Anschütz German Opera: Faust

Event Information

Academy of Music

Manager / Director:
Leonard Grover

Carl Anschütz

Price: $2; $1.50; $1; $.50; $.25

Event Type:

Record Information


Last Updated:
5 August 2015

Performance Date(s) and Time(s)

28 Apr 1865, Evening

Program Details

Military fanfare by Grafulla’s Seventh Regiment Band. Performance also included members of several German singing societies.

Faust was originally scheduled for April 17, 1865, but postponed because of Lincoln’s assassination. The post-assassination, rescheduled season set a performance of Faust on April 27 and a performance of La Juive on April 28. The company had to cancel Faust on April 27 because of a misunderstanding at the Academy of Music (see citations – AD: NYH 04/23/65 & AD: NYH 04/26/65). Then, owing to singer Johannson’s illness, La Juive was replaced by Faust on April 28 (see citation – AN: NYT 04/27/65).

Performers and/or Works Performed

Composer(s): Gounod
Text Author: Barbier, Carré
Participants:  Anschütz German Opera Company;  Seventh Regiment Band;  Marie Frederici (role: Marguerite);  Heinrich Steinecke (role: Valentin);  Otto Lehman [bass] (role: Wagner);  Sophie Dziuba (role: Siebel);  Joseph Hermanns (role: Mephistopheles);  Agnes Zimmermann (role: Marta);  Giuseppe Tamaro (role: Faust)


Advertisement: New York Herald, 10 April 1865.

     Advertises performance of Faust for April 17, 1865, which was postponed because of Lincoln’s assassination.

Announcement: New York Post, 10 April 1865.

     Advertises performance of Faust for April 17, 1865, which was postponed because of Lincoln’s assassination.

Advertisement: New-York Times, 13 April 1865.

     Advertises performance of Faust for April 17, 1865, which was postponed because of Lincoln’s assassination.

Advertisement: New York Herald, 23 April 1865.

     “Thursday evening, April 27, only time of Faust. Friday evening, April 28, only time of The Jewess.”

Advertisement: Courrier des États-Unis, 25 April 1865.

     Announces La Juive.

Advertisement: New York Herald, 26 April 1865.

     “Friday evening, April 28, only time of The Jewess. No Opera On Thursday. A previous engagement of the Academy to the Columbia College for Thursday next precludes Opera on that night. The postponement of the engagements of last week to this led to announcing Thursday’s Opera. Seats for Thursday may be re-secured or exchanged where purchased.”

Advertisement: New-York Times, 26 April 1865, 7.

     Advertises La Juive.

Advertisement: New-York Times, 27 April 1865, 7.

     Advertises Faust.

Announcement: New-York Times, 27 April 1865.

     Part of a review for the 04/26/65 performance of Robert le Diable. “The sickness of the lady named [Johannson] renders it necessary to give ‘Faust’ on Friday, instead of the ‘Jewess.’”

Announcement: New York Post, 27 April 1865.
Advertisement: New York Herald, 28 April 1865.

     Announces Faust; Cast.

Announcement: New-York Times, 28 April 1865, 4.

     “Academy of Music.—Mr. Grover announces ‘Faust’ for this evening, with the admirable cast which won the success of the work last season.”

Announcement: New-York Daily Tribune, 28 April 1865, 8.

     “This evening, the German Opera Company will perform the popular Opera of ‘Faust’ with a very strong cast. This Opera has always been well performed by this Company, drawing overflowing audiences for many nights. The choral portion is very fully and ably sustained, and altogether it is the most complete opera in the repertoire of the Company.”

Review: New-York Times, 29 April 1865, 4.

     “There is undoubtedly a strong Teutonic flavor about Gounod’s  music—a local coloring peculiarly adapted to the splendid story which he so happily and powerfully illustrates. ‘Faust,’ for this reason, is generally heard to advantage when rendered by a German company, and this in spite of some alterations in the music, necessitated by translation and transposition of accent—as for instance in Margherita’s opening phrase—prim, modest and demure in the original, but shorn of its fair proportions in the German versions. These, however, are trifles when weighed against the obvious and general adaptability of the music to the idiom of the German language. In some passages, indeed, this is so manifest that the preference must be given to it over either of the other two languages through which the work has been made so widely known. The best characteristics of the German version were certainly brought out last night in an unusually agreeable manner. We have rarely heard the work, in all general respects, better given.  The artists were, without exception, in capital voice, and a rare and enjoyable unanimity prevailed—a desire to be good and conscientious.  The cast was mainly the same as last season, when Mr. Grover played the opera here. We note, however, in his artists a commendable degree of improvement. Mme. Frederici’s voice has become fuller, and is evidently more under her control. Its quality is as heretofore, exceedingly good. We should be glad if the lady would not display so much energy in her acting—especially in the window scene of the third act. A modest young woman communing with her thoughts in the chaste light of the moon does not fling her arms about so violently. We throw out this hint without desiring to detract from the general merit of Mme. Frederici’s performance, which indeed was great. Mme. Djiuba [sic]—a young artist who sang once or twice last season—gave a very acceptable rendering to the small but charming rôle of Siebel. Her voice also has notably improved. Signor Tamaro was the ‘Faust,’ (singing the words in Italian,) and was good. Of Herr Herman’s [sic] Mephistopheles it is unnecessary to speak. It has been fully accepted as one of the best personations on the stage. We must not forget to add a word of praise for Herr Steinecke, a reliable and painstaking artist, who is always at his post. The orchestra and chorus were alike admirable. Indeed our recollections of last evening’s entertainment are wholly agreeable.”

Review: New-York Daily Tribune, 29 April 1865, 4.

     “The Opera of Faust was given last evening to a large audience.  This opera grows upon the public ear with every representation.  Its beauties are of that sensurous [sic] character which appeal to the heart, and the impression grows deeper and deeper the more familiar we become with its earnest characteristics.  It has wonderful individuality and the originality of its conceptions is unquestionable.

     As performance it is altogether the most perfect of all the repertoire of this company.  Mlle. Frederici personates Marguerette [sic] most charmingly.  Simple and earnest in her manner, she is certainly the impersonation of womanly tenderness.  The whole of her scene in the third act was acted with that simple archness, which gave it the air of perfect naturalness.  Every emotion was faithfully expressed, and the grace of her action gave a charm which all acknowledged.  She was in fine voice and sang unexceptionably well.  This character displays her excellence to the best advantage, and places her in good position as an artist.

     Mdlle. Dziuba is altogether the best representative of the part of Siebel that we have yet had in the city.  Her voice is fresh and beautiful, and she manages it with grace and skill.  Her personal appearance is most pleasing. She is a graceful actress, and earnest in all she does.  She is a great acquisition to the company.

     Signor Tamaro, if he would use his voice with more judgment, sometimes singing in mezzo voce, would be all that could be desired as Faust.  He should remember that love, even at its fever heat, is not always boisterous; that tenderness is rarely expressed by a shout.  In the love scene, which, in its passionate pathos, has never been excelled, there are fine opportunities for the display of subdued and earnest passion, most of which he lost.  Still, he sings like an artist, and though his reading of the character may be questioned, he acts the part well.

     Hermans is the only representative of Mephistopheles that we have had here, who acts, sings and understands the character.  His personation was admirable throughout.  It is pleasant to listen to a fine voice perfectly in tune and free from the present vitiated style of singing.  He phrases well, delivers his recitatives with energy and marked emphasis and slights no portion of his role.  His performance throughout was worthy of all praise.

     A strong feature with this company is its admirable chorus, which is in every respect superior in all its parts to any we have had on our operatic stage.  The choruses in this opera are difficult of execution, and are highly effective when well performed.  On this occasion they were unexceptionably good; every point was promptly taken up and the effects were faithfully preserved.  They were well appreciated by the audience each one receiving distinct marks of approbation.

     The orchestra was ably directed by Anschutz, its execution was marked by unusual care, and the innumerable points of rare beauty were observed in its minutest shades of artistic coloring.  The score has seldom been more faithfully rendered.  We trust had Mr. Grover will repeat this beautiful opera before the close of the season.”

Review: New York Clipper, 06 May 1865, 30.

Grover’s German Opera Troupe gave two evening performances and one matinee at the Academy of Music last week. On the evening of the 28th, we witnessed ‘Faust,’ which was exceedingly well rendered. Hermans as Mephistophiles was grand, Mlle. Fredrica [sic] as Marguerette acted and sang her part well, and Mlle. Djiubia [sic] as Siebel was evidently a favorite with the audience. The chorus and scenery were both admirable, and, including the march by the 7th Regiment band, which was encored and repeated, the whole performance was a success. The audience was by no means numerous, and secured seats were not at a premium.”