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Figure Bertha Farner SOPRANO Management: WOLFSOHN MUSICAL BUREAU 250 West 57th Street, New York City MISS BERTHA FARNER Soprano BERTHA FARNER is a typical young American woman of modest demeanor, exceptional personal charm and with unusual gifts as an artist. She inherits her voice and artistic ability from her father and her father's mother, both of whom were cultivated vocalists, although neither ever sang professionally. Miss Farner's personality is of a nature so gracious and alluring that she is able to win her audience even before she sings. At an early age she received instruction on the piano, but soon discovered that she possessed a voice of unusual quality, susceptible of the highest cultivation. Her friends predicted even at this time a great future for her vocally. Her natural art has been amplified by intensive training both in this country and abroad, among her teachers being numbered Jean de Reszke, Elie Tegui of Paris, Shakespeare of London, Piccoli of Milan. Extensive concert and operatic experience in the United States and abroad has added to the completeness of her art. Miss Farner's personality is peculiarly adapted to the concert stage. In Europe she appeared in concert in Paris, London, Brussels, Cologne and other musical centers. She sang Manon before Massenet himself, who spoke of the sweet, persuasive voice. In her native land she has appeared before several hundred audiences. Last season she appeared in important engagements in joint recital with Edward Johnson of the Metropolitan Opera Company and as soloist with the Chicago, Minneapolis and Cleveland Symphony Orchestras, with the Schubert Club of St. Paul, the Iowa State Teachers' Association at Des Moines and numerous other important engagements. In former seasons, she appeared as guest artist with the San Carlo Grand Opera Company. Criticisms Bertha Farner, a prominent singer from Chicago, gave a recital at Aeolian Hall on the afternoon of October 27. With a voice of warm, luscious mezzo-soprano quality, of great volume and carrying power, Miss Farner combines a musical understanding far above the average and a personality of great charm. She sang a program of an interesting sort, beginning with Italian and French airs by Rameau, Scarlatti and Campra, and following these with a group of German songs from Bach, Brahms, Ries and Erich Wolff. There was also a group of delightful French songs most delightfully given—Berlioz, Massenet, Faure and Lagourgue, and the final group was in English—Spring, by Mortelmans; The Star Goddess, by Charles Henry; A June Morning, by Willeby; Harp of the Woodland, by Easthope Martin; My Lover is a Fisherman, by Strickland. In these various groups, Miss Farner had opportunity to display her extraordinary grasp of languages and of styles. She interpreted Bach's air, Mein gläubiges Herz, with a traditional restraint, matched only by the complete freedom of rendition of such things as the Brahms song, Die Mainacht, the charming lightness of Easthope Martin's lovely Harp of the Woodland, and the tender passion that flowed through all of her offerings, even those in lighter vein. This singer has much to offer that is not easy to describe. She possesses a sort of throbbing, living quality that pours out its artfeeling upon the audience in generous measure and assures her success. She makes her songs, gives them all there is in them and a little more. Any composer must benefit from such rendition, which enhances the musical setting without exaggeration or distortion and lends a dramatic, poetic quality to every bar that is as agreeable as it is unusual. Technically speaking, Miss Farner is perfectly equipped. Her articulation is clear and sharp, her phrasing musicianly and well-defined, and her vocal poise perfect. Her voice appears to be of wide range, probably of soprano range, though it has the warm tone quality of a mezzo, even, at moments, of contralto sonority, and its dynamic range is no less evident. Especially has she great force without hardness, and is able, too, to sustain a smooth pianissimo. A fine singer, who deserved fully the enthusiastic reception she received!— Musical Courier , November 6, 1924. Miss Bertha Farner, Soprano, was the soloist with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Frederick Stock, Conductor. She sang as her first number, Ave Maria, from The Cross of Fire, by Bruch. Her voice showed careful training, wide range and purity of tone. Her encore was a little French song in which one scarcely needed to know the words, so keen was her interpretation. In the second part of the concert Miss Farner sang another French song, Je Suis Encore Tout Etourdie, from Manon, by Massenet. Clear, unwavering, pure and voluminous came her voice, and it was with ease that she took the higher notes, swelling them forth as does a bird. She responded to an encore. She charmed her audience with her pleasing presence.— The Racine, (Wis.) Journal-News, October 14, 1924. Miss Bertha Farner, a soprano from Chicago, gave her first recital here in Aeolian Hall yesterday. This artist has sung in recitals and with orchestras in the middle west and in opera in Italy and France. She offered a program showing musicianly taste in selection. It ranged from seldom heard old Italian airs, including Rameau's Grand Air de Venus, through German and French songs and a group in English, which began with the Dutch Mortelman's lyric Spring. The singer's voice is of Mezzo range. Its quality is good and she uses it well. She showed knowledge of style and sang with taste.— The (N. Y.) Sun, October 28, 1924. Bertha Farner of Chicago made her local debut in a matinee of soprano songs at Aeolian Hall yesterday afternoon. A naturally rich voice, mature intelligence and interpretation marked her Italian airs and groups of German and French, headed by Bach's Mein gläubiges Herz and L'Absence of Berlioz. The sheer luxury of tone and range served well for Martin's Harp of the Woodland and others by Americans. To Lily Strickland's My Lover Is a Fisherman was added the quaintly florid Come and Trip It on recall.— The New York Times, October 28, 1924. Miss Bertha Farner gave a song recital at Aeolian Hall yesterday afternoon and made a favorable impression. Miss Farner disclosed a voice of good quality and charming style as well as interesting interpretation. Her list was diverting and included selection from German, French, Italian, English and American composers.— New York American , October 28, 1924.
|Topical Subject (LCSH)||Sopranos (Singers)|
|Personal Name Subject||Farner, Bertha|
|Digital Collection||Traveling Culture: Circuit Chautauqua in the Twentieth Century|
|Contributing Institution||University of Iowa. Libraries. Special Collections Dept.|
|Archival Collection||Redpath Chautauqua Collection|
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|Contact Information||Contact the Special Collections Dept. at The University of Iowa Libraries: http://www.lib.uiowa.edu/spec-coll/contact/index/|
|Number of Pages||4|
|Digitization Specifications||Scanned at 600 dpi, 32-bit color. Master image available in tiff format.|