OPERA

[Carl Rosa] Autograph Letter Signed to ‘Miss Macgregor’, expressing regret for losing her as a tenant.

Author: 
Carl August Nicholas Rosa [born Karl August Nikolaus Rosa] (1842-1889), German-born opera manager and musical impresario who founded the Carl Rosa Opera Company in England.
Publication details: 
7 January 1886; on letterhead of 17 Westbourne Street, Hyde Park, W.
£42.00

See his entry in the Oxford DNB. 1p, 12mo. In fair condition, lightly aged. Folded once. In a loose, untidy hand. He is ‘much obliged for the note of the 4th.’, and as she wishes has sent instructions to ‘Davy’, to whom he asks her to ‘send all communications’. He is ‘very sorry indeed’ to ‘loose [sic]’ her as a tenant.

[Albert Saléza, French tenor opera singer.] Autograph Letter Signed (‘Alb. Saléza’), in French, asking ‘Monsieur Forsythe’ to secure him ‘le plus grand nombre de places possible’ for a production (his own?) that evening.

Author: 
Albert Saléza (1867-1916), French tenor opera singer
Publication details: 
18 June 1900; no place [London?].
£56.00

2pp, 12mo. On bifolium. Folded once. The first page is scored through in ink, with pencil annotations at head. The final page, with Saléza’s signature, is unmarked. He asks him for as many seats as possible for that evening. He would like ‘une bonne loge, deux Stalls et plusieurs petites places’. He will pass by the office to collection, and asks for them to be left in his name.

[Albert Saléza, French tenor opera singer.] Autograph Letter Signed (‘Alb. Saléza’), in French, asking ‘Monsieur Menager’ to secure him ‘deux places pour ma femme et une de ses amies’ at the Opéra that evening.

Author: 
Albert Saléza (1867-1916), French tenor opera singer
Publication details: 
11 July 1906; on letterhead of the Hotel Cecil, Strand, WC [London].
£56.00

1p, 12mo. On bifolium. In fair condition, with two pencil notes at head, one in orange. Folded twice. He hopes he is not abusing the kindness of 'Monsieur Menager' (i.e. the house manager) by asking for two seats, for his wife and her friend, as they would like to go to the opera that night. After terminating the letter in the customary Gallic fashion, he adds a postscript asking for the reply to be left with the porter.

[Madame Albani [Dame Emma Albani Gye], celebrated Canadian operatic soprano.] Autograph Signature (‘Emma Albani Gye | 1883.’), written for display on front of envelope.

Author: 
Madame Albani [Dame Emma Albani Gye; Madame Albani; born Marie-Louise-Emma-Cécile Lajeunesse] (1847-1930), celebrated Canadian operatic soprano
albani
Publication details: 
1883; no place.
£28.00
albani

Clearly given in response to an autograph collector, and written for display on front panel of envelope. Dimensions: 10.5 x 8.5 cm. In good condition, lightly aged. Horizontal crease along bottom not affecting signature, which reads ‘Emma Albani Gye | 1883.’ In 1883, after several years of enormous success in Europe, Albani returned to Canada to give a series of recitals. Thousands turned out to greet her arrival in Montreal.

[Luigi Montesanto, Italian baritone opera singer.] Autograph Signature (‘Luigi Montesanto’) to part of printed English libretto to Leoncavallo’s ‘Pagliacci’.

Author: 
Luigi Montesanto (1887-1954), Italian baritone opera singer
Luigi
Publication details: 
Dated by Montesanto to 1936. [His Master’s Voice, London.]
£40.00
Luigi

At top right-hand corner of part of printed English libretto to Leoncavallo’s ‘Pagliacci’. Dimensions: 13.5 x 17.5 cm. Sloping upwards towards the corner, and underlined: ‘Luigi Montesanto | 1936’. On shiny art paper and in fair condition, lightly creased and a little dog-eared at the corner of the signature. The cutting is headed: ‘Prologue (Pagliacci) ... ... ... ... Leoncavallo | LUGI MONTESANTO | PROLOGUE’, with thirty-two lines of English translation.

[‘Theatre Royal Darwar’, 1858: British amusements during the Indian Mutiny.] Seven items relating to the ‘Corps Dramatique’ of ‘Mrs. Comfit’: four handbills and three manuscript items, incl.2 poems and drawing of castigating Englishwoman. See Image.

Author: 
‘Theatre Royal Darwar’, ‘Opera Comique d’Arwar’, ‘Mrs. Comfit & Co’ [Dharwar, Bombay Presidency, India [now Dharwad, Karnataka]; Indian Mutiny; the Raj; East India Company; British India]
darwar
Publication details: 
Three of the eight items dated to 1858, and with the same date on one of the mounts; all from Dharwar, Bombay Presidency, India [now Dharwad, Karnataka].
£750.00
darwar

An interesting and evocative collection of ephemeral material, casting light on the social activities and entertainments of the British in India in the last months of the Indian Mutiny, also the year of the dissolution of the East India Company. No other record of this amateur ‘Corps Dramatique’, or of its conductor ‘Mrs. Comfit’, has been discovered.

[John Rich; theatre; Beggars' Opera] Signature with some unexplained text. See image.

Author: 
John Rich (1692–1761), important director and theatre manager in 18th-century London.
Rich
Publication details: 
No place or date.
£450.00
Rich

Paper, 18 x 4cm, laid down on paper, 15 x 24cm, grubby, Signature of John Rich with note and a title[?], as follows: Mrs Rich's Ground | Mr Linley | 5 Guineas for Fülling | Jn. Rich. No illumination from Google. John Rich's signature and autograph apparently hen's teeth. Perhaps Rich is best remembered for the success of John Gay's Beggar's Opera and the 'invention' of Pantomime..

[ Giulia Grisi, opera singer ] Bold Signature Giulia Grisi.

Author: 
Giulia Grisi (1811 – 1869), Italian opera singer.
GRISI
Publication details: 
No place or date.
£56.00
GRISI

Signature on slip of paper, c.11 x 2cm, with embossed coat of arms (crown on top), laid down on slightly larger card, sl. irregular, good condition. Docketed the late Madame Grisi. See image,

[ Eva Turner, Dino Borgioli, Sabine Kalter, Alfredo Tomasini, Opera Singers ] Signatures on printed advertisement/announcement extracted from a programme or magazine.

Author: 
Eva Turner, Dino Borgioli, Sabine Kalter, Alfredo Tomasini, Opera Singers
Publication details: 
Opera Season 1936-37
£32.00

Paper, 14 x 18cm, fold marks, small closed tears, sl wrinkled. The recto is headed International Celebrity Subscription Concerts [...] and announces Harold Holt presents a Grand Opera Programme naimg the above, adding At the piano - IVOR NEWTON On the verso there are circular heads of the above singers with their signatures. Only Eva Turner has added anything, Best wishes.

[Sir Edward German, composer.] Autograph Signature ('Edward German :') to secretarial letter to Mrs Russell, apologising for not writing 'personally'.

Author: 
Sir Edward German (1862-1936), composer of incidental music and comic opera, best remembered for 'Merrie England'
Publication details: 
5 January 1928. On letterhead of 5 Biddulph Road, Elgin Avenue, W.9.
£25.00

1p, 12mo. In good condition, lightly aged. Folded once. Only the salutation ('Dear Mrs. Russell,') and the valediction ('Yours very sincerely | Edward German :' are in German's hand; the rest is by a secretary. He writes that he would 'have liked to write you [sic] personally, but it is a little more than I can manage at present'. Nevertheless he assures her that he is 'most grateful' for her 'very kind message'.

[Jenny Lind, the 'Swedish Nightingale', opera singer.] Autograph Letter in third person, as 'Mme. Goldschmidt', thanking Lady Cullum for flowers 'which certainly do “enliven” her drawing room at the Hotel'.

Author: 
Jenny Lind [Johanna Maria Lind], 'the Swedish Nightingale] (1820-1887), opera singer, wife of Otto Goldschmidt [Lady Ann Cullum (1807-1875), wife of Sir Thomas Gery Cullum (1777-1855) of Hardwick]
Publication details: 
'Bury St. Edmunds. | Royal Hotel. | Thusday. April 6th. [no year]'.
£200.00

3pp, 12mo. Bifolium. In good condition, lightly aged, with thin strip of paper from mount adhering to blank reverse of second leaf, one corner of which has been slightly damaged by the opening of the wafer. Folded twice. The letter begins: 'Mme. Goldschmidt presents her best Compliments to Lady Cullum and begs to express her sincere thanks for the most beautiful flowers she received this morning from Lady Cullum and which certainly do “enliven” her drawing room at the Hotel'.

[Filippo Marchetti, composer, and Pasquale Villari, historian.] Marchetti's Autograph Signature ('F Marchetti') with a few bars in autograph from the prelude of 'Ruy Blas'. On same leaf as an Autograph quotation, signed 'Pasquale Villari'.

Author: 
Filippo Marchetti (1831-1902), Italian composer of the opera 'Ruy Blas'; Pasquale Villari (1827-1917), Italian historian, politician and Dante scholar
Publication details: 
Marchetti's autograph on letterhead of the R. Accademia di S. Cecilia ('Liceo Musicale'). Rome, 14 September 1892. Villari's autograph on reverse of leaf, dated from Florence, 2 November 1892.
£350.00

1p, 12mo. Leaf of lightly-browned and creased aged paper, with closed tears to one edge. The two men are clearly writing in response to requests for autographs. Marchetti has written out four bars – slightly affected at end by closed tear – from what he states is 'Ruy Blas Preludio'. Beneath this he signs, in a firm attractive hand, 'F Marchetti'. At the head he dates: 'Roma 14 9bre 92'.

'Decima Moore' [Lilian Decima, Lady Moore-Guggisberg], soprano singer and actress with the D'Oyly Carte Opera Company, suffragist.] Autograph Letter Signed ('Decima Moore') to 'Mrs. Horton', regretting that she cannot provide an introduction.

Author: 
'Decima Moore' [Lilian Decima, Lady Moore-Guggisberg] (1871-1964), soprano singer and actress with the D'Oyly Carte Opera Company, suffragist [Gilbert and Sullivan]
Publication details: 
Undated; on letterhead of the Prince of Wales Theatre, Coventry Street [London].
£80.00

2pp, 12mo. Bifolium. Aged and grubby; folded several times. Reads: 'I am sorry to say I do not know Mr Alexander or would have been very pleased to give your friend an introduction to him. | Hoping you are well – with kind regards. | Yours sincerely | Decima Moore'.

[Charlotte Dolby [Charlotte Helen Sainton-Dolby], celebrated English contralto singer.] Autograph Letter Signed ('Charlotte H Dolby') giving a list of four pieces she will be 'happy to sing' for the recipient.

Author: 
Charlotte Dolby [Charlotte Helen Sainton-Dolby] (1821-1885) (1821-1885), celebrated English contralto singer, singing teacher and composer
Publication details: 
'Scarbro' [i.e. Scarborough, Yorkshire]. 'Thursday' [no date]
£38.00

2pp, 12mo. Bifolium. In good condition, lightly aged. Folded twice. She writes that she will be 'happy to sing the following songs on the 16th inst', and lists pieces by Meyerbeer, Linley and Mendelsohn, as well as 'Scotch song “Bonnie Dundee”'. In a postscript she writes: 'After tomorrow may I trouble you to address me at Dilstone [i.e. Dilston, Northumberland]'. Endorsed on second leaf: 'Sans date | Miss Charlotte H. Dolby | Will be happy to sing the within mentioned songs &c'.

[Dame Margot Fonteyn, ballerina.] Typed Letter Signed to 'Mr. Duncan' [the bookseller Barry Duncan], regarding a playbill.

Author: 
Dame Margot Fonteyn [stage name of Margaret Evelyn Hookham, later de Arias] (1919-1991), ballerina [Barry Duncan (1909-1985), theatre historian and bookseller]
Publication details: 
On letterhead of the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, London. 11 January 1947.
£40.00

1p, 12mo. In good condition, lightly aged. She sends her thanks for 'the playbill': 'You know already how much I liked it, as I remember admiring it when I was in the shop.' She will 'value it highly' and will thank him personally: 'you may be sure I shall be looking in again one of these days'.

[ Mary Davies; mezzo-soprano ] Autograph Note Signed "Mary Davis" to "Madame Frickenhaus", pianist

Author: 
Mary Davies [(1855–1930), Welsh mezzo-soprano
Publication details: 
[Headed] 208 Euston Road, NW, 19 Dec. 1881.
£50.00

Two pages, 12mo, bifolium, fold mark, good condion, large handwriting. "Your song has come to hand. I am sory to say that it does not suit me. The words are beautiful but there is no story in it and that is almost necessary for a Ballad. [..."

[Dame Eva Turner, dramatic soprano.] Typed Letter Signed ('Eva Turner.') to Constance Evans, whose claim that she was her 'earliest private accompanist' she accepts, with reminiscences.

Author: 
Dame Eva Turner (1892-1990), English dramatic soprano [Constance Evans of Darlington, piano accompanist]
Publication details: 
26 Palace Court, London, W2. 6 April 1962.
£100.00

1p, 4to. In fair condition, lightly aged and worn, with the top part of the blank reverse pasted onto a slip of paper cut from an album. Adressed to 'Miss Constance M. Evans, | Raventhorpe, | Carmel Road N., | Darlington.' She begins by stating that Evans's letter has been forwarded to her by Julian Herbage.

[ Eva Turner, soprano ] Substantial Typed letter Signed "Eva Turner" to a "David Bowman" on various matters including her views on biography.

Author: 
Dame Eva Turner, "dramatic soprano"
Publication details: 
[Headed, "Eva Turner"] 26 Palace Court, London, W2 4HZ, 12 Dec. 1977
£80.00

One page, cr. 8vo, fold marks, very good condition. She appreciates his thoughtfulnes concerning her personal life, and is sympathetic about his personal life. She goes on: "I think there are enough biographies and autobiographies on the market without my inflicting more and so I have decided against it! Notwithstanding I am very touched by all your kind observances regarding myself." She then discusses her promising students, Linda Esther Gray [later her biographer] and Stuart Harling. She appreciates his remembering her Pekingese which had died after a long life and not been replaced.

[Luigi Agnesi [Louis Ferdinand Leopold Agniez], Belgian operatic bass-baritone.] Autograph Letter Signed ('Agnesi'), in French, regarding charitable work, and declaring, 'Les malheureux sont mes Amis'.

Author: 
Luigi Agnesi [Louis Ferdinand Leopold Agniez] (1833-1875), Belgian operatic bass-baritone, conductor and composer who performed in London at the Royal Opera House and Theatre Royal, Drury Lane
Publication details: 
London. September 1874.
£45.00

1p, 12mo. In good condition, on lightly-aged paper, folded twice. An elegantly-expressed sentiment: 'Mademoiselle, | Les malheureux sont mes Amis, et l'oeuvre à la quelle vous vous interressez à [sic] toutes mes sympathies; malheureusement je suis si peu de choses que je ne puis vous témoigner que mon bon vouloir a l'oeuvre à la quelle vous vous interressez [sic]si vivement.'

[Joan Hammond, Australian operatic soprano and champion golfer.] Autograph Letter Signed ('Joan') to 'Derek', regarding her heart attack, recuperation and retirement.

Author: 
Joan Hammond [Dame Joan Hilda Hood Hammond] (1912-1996), Australian operatic soprano and champion golfer
Publication details: 
On letterhead of The Old Cottage, Egypt, Farnham Common, Bucks. 15 October 1965.
£120.00

2pp, 12mo. In good condition, lightly aged, with lightly-rusted indentation from a paperclip. She thanks him for the 'lovely form of intrusion your letter proved to be - as though you could ever intrude!' She wonders whether, if she had been 'a more patient patient' the 'second attack' might not have happened' (a heart attack had forced her to retire from the stage), 'but I was never one for sitting and doing nothing'. She is 'trying very hard now as I have learnt my lesson'. She has 'so many interests that retirement is beginning to become a pleasure, thank heavens'.

[Charlotte Helen Sainton-Dolby, English contralto.] Autograph Note Signed ('Charlotte H Sainton Dolby'), complying with a request [for an autograph].

Author: 
Charlotte Helen Sainton-Dolby (1821-1885), English contralto, singing teacher and composer
Publication details: 
On letterhead of 71 Gloucester Place, Hyde Park, W. [London] No date.
£25.00

1p, 12mo. In good condition, lightly aged, with small trace of glue from mount at foot. Folded twice. Reads: 'Dear Madam | I have much pleasure in complying with your request & beg to remain | Yours faithfully | Charlotte H Sainton Dolby'. See her entry in the Oxford DNB.

[John Christie, founder of the Glyndebourne Festival.] Autograph Letter Signed I'John Christie.')

Author: 
John Christie (1882-1962), founder in 1934 of the Glyndebourne Opera House and the Glyndebourne Festival Opera, Lewes, Sussex
Publication details: 
On letterhead, Glyndebourne, Lewes [Sussex]. 22 March 1956.
£90.00

1p., 12mo. In envelope addressed to Giles at Moulsecoombe, Brighton. In good condition, lightly aged. He has looked for Giles's letter 'but cannot – yet – find it. Sorry. I vaguely remember it.' He will find Giles '2 tickets for a Dress Rehearsal if you will let me know which one.' Options of six operas, on six different days are listed, including Figaro and Giovanni.

[ Aulikki Rautawaara, Finnish soprano. ] Christmas card with Autograph Note Signed ('Deine Aulikki') in German.

Author: 
Aulikki Rautawaara [ Terttu Aulikki Rautawaara ] (1906-1990), Finnish soprano, noted for her interpretation of Edvard Grieg and Jean Sibelius
Publication details: 
No place or date.
£32.00

10 x 11.5 cm. In good condition, lightly aged. Christmas card with original engraving, signed in pencil, on cover. Addressed to the recipient 'and Colin', the message reads: 'Viele liee Grüsse von Deine Aulikki'.

[ Ljuba Welitsch, Bulgarian operatic soprano. ] Christmas card with Autograph Note Signed ('Ljuba' and 'Ljuba and Karl') in English and German.

Author: 
Ljuba Welitsch [ Lyuba Welitsch ] (1913-1996), Bulgarian operatic soprano, who settled in Austria, noted for her performance in the 'Salome' of Peter Brooke
Publication details: 
Without place or date [ between 1956 and 1969 ].
£32.00

14 x 11.5 cm Christmas card, with illustration of cherubs singing and message in German on cover. In good condition, lightly aged and worn. The message, written in red ink, reads: 'Love and all best wishes for Christmas and New Year, your| Ljuba and Karl' Eleven-word postscript in German, signed 'Ljuba'. Regarding 'Karl', see Welitsch's obituary in the New York Times (6 September 1996): 'In 1956, when she was 43, Miss Welitsch caused a stir in Vienna when she married Karl Schmalvogel, a 29-year-old traffic policeman who had assisted her after an accident a year earlier.

[ Marie Marimon, French soprano opera singer. ] Autograph Signature on monogrammed letterhead.

Author: 
Marie Marimon (1835-1923), French soprano opera singer who also sang in England at Drury Lane, Covent Garden and elsewhere
Publication details: 
No place [ London ]. 'Mardi, 4 Juin 1872.'
£50.00

A nice piece of Victorian opera ephemera. On a 10 x 6.5 cm piece of laid paper, with Marimon's monogram of intertwining Ms in plum-coloured ink at head, and with a border in the same colour. In good condition, lightly aged, and laid down on a piece of cream paper. Signed 'Marie Marimon' a third of the way down the page, and with the date at the head: 'Mardi, 4 Juin 1872.' Marimon made her English debut at Drury Lane in 1871, and was performing at the Lyceum as late as 1881.

[ 'Toti Dal Monte' [ Antonietta Meneghel ], celebrated Italian operatic soprano. ] Autograph signature.

Author: 
'Toti Dal Monte' [ stage name of Antonietta Meneghel ] (1893-1975), celebrated Italian operatic soprano, a noted Cio-cio-san in Puccini's Madame Butterfly
Publication details: 
No place. Dated 1956.
£35.00

On 13.5 x 18 cm leaf of cream paper, torn from an autograph album. Good firm signature, rising upwards, and reding 'Toti Dal Monte | 1956'. Nothing else written on either side of the leaf.

[ 'Elizabeth Parkina' [ Elizabeth Parkinson ], American soprano. ] Two Autograph Letters Signed (both 'Elizabeth Parkina') to 'Mr. Forsyth' [ Neil Forsyth, General Manager, Royal Opera House, Covent Garden ], one regarding her name on the programme..

Author: 
Elizabeth Parkina [ real name Elizabeth Parkinson ] (1878-1922), American soprano [ Neil Forsyth, General Manager, Royal Opera House, Covent Garden ]
Publication details: 
Neither letter is dated. One (the earlier, circa 1905?) is addressed from Villa St Etienne, Allée Hennon, Arcachon. The other [ 1906 ] is on letterhead of 51 Bedford Court Mansions, London, W.C.
£50.00

'Elizabeth Parkina' studied under Mathilde Marchesi in Paris and made her debut in 1902 at the Opéra-Comique of Paris in ‘Lakmé’. At Covent Garden between 1904 and 1907, she appeared as Musetta in ‘La Bohème’ and Siebel in ‘Faust’, and stood in for prima donna Nellie Melba as Marguerite in ‘Faust’. She toured Australia in 1905 and retired from the stage around 1907. She died after long illness. ONE: Villa St Etienne, Allée Hennon, Arcachon. 2pp., 12mo. In fair condition, lightly aged, with blue pencil line by Forsyth across first page.

H. B. Irving [ Harry Brodribb Irving ], actor-manager and criminologist. ] Autograph Letter Signed ('H B Irving') to 'Mr Forsyth [ Neil Forsyth, General Manager, Royal Opera House, Covent Garden ]

Author: 
H. B. Irving [ Harry Brodribb Irving ] (1870-1919), actor-manager and criminologist; the eldest son of Sir Henry Irving [ Neil Forsyth, General Manager, Royal Opera House, Covent Garden ]
Publication details: 
On letterhead of 'Mr. H. B. Irving & Co. ('Under the Direction of Messrs. Nixon & Zimmerman'). 29 June 1906.
£50.00

2pp., 12mo. In good condition, lightly aged, with light pencil line by Forsyth through first page. She hopes that she is not 'asking too much' in requesting 'two stalls or a box for the premiere of “Eugene Oneghin” - Friday evening'. If 'not impossible', he would like 'a lunch to be present that night. He asks to be sent word to the Garrick Club.

[ 'Ben Greet' [ Sir Philip Barling Greet ], Shakespearean impressario and 'an ardent opera goer'. ] Two Autograph Letters Signed (both 'Ben Greet') to Neil Forsyth, Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, requesting boxes and commenting on productions.

Author: 
'Ben Greet' [ Sir Philip Barling Greet ] (1857-1936), Shakespearean actor, director, impresario, manager of Old Vic Theatre, London [ Neil Forsyth, General Manager, Royal Opera House, Covent Garden ]
Publication details: 
One from 20 Buckingham Street WC [ London ], on letterhead of 'The Ben Greet Players', 14 July [no year]. The other from 2 The Terrace, Camden Square. 17 August [no year].
£80.00

ONE: On letterhead of 'The Ben Greet Company', addressed from 20 Buckingham Street, WC [ London ]. 14 July [ no year ]. 2pp., 8vo. In fair condition, aged and worn, with the first page carrying pencil scorings and a short note by Forsyth. The first paragraph reads: 'If business will permit can I have one of the small boxes for Monday night. You generally let me have something during the Season. I've been a very regular Gallery & Amphitheatre and stallite this season.' He continues: 'You've got a genius in Frau , & you sd keep her. Everyone is raving about her.?>

[ Whitelaw Reid, American Ambassador to the United Kingdom. ] Typed Letter Signed to Col. H. V. Higgins of the Grand Opera Syndicate, Covent Garden, comparing his opera box unfavourably with the one he had in Paris.

Author: 
Whitelaw Reid (1837-1912), proprietor of the New York Tribune, historian, Republican nominee for Vice President of the United States in the 1892 election, American Ambassador to the United Kingdom
Publication details: 
On letterhead of Dorchester House, Park Lane, W. [ London ] 5 September 1905.
£150.00

1p., 12mo. In fair condition, lightly aged. He is sending a copy of a note his secretary has 'just sent about an opera box for the next season. | The box we were able to get this year contrasted so poorly with my old "loge entre les colonnes" in Paris that I am afraid my personal tastes would be about as well satisfied without one!' He feels sure that 'with this long notice and with a friendly word' from Higgins, 'something better can be done'. One of the grandest residences in London, Dorchester House was rented by Reid as the American Embassy from 1905.

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