[Met Performance] CID:14130
Carmen {56} Metropolitan Opera House: 01/30/1895.

(Review)


Metropolitan Opera House
January 30, 1895


CARMEN {56}

Carmen..................Zélie de Lussan
Don José................Giuseppe Russitano
Micaela.................Emma Eames
Escamillo...............Edouard de Reszke
Frasquita...............Mathilde Bauermeister
Mercédès................Marie Van Cauteren
Remendado...............Antonio Rinaldini
Dancaïre................Agostino Carbone
Zuniga..................Lodovico Viviani
Moralès.................Victor De Gromzeski
Dance...................Maria Giuri

Conductor...............Enrico Bevignani

Director................William Parry


Unsigned review, paper unknown:

Carmen at the Metropolitan Opera

Rather a dreary performance of "Carmen" took place in the Metropolitan last evening. The audience was discouraged at the very entrance by large posters announcing that owing to the indisposition of both Mlle. Heller and Jean de Reszke the roles of Carmen and Don José would be sung by Mlle. de Lussan and Signor Russitano. The real truth of the matter was, however, that Jean de Resezke alone was ill, and that Miss Heller having rehearsed with him in French was unwilling to make a first appearance in an important role with a tenor quite incompetent to act the part of Don José and who sings it in Italian. Miss Heller is said to have an exceedingly high estimate of her own capabilities as well as a strong inclination to assert her rights and to fight for them. In this case, at all events, there seems good reason for her insistence not to hamper her efforts with such a weak dramatic partner as Signor Russitano, who is vocally as well as physically absolutely unfitted for this great part which he undertook last evening with a perfectly unsatisfactory result. Miss Heller suffered on her first appearance in New York from being associated with Signor Nouvelli, who made a complete fiasco in "Mignon." Her experience on this occasion justifies her in defending herself from similar mortification or detriment.

And so it happened, as before mentioned, that last evening was a dull one at the Opera House. The audience sat in grim silence even between the acts, and there was only the solace of the piquant strains of "Carmen" coming from the orchestra, but not too well played, and the impressive Toreador of Edouard de Reszke, whose presence on the stage was even more welcome than usual on account of the dearth of attraction there. Mlle. de Lussan is not a competent or attractive Carmen. Repeated performances go to confirm the first judgment that she has no idea of the true meaning of the character, and it is doubtful if she has sufficient histrionic talent to act the role cleverly, even if she were able to imagine a veritable Carmen. Miss Eames made a charming Micaela.



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