[Met Performance] CID:23030
Aida {48} Metropolitan Opera House: 01/3/1900.

(Review)


Metropolitan Opera House
January 3, 1900


AIDA {48}
Giuseppe Verdi--Antonio Ghislanzoni

Aida....................Emma Eames
Radamès.................Albert Alvarez
Amneris.................Eugenia Mantelli
Amonasro................Antonio Scotti
Ramfis..................Pol Plançon
King....................Lempriere Pringle
Messenger...............Roberto Vanni
Priestess...............Mathilde Bauermeister
Dance...................unknown

Conductor...............Luigi Mancinelli

Unsigned review in The New York Times

MME. EAMES MAKES HER AIDA DEBUT

Successfully Appears for the First Time in her Career as Verdi's Heroine

IS CHARMING IN THE ROLE

Voice, Personal Beauty and Artistic Costumes Combine to Make the Occasion Noteworthy

ALVAREZ AND SCOTTI SING

There was so much that was novel in the performance of "Aida," at the Metropolitan Opera House last night that the occasion had somewhat the air of a premiere for Verdi's chef d'oeuvre itself.

To begin with, Mme. Eames made her first appearance in her artistic career in the title rôle. Furthermore, M. Alvarez and Signor Scotti were heard for the first time in this city as Radames and Amonasro. The score had been gone over carefully by Signor Mancinelli and Verdi's original dynamic marks, which successive conductors had changed to suit the whims of various singers, restored. Then, too, the scenery had been touched up.

But of course the feature of chief importance was Mme. Eames' premiere as Aida. She added a most successful rôle to her repertoire. Not the least charming trait in her performance was her own attractive personal appearance, enhanced by extremely artistic costumes. The blue costume in the Nile scene almost seemed to fade away into the moonlight and her beauty made Rhadames' treason toward his country wholly explicable. Altogether, her Aida is fascinating.

Despite the strain which a first appearance in so exacting a role imposes, Mme. Eames, especially after the first act, showed little evidence of nervousness. In the great scene at the end of the second act her voice penetrated through the ensemble; she sang the "O' Mia Patria" (sic) exquisitely and admirably sustained her part in the duet with Rhadames in the Nile scene.

M. Alvarez, as the hero, again showed a fine stage presence and, again, while lacking beauty of sustained phrasing in lyric phrases, such as the "Celeste Aida," was full of force and fire in the more passionate episodes. This was especially the case in the Nile scene duet.

Signor Scotti's Amonasro was a picturesque personation-agile in movement and gesture, mobile in facial expression and vocally fully adequate.

Mme. Mantelli sang the rôle of Amneris with dramatic breadth and M. Plançon was a sonorous and dignified Ramfls.


Photograph of Emma Eames as Aida by Aimé Dupont.



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