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Vainement ma bien aimee

Opera details:

Opera title:

Le Roi d'Ys


Edouard Lalo




Le Roi d'Ys Synopsis


Le Roi d'Ys Libretto


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Aria details:









Previous scene: Puisque on ne peut fléchir
Next scene: A l'autel j'allais rayonnant

Miguel Villabella - Vainement, ma bien-aimée

Singer: Lucien Fugère

Miguel Villabella (1892-1954) was a remarkable tenor whose career in the French speaking world spanned the period between the two world wars. Despite his status as a French tenor, Villabella was born in Bilbao in Spain’s Basque region. His father, celebrated zarzuela baritone Eulogio Villabella, did not wish for his son to follow in his footsteps and sent the boy to Paris to pursue studies for a business career. The young man halfheartedly engaged in his studies but had no interest in business. At first, Villabella concentrated on roller skating and actually set the speed record for skating in 1912 when he was not yet twenty years old. Skating was not the only thing on the youth’s mind, however, and he also indulged in his other passion, singing. A chance meeting with legendary French bass-baritone Lucien Fugère (1848-1935) prompted a change of focus. Although Villabella never lost his love for skating (he was still pursuing the sport as a hobby well into his 50s), Fugère’s encouragement and support led to the young man entering a period of vocal study with the intention of making a career on the opera stage.

Villabella made his first public appearance in 1917, singing arias and duets from Rigoletto in a gala concert in San Sebastian. The following year the tenor made his operatic debut as Cavaradossi in Tosca at the Grand Théâtre de Poitiers. Villabella’s first appearance with a major company took place at the Opéra-Comique in 1920. The opera was once again Tosca, but the role was Scarpia’s police agent, Spoletta. It was as a character tenor that Villabella spent his first several months at the Opéra-Comique. It was as the title character in Messager’s Fortunio that he first made his mark as a leading tenor. Villabella went on to essay such roles as Ferrando in Così fan Tutte, Don José in Carmen, Gérald in Lakmé, des Grieux in Manon and, what was to become his favorite role, Georges Brown in La Dame Blanche. In 1928, the Opéra de Paris contracted the tenor, who made his debut there as Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly. Villabella sang a variety of roles with the Opéra during the next eight seasons and created the leads in the Opéra premieres of Ibert’s Persée et Andromède, Bruneau’s Virginie and Laparra’s zarzuela L’Ilustre Fregona.

Apart from a handful of appearances in Brussels and Monte Carlo, Villabella’s career was a Parisian affair. His schedule of appearances was nothing short of backbreaking and he amassed an impressive repertoire that included Don Ottavio in Don Giovanni, Almaviva in Il Barbiere di Siviglia, Mylio in Le Roi d’Ys, Nadir in Les Pêcheurs de Perles, Wilhelm Meister in Mignon, the Duke in Rigoletto, Alfredo in La Traviata, Rinuccio in Gianni Schicchi, Rodolfo in La Bohème, Daniel in Le Chalet, Zéphoris in Si j'étais Roi, Chapelou in Le Postillon de Lonjumeau and the title roles in Faust, Castor et Pollux, Roméo et Juliette and Les Contes d’Hoffmann. He continued to sing at the Opéra until 1936 and left the stage altogether in 1940. Villabella continued to sing in concerts for a few years, but eventually retired from public life altogether and devoted his time to teaching. The tenor died of complications from surgery in June of 1954 at the age of 61.

Miguel Villabella was the possessor of a lyric instrument of tremendous beauty that he employed with artistry and finesse. His perfectly balanced voix mixte in the softest notes of the upper register was a technique straight out of the 19th century French school. By all accounts, it was not a heroic sized voice. There is even speculation that Villabella’s move from the intimate confines of the Opéra-Comique’s Salle Favart to the larger Palais Garnier of the Opéra de Paris proved too taxing and led to his retirement from the opera stage at the relatively early age of 47. However, the tenor’s later recordings give no evidence of vocal deterioration, indicating that there were other reasons for his withdrawal from the operatic stage.

Miguel Villabella made over 130 recordings for Pathé and Odéon between 1925 and 1935. These recordings give a nearly complete representation of the tenor’s operatic repertoire as well as an impressive listing of art songs and popular standards. In this recording, Villabella gives a lovely reading of the aubade, "Vainement, ma bien-aimée" from Lalo's Le Roi d'Ys. This was recorded in Paris for the Odéon label on January 30, 1928.

Watch videos with other singers performing Vainement ma bien aimee:

Giuseppe Di Stefano Vainement ma bienaimee 12629
5 - Giuseppe Di Stefano
Juan Diego Florez Rosenblatt Recital Vainement ma bienaimee Lalo 12626
5 - Juan Diego Flórez

Roberto Alagna Vainement ma bien aimee Edouard Lalo Le Roi d Ys  12625
5 - Roberto Alagna
Henri Legay Vainement ma bienaimee 12643
5 - Henri Legay

Nicolai Gedda Puisqu on ne peut flechir Vainement ma bien aimee 88th birthday tribute 12640
5 - Nicolai Gedda
Beniamino Gigli Vainement ma bienaimee 1922 12651
5 - Beniamino Gigli

Vainement ma bien aimee Le roi dYs Tenor Miguel Fleta 12649
5 - Miguel Fleta

Lalo Le Roi d Ys aria Vainement ma bien aimee Robert White tenor 12653
5 - Robert White

Part III Rare and unknown voices JOSEPH ROGATCHEVSKY 75655
6 - Jacques Isnardon
Edmond Clement Vainement ma bien aimee from Le Roi d ys Edouard Lalo 75659
5 - Edmond Clément

Soprano Nellie Melba Le roi d Ys 1906 75660
1 - Nellie Melba
Le Roi D Ys Vainement Ma Bien Aimee Alfredo Kraus Inedito Volumen I 12673
5 - Alfredo Kraus

Vainement ma bien aimee le roi d ys Joseph Rogatchewsky Lalo 12655
5 - Joseph Rogatchewsky
Carlo Bergonzi Vainement ma bienaimee Live 1984 12672
5 - Carlo Bergonzi

William Matteuzzi Mylio aria Vainementma bienaimee Le roi d Ys Edouard Lalo  12648
5 - William Matteuzzi
100 Singers DAVID DEVRIES 75673
5 - David Devriès

Richard Tauber Le Roi Dys Lalo Puisquon Etait Vainement Ma Bien Aimee 12661
5 - Richard Tauber
Alain Vanzo Vainement ma bien aimee Lalo wtransl 75676
5 - Alain Vanzo

Cesar Vezzani Vainement ma bienaimee 75681
5 - César Vezzani
Jonas Kaufmann Vainement ma bienaimee LE ROI D YS Edouard Lalo 12641
5 - Jonas Kaufmann

Miguel Villabella Vainement ma bienaimee 75704
6 - Lucien Fugère

Le Roi dYs Vainement ma bien aimee 75711
5 - Richard Crooks

Vainement ma bienaimee Aubade from Le Roi d Ys 75716
5 - Marcelo Álvarez
Le Roi d Ys Act III Puisqu on ne peut flechir Vainement ma bien aimee  75731
5 - Dennis O'Neill

Lalo Le Roi d Ys Act 3 Puisqu on ne peut flechir ces jalouses gardiennes vainement ma 75761
5 - David Hobson
Le roi d Ys Acte III Scene 1 Puisqu on ne peut flechir Vainement ma bienaimee  12636
5 - Jonas Kaufmann
6 - Philip Kraus

Renato Sassola Vainement ma bien aimee Le Roi d Ys by Edouard Lalo 12652
5 - Enrico Caruso
5 - Flaviano Labò
5 - Giuseppe Di Stefano
5 - Marcelo Álvarez
5 - Plácido Domingo
6 - Erwin Schrott
6 - Luca Pisaroni
6 - Manuel Ausensi
Act 1 Tableau Noel Noe Noel 50215
1 - Janine Micheau
2 - Rita Gorr

Le Roi d Ys Act III Tableau I Puisqu on ne pet flechir Vainement ma bienaimee  75718
5 - Henri Legay
6 - Jean Borthayre


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Full libretto Le Roi d'Ys

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