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Wake, Rosa wake, a serenade for three voices, is simple and pretty. M. Pio Cianchettini has published (at Liverpool) the variations and words, sung by Madame Catalani, to Rode's air. They are exceedingly difficult, and will serve as a monument of what that astonishing singer can do, though she must be heard to be understood. Notes can convey no adequate notion of the force and effect she gives, and therein lies the wonder. Mrs. Salmon is, we apprehend, fully equal to Catalani in execution, and even superior in precision, tone, and finish ; but the one is a trickling fount, limpid and beautiful ; the other, a mountain torrent, headlong, irresistible, sublime. Mr. Cramer has arranged Gluck's Air, Che faro senza Euridice, as a rondo for the pianoforte, with great taste. The peculiar grace and sentiment of the air is enriched by the elegance of the adaptation; the introduction is highly expressive, and its resemblance to the subject artfully contrived. If this composition may not be ranked with Mr. Cramer's finest and most difficult productions, it may be at least classed with the most elegant. We cannot bestow the same praise on his Hibernian Impromptu, which has nothing to distinguish it as the work of a great master. Les Petits Delassemens, No. II. by Kiallmark, L'Accueil Favorable, by Rolfe, A Swiss Air, with variations, by Panormo, and a Temple to Friendship, with variations, by Eavestaff, are all very pretty lessons for the pianoforte; the two first especially. O softly sleep, arranged for the harp, by Dizi, is an elegant little piece. The introduction is very graceful, and the air judiciously treated. It is by no means difficult. John Anderson my Jo, and The last Rose of Summer, with variations by Chipp,
are of the same description for the harp. The variations of these two Airs bear too near a resemblance; the fourth of the one, and the fifth of the other, are precisely the same in their structure. The eleventh number of the Operatic Airs is by Meves. The subject is an old air from Martini's Cosa Rara, Pace cara, mia Sposa. There is an ease, grace, and flow of melody about Mr. M.'s compositions, which is always very agreeable to us, and the piece before us possesses all these qualities. It has nothing of originality or force, but it is never vulgar, and the passages, though not entirely new, (no passage now can be so) are so put together, as to be very pleasing. Fantasia, with variations for the harp, on the Scotch Air, Roy's Wife of Aldivalloch, by Bochsa. This piece is one of Mr. B.'s best efforts, and is capable of great effect; it is full of imagination and great originality. The style of the first variation is particularly novel and beautiful. Its execution demands great powers; in fact, those of the composer himself can alone do it complete justise; the adaptations of this month are, Rossini's Overture to L'Inganno Felice, with a flute or violin accompaniment; Winter's Overture to Il Rutto di Proserpina, arranged by Little, with a flute and violoncello accompaniment; and the Marche des Marriages Samnites, by Von Esch, arranged as a duet for the pianoforte, by Coggins. We have reserved the last place in our vocal criticism, for the notice of a very singular adaptation of Lord Byron's not less singular song, I drink to thee, Tom Moore, by Mr. Bishop. It is wild, strong, original, and productive of high excitement, if sung as boldly as it is written, by a full tenor voice. We recommend it as a nervous and a curious composition.
I look'd upon the bust of Love you sent
DRURY-LAN is the ATRE.
DRURY LANE is certainly an unfortunate house. We know not whether its present fallen state is to be ascribed to the mismanagement of the Great Lessee—that luminary of the dramatic hemisphere, and to the satellites which revolve around him, or whether its decay is to be attributed to the naturally capricious taste of the public, and to its old predilection for Covent Garden. The comfortless and pleasureless nature of the performances at Drury are, however, sufficiently apparent both in company and audience. We sauntered down the Pit avenue on a late evening without the interruption of a single human being, until we came to a chilled money taker, who sat shivering over an empty till," and appeared to shake off a fit of drowsiness to take our half-price cash. We scarcely saw a footmark in the saw-dust to startle our Robinson Crusoe admiration. Our two shillings were slided into the drawer and fell upon wood, and not upon silver, or our ears deceived us. On entering the Pit, we were able to take a seat at any part of the outskirts, although Mr. Kean was playing the part of Reuben Glenroy, in that ridiculous modern jumble of sentiment and slang, called Town and Country;-by slang, we do not mean that which Capt. Grose (fit name for his work, and worthy to rank with Kitchener on Cookery), has interpreted,—but the real characteristic slang of modern dramatic writing. The Pit was, indeed, by no means overflowing; and, the audience were huddled together in tippets, muffs, cloaks, and great coats, like a batch of Greenlanders, sitting together and endeavouring to thaw some amusement in the days when whales are coy and blubber is shy. Although the play of Town, and Country is constructed upon the moving princile, and is intended “to go about Fo the sorrow from your eyes,”—it met with little success on this dreary evening, and the blubber of the audience (if we may use so vulgar a word) was quite as difficult
to be got at, as in the genuine Greenland seas, by bona side whalers. Perhaps the paucity of the company, the poverty of the times, may, the tarnished pannels of the boxes, might mar the cunning of the scene ; but it cannot be denied, that Mr. Kean did not sway the minds of his auditors as he is wont to do. The character of Reuben Glenroy is that of a lover in Wales that saves the life of a Beau (Mr. Penley) in a stormy Cambrian night, and in return for cherishing this young foundling of fashion, finds that a young lady, -“beautiful as, &c. with forehead, like, &c.—her eyes of a circulating-library-brightness—her cheeks rosy as, &c.—her form graceful as—" (see the usual forms, which are kept ready printed in Leadenhall-street for use:)—This young lady, in short, is borne away (Reuben calls it seduced) —and then follow divers acts of despair and philanthropy. Melancholy É. on a pair of pantaloons and oots, and goes about relieving the distressed, and retrieving gambling brothers and gadding sisters-in-law. The end of the play restores Miss (whatever her name is), unsullied and faithfully fond, to the arms of Reuben—at the very moment that he had bound the beau-serpent (Mr. Penley) to amend his crimes by marriage. We really pitied Mr. Kean in this unnatural part. What has he to do with o long lectures to Mrs. W. est on the virtues of nursing her own children —What to him is the ruin of Mr. Barnard, at Itouge et Noir, in a back room at the Five Compasses, Brook-street ! Mr. Kean is not formed for this modern trifling. His soul is in arms. Give him the snake curls, the crimson mantle, the white-rose shoes, the gauntlets, the truncheon, the ermined cap, the crown;—give him these, or some of these, with “ thoughts that breathe, and words that burn,” and you shall see a giant genius rush forth in all its pride, energy, and beauty;—but confine him to the tasteless prison of modern costume, and surround him with the generation of 1820, and he dwarfs immediately, and you perceive but the little gentleman that knows Mr. Elliston, and has a house in Clarges-street. Nothing can be nobler than the throe, the passion, the agony, of his Othello,-its sun-scorched love and tyger jealousy l—Nothing, perhaps, can surpass the towering craft and swelling courage of his Richard—in his wooing of the Lady Anne—in his wild madness of battle in Bosworth Field !—We can never }. hope) forget his Hamlet, his ago, his Shylock,--but we do not wish to remember his Duke Aranza, nor his Reuben Glenroy. Adeline; the Victim of Seduction. —“Adeline; the Victim of Seduction " “ Phoebus, what a name !” The innocent country reader, lounging over a five o'clock tea-cup, will think we are about to criticize a novel; but we assure our country friend, that we are honestly treating “ of and concerning” a pathetic drama from the .#. We should suppose that, if there be any superiority in the productions of the French stage over those of the English, it lies in their sprightliness of dialogue, and the easy, rapid succession of incidents;–for there is little force or distinction of character, and none of that sterling constant interest which the patient unraveling of some tangled passion raises in the mind. Our dramas differ as essentially as our wines, and we make as vigorous a stand for our port, as they for their champaigne. Now we think very few persons would send to France for their port, no one, indeed, we suspect, except Mr. Elliston 1—And from him we should not have expected so egregious a blunder. But he has committed an error of this kind,-and since he has brought up a bottle of Adeline, with a kind of boast that he is giving us “something of a very superior flavour,” let us hold up the glass and criticize its contents. Adeline is an Afterpiece in three Acts (it was at first tried as a leader, but was reduced to the wheel), and is described in the bills as “a pathetic drama,” for the sake, we suppose, of admonishing ladies to come furnished with a double stock of cambric handkerchiefs, and to warn gentlemen against a paucity of barcelonas. The pathos, as it will appear in our rela
tion of the plot, is utterly French,being no other than such a pathos as the accidents and offences of a daily newspaper afford, or as may be .. off, with the irons, in the Newgate press-yard on a black Monday morning. The heart is tortured in all possible ways, human nature is insulted by the most barefaced and unaccountable vices and cruelties,— and over the extremest miseries and villanies there is cast a thin veil of gauzy sentiment, which makes the whole doubly improbable, and wretched. The plot and characters of this pathetic drama are these. Adeline is the daughter of an old blind soldier who makes the most sententious and moral father, and to whom she is the most affectionate and watchful child. She is courted by a portrait painter, Fabian; and we presume, that while he takes off her head he takes off her heart. This Fabian is, however, no portrait painter, but the Prince in disguise,_and so it turns out satisfactorily in the end; for when his great blue mysterious portraitainting cloak is thrown aside, he as on a spangled jacket, and a pair of white tight pantaloons perfectly convincing. Fabian wishes to possess Adeline, without absolutely making her a princess, for he very wisely . apprehends the difficulty of unmarrying; and he therefore advises with a good wholesome worthless rascal in regimentals, who for no reason on earth, except “to touch the true prince,” recommends a sham parson, and a mock wedding. Adeline is therefore married to Fabian in humble state, and then the mischief begins. A kind, old, faithful, nimble gardener (Knight) on the second day of the honey moon, lets the young lady into the secret of her being confined (imprisoned), and of her not being really Mrs. Fabian. She longs to abscond from her new home, but the key is not at hand, and Fabian's friend urges her to keep her room. The gardener gets over the wall and fetches the blind father, who, just as his daughter is being dragged into the Chateau, obtains admission and rescues his child. He is not aware of her wedding, and very naturally asks why she absented herself for a day and night, we forget her reply, but it satisfies him. She returns to the
cottage, and he binds her down to give up her intimacy with “ that Fabian.” Fabian comes, however, to the cottage ; and Adeline has a parting interview, in which she learns that she is not only not married, but that there is already a Mrs. Fabian. A shriek produces the blind father, who has heard enough to satisfy him of his daughter's ruin, and he therefore produces pistols and calls Fabian out! Fabian very properly, we think, stands on one side, receives the old gentleman's fire, and does not blow his father-in-law's brains out. The parent goes to court, blindly enough to be sure, to get redress, and the Ring promises very virtuously to him and to the young lady. We should, however, state that the real Mrs. Fabian, previously to Adeline quitting the cottage, calls to abuse the minx that intrigues with her good man; but, ascertaining the girl's story, hugs hers to her heart, swears an eternal friendship, and gives her lavender-drops in her hysterics. There is to be a great gala-day at the palace, heaven knows why 1–And there being a stream in the palacegarden, Adeline drowns herself in the presence of Miss Tree, throws the dancers into confusion, is brought out by the Corps de Ballet, forgives her seducer, sinks into the callimanco lap of the old blind gentleman, and dies to the tune of a falling curtain. This is a sketch, as well as we can write from recollection, of this pathetic drama, and it only remains for us, after remarking that the language is as turgid and trumpery as such a plot requires, to speak of the performers. Miss Copeland is a very interesting little girl, and contrives to throw a force and pathos into the unnatural part of Adeline, which we really could not have expected. Her death by water (they have no humane societies abroad, we presume) was really affecting, if you forgot the folly of the scene,—but it was almost impossible to dismiss from the mind the unmatural miseries in which she was enmeshed. To be sure, she destroys herself in the nost picturesque manner, by flinging herself off a bridge (cousin german to the Pagoda Bridge in the Park) at the conclusion of Miss Tree's passeul ' Mr. Penley enacted
Fabian after a fashion; and Mr. Cooper did his best for the bad friend. Poor Knight fidgeted through a very indifferent character in a very agreeable manner, and really “gave to airy nothing a local habitation and a name.” The old blind gentleman seemed playing one long game at blindman's buff. Mr. Elliston is now at Paris, we understand, buying up sentiment by the yard, and pathos by the pound. Gad-a-mercy, what bitter work do we foresee to be in store for us ! We do, however, hope that the officers at Dover will, out of tenderness to English taste and tears, well rummage the manager's trunks, and seize every rag of sentiment they can find. They will deserve to be sainted if they prevent the importation of more Adelines / By the bye, we have said nothing of Owen, Prince of Powys, or Welch Feuds, and nothing have we to say. Mr. Kean wasted a great deal of powerful acting on a very foolish Cambrian. He must, as we have said before, have his soul stirred by the life of the part, and Owen was absolutely lifeless All through the piece, we could not avoid recollecting, as applicable to the matter in hand, the caricature in Bowles's shop window, of the Quaker addressing the smirking footman:
With lengthen’d face and drawling chin,
But who could, with a pennyweight of brains, lay the scene of a tragedy in Wales? The peculiardialect of the Welch will rise up ; and is it tragic 2–Alack, no!—We understand that Mathews has a choice specimen of Welch character in his approaching entertainment, in which the dialect is given to the life. The character is described to us as that of a fat Cambrian valetudinarian, who visits every watering place, and talks only of waters, in the hopes of “ getting thinner.” Mr. Mathews, having caught this whimsical character, is too wise a man to hoard him up for a tragedy.
CovenT GARDEN THEATRE.
Montrose; or the Children of the Mist. This is a very uninteresting and unintelligible opera, founded on one of the Scotch novels. The story is luckily too well known by our readers to make it necessary for us to detail the plot, particularly as the tale itself is strictly adhered to in the drama, not only in its incidents, but in its language; there is this defect, however, in the play, that the characters are not described or realized to the audience, and the incidents are hurried on and confounded, without order or connexion: the novel remedies all this, by descriptive and explanatory passages; but it would really require the intervention of a chorus to render the scenes of the opera intelligible to an unread audience. The wildness and mystic insanity of Allan M'Aulay, untameable except by music, and marvellous enough in the legend, are perfectly unaccountable until nearly the conclusion of the drama; and the character, in the hands of Mr. Abbott, certainly added something to its incoherence. Ranald of the Mist was powerfully represented by Mr. Yates; but the mystery of these gentlemen of second-sight is certainly, at the best, of a very inferior interest. The Earl of Menteith was well dressed by Mr. Duruset, and might have been well performed if he had had a single thing to do worth the doing ; Montrose was personated by Mr. Connor; the character is thus described in the novel. “He was perfect in all exercises, whether peaceful or martial, and possessed, of course, that graceful ease of deportment proper to those to whom habit has rendered all postures easy. His long brown hair, according to the custom of men of quality among the royalists, was parted on the top of his head, and trained to hang down on each side in curled locks, one of which, descending two or three inches lower than the others, intimated Montrose's compliance with that fashion against which it pleased Mr. Prynne, the puritan, to write a treatise, entitled, “ The unloveliness of Lovelocks.”
“ The features which these tresses inclosed were of that kind which derive their interest from the character
of the man, rather than from the regularity of their form. But a high nose, a full, decided, well opened, quick, grey eye, and a sanguine complexion, made amends for some coarseness and irregularity in the subordinate parts of the face; so that, in general, Montrose might be termed rather a handsome than a hard-featured man.” A great deal more of this highly wrought description follows; but enough has been extracted to make it doubtful, as we think, whether Mr. Connor sat for the picture. Erorcht was fearfully represented by Mrs. Faucit ; and Donald met with an arch master, in Taylor, the singer. It was our misfortune to witness this opera, on a night when Mr. Liston’s “ hoarseness was so F. (as Mr. Abbott eloquenty described it) as to prevent his appearing at all, and Mr. Meadows “ threw himself on the liberality of the public,” in the part of Captain Dalgetty. It was never our chance to meet with any gentleman half so well armed against humour as Mr. Meadows; and we hope, on all accounts, that Mr. Liston's hoarseness will not continue palpable many nights longer. But Miss Stephens requited us for all disappointments' pretty herself, and prettily dressed, she came forward but to give delight to every one. Her voice in the first song she sings, “We’re a noddin, mid mid noddin,” is quite enchanting! So much of sweetness, simplicity, girlish pathos, and clear power, it is impossible to imagine in any other singer. Her dress is striking— the scarlet skirt, blue boddice, and the black curls of her hair, are quite a picture of the days of Montrose. In the last act, she sang “ Charlie is my Darling,” which, to avoid a trifling anachronism, is altered and spoiled by a single word: Chevalier is changed for Cavalier, and it is quite o how much spirit is lost in the music by it. Miss Stephens did not sing this charming air with confidence and life, and we were disappointed—for we reckoned upon it. We have heard a young lady sing it at the piano in a private room, with thrice the spirit. The scenery is beautiful, and nearly all new, or at any rate new to us.