[Met Performance] CID:94520
La Cena delle Beffe {10}
Le Rossignol {8}
Metropolitan Opera House: 12/10/1926.

(Review)


Metropolitan Opera House
December 10, 1926


LA CENA DELLE BEFFE {10}
U. Giordano-S. Benelli

Ginevra.................Frances Alda
Giannetto...............Beniamino Gigli
Neri....................Titta Ruffo
Gabriello...............Angelo Badà
Tornaquinci.............Louis D'Angelo
Calandra................Vincenzo Reschiglian
Fazio...................Millo Picco
Cintia..................Henriette Wakefield
Lapo....................Max Altglass
Doctor..................Gustav Schützendorf
Trinca..................Giordano Paltrinieri
Laldomine...............Mary Bonetti
Fiammetta...............Grace Anthony
Lisabetta...............Ellen Dalossy

Conductor...............Tullio Serafin


In French

LE ROSSIGNOL {8}

Nightingale.............Marion Talley
Fisherman...............Alfio Tedesco
Cook....................Ina Bourskaya
Emperor.................Adamo Didur
Chamberlain.............Louis D'Angelo
Bonze...................James Wolfe
Death...................Henriette Wakefield
Japanese Envoys: Max Altglass, Millo Picco, Giordano Paltrinieri
Lantern Servants: Louise Lerch, Mary Bonetti, Max Altglass

Conductor...............Tullio Serafin

Review of W. J. Henderson in the New York Sun

Alda and Ruffo in 'The Jest'

Sem Benelli's tragedy "La Cena delle Beffe," as transmogrified by the music of Umberto Giordano, returned to the stage of the Metropolitan Opera House last evening amid glad shoutings from the places whence such proclamations of authoritative approval customarily emanate. The work was produced here on January 2 and, by reason of the intensely dramatic quality of the book, held the interest of the audience. The reappearance of the opera last night was accompanied by that of Titta Ruffo who impersonated the unrestrained Neri.

This character might have been made for Mr. Ruffo, so well done it fit his manner of song and action. Neri is brutal, savage, baffled and even tortured. He belongs to the class that roars out its emotions, and Mr. Ruffo's prodigious voice, which he uses in three days with more discretion that he showed three or four years ago, is well employed in Giordano's declamations. Occasion has been taken before this afternoon to note certain progress in Ruffo's art, for it was greatly to the honor of this already popular singer that he sought to better himself by the advice and criticism of an artist of an older generation. Some less successful singers might profit by this illustrious example.

It does not seem of vital necessity to comment again on the score of the opera. Giordano handled the subject with technical skill for the most part, though it is difficult to account for his treatment of the duet between Giannetto and Ginerva. However, the music, which is utterly foreign to the text, is pretty and audiences applaud it. So why take it seriously? It is just opera music. Besides, while Mr. Gigli is to sing, there is always something to hear. And in this opera he does more than merely sing. He gives an impersonation which has point and poignancy. There is no other role in which this favorite tenor shows his histrionic skill.

Mme. Alda repeated last evening her Ginevra, which has good quality. Among other things it is good to see, which is a matter of no small importance in this opera. A plain and domestic Ginerva would make the whole imbroglio look ridiculous. The prima donna was in good voice last night and sang her music laudably. There were numerous others mentioned in the program, but their doings may be passed with general mention. Mr. Serafin conducted.

"La Cena delle Beffe" was followed by Stravinsky's "Le Rossignol" with Miss Talley, Mme. Bourskaya, Mr. Didur, Mr. Tedesco and others in the cast. Mr. Serafin conducted the Russian fantasy with authority, as he had the Italian drama.



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