Opera Scotland

Maritana 1917O'Mara Grand Opera Company

Read more about the opera Maritana

Cast details for this performance are compiled from reviews in the Dundee Advertiser and Dundee Courier & Argus.


The Dundee Press Attitude

Dundee Advertiser: Thursday, October 11, 1917   (p8)

Opera in Dundee - O’Mara Company in “Maritana”

'That Maritana, although 70 years old, is still a name to conjure with in Dundee was proved last night.  The house was completely full, and the many well-known melodies were received with a fervour that showed that custom had not deprived them of any of their power to charm.

'Maritana, if not precisely a ballad opera, depends largely on its ballads for success.  Time after time the dramatic action is held up in order that singers may indulge in prolonged legato phrases, and cadenzas.  And that with the entire approval of audiences who care little for dramatic propriety so long as they have a good voice engaged in giving a good song.  There was much fine singing last night and some capable acting.

'Miss Alma Lowe, who was making a first appearance here, made many friends.  She has a light and well-cultivated soprano voice of great beauty, which in “The harp in the air” and “Sainted mother” was heard to much advantage.  Her acting in the earlier scenes, when still the gipsy, was a trifle lacking in abandon, but experience will remedy this.  Miss Lowe is an artist of distinct promise.  The rich tones and clear enunciation of Miss Mabel Dennis as Lazarillo made her one of the chief favourites of the night.  “Alas, those chimes,” thoroughly deserved the encore it received.  Mr Charles Neville was quite successful as the rollicking Don Caesar.  The humour of the part was nicely emphasised without overstressing.  Vocally his best effort was perhaps “There is a flower that bloometh,” which was delivered with much feeling.

'In the two baritones, Mr Flintoff Moore and Mr Joseph Griffin, the O’Mara Company possesses towers of strength.  Both have fine voices, and their acting qualities are of a high order.  The first-named with “In happy moments” and Mr Griffin with “Hear me, gentle Maritana,” were worthy of the warm applause that rewarded their efforts.  The chorus was as efficient and interested in events as we now look for in this company; and the band also was good, though once or twice it was a little loud for the soloists.  The harp-playing and the obbligato of the leading violin deserve acknowledgment.

'To-night Mr John Harrison, a tenor of reputation, appears as Faust, with Miss Eleanor Felix as Marguerite.'


Dundee Courier & Argus: Thursday, October 11 1917 (p2)

Her Majesty’s Theatre - The O’Mara Opera Company - “Maritana”

'Maritana has not been performed in English for, we think, nine years, and this fact, coupled with the other fact that it is the first purely home-made in the sense of British production of the week, may account for the large audience.  The house was full every box being occupied, and this makes a great difference to everybody, singers included.  How many people, we wonder, remember a famous production by the Carl Rosa Opera Company, some forty years ago, in which Julia Gaylord and J W Turner took the principal parts.  That was a magnificent performance.

'Last night’s production was wholly enjoyable.  The new prima donna, Miss Alma Lowe, has a beautiful voice under rare control.  Her roulades were delightfully sung, and there was a freshness about her performance which was delightful.  Miss Mabel Dennis’ rich contralto voice was heard to splendid effect in “Alas, those chimes,” her singing of which was the vocal artistic success of the evening.

'Mr Neville made a brave Don Caesar, acting with force and humour, and singing in “There is a flower that bloometh” with delicate art; his “Let me like a soldier fall” was not quite so happy.  That fine artist, Mr Flintoff Moore, was admirable as Don José and his treatment of “In happy moments” delighted everybody and was warmly encored.

'Chorus and band were in good order, although the latter overpowered the former, particularly in the opening number.

'To-night the ever-popular Faust, of Gounod, will be presented, with Miss Felix and Miss Ainsley and Mr John Harrison, the famous English tenor, Mr Griffin, and Mr Ryan in the cast.'


Dundee Advertiser: Thursday, October 11, 1917   (p8)

Dundee Courier & Argus: Thursday, October 11 1917    (p2)

Correspondence (Identical letter to each newspaper) - Opera in Dundee

'Sir, Messrs Paterson (box office), Reform Street, inform me that they have received several letters from grand opera enthusiasts complaining of the absence from our Dundee repertoire of such operas as Don Giovanni, Tannhäuser, Tristan and Isolde.  I have been prompted to write this letter because to-night’s audience is the largest my company has ever played to in Dundee, and the attraction is the old-time favourite Maritana.

'On the occasion of our last visit to Dundee we gave two of the works I mention above, also Madam Butterfly and Tosca.  The box office results were not satisfactory.  On my next visit to Dundee it is my intention to afford opera lovers an opportunity of deciding the works to be performed by taking a plebiscite prior to selecting the repertoire.  The seven operas obtaining the greatest number of votes will be staged.

I am &c

Joseph O’Mara

Her Majesty’s Theatre

Dundee, 10th Oct 1917

Performance Cast

Maritana a gitana

Alma Lowe (Oct 10)

Don Caesar de Bazan

Charles Neville (Oct 10)

Don José de Santarem

Flintoff Moore (Oct 10)

Lazarillo a poor apprentice

Mabel Dennis (Oct 10)

Charles II King of Spain

Joseph Griffin (Oct 10)

Production Cast


Charles Risegari (Oct 10)

Performance DatesMaritana 1917

Map List

Her Majesty's Theatre, Dundee | Dundee

10 Oct, 19.15

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