[Met Performance] CID:140250
Roméo et Juliette {181} Metropolitan Opera House: 12/19/1945.

(Review)


Metropolitan Opera House
December 19, 1945


ROMÉO ET JULIETTE {181}

Roméo...................Raoul Jobin
Juliette................Dorothy Kirsten
Frère Laurent...........Nicola Moscona
Stéphano................Frances Greer
Mercutio................Hugh Thompson
Benvolio................Richard Manning
Gertrude................Anna Kaskas
Capulet.................Frank Valentino
Tybalt..................Thomas Hayward
Pâris...................George Cehanovsky
Grégorio................Louis D'Angelo
Duke of Verona..........Osie Hawkins

Conductor...............Emil Cooper

Review signed T. P, in the Musical Leader

Kirsten as Juliette

The second performance of "Romeo et Juliette" on December 19 had a major change in cast. Dorothy Kirsten sang the ill-fated Capulet heroine for the first time with the company, in a voice that was in turn warm, tender, dramatic, though the Waltz Song in the first act fell short of the florid effects with which this aria can be invested. Miss Kirsten's appearance and interpretation were splendid.

Raoul Jobin was an excellent Romeo who, though never transfigured by inspiration, was convincingly real and human beyond what is generally expected of the somewhat stylized role. Anna Kaskas, the Gertrude, was not the subtle character of Shakespeare's concept, but why need she be in this divergent version of the Elizabethan drama? She made a new and probably much more acceptable character of the part, small as it is. Mercutio was sung by Hugh Thompson, in lieu of Martial Singher (programmed but indisposed), with considerable verve and much tonal beauty. Nicola Moscona dignified and impressive in acting, was a melodious Friar Laurent. Thomas Hayward, the Tybalt, was sincere and much more than adequate. Francesco Valentino, an authoritative if not particularly well costumed Capulet, and Osie Hawkins, a tonally and histrionically commanding Duke.

The settings were handsome, the costumes and their groupings in the massed scenes colorful, and the chorus sounded and behaved admirably. There was also some incidental dancing, not exceptional. All through the evening, Emil Cooper, who conducted, held the entire opera on a generally high level.



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