[Met Performance] CID:53820
Il Trovatore {96} Metropolitan Opera House: 04/3/1912.

(Debut: Sarah Charles-Cahier
Review)


Metropolitan Opera House
April 3, 1912


IL TROVATORE {96}
Giuseppe Verdi--Salvatore Cammarano

Manrico.................Riccardo Martin
Leonora.................Johanna Gadski
Count Di Luna...........Dinh Gilly
Azucena.................Sarah Charles-Cahier [Debut]
Ferrando................Giulio Rossi
Ines....................Emma Borniggia
Ruiz....................Pietro Audisio
Gypsy...................Vincenzo Reschiglian

Conductor...............Giuseppe Sturani

Unsigned review in the Evening Globe

Mrs. Charles Cahier, an American woman who for several years has held the position of first contralto at the imperial Opera of Vienna, is adding a spice of novelty to the last days of the Metropolitan season, by singing twice in opera there. The first of these appearances, and also her first appearance in opera in America, occurred last night as Azucena, in "Il Trovatore." Although new to her native land in opera, Mrs. Cahier is by no means unknown here as a singer. Before she went abroad for operatic study, when she was still Mrs. Morris Black, she had something of a career in concert, and is remembered by many who heard her in those days.

It is a pleasure to record that the impression she made on her return last evening was distinctly good. Her voice is not large in volume, and it would be possible to picks flaws in it, but in general her singing last night was marked by considerable technical skill and rare musicianship and artistic intelligence. The unsteadiness which appeared in her tones at first, whether due to nervousness or to an intentional use of the vibrato, soon vanished entirely. In particular her upper tones are admirably placed and of very beautiful quality. In color, nuance, and feeling for the phrase her singing of Azucena's music has perhaps been equaled here only once in many years -on the occasion when Mrs. Schumann-Heink sang the part at the Manhattan Opera House. And yet intelligent as was Mrs. Cahier's singing, her intelligence did not obtrude itself disagreeably. There was no distracting thought of the lesson conscientiously learned and faithfully repeated. The appearance of spontaneity was there, and no little native fire.

Dramatically Mrs. Calder was admirable. Some women have foolishly attempted to make Azucena young and alluring. Mrs. Cahier, though most picturesque in appearance did nothing of the sort. She dwelt, as she should, on he conflicting passions of the aging gypsy woman, her consuming desire for revenge and her intense maternal love. Altogether it was a singularly vivid and artistic impersonation. A large audience applauded Mrs. Cahier warmly. Her appearance as Amneris in "Aida" at the Friday matinče next week is awaited with lively anticipation.

Otherwise the performance of "Il Trovatore" does not invite to extended comment. Mr. Gilly sang deplorably as the Conte di Luna. Rumor had it that he was suffering from a cold, but no official announcement was made to that effect and he unwisely tried to sing "Il balen." Official announcement did greet the incoming audience that owing to the indisposition of Mr. Slezak Mr. Martin would sing Manrico, which he did much as he has on previous occasions. There were moments of great beauty in Mme. Gadski's singing of Leonora, but the part is far from being among her best. Sturani did not add to the joys of the evening by his rigid, listless, uninteresting conducting.



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