Opera Scotland

Tannhäuser 1923British National Opera Company

Read more about the opera Tannhäuser

Only a single performance in Scotland for this enduringly popular opera.


The Edinburgh View

It seems strange, given the detailed listing of cast members in this review, that no singer is credited as the Landgrave. This seems most likely to be an oversight on the part of the writer, rather than a deliberate omission.

The Scotsman of Wednesday, 13 March (p8) gave its opinion:

'From the gay Seraglio of the previous evening, the National Opera artists last night passed to Tannhäuser, which was given with an admirable cast.

'There is no tenor in this country who presents the character of Tannhäuser with such paaionate intensity as Mr Frank Mullings, and his rendering of the part last night was superb.  With all its fervour it never became exaggerated, and even in the most dramatic moments of the rôle there was none of that unmusical quality in his singing to which a vocalist endeavouring to convey a stongly dramatic impression is liable to fall a victim.  In the frantic despair animating the narration of his pilgrimage, the tone was always beautiful.

'Miss Beatrice Miranda has often been heard in Edinburgh as Elizabeth, and her rendering of the part seems to become finer with repetition.  Last night it was a delightfully finished interpretation.

'Mr Robert Parker's Wolfram was another excellent impersonation, and the rather thankless music assigned to the character in the Hall of Song scene was phrased with a clearness and significance which it is seldom made to present.

'Miss Elsie Treweek's Venus was remarkably effective; Miss May Blyth grappled successfully with the difficulties of the shepherd boy's music, and Messrs Seph Jones, Frederic Collier, Nathan Shacknoff, and Philip Bertram were effective as the minstrel knights, while the chorus was also good.

'Given in the ''Paris'' version, with the extended employment of the ballet, the Venusberg scene was artistically presented, and the dancing of Miss Eily Gerald was as clever and graceful as usual.  Mr Julius Harrison conducted.'


BNOC in Scotland - 1923 (Spring & Autumn)

The company's Spring visit lasted five weeks - two in Edinburgh (King's Theatre) and three in Glasgow (at the Coliseum, as the Theatre Royal was not available).

Returning in the autumn, the visit again lasted five weeks - four in Glasgow (this time at the Theatre Royal) and one in Edinburgh (King's Theatre).

The 29 operas performed were Bach (Phoebus and Pan);  Mozart (Seraglio,  Marriage of Figaro,  Magic Flute);  Wagner (Tannhäuser,  Mastersingers,  Rhinegold,  Valkyrie,  Siegfried,  Twilight of the Gods);  Verdi (TrovatoreAïda Otello);  Gounod (Faust);  Bizet (Carmen);  Saint-Saëns (Samson and Delilah);  Leoncavallo (Pagliacci);  Puccini (Bohème,  Tosca,  Madam Butterfly,  Gianni Schicchi);  Mascagni (Cavalleria Rusticana);  Humperdinck (Hansel and Gretel);  Debussy (Pelléas and Mélisande);  Charpentier (Louise);  Smyth (Boatswain's Mate,  Fête Galante);  Holst (Savitri,  Perfect Fool).

The schedule was as follows:


Edinburgh, w/c 5 March:  Mon 5 Samson and Delilah;  Tue 6 Marriage of Figaro;  Wed 7 mat Hansel and Gretel;  Wed 7 eve Aïda; Thu 8 Madam Butterfly;  Fri 9 Carmen;  Sat 10 mat Phoebus and Pan & Pagliacci;  Sat 10 eve Trovatore.

Edinburgh, w/c 12 March:  Mon 12 Seraglio;  Tue 13 Tannhäuser;  Wed 14 mat Marriage of Figaro;  Wed 14 eve Hansel and Gretel;  Thu 15 Magic Flute;  Fri 16 Mastersingers;  Sat 17 mat Bohème;  Sat 17 eve Faust.

Glasgow, w/c 19 March:  Mon 19 Rhinegold;  Tue 20 Valkyrie;  Wed 21 mat Hansel and Gretel;  Wed 21 eve Phoebus and Pan & Pagliacci;  Thu 22 Madam Butterfly;  Fri 23 Marriage of Figaro;  Sat 24 mat Magic Flute;  Sat 24 eve Trovatore.

Glasgow, w/c 26 March:  Mon 26 Seraglio;  Tue 27 Siegfried;  Wed 28 mat Samson and Delilah;  Wed 28 eve Louise;  Thu 29 Phoebus and Pan & Pagliacci;  Fri 30 Hansel and Gretel;  Sat 31 mat Marriage of Figaro;  Sat 31 eve Madam Butterfly.

Glasgow, w/c 2 April:  Mon 2 Carmen;  Tue 3 Mastersingers;  Wed 4 mat Bohème;  Wed 4 eve Samson and Delilah;  Thu 5 Magic Flute;  Fri 6 Twilight of the Gods; Sat 7 mat Hansel and Gretel;  Sat 7 eve Aïda.


Glasgow, w/c 29 October:  Mon 29 Magic Flute;  Tue 30 Samson and Delilah;  Wed 31 mat Phoebus and Pan & Pagliacci;  Wed 31 eve Bohème;  Thu 1 Nov Aïda;  Fri 2 Valkyrie;  Sat 3 mat Hansel and Gretel;  Sat 3 eve Madam Butterfly.

Glasgow, w/c 5 November:  Mon 5 Savitri Perfect Fool;  Tue 6 Louise;  Wed 7 mat Madam Butterfly;  Wed 7 eve Cavalleria Rusticana & Gianni Schicchi;  Thu 8 Siegfried;  Fri 9 Otello;  Sat 10 mat Magic Flute;  Sat 10 e Faust.

Glasgow, w/c 12 November:  Mon 12 Aïda;  Tue 13 Mastersingers;  Wed 14 mat Samson and Delilah;  Wed 14 eve Savitri & Perfect Fool;  Thu 15 Tosca;  Fri 16 Bohème;  Sat 17 mat Fête Galante & Boatswain's Mate;  Sat 17 eve Phoebus and Pan & Gianni Schicchi.

Glasgow, w/c 19 November:  Mon 19 Faust;  Tue 20 Otello;  Wed 21 mat Hansel and Gretel;  Wed 21 eve Aïda;  Thu 22 Pelléas and Mélisande;  Fri 23 Fête Galante & Boatswain's Mate;  Sat 24 mat Cav & Pag;  Sat 24 eve Magic Flute.

Edinburgh, w/c 26 November:  Mon 26 Aïda;  Tue 27 Louise;  Wed 28 mat Fête Galante & Bosun's Mate;  Wed 28 eve Phoebus and Pan & Gianni Schicchi;  Thu 29 Pelléas and Mélisande;  Fri 30 Savitri & Perfect Fool;  Sat 31 mat Magic Flute;  Sat 31 eve Madam Butterfly.

Performance Cast


Elsy Treweek (Mar 13)

Tannhäuser a knight and minnesinger

Frank Mullings (Mar 13)

Shepherd boy

May Blyth (Mar 13)

Wolfram von Eschenbach a knight and minnesinger

Robert Parker (Mar 13)

Walther von der Vogelweide a knight and minnesinger

Seph Jones (Mar 13)

Heinrich der Schreiber a knight and minnesinger

Nathan Shacknoff (Nov 13)

Biterolf a knight and minnesinger

Frederic Collier (Mar 13)

Reinmar von Zweter a knight and minnesinger

Philip Bertram (Mar 13)

Elisabeth niece of the Landgrave

Beatrice Miranda (Mar 13)

Performance DatesTannhäuser 1923

Map List

King's Theatre, Edinburgh | Edinburgh

13 Mar, 19.00

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