Valentino, Henri Justin Armand Joseph
- Jeffrey Cooper
- , revised by Katharine Ellis
(b Lille, Oct 14, 1785; d Versailles, ?Jan 28, 1865). French conductor. At the age of 14 he conducted a theatre orchestra (probably at Lille); later he held a similar post in Rouen. He became deputy conductor at the Paris Opéra in about 1820, and from 1824 to 1830 shared conducting duties there with Habeneck; he directed the premières of La muette de Portici and Guillaume Tell. As chief conductor of the Opéra-Comique from 1831 he led the first performance of Zampa. He resigned and settled in Chantilly in 1836 but returned to Paris the following year to direct the Concerts St Honoré, in which programmes mixed the instrumental works of Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven and turn-of-the-century French composers (conducted by Valentino) with quadrilles, waltzes and contredanses (directed by Fessy and Dufresne). The ‘Concerts Valentino’ were popular but always on the edge of extinction; the 1839 season was finished early; the series was closed definitively in ...