Maretzek Italian Opera: Le Prophète

Event Information

Academy of Music

Manager / Director:
Max Maretzek

Max Maretzek

Event Type:

Record Information


Last Updated:
15 March 2019

Performance Date(s) and Time(s)

15 Mar 1869, Evening

Program Details

“Fancy skating by members of the New York Skating Association.”

Performers and/or Works Performed

Composer(s): Meyerbeer
Participants:  Maretzek Italian Opera Company;  Wilhelm Formes (role: Comte Oberthal);  Isabella McCulloch (role: Bertha);  Anna de La Grange (role: Fides);  Mlle., unidentified [dancer] Zuccoli;  Mlle. [dancer] Wesmael;  Alessandro [tenor] Boetti;  Ettore Barili (role: Mathisen);  Theodore Habelmann (role: Jonas);  Giuseppe B. [basso] Antonucci (role: Zacharie)


Advertisement: Courrier des États-Unis, 11 March 1869.
Advertisement: New-York Times, 13 March 1869, 7.
Advertisement: New York Herald, 15 March 1869, 11.
Announcement: New-York Daily Tribune, 15 March 1869, 5.

“‘The Prophet’ will be repeated to-night at the Academy of Music. It is gratifying to know that it has produced a genuine sensation, amounting, among musical people, almost to a furore, and we should not be surprised if it came as near to having a run as the approaching close of the season will permit. It is gratifying also to see so gorgeous a work presented with such attention to details, such a liberal stage setting, and a cast so nearly adequate to its proper interpretation. In one respect, the Fides of Madame La Grange, it would be impossible to suggest any improvement. This is one of the most extraordinary, most inspired performances that we have seen on the operatic stage for many a year. Miss McCulloch also has won a great deal of praise by her simple and intelligent delivery of the music of Bertha. The opening cavatina, Il cor nei sen, she omits; but the duet with Fides, Della Mosa un giorno, and the Per serbor me fedel, in the fourth act, give opportunities for the display of some of her best qualities of voice. The grand music of the three Anabaptist leaders, which forms, so to speak, the background of the whole opera, is splendidly treated and Antonucci, Habelmann, and Barili; and Boetti as John of Leyden, and Formes as Oberthal, if not altogether satisfactory, are at any rate good enough not to mar the general effect. We have already complimented the manager upon the perfection of the chorus, scenery, and decorations, and the effective grouping of the spectacular scenes. The few defects inseparable from a first performance will no doubt be removed to night, and the opera will run smoothly. The orchestra, led by Mr. Maretzek, is admirable. It has splendid work to do, for the richness of Meyerbeer’s score is wonderful. It is enough to say that none of the beauties are obscured or missed.”

Review: New-York Daily Tribune, 17 March 1869, 5.

“The second performance of ‘The Prophet,’ on Monday night, was even better than the first, the stage arrangements working with greater smoothness, and the artists, chorus, and supernumeraries being entirely familiar with the ‘business’ belonging to their respective parts. Boetti sang better than he did before, and La Grange, Miss McCulloch, and the others dame [sic] fully up to the high standard which they had already established for themselves. The house of course was crowded, and the public seemed appreciative. The skating-scene, the grand interior of the cathedral of Munster, and the explosion and fire in the banquet hall at the close of the opera drew forth marks of warm approval. No Italian opera has been so well represented in New-York for many years. The third performance is announced for ton-night, and during next week (the last of the season) we presume the opera will be repeated, for it certainly promises to draw for some time.”