Poulenc, Francis (Jean Marcel) (b Paris, 7 January, 1899 - d Paris, 30 January, 1963)
Poulenc's background gave him a musical and literary sophistication from boyhood, and he was already a publicly acknowledged composer by the time he started lessons with Koechlin in 1921. His early works, such as Le bestiaire (1919), and his Sonata for two clarinets (1918) had already shown the Stravinsky-Satie inclinations which assured him a place among Les Six.

There came a change to Poulenc's personal and spiritual life in around 1935, and this is reflected in his output of religious music. The basis of his style remained the same: Stravinsky, Faure, and contemporary popular music continued to be his sources even in the devotional music.