[Met Performance] CID:2090
Don Giovanni {9} National Theater, Washington, D.C.: 02/28/1884.

(Review)


Washington, D.C.
National Theater
February 28, 1884


DON GIOVANNI {9}

Don Giovanni............Giuseppe Kaschmann
Leporello...............Giovanni Mirabella
Donna Anna..............Emmy Fursch-Madi
Don Ottavio.............Roberto Stagno
Donna Elvira............Alwina Valleria
Leporello...............Giovanni Mirabella
Zerlina.................Sofia Scalchi
Masetto.................Baldassare Corsini
Commendatore............Achille Augier

Conductor...............Auguste Vianesi

Review:

AMUSEMENTS.

"DON GIOVANNI" by the Abbey Troupe - Mozart's fine old tragic-comic work renewed its youth at the National theatre last night; and it was such a rejuvenance as those who had the good fortune to be present can hardly hope to witness again. This may seem the thoughtless expression of a glowing enthusiasm, but it is really and merely the statement of a cold, critical fact. In every part the opera was revivified and lived out, if the expression be allowable, with a warmth of coloring and force of spirited yet temperate action to which it would be vain to take exception. The artists caught the real antique spirit, humorous or serious, of their rôles, and the dramatic excellence of the performance was but by little less excellent than the superb vocal rendering of the classically beautiful score. The triumph of the evening belonged to Mme. Scalchi whose Zerlina is only less admirable than her Arsase because it is essentially less of a rôle. Her first appearance was greeted with round after round of applause and, not withstanding an evident reluctance, she was forced to repeat all of her solo numbers and, in fact, nearly every concerted number in which her stirring voice was heard. There was the usual chilly air about stage and auditorium during the [first] scenes, but from the moment Mme. Scalchi's honest voice was heard amid the peasant chorus all went with spirit and éclat. The "La ci darem" duet with Don Giovanni (Signor Kaschmann) was widely redemanded; as too, the "Batti, battti" in the second act, and of course, that gem of the opera, "Vedrai carino." The Elvira of Mme. Alwina Valleria was a most charming assumption, dramatically full of artistic grace and sung with great beauty of sympathetic expression and in unexceptionable style. Particularly sweet was the window terzet's the [beginning] of which were given with a purity, justness of intonation and depth of feeling that could not well be excelled. Mme. Fursch-Madi's rendering of the part of Donna Anna was even more striking than last year. She gave the "Or sai chi l'onore" with real grandeur of vocal effect. Signor Kaschmann as Don Giovanni greatly increased the favorable impression he made in "Lucia." He acted the part with engaging abandon and easy gallantry while his score was sung with spirit, accuracy and brilliancy. The canzonette called out genuine enthusiasm and had to be repeated. At the end of the second act the septette was grandly sung and the curtain was rung up in answer to the applause. Signor Kaschmann makes as fine a Don Giovanni as ever went to the devil. In the person of Signor Mirabella, who last night made his first appearance here in the character of Leporello, the audience made a most entertaining acquaintance. He is a capital comedian and possesses a voice of rare power. His aria in the first act was given with care and abundant spirit and was warmly applauded. Signor Cortini as Masetto and Signor Augier as Il Commandatore completed this admirable cast in a satisfactory manner. The audience, while not large, was thoroughly appreciative.



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