excerpt from 'Reminiscences of Michael Kelly' pp. 347-348 (281 words)

excerpt from 'Reminiscences of Michael Kelly' pp. 347-348 (281 words)

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Reminiscences of Michael Kelly

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The time...was fast approaching, at which we were to quit Paris ; for before I left London, Le Texier, the French reciter, had translated Gretry's opera of La Caravane into English. Mr. Linley had adapted the original French music to English poetry, and it was to be produced at the opening of Drury Lane. As Mrs. Crouch and myself had principal parts in it, I was very anxious to see it performed at the Grand Opera at Paris, and to make observations how they got it up. I mentioned my wish to Monsieur Gardel, and he was so polite (though another piece was announced to be performed) to have "The Caravan" performed, for the purpose of gratifying our curiosity. We saw it finely acted, and the decorations and scenery were of the most splendid description ; we saw also the opera of " Blue Beard." " Racule Barbe Bleue," is the French title of it: the fine bass singer, Chenard, was famous in " Barbe Bleue ;" and Madame Dugazzon, in Fatima, and Mademoiselle Cretue, in Irene, were both excellent : the music, by Gretry, was very good ; but so different are the tastes of a French and English audience, that when I produced my " Blue Beard" at Drury Lane, I did not introduce a single bar from Gretry. Mrs. C. was struck with the subject, and wrote down the programme of the drama, with a view to get it dramatized for Drury Lane ; Johnstone got the music copied to bring to Mr. Harris, at Covent Garden, and it was got up at that theatre as a pantomime, I believe by Delpini ; I never was it in that shape, but have heard that it was not successful.

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excerpt from 'Reminiscences of Michael Kelly' pp. 347-348 (281 words)


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