V0055. EMMA LUART, w.Charles Friant, Gaston Micheletti, Roger Bourdin & Jean Vieuille: Manon - Arias & Scenes; EMMA LUART: MIREILLE - Mon coeur ne peut changer. (England) Vintage 1002, recorded 1928-32. Transfers by Richard Bebb. Very long out-of-print, final sealed copy. - 618132100224
"Luart’s soprano has a distinctive character, a fast vibrato but a steely tonal core; she sings with great dramatic intensity, and in the death scene [of THAÏS] her voice rises to ecstatic high Ds….The sound is very good for the time.”
- Desmond Arthur, AMERICAN RECORD GUIDE, March/April, 1999
"Charles Friant studied and toured with Sarah Bernhardt before he became a singer (he was a mainstay at the Opéra-Comique for 20 years), and it shows; his Werther is dramatically the most effective I know, with every turn and inflection of the music and the words reflected in his clear, lyrical voice....There are modern versions of this opera in better sound [however] this one opens an enlightening and enjoyable window to a valuable past."
- Alexander Morin, AMERICAN RECORD GUIDE, March/April, 1998
“Micheletti was contracted to the Opéra-Comique, where his first rôle was Des Grieux. This opera house became the centre of his activities until his retirement in 1946. He sang in a wide range of rôles, including Don José, Turiddu, Hoffmann, Gérald, Pinkerton, Canio, Dimitri in Alfano’s RÉSURRECTION, Mylio, Werther, Rodolfo, Cavaradossi and Roméo. He created numerous rôles in premieres of forgotten French operas. His career was largely restricted to French and Belgian opera houses. He is a lirico-spinto tenor of remarkable subtlety. The timbre of his voice is attractive, warm and velvety, with a slightly baritonal tinge."
-Zillah Dorset Akron
“Roger Bourdin studied at the Paris Conservatory, where he was a pupil of André Gresse and Jacques Isnardon. He made his professional début at the Opéra-Comique in 1922, as Lescaut in MANON. His début at the Palais Garnier took place in 1942, in Henri Rabaud's MÂROUF, SAVETIER DU CAIRE. The major part of his career was to be spent between these two theatres, where he created some 30 roles.
Bourdin seldom performed outside France, but did a few guest appearances at the Royal Opera House in London, La Scala in Milan, and the Teatro Colón in Buenos Aires. He also sang in the first performance of surviving fragments of Chabrier's VAUCOCHARD ET FILS IER on 22 April 1941 at the Salle du Conservatoire with Germaine Cernay, conducted by Roger Désormière.
His most memorable roles were: Clavaroche in André Messager's FORTUNIO, Metternich in Arthur Honegger and Jacques Ibert's L'AIGLON, Duparquet in Reynaldo Hahn's CIBOULETTE, Lheureux in Emmanuel Bondeville's MADAME BOVARY, the lead in Darius Milhaud's BOLIVAR, but also standard roles such as Valentin, Athanael, Onegin, and Sharpless. In all he sang an estimated 100 roles throughout his long career.”
- Ned Ludd