OCR Interpretation

Evening star. [volume] (Washington, D.C.) 1854-1972, April 23, 1947, Image 10

Image and text provided by Library of Congress, Washington, DC

Persistent link: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn83045462/1947-04-23/ed-1/seq-10/

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Baccaloni Delights Audience
In Presenting Buffo Roles
By Alice Eversmon
The one part of opera that is
practically unknown here is that of
the basso buffo, so the appearance
in Constitution Hall of Salvatore
Baccaloni, the greatest living expo
nent of that style, as soloist with
the Philadelphia Orchestra was
something of an event. Some years
ago he sang here with a concert
company giving scenes from opera
but it is possible that last night was
the only time that arias of this kind
have farmed part of a symphony
program. Eugene Ormgndy, conduc
tor of the Philadelphians, sur
mounted skillfully the difficulty of
including the proper type of orches
tral numbers to fit in with the sing
er’s selections, Franck’s beautiful
symphony had a place all its own
as opening number, and after all the
fun, the “Waltzes” from Strauss’
"Der Rosenkavalier” was a logical
choice to end the concert.
Had not a variety of circumstances
led Baccaloni to the buffo roles, he
might well have gained equal re
nown in other bass parts. His voice
is by nature and schooling emi
nently fitted for all operatic re
quirements. It is large, mellow and
flexible. But he has the comedy gift
that cannot be learned. It activates
his whole body, his feet to light,
dancing steps, his face to mobile
change of mood and his hands to
expressive gestures. There radiates
from him a continuous sense of
good humor and he needs but to
strike a pose to set an audience
It was great art that he presented
last night. For the vehicles for most
of it he went back to the two men
who knew best how to write comedy
parts in their theater works, Mozart
and Cimarosa. From Mozart’s “Die
Entfuehrung aus dem Serail,” he
sang two of Osmin’s arias and from
“Don Giovanni” Leporello’s ''Ma
ri amina, 11 catalogo e questo” and
"Ah, pieta, signori miei.” Facial ex
pression, gestures and a bit of ac
tion underscored the meaning of
the words so clearly that their hu
mor could be fully appreciated, al
though sung in German and Italian.
Cimarosa’s “II Matrimonio Se
greto” was so successful at the time
of its production that it threatened
Mozart’s fame. Its popularity en
dures to this day and this charming
work was heard here in its entirety in
1933 in the Library of Congress, pre
sented by Juilliard School of Music.
Geronimo’s aria “Voi tutti, udite, le
orecchie spalancata” was given, to
gether with “Le ragazze che son di
vent’ anni,” all that remains of Ci
marosa’s “Le Astuzie Femminill.”
Here again, Baccaloni’s refined
artistry in comedy put a present-day
stamp on these works.
More familiar to operagoers of
today is Verdi’s “Falstaff” from
which Baccaloni sang “Mondo ladro,
mondo rubaldo” and “Quand’era
paggio di Duca di Norfolck.” His
own girth comes closer to a true
picture of this famous character than
that of most artists taking the role.
Excellently sung from a serious
musical consideration, it was, how
ever, his great ability to bring to
the concert platform the complete
comedy essence of his selections
that made the occasion both un
usual and delightful. The audience
enjoyed itself so much that it could
hardly let the artist go and the long
sounding applause brought him out
again and again.
In this program, which was the
Philadelphia Orchestra’s farewell
for this season, Mr. Ormandy made
a profound impression with his
reading of the Franck “Symphony.”
The noble plan of his directing gave
time for an absorption of the lovely
effects that abound in this work
and kept the music rising from its
contemplative whispering to great
outbursts of sublime exaltation. The
audience’s reaction showed the stir
ring effect on It that was outwardly
expressed in the ovation accorded
the conductor._
Judge Chides Prosecutor
As He Frees Defendant
A used car lot operator, charged
with allowing vehicles in his custody
to be parked without license tags
on the street adjacent to the lot,
was ordered freed of the charge
yesterday by Judge Thomas Dewey
Quinn, who chided the prosecution
for failing to make proper investi
gation. '
VoUmen H. Campbell, 37, of the
4600 block of North Twenty-third
street, Arlington, whose used ear lot
is located in the first block of
Massachusetts avenue N.W., was the
“The government had failed to
show that the car in question wen
registered In the dealer’s name o]
that he had custody over them,” th<
judge declared in Traffic Court.
Addressing the assistant corpora*
tion counsel, he added: “Suppose
somebody were to park a car in front
of your house. Merely because of
its presence there, would that mean
it would be to your custody?”
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