[Met Performance] CID:58380
New production
Euryanthe {5} Matinee ed. Metropolitan Opera House: 12/19/1914.

(Review)


Metropolitan Opera House
December 19, 1914 Matinee

New production

EURYANTHE {5}
Carl Maria von Weber--Helmina von Chézy

Euryanthe...............Frieda Hempel
Adolar..................Johannes Sembach
Eglantine...............Margarete Ober
Lysiart.................Hermann Weil
Ludwig..................Arthur Middleton
Bertha..................Mabel Garrison
Rudolph.................Max Bloch
Dance...................Rosina Galli

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

Director................Loomis Taylor
Set Designer............Hans Kautsky
Costume Designer........Georg Heil

Euryanthe received six performances this season.

[The program for the premiere did not list Rosina Galli as ballerina, though she was announced to dance in advance cast lists. She presumably appeared in this performance as she did at all subsequent performances of Euryanthe this season.]


From the review of Richard Aldrich in The New York Times

"Euryanthe" owes a large share of its success achieved yesterday to the superb performance given it. Mr. Toscanini had worked out the fullest dramatic effects in his study of the opera. He conducted with tireless energy and a burning enthusiasm, and his execution of it filled it with life, passion, poetry, rhythmic vigor, and beautifully modulated orchestral color from beginning to end. And it is, no doubt, owing partly to his insistence that the declamatory and melodramatic recitative so abundant in the opera was presented with so fine a musical as well as declamatory effect.

The cast was admirably composed. Miss Hempel made a remarkably fine Euryanthe, and her impersonation deserves to be put down among the very best she has offered to New York. She alone commanded in sufficient measure not only the dramatic but the florid element in Weber's music, the union of which makes much of it so difficult. In beauty of voice and in the ingenuous and pathetic significance of her acting she was wholly admirable. It is not easy to recall more beautiful or expressive singing than her revelation of Emma's "secret" to Eglantine.

Eglantine is a "dramatic" part, and Mme. Ober did not overlook the fact. Much of her representation was very fine; some of it was overdone and tore the passion to tatters. Her dramatic intensity, too, sometimes got the better of her singing, to its manifest disadvantage, and her technique did not prove equal to singing properly the difficult florid passages that are given her in the overwrought scenes of the second act.

Mr. Sembach made a chivalrous and knightly figure of Adolar-his singing had much beauty in many passages, both in restrained and in full voice-more beauty and more style than many German tenors have been able to offer. The black and beetle-browed Lysiart of Mr. Weil was intelligent in a melodramatic conception, and there were numerous well-executed touches in his action. He sang some of the music well, especially the declamatory parts, but he too, found difficulties in some of the florid music. Mr. Middleton had no chance to emerge from the most conventional attributes of operatic kingship. His singing was acceptable.

The chorus earned special praise by the flexibility, power and well-modulated pianissimos of its singing. There was a scenic setting for the opera of real beauty and appropriateness; the hall in the royal castle in the first scene is especially rich; the rocky pass of the last act and the castle garden and the open space in front of the castle in different ways show fine and picturesque landscape effects. And there should be mention of the rich costuming of the chorus.



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