Opera Scotland

Cavalleria Rusticana 1924Carl Rosa Opera Company

Read more about the opera Cavalleria Rusticana

The Carl Rosa company was in the habit of coming to Scotland in February and running its tour through the early spring. In1924, from 28 January to 19 April they toured Aberdeen, Perth, Greenock, Glasgow and Edinburgh.

These four performances of Cav were all given in conjunction with the usual theatrical partner, Pagliacci. However Leoncavallo's masterpiece had two extra performances in conjunction with a new one-act piece by Nicholas Comyn Gatty called Prince Ferelon, and a ballet entitled Cameo. Normal service was resumed before the tour ended.

There is only a relatively brief review in the Aberdeen Press and Journal of Monday, 4 February. It would not generally cover Saturday, but this was the mid-point of a two week visit, and the notice had to include the matinee of Faust as well as the inevitable second half Pagliacci.

'The principals acted and sang with immense energy and gusto; even the chorus showed an unwonted vivacity in their work. The knock-about business, which so pleasantly excites and impresses an audience, was exploited to the utmost. Never have we seen a Santuzza sent oftener to the boards, or with a greater show of brutality. The convincing appearance of the players was a further aid to realism - each looked his or her part perfectly.

'Miss Turner sang brilliantly, and extracted the last shred of emotion from the unhappy heroine - a process in which she was helped by the curiously slow speed at which she took all her music. Mr Williams allowed no scrap of weakness to mar the hard brilliancy of his Turiddu. It was a consistent performance, and a very good one at that. Mr Moore's make-up as Alfio was excellent, and he played up to his appearance. He sang his first song better than we have heard it sung for years, and he sang it correctly. It was a finely thought-out study, ripe in every detail, and eloquent of the progress which Mr Moore is making in his profession.'

When the company moved to Glasgow, the emphasis was very much on the popular success of the revival of Fidelio. Three extra performances were scheduled for the final week, including the Saturday evening that would normally be given over to a popular classic. As the company's regular Santuzza, Eva Turner, would be busy in the evening singing Beethoven, Hope Laurin joined the Cav cast for the matinee, listed in full by the Scotsman of Monday, 7 April.

Performance Cast

Santuzza a village girl

Eva Turner (Feb 2e)

Hope Laurin (Apr 5m)

Mamma Lucia the innkeeper, Turiddu’s mother

Olive Gilbert (Apr 5m)

Turiddu a young soldier

Ben Williams (Feb 2e; Apr 5m)

Alfio the village carter

Appleton Moore (Feb 2e; Apr 5m)

Lola Alfio’s wife

Gladys Parker (Apr 5m)

Performance DatesCavalleria Rusticana 1924

Map List

His Majesty's Theatre, Aberdeen | Aberdeen

2 Feb, 19.15

Theatre Royal, Glasgow | Glasgow

12 Mar, 19.15 5 Apr, 14.15

Royal Lyceum Theatre | Edinburgh

18 Apr, 19.15

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