Price: $1; $1.50 reserved
26 September 2016
“Mr. Ignatz Pollack's [sic] concert at Irving Hall had its own distinguished audience. . . . At this the most unusual and interesting performance, strange to state, was not a musical one. It consisted of a recitation in German from Shakespeare's ‘Sonnets’, and of Strachwitz's ‘Admiral’, Miss Alide Topp's fine interpretation of Lizst's ‘Venezia e Napoli’ and the polka air by Raff; and Mr. Wenzel Kopta's vigorous execution of Ernst's ‘Air Hongrois’ were next in favor. Mr. Pollack gave the aria ‘Di Cheesa’ [Chiesa], and a triple and somber selection from Rubinstein, Marschner and Kuecken.”
The venue was over-booked. [Review cuts off here.]
“Mr. Ignatz Pollak, the popular baritone, gave a concert at Irving Hall on Sunday evening, at which the principal attractions, besides himself, were Miss Topp and Miss Janauschek. This latter lady read a piece from Shakespeare and a piece by Strachwitz, and Miss Topp performed Liszt’s Venezia e Napoli and a waltz. There was singing by Madame Johannsen, and a violin performance by Mr. Wenzel Kopta. The audience was very large, but, we regret to say, very ill-mannered. The practice of demanding encores is bad enough, but when people go to the length of hissing at a lady because she declines giving one, it is time for well-bred people to put in a strong remonstrance. The behavior of a part of the audience toward Miss Topp was simply brutal.”
The concert attracted a large audience. Pollack sang Stradella and 3 Rubinstein songs with much sentiment; however, he started this habit of adding a heavily melancholic tone that creates an almost uncanny atmosphere. We have no doubts, he will let go of this manner again. He has to. Topp played Liszt’s “Venezia e Napoli” with overwhelming strength and sensitive expression while a little nervousness was still apparent in some parts. We do doubt, however, if this piece was well-chosen for a performance in front of a large audience. The applause for her was deafening.