The Frenchborn American composer, René-Louis Becker, was born to Edouard and his wife, Adele, in the town of Bischheim, Alsase, France. It took most of Edouard's income to raise the children and pay for their training at Strasbourg's Conservatory of Music. Some noted musicians of the time were their teachers. René's piano teachers, for example, included Ernest Munch whose son Carl (Charles Munch) became music director and conductor of the Boston Symphony Orchestra. Another was Fritz Blumer, a pupil of Franz Liszt. René studied advanced composition under Carl Somborn, a pupil of Josef Rheinberger.