- Category : Entertain-Music-Vocalist-Opera
- Type : GE
- Profile : 1/3 - Investigating / Martyr
- Definition : Triple Split
- Incarnation Cross : RAX The Four Ways 4
French soprano who sang at the Opéra in Paris. Her greatest success was creating the role of Valentine in Meyerbeer's Les Huguenots. She possessed "a full, resonant voice" with a distinctive dark timbre and was an exceptional actress. Based on the roles written for her voice her vocal range spanned from low A-flat to high D, 2.5 octaves. She and the tenor Adolphe Nourrit are credited with being primarily responsible for raising artistic standards at the Opéra, and the roles in which she excelled came to be known as "falcon soprano" parts.
Falcon's singing career was remarkably short. She lost her voice catastrophically during the second performance of Stradella at the Opéra in March 1837. When Nourrit as Stradella asked her "Demain nous partirons – voulez-vous?" Falcon was unable to sing her line "Je suis prêt", fainted, and was carried offstage by Nourrit. Berlioz, who was present, describes "raucous sounds like those of a child with croup, guttural, whistling notes that quickly faded like those of a flute filled with water". Falcon resumed performances, but her vocal difficulties continued, and she gave her last regular performance there in Meyerbeer's Les Huguenots on 15 January 1838. She resorted to all sorts of bogus treatments and remedies and moved to Italy for 18 months in the hope that the climate would have a beneficial effect.
She returned for a benefit at the Opéra on 14 March 1840 in which she was to sing selections from Act 2 of La Juive and Act 4 of Les Huguenots with Gilbert Duprez, Jean-Étienne Massol, and Julie Dorus-Gras. She was calm and received a warm ovation at her entrance, but it soon became apparent that her voice was gone. As Spire Pitou relates: "She wept at her own pathetic fate but continued despite her inability to do much else besides make the audience regret the loss of her gifts. When she came to the painfully poignant words in Les Huguenots, 'Nuit fatale, nuit d'alarmes, je n'ai plus d'avenir' ('Fatal night, night of alarms, I have no longer a future'), she could not support the dreadful irony of the line. She had no choice but to retire ...". There followed a few performances in Russia in 1840–1841, but after that, except for a few private performances in Paris at the court of Louis-Philippe and for the Duc de Nemours, she definitively quit the stage.
Falcon married a financier, becoming Madame Falcon-Malançon and a grandmother, and continued to live, reclusively, near the Opéra in the Chaussée d'Antin, until her death. At the end of 1891, she agreed to appear on stage at the Opéra on the occasion of a celebration of the centenary of Meyerbeer, "with three of her surviving contemporaries". She died on 25 February 1897.