[Met Performance] CID:98040
Lucia di Lammermoor {140} Brooklyn Academy of Music, New York, Brooklyn: 01/17/1928.

(Review)


New York, Brooklyn
January 17, 1928


LUCIA DI LAMMERMOOR {140}

Lucia...................Amelita Galli-Curci
Edgardo.................Giovanni Martinelli
Enrico..................Giuseppe De Luca
Raimondo................Ezio Pinza
Normanno................Giordano Paltrinieri
Alisa...................Minnie Egener
Arturo..................Alfio Tedesco

Conductor...............Vincenzo Bellezza

Review of Felix Deyo in the Brooklyn Standard Union

Galli-Curci in 'Lucia' at Academy

For the sixth performance in Brooklyn's subscription series, the Metropolitan Opera Company last night brought Donizetti's "Lucia di Lammermoor" to the Academy of Music, and the crush of patrons was nearly as great as that which attended the revival of Bellini's "Norma" at the Academy several weeks ago. All of Little Italy, it seemed, and most of Brooklyn, joined in the jam. Was not the magnet Galli-Curci as much as Donizetti? We answer yes, for Galli-Curci night has always been an annual "sell-out" in Brooklyn.

"Lucia," that tearfully melodious Italianized Scotch operatic favorite of past generations (it will reach the century mark in 1935), has had many notable Metropolitan Opera productions in Brooklyn. We take a backward peep and find performances within our personal memory as follows:

In 1926, "Lucia" was last sung here, with Marion Talley, Gigli and Danise; 1923 with Galli-Curci, Chamlee and De Luca; 1919 with Mabel Garrison, Crimi and De Luca; 1917 with Maria Barrientos, Martinelli and De Luca; 1916 with Barrientos Martinelli and Amato. Beyond this our memory falters. The fact is established, however, that "Lucia" with Galli-Curci, Martinelli and De Luca is definitely inscribed on the records of grand opera history in Brooklyn.

As to the opera itself, and the reason for its unwaning popularity, we can find no comment more apt that that in Marty Fitch Watkins, completely informative "First Aid to the Opera-Goer." "This opera," writes Miss Watkins, "should be regarded as a jewel casket wherein repose two pearls of great price, the largest and finest being the immortal Sextet, which remains today the greatest concerted number for mixed voice in all opera, and the second pearl, the Mad Scene, which has served colorature sopranos as a vehicle 'deluxe' ever since the opera was first produced. There are many other splendid jewels of melody and song to be found in the same casket, but it is really these two which keep "Lucia" perennially on the boards long after some more modern operas have begun their last long sleep."

Last night's performance was uniformly excellent in all departments, from orchestra to singers to stage management. Mme. Galli-Curci's voice is not as brilliant, perhaps, as of yore, but her vocal art is consummate. There were crystal-clear tones last night, and flexible phrasing. She sang with restraint, and exercised caution in not straining for volume. As a result, her singing had the perfection and quality of miniature rather that the showiness of a "grand style." Following her custom, Mme. Galli-Curci addressed her audience, recital fashion, rather than her comrades in the cast. We esteem this coloratura as the last of a long and famous line.

Mr. Martinelli was in splendid, almost magnificent voice. As the enraged Edgardo, before, in and following the Sextet, Martinelli unleashed an impassioned lyric outburst such as few tenors of the younger generation could hope to equal in fervency and realism. Messrs De Luca, Tedesco and Pinza proved finished artists in their respective parts; similar mention goes to Miss Egener and Mr. Paltrinieri. Mr. Bellezza conducted "con amore," and the chorus of sleek and corpulent Latin highlanders sang with verve.



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