FALCON, Marie Cornélie, born Jan. 28, 1812, at Paris, received vocal instruction at the Conservatoire from Henri, Pellegrini, Bordogni, and Nourrit, and gained in 1830–31 first prizes for vocalization and singing. On July 20, 1832, she made her début at the Opéra as Alice in 'Robert,' with brilliant success. 'Her acting, intelligence, and self-possession give us promise of an excellent actress. In stature tall enough to suit all the operatic heroines, a pretty face, great play of feature. … Her voice is a well-defined soprano, more than 2 octaves in compass, and resounding equally with the same power' (Castil-Blaze). She remained there until 1838, when ill-health and loss of voice compelled her to leave for Italy. Her parts included Donna Anna on the production of 'Don Juan,' March 10, 1834, Julie in 'La Vestale' at Nourrit's benefit May 3, 1834, the heroines in 'Moïse' and 'Siege de Corinthe.' She also created the parts of Mrs. Ankarstroem ('Gustave III.'), Rachel ('La Juive'), Valentine ('Huguenots'), her best part, the heroine in Louise Bertin's 'Esmeralda,' and in Niedermeyer's 'Stradella.' 'Richly endowed by nature, beautiful, possessing a splendid voice, great intelligence, and profound dramatic feeling, she made every year remarkable by her progress and by the development of her talent.' (Fétis.) [See vol. iii. p.357 b, note 3.] After an absence of two years, and under the impression that her voice was restored, on March 14, 1840, she re-appeared at a benefit given on her behalf in the first two acts of 'La Juive,' and in the fourth act of the 'Huguenots.' But her voice had completely gone, and it was with difficulty she could get through the first part—indeed she fainted in the arms of Duprez. (Clément, Histoire de Musique, p.749.) After this she retired altogether from the Opera, where her name still survives to designate dramatic soprano parts. Mme. Falcon afterwards married M. Malançon, and we believe that she is still living in Paris.
[ A. C. ]
FANCIES, or FANTASIES, the old English name for Fantasia, which see. In the various collections catalogued under the head of Virginal Music all three words occur. The name seems to have been confined to original compositions as opposed to those which were written upon a given subject or upon a ground.
[ M. ]
FANING, Eaton, the son of a professor of music, was born at Helston in Cornwall, May 20, 1850. He received his first instruction on the pianoforte and violin from his parents, and performed at local concerts before he was five years old. In April, 1870, he entered the Royal Academy of Music, where he studied under Sir Sterndale Bennett, Dr. Steggall, Signor Ciabatta, and Messrs. Sullivan, Jewson, Aylward, and Pettitt, and carried off successively the bronze medal (1871), silver medal for the Pianoforte (1872), Mendelssohn Scholarship (1873), bronze medal for Harmony (1874), and the Lucas silver medal for Composition (1876). In 1874 Mr. Faning was appointed Sub-Professor of Harmony, in 1877 Assistant-Professor of the Pianoforte, and Associate, and in 1878 Professor of the Pianoforte. He also played the violoncello and drums in the orchestra. On July 18, 1877, Mr. Faning's operetta, 'The Two Majors,' was performed at the Royal Academy, which event led to the establishment of the Operatic Class at the institution. An operetta, 'The Head of the Poll,' was successfully produced at the German Reeds' Entertainment in 1882. At the same date Mr. Faning occupied the posts of Professor and Conductor of the Choral Class at the National Training School, and Professor of the Pianoforte at the Guildhall School of Music; the latter post he resigned in July 1885, when he was appointed Director of the Music at Harrow School. From the opening of the Royal College of Music until July 1885 he taught the Pianoforte and Harmony, and until Easter 1887 also conducted the Choral Class at that institution. Mr. Faning is also conductor of the Madrigal Society. His compositions include two operettas, a symphony in C minor, two quartets, an overture, a Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis for full orchestra (performed at St. Paul's at the Festival of the Sons of the Clergy), besides anthems, songs, duets, and part-songs, among which the 'Song of the Vikings,' for four-part chorus with pianoforte duet accompaniment, has attained wide popularity.
[ W. B. S. ]
FARANDOLE. A national Provençal dance. No satisfactory derivation has been given of the name. Diez ('Etymologisches Wörterbuch der Romanischen Sprachen') connects it with the Spanish Farandula, a company of strolling players, which he derives from the German fahrende. A still more unlikely derivation has been suggested from the Greek φάλαγξ and δουλος, because the dancers in the Farandole are linked together in a long chain. The dance is very probably of Greek origin, and seems to be a direct descendant of the Cranes' Dance, the invention of which was ascribed to Theseus, who instituted it to celebrate his escape from the Labyrinth. This dance is alluded to at the end of the hymn to Delos of Callimachus: it is still danced in Greece and the islands of the Ægean, and may well have been introduced into the South of France from Marseilles. The Farandole consists of a long string of young men and women, sometimes as many as a hundred in number, holding one another by the hands, or by ribbons or handkerchiefs. The leader is always a bachelor, and he is preceded by one or more playing the galoubet, i.e. a small wooden flute-à-bec, and the tambourin. [See vol. iv. p.55.] With his left hand the leader holds the hand of his partner, in his right he waves a flag, handkerchief, or ribbon, which serves as a signal for his followers. As the Farandole proceeds through the streets of the town the string of dancers is constantly recruited by fresh additions. The leader (to quote the poet Mistral) 'makes it come and go, turn backwards and forwards … sometimes he forms it into a ring, sometimes winds it in a spiral, then he breaks off from his followers and dances in