Ludovic Halévy was born in Paris on December 31st, 1833 into a family of musicians and playwrights. His father Léon was a scholar and playwright and his paternal uncle, Jacques François Halévy, was a well-known composer.
Ludovic followed in the family tradition and, even though he became a government official, he started his career as a librettist in 1855, working with Offenbach. Thereafter, he wrote libretti with Hector Crémieux and Henri Meilhac for other operas and operettas. His collaboration with Meilhac was all-important because together they created the ideal libretti for Offenbach and, most memorably, also wrote the libretto to Carmen for Bizet. Among Offenbach's operas the most important are Orphée aux enfers, La Belle Hélène, La Vie parisienne, La Grande-duchesse de Gérolstein and La Périchole.
Ludovic Halévy died in Paris on May 7th, 1908.