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Michael William Balfe (1808-1870), Composer

Sitter associated with 8 portraits
Dublin-born musician and composer, Balfe came to London in 1823, where he became a violinist at the oratorios at Drury Lane. Between 1825-6, he studied with Rossini, in Italy, where he became a successful opera singer. On returning to London in 1833, he found singing engagements at the Philharmonic Concerts, and was later appointed conductor of the London Italian Opera in 1845. Balfe's numerous operas and operettas included popular compositions The Bohemian Girl (1843), Rose of Castille (1857) and Satanella (1858).