Jean Desailly

Jean Desailly (24 August 1920 – 11 June 2008) was a French actor. He was a member of the Comédie-Française from 1942 to 1946, and later participated in about 90 movies.

Jean Desaily
Born(1920-08-24)24 August 1920
Died11 June 2008(2008-06-11) (aged 87)
Paris, France
OccupationActor, Series
Years active1943-1999

Life and career

Desailly studied at the École nationale supérieure des beaux-arts and the Conservatoire de Paris winning first prize, joining the Comédie-Française in 1942. In 1946 he became a leading member of the Jean-Louis Barrault-Madeleine Renaud company at the Théâtre Marigny, playing in a wide repertoire from Les Fausses Confidences, Bérénice and Le Songe d'une nuit d'été.

With the Renaud-Barrault at the Odéon-Théâtre de France he played both leading roles in le Mariage de Figaro: Figaro on tour in the provinces and Count Almaviva in Paris.

Desailly's second wife was the French actress Simone Valère, with whom he formed a theatre company which they directed successively at the Théâtre Hébertot and the Théâtre de la Madeleine.[1] A wide repertoire was played at the two theatres from 1972 to 2002.[2]

In music he was the narrator on the 1965 recording of Stravinsky's Oedipus rex conducted by Karel Ančerl for Supraphon and on the 1971 recording of Honegger's Le roi David under Charles Dutoit for Erato (with Valère as the prophetess).

Partial filmography

Awards and nominations


  1. L'acteur Jean Desailly est décédé (Short obituary in Le Figaro, 12 June 2008, accessed 25 May 2015.
  2. Don des archives de la Compagnie Valère-Desailly (ARchives of the company), accessed 25 May 2015
  3. Yon, Jean-Claude. Jacques Offenbach. Éditions Gallimard, Paris, 2000, p663.
  4. "Golden Screen, Germany" (Retrieved on June 17, 2008)
  5. “French actor Desailly, famed on stage and screen, dies”, MSNBC, 12. Juni 2008 (Retrieved on June 17, 2008)
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