[Met Performance] CID:7240
Aida {5} Metropolitan Opera House: 02/20/1889.

(Review)


Metropolitan Opera House
February 20, 1889
In German


AIDA {5}
Giuseppe Verdi--Antonio Ghislanzoni

Aida....................Marie Schröder-Hanfstängl
Radamès.................Julius Perotti
Amneris.................Fanny Moran-Olden
Amonasro................Adolf Robinson
Ramfis..................Emil Fischer
King....................Karl Mühe
Messenger...............Albert Mittelhauser
Priestess...............Hedwig Reil
Dance...................Etiènne Vergé
Dance...................Miss Louie
Dance...................Josefine Ambroggio

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

Director................Theodore Habelmann
Set Designer............Henry E. Hoyt
Costume Designer........Carl Schäffel

Aida received three performances in German this season.

Unsigned review in The New York Times

METROPOLITAN OPERA HOUSE.

The revival of "Aida" at the Metropolitan Opera House was on what the spectacular theatres would announce as a "scale of unparalleled magnificence." The scenery may not have been altogether new, and probably was not; but that which was not new had been retouched till it looked new, and the whole of the scenic attire was brilliant in color, Egyptian in general aspect, and massive in effect.

The costumes and properties were on the same scale. The dresses were dazzling in variety and gorgeousness, though perhaps not always perfect in detail. The crocodiles, lions, storks, and other effigies carried in the grand procession were glittering with gilt and tin foil, and there were dozens of fine standards. In the grand finale of the second act the stage was literally jammed with people attired as never was Solomon in all his glory. The brass band did its duty nobly, and the six long Egyptian trumpets, even of which Drysdale in "Tom Brown at Oxford" would have christened a "yard of tin," were excellently played. Indeed, the entire opera was put on in a manner which showed that the stockholders of the Opera House are not afraid to spend money in a good cause, and we regard the revival of this notably fine opera as an exceedingly good cause.

As for the performance, it was worthy of much praise, and also of some condemnation. The first act went without any spirit whatever, and there was no touch of warmth until the duo between Amneris and Aida. After that the performance had generally more life, though a good deal more feeling might have been put into it without much exertion. Frau Schröder-Hanfstängl's voice is undoubtedly much worn, and her sustaining power is impaired. Her singing of Aida suffered consequently, though she frequently achieved no small amount of effect by careful husbandry of her resources and judicious exercise of her powers. She looked tolerably well in the make-up and her acting was dignified and sensible.

Frau Moran-Olden was a very good Amneris, her extensive voice enabling her to sing the music as it is written. She was full of dramatic force, and her singing was generally on the key. Her impersonation was, on the whole, highly commendable. Herr Perotti was a good Radames, singing with all the vigor of his powerful voice. Herr Robinson was the Amonasro, a rôle for which he is particularly well fitted. He acted and sang with great intensity. Herr Fischer was the Ramfis, and Herr Muche a very bad King. The chorus and orchestra were passably good, but it must be admitted that other conductors have far excelled Hcrr Seidl in bringing out the beauties of the score.



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