony Hall Pops Golden Jubilee. Lenom was one of several guest conductors honored at the performance.
The Longy Club folder spans the years 1901-1925. It contains several programs of Longy Club performances where Lenom played either oboe or English horn. Also included is a xeroxed copy of a book chapter describing the history of the Longy Club, its members, and its importance to Boston music. The chapter is believed to come from the book The Longy Club: A Professional Wind Ensemble in Boston- by David Whitwell.
The Photographs folder includes four photographs, all identified by donor Cheryl Bishkoff. They include a photo of Lenom and his first wife Matilde; a photo of a bust of Lenom by Bruce Wilder Saville; a photo of the portrait of Lenom done by artist Thomas Hart Benton; and a photo of artist Thomas Hart Benton in front of his portrait of Lenom.
The Miscellaneous folder includes such items as a newspaper cartoon of Lenom leaving Europe for America and a biography of artist Bruce Wilder Saville, who created the bust of Lenom.
The Correspondence folder spans the years 1992-2009. It is a collection of letters on the creation of the Clement Lenom Collection, including letters from Stevens Hewitt on his decision to donate the materials to begin the collection and letters from NEC library director Jean Morrow to Mrs Lenom and Ms Bishkoff thanking them for their contributions to the collection. They mention specific donated items, and include an itemized list of the categories of contents donated by Mrs Lenom.
The Printed Music folder spans the years 1888-1960. It includes: orchestral parts for Basse-cour (1899); Basse-cour (1899) for piano; Berceuse (1903) for oboe and piano (1 c.); Canzonetta (1895) for oboe/violin and piano; Danse la vallée (1888) for piano (3 c.); Douce missive (1895) for piano (5 c.); Lullaby (1960) for solo oboe/flute with piano (2 c.), for solo Bb clarinet/bass clarinet/Bb saxophone with piano (2 c.), for solo Eb alto saxophone with piano (2 c.), for solo bassoon with piano (2 c.); Mazurka des Dindons (1896) for piano (7 c.); Melodie (1892-93) for oboe (1 c.); Musette (1895) for oboe and piano (5 c.); Musette (1914) for oboe and piano (5 c.); Tarentelle (1889) for piano (2 c.).
The Manuscript Music folder consists of music in the hand of Lenom. Most is unidentified.
*For other individual music manuscripts by Lenom, search our online catalog.
Folder 1-News Articles 1913-1957
Folder 2- Programs 1895-1940
Folder 3- The Longy Club 1901-1925
Folder 4- Photographs
Folder 6- Correspondence on Donations of Collection 1992-2009
Folder 7-Printed Music 1888-1960
Folder 8-Manuscript Music