Grau French Opera Bouffe: Geneviève de Brabant

Event Information

French Theatre

Proprietor / Lessee:
Jacob Grau

Manager / Director:
Jacob Grau

Price: $1.50 orchestra; $1 dress circle; $10 private boxes; $15 proscenium boxes; $1 general admission; .30 family circle

Event Type:

Record Information


Last Updated:
16 June 2019

Performance Date(s) and Time(s)

23 Nov 1868, 8:00 PM
24 Nov 1868, 8:00 PM
25 Nov 1868, 8:00 PM
26 Nov 1868, 8:00 PM
27 Nov 1868, 8:00 PM
28 Nov 1868, 1:00 PM
28 Nov 1868, 8:00 PM

Performers and/or Works Performed

aka Genevieve de Brabant; Geneviève of Brabant; Genevieve of Brabant; Genevieve d'Brabant
Composer(s): Offenbach
Text Author: Jaime, Etienne (Victor)


Review: Dwight's Journal of Music, 21 November 1868, 352.

“... drawing crowded houses…among his singers who had been less widely noticed than the leaing names, Mme. Guerretti is attracting special attention, from the pureity of her vocal style and the charming quality of her voice. This lady is the wife of Alard the violinst, and is a treasure the adds greatly to the success of ‘Genevieve.’ The serenade of the first act, En passant sous lefenetre, has become a popular melodic favorite, and, with the hunters quartet and Tyrolean trio, is the most admired portion of the opera.”

Advertisement: New York Herald, 22 November 1868.
Review: New York Herald, 23 November 1868, 4.

“‘Geneviève de Brabant,’ like good wine, needs to bush. It is one of the most complete successes of the season and will doubtless hold its own for many weeks to come. The careful manner in which the piece was first placed on the stage was in itself a sufficient guarantee that the management of the Théâtre Français would endeavor to make that establishment worthy the patronage of the general public. How the public responds to the liberality of the management is clearly manifested in the throngs who are nightly compelled to stand, owing to the fact of most of the seats being generally engaged in advance for each representation of the opera. It is only necessary here to say that the singing and the acting of the artists improves with each successive performance and that the libretto has been subjected to a careful and judicious pruning.”

Announcement: New York Post, 23 November 1868.
Review: New York Post, 24 November 1868.

“In the gallery of eccentric delineations to be witnessed every night in ‘Genevieve de Brabant,’ there is one individual who is attracting no small share of the comment to which the piece has given rise. This is M. Petit, who takes the part of Narcisse, the court poet, whose function it is to throw into rhyme, to the accompaniment of an impossible lute, the events of the day. This poet laureate of Duke Siffroy, like many others of his class, does not meet with very flattering success, for his effusions inevitably bore his ducal patron beyond measure.

“M. Petit makes as much out of this minor character as Mr. Leduc does out of the part of Prince Paul in the ‘Grand Duchess.’ His humor is more extravagantly burlesque in its style than Leduc’s. Gifted with a mouth of amazing flexibility and incredible powers of expansion, M. Petit avails himself fully of its mirth-provoking capabilities. His expression of self-complacent good-humored, idiotic conceit is perfectly exquisite; and his burlesque of the facial contortions and the attitudes of the grand opera artists is equally mirth-provoking. Petit also varies considerably in his by-play, and, without being obtrusive, always makes his presence on the stage a fact which the audience cannot overlook. Altogether, though petit in name, he adds in no little degree to the amusement of the delighted crowds who find in ‘Genevieve’ one of the most signal attractions in the whole list of our city amusements.

“We notice, by the way, that of late some of the really immodest features of the can-can dancer have been suppressed. Whether this was incidental to a single occasion, or the result of managerial oversight, we know not; but if not permanent it should be so. ‘Genevieve’ has too much delightful music, and is altogether too amusing a burlesque to be marred by some of the features which marked the first few nights of its performance at the French Theatre.”

Announcement: New York Post, 27 November 1868.
Announcement: New-York Times, 28 November 1868, 5.
Review: New-York Times, 30 November 1868, 4.

“Mr. GRAU announces no change in his bill, nor does he need to do so. Genevieve de Brabant has proved a success, and it will naturally remain the attraction until the public demands something else. We may add that the opera is now in its best working order, and ‘goes’ in every respect excellently. The brilliant costumes and striking scenery, added to the merits of the principal artists have led undoubtedly to a popular success.”