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The Listener's Column

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I have always been quite a suceess as a prophet. It is true, I have' usually confined my prophecies to events tliat had airead y taken place, but now and then Idig into tlie future and occasionally Lave the pleasure of learning with time that I have hit the nail on the head. I am going to prophesy this morning a bit. just to keep my hand in, as it were, and I íeel sure that my statements will be borne out by circumstances. It all has to do with the Calve concert of this evening, the third of the Festival series. But without further words, here it is. I venture tó say that seyenty-flve per cent, of the persons who altend tonighfs musical event will leave the University Hall disappointed in Calve. The reason is not f ar to seek. In the flrst place, the per cent. of persons I mention have oever heard the great singer, and they have built their expectations upon what they have heard and read of her as a grand opera prima donna. They know nothing óf her as a concert performer. Her ceputation has been made in opera, in the assuming of a singing character, if I may be permitted so outlandish a phrase. Tliose persons will attend the concert tonight sure in thimselves, that they are to hear the greatest woman in the worldIf they do carry that idea to University hall, they will be disappointed. There is as much diiïerence between a concert singer and a grand opera prima donna as there is between Hamlet and a cake walk. Calve is just as great au actress as she is a singer, and as an actress equally as a singer lias she won her great reputation. But tonight you will not see her the woman of the stage. You will simply hear her in one or two numbers. The other half of her will not be there. Her fame has been won behind the foot-lights, surrounded by glare and wonderful scenery, and all the tricks to apall the senses and transport an audience from the world of reality to the world of dreams and the ideal. The stage is Calve's home, not the concert platform. It was just the other way with Jennie Lind. ihe was no actress. She was wholly, and aU in all, a concert singer. Calve is greater than Jennie Lind. She has all the singing genius of that woman and the acting genius of a Fiske combined therewith. Besides, Barnum only paid Lind $1,000 a night. Abbey Shoeffel and Grau pay the French woman (they say) 5)1,800 a night. Po you see she is a gjeater artist in every way. But you will not see her tonight as the great actress, the woman, who, as Carmen, smokes a cigarette, sets the ministers a-talking and the town agog. You will see simply a magnificent woman. You will hear that woman sing an aria from Carmen, but you will neither see nor hear Carmen herself. For Calve is Carmen in the world behind the foot-lights. So do not judge her as an artist by what you hear from her tonight. H would be unjust to her and to yourselves. Would you judge the genius of a Booth by hearing him read the great soliloquy from Hamlet in a bathrobeV 1 don't think you would.


Old News
Ann Arbor Democrat