1-20 of 947 results  for:

  • 19th c. /Romantic (1800-1900) x
Clear all

Article

Martha Furman Schleifer

(b Philadelphia, PA, July 19, 1843; d Philadelphia, PA, 1918). American pianist, singer, educator, and composer. He studied music with his father Thomas à Becket Sr. (b 17 March 1808; d 6 Jan 1890) and in Philadelphia public schools. The father, a music teacher, actor and composer, wrote Columbia, the Gem of the Ocean. In 1855 Thomas à Becket Jr. performed at the Walnut Street Theatre in a work written by his father. He developed into one of the finest, most sought after accompanists in the city, joining with leading artists and singing groups. Member and president of the Mendelssohn Club, he sang in a series of 35 light operas produced at the Amateur Drawing Room (1868–72) and accompanied the Orpheus Club (1877–98). An important educator, from 1873 until he died à Becket taught and played the organ at Girard College, a residential school for orphaned boys. À Becket became a member of a group of professional musicians who evaluated music teaching methods in the Philadelphia Public Schools. À Becket family archives at The New York Public Library for the Performing Arts include diaries (...

Article

Elizabeth Forbes

(b Genoa, 1821; d Milan, 1896). Italian mezzo-soprano . She studied with her father, the composer and teacher Natale Abbadia, making her début in 1836 at Sassari. In Vienna she sang Corilla in Donizetti’s Le convenienze ed inconvenienze teatrali (1840). At La Scala she created Giulietta in Verdi’s ...

Article

H. Wiley Hitchcock

revised by Katherine K. Preston

(b Chicago, Dec 9, 1850; d Salt Lake City, Jan 5, 1891). American soprano and impresario. She studied first with her father and by the age of nine was performing professionally. She joined an itinerant concert troup in 1866 and after it disbanded went to New York to study with Achille Errani; her concert début there was in December 1871. In 1872 she went abroad to study with Sangiovanni in Milan and Marchesi, Wartel and Delle Sedie in Paris. Her operatic début at Covent Garden was as Marie in La fille du régiment (2 May 1876), but her contract was cancelled when she refused to sing Violetta on moral grounds.

Abbott secretly married Eugene Wetherell (d 1889); in 1876 they returned to the USA, where she gave concerts. Her American operatic début was in New York on 23 February 1877, again as Marie. In ...

Article

J.B. Steane

(b Lemberg [now L’viv], July 14, 1872; d Weidling, nr Vienna, Sept 1, 1932). Polish soprano of Austrian parentage . She first appeared as a child prodigy, singing operatic arias in her native town. At 13 she entered the Vienna Conservatory; she later studied in Milan, becoming highly proficient in florid singing while developing a voice of considerable power. She made her début (1889) in La sonnambula at the Vienna Opera. In the Munich première of Falstaff she sang Mrs Ford, and at Dresden in 1902 sang Tosca in the opera’s German première. She retired in 1908, having sung some 70 operatic roles, ranging from coloratura parts such as the Queen of Night and Lucia to dramatic roles including Sieglinde and Venus. A few rare gramophone records made in 1902 display some dubious stylistic qualities along with an extraordinary fluency in decorative work and a warm, limpid tone characteristic of the Lamperti school....

Article

(b Riverside, ny , 1878; d New York, Feb 9, 1919). American soprano . She appeared first with her sister Jessie in vaudeville, then, in London, in operetta; she was heard there in 1898 by Jean de Reszke, who helped her to study in Paris with Victor Capoul and Mathilde Marchesi. Her début at the Opéra as Juliet in ...

Article

H. Wiley Hitchcock

revised by June C. Ottenberg and Jonas Westover

(b Charlestown, MA, Feb 9, 1834; d West Harwich, MA, July 4, 1900). American tenor. Adams was one of the most prominent American singers in European opera houses throughout the 19th century. He studied singing in Boston and in 1856 was soloist in the Handel and Haydn Society’s performance of Haydn’s The Creation. In 1861 he made concert and opera appearances in the West Indies and Holland. He studied in Vienna with Carlo Barbieri and was engaged for three years by the Berlin Royal Opera, then for eight out of nine years (1867–76) as principal tenor of the Vienna Imperial Opera. He also sang at La Scala and Covent Garden. In 1877 he returned to the United States. During the 1877–8 season at the Academy of Music in New York he sang the title role in the first American production of Wagner’s Rienzi. An excellent singer and fine actor, he had a commanding stage presence. His voice was described as very powerful and “a very sweet one and one of great range.” Adams made his way to Chicago in the 1880s, where he regularly performed oratorios with the Chicago Musical Union. Tannhäuser, Lohengrin, Manrico, and Rienzi were his most celebrated parts. From ...

Article

David Cummings

[Chapman, Adele ]

(b Boston, 1855; d Dieppe, Feb 1924). American soprano . She studied with Pauline Viardot and Giovanni Sbriglia in Paris. Her début role was Meyerbeer’s Dinorah, at Varese in 1876. She appeared with the Mapleson Company in New York and after returning to Europe sang at the Opéra from ...

Article

J.B. Steane

(b St Chinian, Oct 23, 1858; d Cagnes-sur-Mer, Dec 27, 1931). French tenor. For 20 years he was a principal lyric-heroic tenor at the Opéra in Paris. Its director, Pierre Gailhard, had heard him in the provinces and arranged for lessons with Victor Duvernoy. Affré’s house début as Edgardo in 1890 coincided with Melba’s, in Lucia di Lammermoor. He developed a large repertory, appearing in Gluck’s Armide and also in the first performances at the Opéra of Entführung and Pagliacci. In 1891 he sang in the première of Le mage by Massenet, who found his voice ‘vibrant as pure crystal’. At Covent Garden in 1909 his roles were Faust and Saint-Saëns’s Samson. He went to the USA in 1911, appearing at San Francisco and New Orleans where in 1913 he became director of the Opera. He was a prolific recording artist and sang Romeo in one of the earliest complete operatic recordings (...

Article

Elizabeth Forbes

(b Verdello, Bergamo, Nov 23, 1882; d Buenos Aires, July 6, 1954). Italian soprano . She studied in Milan and made her début in 1903 at Pavia as Fedora. She sang throughout Europe, in South America and in Russia. After an engagement at the Manhattan Opera House, New York (...

Article

Elizabeth Forbes

(b Verona, July 21, 1874; d Abington, pa , July 26, 1951). Italian tenor . He made his début in 1895 at Nuovi Ligure. In 1897, after singing Rodolfo for the first time at Cagliari, he took the role in the American première of La bohème at Los Angeles and in the New York première (...

Article

Alexis Chitty

revised by Gilles Potvin

(Marie Louise Cécile)

(b Chambly, nr Montreal, Nov 1, 1847; d London, April 3, 1930). Canadian soprano. Her father was a professor of the harp, piano and organ. She was educated at the Couvent du Sacré-Coeur at Montreal. She gave concerts in some Quebec towns before her family moved to Albany, New York, in 1864; there she became a soloist at St Joseph’s church and the Albany bishop and others advised Lajeunesse that his daughter should adopt a musical career. She went to Paris in 1868 where she was taught by Duprez. Later she studied with Lamperti in Milan. In 1870 she made her début at Messina as Amina in Bellini’s La sonnambula, adopting, as suggested by her elocution teacher, the name of Albani, borrowed from an old Italian family. She then sang successfully at Malta and Florence.

On 2 April 1872 she made her London début at Covent Garden as Amina. The beautiful qualities of her voice and the charm of her appearance were at once appreciated. She sang nearly every season there until ...

Article

J.B. Steane

(b Amsterdam, Feb 1, 1866; d Paris, Sept 12, 1925). Flemish baritone . He began as an actor in comedy, and in 1889 made his operatic début as Méphistophélès in Faust at Amsterdam. Massenet heard him in Antwerp and arranged for him to study in Paris with Jean-Baptiste Faure. He then travelled widely in France and the USA, making his début at the Metropolitan in ...

Article

Elizabeth Forbes

(b London, 1 May ?1814; d London, Sept 25, 1847). English contralto . She made her début in 1830 in London at the King’s Theatre as Pippo in La gazza ladra. In 1831 she went to Italy and married a lawyer; she continued to sing, appearing at the Teatro della Cannobiana (...

Article

Elizabeth Forbes

[Maria Anna Marzia]

(b Città di Castello, March 6, 1826; d Ville d’Avray, June 23, 1894). Italian contralto. She studied at the Liceo Musicale, Bologna, with Alessandro Mombelli. Rossini coached her in the principal contralto roles in his operas. She made her début at Bologna in 1842 as Clymene in Pacini's Saffo, and then sang Maffio Orsini in Lucrezia Borgia. In the same year she first appeared at La Scala, as Néocle in Le siège de Corinthe; during that season and the next she also sang Rizzardo in Marliani's Ildegonda, Léonore in La favorite, Adalgisa, and Pierotto in Linda di Chamounix. She created Mirza in Salvi's Lara (1843) and Berenice in Pacini's L'ebrea (1844). She made a very successful Vienna début in 1843 as Pierotto, and spent the winter of 1844–5 in St Petersburg, where she sang Pierotto, Maffio Orsini, Gondi in Donizetti's Maria di Rohan and Arsace in ...

Article

Elizabeth Forbes

(b Lazise, Lake Garda, Jan 6, 1824; d Verona, May 11, 1906). Italian baritone . He studied in Verona and Milan, making his début in 1858 at Novara as Germont. For the next 20 years he sang at all the leading Italian theatres, including S Carlo, where he created Raoul in Donizetti’s posthumously performed ...

Article

Elizabeth Forbes

(b Villafranca Veronese, 1828; d Colognola ai Colli, 1907). Italian soprano . She made her début in 1849 at Verona as Bellini’s Beatrice di Tenda, also singing Donizetti’s Maria Padilla. In 1854 at the Teatro S Benedetto, Venice, she scored a triumph as Violetta not long after the disastrous première of Verdi’s ...

Article

Laurie Shulman

(b Paris, Dec 29, 1814; d Marseilles, Jan 23, 1850). French bass-baritone . He began his career as a violinist, studying under Chrétien Urhan, but switched to singing in 1834, enrolling at the Paris Conservatoire. After earning first prize there in 1836, he made his début the following year as Saint-Bris (Les Huguenots). Alizard was associated with the Opéra, primarily in minor roles, until 1842 when he accepted a two-year appointment in Brussels. A throat problem, possibly induced by higher baritone roles, forced him to take leave from 1844 to 1846. Following a short recuperative sojourn in Italy, he enjoyed a brief second success in Paris from 1846 to 1848. A recurrence of his ailment necessitated his permanent retirement to the balmier climate of Marseilles, where he died. Contemporary critics described his voice as powerful and of a flattering timbre. His short and overly muscular stature, however, compromised his popularity with the public....

Article

J.B. Steane

(b Obra, Poland, April 7, 1880; d New York, Jan 31, 1975). Polish-American soprano . Born of a French mother and Norwegian father, she trained in Breslau as a contralto and sang first in public at short notice and from memory in the St Matthew Passion. Her operatic début followed in ...

Article

Elizabeth Forbes

[Gourron, Raymond ]

(b nr Bordeaux, Jan 16, 1861; d Nice, Feb 26, 1933). French tenor . He studied in Paris and made his début in 1886 at Ghent as Gounod’s Faust. From 1892 until 1906 he was engaged at the Opéra, where he created Nicias in Massenet’s Thaïs (1894) and roles in Holmès’ La montagne noire (1895), Duvernoy’s Hellé (1896), Bruneau’s Messidor (1897), Vidal’s La burgonde (1898), Leroux’s Astarte (1901), Erlanger’s Le fils de l’étoile (1904) and Guiraud’s Frédégonde (1905). At Covent Garden he sang Leicester in the first performance of De Lara’s Amy Robsart (1903) and created Araquil in Massenet’s La navarraise (1904). In Monte Carlo he sang Paris in the first performance of Saint-Saëns’s Hélène (1904). His large repertory included Romeo, Samson, Don José, Fernand (La favorite...

Article

Harold Rosenthal

[Anders, Max]

(b Düsseldorf, May 3, 1856; d Grosstabarz, Thuringia, Nov 7, 1898). German tenor. He pursued his singing career over the initial objections of his father, the painter Andreas Achenbach, and studied in Frankfurt with Julius Stockhausen and in Milan with Francesco Lamperti. He made his début (1879) in Weimar, under the name of Max Anders, singing the title role of Flotow's Alessandro Stradella, and remained at the Weimar Opera until 1885, enjoying the favour of the grand duke. He had great success at the Metropolitan in New York, making his début there on 25 November 1885 singing Don José in German. He was the USA's first Siegfried (in Siegfried), his most celebrated role, in 1887; other important roles of his four years at the Metropolitan included Adolar in Euryanthe (1887), Alvar in Spontini's Fernand Cortez (1888) and Loge in Das Rheingold...