Félia Litvinne


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(b St Petersburg, ?11 Oct 1860; d Paris, 12 Oct 1936). Russian soprano of German and Canadian descent. She studied with pauline Viardot and victor Maurel in Paris, making her début with the Théâtre Italien troupe as Amelia (Simon Boccanegra) in 1883. She then sang throughout Europe, in New York, at La Monnaie as Brünnhilde in the first Die Walküre in French (1887), the Opéra, La Scala, and in Rome and Venice. From 1890 she appeared in the imperial theatres in Moscow and St Petersburg. Litvinne made her Metropolitan début in 1896 as Valentine (Les Huguenots) and sang, among other roles, Aida, Donna Anna, Brünnhilde (Siegfried) and Sélika (L'Africaine). In 1899 she appeared at Covent Garden, as Isolde, returning periodically until 1910; in her last season she sang Brünnhilde in Götterdämmerung. She sang in several Russian Ring cycles, 1899–1914, and, with charles Dalmorès, in the French premières of Götterdämmerung and Tristan under Alfred Cortot in 1902. An excellent musician and linguist, she had a large, flexible voice and great stage presence. Her recordings (1902–8, several with Cortot as her pianist) vividly convey her vibrant, impassioned singing.

From The Grove Book of Opera Singers in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: Opera.

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