[Met Performance] CID:176440

Metropolitan Opera House, Thu, December 12, 1957

Review 1:

Unsigned review in the Herald Tribune
Miss Madiera Sings 'Carmen' At Metropolitan

Bizet's "Carmen" was given Thursday night at the Metropolitan Opera House for the second time of the current series. Jean Madiera in the title role, Hilda Gueden as Micaela and George London as Escamillo were being heard in these roles for the first time this season. Richard Tucker was heard as José and Thomas Schippers conducted.

Miss Madiera ‘an impersonation was estimable in every respect for its integrity and high purpose. Her singing was grandly sumptuous and evenly produced, her diction a model of clarity. One regretted that her voice didn't color easily, ran, as a matter of fact, to monochrome; she replaced this want with rhythms belted rather than inflected, an effect, in the end, rather less meaningful than truly expressive singing. Miss Madiera'a acting was highly realistic — surely a virtue in this role – but she hasn't yet learned to manage her rather coltish physical proportions in a manner suggestive of the warm sensuality that a Carmen must of necessity exude.

Miss Gueden sang with her customary chilly elegance and Mr. London seemed, the most part, rather out of sorts vocally. Mr. Schippers paced the score with enormous skill and concentration but his more interesting ideas were misbegotten by a ballet and choral ensemble badly in need of renewed rigor. .

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