Life and career
Bathori originally studied piano and planned a career as concert pianist but soon turned to singing, making her professional debut sometime in 1898 at the small
Théâtre de la Bodinière in the
rue Saint-Lazare in a concert to celebrate the poet
 In the same year she made her debut in the grands concerts at the Concerts du Conservatoire followed by performances in
Fauré's La Naissance de Vénus and
Saint-Saëns's Messe de Requiem. During the season 1899–1900 she made her operatic debut at
 Her first roles included
soprano parts such as Mimi in
La bohème and Micaëla in
In the early 1900s Bathori began studying with
Pierre-Émile Engel, whom she married in 1908.
 She became celebrated for her performance of
Ravel's song cycle
Shéhérazade and gave the premières of his
Histoires naturelles (of which she was the dedicatee) and of his Chansons madécasses. In 1917 Bathori became the director of the Théâtre du Vieux-Colombier.
In the early 1920s she played a large role in the propagation of the new music of this period especially by some of the members of
Les Six, giving many first performances of their works and those of others.
Throughout the 1930s Bathori appeared every year at the
Teatro Colón in
Buenos Aires. In 1935 she was appointed to the
Legion of Honour for her services to French music.
 During the German occupation of France in the Second World War she made
Buenos Aires her home. After her return to France she taught singing, and gave frequent talks for French radio.