Cruvelli, Jeanne Sophie Charlotte


A German soprano, born in Bielefeld, Westphalia, who, in spite of a lack of proper vocal training, appeared successfully for many years on the operatic stage. She made her debut in Venice, in 1847, and created a veritable triumph. Her voice was of remarkable beauty and in face and form she was strikingly handsome. With these natural endowments her success was almost assured from the beginning. Mme. Cruvelli sang in Verdi's Atilla, and when she went to Paris in 1851 created a furore by her singing in Ernani, The Marriage of Figaro, and other operas. It was then that she Italianized her name, which was originally Cruwell. In 1854 she was engaged for grand opera in Paris at a salary of 100,000 francs and appeared with success as Valentine in Les Huguenots and in Fidelio. In 1848 she sang in The Marriage of Figaro with Jenny Lind, but comparison with the " Swedish Nightingale " did not strengthen her position as a singer. The last role she sang was Verdi's Vepres Siciliennes and she retired, in 1855, when she married Viscount Vigier, an equerry to Napoleon III. Her sister, Fredericka Marie, two years older, was also a singer, who made her debut in London in 1851 and created a furore, but failed eventually because of lack of training. She is said to have died of a broken heart because of her failure. Sophie Cruvelli (Viscountess Vigier), died at Nice, Nov. 6, 1907, aged 81 years.