Opera Scotland

Joséphine de Méric Suggest updates

Joséphine Bonnaud

Born Strasbourg, 22 March 1801.

Died London, 26 December 1877.

French soprano.

Joséphine de Méric spent most of her career in Italy, but enjoyed a successful period in Britain, and lived in London during her retirement. Her daughter by the impresario Joseph Glossop also had a successful career as an operatic contralto, under the name Emilie de Méric Lablache (or Deméric-Lablache). She, in turn, had a daughter, also a contralto, who sang as Louise Lablache.

Her operatic debut was in Paris, at the Théâtre-Italien, in 1823, as Amenaïde in Rossini's Tancredi. Her first appearances in Italy followed in Milan in 1825, first at the Teatro Cannobiana before switching to La Scala. In 1832, she was leading soprano at the King's Theatre in London, singing Giulietta in the first British performance of Bellini's I Capuleti with Pasta as Romeo. The following year she was Adalgisa in the first British performances of Norma, joining Pasta and Donzelli, the original creators of Norma and Pollione. At this period she also toured in Britain under the management of Giuseppe de Begnis.

The next decade was spent mainly in Italian houses, Her repertoire included roles by Mozart (Donna Anna) as well as her contemporary bel canto composers. She was highly regarded for her interpretation of Sandrina in Un avventura di Scaramuccia (Luigi Ricci).

(Main source: New Grove Dictionary of Opera)

Roles in Scotland

Donna Aristea Don Febeo's daughter
Fanatico per la musica 1832
Desdemona lover and secret wife of Otello
Otello 1832
Susanna the Countess's maid
Nozze di Figaro 1832
Donna Anna the Commendatore's daughter
Don Giovanni 1832
Rosina Bartolo's ward
Barbiere di Siviglia 1832

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