Alice May: Gilbert & Sullivan's First Prima Donna (Forgotten - download pdf or read online
By Adrienne Simpson
This biography tells the tale of Alice may possibly, a traveling prima donna within the 19th century who travelled from England to Australia, New Zealand, India and the united states, enjoying pioneering performances of the preferred gentle operas of the day. alongside the best way she took half in lots of premieres, together with the 1st construction of Gilbert and Sullivan's The Sorcerer and the 1st permitted American construction of The Mikado . This vibrant lifestyles tale will entice theatre historians, lovers of the melodrama, burlesque, and the musical degree.
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Additional info for Alice May: Gilbert & Sullivan's First Prima Donna (Forgotten Stars of the Musical Theater)
Her upper notes seemed, perhaps through nervousness, a little harsh, and her low ones were not so full and round as could have been desired, her power evidently lying in her middle register, the notes of which are exceedingly sweet and clear. She also sings with intelligence, and has a very distinct articulation. With these advantages, and a pleasant manner and engaging appearance, 20 ADRIENNE SIMPSON she will undoubtedly soon establish herself a favorite with the Melbourne public. Other reviewers were in broad agreement.
Lambert’s husband, Charles Templeton, possessed a musical if not very powerful baritone. He looked good onstage and acted well. Florence Howe was a useful contralto who had worked with Alice and Allen in their Gallery of Illustration days. The 44 ADRIENNE SIMPSON inexperienced leading tenor, Henry Hallam, had begun his career singing in a burlesque troupe. He had a pleasant voice but his top notes were not equal to the demands placed upon them. Critics complained that he often cheated by resorting to falsetto or transposing passages an octave lower than written.
Companies seldom remained more than four weeks in any town and in some places they stayed just a day or two before packing up and moving on. Frequent travel over long distances raised transport costs and made life harder for the performers. Already slender profit margins could be squeezed still further by imponderables such as bad weather. New Zealanders loved entertainment of all kinds, but when driving rain turned the colony’s dirt roads to quagmires or seeped through the chinks in its wooden-walled theatres, even the most enthusiastic patrons stayed at home.
Alice May: Gilbert & Sullivan's First Prima Donna (Forgotten Stars of the Musical Theater) by Adrienne Simpson