(stage name of Pierre Louis Dubus). Born Sept. 19, 1721, in Paris; died Dec. 18, 1799, in Beauvais. French actor.
Préville began acting in 1738 with a group of traveling actors. In 1753 he became the leading comic actor of the Comédie Française in Paris. He played comic servants’ roles in works by Molière, A.-R. Lesage, J.-F. Regnard, P. Marivaux, and F. Dancourt. Préville won fame in the history of world theater for creating the role of Figaro in Beaumarchais’s The Barber of Seville (1775). He left the stage in 1786.