Opera Scotland

Carmen 1934Carl Rosa Opera Company

Read more about the opera Carmen

"It was no small pleasure to have so fresh and interesting a performance of Carmen as that which was given at the King's Theatre last night by the Carl Rosa singers. the standard operas are apt to receive standard renderings; sound, but rather hackneyed and with a number of details which might be improved remaining unamended, merely because they have always been done in that particular way. Last night's production (Scotsman 18 April) however, suggested that no detail had escaped attention".\

"The ensemble movements in which this opera abounds were all capitally rendered, and chorus, ballet and orchestra were always good".  As for the settings, they 'had all been well imagined by a skilled producer.'

The Carl Rosa's Scottish tour in the spring of 1934 began with two weeks at the Glasgow Theatre Royal, followed by one each at His Majesty's, Aberdeen and the King's Edinburgh.

The performance schedule was as follows:

First week (Glasgow), commencing 26 March: Mon Fledermaus; Tue Barber of Seville; Wed Cav & Pag; Thu Carmen; Fri Fledermaus; Sat mat Butterfly, Sat eve Faust.

Second week, commencing 2 April: Mon Barber; Tue Trovatore; Wed Carmen; Thu Don Giovanni; Fri Madam Butterfly; Sat mat Fledermaus; Sat eve Maritana.

Third week (Aberdeen), commencing 9 April: Mon Fledermaus; Tue Cav & Pag; Wed Carmen; Thu Faust; Fri Barber; Sat mat Fledermaus; Sat eve Maritana.

Fourth week (Edinburgh), commencing 16 April: Mon Fledermaus; Tue Carmen; Wed Don Giovanni; Thu Fledermaus; Fri Barber; Sat mat Faust; Sat eve Maritana.

or this Carmen the short-lived conductor Leslie Heward is notable - he had previously conducted BNOC and was closely associated with the Hallé Orchestra. Redvers Llewellyn and Howell Glynne both had major post-war careers and can here be seen being promoted to more important roles.

Cast details for Wednesday 4 April, are drawn from a programme in the Gardiner Collection (Mitchell Library) which also includes the following evening's Don Giovanni.

There were two performances of that venerable double boll, Cav and Pag. Eight other operas were presented during the tour.

Performance Cast

Moralès a corporal of dragoons

Charles Draper

Micaëla a peasant girl

Pauline Maunder

Don José a corporal of dragoons

Godfrey Stirling

Zuniga a lieutenant of dragoons

Howell Glynne

Carmen a gypsy

Betty Thompson

Frasquita a gypsy, Carmen’s friend

Hilary Davies

Mercédès a gypsy, Carmen’s friend

Monica Sweeney

Escamillo a toreador

Redvers Llewellyn

Dancaïre a smuggler

Kingsley Lark

Remendado a smuggler

Gwilym Jones

Performance DatesCarmen 1934

Map List

Theatre Royal, Glasgow | Glasgow

29 Mar, 19.30 4 Apr, 19.30

Her Majesty's Theatre, Aberdeen | Aberdeen

11 Apr, 19.30

King's Theatre, Edinburgh | Edinburgh

17 Apr, 19.30

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