Anna Caroline Oury

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Anna Caroline Oury

Anna Caroline Oury (née De Belleville), also known as Ninette de Belleville, Ninette von Belleville or Ninette de Belleville-Oury (24 June 1808 – 22 July 1880), was a German pianist and composer of French ancestry.

Life and career[edit]

Anna Caroline de Belleville, often referred to as "Ninette", was born in Landshut, Bavaria, Germany. She was the daughter of a French aristocrat who was the director of the national Court Opera in Mannheim.[1] She studied with Carl Czerny in Vienna between 1816 and 1820, where she met Beethoven and heard him improvise.[2] In 1829 she traveled to Warsaw where Chopin heard her play impressively enough for him to write about it in a letter, praising her "excellent" playing for its lightness and elegance.[3] Twelve years later, in 1841, Chopin dedicated his Waltz in F minor, Op. Posth. 70, No. 2, to Mme. Oury, though it went unpublished until 1855.

In July 1831 she made her London debut in Her Majesty's Theatre with Niccolò Paganini and in October she married Antonio James Oury (1800–1883), a violinist at the King's Theatre in London and the two toured as a duo.[4][5][6] They performed in Germany, France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Austria and Russia between 1831 and 1839 before settling in England, excepting a concert tour of Italy in 1846-7. Working with her husband, she helped to create the Brighton Musical Union in 1847, a club for chamber music modeled after the London Musical Union.[7] The remainder of Anna Caroline Oury's career was spent focusing on composition until her retirement in 1866, writing approximately 180 works for piano in this time.[8] Oury died in Munich in 1880 at the age of 72.


Oury published more than 200 works, including a number of transcriptions. Selected works include:

  • Souvenir d'Edinbourg (arrangement)
  • Fantasie on the opera "L'Africaine"
  • La Chasse de Compiegne
  • Plaintes de I'Absence
  • Marche Ecossaise
  • Valse brillante
  • Nocturne[9]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Persons Related to Chopin". Retrieved 16 October 2010.
  2. ^ Fuller-Maitland, J.A. and Andrew Lamb Oury, Anna Caroline, Grove Music Online.
  3. ^ Golberg, Halina (2008) Music in Chopin's Warsaw, New York: Oxford University Press, 281.
  4. ^ Comini, Alessandra (2008). The Changing Image of Beethoven: A Study in Mythmaking (Digitized online by GoogleBooks).
  5. ^ Thomas, Joseph (1908). "Universal pronouncing dictionary of biography and mythology, Volume" (Digitized online by GoogleBooks). Missing or empty |url= (help)
  6. ^ Fuller-Maitland, J.A. and Andrew Lamb Oury, Anna Caroline, Grove Music.
  7. ^ Bashford, Christina Oury, Antonio James, Grove Music.
  8. ^ Fuller-Maitland, J.A. and Andrew Lamb Oury, Anna Caroline, Grove Music.
  9. ^ Ebel, Otto (1902). "Women composers:a biographical handbook of women's work in music" (Digitized online by GoogleBooks). Retrieved 16 October 2010.