Opera Scotland

Trovatore 1929Covent Garden Opera

Read more about the opera Trovatore

The cast for the Edinburgh performance  on 23 October 1929 is as advertised in that morning's Scotsman, confirmed, with the addition of Ruiz, by the highly enthusiastic review the next day.


The Scotsman,  Thursday, 24 October 1929 (p8):

''It was a great pleasure to hear Il Trovatore given with such vitality as was the case last night at the King's Theatre.  With the best will in the world, the familiar in music is too often apt to engender a greater or less perfunctoriness in performance;  the fine edge of interest on the part of the singers and players concerned has become blunted.

'Last night, however, under Mr Barbirolli's direction,  Verdi's most familiar opera was given with a freshness of touch such as might be expected in the case of a recent addition to the repertory.  This feeling of freshness was materially reinforced by the efficiency of the action on the stage, and the artistic nature of the mounting.  The male chorus, for example, looked like soldiers, while Manrico also looked less like an operatic tenor, and more like the soldier he was supposed to be.  Opera is a composite art, and all these no doubt non-musical factors count in the general effect.

'It is a general convention that the story of Il Trovatore is incomprehensible, and that the music is not really dramatic.  As a matter of fact, the story is strongly dramatic, and quite simple,  while the music, notwithstanding the set forms in which it is cast,  is never otherwise than a telling commentary upon the dramatic situation.  The painting is done with a broad brush, and a bold touch, but the effect is always true.

'Mr Edward Leer made a fine Manrico, the variety of colour in his voice reinforcing the dramatic sense of his music, the great solo in the second scene of the third act being given with magnificent force.  The Leonora of Miss Rachel Morton, while perhaps lacking a little in strength in the emotional climaxes, was full of charm.

'Miss Constance Willis, although labouring under the disadvantage of a cold, gave a highly dramatic reading of the rôle of Azucena,  singing and acting with a fervour which never ran into exaggeration.  The Count di Luna of Mr Arsene Kirill completed a fine cast of principals,  his singing and acting being always good.

'In the minor rôles, Miss Constance Groome as Inez,  Mr Philip Bertram as Ferrando, and Mr Frederick Davies as Ruiz, were all effective.  Very high praise is due to both chorus and orchestra.  The attack of the chorus was excellent, while the tone of the orchestra in all sections was good.

'The string section of the orchestra is very effective,  while it was exhilarating to hear brass playing of such precision and brilliance of tone.  The ballet in the gipsy encampment scene made an excellent appearance.'

Performance Cast

Ferrando captain of Di Luna's guard

Philip Bertram (Oct 23)

Inez confidante of Leonora

Constance Groome (Oct 23)

Leonora a Duchess, lady-in-waiting to the Princess of Aragon

Rachel Morton (Oct 23)

Count di Luna a young noble of Aragon

Arsène Kirillov (Oct 23)

Manrico a chieftain under the Prince of Biscay

Edward Leer (Oct 23)

Azucena a Biscayan gypsy woman

Constance Willis (Oct 23)

Ruiz a soldier in Manrico's service

Frederick Davies (Oct 23)

Performance DatesTrovatore 1929

Map List

Theatre Royal, Glasgow | Glasgow

12 Oct, 19.15

King's Theatre, Edinburgh | Edinburgh

23 Oct, 19.15

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