Opera Scotland

Rigoletto 1906Carl Rosa Opera Company

Read more about the opera Rigoletto

The reviewer in the Glasgow Herald (10 March) wrote "..he is a strange opera-lover who cannot now and then drop the proud Wagnerian pose to stoop to music of the days when melody was all in all.  In Glasgow, there are evidently plenty of music-lovers who own to the attractions of the older operas.  Verdi's Rigoletto drew out a large audience to the Grand Theatre last night, and the work could hardly have been followed with more interest even in the days of its prime.   Affinities have been pointed out between Verdi and Hugo, as close as those between Beethoven and Goethe, or Schumann and Heine.   Verdi, like Hugo, loved passions in their raw state, strong situations, plenty of what is known as 'blood and thunder'.  The sordid story of Rigoletto, adapted from the French writer's 'Le Roi s'amuse', is hardly fit for delicate ears.  Before the Duke of Mantua and his satellites one is reminded of certain habits observed by Gulliver among the Yahoos.   But the libretto gives Verdi all he wanted.  He had loves, hates and fears, plottings, betrayals, and murder.  Without any reticence he gives us the musical equivalent of it all.  There are no orchestral subtleties, no appeals to the intellect.  It is all melody, for the most part simply accompanied.  With its tunes and orchestral 'vamping', the opera seems, on the surface, old-fashioned enough.  But when the singers are actors as well, the piece still tells with extraordianry force.  Its success last night, with Miss Elixabeth Burgess, Miss Anna Hope, Mr Frank Arthur, Mr Edward Davies, and Mr Charles Arthur in the principal roles, will probably keep it in the repertory of the company for a considerable time.  Mr Victor, who i an artist of quite considerable powers, , made a palpable hit with Rigoletto; it is seldom one meets with an actor of his strength on the operatic stage.  The Gilda of Miss Burgess and the Duke of Mr Davies were also entirely acceptable; Mr Davies made his best appearance of the week.  Miss Hope as Magdalena and Mr Arthur as Sparafucile were equal to the modest demands of their parts, and the smaller roles were in safe hands.  The opera was well staged, and excellent results were obtained from the band and chorus under the baton of Mr Walter van Noorden."

The full Carl Rosa itinerary in Scotland for 1906 was 

One week w/c 26 Feb at the Alexandria, Greenock then three weeks in Glasgow (w/c 5 Mar; 12 Mar; 19 Mar) at the Grand; 7.30pm and 2pm

Four weeks, seven performances. Twenty-eight.

w/c 26 Feb Mon Tannhauser; Tue Bohemian Girl; Wed Trovatore; Thu Carmen; Fri Lohengrin; Sat m Faust; Sat e Maritana.

w/c 5 Mar Mon Tannhauser; Tue Carmen; Wed Marriage of Figaro; Thu Faust; Fri Rigoletto; Sat m Fidelio; Sat e Bohemian Girl

w/c 12 Mar Mon Lohengrin; Tue Trovatore; Wed Fidelio; Thu Rigoletto; Fri Don Giovanni; Sat m Tannhauser; Sat e Maritana

w/c 19 Mar Mon Fidelio; Tue Rigoletto; Wed Trovatore; Thu Tristan and Isolde; Fri Fidelio; Sat m Don Giovanni; Sat e Carmen.


Tannhauser; Carmen; Rigoletto; Trovatore.

Maritana; Bohemian Girl; Lohengrin; Faust; Don Giovanni.

Tristan and Isolde; Marriage of Figaro.


Performance Cast

Duke of Mantua

Edward Davies

Gilda Rigoletto's daughter

Elizabeth Burgess

Maddalena sister of Sparafucile

Anna Hope

Rigoletto a jester

Charles Victor

Sparafucile a professional assassin

Frank Arthur

Production Cast


Walter van Noorden

Performance DatesRigoletto 1906

Map List

Grand Theatre, Glasgow | Glasgow

9 Mar, 00.00 15 Mar, 00.00 20 Mar, 00.00

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