excerpt from 'Naples and the Campagna Felice. In a series of letters, addressed to a friend in England, in 1802' pp. 336-341 (559 words)

excerpt from 'Naples and the Campagna Felice. In a series of letters, addressed to a friend in England, in 1802' pp. 336-341 (559 words)

part of

Naples and the Campagna Felice. In a series of letters, addressed to a friend in England, in 1802

original language

urn:iso:std:iso:639:ed-3:eng

in pages

336-341

type

text excerpt

encoded value

[Engelbach describes chaotic preparations for a dance he is hosting at his Naples residence with the assistance of D. Michele whose words are presented as direct speech and who refers to himself in the third person]

 [Letter XVII] "The execution of your [Engelbach's] orders, sir, is the cause of your waiting; for when D. Michele undertakes a thing, he likes to go through with it at once. First, as to the company, there will be ten couple, besides our family and some odd ones […] Three or four will come in their own carriages; and some of the lasses will shew you what is called dancing at Naples. Care too has been taken, that they should not want for good music: you will have, Signor Don Luigi, the first oboe of St. Carlo, two excellent violins, a flute, tenor, and violoncel—my son will play the tamboureen. […] [T]hese will be sufficient to begin the evening with a little concert: my friend will give you a concerto on the oboe; one of the ladies will sing a scena from an opera, to which we may add a duet or two; and at ten o'clock the dance shall begin. […] I have not been idle all this while; and the pains I have taken will be to some purpose, I warrant you. Your dance will be spoken of long after you shall have forgotten us poor Neapolitans."

I am not going to plague you with a minute journal of the proceedings of the evening; but a few incidents, I imagine, will entertain you. The musicians arrived in good time, and the company dropped in fast after eight o'clock.

[…]

 After the oboe-concerto, therefore, which really was delightfully played, the operatic budget was opened: a young lady, with her brother, sung a duet from "Il Fanatico per la Musica," with great and deserved applause. It was now suggested, whether, as there were several more singers in the room, we might not be able to muster sufficient strength for the finale in the first act of Il Matrimonio Segreto. Volunteers were called for, and on counting the parts, nothing but a bass voice was found to be wanting. Everything seemed at a stand for a few minutes, till seeing that there was no chance to supply the defect otherwise, I offered to undertake the part, if the company would indulge any blunder I might commit. The truth was, that from seeing this very opera perhaps half-a-dozen times, I knew it almost by heart, and the finale, in particular, was very familiar to me. […] [T]he performance began. When I found that all my fellow-singers executed their parts in character, that is to say, with all the comic gesticulations and the emphasis that would be required on the stage, I was not backward in throwing a quantum sufficit of mimicry into my task, and you know I can play the fool upon occasion. Once or twice I had nearly been put out by my friend Michele, who had planted himself directly opposite to me, and whose pleasing astonishment was every now and then interrupted by a "Bravo, carissimo." When we had finished, the clapping of hands was universal, and the old fool, in his ecstasy of delight, flew towards me, embraced me, and imprinted half-a-dozen savoury kisses on my cheeks.

appears in search results as

excerpt from 'Naples and the Campagna Felice. In a series of letters, addressed to a friend in England, in 1802' pp. 336-341 (559 words)

1518719879125:

reported in source

1518719879125

documented in
Page data computed in 370 ms with 1,622,072 bytes allocated and 35 SPARQL queries executed.