Vallas, Léon, distinguished French musicologist; b. Roanne, Loire, May 17, 1879; d. Lyons, May 9, 1956. After studying medicine in Lyons, he pursued his musicological training at the Univ. there (Ph.D., 1908). In 1902 he became music critic of Tout Lyon;in 1903, founded the Revue Musicale de Lyon,which became the Revue Française de Musiquein 1912 and the Nouvelle Revue Musicalein 1920; also wrote for the Progrès de Lyon (1919-54). With G. Witkowski, he founded a schola cantorum in Lyons in 1902; taught theory at the Univ. (1908-11) and the Cons. (1912) there, and later at the Sorbonne in Paris (1928-30). He was president of the Société Française de Musicologie (1937-43) and artistic director of Radiodiffusion de Lyon (1938-41).
Georges Migot (Paris, n.d.); Debussy, 1862-1918 (Paris, 1926); Les Idées de Claude Debussy, musicien français (Paris, 1927; 2nded., 1932; Eng. tr., 1929, as The Theories of Claude Debussy); Claude Debussy et son temps (Paris, 1932; 2nded., 1958; Eng. tr., 1933, as Claude Debussy: His Life and Works); Achille-Claude Debussy (Paris, 1944); Vincent d’Indy (2 vols., Paris, 1946, 1949); César Franck (London, 1951; in French, 1955, as La Véritable Histoire de César Franck).
—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire