Anschütz German Opera: Faust – Closing Night

Event Information

Academy of Music

Event Type:

Record Information


Last Updated:
4 August 2014

Performance Date(s) and Time(s)

21 Dec 1863, 7:30 PM

Program Details

Closing Night.

AN: NYT 12/21/63, p.4 lists starting time as 7:45 pm.

Performers and/or Works Performed

Composer(s): Gounod
Text Author: Barbier, Carré
Participants:  Anschütz German Opera Company;  Joseph Weinlich (role: Mephistopholes);  Bertha Johannsen (role: Siebel);  Marie Frederici (role: Margarita);  Franz Himmer (role: Faust)


Advertisement: New-York Times, 20 December 1863, 7.

Announcement: New-Yorker Staats-Zeitung und Herold, 20 December 1863, 4.

“With tomorrow’s repeat performance of ‘Faust’ this year’s season will close. The director’s announcement in the daily papers informs us of his intention to undertake his enterprise again at the beginning of the new year. In the meantime, Mr. Maretzek and his Italian opera company will take up residence at the Academy of Music, producing ‘Faust,’ ‘Don Giovanni,’ and Verdi’s ‘Un ballo in maschera.’” 

Advertisement: New York Herald, 21 December 1863.

Announcement: New York Post, 21 December 1863, 2.

Announcement: New-York Times, 21 December 1863, 4.

“The last performance of the German opera under Mr. Carl Anschutz, takes place to-night at the Academy of Music. . . . The public and subscribers will, we trust, seize the last opportunity of hearing ‘Faust’ in the language in which it is decidedly heard to the best advantage.  It should be borne in mind that the performances commence at a quarter to 8 precisely.”

Advertisement: New-York Times, 21 December 1863, 7.

Advertisement: New-Yorker Staats-Zeitung und Herold, 21 December 1863.

Announcement: New-Yorker Staats-Zeitung und Herold, 21 December 1863, 8.
Review: New York Post, 22 December 1863, 2.
“The German opera season at the Academy closed last night with the farewell performance of ‘Faust.’  To say that the representation was highly successful, and that a vast audience witnessed it, would but partially represent the facts; for every seat was engaged long before night, and though the placard ‘only standing room’ was hung over the box office from the moment of its opening in the evening, the implied assertion that there was such room was found to be baseless, and hundreds of disappointed and dismal-looking people went home.  The four or five thousand persons who remained were delighted with the opera; it was beautifully rendered.”

Review: Courrier des États-Unis, 22 December 1863, 1-2.
Remarks on Anschütz’s opera season.  Laments the fact the public has remained uninterested, despite the good choices in repertory and especially the quality of the performers and the chorus.  He would have succeeded if he hadn’t had to compete with Maretzek.

Review: New-Yorker Staats-Zeitung und Herold, 22 December 1863, 8.

“Last night, before a packed house, the German opera company gave its last performance. ‘Faust’ was repeated and was quite polished. Mr. Anschütz will bring this opera to Brooklyn in the coming days.”

Announcement: New York Clipper, 26 December 1863, 291.
“It is a grievous thing for one brother to rage against another; but certainly Carl Anschutz and his German Opera Troupe have much cause to feel embittered against the Dutch of this city for their cool treatment of the opera.  Carl closes abruptly this evening, 21st, at the Academy, after a disastrous campaign, in which, probably, he has lost the little pile he has been making in Philadelphia and elsewhere.  The democratic tendencies of the German element lead to lager bier, sauer krout, and free opera in the Bowery, instead of to kid gloves, telescopes, and big prices at the Academy.  Farewell to all thy dreams of Academical greatness, Carl; farewell to thy little pile.”

Review: Dwight's Journal of Music, 26 December 1863, 157-158.

New York, Dec. 22.—The German Opera wound up last evening with Gounod’s ‘Faust,’ its second representation by the Anschutz company. The house was filled from pit to dome, and the enthusiasm unbounded. The choruses of the Kermesse in the second act, and the Soldiers Chorus by the Arion Society, in the fourth act, were rapturously encored, and the opera throughout was a success. The two performances of ‘Faust’ have saved Anschutz from the pecuniary loss which the failure of the previous performances would have entailed, and it is a great pity that he did not commence his season with it, instead of ‘Stradella,’ ‘Martha,’ and the like, which draw hardly a ‘Corporal’s guard’ The [sic] German Opera season has proved a failure, and this fact reflects but little credit upon the German population, who have always been such liberal patrons of their own national enterprise. As Anschutz steps out, Maretzek pops in and our Holiday week will be doubly gay and brilliant.”

Review: Musical Review and World, 02 January 1864, 7.

“After having given two performances of ‘Faust,’ the Germans have for the present retired from the field. The house, on the two last nights, was crowded, yet the receipts were but $2,200 for both performances. The subscribers, thinking the end had come, had crowded the house. Although the soloists, with exception of Mad. Friderici [sic] (Margaretha), and Mr. Himmer (Faust), were inferior, yet the impression of the whole was favorable, owing to the excellent manner in which chorus and orchestra acquitted themselves of their arduous tasks. In this respect, the German performance was by far more complete and better than the Italian. It is now said that the season will be resumed early in January, with ‘Tannhauser,’ ‘Jessonda,’ and ‘Euryanthe.’ The first opera is now in active rehearsal. We hope, this will turn out to be correct, for even if the details of the performances leave much room for improvement, the fact of the public at large having an opportunity to become acquainted with these operas, will make up for all the deficiencies in the rendering.”