Opera Scotland

Madam Butterfly 1923Carl Rosa Opera Company

Read more about the opera Madama Butterfly

For full details of the Royal Carl Rosa's 1923 Scottish tour, see under the entries for AïdaMaritanaLohengrinCarmen, Tales of Hoffmann or Bohemian Girl.

No complete cast details for any of the Butterfly performances have been confirmed as yet. The Glasgow Herald's notice of the first Glasgow performance on Wednesday, 21 February highlights the quality of the staging:- ''This has been in the past one of the most generally satisfying of the Carl Rosa productions, and the very good performance offered last evening was well up to the standard. The opera commended itself particularly on this occasion by reason of the beauty and brightness of the opening scene. It was good to leave the slushy streets of Glasgow for the sunny slopes of Nagasaki, even if only for an hour or two.''

The second Herald review, of the Tuesday, 14 March performance, is brief but enthusiastic, again limiting itself to four singers and the conductor. While the Aberdeen Press & Journal notice  on Saturday 7 April is even more enthusiastic it still mentions only the four leads by name. - ''The favourable impression which the Carl Rosa Company have made during the week was deepened last night by a remarkably fine performance of Madam Butterfly. The opera was splendidly sung, and acted with real power, but these features did not wholly account for the enthusiasm which the performance aroused. The orchestra, under Mr Paul Kochs, achieved almost as good a triumph as Miss Turner, who played the title-part. It is a curious thing that Puccini's music, which is supposed to be mainly popular in its appeal, seems to inspire conductors and their orchestras with a greater confidence and affection than the masterpieces of classical or modern composers........From the opening of the second act to the final tragedy Miss Turner goes from strength to strength, acting and singing with rare emotional power. In her singing one feels that it is still sometimes prone to exalt the note at the expense of the word and let out her big voice on a grateful phrase, whether the sense and sentiment demand it or not. Her climaxes are magnificent; they ring out superbly over the orchestra...........Mr Perry's Pinkerton we know as a breezy and engaging picture of the ideal sailor. He gains our sympathy to such an extent that we do not blame him for exercising the proverbial prerogative of the sailor. Mr Perry's singing is as easy and free and enjoyable as his acting, and he makes a fine show in the love duet.''

Company information is from a programme for w/c 5 March in the collection of the V&A, London.

Performance Cast

Lieut. F B Pinkerton U S Navy

Ben Williams (Feb 21; Mar 13)

John Perry (Apr 6)

Suzuki Cio-Cio-San's servant

Gladys Parr (Feb 21; Mar 13; Apr 6)

Sharpless U S Consul in Nagasaki

Appleton Moore (Feb 21)

Booth Hitchen (Mar 13; Apr 6)

Cio-Cio-San known as Madam Butterfly

Eva Turner (Feb 21; Mar 13; Apr 6)

Performance DatesMadam Butterfly 1923

Map List

Theatre Royal, Glasgow | Glasgow

21 Feb, 19.15 13 Mar, 19.15

His Majesty's Theatre, Aberdeen | Aberdeen

6 Apr, 19.15

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