[Met Performance] CID:101240
Il Barbiere di Siviglia {140} American Academy of Music, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: 01/29/1929.

(Review)


Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
January 29, 1929


IL BARBIERE DI SIVIGLIA {140}

Figaro..................Titta Ruffo
Rosina..................Amelita Galli-Curci
Count Almaviva..........Armand Tokatyan
Dr. Bartolo.............Pompilio Malatesta
Don Basilio.............Ezio Pinza
Berta...................Henriette Wakefield
Fiorello................Vincenzo Reschiglian
Sergeant................Giordano Paltrinieri

Conductor...............Giuseppe Bamboschek

Review (unsigned) in the Philadelphia Inquirer

ROSSINI'S FIGARO WITH TITTA RUFFO

'The Barber of Seville' by the Metropolitan at the Academy

Galli-Curci is Rosina and Other Parts Are All Well Taken

Even the genius of Mozart has not eclipsed Rossini's version of the adventures of the irrepressible Figaro. In fact, the later work is the oftener given, perhaps, because it makes less heavy demands on the singers than "Le Nozze di Figaro." It is a favorite with the public and the crowded house at the Academy of Music last evening evidently enjoyed the performance to the utmost, in spite of the long stretches of recitative secco, which seem dry, indeed, to ears accustomed to modern orchestration. But the lively comedy has its own interest and such airs as the composer chose to write for it are graceful and charming.

There is not much that can be said about either opera or performance. The cast offered by the Metropolitan company was a good one. Titta Ruffo deserves first mention. His Figaro is an excellent characterization, with more subtlety than we are wont to expect from him, and with an almost complete absence of the mere buffoonery to which a comic role tempts. Mr. Ruffo was in better voice than when he was heard here last. Mme. Galli-Curci was the Rosina, a part which she plays with all the ease of familiarity. But her stage presence is not impressive and her singing last evening was below the standard we expect from her. The coloratura passages were somewhat slurred and at times her notes seemed hard and dry.

Mr. Tokatyan as Almaviva improved as the evening went on and Mr. Pinza as Don Basilio drew upon the rich resources of his excellent basso. Mr. Malatesta showed the true comic spirit as Dr. Bartolo. But why did he drop for a moment into English? Messrs. Reschiglian and Paltrinieri were competent in their respective roles and Miss Wakefield's one solo brought forth applause. Mr. Bamboschek was the conductor. Next week comes "Madama Butterfly."



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