Opera Scotland

Tosca 1925British National Opera Company

Read more about the opera Tosca

The sole performance of Tosca was on the final Friday of the visit - surely one of the highlights, which would make ideal Friday night entertainment.  Rosina Buckman was renowned as an interpreter of Puccini.  It isn't an area of the repertoire that Sir Malcolm Sargent was associated with in later years, but he seems to have done well enough.  Muriel Brunskill is certainly luxury casting for the off-stage shepherd boy.


An Edinburgh Review

The Scotsman of Saturday, 24 October (p8) gave a brief but enthusiastic notice.

'Tosca is an example of the skill with which Puccini chose his libretti.  It is a lurid piece of drama, full of strong situations, and though with less of the definitely melodic in its treatment than is presented by the composer's other operas, the music progresses at an appropriately high pitch of emotionalism.  Both as drama and as music its performance at the King's Theatre last night was strikingly effective.  Miss Rosina Buckman, as Tosca, was perhaps a little lacking in the graceful capriciousness which is demanded in the first act, but she rose magnificently to the dramatic intensity of the great scene with Scarpia in the second act.  It was a fine piece of tragic acting.

'There was an admirable distinction in the Scarpia of Mr Robert Parker, and his share in the second act was masterly in its combination of the polished and the sinister.  Mr Tudor Davies as the painter sang the music of the part with an exquisite quality of tone and feeling and reproduced the varying moods of the character, the gaiety and tenderness of the opening scene, the desperate defiance of its successor, where he is tortured, and the contemplative melancholy of the beginning of the third act, with real conviction.

'Scarpia's satellites were all well represented, and as in other performances of the opera here, Mr Sydney Russell's interpretation of the stealthy Spoletta was a very finished little study.  Mr William Anderson made a good Sacristan, and the pathetic song of the shepherd boy in the opening of the third act was delightfully rendered by Miss Muriel Brunskill.

'Mr Malcolm Sargent conducted.  There was a large and enthusiastic audience, and the theatre presented the appearance which it should have done throughout the past fortnight.'


BNOC in Scotland - 1925

The 1925 tour consisted of two weeks in Glasgow (Theatre Royal) followed by two weeks in Edinburgh (King's).

The 19 operas performed during the tour were:

Bach (Coffee Cantata);  Mozart (Magic Flute); Wagner (Tannhäuser, Tristan and Isolde Mastersingers); Verdi (RigolettoAïdaOtello); Offenbach (Tales of Hoffmann);  Bizet (Carmen);  Rimsky-Korsakov (Golden Cockerel);  Leoncavallo (Pagliacci);  Mascagni (Cavalleria Rusticana); Puccini (BohèmeToscaMadam ButterflyGianni Schicchi); Holst (At the Boar's Head);  Vaughan Williams (Hugh the Drover).

The tour schedule was:

Glasgow, w/c 28 September: Mon 28 Rigoletto;  Tue 29 Tannhäuser;  Wed 30 mat Cav & Pag;  Wed 30 eve Hugh the Drover;  Thu 1 Oct Otello;  Fri 2 Madam Butterfly; Sat 3 mat Magic Flute;  Sat 3 eve Bohème.

Glasgow, w/c 5 October: Mon 5 Carmen; Tue 6 Coffee Cantata & Golden Cockerel; Wed 7 mat Rigoletto;  Wed 7 eve Mastersingers;  Thu 8 Otello;  Fri 9 Tristan and Isolde;  Sat 10 mat Tales of Hoffmann;  Sat 10 eve Aïda.

Edinburgh, w/c 12 October: Mon 12 Mastersingers;  Tue 13 Tannhäuser;  Wed 14  mat Bohème; Wed 14 eve Aïda;  Thu 15 Magic Flute;  Fri 16 Coffee Cantata & Hugh the Drover;  Sat 17 mat Golden Cockerel;  Sat 17 eve Carmen.

Edinburgh, w/c 19 October: Mon 19 Otello;  Tue 20 At the Boar's Head & Gianni Schicchi;  Wed 21 mat Cav Pag;  Wed 21 eve Rigoletto;  Thu 22 Bohème;  Fri 23 Tosca;  Sat 24 mat Carmen;  Sat 24 eve Tales of Hoffmann.

Performance Cast

Mario Cavaradossi a painter

Tudor Davies (Oct 23)


William Anderson (Oct 23)

Floria Tosca a famous singer

Rosina Buckman (Oct 23)

Baron Scarpia Chief of Police

Robert Parker (Oct 23)

Spoletta police agent

Sydney Russell (Oct 23)

Shepherd boy

Muriel Brunskill (Oct 23)

Performance DatesTosca 1925

Map List

King's Theatre, Edinburgh | Edinburgh

23 Oct, 19.30

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