[Met Performance] CID:97110
Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg {170} Brooklyn Academy of Music, New York, Brooklyn: 11/8/1927.

(Review)


New York, Brooklyn
November 8, 1927


DIE MEISTERSINGER VON NÜRNBERG {170}

Hans Sachs..............Clarence Whitehill
Eva.....................Dorothee Manski
Walther von Stolzing....Walter Kirchhoff
Magdalene...............Kathleen Howard
David...................George Meader
Beckmesser..............Gustav Schützendorf
Pogner..................Richard Mayr
Kothner.................Arnold Gabor
Vogelgesang.............Max Bloch
Nachtigall..............Louis D'Angelo
Ortel...................Paolo Ananian
Zorn....................Angelo Badà
Moser...................Max Altglass
Eisslinger..............Giordano Paltrinieri
Foltz...................James Wolfe
Schwarz.................William Gustafson
Night Watchman..........George Cehanovsky

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

Review of Felix Deyo in the Brooklyn Times

"Die Meistersinger" Sung At the Academy of Music

It was an altogether pleasing performance of Wagner's inspiring "Die Meistersinger," presented last night at the Academy of Music, for the second offering of Brooklyn's subscription season. A large audience was seated when the overture commenced at 7:30 o'clock, and just a few departed before the final curtain at 11:30. This opera was last given in Brooklyn on December 30, 1924, with several leading members of last night's cast, including Mr. Bodanzky, conductor of the Wagner repertory.

Newcomers were Walther Kirchhoff, in the leading tenor role, Dorothee Manski, in the leading soprano role, and Richard Mayr, in the leading bass role. Clarence Whitehill's Hans Sachs is a noble figure, commanding and lovable, fully reflecting the beatitude of Wagner's humble cobbler. In voice and demeanor the eminent Iowan baritone is always a gratifying artist.

A tinge of diablerie distinguishes Gustav Schützendorf's Beckmesser. His voice and diction, in canto and recitative, are marvelously attuned to the incessant alterations of suave legato and cutting staccato which characterizes the music of the part. George Meader's reliable tenor and well conceived action are admirably suitable to the role of David, while Kathleen Howard's skill and experience take root in the satisfying delineation of Magdalene.

Concerning the newcomers, Dorothee Manski, lyric soprano from the Berlin Opera, seems to be a singer of routine quality and actress to match. Her voice production, at least last night, was impeded by its obvious effort; to the eye she is statuesque, fitting the Teutonic conception of Wagner's lovely Nuremberg maid. Walther Kirchhoff is remembered by his striking assumption of Siegfried in Brooklyn last season. Somewhat mature for the part of the young Franconian knight in "Die Meistersinger," Mr. Kirchhoff, handsome in figure and bearing, made use of his vocal opportunities. His voice has a certain blend of the Italian and German tone elements. At some moments he sings superbly; at others, when perhaps a little self-conscious of the fact he is singing, his voice spreads and becomes unpleasing. Mr. Mayr brings tone and authority to the role of Pogner.

Mr. Bodanzky guided his orchestra safely over the inter-textured polyphony of Wagner's glorious score, and also carried the large ensembles through a labyrinth of choral passages. "Die Meistersinger," with its rich underground of Bach, is unquestionably Mr. Bodanzky's superior Wagner reading.

The stage of the Academy of Music, quite smaller than that of the Metropolitan in Manhattan, presents problems for the proper mounting of such works as "Die Meistersinger." In view of this fact, last night's management of the street fighting and festivity scenes was handled very successfully.



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