Jean-Blaise Martin


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(b Paris, 24 Feb 1768; d Ronzières, nr Lyons, 28 Oct 1837). French baritone. He studied music at an early age and auditioned unsuccessfully for the Opéra as both a violinist and a singer. He made his début at the Théâtre de Monsieur in 1789 in Le marquis de Tulipano, a French version of Giovanni Paisiello's opera Il matrimonio inaspettato. Lessons with Louise-rosalie Dugazon and François Joseph Talma helped him to overcome his deficiencies as an actor and in 1794 he moved to the Théâtre Favart, remaining there until it merged with the Feydeau to form the Opéra-Comique in 1801. Martin specialized in comic servant roles in new operas by N. -M. Dalayrac, Adrien Boieldieu, E. -N. Méhul, Nicolo Isouard and others. He retired from the Opéra-Comique in 1823 but returned briefly in 1826 and 1833, when he appeared in Léon Halévy's Les souvenirs de Lafleur, a pasticcio incorporating songs from his most successful roles. He was also a member of the imperial chapel (later the royal chapel) from its foundation until July 1830, and taught singing at the Paris Conservatoire from 1816 to 1818 and 1832 to 1837.


From The Grove Book of Opera Singers in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: Opera.

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