Oratorio Concert/A Grand Performance of Ancient and Modern Music
London: Theatre Royal, Drury Lane
Time: Evening, Seven o’Clock
Tickets: Boxes 7s., Pit 3s. 6d., Lower Gallery 2s., Upper Gallery 1s., Second Price at 9.
|*Irish Air, ‘Savourness deelich’||Miss Stephens|
|*From Theodora: Recit. and Air, Angels ever bright and fair’||Miss Stephens||Handel|
|A Selection from the Sacred Oratorio, The Redemption||Arranged by Dr. Arnold|
|Overture, Occasional Oratorio||Handel|
|From Ezio: Recit. and Air, ‘He layeth the beams’||Mr. Kellner||Handel|
|From Theodora: Recit. and Air, ‘Angels, ever bright and fair’||Miss Stephens||Handel|
|From Israel in Egypt: ‘He gave them hailstones’||Double Chorus||Handel|
|From Seracle |
Air, ‘Lord! what is man’
Recit. and Air, ‘He was eyes unto the blind’
|From Judas Maccabæus |
Air, ‘Pious orgies’
Recit. ‘Now the elders of Israel’
|From Saul: ‘Welcome, welcome, mighty King’||Semi-Chorus||Handel|
|From Saul: ‘David, his ten thousand slew’||Chorus||Handel|
|From Judas Maccabæus: March |
Air, ‘Lord, remember David’
Air, ‘Holy, holy, Lord God Almighty’
|From Israel in Egypt|
‘The Lord shall reign’
Recit., ‘For the host of Pharaoh’
‘Sin ye to the Lord’
‘The horse and his rider’
Recit., ‘Tu che accendi questo core’
Aria, ‘Di tanti palpiti’
|Piano Concerto [No.4 in E major] |
(first time of performance in London)
(first appearance in London this season)
|A Selection from The Lady of the Lake, from the poem by Sir Bart Walter Scott arranged to Rossini’s La Donna del Lago|
|Introduction and Chorus (The Chase): |
‘The Stag at Eve had drunk is fill’
|Air, ‘Ellen’: The waves of slow retiring day’||Miss Paton|
|Duet, ‘Ellen and Fitz James’ (The Meeting): ‘What beauty and what grace’||Miss Paton, Mr Sapio|
|‘Huntsman rest’ thy chase is done’(The Highland Welcome)||Chorus|
|Duet, ‘Ellen and Fitz James’ (The Departure): |
‘And have we met so soon to part’
|Mrs. Salmon, Mr. Braham|
|Recit. and Air, ‘Malcolm Graem’ (Absence): |
‘Oh! what is life when we doomed to prove’
|Recit. and Air, ‘Douglas’ (The Return): |
‘I met young Malcolm as I stray’d’
|Mr. Kellner (first appearance for the two years)|
|Recit. and Duet, ‘Ellen and Malcolm Graem’(The Parting): |
‘Oh! Risk not thus thy Life for me’
|Mrs. Salmon, Mme Vestris|
|Air, ‘Rhoderick Dhu and Clansmen’(The Offer): |
‘Hail to the Chief who in triumph advances’
|Mr. Braham and Chorus|
|Air, ‘Fitz James’ (The Stranger returned): |
‘How sweet is toil endured for those’
|Trio, ‘Ellen, Fitz James, and Allan’ (The Discovery): |
‘Oh, stranger! in this hour of fear’
|Mrs. Salmon, Messrs. Braham and Sapio|
|Air, ‘Malcolm Graem’ (The Disconsolate Lover):|
‘My bosom night or day’
|Mme Vestris, Chorus|
|Recit. and Air, (Stirling Palace): ‘I did not think that my fond breast’||Mrs. Salmon, Chorus|
|Song, ‘O the moment was sad’||Miss Stephens|
|Violin Concerto, incl. Le petit Tambour||Mr. Mori|
|A Grand Miscellaneous Act|
|The Calm of the Sea and the Rising Breeze (third time in the country). A descriptive Chorus by Beethoven translated and adapted from German from Goethe’s Poem||Soloists: Miss Povey, Master Longhurst, Messrs. Nelson and Terrail|
|From Comus: Duet, ‘The Echo’||Mrs. Salmon, Miss Stephens||Arne|
|Air, ‘Is there a heart’||Mrs. Braham||Braham|
|Air, ‘Genius of Freedom’||Miss Paton||Parry|
|Aria, ‘Qual mi circonda’||Madame Bulgari (second public appearance in the country)||Pavesi|
|Duet, ‘Ah si de’ mali miei’||Mme Vestris, Mr. Sapio||Rossini|
|From The Messiah: ‘Hallelujah!’||Chorus||Handel|
|Principal Vocalists: Mesdames Bulgari, Vestris, Mrs. Salmon, Miss Paton, Miss Povey, Miss Stephens, Signora Camporese; Master Longhurst, Messrs. Braham, Kellner, Nelson, Sapio, Terrail|
|Principal Instrumentalists: Messrs. Mori, Moscheles|
|Leader: Mr. Henry Smart; Conductor: Sir George Smart|
Encores: Irish Air, ‘Savourness deelich’—Miss Stephens
Song, ‘O the moment was sad’—Miss Stephens
Moscheles: I was at a so-called Oratorio Concert; one part consisted of sacred, another of secular music. The public may have found the former part rather longer than they liked, for the people stormed and stamped because certain pieces of the Donna del Lago, which had been promised in the programme, were left out. [RMM, 49.]
Moscheles: Das Publikum…setzt mag diesmal guter Laune gewesen sein, da man ihm nicht nur die neulich weggelassenen Stücke aus der „Donna del lago” auftischte, sondern sämmtliche Nummern der Oper. [AML I, 72.]
 The concerto performed was probably the same concerto performed in Bath on February 11, and it seems that it may have been the Piano Concerto No.4 in E major.
Public Ledger and Daily Advertiser (January 24, 1823): 2.
The admirers of Sacred Harmony are impatient for the arrival of the Oratorio Season. These grand performances are to be again under the able management of Mr. Bochsa, whose talents gave such general satisfaction during the last winter; and we understand he is to be supported not only by the same able performers as on that occasion, but by a strong reinforcement of both native and foreign talents: among others, by Mr. Braham, for the first time these two years; Signor Curioni, Mrs. Austin, and Miss Paton; and an engagement we learn is also pending with Mons. Moschelles of whom fake speaks highly, and whose arrival in this country is daily expected. A new super Orchestra, decorated by Marinelli, is also erecting for the occasion. As a specimen of what is to follow, a grand Concert is to be given on Thursday next, to consist of a selection from Handel’s Messiah, with Mozart’s Accompaniment; an Oratorio, by Rossini, called “Cyrus in Babylon,” first time in this country; and a grand Miscellaneous Act, of which particulars will be timely given.
The Morning Post (February 20, 1823): 3.
We understand that Mr. BOCHSA has engaged the celebrated MOSCHELLES for the Oratorios, and that he will appear to-morrow evening for the first time this season, at Drury-lane Theatre. His performance on the Grand Piano will prove a great attraction.
Morning Advertiser (February 21, 1823): 2.
THEATRE ROYAL, DRURY-LANE
THIS EVENING, Feb 21, a GRAND PERFORMANCE of ANCIENT and MODERN MUSIC, under the Direction of Mr. BOCHSA.
Part I.—(For this Night only) a Selection from Handel’s Sacred Oratorio, THE REDEMPTION. Between the First and Second Parts, Recit. Ed Aria, Madame Camporese—O patria—Concerto Grand Piano Forte, Mr. Moscheles
Part II.—For the First Time in this Country, THE LADY OF THE LAKE, selected from a celebrated Poem of that name, written by Sir Walter Scott, Bart. And Arranged to Rossini’s admired Opera of La Donna del Lago.—Between the Second and Third Parts, Concerto on the Violin, Mr. Mori.
Part III.—A GRAND MISCELLANEOUS ACT, which will commence with (for the third time in this country) Beethoven’s Descriptive Chorus, translated and adapted from the original German of the eminent Poet-Goethe, entitled The CALM OF THE SEA AND THE RISING BREEZE (this Piece is one of the latest productions of the above celebrated composer.)
Principal Vocal Performers.—Mrs. Salmon, Miss Povey, and Madame Vestris—Miss Stevens, Miss Cubitt, and Miss Paton- Madame Camporese and Madame Blugari (her second public appearance in this country).—Mr. Braham, Mr. Sapio, Mr. Terrail, Mr. Nelson, Master Longhurst, and Mr. Kellner (his first appearance for these two years).—Leader, Mr. Smart. At the Organ, Sir George Smart.
Playbill (February 21, 1823)
THEATRE ROYAL, DRURY LANE
The Nobility, Gentry, and the Public, are respectfully informed, that a GRAND PERFORMANCE of
ANTIENT AND MODERN MUSIC,
Will take place at the above Theatre,
THIS EVENING, FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 21, 1823,
Under the Direction of Mr. BOCHSA.
A NEW AND SUPERB ORCHESTRA has been designed and decorated by Mr. MARINARI, for these Performances.
PART I.—A SELECTION FROM THE SACRED ORATORIO,
The Pieces in which are from
THE OCCASIONAL ORATORIO, THEODORA, ISRAEL IN EGYPT; SEMELE, SAUL,
AND JUDAS MACCABAEUS.
The Selection forming this Oratorio, was arranged by the late Dr. ARNOLD, from the favourite Works by HANDEL, and performed at his Commemoration in WESTMINSTER ABBEY.
|Overture to the Occasional Oratorio.|
|Recit. and Air, Mr. KELLNER—He layeth the beams.|
|Recit. and Air, Miss STEPHENS—Angels, ever bright and fair…(Theodora.)|
|Grand Double Chorus—He gave them hailstones…………..(Israel in Egypt.)|
|Air, Miss POVEY—Lord! What is man…………………………….(Semele.)|
|Recit and Air, Mr. BRAHAM—He was eyes unto the blind.|
|Air, Miss PATON—Pious orgies………………………………(Judas Mace.)|
|Recit. Mr. BRAHAM—Now the Elders of Israel.|
|Semi-Chorus—Welcome, mighty King….……………………………(Saul.)|
|Full Chorus—David his ten thousand slew [Saul.]|
|MARCH IN JUDAS MACCABÆUS.|
|Air, Mr. SAPIO—Lord, remember David.|
|Air, Mrs. SALMON—Holy, holy, Lord God Almighty|
|Chorus—The Lord shall reign……………………[Israel in Egypt.]|
|Recit. Mr. BRAHAM—For the host of Pharaoh………………(Israel in Egypt.)|
|Solo, Miss STEPHENS—Sing ye to the Lord……[Israel in Egypt.]|
|Grand Double Chorus—The horse and his rider….[Israel in Egypt.]|
Between the First and Second Parts,
Aria, Madame CAMPORESE—Di tanti palpiti………(Il Tancredi.)……….Rossini.
A Concerto, Grand Piano Forte, (never performed in London) Mr. MOSCHELES………. Moscheles.
PART II. (FOR THE FIRST TIME IN THIS COUNTRY.)
THE LADY OF THE LAKE.
The Words selected from the celebrated Poem of that Name, written by SIR WALTER SCOTT, Bart, and arranged to ROSSINI’s admired Opera of
LA DONNA DEL LAGO.
|Introduction and Chorus—(The CHASE)—The Stag at Eve had drunk his fill.|
|Air, Miss PATON—Ellen—(EVENING)—The Waves of slow retiring Day.|
|Duet. Miss PATON and Mr. SAPIO—Ellen and Fitz James—(The MEETING)—|
|What beauty and what grace.|
|Chorus—(The HIGHLAND AND WELCOME)—Huntsman rest, thy Chace is done.|
|Duet, Mrs. SALMON, and Mr. BRAHAM.—Ellen and Fitz James—(THE DEPART-|
|TURE)—And have we met so soon to part.|
|Recit. and Air, Madame VESTRIS—Malcolm Graem—(ABSENCE)—Oh! what is Life|
|when doomed to prove.|
|Recit. and Air, Mr. KELLNER—Douglas—(The RETURN)—I met young Malcolm as|
|Recit. and Duet. Mrs. SALMON and Madame VESTRIS—Ellen and Malcolm Graem|
|—(The PARTING)—Oh! Risk not thus thy Life for me.|
|Air, Mr. BRAHAM, and Chorus.—Roderick Dhu and Clansmen—(THE OFFER.)—|
|Hail to the Chief who in triumph advances.|
|Air, Mr. SAPIO—Fitz James—(The STRANGER RETURNED)—How sweet is toil|
|endured for those.|
|Trio, Mrs. SALMON, Mr. BRAHAM, and Mr. SAPIO—Ellen, Fitz James, and|
|Allan—(THE DISCOVERY)—Oh, Stranger! In this hour of fear.|
|Air and Chorus, Madame VESTRIS—Malcolm Graem—(The DISCONSOLATE LOVER)—|
|my bosom night or day.|
|Recitative, and Air, Mrs. SALMON, and Chorus—(STIRLING PALACE.)—I did not think|
|that my fond breast.|
In this Piece an additional Orchestra of Wind Instruments will be employed.
Between the Second and Third Parts.
Song, Miss STEPHENS—O the moment was sad. (Irish Melody).
A Concerto on the Violin, Mr, MORI, in which will be introduced the favourite Rondo, Le petit Tambour. Mayseder.
A MISCELLANEOUS ACT.
Which will commence with (for the Third Time in this Country), a descriptive Chorus composed by BEETHOVEN, entitled
THE CALM OF THE SEA AND THE RISING BREEZE,
The Solo Parts, by Miss POVEY, Master LONGHURST, Mr. TERRAIL, and Mr. NELSON.
(This Piece is one of the latest productions of the above celebrated Composer.)
|Echo Song, Miss STEPHENS, and Mrs. SALMON…………………….Arne.|
|Air, Mr. BRAHAM—Is there a heart…………………………………..Braham.|
|Air, Miss PATON—Genius of Freedom………………………………….Parry.|
|Aria, Madame BULGARI—Qual mi circonda………………………….Pavesi.|
|Duetto, Madame VESTRIS and Mr. SAPIO—Ah si di mali miei……..Rossini.|
PRINCIPAL VOCAL PERFORMERS.
|Mrs. SALMON||Miss STEPHENS,|
|Madame VESTRIS.||Miss PATON|
|(Her Third Appearance at these Performances,)|
(Her second appearance in this Country.)
And Madame CAMPORESE
(His Fourth Appearance at these Performances for these Two Years,)
Mr. TERRAIL, Mr. NELSON, Master Longhurst,
and Mr. KELLNER,
(His First Appearance at These Performances for these Two Years.)
PRINCIPAL INSTRUMENTAL PERFORMERS
Piano Forte, Mr. MOSCHELLES, (His First Appearance in London This Season.)
Violin, Mr. MORI
The Band will be numerous, and Complete in every Department. Leader, Mr. SMART.
SIR GEORGE SMART,
Will conduct the Performance, and preside at the Organ, built by Mr. GRAY.
The Nobility, Gentry, and the Public in general, are most respectfully acquainted that
The Grand Performance of Antient and Modern Music, on Wednesday next, will
Take place at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane.
The Performers in the Choruses, under the Superintendence of Mr. WATSON, will be numerous, and assisted by the Young Gentlemen of
His Majesty’s Chapel Royal, St. Paul’s Cathedral, and Westminster Abbey.
Books of the Performance to be had in the Theatre only, Price 10d. Boxes, Places, & Tickets may be had of Mr. SPRING, at the Box Office, from 11 to 4.
Doors will be opened at half-past Six. The Performance will commence at Seven o’Clock.
The Public are most respectfully acquainted that Places in the dress Circle can only be secured by paying the Price of Admission when they are taken.
Boxes, 7s. Pit, 3s. 6d. Lower Gallery, 2s. Upper Gallery, 1s. Second Price at Nine.
[GB-Lbl Playbills 56]
The Morning Chronicle (February 21, 1823): 1.
THEATRE ROYAL, DRURY-LANE.—This EVENING, a GRAND PERFORMANCE of ANTIENT and MODERN MUSIC, under the Direction of Mr. BOCHSA. Part I.—(for this Night only), a Selection from Handel’s Sacred Oratorio, THE REDEMPTION. Between the First and Second Parts, Recit. ed Aria, Madame Camporese—O patria—Concerto Grand Piano Forte, Mr. Moscheles. Part II.—For the First Time in this Country, THE LADY OF THE LAKE, selected from a celebrated Poem of that name, written by Sir Walter Scott, Bart, and arranged to Rossini’s admired Opera of LA DONNA DEL LAGO. Between the Second and Third Parts, Concerto on the Violin, Mr. Mori. Part III.—A GRAND MISCELLANEOUS ACT; which will commence with (for the Third Time in this Country) Beethoven’s Descriptive Chorus, translated and adapted from the original German of the eminent Poet Goethe, entitled THE CALM OF THE SEA AND THE RISING BREEZE (this Piece is one of the latest productions of the above celebrated Composer.)—Principal Vocal Performers.—Mrs. Salmon, Miss Povey, and Madame Vestris—Miss Stephens, Miss Cubitt, and Miss Paton-Madame Camporese and Madame Bulgari, her Second Public Appearance to this Country.—Mr. Braham, Mr. Sapio, Mr. Terrail, Mr. Nelson, Master Longhurst, and Mr. Kellner, his First Appearance for these Two Years. Leader, Mr. Smart. At the Organ, Sir George Smart.
The Theatrical Observer (February 21, 1823): 2-4.
New Theatre Royal, Drury Lane.
The ORATORIO of to-night presents another instance of a tasteful Selection. The Lady of the Lake will positively be performed; the music is said to be beautiful.
This Evening will be performed, a Grand Selection of
Antient and Modern Music,
Under the Direction of Mr. BOCHSA,
A New and Splendid ORCHESTRA has been designed and decorated
By Mr. MARINARI, for these Performances.
A Selection from the Sacred Oratorio,
The pieces in which are from
The Occasional Oratorio, Theodora, Israel in Egypt,
Semele, Saul, and Judas Maccabæus. The Selection forming this Oratorio, was arranged by the late Dr. ARNOLD, from the favorite Works of HANDEL and performed at his Commemoration in WESTMINSTER ABBEY
|Overture to the Occasional Oratorio|
|Recit. and Air. Mr. Kellner—He layeth the beams|
|Recit. and Air, Miss Stephens—Angels, ever bright and fair. (Theodora)|
|Grand Double Chorus—He gave them hailstones. . . . . . (Israel in Egypt)|
|Air, Miss Povey—Lord! what is man. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . .(Seracle)|
|Recit, and Air, Mr Braham—He was eyes unto the blind.|
|Air, Miss Paton—Pious orgies . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . .(Judas Macabæus)|
|Recit. Mr Braham—Now the elders of Israel|
|Semi-Chorus—Welcome, mighty king……|
|Full-Chorus—David, his ten thousand slew…………………(Saul)|
MARCH IN JUDAS MACABEUS.
|Air, Mr Sapio—Lord, remember David.|
|Air, Mrs Salmon—Holy, holy, Lord God Almighty|
|Chorus—The Lord shall reign……………….. [Israel in Egypt]|
|Recit. Mr Braham—For the host of Pharaoh… … (Israel in Egypt)|
|Solo, Miss Stephens—Sin ye to the Lord……[Israel in Egypt]|
|Grand Double Chorus—The horse and his rider[Israel in Egypt]|
|Between the First and Second Parts,[Israel in Egypt]|
Between the First and Second Parts,
Aria, Madame Camporese—Di tanti palpiti
(Il Trancredi) [sic] . . . . . . Rossini.
A Concerto Grand Piano Forte, Mr Moschelles,
Never performed in London.
For the first time in this country
Lady of the Lake.
Selected from the celebrated Poem of that name, written by SIR WALTER SCOOT, BART and arranged to ROSSINI’S admired Opera of
LA DONNA DEL LAGO.
|Introduction and Chorus—(The Chase)—The Stag at Eve had drunk is fill.|
|Air, Miss Paton—Ellen—(Evening)—The waves of slow retiring day.|
|Duet, Miss Paton and Mr Sapio—Ellen and Fitz James—(The Meeting)— What beauty and what grace|
|Chorus—(The Highland Welcome)—Huntsman rest, thy chase is done.|
|Duet, Mrs Salmon and Mr Braham—Ellen and Fitz James—(The Departure) And have we met so soon to part.|
|Recit. and Air, Madame Vestris—Malcolm Graem—(Absence)—Oh ! what is Life when we doomed to prove.|
|Recit. and Air, Mr Kellner—Douglas—(The Return) I met young Malcolm as I stray’d.|
|Recit and Duet, Mrs Salmon and Madame Vestris—Ellen and Malcolm Graem (The Parting)—Oh ! Risk not thus thy Life for me.|
|Air, Mr Braham, and Chorus—Rhoderick Dhu and Clansmen—(The Offer)— Hail to the Chief who in triumph advances.|
|Air, Mr Sapio—Fitz James—(The Stranger returned)—How sweet is toil endured for those.|
|Trio, Mrs Salmon, Mr Braham, and Sapio—Ellen, Fitz James, and Allan—(The Discovery)—Oh, stranger ! in this hour of fear|
|Air and Chorus, Madame Vestris—Malcolm Graem—(The Disconsolate Lover) My bosom night or day.|
|Recitative and Air, Mrs Salmon, and Chorus—(Stirling Palace)—I did not think that my fond breast.|
|In this Piece an additional Orchestra of Wind Instruments will be employed. ——|
Between the Second and Third Parts,
Song, Miss Stephens—O the moment was sad.
A Concerto on the Violin, Mr Mori, in which will be
introduced the favorite Rondo, Le petit Tambour
Which will commence with,
(Third time in this country) a Descriptive Chorus, composed by
BEETHOVEN, translated and adapted from the original German of the
eminent Poet Goethe, entitled
The Calm of the Sea and the Rising Breeze;
The Solo Parts by Miss Povey, Master Longhurst, Mr Terrail, and
|Echo Song, Miss Stephens and Mrs Salmon………………..…….Arne.|
|Air, Mr Braham—Is there a heart………………………………Braham|
|Air, Miss Paton—Genius of Freedom…………………………….Parry|
|Aria, Madame Bulgari—Qual mi circonda……………………….Pavesi|
|Duetto, Madame Vestris and Mr Sapio—Ah si di mali miei……Handel|
Principal Vocal Performers
|Mrs. SALMON||Miss STEPHENS,|
|Miss POVEY, and||and|
|Madame VESTRIS||and Miss PATON.|
Madame BULGARI (her second appearance in this country.)
And Madame CAMPORESE
Mr. SAPIO, Mr. TERRAIL,
Mr. NELSON, Master Longhurst, and
[His first appearance these two years.]
Grand Piano Forte, Mr. MOSCHELLES, (first appearance this season)
Violin, Mr. MORI
The Band will be numerous, and Complete in every Department.
Leader, Mr. SMART.
SIR GEORGE SMART,
Will conduct the Performance, and preside at the Organ, built by
Mr. GRAY; and Mr. WATSON superintend the Chorusses [sic].
 Square brackets are not editorial.
The Times (February 21, 1823): 3.
NEW THEATRE ROYAL DRURY-LANE.
THIS EVENING, February 21st, a GRAND PERFORMANCE of ANCIENT and MODERN MUSIC, under the Direction of Mr. BOCHSA. Part I.—(For this night only), a Selection from Handel’s Sacred Oratorio, THE REDEMPTION. Between the First and Second Parts, Recit. ed Aria, Madame Camporese; “O patria,” Concerto Grand Pianoforte, Mr. Moscheles. Part II.—For the first time in this country, The Lady of the Lake, selected from a celebrated poem of. That name, written by Sir Walter Scott, Bart., and arranged to Rossini’s admired opera of La Donna del Lago. Between the Second and Third Parts, Concerto on the Violin, Mr. Mori. Part III.—A Grand Miscellaneous Act, which will commence with, for the 3d time in this country. Beethoven’s descriptive Chorus, translated and adapted from the original German of the eminent poet Goethe, entitled “The Calm of the Sea and the Rising Breeze;” (this piece is one of the latest productions of the above celebrated composer.) Principal Vocal Performers:—Mrs. Salmon, Miss Povey, and Madame Vestris; Miss Stephens, Miss Cubitt, and Miss Paton; Madame Camporese and Madame Bulgari, her second public appearance in this country; Mr. Braham, Mr. Sapio, Mr. Terrail, Mr. Nelson, Master Longhurst, and Mr. Kellner, his first appearance for these two years. Leader, Mr. Smart. At the Organ, Sir George Smart.
The Morning Chronicle (February 22, 1823): 3.
DRURY-LANE THEATRE-ROSSINI’S OPERA, The Lady of the Lake, the delaying of which produced such an uproar at Convent-garden Theatre, on Wednesday last, was performed at this House last night. If in its native state, attended by every advantage, that dramatic action, scenery, and decoration could afford, it hung heavily in the Italian Theatre, how much more tedious it proved when forced into an unnatural alliance with English words, badly adapted, sung in an orchestra without distinction of character, and given in that imperfect manner which a deficiency of rehearsals must always render certain, we leave our readers to judge. Of course the whole Opera was not attempted to be given, but only a selection from it, forming one Act of the Oratorio. We were prepared to witness a failure in some parts, but expected to hear an effect produced by the Choruses, in a place where the performers are allowed to sing from book; but in this we were disappointed, and to our astonishment and chagrin, the best part of the finale to the first Act, comprising a triple chorus that is capable of producing a powerful result, was omitted. The first part of the Oratorio was well put together, and induced the company to receive the second with complacency. In the former Mrs. SALMON, Miss STEPHENS, and Mr. BRAHAM, had sung some charming songs from The Redemption; the Choruses went off well and at the end of it, Mad. CAMPORESE gave, in a very superior manner “Tu ch’accendi,” and M. MOSCHELLES played a very animated Piano-forte Concerto, being his first appearance in London this season. These soothing preparations proved very favourable to the succeeding Act from La Donna del Lago; but that this adaptation will not be popular, required no ghost to tell us. The House was not quite full, even at half price, and the many empty private boxes gave to it a very sombre appearance. The performance was protracted t a wearisome length: we quitted the Theatre at the end of the second Act, which was not over till 11 o’clock. The whole, therefore, probably would not terminate till long after midnight.
The Morning Post (February 22, 1823): 3.
The Oratorio at Drury-Lane last night drew a very crowded house. The principal attraction of the evening was ROSSINI’S music to the Donna del Lago adapted to English words. Those words, we are told, were principally selected from the well known poem of Sir WALTER SCOTT; but it would be more correct to say partly selected. We wish we could congratulate the Northern Minstrel on the rhymes that are so profusely blended with his own; but this were impossible; and we are besides bound to say that the words but ill sound with the music. MISS STEPHENS sung “Angels ever bright and fair” divinely, and was encored in the beautiful Irish Air of “Savourness deelich.” Madame BULGARI sung with much taste, and was warmly applauded.
The Literary Gazette; and Journal of Belles Lettres, Arts, Sciences, &c. (February 22, 1823): 125.
ORATORIOS.—On Friday and Wednesday, Mr. Bochsa gave Oratorios alternately at Drury Lane and Covent Garden. The selection at the first, procured a crowded audience, and went off, in the stage phrase, with eclat. Not so the last. The Lady of the Lake was advertised as the second part—the music of Rossini, to which the English words of Sir Walter Scott’s poem have been adapted by Mr. Bochsa. But unluckily Miss Tree, on whom a chief part fell, had become ill since the preceding evening; and, without an apology, the managers were in consequence substituting the Creation for the Lady of the Lake, when a lond [sic] explosion of displeasure ensued. To be taken all the way back to the Creation with so little ceremony, was more than John Bull could endure, and he began bellowing for the manager accordingly. Excuses, half French half English, were offered, but it must be said that the whole business was very unsatisfactory. As for Rossini’s Donna del Lago, it will be seen by our notice of the King’s Theatre, that its loss was no great loss. Indeed we do not think Rossini will ever be a popular composer in this country. Very little of his, which we have heard, affects the mind; he tickles the ear, but he touches not the heart; and no music was ever relished in England which was destitute of the latter property.
The Theatrical Observer (February 22, 1823): 1-2.
The Lady of the Lake has proved a great attraction at the Oratorio. This Theatre was last night crowded in every part. The first act was The Redemption, at the end of which Mr. MOSCHELLES executed one of the most brilliant Concertos on the Grand Piano-forte, that we ever heard, even by himself. The second act was from the celebrated Opera of ROSSINI’S La Donna Del Lago, arranged to the English words of SIR WALTER SCOTT. ROSSINI’S style of music is so well known that it needs no criticism; it may its faults, but the beauties so far preponderate, that his composition will ever please. This production possesses, perhaps more of his excellence and less of his faults than any other, and, as it was received with the most flattering marks of approbation, will of course be repeated, and, we hope, often during the Oratorios. It is but justice to say, that the most effective part of the music in the Italian Opera is preserved, and adapted to the beautiful words of SIR WALTER SCOTT’S Poem, and deserves that distinction. It was performed in a far superior style to the Opera itself. There were a few stragglers well planted for the purpose of hissing, but clumsily trained to the business; and the quarter from whence they came, could not have well considered, that if the pieces, so admirably performed, deserved their censure, there could not be any hopes of its serving the Haymarket Establishment. We mention no names, but signals were conspicuous.—SAPIO was indisposed, but sung admirably notwithstanding. Miss STEPHENS was rapturously encored in the beautiful Irish Melody, “O the moment was sad;” she was unable to sing the duet with Mrs. SALMON in the second act. Upon the whole, the performance went off with eclat, and evinced a determined spirit on the part of the proprietor to present novelty and attraction more conspicuous, as the season advances. MORI on the Violin was exquisite. We understand the Oratorios are future to be at Drury Lane only.
The New Monthly Magazine and Literary Journal, vol. 9, (April 1, 1823): 153-154.
ORATORIOS.—These musical performances have been continued twice a-week, in regular succession, at Drury Lane during the whole of the past month, under the direction of Mr. Bochsa, whose exertions have been strenuous, and praiseworthy, both in producing a very great variety of new music, mixed with older compositions of established merit, and in engaging nearly the whole of the first-rate vocal talent in the metropolis, and appointing a complete and competent instrumental orchestra. Besides “Cyrus in Babylon,” noticed in our account of last month, the principal pieces of extent were,— “The Lady of the Lake”—Dr. Crotch’s Oratorio of “Palestine”—“The Creation”—“The Redemption”—Mozart’s “Requiem”—“Acis and Galatea”—“The Messiah;”—and there were a number of classic compositions, of minor extent, by a variety of great masters. As we have given our opinion of Rossini’s “Donna del Lago” in the preceding article, it is unnecessary to enter into a particular account of “The Lady of the Lake,” as performed at the Oratorios. The English text of Sir W. Scott forced under Rossini’s music, and the English singers, by whom the latter was executed, gave but a faint glimpse of the nature of the work. Proper emphasis and accentuation were wanting. Some individuals, whom we will not name, caring little for Rossini’s time, dragged on the notes ad libitum, made gratuitous pauses, cadences, &c., as if they were singing English ballads, and altogether seemed quite out of their element. One lady, in particular, appeared quite abroad, and under constant suffering, from the correct time in the accompaniments. The choruses, however, told, upon the whole, much better than at the King’s Theatre, because the singers were not only more numerous, but decidedly superior. Dr. Crotch’s “Palestine” would be infinitely more interesting if it were only half as long. Its duration wearies the ear and spirits. A selection from it would have been preferable at the Oratorios. It is a scientific, skilful, and meritorious com position; a mixture of old and modern style. Two or three of the melodies are particularly good; but, upon the whole, the Oratorio is not so much distinguished by novelty and sweetness of musical ideas, as by the richness of its harmony. Many of the harmonic combinations are of the first order, others produce a grand and striking effect; the accompaniments possess the utmost variety, and some are peculiarly elegant. The singers and orchestra exerted themselves laudably to do justice to the composition. Among the numerous solo-players on various instruments, the performances of Mr. Moscheles on the piano-forte created the greatest interest. His execution certainly baffles all description: it is beyond what we conceived the piano-forte capable of, until we heard him the winter before last. His play, no doubt, will give a new impulse to our own artists. As a composer, too, we consider Mr. M. to hold an eminent rank. His ideas are as original, vivid, and tasteful, as his play. The Oratorios have invariably been crowded at every performance, by audiences the most respectable; so that Mr. Bochsa is likely to be amply rewarded for his unremitting efforts to satisfy the expectations of the musical public.
The Harmonicon, vol. I (March 1823): 42.
….On the succeeding Friday, The Lady of the Lake was produced, but without Miss Tree. The parts were given to Mrs. Salmon, Miss Paton, Messrs. Braham, Sapio, and Kellner, who did their utmost to give them effect. But these adaptations are mongrel things, which rarely convey the composer’s meaning with any truth, and in the present instance, the words are so extremely ill-fitted to the music, that it seems in a perpetual struggle to throw its companion off. The whole had been very insufficiently rehearsed, particularly the choruses [sic], so that altogether it was coldly received by the judging part of the audience. In the course of this same evening, Μadame Camporese, in “Tu che accendi,” and Mr. Braham in “He was eyes unto the blind,” shewed the perfection of the Italian and English schools of singing. M. Moschelles also exhibited his great powers, in a concerto on the piano-forte; and Miss Stephens sung enchantingly the beautiful Irish melody, “Savourna delish.” The length of this performance has been, with great reason, complained of ; [sic] for beginning at seven, it was not over till between twelve and one o’clock.