[Met Performance] CID:46030
Otello {30} Metropolitan Opera House: 01/6/1910.

(Review)


Metropolitan Opera House
January 6, 1910


OTELLO {30}
Giuseppe Verdi--Arrigo Boito

Otello..................Leo Slezak
Desdemona...............Frances Alda
Iago....................Pasquale Amato
Emilia..................Florence Wickham
Cassio..................Angelo Badà
Lodovico................Andrés De Segurola
Montàno.................Vincenzo Reschiglian
Roderigo................Pietro Audisio
Herald..................Bernard Bégué

Conductor...............Arturo Toscanini

Review of W. J. Henderson in the Sun

MUSIC AND MUSICIANS

SLEZAK IN 'OTELLO'

The Natural Successor of Jean de Reszke Triumphs in a Special Part on the Operatic Stage in Spite of Long DramaticTraditions

Mr. Leo Slezak appeared again as Otello at the Metropolitan last night in Verdi's opera, and made the same powerful impression as before. It would be unfair to his contemporaries on the lyric stage to say that he has made the parts impossible for them, but it would not be unfair to say that he has made it difficult, very difficult. For it is a fact that when you have seen and heard him you get an impression that you know will be permanent and exclusive.

This singer, who seems destined to attain the very first place among musical dramatic artists, is the natural successor of Jean de Reszke. Like that mighty Pole he has a powerful personality that fills the eye and stimulates the imagination. It was as much the personality as the consummate art that enabled de Reszke to triumph when his voice had been failing for long. Mr. Slezak is but coming to his prime. The future is all before him. He will leave his mark deep on New York musical history.

It may be that we pay too much attention to the dramatic side of opera. And again it may not. In the case of Mr. Slezak, as in that of Miss Garden, it cannot be denied that there is no suggestion of the stupidity of opera. Brains come in. And when you add to brains a great voice you have got what Wagner dreamed of mostly in vain.

To take a great special part, like that of Otello, with its traditions on the other stage, and keep it great on the musical stage, is an exploit of significance. This Mr. Slezak does. With him the progress of jealousy is subtly, powerfully, pathetically, indicated. The fury of this giant, infected by foul and plausible lies, is as terrible as his determination as a stealthy murderer. Mr. Amato shared the honors deservedly as Iago, and Mr. Toscanini conducted with his usual animation and finish.



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