[Met Performance] CID:82490
Samson et Dalila {43} Metropolitan Opera House: 12/21/1922.

(Review)


Metropolitan Opera House
December 21, 1922


SAMSON ET DALILA {43}

Samson..................Giovanni Martinelli
Dalila..................Margarete Matzenauer
High Priest.............Giuseppe De Luca
Abimélech...............Paolo Ananian
Old Hebrew..............Léon Rothier
Philistine..............Pietro Audisio
Philistine..............Vincenzo Reschiglian
Messenger...............Giordano Paltrinieri
Dance...................Lilyan Ogden

Conductor...............Louis Hasselmans

Review of W. J. Henderson in the Herald

Mme. Matzenauer Gorgeous Dalila in Saint-Saens Opera

Martinelli as Samson Goes Lamblike to Doom Before Siren

The performance of Saint-Saens's opera "Samson et Dalila" at the Metropolitan Opera House last evening had some features which must properly be regarded as items of interest. Mme. Margaret Matzenauer, the distinguished Austrian prima donna soprano e contralto, was, as usual, the impersonator of the famous siren who overthrew the virtue of Samson and caused him eventually to overthrow the walls of Gaza. Mme. Matzenauer disclosed a new and regal garb for her Isolde, but all the princesses in Ireland never got together such gorgeousness as the prima donna found for her Dalila last evening. Lord Carnarvon has discovered that Egyptians had some jewels, but the Philistines last evening produced a lady with crown diamonds that would have made any Miss Pharaoh ill with envy. The whole costume too - what there was of it - was new and splendid.

Mr. Martinelli as Samson had no chance from the moment the lady began to promenade around him and murmur things about love's young spring. Hergesheimer's "Cytherea" claimed him for her own and he went lamblike to his doom. No one was astonished to see him grinding corn in the third act. Mr. de Luca as the High Priest, Mr. Rothier as the would-be fire preventive old Hebrew, and Mr. Ananian as the early slaughtered Abimelech were also in the cast.

There were some improvements in the stage management. The chorus was broken up at times into groups and there was movement in some places where the immovable poses of …used to exist. Mr. Von Wymental, the new stage manager, was probably responsible for the changes. Mr. Hasselmans, who conducted, kept things moving, as he usually does. He does not permit tempi to drag as they are wont to do in opera. The orchestra and chorus both contributed much to the general merit of the performance.



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