Bryants’ Minstrels

Event Information

Venue(s):
Bryants’ Minstrel Hall

Event Type:
Minstrel

Record Information

Status:
Published

Last Updated:
3 April 2018

Performance Date(s) and Time(s)

14 Sep 1868, 8:00 PM
15 Sep 1868, 8:00 PM
16 Sep 1868, 8:00 PM
17 Sep 1868, 8:00 PM
18 Sep 1868, 8:00 PM
19 Sep 1868, 8:00 PM

Program Details

Scenery by Mr. Williams. Machinery and properities by F. Boniface.

Performers and/or Works Performed

2)
aka Monster tin panonion; Monster concert tin-pan-on-ion; Grand tin-pan-on-ion; Grand tinpanonion; Grand Tin Pano-ni-on; Tin-pan-o-ni-on; Tin-Pan O-Ni-On concert
Participants:  Dan Bryant
3)
aka Lucrezia Borgia
Text Author: Byron
Participants:  Ruey Hughes (role: Rustigallo);  [minstrel comedian] Unsworth (role: Orsini);  [minstrel singer] Eugene (role: Lucrezia Borgia);  Dan Bryant (role: Kito Bamsani);  Eph Horn (role: Princess Rumbo);  Nelse Seymour (role: Duke Alphonse);  William P. Grier [minstrel] (role: Gubretta);  John P. Hogan [minstrel] (role: Johnnero Albani and Jackeno Romero);  Monroe Dempster [minstrel tenor] (role: Gennaro)

Citations

1)
Announcement: New York Clipper, 12 September 1868, 182.

“The Bryants have in preparation Eugene’s burlesque of ‘Lucrezia Borgia,’ which will be produced on the 14th inst., after careful preparation.”

2)
Advertisement: New York Herald, 13 September 1868.
3)
Announcement: New York Herald, 14 September 1868, 4.

“Anticipating the arrival of Mapleson next door, Dan Bryant has inaugurated a season of Italian opera at his charming little hall. ‘Lucrezia Borgia’ is on the bill this week, and with Eugene, the rival of Titiens, the excrutiatingly funny Unsworth, the prolongated Seymour, and the unapproachable Dan in the cast, the opera is sure to go on brilliantly.”

4)
Announcement: New-York Times, 14 September 1868, 4.
5)
Advertisement: New-York Times, 14 September 1868, 7.
6)
Review: New York Herald, 15 September 1868, 7.

“The Bryant brothers and their inimitable aids, composing this unsurpassed troupe of minstrels, were greeted last evening with an audience both in number and character that seldom is seen in halls of such amusement. The attraction, besides an entertainment in keeping with swarthy faces and woolly heads was the first performance of the burlesque ‘Lucrezia Borgia.’ It was previously rendered by its authors, Unsworth and Eugene, in London, and it is reproduced here after much preparation. The title role was assumed by Eugene and the other characters were well rendered by Unsworth, Dempster, Dan Bryant, Seymour, and Eph Horn. The burlesque abounds in telling hits, happy and inspiriting songs, side-splitting situations and elegant costumes and appointments. It was received by the audience last evening in such a manner that its success may be acknowledged.”

7)
Review: New-York Times, 16 September 1868, 4.

Brief: “The Bryants have produced an opera bouffe, or, as they are audacious enough to call it, ‘gouffe gouffe,’ on ‘Lucrezia Borgia.’ The principal gems of the opera are preserved with artistic care, and are interpreted with skill. There is also fun on this terrible subject of the Borgias. The scenery is admirable, better than at the next shop—the Academy of Music. Eugene, Dempster, Unsworth and Nelse Seymour are admirable. We are disposed to believe that ‘Lucrezia’ will run as long as ‘Il Trovatore.’”

8)
Announcement: New York Clipper, 19 September 1868, 190.

“In the cast of characters for Unsworth and Eugene’s burlesque opera of ‘Lucrezia Borgia’ at Bryants’ Minstrels, Mr. Bryant has wisely given the tenor part, Genarro, to Mr. Monroe Dempster. ‘Orpheus and Eurydice’ is in production at this house.”

9)
Announcement: New York Clipper, 19 September 1868, 190.

“Bryants’ Minstrels produce this evening, after considerable preparation, a burlesque by Eugene on Lucrezia Borgia, for which new scenery has been painted by H. [sic] Wallack, and everything done, it is thought, to make the affair a success…Brougham’s burlesque on Orphee aux Enfers is in active preparation.”

10)
Advertisement: New York Clipper, 19 September 1868, 191.
11)
Review: New-York Daily Tribune, 19 September 1868, 2.

“A new burlesque on ‘Lucrezia Borgia’ has been produced by Bryant’s Minstrels. Remarkably good scenery, by W. Wallack, and rich costumes, by Mr. Flannery, give this jewel of mirth a gay and gorgeous setting. The action of the burlesque, which condenses that of the opera, is limited to three scenes. A good deal of the difficult music of the original is well executed by Eugene as Lucrezia, Mr. Monroe Dempster as Gennaro, Unsworth as Orsini, and Mr. N. Seymour as Duke Alphonso. [Lists other cast members.] In occasional incident this burlesque is funny; but, for the most part, it fails to conform to the chief law of burlesque—that comic acts and words shall be seriously done and spoken. To sing the serious music of ‘Lucrezia Borgia’ in a serious manner is not to burlesque anything, even though the singer’s face be blackened. However, not ‘to consider too curiously’ what is after all a mere trifle, there is fun enough in this Ethiopian ‘Lucrezia Borgia’ to make its representation agreeable, and there is nothing coarse in it. Mr. Unsworth makes a good deal of merriment, considering the limited opportunities afforded to him; and Mr. Eugene at once startles and amuses his auditors, by his remarkably accurate and exceedingly comical assumption of the feminine physique. ‘Lucrezia Borgia’ did not impress us as being so comic as its predecessor ‘Ill-True-Bad-Doer;’ but the large audience present received it with emphatic demonstrations of delight, and we may safely anticipate that it will have a long and prosperous run. Another operatic burlesque is by and by to follow it, ‘Orpheus and Eurydice.’ The miscellaneous portion of the entertainment at present given by Bryant’s Minstrels as a prelude to their ‘Lucrezia Borgia,’ is varied in character and brim full of humor. A Monster Concert Tin-pan-o-nian may especially be enjoyed both because of the music, and because of Mr. Dan Bryant’s superb travestie of the antics of the demonstrative foreign impresario.”

12)
Review: New York Clipper, 26 September 1868, 198.

“The Bryants produced Eugene and Unsworth’s burlesque opera, ‘Lucrezia Borgia,’ the past week, in a very handsome manner, as regards scenery and costumes. The opening scene, representing Venice by moonlight, is one of the handsomest scenes yet presented in a minstrel hall in this city, and reflects credit upon the artist, W. Wallack. The scene represents the plaza, with the canal in the foreground and the palace of Borgia on the right. The second scene—the interior of the palace—is a handsome affair, as is the last scene, where the sports are holding high revel and banqueting in the palace of the Borgias. All the costumes are quite handsome and look as if they had been made expressly for the burlesque. Eugene appeared as Lucrezia, Dempster as Gennaro, Unsworth as Orsini, Nelse Seymour as the Duke and Dan Bryant as Gubetta, in place of Mr. Grier, who was prevented from appearing in consequence of the death of an infant child that day. Each one was well up in his part and did justice to the character presented. Eugene was particularly good. He is certainly a most excellent burlesque prima donna. The house was crowded and business continued excellent throughout the week.”