AGLAÉ

AGLAÉ (b Jocelyne Deslongchamps). Singer, actress, b L'Épiphanie, near Montreal, 13 May 1933, d Montreal 19 Apr 1984. She began her career at 16 in Montreal nightclubs (eg, the Au Faisan doré) under the name Josette France.

AGLAÉ

AGLAÉ (b Jocelyne Deslongchamps). Singer, actress, b L'Épiphanie, near Montreal, 13 May 1933, d Montreal 19 Apr 1984. She began her career at16 in Montreal nightclubs (eg, the Au Faisan doré) under the name Josette France. She was heard by, and in 1950 married, the French songwriter Pierre Roche, who was the pianist and singing partner of Charles Aznavour. With Roche, she lived in Paris 1952-64, the years of her greatest popularity. The early success of her recording (for Philips) with Michel Legrand of the Lionel Daunais song "Aglaé" prompted her, on the advice of Félix Leclerc, to take Aglaé as her stage name.

She subsequently sang at the Bobino and the Olympia in Paris, appeared throughout France, and later toured in Switzerland, Belgium, Luxembourg, Holland, Algeria, Morocco, and Tunisia. Aglaé also performed in operetta - during the 1955-6 season with Tino Rossi at the Châtelet in Francis Lopez's Méditerranée and in 1960 at the Théâtre de l'ABC in Guy Magenta's Coquin de printemps. She was heard in the films Les Nuits de Montmartre and À la manière de Sherlock Holmes.

Aglaé performed on several occasions 1956-64 in Montreal, appearing on such CBC TV shows as "Music Hall" and "En habit du dimanche." After her return in 1964, she made only infrequent appearances - eg, at the Patriote in 1969. Aglaé recorded for Philips (including an album of excerpts from Méditerranée, B77.772L), Pergola and Ricordi in Europe, and for Alouette (Aglaé, ALP 255, a collection of her hits including the Canadian songs "V'là l'bon vent", "Ah! Si mon moine voulait danser", "Rapide blanc," and "La Bastringue") and Dinamic in Canada.

On the death of Aglaé, Pierre Gravel wrote, "Long before Gilles Vigneault, Edith Butler, Ginette Reno and Jean Lapointe, Aglaé embodied for France a certain Québécois reality. With turlutes like her fetish song ["Aglaé"] or "Dans nos compagnes" or again "Tout le long de la rivière," she was the first to take, without apology, all of her québécitude before the French public" (La Presse, Montreal 22 Apr 1984).


Further Reading

  • "L'infatigable Aglaé," Quebec Le Soleil, 26 Feb 1966

    Lemelin, Mireille. "La 2e carrière d'Aglaé," Châtelaine, Mar 1970

    Bernatchez, Raymond. "Aglaé, la Canadienne: elle avait séduit tout Paris," Montreal La Presse, 21 Apr 1984