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The Contralto

Review published in the November 2, 1906 edition of the Emmitsburg Chronicle of the First Performance of the 'Princess'

First Performance of the Princess

Given by the Emmitsburg Opera Company

Twenty young ladies, under the direction of Father Maloy and Prof. Frederick J. Halm, opened the dramatic sea-son, on Tuesday evening, in St. Euphemia's Hall, by giving Prof. Halm's delightful operetta, "The Princess." A small but appreciative audience greeted the singers at this initial performance and, judging from the splendid way in which the, young ladies acquitted themselves and the bright and catchy music of the operetta, not only will a larger audience be in evidence at the next performance but there will be a strong demand made for a repetition of this sprightly little opera. The inclement weather had a good deal to do with the size of the audience and by no means should the small attendance dampen the ardor of the conscientious young performers.

From first to last there is not an uninteresting line in the libretto nor was there any evidence of hitch or unfamiliarity with the score. The stage settings were good and the costumes, made by Miss Rose Tyson, were beautiful as well as tasteful and appropriate. Too much credit can not be given to the chorus and about the only suggestion that might be offered by an attentive listener would be that the stage manager should have the soloists a little nearer the foot lights. The acoustics of the hall and stage demand this. The accompaniment at times, was a little too heavy to make the ensemble effective, but no doubt, in the second rendition, which will be given this evening, these little inequalities will no longer be in evidence.

The congratulations heaped upon Prof. Hahn after the performance; of the "Princess" gave ample evidence that his work was thoroughly appreciated. The book and the score, both from the pen of this accomplished gentleman, are full of gems and the tuneful, catchy music of this sprightly operetta will be whistled and sung in this community for many a day.

‘The Princess’ is but one of the many successes that are due to the untiring efforts of Father Maloy and his associates. Before any of these performances, so easily and smoothly rendered, can be given, there are weeks of work and hard practice, of training and wise direction, and when it is considered that all this care is taken in the production of plays that have for their end the betterment, not of the instructors, but of the players and people at large, and that all the performances are clean and wholesome, too ' much praise and support can not be given the Rev. Father Maloy.

The first act opened on a sylvan scene with the chorus of court maidens on either side of the Princess' throne. Miss Mae Long, who impersonated the Princess, entered from the left and sang her part admirably. This was followed by the Dance Song and, after the entrance of the ambassadress, Miss Stella Long, by a war song. Dolorosa, Miss Lillian Gelwicks, acted her part well and her song, Woman's Sphere, anti-amazonian in spirit was well acted and sung. The act ended with a full chorus.

In the second act the scene was laid in the camp of the Princess' forces. Miss Euphemia Tyson, who took the part of Martella, sang with her usual grace an anvil song. The audience was robbed of an encore by the entrance of the Newsboys, who captured the house. This was a source of regret to the audience who would have been glad to have heard several repetitions of this song.

The singing and acting of these "Chronicle newsboys," Lilly Long and Gertrude Krise; was one of the most thoroughly enjoyable features of the excellent programme, The make up of these little stars was perfect and their rendition of 'Emmitsburg,' a witty topical song, and their clever bits of good natured satire aimed at this paper, called forth prolonged applause.

Miss Stella Topper, as Gladiola, was excellent and her Sword song was sung with a spirit and abandon worthy of the ‘Fencing Master.’ She drilled her corps of soldiers with grace and was vociferously applauded.

The third and last act saw the return of the victorious ladies of the Princess' court. In the final scene of this act the wounded and defeated Prince was borne in upon a stretcher. The song of the Princess over the stricken man was beautifully and, touchingly rendered. Miss Tyson, the Doctor, acted and sang her part well and the act and performance was closed with a full chorus.

The following is the cast:

The Princess, Miss Mae Long ; Aline, Miss Blanche Dukehart; Dolorosa, Miss Lillian Gelwicks; Imogen, Miss Vincentia Sebold; Perdita, Miss Anna Elder; Candida, Miss Julia Tyson; Portia, Miss Mazie Sebold; Martella, Miss Euphemia Tyson; Gladiola, Miss Stella Topper; Calpurnia, Miss Rosella Burdner; Katherine, Miss. Mary Burdner; Roselind, Miss Valerie Welty; Nerissa, Miss Carrie Gelwicks; Dulcissima, Miss Madeline Gelwicks; Lydia, Miss Lillian Cool; Terpsichore, Miss Nan Favorite; Ophelia, Miss Anna Long; Ambassadress, Miss Stella Long; Newsboys, Miss Lilly Long and Miss Gertrude Krise.

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