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Operatic Programme

Synopsis

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Excerpts from
'THE DAUGHTER OF THE REGIMENT ' by Donizetti
Cast :
The Countess of*Berkenfeld GLADYS PARR
Maria (Vivandiere) GERTRUDE JOHNSON Tonio (A Young Tyrolese Peasant) ,
JOHN ARMSTRONG
Sulpizio (Sergeant) ....... GEORGE BAKER
THE WIRELESS CHORUS
THE B.B.C. ORCHESTRA
(Section E)
Conducted by JOSEPH LEWIS
OUR grandfathers counted Donizetti as one of the great masters of melody, holding his operas in a very warm affection. The Daughter was produced in Parisin 1840, and before long, made its way to opera houses abroad: its blend of simple melody and light-hearted merriment, with a flavouring of sentiment, has always attracted singers as well as audiences, and such great artists as Jenny Lind , Sonlag, Patti, and Albani enjoyed playing the title r6le.
Donizetti was a soldier for some years, and in making the Italian libretto himself was on familiar ground. In the first act, which begins while a battle is in progress near the home of the Countess of Berkenfeld, Maria is brought there by Sulpizio, a sergeant in the regiment which claims her as its daughter : she had been found as a mere infant on a battlefield and brought up among the soldiers. There is a merry scene in which she goes through her drill, and sings, with Sulpizio, the famous Rataplan duet, playing the drum herself. The sergeant then prevails on her to tell him about a young man who saved her life on the verge of a dangerous precipice. Tonio, the young man himself, makes an unexpected appearance immediately afterwards ; the soldiers have captured him, and, but for Maria's intercession, would have shot him as a spy. He sets their suspicions at rest by enlisting in the regiment. He and Maria love one another, but no sooner have they confessed that, than the Countess claims the girl as her niece, and insists on carrying her off to her chateau. Tonio and the regiment take a sad farewell of her. In the second act, in the chateau, Maria is learning tho airs and graces proper to her station: but with the old sergeant at hand, for he has remained by her side, she must now and again break into the old song of the regiment. Tonio returns, now as an officer —commissioned for valour on the field-and at, the end the two young people are happily united.

Contributors

Unknown: Berkenfeld Gladys Parr
Unknown: Gertrude Johnson
Unknown: John Armstrong
Unknown: George Baker
Conducted By: Joseph Lewis
Unknown: Jenny Lind

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Feedback about Operatic Programme, National Programme Daventry, 20.00, 6 January 1932
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