[Met Performance] CID:71400
La Forza del Destino {7} Academy of Music, Brooklyn, New York: 03/8/1919.

(Review)


Brooklyn, New York
Academy of Music
March 8, 1919


LA FORZA DEL DESTINO {7}
Giuseppe Verdi--Francesco Maria Piave

Leonora.................Rosa Ponselle
Don Alvaro..............Enrico Caruso
Don Carlo...............Luigi Montesanto
Padre Guardiano.........Josť Mardones
Preziosilla.............Alice Gentle [Last performance]
Fra Melitone............Thomas Chalmers
Marquis de Calatrava....Louis D'Angelo
Curra...................Marie Mattfeld
Mayor...................Paolo Ananian
Trabuco.................Giordano Paltrinieri
Surgeon.................Vincenzo Reschiglian
Dance...................Rosina Galli
Dance...................Giuseppe Bonfiglio

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


Review in the Brooklyn Eagle:

The performance last evening went without a hitch and for the most part along the familiar lines of former performances in Manhattan. Caruso did not sing as well as on other occasions. Perhaps the nervousness of his second marriage - that in St. Patrick's Cathedral during the afternoon - may have had something to do with the state of his voice. However, the lapse from form affected only the sensitive ears. To the bulk of the audience the singing was that of Caruso - the king can do no wrong. And only critics can cat-like look at the King of Song.

Ponselle's Rare Voice and Art

Ponselle as Leonora, revealed for the first time her rare art to a Brooklyn audience. She was not in the best of voice in the early part of the evening and had considerable difficulty with her top tones. But as the opera progressed the difficulties disappeared as if by magic and she delivered the prayer in the final scene with striking beauty of tone and finish of dramatic delivery. More and more this young American who a year ago was singing in vaudeville proves herself the find of years.

Montesanto was a poor substitute for De Luca. He had trouble in maintaining the pitch and frequently indulged in a disagreeable tremolo. But offstanding his singing was that of the recently returned Gentle and the sonorous Mardones. D'Angelo sang the Marquis, a role usually entrusted to Rossi, while his regular role, that of the Alcada, was filled most acceptably by Ananian.

Thomas Chalmers repeated his entertaining portrayal of the buffo role of Melitone. As has been pointed out a number of times in these columns Chalmers has succeeded in giving verisimilitude to a kind of role that by its very nature has been believed to be the arbitrary right of the Italian singer. He makes the part amusing, which is the "ne plus ultra" of buffo singing.

Rosina Galli Bonfiglio, and the ballet contributed their customary choreographic share to the performance. The chorus fulfilled its arduous duties as well as ever, and the entire performance moved with spirit under Papi's direction.



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