About Anna de Skalon
Anna de Skalon (my great grandmother) lived in Nottingham, UK. She was married to an American, James Duncan Lahey and they had a daughter, Margaret (my grandmother) and a son, Alec. They all lived in Paris until 1914. But at the outbreak of World War I, they emigrated as a family to Nottingham, UK.
Anna left St Petersburg in 1894-1899 after training to be an opera singer in Paris. The whole of my branch of the de Skalon family grew up in St Petersburg. Her family translated their surname as 'de Scalon' and until recently, my family carried on spelling it this way when translated from Russian. But I know from my grandmother, Margaret Trouncer's written life history that we are related to Anton Skalon and all the rest of the family. From now on I will spell it as 'de Skalon' in keeping with the rest of the de Skalon family from the generation starting with my great grandmother Anna de Skalon.
MARGARET TROUNCER WROTE OF HER MOTHER: "She limped a little from her broken hip from a carriage accident in St Petersburg, but in some odd way, this only added to her attractions. She was very elegant but she rarely smiled and never laughed.The chamber music she sung, which my brother and I heard every night was wonderful. They say it is an epicure‘s delight to look at beautiful objects to the sound of lovely music, and when I heard my mother‘s wonderful voice singing Debussy and Ravel, I felt completely happy. Mother taught me the piano but I did not play well. Mother could sing in Russian, French, Polish, Italian and English."
REFERENCES TO HER MUSICAL CAREER IN ENGLAND 1914-1947 (as 'Madame Lahey'):
- Programme of Concert of Dancing & Rhythmic Movement at Circus Street Hall, Nottingham DD/2243/31/26 3 Dec 1927 Contents:By Mary Evans and students (incl. Gladys Dann). Songs by Madame Lahey; piano Miss Ullett. Leaflet, printed. see DD/2243/30/11 and DD/2243/35/12 (SOURCE: http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/a2a/records.aspx?cat=157-dd2243_1&cid=-1#-1)