French soprano Denise Duval, known as Francis Poulenc’s muse, has died in Switzerland yesterday, aged 94. Born in Paris in 1921 she made her debut at the Bordeaux Opera in 1943, as Lola in Cavalleria Rusticana. After the war, she was heard by composer Francis Poulenc and subsequently became his favourite singer, creating the roles of Elle in La voix humaine and Thérèse in Les mamelles de Tirésias, as well as playing Blanche in Dialogues des Carmélites. She was internationally successful, yet retired already in 1965.
She taught at the École Française de Musique and occasionally directed.

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