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many curious Anecdotes of the last thirty years of that age.
Cœur de Lion, or the Third Crusade, a Poem, in Sixteen Books, by Miss Porden, is in the Press.
In the Press, Conduct is Fate, in 3 vols.; also nearly ready, The Provost, or Memoirs of his own Times, compiled from the Papers of James Pawkie, Esq. by the Author of Sir Andrew Wylie.
Captain de C. Brooke has nearly ready for the Press, a Tour through Sweden, Norway, and the Coast of Norwegian Lapland, to the Northern Cape, in 1820. Part the 2d. which will follow, will comprise a Residence at Hammerfest, in the lat. of 702, and a Winter's Journey through Norwegian, Russian, and Sweedish Lap
land, to Torneo; with numerous Portraits and Plates, illustrating the Physiognomy and Costume of the different wandering Tribes of Laplanders.
Lord Dillon, Author of several Military and Political Works, has, during his reResidence at Florence, written The Life and Opinions of Sir Richard Maltravers, an English Gentleman of the Seventeeth Century, which is now in the Press.
In the Press, The Scripture Character of God; or Discourses on the Divine Attributes; by H. F. Burder, M.A,
In the Press, Sacred Lyrics; by James Edmeston. Vol. 3.
In the Press, in 1 vol. fools Cap 8vo. Dangerous Errors, an Interesting Tale.
THEATRICAL JOURNAL. "Veluti in Speculum."
FEB. 23. We most conscientiously wish that it were in our power to congratulate either the public, the manager, or the author, upon the new production of this evening; but should we even so far tax our politeness at the expense of our sincerity, we very much fear that nobody would believe us. The truth is, as a friend observed to us on the first representation, that though this may be a very tolerable production for Mr. Knight, it would be a most lamentable falling off for any individual who ever wrote beside, and such "faint praise” is, alas! all that we can honestly award him. This new attraction was entitled "The Veteran; or, the Farmer's Sons," and to give an accurate detail of it's Plot would be as difficult as the endeavour to discover a spark of wit, or genuine humour, in the dialogue; and we are therefore only enabled to say, that the Veteran is a General Van (Munden), who has two pretty daughters, Rosa (Miss Forde), and Isabella (Madam Vestris), that the the Farmer is one old Franklin (Powell), and his two Sons are Captain George (Harley), and Jonas (Knight). We can also state, that the General has two hangers-on, Sergeant O'Rory O'Whack (Fitzwilliam), and a Steward named Blunt (G. Smith); to which characters may be added a Recruiting Sergeant (Gattie), a pretty, moping, cottage lass, named Patty (Miss Povey), and a hard hearted Landlord, one Mr. Stone, by Mr. T. Smith.
The Veteran General's duty appears to be to relieve the distresses of the village, and to bring his daughter Bell to a reasonable conception of the value of the tender passion, which she derides, although opposed by papa and sister. The Farmer, poor man, is bed-ridden through vexation at the bad times, until the last scene: but his sons are active in his service. George has been missing from his family for many years, though we know neither why, nor how, but has become a Captain, saved the life of one of the General's daughters, and returns to his native village just in time to support the manoeuvres of the General to cause the heart of Miss Bell to capitulate to Cupid, and to restore the fallen fortunes of his own family. Jonas is employed in hugging bailiffs, in taking the King's bounty as a recruit, to preserve his feyther, in finding a pocket book, reasoning on honesty, making love to Patty, and wiping his eyes because he is an honest lad and reverences his dad. Sergeant-Major O'Whack, was a sort of an Irish vocal aid-de-camp to the General, and suttler to the whole corps of paupers under the same command. Each when they could, sang a song, a duet, or a trio, or joined in a row-de-dow chorus ; and so the whole concluded amidst applause, with victory over Miss Bell's obdurate heart,-joy for the found brother, and the happy loves of Captain George and Rosa; and Jonas and Patty.
This plot is obviously good for
nothing, and we regret to say that it's deficiency was but very feebly filled up by animation in the dialogue, or interest in the music. The chief attraction was Miss Forde, as Rosa, who certainly exhibited much promise in the lighter range of characters. She has a good voice, rather untaught, and though in this instance, unfortunately urged to efforts beyond it's practice and it's power, will ultimately, we think, reward her instructors and herself. Her appearance is favourable, she has a good figure, a good-humoured countenance, a not ungraceful style of gesture, and may hereafter eligibly succeed some of our present favourites. Mr. Knight's delineation of the rustic, in his own Opera, without any aspersion on the skill of that popular performer, was decidedly absurd. What can be more improbable than a clown eternally prating about his feelings, clapping his hand on his heart at every third word, and raving in all the dia'lects that ever shocked the ear from Inverness to Cornwall? Harley's Captain George, though less repulsive, was equally beyond the hope of being understood; and what attraction could be found in his exaggerated manner and preposterous dress by any woman, is to be answered only on the supposition of a passion for absurdity; though much is to be forgiven him, in consideration of his most excellent burlesque song on Parliamentary Oratory. Munden played a long, dull, sentimental part very spiritedly; Madame Vestris acted with much animation, and Miss Povey sang with most melodious clearness. The Opera altogether exhibited much ineffectual industry, and though it was not hissed, except in one or two instances, it was not applauded. It's career, as might have been expected, has therefore been brief and profitless, and Mr. Knight's fame and fortune are, we much fear, neither advanced half a per cent. by the experiment.
MARCH 18. Mr. Kean's long announced attempt to embody the difficult character of Sir Pertinax Macsycophant in Macklin's "Man of the World" this evening attracted a most brilliant audience to witness the experiment. Since the decease of Cooke, this comedy has remained almost entirely unrepresented, except when occasionally revived for one solitary evening, to introduce some one in
the part of the wily Scotsman, whom we either never heard of afterwards; or if he were even a London favourite, seldom, or never, repeated his temerity. The very many obstacles with which Mr. Kean has had to contend, from his usual style of acting being so entirely different, and the continued pronunciation of the Scottish dialect so extremely difficult, rendered his triumph of course so much the more complete; as whatever trifling drawbacks might appear in the minuter shades, taken as a whole, we conceive it to have been as effective as any of the most popular of that gentleman's preceding charaeters. This perhaps was the more unexpected from the whisper, that his courage had somewhat failed him after he had commenced the part.
We must, however, confess that be did not come up to our conception of the character in all respects, and also that he played it in a totally different style from Mr. Cooke, whose broad and rich humour created an effect beyond what any one has produced, since Macklin himself acted it. Mr. Kean is, perhaps, too restrained in his manner, and too methodical in his delivery; and the sycophancy of Sir Pertinax is thus by him less apparent than it ought to be. Cooke's hearty laugh and look of ample approbation at every syllable uttered by Lord Lumbercourt, was the finest part of his representation, while Mr. Kean gives no adequate marking of the character in that way; but is more meditative than operative; and often seeks rather to strike by a silent and formal obsequiousness than by an over-eager shew of congeniality of feeling and acquiescence of opinion with the Lordly dupe. Though unless his Lordship were in reality a fool, we know not but that Mr. Kean has the best of the argument in favour of his mode of performance. His best scenes were those with Egerton, where he unfolds the way in which he raised his fortune, in which Egerton refuses compliance with his schemes;-that with Sidney, where he seeks his assistance to destroy the character of Constantia, and the discovery of the letter to his wife and son. Mr. Kean has, however, two defects which make his representation of the character appear far less effective than it actually is. His features do not readily melt into a broad complacency, and his pronunciation of the Scots
The ouvelle performances behind the scenes at this Theatre, to which we have considered it would have been indelicate to make any earlier allusion,-have, we apprehend, precluded the introduction of any additional novelty before them; as, since our last notice, toujours perdrix has been the sole order of the day, or rather night; and, contrary to all preceding practice, an entire month has glided past, without the production of even a triumphant melodrama, or an unsuccessful farce. The new arrangements are, however, now complete; and we sincerely hope, that we may congratulate both the public and the proprietors upon the anticipated result. Mr. Harris retires from the chief management, which has for so many years been vested in his own, and in his father's hands, and is succeeded by Mr. Charles Kemble; who, with Captain Forbes, and the Messrs. Willetts, as his coadjutors, is to have the sole superintendence for ten years. This new compact also includes a complete adjustment of the heavy incumbrance of debt which has so long pressed upon the concern; thus leaving the Proprietors completely unfettered in their future course of pro
Mar. 19. Beggar's Opera-Love in Humble Life-Amoroso.
19. No Performance.
14. West Indiau-Giovanni in London. 15. No Performance.
16. Busy Body-Love in Humble Life-Sleep. ing Draught.
18. Man of the World-Adeline.
19 Ditto-Three and the Deuce.
20. No Performance.
21. Man of the World-Paul and Virginia. 22. No Performance.
23. Man of the World-Giovanni in London.
cedure, to which, in all sincerity, we' most heartily wish complete and unqualified success. The only Dramatic Novelties which it devolves upon us to notice, we may despatch in a very few sentences.-Mr. Macready's appearance as Daran, in “The Exile,” vice Mr. Young, has twice gratified a crowded audience, and extended his own fame, with well-merited eclat, by his very able and energetic performance.—Missès M. Tree and Foote have also represented William and Phæbe, in “Rosina," for a first time, with considerable effect; and on Tuesday, March 19th, Mr. Charles Kemble made his debut for the season as Charles, in Sheridan's "School for Scandal." In his novel character of Actor and Manager, Mr. K. was received with enthusiastic applause, and in thus selecting the legitimate comedy of our country for his reappearance before his public friends, we augur most favourably of his prosperous career in swaying the drama-' tic sceptre of Covent Garden; while towards a consummation so de-. voutly to be wished," he has our warmest desires, and most fervent good wishes for his success.
The Musical Performances of the Lent Season of 1322 baye differed
in toto cælo from all preceding years. In the first place, they are confined
to Covent Garden Theatre alone; and in the next, the leading performers of both houses are now united under the New Management of Mr. Bochsa. Without impugning the professional talents of this gentleman, which, we understand, are highly appreciated where such estimation is most valuable; there are not a few reasons, why Mr. B. is not exactly the individual we should have conceived in all respects fitted to conduct these performances. We leave opinions, however, to speak of facts, and one great proof of exertion is, that the Season has produced us a new Oratorio. We have not now time to write an essay upon the difficulties which the Composer of an Oratorio has to encounter, but we may safely set it down as an axiom, that they are insurmountable, except to genius the most sublime and commanding. The task is nothing less than to write an epic poem in musical sounds; and when it is considered that they can only present impressions to the feelings, not ideas to the mind, and that this medium of thought and sentiment is very uncertain in it's nature, as well as it's principles, it will be evident that the loftier efforts in the art must frequently end in disappointment. The effect of music also, in a great degree, depends upon association; and even those who are most delicately sensible to it's fascinations, owe no small portion of their enjoy ment to the language, which is enshrined in sounds appropriately sweet and expressive. In Mr. Bochsa's Oratorio, founded on the incidents of "the Deluge," he has provided, from the pen of Mr. Charles Dibdin, a description of all that his composition is intended to express, in the preludes and symphonies, as well as in the vocal portions of the work. Without this aid, a great part of his
music would have been inexplicable; and that which least required such an interpreter, was least calculated to uphold the imagination of the hearer to the grandeur of his theme. The striking of a single gong, and the sibilation of an ordinary piece of mechanism, used to imitate the whistling wind and pelting shower, in our theatres, were employed to express "the death-roaring voice of the tide." and "the howling of the elements at each other in their fury;" our readers will therefore readily judge of the Composer's inspiration; though the second part, which treats of returning tranquillity, has more merit, and being, we presume, more in unison with the author's taste and talents, was infinitely preferable. The partnership of Messrs. Bochsa and C. Dibdin, however, will, we much fear, never produce a splendid composition; though as the latter gentleman has been rather severely criticised upon the occasion, it is but justice to him to observe, that, entirely contrary to the usual practice, Mr. Dibdin wrote the words to the music, instead of Mr. Bochsa writing the music to the words. When they attempt another Oratorio, therefore, we would earnestly recommend an adherence to the ancient mcthod, as their present experiment on "The Deluge" having been repeated but twice, must be considered a fail
The other performances have been," The Messiah" once; and "The Creation," with "Selections," "Miscel laneous Acts" &c. &c. ad infinitum, comprising something of all sorts. The performers, both vocal and instrumental, have been of the first talent which the metropolis could furnish, and the public patronage has been equally liberal as the exertions for their entertainment; although we much fear, that the speculation is upon too large a scale to be repaid this season.
ENGLISH OPERA HOUSE.
MARCH 11." Ever charming, ever new." like the landscape at Grongar Hill, our inimitable friend Mathews has once more opened his annual campaign "At Home;" where we have not failed paying him our earliest respects. For the fifth season he has again ventured upon the arduous experiment of entertaining a crowded audience by his single-handed exertions; and if laughter be a proof of success, and we really know of none so legitimate,-his triumphs encrease as he proceeds, and the present year's drolleries far excel all his former attractions. Contrary to our apprehensions, we are happy to say that Mr. Mathews looked in good health and spirits, for had he not been so, we must certainly have had to record his final exit before he had got half through his arduous task. The evening's amusement is, as usual, divided into Three Parts. The First comprising the period from his Birth to his arrival in Dublin; the Second including his stay in Ireland, his departure for Wales, his removal to Yorkshire, his arrival in the Metropolis, and his debut at the Hay Market; which properly concludes the narrative of his earlier days. The Third Part is a Petite Furce, under the title of " Stories," in which some of the previous characters are introduced, and with some new ones exhibit the loves and difficulties of Mr. George Augustus Fipley, and Miss Amelrosa, with the humourous blunders of the lodgers on the first second and third floors of a watering-place lodging-house.
That all who can visit the English Opera House, will do so, we entertain not the slightest doubt; but as our invalid, and country friends, will expect a rather more minute detail of this attractive novelty, for their sakes we most readily proceed to tell the story more at length. The new entertainment is entitled "The Youthful Days of Mr. Mathews," and comprehends a genuine, though whimsical biography of himself, introducing numerous characters whom he encountered in his progress, almost as identical as if they too had come to the Theatre, to recite their own doings, and play their own parts. In this, our hero's astonishing powers and versatility are most conspicuous: if ever a man was beside himself, he is the person, for any body Eur. Mag. Vol. 81. March, 1822.
would swear that in these transformations he was Wilkes, Macklin, Tate Wilkinson, Cooke, Suett, or whoever else may be introduced, rather than Charles Mathews.
The lectures open with an account of his birth on the 28th of June, 1776, and subsequent adventures till he was an hour and a quarter old! From one to ten his life is pretty even, except that his schoolmaster at a preparatory seminary is fond of exercise, and sefects him to play Whackum with, till he used to cast his young eyes up to the organ in a corner of the school, and wish that he resembled it's gilt Cherubim, in being all head and wings. From this discipline he is sent to Merchant Tailors' School, where he is lively and mischievous, and whence he bears the remembrance of the three Masters Wilkinsons, his companions, whose anniversary orations in Latin, Greek, and English, he ludicrously copies. At this age the dramatic mania seizes him, and he performs for the first time, together with Elliston, at their French teacher's, in a first floor over a pastry-cook's in the Strand. Like the course of true love, the course of stage love never did run smooth, and his father, a respectable bookseller, had many objections to our hero's dramatic propensities. He is called on to choose a trade, and sings a very indifferent song about the London Directory. He is, however, hound apprentice to his father, and for that purpose taken to Wilkes, then Chamberlain of London. His imitation of this famous City Magistrate is exquisite. With his eyes directed two ways, he advises the apprentice always to look straight before him; and above all things to avoid meddling with politics, against which he could give him at least fortyfive reasons! Thus admonished, Charles is placed behind the counter in the book-shop, till his determined passion for the Stage makes him a vagabond by act of Parliament.
At first his professional success is rather disheartening, for he is voted to be talentless, and his tragic abilities are chiefly valued for his fencing in fighting scenes, which when be acts, are accordingly protracted to five and twenty minutes! An interview with Macklin, then in his 103d year, is capitally given, and the veteran's