Opera Scotland

New on the website in November

Posted 7 Dec 2012

This month notes have been added on Elephant Angel (Williams) and Siege of Calais (Donizetti).

Look at new entries for:- 

Coronation of Poppea (2012), Così fan tutte (2013), Elephant Angel (2012), Lucia di Lammermoor (1861), Lucrezia Borgia (1861), Norma (1861), Siege of Calais (2013), Simon Boccanegra (2013) and Trovatore (1861).

Work is nearing an end on Opera Scotland's  book on Carl Rosa and the Carl Rosa Opera Company touring Scotland 1874-99.   But still the material turns up, and we've found a story of how Rosa and his wife, the formidable Euphrosyne Parepa (a well known soprano, born in Edinburgh) travelled through the Isthmus of Panama in 1868, not long after their wedding, to put on an eight week season of opera in San Francisco.  

As Rosa and Parepa were journeying back eastwards across the continent, they gave concerts on the way. Travelling in a stagecoach on their way to Salt Lake, a wheel came off.  The passengers included Mrs Rosa's maid, De Vivo, the party's manager (later a famous impresario), a couple of Mormons and perhaps two other men. One of them, having heard Mrs Rosa break into song to keep spirits up, said he could mend the wheel if only she would sing while he did it. And so in the desert night, four days' travel from Salt Lake, Parepa sang 'Within a mile o' Edinburgh toun', 'I dreamt that I dwelt in marble halls' and others, including snatches of oratorio.  But, the passenger who wrote about this thirty years later thought that "I know that my redeemer liveth" had the greatest effect, Parepa having to give it three times.  According to this recollection, the first signs of dawn were in the sky when work was finished and the coach got going again, Euphrosyne Parepa Rosa settling back into her seat with a sigh of relief. Music While You Work.

Look out for our book - we'll keep you posted!

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