Forgotten Opera Singers

Forgotten Opera Singers

Jul 31, 2014

Benvenuto Finelli (Tenor) (London, England 1910 - London, England 1987)

His real name was Bennett Fynn and he was a pupil of the pedagogue John Tobin in London. In 1941 he made his debut under his real name as Almaviva in Rossini’s ‘’Barbiere di Siviglia’’. In 1942 he became a member of the Sadler's Wells Opera, in 1945 Carl Rose Opera Company. Here he took over parts like Duke in ‘’Rigoletto’’, Pinkerton in ‘’Madama Butterfly’’ and again Almaviva. He additionally studied singing under Italian tenors Dino Borgioli in London, Romeo Berti and Amedeo Bassi in Italy. He specialized in the Italian Belcanto repertoire and accepted the  name Benvenuto Finelli. He became known in the 1950’s in England above all as a broadcasting company singer. In 1971 he finished his career and worked since then as a singing teacher in London. 

Chronology of some appearances

1942 Sadler's Wells Opera
1945 Carl Rose Opera Company


Figlia Del Reggimento (Donizetti): Qual Destin Qual Favor
Don Pasquale (Donizetti):  E se fia che ad altro oggetto 
Lucrezia Borgia (Donizetti): Di Pescatore Ignobile
La Favorita (Donizett): Una Vergine
I Puritani (Bellini): A una fonte afflitto e solo
I Puritani (Bellini):  Nel Mirarti
Don Sebastiano (Donizetti): Deserta In Terra
I Puritani (Bellini): A te, o cara
I Puritani (Bellini): Credeasi misera
La Sonnambula (Bellini): Prendi l'anel ti dono
L Italiana in Algeri (Rossini): languir per una bella

Jul 30, 2014

Virgilio Lazzari (Bass) (Assisi 1887 - Castel Gandolfo 1953)

He sang with the Vitale Operetta Company, 1908–11, then studied in Rome with Cotogni . He made his operatic début at the Teatro Costanzi, Rome, in 1914. After singing in South America, in 1917 he made his North American début at Boston. He sang with the Chicago Opera (1918–33), then made his Metropolitan début as Don Pédro (''L'Africaine''), remaining with the company until 1951 and singing 20 roles. From 1934to1939 he appeared at the Salzburg Festival, where he sang Pistol (''Falstaff''), Bartolo and Leporello, the role of his only Covent Garden appearance (1939). His most famous role was that of Archibaldo ( Italo Montemezzi's ''L'amore dei tre re''), which he sang first in 1916 in Mexico City and as late as 1953 in Genoa. Although not blessed with a great voice, Lazzari was considered one of the best singing actors in his particular repertory.

Chronology of some appearances

Il re d’Egitto 6/6/1916, Fouquier-Tinville 11/13/1916, Il cieco 11/14/1916, Colline 11/17/1916, Fouquier-Tinville 11/18/1916, Raimondo Bidebent 3/4/1919, Don Basilio 3/6/1919, Erster Nazarener 2/28/1922, Ein Coppadocier 2/28/1922, Un moine peintre 3/1/1922, Colline 2/27/1934, Ramfis 3/27/1934, Colline 3/9/1937, Leporello 3/15/1938, Il dottore Bartolo 2/28/1939, Colline 2/13/1940, Simone 1/18/1944, Oroveso 2/1/1944, Alvise Badoero 3/13/1945, Il Talpa 1/22/1946, Colline 12/7/1951 (Filadelfia)


Edison, New York 1916-12-17/19
Barbiere di Siviglia (Rossini): La calunnia 82555 5220-A

Vocalion, New York 1922-05?
Bohème (Puccini): Vecchia zimarra  30171
Barbiere di Siviglia (Rossini): La calunnia 52038
Simon Boccanegra (Verdi): Il lacerato spirito 70040

Concetto Paterna (Bass) (Catania 1870 - ?1940)

Probably he made his debut in 1890. He had a long and successful career and during his tage career made guest appearances in Lisbon (1891), Rio de Janeiro (1899), Alessandria (1901), Buenos Aires (1906), Montevideo (1906), Madrid (1906), New York (1908) etc. He retired from the stage in 1938.

Chronology of some appearances

1891 Lisbona  Teatro San Carlos Crispino e la comare (Don Fabrizio)
1897 Savona Teatro Chiabrera Boheme (Benoit/Alcindoro)
1900 Cagliari Teatro Civico Boheme (Benoit/Alcindoro)
1904 Torino Teatro Vittorio Emanuele Resurrezione di F.Alfano
1908 Genova  Teatro Carlo Felice Tosca (Sagrestano)
1910 Cremona Politeama Verdi  Don Pasquale (Don Pasquale)
1915 Madrid Teatro Reale  Boheme (Benoit/Alcindoro)
1918 Firenze Teatro Della Pergola Barbiere di Siviglia (Don Bartolo)
1920 Londra Covent Garden   Tosca (Sagrestano)
1925 Basilea Opera Barbiere di Siviglia (Don Bartolo)
1929 Livorno Politeama Crispino e la Comare (Crispino)
1931 Modena  Teatro Storchi Elisir d'amore (Dulcamara)
1937 Ravenna  Teatro Alighieri Matrimonio Segreto (Robinson)
1938 Chianciano Teatro Delle Terme Barbiere di Siviglia (Don Bartolo)


Fonotipia, Milano 1910-12-10
Tutti in maschera (Pedrotti): Don Gregorio 92769 xPh 4446
Tutti in maschera (Pedrotti): Dunque l'opera è caduta? 92770  xPh 4447

Jul 29, 2014

Domenico Mastronardi (Baritone) (Bari ? - ?)

He studied singing in Milan under the pedagogue Marconi and made his debut in 1928. In 1938 he went to South America, where he continued his career as tenor.

Chronology of some appearances

1928 Livorno Politeama Barbiere di Siviglia (Figaro)
1929 Malta Teatro Reale Boheme (Marcello)
1930 Bari Teatro Petruzzelli Rigoletto (Rigoletto)
1931 Bologna  Teatro Duse Rigoletto (Rigoletto)
1932 Pisa Teatro Verdi  Traviata (Germont)
1933 Torino Teatro Vittorio Emanuele Traviata (Germont)
1934 Bologna  Teatro Del Corso Barbiere di Siviglia (Figaro)
1936 Bari  Teatro Petruzzelli  Tosca (Cavaradossi)
1937 Bologna  Teatro Del Corso Madama Butterfly (Pinkerton)
1938 San Paolo Teatro Municipal  Carmen (Don Josè)
1939 Buenos Ayres Teatro Colon  Madama Butterfly (Pinkerton)
1940 Montevideo Teatro Solis Pagliacci (Canio)


I Pescatori di perle (Bizet): Del tempio al limitar with Franco Foresta  25M 891
Gioconda (Ponchielli): O grido di quest'anima with Franco Foresta M7104 25M/884
Pagliacci (Leoncavallo): Sì può? (Prologo, pt 1) M 7106 25M/881
Pagliacci (Leoncavallo): Un nido di memorie (Prologo, pt 2) M 7106 25M/882
Carmen (Bizet): Toreador M 7107 25M/887

Orville Harrold (Tenor) ( Cowan, Indiana 1878 - Norwalk, Connecticut 1933)



He had a notable singing voice even as a child. He sang in church choirs, singing clubs, and traveled with a boys' choir in 1893 to the World's Fair in Chicago, where he was christened "the boy wonder of Muncie" for his performance there. He also played in a band in Muncie and took violin lessons, hoping one day to become a professional violinist. Those dreams did not come true, and as an adult Orville went to work for the Ball brothers glass factory. He later became a driver for a casket company and impressed his fellow workers by singing arias as he worked. In 1906 he was "discovered" by Mme. Ernestine Shumann-Heink, a noted contralto, who was on a concert tour of her own and heard Orville singing with the Apollo Club, an amateur singing group in Muncie. She encouraged him to pursue a singing career, and, through friends in Muncie who had contacts in New York City, an audition was arranged. Orville left Muncie to begin a career in vaudeville and the musical theater, a decision that would take him to the greatest heights in his profession, but would cost him his marriage to Euphamia Evaline Kiger, who would divorce him in 1913. In 1908 he toured with a production of "Wine, Women, and Song" at which time he caught the attention of Oscar Hammerstein and Oscar Sanger. This meeting resulted in a contract with Hammerstein's Manhattan Opera Company. During the year 1910 he sang with the Manhattan company and also with Hammerstein's Philadelphia Opera Company. He toured with these groups and was invited to join the Metropolitan Opera in New York in 1919. He performed with the Met until 1924, taking the lead tenor rolls in "La Boheme," "Parsifal", "Lohengrin", "Louise", "Tosca", "The Barber of Seville," and many other productions. He made solo tours of his own, singing in cities throughout the United States, sometimes accompanied by his daughter, Adelina Patti Harrold, who had inherited her father's gifts and who would go on herself to star in musical comedy in Los Angeles. After leaving the Met, Orville toured Europe, appearing at the London Opera House as a lead tenor, and returned to America to join the Century Opera Company for a United States tour. He also authored a book of 200 songs for children titled "Nimble Bunny," that concerned a musical adventure trip around the world. At the time of his death from a cerebral hemorrhage, he had planned to join his daughter in California for a series of radio broadcasts. Orville's career was short, compared to the other great tenors of his day, perhaps due to his lack of rigorous formal training at an early age.

Chronology of some appearances

1910 Manhattan Opera House
1910 Philadelphia Opera House
1919-1924 New York Metropolitan Opera


Edison 4-min cylinders, New York 1912?
Favorita (Donizetti): Spirto gentil (Eng) BA 28182

Edison, New York 1913?
Martha (Flotow): Ah, so pure 82005

Louise (Charpentier): Depuis longtemps j'habitais cette chambre with  Eva Gauthier  6151 C25555

Jocelyn (Godard): Lullaby A 5439 36483
The snowy breasted pearl (Robinson) A5439 36422

Victor, 1920-04-16
Bohème (Puccini): Che gelida manina 74624 C23716

Marius Chambon (Bass) (1864-1945)


His complete name was Claude Etienne Marius Chambon. He studied singing at the conservatoire of  Lyon, where he won the first price in 1889. In 1890 he made his debut at in the Opera House in Marseille as  Marcel in G. Meyerbeer's ''Huguenots''. In 1892 he was engaged by the Grand Opéra in Paris, where he sang the role of Marcel again as a beginning role. Longer than 15 years he appeared at the Grand Opéra in Paris. He sang there in the première of the opera ''Samson et Dalila'' of Saint-Saëns (14 years after the premiere in Weimar); in 1899 he performed there in the première of the opera ''La pinch de Troies'' of Berlioz. He also appeared as a guest at the famous opera houses of  the French province. He was married the soprano Anna Tanésy. Later he was active as vocal pedagogue in Paris.

Chronology of some appearances

1892-1910 Paris Grand Opéra


Pathé cylinders, Paris 1902?
Le pas d'armes du roi Jean (Saint-Saëns) 3153

Dutreih cylinders, Paris 1903?
Faust (Gounod): Trio with Minvielle and Tanésy 150699 13503

Jul 27, 2014

John Forsell (Baritone) (Stockholm 1868 - Stockholm 1941)

He made his operatic debut at the Royal Swedish Opera, Stockholm, in 1896 as Figaro in Il barbiere di Siviglia. He would remain its premiere baritone for some 30 years. He would also establish an international career, singing for example at the Metropolitan Opera in New York City in 1909/1910, performing such parts as Tonio in Pagliacci, Amfortas in Parsifal, Figaro in Il barbiere di Siviglia, Telramund in Lohengrin, Germont in La traviata and Yeletsky in The Queen of Spades. The title role in Mozart's Don Giovanni was probably his most famous interpretation. He sang the part numerous times, including during the 1909 season at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, London, and at the 1930 Salzburg Festival. Among the other major European cities in which Forsell sang the Don and various leading parts were Copenhagen, Berlin, Amsterdam and Vienna. Forsell become the Director (Intendant) of the Royal Swedish Opera in 1923/24, and performed less frequently on stage as a consequence. His voice, however, remained in fine condition. As late as on his 70th birthday, he sang Almaviva in Le nozze di Figaro by Mozart. He retired from his director's position in May 1939 and died in Stockholm two years later. In addition to his administrative duties at Stockholm's opera house during the 1920s and '30s, Forsell taught voice as a professor of singing at the Stockholm Conservatory of Music. His pupils included Jussi Björling, Hjördis Schymberg, Joel Berglund and Set Svanholm.

Chronology of some appearances

1896-1918 Stockholm Royal Swedish Opera 


G&T, Stockholm 1905-10
Don Giovanni (Mozart): Du bör ej fruktan bära (Là ci darem la mano) with Hellström 84064 2741e
Trovatore (Verdi): Ser du, af tårar (Mira d'acerbe) with Hellström 84066 2744e
Tannhäuser (Wagner): Sången till aftonstjärnan 82987 2710e
Barbiere di Siviglia (Rossini): Brevduett (Dunque io son) (w. Hellström) 84059 2745e
Nozze di Figaro (Mozart): Hur kan du grymma flicka (Crudel perché finora) (w. Hellström) 84070 2740e

G&T, Stockholm 1907-02-16/17
Faust (Gounod): Bön (Avant de quitter) 2-82528 10277u
Guillaume Tell (Rossini): Bön (Sois immobile) 2-82534 10278u
Mignon (Thomas): Svalduetten (Légères hirondelles) with Hesse 84086 10279u
Aida (Verdi): Duett (A te grave cagion) with Lyckseth-Schjerven 84083 10280u
Barbiere di Siviglia (Rossini): Faktotumsarian 082015  0717v

Gramophone, Stockholm 1907-10
Nozze di Figaro (Mozart): Grevens aria (Vedro mentr'io) 2-82614 7035e

Gramophone, Stockholm 1912-08-23
Favorita (Donizetti): Så mycken kärlek (A tanto amor) 082066
Pagliacci (Leoncavallo): Prolog 082065 449ac

Gramophone, Berlin 1913-10-28
Walküre (Wagner): Der Augen leuchtendes Paar 042475 1242s

Gramophone, Stockholm 1916-12-29
Rigoletto (Verdi): Monolog (Pari siamo) 2-082002 306p(sm)
Don Giovanni (Mozart): Finch'han dal vino (Sw & It) 7-82005 13507o(sm)
Trovatore (Verdi): Hennes skönhet öfverstrålar (Il balen) 2-082005 307p(sm)
Eugen Onegin (Tchaikovsky): Om ödet mig behagat giva 2-082006 309p(sm)

Gramophone, Stockholm 1916-12-30
Rigoletto (Verdi): Se jag gråter... Ädle herrar (Miei signori) 2-082001 310p(sm)

Walter Hyde (Tenor) (Birmingham 1875 - London 1951)

He was one of the greatest dramatic tenors in Britain in the early decades of the twentieth century. He trained in London at the Royal College of Music under Gustave Garcia and Walter Parratt, appearing in student productions of ''Euryanthe'' and ''Much Ado About Nothing'' (Stanford). His early professional career was in musical comedy, including ''Miss Hook of Holland'' (Rubens 1907) and ''Three Kisses'' (Talbot 1907). Percy Pitt then recruited him to sing Siegmund in the 1908 English language Ring cycles at Covent Garden, which were conducted by Hans Richter and directed by E C Hedmondt. He continued to work regularly at Covent Garden until 1923. One of his early appearances there was as Sali in the British premiere of Delius' ''A Village Romeo and Juliet'', conducted by Beecham (1910). He worked extensively with Beecham's company, and in the twenties became a director of BNOC, continuing to sing with them until they folded. He sang Siegmund at the New York Met, and in 1912 toured the USA in Robin Hood. After Siegmund, his most notable Wagnerian role was probably Parsifal. He later became Professor of Singing at the Guildhall School of Music, where his students included John Heddle Nash and Eric Shilling.

Chronology of some appearances

1908-1923 London Covent Garden


Odeon London 1908 
The nightingale/ A maiden fair to see" WH and chorus  44872 Lx2153

Odeon London 1909 
The Noble Outlaw (Bishop) The Pilgrim of Love Odeon 84222 Lxx296
Carmen (Bizet): The Flower Song XX84212

HMV, London 1910-07-27
Contes d'Hoffmann (Offenbach): Legend of Kleinsack (w. chorus) 02256 4341f

HMV, London 1921
Die Walküre (Wagner): Winter storms have waned (Winterstürme wichen dem Wonnemond) (o Byng) 02932 598 

Jul 26, 2014

Joseph O'Mara (Tenor) ( Limerick, Ireland 1864 – Dublin 1927)

He received his education among other things by Moratti in Milan. He made his debut at the Royal English Opera House in London (1891) in the title role of the opera ''Ivanhoe'' of Sullivan. In the 1894-95 season he appeared with great success at the Drury Lane Theatre like at the Covent Garden in London in which he performed still  in 1910. Then he became the leading tenor of the Moody Manners Opera Company. In the 1902-04 seasons he undertook as a member of the Beecham Opera Company tours through the English cities. Later he founded own opera troop under the name O'Mara Opera Company which real star singer was he himself. He counted as an excellent Wagner's interpreter, however, his extensive repertoire contained more than 70 stage roles. In 1896 he created in the premiere of the opera ''Shamus O'Brien'' of Charles Stanford in London the title role. In 1926 he retired from the stage. 

Chronology of some appearances

1891 London Royal English Opera House
1894-1895 London Drury Lane Theatre


G&T, London 1901
Shamus O'Brien (Stanford): Ochone! When I used to be young 2-2567 1229b

G&T, London 1902-03?
An April Birthday (Ronald) (pf: Ronald) 2-2061 4143a
Friend and Lover (Ronald) (pf: Ronald) 2-2062 4144a

Jul 25, 2014

Roberto Tamanti (Bass) (1871-1940)

Probably he made his debut in 1889 at the Teatro Ventido Basso at Ascoli Piceno in G. Verdi’s ‘’Traviata’’. He made guest appearances in Cairo (1896), Bucharest (1898), Amsterdam (1898, 1921), Lisbon (1900, 1902-1903), Mexico City (1901), Oporto (1904), Alessandria (1905), Nice (1906), Buenos Aires (1907), Stockholm (1913). Probably he retired in 1921. He made two published records.

Chronology of some appearances

1889 Ascoli PicenoTeatro Ventido Basso Traviata (Grenvil)
1896 Cairo Teatro Esbekieh Ernani (Silva)
1898 Bucharest Teatro Nazionale Concert
1898 Amsterdam Paleis Voor Volksvlijt Ebrea (Ruggero)
1901 Mexico City Aida (Re)
1904 Oporto Teatro San Joao Thais (Palemone)
1905 Alessandria Teatro Finzi Adriana Lecouvreur (Principe)
1906 Nice Casino Municipale Barbiere di Siviglia (Don Bartolo)
1907 Buenos Aires Teatro Coliseo Rigoletto (Monterone)
1913 Stockholm Teatro Reale Barbiere di Siviglia (Don Bartolo)


Fonotipia, Milano 1906-07-04
Siberia (Giordano): O bella mia with Francesco Maria Bonini, Gino Martinez-Patti and Oreste Luppi 39821 XPh1974

Jul 24, 2014

Nazzareno Bertinelli (Baritone)

He studied singing under Antonio Cotogni and probably made his debut in 1921 at the Teatro Verdi of Salerno in G. Verdi’s ‘’Forza del Destino’’.

Chronology of some appearances

1921 Salerno Teatro Verdi Forza del Destino (Don Carlo)
1922 Roma Teatro Morgana Aida (Amonasro)
1923 Mantova Teatro Sociale Tannhauser (Wolframio)
1925 Castelsangiovanni Teatro Verdi Concerto
1927 Fano Teatro Della Fortuna Rigoletto (Rigoletto)
1931 Galatina  Teatro Comunale Cavalleria Rusticana (Alfio)
1932 Torino Teatro Vittorio Emanuele Barbiere di Siviglia (Figaro)
1933 Piombino Teatro Nuovo Trovatore (Conte)


Fonotipia, Milano 16-01-1931
Nerone (Boito): Vivete in pace e in concerto soave d'amor! 172169 XXP6684

Odeon, Milano 1931-10-27
Pagliacci (Leoncavallo): Sei là? with Ljuba Mirella 168779 Mo3380 
Pagliacci (Leoncavallo): Hai tempo aridimelo with Ljuba Mirella 168779 Mo3381

Manon Lescaut (Puccini): No pazzo son with Arturo Ferrara M35003

Fabio Ronchi (Baritone) (Este 1884 - Roma 1974)

He made his debut in 1922 at the Teatro Valle of Rome in ‘’Traviata’’. He was well known lyric baritone, who appeared mostly at the smaller opera houses. After the retirement he devoted himself to teaching.

Chronology of some appearances

1922 Roma Teatro Valle Traviata (Germont)
1924 Padova Teatro Garibaldi Aida (Amonasro)
1926 Livorno Politeama Piccolo Marat (Soldato)
1928 Genova Teatro Carlo Felice Werther (Albert)
1930 Augsburg Stadt Madama Butterfly (Sharpless)
1932 Modena  Teatro Municipale Turandot (Ping)
1934 Milano Teatro La Scala  Don Giovanni di F.Lattuada (Avellia)
1937 Barcellona  Teatro Tivoli  Boheme (Schaunard)


Fonotipia, Milano 1924-11-17
Nerone (Boito): Nell'antro ov'io m'ascondo 74252 XXPh5459

Fonotipia, Milano 1924-11-18
Nerone (Boito): S'avanza una gran nube di turbe 152631 Pho5460

Fonotipia, Milano 1925-09-28
Ballo in maschera (Verdi): Alla vita che t'arride 152738 Pho5667

Fonotipia, Milano 1926-04-03
Faust (Gounod): Dio possente 74258 XXPh5681
Trovatore (Verdi): Il balen 74315 XXPh5684
Ballo in maschera (Verdi): Eri tu 74316 XXPh5685

Fonotipia, Milano 1926-10-28
Barbiere di Siviglia (Rossini): All'idea di quel metallo with Salvatore Salvati  120010 XXPh5807
Barbiere di Siviglia (Rossini): Numero quindici with Salvatore Salvati 120011 XXPh5808

Leonardo Aramesco (Tenor) (Temesvár 1898 – New York 1946)

He studied singing at Vienna under Otto Iro and Kate Naether-Osten. He began his stage career appearing in the 1920-23 seasons at the Vienna State Opera. In 1926 he was engaged by the West German broadcasting company in Cologne. Here he attained a quite unusual popularity singing roles like Rodolfo in ‘’Bohème’’, Cavaradossi in ‘’Tosca’’, Don Ottavio in ‘’Don Giovanni’’, Lohengrin, Riccardo in Verdi’s ‘’Ballo in maschera’’, Jason in ‘’Medea’’ of Cherubini, Don José in ‘’Carmen’’, Almaviva in ‘’Barbiere di Siviglia’’ and Tamino in ‘’Zauberflöte’’. He also sang in other German radio stations, among other things at Frankfurt a. M., Stuttgart, Munich, Vienna and Prague. Also as an operetta singer he had a significant career. In 1933 he was dismissed as a Jew with the German broadcasting company. Then in the 1935-36 season he was engaged by the Opera House in Lucerne, in the 1937-38 season he performed at the Opera House of Teplitz-Schönau in Czech Republic. He went to Amsterdam, where he made guest appearances and then been active in the field of education. Then he emigierted to USA. Here he still gave a recitals. He died suddenly during an USA tour.

Chronology of some appearances

1920-23 Vienna State Opera
1923-24 Berlin State Opera
1924-25 Erfurt Municipal Theatre
1925-26 Bielefeld Municipal Theatre
1926-27 Erfurt Municipal Theatre
1926-28 Essen Opera House

Jul 23, 2014

Theodore (Tobia, Vito) Kittay (Tenor) (near St. Petersburg 1887 - USA 1965)

                                                        with Giacomo Puccini

He was of jewish origin. Since 1902 he lived at St. Petersburg and in 1905 he studied singing at the St. Petersburg Conservatory under the pedagogue Stanislav Gabel. In 1912 together with his family he went to New York, where he additionally studied privately with Pasquale Amato. He appeared almost exclusively together with Japanese soprano Tamaki Miura (1884-1946), who undertook big tours in the 1924-32 seasons appearing in G. Puccini's ''Madama Butterfly''  and ''Iris'' of P. Mascagni. Already in 1917 he appeared opposite her at the Boston Opera in P. Mascagni's ''Iris''. When Tamaki Miura began in 1920 her big European tours, he sang as her partner at the Italian opera houses. Besides, he appeared in Europe under the pseudonym Vito. After his retirement he worked at the Chicago Conservatory.

Chronology of appearances

Iris Indianapolis, Murat Th., 14 October 1916 (possible)
Iris Louisville, Keith's Th., 18 October 1916
Iris Columbus, Hartmann Th., 24 October 1916
Iris Richester, Lyceum, 28 October 1916
Iris Buffalo, Teck Th., 1 November 1916
Iris New York, Lexington Th., 9 November 1916 (2)
Iris Philadelphia, Metropolitan O. H., 14 November 1916
Iris Cleveland, Keith's Auditorium, 22 November 1916
Iris Detroit, Washington Th., 24 November 1916
Iris Baltimore, Lyric, 1 December 1916
Iris Boston, Opera House, 5 January 1917]
Iris Washington, Poli's Th., 13 January 1917
Iris Pittsburgh, Alvin Th., 17 January 1917
Iris Cincinatti, Music Hall, 24 January 1917
Iris Toledo, Valentine Th., 27 January 1917
Iris Nashville, Vendome Th., 2 February 1917
Iris New Orleans, La Fayette Th., 7 February 1917
Iris Dallas, Coliseum, 13 February 1917
Iris El Paso, Texas Grand Th., 17 February 1917
Iris Los Angeles, Cline's Th., 20 February 1917
Iris San Francisco, Cort Th., 27 February 1917
Iris Portland, 11th Street Play House, 6 March 1917
Iris Seattle, ?, 8 March 1917
Iris Spokane, Auditorium, 15 March 1917
Iris Salt Lake City, Salt Lake City Th. 20 March 1917
Iris  Denver, Auditorium, 24 March 1917
Iris Omaha, Boyd's Th., 28 March 1917
Iris Kansas City, Convention Hall, 31 March 1917


Columbia, New York 1917-11-09
Madama Butterfly (Puccini): Love duet with Tamaki Miura 49265

Brunswick 1921
Meierke Mein Sohn  40000-B

Jul 21, 2014

Emile (Emiel) van Bosch (Baritone) (Boom, Belgium 1886 - Amsterdam 1940)

He had already made epoch-making work for Flemish composers as Peter Benoit (1834-1901) and his follower Jan Blockx (1851-1912), when he leaved his country in 1914 to the Netherlands, that became his second homeland. He made his debut on December 14th in the Hollandsche Schouwburg at Amsterdam in the opera ''Miss Helyett'' from the French composer Edmond Audran (1840-1901) and build a wide repertoire, that besides opera also included operetta, lieder and songs. He sang roles as Valentijn (''Faust'', Gounod), Alfio (''Cavalleria Rusticana'', Mascagni), Tonio (''Paljas'', Leoncavallo), Scarpia (''Tosca'', Puccini), Escamillo (''Carmen'', Bizet) Sharpless (''Madame Butterfly'', Puccini) and Giorgio Germont (''La traviata'', Verdi). His last appearance on stage was on May 24th, 1926 at Amsterdam in the Theater Carré as Escamillo in ''Carmen''.

Chronology of some appearances

1914 Amsterdam Hollandsche Schouwburg Miss Helyett
1926 Amsterdam Theater Carré Carmen


Gramophone, den Haag 1919-08-19
Geen lenteloover ruischt zoo zoet (Sauiwen) 7-92034 20764u

Homocord, 1922-07-07
De Stomme van Portici: (La Muette de Portici) Veel liever sterven (Plutôt mourir) with Morrisson 50649
Pecheurs de perles (Bizet): Duo with Morrisson 50650
Goublier. Angelus der zee (L'Angelus de la mer) with Morrisson 50651
Faure. Le Crucifix! (in Dutch) with Morrisson 50652

Homocord, 1922-07-08
Carmen (Bizet): Duo with Morrisson 50653
Lucia van Lammermoor: (Lucia di Lammermoor) Edgard, ja ik! (O piu rapido) with Morrisson 2-50654

Homocord, 1922/1923
Rigoletto (Verdi): Geef my myn dochter weder 50657

Homocord, 1923-05-05
Thais (Massenet): Duo Thais-Athanael with Santhagens 51023

Homocord, 1923-05-07
Forza del destino (Verdi): Duo with Morrisson 51027
Madama Butterfly (Puccini): Duo with Morrisson 51028
Faust (Gounod): Trio with  Morrisson and Bouwmeester 51031
Rigoletto (Verdi): Kwartet with Morrisson, Bouwmeester and Santhagens 51032

Jul 20, 2014

Louis Morrisson (Tenor) (Antwerp 1888 - Antwerp 1934)



Louis Morrisson (pseudonym fir Ludovicus Moyson) was born at Antwerp, Belgium, on May 11th, 1888, in a middle-class family, which gave him the opportunity to study in the French language at the Malonne College (Belgian Ardennes). Predisposed to music and aspiring to a career in it, he became a pupil of the well-known composer Edgard Tinef at the Lemmens Institute, Malines, from 1901 to 1907, learning fugue, counterpoint and composition, as he wished to become an organist. It was his professor, Tinel, who discovered his beautiful tenor voice, which was completely formed at the age of thirteen and at (his time he regularly sang at the Christmas services in the cathedrals of Malines and Anversa. At this age too he had the honor of singing before their Royal Highnesses Prince Albert and Princess Elisabeth, who were both impressed with the magnificent tone of his voice. Completing his musical studies in 1907 he was due to leave for London, where he had a contract as organist at Westminster Abbey, when family circumstances obliged him to retract. Encouraged by his friends Morrisson finally decided to follow up the possibility of a vocal career and sang in some concerts in Anversa and in Amsterdam where he aroused the interest of the art-director of the Rembrand Theatre. At this time the Rembrand Theatre was a house devoted entirely to opera, directed by an old Belgian tenor, Mr. Desirée Pauwels, who engaged Morrisson and his debut as an operatic tenor took place during the 1909-10 season on October 1st. The role was Manrico in Verdi’s "Il Trovatore" and he sang it on eight successive nights, with co-artists Cato Engelen-Sewing, s., Irma Lozin, mezzo, Carl Butter, br. and Joseph Orelio, br.. During his years at this theatre Morrisson sang a varied repertoire: apart from Trovatore; La Bohème, Les Huguenots, La Juive, Faust, Lucia di Lammermoor, Guglielmo Tell, Werther, Mignon, Tosca, La Favorita, Rigoletto, Aida, Madame Butterfly, Le Postillon de Lonjumeau, Herodiade, Cavalleria Rusticana and Pagliacci, two works he customarily sang on the same evening throughout his career. He also sang in "La Traviata" and "Carmen" with the internationally famous Sigrid Arnoldson. During his Netherlands Opera engagement Morrisson sang (in 1913 and 1914) several performances at the Anversa Royal Opera, where a very enthusiastic public cheered him in Martha, Der Freischütz, Les Contes d'Hoffmann, Quinten Massys, Eugen Onegin, Cavalleria Rusticana and Pagliacci, etc., and where he created in the Dutch language "Alpenlied'', "Le Jongleur de Notre Dame" and "I Gioielli della Madonna". During the same season of the performances of this beautiful work of Wolf Ferrari at the Royal Flemish Opera, Leon Campagnola was singing the same role at the Anversa Royal French Opera. In consequence opera lovers went from one theatre to the other, making comparisons, and despite the great and undoubted merit of M. Campagnola, at the time at the peak of his glorious career, both the critics of the time and the public were even more favourable to "this young tenor with his prodigal voice" as several wrote at the time. The two tenors went to see and hear each other. Fortunately they were introduced and eventually became good friends. This friendship between two exceptional artists grew during the 1914-18 war and remained as long as they lived. One day, after a performance of I Gioielli della Madonna at which Campagnola was present to hear and cheer his young rival, Campagnola said, in an admiring and convinced voice, "My friend, if I had your voice and my experience, which is so much greater than yours can be by now, at this time my fame would be as great as Caruso’s and, believe me, I'm convinced of what I'm telling you". This was in January 1914, a few months before the great disaster which not only had such dramatic consequences for the entire world, but seriously affected the career of our young tenor who a few weeks later, through a Berlin impresario, signed a five-year contract for the Chicago Opera, then managed by Dippel. This contract bound Morrisson for the seasons 1914 to 1919 in the tenor roles of Il Trovatore, Guglielmo Tell, La Juive, La Favorita, Cavalleria Rusticana and Pagliacci, La Forza del Destino, Aida and Lucia di Lammermoor. Unfortunately owing to the explosion of the Great War this contract had to be annulled. Morrisson made his first recordings, commencing in 1910 in Berlin for Favorite Records, then in London for Columbia in 1911 and in 1913 in Paris for Pathe. The six vertical cut records he made there appeared first on 35cm. discs, then they were cut on 25cm. and still later they were re-recorded on to 25cm needle-cut. From 1918 to 1920 some recordings were made for the Polydor company (Reneyphone-Polyphon-Musola). In 1919 Morrisson returned to Anversa, then had a concert tour covering London, Manchester and other British cities, following which he visited the singing-pedagogue, M. Edmond Delit, another Belgian. At a much later press interview Morrisson stated, "Monsieur Delil gives his singing lessons following the old Italian methods of Emanuel Garcia, Pauline Viardot-Garcia and Blanche Marchesi. He has now settled as a singing master in Paris and today - here inserting shyly - thanks to the successes I have everywhere I'm singing in France today he is the professor who is consulted by almost all the artists of L'Opera and the Opera-Comique for instruction and for his wide knowledge of the science of voice-placing". M. Delit was not only Morrisson’s teacher, but as impresario managed all Morrisson’s contracts during his stay in France. In fact he settled in Paris from July 1919 - at Neuilly-sur-Seine - and made his opera debut for that country in the part of Eleazar, La Juive, on January 16th, 1920, at Le Havre. There is an interesting press interview report given the day following the performance. To a question from one of the reporters Morrisson answered, "What you were told, dear sir, is quite correct' The manager of your Lyric Theatre really was afraid about me. because at the 'Italienne' (short piano accompanied rehearsal) yesterday afternoon I sang in half voice and by-passed the long passages. So when I had returned to my hotel this gentleman said - about me - 'But good heavens, our first falcon s. will certainly strike this gentleman, who doesn’t even dare to let us hear his voice. Whatever will happen tonight! At the beginning of the performance last night - on hearing the br. like notes of my first act entree as Eleazar 'et pourquoi pas, et pourquoi pas?' he cried. 'Do you hear, they have sent me a br., it’s the biggest disaster of my life!' But I can assure you, after my encore of 'O, ma fille cherie' he came to me and kissed me, tears of joy and emotion in his eyes and told me what his first thoughts had been. I am not at all angry about this for he is not the first who made this error, misled by the baritonal 'grave' of my voice, but this way I can always say a lot for the performance, which generally comes as a great ‘surprise' . . ." And a current critic wrote, "We have often heard 'La Juive' but never felt the same emotions as we did last night, when we heard and saw the new tenor Louis Morrisson in the role of Eleazar. Have our senses played us false? We don’t think so and have the firm conviction that Mr. Morrisson is a genuinely superior artist. How many famous tenors have we cheered in this role? Yet nevertheless, when we compare - and this is what we do instinctively - all those great artists did not reach the same peak of perfection. Mr. Morrisson possesses the required organ and musical science, and even when other singers have the same qualities, Morrisson has something the others usually lack, a real acting ability: a real scenic science. This science he translates through his voice, his mimicry, his gait and costume. His voice is really of a marvellous purity, very homogeneous with a splendid and easy attack. He portrays the role in an original manner and the character of his Shylock-like Jew is a remarkable one, growing from the first note to the end. Starting from his 'O ma fille cherie' the audience was in a really delirious mood and one 'Encore' after another sounded. The Passover scene of the second Act was of dramatic sobriety. Concerning the fourth Act we can only say that it brought the warmest 'bravo’s', so that our tenor was absolutely obliged to sing a second time the famous, and so difficult, 'Dieu m'eclaire, fille chore'...  "M. Morrison sang "La Juive" more than 1,200 times during his career, with the famous falcon Mme. Mathilde Comes and the basses Paul Aumonier, Paul Payan, Albert Huberty, Henri Bloemgarten and M. Raybaud. In this role he was acclaimed at the Gaite Lyrique where he conquered all Paris on November 21st, 1921. The Press wrote the following morning: "The Gaite Lyrique has discovered a new tenor, Monsieur Louis Morrisson. This is an heroic tenor: he sings 'La Juive'. After the fourth Act he brought the whole audience to its feet! It was the enthusiasm of a great night'. The curtain was raised again and again and we had the honour to hear an encore. So M. Morrisson began again and could have sung for a third time his famous 'grand-air', as he did not give the least impression of tiredness or effort. He really is made for singing in large houses, because he has an astonishing, easy emission and his tones, every tone, really fill the house. He certainly will be acclaimed in the Opera Comique, but his real scene of action should be L'Opera. Let us hope (he managers of our lyric theatres will go to hear M. Morrisson, for we do not possess many heroic tenors and this one ranks amongst the greatest." The remainder of the cast that night were Mme. Madesky (Rachel), the bass Emil Roque (Brogni), Vina Bovy (Eudoxie) and M. Burdino (Leopold). On December 21st, same year, the following criticism appeared in a Paris newspaper: "Last night there was a performance at L'Opera of 'I Pagliacci' with a new Belgian tenor in the title role, M. Morrisson. Here he was as good as Canio as he was last month at the Gaite Lyrique a good Eleazar. In this role he again displays his fine vocal and scenic gifts, portraying in a perfect manner the painful and fatal jealousy, bringing maximum effects to the pathetic situations. His vocal power and ease over the whole register from the highest to the lowest tones made of the grand air a 'lamento' of breathtaking dimensions; further M. Morrisson makes of the other famous and difficult pages really unique compositions, convincing by the life-like outbursts of passion. M. Morrisson gave an encore and won a very warm and intense ovation and the warmth of this increased in strength at the end of the opera." A few months later Morrisson made his debut at the Opera Comique on May 15th, 1922, in "Cavalleria Rusticana" and this was another triumphant success for him. He carried the title of thisinstitution for the remainder of his life. The following day’s report ran: "The main interest of the audience was especially excited by the appearance on stage of the new tenor, Morrisson, making his debut on our big lyrical stage. His mighty voice, incredibly easy in the highest notes, his acting intelligence as well as a young and warm conviction have given us a splendid and vibrant interpretation of Turiddu. The fullness of his notes throughout his entire register, as well as their long duration made us think immediately at the ‘souvenir' of our most outstanding tenors. Considering the fact that he is not a Frenchman there is not a trace of foreign accent when he sings, articulating very intelligibly. Every word is understandable for the public, which brought him, of course, an enthusiastic ovation, almost without comparison, at the end of the night, making him repeat the 'Vive le vin qui petille' given in a really splendid manner, the high notes pealing above the chorus with an astonishing ease. After this night we are convinced that M. Morrisson has conquered all the real Parisian connoisseurs and we hope to see him often on the stage of our National Academy of Music." During this period Morrisson appeared on all the great stages of France. Look what the critics wrote at Toulouse, to every great singer a most redoubtable town, after a performance of "II Trovatore"."M. Morrisson, the tenor who was so appreciated by our citizens some time ago in 'La Juive', 'Guillaume Tell' and 'Les Huguenots' had naturally an enthusiastic welcome in the part of Manrico. We will not say again that M. Morrison has found a role that suits him, no, it was much better than that. By singing this part his stature has increased, if possible, because his Manrico, with its high notes, trumpeted with ease, sureness and unbelievable suppleness has filled the lovers of Grand Opera with Joy. His easy, mighty, full warm and well-limbered voice has astonished everybody once again. Firstly in his ‘serenade' in the first Act, then in the second Act duet with Azucena. He was obliged to sing the 'mal reggendo' and the famous 'Ah! che la morte ignore' of the Miserere scene twice; and concerning 'Di! quella pira' this grew into a delirious success with no less than three encores. An unforgettable night for lovers of grand opera and heroic tenors." We find M. Morrison back, in "Guglielmo Tell" of Rossini at Marseilles on January 30th, 1921, when the press wrote the following about him: "He arrived here in Marseilles yesterday afternoon from Le Havre. In that town he had sung 'La Juive' the night before and last night he had to sing the part of Arnold. It was a real revelation, with each Act his success grew and it is true that yesterday’s performance of this Rossini work was one that our stage had never seen previously. M. Morrison is not the traditional heroic tenor, he is a real 'mixed tenor' who must be marvellous in 'Gli Unonotti' or 'Faust' in which we should love to hear him. He triumphed in the 'fort' and all the top notes. The power of his voice unleashed stormy ovations, and in the indicated places this brilliant tenor presented some sublime mezzo-voce phrases, with which this brilliant tenor fills his hearers with ecstasy. Right from the first Act, after the 'Mathilde io t'amo d'amore' sung with love and emphasis, loud ovations resounded. The same was true for the duet with Mathilde, Mlle. Marguerite Charpentier, and the famous trio, Arnold, William, Walter, with Mss. Weber and Aumonier, caused a long continued ovation. The crown to this work was without doubt the encore given by M. Morrisson to the famous Act 4 air 'O muto asil', and the stretta 'Corriam, corriamo' brought a minute’s long ovation. At no time did the histrionic Morrisson give way to the singer. Natural acting, expressive mimicry, the artist portrayed as well as is possible all the emotions of the character. M. Morrisson is incontestably one of the most remarkable artists we have seen here at Marseilles." And a newspaper extract from Bordeaux, January 20th, 1922: "The superior talents of M. Morrisson, a singer we have heard up to now in his successes as heroic tenor - La Juive, Les Huguenots, Guglielmo Tell etc.- gave us during yesterday’s performance of 'Rigoletto' real life to the personage of the Duke of Mantua. The strength, purity and durability of his beautiful voice added to the beauty of the famous pages of this work. Especially the love-duet and the 'La donna e mobile' which he had to repeat of course. The interpreter of Rigoletto was Jean Note and Gilda was sung by Mlle. Duffan." "M. Morrisson in Les Huguenots" is the heading to an article from an Avignon paper in 1922. "The Raoul of M. Morrisson alone justifies mounting the opera. With a tenor of such capacities and well-established fame, success was assured in advance. Not only was it a success, but a genuine triumph. To begin with. the 'Plus blanche que la blanche hermine' was sung in such a way, so homogeneous a voice, such superb high tones, that M. Morrisson had to repeat it. The 'o mon épée of the third Act was a triumph, but the climax we had all been waiting for was certainly in the fourth Act, the 'Ou vas-tu? - Laisse-moi' and the 'Oui, tu l'as dit'' which brought the most frenetic response from the public. The 'demi-teintes' were magnificent and the high tones, brilliant and of exactitude and purity; the stage acting was sober, measured and natural. Let us mark this night with a little white cross, because it was a brilliant one. In one word-unforgettable. M. Morrisson is certainly one of the most beautiful Raouls we have ever heard." The immortal work of Massenet was also one which he much liked to sing: I mean "Werther", of which I reproduce here an article, one amongst many, from the town of Nimes in 1924. "It really happens very seldom that we can hear a voice like this of M. Morrisson, so strong, so homogeneous, as good in the low tones as in the medium and the high. Nevertheless this heroic tenor with his trumpet like high sounds makes this mighty voice supply lender in the marvellous melodical fiorituri of Werther. Last night M. Morrisson sang it for us, it is the first time we have heard him here in this part, in which he can vocally translate the melancholic psychology, with a voice that gave itself in an astonishing manner to the passages of tenderness and charm, but sounded like a trumpet in the 'Invocation a la nature' and the 'Couplets d'Ossian'. This really prodigal tenor will never cease to bring us from one surprise to another, and at each of his appearances, in each new part, he will keep us under his spell; for his sober, fine acting, full of contained passion, enveloped by a veil of melancholic sadness had kept us so during all this performance. The least we can say is that it was an immense success and the cheers at the end of the night were endless." So nobody will be astonished to learn that this prodigal "mixed tenor" won brilliant success in "Faust", this is what the Marseillians wrote in 1923: "Last night there was a full house for the repeat of the ever-young masterwork of Gounod, with Mrs. Morrisson and Huberty in the parts of the Doctor and Mefistofeles. "The talented tenor Louis Morrisson, who we cheered last year in...  sang this work for us; with his splendid, gripping and powerful voice obtaining, of course, the lion’s share of the night’s success. From the first scene the bravo’s sounded, and grew, if possible, after the masterly interpreted duet. On hearing the famous cavatine by this singer, one is moved to the soul and the 'encores' obliged the great tenor to repeat this difficult aria. In the final trio 'Anges purs, anges radieux' his brilliant and prodigal voice was marvelously beautiful; this voice that by its smoothness, in the high as well as the low register is one of the most beautiful we know and is fascinating to the most discerning of listeners." And a commentary on "La Favorita" at Toulouse, May 1923: "Last night we had 'La Favorita' on the play bill, with M. Morrisson, the famous tenor of the Opera Comique. This part, one of the most difficult that exists requires a vocal sumptuousness that very few tenors have at their disposal. The air of the first Act 'Un ange, une femme inconnue' sung in a perfect mezza-voce, finished in such a brilliant manner, unleashed such enthusiasm from the public that a repeat was an obligation, as well as the air from the fourth act 'Ange si pur, que dans un songe' that was sung in a marvellous manner. M. Morrisson is not distinguishing himself solely by his voice with the prodigal timbre, but also by his acting, always adapted to the situation and by his facial expression. Numerous recalls at the end of the evening confirm our personal opinion: M. Morrisson is an exceptional heroic tenor, in the full meaning of the word; a tenor, we hope, we will hear again very soon in our town of Toulouse." At Bordeaux the same year we find in a newspaper article about "Carmen": "Too many tenors confound Des Grieus, Werther and Don Jose. There is nevertheless a vast difference between them and we could easily find all the depths of this difference in the interpretation by M. Morrisson of this legendary personage, the 'bandit-for love', this wild and sad human being. The conception of Mr. Morrisson remains very close to reality. First he is the simple plebeian, full of distrust for Carmen, the seductress, and it is only by the carnal desire that overwhelms him completely that he will be vanquished and follow her. His mimic art rends completely all the feelings that made him act so, consequently it was a very convincing Don Juan we had the opportunity to cheer, rousing, conquering his public in a really extraordinary manner. The voice of M. Morrisson is of a purity, a warmth and an exactness in all the registers, in the flower-song it unchained an unparalleled ovation and the following encore ended on a real storm of applause. It was an immensely successful opera night thanks to the participation of this magistral tenor M. Morrisson." Again in a Toulouse newspaper dated December 1923 I find an eulogy of his Radames interpretation: "After a few months absence we meet again on our bill - and this with great pleasure - the name of Louis Morrisson of the Opera Comique, the tenor who is so highly appreciated by our Toulouse public and who, certainly, is one of the very few tenors holding the attention of the world of the theatre. After the 'Celeste Aida' a tremendous ovation obliged him to repeat this famous aria which he gave with his large and vibrant voice, this voice of an incomparable suppleness and endurance that borders on the impossible, and which he projects very easily, from the lowest to the very brilliant, thrilling highest tones, with a style and exactness which compel unlimited admiration and show possession of a most sure singing-method. It is true that after having pampered us here in La Juive, Les Huguenots and Guglielmo Tell we didn’t expect less in this part. But once again his success was immense, a real triumph, and the recalls at the end of the night were unique in the annals of our theatre."At San Sebastian, Spain, in August 1921, where some days earlier he had sung "Pagliacci" with Marcel Journet in the part of Tonio and Mme. Rizzini as Nedda, a description of "La Boheme" runs: "The performance of 'La Boheme', which was given last night with the same interpreters as in 'Pagliacci' last Thursday was one that will certainly linger long in memory. The tenor Louis Morrisson, of Belgian origin, drew us the personage of Rodolfo in a manner that was excellently true to life, with all the ardent passion as well as the necessary tenderness of love, infinitely poignant and human. It is an impersonation in flesh and bones, as was his Canio some days ago, in a different manner. After his great aria of the first Act the ovations broke loose and he was obliged to repeat. M. Morrisson possesses a very rare solid and caressing ‘timbre' at the same time. His notes are produced with perfect purity. His register is one of the widest we know and he moves within it with unusual ease. Yes, M. Morrisson is really a beautiful tenor and a great artist, I should even say: 'A perfect artist, a complete one' . . ." And so we can say that the great reputation of M. Morrisson triumphed on all the great French lyrical stages, from Paris to Marseilles and from Biarritz to Strasbourg, through Toulouse, Bordeaux, Montpelier, Le Havre, Avignon, Grenoble, Monte-Carlo, Nancy and many other towns. It is in France, in the part of Eleazar of 'La Juive' that this singer obtained a world-wide reputation in a record time. In Spain, at Madrid, Barcelona and San Sebastian he roused public enthusiasm in La Juive, Pagliacci, Cavalleria Rusticana, La Boheme, Les Huguenots, Guglielmo Tell and many other roles. In north Italy, at Turin, Genoa, Aosta, Biella and Asta during a gala cycle of French performances he went from one triumph to another in La Juive, Les Huguenots, Faust, Hérodiade, Romeo et Juliette, Carmen, Sigurd, Lakmé, Werther, Les Pêcheurs de Perles and Louise. In Switzerland, at Geneva and Lausanne, to which he returned every season during his stay in France, he had, as everywhere else, a lasting success in his specialities-those mentioned above for Italy and Spain, plus Rigoletto, Tosca, Werther, II Trovatore and La Favorita. In Belgium, at Anversa’s Opera Royal Francais, Liege, Verviers, Namur, Ghent, Mons, Charleroi, he sang all his great operatic successes. A proverb has it "No man is a saint in his own country", but Morrisson was the exception that proves the rule. The least we can say is that he was carried on people’s shoulders in triumph. In Germania our singer received ovations everywhere he appeared during his concert-tours in Berlin, Dusseldorf, Munich, Hamburg, Frankfurt, Dresden and Leipzig. In England he sang in London, Manchester, Liverpool, Birmingham, Northampton, Nottingham and Southampton. The Netherlands, where he had made his debut and had stayed during the Great War, public continued to acclaim him in La Juive, II Trovatore, Faust, Carmen, etc., etc. but at the same time he created, in Dutch, a great number of operettas of French and Viennese origin: Les Saltimbanques, Gri-Gri, Rip-Rip (which ran for months). La Mascotte, Les 28 Jours de Clairette, Der Bettelstudent, Der Rastel-binder, Die Geisha, Vendetta and many others. M. Morrisson had, and still has, numerous enthusiastic admirers there, and faithful friends who clamoured continuously for him, and so, even during his Paris sojourn, he returned regularly to Amsterdam, to have triumphs at each opera evening in La Juive, Les Huguenots, Pagliacci, Cavalleria Rusticana, etc. In 1918, during the time he remained in Holland, Morrisson signed a very advantageous "exclusive" contract for a period of five years with the Homocord Company, but during the time of his great triumphs in France, the recordings were made, less a couple, in both the French and Dutch languages. In this way a double clientele could be satisfied. During this five-year period several other recording companies asked for M. Morrisson, but had to remain unsatisfied owing to the contract. However, at the end of 1923 the Gramophone Company (H.M.V.) made a proposition, but not very satisfied with the contract offered, with the assistance of a legal adviser, he made propositions to this company that wanted him. The discussions were long and difficult and lasted until January 12th, 1925, as evidenced by the voluminous correspondence, and on that date a first five-year contract was signed. M. Morrisson obtained what he desired, the contract fixing certain advantageous conditions, especially that which obliged the company: 1. (a) To pay a high and fixed remuneration for each piece recorded, and (b) to pay 5 per cent on the sale of each record, made by the company, for the duration of his life. 2. Should M. Morrisson die during the five-year period of the contract the company would continue to pay this percentage, under the same conditions, to his heirs and successors, for a period of ten years commencing at the date of decease. These conditions granted him have not been obtained by any other artist, no matter how famous, in this period by the company. On January 12th, 1930, by mutual agreement, the contract was renewed on the same terms for a further period of five years. An inexplicable and unfortunate sequel was that during the period of the second contract, covering the period January 12th, 1930, to January 11th, 1935, M. Morrisson died on January 30th, 1934, during the period of its validity. The heirs found to their surprise that the company put an embargo on his records the day after his decease, stopping every delivery and sale. Why? remains a mystery that has not been explained up to this day. But to find out what kind of person our artist was, in a newspaper we read: "The short but very brilliant appearance of the loved tenor gives us the opportunity to chatter for an hour with this great artist, who in spite of his splendid triumphs and ever-increasing fame, remains one of the world’s most modest and simple men. He has kept intact his independent and sincere character, a trait of which he can be proud. This outspoken, frank character won him some solid sympathetic friends, but also some bitter animosity, for the theatrical world tends to prefer those who feign and flatter-hypocrites; and the struggle to reach the top is certainly not less in the case of a world-famous tenor." In his correspondence we find everywhere indications of a man who was very sensitive to the misfortunes of others, full of goodwill to everyone he met. Those with whom he was personally acquainted certify that he had a golden heart, always ready to assist his fellow men. He was easily excited, but rapidly gained control of himself. He was a very kind, frank and loyal character. Even at the peak of his career he remained simple with no trace of condescension to his less gifted colleagues, or others. And his pastimes? When he had any free days in Paris his favourite diversion was to make a tour of the antique dealers there, to visit the sale-rooms, as his great passion was the collection of period furniture and paintings by the early masters. He possessed a large collection of pictures in his Paris residence, as well as in his villa - called "Il Trovatore" in memory of his opera debut - and where he spent his annual vacation. Musical composition too was one of his preferred pastimes, he left some very nice pieces, very attractive by their musical intensity or most appropriate text; he wrote under the nom-de-plume "Somoye", see the following records; La Marche a Venus (No, 3) Favorite Records, for this he wrote both lyrics and music. Heil! Heil' Mannen van den Yser (No. 146) Homocord Records andMadeliefke 'n bloemke (No. 171) H.M.V. Records for which he wrote the lyrics, but the music in co-operation with Van den Eynde.

Chronology of some appearances

Il Trovatore-Amsterdam, Rembrandt, 1 October 1909 - Martha-Amsterdam, Rembrandt - Cavalleria Rusticana-Amsterdam, Rembrandt - Pagliacci-Amsterdam, Rembrandt - Quinten Maasijs-Amsterdam, Rembrandt - Eugene Onegin-Amsterdam, Rembrandt - Le Jongleur de Notre Dame-Amsterdam, Rembrandt - I Gioielli della Madonna-Amsterdam, Rembrandt - Liefdelied-Anversa, Flemish Opera, 1911/3 - Les Contes d'Hoffmann-Anversa, Flemish Opera, 1911/3 - Der Kuhreigen-Anversa, Flemish Opera, 1911/3 - Shylock-Anversa, Flemish Opera, 1911/3 - Il Barbiere di Siviglia (Paisiello)-Anversa, Flemish Opera, 1911/3 - La Juive-Paris, Gaîté Lyrique, 1921 - Les Huguenots-Verviers, Royal, 13 April 1925 - Tosca-Verviers, Royal, 9 May 1925 - Werther-Verviers, Royal, 16 May 1925 - Das Land des Lächelns-Anversa, Royal, July 1932 - Graaf Chabert - Guillaume Tell t. olandese.


Columbia (1910-1914)
De Troubadour : (Il Trovatore) O dood der schande' (Di quella pira) 36275 D-6312
La Traviata: Een dronk! (Libiam nei lieti) 36277 D-6312
La Favorite: Engel zo rein! (Spirto gentil) 75596 D-17067
Faust: Gegroet verblijf! (Salut demeure) 75595 D-17047
Faust: Sta me toe eenmaal (Laissé-moi) 75593 &-17047
De Troubadour: (Il Trovatore) 'T ogenblik is thans (Perigliarti ancor) 75592 D-17045
De Troubadour: (Il Trovatore) O! Laat geen bange vrees (O si ben mio) 75591 D-17045

Homocord (1919-1924)
Herodiade: Heer, de drang van! (Ne pouvant reprimer) 51581
Cavalleria: Moeder, de wijn! (Mamma quel vino) 5260
De Troubadour: (Il Trovatore) O laat geen bange vrees (O si ben mio) 5258
Carmen: De bloem die gij! (La fleur que tu) 5250
Martha:Ach zo lief! (Ach so fromm) 5252
Mignon: Vaarwel Mignon! (Adieu Mignon) 51054
Cavalleria: Zoete wijn bedwelmt (Viva el vino) 51055
La Gioconda: Hemel en zee) (Cielo è mar) 51051
La Tosca: Een zoete harmonie (Recondita armonia)51052
La Boheme: Uw handen zijn bevroren (Che gelida manina) 51053
La Traviata: Een dronk ! (Libiam nei lieti) 51041
La Tosca: De sterren straalden (E lucevan le stelle) 50620
Mignon : Neen, zij geloofde niet (Elle ne croyait) 50621
Cavalleria: O Lola schone bloem- (Siciliana) 50623
Paljas: (Pagliacci) Thans te spelen. (Vesti la giubba) 50622
De Hugenoten: (Les Huguenots) Rein ald de sneeuw (Plus blanche) 50625
W1llem Tell: (Guglielmo Tell) Verblijf voor mij! (O muto asil) 50624
De Jodin: (La Juive) God dat mijn loflied (Dieu que ma voix) 50626
Fanciulla del West: Ch'ella mi creda libero (in Italian) 50527
Faust: Gegroet verblijf door haar. (Salut demeure chaste) 50628
Aida: O, waar ik veldheer (Se quel guerrier) 50629
La Traviata: O laat ons vluchten (Dei miei bollenti) with Bouwmeester 51040
Cavalleria: Neen! Neen, Turiddo. (No, no, Turiddo) with Santhagens 51039
Faust: Verloren, verloren! (Alerte! Alerte!) with Van Bosch and Bouwmeester) 51031
Rigoletto: Ja, aan U behoord mijn leven. (Belle figlia) with Santhagens-Van Bosch and Bouwmeester 51032
Butterfly: Wel, nu sprak hij de waarheid. (Ed e bella sposa) with Van Bosch 51028
De Macht Van Het Noodlot: (Forza del Destino) In deze heil'ge stonde (Solenne in quest'ora) with Van Bosch 51027
Faure. Le Crucifix! (in Dutch) with Van Bosch 50652
Goublier. Angelus der zee (L'Angelus de la mer) with Van Bosch 50651
CArmen. Ik ben Escamillo (Je suis Escamillo) with Van Bosch 50653
De Parelvissers: (Les pecheurs de Perles) Daar ver in d'heilige Tempel (Au fond du Temple Saint) with Van Bosch 2-50650
Lucia van Lammermoor: (Lucia di Lammermoor) Edgard, ja ik! (O piu rapido) with Van Bosch 2-50654
De Stomme van Portici: (La Muette de Portici) Veel liever sterven (Plutôt mourir) with Van Bosch 50649
Lakme (Delibes): Fantaisie aux divins mensonges 51050