Opera Scotland

Bohemian Girl 1889J W Turner's English Opera Company

Read more about the opera Bohemian Girl

With a week in Aberdeen Aberdeen beng followed by Dundee,  Mr J W Turner, formerly a leading tenor with the late Carl Rosa, was now spreading his wings with his own company.  It would successful for most of the next twenty years.


The Dundee Press Reports 

The Dundee Advertiser: Wednesday, October 16, 1889 (p5) gave its opinion

'Another large audience passed a pleasant time last night listening to the familiar but ever-fresh melodies that make Balfe’s masterpiece a source of delight to young and old. It is on record that the devotees of scientific harmony have picked countless faults with the score of The Bohemian Girl, but the great soul of the public of every European country has been just to her gifted parent. The opera has always been a special favourite in Dundee, and whenever it is competently played is enthusiastically applauded. This was the case last night, for the cast was an excellent one, and the choristers and the orchestra put heart and soul into their work.

'Animation, grace and elegance marked the stage manner of Miss Duncan’s Arline. Her sweet-toned voice was happily heard in the lovely dream song. The delicacy of her modulation and the chasteness of such ornament as she bestows on the cadences give quite a new charm to the melody, and as the enraptured audience awarded their applause the brilliant glance she threw over the house in gratitude for the demonstration showed how deeply she felt the sentiment of the role. It is in truth the sincerity this promising songstress throws into her work which fascinates her hearers.

'She found an admirable Thaddeus in Mr Walter Gray. Young, handsome, and endowed with a certain native dignity, his acting was true to the romance of the character, and his pleasing voice rendered every number he sang acceptable to the house. He got a well-deserved encore for “When other lips,” and he declaimed “The fair land of Poland” with rare melodic vigour. Quietude and reserve on the part of Mr John Redding made his Count Arnheim an enjoyable performance, and his solo “The heart bowed down” was sung with genuine feeling.

'The Gipsy Queen was personated with force and intelligence by Miss Annette Hayward, who had to repeat the tenderly tuneful lament that “Love smiles but to deceive”.  Devilshoof was accounted for by Mr Sidney Clifford with a rollicking recklessness that stirred the audience to hearty laughter, and his rich, deep bass did splendid service in the concerted music.

'Faust will be played to-night for the first time in our new theatre. It has been exhaustively rehearsed and will be worthily rendered.'

Performance Cast

Arline Arnheim's daughter

Chrystal Duncan

Thaddeus a proscribed Pole

Walter Gray

Count Arnheim Governor of Pressburg

John Ridding

Queen of the Gypsies

Annette Hayward

Devilshoof leader of the gypsies

Sidney Clifford

Florestein nephew of the Count

Charles Leverton

Production Cast


Mr T E Turrell

Performance DatesBohemian Girl 1889

Map List

Her Majesty's Theatre, Dundee | Dundee

15 Oct, 19.30

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