[Met Performance] CID:95720
Das Rheingold {64} Metropolitan Opera House: 03/7/1927.

(Review)


Metropolitan Opera House
March 7, 1927


DAS RHEINGOLD {64}

Wotan...................Michael Bohnen
Fricka..................Karin Branzell
Alberich................Gustav Schützendorf
Loge....................Walter Kirchhoff
Erda....................Marion Telva
Fasolt..................Léon Rothier
Fafner..................Adamo Didur
Freia...................Maria Müller
Froh....................Max Altglass
Donner..................Arnold Gabor
Mime....................George Meader
Woglinde................Editha Fleischer
Wellgunde...............Phradie Wells
Flosshilde..............Marion Telva

Conductor...............Artur Bodanzky

Review of Herbert F. Peyser in the New York Telegram

Monday Night Departure

For the first time in history Metropolitan subscribers of the Monday night persuasion found themselves invited last evening to listen to "Das Rheingold." Inasmuch as the members of this august assemblage are habitually credited with marked predilections for the fleshpots of frivolity, a word about yesterday's gathering may not be amiss.

It was one of the largest of the current season - larger, indeed, than the throng which heard the prologue to the tetralogy in the course of the special afternoon "Ring" presentations; and the attitude of a Bayreuth convocation could scarcely have been more devoutly absorbed and reverent. Seven-eighths of the house was seated before the orchestra sounded its first primordial E flat, box-holders came early and remained till Wotan set foot on the rainbow, while from the parquet there was practically no exodus at all before the final curtain. Those who would scornfully deny the possibility of establishing a genuine Wagnerian festival spirit of a Monday night might have learned something to their amusement last evening.

Of course there was the useful intermission after the second scene, and to this concession not even the most implacable Wagnerians could reasonably object. Signs were not wanting that the portents and wonders of the early Nibelungen were virgin experiences for many of those who saw the Rhine pixies in their natural element, beheld the transformations of Alberich, looked upon the hoard in all its gilded resplendence, witnessed the first uses of the Tran helm and saw the irrepressible cynic, Loge, in human form.

They were rewarded. Furthermore, by a spirited performance, whose dominant feature was again the stunning fire-god of Walter Kirchhoff. The only difference in the cast from the preceding representation was the substitution of Mme. Larsen-Todsen as Fricka - and the replacement of the former's Erda by Marion Telva's creditable mother of wisdom. It would be noted in passing that Mr. Bohnen's Wotan now not only wrests the ring from Alberich's finger, but also holds the dwarf suspended in mid-air and then hurls him half way back to Nibelheim. Mr. Didur's Fafner has at last learned how to use his big walking stick in finishing off his brother. And Woglinde once more sang "entaagt," proving that her reformation was more than temporary.

"Das Rheingold" will have no further performances this season, which is regrettable. But to Mr. Gatti-Casazza are due hearty thanks for recognizing the popular potentialities of this fabulously lovely work and for striving earnestly to realize them. The Metropolitan's manager, as it happens, has always been lucky with "Das Rheingold," - has, in effect, proved himself a kind of good angel to the Nibelungen prologue. When he gave the first production of it in Italian at the Milan Scala in 1903-04, it attained the unprecedented number of nineteen performances during a single season (the earliest "Rheingold"s in Italy were given in the eighties by Angelo Neumann's travelling Wagner Theatre - of course in German.

Cleofonte Campanini conducted Mr. Gatti's production. Two of the singers engaged in it are new at the Metropolitan - Mr. Didur, who then sang Wotan, and Mr. de Luca, the Alberich. Borgatti was the Milanese Loge, Pini-Corsi is the brother of the Metropolitan's one-time basso buffo, the Mime, Frascani, the Fricka, and the Freia a certain Cecelia Gagliardi, who was later to enjoy fame in roles as Brünnhilde and Isolde.<.b>



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