[Met Performance] CID:6320
Euryanthe {2} Metropolitan Opera House: 12/28/1887.

(Review)


Metropolitan Opera House
December 28, 1887

EURYANTHE {2}
Carl Maria von Weber--Helmina von Chézy

Euryanthe...............Lilli Lehmann
Adolar..................Max Alvary
Eglantine...............Marianne Brandt
Lysiart.................Emil Fischer
Ludwig..................Johannes Elmblad
Bertha..................Minnie Dilthey
Rudolph.................not performed
Dance...................Theodora De Gillert

Conductor...............Anton Seidl

Unsigned review in The New York Times

METROPOLITAN OPERA HOUSE.

The second performance of "Euryanthe" at the Metropolitan Opera House last evening was attended by an audience of goodly numbers. There can now be no question that Weber's noble music and Fran Von Chezy's picturesque but somewhat irrational personages will be brought forward frequently in the course of the season. The opera was received last night with abundant evidence of public approval. Not only do the more devoted lovers of music in the orchestra and upper circles show that they are pleased, but the occupants of the boxes are not backward in applauding the more striking passages of the work. It is unnecessary to review the merits of the opera, which were noted after its first performance; but it is easily perceived that they impress themselves more firmly on the mind with repetition. A work that can live with a man and grow upon him, that does not reveal a lack of depth through close intimacy, is one which possesses the elements of a masterpiece. It is a good thing that Weber is to be known better than he has been in this country. Musicians have always looked to him as a master, and as the forerunner of Wagner he has an especial interest at this time, when serious students of music are given to seeking for the lines along which the tone art is to make vital progress. The revelation of a masterwork is a worthy enterprise, and for this the management of the Metropolitan Opera House deserves hearty commendation. It is said that "Euryanthe" was presented in this city many years ago, but there does not seem to be any authentic record of the production. If there was such a performance it is forgotten now, and does not detract from the credit due the present revival. There is one thing which detracts from the general enjoyment of the opera at the Metropolitan. That is the continual warfare between the orchestra and the boxes on the subject of conversation. Like most questions in this world, this has two elites. The stockholders built and maintain the opera house and they have undeniably the right to derive as much pleasure as possible from the fruits of their enterprise. Through their social position they are enabled by their countenance at performances to make German opera fashionable, and this is not a matter to be lightly considered. That they make the opera house a social resort is by no means so heinous a proceeding as some persons seem to deem it, and a social resort cannot thrive under a reign of unbroken dumbness. But on the other hand it is unlikely that the stockholders would undertake the expense of maintaining the opera for their own edification solely without the substantial aid of that part of the audience which does not occupy boxes. They cannot, then, expect an assembly of persons, three-fourths of whom are drawn to the opera house by the pure love of music, to pay a large sum of money nightly for the privilege of listening to the conversation of the stockholders' families and friends. This seems to be fairly an opportunity for the exercise of mutual forbearance. The people in the orchestra stalls should not cry "Hush" on the slightest provocation, and the stockholders will not have opera where they cannot talk at all. On the other hand, the general public will not tolerate constant interruption of its pleasure by immoderately pitched conversation. No one objects to talk which is not too loud, if the occupants of the boxes will bear that in mind, neither they nor their valuable friends is the other parts of the house will be annoyed. To refer to last night's representation, it is only necessary to say that Fräulein Lehmann, Fräulein Brandt, Herr Alvary, Herr Fischer, and Herr Elmblad repeated their former good work and that a warm and inspiriting performance was the result.



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