Louisa Pyne

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Louisa Pyne from the cover page of "The Louisa Pyne Polka", composed by S. Markstein

Louisa Bodda-Pyne (30 April 1828 – 20 March 1904) was an English soprano and opera company manager.


Life and career[edit]

Born into a theatrical family as Louisa Fanny Pyne, she was the youngest daughter of the alto George Griggs Pyne (1790–1877).[1] Her elder sister Susanna Pyne (1821–86) was also an accomplished singer and her uncle James Kendrick Pyne (1785–1857) was a tenor[2] whose son and grandson, both named James Kendrick Pyne were distinguished organists.[3][4] Her niece, Blanche Whiffen, had a long career in America on stage and later in cinema.[5]

Louisa Pyne was the manager, with the tenor William Harrison, of the Pyne & Harrison Opera Company which toured the Americas in the 1850s. In 1857 she and Harrison founded the Pyne and Harrison English Opera Company[6][7] at the Lyceum Theatre, London.[8] The company later moved to the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane and, in 1858, under the shortened name of the Royal English Opera, gained a lease at what is now the Royal Opera House in Covent Garden from December 1858 until 1864. The following year, Pyne, along with William Harrison, W. H. Weiss and Madame Weiss, formed a new company under E.T. Smith at Astley's Theatre Royal.[9] On 12 October 1868, she married the singer Frank H. Bodda[1] remaining so until his death aged 69 on 14 March 1892.[10] Pyne died at her home Cambridge Gardens, North Kensington on 20 March 1904.[11]


  1. ^ a b "Marriages", The Times, 20 October 1868, pg. 1
  2. ^ Charles Edward Horn's Memoirs of His Father and Himself, Charles Edward Horn (Author), Michael Kassler (Editor), 2003
  3. ^ "Obituaries, Dr. J. K. Pyne Distinguished Organist", The Times, 5 September 1938, pg. 14
  4. ^ Louisa Pyne, short biography by Dr Michael Burden, New College, Oxford
  5. ^ Mrs. Thomas Whiffen, Noted Actress, Dead-Chicago Daily Tribune; 27 November 1936; pg. 14
  6. ^ "Reviews, Lyceum Theatre", The Times, 27 December 1857, pg.10
  7. ^ "Reviews, Lyceum Theatre", The Times, 22 September 1857, pg. 12
  8. ^ "Reviews, Royal English Opera", The Times, 18 October 1864, pg. 12
  9. ^ "Reviews, Astley's Theatre", The Times, 7 June 1865, pg. 12
  10. ^ "Deaths", The Times, 15 March 1892, pg. 1
  11. ^ The Times, 22 March 1904

External links[edit]

  • Louisa Pyne, English soprano, Luminous-Lint
  • Corder, Frederick (1912). "Bodda Pyne, Louisa Fanny" . Dictionary of National Biography (2nd supplement). London: Smith, Elder & Co.