Vallin, Ninon (1886–1961)

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Vallin, Ninon (1886–1961)

French soprano known especially for her recordings of 20th-century composers. Name variations: Nina Vallin. Born on September 8, 1886, in Montalieu-Vercieu, France; died on November 22, 1961, in Lyons; studied at the Lyons Conservatory.

Debuted in the premiere of Debussy's Le martyre de Saint Sébastien (1911); sang with the Opéra-Comique (1912–16); debuted at the Teatro Colón in Buenos Aires (1916), Paris Opéra (1920); sang with the Teatro Colón (1916–36).

Born in France in 1886, Nina Vallin possessed a voice of great beauty, with a superb sensual quality, though devoid of power. Her operatic career, which was centered in Paris and Buenos Aires, lasted 20 years. Vallin specialized in the work of composers who were alive during her lifetime—Massenet, Charpentier, Hahn, Nin, de Falla, Respighi, and Fauré. Many of the songs she recorded were accompanied by the composer at the piano. For example, while in her 50s, she made famous recordings of Charpentier's Louise supervised by him. When she was nearing 60, Vallin recorded the third-act aria of the Countess from Le nozze di Figaro. André Tubeuf wrote of her, "Ah Ninon! she could do nothing wrong, nor by halves.… Vallin was one of the very rare singers in this century who was

always not only the epitome of good singing but also of good taste."

John Haag , Athens, Georgia