Maretzek Italian Opera: Crispino e la comare

Event Information

Academy of Music

Manager / Director:
Max Maretzek

Angelo Torriani

Event Type:

Record Information


Last Updated:
4 April 2013

Performance Date(s) and Time(s)

10 Feb 1866, 11:00 AM

Performers and/or Works Performed


Announcement: New-York Times, 06 February 1866, 5.

     “There will be a matinee on Saturday, when ‘Crispino è la Comare’ is to be again performed.  The Academy having been previously rented to the Philharmonic Society for an afternoon rehearsal, and large pecuniary advantages being thus secured to the stockholders, Mr. Maretzek is compelled either not to play or commence early.  He prefers the latter plan.  On Saturday the doors will be opened at 10 o’ clock, the opera commencing punctually at 11.”

Advertisement: New-Yorker Musik-Zeitung, 07 February 1866.
Review: New-Yorker Musik-Zeitung, 07 February 1866, 73.

     Singing the role that Rovere, who died young, had once performed, Bellini did fairly well, though, certainly not with the same lovingness. Mr. Fossati performed in Bellini’s old part with less vocal strength yet good understanding of the part. The casting of the other parts was the same as usual. This opera gives a “friendly” impression. A truly loving work; an opera that feels like a “respite.”

Announcement: New-York Times, 09 February 1866, 4.

     “The house will present the gorgeous and striking appearance which is elsewhere described in this paper—the decorations of the ‘Arion Ball’ remaining to-night and to-morrow at the matinée, which our readers will remember commences at 11 o’ clock—the doors opening at 10; opera ‘Crispino e la Comare.’”

Advertisement: New-Yorker Staats-Zeitung und Herold, 09 February 1866.
Announcement: New-York Times, 10 February 1866, 4.

     “There are undoubtedly many visitors to the city who will be pleased with this change [of time].  It enables them to go direct from the cars to the Academy in all the pristine freshness of their toggery, and leaves them time to do their shopping afterward.  Whether it will work equally well with the City folk remains to be seen.  Matinées are, however, the rage, and at any hour they are likely to be well attended.  The opera to-day is ‘Crispino è la Comare’—the most popular work in the repertoire.  The beautiful decorations used at the Arion Ball are retained for this occasion, and will undoubtedly interest the lady folk, who are cunning in these things.”

Advertisement: New-York Times, 10 February 1866.
Announcement: New-York Daily Tribune, 10 February 1866.
Review: New-York Times, 12 February 1866, 5.

     “Saturday was a hard day for the fiddlers, and eke [sic] the performers on wind instruments, among whom may be numbered several critics.  At the early hour of ten the doors of the Academy were thrown open, and at eleven the opera commenced.  When the cobbler had returned to his last, the Philharmonic Society took possession of the building and worried through their tenth rehearsal.  In the evening a large concert was given at the same place, and over the way in Irving Hall Mr. Theodore Thomas gave his farewell symphonic soiree.  After this final labor there was not a drop of lager-bier to be had in the adjacent neighborhood.

     When Steinway’s new hall is built, and it is to be commenced on the first fine day and finished by the 1st of September next, the Philharmonic will, we presume, give their concerts and rehearsals there.  At present the Society is awkwardly situated.  Mr. Maretzek’s experiment of an early opera has succeeded, and hereafter he will, as a matter of course, preface the Society’s laudable efforts with a matinee.  The Academy mob, and the Philharmonic mob will come in conflict, which, to say the least, is disagreeable.

     The idea of getting a large audience for a performance commencing at 11 did not impress any one as being particularly good; but it turned out to be precisely the thing that was wanted.  So indeed we may conclude, for the Academy was filled to its greatest capacity, notwithstanding the slush and the hour.  Hereafter, then, it only remains for Mr. Maretzek to improve his opportunities.  If an operatic performance and a Philharmonic concert can take place in one day, why not two operatic performances.  We tremble at the probable consequences of the hint.

     ‘Crispino’ was excellently played, and is as popular this season as it was last.”

Review: New-York Daily Tribune, 12 February 1866, 5.

     “The Matinée at the Academy of Music on Saturday notwithstanding that it took place at the early hour of 11 a.m., and the streets were in a state of sloppy filth unequalled even in the memory of New-Yorkers, was attended by a dense throng of elegantly-dressed ladies, which crowded to overflow every part of that vast building. It was a display of beauty and fashion but rarely to be seen even in New-York.  The attraction was the popular and beautiful Opera, ‘Crispino e la Comare,’ which seems to have sunk deep into the affections of our musical public.

     Miss Kellogg and Signor Bellini were the bright particular stars, and sustained their reputation on this occasion nobly. Miss Kellogg singing with rare grace and melodious facility, and acting with pleasant and arch sprightliness; and Bellini, feeling more at home in the role of the Cobbler, acting with piquant humor and making the public feel less keenly the loss of the excellent Rovere. The whole opera was a great success, the subordinate characters being ably sustained, and the chorus and orchestra competent and faithful in their work.”

Review: New York Post, 12 February 1866, 3.

     “The experiment of a matinée at eleven o’clock in the morning proved so marked a success last Saturday, that it will probably be repeated every Philharmonic rehearsal day. The house was crowded to excess, and ‘Crispino’ was received with the usual favor. The singers were in high glee, and the whole affair was a joyous musical romp.”

Review: New-Yorker Staats-Zeitung und Herold, 12 February 1866, 8.

     Sold out event, very well performed.