Heritage \ Writings \

Francis MacLennan (1879-1935)
Born in Bay City, went on to become highly reknowned opera singer.

1909: Review. - Added Dec., 2009.

1909 - The World To-day, Vol. 17.

Page 825.

Francis Maclennan is a proof of the fact that even though American tenors of worth may find it a difficult proposition to pass the stage-doors of our New York operas, they do not go without recognition in a city where there is no discrimination in musical matters as to nationality. Mr. Maclennan comes from Bay City, Michigan. It is interesting, by the way, to note how many of the American singers in Europe hail from the Middle West. After a career as church singer he went to New York, and then to London for study, singing in opera in England with the Moody-Manners Company. Then came his engagement with the Savage Opera Company to sing “Parsifal” in the American tour, followed by two more years with the same company as “Siegmund” (“Die Walkure), “Lohengrin,” “Tannhauser,” and finally as “Pinkerton” in the first American performance of “Madame Butterfly.”

1911 Newpaper article. - Added Dec., 2009.

The New York Times – Dec., 25, 1911


Francis MacLennan Sings Tristan at the Royal Opera.

Special Cable to THE NEW YORK TIMES.

BERLIN, Dec. 24. - One of the operatic events of the season was the appearance of the Royal Opera, last night, of the American tenor, Francis MacLennan, as Tristan.

Mr. MacLennan is the first American who has ever sung the hero of the Wagnerian tragedy on the German operatic stage. He was enthusiastically received, both by the audience and the critics.

Mr. MacLennan is completing his fourth year at the Kaiser's Opera, where he now ranks as leading tenor.

1912 Review. - Added Dec., 2009.

Hampton Magazine, Vol. 28, 1912

Some American Singers in Germany.

Francis Maclennan, of Bay City, Michigan, has scored at the Berlin Royal Opera, where Lucy Gates and Florence Rose, sopranos, respectively of Salt Lake City and Cleveland have also sung.

1918 Brief bio. - Added Dec., 2009.

International Who's Who in Music, 1918

Francis Maclennan.

Tenor: b. Bay City, Mich., Jan. 7, 1879, son of T. J. and Mary (Marsac) M.; educated public high schools of Bay City; studied music with J. F. Mount at Bay City, Carl E. Dufft and Joseph Tamaro of New York and in Europe with Georg Henschel and Franz Emerich; married Florence Easton, soprano (q.v.), London, 1904 (2 children). Debut as Faust in Gounod's opera Covent Garden, London, then appeared at the Berlin Royal Opera, Hamburg Stadttheater, at Antwerp and all large cities of the United States and Great Britain and Canada; created Parsifal in the English production of Henry W. Savage in the U.S. Debut in Berlin as Turiddu, Royal Opera, 1907, there created the roles of Renaud in Leoncavallo's Maia, 1910. Leontes in Goldmark's “A Winter's Tale”; created the role of Pinkerton in “Madama Butterfly” at it first performance in America and the first English production in Germany (Royal Opera, Berlin, 1907); member Chicago Opera Co., 1915-7. Principal roles include Radames, Pinkerton, Raoul, Othello, Rienzi, Tristan, Siegmund, Siegfried, Herodes and others.
Address: Daniel Mayer Times Bldg., New York. Home: 29 Fifth Avenue, Port Washington, Long Island, N. Y.

1920 Review. - Added Dec., 2009.

Grove's Dictionary of Music and Musicians, 1920


Maclennan, Francis (Jan. 7, 1879, Bay City, Mich.), was developed into an eminent operatic tenor by Dufft and Tamaro in New York, Henschel in London, and Emerich in Berlin. In 1902 he made his debut in London as Faust, in 1904-07 sang in 'Parsifal' and 'Madama Butterfly' in the United States with the Savage Opera Company, in 1907-15 was at the Royal Opera in Berlin (the first American to sing Tristan in Germany) and the Stadt-Theatre in Hamburg, in 1915-17 with the Chicago Opera Company (mostly Wagnerian roles) and from 1917 at the Metropolitan Opera House in New York. He has a large repertory and excels in Wagner and Verdi works. In 1904 he married the soprano Florence Easton, and since then they have been constantly associated in both opera and song-recitals.

Additional Notes.

    1880 Census Bay City, Mich.

  • McClennan, T. J. - born 1845 New York
  • Mary L – wife, born 1840 Canada
  • Frank – son, born 1874 Mich.

    Family Search.

  • Maclennan, Francis, born Jan. 7, 1879, Bay City, Mich.; died Jul. 17, 1935.
Related Pages/Notes

Francis MacLennan
Francis' mother, Mary M. Marsac, is the daughter of Joseph Marsac and Theresa Rivard, one of Bay City's earliest pioneer families.
Related Pages
Marsac, Jos. & Terisa
Mount, J.F.
Theater History.
People Referenced
Dufft, Carl E.
Easton, Florence (wife)
Emmerich, Franz
Gates, Lucy
Henschel, Georg
MacLennan, Francis (subject)
MacLennan, T.J. (father)
Marsac, Mary M. (mother)
Mount, J.F.
Rose, Florence
Savage, Henry W.
Tamaro, Joseph
Subjects Referenced
Bay City, MI
Berlin, Germany
Chicago Opera Co.
Cleveland, OH
Hamburg Stattheater
Kaiser's Opera
London, England
Metropolitan Opera
Moody-Manners Co.
New York Times
Port Washington, NY
Salt Lake City, UT
Savage Opera Co.
Royal Opera, Berlin
Florence Easton
Florence Easton was born Oct. 25, 1882, to John T. & Isabella (Yarrow) Easton, and died on Aug. 13, 1955. Florence began her singing career in around 1903, and went to become the most popular and versatile singers of her time. Her marriage to Francis MacLennan took place in May, 1904, and they had two children, a son born in 1906 and daughter, Wilhilmina (1912-1919). Francis and Florence were divorced in 1928.
  • Bio. [Wikipedia]
  • WRITINGS: History As It Was Written Then.