[Met Performance] CID:68290
Madame Sans-Gêne {17} Matinee ed. Metropolitan Opera House: 03/2/1918.

(Review)


Metropolitan Opera House
March 2, 1918 Matinee


MADAME SANS-GÊNE {17}
U. Giordano-Simoni

Caterina................Geraldine Farrar
Lefêbvre................Giovanni Martinelli
Napoleonê...............Pasquale Amato
Neipperg................Paul Althouse
Fouché..................Andrés De Segurola
Carolina................Vera Curtis
Elisa...................Minnie Egener
Brigode.................Vincenzo Reschiglian
Toniotta................Lenora Sparkes
Giulia..................Rita Fornia
La Rossa................Marie Mattfeld
Vinaigre................Max Bloch
Despréaux...............Angelo Badà
Gelsomino...............Pompilio Malatesta
Leroy...................Robert Leonhardt
Roustan.................Louis D'Angelo
Undesignated role.......Cecil Arden

Conductor...............Gennaro Papi

Director................Richard Ordynski
Set designer............Antonio Rovescalli
Costume designer........Caramba

Madame Sans-Gêne received three performances this season.

Unsigned review in unidentified New York newspaper

"Madame Sans-Gêne" was sung yesterday afternoon at the Metropolitan for the first time this season. "Madame Sans-Gêne" contains three good tunes, Napoleon Bonaparte and Mme. Geraldine Farrar.

The three tunes appear in the first act; they are the "Carmagnole," "Caira," and the "Marsaillaise." They were not written by Signor Giordano.

Napoleon Bonaparte appears in the last act; Mme. Geraldine Farrar in all three. This Napoleon Boneparte is the creation of Sardou. Mme. Geraldine Farrar is the creation of herself. As for Signor Giordano, his part in the opera consists in the furnishing of excellently made, and completely uninspired music which is without character and without charm. Beside "Madame San-Gêne" "Andrea Chenier" is a masterpiece.

Yet a large audience seemed satisfied - which proves that, given a well-constructed libretto, filled with comedy, and singing actors and actresses competent to play that comedy, an opera may succeed by forgetting the music. So let us thank Sardou, and Napoleon and the Tricolor, and Mme. Geraldine Farrar, and Mr. Bada, and Mr. Segurola and Mr. Martinelli, and Mr. Amato, for the pleasant afternoon. Signor Giordano's part was lost in the shuffle.

Mme. Farrar has improved in her Caterina Hubscher. It is truer, less burlesqued, than in its first season. In the second act she now gets her laughs legitimately. We believe in her reality. As for her singing, it was not better and no worse than it has been before this season. Mr. Martinelli is a virile figure as Lefèbre, though he is always Mr. Martinelli. He, too, was not in his best voice. Mr. Amato gives of Napoleon a memorable impersonation, though, of course, he conceives it along conventional lines. Vocally he followed the lead set by Mme. Farrar and failed to be in good voice.

In many respects the most satisfactory performance of the afternoon was the dancing master, Despreux, of Angelo Bada. Mr. Bada as an artist knows no superior in the Metropolitan Opera Company today. Lack of voice forces him into the background, when as a musician and an actor he is of the very first rank. It is time that more be said of him than has been the case in the past. Three-fourths of the singers of the company could go to school to him. Mr. Segurola, always an interesting artist, was excellent as Fouché, and Miss Minnie Egener's radiant beauty made us believe in the power of the distaff side of the house of Boneparte. Mr. Papi conducted with vigor and authority.



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