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"C" (Patience No. 1) Company in Bristol

The Bristol Mercury and Daily Post (Bristol, England), Wednesday, April 2, 1884; Issue 11196.


Last evening, an operatic company, formed under the auspices of that experienced and always efficient entrepreneur Mr. D'Oyly Carte, appeared at this house for the second of a six nights' engagement. Since the opera was last performed in Bristol many changes have been made in the personnel of the company. This, of course, has necessitated the reposing of several of the principal characters in new hands, a result from which the representation of plays so often suffers. It cannot be said that such has been the case in the present instance, for regarded as a whole we do not think that "Patience" has ever been more efficiently rendered in Bristol.

The tile role is filled by Miss Josephine Findlay, than whom we have not had here a better or more satisfying representative of the character. She is young, pretty, has a fresh and well cultivated voice, acts naively, and sings well. She has produced a marked impression upon the audience, who have applauded her heartily at every point and encored her more striking numbers. As Lady Jane, Miss Elsie Cameron has to play up against the favourable impression produced by Miss Edwards in the part, but she succeeds admirably, doing much justice to both singing and acting. The beautiful aria, "Silvered is the raven hair," is given by her with a tenderness and art power which evokes vociferous redemands. The Misses Rosa Husk, Blanche Symonds, and Mina Rowley also prove excellent representatives of the Ladies Angela, Saphir, and Ella.

The male character, which may be said to form the central figure of the opera, is Reginald Bunthorne, and we confess that with a memory of Mr. George Thorne acting the part, we were not without doubt as to the success of the new cast. We were well aware that Mr. Wilfred E. Shine (who now fills the role) is a member of an acting family of considerable reputation, but we anticipated some disappointment. That disappointed we were, we confess, but it was in a most agreeable direction. The character is, of course, very markedly drawn by the author, so that every actor who fills it would have to shape his performance pretty much upon the same lines, but Mr. Shine had obtained such a thorough grasp of it that it really seemed at times as if Mr. Thorne was still filling it. He has a stronger singing voice, but his general conception of the part is as much like that to which we have been accustomed as anything well could be.

The character of Archibald Grosvenor is held by Mr. Walter Greyling. His impersonation may not be fully up to Mr. Arthur Rousbey's, but it is a very good performance. He looks the part admirably, and has a nice voice. He was encored in all the most striking parts of the music. Mr. Byron Browne's Colonel Calverley is as excellent and forcible as ever, and he too, was encored last night in all his songs.

The chorus is both large and good, the voices being fresh and tuneful and the orchestration — always a matter of importance with Mr. [sic] Sullivan's operas — is excellent. It only remains to be said that the mounting of the piece is quite up to that of any previous representation, and that the ensemble leaves little if anything to desire.

The Era (London, England), Saturday, April 5, 1884; Issue 2376.



NEW THEATRE ROYAL. — Managers, Messrs. George and James Macready Chute. — Messrs. Gilbert and Sullivan's popular opera Patience has probably never been presented more completely than during the present engagement at the above house.

As a rule, a great difficulty encounters the general public in disassociating themselves from a popular "original," but in the case of the opera now playing at the above house, it is a matter of congratulation that the audience has generally freely recognised one of the most complete casts which has yet been placed before the British public. Miss Elsie Cameron is Lady Jane; Miss Josephine Findlay, Patience; Mr. Wilfred E. Shine, Bunthorne; Mr. Walter Greyling, Grosvenor; Mr. B. Browne, the Colonel; and Miss Rosa Husk, the Lady Angela.

The mounting was admirable, and although the orchestra seemed a little faulty, the present representation of the opera has proved a most thoroughly acceptable one, and certainly one most creditable to the management.

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