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to appear in Balfe's posthumous opera, 'Il Talismano,' at Drury Lane. The Italian tenor sang in Herr Wagner's Lohengrin' eleven times, and in Signor Verdi's 'Aïda' thirty-three times in America, and yet these two works are ignored both at Her Majesty's Opera and at the Royal Italian Opera. Madame Nilsson left New York, after singing at a farewell concert, at which Madame Pauline Lucca and Mdlle. Murska co-operated, on the 6th, and is daily expected to resume her engagement here. The Swedish songstress will create the character of Edith Plantagenet in the Talismano, which may be looked for the end of this month or early in June.
M. GOUNOD'S 'Faust' and Balfe's 'Satanella' have been the operas in English this week at the Crystal Palace. It is stated that tickets to the amount of 10,000l. have been already sold for the four days of the Handel Festival next month. LETTERS from Wiesbaden afford the welcome information that the "cure" of Mr. Sims Reeves is "progressing" so satisfactorily as to justify the expectation that he will re-appear here early next month, and will be able to sing at the Handel
THE Whitsuntide Lower-Rhenish Festival will
be held this year at Cologne. In the programme we note that Herr Brahms's 'Triumphlied' will be produced under the composer's direction, and that Herr Ferdinand Hiller will conduct his own work, "The Destruction of Jerusalem.' Handel's 'Samson,' Schumann's 'Genoveva' overture, Beethoven's Pastoral Symphony, and Mendelssohn's in A, are the leading items. Herr Joachim will play a violin concerto. The chief singers will be Madame Peschka-Leutner, Madame Joachim, and Herr Diener.
AN operetta, 'Die Mönkguter,' by Herr Radecke, has been produced with success in Berlin.
THE German papers mention that the musical director of the Hungarian National Theatre in Pesth has selected a tenor for the part of Siegfried in Herr Wagner's "trilogy," and that the composer has approved the choice of Herr Richter. The singer is Herr Franz Glatz, the son of an advocate at Pesth, who was studying for his father's profession, but as an amateur displayed such a marvellous organ, that he has been persuaded to abandon the law for the lyric stage, and Bayreuth will witness his début.
HERR RUBINSTEIN will produce his oratorio, the 'Dæmon,' in Paris, in the course of the ensuing
THE new oratorio, 'Jesus Christ,' so successfully produced in Berlin, is in three parts, with six principal scenes. The Entry of the Saviour into Jerusalem and the Last Supper form the first part; the Denial of Peter, Christ before the Grand Pontiff and before Pilate, and the Crucifixion, the second section; and the final one is devoted to the ResurChrist, the Grand Pontiff, Pilate, Peter, Judas, Thomas, the two Marys, a Pharisee, an Angel, two Servants, the two Thieves, the Disciples, and the People.
rection of Jesus. The characters in the score are
A NEW Russian opera, by the composer Tsaikoffsky, called 'Opritschniki,' is in preparation at the St. Petersburg Opera-house. The names should be set in Sol-Fa notation.
Special interest attends the first appearance of Mdlle. Favart as the heroine of this piece, the character being one that would, in the course of things, be offered her at the Comédie, and its bestowal upon another involving a departure from precedent. There is no great cause for regret that Mdlle. Favart has been prevented from reaping the laurels another is wearing. Her own wreath may spare a few leaves, and those Mdlle. Croizette has gathered are scarcely worth collecting. The character of Blanche de Chelles, the heroine, is morbid, extravagant, and unreal. Blanche loves Henri de Savigny, the husband of her one friend, Berthe. Unable to conquer his apparent coldness, she asks this man to read some letters, which she declares contain her vindication. He reads, and finds she is in love with him. De Savigny loves his wife, and so, in a way, does Blanche. The latter is capable of any sacrifice to her friend, except that of remaining faithful to her husband.
To remove accordingly the jealousy that Berthe evinces, Blanche determines to run away with Lord Astley, a Scotch nobleman, who wishes to introduce her to his Highland retainers. She is on her way to meet Lord Astley when she encounters De Savigny, who endeavours to dissuade her from her mad scheme. Cajolery and menace are used in vain, and De Savigny employs at length absolute violence. When Blanche sees that sooner than permit her elopement De Savigny is capable of murdering her, she screams with delight, "Ah! vous m'aimez donc." This logic is conclusive, and De Savigny does not attempt denial. Blanche have been heard by Berthe, who Unfortunately, the words of arrives at an inopportune moment. In the next act the two women are at open feud. Berthe, the lamb-like, is a lion when roused. She insists upon the immediate departure of her rival, and avows her intention of using as an instrument of vengeance, provided her demands are not complied with on the instant, the letters of Blanche of which she has obtained possession. For a moment the worst passions of Blanche are aroused. She pours into water the poisonous contents of a ring, representing a Sphynx, she has long worn, and she makes a step to offer the glass to her fainting enemy. More human thoughts prevail, however. She embraces, in a fit of penitence, the woman whose happiness she has so sorely imperilled, and she swallows herself the potion she has prepared. With her death the piece ends.
What, then, is the riddle of the Sphynx'? The spectator who found it difficult to solve will do well to treat it as he treats other problems that will not reward the effort necessary to their solution, and give it up. That a woman may love her friend's husband; that she may balance for awhile between her affection for the woman and her passion for the man, and may give her life as the price of self conquest, is conceivable. It is not conceivable, however, that a woman should for the love of one man run away with another; but if there be a nature perverse enough to be driven to such courses it is not worth studying. M. Feuillet is generally in extremes. More than the usual amount of inconsistency to be expected from a French novelist and moralist is shown in the man who, after attempting to purify the stage by 'Le Roman d'un Jeune Homme Pauvre,' and casting down the gauntlet
to all free-thinkers in his 'Histoire de Sibylle,' gives to the press a novel like 'Monsieur de Camors' and a play like 'Le Sphynx.'
Mdlle. Favart gave a masterly presentation of the Sphynx, showing, with remarkable breadth and effect, the sterner sides of the character. The part is, however, scarcely worthy of the actor. One point, moreover, we noticed with regret. In the death-scene, Mdlle. Favart gave a presentation of physical agony, intended, apparently, to eclipse that which has made Mdlle. Croizette famous. While a young actress may essay an experiment of this kind, to an artist like Malle. Favart it is not permitted. A dangerous triumph is obtained by those who present with ultra-realism the spectacle of death agony or of physical suffering. For the pure art of which Mdlle. Favart is the priestess, a conventional representation of death must always be reserved, and the triumph that a actress young like Mdlle. Croizette has obtained will, we fear, be dearly purchased. The other characters of the play were sustained by M. Rosambeau, who made a first appearance as De Savigny; Mdlle. Kelly, excellent as Berthe; Malle. Davenay, M. Gouget, and other members of the company.
A SOCIETY for the "amelioration" of the French
stage has held its first sitting in Paris, when a The improvement aimed at is, of course, moṛal 'conférence" by M. Paul Féval was delivered. After M. Dumas fils has appeared as a regenerator of Parisian society, we need scarcely be surprised at the author of the Fils du Diable' appearing as the regenerator of M. Dumas.
M. Gor's re-appearance in London is fixed for the 28th instant.
been revived at the Adelphi, with Miss Kate 'MAGIC TOYS,' the amusing and not over-decorous version of 'Les Pantins de Violette,' has Vaughan, hitherto known only as a dancer, in
the part of Valentine, and Miss Hudspeth as Urgundula.
'GENTIL BERNARD,' by M. Dumanoir, has been revived at the Théâtre de la Renaissance, with Mdlle. Scriwaneck in the role of M. Dejazet.
'L'AMI DES FEMMES' of M. Dumas fils has been revived at the Gymnase-Dramatique, with Mdlle. Blanche Pierson in the rôle of Jeanne de
ber of the Athenaeum, refers to "the plate from which Forged Assignats.-Mr. Lebour, in a recent numthe sham assignats were printed" being "still in existence," p. 463. I have a dozen assignats of differ ent values, but they are all printed from types, with metal type borders. These were selected from among hundreds, and I have never seen any printed from plates. J. E. GRAY.
TO CORRESPONDENTS.-F. C.-F. F.-W. S.—K. M.—A. H.
J. R.-R. T.-received.
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THE GENERAL INDEX
NOTES AND QUERIES,
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