[Met Performance] CID:99250
Cosė Fan Tutte {12} Metropolitan Opera House: 04/11/1928.

(Review)


Metropolitan Opera House
April 11, 1928


COSĖ FAN TUTTE {12}
Mozart-Da Ponte

Fiordiligi..............Florence Easton
Ferrando................George Meader
Dorabella...............Editha Fleischer
Guglielmo...............Giuseppe De Luca
Despina.................Lucrezia Bori
Don Alfonso.............Pavel Ludikar

Conductor...............Paul Eisler

Director................Samuel Thewman
Set designer............Joseph Urban
Costume designer........Gretel Urban

Cosė Fan Tutte received one performance this season.

Review of Mary F. Watkins in the New York Tribune

'Cosi Fan Tutte' Jinx Is Routed by Clever Gatti

Last Minute Mishap Costs Bodanzky's Services, but Eisler Takes the Baton

TWO NEW PRINCIPALS

Bori, as Usual, Carries Off Full Share of Triumphs

It is regrettable fact that various causes have conspired to withhold one of the season's chief operatic delights, the revival of Mozart's "Cosi fan tutte," until the third night from the operatic season's end. Also the rain descended in floods at the very moment of the overture, so that the Metropolitan Opera House was not as full as it might have been, and many missed that which would have left a very pleasant echo in the ears to solace the silent months that are now at hand.

Performed in America for the first time in 1922, the rollicking, shimmering little piece held the boards until 1925, when it retired for a period of three more years. Perhaps its resented the interruption in its beauty sleep, for it has not lent itself gracefully to its revival this year and the ghost of the famous opera jinx has showed some faint interest in its behalf

Eisler Replaces Bodanzky

When announced for its revival premiere on March 24, several of the principals were straightway smitten by indisposition and Mr. Gatti was compelled for the first time in several seasons to make a last moment change of bill. Last evening, chastened and brought before the footlights at last, it reached out in a final spiteful gesture and smote Mr. Bodanzky, the conductor.

Fortunately, however, Mr. Eisler, assistant conductor of the company, was on hand and sprang into the breach. The piece opened on time and the tempo lost only sixty seconds during the first act, according to the authoritative stop-watch of Mr. Tom Bull, the opera's veteran timekeeper. In spite of these inadvertencies it was a sparkling performance, and the initial raggedness and lapses from perfect intonation under the substitute baton were excusable and soon redeemed themselves as the opera progressed.

Principals Are Changed

On the stage the participants were adept. There were two important changes from the cast made familiar in earlier repetitions. Editha Fleischer played the impetuous Dorabella, once the role of Miss Peralta, and Mr. Ludikar replaced Mr. Didur as Don Alfonso. Dorabella lies a little low for Miss Fleischer's best voice, but this young artist is proving herself with each appearance more and more valuable to the company, and her good humor, originality, exuberance and consistent adherence to style readily overcame vocal difficulties and placed her firmly and surely beside the other two delightful women in the cast, on the exalted plane they justly occupy. There, too, were Miss Bori as the maid, Despina, and Miss Easton as Fiordiligi. If one must choose between them, perhaps first honors would go to Miss Bori, for Mozart might easily be imagined to have been "schwaermend" for her and to have written the part for her and none other, so perfectly does it fit her charms and graces. Mr. Ludikar did well by Don Alfonso, if just a shade heavy handed, and Messrs. Meader and De Luca were, as formerly, quite inimitable in the absurdities of the doubting lovers, Ferrando and Guglielmo.

Once again there was occasion to admire the admirable costuming and Mr. Urban's ingenious rococo stage within the bigger proscenium. Mr. Eisler distinguished himself in the trying role of Minute Man, and the delicious music was released with very little diminution of its clarity and sheen. The direction and general smoothness of the production were admirable.



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