Franz Xaver Biebl (1 September 1906 – 2 October 2001) was a German composer of classical music. Most of his compositions were for choral ensembles.
Biebl was born in Pursruck, now part of Freudenberg, Bavaria, in 1906. He studied composition at the Musikhochschule in Munich. Biebl served as Choir Director at the Catholic church of St Maria in München-Thalkirchen from 1932 until 1939, and as an assistant professor of choral music at the Mozarteum, an academy of music in Salzburg, Austria, beginning in 1939, where he taught voice and music theory.
Biebl served in the military beginning in 1943 during World War II. He was a prisoner of war from 1944 to 1946, being detained at Fort Custer in Battle Creek, Michigan. After the war, he moved from Austria to Fürstenfeldbruck, Germany, where he served as director of the town chorus.
Biebl's best-known work is his Ave Maria (1964), which sets portions of the Angelus as well as the Ave Maria. The piece was brought to the United States by the Cornell University Glee Club in 1970. The ensemble met Biebl during a recording session in Frankfurt while on a tour of Germany. Conductor Thomas A. Sokol was given a number of Biebl's works, premiering them after returning home. The Ave Maria quickly gained popularity, most notably after becoming part of the repertoire of Chanticleer. Originally scored for male voices, after it became popular the composer himself rearranged Ave Maria for SATB and SSA choir as well.
The San Francisco Renegades, an all-age Drum and Bugle Corps, first adapted sections of Biebl's Ave Maria in their 2003 show: "Red Skies At Night". In 2005 they revisited the piece as the opener to their show, "The Days of Future Past". In 2006 the Phantom Regiment Drum and Bugle Corps, an International World Class Corps based in Rockford, Illinois, used the piece in its 2006 field show "Faust," further expanding awareness of Biebl's arrangement. Both drum and bugle corps' continue to perform Franz Biebl's Ave Maria as part of their yearly repertoire.