Jean-François Dandrieu (c. 1682 – 1739) was born in Paris into a family of artists and musicians. A gifted and precocious child, he gave his first public performances when he was 5 years old, playing the harpsichord for King Louis XIV of France, and his court. These concerts marked the beginning of Dandrieu's very successful career as harpsichordist and organist. He was a student of Jean-Baptiste Moreau. In 1700, aged 18, he started playing the organ at the Saint-Merri church in Paris (a post previously occupied by Nicolas Lebègue) and became its titular organist in 1705. At some point in 1706 he was a member of the panel of judges who examined Jean-Philippe Rameau's skills to appoint him organist of the Sainte-Madeleine en la Cité church (incidentally, a post Rameau declined). In 1721 he was appointed one of the four organists of the Chapelle royale of France. In 1733, he succeeded his uncle, the organist and priest Pierre Dandrieu (1664–1733) to become the organist of the (now destroyed) church of St Barthélémy in the Île de la Cité, a post he combined with duties at Saint-Merri (also known as Saint-Médéric). He died in Paris in 1739, and was succeeded at the organ of St Barthélemy by his sister, Jeanne-Françoise.
A volume of organ noëls, which revised and enlarged a similar book published by his uncle, Pierre Dandrieu in 1714 (rev. in the 1720s). This was published posthumously by sister, Jeanne-Françoise, in 1759.
The three settings of "A minuit fut fait un réveil" (At midnight there was an awakening) show some of Dandrieu's contrasts in style, texture and dynamics.
No. 26 is a thundering fanfare from stop to finish. It sounds the Lord's Nativity is being shot off into the night like a cannonade!
The score is attached below, as well as a portrait of Jean-Francois Dandrieu, a title page from one of his publications, a portrait of his uncle Pierre, and photos of the Church of St. Merri in Paris.