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Michael William Balfe

Michael William Balfe (15 May 1808 – 20 October 1870) was an Irish composer, best-remembered for his operas, especially The Bohemian Girl.

After a short career as a violinist, Balfe pursued an operatic singing career, while he began to compose. In a career spanning more than 40 years, he composed at least 29 operas, almost 250 songs, several cantatas and other works. He was also a noted conductor, directing Italian Opera at Her Majesty's Theatre for seven years, among other conducting posts.

Birth and Death Data: Born May 15th, 1808 (Dublin), Died October 20th, 1870 (Hertfordshire)

Date Range of DAHR Recordings: 1894 - 1941

Roles Represented in DAHR: composer, arranger, lyricist

Notes: Irish poet, composer, and singer


Company Matrix No. Size First Recording Date Title Primary Performer Description Role Audio
Columbia 30022 12-in. ca. Jan.-May 1906 Killarney Ruth Vincent Female vocal solo, with piano composer  
Columbia 36762 12-in. ca. 1913 The heart bowed down Henri Scott Bass vocal solo, with orchestra composer  


Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Balfe, Michael William," accessed June 21, 2021,

Balfe, Michael William. (2021). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved June 21, 2021, from

"Balfe, Michael William." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2021. Web. 21 June 2021.

DAHR Persistent Identifier



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