Opera Scotland

Black Domino 1891Carl Rosa Opera Company

Read more about the opera Black Domino

Auber's comedy is a delightful piece of froth which should be better known nowadays.  But as with a later master of the comic style, Offenbach, there seems to have been a slight gap between a form of humour that delighted the French and an entertainment that was appropriate and tasteful to British sensibilities. The adaptation seems, on this occasion to have fallen a bit flat, and the work did not survive for long.

The reviewer in the Glasgow Herald (11 November) opened "The Black Domino was the opera produced at the Theatre Royal last evening, and was witnessed by a smaller audience than was attracted by CarmenLe Domine Noir was produced by the Carl Rosa company for the first time last month.  We cannot congratulate the management on thus adding to the repertoire of the company a comic opera the music of which is old-fashioned and neither inspired nor inspiring.  The first two acts, indeed are carried on a level plane of dialogue, with intervals of melody.   In the last act the music reaches the point at which the opera should begin, with higher progressions.

''In its English form, too, the story of the opera is such as to pass the wit of man.  The Black Domino should be acted with much greater esprit than that shown by the ladies and gentlemen engaged in the performance last night, while its music does not at all bring out the vocal and orchestral resources of the company.  The management, however, are not of our way of thinking, for the opera has been produced with all due attention to detail, and especially to the art of the costumier.

''Madame Burns appeared as Angèle, whose vocal opportunities are much greater than those falling to any of the other characters, and of these the lady, we need hardly say, made the most.  The cavatina 'Love, before thy dread power' she sang with her accustomed brilliancy,  and the audience would fain have had a repitition of it.   The prayer in the third act to the Virgin 'Grant thy protection', a slight yet beautiful melody, was rendered with much purity and feeling.  Mr John Child as Horace sang his music so well that one could have wished to hear his voice oftener, and MR Rhys Thomas, although not quite master of his lines, acted with the requisite gaiety of manners as Julien.  Miss Josephine Yorke made a capital Jacintha, and sang the ballad 'Where will you find on this earth' with vocal skill as well as with fine sense of comedy, while Mr Aynsley Cook was exceedingly droll as Gil Perez.  The slight demands on the chorus and orchestra were fully met''.

The cast is as advertised in Glasgow.

Performance Cast

Angèle d'Olivarès a novice at the Convent of the Annonciades

Georgina Burns

Brigitte de San Lucar Angèle's companion, also a novice

Miss M Ormerod

Horace de Massarena a young Spanish nobleman

John Child

Count Juliano Horace's friend

Rhys Thomas

Jacinthe Count Juliano's housekeeper

Josephine Yorke

Gil Perez Porter at the Convent

Aynsley Cook

Ursule a nun

Annie Cook

Porteress at the Convent (Gertrude)

Lillie Williams

Lord Elfort attaché at the British Embassy (Prince Grunhoff)

Lempriere Pringle


Mr P Wood

Performance DatesBlack Domino 1891

Map List

Theatre Royal, Glasgow | Glasgow

10 Nov, 19.30

Royal Lyceum Theatre | Edinburgh

27 Nov, 19.30

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