Forgotten Opera Singers

Forgotten Opera Singers

Mar 23, 2014

Blanche Deschamps-Jehin (Mezzo-Soprano) (Lyon 1857 - Paris 1923)

Already in 1874 she sang at the Alhambra Theatre in Brussels in Lecocq’s operetta ‘’Giroflé-Girofla’’. Her debut as an opera singer occurred in 1879 at the Théâtre de la Monnaie in Brussels in ‘’Mignon’’ of Thomas. In Brussels she appeared on 19. 12. 1881 in the premiere of Massenet’s ‘’Hérodiade’’ in the title role. On 7. 1. 1884 she sang at the same opera house in the premiere of Reyer’s opera ‘’Sigurd’’ in the part of  Uta. Then she joined to the Opéra-Comique in Paris (1885-91). Here she sang in several premieres - 25. 4. 1885 Une nuit de Cléopâtre (Massé), 7.5.1888 ‘’Le roi d'Ys’’ (Lalo), 10.6.1891 ‘’Le Rêve’’ (Bruneau). In 1892 she sang the role of Dalila in ‘’Samson et Dalila’’ of Saint-Saëns in the première of the opera at the Paris Grand Opéra, where she worked from 1891 to 1902 as a famous prima donna. In 1891 she sang with triumph in a concert in Paris to the 100-th birthday of the composer Meyerbeer. In 1893 she sang at the Grand Opéra the role of Fricka in the première of the Wagner’s ‘’Walkure’’, on 19. 2. 1897 in the premiere of the opera ‘’Messidor’’ of A. Bruneau. In 1891 at the Covent Garden in London as Carmen and in the première of Bruneaus' ‘’La Rêve’’. On  2. 2. 1900 she created in the premiere of Charpentier’s ‘’Louise’’ at the Opéra-Comique the role of mother. Since 1889 she married the conductor Léon Jehin (1853-1928), who was active at the Opera House of Monte Carlo, where she guested regularly since 1889. There she also sang on 4. 3. 1894 in the premiere of the opera ‘’Hulda’’ of César Franck (after the death of the composer) the title role. On 9. 3. 1895 she appeared in ‘’ La Jacquerie’’ of Lalo. On 14. 2. 1903 she performed in ‘’Le Tasse’’ of Eugène d'Harcourt. on 14. 2. 1905 in the premiere of Massenet’s ‘’Chérubin’’ (as Baronne). Till 1913 she was to be heard at the Opera House of Monte Carlo, among other things in ‘’Hamlet’’ of A. Thomas, ‘’Mefistofele’’ of Boito (1910, 1912), ‘’Hélène’’ of Saint-Saëns, ‘’Rheingold’’ like in ‘’Siegfried’’ (1910, 1911 and 1913) and as a voice of the mother in ‘’Hoffmanns Erzählungen’’ (1911).

Chronology of some appearances

1874 Brussels  Alhambra Theatre Giroflé-Girofla
1879 Brussels Théâtre de la Monnaie Mignon
1881 Brussels Théâtre de la Monnaie Herodiade
1884 Brussels Théâtre de la Monnaie Sigurd
1885-1891 Paris Opéra-Comique


Edison 2-min cylinders, Paris 1906
L'anneau d'argent (Chaminade) 17834

Odeon, Paris 1908?
Trovatore (Verdi): La flamme brille 60720 xP3938

Odeon, Paris 1908-06?
Samson et Dalila (Saint-Saëns): Mon coeur s'ouvre 97028 xP4298
Prophète (Meyerbeer): Ah mon fils 97041 xP4299

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