Opera Scotland

Lily of Killarney 1913Carl Rosa Opera Company

Read more about the opera Lily of Killarney

In this single performance of Lily there is a slight oddity in the casting.  The hugely versatile bass-baritone Frederick Clendon worked with the Carl Rosa Company for many years in a huge range of roles serious and comic.  In The Lily of Killarney we have him singing the role of the villainous Squire Corrigan, a baritone,   on four tours - 1911 and '12, then 1917 and 1923.  However here, in 1913, the reviewer specifies that he sang the very different bass role of the benevolent priest Father Tom.  The young baritone Leslie Austin was being given more important work and this includes Squire Corrigan here - he had performed the brief role of Hyland Creagh in 1912.  It may be that Clendon was trying out the Priest, to see which part suited his voice better, or which he enjoyed more.  Or it may simply be that the Edinburgh reviewer, in his hurry,  mixed things up and swapped the singers round.


An Edinburgh Review

Scotsman:  Monday, 17 February 1913  (p6)

Carl Rosa Opera Company

'At the King's Theatre on Saturday afternoon and evening the Carl Rosa Opera Company continued its successes in the presentation of Mignon and The Lily of Killarney.  In Ambroise Thomas's romanti opera, which drew forth a good attendance at the matinee,  Moss Beatrice Miranda,  Miss Ina Hill,  Mr Gordon Thomas, and Mr Arthur Winckworth filled the chief parts of Mignon,  Filina,  Wilhelm, and Lotario.

'There was a large attendance at the eveninig performance in the popular parts of the theatre, showing how strongly the power of pure melody prevails with the public even in these days.  Based upon the simple drama of Dion Boucicault's The Colleen Bawn,  Sir Julius Benedict's Lily of Killarney goes back as far as 1862, when it received its first performance at Covent Garden Theatre.  It has always been a favourite opera, first because of its popular choruses,  concerted pieces, and melodies for the principals;  and secondly, because of the inherent interest of the drama, the tender domestic sentiments touched in the love affair of Eily o'Connor and Hardress Cregan, and the specially Irish characters of Danny Mann and Myles na Coppaleen.

Mr Gordon Thomas as Hardress Cregan had a somewhat difficult rôle to fill as the lover of Eily, who would sacrifice passion to pelf, though in the end he chooses the right course.  He sang the part well though without marked distinction.  Miss Elizabeth Burgess played the Colleen Bawn with excellent spirit and vocal efficiency, and the Mrs Cregan of Miss Phyllis Archibald, the Danny Mann of Mr Hebden Foster, the Father Tom of Mr Frederick Clerndon, the Corrigan of Mr Leslie Austin, the Anne Chute of Miss Lawson-Taylor, and the Sheila of Miss Jean Douglas-Wilson were all well-proportioned characters in a performance of substantial excellence.

'But, on the whole, the honours fell to Mr Hedmondt, who as Myles had one of those distinctive parts which he knows how to make alive, with sometimes a touch of humour that that is grateful in a sort of drama that is essentially theatrical.  All the favoured numbers, ''The Cruiskeen Lawn,'' ''The Colleen Bawn,'' ''The Moon has Raised her Lamp Above,'' ''I'm Alone,''  and the Lullaby in the last act met with the usual applause, and encores were frequent.  The piece was admirably staged, and Mr Goossens secured from the orchestra an excellent rendering of the comparatively clear and simple music.

'For the coming week chief interest centres in the production for the first time by the company of The Jewels of the Madonna, a work of the intensely modern school, which is understood to be under constant rehearsal in order that it may be produced in Edinburgh for the first time out of London.


Carl Rosa Scottish Tour - 1913

This late winter Scottish season conisisted of seven weeks, each with seven performances.  After a week in Aberdeen (w/c 20 Jan) then one in Dundee (w/c 27 Jan), there followed three in Edinburgh’s King’s Theatre (commencing 3 Feb, 10 Feb, 17 Feb) and two in Glasgow’s Theatre Royal (w/c 24 Feb; 3 Mar).  Two performances originally scheduled of Jewels of the Madonna in Edinburgh were cancelled to allow for more rehearsals.  The operas that replaced them were Mefistofele (20 Feb) and Magic Flute (22 Feb mat)

The sixteen operas performed were by:  Mozart (Don GiovanniZauberflöte);  Benedict (Lily of Killarney);  Balfe (Bohemian Girl);  Thomas (Mignon);  Wallace (Maritana);  Wagner (TannhäuserLohengrin);  Verdi (Trovatore);  Gounod (Faust);  Goldmark (Queen of Sheba);  Boito (Mefistofele);  Bizet (Carmen);  Leoncavallo (Pagliacci);  Mascagni (Cavalleria Rusticana);  Wolf-Ferrari (Jewels of the Madonna).

The performance schedule was:

Aberdeen, w/c 20 January:  Mon 20 Carmen;  Tue 21 Lohengrin;  Wed 22 Trovatore;  Thu  23 Mefistofele;  Fri 24 Magic Flute;  Sat 25 m Tannhäuser;  Sat 25 e Mignon.

Dundee, w/c  27 January:  Mon 27 Tannhäuser;  Tue 28 Magic Flute;  Wed 29 Mignon;  Thu 30 Trovatore;  Fri 31 Mefistofele;  Sat 1 Feb m Carmen;  Sat 1 Feb e Bohemian Girl.

Edinburgh, w/c 3 February:  Mon 3 Tannhäuser;  Tue 4 Mignon;  Wed 5 Magic Flute;  Thu 6 Trovatore;  Fri 7 Lohengrin;  Sat 8 m Faust;  Sat 8 e Bohemian Girl.

Edinburgh, w/c 10 February:  Mon 10 Magic Flute;  Tue 11 Queen of Sheba;  Wed 12 Carmen;  Thu 13 Maritana;  Fri 14 Magic Flute;  Sat 15 m Mignon;  Sat 15 e Lily of Killarney.

Edinburgh, w/c 17 February:  Mon 17 Cav & Pag;  Tue 18 Don Giovanni;  Wed 19 Faust;  Thu 20 Mefistofele;  Fri 21 Tannhäuser;  Sat 22 m Magic Flute;  Sat 22 e Trovatore.

Glasgow, w/c 24 February:  Mon  24 Magic Flute;  Tue 25 Mignon;  Wed 26 Trovatore;  Thu 27 Cav & Pag;  Fri 28 Jewels of the Madonna;  Sat 1 Mar m Tannhäuser;  Sat 1 Mar e Faust.

Glasgow, w/c  3 March:  Mon 3 Lohengrin;  Tue 4 Jewels of the Madonna;  Wed 5 Magic Flute;  Thu 6 Mignon;  Fri  7 Carmen :  Sat 8 m Jewels of the Madonna;  Sat 8 e Magic Flute.

Performance Cast

Eily O'Connor the Colleen Bawn

Elizabeth Burgess (Feb 15 e)

Hardress Cregan secretly married to Eily

Gordon Thomas (Feb 15 e)

Danny Mann a boatman, devoted to Hardress

Hebden Foster (Feb 15 e)

Squire Corrigan holder of a mortgage on the Cregan lands

Leslie Austin (Feb 15 e)

Father Tom Parish Priest of Kenmare

Frederick Clendon (Feb 15 e)

Myles na Coppaleen in love with Eily

Charles Hedmondt (Feb 15 e)

Mrs Cregan Hardress's mother

Phyllis Archibald (Feb 15 e)

Miss Ann Chute an heiress, the Colleen Rhud

Dorothy Lawson-Taylor (Feb 15 e)


Jean Douglas-Wilson (Feb 15 e)

Performance DatesLily of Killarney 1913

Map List

King's Theatre, Edinburgh | Edinburgh

15 Feb, 19.30

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