[Met Performance] CID:95680
Faust {358} Matinee ed. Metropolitan Opera House: 03/5/1927.

(Review)


Metropolitan Opera House
March 5, 1927 Matinee


FAUST {358}

Faust...................Edward Johnson
Marguerite..............Queena Mario
Méphistophélès..........Michael Bohnen
Valentin................Lawrence Tibbett
Siebel..................Ellen Dalossy
Marthe..................Kathleen Howard
Wagner..................James Wolfe

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

Review signed M. W. in the New York Herald Tribune

'Faust' Is Sung at Metropolitan

Bohnen, as Slate-Colored Satan Wins Acclaim as Johnson, Mario, and Others Share Praise. Hasselmans Conducts

Yesterday's operas at the Metropolitan included a matinee "Faust" and an opportunity for the "popular" evening subscribers to hear that perennial favorite, "Madama Butterfly." Of the first, which has not been given too often this season, the sinister, slate-colored devil of Mr. Bohnen was the distinguishing feature. This singer, whose artistic caprices avail themselves so often of both the tonsorial and sartorial for expression, disclosed this ashen herren to us during the season before last, and great was the public outcry compounded with acclaim.

There were those to whom any dalliance from black and scarlet tradition was heresy; others who found his complexion of zinc, relieved only by blatant red lips and the bleeding wounds of crimson satin in his tunic, frankly repulsive. And still a third group who recognized, in this departure from the established order, only another indicative phase of this unique artist's restless and persistent groping for new means of illustrative interpretation.

Whether or not you agreed or approved, you doubtless joined spontaneously in the applause which was accorded him yesterday. There was a terrifying power of evil in his delineation which was all his own, and which discarded with admirable deftness the cluttering Gallicisms of the suave, and familiar Gentleman from Hell. How he sang is another matter, but Mr. Bohnen knows, among many other valuable things, how to make the most of what he has in voice.

His victims, Faust and Marguerite, were ably interpreted by Mr. Johnson and Miss Mario. The tenor is not at his pictorial best in the feathers and furbelows which the rejuvenated doctor affects, and certain portions of the score take a merciless advantage of that afflicting tremolo which is his, but nevertheless he is the most romantic hero that even the most exacting youngster, hearing her first grand opera, could crave. Miss Mario was in excellent voice and extremely well cast in the role. Mr. Tibbett sang an acceptable Valentin; Miss Howard was, as usual, the best Martha imaginable, and Miss Dalossy, charming as the moon-calf, Siebel. Mr. Hasselmans conducted.



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