Forgotten Opera Singers

Forgotten Opera Singers

Nov 19, 2013

David Devries (Tenor) (Bagneres-de-Luchon, France 1881- Neuilly-sur-Seine, France 1936)

                                                        Don Jose in ''Carmen''

He made his debut in 1904 at Theatre Montparnasse as Gerald in ''Lakme'', but the main part of his career was devoted at the Opera Comique, where he sang Almaviva, Don Jose, Armand in Massenet's Therese, Alfredo, Jean in Massenet's ''Sapho'', Clement in Messager's ''La Basoche'', Vincent in ''Mireille'', Wilhelm in ''Mignon'', Des Grieux, Werther, Julien, Pinkerton, Cavaradossi and other roles. In 1909 he took part in the revival of Boieldieu's ''La Dame Blanche'' and he remained a paradigmatic Georges Brown. In the same 1909 he went to New York, invited by Oscar Hammerstein, to sing at the Manhattan Theatre, where he sang different roles: Ange Pitou in Lecoq's ''La Fille de Madamme Angot'', Sylvan in Maillart's ''Les Dragons de Villars''. More important, during this time he sang for the first time in his career the role of Pelleas in Debussy's masterwork. Still in America,  with Mary Garder he sang Araquil in ''La Navarraise'' and Alain in ''Griselide''. As a curious fact, Garden had appropiate the title role in Massenet's ''Le Jongleur de Notre Dame'', originally composed for a tenor. But when she was off travelling, Devries also sung this role, so the local audiences had the chance to listen to the part in both versions, soprano and tenor. Later he sang Pelleas at Covent Garden, Nicias (from Thais) in Montecarlo. And in Nice he created Paco in the world premiere of Falla's ''La Vida Breve''. e sang also as soloist in recitals and concerts, singing in St. Mattew Passion as well as in Berlioz's ''La Damnation de Faust''. 

Chronology of some appearances

1909-1910 Manhattan Opera House


Pathe, Paris 1907
Bonsoir, Mme la lune (Maunier) 4670

Victor, 1910-04-04
Fille de Madame Angot (Lecocq): Voyons, Monsieur, raisson nous politique w. Gabrielle Lejeune 70025
Le Roi d'Ys (Lalo): Vainement ma bien aimee 70021

Pathé, Paris 1910/1911
Tannhäuser (Wagner): Choeur des pèlerins with  Belhomme, Dangès and Nansen 0775
Fille de Mme Angot (Lecocq): Choeur des conspirateurs with DangèsNansen & Belhomme 0776

Odeon, Paris 1927-01/02
Manon (Massenet):  Instant charmant... En fermant les yeux 188.505  Ki 1079-2

Odeon, Paris 1927-04 (end)
Griselidis (Massenet): Je suis l’oiseau 188.523 Ki 1199-1
Barbiere di Siviglia (Rossini): Des rayons de l’aurore  188.524 Ki 1200-2

Odeon, Paris 1927-05
Griselidis (Massenet): Ouvrez-vous sur mon front   188.523    Ki 1216-2

Odeon, Paris 1928-04-26
La Dame Blanche (Boilldieu): O moment plein de charmes 123.548   XXP 6659-2

Jocelyn: Caches dans cet asile... Oh ne t’eveille pas encore 166.257  Ki 3739-2
La Dame Blanche (Boildieu): Viens gentille dame 188.795   Ki 3988-1

Odeon, Paris 1928-05-23
Les roses d’Ispahan, Op.39 No.4  (de Lisle - Faure) 123.553 XXP 6673-2

Odeon, Paris 1928-07-05
Les anes du Caire (Sylvestre - Emile Nerini) (A minor) 188.596   Ki 1763      

Odeon, Paris 1930-09-16
Rigoletto (Verdi): Comme la plume au vent 188.751  Ki 3611-2
Lakme (Delibes): Fantaisie aux divin mensonge 123.715 XXP 7125

Odeon, Paris 1930-10-20
Werther (Massenet): Pourquoi me reveiller 188.770 Ki 3717-3
Werther (Massenet): Alors c’est bien ici... O Nature pleine de gràce 123.715 XXP 7132
Werther (Massenet): Un autre est son epoux… J’aurais sur ma poitrine  188.770 Ki 3721

Odeon, Paris 1930-10-27
Tosca (Puccini): Le ciel luisait d’etoiles  188.774 Ki 3735 -1
Paganini (Lehar): J’ai toujours cru qu’un baiser  123.729   XXP 7154
Les Pecheurs de Perles (Bizet): Je crois entendre encore 123.729  XXP 7155-1

Odeon, Paris 1930-11-25
Chanson du pecheur, Op.4 No.1 (Gautier - Faue) 188.792  Ki 3889-2                   

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