[Met Performance] CID:112020

L'Elisir d'Amore
Metropolitan Opera House, Wed, November 23, 1932

Debut : Tito Schipa

L'Elisir d'Amore (52)
Gaetano Donizetti | Felice Romani
Editha Fleischer

Tito Schipa [Debut]

Giuseppe De Luca

Dr. Dulcamara
Ezio Pinza

Philine Falco

Tullio Serafin

Alexander Sanine

Set Designer
Joseph Novak

L'Elisir d'Amore received three performances this season.

Review 1:

Review Olin Downes in the New York Times:

[Schipa] had a well-deserved success. The voice may be a little dryer than a decade ago, but the skill in song and the art of the musician were obvious in everything the singer accomplished. Mr. Schipa has ample bravura when that is required, but what is more to the point in this adorable opera bouffe of Donizetti is his capacity to sustain and mold beautifully a long melodic phrase. He also makes much of the text.

In all these requisites of artistic singing Mr. Schipa won the respect and enthusiasm of his audience. His authority as an interpreter was tinged with his capacity for fun and in appropriate places he made the audience laugh without becoming a mere buffoon. Thus he kept within the frame of Donizetti's comedy, which, like other operatic comedy of that period and style, is often spoiled by cheap vocal tricks and cheap and silly clowning. At no time did Mr. Schipa depart from artistic standards and no occasion did he fail to charm as well as divert his listeners. The climax of his performance came naturally with "una furtiva lagrima" delivered with much refinement and feeling and here the audience not only applauded, but shouted its approval.

Review 2:

Review of W. J. Henderson in the Sun

A chronological record of accomplishments at the Metropolitan Opera House in the past two days catalogues performances of three operas, one in Italian, one French, one German; three debuts, the return of Lily Pons to the scene of her first glorification, and the names of Donizetti, Delibes and Wagner restored to the list of active immortals.

Wednesday evening the opera was "L'Elisir d'Amore," in which Tito Schipa, formerly of the Chicago Opera, made his first appearance with the local company. As Nemorino he had a most excellent introduction to Metropolitan patrons. He had long been known to local music lovers as an artist of taste, refinement and elegance, and his Nemorino served to disclose his ability to play the rustic simpleton without also playing the buffoon.

His comedy was delightful, never out of the picture and never without point. His singing was characterized by beauty of phrases, aptness of nuance, clarity of diction and communicative feeling. He made much of his skill in the use of morendi with delicately spun head tones, but he did not at any time employ the effect inappropriately. Nemorino reaches the vocal climax near the end of the opera with "Una Furtiva Lagrime." Mr. Schipa sang this air as it has rarely been sung at the Metropolitan Opera, without exaggeration and poised finish.

Search by season: 1932-33

Search by title: L'Elisir d'Amore,

Met careers