[Met Performance] CID:97460
Andrea Chénier {40} Metropolitan Opera House: 12/5/1927.

(Review)


Metropolitan Opera House
December 5, 1927


ANDREA CHÉNIER {40}

Andrea Chénier..........Beniamino Gigli
Maddalena...............Florence Easton
Carlo Gérard............Titta Ruffo
Bersi...................Ellen Dalossy
Countess di Coigny......Kathleen Howard
Abbé....................Alfio Tedesco
Fléville................George Cehanovsky
L'Incredibile...........Angelo Badà
Roucher.................Millo Picco
Mathieu.................Adamo Didur
Madelon.................Henriette Wakefield
Dumas...................Arnold Gabor
Fouquier Tinville.......Paolo Ananian
Schmidt.................Pompilio Malatesta
Major-domo..............Vincenzo Reschiglian

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

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

Ruffo Sings in 'Andrea Chenier'

Gigli, Mme. Easton and Mme. Howard Also Have Roles in Opera at Metropolitan

Giordano's opera, "Andrea Chenier," which has had a checkered career, seems to have settled down to the comfortable estate of a repertory work. The title role was thought at one time to be only for Caruso, but it is plain now that it can safely be passed along from tenor to tenor without endangering the box office value of the opera.

Surely Col. James Henry Mapleson deserved to get more out of it than he did when he introduced it to this country at the Academy of Music on November 13, 1896. But his company was nearing the last ditch; only Scalchi remained in that cast of all the lambent constellation he revealed to us.

Even then it was declared that in better circumstances the opera might have won a permanent place. When Oscar Hammerstein produced at the Manhattan just at the end of the season 1907-08, this observer declared that it was a "genuinely good Italian opera." But Mr. Hammerstein did not give it a chance. It remained for Mr. Gatti-Casazza, a most distinguished "snapper up of unconsidered trifles" to rescue it from neglect and, by the simple process of injecting into its veils a full dose of elixir Caruso, entirely to rejuvenate it.

In these days, if you grow weary of watching the energetic movements and listening to the pealing proclamations of the stock list of tenors, new interest is aroused by the advent of a new Gerard. The new one last evening was Titta Ruffo, who made his first appearance of the season. His version of the revolutionary butler is well known to opera goers. It is burly, but compelling. The part accords well with Mr. Ruffo's vocal and dramatic methods and he makes of Gerard one of his best achievements.

The others in the presentation were old friends. Mr. Gigli again impersonated the imprudent poet. There is much applause always for his delivery of the solo in the first scene, which probably does his voice no good, nor is this all that is praiseworthy in his performance. But the foot soldiers demand stentorian singing and artists are always too ready to give them their desire. Mme. Easton repeated her excellent Madeline and Mme. Howard was the Countess. The others were those heard before. Mr. Serafin was in the conductor's chair and held his forces well in hand.



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