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François Servais

A traveling cello wonder

François Servais was born on June 6, 1807 in Halle as son of  cobbler Jean-Baptiste Servais and housewife Joséphine Bande. From childhood it turned out that he had an exceptional musical talent. He  was part of the church orchestra  and  was discovered by Marquis Jules  the La  Croix  the  Chevrieres  the Sayve  who introduced him to Corneille  Of the  Plancken, the first violinist of the orchestra of the Royal Mint Theatre In Brussels. Thanks to him and the  French cellist Nicolas  platel  did he get the chance to be  special  gift to develop.  

He  became conductor at the Royal Harmony  Saint Cecilia Halle and  taught  to the Royal Conservatory of Brussels  but  also wanted his talent beyond the national borders  develop further.

In 1833 he traveled to Paris for the first time, immediately starting his international cello career. Then followed  The United Kingdom,  The Netherlands  and Germany. In 1839 he undertook a months-long concert tour through Russia, followed by a successful tour in Vienna. He played alongside famous composers such as Felix Mendelssohn and Ferdinand David and also got to know the German composer Robert Schumann. During one of his trips through Russia he became acquainted with  the charming one  Sophie  Feygin  who would later become his wife. She fulfilled during many  musical performances  the role of impresario and negotiated  the buyout fee  from the  concert.  After all, part of the trips was made to  lavish  maintain the family’s lifestyle.

On his second Russia trip he played for the prince family  Youssoupov.  It is said that Princess Tatiana  Vasilievnan  Youssoupov  as a patron an important part  had  in Servais’ purchase of the famous  Stradivarius  cello from 1701  back then  which was auctioned.

In 1847 the Servais-Feygin . family left  to build an imposing villa in Halle in which he incorporated the many influences from his travels.  Villa Servais from then on became his favorite home base and the meeting place for local and international musicians and artists. Take a seat in the cozy  tearoom of the villa and travel with us  Japan,  Netherlands ,  Germany, United Kingdom, Turkey, Russia ,  France and Austria .