Maretzek Italian Opera: L’Etoile du Nord

Event Information

Winter Garden

Manager / Director:
Max Maretzek

Event Type:

Record Information


Last Updated:
23 June 2016

Performance Date(s) and Time(s)

03 Dec 1866, Evening

Performers and/or Works Performed

aka North star; Etoile du nord
Composer(s): Meyerbeer
Text Author: Scribe
Participants:  Maretzek Italian Opera Company;  Minnie Hauk (role: Proscovia);  Signor [tenor] Baragli;  Clara Louise Kellogg;  Fernando [bass-baritone] Bellini (role: Gritzenko);  Giuseppe B. [basso] Antonucci (role: Peter the Great)


Advertisement: New-York Times, 01 December 1866, 7.
Announcement: New-York Times, 03 December 1866, 4.

“The distribution of characters in the opera for this evening cannot fail to attract general attention. Baragli would never be selected by an insurance agent as an exponent of powerful lungs, but such as he has he uses discreetly; but the rest, Miss Kellogg, Miss Hauck, Bellini and Antonucci, are quite sufficient to make any work attractive. All have roles of beauty and power, in the rendering of which they merit and receive great popular applause and much critical approval. As for the choruses and incidental developments—they are simply immense.”

Announcement: New-York Times, 03 December 1866, 4.
Advertisement: New-Yorker Staats-Zeitung und Herold, 03 December 1866.
Review: New-York Daily Tribune, 04 December 1866, 6.

“‘The Star of the North,’ a work in which Meyerbeer has especially studied the romance of national and military character, was produced last evening. No opera of this great stage-master gives evidence of more characteristic art. It is a well-colored Russian picture, rich with the accompaniment of a warlike music as profoundly studied as any song and instrumentation which the works of this cosmopolitan master can boast. He has probably in no other work written choruses of a kind at once so strong, distinctive and characteristic; and for this reason we are very glad that the force of the performance last evening brought this feature of effect into so striking prominence. Miss Kellogg appeared in a part well suited to her fullest capacity. With a voice delicate, but clear, expansive and flexible, she illustrates some of the most delightful versatility of the composer. Miss Hauck, as Proscovia was an excellent foil to Miss Kellogg’s maturer style, and the performance lost little in spirit by her fresh and graceful delivery. In concerted music we miss a more experienced tone, but one or two well-merited encores proved that Miss Hauck is a real acquisition. Especial praise is due to Bellini’s well-acted part of Gritzenko, and to Antonucci’s sonorous characterization of Peter the Great.”

Review: Courrier des États-Unis, 05 December 1866.

“Monday, the performance of L’Etoile du Nord was very sparkling. Mlle Amalia Hauck is decidedly becoming the idol of the public, and we only wish her one thing—that her deserved success doesn’t turn her head. She has in her the seeds of a great artist, but she isn’t a great artist yet, and work is necessary for the complete development of her rich faculties.”

Review: New-Yorker Staats-Zeitung und Herold, 09 December 1866, 4.

(…) Kellogg’s performance in the finale of the first act was enchanting. The coloratura part of the aria was cut, though, which was favorable. That way Kellogg’s clear, warm voice did not get distorted by trills and redundant ornamentations. Where a dramatic is climax required, the abilities of Kellogg are insufficient. Her voice lacks strength, but she is beautifully skilled in the areas of graceful and heartfelt presentations. She is the favorite of the audience and critics. (…) Signora Ronconi could not be heard beyond the 4th row of the parterre. Poch and Mazzoleni ruined the duet of the 4th act. Poch sang better in the duet of the 3rd act, which even produced calls for da capo in the audience. The audience was mostly quiet and unmoved during the performance. Antonucci’s massive appearance does not match the volume of his voice. However, he is at least able to sing accurately and pleasantly. The same applies to Bellini. The ensemble was weak in their performance in the “Conspiracy Scene” of the 4th act, which was cut heavily. Many audience members, including the critic, left before the 5th act, due to dissatisfaction with what had preceded.