Yvonne Gall


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(b Paris, 6 March 1885; d Paris, 21 Aug 1972). French soprano. She studied at the Paris Conservatoire and in 1908 was engaged by André Messager at the Opéra as Woglinde in the first production there of Götterdämmerung. Keeping the French lyric roles such as Marguerite, Manon and Thaïs at the centre of her career, she developed a powerful voice and added more dramatic parts such as Elsa and, in 1923, Isolde to her repertory. At Monte Carlo she sang in the premières of operas by Raoul Gunsbourg, the impresario of the house: Le vieil aigle (1909), Le cantique des cantiques (1922) and Lysistrata (1923). Abroad, she appeared with success in Buenos Aires and in Chicago, where she sang in the first American performance of L'heure espagnole. Tosca was the part in which she appeared at La Scala and in her only performances at Covent Garden (1924); Ernest Newman remarked that she presented ‘three capable Toscas, a different one in each act’. One of her last appearances was as Phoebe in Jean-Philippe Rameau's Castor et Pollux at the Maggio Musicale, Florence, in 1936. Her bright, very French soprano is heard in many recordings, notably in one of the first complete operas on record, Charles Gounod's Roméo et Juliette (1912).

From The Grove Book of Opera Singers in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: Opera.

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