Opera Scotland

Cavalleria Rusticana 1912Carl Rosa Opera Company

Read more about the opera Cavalleria Rusticana

Cav & Pag were the only works not performed in Aberdeen the week before. Instead they had seen The Merry Wives of Windsor.

Cast details are from the Dundee Courier & Argus and Dundee Advertiser.

 

Dundee Reviews

Dundee Advertiser: Friday, February 9, 1912

Carl Rosa Opera - Cavalleria Rusticana and Pagliacci

 'At last, a little late, the Dundee public have awakened to the great merits of the Carl Rosa singers.  The house last night was much the best of the week, and, without the possession of prophetic powers one runs little risk in predicting a crowded audience for the Queen of Sheba to-night.  It is perhaps not a matter for wonder that opera-lovers here were somewhat slow in responding to the company's advances.  Many of the singers were unknown and no-one likes to buy a pig in a poke.  The newcomers having shown themselves possessed of great powers, confidence has taken the place of doubt, with happy results for all concerned.

'One of the most valuable assets of the company was revealed last night in the person of Miss Helene Stylianides, who represented the luckless Santuzza in Mascagni's Cavalleria.  In her we have a dramatic soprano of full and telling volume.  The part is vocally a trying one, extreme notes and awkward intervals occurring in profusion; so that a slight lapse from exact intonation, apparent once or twice, was excusable.  That, however, was the only flaw.  Otherwise the representation was most satisfying and impressive.  Another newcomer, Miss Lawson Taylor, was very charming as the flirt, Lola, and rendered in a captivating manner the lyrical phrases allotted to the character.  As Nedda in Pagliacci, Miss Elizabeth Burgess made a picturesque figure.  Her light soprano was slightly overweighted at the more intense moments; but where tender feeling was required, as in the duet with Silvio, she showed to advantage.

'First place among the male singers must be given to Mr Hedmondt, who was exceedingly moving in the part of the clown Canio.  If space permitted, his performance would justify examination at length; but it is only possible to commend generally his acting and singing, and particularise as especially good “On with the Motley.”  Mr Hebden Foster sang the Pagliacci Prologue with great effect and was recalled three times.  The pretty Serenade in the same opera was nicely given “off” by Mr William O'Connor, another new tenor.  As Turiddu in Mascagni's work, Mr Charles Neville improved on his Monday's performance of Wilhelm.  The parting scene with Lucia was pathetic; and “See the merry wine is winking” was delivered gaily and with good tone.  Mr Leslie Austin had parts in both works and rendered excellent service.

'The chorus sang in a spirited manner, attaining a fine climax in the Easter Hymns, in spite of defective intonation at the start.  Under Mr Goossens, the orchestra was admirable.  It is seldom that such capital and discreet accompaniments are heard here.

'Both operas were finely staged and mounted, and gave much evident delight to the audience.'

 

Dundee Courier & Argus: Friday, February 9, 1912

Her Majesty’s Theatre - The Carl Rosa Opera Company in Cavalleria and Pagliacci

'The Dundee public is beginning to realise that we have this week a series of most excellent and satisfying operatic performances at Her Majesty’s Theatre.  Last night’s house was a great improvement on its predecessors of the week; the dress circle was all but full, though the cheaper parts of the theatre were still unsatisfactorily occupied.

'Thoroughly bright and forceful performances were given of the two most famous short Italian operas Cavalleria Rusticana and Pagliacci.  There is a strong family resemblance between them both in story and in music.  The story of both is tragic, almost bloodthirsty in the extreme, and both spring from jealousy; the music of both is warm, strenuous, and highly coloured, full of piquant melody, and clothed with superb orchestral resource.

'In Cavalleria, Miss Helene Stylianides, as Santuzza, made her first appearance for the week.  She has a fine clear voice, and a dramatic style of acting which perfectly suited the part. The solo part in the “Easter Hymn” was well sung, but Miss Stylianides’ voice was not powerful enough to dominate band and chorus so completely as we have heard.  Miss Lawson Taylor made a piquant Lola, and sang “O gentle flow’r of gold” with much charm.  Miss Douglas Wilson’s Lucia was a careful and finished performance.

'Mr Charles Neville made a finely vigorous Turiddu, and he sang the “Drinking Song” very nicely.  He was still more effective in the duets with Santuzza, with Lucia, and with Alfio.  Mr Leslie Austin’s Alfio was a manly performance, and vocally strong and telling.  The chorus sang unusually well, and the band played brilliantly, the famous “Intermezzo” narrowly escaping an encore.

'Pagliacci was distinguished by a truly magnificent performance by Mr Hedmondt.  His acting was powerfully dramatic, and the poignant pathos of “On with the motley” was most expressively brought out.  Mr Hedmondt’s treatment of the closing scene was fresh and intensely dramatic.  Mr Hebden Foster as Tonio sang the beautiful Prologue with immense power and dash, and throughout sang with splendid effectiveness.  Mr Willam O’Connor in the part of Beppe displayed a pretty tenor voice, but sang with a tendency to vibrato.  Mr Leslie Austin made a handsome and dramatic Silvio.

'Miss Elizabeth Burgess, who also sang for the first time this week, gave an interesting and attractive performance.  She was specially happy in the love scenes with Silvio, and in the comedy scenes in the play within a play.  The acting of the chorus was notably good, and helped the dramatic efficiency of many of the scenes. Mr Goossens conducted with his accustomed care and resourcefulness, and the organ played an effective part in the “Easter Hymn” and “Intermezzo” in Cavalleria.

'To-night the novelty of our opera season, Carl Goldmark’s The Queen of Sheba, will be presented.  This opera was thirty-five years before the public ere it reached London, and to the Carl Rosa Opera Company belongs the credit of its production in this country.  Beyond the names of Solomon and the Queen and her visit there is nothing Biblical in the book, which deals chiefly with the loves of far less important and perhaps more human people.  There is fine scope for scenic display, of which full advantage is taken, and the music, while coloured by Wagnerism, is smooth and pleasing in form.  The orchestration is very important, and as the band is so good this week that part of the performance will be specially enjoyable.  The cast includes Madame Marianne de Kleno, a new soprano; Miss Ina Hill, Mr Frank Christian, and Mr Arthur Winckworth.  Mr Goossens will conduct.'

Performance Cast

Santuzza a village girl

Hélène Stylianides (Feb 8)

Mamma Lucia the innkeeper, Turiddu’s mother

Jean Douglas-Wilson (Feb 8)

Alfio the village carter

Leslie Austin (Feb 8)

Turiddu a young soldier

Charles Neville (Feb 8)

Lola Alfio’s wife

Dorothy Lawson-Taylor (Feb 8)

Performance DatesCavalleria Rusticana 1912

Map List

Her Majesty's Theatre, Dundee | Dundee

8 Feb, 19.30

King's Theatre, Edinburgh | Edinburgh

19 Feb, 19.30

Grand Theatre, Glasgow | Glasgow

11 Mar, 19.30

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