- J.B. Steane
(b Plovdiv, June 16, 1894; d Pasadena, ca , June 12, 1960). Armenian tenor. His parents settled first in Bulgaria and then in Egypt, where he made his début in 1914. After studying in Milan he appeared there in 1921 as Chevalier des Grieux (Manon Lescaut). Later that year he travelled to the USA, inaugurating a substantial career with Antonio Scotti’s touring company and from 1923 to 1946 he appeared frequently at the Metropolitan. He sang mostly in lyric roles such as Nicias in Thaïs (with Jeritza) and Corentin in Dinorah (with Galli-Curci). House premières included Falla’s La vida breve (1926) and Puccini’s La rondine (1928), in which he took the light baritone role of Prunier. During the 1930s he travelled widely in Europe, appearing at Covent Garden in 1934 as Calaf. His few recordings show a bright, well-defined voice rather than a rich one, with adequate rather than distinctive powers of characterization....