Oct. 26, 1988 Boston Suffolk County Massachusetts, USA
Serge Conus was the son of composer and violinst Julius Conus, one of the closest associates of Sergei Rachmaninoff. Serge began studying piano at the age of four and wrote his first composition at the age of six. At age seven, he composed a ballad for piano and voice and a gavotte, which he played for the Princess Heiress of Italy.
After obtaining his Baccalaureate at the Russian Gymnasium of Essentouki, Serge left Russia at the age of 17 and rejoined his parents and his brother Boris in Paris. He continued musical studies in Paris at the National Academy. While at the Academy, Serge took courses in organ, counterpoint, and harmony, and studied with pianists Isidor Phillip and Alfred Cortot.
Shortly after his studies at the Academy, Conus left his family for Bulgaria where he spent two years in Russian Orthodox monasteries there. He became the bell ringer of the Saint Alexander Cathedral in Sofia. His deeply-religious nature prodded him to enter the Theological Faculty of the University of Bulgaria where he obtained his degree in Theology in 1929.
Despite the demands of his religious studies he did not abandon music. He continued his piano and composition studies, and was encouraged by the Polish Ministry of Sofia to pursue a musical career in Warsaw. There he gave a series of "soirées musicales" in the private homes of Polish aristocracy. He was in Warsaw, Poland from 1929 to 1933.
Conus returned to Bulgaria where he gave a series of recitals in concert halls and on the radio. In 1936, he traveled to Vienna, Austria, studying with Professor Paul von Kohn, a student of pianist Anton Rubinstein. The following year he returned to Paris, becoming well known throughout Europe. Also in 1936, he married his first wife in Paris, and they had one son, George, who passed away in 1952.
He gave a great number of concerts in Vienna, Paris, Rome, Pisa, Florence and other cities, playing works of Bach, Beethoven, Chopin, Liszt, and the Russian composer Medtner, as well as his own compositions. Later in France at La Rochelle and Cognac, he gave a series of recitals playing chronologically the music of Beethoven and Chopin.
He married his second wife, Madeleine Gabrielle Bompoint, in October 1945, in La Rochelle, France. They had one son.
In 1950, he departed for Kenitra, Morocco, where he was a Professor of Music for almost ten years, traveling as far as Tunisia and Algeria to teach, and also playing in a jazz band.
Conus arrived in the United States in September 1959. He taught for two years at the Boston Conservatory of Music, and gave local private lessons and small concerts throughout the country, though never achieving the level of fame he had in Europe.
He died of a cerebral hemorrhage in St. Elizabeth's Hospital in Boston in October 1988. His wife, Madeleine, preceded him in death in July 1987.
Jeanne D'Arc Records, Inc., was founded by his son, Dominque, to make available his unpublished recorded musical legacy.