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Full text of "Enrico Caruso; a biography"

M9AINSH&CO. 

LIMITED 
4. COLLEGE ST. TORONTO 



ENRICO CARUSO 



ENRICO CARUSO 



A BIOGRAPHY 



BY 



PIERRE V. R. KEY 



IN COLLABORATION WITH BRUNO ZIRATO 



With illustrations 




BOSTON 

LITTLE, BROWN, AND COMPANY 
1922 




Jfyrigkt, 1922, 
BY LITTLE, BROWN, AND COMPANY. 



All rights reserved 
Published October, 1922 



PRINTED IN THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA 



HIS GREAT PUBLIC 



PREFACE 

THE purpose of this book is to present a portrai- 
ture of Enrico Caruso and to set down essential facts 
touching his career and private life which belong 
properly in a biography. It is doubtful if any other 
music artist attained so widespread a popularity ; 
on the side of interpretative art he has been accorded, 
almost unanimously, a supreme place. In an age 
wherein personalities are not few, Enrico Caruso 
appears in an outstanding light ; he was one whose 
name and photograph were instantly identified and 
recognized wherever civilization prevailed. 

To secure and detail facts, and to permit the in- 
dividuality of the man to reveal itself as it was, have 
been the aim of author and collaborator. Neither 
time nor effort was spared to obtain from every 
authoritative source possible information which it 
was felt should have representation in this volume. 
Members of the Caruso family, intimate friends, per- 
sons associated with the singer in his professional 
activities have assisted to make the work as com- 
plete as possible. This aid came from the United 
States, Italy, England, France, Germany, Mexico, 
Cuba, and South America. 

In a letter written to the author, on November 
15, 1921, Mrs. Enrico Caruso stated, "It is most 



viii PREFACE 

gratifying to me that you have consented to 
write the biography of my husband. Mr. Caruso 
told you so much of his life-story when you and he pre- 
pared that comprehensive series of articles two years 
ago. And, as you know, he had planned to collabo- 
rate with you in writing his biography for publica- 
tion as a book, a volume that would stand as a per- 
manent record of his career as an artist and a man. 

"I will, of course, give you full access to all the 
letters, papers, and other data which belonged to 
Mr. Caruso ; and I will assist you in every manner 
possible, for your book will be the only authentic 
biography. I am happy that Bruno Zirato is to 
assist you as collaborator." 

Giovanni Caruso, only living brother to the singer, 
wrote to the author in a letter dated November 20, 
1921, "I am sending the data you wanted, and will 
arrange to confer with you and Zirato as often as 
may be necessary, during my stay in America. Your 
book of Enrico will be the only book, the one he had 
told me he expected you and he would write to- 
gether." 

For all their deep interest, both Mrs. Caruso and 
Giovanni Caruso realized that the value of the biog- 
raphy would rest in its fidelity to fact. Enrico 
Caruso was human ; he therefore had shortcomings 
as well as virtues. To disclose them as they existed 
has been the constant purpose of the author. He 
has sought, as far as possible, to let experiences tell 
the story. 

To the reader it must be apparent that integrity 
and industry were no less responsible for the achieve- 



PREFACE ix 

ments of Enrico Caruso than his vocal and artistic 
gifts. The development of the man was such as to 
be little short of amazing ; one has only to read to 
appreciate the growth and unfolding of his finer 
qualities, which carried him from the beginning (a 
youth of humble parentage, having the slenderest 
of early opportunities) to an ultimate position of 
justly earned admiration and respect. 

Despite the generous physical proportions of this 
volume, it has not been possible to use everything 
available for publication. Much that was at hand 
could not be incorporated in its pages ; excellent 
and interesting incidents if non-essential from a 
biographically historic standpoint were omitted 
with regret. 

The gathering and assembling of the necessary 
material represents a huge and exacting task. No 
one else was so well fitted for it as Bruno Zirato, 
secretary to Enrico Caruso throughout the closing 
years of his life ; and Zirato's constant and helpful 
suggestions to the author during the writing of the 
text form a large part in its accomplishment. 

Grateful acknowledgment by author and collab- 
orator is made to the following persons, who coop- 
erated in supplying information without which 
the book as it stands could not have been made : 

Gabriel Astruc, Vittorio Arimondi, Pasquale Ama- 
to, Frances Alda, Camillo Antona-Traversi, A. F. 
Adams, Henry Bassano, Richard Barthelemy, Gio- 
vanni Bellezza, L. Barcellona, Elena Bianchini-Cap- 
pelli, Francesco Cilea, Francis C. Coppicus, Ricardo 
Cabrera, Richard S. Copley, Federico Candida, 



x PREFACE 

Roberto Ciappa, Feodor I. Chaliapin, Maria Cas- 
taldi-Caruso, Amedeo Canessa, Calvin G. Child, 
Martino Ceccanti, Gino Castro, Nicola Daspuro, 
Giuseppe de Luca, Menotti Delfino, Eugene H. Dan- 
ziger, Carlo d'Ormeville, Andres de Segurola, Carlo 
d'Amato, t Luis P. Figueras, Vittorio Ferraguti, 
Mario Fantini, Giulio Gatti-Casazza, Filippo Galante, 
William J. Guard, Fabian Garcia, Giuseppe Grassi, 
Giovanni Gatto, Cesare Gravina, Frank Garlichs, 
Otto Gutekunst, Giuseppe Jaricci, Giuseppe Lusardi, 
Michele Lauria, Enrico Lorello, Mario P. Mara- 
fioti, Leopoldo Mugnone, Antonio Mazzarella, Al- 
berto A. Macieira, Lionel Mapleson, Herman Mish- 
kin, Vincenzo Morichini, Carl E. Peck, Giacomo 
Puccini, Percy Pitt, Graziella Pareto, Angelo Rus- 
pini, Titta Ruffo, Antonio Scotti, Antonio Stella, 
Enrico Santini, Louise Saer, Sadie M. Strauss, Alfred 
F. Seligsberg, Pasquale Simonelli, Marziale Sisca, 
Arturo Scaramella, Joseph Tonello, Egisto Tromben, 
Enrico Usiglio, Henry Uterhart, Beatrice Vergine, 
Gianni and Gina Viafora, G. B. Vitelli, Edward 
Ziegler. The Municipalities of Genoa, Treviso, 
Trieste, Naples, Palermo, Livorno. The Metro- 
politan Opera Company of New York,. The Colon 
Theater of Buenos Aires. The San Carlo Theater 
of Naples. The Covent Garden of London. The 
Vittorio Emanuele Theater of Palermo. The Alia 
Scala Theater of Milano. The Cimarosa Theater 
of Caserta. 

P. V. R. K. 



CONTENTS 

CHAPTER PAGE 

I INTRODUCTORY . . ... . . i 

II YOUTH . 10 

III WORKING DAYS .20 

IV DEBUTS . . . . - . . . .41 
V REALIZATIONS 81 

VI CLIMBING 154 

VII ESTABLISHED 200 

VIII TRYING DAYS . 245 

IX A NEW PERIOD . . 275 

X GOLDEN DAYS ' . 305 

XI TWILIGHT 343 

XII THE END 388 

APPENDICES 

Compiled by Bruno Zirato . . . . 393 

INDEX 443 



ILLUSTRATIONS 

ENRICO CARUSO Frontispiece in Photogravure 

THE HOUSE WHERE CARUSO WAS BORN .... 10 

ANNA BALDINI-CARUSO, MOTHER OF ENRICO. . . 22 

ASSUNTA CARUSO, ONLY SISTER OF ENRICO ... 34 

MARCELLING CARUSO, FATHER OF ENRICO ... 34 

CARUSO AS TURIDDU, WITH ELENA BIANCHINI-CAPPELLI 

AS SANTUZZA, IN "CAVALLERIA RUSTICANA" ... 50 
A CARD TO DON ANTONIO MAZZARELLA, OF CASERTA, 
AT A PERIOD WHEN CARUSO WAS STRUGGLING FOR A 

LIVING 58 

REDUCED FACSIMILE OF THE PROGRAM OF THE TEATRO 
MUNICIPALS IN SALERNO FOR THE PERFORMANCE OF 
"LA GIOCONDA" GIVEN IN HONOR OF CARUSO, APRIL 

30, 1897 74 

ENRICO CARUSO IN 1896 78 

A PAGE OF CARUSO'S MANUSCRIPT 122 

How he studied the role of Samson 

CARUSO AS RODOLFO IN "LA BOHEME" 134 

CARUSO AS THE DUKE IN "RIGOLETTO" 158 

CARICATURES OF CARUSO AND UMBERTO GIORDANO, 
AUTHOR OF "FEDORA," MADE BY CARUSO, PARIS, 

MAY 5, 1905 . . . 194 

GARDEN AND REAR ENTRANCE TO CARUSO'S "VILLA 
BELLOSGUARDO," AT LASTRA A SIGNA, FLORENCE . 198 



xiv ILLUSTRATIONS 

CARICATURES OF CARUSO, DRAWN BY HIMSELF ON A 
TYPEWRITER 202 

PUCCINI COUNTS ON CARUSO'S COLLABORATION FOR THE 
SUCCESS OF THE LONDON PREMIERE OF HIS "MADAMA 
BUTTERFLY" 208 

THE AUTHOR OF "FEDORA" TO CARUSO AFTER THE PRE- 
MIERE AT THE METROPOLITAN OPERA HOUSE . . . 236 

AN APPRECIATION BY "Ciccio" TOSTI, AFTER HEARING 
HIS OWN "IDEALE," RECORDED BY CARUSO . . . 242 

MARBLE BAS-RELIEF, BY THE MASTER OF THE MARBLE 
MADONNAS, XV. CENTURY, IN THE CARUSO COL- 
LECTION 246 

EIGHTEENTH CENTURY GOLD WATCHES, ENAMELED AND 
JEWELED, IN THE CARUSO COLLECTION .... 250 

How MADAME REJANE APPRECIATED A CARUSO PER- 
FORMANCE 272 

ONE OF CARUSO'S LAST PEN-AND-INK CARICATURES . 276 

CARUSO'S PENCIL SKETCH OF LITTLE GLORIA WHEN SHE 
WAS NINE MONTHS OLD 276 

CARUSO AS DICK JOHNSON IN "THE GIRL OF THE GOLDEN 
WEST" 284 

CARUSO AS HE APPEARED IN "THE SPLENDID ROMANCE," 
A FILM MADE IN AMERICA BUT NEVER PRODUCED . 292 

CARUSO IN 1913, THE YEAR WHICH MARKED THE BEGIN- 
NING OF HIS ASCENDANCY 298 

CARUSO AS SAMSON IN "SAMSON ET DALILA" . . . 312 

A PAGE OF THE SCORE OF "SAMSON ET DALILA" COPIED 
BY CARUSO 316 

MRS. ENRICO CARUSO . 324 

CARUSO AS ELEAZAR IN "LA JUIVE" 346 

GLORIA 350 

A PAGE FROM SECCHI'S "LovE ME OR NOT," ILLUS- 
TRATING CARUSO'S ORIGINAL METHOD OF TEACHING 
HIMSELF HOW TO SlNG IN ENGLISH 37O 



ILLUSTRATIONS xv 

CARUSO AS CANIO IN "I PAGLIACCI" 376 

VOUCHER OF CHECK RECEIVED FROM THE METROPOLITAN 
OPERA HOUSE, FOR CARUSO'S LAST PERFORMANCE, 

"LA JUIVE," DEC. 24, 1920 384 

THE LAST PICTURE. TAKEN AT HOTEL VICTORIA, SOR- 
RENTO, ITALY, JULY, 1921 388 



ENRICO CARUSO 

CHAPTER ONE 

INTRODUCTORY 

LOOKING back to that particular Saturday, I can 
see now how virile a thing is hope ; how easily it 
may thrust reason aside as too assertive. I am not 
likely to forget either the date May 28, 1921 
or the hour one o'clock in the afternoon com- 
memorative in these pages of my last meeting with 
Enrico Caruso. 

He was seated in a room high above the rumble of 
New York streets, which is imaged still in the 
mind. His chair was drawn close to a slender- 
legged table topped with an oblong of thick glass. 
Without a coat, his vest partly unbuttoned, he was 
guiding stiffly with the fingers of his gloved right 
hand a pen. Through the south window shone the 
sun ; the spring air suggested approaching summer. 
On other such days had he been thus engrossed ; 
though with body and spirit less wasted. He had 
come, very slowly, back to the period of convales- 
cence known now to have been part of the danger 
period of his sickness. 

Traversing mentally the events which have 
followed since that day leaves a bewildered feeling 



2 ENRICO CARUSO 

of an opportunity neglected. So much might have 
been said in place of the inconsequential talk 
seemingly befitting the occasion. Others no doubt 
are conscious on their part of a similar omission. 
Perhaps it was just as well that no such special 
attitude of mind was allowed. 

As Edward Ziegler and I were admitted to the 
Caruso apartment in the Hotel Vanderbilt we 
caught sight of the tenor down the long 
hallway which led to the room where he worked. 
Bruno Zirato, Caruso's faithful secretary, was 
kneeling on the floor opposite the singer, who was 
dictating some instructions as he laboriously wielded 
his pen : the disposition of some final matters 
prior to the departure for the steamship Presidente 
Wilson. Only a few hours hovered before the voyage 
eastward from New York toward the land of his 
birth, which for two years he had not seen. 

There was no sense of impending tragedy in 
that walk along the hallway. It was more a moment 
of rejoicing that death had been beaten off ; that 
health, if by no means yet attained, lay at no great 
distance. Trustworthy physicians had approved 
the proposed journey. Well ! Anxious days almost 
past and gone. Danger may not have wholly 
withdrawn, but it seemed a danger shrunken and 
dwindled away to something too puny for a success- 
fully renewed attack. 

Some boxes and stripped walls indicated a 
change of abode for the Caruso household. Ex- 
pecting our arrival, Caruso had raised his head when 
Mario, one of his two valets, admitted Ziegler and 



INTRODUCTORY 3 

me. He smiled as we crossed the threshold of his 
workroom, and extended a greeting with partly 
lifted arm and a word. 

"Halloo! "he said. 

The speaking voice was subdued and lacking its 
accustomed sonority. For an instant, until he 
spoke again in slightly firmer tones and smiled with 
a trace of the old-time humor, a sudden oppres- 
sion held. Zirato rose and pulled out chairs, while 
the tenor continued with what developed to be a 
caricature of his secretary the last drawing he ever 
made in this country, and one of the last anywhere. 

All the while Zirato chattered on alternately 
in English and Italian and Caruso plied his 
pen and occasionally interjected a monosyllabic 
word. A fancied repressed nervousness in the sec- 
retary's manner was contradicted by his smiling 
countenance ; he too (as he has since admitted) 
felt buoyed by hopes which heartened so many 
others. 

I remember, though, how touched by illness was 
the singer's face. Beneath the loosened waistcoat 
the arched chest of previous days was no more ; 
the whole frame appeared shrunken, and the loss 
in weight very many pounds. Considering all he had 
undergone one marveled that he had survived at all. 

He still appeared, on that May afternoon, a very 
sick man ; but who would have sensed the outcome 
that lay only a few weeks off ? Such external 
evidences as were to be observed of the long fight 
with disease must gradually depart. Two months, 
three possibly, under the sun at Sorrento ; further 



4 ENRICO CARUSO 

rest in a climate which helps to heal such cases, 
and care. Even the gloved right hand conveyed 
none of the significance it should. I was aware, 
too, that the arm had been stricken by the pressure 
of lying upon it for days when Caruso had remained 
unconscious, holding to life by a shred of his tena- 
cious vitality. It had left the hand incapable of 
grasping with firmness any object ; so a glove was 
used to give support and purchase to the fingers. 

The mental process of comparing the physical 
Caruso of the moment with the Caruso of six months 
before had passed when Zirato finished making no- 
tations on the tags attached to the various keys he 
held. They fitted trunks containing the tenor's 
costumes, stored at the time in the Metropolitan 
Opera House ; and at Caruso's direction Zirato 
passed to assistant general manager Ziegler these 
keys, voicing the singer's desire for their safe keeping. 

What a series of pictures the thought of Caruso's 
costumes suggested ! Seventeen consecutive years 
of triumphs and the arrested eighteenth season. 
Would he don again any one of those costumes ? 
It was impossible to repress the unspoken question. 
I looked across at the figure at the desk, with drooped 
head crowned by thinning hair. Caruso was still 
making marks with his pen on the paper before him. 
Perhaps he also was thinking of some of his great 
nights. Underneath the table the tenor's legs 
their slenderness ill concealed by trousered coverings 
- could be seen stretched out in customary fashion 
when he sat thus, with ankles crossed. He looked 
up at that moment and put aside his pen. 



INTRODUCTORY 5 

There followed then some further commonplace 
conversation in which we all joined. Caruso gath- 
ered cheerfulness, possibly from some mysterious 
sources he himself did not know. He received with 
little exclamations of pleasure some messages from 
friends we had brought him, and leaning back in 
his chair looked at us out of wistful eyes. In them 
I caught now and again the distant expression 
which comes when one projects the mind through 
great spaces ; and I have no doubt that at these 
moments he had anticipated by a fortnight the 
voyage of the Presidente Wilson, and was already in 
Sorrento across the bay from his beloved Naples 
and was perhaps getting some of the good of it. 

The desire to linger was put resolutely away and 
I rose to leave ; there was a realization of what a 
tax upon a none too abundant strength would be 
the experiences at sailing time. 

I wish I might know what thought Caruso held 
as we clasped hands in what I did not suspect was 
the long farewell. Hope virile Hope continued 
on guard even at that precious instant. 

At the end of the passageway, preparatory to 
stepping into the hotel corridor, I turned ; and 
Caruso lifted slightly his gloved hand. He was 
still seated before the slender-legged table, gazing 
down the hallway, as I drew the door shut after me. 

Five hours later found the singer on the deck of 
his ship, Mrs. Caruso standing by his side, with 
Baby Gloria seated on the rail between them. 
A throng of people swarmed the dock ; many among 



6 ENRICO CARUSO 

those faithful hundreds had remained patiently wait- 
ing for more than half the day. They waved hands 
and hats and handkerchiefs as the Presidente Wilson 
moved away from her slip. It was America's uncon- 
scious farewell to its best loved singer. 

II 

An estimate of a great man may come in his life- 
time, but only when he is gone forever is the true 
evaluation reached. There seemed at Enrico Caruso's 
death an immediate realization of a world loss, due 
to the affection felt for him. Indeed, it was from the 
pleasure his singing gave that Caruso became in 
a way the property of the people. He always said 
that he belonged to the public ; and what a vast 
public it was ! But the sadness which touched so 
many those August days of 1921 must have dulled 
the perceptions. Not until months later did there 
arise a full consciousness of the gap he has left. 

Through "the machine" (as he termed the pho- 
nograph) he was available to multitudes who could 
by no other means feel the spell of his voice and art. 
It seems a fitting medium, now, to help keep our 
memory of him fresh : we have only to close our 
eyes listening to his reproduced singing to have 
him almost with us. 

Preparing this volume was not easy ; Caruso had 
expected to share the work. He first spoke of it 
toward the end of numerous meetings we had, during 
which he supplied the material for a series of articles 
covering experiences in his life. As the story grew, 



INTRODUCTORY 7 

so did Caruso's interest warm to the idea of expanding 
and rewriting the whole into a book. He believed 
this should be leisurely done, with respect for facts. 
The undertaking, he knew, would be laborious : 
securing much data from the countries where he had 
appeared, then arranging this chronologically with 
other data. To select what we felt should go to 
make the text of some forty thousand words had 
been trying enough. The singer's appreciation of 
this deterred him from the more elaborate and 
painstaking effort ; yet he did not dismiss com- 
pletely the thought, for, now and again, at some 
unexpected moment, he would refer to it. 

No effort is necessary to picture him as he ap- 
peared the evening we finished the last of these articles. 
It was Caruso's 1920 name day, July 15. He sat in 
his workroom in a rented villa at Easthampton, 
Long Island, cutting strips of Manila paper to be 
made into huge envelopes. Such work he enjoyed, 
just as it pleased him to gather the accumulation of 
newspaper clippings and put them in these home- 
made receptacles. Afterward he would paste the 
cuttings, with meticulous care, in scrapbooks. Idle- 
ness he disliked ; rarely was he satisfied to confine 
himself to a single task if he could perform simul- 
taneously another. As he grew older he guarded 
carefully his time ; there were few waking hours 
he did not turn to profitable account. During his 
final years there was the almost constant com- 
panionship with Mrs. Caruso, and the eagerly seized 
playtime moments with Baby Gloria. 

Much that follows in these pages was jotted down 



8 ENRICO CARUSO 

when Mrs. Caruso was actually present, or near by. 
That first day, in the singer's Knickerbocker Hotel 
suite (February, 1920), automatically revisualizes 
itself: a wintry afternoon in New York, as dusk 
approached, with the narrator modeling on a clay 
bust of himself as Eleazar in " La Juive " ; Mrs. Caruso 
clicking a small typewriter in one corner of the room. 

These were moments for studying the man, his 
face, his figure, his habiliments, his inherent sim- 
plicity. He spoke always with a resonant enough 
tone, though it was seldom loud or suggestive of a 
singer, except to music experts aware of the signif- 
icance of a speaking voice concentrated where nose 
and forehead join. Caruso's speech was rarely 
hurried. Deliberation, of a sort which reflected 
thoroughness, attached to whatever he said and to 
nearly every movement he made. While seated he 
had a way of occasionally leaning forward ; massive 
from the waist up, his high-curved, barrel-like chest 
indicated its store of breathing space and power. 

On this February day Caruso was all but ready 
for the street ; he need only have exchanged his 
dark lounging robe for the customary sack coat. 
As usual, he was immaculate from head to shoes ; 
the singer particularized in such matters. Surveying 
one side of Eleazar's nose which had eluded his mod- 
eling skill, he half-shut his eyes as though preparing 
for some mental journey. Having diverted his atten- 
tion from the rebellious bit of clay, he sat with body 
relaxed, the stick he had been using protruding from 
the heavy fingers of his right hand. Directly he 
put it on the stand before him, to fit a cigarette into 



INTRODUCTORY 9 

a long holder. That done, he began puffing, his 
head tilted to one side, his shoulders showing square 
and wide and high under the loose folds of his gown. 

At that instant he appeared a Somebody. Author- 
ity which he had been acquiring gradually for years 
was in those days of his life so natural that in such 
a situation he seemed splendidly aloof. Even the 
Caruso voice was subservient to this authority, 
which made him the singer he could not have become 
with voice alone, though it were this rather special 
voice. 

When Caruso recalled his thoughts to his surround- 
ings that wintry afternoon, it was with a perceptible 
flexing of his body. Resuming work upon the im- 
perfect side of Eleazar's nose he began his narrative. 



CHAPTER TWO 

YOUTH 

ENRICO CARUSO was born in Naples, Italy, February 
27, 1873, on the first floor of a house at Number 7 
via San Giovannello agli Otto Calli. He was the 
eighteenth son. His parents were both born in 
Piedimonte d'Alife : Marcellino Caruso on March 
8, 1840, Anna Baldini on May 29, 1838. 

It is difficult to reconcile the foregoing dates, and 
no birth records are available to substantiate them. 
Caruso and his brother Giovanni speaking on 
different occasions were in agreement as to the 
ages of their father and mother ; each stated that 
there were twenty Caruso boys and one girl. 

None of the seventeen children had survived 
infancy, so, as Enrico thrived and approached his 
third year, a new happiness crept into the Caruso 
household. January 8, 1876, gave it a fresh impetus, 
when Giovanni was brought into the world ; but 
between him and Enrico another son had come 
"without the strength to live." Assunta, the only 
girl, followed Giovanni on August 10, 1882, the 
twenty-first Caruso child. She died June 2, 1915, 
adoring her brother Enrico who, apart from providing 
for her every comfort, had shown her a constant 
tenderness throughout her somewhat melancholy life. 

Anna Caruso had been too ill to nurse her Enrico. 
Signora Rosa Baretti, a woman of gentle birth living 



YOUTH ii 

in the same house, was the one who volunteered to 
save a life. In later years Caruso insisted that it 
was she who had put into him some of her own big- 
heartedness. 

When he was six, and the family moved to Number 
54 via San Cosmo e Damiano, Enrico was sent to 
a kindergarten, where he remained for two years. At 
the time his father had employment as a mechanic 
in the factory of a Signor Francesco Meuricoffre, 
being advanced, about 1881, to superintendent. 
In this year his employer gave him the use of a house 
in Sant' Anna alle Paludi, which belonged to the 
factory. So once again the Caruso family trans- 
ferred their belongings, to a more permanent 
abode ; they remained in it until Enrico Caruso 
reached manhood and began seriously his professional 
career. 

From this home, at the age of eight, the boy 
Enrico made his first acquaintance with a public 
school. No emphasis was put upon it in the narra- 
tive, although it is on record that he was required to 
wear a black cap circled with a blue band, a sort 
of insignia of this school. It is known too that he 
was industrious : he had an eagerness to learn, and 
even then he was a most considerate son. For his 
mother he showed his love in those practical ways not 
always displayed by children older : he was always 
ready to help her about the house, to do errands ; and 
often he hovered beside her bed when she fell ill, for, 
after the birth of Assunta, Mrs. Caruso never com- 
pletely regained her health. 

This devotion so intensified the bond between 



12 ENRICO CARUSO 

mother and son that there grew between them a 
deep and sympathetic understanding. " If you were 
to go into the neighborhood where we then lived," 
Caruso once said, " and ask of the old-time residents 
for Marcellino's son, none would know who was 
wanted ; but an inquiry for ' the treasure of Mar- 
cellino's family* would bring the instant answer: 
'Oh! you mean Enrico Caruso." 

The treasure of the family developed early re- 
sponsibilities affecting his mother's welfare. If not 
the actual head of the house, he served somewhat 
regularly in that capacity. Marcellino Caruso was 
fond of wine, and his not infrequent absence of 
evenings put upon Enrico, as eldest child, certain 
duties. 

It was inevitable that this companionship should 
have had its effect upon an impressionable nature. 
Giovanni Caruso spoke of it when he arrived in 
New York, from Naples, three months after the 
death of his brother. Mrs. Caruso has told of little 
things her husband unconsciously let drop which 
sketched intimate word pictures. 

An insistence for neatness and order and personal 
immaculateness, which possessed the tenor during 
later periods of his life, took root during his child- 
hood. There was no grumbling at having to carry 
upstairs pails of water for his bath ; every such 
opportunity was more than casually welcomed, - 
one appears to have been made on any pretext pos- 
sible. To keep himself fresh, his hair brushed, his 
clothes free from dust and spots these were 
matters the boy refused to neglect. And pride was 



YOUTH 13 

stirred in the mother when she gazed on her slender 
son and beheld his efforts which did her credit. 
For all his tenderness and devotion, however, the 
then future great artist was nevertheless a boy ; 
pretty much all boy, and at times a capricious one. 
Such manifestations became noticeable soon after 
he joined a school where boys were trained to sing 
in church choirs, which was conducted evenings 
at Number 33 via Postica Maddalena by Father 
Giuseppe Bronzetti. Giovanni Gatto, a sort of 
tutor and brother-in-law to Bronzetti (who died 
in 1893 with the devoted Caruso at his bedside), 
spoke in 1921 of incidents touching the little En- 
rico not long after he entered this school, at the 
age of six. Gatto one of a considerable num- 
ber of Italians who later owed many of their life 
comforts to the singer's bounty had Enrico in 
charge ; he called him Carusiello. He remembered 
well occasions when the youthful singer (a moment 
approaching for him to contribute a contralto solo 
in some music performance in the church where the 
sessions were held) was as difficult to manage as a 
prima donna displeased over some magnified trivial- 
ity. "He could be coaxed, by appealing to his 
gentler nature," explained Gatto, "but meeting his 
opposition with force seldom succeeded." One ex- 
ception he related found the boy's father playing 
a stern role, after Enrico, in a fit of temper, had torn 
from his coat two silver medals given him for singing 
excellence, and thrown them at the feet of Bronzetti. 
Administering a slap to Enrico his parent said, "Kneel 
down, and kiss Father Bronzetti's hands and feet!" 



I 4 ENRICO CARUSO 

and the boy did so. Thereupon he went almost 
immediately before the people who sat waiting, 
"to sing like an angel", declared Gatto. 

Caruso's first training in singing and music was 
received from Maestro Alessandro Fasanaro, who 
discovered his gifts of voice and expressiveness 
while teaching his pupil his school hymns. It was 
Fasanaro who encouraged the little dark-skinned 
lad ; Fasanaro who guided and stimulated him, and 
by studying his nature appealed to that side of it 
which could be so easily reached by one willing to 
exert the patience. A charge of five lire a month 
was paid, at the beginning, by Mrs. Marcellino 
Caruso for the privilege of having her son attend 
the school ; later, as he progressed, Bronzetti refused 
to take this money. Punctuality, neatness, and 
industry carried Enrico along. By hard work he 
finally became the principal soloist of the chorus. 

In Naples every church is called upon to par- 
ticipate in various ceremonies. One of them is a 
religious procession through the streets, which takes 
on importance through the joining of choirs from 
different churches. Father Bronzetti's choir was 
greatly sought during the period Enrico Caruso 
served as a member. Maestro Fasanaro, receiving 
fees from the churches which he visited with his 
charges, rewarded them with pennies. To his con- 
tralto soloist, who always attracted the most notice 
and favor by his singing, Fasanaro was more liberal ; 
for Carusiello there was generally several lire. With 
presents of candy, and sometimes a coin or two 
from admiring priests, the boy's earnings were 



YOUTH 15 

enough to make him happy. Yet he seldom kept 
them; "the hole in the Caruso pocket" had de- 
veloped even thus early. 

His position in the Bronzetti school appears to 
have been easily and completely taken. He craved 
companionship, and won it. He could, and did, 
invite the affection of his elders because of a char- 
acter they were unable to resist. He was playful 
and serious, in turn often unexpectedly so. Gatto 
tells of suddenly developed moods, when an appear- 
ance to sing impended, or had passed ; moods which 
presented the tranquil and lovable Carusiello with 
an unyielding front, a strange little person, stand- 
ing firmly upon a dignity that might have been the 
more amusing but for its disturbing consequences. 

On one occasion, returning to Naples from Amalfi, 
a neighboring town where the choir had gone to sing 
the Mercadante Mass in the Church of St. Andrea, 
Enrico declined obstinately to enter a coach with 
his mentor and his companions ; he would ride on the 
box with the coachman. And ride he did, until 
Gatto, observing that his charge had dropped fast 
asleep and fearing he might fall under the horses, 
transferred him bodily to the interior of the coach 
where he continued for the remainder of the journey 
to slumber placidly. 

These evening sessions at the Bronzetti school were 
fruitful to Carusiello in other respects than music. If 
Fasanaro and others of the small faculty did their 
share, there was one of a different calling who must 
not be overlooked, Giuseppe Spasiano, the penman- 
ship teacher. Quite early during the little pupil's 



16 ENRICO CARUSO 

attendance, Spasiano made his particular discovery : 
here was a boy with a natural facility to use either 
pen or pencil. No urging was needed to win his 
interest ; he took to drawing as happily as does the 
proverbial duck to water. And Spasiano suggested, 
and corrected, and dropped the necessary words to 
induce the substitution of pains for speed. Hunched 
over his desk Carusiello would forget temporarily, 
at least about music. As he acquired skill Spa- 
siano gave him manuscripts to copy, which skill 
highly developed in his mature years came to be 
of practical use. For it is a curious fact that Caruso 
learned the words and notes of his opera roles by 
copying them. He explained that the process as- 
sisted materially in impressing them on his memory. 

The influence of his instructors in this unpreten- 
tious institution appears to have affected the youth- 
ful Caruso very positively, in ways that held even 
after he passed actively out of it, about 1887. Before 
that he had been taught by Alfredo Campanelli and 
Domenico Amitrano, pianists and coaches in the 
Bronzetti school ; and by Giovanni Gatto's daughter, 
Amelia, an excellent musician and pianiste. There 
is some hint that she formed for Caruso a violent 
attachment, though he was much her junior ; but 
nothing ever came of it. With her the boy studied 
solfeggi, also solo compositions he was preparing for 
appearances outside the school. 

Eager in his pursuit of knowledge of music and 
singing, Caruso did not hesitate to accept whatever 
instruction offered, some of it from sources other than 
were available at Bronzetti's. He was only ten 



YOUTH 17 

when he met Ernesto Schirardi, a pianist, and Mae- 
stro Raffaele de Lutio ; little more than a baby, yet 
even then regularly employed for pay. He had 
bidden farewell to the public school, turning from 
teachers and comrades to the mechanical laboratory 
of Salvatore de Luca. His wages were two soldi 
an hour. Schirardi and de Lutio gave the small 
Caruso advice as to how he should use his voice, and 
together they taught him some arias from operas. 

During these days he revealed those industrious 
leanings which, years later, became almost an ob- 
session. He would come home, dead tired, from 
work ; then set himself to some musical task. First, 
however, he always made himself clean ; and he has 
related how, wishing to surprise his mother, he once 
bought with some treasured pennies a large sheet of 
stiff white paper, and cut it into a shirt bosom, which 
he tucked inside his coat. 

Developing ambition, and setting a higher value 
upon his services shortly after his eleventh birthday, 
Caruso suggested to his superior in the de Luca lab- 
oratory that he be given more money. A refusal 
was his answer. Was it possible ? Could it be that 
all his energy and faithfulness were to go unre- 
warded ? He stiffened his slender body, and with 
much seriousness resigned. He took himself then 
to the establishment of Giuseppe Palmieri, where iron 
drinking-fountains designed for public use were 
manufactured. One of these drinking fountains, 
which he had built, he always visited when, years 
afterward, he returned during his vacations to 
Naples. For two years he continued in helping to 



18 ENRICO CARUSO 

quench the people's thirst ; he admitted, however, 
that his heart and mind were all for music. More 
than one evening found him earning a lira or two 
for singing a serenade under the window of some 
Italian maid while her suitor stood near, looking 
upwards for some recognition of the vocal tribute 
he had paid to have bestowed. It was an avoca- 
tion that generally called forth remonstrances from 
Carusiello's Bronzetti instructors for taxing his 
precious voice. Occasionally the enterprising con- 
tralto would find some small engagement to partic- 
ipate at a social affair, or in some religious service ; 
he was born to be an artist and no day's labor at the 
shop left him lacking in either will or desire to accept 
with enthusiasm whatever fell in his way. 

If Marcellino Caruso manifested no great interest 
in his son's semi-professional progress, his wife sup- 
plied enough. But she was wise. The praise a 
sensitive boy needs to encourage him was never 
denied. She was generally present, when the oc- 
casion was one making it proper for her to appear ; 
afterward Enrico would go to her for his most cher- 
ished reward. These were proud moments for both 
mother and son. She no doubt saw farther into 
his future than others could have seen. The mater- 
nal instinct is a wonderous thing. Yet she was care- 
ful never to say too much ; hers seems to have been a 
far-seeing course, tempered with judicious restraint. 
So the boy, for all his small successes, acquired no 
egotistical poses. If they perhaps smoldered within 
him, they were lovingly smothered. The best, and 
that alone, was nurtured by the woman who had so 



YOUTH 19 

little yet so very much to give this son she had borne. 
The years were few allowed her for her task ; still, 
in some ways, they were enough. The memory of 
them, and of her, never slipped from the mind of the 
one who was thus fortunate in the molding his nature 
then received. Who can estimate what effect it 
had upon his future work ! Caruso undertook once 
to do so. But words would not come. 



CHAPTER THREE 

WORKING DAYS 

WHEN Caruso was nearly fifteen he was given his 
final opportunity for scholastic study. It came at 
private hands. Signorina Amelia Tibaldi Niola, 
sister of Doctor Raffaele Niola, who had attended 
Mrs. Marcellino Caruso during her illnesses, was 
Enrico's tutor. She was a cultivated woman, strict 
in the Italian speech. Her set purpose in one direc- 
tion was to break her pupil of his habit of a too free 
use of the Neapolitan dialect ; and it was this insist- 
ence, and the boy's carelessness one evening, that 
brought him a slap so hard as to end forever his 
school days. 

"The next night," said the tenor in relating the in- 
cident, "I took my books and left home as usual 
though not for my lesson. The railway yards 
were near. I played there each evening for two 
weeks, with my boy friends, until time to go home. 

"One day my father met Doctor Niola, who 
wished to know why I had stopped going to his 
sister. 

" ' He does go,' said my father, ' regularly/ 
'Then he must lose his way,' replied the doctor. 

"The following evening my father appeared while 
I was playing, and took me home for punishment I 



WORKING DAYS 21 

still remember. Soon after he put me at work with 
him at the Meuricoffre plant." 

Although official records disclose Caruso as having 
made his opera debut, when twenty-one, in "L'Amico 
Francesco", his first appearance actually took place 
nearly seven years before. It was at the Bronzetti 
school, in a work written by Maestri Campanelli and 
Fasanaro to secure funds for that institution. Con- 
siderable opposition was offered to the proposal to 
give an operatic piece in a church, but it was finally 
overcome. "I briganti nel giardino di don Raffaele" 
was the title of this opera. It was quasi-comic and 
not too difficult for the boys to sing. Carusiello, 
being the comedian of the school, was cast for the 
role of a bidello a sort of janitor don Tommaso. 
Peppino Villani, the solemnest youth of all, assumed 
the part of Lulu, a girl. The performance developed 
into a success ; but it did not foreshadow with accu- 
racy the future careers of the two young singers who 
carried off chief honors, though many who were pres- 
ent ventured predictions. Years afterward, Villani 
became one of Italy's most celebrated comedians, 
while Caruso was engaged oftenest with tragic roles. 

His time apportioned to work, singing, and play, 
Caruso followed each with an intensity character- 
istic. Indifference touched no part of him ; he seems 
almost never to have approached anything, whether 
out of necessity or choice, in half-hearted fashion. 
No regular contributions to the family exchequer, 
slender though it was, were exacted of him. His 
earnings were regarded as his own, and he spent 
them as he saw fit : for apparel, of which he was 






22 ENRICO CARUSO 

boyishly fond ; the theater ; and, since it was the 
custom for the Neapolitan boys of his acquaintance 
to play occasional games of chance, some of his 
money was lost to luckier playmates. 

Free-handed and sunny ; respecting with almost 
stiff-necked rigidity a promise or obligation, he was, 
for all his temperamental moments, sensitive to the 
good opinion of others. Shrinking from disputes, 
Caruso gave evidence all through his youth of that dis- 
position, so marked in maturity, to avoid the unpleas- 
ant. To make and retain friendships, to lend a help- 
ing hand when he could, or a word of cheer that 
was his nature ; and, if it was not a consciously 
courted popularity, he found himself generally invit- 
ing a welcome wherever he went. Enhancing these 
qualities were his strain of comedy-making and his 
voice, a combination rare enough to set him 
apart from others. 

As he continued more and more to sing in dif- 
ferent places his reputation gradually widened. He 
grew, after a time, to be known as the little divo, 
Errico, a name in point of fact, which was his own ; 
Enrico did not evolve until the tenor became very 
well known. Although he walked onward in those 
days, it was for this Italian boy no flowery path ; 
there were hidden thorns to prick his sensitiveness. 

No formal declaration of preparing him for a sing- 
ing career was ever voiced ; no family powpow, no 
laying of plans, nor house-top shouting. Events 
shaped the Caruso future, and with them he moved, 
grateful for what might follow. He seized with 
fervor, however, every new opportunity, putting into 




ANNA BALDINI-CARUSO, MOTHER OF ENRICO 
From a pastel drawing which stood at Caruso's bedside. 



WORKING DAYS 23 

each effort as he did to the very last every 
resource he had. ^ 

About the time he entered the employ of the 
Meuricoffre establishment, Caruso had become 
sought after to sing in the May church celebrations 
which abound in Naples. Mary's month, it is called ; 
and always is it set apart by the populace to pay 
homage to the Blessed Virgin. The music festivals 
that close these celebrations were pretentious ; there 
was scarcely a good singer but got his chance. The 
one which knocked at the Caruso door on June I, 
1888, found a boy wavering in a distressed mood, 
because his mother lay seriously ill. He did not 
wish to leave her, but she insisted ; and thus urged, 
though with misgivings, he trudged gloomily to the 
Church of St. Severino, there to perform his part in 
the festival of the Corpus Domini holiday, in which 
Maestro Amitrano was to conduct the music. He 
would lift his contralto voice, he argued to himself, 
pouring forth his heart in thanks for such a mother. 

In the midst of the service came an interruption. 
People who had seen the father emerge weeping from 
his house came looking for Enrico. Anna Caruso 
had gone on her final exploration while the son she 
adored was engaged in the work which she loved 
best to have him do. 

II 

The work at the Meuricoffre plant served well, at 
this juncture, for a sorrowing boy incapable of find- 
ing any heart for his cherished song. Serenading 
could not woo him nor even the church choir. 



24 ENRICO CARUSO 

Affairs in the motherless Caruso home suffered con- 
fusion, with soberly eaten meals ; but such a condi- 
tion could not be expected to continue indefinitely. 
Marcellino Caruso ministered as best he knew how 
to his brood of three, helped by the manful Enrico. 
After a time, the practical side of life persisting, a 
bit of sunshine appeared. Then, as the weeks slipped 
by, the natural buoyancy of youth prevailed. 

Work at Meuricoffre's continued, and, presently, 
Enrico experienced again the desire to sing. True, 
his mother was gone, yet she at least no longer 
suffered ; and had she not taken a deep joy in his 
music ? So the inevitable happened, bringing the 
boy, by gradual processes, back to that longing which 
was his master. Even Marcellino Caruso acqui- 
esced ; he was not unwilling that his son should 
indulge his voice. Perhaps he also, by this time, 
had some premonition of what was to come ; possibly 
the occasional nightly earnings helped the paternal 
decision. 

In the meantime, however, Enrico Caruso's voice 
had undergone a change from a boyish contralto into 
a tenor a somewhat thin one, yet, for all that, a 
tenor. There being a demand for even thin- voiced 
tenors, provided they could sing, Enrico knew little 
idleness. Church music was his recognized forte, 
and it brought him moderate rewards. The religious 
festivals came oftener to be attended by the sound of 
his youthful tenor ; and as he continued to sing the 
Caruso name was more frequently mentioned. 

There were, in the nature of things, transitions 
in the Caruso family. Enrico, sobered by cares, 



WORKING DAYS 25 

strove to meet the situation, but Giovanni was still 
a child, and Assunta could not, because of infirmities, 
be called on to assume even slight responsibilities 
or domestic duties. The need of a mother for his 
children must have dwelt in the heart of Marcellino 
Caruso when he journeyed to Aversa, some four 
months after the death of his wife, to install in a 
factory owned by a Baron Ricciardi machinery he 
had purchased from Signor Meuricoffre. H 

It developed that the lodging secured for Mar- 
cellino Caruso during his stay in Aversa was in the 
home of Maria Castaldi. A widow, she apparently 
found matters of common interest to herself and her 
temporary widower guest. And there is every in- 
dication that the two came without much delay to 
an understanding, for they were married on Novem- 
ber 1 8, 1888, within a few weeks after their first 
meeting. 

No mother could have been tenderer than this new 
one which the Church and law gave to the Caruso 
children, and who was brought into their home 
within six months after Anna Baldini Caruso had 
been laid at rest. She was gentle ; she had patience ; 
and she bestowed upon her small charges an affection 
which gradually brought to them what they uncon- 
sciously sought. To Enrico was she especially 
drawn ; something in his nature seemed to cry out 
that he needed her most. For her he was almost a 
model child ; quite the opposite of Giovanni, whose 
irresponsible ways were a source of annoyance. 
"Whatever Enrico did was always right/' recently 
declared Giovanni, "but I was forever getting into 



26 ENRICO CARUSO 

trouble of my own making." The singer, to his very 
last days, loved and revered his stepmother. It al- 
ways disturbed him that despite his repeated urging 
to the contrary she preferred to continue living 
modestly. 

Ill 

The working days of the young Enrico Caruso 
continued in the Meuricoffre establishment even 
after it had been partly denuded of its mechanical 
equipment, for it was a business having several 
sides. There was one department given over to the 
manufacture of cotton oil ; another for purifying 
cream of tartar ; and a third, which was a warehouse. 
Raw and finished material, after being inventoried, 
would be stored in it, and against this merchandise 
warehouse certificates were issued and deposited with 
banks as collateral for loans. 

Business having receded to a threatening point 
when Enrico Caruso had passed his sixteenth birth- 
day, and a reduction of the working force becoming 
necessary, Signor Meuricoffre proposed to the elder 
Caruso that his son be made a sort of accountant in 
charge of the records of such materials as might be 
received for refining purposes, and also of records 
covering whatever was stored in the warehouse. 
Approached in the matter, the boy appeared to 
doubt his ability to perform duties of such responsi- 
bility, but his employer soon discovered in his new 
accountant and receiving clerk abilities of an unusual 
sort. Enrico came early each morning to his desk ; 
he kept his sets of figures accurately ; and he saw 



WORKING DAYS 27 

to it that the Meuricoffre property was safeguarded 
from petty thefts. It was work that called for 
accuracy, alertness, and a shrewd mind ; and re- 
quired many hours of each day to complete. There 
were periods, however, when a lessening of business 
activities enabled the young singer to accept out-of- 
town engagements ; and he had his vacation days, 
also. 

It was during one of these recreation terms, in the 
summer of 1890, that patrons of cafes heard between 
dances the Caruso voice. One Saturday night the 
tenor attracted the notice of a man who, as Caruso 
expressed it, "liked my voice if not my way of using 
it." 

"You do not sing correctly," observed the critic; 
"you should study." "But," answered the tenor, 
" I have no money." " Never mind about the money, 
my brother is a teacher of singing ; I will take you 
to him." 

Caruso went for a time to this teacher, climbing 
five flights of stairs to the studio, which he always 
reached out of breath. Convinced after the eleventh 
lesson that the "covering" of his high tones in the 
manner advocated was injuring them, Caruso paused 
in his vocal studies as suddenly as he had begun them. 
For one year he continued in his former technical 
ways ; then came the unexpected. 

He had joined forces with a young pianist to enter- 
tain bathers at the Risorgimento Baths, in via Ca- 
racciolo, in Naples. During the previous summer 
the tenor had had similar opportunities to display 
his vocal gifts for such pieces of money as generously 



28 ENRICO CARUSO 

inclined persons had seen fit to bestow. "Come 
here and sing," the owner of the baths had said. 
"What my patrons give to you you may keep; I 
will take no percentage." A like arrangement 
existed at the baths during the few weeks in the 
summer of 1891, which found Caruso singing often 
without receiving a solitary lira. He has admitted 
that those days were pleasant to remember ; that 
they brought him no real unhappiness. Toward the 
end of the summer he met Eduardo Missiano, a 
baritone singer in comfortable circumstances, whose 
interest in the struggling tenor was to influence so 
vitally his future career. Relating his first meeting 
with Missiano, who was preparing for a career, Caruso 
said his new acquaintance asked him if he were study- 
ing. "I explained that I had no money for study." 
"Never mind," encouraged Missiano, "you have a 
fine voice ; I will take you to my maestro Guglielmo 
Vergine, and somehow arrange for him to teach you." 
But Vergine displayed less enthusiasm for the 
Caruso voice and its possibilities than his pupil had 
shown. He thought it a small voice which sounded 
"like the wind whistling through a window." De- 
jectedly silent, Caruso waited while his newly found 
friend argued with the seemingly disinterested Ver- 
gine (for subsequent developments lead to the belief 
that the maestro may have chosen to conceal his 
real feelings). At length Vergine said, "Very well, 
come back in eight days, and I will hear him again." 
Reluctantly consenting, after this second trial, to 
accept Caruso as a pupil, Vergine declared warningly, 
"but don't expect too much of yourself." He 



WORKING DAYS 29 

proceeded then to drawing a contract one of those 
remarkable documents which continue to be made 
between impecunious singers and avaricious teachers 
which provided that Caruso should pay Vergine 
twenty-five per cent of his total earnings for five 
years of actual singing. This was the "joker" clause 
in the contract. It would have taken the tenor 
many times five years in his profession to have 
fulfilled the terms ; and an Italian court tried for 
two years to reach a decision. In 1899, when Ca- 
ruso was singing in Rome, Vergine went to him. 
A reconciliation was effected, an understanding 
brought about, and on the payment to Vergine of 
twenty thousand lire the contract was torn up. 

The lessons began shortly after arrangements had 
been reached, though they were rather unusual 
lessons. Vergine taught in classes. It was his 
practice to assemble his pupils in a large room, 
and then to call on various ones to sing specific 
technical exercises and arias. He would admonish 
and approve ; he would call for criticisms from 
members of the class ; and passing from one pupil 
to another, each found an opportunity to be heard 
and enlightened. Throughout several of these class- 
lessons Caruso was not surprised at being ignored ; 
he considered himself as undergoing a preparatory 
period valuable for what it offered one to hear and 
observe. But as weeks passed without his being 
called on to sing, the tenor grew anxious. One day he 
volunteered to sing some phrases to illustrate a point 
Vergine had explained generally to the class, where- 
upon Vergine exclaimed, "What, are you still here ?" 



30 ENRICO CARUSO 

Persistence, however, brought its reward. Or 
it may have been as it doubtless was Vergine's 
way of protecting his pupil from developing a sus- 
pected overconfidence. Permitted, at length, to 
sing, Caruso found the hand of restraint laid heavily 
upon any aspirations he may have had to use his 
full voice. He listened to other tenors with tones 
stronger than his. He heard the maestro's favorable 
comments of their efforts. Often, as he has con- 
fessed, he thought slightingly of his own chances as 
compared with those colleagues who delivered ringing 
high tones, which sounded many times more effective 
than his own voice of "the whistling wind." Yet, 
for all the discouragement, the subdued pupil pro- 
gressed. It may have been a slow growth, but it 
appears to have been sure. And the tenor always 
insisted that he was taught with infinite care and 
skill. "It was Vergine," he once explained, "who 
emphasized the necessity of singing as nature in- 
tended, and who constantly warned ' Don't let 
the public know that you work.' ' 

Such instruction had a tendency to keep the 
Caruso voice light. It was not until some six years 
after those first Vergine lessons, when he came under 
the influence of Vincenzo Lombardi, that Caruso 
really allowed his voice to come free, with the natural 
power back of it which was necessary for the dis- 
closure of its fullest beauty and resource. To force 
the tone is unquestionably a grave error for any 
singer to commit, yet an equally grave error is to 
baby the voice by a repression of energy. 

This practice of vocal restraint was responsible 



WORKING DAYS 31 

for much of the criticism visited upon the public 
endeavors of the then young artist. It was un- 
doubtedly to some extent the cause of his inability 
for all the natural facility he possessed to sing high 
notes with fullness and ease. Had he persisted in 
those earlier technical ways he might have continued 
longer to "break" on high A-flats and B-flats, as 
was his not infrequent custom even after he had 
achieved considerable recognition on the operatic 
stage. 

Established at last in the studio of a maestro he 
respected, Caruso directed his efforts toward im- 
proving his opportunities. His perfect trust in 
Vergine is reflected in the calmness he showed under 
criticism for not using more voice. He was content 
to follow instructions and advice ; and if he failed 
to please completely all his hearers, there were enough 
who approved of his singing to confirm his belief 
that Vergine's way was perhaps the best. 

Occupied all day long at Meuricoffre's, Caruso 
had little time after working hours for more than 
vocal practice and such singing as fell his way. He 
never studied any instrument, or music on its scien- 
tific .side. Though musical in an unusual degree, 
he was never a musician. He sang, when he devel- 
oped into an artist, in a more musicianly manner 
than some singers who were musicians ; but such 
subjects as harmony were destined, to the end of his 
days, to remain to him a mystery. This lack of 
intimate understanding of music on its higher side 
was not, however, to prove a handicap. The singer 
had an unerring feeling for accuracy of pitch ; his 



32 ENRICO CARUSO 

sense of time and of rhythm must from the beginning 
have been exceptional ; and he once said that he 
learned thoroughly with reasonable quickness. Still, 
even these attributes, and a studious nature, could 
not overcome the handicaps imposed in those days 
when the greater part of the young singer's time was 
passed at a desk or in some part of the Meuricoffre 
plant. Not until he was twenty-one, upon his re- 
turn from his brief military service at Rieti, did 
Caruso forsake business and give himself wholly 
to his musical career. The period from 1891 to the 
spring of 1894 was passed in going to and from his 
daily labors ; in frequent lessons at Vergine's studio ; 
in singing when and where he could find an oppor- 
tunity ; and in snatching some leisure moments for 
companionship with his youthful friends. 

Permitted by Signor Meuricoffre to absent him- 
self from business for any church festival engagements, 
Caruso experienced, about 1891, a certain demand 
for his services during festival times. Some of 
these festivals were in neighboring towns ; and 
attending them were occasional incidents to be 
remembered. One in particular, which occurred 
in the village of Majori, seemed to have impressed 
the tenor in an unforgettable way. He had been 
engaged at a fee of ten lire ($2) a service by a con- 
tractor who was supplying all the musicians for this 
particular church. On the final evening of his 
Majori engagement, his churchly duties over, Caruso 
was preparing to leave for the fifteen-mile journey 
to Naples, when the contractor called to him. " Your 
work is not finished," he said, "you must go with 



WORKING DAYS 33 

me to sing at a reception in the home of Baron Zezza, 
the mayor." The young singer could but comply. 
He had no other course, after he had once sung for 
the mayor's guests, than to sing whenever he was 
asked which proved to be often and long con- 
tinued, for it was six o'clock the next morning when 
he learned that he might depart. 

Enthusiastic over the young tenor's voice and 
singing, Baron Zezza insisted on escorting Caruso 
to the door ; but instead of the mild temperature 
of the evening before, they found the air biting and 
raw. It would never do to risk catching cold on the 
stage ride to Naples, so the mayor procured for 
the singer an old shooting jacket, which he insisted 
Caruso should keep as a remembrance of that par- 
ticular occasion. 

It was in 1913, while he was filling an engagement 
in Covent Garden, Jbondon, that Caruso was re- 
minded of the incident in a letter from Baron Zezza 
which read, " If you are the Enrico Caruso who sang 
more than twenty years ago in one of the Majori 
church festivals, I wish to know why you did not 
return to me the overcoat I then loaned you. If 
you are that one, please return to me the over- 



coat." 



To this communication the tenor replied, "I am 
the Enrico Caruso who sang in the city at the time 
you mention ; but I did not intend to preserve for 
the remainder of my life the overcoat which you 
offered as a souvenir. I cannot return it, since I 
do not know what has become of it. But if you 
desire to have an overcoat, or the value of one, you 



34 ENRICO CARUSO 

must first send me the amount of money for the 
work I did in your house, because I was not paid 
for it. Such amount must be what I receive to-day, 
which is $2000. This is a special favor, for twenty 
years ago my voice was the same voice of to-day, 
with the difference that I now sing only three hours. 
In your house I sang for eight hours. You must also 
add the interest for twenty years/' 

Baron Zezza's answer was, " I had not the slight- 
est intention of annoying you about the coat. I 
merely wished to learn if that boy who sang at my 
house is the Enrico Caruso who is having such a 
wonderful career. I am content to have as my 
souvenir his autograph/' He got it, an inscribed 
photograph of the singer, in a frame, and also a silver 
hunting flask. 

At twenty, Caruso was summoned to be physically 
examined for military service. This official com- 
munication all but threw him into a panic. Visions 
possible only to such an imagination as was his 
sent him in search of friends, and they in turn found 
a man of influence who reassured them. This 
influential person doubted, he said, whether the 
young Caruso would pass the physician's test. He 
was slender ; his very appearance suggested a del- 
icate constitution. The matter, in any event, need 
cause them no concern ; there were ways of bringing 
about the rejection of a prospective soldier. But 
when the tenor in trepidation presented himself 
to the military examining board, he was pronounced 
mentally and physically fit to serve his country. 
Thereupon he was given written notice to prepare 




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W5 P-i 



WORKING DAYS 35 

for a regimental call which might come at any hour 
after his twenty-first birthday. 

The story which Caruso himself told the writer 
of his military experiences is perhaps the most vivid 
one possible to record. It was in late February of 
1894 when he bade farewell to his father and step- 
mother, and to Giovanni and Assunta, and "set 
out for Rieti, by way of Rome where I was to 
join my regiment, the Thirteenth Artillery. During 
the eight days of my stay in Rome I met with harsh 
treatment from the junior lieutenant of my battery, 
who, for reasons I have never learned, took a violent 
dislike to me. Discovering that I was a poor horse- 
back rider, he seized every occasion when I was 
mounted to make me more uncomfortable. He 
would come to my side and roughly turn my feet 
to bring them into the proper positions. Often he 
would hit me across the legs with a quirt. When 
we finally reached Rieti his persecution ceased. 

"Wishing to take advantage of the free time, 
from four in the afternoon to eight, to exercise my 
voice, I searched for a suitable place and found it 
in the large drill hall. The day we were settled in 
the Rieti camp I was doing my exercises when a 
corporal came into the hall and called to me. 
'Quickly!' called the corporal. 'The major wants 
to see you/ I asked, 'What does he want ?' The 
corporal answered, ' I don't know ; maybe he has 
some letters for you from your family, or maybe 
he wishes to speak to you about your singing/ 

" I hoped the major had a letter from my father ; 
I was short of money. Then I thought that perhaps 



36 ENRICO CARUSO 

he might wish to compliment me about my voice. 
I followed the corporal to the door of the major's 
office, which adjoined the drill hall. Standing 
there for a few moments without being commanded 
to enter I asked, 'May I come in ?' 

"A hard voice answered, 'Yes, come in.' 

" I took off my cap as I entered the office and raised 
my hand in a salute. The major sat before his 
desk, writing ; he did not glance up at me, but that 
did not prevent him from seeing. He had sharp 
eyes, Major Nagliati. Finally, after what seemed 
a long time, he raised his head. 

"I stood embarrassed as he looked me all over, 
and was more embarrassed when he said, 'You must 
be a stupid one.' 

" I didn't answer ; it is the rule in the Italian army 
that a soldier may not answer his superior unless 
requested to. But why did he call me a stupid one ? 
I quickly found out. 

' Why do you salute when you have no cap on ? ' 
demanded the major. 'Don't you know it isn't 
regulation?' I replied that I was but for eight 
days a soldier. 

"'What name?' snapped the major in his curt, 
rough voice. 

"I told him, 'My name is Caruso, Enrico Caruso.' 

"'Oh!' he replied, though it wasn't exactly a 
reply, but more a sort of involuntary ejaculation, 
to which I soon discovered he was given. 

"'Where from?' he inquired. I said I was from 
Naples. 

"'Why do you bother me, making so much noise ?' 



WORKING DAYS 37 

"I answered, 'I exercise/ 

"' Exercise what ?' 
' ' Exercise my voice/ I replied. 

"'Oh!' 

"'What did you do before you became a soldier ?' 
he wished to know. 

" I explained that I had studied to become a singer. 

"'A singer! What for?' 

" ' For the theater/ I answered. 

"'Oh!' 

"How long/ he inquired next, 'must you be a 
soldier ?' 

"I said, 'Three years/ He knew this; I won- 
dered why he asked. 

'Three years a soldier, eh ? After three years 
good night voice/ 

"Following a long pause the major stared at me 
with that first stern look and said, 'I don't want 
to be annoyed any more with your exercising your 
voice ; I have to work in the afternoons. Now go 
away/ 

"I put on my cap (remembering what he had 
told me of the regulation) and saluted and went out. 
The corporal, curious, was waiting for me. 

: 'What did he want?' demanded the corporal. 

"I said, 'He's crazy/ 

"But to my surprise, two days later, when Major 
Nagliati was passing me, he stopped and said, 
'What are you doing this afternoon during the free 
time ?' 

"I want to exercise my voice/ I took, somehow, 
a sudden courage. 



38 ENRICO CARUSO 

'Well/ he said, * after you exercise, meet me at 
the cafe, at five o'clock/ 

"My comrades who had witnessed the incident 
rushed up to me as soon as Major Nagliati was out 
of distance. They were eager to learn what had 
prompted a commissioned officer to stop me after 
such fashion. Upon being told of the summons to 
appear that afternoon at the little cafe popular at 
that time with the officers, the soldiers began to 
speculate on what might happen to me. 

"He will try to send you to prison/ predicted 
one of them ; then he walked off, whistling. 

" Promptly at five o'clock I arrived at the cafe, but 
I took care not to enter ; a private soldier in the 
Italian army was not permitted to enter such a place 
when he knew his superior officer was there. Looking 
through the doorway I could see Major Nagliati 
seated at a small table at the rear of the cafe. He 
was reading a newspaper and smoking a cigarette. 
I walked up and down before the entrance, pausing 
occasionally to glance within and hoping thereby to 
attract the major's notice ; but he only continued 
to read and smoke. Finally he summoned a waiter 
(he had seen me the moment I arrived), and I heard 
him say, 'Tell that soldier outside to come in.' 
I entered the cafe and walked to the table where the 
major sat. He had a bad face, but a good heart. 

"Have you had lunch ?' asked Major Nagliati. 

'"Yes/ I replied. 

'You say you are a Neapolitan ; then you must 
like coffee. Smoke ?' He offered me a cigarette 
and ordered coffee, after which he returned to his 



WORKING DAYS 39 

newspaper and ignored me. All the time I tried to 
guess why he had summoned me there ; the major 
was a strange man. Finally he put down his paper 
and took out his watch. 

"I think I have found something for you/ he 
said. 'In this town is a baron who loves music. I 
have spoken to him about you, and asked that he 
let you go to his house to exercise your voice. The 
baron is coming here shortly/ 

"In this the major was mistaken, for instead of 
the baron came his brother explaining that the 
baron, unable to keep the appointment, had sent 
him in his place. 

"'Oh!' ejaculated Major Nagliati. 'Well, this is 
the boy I have spoken of to your brother. Let us 
go to his house.' 

" So we all departed, but the baron was not at home, 
being still detained with his appointment. The fol- 
lowing day, however, I was commanded to go back 
and I found the baron a kind man. He proved to 
be a musician and pianist ; and he seemed to enjoy 
playing for me to sing, and correcting my mistakes. 
I was made happy at this opportunity the major 
had given me, yet I dared not thank him. I knew he 
would not have liked that. It was enough for him 
to know that he had arranged matters as he had ; 
probably he got from the baron reports of me. 

"We worked on, and in the first five days with the 
baron I learned the entire role of Turiddu in 'Caval- 
leria Rusticana/ By this time the whole regiment 
had learned what was happening. I was taken 
by my comrades to the drill hall during some of the 



40 ENRICO CARUSO 

free time, to sing for them many songs. But 
after a few such experiences Major Nagliati appeared, 
one afternoon, and stopped me. 'How many times 
must I tell you not to annoy me with your singing ?' 
he demanded. It was his consideration for my voice 
that caused him to interfere ; he realized it might 
be harmful for me to sing continuously for those 
soldiers ; so he made it impossible for them to con- 
tinue asking me to do so. 

"Twenty days later the major sent for me again. 

"'You cannot be a soldier and also a singer/ 
he informed me. ' I have arranged that your brother 
Giovanni shall come here at once to take your place.' 

"Major Nagliati would not allow me to express 
the gratitude which overwhelmed me. And on the 
next day came Giovanni, to be my substitute." 



CHAPTER FOUR 

DEBUTS 

THIS sudden and unexpected release from military 
service sent the singer's thoughts soaring. He had 
emerged from threatened obscurity into the sunlight, 
and the almost fortuitous touch attached to it moved 
him deeply. He wished immediately to return home ; 
he wished with a strange intensity to embrace his 
father and stepmother ; but he was not without 
other desires to which his nature was susceptible. 
Some celebration seemed proper. At Rome, where 
he was detained during the formalities of his dis- 
charge, and after receiving his pay for having been 
thirty days a soldier, Caruso found this opportunity. 
A close friend, Sergeant Angelo Arachite, participated 
in the farewell dinner, which left the tenor with just 
two pennies in his pocket. It was perhaps fortu- 
nate that the Italian Government had provided the 
transportation from Rome to Naples, otherwise the 
journey might have been slower than that made by 
a train which halted for periods longer than was con- 
sumed in the actual time of running. Some bread 
purchased with the two pennies was all the food 
Caruso had from midnight on a Saturday until late 
evening of the next day, Easter Sunday. Bursting 
joyously in upon his slumbering parents, who knew 
nothing of his coming, he went happily to bed. But 



42 ENRICO CARUSO 

morning brought to him serious thoughts. Work 
of any sort other than singing had been resolutely 
put out of his mind. His career was waiting to be 
made, and the tenor set himself in those limited ways 
then at his command to attain it. 

Church singing, soiree engagements, and the some- 
what frequent serenade brought him small sums of 
money. It was not enough however to meet Caruso's 
every need. There came also one opportunity to ap- 
pear in an amateur representation of "Cavalleria 
Rusticana", given in a small Naples theater for the 
entertainment of people "who did not pay to go in." 
This appearance was not considered to have consti- 
tuted a debut ; Caruso regarded it as an experience 
too trivial to detail. In fact, nothing of significance 
occurred during the summer that followed. It was 
for the singer an existence of routine, with the lessons 
in Vergine's classes and rather more study than had 
previously been possible consuming a fair portion 
of the time. But work did not seize completely 
this Neapolitan youth who had just entered man's 
estate. His fondness for the companionship of his 
friends sent him regularly into their midst ; and 
the card games in the little cafes continued to hold 
their fascination for him. Nor was he insensible to 
feminine charms, or to passing some of his leisure 
hours in the society of young women toward whom 
he was drawn. Fortunately he had no serious love 
affairs, although he was slender of figure, and as 
photographs taken of him at the time show ro- 
mantic enough in appearance to render him eligible. 

The summer of 1894 passed. Autumn, however, 



DEBUTS 43 

brought a light in the sky of Enrico Caruso's hopes. 
This light was reflected by Nicola Daspuro, one of 
the foremost newspapermen of Italy, a respected 
writer, and by no means least of all the general 
representative for the south of the Milan music- 
publishing house of Sonzogno. Daspuro had ob- 
tained in 1893 from the municipality of Naples the 
concession to operate for twenty-five years the 
Theater Mercadante (better known as the Fondo). 
And he had at once arranged with Edoardo Sonzogno, 
head of his firm, to supply the Mercadante for three 
consecutive years a season of opera and ballet. 
After having his theater remodeled and redecorated, 
Daspuro reopened the Mercadante doors on Decem- 
ber 6, 1893, with an inaugural representation by the 
Sonzogno organization. That season is still talked 
about in Naples. It compelled by the brilliancy of its 
achievements the closing of the San Carlo Theater, 
and no wonder ! Sonzogno had engaged an unique 
company in which there were nine celebrated tenors 
(among them Roberto Stagno, Francesco Tamagno, 
and Angelo Masini), twenty-two prime donne (in- 
cluding Gemma Bellincioni, wife of Stagno, and 
Adelina Stehle), and three widely known ballerine, 
Mile. Danesi, Mile. Cerri, and la Cote d'Or, from the 
Vienna Opera House. In such circumstances it 
was natural that Daspuro, occupying so conspicu- 
ous a position in the lyric world of Italy, should 
have subsequently been sought out by singing maestri 
anxious to place in the Sonzogno Company their 
most proficient pupils. 

"In the fall of 1894," said Daspuro, "Maestro 



44 ENRICO CARUSO 

Guglielmo Vergine, a very good singing teacher whom 
I knew, called on me and recommended warmly a 
young tenor then studying with him a certain 
Caruso whose voice he declared to be of excep- 
tional beauty and angelic sweetness. I expressed 
my regret at being unable to satisfy Vergine's desire 
to have his pupil appear during the approaching 
Mercadante season, since my company was au complet; 
but instead of discouraging the maestro, my refusal 
only moved him to renew his assurances with 
a color of expressiveness to be found only in a Nea- 
politan soul of the celestial qualities of his pupil, 
whose voice Vergine insisted was absolutely phenom- 
enal. He continued begging me as a god invoking 
the names of all my dead to at least give this 
young tenor a hearing. To be rid of this insistent 
person I at length said, 'All right; bring this 
tenor with you, and let me hear his phenomenal 
voice/ 

"The next morning Vergine and Caruso appeared 
at the Mercadante and Caruso sang for me. I liked 
him immensely. His voice was really beautiful. 
What impressed me most was his clear enunciation, 
and an accent full of warmth. I congratulated him 
and Vergine as well ; and thereupon promised to try 
to arrange to have Caruso sing in one of the matinee 
performances within the next few months, although 
he had thus far never appeared publicly on any stage. 
When my first conductor, Maestro Giovanni Zuccani, 
came some time later to Naples to begin his pre- 
liminary duties for the 1894-1895 Mercadante sea- 
son, I summoned Vergine. He brought Caruso for a 



DEBUTS 45 

second audition. Zuccani liked his voice so much 
that we agreed to have the tenor appear at a matinee 
representation of Ambrose Thomas's "Mignon"; 
and we asked him to make ready for a piano re- 
hearsal. The day finally arrived ; but alas ! what 
a different Caruso. The extreme sensitiveness of 
his temperament, the nervous excitement caused by 
finding himself surrounded by singers and maestri 
of repute and his lack of complete familiarity 
with his role seemed almost to have paralyzed 
Caruso's mental faculties and to have tightened his 
throat. Maestro Zuccani and I sought fruitlessly 
to encourage him. He only confused the words of 
his text, began and finished phrases out of tempi, 
and, beyond all these and other mistakes, his voice 
cracked and broke to pieces on all his high notes. 
Maestro Zuccani was patient and kind until he 
wearied of correcting the struggling Caruso. Then 
my conductor lost his temper, and turning to me 
declared that it was impossible to take this tenor 
to the footlights. Vergine and Caruso, furiously 
angry with Zuccani, left the theater in tears. After 
this experience I did not hear from them for a long 
time." 

For all the discouragement which fell so heavily 
upon Caruso through his failure to grasp an alluring 
opportunity to appear in an opera house of the first 
rank, the tenor was not defeated. Soon after his 
experience with Daspuro and Zuccani he was ap- 
proached by a professor of the contrabass who had 
played often with Caruso in church. He spoke to 
his younger friend of "a very good chance to make a 



46 ENRICO CARUSO 

debut/' A young maestro, of considerable financial 
means, Mario Morelli by name, had written his first 
opera and was planning to present it before privately 
invited audiences. The opera was in four acts, 
with the tenor character serving as the protagonist. 
"You would have nearly two months in which to 
study your part," explained the contrabass professor, 
"and the appointment would bring you eighty lire 
for not less than four performances. I advise you to 
accept/' Himself unwilling to decide, Caruso replied, 
"Go to Vergine ; whatever he tells me to do I will 
do." Vergine examined the music of the tenor role, 
and instantly recommended his pupil to accept the 
proposal. Caruso studied his part in the opera, 
"L'Amico Francesco," which presented him as a 
man of about fifty. He was amused that Signor 
Ciabo, the baritone engaged to appear in the char- 
acter of the tenor's adopted son, was nearly sixty 
years old. Nothing interfered with the progress of 
preparations until the night of the general rehearsal. 
Then, while Caruso was dressing, he discovered that 
he was lacking shoes and stockings, and also a scarf 
which it was necessary to have tied about his neck. 
A request for these articles brought from the costumer 
no more than a laugh. A few moments later the 
regisseur entered the tenor's dressing room and in- 
quired, "Are you ready?" "Yes," replied Caruso, 
" if you like." Departing in anger the regisseur re- 
turned presently with Morelli, who demanded, 
"Why are you without the necessary parts of your 
costume ? I paid you." Caruso answered that he 
considered eighty lire to be no more than money 



DEBUTS 47 

enough to buy a good dinner before each of the four 
performances, an opinion in which the composer at 
length concurred. So Morelli sent out for the 
needed wearing apparel, and the general rehearsal 
commenced. 

Some music experts, who were not friendly to the 
young Caruso, had expressed doubts that he would 
be able to finish the four performances of "L'Amico 
Francesco." Stories of the tenor's light voice, and 
Vergine's method of cultivating it, had gotten abroad. 
The music was looked upon as being too strong for 
Caruso. So these experts sat back in their seats, 
in the Nuovo Theater, on a November evening, 1894, 
expecting a fiasco, and hoping, after the manner of 
their kind, that it would occur. Events, however, 
brought no such outcome. That first representation 
went rather well for the tenor, vindicating the judg- 
ment of his maestro, who predicted for his pupil in 
the second performance of the opera, two evenings 
later, a more pronounced success. 

Neither "L'Amico Francesco" nor its. tenor pro- 
tagonist moved many who were present at the two 
performances on November 16 and 18 to enthuse. 
In fact, so slight was the impression caused by the 
opera that its composer and patron abandoned the 
proposed two final representations. Whatever dis- 
appointment he may have felt, Morelli's gratitude 
for what Caruso had done prompted him to present 
the tenor, in addition to his guaranteed cachet, with 
a bonus of fifty lire. Moreover, the composer assured 
Caruso that he might expect an invitation to sing 
in the premiere of his next opera, on which he was 



48 ENRICO CARUSO 

then at work. It was never given, for, not long 
afterward, Morelli died. 

For Caruso, however, those appearances in 
"L'Amico Francesco" held potential rewards. He 
had achieved a debut with moderate success ; and 
his singing during the second representation en- 
listed the increased favor of at least two persons 
who were in positions to aid in advancing him in his 
career. One was a famous theatrical agent, Fran- 
cesco Zucchi ; the other Carlo Ferrara, impresario 
of the Cimarosa Theater, at Caserta, who had 
journeyed to Naples in search of a tenor for a season 
of opera he planned to hold during the Quaresima, 
in 1895. Zucchi, who had followed closely the en- 
deavors of the tenor debutant, became convinced 
after his second appearance that he possessed the 
qualities of a future great artist. To Zucchi, the 
singer became at once the nicu Caruso (nicu, in the 
Sicilian dialect, means " little ") ; and going to him 
the agent proceeded, with the sweeping authority for 
which he was noted, to place him under his protect- 
ing wings. 

Zucchi was at that time a sort of character. He 
had retired from the stage because of advancing 
years ; but he still had left his old-time aggressive- 
ness, and a loyalty which had drawn about him a 
host of second-rate artists who looked upon him as 
their firm protector. The agent had a sort of head- 
quarters in the unpretentious Cafe dei Fiori, situated 
in Naples's via del Municipio ; and here he ministered 
to his followers ruling, if with rough ways, out of a 
kindly heart. 



DEBUTS 49 

Tall, with square shoulders a la Tamagno (though 
thinner than the celebrated tenor), Zucchi had dyed 
to a deep henna a moustache which bristled upwards 
towards his freckled cheeks. His appearance was 
accentuated in ferocity by fluffy hair, which he wore 
after the manner of Raffaello Sanzio. Zucchi was 
ever ready, as a good Sicilian, to defend his charges 
against the claws of the Milanese agents. He always 
sat at the head of the presiding table ; and in every 
controversy he was the first and the last one to speak. 
When an impresario from any near-by mountain 
community came to Naples to form an opera com- 
pany, Zucchi was prepared to supply a tenor who 
could spin out the tone like Gayarre, or one who had 
three such C's as Tamagno possessed. If a prima 
donna were sought, the singer Zucchi offered had 
high notes which would put to shame those of Adelina 
Patti herself; while his bassos if bassos happened 
at the moment to be specifically in demand had 
low Ps that boomed as loud as the big gun mounted 
on adjacent castle walls. To an impresario who 
solely needed a comprimario singer, Zucchi would say, 
"I have no second-role artists, but to accommodate 
you, my good friend, I will have one of my first 
tenors who usually receives one thousand lire a 
performance save the situation by singing, for this 
time only, a secondary part." The first tenor in 
question might later sign with the impresario for 
ten lire an appearance (happy of this chance to be 
certain of eating during the ensuing few months) ; 
but momentarily his honor had been preserved by 
the protecting Zucchi. 



50 ENRICO CARUSO 

II 

The contract for Caruso's first appearance in 
Caserta was negotiated between acts during one of 
the performances of " L'Amico Francesco." He was 
visited, while dressing, by Impresario Ferrara of the 
Cimarosa Theater, and his attorney ; and within a 
few minutes all the arrangements had been made. 
The tenor once told of the thrill this experience had 
brought him. He was impressionable ; his imagina- 
tion moved him to peer into the future ; but he did 
not visualize overwell. He was taking his first pro- 
fessional steps ; who can blame him if he did not 
perceive a few that might falter. He sang promis- 
cuously between November and April, in which month 
was the opening of the Cimarosa Theater season ; 
then, with a light heart, he boarded a train. This 
engagement, the tenor believed, would send his 
artistic value either up or down. 

"Cavalleria Rusticana" introduced the young 
singer to Caserta with Mme. Elena Bianchini- 
Cappelli, as Santuzza, and Enrico Pignataro in the 
role of Alfio. In their reviews of the next day the 
newspaper writers commented upon a conflict be- 
tween the voice of Caruso and his music ; his acting 
they pronounced "awful." There was not much 
praise for his Faust in the Gounod opera of that name, 
in which he had as principal associates Mme. Moscati- 
Ferrara for the Marguerite, Pignataro, the baritone, 
and a basso named Sternajuoli. An unknown opera, 
"Camoens", by a Maestro Musoni, was also per- 
formed, and soon after forgotten. The slender 




CARUSO AS TURIDDU, WITH ELENA BIANCHINI-CAPPELLI AS SANTUZZA, 
IN " CA VALLERIA RUSTICANA " 

His first appearance in standard opera, Cimarosa Theater, Caserta, 1893- 



DEBUTS 51 

audiences did not make for enthusiasm, nor always 
for enough money to permit every artist to be paid. 
On more than one occasion the young tenor was 
obliged, before he could eat breakfast, to ask Impre- 
sario Ferrara for his ten lire cachet he had earned the 
night before. This poor business brought the season 
to a somewhat abrupt end, sending Caruso home- 
wards with twelve cents to show for his four weeks' 
work. 

The singer, however, was not seriously disturbed 
by this small misfortune, and June found him, 
one bright afternoon, waiting like Micawber for 
something to turn up. In the midst of a game of 
cards, at which he was engaged in Bella Napoli alia 
Ferrovia a little restaurant which he haunted not 
far from his Sant' Anna alle Paludi home the singer 
was interrupted by hearing his name called aloud. 
He looked up ; there stood the impresario of the 
Bellini Theater, who had come in search of him. 
It appeared that the tenor who had been engaged to 
sing in a special Sunday evening performance of 
"Faust" had suddenly fallen ill. Pignataro, the 
baritone, who had sung with Caruso during the 
Caserta season, had suggested his name ; so here was 
another opportunity, a better one than any that had 
gone before. The fee was twenty-five lire the 
highest Caruso had yet received and it was pressed 
upon him by an anxious manager, gratified perhaps 
thus to show his relief over an averted disaster to his 
advertised performance. There was no further card 
game that day for Enrico Caruso. He departed 
almost on the heels of the impresario ; and within 



52 ENRICO CARUSO 

the hour had purchased a pair of white silk trousers 
as well as a pair of white kid shoes. The next day, 
Sunday, he strode forth "the envy of my less 
well-garbed comrades." 

That special Faust representation brought the 
tenor a success greater than he had expected. After 
the Salve Dimora Casta e Pura romanza of the third 
act his name was on many a tongue. At the close 
of the opera the impresario offered him a four weeks' 
engagement for the approaching autumn, at the same 
theater. The tenor was happy, for at the age of 
twenty-two he found himself assured of regular ap- 
pearances and cachets in a season which was virtually 
certain to go through to the end. Nor was that all, 
for, after a Bellini Theater appearance in " Rigo- 
letto ", in July, Caruso received an invitation to sing 
for one month in Cairo, Egypt, at the then to him 
astounding figure of six hundred lire. (Enrico 
Santini, impresario of the Esbekieh Theater, of Cairo, 
has placed the amount at the somewhat lower figure 
of sixteen pounds.) 

" I made the voyage on an English boat," declared 
Caruso. "By the second day out from Naples 
everybody on board knew that they had with them 
a tenor, so a concert was arranged. The conse- 
quences were not unlike those which happened after 
I had first sung for my regimental comrades in Rieti. 
I was asked to sing oftener than I thought was good 
for my voice. Going one night to the bar for a glass 
of wine, I found the room noisy with the laughter 
of a group of young Englishmen. They greeted 
me with enthusiasm and loudly demanded a song. 



DEBUTS S3 

'No, if you please/ I answered. 'I have come for 
my wine, then I must retire/ I started toward the 
bar, only to be surrounded by these young men 
some laughing, others merely smiling, though all of 
the one mind that I should sing them a song. They 
continued good-naturedly to urge, and I as good- 
naturedly asked to be excused. Finally one of their 
number said to me, 'You will sing for us just one 
song, and then we will make you a nice present ; 
if you don't sing we will let you take a bath in the 
Suez Canal/ I of course preferred to sing not 
the solitary song requested, but several times. 
Immediately after my last song the young man who 
had been the spokesman took his hat and went around 
to his companions ; and into that hat these English- 
men dropped many pounds sterling, until one hundred 
of these banknotes had been gathered. I was much 
pleased and made to feel rich. Never before had I 
had at one time so large a sum. I am not ashamed to 
say that now (1920), for at that time one hundred 
pounds was like $100,000 to me to-day." 

Egypt offered to the tenor new opportunities, 
which he dutifully seized. One of them was a first 
appearance in the "Manon Lescaut" of Puccini, 
a role he had learned with Maestro Enrico Santini, 
a nephew of the impresario. Caruso sang also in 
"Cavalleria Rusticana", "Rigoletto", and "La 
Gioconda", under the baton of Conductor Alfredo 
Sarmiento. It was Sarmiento who afterward be- 
came his accompanist and prepared him for his 
introductory "L'Elisir d'Amore" in which, during 
1901 at La Scala, he overwhelmed a captious audience. 



54 ENRICO CARUSO 

Mme. Bianchini-Cappelli and Vittorio Ferraguti, a 
baritone, were members of the Cairo company. 
Other matters than singing, however, found attraction 
for the tenor. It was summer ; the skies were clear ; 
and two feminine vaudeville singers consumed some 
of the leisure moments he and Ferraguti had to spare. 
The situation, though, was odd ; for the women could 
not speak Italian, nor were Caruso and the baritone 
able to converse in any language than their own. 
So the couples communicated with one another by 
making signs. Once, attending a representation 
of "Rigoletto", the Egyptian entertainers fell into 
ecstasies over the costumes of their "adored" ones 
their voices interested them least of all. 

Signora Bianchini-Cappelli, who had been a fellow 
student of Caruso in the Vergine studios, relates an 
experience she had with the tenor at his Cairo pre- 
miere of "Manon Lescaut." Only five days had been 
given them to learn the Puccini score, and Caruso 
had found difficulty in memorizing the final act. 
At the performance all went reasonably well until 
the scene where Manon lies on the ground dying, 
and begs Des Grieux to go in search of water for 
her. 

"Enrico had gone off the stage, according to the 
action required," explained Signora Bianchini-Cap- 
pelli. "I was suddenly startled to hear him call to 
me from the wings, ' Don't move ; I am going to put 
the score against your back otherwise I cannot 
proceed.' Then he returned to where I was lying, 
the score of the opera concealed from the audience's 
view. Never have I felt such embarrassment before 



DEBUTS 55 

the public. I was supposed to be dying, and had 
gestures to make and movements of my body. But 
with that score propped against my shoulders, and 
realizing what it meant to Enrico, I was helpless to 
do more than hold as still as possible, serving as a 
human music rack for my comrade. And what did 
the rascal do ? He was bursting to laugh ! I could 
feel that he was, and the thought made me furious ; 
for I had to die lying quite still, and with no chance 
to make any effect. When the curtain fell I rose 
and chased Enrico, and threw the score at him, which 
he had dropped in his flight. Later we made up. 
Of course, there came a good laugh not only over 
that situation but over the mistakes we had made 
with the words, and the new music we had sung in- 
stead of what Puccini had written which had quite 
gone from our heads." 

There were also other experiences of a differ- 
ent sort : sight-seeing excursions, visits to unusual 
spots, and a trip on the Nile to the famous pyramids. 
This last was made with Maestro Santini, in a small 
boat that, accidentally capsizing, deposited the 
occupants in murky waters from which both were 
rescued with mud plastered to their clothing. In 
their plight the singer and his companions sought 
a carriage, though without success. Fearful that 
the muddy garments would leave marks on the 
seat cushions, each driver refused stonily the plead- 
ings of the would-be fares. Two donkeys finally had 
to serve Caruso and Santini. Astride these small 
animals they rode through streets, to the great 
amusement of beholders. 



56 ENRICO CARUSO 

Caruso did not return to Naples on board an 
English steamer. He engaged passage on an Italian 
boat, and, as he expressed it, "in the nice, rich 
suite which was steerage because my poor one 
hundred pounds had been so maltreated during my 
first days in Cairo that it flew completely away." 
Good fortune, though, had not departed with 
it. No sooner had the steamer been made fast 
at its dock than a representative of the impre- 
sario of the Mercadante Theater greeted Caruso, 
and offered him seven hundred and fifty lire a 
month to sing during the coming winter. Here 
was news to offset the illness of a rough passage 
from Egypt. 

October came soon enough, bringing the Bellini 
Theater season into the foreground. Stories of 
Caruso had been traveling about ; so there was some 
special interest in the "Rigoletto" opening for which 
the tenor was cast to sing the role of the Duke. 
Hazardous indeed was the task any tenor undertook 
in those days. Small jealousies were ever loose ; a 
singer had to be judged by others than certain envi- 
ous companions. It proved to be so in this instance, 
as Caruso discovered when he walked out upon 
the stage, and toward the foot-lights. For there, 
occupying the entire first row where he could easily 
see them, were all the best tenors Naples possessed 
at that time. The position was both trying and 
exasperating. When the representation was finished, 
the victim of this quasi-cabal went solemnly home. 
What did it mean ? In the morning he found out. 
In all the music circles of the city there hovered a 



DEBUTS 57 

principal theme : Caruso was the great fake of the 
artistic world, a mere nothing in comparison with 
each tenor who posed as his judge. 

" Faust " brought the singer no better fortune. He 
was easily dispirited ; and brooding over this ill- 
fortune did him no good. His engagement con- 
cluded, he experienced a degree of solitude, so far 
as attracting the attention of impresari was con- 
cerned. None went to see him ; it was a question 
in the tenor's mind whether any would care to 
seek again his services until opportunity came 
to correct in some measure the poor impression 
he had caused. So the months slipped by, until 
the Mercadante season arrived when the wheel 
of circumstance once more took a propitious 
turn. 

There had been no formal announcement of 
Caruso's engagement ; his name had no place in the 
prospectus. Through the courtesy of Federico Can- 
dida, of Naples (who provided the information from 
the manuscript of his book on the history of opera 
in the theaters of Italy, soon to be published), it 
seems that not until November 29, 1895, did the 
name "Caruso" appear on a poster outside the 
Mercadante Theater announcing him for an ap- 
pearance in "La Traviata", with Mme. Kate Bens- 
berg as Violetta, and Ludovico Magni in the part 
of Germont. This same opera had opened the season 
only six nights before, with Signer Potenza as Alfredo 
and Maestro Sebastiani conducting. Reading the 
name of a new tenor, some of the people exclaimed, 
"Who is this Caruso ?" The question was answered 



$8 ENRICO CARUSO 

a few hours later to an audience which pronounced 
him passable. 

In those days the singer had no opportunity to 
coddle his voice. During later years, after it had 
become precious to both impresari and public, two 
appearances in any week three at the most 
came to be regarded as a maximum to impose upon 
it. That season at the Mercadante was for Caruso 
one of strenuous work ; he occasionally sang twice 
on the same day. 

He did this on December 15, 1895, appearing in 
a matinee performance of Bellini's "Romeo e Giu- 
lietta" and, that evening, in "La Traviata." De- 
cember 26 presented the tenor first in " Rigoletto", 
then in "Romeo e Giulietta." Within twenty-four 
hours he was called upon for an afternoon repre- 
sentation of "Traviata", and after he had eaten 
dinner he proceeded to the theater to be heard as the 
Duke in "Rigoletto." Two days intervened, where- 
upon having nothing else to do Caruso sang 
a New Year's Day matinee in "Traviata" and a 
night performance of "Rigoletto." It would have 
been a task with sufficient rest in between, but this 
was not possible ; every week day was a singing day 
for the struggling Neapolitan. He wanted the expe- 
rience of routine ; well, he was getting it. 

Caruso made enough of his numerous opportunities 
to move the critics to commend his voice as fresh, 
clear, and of penetrating effect. He sang in " La 
Traviata" fifteen times before his engagement was 
concluded; the opera "Rigoletto" required his 
services on ten occasions; in "Romeo e Giulietta" 




A CARD TO DON ANTONIO MAZZARELLA, OF CASERTA, AT A 
PERIOD WHEN CARUSO WAS STRUGGLING FOR A LIVING 

Naples, 31 January 1895 
My dear Don Antonio, 

Answering your invitation I inform you that I accept, but with the condition of the 
feeofL. 15 and the railroad fares. I make this price only for you and because you 
have remembered me, otherwise they should have to pay me 28 Lire. 

Today I will go around to find that piece of music by Paisiello and as soon as I find 
it I will study it and then I will send it to you. 

If you wish to send me the piece you have, rush it to me and let me know the train 
I shall take to come there. 

Thanking you I salute you 

Respectfully, 

Enrico Caruso 



DEBUTS 59 

he appeared in the role of Tebaldo before fifteen 
audiences; while in "Faust", essayed for the first 
time in this season on January n, 1896 (with Si- 
gnore Franco and Riso, Signori Bonini and Rossato, 
and with Vincenzo Galassi conducting), Caruso had 
three appearances. He finished his endeavors there 
on February 18, as the Duke. His associates in 
"Rigoletto" had been Signora Franco as Gilda and 
Vittorio Ferraguti as the Jester, and, for conductor, 
Maestro Galassi. Under the baton of Maestro 
Sebastiani, "Romeo e Giulietta" had enlisted as 
Romeo the services of Signora Emma Carelli, who 
has since become the celebrated impresaria (at the 
Costanzi, of Rome) of to-day, while Signora Franco 
sang the Giulietta. 

That Mercadante season went on until the final 
day of the Carnevale, in February, 1896. Several 
other operas had been performed, "II Trovatore", 
"Ugonotti", "La Forza del Destine", "Fra Dia- 
volo", "II Matrimonio Segreto", "Giannina e Ber- 
nardone", and "La Favorita", in none of which 
had Caruso appeared. His progress had neverthe- 
less been marked. And in "Faust", particularly, 
were his accomplishments held to have been the 
most serious he had achieved. 

Also in February the Sicilian agent, Zucchi, 
undertook to give some special performances of 
"Faust" in Caserta. He had invited Caruso to be 
one of the company members, with results disastrous 
to him and all the others too. Most of these Caserta 
audiences were peasants. They did not appreciate 
the artistic value of bel canto singing, so with char- 



60 ENRICO CARUSO 

acteristic vehemence they objected after the sec- 
ond act of the opening presentation to each of 
the artists and with such fury that the season, 
then and there, met an unexpected demise. 

No sooner had Caruso returned to Naples than 
Impresario Giulio Staffelli put the tenor into a 
short season at the Bellini Theater. There he sang 
in "La Traviata", "Rigoletto", "Faust", and " La 
Favorita" under Maestro Siracusa, striving with 
seriousness and energy to make every phrase tell. 
He also sang in a new opera " Mariedda", by Gianni 
Bucceri. 

He was rewarded, after one of these Bellini Theater 
performances, by receiving an offer from Signor 
Cavallaro, one of the best-known tournee impresari 
of that time, who wished to make a several months' 
tour through Sicily, of a place in his company. The 
fee was to have been six hundred lire a month, a sum 
which was still tempting enough to the tenor to 
induce him to accept. He was troubled at the time. 
The departure of his brother Giovanni with his 
regiment, for Massaua (Africa), to engage in the 
Italian-Abyssinian War so depressed Caruso that 
his impresario feared he could not sing the 
Mercadante performance on that February 8 
night. But he did. He finished the remaining 
appearances scheduled for him ; and boarding ship 
sailed for the island to the south. 

The opening of the Sicilian tour was scheduled 
for Trapani, in the Municipal Theater of that par- 
ticular town. Caruso found the home of Enrico 
Pignataro, a baritone member of the company, an 



DEBUTS 61 

inexpensive place in which to live ; and he sang 
well enough the preliminary rehearsals of "Lucia di 
Lammermoor" to satisfy those mainly concerned. 
Then came the day for the general rehearsal. At 
two o'clock that afternoon Caruso sat d'own with 
his baritone friend for the dinner which must serve 
until after the evening performance should be over. 
He drank no more, he declared, than the amount to 
which he had been accustomed at home ; what he 
apparently failed to take into account was the 
heavier character of Sicilian wine, for when he at 
length attempted to rise from the table the tenor 
discovered that both his legs and his head were 
unsteady. Insisting that a walk in the air would 
help, the baritone took his younger companion out 
of doors. Perhaps had he been content to cease his 
ministrations all might have gone well. Instead, 
however, a bracer was mixed for the still dizzy 
Caruso and that settled matters completely. He 
was forced to lie down. Hours passed ; eight o'clock 
arrived, an audience assembled in the municipal 
theater, and an infuriated impresario, learning of 
the non-arrival of his principal tenor, sought an 
explanation of the baritone. Then the truth came 
out. Caruso was still asleep when theater attaches 
reached him. It was nearly one hour afterward 
when he walked upon the stage, his head by no 
means so clear as it should have been for the impor- 
tant task of a debut. 

The opening scene progressed well enough before 
the audience whose annoyance over the long wait 
had almost subsided. Caruso's voice was respond- 



62 ENRICO CARUSO 

ing ; only the text was less clearly fixed in his mind 
than the music. Presently came the words, Le 
Sorti delta Scozia (the fate of Scotland). Why he 
should have sung Le Volpi della Scozia (the Foxes 
of Scotland) the tenor was never able to explain. 
No sooner had the words been delivered than there 
ensued mingled murmurings, which gradually swelled 
into a tumult. In vain the impresario sought to 
restore order. The curtain had to be rung down, and 
thereupon excuses were made for the singer, who, 
it was announced, had not recovered from the effects 
of his sea voyage. When the opera performance 
proceeded, it was without a tenor. 

Despite this incident, and to his surprise, he was 
allowed to appear in the first public presentation of 
"Lucia di Lammermoor", on the following night. 
It is perhaps not to be wondered at that he barely 
managed to get through. Nor was it an evening 
devoid of incident. Beginning to sing, Caruso was 
heartened by the encouragement called out by 
some of the friendly disposed members of the au- 
dience. But no sooner was it proffered than persons 
otherwise disposed voiced their protests. " Le Folpi 
della Scozia!" they shouted; and instantly there 
were created two factions, each striving in its clamor 
to outdo the other. Throughout each act it con- 
tinued until, his courage broken, Caruso finished 
his part with his voice weak and almost out of 
control. 

He was startled upon emerging from the theater 
to discover a group of young men gathered about the 
stage-door entrance. Caruso hesitated, fearful that 



DEBUTS 63 

physical violence was to be done him. In this, 
however, he was mistaken, for immediately the 
leader spoke, saying, "What is the matter? We 
tried to encourage you, and you took no notice." 
Then these Trapani supporters escorted their tenor 
to his lodging, urging him to "be prepared for to- 
morrow", although realizing that by their injudicious 
applause they had not helped his cause. 

Morning came ; and after breakfasting in a little 
cafe Caruso caught sight of the impresario. To the 
tenor's salute and inquiry Cavallaro replied briefly, 
then walked away. Wondering what this might 
mean, the singer sought his baritone friend, who 
excused himself hurriedly on the pretext of an appoint- 
ment. By this time genuinely troubled Caruso walked 
toward the theater. On the way he met different 
members of the company, all of whom appeared 
distant and reserved. Finally he met the opera 
company secretary. "Hah!" exclaimed the latter, 
"I was looking for you. I have a letter." 

Caruso opened the communication. It was from 
Trapani's opera commission, formally protesting 
him as a singer. He walked dazedly to the home 
of the baritone and showed him the letter. 

"There is nothing to do," he said, "but to go 
back." 

"Then," answered Caruso, "you must find a way; 
I have no money. You are responsible for my 
position. If you had not allowed me to oversleep, 
I should not have been late at the general rehearsal, 
and all these things could not have happened " 
The baritone departed and returned later to ex- 



64 ENRICO CAR USD 

plain that he had made arrangements for passage to 
Naples with the sailing master of a vessel. The 
passage would be only eight lire; but since such 
ships were prohibited from carrying passengers 
Caruso was cautioned not to go aboard until after 
nine o'clock that evening. 

He was preparing to leave when, from the court- 
yard below, his name was loudly called. It was 
Secretary Seciutto, dispatched by his impresario 
after the failure of the company's dramatic tenor 
in "Lucia di Lammermoor", to order Caruso to 
remain in Trapani. There had been an uproar, it 
seemed, as soon as the audience discovered that 
instead of Caruso they were listening to the dramatic 
tenor whom he resembled. Then the people had 
shouted: "No! No! the Fox of Scotland is the 
better one." Though permitted to remain, Caruso 
had to consent to accept a reduction in his fee to 
two hundred lire. "For," explained the impresario, 
" I must engage another tenor for the place of this 
one who goes." 

At the second performance of " Lucia di Lammer- 
moor", in which Signor Oddo, the new tenor ap- 
peared, Caruso decided to be present in order that he 
might see for himself what would happen. He paid 
two and a half lire for a seat in the fourth row. 
" It was reassuring to hear the things spoken about me 
by the people near by," said Caruso. "But the 
surprise was to come. No sooner was my presence 
discovered than I was taken from my chair and 
pushed up and upon the stage. And standing 
there, I was unwillingly compelled to see this young 



DEBUTS 65 

tenor (who had a very beautiful voice) led from the 
stage. I finished his part in the opera apparently 
to the satisfaction of the audience." 

The remainder of the Trapani engagement was 
attended by no further disturbing episodes. One 
result, however, was this : Caruso received his six 
hundred lire a month ; and fifteen years later, when 
he chanced again to be passing through Trapani, the 
people recognized him and greeted him with cries 
of " Le Volpi della Scozia" 

III 

The arrival in Naples was attended with some 
measure of triumph. Favorable as well as un- 
favorable reports had preceded Caruso. The im- 
presari, the maestri, the opera singers themselves, 
and the students preparing hopefully to be of their 
number, all knew more or less of the tenor's Sicily 
tour. They were curious to discover, through the 
next appearances of this young artist, whether he had 
in truth advanced. This speculation was put speed- 
ily to an end in two public achievements made 
possible by the ever faithful Zucchi. The msyor 
of Salerno, preparing for his city's celebration in 
1896 of Italy's Independence Day (the first Sunday 
in June), had ordered two presentations of "Rigo- 
letto." Commissioned to supply the artists, Zucchi 
had insisted that his u beddu nicu (fine-looking little 
boy) should be intrusted with the role of the Duke. 

Salerno's opera-going public had never heard of 
Enrico Caruso until the Saturday evening which 



66 ENRICO CARUSO 

marked the beginning of the celebration of 1896. 
With the mayor and his staff among those present, 
the singer went before them. He was seen and heard 
and although his voice broke on the high IB-flat 
near the end of the duet, 'E il sol dell ' anima - 
conquered. He was quite as favorably received 
the following evening by a Salerno throng which 
discounted a troublesome top note in such a voice. 
Admirers of the unknown tenor immediately sprang 
up, one of whom was Enrico Lorello. To this music 
enthusiast, who could not forcibly enough express 
his regard for the Neapolitan, Enrico Caruso was 
"the coming world's greatest tenor." Lorello re- 
peated his prediction to every one he met, including 
Caruso himself, to whom he said, " You will one day 
be the greatest of the greatest." To this the tenor 
had smilingly answered, "Well Lorello, if that be so, 
then you shall be my secretary." 

Among those best fitted to estimate Caruso's 
qualities aright was Maestro Vincenzo Lombardi, 
the same Lombardi who afterward became a 
famous teacher of singing, and whose opinions com- 
manded such widespread respect. Lombardi was 
then distinguished as musician and conductor. When 
he spoke, others obeyed ; wherefore, summoned by the 
maestro, Caruso presented himself without delay. 

Dismissing preliminaries of any sort, Lombardi 
asked the tenor if he had ever sung in " I Puritani ", 
which it was his intention to give during the Salerno 
season t6 be opened during the next two months. 

"I explained to Lombardi," to use Caruso's own 
words, "that I had never attempted to sing the tenor 



DEBUTS 67 

role in 'Puritani* because my voice was too short" 
(lacking in the extreme high notes). "The manner 
of Lombardi was not altered by what I had said. 
* If you accept for the money we can pay, I will 
make " longer" the voice because you do not know 
how to sing.' 

" I was surprised at these words, yet I knew Lom- 
bardi to be a great maestro ; so I was glad to accept 
at once his offer of seven hundred lire for a two and a 
half months' season. I began very soon to study with 
Lombardi. He got me to put more power behind 
my tones ; and although I did not, until much later, 
get the top notes as I should, I was finally able, 
through his instruction, to give all those in the 
'Puritani' music which the tenor must sing." 

The Salerno opening at length arrived. Impresario 
Visciani chose the Verdi Theater, and prepared 
well; "I Puritani" was presented and under 
Lombardi's conductorship won a merited success. 
Apart from all the principals who participated in it 
stood one clearly revealed. All the hardships and 
heartaches, all the yearnings and sacrifices were 
compensated for in this first "Puritani" that Enrico 
Caruso sang. The news was flashed quickly to 
Milan ; then with almost similar speed came a 
letter from Milan's La Scala impresario inviting 
the singer to create the tenor part in the opera "II 
Signor di Pourceaugnac ", by Baron Franchetti. 
Well aware of the value of his "find", Visciani 
would not release him when the request was made. 
Perhaps it was just as well. Certainly Caruso 
suffered nothing in his career through having to defer 



68 ENRICO CARUSO 

his La Scala debut. And he had the satisfaction - 
after one "Puritani" representation of being vis- 
ited in his dressing room by the then tenor-idol of 
Italy, Fernando de Lucia who, learning of the Caruso 
acclaim, had come from Cava specially to hear for 
himself what this possible successor might be like. 
De Lucia was not disappointed ; and, tenor though 
he was, he congratulated his confrere and begged 
him to consider well, for his future, the need of 
study. 

"I Puritani" was followed by "Cavalleria Ru- 
sticana ", also with Caruso ; an opera in which he 
failed to equal the vocal and artistic accomplishments 
attained in the former work. Still, this did not 
appear to influence his popularity with the public. 
He began to attract the attention of people outside 
the theater, and they, wishing to pay him special 
consideration, disputed among themselves which 
should have him for this occasion or that. One 
admirer, destined for a time to be conspicuous among 
all who stalked after Caruso during his waking hours, 
was don Peppo Grassi. An elderly impresario - 
rotund, smiling, and having the gift of delicately 
sarcastic speech which prevails even now in the 
columns of La Frusta, of which he is proprietor- 
editor Grassi fell completely under the Caruso 
spell. His daughter Josephine, studying singing 
at the same time with Lombardi, did still more than 
that. Her malady was love, which affected her at 
first sight of the young tenor. She was not, it 
appeared, to endure that malady quite alone ; 
Caruso too was stricken with it, with the result - 



DEBUTS 69 

somewhat later that the two became engaged 
to be married. 

All this, together with the singer's increasing favor, 
prompted the vigorous don Peppo Grassi to bestir 
himself. What could so effectively fan this Caru- 
siana flame as a company organized for a special 
Salerno season ? With Lombardi and Vergine as 
partners, Grassi decided to present at the Comu- 
nale Theater during October and November of 
1896 twenty performances of opera. Preliminaries 
passed ; the premiere took place ; a fresh impetus 
was imparted to the Caruso boom. " La Traviata", 
"La Favorita", " Carmen ", "I Pagliacci", and 
"A San Francisco" the last mentioned having 
been popular because of its librettist and composer, 
Salvatore di Giacomo and Maestro Sebastiani 
were the operas performed. Signer Pagani was the 
alternate tenor ; Signora Annina Franco wore prima 
donna laurels ; Signora Masola was the mezzo- 
soprano ; and the ever-present Pignataro sang leading 
baritone parts. With Lombardi conducting, the or- 
ganization seemed artistically secure. The audiences 
were large and enthusiastic ; everybody who was any- 
body at all attended the performances with appro- 
priate regularity, and unpretentious folk went as well. 
Many of these occasions, by reason of Salerno's 
opera fashion of the moment, took on a gala touch. 
Multicolored feminine costumes dotted the audiences 
which assembled in the Comunale ; supper parties 
followed every performance, and the season bore 
on with Caruso growing steadily in the public's 
regard. 



70 ENRICO CARUSO 

Considering some of his vocal shortcomings at that 
time, it may cause curiosity. A favorite he un- 
questionably was with the Salerno populace ; but 
a reliable singer he had by no means then become. 
Despite the ingratiating quality of his voice, and a 
style of singing undeniably smooth, the tenor was 
still uncertain of his highest tones. With some arias 
he experienced great difficulty, and one of these 
was the Flower song in "Carmen." Invariably, 
when attempting to sing the top B-flat which marks 
the climax near the close of this number, Caruso's 
voice broke. It would occur, clock-like, during 
every performance of the Bizet opera, to the dis- 
comfiture of the singer and don Peppo Grassi's 
despair. So concerned was don Peppo over his 
protege, that as often as the Flower song approached 
he would station himself in the wings, gazing upon 
Caruso in a manner that seemed to say, "You must 
not break on the B-flat." Then would come the 
fateful phrase Te riveder, Carmen and the 
splintering of the top note. Unfailingly, on every 
such occasion, don Peppo would jump backward, 
run his fingers wildly through his hair, and knock his 
head against one of the wings which fortunately 
was of paper. 

Such behavior, even though practiced by his 
impresario, jarred the singer's nerves. His first 
protests being of no avail Caruso finally rushed 
into the wings after the act of one of the performances 
and cried, "Listen! if you stand here again while 
I am singing the aria, I will leave the company. 
You are my jettatore (hoodoo) ." 



DEBUTS 71 

"I, jettatore!" exclaimed don Peppo. " How is 
that possible ?" 

" Because there is no worse jettatore than one who 
is interested in or who has affection for one he wishes 
well." 

"Very good,'* answered the impresario, calming 
himself. "When next you sing the aria, I will go 
outside and smoke a cigar." 

Although Grassi kept his word, Caruso's Flower 
song B-flat continued to break whenever he at- 
tempted to deliver it and, according to don Peppo 
(though he admitted not having heard) even worse 
than before. Yet the people appeared not to care. 
They became more devoted to their tenor, with 
the result that the box-office receipts were large 
whenever he sang. Invitations to the best Salerno 
homes continued to be too numerous for him to 
accept them all. 

Caruso's vocal trouble on the high notes, if un- 
important to these particular listeners, neverthe- 
less gave him grave concern. He realized that if he 
were ever to become great he must conquer this 
shortcoming. Lombardi did also ; and together 
they worked, harder than ever to make the upper 
voice secure. The maestro appreciated, as his pupil 
did not, that a constricted throat while attempting 
to sing high notes was chiefly responsible for the 
breaking of his tones. In order to cause the tone 
to "pass" properly when the higher pitches were 
reached, Lombardi after explaining carefully those 
essentials with respect to proper breath support, 
and a loose lower jaw would make Caruso drop 



72 ENRICO CARUSO 

his head, then place it firmly against a wall. In 
this position he would command, " Now sing 
with strength." Persistence brought some reward ; 
before the conclusion of that Salerno season the 
tenor's top notes began to come more freely, and it 
was not many months afterward that the "breaking" 
habit almost totally disappeared. Caruso's pe- 
culiarity of "setting" a top note with lowered head 
may be remembered by those who heard him during 
the height of his fame. To the last he followed 
this practice : attacking a high tone in the manner 
explained, one foot extended well in advance of the 
other, then with the tone focused occasionally 
throwing back his head, to let the tone soar as only 
a Caruso tone could. 

Toward the end of the Salerno season at the Co- 
munale, Caruso gave the first-known evidences of the 
vocal endurance and dependableness he was, later 
in his career, so convincingly to disclose. "A San 
Francisco" was scheduled for its premiere, with 
Caruso in the leading tenor role ; and since it was a 
short opera the bill included for its closing portion 
"I Pagliacci." The former opera had been re- 
ceived enthusiastically, largely because of the pop- 
ularity of composer and librettist. Indications were 
pointing to another notable Comunale night when 
the indisposition of the tenor (a Signor Pagani), 
cast to sing Canio, filled the management with 
alarm. What if Pagani were unable to finish ? 
With diplomatic forethought don Peppo Grassi, 
preparing in advance for the emergency his ex- 
perience whispered threatened, repaired with Lorn- 



DEBUTS 73 

bardi to Caruso's dressing room where the singer 
was changing into street attire. 

"Undress," said don Peppo, "but do not leave 
the theater." 

"Why," demanded the astonished tenor. 

"Because if Pagani does not go well in 'Pagliacci* 
you will have to sing. Not a word more." 

Observing that Lombardi approved of the im- 
presario's intention, Caruso became furious. "You 
are both crazy!" he cried. "I am starving, and 
I shall go out to get some food." 

" Do not worry," admonished Lombardi. " Signer 
Grassi has arranged to have you served at once with 
a fine dinner here in your dressing room." 

"And Caruso," said Salvatore di Giacomo (li- 
brettist of "A San Francisco") who was present, 
"ate a large dish of spaghetti, two pork chops, and 
drank almost a liter of wine." Soon afterward, as 
"Pagliacci" was progressing, the theater auditorium 
rang with cries of : " Enough ! Enough !" for Pagani, 
as he had feared, was in very bad voice. By this 
time Caruso had donned his clown's costume and 
painted his face white. It was perhaps a hazardous 
thing to have thus used his voice so soon after a 
hearty meal, but the singing of the tenor for the 
remainder of ''Pagliacci" seems not to have suffered. 
The performance closed with the audience expressing 
in almost frantic applause its whole-hearted ap- 
proval. 

The period between the finish of the Comunale 
special season in late November, and the December 
opening of the Bellini Theater, in Naples, was short. 



74 ENRICO CARUSO 

It nevertheless enabled Caruso to improve still 
further, through the application of Lombardi's prin- 
ciples, his coveted high tones. Appearing during 
this season of Santo Stefano in "La Gioconda" 
and "Ugonotti", the tenor was recognized as never 
before by the people of his native city. The critics 
wrote of his progress ; they commented upon his 
admirable diction; his voice, all declared, had 
acquired both color and warmth. One reviewer 
went so far as to assert that "Caruso sings a la De 
Lucia", and as De Lucia was for the Neapolitans 
almost a god, he 1 could scarcely have said more. 

January of 1897 brought the young tenor another 
opportunity to appear in the Mercadante Theater 
of Naples. The season was under the impresa of 
Alberto Landi and Baron Mascia, the operas assigned 
Caruso being "La Gioconda", "La Traviata", and 
"Dramma in Vendemmia", a new work by Vincenzo 
Fornari. Signora Penchi, soprano ; Mme. Dom- 
prowitch, contralto ; and Signori Guarini and Bran- 
caleone, baritone and basso respectively, appeared 
with the tenor in "La Gioconda", which was con- 
ducted by Maestro Scalise. Fornari directed his 
own opera, "Dramma in Vendemmia." 

Although Antonio Scotti was also a Neapolitan, 
his engagements during the earlier period of Caruso's 
career had prevented his ever having heard his 
younger fellow townsman. During this Mercadante 
season Scotti was singing in "Falstaff" at the 
Argentina Theater, in Rome. Camillo Bonetti 
famous now as impresario of the Colon Theater, in 
Buenos Aires was then secretary to Signora Fer- 



TEATRO MUNICIPALS DI SALERNO 



A BENEFICIO DEL TENORE 

sic. ElICO CARUSO 




U GIOOOHOA 

\uii\-isaiinA ;-r Salerno 

liran.!.- ,.|-ri. !. 11, i lti ,!. | M.,,,.:,.. PONCHIELLI 



i& 







REDUCED FACSIMILE OF THE PROGRAM OF THE TEATRO 
MUNICIPALS IN SALERNO FOR THE PERFORMANCE OF 
"LA GIOCONDA" GIVEN IN HONOR OF CARUSO, 
APRIL 30, 1897 

The copy from which this reduced facsimile was made, was furnished 

through the courtesy of Nicola Daspuro, Naples. Note announcement 

of the singer's Christian name as Errico, not Enrico. 



DEBUTS 75 

rari, in those days a South American impresaria. 
During a visit with Scotti in Rome, the baritone 
spoke to Bonetti of a tenor, by name Caruso, who 
was then appearing at the Fondo (Mercadante) 
of Naples. "I would suggest," Scotti said to Bo- 
netti, "that you go to hear him." This the latter 
did ; but his report did not bear out the fine reports 
circulated on all sides. "That Caruso," declared 
Bonetti, "is no more than a mediocre tenor; so 
mediocre as to be of the third class." Not until 
1899 did these two men, who were to become such 
fast friends, meet. On May 24, 1902, at London, 
in a Covent Garden performance of "La Boheme" 
these two artists, who afterward appeared together 
in so many representations, sang with each other 
for the first time. 

IV 

Experience had been having its effect upon the 
young Neapolitan tenor. Though still vocally and 
artistically immature, he was beginning to reflect 
in his operatic appearances the value of a moderate 
routine gained in troublous grooves. The hard 
knocks had not been endured without the learning 
of valuable lessons ; for each one fitted Caruso the 
better to meet whatever next might come. Health 
had blessed him. Fortune seemed to have ap- 
proached somewhat nearer. The career, if yet in 
the distance, was nevertheless a discernible thing. 
Like the ship which trembles under the impact of 
deep waters, the singer was beginning instinctively 
to brace himself to meet responsibilities that then 



76 ENRICO CARUSO 

increased. A slip or false move would have invited 
more serious consequences than if made even half 
a year before. Having accomplished more, more 
was expected of him. He played during his leisure 
moments as he had played in the past : the world 
was looming larger, brighter, and altogether a more 
desirable place in which to live. But the need of 
work, of applying himself to each task with that 
thoroughness which helps to bring mastery, appears 
at this period to have been borne in upon the man. 
Indeed, Caruso could not have added to his repertory 
to the extent that he did short of much labor. His 
Bronzetti school training began to break through, 
and with pen or pencil he would copy the notes and 
text of some opera part, fixing both, through this 
method, securely in his mind. His increasing favor 
with those of the public who heard him had begun 
to develop in him some self-confidence ; and this was 
perhaps responsible for the poise he commenced to 
acquire. 

These manifestations of growth were not confined 
solely to the singer's artistic side. Having become 
a man, he turned toward man's inclinations, one of 
which was his discovery that he could not much 
longer live conveniently in his former home. So a 
few months later he bade a farewell to that dwelling 
in Sant' Anna alle Paludi which had so long sheltered 
him. He returned whenever possible for visits with 
his father and stepmother; but after the year 1897 
he was master in whatever place he was privileged 
to call his house. 

Having been engaged for the new Salerno season 



DEBUTS 77 

at the Comunale Theater, Caruso presented himself 
well in advance of the opening date of March i, 1897. 
He was to receive one thousand lire for an engagement 
which was to continue, as it did, until the following 
May 4. In the company were Signora Zucchi- 
Ferrigni, soprano ; Mme. Masola, mezzo-soprano ; 
Enrico Pignataro, baritone, and Signor de Falco, 
basso. Maestro Vincenzo Lombardi was the con- 
ductor. The operas in which Caruso appeared 
were "La Gioconda", "Manon Lescaut", "La Tra- 
viata ", and " Profeta Velato ", a new work by Maestro 
Daniele Napolitano. The tenor started his appear- 
ances under a favorable star. With each fresh effort 
he found such an added ease that the people rose to 
him. When it became evident to the watchful 
Vergine that his pupil was more than holding his 
own, the singing master left for the long-anticipated 
return call on Nicola Daspuro once again to tell 
of the accomplishments of his favorite tenor, who 
alone needed the "famous push" to send him to 
the " pinnacle of glory." 

To Vergine's pleadings that Daspuro consent to 
make the journey from Naples to Salerno the 
latter roughly replied, "I go to Salerno? You are 
crazy." 

"Yes," answered the teacher, "but please come." 
" I had never beheld such faith in a pupil as this 
maestro showed for Caruso," declared Daspuro. " He 
touched me. To myself I said, 'Perhaps this man 
speaks the truth. Anyhow, I could have a friendly 
chat with my friend don Peppo Grassi, the im- 
presario ; and by going I will be rid for always of 



78 ENRICO CARUSO 

this maniac/ 'Very well, Maestro/ I consented. 
4 But if I find, instead of a divo, a dog, then poor 
you!'" 

Daspuro reached the Comunale, where Vergine 
awaited him with still another request. He must 
not, begged the teacher, be seen by the sensitive 
Caruso before the performance. "He would in- 
stantly recall his experience with you and Zuccani, 
perhaps lose his head, and then good night!" 

The opera was "La Gioconda" and in it Daspuro 
avers that Caruso sang with a voice full of warmth 
and power, and with much style. So impressed was 
the Sonzogno manager that, following the audience's 
acclaim of the tenor, he promised Vergine, between 
acts, to engage Caruso for a Lirico Theater season, 
in Milan. After the performance there was a supper 
at which Caruso, the then overjoyed Vergine, and 
Daspuro gathered. 

"How much," inquired Daspuro of Caruso, "do 
you receive for an appearance ? " 

"Twenty lire" 

"Then how do you manage to eat ? " 

"Oh! that is easy," replied the tenor. "The 
people like me. I sing wherever I am asked ; and 
in return I am given luncheons, dinners, and some- 
times presents." 

"Eat well," said Daspuro, "but do not be too 
generous with your voice," to which Caruso smilingly 
answered, "Don't worry about that. I can give 
voice to all the world." 

This response nettled Daspuro, who feared the 
tenor was developing conceit. So, Neapolitan fash- 




ENRICO CARUSO IN 1896 

The original photograph, ha.rr.sd in silver, was given by Caruso, in London, 

to his son Enrico, Jr., as a birthday present. The photograph has suffered 

evident injury, but the portrait is of interest as representative of the tran- 

sitionary period between the singer's youth and maturity. 



DEBUTS 79 

ion, he admonished him: "Guaglio (young man), 
be careful not to lose your head/* 

There is no evidence that Caruso was propelled 
through the public's attention into the loss of his 
head. What he did lose was his cherished moustache, 
which he sacrificed in order that he might more 
fittingly suggest Chevalier des Grieux in Puccini's 
"Manon Lescaut." Although a long and vocally 
arduous role, the tenor appears to have sustained it 
without fatigue. His powers of resistance were 
steadily developing ; and it was well for him that 
such was the case, otherwise since he was appear- 
ing in almost every opera he would not have 
performed so physically exacting a task. 

The final portion of the Salerno season brought 
renewed recognition for Caruso. Such was its pro- 
portion that word of it drifted to Milan. Con- 
firmation of this recognition by Maestro Leopoldo 
Mugnone, who had heard the tenor, was such that 
very shortly a Signer Argenti, theatrical agent, 
telegraphed the tenor inviting him to accept an 
invitation to participate in the inauguration of the 
Massimo Theater of Palermo. He offered two thou- 
sand seven hundred and fifty lire for forty-five days, 
a fee larger than any the singer had then received. 
Fate appeared finally to have showered its bounty 
upon the young artist. Through Lombardi and 
Commendatore De Leo, Mayor of Salerno, Caruso 
had asked don Peppo Grassi for the hand of his 
daughter in marriage. He had received Grassi's 
consent joyously ; there had been some sort of cele- 
bration in honor of the engagement ; the ceremony 



80 ENRICO CARUSO 

had been set for the following year. In the midst 
of all this happiness there crossed its path a shadow 
in the person of one of the twelve ballerinas who, 
by their dancing, had captivated Salerno. She 
fascinated the tenor with such completeness that 
his feelings toward Josephine Grassi experienced a 
sudden change. Whether he ever really loved her 
may be open to question ; the fact remains that when 
the final curtain fell on that Salerno season Caruso 
departed for Palermo taking with him the pretty 
ballet girl. In this contest of hearts Terpsichore 
had defeated Euterpe. 



CHAPTER FIVE 

REALIZATIONS 

CARUSO missed the honor of participating in the 
formal opening of Palermo's Massimo Theater in 
May, 1897. "Falstaff", with Leopoldo Mugnone 
conducting, was the opera chosen without the 
tenor whose hopes had been fixed on sharing in the 
event. Puccini's "La Boheme" followed, then came 
"La Gioconda" and the Caruso debut before a 
Palermo audience. The singer has related how he 
arrived "on the piazza" (as Italian singers are wont 
to express it) only to find Mugnone less friendly 
disposed than at the time he had recommended him 
for the Massimo engagement. Caruso felt Mu- 
gnone's coldness to have been due to reasons scarcely 
fair (each, it seems, had formed an attachment for 
the one who had seen fit to bestow her favor upon 
the younger man). Still, whether fair or not in the 
stand he took, Mugnone, according to the tenor, 
made his rehearsals of "Gioconda" most unpleasant 
affairs. Summoned on occasions to appear at the 
theater as early as nine o'clock in the morning, Caruso 
has described how difficult he found each attempt to 
reach the high notes of his part. A change in this 
maestro's attitude was brought about during the 
general rehearsal of the opera, when the tenor sang 
with such fervor that Mugnone himself, exclaiming 
"bravo", rapped approvingly with his baton on the 



82 ENRICO CARUSO 

conductor's stand. The trouble period, though, was 
not safely passed. The Sicilian artists of the com- 
pany were angry that one of their compatriot tenors 
had not been engaged for so prominent a post ; and 
there also was the threatened danger of protestation 
from the theater commission, which it could exercise 
up to and including Caruso's third appearance in the 
opera of his debut. No such protest was ever ex- 
ercised. The tenor's third Enzo was evidently too 
satisfactory an achievement. So he continued to the 
end of the season, in June, singing in twelve repre- 
sentations of "La Gioconda", with Signora Nedea 
Borelli, soprano ; Signore Borlinetto and Paolicchi- 
Mugnone, contralti ; and Signor Terzi, baritone. 
Under the management of Commendatore Ignazio 
Florio and Cavalier C. di Giorgio, that opening 
Massimo season was a distinguished success. It 
sent Caruso to his Sant' Anna alle Paludi home with 
much money in his pockets, a part of which he spent 
freely in the purchase of new clothing. Then it 
was that the tenor acquired his first frock coat ; and 
arrayed in his newly bought garments, and wearing 
a derby hat, he strode forth to astonish the neighbors 
with his fine apparel. 

His Palermo experiences had further strengthened 
the Caruso resources, and they likewise increased 
Nicola Daspuro's faith that the tenor was to achieve 
a great career. Meeting Edoardo Sonzogno in 
Rome, to attend with him the premiere at the Co- 
stanzi Theater of "Andrea Chenier", Daspuro in- 
formed his chief of Caruso's Palermo success. 

"'Signer Edoardo,'" Daspuro began, "'we have 



REALIZATIONS 83 

in Naples a young man, Enrico Caruso, a youthful 
plant of a tenor. He has a voice a trifle short, but 
with a center that is round, velvety, and reminding 
one of Masini in his prime/ 

'"You really like him?' inquired Sonzogno, to 
which I answered, * Enormously/ 'Then engage 
him/ directed Sonzogno, 'for the next autumn at 
the Lirico' (Milan). 

'"I will do better/" declared Daspuro. "'I will 
make with him a contract for only the autumn 
but orally for the three seasons of fall, Lent, and 
Carnevale. You will see that when Caruso sings 
Milan will take flight to the sky/ 

' ' Go easy/ cautioned Sonzogno ; but I was con- 
fident, and said 'you will see/ 'Then do as you 
like/ remarked Sonzogno, indulging in one of his 
incredulous smiles. 

"Returning to Naples," continued Daspuro, "I 
summoned Vergine and Caruso, and proposed a con- 
tract for the tenor to sing at the Lirico at five hundred 
lire a month, from October I to December 10. The 
right was reserved, however, for Sonzogno to engage 
Caruso for the following Lenten and Carnevale 
seasons. We met next morning at the Galleria, 
and proceeded to the little telegraph office near the 
San Carlo Theater. I signed for Sonzogno, and 
Vergine and Caruso for themselves." It was agreed 
that the tenor should study three operas which at 
the time were new to him: "Voto", by Giordano, 
the "Arlesiana" of Cilea, and Leoncavallo's "La 
Boheme." Later, after an examination of these 
scores, Vergine recommended to his pupil that he 



84 ENRICO CARUSO 

refuse the last one. A reconciliation having been 
effected with Mugnone, near the end of Caruso's 
Palermo engagement, the conductor had suggested 
to Impresario Arturo Lisciarelli, of Livorno, that he 
secure the tenor for one month of the season he was 
planning to give, beginning in August, 1897. 

"I can state very definitely," Caruso once declared, 
"that from the time of my Livorno engagement began 
the fortunate period of my career from which I have 
had much pleasure, success and sorrow. Perhaps 
I might separate that career into four distinct parts : 

"The first period ended in June, 1897, at Palermo. 

"The second covered the ten years between 1898 
and 1908. 

"The third part extended from 1909 to 1918. 

"The fourth section, which began in 1919, will 
continue for I cannot say how long !" 

At his first Livorno appearance, as Alfredo in 
"La Traviata", Caruso impressed vividly his hearers 
and manager. Upon the singer this reacted in bene- 
ficial ways, stimulating him with such confidence 
that at each reappearance he sang with finer vocalism 
and art. There entered in his mind at this period a 
firm belief in himself. He perhaps might stumble, 
but he was convinced that never again would he be 
destined to fall. 

It was at this juncture that the publishing house of 
Ricordi, anxious to present in Livorno some per- 
formances of the then recently produced and 
successful "La Boheme" of Giacomo Puccini, 
had arranged with Lisciarelli to that end. The 
project promised difficulties, for Livorno was the 



REALIZATIONS 85 

birthplace of Pietro Mascagni, whose operas were 
being fostered by Sonzogno, chief publishing rival of 
Ricordi. Realizing the natural skepticism with 
which the Livornese would regard any work by a 
composer other than their beloved Mascagni, the 
Ricordi firm were proceeding with extreme care. 
They had consented to the choice of Signora Ada 
Giachetti for the role of Mimi ; Antonio Pini-Corsi 
was acceptable for the Marcello ; but where to find 
an adequate Rodolfo these publishers did not know. 
There were many tenors, yet only the best one would 
do. The problem was : Where was he to be found ? 

Lisciarelli had every confidence that Caruso was 
the tenor sought, and he so stated in a letter dis- 
patched to the Ricordis, in Milan, from which he 
anticipated a favorable reply. The answer, how- 
ever, conveyed more than a feeling of doubt, for it 
read, "Who is this Caruso?" To the tenor, thus 
summarily rejected, this communication came as a 
slap in the face. Lisciarelli had promised him for 
the "Boheme" appearances one thousand lire for 
an extra month of singing ; and, besides, he wished 
keenly to appear in a new role. The music Caruso 
already knew ; this chance to sing it he determined to 
seize. So when the impresario suggested that he go to 
Puccini, who was stopping at the time in his country 
place on the shore of Torre del Lago, he was ready to 
acquiesce. The distance from Livorno was not far. 

"If Puccini approves of you," declared the im- 
presario, "the business is fixed." Caruso had further 
ideas in the matter, of a monetary sort. 

"All right," he replied, "only if he recommends 



86 ENRICO CARUSO 

me, you must pay me one thousand lire for each 
'Boheme* appearance. Should you wish me to ap- 
pear anyway, without Puccini's consent, I am will- 
ing to agree to sing for just my living expenses 
alone fifteen lire a day." This proposal Lisciarelli 
flatly refused, the subject was dropped, and Caruso 
soon forgot about it. 

One Sunday morning some ten days later the 
tenor was awakened from his sleep by a friend who 
knocked loudly on his door. "Get up!" came the 
command, "and come with me out to the country 
for some shooting." Caruso approved of the sug- 
gestion. An hour afterwards he and his companion 
were riding in a train that ran alongside the shores of 
Torre del Lago. They had not gone far when, 
Caruso's attention having been attracted to a 
picturesque looking dwelling, his friend suggested 
that they get out the better to see it. Caruso walked 
toward the house with his companion, who led the 
way across the lawn, up to the doorway, and directly 
the two entered the hall. Advancing to meet them 
came a man whom the tenor instantly recognized, 
from photographs he had seen, as Puccini himself. 
The composer, who seemed to know perfectly well 
Caruso's guide, made the tenor welcome. At their 
host's suggestion all three thereupon went out upon 
the lake, secured a bag of game, then returned to the 
picturesque little house. Comfortably settled once 
more, Puccini turned to the singer and said, " Signor 
Caruso, people have told me much about you, but 
never have I heard you sing. Do you know my 
'Boheme'?" 



REALIZATIONS 87 

The answer came quickly. "Yes, Maestro; I 
can sing for you the romanza, but please do not ask 
me to put in the high C." 

" Perhaps you have not looked well at the score," 
reproved Puccini, "else you would have seen that 
the marking shows the singer may, or may not, 
take the C at his pleasure." 

"Oh, yes," agreed Caruso. "But it is the custom 
to put it in." 

"Never mind ; sing me well the aria and I will not 
care for the high C. Generally the tenors sing all 
the music badly in order to save themselves for that 
one note." 

Directly Caruso had finished singing the Che 
gelida manina Puccini turned to the friend who had 
brought him, saying, "Tell Lisciarelli that I approve 
the appearance of Signor Caruso in my 'Boheme/' 

"I was made twice glad," declared the tenor, "for 
besides being able to add another opera to my 
repertoire, there were the large cachets which I could 
use very well. My friend and I returned to Livorno ; 
that same evening I saw Lisciarelli, who had already 
received Puccini's message. 'To-morrow/ he in- 
formed me, 'we will begin rehearsals/ 'Yes/ I 
agreed, 'but please remember to make the new 
contract.' 'Naturally. You will sing Rodolfo in 
"Boheme" for one month, at the price of your living 
expenses fifteen lire a day/ 

"I was astonished. What of our agreement ? It 
developed that Lisciarelli barricaded himself behind 
the argument that, since he had rejected my proposal, 
he had not actually sent me to Puccini. If I had 



88 ENRICO CARUSO 

chosen to go there of my own accord, it was no 
concern of his, even though the maestro himself had 
approved of me to sing in his 'Boheme.' It was of 
course a clever trick, in which, to serve this impre- 
sario's selfish end, my friend had been innocently 
used. I had nothing to do but accept on those unfair 
terms to me, yet I was not sorry because another 
success came to me." 

Such was its success that the opera was performed 
in Livorno during August of that year on twenty-six 
occasions, each time with Caruso as Rodolfo. All 
did not go smoothly, in spite of outward evidences to 
the contrary. Intrigue wormed its way into the 
ranks of Lisciarelli's company, as it so often does into 
the ranks of many another. A new tenor had been 
summoned ; and he attempted, by devious machina- 
tions, to undermine Caruso in order that he might 
sing Rodolfo in his place. To an extent he suc- 
ceeded ; though he got no farther than part of a 
single appearance, in which he was treated to much 
the same experience of that young tenor atTrapani 
who had suffered the humiliation of having been led 
from the stage. 

This unpleasantness, nor the strange insistence 
of Lisciarelli in limiting the cachet of his popular tenor 
to fifteen lire a day, disturbed scarcely at all the 
easy-going Caruso. He foresaw, even before it actu- 
ally came, the outcome likely to follow the overex- 
tension of the Livorno season ; the town was scarcely 
large or prosperous enough to support so much 
opera. Also his heart had been made happy, some 
time before, by an affection that had arisen between 



REALIZATIONS 89 

him and Ada Giachetti, the prima donna whose Mimi 
provided such substantial support to his first Rodolfo. 
More experienced operatically then he, Signora 
Giachetti was also a well-schooled musician and 
pianiste. Nature had given her comeliness and a 
quick mind ; and being herself of a sensitive dispo- 
sition, her understanding of the unaffected and 
direct Caruso helped to establish between them a 
very close bond. Out of her broader knowledge of 
opera routine, and her superior years, she was able 
to counsel and direct. The technic of singing, too, 
she had grasped and ultimately mastered. What 
was more natural then in a land and in a profes- 
sion where such alliances so often obtain that 
Enrico Caruso and Ada Giachetti should have 
combined their fortunes. For eleven years that 
relationship continued ; and she is the mother of his 
two boys, Rodolfo and Enrico Jr. 

II 

That Livorno season "died", just as Caruso 
had anticipated, leaving him with scarcely funds 
enough for the journey to Florence where friends 
made him welcome in their home for eight days. 
This same family loaned him fifty lire to go on to 
Milan in search of other friends who, the tenor felt 
confident, would aid him in his pecuniary dilemma. 
He arrived at the Galleria the famous meeting 
place of opera singers, conductors, and impresari 
where most of their business is transacted and 
sought one after another of those whose assistance 
he had counted upon. But each person Caruso 



90 ENRICO CARUSO 

approached to ask for money either refused, or else 
demanded an interest rate of fifty per cent. Three 
days passed before the tenor summoned courage to 
present himself to Edoardo Sonzogno, to ask, dif- 
fidently, for part of his " advance'* on account of 
his forthcoming engagement at the Lirico Theater. 
Sonzogno did more than to receive Caruso with 
kindliness ; he considerately paid to him the entire 
"advance", which at that time he need not have 
done. Relieved in being able to return at once 
the fifty lire borrowed money, Caruso accepted an 
opportunity to sing in a single representation of 
Puccini's "La Boheme" at the Verdi Theater, in 
Fiume, and then prepared to rest. 

In mid-September, when the tenor returned to 
Milan to make ready for the October first opening 
of the Lirico season, those oscillating clouds which 
seemed destined never to leave his skies again re- 
appeared. Unfavorable reports of Caruso began to 
reach the ears of Sonzogno, and curious to learn 
what Daspuro might have to offer, he wrote him a 
letter. 

"Dear Daspuro," it began, "I thank you for the 
present you have made me by engaging a baritone 
instead of a tenor." Instantly came the following 
reply. 

" Dear Signor Edoardo : 

Before judging it is essential to hear and see. 
Anyhow, if Caruso is a baritone De Lucia is a basso 
profundo. Wait ; and in the meantime do not lend 
your ears to jealous and wicked tongues. 

Nicola Daspuro." 



REALIZATIONS 91 

The reaction of uncertainty upon such a nature as 
Caruso's was damaging to his artistic powers. Real- 
izing through not having been summoned for re- 
hearsal that something was wrong, the tenor had no 
alternative than to wait and hold his peace. The 
season was going on ; other artists were busy ; yet 
he, though a member of the Sonzogno company, was 
having no active part in it. About October 15, 1897, 
he was summoned before the director and asked, 
"Are you ready with the three operas I sent your 
master, Vergine ?" 

" I am ready with two of them," answered Caruso, 
"but not with Leoncavallo's 'Boheme.' ' 

"Well," inquired Sonzogno, "why?" 

" Because my teacher said it was too strong for my 



voice." 



"In spite of what your teacher says," retorted the 
director, "I suggest, since you have nothing to do, 
that you try to learn this part with an accompanist I 
will send to you." 

That very afternoon work was begun on the Leon- 
cavallo score ; and the singing continued, day after 
day, through the remainder of October and on 
through a part of November. Sonzogno had not 
exercised his option in his contract with Caruso to 
engage him for the Carnevale season, and the singer 
"saw black" for his future as the weeks passed with 
nothing to reassure him. This apprehension was 
ended suddenly the middle of November when, 
without previous intimation of any sort, Caruso 
received from Sonzogno a letter confirming him for 
that Lirico's coming Carnevale season. Then the 



92 ENRICO CARUSO 

discovery was made that the accompanist under 
orders from his superior had been reporting regu- 
larly upon the tenor's abilities and progress. Al- 
though this respite had come at a moment sorely 
needed, it was by no means assured that the im- 
mediate future was secure. Before that there must 
come an actual debut, in which a critical and ex- 
acting public, and a still more critical and exacting 
impresario, would render two vital decisions. In 
the midst of worrying over that coveted Lirico first 
appearance, the tenor was ordered to report to 
Sonzogno. 

In his almost irritatingly slow speech the director 
asked : "Are you ready with 'La Navarraise' ?" to 
which Caruso answered, "Who is she ?" 

"What!" ejaculated Sonzogno, "you don't know 
the opera 'Navarraise' ?" The tenor answered that 
he did not. 

"Well," observed the impresario, "you have five 
days in which to learn it." Caruso was all but 
stunned at the thought of this seemingly impossible 
task. It appeared to him to be so unjust an ultima- 
tum that he made no attempt to reply. Sonzogno 
went on to explain that "La Navarraise" was in only 
one act ; and giving the tenor the score he com- 
manded, "Now go; and be ready day after to- 
morrow to rehearse." 

Troubled, Caruso assuredly was over this make-or- 
break situation. He "worked and worked" for two 
days for the rehearsal. When it came his singing 
so discouraged Conductor Ferrari that the latter 
addressed Sonzogno, who was seated near by, and 



REALIZATIONS 93 

said, "I cannot go on. He (meaning Caruso) 
doesn't know anything." 

Sonzogno appeared less doubtful. "Well, Maestro, 
we mustn't expect too much of him, and anyway the 
public wishes most of all to hear 'NavarraiseV 

Another forty-eight hours brought the company to 
the general rehearsal, at which the handicapped 
tenor encountered further trouble in the person of 
Signora De Nuovina, the soprano prima donna. 
His mind concentrated upon the music and action of 
his part, Caruso had neglected to remove his hat, 
which so infuriated the arrogant singer that snatching 
it from her associate's head and throwing it upon the 
stage, she cried, "When you sing with a lady take 
off your hat." There may have been some jus- 
tification, but she could not have really known the 
feelings of her sensitive comrade, for he admitted 
in relating the incident that he "swallowed the 
wrong way", and was made to feel quite unhappy. 
Other mishaps occurred during that rehearsal, so 
serious, it appeared, that Sonzogno was prompted 
to remark that "To-morrow at the performance, we 
will assist at a triumph for Signora De Nuovina and 
a fiasco for this young Boo !" 

How far from what happened was the director's 
prediction ! A triumph there was, though not for the 
soprano. Instead, it veered from the screaming of 
Signora De Nuovina which the public disliked, and 
was placed before the new tenor whose voice 
though light and smooth singing carried him into 
favor that was destined to hold. "Signora De 
Nuovina had encouraged Sonzogno and Ferrari in 



94 ENRICO CARUSO 

the idea that I would not do," declared Caruso. 
"She disliked the suggestion of a change of tenors, 
for with Caruso she felt her success would be relatively 
easy. It was with dread that I went out upon the 
stage at my beginning in the performance. Hisses 
and screams greeted me. I later learned that when 
I attacked the aria many people thought I would 
have a fiasco. When I triumphed I was told it was 
due to the 'grace and charm' of my singing." From 
that night, Caruso was never again to experience any 
difficulties in singing the Sonzogno repertoire. In 
his lodgings at the Pension Gasperini he studied new 
roles, and the many dark hours he had passed there 
were supplanted by brighter ones. Cilea, composer 
of "Arlesiana", was immediately desirous that the 
Araguil of "La Navarraise" should be the Federico 
of his new opera. And on November 27, 1897, it so 
happened ; with a twofold recognition for Cilea, who 
conducted, and for singer. Some experts felt at the 
time that in the Lament of Federico the real voice of 
Caruso was first disclosed. 

In spite of the very evident direction the wind was 
blowing for Caruso, he was not accepted on every side 
as an established artist. There was still the in- 
clination on the part of many who heard him to 
withhold any considerable approval, while others 
who received and weighed such reports as reached 
them from a distance were no less conservatively 
inclined. Ada Giachetti, aiding in ways she was so 
well able to, gave him her encouragement and sup- 
port. The weeks passed, January came, and on the 
twentieth day of that month, 1898, the tenor made 



REALIZATIONS 95 

his Genoa debut at the Carlo Felice Theater. Son- 
zogno had sent him there, to Giovanni Massa, the 
impresario. Oddly enough, it was as Marcello, in 
Leoncavallo "La Boheme" (the opera Vergine had 
pronounced too strong for his pupil's voice) that 
the first appearance took place. 

Artists whom the people of the United States have 
often heard were members of that cast. Besides 
Pini-Corsi, who sang Schaunard, Genoa greeted 
Giuseppe de Luca in the part of Colline. Rosina 
Storchio was the Mimi, Emilia Corsi had the char- 
acter of Musetta, and Signor Angelini appeared as 
Rodolfo. Alessandro Pome sat in the conductor's 
chair, as he did also when "The Pearl Fishers" intro- 
duced Caruso, on that occasion, in his first appearance 
in the role of Nadir. Regina Pinkert, a member of 
Oscar Hammerstein's New York Manhattan Opera 
Company during its opening 1906-1907 season, was 
the soprano of that cast, and Signori de Luca and 
Carozzi had principal parts. 

There was work enough to absorb much of Caruso's 
time, but he found hours for recreation away from 
the theater, and all thought of it, with the comrades of 
whom he was fond. Signor de Luca, later to be 
associated with the tenor in many New York Metro- 
politan presentations, recalls incidents of that season 
when both singers were struggling to get on. 

"I met Caruso for the first time at that Carlo 
Felice season, in Genoa. He received five thousand 
lire for the entire season of about three months ; 
and we lived together at the Pension Mancinelli, in 
via Assarotti. Caruso had a parlor as well as a bed- 



96 ENRICO CARUSO 

room, while I with no more than seven hundred 
fifty lire for those three months had to be con- 
tent with a small room in which to sleep. Our 
friendship having grown, I was allowed on occasions 
to use Caruso's parlor . . . when I was visited by 
persons wishing to borrow a lira or two, or who 
desired tickets for the opera. 

"The prices we paid included meals as well as 
lodgings, but it was not food either of us cared to 
eat. So we visited the restaurants. On fine days 
we preferred riding out to the Righi, situated in the 
Ligurian hills, from which one might gaze at the 
magnificent panorama view all about. If not just 
like Naples, it suggested the country that Caruso 
loved ; and often out of the joy that filled his heart 
he would sing, standing there, the popular songs of 
the people. 

" Following an evening performance at the Carlo 
Felice, Caruso liked to go for supper to Peppo, a 
restaurant in the Galleria. Always when it was 
finished, the six or seven artists who usually made up 
the party would stand at a given point in preparation 
for a foot-race across the Galleria to the Cafe Zolesi 
at the further end. It was understood that the one 
who finished last must pay for the coffee and it 
was very often Caruso. He had begun then to 
lose his slender figure ; he was putting on weight." 

The Genoa season ended, after the final perform- 
ance, with a small celebration at Righi's. Caruso 
was host at that supper which attracted the attention 
of other diners who had recognized the tenor. Urged 
to induce Caruso to sing for them the proprietor made 



REALIZATIONS 97 

known to his guest their wishes ; and he responded 
with that good-natured willingness which, during 
his early career, was in such instances a noticeable 
trait. He gave, first, the Flower song from 
"Carmen", and then, with de Luca, the duet for 
tenor and baritone from "The Pearl Fishers." When 
Proprietor Righi presented the check Caruso nodded 
his head. 

"You have served us with an excellent dinner," 
he informed the restaurateur, " and to prove my entire 
satisfaction with it I will be reasonable in the charge 
for the songs Signor de Luca and I provided for your 
guests. Your bill is one hundred eighty lire; ours 
to you I will put at the reasonable amount of three 
hundred lire. All you owe me, therefore, is one 
hundred twenty lire." 

The astounded Righi stood speechless until 
Caruso relieved the situation with his laughter. It 
was typical of the jokes Caruso enjoyed indulging in 
until some time after he had established his American 
reputation, when, having become preeminent in his 
art, he shaped his public conduct accordingly. 

Caruso departed from Genoa with pleasurable 
recollections. And he carried with him a bust of 
himself, modeled by Achiile Canessa, a Genoese 
sculptor. Canessa had invited the tenor to look upon 
a bust he had made from a death mask of Roberto 
Stagno, who had passed away in April of that year. 
Impressed by the character of the artistry, Caruso 
had assented to Canessa's suggestion that the singer 
sit for him. Although it was the intention of 
Impresario Massa to present to Caruso his own 



98 ENRICO CARUSO 

bust, in recognition of his Carlo Felice services, 
Canessa never was paid. Massa forgot about the 
matter, and Caruso, unaware of the incident, re- 
mained ignorant of it ever afterwards. The sculptor 
perhaps through artistic sensitiveness never 
made the facts known. They came to light only a 
short time ago. 

Anxious now to preserve without subsequent 
faltering the artistic advances he had made, the 
singer plunged still more seriously into his work. 
Had he been conscientious before ? He would guard 
with a deeper sense of appreciation the hours of 
study. Friends had proved their loyalty ; other 
persons whom he had never known had become 
friends also, and proffered their support. Then 
there was the public which had encouraged him ; 
the public he toiled to please and must continue 
to please if he were to hold its confidence. 
Springtime passed into summer, and June 26, 1898, 
carried Caruso to Trento where, at the Sociale 
Theater, he appeared in several performances of 
"I Pagliacci", and the "Saffo" of Massenet, which 
brought cachets of five hundred lire each. July 
found the tenor once more in Livorno, this time to 
remain for two months at the Politeama Livornese 
(still under the control of Sonzogno) where he was to 
reap a joy from his operatic singing of "I Pagliacci" 
in a degree theretofore untasted. 

Sonzogno himself had, by his fairness, been re- 
sponsible for the first part of this joy ; for when 
Caruso had tendered to the impresario his Genoa 
earnings (which under the terms of his agreement he 



REALIZATIONS 99 

was in duty bound to do) Sonzogno had said, "No, 
I don't do business in that way. You worked hard 
for the money ; keep it." 

Ill 

The preparations for the premiere of Umberto 
Giordano's "La Fedora" had engaged the consuming 
interest of the operatic world. Roberto Stagno, in 
whose house in Florence the composer had penned 
many pages of his score, had been the choice for the 
Loris Ipanoff ; and Gemma Bellincioni, Stagno's 
wife, had been nominated to sing Fedora. The 
death of the great tenor compelled the selection of 
another to take his place, one so difficult to fill that 
few persons, if any, believed such a thing to be pos- 
sible. In the midst of deliberations by Giordano 
and Sonzogno, Signora Bellincioni was asked to aid 
with her professional advice. From her Livorno 
villa, at the composer's request, she had gone to a 
Politeama performance of "Pagliacci" especially to 
hear Enrico Caruso sing. The entire score of "La 
Fedora" was almost as familiar to her as her own 
part. She was acquainted with the requirements of 
Loris ; her ability to pass upon the resources of any 
tenor candidate was regarded by the composer as 
almost equal to his own. After hearing Caruso she 
wrote to Giordano : 

"You know that 'Pagliacci' is an opera entirely 
different from your 'Fedora', and that Canio is not a 
bit like Loris. In spite of this difference it is my 
opinion that Caruso has the voice and the intelligence 
to make him an assured success in the role." 



ioo ENRICO CARUSO 

The judgment of this distinguished artiste was 
apparently all that Giordano required to move him to 
a decision. He himself had heard Caruso during 
the "Arlesiana" premiere in which he had sung the 
preceding November in Milan ; so he hesitated no 
longer. The singer who only four years before had 
yearned eagerly for a chance to be heard was there- 
upon invited to create a new role. And hard upon 
this stimulating information came other news on 
July 2, 1898 to bring to the tenor further con- 
sciousness of his growing responsibilities. A son had 
been born to him in Milan ; and soon afterward, 
his Livorno duties disposed of, he hastened to his 
home at Number i via Velasca to be with the boy 
and its mother. Caruso and Ada Giachetti named 
this boy Rodolfo, in remembrance of the role the 
father had sung in Puccini's "La Boheme" ; but he 
grew up as Fofo, and, among his intimates, Fofo he 
still is. 

The 1898 Lirico season at Milan opened, under 
Edoardo Sonzogno's sponsorship, on October 22 with 
a revival of "Arlesiana." Caruso appeared, meeting 
with much the same moderate reception he had 
experienced before. Federico Candida, a Neapo- 
litan journalist who still resides in Milan, has written 
that the singer's "fair success of 1897" was sub- 
stantially repeated, pointing out the tendency of 
Milan's practice of conservatism in bestowing its 
approval on any newcomer artist. In Leoncavallo's 
Boheme, given at the Lirico November 8, 1898, 
Caruso's performance prompted no reviewer to write 
in glowing terms. He was, it appeared, only one of 



101 

the cast which included Signore Bel Sorel and 
Santarelli. But what a change was wrought in 
both public and critical opinion on the evening of 
November 17, 1898, when he appeared under the 
baton of Composer Umberto Giordano, and with 
Gemma Bellincioni as Fedora. Delfino Menotti in 
the part of De Sirieux, and Signora Anita Baroni 
singing Countess Olga. 

In a role (Loris Ipanoff) which some have declared 
could not have suited him better had it been spe- 
cially written for him, Caruso appeared at his best in 
that world premiere of "La Fedora." The envious 
might continue to speak slightingly of this Neapolitan 
tenor ; associates who chafed because he had out- 
stripped them were certain to follow their previous 
course of circulating untruthful reports of his alleged 
shortcomings ; but unprejudiced people considered 
in Caruso's accomplishments of that night only what 
their ears told them. It was as though his voice and 
art had burst suddenly through an obscuring haze. 
After the Amor ti vieta aria the spark of a new glory 
was kindled, and news of it flashed over the telegraph 
wires to many European cities. The following day 
there was enough in the newspaper reviews to con- 
vince even the conservative that a great singer was 
being made. One celebrated critic, in the course of 
his comments wrote : " Caruso canto in Fedora e la 
fe d'oro" (Caruso sang in Fedora, making it of 
gold). 

"After that night," Caruso once said, "the con- 
tracts descended on me like a heavy rainstorm. Of 
course, many friends crowded about me. I liked 



102 ENRICO CARUSO 

best of all, though, the present from Sonzogno a 
copy of each opera score he had thus far edited." 

One of these contracts offered was from Russia, 
and since both the prestige and emolument (six 
thousand lire a month) were regarded as offering 
the greatest rewards, Caruso prepared for his de- 
parture northwards. He sang "Saffo" with Signora 
Bellincioni, before leaving Milan near the end of that 
December ; and there was a twofold sadness in the 
departing, for Ada Giachetti sailed at almost the 
same time to fulfill a South American engagement. 
Little Fofo alone remained amidst the scenes of 
his father's triumphs, in the care of his aunt Rina 
Giachetti. 

The Petrograd of to-day was St. Petersburg at the 
time Enrico Caruso first arrived there, in late De- 
cember of 1898. A city different from any he had 
previously visited, the tenor relaxed without delay in 
a round of sightseeing which yielded an added inter- 
est through the conditions in which he then found 
himself. Relatively he was in comfortable cir- 
cumstances. He could poke about with the con- 
sciousness of a financial security never before felt, 
and this rather heightened the pleasure of such 
excursions. The people were new to him ; the cli- 
mate, if not altogether to the liking of his Italian 
nature, at least supplied an element of novelty ; 
it was all quite wonderful in its way and lent its 
effects to this observant man. Travel brings its 
advantages in ways of enlightenment, as Caruso was 
eventually to learn. Here was an environment of 
a character worth absorbing one fairly teeming 



REALIZATIONS 103 

with art and the tenor, as events later proved, was 
to be the gainer. 

That 1898-1899 season of the Grand Theatre du 
Conservatoire in Petrograd included among its lists 
of principals a number of illustrious artists. One 
was Signora Luisa Tetrazzini, another Mme. Sigrid 
Arnoldson, and a third the great baritone, Mattia 
Battistini. The basso Vittorio Arimondi, whom 
United States opera-goers know so well, was also of 
that company huge of body and ever generous with 
his helpful advice to his newly made and younger 
tenor friend. Here was an array of artists who were 
above petty jealousies or intrigue. Each one per- 
formed his or her duties ; there was present always 
a spirit of camaraderie; life for them during that 
Petrograd season was one devoted with evident 
profit to both their art and leisure. 

In this beneficial atmosphere Caruso's singing 
thrived. His debut role was Rodolfo in Puccini's 
"La Boheme." Mme. Arnoldson appeared as Mimi ; 
Signora Tetrazzini was Musetta ; Signor Brombera 
had the part of Marcello, and Arimondi was the 
Colline. The lyric beauty of the Caruso voice and 
his ease of singing commanded instantaneous and 
approving notice from the Russians. Correspond- 
ingly favorable attention was attracted by the tenor 
when he appeared next in "I Pagliacci," with Mme. 
Arnoldson and Battistini. Donizetti's "Maria di 
Rohan" was the third opera in which Caruso ap- 
peared, and thereafter came "Cavalleria Rusticana", 
and "La Traviata." 

Changes were gradually marking this singer who 



104 ENRICO CARUSO 

was moving forward, step by step, in his career. He 
was some distance from being a man of the world 
(he was just approaching his twenty-sixth year, 
and the advantages which help to make such men 
had not as then arrived), but those who knew him at 
the time noted signs that he was maturing. At 
this juncture, with his name published frequently in 
Russian newspapers, Caruso awoke one morning to 
find a summons to appear at a special concert which 
was to be given before the then Czar Nicholas II 
of Russia, in his Petrograd palace. 

He describes the czar to whom he was pre- 
sented at the conclusion of the concert as a " small, 
almost insignificant-looking man with an anxious 
face. Royalty was to me something to be regarded 
from a distance. The scene was brilliant. Such 
color, together with the beauty of the women and 
the bearing of the men assembled in so large a 
space was wholly new to me. I recall having felt 
a sense of gratitude for that opportunity, and won- 
dered if there was to be another and when and 
where. I could feel people staring as I was re- 
ceived by the czar, who said, * Thank you very 
much/ and then presented me with a pair of gold 
cuff buttons set with diamonds." 

In February Caruso returned from Russia to 
Milan. He arrived with the consciousness of having 
progressed ; of being equipped more completely to 
resume his place at the Lirico during the Carnevale 
season then about to begin. Prior to his departure 
from Milan in 1898 a contract for his first South 
American engagement had been negotiated. Per- 



REALIZATIONS 105 

haps the thought of this added to the spirit of con- 
fidence which was commencing to glow within him. 
Carlo d'Ormeville, dean of the Italian managers, 
who was responsible for this particular contract, 
recently related some incidents connected with 
it. 

" I had been one of the intimate friends of Caruso 
from the start of his glorious career at Milan to those 
last days of his premature death. No one can ever 
fill the emptiness he has left in the lyric world. Apart 
from his great voice and talent, he was acclaimed as 
an artist scrupulous to the last detail in fulfilling 
his engagements. As a man he was of golden 
character and so generous that many times his left 
hand did not know what his right hand was 
giving. 

"I had the honor of engaging him for the 1899 
season in South America to appear under Impresaria 
Ferrari. Caruso was then no celebrated tenor. The 
contract (for twelve thousand lire a month) was 
signed November 16, 1898, on the eve of his notable 
first performance in 'Fedora/ The day after the 
premiere Caruso was declared by not a few to be the 
greatest of tenors. Meeting him twenty-four hours 
later, he expressed disappointment over the terms of 
the contract. Some of his friends, made acquainted 
with the conditions, had become furious. 

"'Tell me/ I asked, 'what did any of your friends 
offer you before the ' Fedora ' performance ? Noth- 
ing ! Is n't that true ? Well, you signed with Signora 
Ferrari before that performance, and I am sure you 
will keep your written agreement/ 



106 ENRICO CARUSO 

"'Ah ! my dear Carlo,' answered Caruso, 'I would 
rather die than to break a contract/ 

"Caruso went to Buenos Aires. He won. And 
he was engaged for future seasons on more advanta- 
geous financial terms." 

Before he sailed, however, there were some rumors 
to be silenced ; rumors to the effect that the tenor, 
while in Russia, had lost his voice. These reports 
were not without their damaging influence, for soon 
after he reached Milan Caruso was invited by Signora 
Ferrari to call upon her. Despite his assurances 
that he was in vocally excellent condition the im- 
presaria continued skeptical ; she wished some 
tangible evidence that he was still the reputedly 
excellent tenor she had engaged. Returning to his 
home after this disconcerting interview, Caruso 
found there a letter from Sonzogno. It read : " I 
hear that you have lost your voice somewhere 
in Russia. Well, my theater is wide open to you 
to sing any opera at any time." 

The Carnevale season of 1899, which began at the 
Lirico in late February, brought Caruso once more 
before the people of Milan. No part of the opera 
circles of the city was without a feeling of excitement. 
A large attendance was assured ; the public would 
be there in the spirit of any public ready to 
applaud or condemn. A canvass would probably 
have returned for the one whose ability was being 
questioned a majority vote of confidence. Such, 
at any rate, must be the conclusion drawn from the 
occurrences of that opening Carnevale performance 
of "Fedora" at the Lirico when Caruso, singing with 



REALIZATIONS 107 

Signora Bellincioni, triumphed as he never had be- 
fore. Thus was another canard disposed of. Before 
the close of that Carnevale season the malicious 
workings of the tenor's enemies had, by his achieve- 
ments, been smothered. 

Caruso sailed in April, aboard the SS Regina 
Margherita, for Buenos Aires, where he arrived 
May 7, 1899. Another task lay ahead. Seven days 
after he went ashore, in the Theatre La Opera, the 
tenor performed it. " Fedora" was to introduce him 
to a South American audience ; and he felt a sense of 
security in having as a comrade Signora Bellincioni. 
But one of those storm-clouds appeared again in the 
Caruso skies. A baritone one Caruson by name 
who had sung in Buenos Aires had not left any too 
excellent an impression. Some misunderstanding 
on the part of certain newspaper writers having 
caused a confusion of the two singers, through the 
similarity of their names, the public was led by 
published articles to anticipate a possible baritone 
singer in the place of an expected tenor. 

The opening night of May 14, 1899, arrived, and 
before the first South American assemblage he had 
ever faced Caruso sang Loris Ipanoff. Delfino 
Menotti was also of the cast ; Maestro Mascheroni 
conducted, and a scene similar to scenes Milan had 
caused when "Fedora" had been given there was 
enacted. After the performance, which fired the 
temperamental listeners to make a demonstration, 
Impresaria Ferrari embraced her tenor; then she 
urged him to put his signature to a contract for the 
three seasons following at twenty-five thousand, 



io8 ENRICO CARUSO 

thirty-five thousand, and forty-five thousand lire a 
month respectively, only two of which the first 
and third he fulfilled. 

"La Traviata", in which Caruso and Signora 
Bellincioni appeared as Alfredo and Violetta, was 
performed on May 24. A second "Fedora", during 
which the fervor of the audience duplicated that 
which had attended the first one, was given on May 
27. With Signora Bellincioni, the tenor sang on 
June 4, in "Saffo"; but the opera displeased the 
South American public, and it has been asserted that 
this perfomance was a fiasco. Other operas then 
were presented, in a steady succession: "La Gio- 
conda", on June 8, with Signore Elisa Petri and 
Elvira Lorini in the cast; Mascagni's "Iris", on 
June 22, with Signora Maria de Lerma ; "Regina di 
Saba", on July 4, with Signore de Lerma and Lorini, 
and Signori Taboyo and Leonardi (in which one 
critic declared that it was Caruso's opera, not Gold- 
mark's) ; "Jupanki", by Arturo Berutti, a South 
American maestro, which had only two subsequent 
presentations after its July 25 premiere ; and 
"Cavalleria Rusticana", which marked Caruso's 1899 
farewell, on August 8, with Signora Petri singing the 
Santuzza. The Buenos Aires public had already 
bestowed upon Caruso the title divo; and at this 
performance he was made to repeat the Brindisi 
(Drinking song) three times. One other, and 
unlooked-for "Cavalleria Rusticana" came before 
the tenor sailed for Italy. It was a benefit per- 
formance, given for the refugees of the Rio Negro 
flood. 



REALIZATIONS 109 

IV 

Accounts of the Caruso accomplishments in South 
America began at this period to intensify managerial 
desires to have the tenor's name appear in the pages of 
their prospectuses. Invitations were awaiting him on 
his arrival in his own country to accept various alluring 
contracts. Each letter was ingratiatingly phrased ; 
for within a comparatively brief period he had 
emerged from the realm of uncertainty into one of 
promise. It was often "Caro Enrico" to be 
followed by a jogging of the singer's memory to re- 
call some service rendered him, or an assertion that 
always had the writer held firm in his faith in Caro 
Enrico's future. The handwriting appeared plainly 
upon the wall, and impresari were not slow in heeding 
its indications. More than one progressive im- 
presario waited on the tenor in person ; those 
managers who could not, or were not yet ready to 
bring themselves to so doing, dispatched emissaries in 
efforts to win the singer's consent to signing a 
contract. 

Caruso himself has described his own feelings at 
that time. "I liked, just then, to reflect on those 
bad days already gone which had brought me hard- 
ships and heartaches. It was nice to be back in 
Naples, with my father and stepmother, and among 
old friends. They had much to tell me of what the 
Neapolitans had had to say of my career. 

"He goes on,' they had said, in effect, 'and the 
public accepts him ; perhaps some day he will become 
a great tenor.' It was clear to me that my fellow 



no ENRICO CARUSO 

citizens wanted me to gain success, but feared the 
time had not yet come to insure it. 

"This special home-coming was different from any 
other of mine. Besides plenty of money in my 
pocket I had also my South American contract 
which meant more money for the future. I had to 
smile at the thought of how different everything had 
been only two years before. Then my professed 
Neapolitan friends had found excuses to deny me 
small loans when I had asked them, in the Milan 
Galleria. These friends would have been glad to 
let me have any reasonable sum I might then have 
requested which was not necessary since I had 
enough money of my own." 

Caruso did not stop for long in Naples. Milan was 
a desired objective, to consider what engagement 
from among those offered it would be most desirable 
to accept. "I was almost as eager to meet my 
former fellow artists," explained the tenor, "as to 
sign a piece of paper which would mean that I should 
be certain of opportunities to sing in a given number 
of performances at respectable cachets. All the way 
from Naples to Milan I continued to wonder, 'What 
will they say? How will they act?* I looked a 
good deal through the car window without seeing as 
much of the country as on other similar journeys. 

"I went quickly to the Galleria from the railway 
station, not stopping to find a place to live while I 
should stay in Milan. Everybody was so glad to 
see me when I went in that I at once knew my South 
American engagement had been enough of a success. 
Soon afterward I decided upon the contract offered 



REALIZATIONS in 

me to appear during the coming autumn season at 
the Costanzi Theater, in Rome, at fifteen hundred 
lire for each of the first ten appearances, and twelve 
hundred fifty lire for every appearance that might 
follow." 

There were a number of reasons for Caruso's 
choice, one being that the Costanzi's impresario 
Vincenzo Morichini was idolized by the Romans. 

The Neapolitan singer, who was sensing more and 
more the opportunities opening before him, was 
nevertheless willing, during those September days 
spent in Milan, to relax in play. In the home he had 
established for his baby Fofo and its mother he spent 
happy hours. It was no longer, as it had been at the 
outset, a tax upon his finances to maintain it. There 
during afternoons and evenings his friends gathered 
and also those acquaintances who showed an anxious 
desire to be counted as friends. Any tenor standing 
upon the threshold of success is a magnet. Marked 
long before for his generosity, Caruso could not 
escape those who flocked toward him out of motives 
calculated to serve their own ends. He was courted 
and waited upon by scores of persons he barely knew. 
If his course took him to the Galleria, he was sure to 
find there innumerable persons whose faces he 
scarcely remembered having seen calling out com- 
pliments to him as he passed. It was the old story ; 
and if new to the singer at that time it was destined 
to run on. The gossip of the theaters intrigued 
him ; the lowliest Neapolitan, stopping him in the 
street, could engage his ear. He took delight in 
selecting his dress for various occasions with minutest 



H2 ENRICO CARUSO 

care ; indeed, Caruso was becoming conspicuous 
for his dress a dress not then so conservative as it 
became in later years. 

Autumn came and with it the important busi/iess 
of preparing for the approaching season at Rome. 
He repaired there, attending personally to the choice 
of a place in which to live. The quarters selected 
were located in the dwelling at Number 79 via 
Napoli, but satisfactory as they proved in all physical 
requirements, one element appeared to be missing. 
With the accumulation of work due to his advancing 
artistic position it became evident to the singer that 
assistance was required. He needed, in short, a 
secretary ; so, faithful to the promise he had given 
four years before, he offered the post to Enrico 
Lorello, of Salerno. Lorello accepted, joined his 
employer in Rome, and thus was the first of the 
several who were ultimately to serve Caruso in that 
capacity. 

The Costanzi season held potentialities for the 
rising singer, one being the stipulation in his contract 
with Impresario Morichini that he should create the 
tenor role in a new opera by a well-known composer. 

"I understood what the opera was to be ('Tosca') 
and who was its composer (Puccini), and I felt a pride 
in the nomination," declared Caruso. " I speak of this 
as a prelude to what I shall say to show that one's 
career is neither so brilliant nor so easy as may seem 
to the casual eyes of the public. For it developed 
that in spite of a crescendo of successes attending my 
appearances in Buenos Aires, and the later ones in 
Treviso, I was to experience a setback in Rome. 



REALIZATIONS 113 

"My happy anticipations were checked, upon 
reaching the Costanzi, to be informed by Morichini 
that for me there was to be no new opera. To my 
inquiries I was given no satisfactory enlightenment 
(it is astonishing to observe how little opera exec- 
utives sometimes appear to know). Searching 
my own mind I discovered, what I believed, to have 
been the reason for the refusal to allow me to create 
Cavaradossi in 'Tosca.' During the first season of 
Sonzogno exactly five months before I sailed for 
South America many artists, conductors, and com- 
posers had been present at each of my Lirico appear- 
ances. Some of them had not agreed with most of 
the critics and the public as to my abilities ; these 
objectors holding the same unfavorable opinion of 
those tenors who had heard me in 'Rigoletto' at the 
Mercadante in 1895. I could have argued the 
matter with Morichini. Perhaps, had I been in- 
sistent, something might have happened, for at 
Livorno Puccini had declared me capable of singing 
Rodolfo in his 'Boheme/ A better and more ex- 
perienced artist at the time of my Costanzi debut, 
there seemed enough justification to intrust to me the 
role of Cavaradossi." 

Caruso's reasoning appears to have been sound 
enough. Only recently Puccini said, in speaking of 
the tenor's accomplishment during that Livorno 
season of 1897, " I do not remember so well to-day the 
incident of 'La Boheme* with my dear friend Caruso. 
But I do remember that those performances revealed 
the treasure of a magnificent voice, and that the suc- 
cess was memorable. Caruso then found the Rac- 



114 ENRICO CARUSO 

conto of the first act a little heavy for him, although 
he did not confide it to me at the time. He men- 
tioned it to me in after years, when we had become 
more friendly ; and he added that he would like to 
have had the aria lowered a half-tone. He inter- 
preted also my 'Manon Lescaut/ As Des Grieux 
he is unforgettable. Always will I remember the 
finale of the third act, as he used to sing it." 

Still it was Puccini himself who took from Caruso 
the coveted opportunity of being the first Cavara- 
dossi and gave it to Emilio de Marchi. Whatever 
Puccini's objections to Caruso as the creator of 
Cavaradossi at the time of its world premiere at 
the Costanzi, he admitted to the tenor when he 
appeared in the role one year later in Bologna 
that never had he heard the music better sung. 

Although wounded in his feelings, the tenor "did 
not fuss or complain." He endeavored, as later, 
"to avoid trouble ... a course that always seemed, 
in time, to bring compensation." "Iris" being the 
opera chosen for the Caruso debut at the Costanzi, 
a host of Mascagni admirers was present to observe 
what the artist would do. Among those associated 
with him that 1899 season in Rome were Signore 
Emma Carelli, Mary Dalniero, and Monti-Baldini, 
and Signori Silla Carobbi and Borucchia ; the re- 
doubtable and then friendly Leopoldo Mugnone 
occupied the conductor's chair. The chagrin Caruso 
felt over the "Tosca" episode may have exerted 
some effect upon his Costanzi premiere appearance, 
but he began well and continued thus to the end of 
the performance. The result appears to have been 



REALIZATIONS 115 

doubly fortunate, for between the tenor and his former 
maestro Vergine there was effected a reconciliation, 
following their differences, several years previous, 
over the interpretation of the terms of the contract 
made in 1893. A court decision having dragged 
on with no apparent end in sight, Caruso proposed 
to Vergine that he pay him a lump sum of twenty 
thousand lire, which the latter accepted under an 
agreement that the contract should be annulled. 
This adjustment no doubt relieved the singer's mind. 
He continued even to the end of his days to hold in 
esteem the man who had been his first singing guide. 
Some persons have contended that Vergine deserved 
less credit for developing the Caruso voice than 
others who during later periods proffered expert 
advice. They may be right ; indeed there is evidence 
gathered here and there to support the belief that 
from Lombardi and various additional sources the 
tenor received suggestions most profitably applied. 
At the time of that Costanzi season it is questionable 
if Caruso would have admitted this to have been 
true, or ever likely to be true. 

Nevertheless the singer's voice in those days was 
not the freely produced voice into which it was later 
to develop. Although it had gained in roundness 
and substance, and soared less reluctantly to the top 
notes, there could scarcely have existed the strength 
and the brilliancy which were to be its ultimate char- 
acteristics. Careful at all times to restrain any 
tendency towards forcing, Caruso charmed more 
at that time by the smoothness and purity of his 
singing than by any tour de force. 



n6 ENRICO CARUSO 

Boito's "Mefistofele" followed "Iris." The pres- 
ence of Arrigo Boito, the composer and librettist, 
was enough to bestir the artists. On the day of the 
presentation the singer, as was his custom, went to 
the Hotel Laurati for luncheon, in a happy frame 
of mind ; but how quickly it was to be dispelled. 
Informed by the waiter who served him of the pres- 
ence of Boito himself, the singer lapsed into diffi- 
dence over the consciousness that soon he might 
be moving along the path of disgrace. He was "dis- 
couraged because of the proximity of the maestro", 
although he need not have been. For that evening 
his Faust sent Boito to his hotel in a satisfied frame 
of mind. 

Meeting Caruso next morning the composer said 
to him, "I came to Rome especially to hear you 
sing in my opera and I am happy to shake your hand. 
I did not visit you in your dressing room last evening 
because I wished to save you further emotion and 
keep myself free to form a deliberate judgment upon 
your performance. Your voice has in it a quality 
that touches my heart ; your singing possesses an 
instinctive virtue I will not attempt to describe. 
I congratulate you ; and from my heart and my mind 
I thank you for the enjoyment you gave to both." 

To the unexpected tribute Caruso was able to 
make only some conventional response. He stood, 
as Boito walked deliberately off, looking after him 
out of eyes that bespoke the gratitude his tongue 
could not express. Thus encouraged, it was only 
natural that the singer's subsequent opera appear- 
ances should have gained through the stimulus of a 



REALIZATIONS 117 

respected judgment. "La Gioconda" carried him 
a rung higher up the ladder on which he climbed ; 
each new effort awakened a keener consciousness 
of the possibilities which lay ahead ; he plodded 
onward, hoping, dreaming, for the cherished ultimate 
reward. 

The season wore on, with the end (December 15) ap- 
proaching. Well enough established, the tenor found 
his favor extending. It was heightened, shortly 
before his farewell appearance, when, invited to 
sing at a special gathering, he attracted to his cause 
many members of Rome's press of that day. This 
affair was a reception arranged by the Associazione 
della Stampa, planned by Attilio Luzzatto, its then 
president and editor of the influential daily news- 
paper La Tribuna. The audience which listened 
to Caruso's interpretation of the Lament of Federico 
from Cilea's "Arlesiana" was comprised largely of 
aristocrats who resided in the Italian capital. As- 
sisted by Mugnone, who played the pianoforte, the 
result was even more pronounced than either Caruso 
or Mugnone had expected. Three times was the 
aria repeated, the applause on each occasion reach- 
ing a point quite uncommon to auditors of that sort. 

V 

Rome had provided compensations enough to- 
assuage the hurt Caruso had felt over his missed 
honor to create the role of Cavaradossi. He was 
willing that it should be dropped into the bag of 
past experiences, there, so far as was possible, to be 
forgotten. Christmas time was approaching; and 



ii8 ENRICO CARUSO 

immediately thereafter his engagements demanded 
his presence, for a second time, in Petrograd. 

What an array of artists with whom to sing ! For 
soprani there were Signora Luisa Tetrazzini, Mme. 
Sigrid Arnoldson, and Mme. Salomea Krusheniska ; 
the great tenor Angelo Masini, and the equally dis- 
tinguished baritone Mattia Battistini, were to be reg- 
ularly in the casts ; another celebrated tenor of that 
day, Francesco Marconi (better known as Checco), 
also was of the company which had as its leading 
basso Vittorio Arimondi, and as mezzo-soprani 
Signore Cucini and Carotini. The first conductor 
was Vittorio Podesti, afterward one of the maestri 
at New York's Metropolitan Opera House. 

Settled in Apartment 88 in the Hotel on the Grand 
Moskaja, Caruso prepared for the Petrograd premiere 
performance "Ai'da." He had never sung in this 
opera because, apart from its intricate tessitura, 
it had been considered too heavy for his voice. 
Again the resourcefulness of the maturing artist was 
disclosed as the representation progressed, and the 
result left the audience of one mind. From all ac- 
counts it must have been a triumph ; the arias were 
delivered smoothly and not without the needed dra- 
matic emphasis, and for the first time in any public 
endeavor Caruso sang a satisfactory high B-flat. In 
his own estimation " Much of the growth I gained at 
that time I attribute to the singing of Radames. The 
role was of much help because it developed and con- 
solidated my voice and aided toward making secure 
my top C, which I had previously been afraid to 
attempt." 



REALIZATIONS 119 

Having resumed the friendship of the previous 
year, Arimondi was almost constantly with his 
younger associate. "To win as Caruso won then 
was exceedingly difficult," declared Arimondi, "and 
an achievement to be remembered. In those times 
every opera was put up by the impresario with a 
cast of such excellence that, even had there been 
among them none of the celebrities present, per- 
sonal success could be gained only through the dis- 
closure of real gifts. In the 'Ai'da' performance 
which Podesti conducted was Mme. Krusheniska in 
the title role ; Signora Cucini sang the Amneris, Bat- 
tistini was Amonasro, and I appeared as Ramphis. 
It was Caruso's night ; a night to have stirred an 
artist older and more experienced than he, and the 
forerunner as well of more than one other of the 
same sort. 

"Presently came the tenor's first opportunity to 
appear in 'II Ballo in Maschera', with Mme. Kru- 
sheniska, Signora Cucini, Battistini, and myself; and 
he took another forward step. The Petrograd pub- 
lic had by this time accepted Caruso completely. 
When he sang they were happy. Appearance was 
succeeded by appearance, and before long he sang 
Faust in ' Mefistofele' for the first time in Russia. 
Mme. Krusheniska and Signore Carotini and Cucini, 
and I were of the cast, which labored under trying 
circumstances. 

"Mme. Arimondi and Mme. Giachetti, having 
decided to join us, had left Milan together on a train 
due to arrive in Petrograd at eight o'clock on the 
morning of the date set for the ' Mefistofele' premiere. 



120 ENRICO CARUSO 

Lorello had been dispatched to receive them and 
we were both waiting when the secretary returned 
with the disturbing information that the train had 
not arrived. His inability to obtain any explanation 
for the delay was causing us further anxiety when a 
telegram from my wife, written in Russian, was de- 
livered to me. I knew she did not know one word of 
that language ; so Caruso and I hurried forth to 
have it translated. But nobody could interpret 
clearly its meaning, which made us desperate. 

" By this time it was midday, yet neither Caruso 
nor I thought of stopping for lunch. We could only 
pace excitedly the floor of my room, talking loudly 
to each other until our voices began to get hoarse. 
Caruso at length left me ; in half an hour or so Lorello 
came in to say that his master had gone out with- 
out putting on the overshoes which are necessary 
in Russia if one is to go about safely in a temperature 
thirty degrees below zero. I tempered my desire to 
scold when Caruso returned with the news that the 
train had been derailed in the open country, though 
without injury to any passenger. At three that after- 
noon Mme. Arimondi and Mme. Giachetti reached 
Petrograd on board the relief-train, both suffering 
from exposure Mme. Arimondi seriously so. The 
performance of 'Mefistofele' took place that evening 
but at what a cost ! Caruso developed broncho- 
pneumonia the following day and was ill in bed for 
one month." 

Those days of suffering and restless tossing gave 
way finally to days more tranquil. There was enough 
for the patient to think seriously on : of what had 



REALIZATIONS 121 

gone by during those doubtful earlier years of the 
career; the gradual ascent to more propitious mo- 
ments ; and the recent efforts so productive of re- 
wards. Mme. Giachetti was always near at hand ; 
there were remembrances and messages from solici- 
tous persons, and even personages ; time began to 
hang less heavily. Toward the end of the illness, 
when Caruso found strength returning to him, he 
discovered a more pronounced leaning in the direction 
of really serious study to which he had begun to 
turn in the autumn of 1899. Success had impressed 
him with the importance of treating it with that con- 
sideration which compels from any opera artist 
a deal of work. He had become aware of the ad- 
vantages accruing from methodical habits ; during 
the season at Rome the tenor had decided that a 
daily schedule would perhaps help. So, on the back 
of an envelope taken from one of his pockets, he had 
jotted down the hours of each day and the purposes 
to which he intended to put them. 

"There was one," he had explained, "for rising; 
another for the breakfast ; still another for the exer- 
cising of my voice and so on. Afterward, when 
I happened to oversleep one morning after a hard 
night at the opera, I altered the schedule. But it 
somehow grew until, after a considerable time, it 
became a sort of fixture. Occasionally some of these 
resolutions were overcome when a friend would come 
to take me out for a game of cards ; or when several 
of my companions would drop into my rooms. I 
was generally ready to reconstruct the schedule, 
especially on waking late from my rest following 



122 ENRICO CARUSO 

some overindulgence at cards that had cost me 
money. In such moments I was forced to admit that 
I might be wasting time. 

"Not being a musician, I wished, in order that 
any conductor should find me well prepared, to learn 
perfectly the words and the notes of my parts. It 
helped, I discovered, to write both on the pages of 
a book small enough to be conveniently carried in 
the pocket. One day a fellow artist came in upon 
me when I was engaged in copying a part. He 
chaffed me, and I answered ; finally he warned : 
'Look out you do not make a mistake in copying 
and become a composer." 

That practice Caruso adhered to right to the end 
of his career ; and while riding on a train, aboard a 
boat, or in any other conveyance, he would take 
from some coat pocket one of his handy little books 
out of which he either refreshed his memory or fixed 
his mind upon matters to be learned. 

During the Lenten period of 1900 the company 
which had been appearing in the Petrograd Conserv- 
atory Theater journeyed to Moscow, and, installed 
in the Grand Theater, began another season. It 
was in Gounod's "Faust", which Caruso regarded 
as the "opera grammar" of young tenors, that he 
came before the public of that city. Not having 
sung the role for several seasons, he made a grati- 
fying discovery ; it was much easier for him to sing 
than at any previous time. Mme. De Lerma was 
the Marguerite of that Moscow cast, and the others 
included Signora Carotini, and Battistini and Ari- 
mondi. 






A PAGE OF CARUSO'S MANUSCRIPT 



How he studied the r&le of Sam&on. Note the spelling of the French diction just beneath 
the words of the score, in which the French pronunciation is Italianized. 



REALIZATIONS 123 

In this city the tenor renewed his studies in prac- 
tical ways eminently valuable. For there is so much 
more, he has contended, beyond the sort of study a 
singer may do in the studio with a maestro, or 
at home. Many times he learned that one way of 
singing a phrase was either a right way or a wrong. 
Observing his audience, Caruso would note upon 
them the effect of some particular manner of de- 
livering his voice ; if they were pleased, he would 
remember that he might repeat the effort at some 
future time, and he likewise took pains to fix in his 
mind what did not please. He had not yet arrived 
at the point of unfailingly seizing each opportunity 
to add to his store of vocal and operatic knowledge, 
but he was trying. Youth still held ; experience and 
years were to add to his apprehension of what it was 
necessary for him to know before he could apply 
such knowledge to enlarging his resources. Never- 
theless, the singer had grasped the fundamentals 
which are essential in any drive toward a worthy 
goal. At least he appreciated that other things 
matter for an opera singer besides a fine voice, well 
used. Such must be the estimate, else he would 
have been content to rely more than he ever was 
willing to rely upon the appealing qualities of such 
tones as he was then beginning to command. 

The Moscow season went over, spring hovered, 
and with renewed confidence Caruso returned to 
Milan for a visit with his son Fofo and a brief stay 
with his father and stepmother before he should 
sail on the SS Regina Margherita for his second South 
American season. He was not met this time with 



124 ENRICO CARUSO 

any false rumors about a voice "lost in Russia." 
The Caruso star was ascending where it could be 
more clearly seen ; Italians were gradually admitting 
among themselves that it was growing brighter. 

Mme. Ferrari, impresaria of La Opera, welcomed 
her tenor with widespread arms. He would make 
his season's debut in "Mefistofele", with the always 
dependable Mme. Carelli, the basso Signer Ercolani, 
and Maestro V. Mingardi conducting. All would 
be fine, the success enormous, was the picture 
sketched by this energetic manager. How differ- 
ent it actually proved. Instead Buenos Aires re- 
ceived Caruso so coldly that the nervousness he 
felt at the beginning of that May 10 performance 
increased until he found difficulty in finishing the 
evening. In the morning, at the studio of his artist 
friend, Filippo Galante, the singer declared that if 
at the next "Mefistofele" performance the public 
failed to accord to him the recognition he sought, 
he would return straightway to Italy. 

What a difference that second "Mefistofele" 
wrought, just two nights after the first one. Caruso 
may have excelled his previous endeavor ; it may 
possibly have been the temper of a South American 
audience, which is known to be sometimes moved 
by seemingly trivial details. Regardless of the cause, 
it is a fact that after the first aria the public stormed 
in applause and would not let the performance go on. 
It wished, it demanded with emotional violence, a 
repetition of the aria from the singer who had been 
well nigh ignored forty-eight hours earlier. It is to 
such a slender thread that the fate of an opera ar- 



REALIZATIONS 125 

tist may occasionally hang. No encore was forth- 
coming, but the tenor came many times before the 
footlights, satisfied then at being restored to the 
position which had been his during his introductory 
Buenos Aires season, one year before. 

Caruso thereupon relaxed, as was his habit when 
matters affecting his career took a favorable turn. 
With his expanding powers he was developing his 
sensitive side ; and while he reacted with a smile 
to any approval by his public, he was even more 
susceptible to expressions of ill will. Coldness hurt 
him more than any outburst of disfavor, and a 
chilly-disposed assemblage could plunge him into mo- 
roseness from which nothing could rescue him save 
the subsequent warming of his critics, and on oc- 
casions not even that. 

Caruso repaired after the second " Mefistofele " 
appearance to the studio of Galante. Each day's 
leisure during that 1900 South American stay found 
him with his artist friend ; and the two chatted 
and worked together, the tenor alternately painting 
and modeling, under the guidance of his master. He 
went abroad, too, in the streets of Buenos Aires, either 
walking or driving, as suited his pleasure. For it 
cannot be gainsaid that Caruso liked admiration. 
He may have chosen to maintain outward uncon- 
cern, yet he was not unaware of the act of some 
passer-by who, recognizing him, chose effusively to 
make known his presence. 

"Iris", on May 17, was the second work in which 
the tenor appeared at La Opera during that second 
Buenos Aires season. Success had touched him 



126 ENRICO CARUSO 

during the previous year ; it returned again, although 
the press expatiated upon the immoral spots in the 
opera and urged the public not to patronize future 
performances of it. No attention was paid this 
advice ; indeed, at the next presentation the at- 
tendance was even larger than before and, with Si- 
gnora Carelli and Signori Angelini and Ercolani in 
the cast, Caruso discovered his popularity increasing 
and his singing of the serenade of Yor redemanded. 

All was then momentarily well. Restored to his 
best humor the tenor continued to fill regularly his 
announced appearances. Besides repetitions of the 
operas mentioned he sang in "La Regina di Saba " 
with Signora Carrera and Signori Mendiorez and 
Giraldoni ; his introductory " La Boheme " in South 
America was sung on June 23 , and on July 1 2 he ap- 
peared for the first time that year in "Cavalleria 
Rusticana." Even before he went upon the 
stage, to sing with Signore Carelli and Ida 
Rappini and Signer Pacini, Caruso captivated his 
listeners ; the Siciliana, sung behind the scenes 
before the curtain rises, had to be repeated. 
Just two weeks later, through the illness of Emilio 
De Marchi, another first tenor, Caruso was called 
upon for a Des Grieux in the "Manon" of Massenet. 
Singing as he was then singing, he could but satisfy 
his auditors. They let themselves go with no effort 
at restraint ; it was for the tenor an evening to look 
back upon. 

The way thereafter was a steady triumphant march 
and it was capped at the farewell when Caruso bade 
his adieu as Rodolfo in "La Boheme." He sang 



REALIZATIONS 127 

twice on special occasions before sailing for Monte- 
video aboard the SS Sirio, the first time at a memo- 
rial service held on August 9 in the Buenos Aires 
Catholic cathedral in honor of the assassinated King 
Humbert of Italy, and again on August 12 in a con- 
cert held at the Progress Club for the Dames of Char- 
ities. Finishing the shorter season in Montevideo, 
where a part of the Buenos Aires repertoire was 
given, Caruso departed for Genoa. 

September found him back once more in his Milan 
apartment in via Velasca, where he turned for one 
month from everything connected with singing. 
How quickly those few weeks flew past. It seemed 
to the tenor that he had barely set foot upon his 
native soil before he must report at Treviso, that 
lovely city near the Austrian border, where he had 
been engaged to appear at the Sociale Theater. 
There was something to look forward to in the asso- 
ciation he was to have in "Tosca" with Ada Gia- 
chetti. At least they would not be separated so 
soon again after their long absence of the previous 
spring and summer. Together they journeyed to 
Treviso ; they sang in the rehearsals to the delight of 
Impresario Enrico Corti ; they worked at home 
over details that might make their performances 
the smoother ; and at the premiere of October 23 each 
found the reward. Egisto Tango who afterward 
spent one season as a conductor at the New York 
Metropolitan led the presentation ; Antonio Ma- 
gini-Coletti was the Baron Scarpia. If that Treviso 
season was not long, it led to some desirable friend- 
ships, one of them being that with Antonio Guarnieri, 



128 ENRICO CARUSO 

then the first 'cellist of the Sociale Theater orchestra, 
who later became a celebrated opera conductor. 
And on each of the twelve occasions when he sang 
in "Tosca" between October 23 and the following 
November 1 1 the tenor met with no serious 5 mishap. 

Appearances at the Comunale of Bologna were 
to come next, appearances likely to give Caruso 
some concern because of the interest that had already 
been created through the announced engagements 
of Giuseppe Borgatti and Alessandro Bonci, two 
other tenors more firmly intrenched than he. Bonci 
was perhaps the more formidable one ; the same 
Bonci who had created the tenor character in "II 
Signer di Pourceaugnac" at its April 10, 1897, La 
Scala premiere, which Caruso had been unable to 
accept. Older than Caruso and more experienced, 
Bonci held the advantage. He was established at 
the Politeama when Caruso and Borgatti joined 
the Comunale, and the Bonci adherents were to be 
counted on to do their part. For the public it was a 
situation to be desired ; competition generally brings 
the best from those competing. But for Caruso it 
was a situation of quite another sort. If not actually 
afraid, he was at least fearful of an outcome he could 
not afford to lose. A lessening of such prestige as 
was then his might harm him in any number of 
ways ; recovering from a setback is often harder 
than the original gaining of the position itself. 

Nerved for what was in truth an ordeal, Caruso 
stepped before the Bologna public in his opening 
appearance. Ada Giachetti and the baritone Giral- 
doni were two of the stalwarts on either side of 



REALIZATIONS 129 

the tenor. Mugnone was at the conductor's desk. 
The public would be sure to get the utmost possible 
from Caruso if his support was an element to be 
counted upon. "Tosca" and "Iris" were the two 
operas which lifted the newcomer into a place near 
the spotlight, contriving to keep him sufficiently 
near the rays to be seen with that distinctness neces- 
sary to attract attention. It was, though, a pivoting 
spotlight which, sweeping in a circle, touched first 
one then another of the three tenors who were con- 
testing for popular favor. One night it would be 
Caruso ; the next Bonci had his innings ; where- 
upon Borgatti's turn came. For several weeks this 
triangular race continued, the adherents of each pro- 
claiming at every opportunity the supremacy of their 
favorite. Finally the tide rolled the majority opinion 
in one direction, toward Caruso, youngest tenor 
of the three, who was declared to have gained the 

palm. 

VI 

After Bologna there was to come for Caruso his 
debut at Teatro alia Scala "the terrible La Scala 
of Milan which scares all artists." Its general di- 
rector at that time was Giulio Gatti-Casazza, who 
since 1908 has been the executive head of New York's 
Metropolitan. The first conductor was Arturo To- 
scanini, even then known throughout Italy as a dis- 
ciplinarian of the severest type. The goal of every 
lyric artist, La Scala nevertheless loomed before 
each new arrival formidable, pitiless, severe. To 
win there was to be carried to the heights ; to lose 
was to be swept away into the limbo of oblivion. 



130 ENRICO CARUSO 

"I did not know what caused it, but almost 
immediately I realized that the feeling was against 
me," declared Caruso. " First came the untraceable 
rumor that I was 'not well/ Then somebody else 
was 'not sure' of my ability. Somebody else re- 
marked that the fifty thousand lire I was to receive 
for the three months' season was 'an enormous sum* 
for such a singer as Caruso. It was in such an atmos- 
phere that I began a most critical period in my career. 

"I had been notified that I would make my debut 
in 'Boheme', on the second night of the season; 
Wagner's 'Siegfried' was to be the opening opera. 
Since the public was eager about 'Boheme' it was 
sure to be well prepared ; the discipline at La Scala 
was strict. Emma Carelli was to be the Mimi, Ales- 
sandro Arcangeli and Oreste Luppi were to have 
the roles of Marcello and Colline. Toscanini was 
of course to conduct. 

"The first rehearsal finally began, with the other 
principals of the company and specially permitted 
visitors listening to my every tone and watching 
every move I made. How little the public realizes 
what the artist must endure to present well the music 
and action of a character. It may have taken blood 
from one's heart to attain the excellence which sends 
an audience from the theater, satisfied. When in 
this rehearsal we reached the tenor's romanza of 
the opening act, I sang in full voice every note of 
the aria excepting the high C ; this I gave falsetto. 

"I noticed some of the artists looking at one an- 
other, for in Italy the use of the falsetto is not a mark 
of good singing. At the end of the romanza To- 



REALIZATIONS 131 

scanini asked me if I could give the high C a little 
stronger; and I answered, 'yes/ He then asked 
to hear, to which I replied that I did not wish to give 
the tone strong so early in the day. I feared this 
might displease Toscanini, but an artist must do 
what he thinks is best and right ; and feeling certain 
of my high C when it was necessary to sing it in the 
performance, it seemed unwise to risk singing a poor 
tone at a time when a good tone was what was 
wanted. 

"At the third rehearsal, when I continued because 
of the same reasons to sing the high C falsetto, To- 
scanini said he was afraid to let me go on without 
hearing how I would give the note from the chest ; 
and he suggested that the aria be transposed a half- 
tone lower. To this I did not object ; it did not 
however remove the obstacle, for at the next rehearsal 
when we arrived at the high B natural I sang that 
note falsetto. 

"At last came the date for the general rehearsal 
which at La Scala begins at nine in the evening with 
a large audience ; it is almost a regular performance. 
The day had not gone far it was, I remember, 
only nine in the morning when the man who sum- 
mons the principals to the theater (the awisatore) 
arrived at my house to inform me of a 'small' re- 
hearsal. Both the composer and the librettist had 
attended all the rehearsals ; many changes had been 
made ; now some one had thought of new changes. 

" Shortly after I reached the theater we began with 
the third act of 'Boheme/ There were many stops ; 
many suggestions ; finally we finished and took up 



132 ENRICO CARUSO 

the fourth act. After a time I began to wonder 
when this * small' rehearsal would end. At half-past 
one we were still at work and no mention had been 
made of lunch, nor was there any when this act had 
been disposed of, for immediately we began on act 
one. By this time I was becoming angry over the 
thought that my soup at home was getting cold. I 
began to sing this first act with all my voice and 
continued in this through the romanza, including 
the much disputed high note near the close. When 
I gave it without any vocal restraint Toscanini (and 
everybody else also) appeared relieved. For a re- 
ward we were put to work upon the second act, in 
which I also used all the tone I had. Having sung 
with complete strength the entire opera, I was as- 
tounded when the avvisatore called out, 'Signore, 
Signori to-night at nine o'clock the general re- 
hearsal.' 

"It was my intention to object, and I. should have 
done so had not the soprano stopped me. * Don't 
worry,' she said, 'to-night we will sing in only half- 
voice/ 

"Having reached home at five o'clock I had little 
rest when, at seven-thirty, the avvisatore called with 
a carriage to take me to the theater. There was 
present an invited audience of distinguished persons : 
the critics, privileged subscribers, La Scala artists 
who were not taking part in the performance, and 
some of their friends. I began the opening act in 
demi-voice. Presently I noticed that the soprano 
who had told me in the afternoon that we would all 
sing that way was using her entire voice. At the 



REALIZATIONS 133 

first opportunity I inquired why she did so. She 
answered, 'I want to put the part in my throat/ 
I was surprised at the finish of the act to notice that 
there was no applause. While I was resting in my 
dressing room don Giulio (Gatti-Casazza) entered 
and requested me to give in the next act a little more 
voice. I begged him to excuse me, explaining that 
I was singing too soon after having eaten to give 
all my voice with comfort to my digestion. 

"Don Giulio's request upset me and made me so 
nervous that in the second act I could scarcely find 
even this demi-voice I had used in the opening scenes. 
In a few moments I heard a rapping noise ; immedi- 
ately the orchestra ceased playing. Then Toscanini 
pointed at me with his baton and said, ' If you don't 
sing, I can't go on/ I urged, for the same reason I 
had given don Giulio, that he excuse me, but instead 
of answering he laid down his baton and left the 
orchestra pit ; then the curtain came down. 

" I went to my dressing room feeling that I should 
give back my advance money and leave La Scala. 
In all probability I should have done so, if the Duke of 
Modrone, president of the La Scala board of directors, 
had not come to me. When he heard what I had 
to say, he urged that I resume my singing in what- 
ever way I felt physically able. We finally took up 
the opera, with Toscanini conducting, and at one 
o'clock in the morning the general rehearsal finished." 

Caruso was so dispirited when he reached home 
that he considered again the advisability of asking to 
be released from his contract. When he awoke later 
in the day he was more firmly of that mind, for he 



134 ENRICO CARUSO 

had contracted fever. Matters now had become se- 
rious. Attended by a physician, his grievances magni- 
fied by illness, the world had become suddenly for- 
bidding. What was the use of it all ? Enmity was 
everywhere about him ; he wished to be rid of the 
whole sickening business. 

But suddenly the sun broke through the clouds 
when, on the day set for the La Scala opening, Gatti- 
Casazza visited his tenor to inform him that " Sieg- 
fried" was not well enough prepared to be presented. 
"La Boheme" had been decided as a substitute; 
here was Caruso's opportunity. In vain did the still 
stricken singer protest ; for two hours Gatti-Casazza 
argued, to ultimate success. Caruso capitulated. He 
consented to sing. And sing he did, on the eve- 
ning of December 26, 190x5; and despite the handi- 
caps imposed by the illness from which he had not 
fully recovered, victory came to him. He was not 
entirely clear of the woods ; he had still a little way 
farther to go. But that "Boheme" appearance 
restored his wavering courage and enabled him to 
collect his resources. He was not far from a goal 
just around the corner ; a glorious goal. 

Gatti and Toscanini were too well seasoned not to 
have immediately discovered the quality of this new 
tenor. Shortcomings he undeniably had ; maturity 
of voice and powers were yet to come. It seemed 
the part of wisdom to both to nurse this singing plant, 
and the first step to that end was to allow him to rest. 
Headaches which years later were to torment him 
had already begun to appear ; nor was he by any 
means wholly recovered from his touch of fever. A 




Copyright Mishkin. N. Y. 
CARUSO AS RODOLFO IN "LA BOHEME " 



REALIZATIONS 135 

rest of eight days, during which an eased mind proved 
no insignificant factor, sent Caruso up for his second 
Rodolfo in condition to do himself justice. At the 
conclusion of the tenth appearance public confidence 
had been won ; and on January 17, 1901, the tenor 
created the role of Florindo in Mascagni's then new 
opera "Le Maschere", his principal associates in 
the cast being Signore Emma Carelli and Linda 
Brambilla, and Signori Arcangeli and Luppi. 

What might have happened if "Le Maschere" 
produced simultaneously in seven different opera 
houses of Italy had succeeded at La Scala must 
be conjectured. Indifferently received after its third 
Milan presentation, Gatti-Casazza was put to it to 
find a substitute. During this period Director Gatti- 
Casazza and Conductor Toscanini fell to meeting of 
evenings to consider what opera could be found to 
replace "Le Maschere/' 

"On one of these evenings," related Gatti-Casazza, 
"I went with Arturo Toscanini to the Caffe Cova 
in the neighborhood of the theater. I had remem- 
bered having heard while a child 'L'Elisir d'Amore', 
that charming opera buffa which Donizetti had 
written in fourteen days. Some of the traditions 
were yet fresh in my mind : the dispute Donizetti 
had with Romani the librettist over the introduction 
as a tenor romanza of a special piece of concert music 
he had composed Una furtiva lagrima during 
which dispute Romani had exclaimed, 'What! a 
pathetic wail by a stupid fellow when all should be 
festive and gay ? ' And then the dedication of the 
opera to the ladies, when Donizetti had written, 



136 ENRICO CARUSO 

' Who more than they know how to distill love ? 
Who better than they know how to dispense it ?' At 
various times since its premiere on May 12, 1832, 
at the Teatro della Canobbiana (now the Lirico) 
'L'Elisir d'Amore' had been revived with recurring 
success. 

"During one of the many pauses in our conver- 
sation on this particular evening," continued Gatti, 
"when Toscanini and I had each vainly suggested 
one work after another, I at length said/ Suppose 
we try to put together "L'Elisir d'Amore", an opera 
always fresh even if almost forgotten.' 'I would be 
delighted to try,' answered Toscanini, 'but the com- 
pany ? We have Caruso, who would do admirably 
as Nemorino ; we have no Adina, although one could 
be found ; but my dear Gatti, what we have not, 
and what I doubt we can find, is a Dulcamara suitable 
for La Scala. It is a difficult role, and buffos of 
good style are no longer to be had.' We separated 
to go to our respective homes. 

"The next day, after a rehearsal, the conversation 
was resumed. Toscanini (I can visualize him now) 
was seated before a piano and playing from 'L'Elisir 
d'Amore' the duet of Adina and Dulcamara. He 
was playing half-unconsciously, looking upwards, 
and repeating in a far-away manner: ' Where - 
can we find a Dulcamara ? There is none/ 

"Maestro Sormani, one of the assistant conductors 
who chanced to hear this curious chant, immediately 
inquired, 'Why not the buffo Carbonetti?' 

"Toscanini paused, swung round in his chair, and 
exclaimed, 'Carbonetti? But the voice?' 



REALIZATIONS 137 

'The voice of Carbonetti, which I heard last 
year/ replied Sormani with quiet assurance, 'is a 
voice no worse than other voices we have since heard 
right here in La Scala.' 

"'Very well,' declared Toscanini, with his char- 
acteristic quickness, 'then let us get Carbonetti and 
try "L'Elisir." We decided at once to do so ; that 
very night, between acts during a performance of 
'Boheme', I spoke to Caruso about Nemorino. 

' ' I know only Una furtiva lagrimaj he informed 
me, 'but if you wish I will begin to-morrow to learn 
the entire role/ Soon I engaged for the Adina Si- 
gnora Regina Pinkert ; Magini-Coletti was cast for 
Sergeant Belcore, and Federico Carbonetti journeyed 
to Milan from the provinces, where he had been 
passing such a wretched existence that he presented 
himself at La Scala without an overcoat, and carrying 
a valise tied up with a bit of string. But he had a 
spirit not in the least curbed by his fortunes. 'They 
say I am getting old !' he declared. 'That is a cal- 
umny ! I still defy all the youngsters to travel around 
Italy in the winter as I do, without an overcoat/ 
Then he hurried off to report to Toscanini, who had 
to be severe with the enthusiastic buffo to prevent 
his introducing in parts of his music top notes 
not written in the score. 

"Reports that La Scala was to revive 'L'Elisir 
d'Amore' were not so favorably received by the pub- 
lic ; and I began to receive letters intimating that 
I was about to turn La Scala into a provincial theater 
and would soon be punished with a fiasco more de- 
cisive than any I had known. These warnings did 



138 ENRICO CARUSO 

not interfere with our preparations for the premiere 
of the revival. The painters started work on the 
three scenes, and my much loved president of the 
board, Duke Visconti di Modrone, made a personal 
search among the Milan carriage makers until he 
had found a 'berlin' which he had adapted for use 
by Doctor Dulcamara. 

"The rehearsals were not strictly joyous affairs. 
The voice of Carbonetti irritated Toscanini intensely ; 
and never have I seen him in such ill humor as he 
was on the morning of February 17, 1901, which 
had been fixed for 'L'Elisir* premiere. Perhaps he 
sensed the quality of the audience which gathered 
that evening ; for it was moderate in size and made no 
pretense of its mind to teach a lesson to Toscanini, to 
me, and if necessary to the memory of Donizetti. 

"Toscanini's face was still forbidding when he 
walked to his conductor's desk in the orchestra pit. 
The opera began ; the chorus sang its strophes ; 
Adina related with grace the story of the love of 
Queen Isolde ; Nemorino sighed delightfully in his 
song but the audience took not the slightest in- 
terest. Not even Belcore which Magini-Coletti 
was interpreting masterfully could soften the stern 
faces of the terrible subscribers. The concertato of 
Adina, Nemorino, and Belcore, with the chorus, was 
followed by a chilling silence which traveled to where 
I was standing back stage, causing my blood to 
freeze with the fear that after all the evening would 
end disastrously. 

" Presently the duet of the soprano and tenor com- 
menced. Signora Pinkert delivered her opening 



REALIZATIONS 139 

phrases delightfully; and when she had finished, 
I caught some subdued murmurs of approval. Then 
Caruso began. Who that heard him will not re- 
member ? Calm and conscious that at this point 
lay the fate of the performance he uttered his re- 
sponse (Chiedi al rio) to the soprano in a voice of 
such warmth, and with such art of sentiment, that 
I cannot describe its effect. Gradually he melted 
the icy reserve with which the auditors had invested 
themselves ; little by little he compelled their atten- 
tion ; and when he arrived at the cadenza he swept 
on to a climax with such fervor that none in the 
theater could resist. Such a tempest of applause 
can be appreciated only by one who knows an Italian 
audience and more particularly a discriminating 
La Scala audience. So uproariously did that assem- 
blage demand a repetition that Toscanini, notwith- 
standing his aversion to granting encores, had to sub- 
mit. The curtain fell with an ovation for Adina and 
Nemorino when they came thrice before the curtain. 

"My nervousness was such at this point that I 
could not remain upon the stage ; I went beneath it. 
I feared to observe how Carbonetti would fare with 
this critical audience. When I fancied his cava- 
tina should have been finished, I approached the 
prompter's box to inquire. Marchesi (the same 
prompter now at the Metropolitan) whispered to 
me that Carbonetti 'went well/ having caused many 
to laugh who wished not to. That settled matters ; 
if the old voice of Carbonetti had met with favor, 
then the ship was indeed safely in port. 

"From that point on, approval greeted every 



140 ENRICO CARUSO 

number. And when Caruso sang Unafurtiva lagrima 
he was made to repeat it, with a third delivery of 
the aria almost compelled. That settled everything. 
I was limp, but content. When Toscanini came 
back stage to go before the curtain with the artists, 
he embraced Caruso, then turned to me and said, 
'Per dio! Se questo Napoletano continua a cantare 
cost, fard parlare di se il mondo intero. 1 (By Heaven ! 
If this Neapolitan continues to sing like this, he 
will make the world talk about him.) 

"It was after a representation of 'Marta' at the 
New York Metropolitan one evening during the season 
of 1916 that Otto H. Kahn remarked to me, 'With 
Caruso in such admirable form why should n't we 
revive "L'Elisir d'Amore"?' This was, as we say 
in Italy, 'inviting a goose to drink/ I accepted 
with enthusiasm Mr. Kahn's suggestion. * L'Elisir 
d'Amore* is one of the very few amori di teatro 
(stage's love) of which I am the faithful slave 
'L'Elisir' with Caruso, be it understood. 

"Perhaps this may explain my feelings toward him 
whenever he sang Nemorino, and which moved me 
to say to him after one of those 1916 'L'Elisir' per- 
formances : ' Caro don Enrico I and many others 
have become less young ; but you must truly have 
drunk of the elixir of love because your voice and 
your art, constantly advancing toward perfection, 
have preserved the charm and the wonderful re- 
sources of that memorable night at La Scala. To 
you and your art may the gods grant as much youth 
and glory as still smile upon the " Elisir" of the great 
Italian master/ " 



REALIZATIONS 141 

After that "L'Elisir d'Amore" revival premiere 
at La Scala there was a sudden lifting of the un- 
pleasant atmosphere which had surrounded the 
Neapolitan tenor. Difficulties were of course to 
be expected so long as the career continued ; and at 
twenty-eight one can scarcely be more than well 
started along the highway. Such was Caruso's 
viewpoint expressed at the time to Ada Giachetti ; 
he likewise communicated his feelings in the matter 
to other of his intimates. Still, the hostility mani- 
fested in the underhanded fashion that was no new 
experience instilled within the singer a feeling of sad- 
ness rather than resentment. By nature friendly, 
he disliked any unfriendly thoughts others might have 
for him. His success was resting far too easily upon 
his widening shoulders to cause on his part any dis- 
play of irritating egotism : he forbore to speak over- 
much of himself, of his voice, or his singing, and there 
is no evidence to indicate that he developed at that 
time any offensive mannerisms. Perhaps no par- 
ticular credit belongs to Caruso for such restraint ; 
it apparently was no part of his make-up to lord it 
over a fellow artist. But for all his open-heartedness 
he unquestionably was learning to look more closely 
at the companion across the table ; and under it also, 
lest his toes be surreptitiously trodden upon. 

Although "Le Maschere" had caused the public 
to upturn its music nose the tenor music gave Caruso 
a real opportunity. In the role of Florindo he had 
found such congenial moments that the complete 
turning of the La Scala tide in his direction dates from 
the time of that opera's premiere. A miscellaneous 



142 ENRICO CARUSO 

performance, given in La Scala February I in com- 
memoration of Giuseppe Verdi (one week following 
his death) presented Caruso in the quartet from 
"Rigoletto" with Signore Brambilla and Ghibaudo 
and Signor Arcangeli. With "L'Elisir d'Amore" 
firmly established in the favor of the Milan public, 
preparations were begun on " Mefistofele," in which 
the distinguished Chaliapin was to appear. 

The Russian basso had an experience with To- 
scanini at his first rehearsal similar to that of Caruso 
during his "Boheme." Chaliapin could not under- 
stand why he should be asked to sing full voice when 
the other artists were permitted to suppress their 
tones. A stranger to him until that meeting, Caruso 
explained to Chaliapin that Toscanini had reasons 
for wishing to hear a voice then new to him. "He 
knows/* said the tenor, "just what the rest of us 
can do. You have not to worry. Toscanini is like 
one of these dogs who bark and do not bite." The 
basso felt that Caruso had "the face of goodness", 
and a voice which was "the ideal" Chaliapin had 
been "waiting years to hear." Those nine La 
Scala "Mefistofele" presentations, the first of which 
took place March 16, 1901, included in the cast 
Signore Carelli and Pinto. But the artists talked 
about by the public were Caruso and Chaliapin. 

The tenor bade au revoir to La Scala with the 
consciousness of a securer place in the world which 
was then beginning to open its arms. April, 1901, 
brought the sailing time for South America, and when 
the SS Orione docked in the Buenos Aires harbor on 
May 10 Caruso disembarked with Toscanini, Mme. 



REALIZATIONS 143 

Ericlea Darclee, Signore Amelia Pinto and Alice 
Cucini ; the tenors Borgatti and Mariacher ; Giral- 
doni and Sammarco, baritones, and the bassos de 
Segurola, Ercolani, and La Puma. There was no 
enthusiastic Mme. Ferrari to greet the little group of 
artists ; the impresaria had died several months before. 
In her place was Camillo Bonetti, her former sec- 
retary, who had engaged the Theater of La Opera 
and was bent on making that season an extraordinary 
affair. He felt elated in having such a maestro as 
Toscanini, a personage by reputation even though 
he had never conducted in Buenos Aires. And he 
needed a Toscanini, for there would be no Emma 
Carelli and no Emilio de Marchi in the "Tosca" 
premiere. Mme. Darclee and Caruso might actually 
surpass these missing favorites yet fail to stir so 
favorable a public response. It was therefore a some- 
what delicate situation which waited for its turning 
upon a capricious South American public. 

The test was not long coming. On May 16 a dress 
rehearsal was given before an invited audience which 
included the critics. Two nights later brought the 
public performance and a gathering by no means 
happy in the absence of their adored Carelli and de 
Marchi. That first act of "Tosca" was performed 
before auditors concerned chiefly in making compari- 
sons between the tenor and soprano before them on 
the opera stage, and those two artists the listeners 
felt should be there. In the same atmosphere the 
second scene was begun, but before such singing 
coldness could not prevail, and when Caruso de- 
livered his Vittoriai Vittoria! cry of defiance to the 



144 ENRICO CARUSO 

Scarpia of Giraldoni, all oppressiveness disappeared. 
No South American assemblage was able to sit un- 
moved by such tones, and the capitulation was 
immediate. Later came the E lucevan le stelle, and 
an uproar akin to a riot. In vain did Toscanini 
protest the demand for a repetition ; it had to be 
granted, just as de Marchi thereafter was forced 
into a place secondary to the one he had hitherto 
held. The same opera was presented on the next 
evening (Sunday) and the Thursday following ; so 
far as public desire was concerned, "Tosca" might 
have gone indefinitely, with that especial cast. 

Time and experience must have carried Caruso 
materially forward in both voice and art during the 
year of his absence from Buenos Aires, for in each 
fresh role he was vehemently acclaimed. These 
demonstrations had their beneficial effects. Stimu- 
lated by them the tenor spared nothing he could give 
as an adequate return. On June i, 1901, he appeared 
with Signora Pinto in "Regina di Saba" ; and eight 
days later, in " Rigoletto", he sang the Duke to her 
Gilda. All the forces within him must have leaped 
out on this occasion, else followers of the great Mas'ni 
could not have allowed themselves to concede Caruso 
to have been "a wonderful Duke." 

Those were sunny days indeed for the tenor. He 
had won the people ; he was earning thirty-five 
thousand lire a month ; he could look ahead, then, 
and actually smile over the spotty past. One could 
of course never be quite sure of what might lurk in 
the distance, but the present was a glorious enough 
present to be enjoyed to the full, with his comrades 



REALIZATIONS 145 

of the opera, with those notables of the city who in- 
sisted he accept their hospitality, and with the always 
sympathetic Galante whose friendship and studio 
continued to be sources of attraction to the singer's 
artistic heart. And visible signs of this material 
and mental prosperity were beginning to appear. 
The former slenderness of figure had given way to 
one manifestly stocky ; no longer was the anxious, 
eager-to-please look to be found upon the tenor's 
round face. Never given to bodily exercise, and able 
at that time to eat whatever and as much as he 
pleased, Caruso was entering willingly the period of 
self-indulgence. He smoked cigarettes, he laughed 
when asked if he were not afraid they might affect his 
voice, and kept such hours as it pleased him to keep. 
In short, he was acquiring the ways of one gripping 
hard to success arid developing out of it the sort of 
confidence necessary to retain that hold. There was 
time enough also for good reading had Caruso been 
so inclined ; but he never was. For him a book was 
something to be looked at rather than into. His 
knowledge was a knowledge gathered principally from 
observation and word-of-mouth communication, if 
exception be made of such study as was brought to 
the learning and refreshing of his opera roles. His 
later years did not bring a development in that direc- 
tion, for when his wife, who devours books vora- 
ciously, asked him why he did not read, he dismissed 
the subject with the terse rejoinder, "I learn from 
life, not from books." 

"L'Elisir d'Amore", "Iris", "La Traviata", and 
"Lohengrin" sung in Italian were other works 



146 ENRICO CARUSO 

in which Caruso appeared during this South American 
sojourn. The tenor role in the latter opera must 
never have appealed to him ; it is a question if at that 
time its qualities of knightly dignity were suited to 
his inclinations and style. In the final period of his 
career when he added to his repertory such parts 
as John of Leyden in "Le Prophete"; Samson in 
"Samson et Dalila" ; and Eleazar in "La Juive" 
"Lohengrin" might have disclosed him upon no less 
eminent an artistic plane. Reports of the two Buenos 
Aires "Lohengrin" appearances go no further than 
that he sang with "considerable success." Since 
Caruso never afterward essayed the character of the 
Knight of the Grail it may be assumed that it brought 
him no laurels. For Caruso possessed a sense of 
values, and whatever could assist materially his 
career was seldom overlooked. 

On July 29 the tenor sang in a performance of 
Rossini's "Stabat Mater" given as a memorial to 
King Humbert of Italy; and August 17 marked his 
Buenos Aires farewell in the same work which had 
opened the season. The next day, on board the 
SS Manilla, he sailed for Italy. Two years elapsed 
before he returned to those audiences which had 
reserved for him an especial place. 

Independent enough upon his return home to 
indulge in a rest, Caruso declined every contract 
offered for an autumn engagement. He had money ; 
what more natural after his periods of struggling 
that he should avail himself of some leisure with 
which to enjoy it ! The Galleria of Milan saw him 
regularly each day, as did those other places fre- 



REALIZATIONS 147 

quented by the workers of the opera. Conspicuously 
clothed, the tenor was a familiar figure and one not 
to be missed. Amid friends and scenes that warmed 
his Italian heart, the weeks drove all too swiftly to- 
ward that late December day which was to carry him 
back to the public of his native city for his debut at 
the celebrated San Carlo Theater. There were only 
two interruptions. The first one took the tenor to 
Bologna, where he sang in " Rigoletto." The second 
interruption came in the form of a request from the 
Associazione Italiana di Beneficenza, of Trieste, urg- 
ing Caruso to sing in two charity performances of 
"L'Elisir d'Amore" to be given at the Politeama 
Rossetti. 

Those evenings of December 14 and 15, 1901, re- 
main memorable. Signora Adelina Padovani was 
the Adina ; Signorina Emma Trentini sang Gianetta ; 
G. Caruson and Signer Borelli appeared respectively 
as Belcore and Dulcamara, and Maestro Gialdino 
Gialdini conducted. A souvenir of those days 
during which Trieste bowed under Austria's rule now 
reposes in the Trieste City Hall. It is a phonograph 
"proof" record (then unpublished) of the song 
La Campana di San Giusto, presented by the tenor 
to those first members of the Parliament which, after 
so many years of waiting, swerved from Vienna to 
Rome. This presentation took place in New York, 
during a visit made by the Parliament members to 
deliver a series of lectures. 

Trieste had served as a sort of operatic warming-up 
for the vastly more serious business of the San Carlo 
debut. How often in his youth had Caruso paused 



148 ENRICO CARUSO 

before that stately building, hoping he might and 
wondering if he would one day sing there. Among 
opera houses of the world the San Carlo ranked high ; 
certainly no other in Southern Italy held for the 
artists so strong an allure. Having conquered in 
outside fields, the singer returned joyously for the 
effort he then believed would prove the supremely 
happy one of his life. All the honors reaped in 
those other centers of operatic art could scarcely 
compare with the single honor he hoped Naples 
would bestow upon a native son. For he did hope, 
with a confidence born of those recent successes 
gained before people quite as critical as the Neapoli- 
tans. 

Perhaps, had there been no intrigue to combat, a 
different story might be told. Naples assuredly was 
eager to welcome within the halls of its beloved San 
Carlo its rising singer. And had the power remained 
solely with the populace the record would doubtless 
have run according to the adage. But operatic 
Naples was swayed at that time by violent prejudices ; 
and out of these prejudices there had grown the 
famous patiti, as the enthusiasts of the opera were 
then termed. Each of these enthusiasts, affirms no 
less an authority than Nicola Daspuro, assumed the 
right to constitute a legitimate guardian of the 
artistic traditions of San Carlo. In reality, however, 
this assumption of authority had been seized by the 
followers of two impresari during an earlier feud, 
their numbers being later swelled by the adherents of 
various teachers of singing whose approval or disap- 
proval of an artist was sufficient to make him 



REALIZATIONS 149 

happy or forlorn. Then there were the pessimists 
who still hugged to their breasts disappointed 
ambition. A motley assortment, those Naples patiti, 
yet an all powerful one where any singer was con- 
cerned. 

That turbulent group has been called by Signer 
Mormone, the eminent music reviewer for the news- 
paper Roma, the sicofanti. Sycophants they un- 
questionably were. They might have had their own 
opinions ; doubtless they did hold them. But they 
were ready to be subdued under such orders as might 
be issued by the leaders, in the manner customary 
for these leaders to display in the presence of any 
San Carlo audience. 

The stamping ground of the sicofanti (or patiti) 
was the orchestra pit of the San Carlo. On the 
right they sat, assuming all the airs of maestri and 
professori, and with such a seriousness as prevailed 
in the Grecian Areopagus. "Monaciello" as they 
called Cavalier Alfredo Monaco was one of the 
leaders, and many artists had experienced evenings 
of woe for failure to have previously paid homage 
either to Monaco or his co-leader, Prince Adolfo di 
Castagneto, who from his historical seat in the first 
row, right, of the orchestra pit would assume the airs 
of a modern Diocletian. 

At every premiere, just before the curtain rose, 
the prince would enter the theater. If the soprano 
or tenor or other artist about to debut had not pre- 
viously called to pay him personal homage, it proved 
an oversight serious in its effects. For the prince 
liked to feel that his protection was a valued thing. 



150 ENRICO CARUSO 

When it had not been sought he would stalk to his 
seat, observing audibly, "Who is this new and un- 
known celebrity ? We will hear. We will be rigid 
critics, yet we will be just.'* These were the stereo- 
typed words, so well known to a San Carlo audience. 
Equally stereotyped would be the action, manner, 
and words of the Prince di Castagneto if the new- 
comer singer had won the audience's applause. He 
would rise ceremoniously from his seat, adjust his 
monocle, and with the pose of a censor from whose 
edict there could be no appeal he would declare, 
"Bad very bad!" 

This ultimatum was the invariable signal for a riot 
in which the "Rights" stood arrayed against the 
public, seated in the other parts of the house. Such 
dissension, started thus in the theater, would extend 
into the foyer and corridors of the San Carlo, thence 
to the streets, and later it would drift into and be 
continued within the fashionable club called the 
Casino dell* Unione, and amongst those who gathered 
in coffee houses, restaurants, and newspaper offices. 

Did Gayarre sing, the Stagno devotees maintained 
that Gayarre forced his voice. For those who bowed 
to Gayarre's art Stagno was no more than a bleating 
goat. Masini to those opposing him spoke 
rather than sang ; de Lucia had to stamp his feet 
against the stage in order to produce his high tones 
and Tamagno was a strillazzaro (fruit vendor). 
These and other comments, uttered by the excitable 
Neapolitan opera sicofanti in judgment of artists of 
renown, bespoke no symptom of merciful considera- 
tion for any young singer ready to come before them. 



REALIZATIONS 151 

Caruso was well aware of this existing situation 
when he signed the San Carlo contract Impresario 
Roberto de Sanna had prepared. He knew on his 
arrival in Naples, several days prior to the night of 
his debut in "L'Elisir d'Amore" on December 30, 
1901, that a visit to Prince di Castagneto or to Chev. 
Monaco would help to gain for him a likely success. 
A visiting card sent to each of the newspaper music 
critics also might have enlisted tempered pens. 

But such practises had not been Caruso practises ; 
he never turned to them at any time in his career. 
Quite possibly he wished to win if it were to be so 
decreed by virtue of accomplishment unaided by 
favor of any kind. He was young ; he had become 
reasonably sure of himself; he believed his towns- 
folk would at least deal out justice to him. Daspuro 
was of that San Carlo assemblage which attended 
Caruso's fateful debut. "I have him before my 
eyes," he declared, "when he advanced toward the 
footlights to sing the Quanta e bella, quanta e cara. 
His friends sought to salute and to reassure him with 
some slight applause, whereupon the sound of hisses 
intermingled. It was the registered objection of 
the ever-observant San Carlo patiti at the right of 
the orchestra pit and that of the public elsewhere. 
Immediately came cries of ' Wait ! let us judge him." 

Stricken momentarily dumb by this reception, 
Caruso stood hesitant. Near him was Signora 
Regina Pinkert, the Adina of the night. Just below, 
with poised baton, sat Maestro Edoardo Mascheroni. 
Beyond, clearly visible, were the faces of the mal- 
contents who sat shoulder to shoulder, ready en masse 



152 ENRICO CARUSO 

to squelch any further efforts to encourage an artist 
who should pass them lightly by. 

For a few moments this tenseness held. It needed 
some immediate and exceptional effort to rescue the 
tenor from his position of defense. He put out of his 
mind whatever previous plan he may have had to win 
by slow methods and sure. It was then or(possibly) 
never ; and into the accomplishment of this task he 
threw every resource he could summon. To shift, 
if only slightly, the attitude of the opposition was a 
thing he must do. In part he succeeded. As the 
performance wore on the majority listeners responded 
to efforts put forth from a heart of lead. Caruso 
sung himself to a triumph, though not an overwhelm- 
ing one. For in the newspapers of the next day it 
was said of him that while his voice was "beautiful - 
very beautiful", it was scarcely adapted to the 
idyllic character of "L'Elisir." Baron Saverio Pro- 
cida, critic for // Pungolo, wrote that for the Una 
furtiva lagrima aria it was necessary to have a tenor- 
like timbre of voice, not a baritone. Other reviewers 
were of the opinion that Caruso's acting "left much 
to be desired." 

The three days intervening between the "L'Elisir" 
premiere and its second representation were sufficient 
to restore Caruso's equilibrium. He no longer 
cared to win his compatriots for the joy it should 
give him. What he sought was revenge ; and he 
meant to have it in his own peculiar fashion. It 
was a dead-cold Caruso who appeared as Nemorino 
in the San Carlo on January 2, 1902. Signora Pinkert 
noticed it ; Signori Bucalo and Borelli, also of that 



REALIZATIONS 153 

cast, noted the fact. So too, it appears, did the patiti, 
and the very public which had joined with it in 
resisting the endeavors of a young artist to win on 
merit alone. 

Between that night and the following January 21, 
1902, Caruso sang four additional times in "L'Elisir 
d'Amore" ; and made four appearances in Massenet's 
"Manon", with Signorina Rina Giachetti, Emanuele 
Bucalo and Constantino Thos. Those were the 
last ten appearances the tenor ever made in the city 
of his birth. His Des Grieux in "Manon" partic- 
ularly the intrepretation of the Dream Aria of the 
third act won over the last of the dissenters. It 
was sweet revenge, but for Caruso there was to be one 
still sweeter to comfort his wounded soul. During 
the final days of that San Carlo engagement he said 
to his friend Daspuro, "Daspuro, I will never again 
come to Naples to sing ; it will be only to eat a plate 
of spaghetti." 

Impresari and friends of the tenor sought at 
various times during the years that followed to induce 
him to break his vow. Vain endeavors ! He never 
would. Much as he loved Naples, he was oper- 
atically finished with it forever on the night of 
January 21, 1902. 



CHAPTER SIX 
CLIMBING 

WHATEVER reception his fellow Neapolitans may 
have chosen to extend him as an artist before his 
voice and singing at length disposed of their ill-timed 
opposition, Caruso must have found comfort in the 
consciousness of his growing importance in the opera 
world. From time to time negotiations had been 
tentatively begun for his appearances in London and 
the United States. As early as December, 1899, 
Henry V. Higgins, chairman of the board at Covent 
Garden, had requested Antonio Scotti to make over- 
tures to Caruso to appear in London ; and it was 
about that time also that an Italian agent, repre- 
senting the New York Metropolitan Opera Company, 
had made an offer to the tenor. A Monte Carlo 
engagement had likewise been tendered, and from 
other European opera houses solicitations for his 
services, both direct and indirect, had reached him. 

Following his Naples "farewell" Caruso was 
pledged to sing some special appearances at Monte 
Carlo ; then to resume his place at La Scala. There- 
after Covent Garden audiences were to hear for the 
first time this much talked-about voice. The tenor 
had signed the Covent Garden contract upon recom- 
mendation of Scotti, with whom he had become 
acquainted at Milan, in March, 1899. Caruso 



CLIMBING 155 

had drawn back from the two thousand lire an ap- 
pearance offer of Chairman Higgins, made through 
Scotti. "Per Dio, I receive twenty-five hundred at 
La Scala ; why should I accept less to go to London ?" 
The baritone emphasized the advantages which a 
Covent Garden engagement would bring, and his 
arguments at length prevailed. Caruso accepted the 
terms, which provided for twenty-five hundred lire 
an appearance throughout the second season, three 
thousand lire for the third, and thirty-five hundred 
lire and four thousand lire respectively an appearance 
for the fourth and fifth seasons. 

Not until 1913 did Caruso receive what he felt 
to have been his "price", and a figure "higher than 
had ever been paid an artist in Europe/* The stum- 
bling block that placed four thousand nine hundred 
and ninety-nine lire the limit for a Caruso appearance 
during his sixth and seventh Covent Garden seasons 
was a contract then in force with Mme. Nellie Melba, 
which stipulated that she alone should receive as 
much as a thousand dollars (five thousand lire) an 
appearance. 

Caruso departed for Monte Carlo looking ahead 
and upwards even though the hurt Naples had 
dealt him was still felt in his heart. Those days spent 
with friends following the San Carlo engagement had 
not been altogether happy ones, although those cleav- 
ing to the tenor had sought to make them so. For, 
creeping in during the card games and the promenades 
and the gatherings of evening, which consumed much 
of Caruso's time during the approach of his leave- 
taking, would come the thought of what he held to 



156 ENRICO CARUSO 

have been the injustice dealt him as an artist by his 
fellow citizens. En route northwards Caruso stopped 
off in Milan, where he participated in several re- 
hearsals of Baron Alberto Franchetti's "Germania", 
in which he was to create the tenor role. 

Monte Carlo was different from Naples. Plunged 
into an atmosphere of gayety,and among people whose 
sole existence appeared to center in the indulging 
of luxurious taste, Caruso caught his first glimpse 
of another corner of the world. He rather liked it. 
The cosmopolitanism of the gatherings held his 
attention ; and he began to note, among other things, 
that taste in dress was governed by other elements 
than conspicuousness of cut and design. The Casino 
attracted his interest ; nor did he attempt to resist 
the desire to chance a few francs on some of the tables 
which silently beckoned him. The soft air, the 
romanticism of the place, and the clear skies appealed 
to his warm Italian nature. He was glad to have 
come to this spot ; and before he left he signed a 
contract with Impresario Raoul Gunsbourg to return 
for several successive seasons. 

It was at this Monte Carlo debut that Caruso first 
sang with Mme. Melba. The opera was Puccini's 
"La Boheme," Maestro Arturo Vigna conducted, 
and Miss Mary Royer was the Musetta. Seasoned 
by the constant routine he had undergone for more 
than five years, and enlightened at last as to the appeal 
and responsiveness of his voice, Caruso seems to 
have expanded in the capacity to sing with that 
degree of authority which is one of the distinguishing 
marks of the artist. He was accepted instantly by 



CLIMBING 157 

an audience which had heard opera in all parts of the 
world ; by an audience well enough versed to dis- 
criminate intelligently. 

"Rigoletto" presented the tenor who was destined 
to become a fixed star in subsequent Monte Carlo 
seasons in a no less favorable light, even though he 
had as associates in the cast Mme. Melba and the 
great baritone, Maurice Renaud, then at the zenith 
of his powers. These two operas were alternated 
throughout the 1902 Monte Carlo season, and at its 
conclusion Caruso went forth to Milan, surer than 
ever of himself and the better equipped for the larger 
efforts to come. He had been chosen to create the 
tenor character of Loewe in Franchetti's "Germania", 
which was to be produced that March 1 1 at La Scala, 
and he took up eagerly the preliminary rehearsals. 

How friendly Milan seemed to the tenor as he 
passed through its streets to the little family of two 
which awaited him at via Velasca ; how different 
from the Milan of the year before, during those 
trying moments when La Scala appeared about to be 
snatched from him. From Fofo and Ada Giachetti 
he went to the Galleria posthaste as every artist 
is moved to go immediately upon reaching this 
city and there he received the congratulations of his 
comrades over the Monte Carlo success, the news of 
which had preceded him. So far as could be seen all 
serious opposition had been routed ; the way into the 
future lay clearly enough defined ; and the realization 
of these matters, subtle though they doubtless were, 
nevertheless gave back a fortifying reaction. Indeed 
from that time forth there was little questioning that 



158 ENRICO CARUSO 

Caruso was certain to shortly become if not 
actually at that time the world's foremost tenor. 
The few who disputed his place never interfered 
seriously with his progress. Some circumstances 
arose which slightly retarded it, but such an artist 
could not long be kept from arriving at his predestined 
goal. 

"Germania" went up (as opera people express the 
presentation of an opera) with Toscanini conducting, 
and a cast consisting of Caruso, Signore Amelia 
Pinto, Jane Bathori, Teresa Ferraris, and the 
baritone Mario Sammarco, who afterward became 
a favorite with the patrons of Oscar Hammerstein's 
Manhattan Opera Company. After fourteen per- 
formances of this work Caruso left for London. 
Here was a new center for his widening activities ; 
a people to sing to quite different in tastes and tem- 
perament from any he had yet known. A victory 
in such circumstances meant an almost assured 
future. The tenor was almost boyishly eager for 
the test. 

Caruso has referred to the attitude of the Covent 
Garden management as that of a housewife endeavor- 
ing, by the "feel" of a watermelon, to determine 
whether it is ripe enough to buy. "I was in a some- 
what uncertain position, for the impresa wished to be 
convinced that I was thoroughly ripe. I accepted 
the conditions of the contract because I was almost 
sure that my voice had something of the * red ripeness ' 
in it." 

Such was the tenor's frame of mind when he first 
set foot in London, where forever afterwards he was 




Copyright Mishkln, N. Y. 
CARUSO AS THE DUKE IN "RIGOLETTO" 



CLIMBING 159 

to become one of its popular singers. Indeed, he 
became in time unique ; his appearance in public 
was instantly attended by the gathering of a throng 
of people, on the streets or indoors. He was just 
beginning to acquire an ease of manner which some 
choose to interpret as self-conceit ; and his prome- 
nading may have had in it something of that air, for 
he walked with a short and scarcely graceful stride, 
his head held high, his upturned moustache bearing 
evidences of careful tending. All this was of course 
enough to be seized upon by those born with gossipy 
tongues. But it mattered little after Caruso had 
impressed Londoners with the quality of his voice 
and his singing. 

"Rigoletto" was the opera which presented him 
to a Covent Garden audience, on May 14, 1902, in 
a cast which included Mme. Melba and Maurice 
Renaud and Marcel Journet. The auditorium was 
quite filled. With as much interest as a Covent 
Garden assemblage of that period would permit it- 
self to show, the listeners gave their attention to the 
new tenor. His stocky frame, his chubby face and 
the traditional operatic bearing affected by most 
tenors of his time and physical characteristics, com- 
bined to give him an individual air. Whatever 
Caruso may have lacked as an actor, he supplied 
vocally. His acceptance was instantaneous and 
complete ; and the newspapers commented on the 
following day in a single vein. The voice, declared 
one of the critics, had in it "the richness of rare 
velvet." The Pall Mall Gazette reviewer declared 
that "Signer Caruso sang to perfection. He is the 



160 ENRICO CARUSO 

embodiment of the finest epoch of Italian bel canto, 
and his ringing tones were marked both by an es- 
sential gift of music and by a fineness of timbre which 
you will not find easily surpassed." Conspicuous in 
the critique appearing in the Daily Telegraph was the 
sentence, " By his magnificent singing Signor Caruso 
evoked a demonstration that is rare here, after the 
clock has struck eleven." 

The clock unquestionably was preparing to strike 
twelve for the tenor. For here was an Anglo-Saxon 
people as completely enthralled by his vocal resources 
as had been any Latin public. He could turn his 
eyes, after such a reception, toward the United States 
with expectation of enlisting favorable consideration 
from a nation that does not invariably approve 
every foreign music artist. 

After "Rigoletto" Caruso appeared in La Boheme y 
again with Mme. Melba singing the leading soprano 
role and with Scotti and Journet among the Bo- 
hemians of the cast. Then came "Lucia di Lammer- 
moor", with Signora Pacini, and the ever-present 
Scotti and Journet. "Ai'da" followed, and on this 
occasion Mme. Lillian Nordica was the soprano, 
and Scotti, Plancon, and Journet also appeared. 
The Caruso vogue had begun. He was a magnet of 
attraction, and when he sang Turiddu in "Cavalleria 
Rusticana " to the Santuzza of Mme. Emma Calve, 
his London future appeared to have become assured. 
He was warmly received in "La Traviata", with 
Mme. Melba, and his next new role was in "Don 
Giovanni", when he had as associate artists Mme. 
Fritzi Scheff and Renaud and Journet. His Nemo- 



CLIMBING 161 

rino, in "L'Elisir d'Amore", also won the London 
public. 

Before the final appearance in "Rigoletto", on 
July 28, during which time he had sung twenty-four 
times, Caruso had made the acquaintance of Maurice 
Grau. There had been some prior negotiations look- 
ing towards the singer's possible engagement at the 
New York Metropolitan Opera House, of which 
Grau was at that time impresario. In the year 1900, 
Scotti had inquired if Caruso would consider signing 
a contract, but when the tenor had mentioned seven 
thousand lire an appearance as his cachet nothing 
came of the matter. The first Metropolitan nibble 
however, had come in the late winter of 1899, just 
after Caruso had returned to Milan from his first 
Petrograd engagement, and while he was singing at 
the Lirico Theater in " Fedora." 

During one of his daily visits to the Galleria, 
Caruso was introduced to MaestroVincenzo Bevignani 
who had been for several seasons one of the first 
conductors at the Metropolitan ; and the conversa- 
tion turning naturally into the channel of the theater 
Bevignani suddenly said, "You young boys who are 
starting hard careers should not let your heads be 
swelled by a few successes." 

Caruso has expressed himself as having been sur- 
prised, and to have felt that he was unfairly criticized. 
Asking Bevignani what he meant by such remarks the 
tenor was informed. "There was a chance for you 
to go to the first theater of the world," declared the 
maestro, " a chance you lost through your swelled head 
which caused you to ask for too much money." 



162 ENRICO CARUSO 

"Do you think," answered Caruso, "that forty 
pounds a week was too much to have asked at a time 
when I was receiving nearly half that amount for a 
single appearance ?" 

"What!'* exclaimed Bevignani, "I was told that 
you asked to go to America twenty-five thousand lire 
a week." 

"Then you were not told the truth, because I said 
I would accept the forty pounds a week offer ; but 
the contract never came." Later Caruso explained 
that Bevignani's silence indicated that he had been, 
in that particular case, "a good pear for two people." 

These matters were still firmly impressed in the 
tenor's mind when Maurice Grau said to him one 
day during Caruso's London engagement, "So you 
don't want to come to America ?" 

" I replied in effect," said the tenor, " Well, it is up 
to you." 

"In that case," observed the impresario, "I will 
say that I should like to have you at the Metropolitan, 
and I hope you will come to see me at my home that 
we may arrange something." 

A few days later Caruso called upon Grau. He 
explained his disinclination to deal through an 
agent, to which the impresario said, "Very well, 
we will do this business ourselves." 

"Mr. Grau," said the tenor, "I don't like to sign 
contracts in the way some persons do. It is enough 
to have one letter in which is specified the length of 
the engagement, the money, and the operas be- 
cause I respect my signature, and I expect the other 
to respect his too." 



CLIMBING 163 

To this Grau answered that he held similar views. 
He thereupon wrote down the necessary matter which 
he felt should be incorporated in the contract, and 
handing the paper to Caruso said, " Please put what 
we have agreed upon into a letter and get two copies 
and bring them to me in two or three days. We will 
then sign together, and you will be with me next 
year." 

"I went away gratified/' explained Caruso, "be- 
cause I wished to have no interference from any 
agent's source. Three days later I called at the Grau 
London residence, only to be informed by the porter 
who opened the door that Mr. Grau was inWiesbaden. 
I explained the nature of my visit, whereupon the 
porter said, 'Just give me whatever you have, I am 
charged by Mr. Grau to forward his mail.' 

"Leaving with the porter the original letter and 
the copies I had made, I returned to my hotel, expect- 
ing shortly to hear from Mr. Grau. Days passed, 
yet no word came. When the London season finished 
I went to my Florence home to rest ; still no letter 
came from Mr. Grau. It seemed strange. 

"It was some time during that August, while I 
was in Salsomaggiore, that I received a visit from the 
son of an agent who had said that unless I dealt with 
him I would never see the land of America. The 
moment he appeared I understood instantly what had 
prompted his call. No sooner had he greeted me than 
he pompously announced that he had been authorized 
by Mr. Grau to negotiate for my services. My reply 
to this surprising statement was, ' But Mr. Grau must 
have forgotten that he has a contract we agreed on, 



164 ENRICO CARUSO 

and which I signed ; he must send me back that 
contract and the two duplicates which I left for him 
at his London home/ 

"My visitor informed me that he was empowered 
to arrange all such, and other details ; my mind, 
though, was made up, and I told the agent that I did 
not wish his participation in the completion of any 
contract Mr. Grau and I might make. To this my 
visitor replied, 'If you don't pass through our agency, 
you will never sing in America/ 

"My reply was 'You can go to Hell! I shall 
never sing in America if it has to be through any 
contract you arrange/ 

"This man left not for the place I had suggested 
but to the nearest telegraph office, to cable to 
Mr. Grau the result of our interview. He must have 
included something else, for the following day I re- 
ceived from Mr. Grau a cablegram urging me to 
accept a contract through this agent. 

"I considered the matter for some hours before 
reaching a decision. To agree meant conceding 
what I disliked to concede. In the end it seemed the 
most sensible thing to do ; so for the first time 
and also the last during my career I passed under 
the forche caudine. The forche, as events were to 
prove, were never made complete. 

"The contract, for a period of five years, finally was 
concluded ; and within a few days everybody in 
the music business had learned of it. Letters of 
congratulation (as well as some worded quite the 
opposite) poured in upon me." 

The difficulties surrounding a United States con- 



CLIMBING 165 

tract were not, as later developed, quite disposed of. 
Caruso thought they were, and continued with his 
vacation in high spirits until late October, when he 
prepared for his next operatic task, the creation 
of the role of Maurizio in Francesco Cilea's new 
work, " Adriana de Lecouvreur." He arrived at the 
Lirico, in Milan, eager to do fullest justice to help- 
ing make successful another creation by the composer 
whose "Arlesiana" had given him one of his first im- 
portant opportunities in this very theater, in 1897. 
On November 6, 1902, the premiere took place ; 
and with Signora Angelica Pandolfini and Giuseppe 
de Luca, the performance moved to success under the 
baton of Cleofonte Campanini, who was later to 
become so important an opera figure in the United 
States. 

The public and critics insisted that much of the 
credit for the achievement during that first "Adriana 
de Lecouvreur" was due to the fervent singing of 
Caruso. It must have been for the tenor a labor 
of gratitude, for he could never forget what Sonzogno 
had done for him ; nor, for that matter, his Milan 
reception in "Arlesiana." Sonzogno, when inviting 
Caruso to create Maurizio, had begged that he treat 
him as a friend, and the singer had replied, "Yes, and 
I will sing in as many performances as you wish 
with the proviso that I am not to be paid one lira." 
Sonzogno was grateful, but he could not bring him- 
self to consent to this generous proposal. In the end 
an agreement was reached that the tenor should re- 
ceive three thousand lire for six appearances, and the 
impresario reluctantly permitted Caruso to provide 



166 ENRICO CARUSO 

his own costumes for which he expended exactly 
twice the amount he received for this engagement. 

Nicola Daspuro, who was among those present at 
the " Adriana de Lecouvreur " premiere, has related 
the reception extended Caruso and his associates in 
the cast. " I went to see Caruso in his dressing room 
during the first entracte" said Daspuro. "After we 
had talked for a few minutes I reminded him of those 
early days of his. 

"Do you remember the time when you could not 
reach a high A-natural without breaking the note 
in pieces ?" 

" How well do I remember," replied the tenor. 

"What did you do," inquired Daspuro, "to find 
an impostation which has made so secure and formi- 
dable your high notes ?" 

"Do you want the truth?" demanded Caruso. 
"Well, I will give it to you. Instead of following 
all the suggestions of my teachers, I did just the 
opposite. I found the impostation of the whole 
voice all by myself." 

"Poor Vergine ! Poor Lombardi!" murmured 
Daspuro. Yet he insists that Caruso was largely 
in the right, and that his accomplishment was due 
to his own "natural, unique, and unquestionably 
tremendous vocal and artistic instinct." 

It is doubtful that Caruso or Daspuro wholly 
believed all they said. The tenor was given to 
taking to himself whatever credit was due for his 
advancement. He probably did not wish to deprive 
any one of just recognition for service rendered him, 
yet it is a fact that he was generally loath to concede 



CLIMBING 167 

that others had been of substantial aid to him. With 
him it was " I did this " or that ; and it was manifested 
in other ways. Hearing a good story related by some 
one else, he would later revamp it and tell it as his 
very own. 

From Milan the tenor journeyed to Trieste, there 
to sing in a second charity undertaking (as he had 
done once before) for the Trieste Benevolent Associa- 
tion. He appeared in two performances of "Rigo- 
letto" on December 10 and n, 1902, with Signore 
Fanny Torresella and Benvenuti, and Signori Arcan- 
geli and Lucente, Maestro Gialdino Gialdini again 
serving as conductor. 

The next task was to be a more arduous one : the 
big season at the Costanzi in Rome was then to be 
faced. Thence Caruso repaired, with sensations alto- 
gether different from those he had felt during his 
previous engagement in this theater, when he had 
been deprived of his " right " to create Cavaradossi 
in "Tosca." . Judging from the newspaper comment 
following his first reappearance in "Rigoletto", the 
tenor's growth must have been extraordinary. The 
past during that season of no more than two years 
since seemed for the public a thing to have been 
quite forgotten. The Gilda of Signora Torresella, 
the Rigoletto of Signor Pacini, even the conducting 
of Edoardo Vitale, were overshadowed by the Duke 
of Caruso. He had returned to the Romans an 
artist ; their artist, now, and how the public flocked 
to the Costanzi to hear him sing. 

It was shortly after this debut on December 26, 
1902, that the tenor received from the agent who had 



168 ENRICO CARUSO 

negotiated his New York Metropolitan Opera House 
contract a laconic telegram. It merely stated that 
because of Grau's retirement from the management of 
that institution Caruso might consider his contract 
as automatically canceled. 

To the tenor this information made him feel that 
"the star of the north would not shine" for him. 
"I nevertheless tried to get at the truth of the 
matter," he said, "by communicating with two friends 
then in New York : one, whom I knew very well 
(Antonio Scotti, then a Metropolitan principal) ; 
the other (Signer Giovanni Simonelli) whose ac- 
quaintance and subsequent friendship had been de- 
veloped through correspondence. 

"In response to my inquiry this first friend advised 
me that Mr. Grau had been ill, and would soon leave 
the Metropolitan. Directly, too, the news got out 
and was spread by some ' friends ' (the sort of ' friends * 
who seem to enjoy such small practices) that after 
all Caruso would not go to America. No harm was 
done me. On the contrary, many proposals came to 
me to sing in different European cities." 

However dim Caruso's "star of the north" might 
be, his star in Rome suffered no eclipse. It con- 
tinued to shine when he appeared in repetitions of 
"Rigoletto"; and when on January 10, 1903, he 
sang with Signora Fausta Labia and Signer Borucchia 
in "Mefistofele." Nor was there any diminution 
of the tenor's popularity at his first appearance in 
"Manon Lescaut", with Signora Lina Pasini-Vitale, 
and again, on January 31, during his endeavors in 
"Ai'da" conducted, as had been the other operas, 



CLIMBING 169 

by Maestro Vitale, and with a cast including Signore 
Labia and Elisa Bruno and Signori Spoto and Pacini. 
Caruso could return to Rome whenever he chose ; 
but he had none too much time after the close of 
his Costanzi season on February 8, to reach Lisbon for 
his introductory appearance on February 14 at the 
San Carlos Theater, at that time under the manage- 
ment of Jose Pacini. The opera selected for the 
Caruso presentation to a Portugal public was "Fe- 
dora"; Campanini was prepared to conduct, the 
Fedora was to be Signora Pandolfini. The Lisbon 
press appears to have been of the same mind regard- 
ing Caruso as was the public. The emphasis placed 
upon the timbre of the newcomer's voice, its emission, 
flexibility, and volume amounted almost to glorifica- 
tion. In one night the tenor had conquered a new 
people ; he continued, in "Ai'da", "Tosca"," Adriana 
de Lecouvreur", " Lucrezia Borgia", and" Rigoletto" 
a triumphant march which lasted until March 19. 
He had sung with Signore Pandolfini, Darclee, Regina 
Pacini, and Virginia Guerrini, and Signori Maurizio 
Bensaude, Riccardo Stracciari, and Giulio Rossi ; 
and the roster of artists also included Signora Eva 
Tetrazzini (sister of Luisa Tetrazzini) one of the 
foremost dramatic soprani of that time and Signori 
Fiorello Giraud, Antonio Pini-Corsi, Gaudio Man- 
sueto, and Eugenio Giraldoni. Portugal made of 
the Caruso farewell an event : His La donna e mobile 
had to be sung three times, and the tenor even was 
persuaded by the management to restore the third 
act aria, which usually is omitted. Perhaps there 
was good reason for Caruso's enthusiastic farewell 



170 ENRICO CARUSO 

just as it may have aided in enabling him to appear 
on six successive evenings in as many different roles. 
For something had happened to bring into a more 
favorable light his "star of the north/' 

Barely one week after Caruso reached Lisbon he 
received from Simonelli a cablegram containing a 
formal offer from Conned ; and there was then begun 
a series of exchanged communications which, predi- 
cating the outcome, finally resulted in an agreement 
that would take the tenor to the Metropolitan the 
following season. 

Pasquale Simonelli, an Italian banker residing in 
New York, relates the details concerning the negotia- 
tion in which he participated that led up to the sign- 
ing of Caruso's first Metropolitan contract. "On 
January 30, 1903," stated Mr. Simonelli, "my 
brother John received a letter from Caruso dated from 
Rome. In it he wrote that Maurice Grau had in- 
formed him that he was sorry to have to dissolve 
the contract made, as he would not continue to be 
the general manager of the Metropolitan Opera House. 
In his letter to my brother, Caruso expressed his 
deep disappointment over the loss of his chance to 
come to America ; and although invited to appear in 
many other opera houses throughout the world, he 
expressed his preference for the Metropolitan. 

"Caruso asked my brother if he would com- 
municate with the Metropolitan's new manager in 
an endeavor to see what might be done. My brother 
John was so occupied with his own affairs that he 
charged me to undertake the commission. When, 
on February 19, 1903, newspaper announcements 



CLIMBING 171 

informed the public that Heinrich Conried had been 
appointed to the management of the Metropolitan, 
I went that very afternoon to see him in his office at 
the Irving Place Theater of which he was then 
director. 

"We spoke at length of artists, and Conried in- 
formed me that he was in communication with 
Alessandro Bonci and doubted whether he wished 
to avail himself of the contract Grau had signed with 
Caruso. As the tenor was young and unknown in 
America, Conried was fearful to engage him as 
Grau had engaged him for forty appearances. 
At length, after an extended discussion, Conried 
directed me to wire Caruso, guaranteeing him twenty 
appearances, with the assurance of additional ones 
should the public like him. 

"I thereupon cabled Caruso, who was then sing- 
ing in Lisbon, 'New impresario would accept Grau 
contract reducing first year half the number of ap- 
pearances ; prolongation depending on your success 
with the public/ Caruso cabled me a message I re- 
ceived on February 23 which read, 'I will accept pro- 
posal if new management deposits in my bank in 
Milan, not later than April 5, an advance covering 
five appearances and will guarantee me twenty-five 
appearances from November 20, 1903, to February 
10, 1904.' That same day, after I had spoken of these 
matters to Conried, I wired to Caruso, 'Conried will 
respect the Grau contract except for the first year's 
appearances, giving you twenty-five, twice weekly, 
beginning November 23. Cable me at once as Con- 
ried wishes an answer by next Tuesday/ And on 



172 ENRICO CARUSO 

February 25 Caruso wired me that he would accept ; 
Conried verified his acceptance, and I again wired, 
'Conried accepts. Wire me acceptance reduction 
to twenty-five appearances first season/ 

"On March 26 Conried himself dictated a cablegram 
to Caruso, who was then singing in a few perform- 
ances of * Tosca ' at Monte Carlo, the following: 'I 
accept your contract with Grau. Only change forty 
to twenty-five appearances first year your engage- 
ment. Will make deposit April 5 as agreed through 
Simonelli. Acknowledge receipt.' To this Caruso 
made immediate acknowledgment." 

The contract made between the Metropolitan 
Opera Company and Caruso was readjusted during 
the middle of his first New York season, and a new 
one prepared for the four years to come. It pro- 
vided, in each new year, for an increased cachet for 
each appearance, and Simonelli, apart from the three 
per cent commission due him under his arrangement 
with the tenor, was also to profit at subsequent re- 
newals of the contract. A misunderstanding on 
Caruso's part of a personal matter between them 
caused the singer, when the time came to renew his 
contract, to insist that Simonelli should receive no 
further commissions. Nor could he be moved, at 
the time, to alter his decision. His mind was made 
up ; he would not budge from his position. Several 
years later, however, when he learned of certain 
facts hitherto unknown to him, he went courageously 
to Simonelli and admitted that he had been in the 
wrong. 

Before proceeding to Genoa, after his Monte Carlo 



CLIMBING 173 

appearances, Caruso paused at Florence. The tenor 
had become obsessed, ever since he had begun to ac- 
cumulate money, with the desire to acquire a villa ; 
and since he had received from Impresario Conried 
an advance of twenty-five thousand lire for his first 
Metropolitan season, he felt he could afford this new 
luxury. He wished some place which would be com- 
pletely his own. The Tuscan country was one he 
had always loved ; something about the Florence 
atmosphere called to him that spring of 1903 more 
irresistibly than ever. It is true that Caruso was still 
unformed in many ways at that time, and that the 
step he then took must have enlisted on the part of 
some people a covert smile. A villa for a tenor not yet 
thirty, and barely coming into recognition ? What 
presumptuousness ! Who was this Caruso ? An 
overdressed Neapolitan ; uneducated as the world 
knows education, and already given to a stoutness 
which hinted at too much time spent at table. But 
for all the uncouthness he may have suggested to 
the critically inclined, Caruso possessed the feeling 
for better things. Deprived in his youth and by 
birth of advantages others had had, he wished to 
improve. And pray how was one to get on without 
breaking the ice which barred the way to the voyage 
upstream ? He negotiated for and purchased the 
place he had set his heart on owning : the Villa 
alle Panche, in Castello near Florence. 

A swift journey to Genoa was necessary, after 
Caruso acquired his Villa, to enable him to catch 
the SS Venezuela which was to carry him to South 
America, where his next engagement awaited him. 



174 ENRICO CARUSO 

Many noteworthy singers were his companions 
of that voyage: Signore Ericlea Darclee, Rosina 
Storchio, Salomea Krusheniska, and Maria Farneti, 
and Signori Giovanni Zenatello, Florencio Con- 
stantino, Giuseppe de Luca, Eugenio Giraldoni, 
and Vittorio Arimondi. Toscanini was also a ship's 
passenger. 

Caruso has said that this trip was one of the most 
enjoyable he had ever known. Amid companionable 
confreres, his heart then soaring at the constant 
thought of that secure Metropolitan contract, the 
tenor behaved like a schoolboy, as he was wont to do 
whenever the wind blew fair for him. During this 
voyage Caruso taught to Giuseppe de Luca the 
American game of poker ; and for a time he delighted 
in the steady losses sustained by the baritone, who 
was slower in gaining some familiarity with certain 
essentials governing the value of hands. Before 
Buenos Aires had been reached de Luca progressed 
at such a rate that Caruso at length found excuses to 
occupy himself in other ways. 

Chosen for the premiere performance from those 
first tenors Camillo Bonetti had engaged for that 
1903 La Opera Theater season, Caruso came before 
a South American audience for his third year in 
'Tosca." Toscanini presided in the orchestra pit; 
on the stage with the tenor were Signora Maria 
Figner Mey, and Giraldoni and Ercolani. Those 
two years that had slipped by since Caruso had last 
been heard in Buenos Aires served in other ways than 
to move that first-night gathering to welcome back 
an artist to whom they had said au revoir with ex- 



CLIMBING 175 

pressions of regret. He had been their favorite tenor 
then ; returned with such improved voice and art, 
his Mario sent those listeners into their own peculiar 
seventh heaven, where they continued to remain 
for so long as that season lasted. 

The position, nevertheless, was by no means so 
secure that Caruso could view the situation with a 
complacent mien. It was true that he had popu- 
larity ; in most respects he held the advantage over 
his first-tenor comrades who, friendly though they 
might seem, were still anxious to shine under the 
spotlight which flooded this young artist to whom 
the gods had been so kind. There was necessary 
every moment the keenest maneuvering to retain 
the upper hand ; and Caruso applied himself dili- 
gently to every performance in which he was to 
appear, preparing his words and music of each role 
with the utmost care. 

Even the cablegram from Simonelli, urging him to 
grant an extension of his first year's Metropolitan 
contract, did not prompt the singer to relax his 
vigilance. He was discounting no success ; the 
future was something to be considered gravely. It 
was this attitude which caused Caruso to decline to 
appear in "Zauberfiote", "Fra Diavolo", "Don 
Giovanni", and "Marta", his explanation being 
that he considered the music of the tenor parts in 
these operas to be too light for his voice. " Further- 
more, I do not know a note of any one of them," he 
wrote Simonelli, " and I have no time to study roles." 
He did, however, learn Lionel in "Marta", which not 
only brought him instant favor at the Metropolitan 



176 ENRICO CARUSO 

at his first appearance in the opera, but became one 
of his most successful characters. 

"Adriana de Lecouvreur" and "Iris" followed 
"Tosca", at La Opera of Buenos Aires ; and in the 
former work Caruso appeared with Signore Maria 
Figner and Virginia Guerrini, and Giuseppe de 
Luca, the latter work presenting him with Maria 
Farneti. The public was standing firmly by its tenor, 
and at each new appearance he enhanced his prestige. 
The cost was not small. It meant hours and hours 
of patient studying ; of extreme care of a precious 
voice, and of closing his ears to small gossip which, 
to an artist, is always unnerving. 

In "Germania" Caruso sang with Signora Farneti, 
and de Luca ; in " L'Elisir" he appeared with Signora 
Clasenti and de Luca; his associates in " Mefistofele" 
were Signore Farneti and Guerrini, and Arimondi. 

The steadying hand of Toscanini was continually 
present ; the season waned, and at the close the 
tenor had the satisfaction of being able to look back 
upon a further gain in his art. 

Providence continued to touch the singer lavishly 
upon his shoulder. Buenos Aires had been more than 
kind. Montevideo where Caruso went with the 
same company and management to appear for a less 
extensive season at the Teatro Solis took the tenor 
almost as completely to its heart. There, in addition 
to having appeared in the same repertoire presented 
in Buenos Aires, Caruso sang a sterling performance 
of Des Grieux in "Manon Lescaut." If less com- 
fortable for his tenor comrades, the achievement en- 
hanced still further his renown. And the second 



CLIMBING 177 

move, to the Pedro II Theater at Rio de Janeiro, 
presented him before the public of that city on eight 
different occasions in "Rigoletto", "Tosca", "Manon 
Lescaut", and "Iris." 

Late August found the tenor once more aboard a 
steamer, homeward bound, with visions of North 
America dancing in his mind. He went thereafter 
to Milan, there to rest for a few weeks before embark- 
ing upon the most important phase of his career. 

II 

The Caruso who first set foot on United States 
soil on November eleventh 1903 was very different 
from the Caruso its public was later to know so well. 
He made the voyage from Italy on board the SS 
Sardegna. His instincts and affections were ineradi- 
cably Italian ; he was still, for all his travel and 
varied experiences, essentially of the people and shar- 
ing their inherent tastes. Much newspaper reclame 
having been made for him as the singer upon whom the 
mantle of the revered Jean de Reszke was likely to fall, 
much naturally was expected of him. It could scarcely 
have been a more intricate situation with the inevi- 
table comparisons certain to be made between the two 
tenors by the fastidious parterre-tier Metropolitan 
boxholders for where de Reszke was aristocratic, 
Caruso decidedly was not ; there was the widest 
possible physical difference in the two men, and, 
finally, the one was undertaking in the middle period 
of his career to succeed a consummately finished 
artist, perhaps the greatest exponent of the highly 



178 ENRICO CARUSO 

polished intellectual school of tenors the world has 
known. 

But for all these disadvantages, certain counter- 
balancing elements lay in the scales. In Caruso the 
United States was truly to have a tenor of the type 
it loved best. How completely he was to be accepted 
remained to be learned. His appearance was decid- 
edly plebeian : he was undeniably fat ; his manners 
had not in them everything to commend ; he was 
handicapped, because of his unfamiliarity with the 
English language, by an inability to appear wholly 
at ease among strangers who spoke another tongue. 

In London, with a less weighty outcome hanging 
in the balance, it had been altogether different. 
Whereas England was a part of Europe, New York 
belonged to the new world ; and there other customs 
ruled which the tenor, perhaps better than any one 
else, understood he must assimilate before he might 
hope to be estimated at his true worth. He himself 
said, " I realized that the Metropolitan Opera House 
was the first in all the world. Many of the most 
celebrated and finest artists had appeared there ; 
besides, the organization was the largest, its season 
the longest, and its repertoire the most extensive of 
any similar institution anywhere." 

Caruso was thus well aware of the importance of 
the task confronting him. An indifferent reception, 
regardless of other fields which still called to him, 
could not be set imperialistically aside. Whether 
just or unjust, anything short of an unqualified success 
in this new sphere of his activities would tarnish a 
hard-won prestige. To win was therefore necessary ; 



CLIMBING 179 

not moderately as many another fine artist had won 
before him, but so emphatically that the Caruso 
name would be cabled around the globe as having 
been finally hoisted to the peak of the staff. 

The attentions even of the press held a significance ; 
for regarded as a singing personage, and besieged for 
interviews immediately upon his arrival in New 
York, Caruso was well aware that there was being 
created for him in the public print a position he must 
achieve and maintain. 

He had gone at once to the Hotel Majestic, where 
a suite had been arranged for him in advance of his 
coming. Ada Giachetti was with him as Mrs. 
Caruso. There, hard by Central Park, the tenor 
received the newspaper reporters. Pasquale Simo- 
nelli was present to introduce the writers and photog- 
raphers to his friend, and to act also as interpreter. 
News and feature stories concerning the Metropoli- 
tan's new tenor had been freely published months 
before ; since he was actually in the United States, 
he was legitimate material to be "played up", and 
this is what occurred, swiftly and with all the graphic 
touches characteristic of the New York dailies. 
Something about this Neapolitan appealed to the 
newspapermen who at first met him ; and when he 
fell to sketching cartoons they fought for them, and 
every editor saw that the sketches were reproduced 
to further enlighten their readers as to the per- 
sonality of this newcomer to the Metropolitan who 
was soon to sing before them. 

The newspaper fraternity were by no means the 
only callers who descended upon the Caruso apart- 



i8o ENRICO CARUSO 

ment in the Majestic Hotel. Many of his country- 
men, residents of New York, swarmed about his 
doors. They were of various classes, not a few being 
of the poorer sort, who went with begging intent. 
Destined to the end of his days to be pursued by 
compatriots seeking to make use of his purse, the 
tenor found no comfort in turning them away. He 
was of that peculiar Italian nature which understood 
the impulses of these gratuity seekers. If opposed 
to acquiescing to every demand, he at least seems 
to have sympathized with the needy. He gave 
by no means freely or pleasantly in every instance 
but he gave. Oftentimes he appears to have been 
actuated by some intangible fear that he must give ; 
that a " no", regardless of the justice of such decision, 
would be interpreted only to his own disadvantage. 
So the Caruso hand went often into his pocket ; and 
just as often did he consent to some proposal which 
he would have preferred not to have entertained, 
yet was to cost him either money or the lending of 
his time or name to what would bring money to others. 
Therefore, that 1903 New York settling period 
was for Caruso a wearying affair. Still, he appears 
to have made the best of it with as much good humor 
as possible. And there were of course some genuinely 
pleasurable moments, gathered from visits of worth- 
while persons, the majority of whom were his own 
countrymen. Members of the clergy, as well as 
representative members of the laity, were made 
welcome in the Caruso apartment. He took time 
to see them all ; he extended his hospitality with 
characteristic thoughtfulness ; through those days 



CLIMBING 181 

prior to his New York debut on November 23, 1903, 
there was little time outside his professional duties 
which was not almost completely taken up by others. 

Caruso's first meeting with Heinrich Conried took 
place in the impresario's office, in the southwest part 
of the Metropolitan Opera House on the ground floor. 
He was introduced to the impresario by Pasquale 
Simonelli, who acted as interpreter, since Caruso 
could speak neither English nor German and Conried 
no Italian or French. The tenor had long been 
"curious" as to "the sort of man" Conried would 
prove to be. He had learned of Conried's un- 
familiarity with opera and opera artists. Thus, 
when Simonelli had taken a small machine and a 
disc of Vesti la giubba, as recorded by Caruso, and 
presented himself to Conried in the Irving Place 
Theater, he made it possible for the Metropolitan's 
new manager to gather some idea of the voice and 
singing style of his tenor. The record had been made 
only with pianoforte accompaniment, yet the im- 
pression made upon the impresario was unforgetable. 

"'If that Caruso can sing as well in the Metro- 
politan as he sang to make that record/" Simonelli 
quotes Conried as having said, "'his success is as- 
sured.' Conried made no attempt to conceal his 
disappointment in not having engaged the tenor for 
forty instead of the twenty-five appearances the 
contract (already concluded) called for. At his 
request I cabled Caruso, who was singing in Buenos 
Aires, but it was too late ; he had already accepted an 
offer to appear in Monte Carlo during the 1904 
season," said Simonelli. 



i8z ENRICO CARUSO 

Caruso was taken by Conried into the auditorium 
of the opera house, which he admired, just as he 
admired the stage, which, in those days, was more 
modern and serviceable for large productions than 
it now is. The singer sensed the atmosphere as 
one stimulating to an artist ; he was likewise favor- 
ably impressed with what he observed in other 
quarters of the opera house. Everything appeared 
to be systematically conducted ; and everywhere 
was neatness. There would be few discords here, 
he hoped, a feeling which ultimately was to be borne 
out by developments. For the tenor had reached 
the Metropolitan at an opportune time : Conried, 
utterly inexperienced in matters operatic and musi- 
cally untutored, was just preparing to take up the 
reins of management ; the singer himself was steadily 
advancing in voice and singing prowess, and there 
was none other in the organization who was his equal. 
Whether it was destiny, such were the facts. The 
pendulum was swinging across a propitious arc ; 
Caruso, sensitive in the extreme, may have sub- 
consciously gathered some faint foreshadowing of 
what was to come. Whatever their source, there 
was nothing save encouragement in the sensations 
the tenor experienced during that first visit to the 
opera house where he was to rise steadily to un- 
touched heights, and in it was to pass the greatest 
number and happiest hours of his future appearances 
before the public. He returned to the hotel home ; 
and soon he began in earnest his preparations for 
his debut. 

That night of the 23 rd of November, 1903, was not 



CLIMBING 183 

peculiarly different from previous nights which the 
Metropolitan Opera House organization and audi- 
ence had both known. Other first appearances had 
been quite as successfully accomplished as was 
Caruso's. There is no record of any specially marked 
or prolonged enthusiasm, if one may except the 
natural demonstrations some few Italians permitted 
themselves. What the assemblage saw was a stocky 
and scarcely graceful figure appearing as the Duke 
in Verdi's "Rigoletto" ; a tenor proceeding in his 
acting along the conventional lines of Italian artists 
who had been seen before him in the same and similar 
roles. What they heard was a fresh, clear tenor 
voice ; a voice neither exceptionally powerful nor 
sensational in its qualities, yet one with an ingra- 
tiating quality. That it was well used was readily 
apparent, particularly to those who had given atten- 
tion to singing. Virtually all who were present were 
willing enough to concede that here was an artist 
who seemed sure of himself ; and if anticipation had 
led them to expect something more, there was enough 
to be grateful for in one who sang so easily, with such 
charm, and with what unmistakably was an authori- 
tative manner. But neither with his voice nor his 
singing did Caruso sweep to its feet any considerable 
part of that gathering. Even the critics tempered 
their comments, and, published in the New York 
newspapers of the following day, they found space 
enough also to consider those other artists of the night 
Mme. Marcella Sembrich and Antonio Scotti 
who had participated in the production conducted by 
Arturo Vigna. 



184 ENRICO CARUSO 

Save for a line mentioning Caruso as a newcomer 
there was no comment in the New York Tribune 
which touched upon his qualifications as a singer or 
his achievement. The New York Times commenta- 
tor wrote of Caruso, " He made a highly favorable 
impression and he went far to substantiate the 
reputation that had preceded him to this country. 
His voice is purely a tenor in its quality, and is cf 
large power, but inclined to take on the * white' 
quality in its upper ranges when he lets it forth. 
In mezza voce it has expressiveness and flexibility, 
and when so used its beauty is most apparent. 
Mr. Caruso last evening appeared capable of intel- 
ligence and passion in both singing and acting." 

The New York Sun reviewer was of the opinion 
that, "Mr. Caruso, the new tenor, made a thoroughly 
favorable impression and will probably grow into 
firm favor with his public. He has a pure tenor 
voice of fine quality and sufficient range and power. 
It is a smooth and mellow voice and is without the 
typical Italian bleat. Mr. Caruso has a natural and 
free delivery and his voice carries well without 
forcing. He phrased his music tastefully and showed 
considerable refinement of style. His clear and 
pealing high tones set the bravos wild with delight, 
but the connoisseurs of singing saw more promise for 
the season in his mezza voce and manliness. He is a 
good-looking man and acts with dignity if with no 
great distinction. But the Duke gives little oppor- 
tunity for the exhibition of histrionic powers." 

Nothing in these reviews to indicate that the 
critics had been swept from their feet ; surely little 



CLIMBING 185 

hint that this new tenor was soon to become the 
tenor of his time. 

In the New York Sun of December i, 1903, in the 
critique dealing with the Metropolitan's "A'fda" of 
the previous evening in which Mme. Johanna 
Gadski and Scotti and Plancon participated, reference 
was made to Caruso's recovery from an attack of 
tonsillitis. The writer felt that the singer "confirmed 
the good impression he made at his debut. He saved 
himself a good deal in the early part of the opera, 
which was wise in view of his recent indisposition. 
He sang the aria (Celeste A'ida) quietly but tastefully, 
and with good effect. In the Nile scene he let him- 
self out." 

The Times chronicler stated that, "He proved the 
remarkable mastery he possessed over his organ ; 
he materially deepened the favorable impression he 
made at his first appearance. The quality, the 
flexibility, and the expressive capacity of his voice 
beautified everything he did. There were passion 
and conviction in his interpretation of the fated 
lover, and everywhere the marks of the adept in 
stagecraft. " 

The Tribune recorder wrote that "Caruso was 
plainly still suffering from the indisposition. But 
his skill in overcoming the drawbacks helped to a 
keen appreciation of his knowledge of the art of 
singing, and invited still further admiration for the 
superb beauty of his voice. The pleasure which his 
singing gives is exquisite, scarcely leaving room for 
curious questionings touching his limitations. He 
is to be accepted for what he is, with gratitude, and 



i86 ENRICO CARUSO 

no one who loves the art of song ought to miss the 
opportunities which his presence at the Metropolitan 
offers." 

Two days later, after the tenor's first Metro- 
politan appearance in "Tosca", the Tribune stated, 
"Signor Caruso filled the music of Cavaradossi with 
sensuous splendor, but acted the part with far less 
fire and distinction than his predecessor, De Marchi. 
Signor Caruso is primarily a singer, that is now 
evident. His musical instincts are as perfect as his 
voice is luscious, but neither his instincts nor his voice 
is at the service of that dramatic characterization." 

The Sun critic also found some elements lacking 
in the tenor's acting, and stated that " his Cavaradossi 
was bourgeois. It was difficult to believe in the 
ardent passion of the aristocratic Tosca for this 
painter of hack portraits at job prices. His clothes 
were without distinction. The tenor seemed to be 
in a better state of voice than he was on Monday night 
and sang well, as he certainly can." 

These opinions of Caruso's bearing, action and 
dress were shared by the Times reviewer, upon whom 
he made "indeed the deepest impression so far as his 
singing was concerned. Caruso displays Cavara- 
dossi in a more bourgeois air than his predecessor 
(De Marchi), with little distinction of bearing and 
with small intensity of feeling ; it is not until the 
scene of his impending doom that he sounds a note 
of elemental power in his outpouring of despair and 
longing for his love. . . . This he did with 
magnificent eloquence and a nobility of song that 
deeply stirred the audience." 



CLIMBING 187 

Evidences were beginning then to appear which 
foreshadowed a growing favor of the tenor newcomer. 
He had already made a first appearance with the 
Metropolitan Company at Philadelphia (in "Rigo- 
letto" on December 29, following his indisposition 
which had kept him from two New York representa- 
tions of "Boheme" and "Rigoletto"), and his re- 
covery from the attack of tonsillitis and the warming 
attitude of the newspaper music critics were en- 
couraging. After his introductory "Boheme", on 
December 5, there no longer appeared any doubt as 
to Caruso's full acceptance by New York as a singer. 
If he unconsciously suggested the plebeian, and in 
his acting fell short of those standards set up through 
the traditions of de Reszke and others who excelled 
on the dramatic side, in voice and song Caruso had 
no need to apologize. In their reviews the critics 
really enthused. 

The strain of the premiere appearances over, the 
singer gave more thought to the matters of personal 
inclinations. Unable to accustom himself wholly to 
American cooking, Caruso wished for his own estab- 
lishment where he at least might have his own 
kitchen. His desire made known, friends began a 
search for a suitable apartment, and Mrs. Gina 
Viafora at length found one in the Murray Hill 
district, near Lexington Avenue. Here Caruso and 
Ada Giachetti moved within a few weeks after their 
arrival in the United States, and it became the 
point of attraction for the tenor's friends and followers 
during his first season in this country. Often Caruso 
prepared spaghetti for numerous guests ; he was 



i88 ENRICO CARUSO 

fond of this particular dish and had a special way of 
cooking it. But he developed a liking for the old 
Cafe Martin situated then at Broadway and 
Twenty-sixth Street which he not infrequently 
patronized for luncheon, to the delight of the pro- 
prietor and patrons. 

The New World having shown a pleasing re- 
sponsiveness to his operatic efforts, Caruso began to 
regard it as a sort of future home. He was impressed 
by the city and its people ; the bustle appealed to 
him, and also those evidences of resources which were 
reflected everywhere. And there was also the rest 
of this huge country which eventually he felt he 
should come to know. It was all very comforting, 
and back of this thought lay another ; a fortune was 
by no means beyond the reach of this Neapolitan 
singer, who was discovering the advantages which 
wealth can provide. 

There were a host of experiences which interested 
or amused the tenor, some of them supplied by Herr 
Director Conried who had considerable to learn in 
an unfamiliar field. Summoned to the impresario's 
office after the general rehearsal of "La Traviata", 
Caruso was informed that there was too little singing 
for him to do in the role of Alfredo. In order to 
give the public a sort of "good measure", Conried 
suggested to the tenor that between the third and 
fourth acts of the opera he might introduce several 
romanzas. To this amazing proposal Caruso an- 
swered, " ' If I do not sing enough music in "Traviata" 
to suit you that is not my fault, but the fault of Mr. 
Verdi, who wrote the work/ Imagine what would 



CLIMBING 189 

have happened to me had I consented to this request ! 
For I had to fight to win and keep the respect of the 
critics and public. Almost every time I sang some 
one of these critics would write, 'Yes a beautiful 
voice, wonderful quality, velvet, everything which 
is to be expected from an Italian voice, but Jean/ ' 

This velvet voice was by no means restricted to 
being heard only at the opera. As soon as the 
Caruso success became unquestioned he was sought 
to appear in private musicales given in fashionable 
homes. Mrs. W. Payne Whitney was the one to 
have the distinction of first presenting the tenor to a 
gathering of friends, on the evening of January 
14, 1904 ; and just one week later Caruso sang for a 
similar assemblage who were the guests of Mrs. 
Orme Wilson. The fee in each instance was much 
larger than the $960 (five thousand lire) the singer 
actually received, but by the terms of the contract 
Conried had the right to Caruso's services in con- 
cert as well as opera at the stipulated cachet, the 
difference going to swell the Metropolitan treasury. 

Between November 23, 1903, and February 10, 
1904, the tenor appeared twenty-nine times, 
twenty-five times in New York, and on four oc- 
casions in Philadelphia. Besides those operas pre- 
viously mentioned he was heard also in "Pagliacci", 
"Lucia di Lammermoor", and "L'Elisir d'Amore." 
The farewell was made in "Lucia", with Mme. 
Sembrich and Giuseppe Campanari, the baritone. 

From the deck of the steamer which carried him 
in the direction of Monte Carlo Caruso looked back 
on the city it had been so difficult for him to reach. 



190 ENRICO CARUSO 

What an unsuspected future it possessed for him ; 
what a vast store of triumphs, of happiness and 
of sadness and tragedy as well. 

Ill 

Monte Carlo was more attractive than ever to the 
Caruso who presented himself to Impresario Raoul 
Gunsbourg for the 1904 season of the Casino. It 
was not so much that Monte Carlo had improved as 
that Caruso was getting on. His "north star" was 
shining ; his fame was spreading ; he was beginning 
to experience some of the sensations which come to 
one who is becoming a success. 

"Ai'da" opened the Monte Carlo operatic festivi- 
ties. Maestro Vigna, who had also come from the 
New York Metropolitan, conducted the performance 
which included Signora Giannina Russ as Ai'da, 
Signora Virginia Guerrini in the character of Amneris, 
Maurice Renaud appearing as Amonasro, and Vit- 
torio Arimondi singing Ramphis. New York had 
exerted upon Caruso the precise benefits he had 
anticipated. Apart from the broadened experience 
of appearing before audiences different in tempera- 
ment and tastes from the majority to which he had 
been accustomed, the engagement had enhanced the 
singer's prestige. The name Caruso was beginning 
to have a very definite professional value ; and it was 
also reacting upon its owner. He appreciated what 
it meant and how well he must guard the name which 
was coming more readily to peoples' tongues when- 
ever opera was discussed, and almost wherever. 
Under this artistic popularity the tenor appraised 



CLIMBING 191 

with a new keenness those essentials he was wise 
enough to discern might be steadily turned to profit- 
able ends. He was only thirty-one ; the career 
less than ten years of age ; but what a future was 
opening before him ! Work he was accepting with 
no unwilling spirit, but he had, in the nature of 
things, to have his time of play. In the theater, and 
concerning all that pertained to it, he was serious ; 
out of it the singer was indulging his fondness for the 
lighter things of which his still boyish heart was fond. 

It amused him to play pranks upon his comrades, 
whose discomfiture gave him a peculiar glee ; and 
he delighted in sketching, any one, anywhere, and 
the more publicly conspicuous the better. It at- 
tracted attention to him, and this he may have liked, 
but the probabilities are that his exuberance chiefly 
prompted him to a practice which was a harmless 
enough recreation. 

Vittorio Arimondi relates how Caruso, as well as 
other principals of the Monte Carlo company, would 
commission the tenor's secretary to go during an 
opera performance to the Casino gaming tables in 
efforts to win at roulette. Lorello had been suc- 
ceeded by another secretary a Signer Giordano 
and he invariably departed with one hundred francs, 
and as invariably came back without them. His 
reappearance was the signal of a general shouting of 
his name, to no purpose. But it was diverting, with- 
out any considerable cost. 

While in Monte Carlo Caruso received from 
Ruggero Leoncavallo, composer of "I Pagliacci", 
the following letter. 



192 ENRICO CARUSO 

Dear Enrico : 

I come with my heart in my hands to ask if you 
will do for me what you have already done for 
Giordano and Cilea to create the tenor role in 
my new opera, "Rolando", which I have just finished. 
The music is written for you, with your voice of 
paradise still in my ears and in my heart. The few 
who have heard the score judge it to be my master- 
piece, and believe the tessitura and inflections of the 
canto have been created for your intentions. I am 
sure that if you could hear the music that you, with 
that high feeling which is part of your heart, would 
not refuse me the favor I am asking. You never 
will find a role including every emotion the hu- 
morous, the pathetic, the loving, and the tragic - 
to the extent as does the role of Henning in 
" Rolando. " Hear it, please, and decide. 

The opera will be given in Germany for the first 
time in Berlin, during October. I wish to arrange 
the Italy premiere, in Rome, in November, or during 
the first fortnight of December, as you may choose. 
The role of the baritone will be sung by Battistini, 
the prima donna is to be Emma Carelli. The en- 
semble will be worthy of you, and the Italian premiere 
should be of unique interest. I hope that you will 
not refuse, to me only, what you granted to other 
confreres. I count upon your friendship, on your 
goodness of heart, and I tell you it would be a great 
sorrow for me if you refuse to do what I ask. 

Sonzogno will write you also on the subject. I 
wanted to be the first to ask you. Now I salute you 
with the hope of receiving a favorable reply. 

Your admirer and friend, 
Ruggero Leoncavallo. 

Caruso replied that he would prefer to hear the 
opera before deciding ; and to this the composer 



CLIMBING 193 

wrote, "Thank you. There is in your letter a thread 
of hope. In two or three days I must be in Nizza to 
assist at the premiere of 'Zaza' there. Being so 
near I will come to Monte Carlo and lunch with you, 
and at the same time I will speak with you about 
the informal proposal I have received to go to New 
York and conduct my 'Rolando* there. Naturally, 
you must create Henning." 

"Rolando" had its Berlin premiere, as Leoncavallo 
expected, on December 13, 1904, though with less 
success than the public had anticipated. Whether 
this, or Caruso's own judgment of the tenor role, 
influenced him in his decision to refuse Leoncavallo's 
request seems not to have developed ; it is merely a 
fact that he did not sing in the Naples premiere of 
the opera. 

Another new country Spain prepared to wel- 
come Caruso for the first time, at the close of his 
Monte Carlo engagement. After some haggling, 
Doctor Albert Bernis, impresario of the Liceo 
Theater, of Barcelona, at length had consented to 
pay the tenor his fee. To the manager it appeared 
exorbitant, and he did not hesitate to make known 
his opinion ; but he had promised the Barcelona 
public to bring Caruso to them "at any price", so 
there was no alternative. Once he had appeared, 
some readjustment might be possible (such, at any 
rate, is the belief of Luis Piera Figueras, a music 
enthusiast and patron who was present in Barcelona 
at the time). 

The singer reached his destination on April 17, 1904 ; 
three evenings later he faced a Liceo audience, in 



194 ENRICO CARUSO 

" Rigoletto." His principal associates were Mme. 
Esperanza Clasenti and Enrico Berriel, and Maestro 
Giuseppe Baroni conducted. Figueras has explained 
that such was the vocal freedom and artistry dis- 
closed by Caruso in the Questa o quella cabaletta of 
the first act that the assemblage shouted aloud, 
"Viva Caruso!'* Quite different was the attitude 
when the E il sol dell 1 anima duet with the soprano 
was reached, in the second act. It had not gone far 
when from the gallery was heard the unmistakable 
sound of hisses. Coming so unexpectedly, after the 
previous manifestation of approval, the tenor was 
half-tempted to stop singing. At the conclusion of 
the act Caruso was informed that he had been hissed 
for having sung out of tune. Expert opinion chal- 
lenged this assertion ; it maintains that the tenor's 
virtually perfect pitch had differed with that of the 
soprano because she had sung flat. 

Inwardly raging, yet determined to perform his 
duty, Caruso continued with his part of the perform- 
ance. So well did he progress that his delivery of 
the La donna e mobile aroused his hearers to frenzy. 
They shrieked their Vivas ! and demanded no less 
vociferously a repetition of the aria ; but the singer, 
piqued by those hisses during the earlier scene, would 
only bow. In the midst of the uproar, and while 
Caruso stood coldly facing it, the galleryites called 
loudly, "He is discourteous not to sing it again!" 
The performance was concluded amid silence. There 
were no curtain calls for the artist ; an impasse had 
been reached between Caruso and his auditors. 

Such discord gave to Impresario Bernis his oppor- 




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CLIMBING 195 

tunity, and waiting upon the tenor he said, "You 
were not liked by the Barcelona public, so I cannot 
have you continue unless you agree to sing at half 
the price we agreed upon/' It was a futile effort. 
"Not one penny less than my fee will I accept/' 
returned the tenor. "You have announced me to 
appear in 'Rigoletto' on next Saturday, therefore I 
will sing ; afterward I will leave." True to his 
word, Caruso sang in the Liceo for a second time 
"Rigoletto." After the Questa o quella, during the 
duet with the soprano, and following the La donna e 
mobile the identical scenes of the previous repre- 
sentation took place ; it had somewhat the appear- 
ance of having been rehearsed. 

Word of the difficulty having reached the mayor of 
Barcelona, he requested the tenor to reconsider his 
decision to depart before the end of his engagement. 
He and the cultivated music lovers of the city, the 
mayor explained, disapproved of what had happened. 
If Caruso would only consent to remain even 
this appeal had no effect upon the singer. 

In after years Bernis explained to Andres de 
Segurola, the basso, that the tenor actually had sung 
off pitch, and that the public had been justified in 
hissing him. The impresario believed that if Caruso 
had treated the hisses less seriously and had re- 
sponded to the demands for an encore of the fourth 
act aria, all would have been well. His attitude in 
having received the applause with such coldness and 
evidences of superiority had, Bernis felt, been un- 
fortunate. Many flattering proposals were after- 
ward received by the tenor from Barcelona, but he 



196 ENRICO CARUSO 

always refused them. Nor could Madrid (a city 
in which he never sang) successfully woo him. And 
all subsequent managerial appeals were, to quote the 
words of Figueras, " Todo fue tiempo perdido para los 
impresarios. 1 ' (It was time lost to the impresari.) 

Caruso shook the dust of Spain from his shoes, 
traveled to Paris, and prepared for his first appear- 
ance there in one special performance of " Rigoletto", 
which it was the intention to give to aid Russian 
soldiers wounded in the Russian-Japanese War. 
Although it was unusual for a singer to debut in 
circumstances other than might attach to a regular 
season, Caruso, while at Monte Carlo, had yielded 
to the persuasions of the Paris Russian ambassador 
who was sojourning there. 

Ample time was afforded the singer to rest and 
indulge in some recreation in a city which held for 
him a strong fascination. Parisians were interested 
in the approaching performance of "Rigoletto", 
which was to be given under the patronage of 
Countess Greffulhe for the benefit of the hospital 
train of Grand Duchesse Vladimir of Russia. To- 
ward the end of April the performance took place, 
in the Sarah Bernhardt Theater. Mme. Lina Cava- 
lieri was the Gilda, Maurice Renaud appeared in the 
role of Rigoletto, Vittorio Arimondi was the Spara- 
fucile, and Mme. Thevenet had the small part of 
Maddalena. Maestro Vigna directed a performance 
which made Caruso an instant favorite. Gabriel 
Astruc, the Paris representative of the tenor from the 
time of that debut, said that this appearance was the 
start of a Caruso furore in Paris which never abated. 



CLIMBING 197 

Astruc describes how peasants, wearing overalls, ap- 
peared at the box office of the Sarah Bernhardt 
Theater holding loo-franc notes in their hands. 
They wished to hear the tenor, even at the to them 
terrific price. 

Paris more than compensated for the wounds 
Barcelona had administered to the sensitive singer. 
He snapped his metaphorical fingers, and departed 
for Prague where he had been engaged to appear 
in the Konigliches Deutsch Landestheater by 
the celebrated impresario Angelo Neumann. On 
May 4, with Signora Regina Pinkert, Fraulein 
Schafer, Enrico Pignataro, and Vittorio Arimondi, 
and Arturo Vigna conducting, Caruso made his 
Bohemian debut as the Duke in "Rigoletto." After 
an " Elisir " the tenor proceeded to the Konigliches 
Opernhaus, of Dresden, where on May 8, 1904, he 
appeared in a single presentation of "Rigoletto" 
with the same cast. 

The Prague music reviewers had termed Caruso's 
voice to be "like gold, clear and brilliant in color, 
and of extraordinary roundness." They referred to 
that voice as unique, and remarkable in its warmth. 
"He (Caruso) is not a thief," wrote one chronicler, 
' as are so many others of rubati and crescendi. 
He keeps always the style of the bel canto with a noble 
manner faithful to its traditions." 

Writing in Caruso's autograph book Angelo Neu- 
mann declared, "After Graziani and Calzolari, I have 
never heard a voice or an artist as superb and as 
complete as you are." 

Barcelona, if not forgotten, could now be looked 



198 ENRICO CARUSO 

back upon by the tenor with an amused tolerance. 
He closed the chapter of those particular experiences, 
then set his face toward Florence. 

It was at this time that Caruso purchased from 
Baron Pucci the Villa Campi, famous in its 
section near the village Lastra a Signa, in the 
province of Florence. First called the Villa Pucci, 
Caruso renamed it Villa Bellosguardo (Beautiful 
View). In the course of years the singer spent more 
than three million lire in perfecting the villa itself, 
beautifying the gardens, and developing the acreage 
forming the estate. He caused improvements to be 
made on the several farms ; he arranged with fattori 
(farmers) to work the land on mezzadria (half and 
half) shares. It yielded grapes for wine and an 
abundance of vegetables. 

Within the villa the tenor had placed a consider- 
able part of his collections of paintings, furniture, 
bronzes and enamels, coins, and other objets d'art. 
Another considerable collection gradually was ac- 
quired in New York, where at the time of writing it 
was in the Canessa Galleries. 

A long tour confronting Caruso, and Fofo having 
then reached an age where his education demanded 
consideration, the singer gave his attention to that 
important matter. Consultations with friends, and 
investigations, at length caused him to select the 
academy La Badia Fiesolana (situated at Fiesole, 
near Florence) as the most suitable school in which to 
place his son. The boy remained in this academy 
until he was fifteen, when he withdrew to live with 
his aunt Signorina Rina Giachetti. 




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CLIMBING 199 

It had been two years since Caruso had sung in 
Covent Garden. His reappearance there in "Rigo- 
letto", the opera in which he had first been heard by 
the English, was accomplished on May 17, 1904, with 
a cast which included Mmes. Melba and Kirkby- 
Lunn, and Messrs. Renaud and Journet. Luigi 
Mancinelli, a former Metropolitan Opera Company 
maestro, was the conductor. The King and Queen 
of England, the Princess Victoria, and the Duke and 
Duchess of Connaught were among the assemblage. 
Not a critic disagreed in the opinion that the tenor's 
voice and artistry had grown during his absence. 
During that season Caruso appeared in twenty- 
six performances, the operas being " Pagliacci ", 
"Boheme", "Aida", "Traviata", and "Ballo in 
Maschera." In addition to those artists mentioned 
the tenor had as associates Mmes. Destinn and 
Selma Kurz and Messrs. Scotti and Plancon. July 
25 relieved Caruso from further immediate opera 
activities. He needed a real rest, and he went to 
the Villa alle Panche. 



CHAPTER SEVEN 
ESTABLISHED 

THERE was a reason for lingering at the Villa alle 
Panche, which on September 7, 1904, became ap- 
parent. For on that day a second son was born to 
Enrico Caruso. Ada Giachetti was the mother. 
The boy was named Enrico Caruso, Jr., but he was 
immediately called Mimmi, as he still is. 

October of that year promised another new field 
into which the tenor was to venture, Germany. 
He had conquered among Latins and Anglo-Saxons ; 
if he should succeed in a similar measure with a 
Teutonic public he could rest assured of what might 
come. It was therefore with real concern that he 
prepared for his Berlin debut, at Des Westens 
Theater, where once again he was to be tested in the 
role of the Duke in "Rigoletto." With Maestro 
Roth conducting, and Frau Mary Stoller and Eduard 
Nawisky in the two other leading characters, Caruso 
was first heard by a German audience on October 
5, 1904. He seems to have had no more difficulty in 
gaining the approval of that Berlin public than of 
others. It was by no means an exclusively popular 
verdict, for the critics wrote of him as an " exponent 
of the typical Italian art of singing now so rare." 
Two nights later in "Traviata", with the same 
singing associates, Caruso faced his second German 



ESTABLISHED 201 

assemblage. Then he departed for London, where 
he had been engaged to appear in an autumn season 
to be given at Covent Garden by the San Carlo 
Opera Company, brought from Naples by Impresario 
Roberto De Sanna. 

It must have been balm to Caruso's heart to have 
been the choice of the San Carlo Theater manager to 
appear in this pretentious London season as leading 
tenor. What would Naples think of this honor ! 
Would its people regret having made his 1902 home- 
coming so disturbing ? And would they perhaps 
hold some wish that before long he might appear 
before them again ? Caruso hoped so. He wanted 
his fellow Neapolitans to feel his absence and to 
yearn for his presence among them in the opera. 
They would hear of his London appearances, as 
they heard of all those others during the past two 
years. It became apparent to him that the severest 
punishment he could administer would be to surpass 
himself, and this he undertook to do on October 17 
of that year when he reappeared before a London 
audience in "Manon Lescaut." Signorina Rina 
Giachetti and Sammarco and Arimondi were in the 
cast, and Cleofonte Campanini presided over the 
music side of the performance. On eight subse- 
quent occasions the tenor was heard : in this 
opera, also in "La Boheme", with Miss Alice 
Nielsen and Signorina Emma Trentini, and Pasquale 
Amato and Arimondi; in "Carmen", supported by 
Mme. Bressler-Gianoli, Miss Nielsen, and Amato ; 
and in "Pagliacci", the other artists being Sam- 
marco and Francesco Daddi. 



202 ENRICO CARUSO 

Success was now exerting upon Caruso another 
effect ; one which, though no doubt amusing to him, 
was destined to call forth from more serious persons 
criticism for lack of dignity before the public. A 
favorite with the people, the tenor was indulged by 
most of them in the pranks he began more and more 
to permit himself to play upon his fellow artists ; 
but those who took their opera more thoughtfully 
questioned whether the tenor was privileged to amuse 
the majority by introducing some uncalled-for com- 
edy bit into his part, or by some other act causing 
a comrade to appear ridiculous in a serious situation. 
Amato felt the effects of Caruso's prankishness dur- 
ing one of these London "Boheme" performances 
when, attempting to put on his coat to go out for 
medicine for the dying Mimi, he found Caruso had 
sewed up the sleeves. Yet the public laughed ; 
and it laughed when Arimondi, after finishing the 
touching zimarra aria in the same opera, endeav- 
ored unsuccessfully to place upon his head Colline's 
tall hat which had been partly filled with water. 
What matter, so long as the people did not care, 
if Caruso wished occasionally to play the clown ? His 
voice, which he gave them so unsparingly, and his 
personality were individual and unique. He was 
first among tenors, and these small practices were 
spontaneous and natural to him. So they en- 
couraged the singer by their laughter until, little by 
little, he fell into like habits wherever he went. 
Eventually they were among the tenor's distin- 
guishing traits, and became responsible for prompting 
so many to regard him as a comedian. 



ESTABLISHED 203 

That London season closed November 3 with a 
performance of "Manon Lescaut", which sent the 
singer on his New York journey with a light heart. 
It was to be his second season at the Metropolitan; 
his cachet was fixed for six thousand lire an appear- 
ance ; there was sufficient reason to expect even 
a more pronounced recognition than before. The 
singer cabled to his friend Mme. Viafora to have 
prepared for him the same apartment he had occupied 
the preceding season, but it had been rented by 
another. Therefore, on reaching New York, he 
found quarters in the York Hotel, situated in Seventh 
Avenue, only two blocks from the opera house. 

An altogether different reception from the one 
given Caruso in 1903 awaited him at his 1904 Metro- 
politan premiere appearance. Then he was known 
and admired ; accounts of his European successes had 
been cabled to New York newspapers and published, 
and, as invariably occurs in any like circumstance, 
they added to prestige won. What nervousness 
the singer may have felt, his inherent self-confidence 
was growing. Mishaps may come to any opera 
singer at unsuspected moments ; they cannot be 
avoided. Still, when one's voice is under full com- 
mand and the role thoroughly learned, an experienced 
artist faces his public with assurance in his heart. 
Caruso had been gradually expanding in the authority 
of his delivery ; gradually growing in belief in him- 
self. He was always prepared and always in earnest 
to give the utmost to the public to which he sang. 
And from the review published in the New York 
Sun of November 24, 1904 which mentioned that 



204 ENRICOCARUSO 

"Perhaps he imitates Tamagno a little at times" 
it would appear that he was yielding to those dramatic 
instincts to give more and more voice. He had 
made his season's debut in "Ai'da" to the general 
satisfaction of those concerned ; and he continued, to 
his last appearance in 1905, to do so. The fifty-four 
occasions upon which he sang that season thirty 
in New York, five in Philadelphia, three in Boston, 
two in Pittsburgh, one in Cincinnati, three in Chicago, 
one in Minneapolis, one in Omaha, one in Kansas 
City, six in San Francisco, and one in Los Angeles 
made Caruso known to the people of the United 
States. Through the medium of the press glowing 
reports of him had swept across the land, and for 
once expectations were realized. From 1905 Caruso 
was established on his singer's throne. He had his 
misfortunes some of them darkly ominous but 
as an opera artist, and in concert when he elected so 
to appear, he was Caruso. 

Before that transcontinental tour of the Metro- 
politan, however, his name was still unfamiliar in at 
least one city, Los Angeles. Advised that he was to 
appear there, the local impresario wrote to Conried, 
"Couldn't you substitute Andreas Dippel for 
Caruso ? I am sure Dippel would attract a larger 
audience ; he is far better known here than Caruso." 

Caruso, well satisfied by this time with the United 
States, had begun to look upon its people and customs 
with a more than superficial eye. As imitative as 
he was observant, he took to himself the consideration 
of matters touching dress and deportment. The 
tailor, the bootmaker, the furnisher were summoned 



ESTABLISHED 205 

to display their samples and take the singer's measure- 
ments ; and so the wardrobe increased. It was on 
December 12, 1904, that Tito Ricordi, addressing 
Caruso from the Carlton Hotel, London, wrote : 

As I have arranged everything for "Butterfly" at 
Covent Garden for next season, and since you are to 
be the first Pinkerton in London, it would seem to 
me an opportune thing while you are in New York 
to have your costumes made there. The uniforms 
are two : a dark blue one, for the first act, and 
another one of white. Mind, however, that both of 
them are simple uniforms of a lieutenant of the 
navy. I would advise you to consult George Max- 
well, who was in Brescia at the premiere of the opera. 

I am so happy to hear of your recent successes at 
the Metropolitan, and I avail myself of the occasion 
to give you my compliments and best wishes for a 
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. 

Yours, 

Tito Ricordi. 

The growing consciousness of his professional op- 
portunities and responsibilities had prompted Caruso, 
during the preceding May while in London, to engage 
as accompanist and repetiteur Richard Barthelemy ; 
and the two worked diligently every day. Rec- 
reation the tenor would consider only after the 
routine of work had been performed. And he was 
insistent upon detail. Old roles were refreshed in 
his memory ; new ones were taken up for the sort 
of study that occupied so many of Caruso's hours. 
He was beginning, at about this time, to give closer 
attention to whatever attached to any character in 
which he was to appear ; its history, the period in 



206 ENRICO CARUSO 

which an opera was laid, and the costumes. He was 
to develop a deeper study of these matters as years 
passed, but the practices which then were becoming 
more a fixed habit were commencing to show at the 
opera. Perhaps this conscientious thoroughness was 
also a factor, if in less degree than the singer's voice 
and singing talent, for the vogue which he then 
started to acquire. The public may not have ap- 
preciated the broadening artistry due to the labors of 
which it was not aware ; the chances are that it did 
not. For the Caruso tones were then entering their 
full glory, and it was the listener's ear which appears 
to have been chiefly charmed. Yet there can be no 
doubt that the subsequent days wherein the tenor's 
supreme art was to rule were being prepared for 
during that second Metropolitan season. 

His consideration for the needs of others was also 
beginning to show itself in substantial ways. Pas- 
quale Simonelli explained the origin of the annual 
Metropolitan Opera House performance for the ben- 
efit of the Italian Hospital, an undertaking which 
means so much to the Italian Benevolent Society. 
" In 1904, after a similar opera representation through 
which the French Hospital profited, I asked Conried 
if he would assist, in this same way, the Italians. He 
consented willingly, and thus encouraged I selected 
for our proposed performance the three most popular 
artists of that time, Mme. Sembrich, Caruso, and 
Scotti. But Mr. Zanolini, secretary of the Italian 
Benevolent Society, feared for the expense of such 
a cast which would bring the total cost of the sug- 
gested performance to $4500. Mr. Zanolini doubted 



ESTABLISHED 207 

the theater could be filled. When I expressed my 
disappointment to Caruso, he reassured me with the 
generous offer, 'Tell Mr. Zanolini that I will return to 
him, intact, my cachet" 

For his part in this charitable undertaking Conried 
received, through the solicitations of Simonelli and 
the Italian Consul Tosti, the decoration of Chevalier 
of the Crown of Italy, and, later, Count Massiglia, 
Consul General at New York, was instrumental in 
having conferred on the impresario the order of 
Officer of the Crown of Italy. 

There were moments of relaxation, as for example 
in a "La Gioconda" presentation, when the playfully 
inclined Caruso pressed an egg into one hand of the 
baritone Giraldoni, who was left to get rid of it as 
best he might. In Boston Caruso succumbed to an 
attack of mumps ; and this gave copy for the news- 
paper paragraphers and brought the singer still more 
firmly into the public eye. So the season wore on ; 
Caruso appeared in concerts given in the homes 
of James H. Smith, Miss Leary, and at a Bagby 
Waldorf-Astoria musicale. He tried vainly to make 
"Lucrezia Borgia" interesting; succeeded in his 
first New York appearances in "Les Huguenots" 
and "Ballo in Maschera" in strengthening his 
position, and finished his 1904-1905 appearances at 
the farewell given on March 3. In the fourth act of 
"La Gioconda" with Mmes. Nordica and Homer, 
and Giraldoni and the first act of "Pagliacci" 
appearing with Mme. Bella Alten and Scotti Ca- 
ruso sang as apparently he never had sung before. 
Throngs of people were turned away from the 



208 ENRICO CARUSO 

Metropolitan box office, unable to gain admission ; 
a laurel wreath was presented to the tenor, who was 
experiencing his first taste of riotous popularity. 
Dashing from the stage, Caruso quickly returned, 
dragging Heinrich Conried with him. Old-time 
New York opera patrons agreed that it was an un- 
usual scene, a brilliant audience, and a gala conclu- 
sion to an interesting season. 

II 

Earlier in the year Caruso had received from 
Edoardo Sonzogno a letter concerning a season the 
publisher-impresario was arranging to give at the 
Sarah Bernhardt Theater, in Paris. Dated in Milan, 
this letter ran : 

I received from Mr. Higgins a telegram as follows : 
"Written to Caruso to accept singing with your 
company in Paris until May 19." I am so glad now 
that you have the permission and all misunderstand- 
ings are out of the question. Dear Caruso, I could 
not give in Paris a season of opera in which I wish 
to give all the best the Italian art can offer without 
you, who should be the principal element. You will 
sing in "Fedora", and Campanini will be the con- 
ductor. There is much expectation in Paris for this 
great season, and I want to give there not only the 
best artists but the best chorus, and the best or- 
chestra I can possibly find. 

By this time you have received the official letter 
from Mr. Higgins, and it will remain only to arrange 
the dates you wish to perform the opera, dates which 
should not be less than four until May 19. 

I ask you to please let me know when it will be 
possible for you to make the first appearance, then 



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PUCCINI COUNTS ON CARUSO'S COLLABORATION FOR THE SUCCESS 
OF THE LONDON PREMIERE OF HIS "MAD AHA BUTTERFLY" 

9- 2- 05 
Dearest Caruso, 

I learned of Tosca and Boheme at the Metropolitan and it pleased me so much to hear the 
echoes of the successes mostly obtained through you and your merits. 

In London you will sing Butterfly. I hope very much for your collaboration together with 
Destinn and Scotti. ... I can hear you, I can see you in that part, which not being so 
lengthy a one (less work for you to learn it) has, notwithstanding, the need of your refulgent 
voice and of your art for the purpose of putting the role in its just and efficacious evidence. 
I thank you and I greet you. 

Affectionately 

G. Puccini. 



ESTABLISHED 209 

I will make the announcement. One rehearsal, I 
think, will be enough, as each of the selected artists 
knows already the opera through having sung in it. 
It will be a perfect ensemble, I am sure. 

It is useless to say that I count upon your good 
will and friendship to make these performances 
possible, and I thank you in advance. 

Believe Me Affectionately Yours, 

Ed. Sonzongo 

To make this season all he had stated was in truth 
Sonzogno's earnest desire. With the aid of Gabriel 
Astruc as chief assistant he laid careful plans and 
announced a repertory which included besides 
"Fedora" the same composer's "Siberia", and 
"Andrea Chenier", "L'Amico Fritz", and "II 
Barbiere di Siviglia." But alas ! The works which 
the French public best liked operas by Verdi, 
Donizetti, Bellini, and Puccini were missing from 
the Sonzogno list. It is true that Caruso was a 
magnet whenever he appeared ; even before the 
premiere "Fedora" not a ticket for the six perform- 
ances was left in the box office. The speculators, 
as busy in Paris as they are in New York, laid goug- 
ing fingers upon every piece of available pasteboard. 
Prices soared, the public fumed and raged, yet it 
bought what the speculators had to sell. But on 
other than Caruso nights there was no such attend- 
ance. 

The tenor was finding himself in those days. The 
fire of youth could be quickly lighted by whatever 
audience chose to apply the match, which lay in 
spontaneous response to Caruso's preliminary efforts. 



210 ENRICO CARUSO 

Nicola Daspuro, who was present at that intro- 
ductory "Fedora", on May 13, 1905, said that 
while the aria Amor ti vieta was the beginning of a 
riot, the real artistic triumph came at the end of 
the second act, when Caruso delivered the phrase, 
La fante mi svela I'immondo ritrovo. " His voice, and 
the realism of the anguish and horror he put into the 
phrases, were as lightning in a terrible storm. The 
breathing of that assemblage seemed to be the 
breathing of Caruso ; the life of each person appeared 
to be controlled by the singer's lips. Even to those 
artistically sophisticated Parisians here was a new 
experience : one of the most tragic developments of 
a human character, in which passions we all might 
know and feel were made so real by this artist that 
our hearts flew to his feet. At the finale, as Caruso 
sang the famous T'amo, the curtain dropped with the 
public emitting a kind of ecstatic yell ; then from a 
thousand throats came cries of * Encore, encore, 
encore!' Half bewildered, Campanini was com- 
pelled to take up his baton, and again that finale was 
sung and for an audience which well knew that 
from a French impresa no bis would have been 
granted. It wished ajso another repetition, and 
clamored until Campanini came before the curtain 
to say : * Excusez-moi, excusez-nous. ... Je vous 
prie de nous donner cinq minutes de repos, car 
dans ce moment nous sommes nerveux . . . presque 
malade* ' 

Each subsequent "Fedora" appears to have pro- 
voked like public outbursts. Caruso received twenty 
thousand francs, from the total receipts of one hun- 



ESTABLISHED 211 

dred thousand francs. It was proof of what Giulio 
Gatti-Casazza always said: "Any amount you 
may pay Caruso, he is always the least expen- 
sive artist to any management." 

A reporter of the Paris Le Gaulois asked Caruso, 
"What do you think of your successes ?" 

"My successes," replied the singer, "or my 
unhappiness ? What are my successes ? I have 
none. I happen to be a very well-known tenor, a 
kind of trademark to be exploited by an impresario. 
I cannot consider my own desires. I dare not even 
think of catching cold. I have to take care of that 
delicate watch mechanism which is my throat, and 
of the rest of my body, in order that not a grain of 
sand may get into the intricate wheels and interfere 
with their workings." 

There had been other artistic successes than 
those of "Fedora", in which Mme. Lina Cavalieri 
and Titta Ruffo participated. Angelo Masini, the 
one tenor Caruso always revered, sang the farewell 
performance of "II Barbiere di Siviglia." Caruso 
listened to him, then went to his hotel, where a letter 
from Giordano had been left for him. It read : 

My Dearest Caruso. 

Before leaving Paris I must tell you again and 
again how grateful, how sincerely grateful, I am to 
you for what you have done for me here and for what 
you will do for me in London. I will wait in Milan 
for your word calling me. Sonzogno tells me he has 
sent you all the models for the costumes, as you de- 
sired. Again a thousand thanks. 
I am Fraternally yours, 

U. Giordano 



212 ENRICO CARUSO 

"La Boheme" reintroduced Caruso to Covent 
Garden patrons on May 22 of that year, and he sang 
twenty-four times before finishing the season on the 
following July 25. He reappeared with two stand- 
bys, Mme. Melba and Scotti. In "Rigoletto" he 
appeared with Mme. Selma Kurz and Scotti and 
Journet ; with Mmes. Kurz and Destinn and Clarence 
Whitehill and Scotti he sang in "Les Huguenots"; 
"Aida" presented him with Mmes. Destinn and 
Donalda and Scotti ; and when he appeared in 
"Ballo in Maschera" the tenor's confreres were 
Mmes. Destinn and Kurz, and Scotti. 

The much anticipated "Madama Butterfly" Eng- 
lish premiere took place on July 10, 1905. Mme. 
Destinn was the Cio-Cio-San ; Scotti sang the role 
of the consul Sharpless, and Mme. Lejeune was the 
Suzuki. All that Maestro Puccini and Tito Ricordi 
could have wished was realized in that representation. 
The duet for soprano and tenor at the close of the 
first act with such artists as Mme. Destinn and 
Caruso was quite enough to satisfy the heart of 
any composer. Thereafter the acceptance to use 
a phrase of which Caruso was fond "was enough." 

In his "Nights in London" Thomas Burke wrote 
of that particular "Madama Butterfly", of what the 
opera in Covent Garden really is, also with vivid pen 
of Caruso. "What is he ? He is not a singer. He 
is not a voice. He is a miracle. There will not be 
another Caruso for two or three hundred years ; 
perhaps not then. We had been so accustomed to 
the spurious manufactured voices of people like de 
Reszke and Tamagno and Maurel, that when the 



ESTABLISHED 213 

genuine article was placed before us we hardly 
recognized it. Here was something lovelier than 
anything that had yet been heard ; yet we must needs 
stop to carp because it was not quite proper. All 
traditions were smashed, all laws violated, all rules 
ignored. Jean de Reszke would heave and strain, 
until his audience suffered with him, in order to 
produce an effect which this new singer of the south 
achieved with his hands in his pockets, as he strolled 
around the stage. 

"The Opera in London is really more of a pageant 
than a musical function. The front of the house 
frequently claims more attention than the stage. 
On Caruso and Melba nights it blazes. Tiers and 
tiers of boxes race round in a semicircle. If you are 
early, you see them as black gaping mouths. But 
very soon they are filled. The stalls begin to leap 
with light, for everybody who is not anybody, but 
would like to be somebody, drags out everything 
she possesses in the way of personal adornment and 
sticks it on her person, so that all the world may 
wonder. At each box is a bunch of lights, and with 
the arrival of the silks and jewelry, they are whipped 
to a thousand scintillations. 

"The blaze of dancing light becomes painful; 
the house, especially upstairs, is spitefully hot. Then 
the orchestra begins to tumble in ; their gracefully 
gleaming lights are adjusted, and the monotonous 
A surges over the house the fiddles whine it, the 
golden horns softly blare it, and the wood-wind 
plays with it. 

"But now there is a stir, a sudden outburst of 



214 ENRICO CARUSO 

clapping. Campanini is up. Slowly the lights dis- 
solve into themselves. There is a subdued rustle 
as we settle ourselves. A few peremptory Sh-sh-sh! 
from the ardent galleryites. 

"Campanini taps. His baton rises . . . and sud- 
denly the band mumbles those few swift bars that 
send the curtain rushing up on the garret scene. Only 
a few bars . . . yet so marvelous is Puccini's feel- 
ing for atmosphere that with them he has given 
us all the bleak squalor of the story. You feel a chill 
at your heart as you hear them, and before the curtain 
rises you know that it must rise on something 
miserable and outcast. The stage is in semi-dark- 
ness. The garret is low-pitched, with a sloping roof 
ending abruptly in a window looking over Paris. 
There is a stove, a table, two chairs, and a bed. 
Nothing more. Two people are on. One stands 
at the window, looking, with a light air of challenge, 
at Paris. Down stage, almost on the footlights, is an 
easel, at which an artist sits. The artist is Scotti, 
the baritone, as Marcello. The orchestra shudders 
with a few chords. The man at the window turns. 
He is a dumpy little man in black wearing a golden 
wig. What a figure it is ! What a make-up ! What 
a tousled-haired, down-at-heel, out-at-elbows Clerk- 
enwell exile ! The yellow wig, the white-out mous- 
tache, the broken collar. . . . But a few more 
brusque bars are tossed from Campanini's baton, 
and the funny little man throws off, cursorily, over 
his shoulder, a short passage explaining how cold he 
is. The house thrills. That short passage, throb- 
bing with tears and laughter, has rushed, like a 



ESTABLISHED 215 

stream of molten gold, to the utmost reaches of the 
auditorium, and not an ear that has not jumped for 
joy of it. For he is Rodolfo, the poet ; in private 
life, Enrico Caruso, Knight of the Order of San 
Giovanni, Member of the Victorian Order, Cavalier 
of the Order of Santa Maria, and many other things. 
"As the opera proceeds, so does the marvel grow. 
You think he can have nothing more to give you than 
he has just given ; the next moment he deceives you. 
Toward the end of the first act Melba enters. You 
hear her voice, fragile and firm as fluted china, before 
she enters. Then comes the wonderful love-duet 
Che gelida manina for Caruso and Mi chiamano Mimi 
for Melba. Gold swathed in velvet is his voice. 
Like all true geniuses, he is prodigal of his powers ; 
he flings his lyrical fury over the house. He gives 
it all, yet somehow conveys that thrilling suggestion 
of great things in reserve. Again and again he re- 
captures his first fine careless rapture. His voice 
dances forth like a little girl on a sunlit road, way- 
ward, captivating, never fatigued, leaping where 
others stumble, tripping many miles, with fresh 
laughter and bright quick blood. There never were 
such warmth and profusion and display. Not only 
is it a voice of incomparable magnificence : it has 
that intangible quality that smites you with its own 
mood : just like something that marks the difference 
between an artist and a genius. There are those who 
sniff at him. 'No artist/ they say, 'look what he 
sings.' They would like him better if he were not 
popular ; if he concerned himself, not with Puccini 
and Leoncavallo, but with those pretentiously subtle 



216 ENRICO CARUSO 

triflers, Debussy and his followers. But true beauty 
is never remote. The art which demands transcen- 
dentalism for its appreciation stamps itself at once as 
inferior. True art, like love, asks nothing and gives 
everything. The simplest people can understand 
and enjoy Puccini and Caruso and Melba, because 
the simplest people are artists. And clearly, if 
beauty cannot speak to us in our own language, and 
still retain its dignity, it is not beauty at all. 

"Caruso speaks to us of the little things we know, 
but he speaks with a lyric ecstasy. Ecstasy is a 
horrible word ; it sounds like something to do with 
algebra ; but it is the one word for this voice. The 
passion of him at times almost frightened me. I 
remember hearing him at the first performance of 
'Madama Butterfly', and he hurt us. He worked 
up the love duet with Butterfly at the close of the 
first act in such fashion that our hands were wrung, 
we were perspiring, and I at least was near to fainting. 
Such fury, such volume of liquid sound could not go 
on, we felt. But it did. He carried a terrific cre- 
scendo passage as lightly as a schoolgirl singing a 
lullaby, and ended on a tremendous note which he 
sustained for sixty seconds. As the curtain fell we 
dropped back in our seats, limp, dishevelled, and 
pale. It was we who were exhausted. Caruso 
trotted on, bright, alert, smiling, and not the slight- 
est trace of fatigue did he show." 

A personality of such distinction as to be in demand 
for almost every special occasion, Caruso was com- 
manded to appear on June 8 before the King and 
Queen of England and King Alfonso of Spain. 



ESTABLISHED 217 

The third act of "La Boheme" and the fourth act 
of "Ugonotti" had been chosen as appropriate 
operatic bits ; and with the tenor, as artists, were 
Mmes. Melba, Destinn, and Parkina, and Scotti and 
Whitehill. Just sixteen days later Caruso received 
the following letter from Lord Farquhar. 

Dear Signor Caruso : 

I am desired by Their Majesties, the King and 
the Queen, to forward to you the enclosed souvenir 
of your visit to Buckingham Palace, and to thank 
you especially for the great pleasure you gave 
Their Majesties and their guests by your beautiful 
singing. 

I must also' congratulate you on the success of 
the charming concert. 

Yours, 

Farquhar. 
Postscript. 

This letter would have reached you more than 
a week ago had it not been for the pressure during 
Ascot week. 

F. 

The "enclosed souvenir" proved to be a diamond 
and ruby pin, with the initials of the king. The tenor 
was pleased by this remembrance. He had an odd 
way of expecting thoughtful attentions, and although 
he was always as delighted as a child when some 
evidence of consideration arrived, he could be 
quite put out if, by any chance, the one who should 
have made known a proper appreciation delayed 
in so doing. And woe to the person who ever 
forgot. 

What experiences that London season brought ! 



218 ENRICO CARUSO 

In the old courtyard of the Savoy Hotel, on the eve- 
ning of July v26, a Venetian lagoon appeared almost 
as if by magic. George A. Kessler, of New York, 
wished to give a dinner to twenty-four of his friends 
- a dinner that would be remembered. Caruso 
was asked to sing, and sing he did for a fee no 
other artist probably could have got. 

The Covent Garden engagement was over ; Os- 
tende was to come, but for a little while the tenor 
could forget about singing. He strode forth into the 
streets with his companions, and with them went 
the rounds. It was summer, there was nothing to 
do save what one wished ; one morning found Caruso, 
Tosti, and Scotti motoring out to Windsor for lunch- 
eon. After the meal there followed the usual Caruso 
antics. The sound of a motor pausing before the 
restaurant attracted the musical trio ; looking, they 
became still more attentive, for from the car alighted 
Adelina Patti, her husband Baron Cederstrom, and 
the baron's young sister. Standing like three sol- 
diers in a line, their left hands behind them, their 
right hands holding their hats, and grinning as so 
many schoolboys, Caruso, Tosti, and Scotti bent 
from the waist in a salute to the famous prima donna. 
Before she would permit them to sit at her table 
she made them pose before her camera, in the very 
attitudes they had assumed at her appearance. 

Ill 

Pleasure-seeking Ostende, which draws thousands 
each year into Belgium, was waiting for Caruso. 
Impresario Georges Marquet, General Director of 



ESTABLISHED 219 

the Resort Amusements, reasoned shrewdly what it 
would mean to inaugurate the Theater Royal with 
an opera including Caruso in the cast. The news 
of his coming had touched Ostende with a flare of 
anticipation. Many already there had heard the 
tenor ; many had not. He was a sort of curiosity 
primarily to be heard, of course, but also, one was 
to bear in mind, to be seen. What was he like ? 
Where was he to stop during that month of August, 
which was to have Ostende's celebrated bathing 
beach eclipsed by a singer ? Guests at the Con- 
tinental Hotel were the favored ones who might 
oftenest catch a glimpse of the tenor. He arrived 
at that hostelry a few days in advance of August 3, 
which was the date he was to make his first appear- 
ance in Belgium, in "Rigoletto." 

Great ladies, famous men, the curious of both sexes 
who were neither great nor famous, yet for reasons of 
their own were set down at this distinctive watering 
place, stared at the stocky figure and the chubby 
face of the artist. Solitude he was able to find only 
in his own hotel rooms. 

The King and Queen of Belgium, and H.R.H. 
the Duke of Abruzzi, were in the audience which 
received "Rigoletto/* Mile. Lalla Miranda and 
M. Beronne appeared as Gilda and the Jester. 
French was the language of the country, and of the 
opera, for all save Caruso, who was permitted 
to sing the text of the Duke in Italian. From an- 
other having less to offer vocally there might have 
ensued objections ; the critics doubtless would have 
made the matter a particular point. Instead there 



220 ENRICO CARUSO 

was only a repetition of other expert views in the 
substance of opinions expressed in the newspapers. 
The Ostende Carillon, and La Rejorme, a leading 
daily of Brussels which had sent its first music critic 
to this premiere, published eulogies, as had other 
newspapers before them. The Caruso voice was 
pronounced " a delight, supremely enchanting, which 
sounds like a clarinet played by an archangel." 
There was much more, and at length, the quoting 
of which is needless. The public was even more 
outspoken if less expert ; but what it offered came 
spontaneously from hearts that, under the spell of 
the singer, had lost all calm. 

A series of concerts at the Kursaal followed the 
opera representations. These were as crowded by 
the Caruso-mad throng, which hung on his tones, 
and then applauded until its strength was spent. 
Jan Kubelik, the violinist, and an orchestra con- 
ducted by Maestro Rinskopf participated in these 
concerts. At their conclusion the tenor turned from 
work and set his face to the south, toward his Villa 
Bellosguardo. 

Like other periods of rest he was then experiencing, 
this one held none of the extended tranquillity which 
it should. Family gatherings were somehow never 
quite to be arranged. Marcellino Caruso was con- 
tent to remain by the side of his wife Maria Castaldi 
Caruso, who had steadily resisted her son's entreaties 
to leave, for even brief visits, her Naples home. 

But others needed no invitation to cross the thresh- 
old of whichever villa the singer was occupying. 
Often, when it was quiet and rest he wished, some 



ESTABLISHED 221 

composer or maestro or artist or agent descended upon 
him. Fond as he was of companionship, there were 
times when he felt the desperate craving of isolation. 
Success which was bulking larger each year was his, 
yet he could not, it appeared, have everything ; not 
the one thing which, as a boy, he had vaguely dreamed 
of. Outwardly happy, the singer had not always 
the light heart his face seemed to reflect. Nor was 
his health, for all his stoutness of body, of the best. 
For the physical exercise he needed to keep in con- 
dition was as repugnant as water to a kitten. He 
would go about over the land surrounding his villa, 
conversing with the farmers, but for the most part 
he preferred lingering in the nearer recesses of his 
garden. 

The change which invariably was wrought at the 
approach of departing time for the important win- 
ter's engagement told the story : Caruso's greatest 
happiness lay in his work. Then a smile hovered 
almost constantly about the corners of his mouth ; 
he would hum occasionally ; and his eyes would 
glow as though beholding some scene to come. 

November 20, 1905 and the third Caruso season 
at the Metropolitan. He was to receive seven thou- 
sand francs an appearance ($1344 at the rate of 
current exchange). As events transpired he sang 
sixty-four times during that 1905-1906 year : in forty 
operas and four concerts in New York, the remain- 
ing occasions being in other cities. How steadily the 
Caruso resistance held. Not a single appearance 
did he miss. Considering his sedentary life and his 
constant smoking of cigarettes, it seems remarkable. 



222 ENRICOCARUSO 

Still, the act of singing requires no slight physical 
exertion, and this may possibly have helped. The 
receipts for his public efforts during that season totaled 
$87,984 as against $65,664 for the year before, and 
$29,807.62 for his first season. Since his reputation 
was increasing at a prodigious rate, his royalties 
from the sale of his phonograph records were growing 
at a corresponding pace. Money as well as fame was 
rolling in upon this favored Neapolitan, and he was 
investing in securities a comfortable part of what 
he earned. 

New York swept upon the Metropolitan Opera 
House for that season's premiere with a zest new 
and easily explained. Another star, which was 
fast becoming brighter than any which had shone 
in the exclusive Metropolitan firmament, seemed 
moving to a fixed place. Mme. Nordica, Mme. 
Homer, and Plancon were of the cast in the repre- 
sentation of "La Gioconda" presented on that eve- 
ning. Maestro Vigna conducted. More compelling 
than ever, Caruso received an ovation at his first 
appearance which was an indication of the enthu- 
siasm in store. It was a Caruso night, as each sub- 
sequent season premiere was regularly to become, 
not to mention those many others that followed, 
year after year, until that farewell "La Juive" which 
none suspected was to be the farewell. 

New York had now come to regard Caruso as its 
rather particular property. What mattered if he 
sang in other countries out of what was in the United 
States its regular season ? From November to the 
following spring he belonged to the nation's metrop- 



ESTABLISHED 223 

olis. His goings and comings, even when of a per- 
sonal nature, were held to be appropriate for chron- 
icling in the press. He was interviewed for special 
articles, and often made to say things he never really 
said or quite understood, as explained to him by 
those "feature writers" from notes they made. Be- 
ing "in the news", the tenor was a public character. 
His daily routine ; his diet ; what he liked to do and 
what he did not like to do, were set down in print, 
and not infrequently the singer was made to appear 
in a light which annoyed him in the extreme. For 
it is certain reading through the mass of clippings 
taken from the New York newspapers of that season 
Caruso was scarcely responsible for much of what 
was published concerning him ; he appears, all too 
often, to have been the victim of imaginatively in- 
clined newspaper folk intent upon a story that would 
enlist the approval of some enterprising editor. 

If, as happened during a January representation 
of "Tosca", the tenor gave the impression of kissing 
the prima donna (Mme. Emma Eames) with evi- 
dences of realism, it became the subject of exag- 
gerated newspaper articles. And when during a per- 
formance of "L'Elisir d'Amore" he accidentally cut 
his temple with the bottle containing the supposed 
elixir, and later narrowly missed being struck by the 
descending drop-curtain, the reporters plied their 
pencils in glee over having a "good story" to write. 

This season brought its humorous experiences, 
as well. One of these occurred on the evening of 
January 4, 1906, when "Faust", without a chorus, 
was performed. The choristers, denied demands 



224 ENRICO CARUSO 

made upon Conried, went on strike. Caruso, 
Mme. Emma Eames, and Pol Plancon, who were 
members of the cast, were nervous because of the 
omission of the customary choruses, but nothing 
interfered to mar their parts in the performance. 

Even a change of domicile could not be accom- 
plished without the news of it getting into the break- 
fast-table newspaper. It was so in December, 1905, 
when Caruso moved from the Hotel York to 54 West 
Fifty-seventh Street. People made it a point to walk 
past this dwelling, eager to see the exterior, even 
though an examination of the premises should be 
denied them. 

There was enough for the tenor to do without dis- 
turbing himself too seriously over these pryings into 
his private life, though he rebelled against a curiosity 
of what he might choose to do outside the theater. 
Not that he objected to the public's attention. He 
was aware of what it meant to him professionally. 
He would have preferred, however, to have been 
relieved of the stares and comments which increased 
as his popularity grew. But such a thing was not 
to be. The frequent publishing of his photographs 
and cartoons made him easily singled out from others. 
His round face, upturned moustache, and black 
hair were peculiarly Caruso-esque. And the indi- 
vidual Caruso gait. 

To his valets, Martino, and Mario, who continued 
faithful members of his household to the day of the 
tenor's death, he would often say, "Why will they 
annoy me ?" Yet, had he been neglected, he doubt- 
less would have been made unhappy. 



ESTABLISHED 225 

"Favorita", "Sonnambula", "Faust", "Marta", 
and "Carmen" were the operas Caruso added to his 
New York repertory during the 1905-1906 season. 
It was a distinguished company, with Mmes. Sem- 
brich, Eames, Nordica, Fremstad, Homer, Edyth 
Walker, Emma Abbot, Marie Rappold, Bella Alten, 
Josephine Jacoby,and MM. Campanari, Scotti, Burg- 
staller, Knote, Dippel, Journet, Dufriche, Reiss, 
Paroli, Rossi, and Blass among the principals. It 
was during this season that Miss Geraldine Farrar 
joined the company of which she was soon to become 
a foremost member. 

The introductory concert in which the tenor ap- 
peared that year took place on January 18, 1906, 
in the home of Mr. James H. Smith. His associates 
were Mme. Rappold and Miss Lina Abarbanell, 
sopranos, and Nahan Franko, violinist. The Salut 
demeure, from "Faust", and a group of songs by 
Tosti comprised the offerings which brought the 
singer two thousand dollars, of which he was allotted 
one thousand five hundred. 

January 22 marked Caruso's second concert ap- 
pearance, when he sang at a Bagby Musicale at the 
Waldorf-Astoria. Victor Herbert and his orchestra 
had a part in that program. Two days later the 
tenor journeyed to Washington, where he sang with 
Miss Abbot and Jean Gerardy, the 'cellist, at a musi- 
cale given by Mr. and Mrs. Perry Belmont in their 
Scott Circle home. Besides the first-act duet from 
"Boheme", Caruso sang the Una furtiva lagrima 
aria and a song by A. Buzzi-Peccia. His fee for this 
engagement was two thousand five hundred dollars, 



226 ENRICO CARUSO 

and he also was given the use of a private car to 
and from Washington. A smaller cachet came to 
him for appearing, on February 27, in a concert 
arranged by Mrs. Orme Wilson in her home, but 
the entire amount one thousand five hundred 
dollars the Metropolitan management permitted 
him to retain. 

In the midst of these musical activities, and while 
opera at the Metropolitan was at its height, Direc- 
tor Conried announced the completion of arrange- 
ments to send the Metropolitan Opera Company 
on a tour to the Pacific Coast. Scarcely had this 
news been made public when Oscar Hammerstein 
startled New York with a statement carrying still 
greater import. He declared his intention of launch- 
ing a season of opera in the Manhattan Opera House 
the following autumn, and the press carried accounts 
of the engagement of Alessandro Bonci, and the re- 
ported successful negotiation of contracts with the 
great Battistini, Edouard de Reszke, Giovanni Zena- 
tello, and possibly a few farewell appearances 
of Jean de Reszke himself. Although the de Reszkes 
and Battistini were destined not to come, the announce- 
ment was sufficient to fire public anticipation. 

With competition threatening, the Metropolitan 
organization was moved to still greater endeavors. 
Caruso to whom the mere mention of Bond's 
name was ever a source of stimulation sang with 
renewed fervor. He appeared, with Scotti, at the 
benefit given in March for the Italian Immigrants 
and Miss Leary's Italian Settlement ; and on March 
16 the Metropolitan's New York season came to a 



ESTABLISHED 227 

close. "La Gioconda" was the opera; in the cast 
with Caruso were Mmes. Nordica and Homer, and 
Scotti and Plancon ; Vigna conducted. Twenty- 
one calls resulted when the final curtain fell. It 
was a noteworthy night ; a noteworthy season as 
well, for the total receipts were estimated at 
1,173,000. 

How little did that company of traveling musicians 
appreciate what fate held for them ! Two appear- 
ances in Baltimore, two in Washington, three in Pitts- 
burgh, three in Chicago, two in St. Louis, and one 
in Kansas City had presented Caruso to the people 
of these cities in "Marta", " Faust ", "Lucia di 
Lammermoor", "Pagliacci", "Carmen", and "Bo- 
heme." On the night of April 17 the eve of the 
great San Francisco earthquake and fire the tenor 
sang Don Jose in "Carmen." 

Antonio Scotti related the Caruso experiences 
during that terrifying occasion. He occupied quarters 
in the Palace Hotel near those of the tenor. "I 
awoke," said the baritone, "at a quarter before five 
on that unforgettable Wednesday morning, with a 
feeling of seasickness. Then I heard the sound of 
falling plaster and cries in the street. I rushed to 
make lights, but could not ; there was no electricity. 
When I tried to unlock the door, there was no key 
to be found. It had been jostled to the floor, where 
I finally discovered it. Once in the outer hallway 
I saw Martino, Caruso's valet ; and almost imme- 
diately Caruso himself, fully dressed, came out of 
his room ; and seeing me cried 'Totonno !' I begged 
him to wait, but he seemed half-crazed and only 



228 ENRICO CARUSO 

continued on his way down stairs. I put on my 
clothing, hurried below and there met Mme. Sem- 
brich and Plancon. Plancon was a sight ; he had 
not had time to dye his beard as he did each morn- 
ing and it was green. 

"I walked to the square on which the St. Francis 
Hotel fronts and here I met several other Metro- 
politan artists. The scenes I will not undertake to 
describe ; it cannot be told in a way to give one more 
than a suggestion of the terror and excitement. 
While I was standing in a dazed state, Caruso un- 
expectedly appeared. He had a towel about his 
neck and carried a framed portrait of Theodore 
Roosevelt, which had been given him by the then 
president of the United States. I remember that 
Caruso and I exchanged some words, and that he 
announced his determination of returning to the Pal- 
ace Hotel to pack his trunks. I sought to dissuade 
him, without success. He left me to return to the 
hotel where, among other adventures, he engaged in 
a fight with a Chinaman. 

"After a time I went looking for some sort of 
conveyance, and found a wagon. I asked the driver 
how much he wanted to take some trunks and friends 
to the home of Arthur Bachman, whom Caruso and 
I knew. He insisted on being paid three hundred 
dollars, and I agreed. Anything, I thought, to get 
to some place of safety. 

"We finally got Caruso's trunks, and mine, and 
some others on this wagon ; then we piled on our- 
selves, and slowly were taken out of the danger zone 
to the home of Mr. Bachman. That night Caruso 



ESTABLISHED 229 

could not be induced to occupy a room in the house ; 
he slept under a tree in the Bachman yard. 

"The next day we started for the ferry to try to 
get across the bay to Oakland, where we could board 
a train to start east. In some way Caruso became 
separated from us. I recall that he appeared, as 
we were loaded into a launch, and that we saw him 
in an altercation with some officers on the dock. He 
was still carrying the portrait of Roosevelt, which 
proved to be his passport, for when he showed it 

with the inscription of the president to Caruso, 

they allowed him to pass, and he joined our party 
in the launch. That ended our immediate troubles. 
We were soon safely in the train, but carrying with 
us recollections we could never forget." 

The first word received by Director Conried from 
the scene of the disaster came from Nahan Franko, 
concert-master of the Metropolitan Opera Company 
Orchestra. It read : " Inform families of musicians, 
through union, of safety of all." 

But what a financial loss the opera company sus- 
tained. The tour had to be abandoned ; thousands 
of dollars in advance subscriptions were returned 
to the San Francisco public, and in spite of the in- 
surance the loss of stage settings, properties, and 
costumes, and orchestra instruments, totaled a large 
figure. 

Caruso reached New York with badly shaken 
nerves, though grateful for having escaped without 
injury. Soon after his arrival he sailed for London 
where he was scheduled to open the Covent Garden 
season on May 15. 



230 ENRICO CARUSO 

IV 

Extraordinary success affects people in different 
ways. Caruso, for all his gifts, was none the less 
susceptible. He always said that he was as human 
as other folk, and in many respects this was indeed 
true, for he inclined to the same things those about 
him inclined towards, and was keen in his desire to 
have the good will of the public. Thus, to be criti- 
cized for a personal act hurt him, often more 
deeply than an adverse phrase penned by a reviewer 
for some artistic blemish charged against him in a 
performance. In view of this sensitiveness it may 
appear strange that his thirty-third year found him 
developing a half-swaggering independence, unless 
it served merely to prove him to have been like the 
average run of mortals. Whatever the analysis 
applied, the difficulty of maintaining a level course 
must appear clear. For distinction and wealth were 
being piled upon the tenor ; men and women made 
fools of themselves over him ; he was treated almost 
like a monarch. Perhaps tolerance should be exer- 
cised in treating some of his behavior at that time ; 
he had been given so much, and in so short a period, 
it is small wonder if his honors went a bit to his head. 

Having the artist's nature, he was then moved by 
it, despite his naturally well-balanced mind, into 
exaggerations of public conduct which he completely 
outgrew in his maturer years. Yet not a little of 
the criticism that has been directed against the tenor 
was overdrawn, and some of it, emanating from 
sources jealous of his success, was downright untrue. 
At least, it would seem no more than fair to make 



ESTABLISHED 231 

allowances during that time for one who lacked the 
advantages many another had, and whose steady 
growth in qualities of integrity and fineness rilled 
those closing years of his life with deeds which could 
have come only from a man deserving the just esteem 
of those who really knew him. 

London, in 1906, was as wild over Caruso as New 
York. And his reappearance in "Rigoletto" during 
that spring Covent Garden season only piled fresh 
fuel upon the fires of his popularity. In sheer golden 
beauty and liquidness of tone, his voice was then 
probably at its best. It had intensity and power 
also, but the timbre had not begun to darken, 
which happened several years later, as the result 
of his singing heavy roles and giving without stint 
every vocal resource he possessed. The ease of his 
voice emission, his marvelous breath capacity and 
control, and the authority with which he delivered 
a phrase were elements which even the casual listener 
could apprehend. Nor did one need to be partic- 
ularly musical in order to appreciate that the Caruso 
voice and the Caruso singing were more than ex- 
ceptional. He thrilled, also, quite as much by his 
inherent talent for song and through the fidelity 
of his vast understanding of the deepest meanings 
of composer and poet. A greater artist he was 
ultimately to become, but according to the lights of 
some, Caruso, in those days, was the singer supreme. 
Night after night, in virtually every engagement, 
he was consistently the same. Doubtless he rose 
or fell vocally as his spirits or physical condition 
compelled, yet so slight was this variance that com- 



232 ENRICO CARUSO 

mon opinion seldom found the tenor other than the 
Caruso they knew, or expected to hear. 

Mme. Donalda and Scotti and Journet were of 
the "Rigoletto" cast which, under Campanini's 
baton, brought the tenor back to Covent Garden. 
He appeared, presently, in "Pagliacci", with Mme. 
Destinn; and soon after was heard in "Tosca", in 
which Signorina Rina Giachetti sang the title role 
to the Scarpia of Scotti. There followed " Traviata ", 
with Mme. Melba and Battistini ; afterward came 
"Don Giovanni", twice performed to the delight 
of the London public, and the satisfaction of Mme. 
Destinn and Battistini and Journet, who also ap- 
peared. In all, Caruso sang on twenty-nine occasions 
before the termination of his contract, July 26. 

Out of the theater, however, the singer took what- 
ever time was necessary to attend to the demands 
made upon him by members of his family. On 
July 13, in a letter penned in the Hotel Cecil to his 
brother Giovanni, who had just acquainted him 
with the news of an expected new arrival in his family, 
Caruso wrote : 

"I am very tired, and long for a real rest. You 
ask me the name your coming child should bear. Why 
don't you ask Father ? He is still living and he, 
not I, is the one to be asked. I want you to know 
that Papa is the only one who should be listened to 
not I. Remember, he is still living." 

Before that the tenor had agreed to sing for a 
benefit concert to be given under the auspices of the 
French Embassy, and this act prompted Paul Cam- 
bon to send him the following letter : 



ESTABLISHED 233 

"I am told," wrote the ambassador, "that you 
have consented to sing at the concert organized 
by this embassy. I express to you all my gratitude 
and that of the French in London. Your name will 
be an element of success, and I am sure every one will 
dispute the pleasure of hearing you sing. I am really 
touched by the grace with which you have consented 
to lend your cooperation at our benefit, which has 
never before received such admirable proof of sym- 
pathy." 

Here again was evidence of Caruso willingness 
to aid, wherever he could, a worthy cause. And 
he was forever putting his hand into his pocket to 
assist with money persons and undertakings often 
undeserving of his generosity. 

From London he went to Ostende, where he sang 
in a series of Kursaal concerts with his usual recog- 
nition ; then he journeyed to Italy for a few weeks' 
rest at his Bellosguardo Villa. 

The second of October, 1906, brought Caruso 
before a Vienna audience for the first time. The 
Royal Opera House reflected traditions which had 
always interested the tenor ; and the known dis- 
crimination of the Viennese public disturbed him 
not a little as to how he was to be received. The 
opera was "Rigoletto", and Caruso's chief asso- 
ciates in the cast were Mme. Kurz and Titta Ruffo. 
Like many a previous nervous anxiety, this one 
was blown afar on the winds of triumph. The quiet 
and tranquillity he had gained in his native land had 
freshened the Caruso resources. Such a voice and 
such singing could scarcely be lost upon so keen an 
assemblage, nor was it. His pulse quickening under 



234 ENRICO CARUSO 

this newest approval, the tenor continued on to 
Berlin, where he sang his introductory Don Jose in 
" Carmen." 

That appearance sealed for always the Caruso 
vogue in Berlin. Already had he gained his place, 
and a secure one it appeared to be. But on this 
occasion Kaiser Wilhelm was present, listening at- 
tentively and indicating in the royal manner his 
approbation of the Italian visitor before whom the 
foremost German singers bowed. During the per- 
formance the tenor was commanded to appear before 
the Kaiser, a summons he obeyed with wonderment 
over what was to occur. Caruso faced the former 
German ruler at other times, and in other circum- 
stances, though never, as he said, with such a flut- 
tering of his heart. It must have fluttered still 
more when he had bestowed upon him the title of 
Imperial Chamber Singer. 

Many were the incidents attending that Berlin 
engagement. In his most jovial mood, after the 
strain of the premiere, the tenor plunged into the 
kind of play which seemed so unfailingly to relieve 
any tension. One night, following his custom of 
smoking between the acts, the tenor was accosted 
by a fireman who informed him he was infringing 
upon an unbreakable rule. "I am sorry," said the 
fireman, "but you cannot smoke." 

"Then I will leave the theater," replied Caruso, 
in a jesting tone which was not understood. 

Alarmed at what he accepted as an earnestly ut- 
tered threat, the fireman reported the matter to his 
chief. That officer hastened to the stage and gave 



ESTABLISHED 235 

Caruso full permission to smoke, with one proviso : 
he must be followed about constantly by the fireman, 
carrying a pail of water. And this actually hap- 
pened, during the remainder of Caruso's engagement. 

To Paris the tenor journeyed next, there to sing 
in a performance given at the Palais du Trocadero 
on October 25, for the benefit of the Maison de 
Retraite de Pont-aux-Dames, of which Constant 
Coquelin was president. An audience of five thou- 
sand persons paid one hundred fifty thousand francs 
to attend this concert. Some time afterward, 
at the solicitation of Coquelin, France decorated 
Caruso with the Croix de Chevalier de la Legion 
d'Honneur. 

New York silently beckoned, and the singer sailed 
away for his fourth successive season at the Metro- 
politan. 

Another change of residence took place for Caruso ; 
and this time he decided to stop at the Savoy Hotel. 
His suite overlooked Central Park, and there he 
spent many an hour, driving or walking, and, often, 
studying some role he was to sing. Singled out, 
because of the conspicuousness of his position, for 
criticism of various kinds, Caruso, like many another 
person of eminence, had often to suffer. Thoughtless 
people who spoke out of slight knowledge or none at 
all, and the envious, chafed because of the singer's 
success. He could not in the nature of things please 
every one : had he been perfect there yet would have 
gone up many voices in complaint. An experience 
which Caruso encountered shortly before he was to 
reappear before a Metropolitan audience was but 



236 ENRICO CARUSO 

one of many he had to undergo. But he emerged 
from it, and his season's debut, on November 28, 
1906, with Mmes. Sembrich and Alten, and Scotti 
in "La Boheme", was attended by a reception 
from the audience which revealed completely the 
estimation in which he was held. 

Caruso's associates have told how, overjoyed at 
that manifestation of public confidence, he broke 
down upon reaching his dressing room and cried. 
There was reason for this display of emotionalism, 
for a cold or disapproving attitude on the part of 
that assemblage might easily have sent the singer 
from American shores forever. The whole affair, 
drawn out as it had been, was a shock that im- 
parted to Caruso a sobering effect, and it is a fact 
that thereafter his serious side deepened and con- 
tinued steadily to prevail. 

The incentive to make his artistic self more es- 
sential " was redoubled." In voice and song Caruso 
established himself, with each fresh appearance, 
more firmly in the good will of his hearers, while 
on the critics he exerted an even stronger appeal. 
"Traviata" and "Marta" followed "Boheme" in 
quick succession ; then came the tenor's first " Fe- 
dora" in New York. The cachet for this season was 
seven thousand five hundred francs ($1440) an 
appearance, and for the sixty-two opera perform- 
ances in which Caruso sang in the United States 
between November 28, 1906, and April 27, 1907, he 
received $89,280. If it had not been for his indis- 
position on six different occasions, the singer would 
have increased his income for that season by nearly 



VIVLA FEDORA 

BAVENO 



\\ . \ % ', \\ C -. 




THE AUTHOR OF FEDORA TO CARUSO AFTER THE 
PREMIERE AT THE METROPOLITAN OPERA HOUSE 



12-12-1906 



means an assured triumph. I am grateful to you, 




ig _ ___^ _^ 

I embrace you. 

U. Giordano. 



ESTABLISHED 237 

ten thousand dollars. Still, he had no cause for 
financial complaint. 

After the "Fedora" presentation, which took place 
in the Metropolitan on December 5, Caruso received 
from Giordano the following letter, sent December 12 
from the Villa Fedora, at Baveno : 

Dear and Great Enrico, 

You have already a telegram signed by Son- 
zogno and myself. But I feel the necessity of sending 
you a few lines written by me, to express my hearty 
thanks. You have been and always will be the great- 
est, the only, Loris. Therefore, you can imagine 
my happiness every time that you will sing in my 
opera. This means an assured triumph. 
I am grateful to you. ... I embrace you. 

Yours, 

U. Giordano. 

Caruso needed such encouraging words as these ; 
he needed, during this specific season, any bit of 
commendation that might come to him, no matter 
how small. Persons envious of his success, who 
stooped to the depths of anonymous communications 
in efforts to disturb his peace of mind, were not idle. 
Letters even postcards containing threats and 
filled with abuse were heaped upon him. He needed 
the stoutest courage to maintain his poise in those 
days, and to his credit be it said that he bore the 
burden with a minimum of complaint. 

Much of his time he spent in the seclusion of his 
Savoy suite, which consisted of rooms 94 to 98. 
There his loyal friends surrounded him ; and grad- 
ually, as the weeks passed, then the months, the 



238 ENRICO CARUSO 

tenor became more his former self in light-hearted 
moments. But his seriousness did not diminish. 
Caruso had entered a new phase of his life. He 
busied himself with what was important, since the 
Manhattan Opera Company, giving performances 
aiming at direct competition with the Metropolitan, 
was something of a factor in New York's operatic 
field. 

The season ran on, presenting Caruso in roles 
he had hitherto not sung in the United States, the 
operas being "L'Africaine", "Manon Lescaut", and 
"Madama Butterfly." Spring arrived, March 23 
sending the tenor up for his season's farewell in 
" Tosca." The next day the Metropolitan company 
started on a four weeks' tour. Caruso sang during 
that month in ten cities ; twice in Baltimore, twice in 
Washington, three times in Boston, on four occasions 
before Chicago audiences, twice in St. Louis, and 
one each in Cincinnati, Kansas City, Milwaukee, 
St. Paul, and Minneapolis. 

The engagement was concluded in Milwaukee, 
April 27. Hurrying to New York, Caruso sailed 
immediately for London, where he was scheduled 
to appear at the Covent Garden opening on May 15. 
After that representation of "La Boheme", with 
Mme. Donalda and Scotti and Charles Gilibert, and, 
two evenings later, a second appearance in " Madama 
Butterfly" with Mme. Destinn and Scotti, the tenor 
crossed the English Channel. Another hurried effort 
this time in concert at the Paris Trocadero, given 
under the patronage of the Belgian Embassy and 
the Comtesse of Greuffulhe, for the benefit of the 



ESTABLISHED 239 

Belgian Charities in France brought receipts of 
one hundred fifty thousand francs, also the decora- 
tion of the Cross of the Chevalier of the Order of 
Leopold. 

Following a further rushed journey, which began 
the day after this concert, the tenor settled himself 
in London where, beginning again on May 21 in 
"La Boheme", in which his associates were Mme. 
Melba and Scotti and Gilibert, he sang continuously 
until July 30. In all he placed to his credit thirty- 
one appearances in the operas "Traviata", "Ai'da", 
"Carmen", "Tosca", "Ballo in Maschera", "Fe- 
dora", "Andrea Chenier", and "I Pagliacci." In 
addition to those artists already mentioned, Caruso 
sang with Mmes. Kurz, Rina Giachetti, Kirkby- 
Lunn and Severina, and MM. Journet, Sammarco 
and Scandiani (now impresario at Milan's La 
Scala). 

Easier days, with brighter skies, had come. Set- 
tled into the routine, Caruso found happiness in the 
companionship of his younger son, Enrico Jr., Mimmi. 
From Italy the boy had been brought to London 
by his governess, Miss Louise Saer ; and established 
in a house in Ealing (from which the singer later 
moved to Claringdon Courts, in Maida Vale) Caruso 
devoted considerable attention to the child he loved. 
They had barely gotten comfortably settled in Ealing 
before a gift arrived from the Duke and Duchesse 
of Vendome (the latter having been the Princess 
Henriette of Belgium), accompanied by the follow- 
ing letter, signed by E. de Cartier, Counsellor of 
the Belgium Legation at London. It read : 



240 ENRICO CARUSO 

At the request of H. E. Leghait, Minister of 
Belgium in Paris, I have the honour to present to 
you enclosed herewith a cigarette case which 
Their Highnesses the Duke and Duchesse of Vendome 
request you to accept as a souvenir of the concert 
you gave at the Trocadero in Paris, recently, in favor 
of the Belgian Charities in France. At the same 
time M. Leghait requests me to convey to you his 
thanks, all over again, for your generous cooperation, 
and his gratitude for the wonderful performance 
which will leave a memory with all who had the 
pleasure and good fortune to hear you sing. 

The world was getting right again; Caruso re- 
laxed and began to play more. Miss Saer, writing 
of those and later days, observes: 

"Signer Caruso loved his children, and was very 
ambitious for them. He would often ask the boys 
what they intended to do when they were old enough 
to earn for themselves ; and he instilled into them the 
necessity of having to work in order to live. 

"The first time the younger boy was left in the 
charge of his governess, and Signer Caruso was say- 
ing good-by, the child said : 'Where are you going, 
Papa?' The father replied, 'I am going to work, 
so you can get food to eat and clothes to wear.' Later 
on, when the child (then four years old) was asked 
where his father had gone he answered, 'He has 
gone to get the dinner/ 

"This little boy was happy as the day was long, 
and as a rule was always laughing, talking, singing, 
and playing with his toys . . . especially soldiers. 
Photographs, taken from time to time, would be 
sent to his father to enable him to see how Mimmi 
progressed. On one occasion a snapshot having 
been taken on the sands which showed the boy in 



ESTABLISHED 241 

a serious mood, the governess thought it would be 
well for the father to see him in this unusual pose. 
To her surprise a telegram arrived, stating that he 
did not like the expression, and would come to cheer 
his boy up. 

"At another time, a telegram was received asking 
if the child were well. It seems that Signer Caruso 
had had a bad dream about Mimmi which he could 
not get out of his mind. Nothing, however, was 
wrong with the boy. 

"These incidents show that Signer Caruso was, 
whenever possible, very solicitous for the welfare of 
his children ; and it was unfortunate for both father 
and children that they could not be owing to 
Signer Caruso's art and engagements together 
more than they were. For each would have had 
a beneficial effect on the other. 

"Sometimes, when Signor Caruso heard Mimmi 
being corrected, he would exclaim, * Yes, yes ; I 
want you to be a good boy . . . not a bad boy, as 
I was/ 

" He would, too, be very interested in any new 
clothes that Mimmi would show him ; and during 
Signor Caruso's holidays the governess has known 
him, in the case of the elder boy who was in boarding 
school, to go out and buy him clothing, with great 
discrimination. 

"When Signor Caruso used to sing in Covent 
Garden, he liked Mimmi to go to hear him. Always, 
in acknowledging the most vociferous applause, he 
would not forget the box where he knew his child 
was, but would smile and throw many kisses to 
him. 

" The governess, too, will not forget the look of 
extreme approbation with which he looked upon 
Mimmi in his first evening suit, when he was seven 
years old. 



242 ENRICO CARUSO 

"As an employer, Signer Caruso exhibited keen 
business traits. He would exact a full day's work 
for a fair day's pay ; but, at the same time, he wished 
his employe to look upon him as a friend as well as 
an employer. When one member of his household 
had outgrown her position and asked him for a rec- 
ommendation, Signor Caruso said, 'It will be a 
pleasure for me to give you a reference, and I want 
you always to look upon me not as Caruso, but 
as a friend. Should you need help at any time be 
sure to write and tell me so. And I want a reference 
from you, too.' 

" The governess remembers one occasion when, 
leaving Pagani's restaurant in London, after lunch, 
Signor Caruso caught sight of Queen Alexandra 
passing. 

" With wild enthusiasm he led a cheer. The queen 
looked up, and recognizing him at once cried, 'Oh! 
that is Caruso.' The crowd heard, and turning to 
the great man raised another cheer, and the shouts 
for the queen and the shouts for the singer became 
intermingled. 

" Signor Caruso was fond of telling what Mr. Mc- 
Cormack's little boy once said to him, during one 
of their return voyages from America. The child 
seeing Signor Caruso for the first time, eyed him 
from head to foot, and then said, 'Well, you may be 
the greatest Italian singer, but my father is the great- 
est Irish singer." 

In the midst of his activities Caruso was the 
constant recipient of letters from personages. The 
pleasure he gave seemed to have in it very great use- 
fulness, and recognition was being steadily shown. 
After a concert given in London that July, for the 
Italian Charities Association, the then ambassador, 



THE GRAND, 

FOLKESTONE. 



V*14M* 







AFTER HEARING HIS OWN "iDEALE, RECORDED BY CARUSO, 
"CICCIO" TOSTI GIVES THE TENOR HIS APPRECIATION 

Saturday, 8 Feb. : 08 
Dearest friend, 

I spent a good half-hour, today, in listening to you sing, three times. "Ideale." 
It is the first time that I have loved the gramophone. 
Affections. 

Yours 

Ciccio. 
Will be in London on Monday. 



ESTABLISHED 243 

Di San Giuliano, thanked the tenor in a written 
communication. It was at about this time that the 
King of England conferred upon Caruso the order 
of M.V.O. Charged by Lord Farquhar to present 
the decoration to his compatriot, the composer, 
Francesco Paolo Tosti, called on the tenor. Finding 
him not at home, he left the following letter ; 

"Carissimo Sorry not to find you in. Here 
is the Victorian Order that I was asked to take to 
you. Please do write me at once assuring me that 
you have received it. And do please write another 
letter, in the official style (you can write it in French) 
to Lord Farquhar, asking him to thank the King 
for the great honor he has bestowed on you." 

It was signed," Affectionately yours, Ciccio Tosti." 

But the letter the singer prized, in some ways, 
above many he received at this time, was one from 
Edouard de Reszke. The basso, and also his brother 
Jean, had visited Caruso in his Covent Garden dress- 
ing room on more than one occasion ; but the first 
had always left the deepest impression, when Jean 
de Reszke had turned to Edouard, saying, "This 
boy will one day be my successor/' On July 16, 
1907, Edouard de Reszke sent the tenor the following 
letter : 

Dear Caruso : 

I am so sorry I could not manage to come and bid 
you good-by before leaving London, and tell you again, 
viva-voce, all the pleasure I had from hearing you 
sing. I never heard a more beautiful voice. . . . 
You sing like a god. You are an actor and a sincere 
artist, and above all you are modest and without 



244 ENRICO CARUSO 

exaggerations. You were able to draw from my eyes 
many tears. I was very much touched, and this 
happens to me very, very seldom. You have heart, 
feeling, poetry, truth . . . and with these qualities 
you will be the master of the world. 

Please do accept these few words from an old artist 
who admires you not only as an artist, but as a very 
dear man. May God keep you in good health for 
many years. Au revoir, until next year. 

Your friend and colleague, 

Edouard de Reszke. 



CHAPTER EIGHT 

TRYING DAYS 

AN orderly and somewhat set procedure was begin- 
ning to dominate the life of Enrico Caruso. It re- 
flected variety enough, and a host of interests due 
to the meeting of new and important people ; but 
the tenor's professional movements from place to 
place were beginning to take him to stages which 
were familiar ground. There was something reassur- 
ing in the consciousness that an audience would be 
made up mainly of old acquaintances ; something 
to be looked forward to in meetings thus renewed. 
Yet for all the pleasurable part which anticipation 
held, no one knew better than Caruso what was ex- 
pected of him. He was popular because of his voice 
and artistry ; he would continue thus only so long 
as nothing occurred to dim either the one or the 
other; so the thought of each reappearance, for all 
the thrill a reappearance gave, was disturbing to his 
nerves. Once the ice of a performance was broken 
this tenseness passed, and the tenor became his 
best self, singing with spontaneity and that individual 
abandonment of style which were conspicuously his. 

He left Italy in late September of 1907 for Budapest 
where, the evening of October 2, he appeared in the 
Royal Opera House in "Ai'da." Two nights later, 
in Vienna, Caruso sang in the same opera ; and 



246 ENRICO CARUSO 

"Boheme" and "Rigoletto" following on the sixth, 
ninth, and eleventh of that month. From Vienna 
the singer journeyed to Leipzig, where the public 
of that city listened to him in the " Ai'da " of Verdi. 
His vocal condition was excellent, and that alone was 
sufficient to insure success to his efforts. Confidence 
having been established through actual accomplish- 
ment, Caruso put still more spirit into his work. In 
Hamburg, on October sixteen, eighteen, and twenty, 
he appeared in "Rigoletto", " Ai'da ", and " Pagliacci" 
with a degree of success that carried him to Berlin in 
a mood that augured well for the four appearances 
he was scheduled to make there between October 23 
and 29. It is difficult to state in which of the two 
operas " Ai'da " and " Pagliacci " - the public liked 
him better. When he finished his tour in Frankfurt, 
four days later, after having sung in "Pagliacci'* 
and "Rigoletto", there was little doubt that he was 
likely to experience in New York his most satisfactory 
season. For that city he sailed almost immediately 
from Bremen ; and he took with him two thousand 
dollars for every appearance. Although the arrange- 
ments had been made by the Metropolitan Opera 
Company management, each cachet was credited 
under the terms for the 1907-1908 season, which 
provided that the tenor was to receive two thousand 
dollars whenever he sang. 

New York welcomed its premier artist warmly. He 
was interviewed by the men of the press, who crowded 
about him when he came off the ship. This business 
disposed of, Caruso was driven to the Plaza Hotel ; 
once more had he changed his living place. It is 




Photo M. E. HewUt Studio, N. Y. 

MARBLE BAS-RELIEF, BY THE MASTER OF THE MARBLE MADONNAS, 
XV. CENTURY, IN THE CARUSO COLLECTION 

Now in the Caruso Chapel at the Cimitero del Pianto, in Naples. 



TRYING DAYS 247 

strange, in the light of his intense superstition, 
that he should have agreed to being lodged in a 
suite on the thirteenth floor. But he was soon 
moved to rooms 1123, 1125, 1127, 1129. 

Those who had been accustomed to Caruso with a 
moustache beheld him at that time clean-shaven. 
And observant persons must have noticed about him 
a more serious manner than he had habitually shown 
before. For it is of record that 1907 brought the 
tenor back to the United States with a consciousness 
of his opportunities, which he had decided not to 
neglect. 

Already interested in collecting objets d'art, he 
began, at this period of his life, to devote more time 
and attention to acquiring new pieces. An artist 
by nature, he built up his collection as one will who 
does so because of sheer love of it. Still, his enjoy- 
ment did not cease when he had made some new 
purchase. The singer spent a part of each day with 
those pieces of art he had about him ; and in this he 
found a special pleasure. 

Caruso began by buying a gold coin of Arsinoe II. 
From this small beginning, about 1906, he was 
prompted to purchase other coins until, at the time 
of his death, he owned nearly two thousand different 
gold coins of all countries, and of dates that ranged 
from the fifth century B.C. to modern times. But 
the plastic arts interested him most ; and often, in 
his visits to museums of art, he would stand before 
some specimen impossible for him to attain, gazing 
admiringly yet regretfully at what he would have liked 
to own. He had been particularly drawn to the 



248 ENRICO CARUSO 

J. Pierpont Morgan Collection in the New York 
Metropolitan Museum of Art ; and later, when that 
collection was broken, came the chance to secure 
a part of the bronzes and enamels. 

Among these purchases were ten pieces of Limoges 
enamel, containing a plaquette by Nardon Penicaud 
" The Adoration of the Magi." Two other plaques 
which the artist prized highly were by Pierre 
Raymond, and represented "The Entombment" and 
" The Descent from the Cross." He also secured from 
what had been the Morgan Collection a small mortar 
(Venetian, XVI Century) ; a door knocker (Venetian, 
XVI Century) ; a large mortar (Venetian, XVI 
Century) ; a pair of candlesticks by Alessandro 
Vittorio ; the figure of a bear, by Riccio ; a Hercules, 
after Bertoldo ; a horse (Paduan work, XVI Cen- 
tury) ; an equestrian figure (North Italian, XVI Cen- 
tury) ; and three lamps by Riccio. 

In the Caruso Collection of pottery which 
numbers some three hundred pieces were objects 
dating back to 1000 B.C. and continuing on to 
the XVI Century, specimens from Egypt, Greece, 
Rome, Rhages, Rakka, Sultanabad, Damascus, and 
Rhodes. He loved each one of them, and knew their 
respective histories. 

Of small vases and plates in glass, the singer gath- 
ered in the course of his travels some four hundred 
pieces. Some were of Egyptian periods, some of 
Greek, and others of Roman. Not a few were of 
rare iridescence and colorings ; and these the tenor 
was fond of turning over and over, commenting upon 
their beauties if a friend happened near. These 



TRYING DAYS 249 

glasses were designed for toilet purposes, appreciated 
in ancient times to such extent that they often were 
placed upon the tombs of the owners when they died, 

a practice which accounted for the excellent pres- 
ervation of such fragile pieces. 

While bas-reliefs interested Caruso he had only 
a few ; but each was very fine. One was by Tullio 
Lombardi, dated 1526; another was a relief of the 
Quattrocento, by the Master of the Marble Madonnas, 
and this work so appealed to the singer that his 
family, knowing of his sentiment for it, has caused 
it to be placed on the altar of his chapel. 

Perhaps one of the most unique parts of Caruso's 
objets d'art consist of about twenty-five enameled 
gold boxes and fifty gold watches, of the XVIII Cen- 
tury. Some of these boxes were acquired from the 
Alfred Rothschild Collection, Paris. They are beau- 
tifully enameled, and regarded as chefs-d'oeuvre of 
French gold-smithing. It was the tenor's wish that 
this collection should always be kept intact, and 
so his heirs have arranged that it be made a special 
bequest to Gloria Caruso. 

In the Villa Bellosguardo, at Signa, the entire 
furniture appointments (excepting one bedroom, 
which contained eight original French pieces of the 
period of Francois I) are of XVI Century Italian. 
There is also a XVII Century chapel, with a large 
Presepio which consists of about five hundred figures 

personages, animals, et cetera each one in wood, 
sculptured by distinguished artists of South Italy of 
the XVII Century among them San Martino, 
Vaccari, Mosca, and others. 



250 ENRICO CARUSO 

Nor does the Caruso Collection stop here. It 
includes paintings, as well as other works of art which 
need not be detailed, and old velvets, embroideries, 
and other textiles, two of which are a dalmatic 
and a chasuble, both regarded as fine examples of 
XVI Century English embroidery. 

It is difficult to determine the sum Caruso had in- 
vested in his art collection. Estimates place the 
amount, conservatively, at $500,000 ; but the belief 
exists that, if it were offered for sale, it would bring 
a still larger sum. The tenor was a wise purchaser. 
He knew art and its value ; and while he undoubtedly 
paid good prices for many pieces, it is a fact that he 
occasionally picked up a bargain, and was elated 
in knowing that he had. One such was a bronze 
plaquette by Tullio Lombardi, a Venetian artist 
of the XV Century, which the singer found in a 
London bric-a-brac shop. Whether the dealer was 
unwary, it is a fact that Caruso bought it for ten 
shillings. Its true value was about $500, and when 
the tenor learned of this, he was wildly delighted. 

Although scarcely in the same category, the stamp 
collection Caruso made was by no means insignificant. 
He had many books in which, with his own hands, 
he had pasted rare stamps of almost every country. 
Burrowing for something out of the ordinary fas- 
cinated him ; and the more circuitous the course, 
the more, apparently, did he enjoy it. For he was 
your true collector. To commission another to 
gather something rare unless it chanced to be a 
piece of art or some stamp he particularly wanted - 
deprived him of the enjoyment of both acquisition and 




Photo M. E. Hewitt Studio. 

EIGHTEENTH CENTURY GOLD WATCHES, ENAMELED AND JEWELED, 
IN THE CARUSO COLLECTION 

Gift of Signori E. and A. Canessa to Caruso, on the occasion of his Twenty-Fifth 
Operatic Anniversary. 



TRYING DAYS 251 

possession. So he browsed among antique shops, 
and into out-of-the-way spots as well, looking for 
the unusual. Occasionally he was rewarded in find- 
ing what he believed would fit in the collection he 
gradually was building. But art for its own sake 
he appreciated. The time he spent in the galleries 
and museums would seem proof of that. And 
November, 1907, found him turning with increasing 
fervor into a channel that was to enrich his artistic 
sensibilities and serve as an aid in developing that 
side of him which made his later character inter- 
pretations achievements to be remembered. 

II 

A fortune was earned by Caruso during that 1907- 
1908 season. Fifteen autumn appearances in Europe, 
sixty-eight in operas presented in the United States, 
two New York musicales, and seven concerts (which 
comprised the tenor's first American tour outside of 
opera) netted him $187,500, since for his out-of-town 
concert engagements he had received $2500 each. 
The new world was assuredly an El Dorado for this 
Neapolitan who, scarcely ten years earlier, had had 
to struggle for opportunities to sing at barely a 
living wage. 

The record, from an endurance standpoint, stands 
forth as unique. Indisposition did not once interfere 
with the filling of an announced engagement. From 
November 18, when Caruso made his reappearance 
in "Adriana Lecouvrer" at the opening of the Met- 
ropolitan season, until May 18, when the final con- 



252 ENRICO CARUSO 

cert was sung, the tenor appeared on seventy-seven 
occasions. 

Mme. Lina Cavalieri and Antonio Scotti were 
associates in the cast which sang during the first 
presentation of "Adriana Lecouvrer" in the United 
States. The opera caused no special enthusiasm, 
and it was given on only two subsequent occasions. 
More interest was displayed in the "Iris", which 
Caruso added to his Metropolitan repertoire on 
December 6 of that year, singing with Mme. Emma 
Eames. February 26 was an eventful date, because 
it brought the singer forward in "II Trovatore", an 
opera which makes vigorous demands upon the tenor. 
The resistance and dramatic fiber of Caruso's voice, 
as shown in his Manrico, indicated clearly the way 
his career was pointing. It was predicted that he 
would drift more and more towards heroic roles, 
despite his eminent fitness for those of lyric character. 

Experts who felt that Caruso was a tenor of pure 
lyric type regretted seeing him yield to those robust 
tendencies which he was beginning to disclose, even 
in music which needed no pronounced dramatic 
emphasis. Others realizing the growth of the 
singer's art and visualizing its promise admired 
the readiness with which he was seizing new and larger 
opportunities. For it is true that a wider range 
of expressiveness, histrionically as well as vocally, 
offers in characters of large mold. 

Metropolitan patrons listened to Caruso in 
"Faust", "Manon Lescaut", "Tosca", "Madama 
Butterfly", "Pagliacci", Puccini's "Boheme", 
"Fedora", and "Ai'da." What tenor could have 



TRYING DAYS 253 

sung, with such consistency and satisfaction to his 
hearers, so many roles of markedly different qualities ? 
And who can forget the enthusiasm he caused in 
" Boheme ", with Miss Geraldine Farrar, who was then 
at the height of her powers ? 

That season served to cement the ties between the 
United States public and Enrico Caruso. He had 
gotten his bearings ; his popularity exceeded that 
of any artist within the recollection of the oldest 
inhabitant, excepting, possibly, in the opinion of 
some, Jean de Reszke. But the pertinent fact, 
which was highly gratifying to the Metropolitan 
Opera Company board of directors, was the con- 
tentedness of this superlatively useful tenor. It 
mattered little if the devotees of De Reszke declared, 
as was their frequent wont, the supremacy of their 
departed idol ; Caruso was there ; vocally he was 
the unquestioned superior of his Polish predecessor ; 
and if in finish of art and aristocracy he lagged be- 
hind the De Reszke standards, he was a magnet 
needed to hold the interest of the people. All in all, 
it is questionable if these directors would have ex- 
changed the Caruso of that season for the De Reszke 
of a decade before, which had crowned him as first 
of all tenors. As for the masses (and quite possibly 
the majority of discriminating, and unprejudiced 
auditors) Caruso would have been preferable to 
that rival whose traditions he was forced constantly 
to meet. For his vocal and inherent singing gifts 
appear to have been manifestly the superior. 

As in other seasons, the Metropolitan made a brief 
tour after its New York farewell performance of 



254 ENRICO CARUSO 

April 4, when "II Trovatore" was given, with Mme. 
Rita Fornia, Mme. Homer, and Riccardo Stracciari 
in the cast. Three appearances in Boston, two in 
Baltimore, one in Washington, three in Chicago, 
and two in Pittsburgh brought the tenor to the be- 
ginning of his concert tour. Then he sang and 
in most of the cities for the first time in Columbus, 
Toronto, Detroit, Buffalo, Cleveland, Rochester, and 
Montreal. 

The tour had been arranged by the Wolfsohn 
Musical Bureau, the assisting artists being Miss Julia 
Allen, soprano ; Miss Margaret Keyes, mezzo- 
soprano ; Henri Scott, basso, and a youthful violinist, 
"Sammy" (since become Sergei) Kotlarsky. 

Profitable though he found such efforts, and much 
as he was sought by communities willing to pay 
almost any price to get him, Caruso disliked to ap- 
pear on the concert platform. He asserted frankly 
that it was not his metier ; and he was never wholly 
comfortable before an audience outside a perfor- 
mance of opera. He was intensely nervous before 
his first aria. And, always, he used music. Asked 
why he did so, when he sang the airs in opera from 
memory, he said, " I feel more secure, and I always 
read both the words and the notes. On the stage 
I have the prompter to rely on, which reassures 
me ; in concert, if I were to forget the text or the 
music, I would be lost without the music." 

On May 21, 1908, aboard the Kaiserin Augusta 
Victoria, Caruso sailed for Europe. His party con- 
sisted of himself, Maestro Tullio Voghera, his accom- 
panist, his valet Martino, and Father Tonello, an 



TRYING DAYS 255 

old and valued friend. "The day before we sailed," 
relates Father Tonello, "Caruso gave me the itinerary 
of our trip. 'We go first to London, where I am to 
sing at Albert Hall for a benefit concert under the 
patronage of the King and Queen of England. Two 
weeks later we will leave for Paris, where I am to 
appear in "Rigoletto" for the poor artists and com- 
posers. Then we will travel directly to Naples, to 
see my father. He is sick, and I wish to go to his 
bedside before going on to Florence/ 

"I was pleased to learn of Caruso's affection for 
his aged parent, and surprised also, because he had 
told me on several occasions that his father had 
always objected to his musical career, and some- 
times had treated him harshly. Had Marcellino 
Caruso had his way, Enrico would perhaps never have 
gotten farther than a clerkship. 

"Caruso ate in the ship's Ritz restaurant, some- 
times with Maestro Voghera, sometimes with me. 
The first three days out were uneventful. Sunday, 
the 24th of May, was a glorious day, one of the most 
perfect I have ever known while at sea. Caruso 
was particularly happy, and he insisted that Voghera 
and I dine with him in the Ritz restaurant. While 
I was in the ship's barber shop a wireless message 
was brought me. It read, 'Prepare Caruso for the 
sad news of his father's death.' I scarcely knew what 
to do. When I reached the promenade deck Caruso 
greeted me with the words, 'You must be a great 
man. Several millionaires are on this boat, and 
some other distinguished people, yet you are the one 
person who has received a wireless to-day.' Ob- 



256 ENRICO CARUSO 

serving my seriousness, Caruso continued to tease me. 
We dined. Immediately afterward I conferred with 
the captain of the ship a particular friend of the 
singer and with Voghera and Martino. We de- 
cided that I should convey the sad news to Caruso 
just before he retired. 

"It was midnight when the tenor went to his 
stateroom. He was in high humor, and remarked 
that he had had 'lots of fun' and was ' looking for- 
ward to reaching London in four days more. Then 
Paris, and Naples/ 

" I trembled at having to begin. 

"'By the way/ I said, 'when we sailed you received 
a quantity of letters and cablegrams ; did you, by 
any chance, receive any information about your 
father's health?' 

"He looked into my eyes, searchingly; then in 
a voice which betrayed his anxiety he observed, 'I 
see now that the wireless you received this morning 
was about my father. Let me see it/ 

"When he had read it he collapsed, and in a voice 
choked with sobs he began to cry out to his father 
as though he were actually present. Hours passed 
before he could be induced to go to bed. But he 
arose at five o'clock the next morning and wrote out 
six wireless messages : one to his stepmother, two to 
Tosti and to Gabriel Astruc, asking that his engage- 
ments be canceled, and others to Camille Saint-Saens, 
the composer, and other intimate friends, acquainting 
them with the news and expressing his misery. The 
message to Maria Castaldi Caruso read: 'Learn 
middle ocean death adored father. Am desperate, 



TRYING DAYS 257 

desolate, heart-broken. Am near you, dividing 
sorrow. Hope having paid all ritual homages his 
memory as he deserved. Embrace you weepingly.' 

"We arrived at Plymouth on Thursday night, May 
28," continued Father Tonello. "The following 
day we went to Mount Avenue House, Ealing, near 
London. Tosti was there to greet and comfort 
Caruso ; also to inform him that despite his bereave- 
ment he must try to meet his engagement at Albert 
Hall, since the house had been completely sold out." 

The situation was one doubly trying to the soul 
of the singer, for he was saddened by another blow, 
which followed that caused by the death of his father. 
The woman he loved, and who had borne his two 
children, had left his house. He could not at once 
bring himself to credit the circumstances which took 
Ada Giachetti out of his life ; but facts were not long 
to be disputed. Perhaps, at another time, the shock 
would have been less difficult to bear. Coming at 
that time, it was a loss magnified ; and the singer 
needed the friends who stood loyally at his side. 

Father Tonello describes the situation. 

"Well," said Tosti, "what shall I announce in 
the program for to-morrow ?" 

Caruso looked up at the composer, and replied, 
" If I can sing at all, it will be Vesti la giubba, il 
lamento di Canio nei Pagliacci." 

When Tosti had departed, the tenor went "with 
great and fearful hesitation" to the piano and began 
to vocalize. His voice rang true. 

Father Tonello relates that Cajuso went the 
following afternoon to Albert Hall, his face revealing 



258 ENRICO CARUSO 

the depth of his agitation. The tenor sang first 
on the program, which included Mme. Melba, and 
Mario Sammarco. " He began the recitative to the 
' Pagliacci ' aria in a voice touched by an emotion 
deeper than any he had known before. Yet only 
Paolo Tosti and one other friend, who were of the 
thousands which thronged the auditorium, realized 
what Caruso was experiencing during those moments. 
He sang the lament with a pathos and passion I had 
never heard him put into the aria before. It was not 
to be wondered at that the people went mad. If they 
could only have known ! All they saw, as they ap- 
plauded frantically, was a man, with face unnaturally 
pale, who came again and again before them. " 

III 

On June 7, while the tenor was still in London, he 
received from Gaston Calmette, then editor of Paris 
Le Figaro, the following letter : 

Dear Friend : 

I could not get your address in London until now 
although I wished to be the first to welcome you back 
to Europe. You are coming to Paris to add new 
laurels to those without number which you already 
have. I will be in the first row to acclaim you, and 
my Figaro will be happy to send throughout the 
world, to the throng of your admirers, the news of 
your fresh conquest in Paris. Bravo ! Bravo ! 

This communication was one of several Caruso 
received at the time which helped steady him in the 
sorrow that caused his shoulders to droop. After 
he had read what Gabriel Astruc had to say the 
tenor wrote him : 



TRYING DAYS 259 

My dear Gabriel : 

Your telegram touched me very much. Please 
express my heartiest thanks to the beloved Victorien 
Sardou, Camille Saint-Saens, and Jules Massenet. 
In my deep sorrow I do not forget what I must do to 
alleviate the sorrow of others. You can announce 
that I will sing as I promised for the benefit 
performance of the Disabled Artists House. 

And on June u, 1908, Caruso appeared for the 
first time in the Opera of Paris, in "Rigoletto", 
under the baton of Tullio Serafin. Mme. Melba was 
the Gilda, and Maurice Renaud the Jester. The 
receipts reached one hundred fifty thousand 
francs, and the occasion, attended by President 
Fallieres of France, and Mme. Fallieres, was note- 
worthy in a number of respects. Afterward Caruso 
sent his personal check for twelve thousand five hun- 
dred francs (the amount of the fee which it had been 
necessary to remit to the Metropolitan Opera Com- 
pany management) to Paul Hervieu, president of 
the Society of Authors and Composers. It was 
another piece of evidence of the generosity of a 
singer who, his word once given, could be relied on. 

But there was no happiness that summer for Enrico 
Caruso. A shadow was cast about his villas, and 
upon his days wherever he went. It was not in 
his nature to be embittered, yet he more than once 
felt his lips sardonically curving. The autumn he 
welcomed, because it again brought work. As before, 
he began his 1908-1909 season with a tour of Ger- 
many, opening on October i in Wiesbaden, where 
he sang in " Rigoletto." In Frankfurt Caruso ap- 



260 ENRICO CARUSO 

peared in " La Boheme " and " Pagliacci." The 
tenor went to Bremen for a single appearance in 
"Pagliacci"; continued to Hamburg, where the 
operas presented were "Pagliacci" and "Boheme"; 
and after one "Rigoletto" in Leipzig he concluded 
his journey in Berlin, where on October 20, 22, and 
24 he sang in "Pagliacci", "Boheme", and "Ai'da." 
This tour was under the direction of Herr Ledner, 
who had been retained by the Metropolitan Opera 
Company management to make the arrangements. 
It was while Caruso was in Hamburg that he re- 
ceived a letter from Constant Coquelin, which read : 

My dear Friend : 

Through a good and sincere friend I had word 
of your departure. I had commissioned her with a 
message to you, which she delivered. I was really 
disappointed not to have had your answer, as all 
my hope was in you. I did not look for anything 
but you, and this year again passes without the 
Societe des Artistes Dramatiques having had for 
their benefit a matinee. 

My comrades reproached me, and I took it all 
upon my shoulders, not wanting to say I had had no 
answer from you. I did not doubt for a moment 
the answer I would have from your big heart so full 
of fraternal charity ; and your kind letter proves 
it. When I think what you did in the opera, and 
for those authors, I die of jealousy. 

I also hear through the same friend that you were 
preoccupied ; that you had lost your charming gayety, 
the good humor of the man just glad to be living ; 
that you were melancholy, and a little discouraged. 
Dear Caruso, you have no right to be that ; nothing 
in this world equals the miracle of your voice of 



TRYING DAYS 261 

your talent and that must console you for the little 
discomforts of life, usually most unjust. In reason- 
ing, one must judge the things for what they are 
worth and not suffer except for the relative meaning 
of it all. 

It happened to me, more than once in my life, 
to be disappointed, disillusioned in friends. ... I 
was quite cured even to not having a regret. We 
should only regret what is worthy of it. Your 
triumphs will be a noble distraction for you, and the 
jealousies of one or the other do not exist when one 
is indisputably the first. I am sorry not to have* 
been able to spend a few days with you ; it would 
have been good for you to listen to a few of my ex- 
periences . . . you would have been amused at more 
than one, and have reflected upon some of them. 

When do you return to Europe ? Tell me first 
that you are feeling better, and then we will talk of 
a big project. I hope it will be before the month of 
May. Pon-aux-D antes always claims your visit ; 
there you are loved as nowhere. Let me finish by 
telling you that before November we will have begun 
rehearsals of "Chantecler." 

Give me the news, Dear Caruso. No, you have 
not lost any of my friendship, which is forever grate- 
ful to you and which wishes you all the happiness 
you so richly deserve. 

Your friend, 
Coquelin. 

Close friends of Caruso, who were often with him 
during these years, assert that the change which 
became noticeable in him the previous season had 
deepened when he reached New York in November, 
1908. The loss of his father, and the estrangement 
between him and Ada Giachetti, had left their mark. 



262 ENRICO CARUSO 

There began, then, those faintly perceptible altera- 
tions of contour in the singer's face ; and that sleek, 
pudgy quality of the flesh gradually gave way to 
firmness. Fortunately, enough demanded Caruso's 
attention to occupy most of his time. Heinrich 
Conned had been succeeded as director of the Metro- 
politan by a dual control consisting of Giulio Gatti- 
Casazza, as general manager, and Andreas Dippel, 
as administrative manager ; and the advent of 
Arturo Toscanini, as principal conductor, put new 
color upon New York's opera. The tenor was aware 
of the crisis affecting both his private and profes- 
sional life, and to meet it he bent every effort. 

Desiring a new environment, Caruso selected 
for his New York home that year the Knickerbocker 
Hotel. It appears to have been a happy choice, 
for he made it his permanent home while in the 
United States ; and not until the summer of 1920 - 
when word reached him in Havana of the decision to 
remodel the Knickerbocker into an office building - 
did he consider moving. 

Although the 1908-1909 season in the Metropolitan 
Opera House did not open until November 16, Caruso 
sang in a representation of "Faust" which the com- 
pany gave in the Academy of Music, Brooklyn, two 
nights before. It was in "Ai'da", however, that the 
regular opera subscribers welcomed the tenor, under 
altered conditions which the public was willing 
enough to accept. 

To his friends, it was apparent that Caruso needed 
to be diverted. He was clearly grieving, and his 
health not of the best. Singing seemed to be an 



TRYING DAYS 263 

effort for him ; and anxious moments weighed upon 
those who sought, in various ways, to lift the singer 
from his gloom. They thronged his hotel apartment, 
to play cards and gossip with him ; and frequently 
a party would be made up to go to some Italian 
restaurant, where atmosphere could be had that 
reminded Caruso of his native land. 

In spite of these efforts the tenor continued to 
droop. On December 18, 1908, he became indisposed 

after having sung seventeen times in "Faust", 
"Aida", "Boheme", "Butterfly", "Traviata", 
"Tosca", "Carmen", and "Cavalleria Rusticana" 

and he missed two appearances. He missed two 
more, the middle of the February following, and later 
that month, three successive opportunities to earn 
his two thousand dollar cachet. Matters appeared 
to be going from bad to worse when, on March 8, 
he could not sing his announced performance in "II 
Trovatore", nor appear in any of six other operas for 
which he had been cast. April brought little im- 
provement in Caruso's condition ; seven times he was 
obliged to report his indisposition to the Metropolitan 
management, a total of twenty-one for that season. 

Yet for all his ill fortune he had sung on forty-four 
occasions (two being in concert) ; and his earnings 
totaled (with his ten October engagements in Ger- 
many) $98,350. In addition to the works already 
mentioned, Caruso sang also in Massenet's "Manon", 
for the first time in the United States, and in " Pa- 
gliacci." He was still in a state of dread not unlike 
that he had felt when he had written to his brother 
Giovanni, on April 2, " I did not sing for one month 



264 ENRICO CARUSO 

and a half. I will resume singing to-morrow matinee, 
and you can understand how nervous I am, as I do 
not know if I will be able to give the performances 
of the full season or quit and rest one entire year 
at home. Pray for me.*' 

With feelings of gravest apprehension, the tenor 
sailed for Italy, where he could consult specialists 
of his own nationality. He went direct to Milan, 
and to Professor della Vedova who was celebrated 
as a throat surgeon. Almost at the beginning of 
the tenor's career he had developed a node on one 
vocal chord, which della Vedova had removed. 
After this expert had examined Caruso, he declared 
that he had succumbed again to a similar affection. 

The singer was taken quietly to a dwelling, and 
once more an operation was performed ; very soon 
he was able to go to the Hotel Cavour. In spite of 
pledges of secrecy, della Vedova was alleged by his 
patient to have informed a representative of the 
Corriere della Sera of what had happened. The 
story which was immediately sent out to many parts 
of the world so angered Caruso that he later refused to 
pay the whole of the sixty thousand lire fee Professor 
della Vedova demanded. The singer asserted that 
he had never been shown any evidence to prove that 
a node had actually been removed ; and that a young 
Florentine physician, quite unknown, had relieved 
him of his trouble said to have been rheumatic 
concretions. A scraping of infiltrations from the 
tenor's vocal chords was stated to have wrought a 
cure. Weeks of anxious waiting followed ; then the 
singing voice was discovered to have been restored. 



TRYING DAYS 265 

Attorneys finally brought about the settlement of 
Professor della Vedova's claim, which certain of 
Caruso's fair-minded friends persuaded him was just. 
The first operation charge had been only fifty lire ; 
this second one was at length reduced to thirty 
thousand lire which the singer then paid. Professor 
della Vedova believed it was a reasonable charge 
for his services in enabling Caruso to resume his 
career and earning powers. 

After a short stay at his Bellosguardo villa, he 
went to Salsomaggiore and then to Montecatini, 
places celebrated for their medicinal waters. Grad- 
ually he improved. By midsummer he was almost 
cheerful, and his physical condition vastly changed. 
No longer did he shrink at the thought of an ap- 
proaching public appearance, for when August 20 
arrived he began a concert tour of England, Scotland, 
and Ireland (under the management of the Quinlan 
Musical Bureau) with an optimistic air. 

With Miss Hilda Saxe, violiniste, as assisting 
artiste, and Tullio Voghera as his accompanist, 
Caruso appeared in Plymouth, Blackpool, Glasgow, 
Edinburgh, Newcastle, Manchester, and Belfast ; 
then at Albert Hall, London, and on September 20, 
for a second time in Liverpool. No further need 
to worry about his voice ; he had conquered with 
his audiences, and so with more of his former spirit 
he departed for eight opera appearances in Germany. 
Frankfurt, Nurnberg, Hamburg, Berlin, and Bremen 
heard Caruso that autumn in "Rigoletto", "Lucia 
di Lammermoor", "Tosca", "Carmen", "Boheme", 
and " Pagliacci." 



266 ENRICO CARUSO 

IV 

Caruso reached New York in the autumn of 1909 
lighter of heart than he had been in eighteen months. 
He appeared as one relieved of a weight, and his 
mood turned now and again to jest. The Metro- 
politan had passed under the sole management of 
Giulio Gatti-Casazza Andreas Dippel having with- 
drawn and the future seemed to augur well. Nor 
was there any evidence from the direction of the 
weakening Manhattan Opera Company to indicate 
any individual rivalry which Caruso need consider. 
It looked like a propitious season for the tenor, 
and such it proved to be. He sang fifty-seven 
times in the opera, and once in concert. Includ- 
ing his pre-season European concert and operatic 
engagements, his earnings for 1909-1910 reached 
$158,350; 

The change in the tenor's vocal condition was 
instantly apparent to the critics and public which 
greeted him in the Metropolitan on November 15. 
As in the previous year, he had sung once in another 
city this time, as Radames in "A'ida", in Phila- 
delphia. With Mme. Destinn and Pasquale Amato 
in the cast, Caruso opened the regular New York 
season in "La Gioconda." From that moment he 
moved steadily forward, with no mishap to mar his 
course. "Traviata", "Butterfly", "Pagliacci", 
"Aida", "Tosca", "Faust", and "Boheme" served 
to dispel any doubt the people may have had con- 
cerning the possible failing in the singer's resources. 
And when, on January 22, 1910, he sang in the first 



TRYING DAYS 267 

United States representation of Franchetti's "Ger- 
mania" the experts knew that all was well. 

But two experiences of that season were trying 
affairs : the first, which brought about a meeting 
between him and Mme. Ada Giachetti, upsetting 
him completely ; the second, threatening his personal 
safety, causing him mild alarm. 

The mother of his two children appeared with 
sudden unexpectedness in New York, while the tenor 
was preparing for a rehearsal at the Metropolitan. 
He was calm enough as he went with his attorney from 
the Knickerbocker to the York Hotel, where Mme. 
Giachetti was stopping ; it only vanished when he 
saw the woman who still held, for all the suffering 
she had caused him, an irresistible appeal. During 
the private talk they had together Caruso wept. 
In the end he gave to Mme. Giachetti what she had 
made the journey to get, money. A cash payment 
was made, and a settlement arranged ; then the 
soprano returned almost immediately to Italy. 
Some time afterward she brought suit against Caruso, 
in a Milan court. Serious charges were preferred, 
and the trial caused a commotion ; but the tenor 
was completely vindicated. The depth of his feeling 
for this woman was such, however, that despite all 
that had occurred he continued sending her money 
almost to the day of his death. "Send this to the 
mother of the children," he would say, after he had 
written out a cheque ; and the last one he ever wrote 
was returned, when it had been paid, to his New 
York bank, weeks after his funeral had taken place. 

The second experience of that winter was an 



268 ENRICO CARUSO 

attempt made to blackmail Caruso, by alleged 
members of the so-called "Black Hand." The 
letter received in February of 1910 demanded the 
payment of fifteen thousand dollars, if the singer 
wished to escape the penalty of death. He was 
instructed to carry a package containing the money 
at a certain time on his way to the Metropolitan 
Opera House. A man would appear, to whom 
Caruso was to hand the package ; complying with 
this demand, his personal safety was assured. In- 
stead, the tenor was provided by the New York de- 
tective bureau with an escort ; and, although efforts 
were made to keep the police officers under cover, 
their presence was discovered by the blackmailers, 
and nothing happened. 

A second letter warned against further efforts 
to thwart those who wanted money. In it a place 
in Brooklyn was designated as a spot where the 
cash was to be left. The police now planned with 
greater care than before ; and on the night stipulated, 
Martino, one of Caruso's valets, took the package. 
On the top and bottom bank notes had been placed, 
but the bulk of the bundle of money consisted of 
strips of green paper, so cut as to resemble bills. 

The entire block in which the designated house 
stood had been surrounded by detectives. Martino 
made the trip, unaccompanied, to Brooklyn. He 
located this house, then placed the package on the 
steps, according to instructions. A quarter of an 
hour passed before anything suspicious happened. 
Then three men appeared. They passed the steps 
where the package of money lay, returned, passed it 



TRYING DAYS 269 

again, then picked it up. Instantly detectives 
swarmed upon them from every side. One of the 
three escaped, but two were arrested. Several 
months later, while Caruso was singing in Paris, 
Antonio Misiani, the ringleader, was sentenced by 
Judge Fawcett to seven years' imprisonment and 
deportation. At a later trial Antonio Cincotta was 
tried and convicted. The publicity of the affair 
possibly served as a lesson to others who may have 
held similar ideas of extorting money from Caruso, 
for he was never afterwards bothered by threats 
of like nature. But when a petition for the pardon 
of the two culprits was prepared, the following year, 
the signature which headed it was that of Enrico 
Caruso. 

Otto H. Kahn, chairman of the board of directors 
of the Metropolitan Opera Company, had long wished 
to have that organization presented in Europe. 
With Caruso in his best form, and a finer artist 
than ever, it appeared a propitious time for an under- 
taking which, once announced, caused a whirl of 
discussion on both sides of the Atlantic. The press 
took up the matter ; the artists of the Metropolitan 
were elated at the opportunities certain to be offered ; 
altogether, it was a decision unique in the history 
of opera, with the consequences a matter of specula- 
tion in many quarters. 

Besides appearances in Brooklyn and Philadelphia, 
Caruso had sung in representations given by the 
Metropolitan in Boston, Chicago, Cleveland, Mil- 
waukee, St. Paul, and St. Louis ; and on May 4 and 
May 7 of 1910 he had received the first indorsement 



270 ENRICO CARUSO 

of two Atlanta audiences which, until then, had 
never heard him. 

Gabriel Astruc guaranteed against loss for one 
half of the proposed Paris season by Mr. Kahn - 
was moving assiduously in preliminary preparations ; 
and he had already communicated encouragement 
in the following letter : 

"If we have Caruso and if Caruso sings 'Aida', 
'Pagliacci', and 'Manon Lescaut'", Astruc had 
written Mr. Kahn, "the success is assured ; and I am 
positive that it will not be necessary to touch one 
penny of the money guaranteed by our patrons." 

To secure Caruso's pledge, personally, Astruc 
wrote the singer ; and the latter, eager for a satisfac- 
tory outcome of the project, replied with : 

Mon cher Gabriel : 

The season here will be over in a few days, and 
I am anticipating with much pleasure and joy the 
moments when I will be in Paris, to interpret my 
three preferred roles "Ai'da", "Pagliacci", and 
" Manon Lescaut " - at the Chatelet Theater, before 
the Parisian public that is so dear to me. 

Au reyoir, 
Enrico Caruso. 

If Caruso appreciated his Parisian public it was an 
appreciation returned. When, on April 20, 1910, the 
advance sale for the announced Metropolitan Opera 
Company season at the Chatelet opened, the people 
clamored only for Caruso tickets. Here was a 
dilemma. To protect himself financially, Astruc 
issued a notice that no subscriptions for an "Alda" 
performance would be accepted without purchase of 



TRYING DAYS 271 

tickets for an "Otello" representation. To secure 
seats for a "Pagliacci" and "Cavalleria Rusticana" 
performance it was necessary also to subscribe for 
a "Falstaff"; while those who wished to attend 
the "Manon Lescaut" must indicate a similar wish 
to attend a performance of one of the operas in 
which Caruso was not scheduled to sing. From 
the public there arose a howl of objections, of course, 
but it was of no avail. The capitulation was im- 
mediate, for on the morning of May 21 (the day of the 
season premiere) the subscription receipts had reached 
the sum of six hundred thousand francs. 

Prior to his Paris reappearance, and with the 
Metropolitan forces, Caruso had consented to sing 
once, at a Trocadero concert given for L'cole 
Menagere. But this affair, in which Mmes. Brozia 
and Lapeyerette and M. Florexo, and Miles. Geniat 
and Robinne assisted, only heightened public interest 
to hear the tenor in opera ; and the one hundred 
thousand francs receipts added to Caruso's pop- 
ularity. Again the singer sent his cheque for the 
amount of his fee ten thousand francs to Mme. 
la Comtesse Greffuhle, head of the organization 
which was to benefit. 

"Ai'da" opened the Metropolitan's first and only 
Paris season, with Caruso, Mmes. Destinn and 
Homer, and Amato, and Toscanini conducting. 
Every seat in the Chatelet Theater was occupied ; 
no other space where one could stand was vacant. 
The attitude toward the visiting organization was 
friendly, though not completely so. Some persons 
chose to interpret the undertaking as a desire to 



272 ENRICO CARUSO 

show Paris how opera should be given ; and, as 
might have been expected, the approval was some- 
what qualified. Caruso, alone, received a whole- 
hearted indorsement. The audience enthused ; the 
press almost raved. One writer declared that 
"Caruso has a voice vibrant, magnificent. He is 
a marvelous tenor who feels the music, and he has 
the ability to make the listeners feel what he is sing- 
ing. What a triumph he made last night. The 
other artists went very well . . . but it was a Caruso 
night. He carried the work of all the opera. Thank 
God he has strong shoulders." 

Fifteen regular representations and two extra 
ones comprised that season: three each of "A'ida", 
and "Pagliacci", and five of "Manon Lescaut", 
with nine of the three other operas. Mile. Lucrezia 
Bori, Amato, and de Segurola sang in "Manon 
Lescaut", and Miss Bella Alten and Amato in "Pa- 
gliacci", which Vittorio Podesti conducted. In the 
three "Otello" performances the principals were 
Mme. Frances Alda and Leo Slezak and Antonio 
Scotti; while in "Falstaff" Scotti had the title role. 

A scrutiny of the receipts indicates the drawing 
powers which Caruso disclosed. At the opening 
"A'ida" the return totalled 63,204 francs. Two 
evenings later, when "Cavalleria Rusticana" and 
" Pagliacci " were presented, the income dropped to 
52,304. But it ascended on May 25 to 64,307 
francs, immediately following an "Otello" (without 
Caruso) which had drawn no more than 48,296 francs. 
The second double bill, in which "Pagliacci" was 
the attraction, yielded 64,307 francs ; and this sum 



TRYING DAYS 273 

was exceeded by more than one thousand francs at 
the second "Aida.". The first "Manon Lescaut" 
brought 61,391 francs into the Chatelet coffers; 
a repetition of the opera was rewarded with a slight 
increase in patronage, while the third one was still 
more profitable, by two thousand francs. Nor 
did the rest of the regular performances, in which 
the tenor participated, yield less than sixty-two 
thousand francs each. Only when the two extra 
representations of "Manon Lescaut'* were offered 
did the receipts drop, to 42,626 and 46,536 francs 
respectively. These performances, it should be ex- 
plained, were not subscription affairs ; therefore the 
patronage was really very large. 

The gross financial return for the season reached 
864,707 francs. Of this amount the ten Caruso 
performances were worth to the management 
594,978 francs (an average of nearly sixty thousand 
francs an opera) ; the other nights brought 269,729 
francs from the public (almost forty-five thousand 
francs each). Mme. Olive Fremstad, Herman Jad- 
lowker, and Amato had shared in the "Cavalleria" 
representations ; there had been both the Metro- 
politan orchestra and chorus, and its settings. Alto- 
gether, the effort was one of distinction. The June 
25 farewell closed an undertaking which left Paris 
something to think about ; but the Metropolitan 
has never since repeated its experiment of that year. 

For Caruso there had been one extra appearance, 
when he sang for the benefit of the survivors of 
the victims of the lost French destroyer Pluviose in 
the third act of "Boheme", with Miss Farrar, then 



274 ENRICO CARUSO 

appearing at the Opera Comique, and Scotti, and in 
the final scene in " Faust." 

The effort had, however, been a severe strain. 
Within eight days, as the close of the Chatelet season 
drew near, the tenor had appeared six times. Still, 
he seemed to have been the one who felt grateful, 
for he wrote to Astruc, addressing him as " My dear 
Gabriel", on June 28, " Before leaving Paris per- 
mit me to send you, once again, my sincerest, 
heartfelt thanks for the continued proof of the 
friendship you have shown me. Be sure that I 
will never forget all the courtesies you extended 
me. I will always be grateful to you." 

What an experiment to look back upon ! Nor 
was it prestige and money only which Caruso carried 
away with him. A communication he always valued 
had come, after one of his Chatelet appearances, 
from Mme. Rejane. 

"When an artiste has had the delicate and unique 
pleasure as I had while listening to you last even- 
ing she has but one desire : to tell it to you at once 
. . . the profound impression. It is a real joy, and 
although I know you slightly, I would like to grasp 
your hand and thank you for that unforgettable 
evening." 






CHAPTER NINE 

A NEW PERIOD 

THE world was assuming once again a more benign 
aspect. Health and honors and wealth were heaping 
upon the singer. He experienced only one deep 
regret ; a single longing still remained unsatisfied. 
Doubtless it would always so remain. He would have 
liked to put out of his mind all thought of this person ; 
yet, try as he did, there continued the old gnawing 
at his heart. Resting in the Bellosguardo Villa did 
not lessen it ; nor hours spent at the Villa Alle Panche. 
In some respects memories were but kindled anew. 
Fortunately friends were always near to give the 
comforting words so needed. One of these Otto 
Gutekunst of London tells of the Caruso he and 
Mrs. Gutekunst knew. 

"A heart of gold, and one of nature's gentlemen, 
if ever there was one ! A big mind and intellect, and 
simple and playful, like a child. He was ever affec- 
tionate and confiding towards his friends. With him 
have passed, and have we passed, the happiest years 
of our lives ; and the gap he has left can never be 
filled again ... as far as we are concerned ; neither 
by artist nor by man, and certainly not by such a 
combination of both. 

"We first got to know him through Selma Kurz, 
the Vienna prima donna, when they were both sing- 



276 ENRICO CARUSO 

ing at Covent Garden. She was then staying with 
us, in 1904. From then until the war broke out 
he last sang in London in 1914 we were the most 
intimate friends, and together whenever he and we 
were disengaged. He dined with us, or we with him, 
after the performances. We mostly waited for him, 
and supped together, or we met at Pagani's, with 
other friends, such as Tosti, Denza, Scotti, Barthe- 
lemy, Lecomte (Count Scalzi), now also dead. Some- 
times he would dine with us en petite comite, with 
just a few friends, and sing to us or draw caricatures or 
play 'coon can' or some Italian card game. 

"At times we took him for drives, because we 
thought the air would do him good, for he used to 
sleep with closed windows ! Nature and scenery 
never strange to say seemed to appeal to him, 
or interest him greatly. 

" In those days both he and I used to overindulge 
at times at table, both being blessed with great 
appetites ; and I advised more exercise and re- 
stricted diet. He suffered from headaches, at times, 
in consequence of these transgressions, or rather from 
lack of exercise and air. Finally, in New York, he 
found a doctor who put him on a strict diet and gener- 
ally took him in hand, with success. He was also 
forbidden excessive cigarette smoking. 

"It was in 1910, 1 think, that we thought we might 
interest him in two games which would afford him 
occasional or regular exercise. We took him to 
Stoke Pogis, and he played his first round of golf 
. . . coached by I. Sherlock, the professional. He 
went around in something like 155. Not bad for 



A NEW PERIOD 277 

one who had never held a golf club in his hands. 
Unfortunately, he was so tired, for some days, that 
he could scarcely fulfill his engagements ; and that 
was the end to golf. Some time after we induced him 
to try lawn tennis. His first and only game con- 
sisted of I think one set. Then he disappeared 
in the hall and fell fast asleep. There was no more 
tennis after that. But he enjoyed the games and 
was as gay as a boy. 

"We went with him to Ostende, when he fulfilled 
his first engagement to sing at the Kursaal. Some 
18,000 people usually heard him ... in a space 
which nominally would hold only 12,000. One had 
to be in one's place an hour before the commencement 
in order to be able to get one's seat, as later the 
auditorium was so packed that it became impossible 
to move. The enthusiasm was incredible. 

"We used to bathe, and take amusing snapshots of 
one another in the sea, where he used to pose as a 
Triton, or sea monster, blowing up his cheeks or 
making grimaces. Barthelemy was with us at that 
time, and we were very jolly together. The year fol- 
lowing we were there again, he insisting that we should 
be his guests ; and he exercised his hospitality in 
the most touchingly scrupulous and conscientious 
manner. Voghera and Lecomte (Count Scalzi) were 
with us that time, and I recollect no end of amusing 
little episodes and happenings in those happy days. 
It was interesting to listen for hours, when he studied 
and practised from the new operas for New York, 
where he had to sing in one new work every fall. 
At night there was very little to do. We did not 



278 ENRICO CARUSO 

gamble, to speak of, but he used to say, with a wink 
of the eye, 'Oh! Comme on s' amuse a Ostende!!' 

"In the following years, when his London season 
was over, he commenced going on continental 
tournees ; to Berlin, Dresden, Frankfurt, Munich, 
Vienna, Stuttgart, where we nearly always accom- 
panied him, I combining business of my own with this 
pleasure. He used to feel very nervous whenever 
he sang to new audiences, always wanting to give 
of his very best. 

"And the people worshipped him, everywhere; 
and there was the keenest competition for tables 
at supper, after any Caruso performance, near his 
table. When he entered, with us, everybody would 
rise as one man and cheer him, just as if a king had 
entered ; only more genuinely and enthusiastically. 
And then, of course, one felt very proud, being the 
center of attention and admiration all the time 
though it was of course only reflected glory, for our 
part. There, everybody tried to get him to lunch 
or dinner, especially at Berlin where we knew many 
people. Those we knew usually asked us in the first 
instance, or him through us, knowing that he would 
be more inclined to accept if we came also. If he 
did not wish to speak or converse at these entertain- 
ments, or was bored by meeting a crowd of people 
he did not know, or he did not want to eat and drink, 
he just started sketching portraits and caricatures, 
to the great delight of the various sitters. 

"His eyesight and self possession, when once 
actually on the stage, were phenomenal. I don't 
think he once failed to spot us, wherever we might 



ANEWPERIOD 279 

be sitting, in stalls or box, in any opera house. It 
was a sort of sport with him. 

"We used to look after little Enrico Mimmi 
between the ages of three and ten, especially during 
Enrico's absence. The boy was very attached to 
'Auntie Lina' and 'Uncle Otto/ 

"I just recall an example of Enrico's subtle and 
kindly way of teasing me with regard to my singing. 
We were staying with him at the Bristol, in Vienna, 
our apartment being above his. The bathrooms also 
ran straight up, one over the other to the top floor, 
all the windows opening on the same air shaft. I used 
to sing songs and exercises while bathing and dress- 
ing ; and he said to me, on the second or third morn- 
ing, with a sly wink of the eye, 'Otto, I wish you 
would not sing in your bathroom, because people 
will think it is I.' All the same, we occasionally 
sang duets together, at home. Nor shall I ever 
forget, when in Paris, at a performance of the 
'Precieuses Ridicules', we went to Coquelin's dress- 
ing room after the first act. They embraced affec- 
tionately, and Coquelin confessed to a paralyzing 
fear of having to sing in the next act, with Caruso 
sitting almost next to him, with us, in the stage box. 

"There are hundreds more of these little touches 
and memories that I could write about. And now 
alas ! all is over. It ended practically with the 
beginning of the war, for after that or since the 
summer of 1914 we never saw him again . . . 
though our correspondence never ceased, nor our 
fondest thoughts and memories of the happy 
past. 



280 ENRICO CARUSO 

"Half our interest in life has gone with him. I 
might say, with Scotti : 

"I don't know when we may have once more the 
courage to bear the strain of turning on any of his 
gramophone records ! Or of hearing any of the 
operas of his repertoire/' 

That summer of 1910 seemed not to have benefited 
the singer in restoring his vitality, sapped through 
the continuous effort and strain of a season overlong. 
If he could have brought himself to regular exercise, 
taking enough air, and restricting his diet, his peace 
of mind might have been eased. But he invariably 
met any such suggestion with a shrug of his heavy 
shoulders, or would turn irritatingly to light a cig- 
arette. And it was an obstinacy which held to the 
very end. Considering his sensible attitude toward 
most matters, this unwillingness to heed what was 
likely to affect his own welfare may appear strange. 

After his vacation period, which he concluded in 
Paris, Caruso departed for Brussels where, on Septem- 
ber 24 and 25, he sang in two representations of 
" Boheme " at the Theatre de la Monnaie. Mme. 
Alda and Pasquale Amato appeared with him, the 
performance being conducted by Maestro Dupuis. 

His 1910 tour in Germany opened October I, 
with "Aida", in Frankfurt. Three nights later 
he reappeared there in "Carmen"; then came 
Munich, where the latter opera and "Boheme" were 
given. Hamburg welcomed the tenor on October 15 
in "Rigoletto", and before his departure he was also 
heard in "Carmen" and "Marta." No mention 
is made of any apparent vocal indisposition. His 



ANEWPERIOD 281 

receptions were of the usual impressive order, but 
he was not his best physical self. Nevertheless his 
Berlin accomplishments did not suffer. He himself 
related a conversation held between two women, who 
had seats directly back of one of the singer's friends. 

"When I made my first appearance of that season, 
in 'Ai'da', one of these auditors who were both 
hearing me for the first time remarked, 'Why he 
isn't a tenor, his voice is baritone/ At my next 
effort, three nights later, in 'Carmen', the discussion 
continued. The ladies agreed that they might 
possibly be mistaken during that performance ; and 
when 'L'Elisir d'Amore* was presented, my critics 
no longer questioned that I was a tenor. In explana- 
tion of this seeming misunderstanding, I can say that 
I always use a different character of voice for music 
which is strictly lyric or dramatic. Radames is a 
role which demands a dark, heavier quality of tone, 
while Nemorino is just the opposite." 

The tenor always insisted that he kept his " different 
voices" in a chest of drawers; one containing his 
" Ai'da" voice ; another the one he used in "Marta" ; a 
third holding the precious instrument with which he 
sang in "Boheme", and so on, throughout his 
entire repertoire. And it is a fact that throughout 
any day on which a performance was, he governed 
his actions and his state of mind, to prepare him for 
the music of the night. If it were to be " Samson et 
Dalila", "La Juive", "La Forza del Destine", "Le 
Prophete", or any other heavy work, Caruso would 
lie down during the day and vocalize very little, 
in slow sustained phrases. If, contrarily, he had to 



282 ENRICO CARUSO 

sing in such an opera as " L'EHsir d'Amore ", he would 
rise early and move actively about his apartments. 
Every action, every thought, would be light and 
swift. Seeking extreme suppleness and agility, he 
would sing swift scales in the most lyric quality of 
tone. And when it came time for him to deliver his 
first phrase in the opera, his voice was invariably the 
character of voice the composer sought. 

So well did Caruso sing his Don Jose in "Carmen** 
that he was summoned, at the conclusion of the repre- 
sentation, to the presence of the Kaiser in the Imperial 
box. The tenor, still under the influence of his tragic 
final scene in the opera, confessed to an inability to 
reply, at first, in other than French monosyllables 
to the remarks of the Kaiser. But when the then 
ruler of Germany said, "Caruso, why don't you turn 
your back to America, and stay with us, always in 
Europe ?" the tenor answered, "Your Majesty, my 
gratitude to America will be extinguished only with 
my death." 

II 

Caruso returned to the United States, where he 
was received as a conqueror. His previous season 
had been his best, and the memory of his Paris 
triumphs still clung to the minds of all who had read 
of them. His place in the Metropolitan was seem- 
ingly as fixed as the very foundation upon which the 
opera house was reared. Back once more amid 
familiar places and scenes and people, it was like home 
and next to Italy, Caruso by that time had come 
so to regard New York. He liked Fifth Avenue, 



ANEWPERIOD 283 

the cosmopolitanism of the crowds, and those little 
spots to which he had become so accustomed that 
they almost seemed to greet him with friendly nods. 
And he was contented in his Knickerbocker apart- 
ment. There, with his secretary and his valets 
Martino and Mario, he lived in solid comfort. His 
slightest wish had only to be made known, an atten- 
tion which secretly meant very much to the singer. 

The season began, with Gluck's "Armide." It 
was not a particularly suitable role for Caruso. He 
always said that Renaud was the one character which 
gave him so little to do, in both singing and acting, 
that to appear in the opera was like taking a rest. 
The public did not care for the classic strains of the 
work, and three performances sufficed. Very dif- 
ferent was the part of Dick Johnson, in Puccini's 
"La Fanciulla del West", which had its world 
premiere at the Metropolitan on December 10, 1910, 
with the composer present. And yet it could not 
be saved even by the glorious singing of Caruso 
and the equally sincere efforts of Mme. Destinn and 
Pasquale Amato, whose voice and artistry made him 
a fitting associate for his illustrious compatriot. 

It was during this time Amato' s singing was con- 
sidered second only to that of Caruso. The friend- 
ship between the two artists was of the closest few 
enjoyed Caruso's affection and confidence in such a 
degree as did Amato. 

The New Year came, and Caruso continued his 
work. He had already appeared in a Philadelphia 
representation of " A'ida" ; he went to Brooklyn for a 
"Pagliacci" performance, and in mid-January to 



284 ENRICO CARUSO 

Chicago where he sang twice in "Pagliacci" and 
"La Fanciulla del West" with the Chicago- 
Philadelphia Opera Association, which consisted of 
the Manhattan organization the Metropolitan had 
acquired from Oscar Hammerstein and, shortly 
after, had sold to a group of Westerners and Philadel- 
phians. A single appearance as Canio in Cleveland 
left the tenor free to return to New York, where he 
arrived feeling out of sorts. 

He resumed his singing, however ; and besides a 
"Gioconda", "La Fanciulla del West", and "Ger- 
mania", he sang at a musicale given by Mrs. Corne- 
lius Vanderbilt, and at one given in the Waldorf- 
Astoria. 

On February 6, 1911, Caruso made his final ap- 
pearance of that season, with Mme. Destinn and 
Amato, in "Germania." It was an unconscious 
farewell ; although indisposed, the tenor confidently 
expected to resume his place in later performances. 
The New York newspapers announced Caruso to be 
suffering from a cold ; but as the days passed, and 
he did not reappear, the concern of the public and 
press increased. 

United States newspapermen have what is termed 
"a nose for news." Let them suspect something to 
be hidden, and their ingenuity is instantly challenged 
to ferret out the truth. As February waned, and 
Caruso continued absent from the casts of the Metro- 
politan, the reporters increased their efforts to dis- 
cover whether the statements that he was suffering 
from influenza were not covering certain facts. From 
some source came the rumor that the tenor had, by 




Copyright H Mishkin, N. Y. 
CARUSO AS DICK JOHNSON IN "THE GIRL OF THE GOLDEN WEST" 



ANEWPERIOD 285 

his continuous and unrestrained singing, developed 
another node on one of his vocal chords. This rumor 
was ridiculed by the opera house management ; by 
the artist's physician ; by his friends. Still, the 
story prevailed. And then, one morning, came the 
word that Caruso had been advised to return to 
Europe, where the climate and rest might help to 
restore him to health. 

The singer's Knickerbocker apartment had become 
the objective of a host of daily visitors. Friends, 
advisers, newspapermen, and others swarmed the 
place. Nervous over his inability to fill his opera 
engagement, Caruso's sensitiveness added to his 
troubles. He feared, intensely, adverse criticism. 
"Now," he declared, "my enemies will say I have 
lost my voice." It was a delicate situation, in- 
tensified by the singer's own emotionalism. Out 
of the storm, however, came one whose very poise 
served to calm the tenor's fears, Calvin G. Child, of 
the company which made exclusively Caruso's 
phonograph records. 

Between Caruso and Child there had developed 
a deep friendship, growing out of an association which 
had begun in 1903. The first Caruso phonograph 
records had been made in late 1901 or 1902, in Milan, 
for the Gramophone Company of London. Soon 
after the tenor's United States debut, he had been 
visited by Child ; and a proposal that ten opera 
arias be recorded was tendered and accepted. The 
financial basis was an outright payment ; the selec- 
tions chosen were: Vesti la giubba ("Pagliacci"), 
Celeste A'ida ("Aida"), Una furtiva lagrima ("L'Elisir 



286 ENRICO CARUSO 

d'Amore"), La Donna e mobile, Questa o quella 
("Rigoletto"), E lucevan le stelle ("Tosca"), 
Recondita armonia ("Tosca"), La reve (Massenet's 
"Manon"), Di quella pira ("II Trovatore"), and the 
Siciliana, from "Cavalleria Rusticana." Caruso 
went on February i, 1904, to the Victor recording 
laboratories in New York, then located in Carnegie 
Hall ; and in a single afternoon he made all these 
records. Only one "master" was demanded at 
that time ; later it was Caruso's custom to make two 
master records of each selection, and frequently he 
made three. If he were not thoroughly satisfied he 
would even go to the pains to make a fourth, in 
order to secure what he, and Child, deemed was 
artistically essential. 

"I never knew him to make a record which was 
mechanically defective," said Child, "for he had the 
one perfect voice for recording. But there was one 
bad note in the first E lucevan le stelle which I pointed 
out at the time. 'That's emotion,' he said, when he 
listened to the note ; afterward, though, the number 
was remade. 

" During Caruso's third season in the United States, 
and realizing that a royalty arrangement would be 
more satisfactory than outright payments, we made 
a contract with him on the former basis. During 
his illness in the late winter of 1911, I visited Enrico 
to discuss a renewal of his contract. It was his way, 
often, when seeking my opinion of any matter affect- 
ing him, to give me the details of a hypothetical case. 
On this occasion he said : 

"'What would be the status of a contract between 



ANEWPERIOD 287 

an artist and a phonograph company if the artist 
wished to terminate his contract ? ' 

'Well/ I replied, 'if, in the instance of your own 
contract, you preferred not to renew it, you would 
be privileged to enter into arrangements with any 
other company ; but if you made for that company 
records you had made for us, on a royalty basis, your 
interest in such of those records as we might sub- 
sequently sell would cease. You could, however, 
make any records you had not sung for us without 
in any way affecting your rights in those you did not 
record elsewhere/ 

"Since we are discussing contracts, your own 
with the Victor will expire in about sixteen months. 
You have been ill, and the financial loss due to your 
absence from the opera and your medical expenses 
must have been heavy. If you would like to renew 
your contract with us, I will be glad to pay you an 
advance of twenty-five thousand dollars against 
your future royalties/ 

" I remember that he looked up sharply as I made 
the statement. 'You say that your company will 
advance me twenty-five thousand dollars if I sign a 
new contract ? ' 

"'Yes/ 
'When could I have the advance ?' 

"'Well, to-day is Saturday; I will be here at 
two o'clock on Monday afternoon with a cheque/ 

"For reply he turned to the table near him, and 
picking up a letter from it, handed it to me. 'There/ 
he said, 'is an offer from a phonograph company 
offering me more to make records than you offer. 



288 ENRICO CARUSO 

Please answer it. And please make out a contract 
arranging that Caruso will sing for your company, 
as long as he lives/ 

"I explained that such a contract would scarcely 
be legal, and suggested a term of years. 'Very well, 
then make it for twenty-five years ; and never 
mind about the twenty-five thousand dollar advance/ 

"Such an action was typical of Caruso; he had 
only one way of doing business. 

" He never was the slightest trouble. Never did we 
have any arguments over making a record. He 
realized, very soon after our first royalty arrange- 
ments, the seriousness of the work. 

'You know, Child/ he said, 'recording is 
different from the opera or concert. On the stage, 
if you take a note in the wrong way, it is possible 
to turn quickly away, with a gesture ; or one may 
look angrily at the conductor, thus moving an 
audience to believe it is his fault, not the singer's. 
But this you cannot do when you make a record, 
because what you sing is there for all time. So one 
must not only approach the task seriously ; it is 
necessary to be in the best vocal condition/ 

"Caruso's visits to us for professional purposes 
were invariably looked forward to with real pleasure. 
For he was more than a great artist ; his consideration 
of members of the recording staff, and of the orchestra, 
made every Caruso date anticipated with delight. 
It was the practise, first, to rehearse the composition 
to be recorded, then to make a little test of it ... 
to determine if everything was correctly adjusted. 
The actual making of the 'masters' was done with 



ANEWPERIOD 289 

the utmost zeal and patience, and nothing ever was 
too slight to be made as perfect as possible. 

"Many times, when Caruso appeared with other 
artists in the securing of concerted compositions, 
the finished proof record might reveal an unsatisfac- 
tory phrase or an incorrect note caused by another 
singer or the orchestra. In such instances, though 
blameless himself, Caruso never objected to or com- 
plained about a remake. He was always most con- 
siderate of singers who worked with him. 

"On one occasion, when he was singing the Cujus 
animam from the "Stabat Mater ", it was impossible 
to avoid several rehearsals of the introduction, which 
has a difficult and trying part for the trumpeter, who 
plays an obbligato. When the 'masters' were at 
length finished, Caruso who always sang with his 
collar and scarf off picked up a gold and enamel 
scarf-holder, and handing it to the trumpet player, 
he said, ' You deserve a reward ; I thought you would 
surely crack/ 

"Often he came to the recording laboratory with 
little souvenirs for members of the staff and the 
orchestra ; and once he brought each of them a gold 
medallion with a bas-relief of his head on one side. 

"I never knew him to appear among us that, should 
a change have taken place in the orchestra personnel 
or if some member were not present, he did not in- 
stantly notice the absence and inquire where the 
missing player was. 

"Naturally, he was held in esteem by the musicians. 
And at times, when it was imperative because of 
his opera engagements to make records on a 



290 ENRICO CARUSO 

Saturday or a Sunday, there was no objection, 
because they were working for Caruso. 

"After each number, the players would applaud. 
But when an entire morning, or afternoon, had been 
devoted to work, there would come a lull in the 
spontaneity and enthusiasm of such applause. Then 
the tapping of bows on violins, and other physical 
demonstrations of approval, would become somewhat 
perfunctory. Once he turned to me, and with a 
twinkle in his eye, remarked, 'Tell them they don't 
have to do that.' 

"His interest in the mechanical side of recording 
was intense. He was the one artist who was taken 
'behind the scenes' and shown just how we proceeded 
mechanically. He was always ready to make ex- 
perimental tests, to aid us in our advancement in the 
art ; and ever willing with helpful suggestions. 

"The procedure, after a proof-pressing was re- 
turned from the factory, was for me to take it to 
him . . . that we might hear it together. Some- 
times he would say he doubted if the composition was 
good material for the public. We always respected 
his opinions. Our own we considered important, yet 
until a record had Caruso's acceptance, it could not 
go to the public. 

"For many years I had sought to have him come 
to the United States well in advance of the time for 
him to begin his professional duties in public. It 
seemed only just, to himself and to us, that he devote 
to his recording several days when he was perfectly 
fresh, and his mind free from having to think of other 
music matters. Until the early autumn of 1920 



ANEWPERIOD 291 

(he had spent the summer at his leased villa on 
Long Island), we had usually had to make records a 
day or two at a time, either in late December or early 
January, or in the spring, before he left for Europe. 

"He said he thought I was right in the suggestion 
offered ; so a lengthy repertoire was prepared in the 
spring of 1920, and in the following September, 
before starting on his concert tour, a full week was 
devoted to recording it. I was so delighted at the 
results that I commented on them, unconsciously, in 
the presence of one of the orchestra players, who 
observed, * That's right, to get him when his voice 
is rested/ It was almost prophetic, for the time he 
might have planned to come to us found him fight- 
ing desperately for his life . . . and never afterwards 
was he able to sing as he would have wished, to make 
a record." 

The sum of $1,825,000 in talking-machine royal- 
ties had been paid to Caruso during the life of his 
contracts ... to January 1920, an average of a 
little more than one hundred twenty-five thousand 
dollars a year. But for the year from January 1921 
to 1922 the royalties received by the Caruso estate 
reached the sum of four hundred thousand dollars. 
Thus, a total of $2,225,000 has been earned through 
this medium. "While the 1921 income does not/' de- 
clares Child, "establish a figure for the future since it 
is absolutely unprecedented it is a fact that with 
only one new number issued, the gross receipts 
from the sale of Caruso talking-machine records 
from January i, 1922, to the following May were 
in excess of those for the same period two years 



292 ENRICO CARUSO 

previous, when several new compositions were being 
regularly released ; and this four months' income, 
during the first part of 1922, almost equalled that 
for the similar length of time one year ago. 

"Apart from our business relations," said Child, 
"those of a personal nature were of two fast friends. 
When he once said to me, ' Child, everybody is ask- 
ing me to sing a concert tour ; I suggest that you 
manage my concert affairs, and you and I will divide 
the profits/ Deeply as I valued this proof of con- 
fidence, I explained that my lack of experience in 
that field was sufficient cause to prompt declining 
the generous offer. I told him I felt, if I were to 
accept, that our friendship would end. 

"His loss I cannot undertake to estimate, because 
it is not possible. In life, I held for him affection 
and admiration. Now that he is gone I realize still 
more how true a friend he was." 



Ill 

Caruso sailed for London in February, 1911, with 
the people of many countries gravely concerned 
over his state of voice. The backbiters (among 
them those who pretended friendship) remarked 
prophetically that his career was "finished." Ex- 
perts who had all along discountenanced his tendency 
toward a prodigality of tone wagged their ears sagely. 
"He sang too strenuously and too much," they de- 
clared. It was the masses, whose hearts the tenor 
had reached with his singing, who were genuinely 
distressed. 




Copyright Famous Players LasKy Corporation. 



CARUSO AS HE APPEARED IN THE SPLENDID ROMANCE, A FILM 
MADE IN AMERICA BUT NEVER PRODUCED 

The r61e he assumed was that of a prince. 



ANEWPERIOD 293 

Having suffered previously from the effects of a 
nodule, it was the belief in many quarters that the 
old trouble had returned. Italian newspapermen, 
in particular, interested themselves in the matter, 
with the result that rumors got abroad that Professor 
della Vedova had gone to Caruso, and performed 
another operation similar to the two previous ones. 
Thereupon, reports spread that Caruso might never 
sing again. 

He was in London when this news broke ; and to 
the press the following statement was given : "The 
canard that my vocal chords are giving me trouble 
is pure invention. The Italian doctor who is said 
to have started the rumor did so merely to advertise 
himself; and the story he gave to a reporter about 
a 'corn* having made its appearance in my throat 
is absolutely without foundation. Indeed, the Ital- 
ian doctor has not examined me for two years. For 
the rest, my voice is in good condition as ever and 
I will duly keep my continental and other engage- 
ments. Doctor William Lloyd, under whose care 
I have been since my return to London, assures me 
that my vocal chords are perfectly healthy and nor- 
mal." 

Le Figaro, of Paris, defended the singer in an 
article published on May 20, 1911, which read : "We 
wish to put a stop to innumerable pieces of misin- 
formation about Caruso's voice. He has not, thank 
Heaven ! lost it. Our esteemed friend is in London, 
resting after an attack of la grippe in New York." 

By this time much improved, and hoping to allay 
fears over his condition by appearing conspicuously 



294 ENRICO CARUSO 

in public, Caruso went to a fancy-dress charity ball 
given that spring in the Savoy Hotel. Many dis- 
tinguished people were present. Among the party 
of which Caruso was one were Lady O'Hagan ; the 
Hon. Wilfred Edgerton, costumed as a Chinaman ; 
Lady Rosslyn, attired as Lady Hamilton (after Rom- 
ney) ; the Earl of Shrewsbury, made up as an Amer- 
ican Indian, and Mr. and Mrs. Gutekunst. Caruso 
was garbed as a Moor, which made him appear much 
like Nadir, in "The Pearl Fishers." 

It was at this time that the London receiver of 
taxes adjudged the tenor a resident of the British 
metropolis since he maintained a domicile in 
Maida Vale and assessed him at a figure he con- 
sidered outrageously high. So incensed was Caruso 
that he ordered removed from his London residence, 
almost overnight, all its furnishings ; and those he 
did not send as gifts to friends he had shipped to Italy. 
By such means did he escape being taxed. And 
he thereupon moved his son Mimmi, and his gov- 
erness, Miss Saer, to Criklewood (the home of the 
Saers), where they remained until 1914. At the out- 
break of the war both went to the villa of Signorina 
Rina Giachetti, at Livorno, and later to the villa 
at Signa. When Caruso married Miss Dorothy 
Benjamin, in 1918, Miss Saer and Mimmi went to 
live at the Hotel Paoli, on the Lungarno, Florence. 

It is significant that the tenor refrained wholly 
from singing until the opening of the 1911-1912 
New York Metropolitan season. Europeans did 
not hear his voice that year. Nervous over his 
artistic future, Caruso turned in his wretchedness 



ANEWPERIOD 295 

from everything musical. His chief object was to 
try to forget, and he devoted himself more than 
had been his wont to efforts to find pleasurable mo- 
ments. Old friends and acquaintances saw him 
oftener ; new people were met, some of whom he 
cultivated. Signorina Elisa Ganelli, a Milanese 
salesgirl, was one of those who attracted the tenor 
those summer days. She was comely, spirited, and 
companionable ; to be gloomy in her society was 
no easy matter. So the months passed. 

By autumn, Caruso had emerged from his nervous 
irritability. His health was improved ; the voice, 
tried judiciously now and again, was giving forth its 
former resonance. His courage regained, the tenor 
set sail for New York, where he discovered more 
than one friendship-pretender eager to shake him 
by the hand. Caruso met them all with philosophic 
tolerance. He held no delusions over the constancy 
of certain individuals ; but of what use was it to 
quarrel needlessly ? He was convinced of his re- 
stored vocal vigor. While that lasted he could afford 
to smile, even if it disguised his real feelings. 

The evening of November 13, 1911, disposed of 
any doubts the public then held as to the Caruso 
voice. For his Radames in "Ai'da", in which he 
appeared at the Metropolitan opening with Mmes. 
Destinn and Margarete Matzenauer, gave the op- 
timists renewed joy. Nor was it any short-lived 
jubilation. "Gioconda", "La Fanciulla del West", 
"Pagliacci", "Armide", "Tosca", "Boheme" 
as well as repetitions of some of these operas con- 
firmed evidences that the tenor was his complete 



296 ENRICO CARUSO 

artistic self. He made new phonograph records, 
which are still among the best sellers, and continued 
with his operatic triumphs. Then something else 
happened. Keen observers detected an improve- 
ment in the singer's acting which hinted at the first 
blossomings of an unsuspected side of Caruso's art. 
Hardship, disappointments, sorrow, illness, and 
the strain of endeavoring to maintain a hard-won 
position constituted the price for its fruits. But it 
seems to have been a price necessary to the devel- 
opment of the Caruso resources. 

The year 1912 swung the tenor into a series of 
fresh successes at the Metropolitan, in Brooklyn, 
in Philadelphia. Where were the calamity howlers 
of ten months before ? Under cover, apparently ; 
at least, nothing was heard from them. 

In the midst of this reestablished security the 
singer was disturbed again when, on February 17, 
suit in Milan was brought against him by Signorina 
Ganelli, for alleged breach of promise. It proved 
no more, however, than a temporary annoyance ; 
in less than a month the case was thrown out of court, 
with damages, in any amount, denied the plaintiff. 

Relieved of this threatened trouble, Caruso sang 
on with increasing powers. Then followed "Rigo- 
letto", and "Manon Lescaut" in which, according 
to the New York Sun, "Caruso never sang better. 
. . . The voice ... is now matched by the grace 
and significance of his actions. There is no need 
to say more. For such a delight all lovers of beauty 
can give thanks. . . ." The season finished on 
April 27, at Atlanta, with the tenor appearing in 



ANEWPERIOD 297 

"Rigoletto." He had sung fifty times, without 
missing a single performance ; and his monetary 
return was one hundred thousand dollars. 

One extra appearance followed, at a benefit con- 
cert given in the Metropolitan Opera House for the 
families of the victims who had perished with the 
lost steamship Titanic. Mme. Lillian Nordica, 
Misses Mary Garden, Bella Alten, Marie Mattfeld, 
Bernice de Pasquali, Kathleen Parlow (violiniste), 
and Andres de Segurola were on the programme 
which was conducted by Alfred Hertz and Giuseppe 
Sturani. The patrons and patronesses were Pres- 
ident Taft and the Duke and Duchess of Connaught ; 
W. Bourke Cochran delivered the commemorative 
address. Caruso sang The Lost Chord, in English, 
to the accompaniment of the New York Philharmonic 
Orchestra, led by Frank Damrosch. 

IV 

Memories of a victory won in enhancing his place 
in the hearts of the American public sent the singer 
that 1912 spring happily upon his voyage to Europe. 
His confidence, too, had been strengthened ; and 
from it a broadened authority grew. Symptoms of 
cynicism a bit mild perhaps, yet none the less 
clear also became manifest. For it was inevitable 
that Caruso was to learn, out of his experiences with 
life, of human frailties. 

On the very day of his sailing he had received from 
Arrigo Boito a cablegram inviting him to create the 
tenor role in the composer's "Nerone", scheduled 
for its premiere at La Scala during the 1913 season, 



298 ENRICO CARUSO 

in connection with the celebration of the Verdi cen- 
tenary. Urged by Giulio Ricordi, the editor, and 
Toscanini, Caruso accepted this invitation, though 
to do so it became necessary for him to cancel his 
planned autumn tournee of Germany. Although 
Herr Ledner released Caruso from his contract, 
the opera was not finished in time for the proposed 
date of the premiere. 

Three appearances in "La Fanciulla del West", 
and three others in the always welcome "Rigoletto" 
presented the singer at the Paris Opera for the first 
time in his career. With Mme. Carmen Melis and 
Titta Ruffo, and Maestro Pome conducting, these 
mid-May performances raised Caruso still higher 
in the estimation of discriminating Parisians. The 
Opera management begged him to appear in a few 
representations of "II Barbiere di Siviglia", with 
Feodor Chaliapin, but without avail. He sought 
rest, and in the following September he began his 
1912-1913 season as guest artist in Munich, ap- 
pearing in "Tosca" and in "Rigoletto", and at the 
Hof Theater, in Stuttgart. Writing to his brother 
Giovanni, after his two appearances in "Pagliacci" 
and "Boheme", Caruso stated that never had he 
known such an ovation as the one tendered him after 
he had sung the racconto, in the first act of " Boheme ", 
the last part of which he had been compelled to 
repeat. 

"Manon Lescaut" reintroduced the tenor to his 
New York public, on November n, with Mile. Bori 
and Scotti as his chief associates, and Giorgio Po- 
lacco conducting. That 1912-1913 season carried 




Copyright H. Mlshkln, N. Y. 



CARUSO IN 1913, THE YEAR WHICH MARKED THE BEGINNING OF 
HIS ASCENDANCY 



ANEWPERIOD 299 

Caruso to still higher ground. He sang only one 
unfamiliar opera, "Les Huguenots"; little of an 
uncommon nature occurred to require chronicling. 
Roles which he had made almost exclusively his 
own were those in which the people heard and saw 
him in such representative works as "Gioconda", 
"Pagliacci", "Boheme", "Aida", the "Manon" 
of Massenet, "Tosca", "Cavalleria Rusticana", 
and "La Fanciulla del West." As Raoul, in "Les 
Huguenots", the tenor attracted attention for the 
heightened distinction of his bearing ; as for his 
singing of the music, he was impressing more and 
more upon his audiences the fact that heroic parts 
were to become a forte. 

Forty of the fifty appearances Caruso made in 
the United States that season took place in the Met- 
ropolitan. Brooklyn heard him twice, Philadelphia 
four times, Boston once, and Atlanta on three occa- 
sions. He sang in no concerts ; he missed only two 
appearances ; his gross earnings were one hundred 
thousand dollars. 

On his way to London, for the Covent Garden 
season, he ran down to Paris where, for a fortnight, 
he stopped at the felysee Palace Hotel. Then he 
crossed the English Channel, took up his abode at 
the Savoy Hotel, and prepared to give Londoners 
what they had been waiting to hear. "Pagliacci" 
was the opening opera, with Caruso, Mme. Carmen 
Melis, and Sammarco. The tenor appeared from 
May 20 to June 28, the other operas being "Ai'da", 
"Tosca", and "Boheme", and his associate artists 
were Mmes. Melba, Destinn, and Edvina, and Scotti. 



3 oo ENRICO CARUSO 

He did not realize, when he visited Vienna the 
following September for two appearances in "Rigo- 
letto" and one in "Carmen", that he was never to 
sing there again. Nor because of the war, and 
his subsequent illness and death that the October 
of 1913, which he spent in Germany, was likewise 
an unsuspected good-by. Munich had one repre- 
sentation each of "Pagliacci", "Carmen", and " Bo- 
heme"; Stuttgart, the last German city in which he 
ever appeared, enthused over Caruso in "Carmen", 
"Tosca", and "Rigoletto." From the Hotel Mar- 
quardt, Stuttgart, he wrote to his brother Giovanni 
that not only was he being followed through the 
streets by crowds, but that they remained under 
his hotel window at night . . . "watching over him 
like a precious stone." It was not unlike an earlier 
demonstration outside his dressing-room windows, 
at the Berlin Royal Opera. He had arrived early 
at the theater, as was his custom, and was already 
costumed and made up for the stage when Martino, 
one of his valets, pulled aside a curtain to look at 
the throng below, which was calling loudly for the 
tenor. " Let us see him," they called, on catching sight 
of Martino ; and the latter told his master of the 
situation. Touched by this demonstration, the 
tenor said, "If it were not that I should take care 
of my voice this evening, I would sing to them." 
Instead he had to be content with showing himself 
at the window, and waving a hand. 

Tranquil in all important respects was Caruso's 
1913-1914 season in the United States. New York, 
Philadelphia, Brooklyn, and Atlanta were the only 



ANEWPERIOD 301 

cities which caught the sound of his voice. He re- 
fused point-blank every concert engagement offered. 
From November 17 until the following April 22 
when he departed for Georgia New York City 
was his home. He appeared in one new opera, Char- 
pentier's "Julien"; and with Miss Tarrar as chief 
associate, he interested a certain few. But the opera 
was not a success ; after five representations it was 
put on the shelf, where it still lies. 

"Aida", "Ballo in Maschera", "Gioconda", 
" Tosca ", " Pagliacci ", " Manon ", " Manon Lescaut", 
"Boheme", and "La Fanciulla del West" were the 
Caruso operas of that year. And the same amount 
he had earned the season before one hundred 
thousand dollars was the tenor's reward for fifty 
engagements he sang, without the loss of one. 

The winter had been a reasonably happy one for 
him. He was content to remain in his Knicker- 
bocker apartment ; and while, as had been his custom 
for several years, he lunched frequently at Del 
Pezzo's restaurant in West Thirty-fourth Street, 
the routine of life was growing smoother. It would 
have been wise had he been careful of his diet. Un- 
fortunately, he ate too heartily. Often he would 
begin a meal with antipasto, soup, and three kinds 
of spaghetti ; then attack a meat course, with various 
Italian vegetables, and wander on through a salad 
to fruit and coffee. There would have been much 
wine, in the course of the eating, and innumerable 
cigarettes. It is no wonder he put on weight ; no 
wonder, since he shunned exercise and plenty of 
fresh air, that he should have experienced in fre- 



302 ENRICO CARUSO 

quency and in increasing violence those terrific aches 
in his head. But friendly remonstrance was of no 
avail. He would listen, and occasionally nod affirm- 
atively, and that was an end to the matter. Still, 
the golden lustre of the Caruso voice was not per- 
ceptibly tarnished. It was becoming heavier ; less 
lyric-like in its shimmering quality ; and the habit 
of scooping high notes, in a manner typical of the 
artist, was becoming more fixed. Experts regretted 
that the tenor disclosed unmistakable tendencies 
in the direction of heroic operas. Their conclusions 
may have been right. For it is possible, had Caruso 
been satisfied to curb his ambitions, that he would 
have put less strain upon his matchless voice. 
Nevertheless, it was a temptation no other artist 
in all probability could have resisted. The 
larger roles were his to sing, if he wished, and 
to sing them was his keenest desire. 

He realized, also, the strategic advantage of his 
position at the Metropolitan in being able to fill in 
equal measure, to the satisfaction of a worshiping 
public, the duties of a lyric and of a dramatic leading 
tenor. So, he found himself actuated by a three- 
fold desire : to gratify personal aspirations ; to con- 
tinue as the idol of a people who were eager to have 
him sing in different types of roles ; and to bask in 
the esteem of a management which was showing an 
increasing willingness to eat from his hand. After 
all, it must be admitted that Caruso bore himself 
amazingly well. He had power, yet never did he 
abuse it ; nor did he abuse the still greater power 
which was to come. Standing, as he was, upon the 



ANEWPERIOD 303 

threshold of his most glorious artistic moments, he 
poised with perfect balance for the leap. 

In the spring of 1914 he went to London, for 
the last season before a public which prized him as 
did that of the newer world. He was not aware of 
this at the time. He did not know that thereafter 
events were to shape in ways tying him more firmly 
to the western country across the seas. It is merely 
a fact that after his opening "Aida", with Mmes. 
Destinn and Kirkby-Lunn, and Dinh Gilly, the 
season sped to a rousing close. "Tosca", "Ballo 
in Maschera", "Madama Butterfly", and " Boheme," 
were the other works in which he sang. Mmes. 
Melba, Muzio, Rosa Raisa, Edvina, and Zeppilli, 
and Antonio Scotti and Pompilio Malatesta were 
members of the casts in which the tenor appeared 
that Covent Garden season. June 29, 1914, marked 
Caruso's final London appearance. The opera was 
"Tosca." Fatigued beyond words, the singer went 
for absolute rest to Bagni di Montecatini, near Lucca. 
It was one month before he wrote to his brother. In 
a letter filled with expressions of his discouragement, 
Caruso admitted to feeling really ill. The doctors, 
he wrote, called it "a nervous breakdown", and ad- 
vised him to "go to the mountains." He winced 
at the thought of going to an unfamiliar spot, and 
acquainted Giovanni with his determination to pro- 
ceed to Bellosguardo, where he asked his brother 
to join him. "But do not tell a soul," he warned. 
"I cannot be disturbed with either letters or visitors." 

Germany's declaration of war, followed soon after 
by Italy's announced decision to remain neutral, 



304 ENRICO CARUSO 

only added to Caruso's agitation. He worried over 
the future of his country, and the worry did him no 
good. As the weeks passed, and the tremendous 
gravity of the situation increased, so did the emotion- 
alism of the half-broken Neapolitan destroy his 
chances for the tranquillity required for his recovery. 
When Temistocle Ricceri appealed to Caruso to sing 
at an affair to be given October 19 in the Costanzi, of 
Rome, to secure funds to enable Italian workingmen 
to leave Germany, there could only be one answer. 
The great Battistini, and Lucrezia Bori, Giuseppe 
de Luca, and other illustrious artists sang in excerpts 
from operas that memorable evening. Toscanini 
conducted ; yet even his aversion to encores melted 
before the tumult which demanded again the Vesti 
la giubba, delivered by Caruso during the represent- 
ation of " Pagliacci ", in which he participated. For 
twenty minutes the Costanzi was the scene of en- 
thusiasm akin to riot. Again as in other previous 
instances did this particular one mark an un- 
premeditated farewell. For never afterward did 
Enrico Caruso sing to his beloved Romans. Im- 
mediately after the performance he was rushed in a 
special train to Naples, where he took a steamer 
sailing at once for New York. He had no time even 
to go to bid his stepmother and sister good-by ; they 
went to the pier to see him off. So he departed 
westward, without having had the opportunity 
of paying his faithful visit to the little Church of 
Sant Anna alle Paludi, and to the fountain he had 
made while a boy and which still continued to give 
drinking water to his fellow Neapolitans. 



CHAPTER TEN 

GOLDEN DAYS 

WAR influences were not materially lessened, 
though thousands of miles separated the tenor from 
the actual scenes of conflict. In New York one 
could, and did, hear quite as much of what was going 
on as those who were in Europe (in certain respects 
the news was less restricted and thus more quickly 
learned). It was Caruso's nature to be patriotic. 
Although he did not diminish his allegiance to either 
his art or the Metropolitan, his interest in Italy's 
attitude stirred, as the weeks passed, with deeper 
intensity. He was beyond the age limit of those 
eligible at the first call, should his country decide 
to throw her fortunes on the side of the Allies. But 
it was by no means certain which way Italy was to 
swing. Uncertainty plunged New York's Italian 
colony into heated discussions ; and, amongst his 
friends, the singer did not hesitate to speak his mind. 
He rebelled, with all his fervor, against the Austrians. 
Trieste in his judgment,! no less than in that of 
many of his compatriots was truly Italian soil. 
He was ready to support Italy ; and means was not 
denied. For that was the season in which began a 
new contract, which yielded him two thousand five 
hundred dollars an appearance. 

"Ballo in Maschera" was the introductory opera. 



306 ENRICO CARUSO 

Mme. Destinn and Pasquale Amato were of the 
cast. Three evenings later on November 19 
the singer appeared in "Carmen." "Gioconda", 
a second "Carmen", another "Gioconda", then 
"Pagliacci", "Aida", "Manon", and "Huguenots" 
followed at intervals. Caruso was appearing regu- 
larly twice each week ; his singing was clocklike ; 
his hold upon the New York public stronger than 
ever. Then, with the end of his season drawing 
near, in mid-February, the newspapers began to 
speculate whether the tenor and Manager Gatti- 
Casazza were pulling smoothly together. Although 
explanations of the Raoul Gunsbourg contract had 
been made, some people questioned these explana- 
tions. Yet it was true that Caruso had promised 
the Monte Carlo impresario, several years before, 
to appear at the Casino. The fulfillment of that 
contract had been postponed repeatedly; in 1914 
Gatti-Casazza agreed with his leading tenor that he 
was right in deciding that the appearances should 
be no longer delayed. This reason, and no other, 
sent Caruso to Monte Carlo after his 1915 farewell 
at the Metropolitan, which he sang on February 17, 
in " Pagliacci." He had appeared just twenty-eight 
times, for which he received the sum of seventy thou- 
sand dollars. From that time forth he was no longer 
bound to the New York organization on terms other 
than those which covered his services when it gave 
performances. He made, thereafter, his own outside 
contracts, and he profited accordingly. 

A commission, delegated by the mayor of Caruso's 
native city, met the steamer Duca d'Aosta when 



GOLDEN DAYS 307 

it arrived at its Naples berth. A benefit performance 
was being arranged for the refugees from the Avez- 
zano earthquake, and as usual in like circumstances, 
the tenor's services were sought. Although he was 
willing to aid, Gunsbourg declined to delay Caruso's 
Monte Carlo debut ; so, instead, the singer con- 
tributed some money, and went on his way. 

The Monte Carlo colony of connoisseurs were 
curious to hear the tenor once more. Malicious 
tongues had spread reports that the golden and vel- 
vety beauty of those tones had passed. The audi- 
ence which assembled in the Casino that March 14 
evening was eager, and a bit anxious as well. 
"Ai'da" was the opera; and in the cast were Mme. 
Felia Litvinne (sister to the brothers De Reszke), 
Alfred Maguenat, and Marcel Journet. Caruso 
went apprehensively from the Hotel Paris to the 
theater, and prepared nervously for the test that 
was to come. He had not many hours to pass in a 
state of agitation ; before the representation was 
half finished he had crossed the danger line. Still, 
these Latins to whom he had not sung in many 
years were not thoroughly convinced. 

Camillo Antona Traversi, a Parisian newspaper- 
man and critic of repute and who had been engaged 
as secretary of Gunsbourg's company, went to see 
Caruso in an entract during that representation. 
"When I entered his dressing room," said Traversi, 
"Caruso spoke abruptly. 

Camillo, you know I am an imbecile ! I feel 
a role too much. I try always to give my best in 
interpreting a part. I know that I am a singer and 



3 o8 ENRICO CARUSO 

an actor yet, in order to give the public the im- 
pression that I am neither one nor the other, but 
the real man conceived by the author, I have to feel 
and to think as the man the author had in mind. 
All the secrets lie in the heart of the artist. The 
difficulty, the terrible difficulty, does not cease when 
an artist has reached the pinnacle of perfection - 
the top of the ladder, as we say. He is haunted, 
when he gets there, by that never-ending inner ques- 
tion : "When will I go down ?" I never step upon 
a stage without asking myself whether I will succeed 
in finishing the opera. The fact is that a conscien- 
tious singer is never sure of himself, or of anything. 
He is ever in the hands of Destiny. 

'The public is quick to approve or disapprove. 
It sometimes happens, because of a trivial frog in 
the throat, that the voice becomes suddenly weaker. 
It is nothing to be alarmed at, if the public would 
only realize. But it is quick to leap to conclusions. 
So, when we are at the zenith we travel through 
occasional storms. The Damocles sword is dangling 
constantly above the head of every great singer. 
For the unforeseen occurrence may often be the 
most damaging. If that frog I spoke about happens 
to come, and the voice, for a time, is veiled, an audi- 
ence may judge hastily and be at fault. 

"It is too bad that the public expects from me, 
always, perfection which it is impossible for me 
always to attain. I am not a machine. I am a 
human being. I may sing, one night, to please the 
people. The same opera, sung by me the following 
night, is less excellent because I am not in the same 



GOLDEN DAYS 309 

mood or do not chance to feel as well. Even though 
I may sing better than somebody else, I am criti- 
cised as having been "bad" . . . because I have sung 
less well than the last time I was heard. Do you 
see my point ?' 

The singer had little to complain of, however, 
when he appeared in "Pagliacci", with Signorina 
Alice Zeppilli ; and, also, when for his third appear- 
ance he was cast with Signorina Graziella Pareto and 
MM. Maguenat and Journet in "Lucia di Lammer- 
moor." Incidentally, he saved an appearance to 
Signorina Pareto, when the soprano caught a cold, 
by supplying some of his own remedies and acting 
successfully as impromptu physician. 

Restored in the minds of the skeptics to his former 
singing place, Caruso was soon besieged by im- 
presari. One of these was Walter Mocchi, who con- 
trolled a season in South America. Wishing to be rid 
of Mocchi's importunings, Caruso said he would 
accept an engagement, if he were paid thirty-five 
thousand francs in gold for each appearance. How 
little did the singer, in spite of his steady advance- 
ment, suspect his approaching commercial value 
as an artist. And how complete was his surprise 
when Mocchi held him to his word, and informed him 
that within one week would they be on board a 
steamer, bound for Buenos Aires. 

A full twelve years had passed since the tenor 
had appeared in that city. Even before he sang 
he must have been reassured, for the advance sale 
immediately upon the announcement of Caruso's 
engagement had leaped to an unprecedented 



310 ENRICO CARUSO 

figure. The debut was made during May, at the 
Colon Theater, in "Ai'da", with Mme. Roggeri and 
Giuseppe Danise. "Pagliacci" followed, with the 
same artists. No one complained of the bigger, 
darker voice ; it had just the warmth South 
Americans admired, while the art of the artist 
thrilled. There was just one opinion, which coin- 
cided with the opinions which had held, and were 
continuing to hold, in those other parts of the world 
where Caruso reigned. 

Massenet's "Manon", with Mme. Genevieve Vix 
and Mario Sammarco, which Giuseppe Sturani con- 
ducted, was the third opera. The fourth was the 
"Manon Lescaut" of Puccini, conducted by Gino 
Marinuzzi, with Signora Gilda Delia Rizza and Sam- 
marco in the cast. Two "Lucia di Lammermoor" 
presentations took place with Signora Amelita Galli 
Curci. He had been hoisted to a new pedestal ; 
honors which it had seemed could scarce be ex- 
ceeded had, indeed, been surpassed. Of a sudden 
had come a fresh impetus to carry the singer still 
farther in advance of even his most distinguished 
confreres. For from that engagement must date 
the period of the Caruso supremacy which set him 
apart from all others ; a supremacy which, as an 
artist, made him signally and conspicuously unique. 
He had in fact become the first ; thereafter no force 
was to arrest the solidity of his position, in which 
he was destined to grow in that measure justifying 
its attainment. 

Mocchi's gratitude to the tenor was expressed in 
a gift made to him just as he was about to depart, 



GOLDEN DAYS 311 

in August, for Italy. It was a gold cigarette case 
with the following inscription : 

To Caruso, the dearest of all friends 
the least dear of all the artists. 

Just one touch of sadness marked Caruso's stay 
in Buenos Aires. On June 2, 1915, he received at 
the Hotel Plaza a cablegram telling him of the death 
of his sister Assunta. ( 

Another, of a different nature, came to him soon 
after he had reached his Bellosguardo Villa, at Signa. 
Accused by the Parisian press of being pro-German, 
and deploring the actions of Gabriele d'Annunzio, 
Caruso wrote in heated anger to his friend Camillo 
Traversi, who was then in Paris. The communi- 
cation was dated September 12, 1915. 

My dear Camillo : 

On my return yesterday from Buenos Aires, 
I found here your letter, and the clippings of the 
Paris papers . . . including the article of Le Matin 
in regard to that infamy. The invention was a ter- 
rible blow to me. It was not alone the item which 
caused me such pain, but the unfavorable comments 
of these Paris papers which evidently have for- 
gotten what I did for Coquelin's benefits for the 
House of the Disabled Artists, for the Belgians, 
for the Society of Journalists, and other French 
benefits. The infamy did not surprise me as much 
as the readiness of the learned Parisian people to 
believe that I could possibly be such a coward, such 
a mean man. 

Believe me, dear Camillo, I cried of rage ; and 
if some day I can discover the person responsible for 
it all, then the world will hear me speak something 
of him and of myself. During the past few years 



312 ENRICO CARUSO 

the press seems to have had a mania of occupying 
itself with poor me, giving me many troubles. I 
did not bother, because they were speaking of my 
voice . . . lost ; but now it is of a different subject. 
Before I die of heart-failure, I wish God to grant me 
grace to permit me to give to Satan the soul of 
this man who intended to make the world believe 
I was such a vile man . . . not an Italian of blood 
and flesh. 

With greetings, believe me, 

Yours, 

Enrico Caruso. 

The singer's fierce anger had cooled somewhat 
when he was called on to assist in two performances, 
planned to be held in the Dal Verme Theater, of 
Milan, to aid artists in need of work. Those two 
appearances were in "Pagliacci", on September 
23 and 25. Toscanini conducted the opera, and 
"II Segreto di Susanna", which was the preceding 
piece. Signorina Claudia Muzio, Luigi Montesanto, 
and Angelo Bada were of the "Pagliacci" cast. 
Since Caruso had not sung in Milan for a number of 
years, his first endeavor resembled a debut. He 
was intensely nervous ; there appears, however, to 
have been slight cause for worry. The next morning 
the Milanese newspapers eulogized Caruso and his 
art. His voice, the writers declared, had not "gone." 
On the contrary, it remained still the beautiful 
instrument of those times when he had sung in 
"Fedora"; perhaps a more dramatic voice, but, if 
anything, more beautiful than before. 

It has been said that in his closing years Caruso 
did not sing in Italy because his compatriots ob- 




Copyright H. Mishkin, N. Y. 
CARUSO AS SAMSON IN " SAMSON ET DALILA" 



GOLDEN DAYS 313 

jected to the heavier, darker timbre of the tones 
they had admired in earlier years, when their 
lyric purity had first captivated the Italian people. 
So far as can be learned, no such general opinion 
held. The tenor was so constantly in demand, and 
at fees so much higher than any Italian opera house 
could afford to pay him, that it appears to have been 
a mere matter of business for him to have accepted 
contracts offered elsewhere. I 

He never sang in Italy after his two appearances 
in Milan. Who knows that he might not have liked 
to. It is questionable if such a public demonstra- 
tion of mourning, as attended his death and funeral, 
could have come from a people who did not truly 
feel. 

II 

No one who heard and saw Caruso during his 
first Samson in "Samson et Dalila", which opened 
the Metropolitan's season of 1915-1916, could have 
dbubted his ripened art. Previous admissions had 
been made by eminent music reviewers of the tenor's 
developed acting resources. It remained for his 
Samson to disclose him in a role of larger mold and 
potentialities than any in which New York had 
known him. The Saint-Saens opera started the 
singer toward that final phase of his career. In it 
he checked for a time, at least the remon- 
strances of those who kept insisting that he was a 
lyric tenor who had wandered outside his metier. 
How different a man he had become from the Caruso 
of a decade before ! Experience and associations had 



ENRICO CARUSO 

not been without their influence. The very shape 
of his head had changed, along with the contour 
of his features. He was jovial of mood to the many 
who saw him casually in the streets. He enjoyed, 
if less effusively, indulging in his jokes and pranks. 
And he turned as often and with as keen a pleasure 
to that oldtime habit of sketching, both caricature 
and portraits. But the serious side of the man was 
having its way. Those who saw him often in 
his home observed the gradual transformation of 
the singer. If only the public which observed him 
cutting capers before the Metropolitan curtain, or 
seemingly having the time of his life in "L'Elisir 
d'Amore", could have seen him in his Knickerbocker 
apartment, as he actually was ! Only in these cir- 
cumstances could they have fathomed the real 
Caruso. 

There the public might have glimpsed him, fol- 
lowing the ceaseless routine of work. For it was 
work that carried Caruso to the goals he reached. 
Some people have rather doubted it. To them it 
was to his voice that all the credit went. Those 
persons cannot know that for Caruso there were 
few real vacations. Out of season he slaved. At 
Signa, he almost invariably coached his roles old 
as well as new with Maestro Mugnone. Occasion- 
ally Barthelemy aided him in this capacity ; he re- 
spected this accompanist because of his musician- 
ship. Maestri Sarmiento, Gaetano Scognamiglio, 
Tullio Voghera, Bruni, Dell' Orefice, and Vincenzo 
Bellezza all at one time or another accompanists to 
the tenor commanded his respect. During his last 



GOLDEN DAYS 315 

few seasons, with the exception of a break of two years, 
Salvatore Fucito acted as the tenor's accompanist. 

Besides "Samson et Dalila", the operas in which 
Caruso sang at the Metropolitan during 1915-1916 
were"Boheme", "Tosca", "Manon", "Pagliacci", 
"Marta", "Ballo in Maschera", "Ai'da", "Manon 
Lescaut", "Rigoletto", and "Carmen." He missed 
only one performance that year ; and for the forty- 
nine in which he participated he earned one hundred 
eighteen thousand dollars. 

An indication of the value the Metropolitan board 
of directors had then come to place upon Caruso's 
services was shown in a letter written by their chair- 
man, Otto H. Kahn, in a letter dated March 27, 
1916. It read : 

Mr. Gatti-Casazza has informed me that while 
you prefer not to sign a contract at this time for an 
extension of your present contract, you have given 
him your verbal assurance, which, coming from you 
is just as good as a written contract, that he may 
depend upon your remaining with the Metropolitan 
Opera Company. In taking note of this welcome 
declaration, may I express my sincerest gratification, 
not only as Chairman of the Metropolitan Opera 
Company, not only as one of the public, in the 
affection and admiration of which you have a unique, 
an unrivalled place, but also as your personal friend 
and well-wisher who holds you in the highest esteem 
for the splendid qualities of character which dis- 
tinguish you as an artist and as a man. With cordial 
good wishes, and in the hope that your health and 
strength and the glory of your incomparable voice 
and superb art may be preserved for many years to 
come, I remain Very sincerely yours. 



3 i6 ENRICO CARUSO 

Caruso went to Signa for a rest. He was con- 
tinuing to suffer more frequently from those violent 
headaches. The previous year, while in Buenos Aires, 
he had at times screamed from the pain ; the one 
Metropolitan appearance he had missed during the 
1915-1916 season had been due to a headache 
attack. Doctor Holbrook Curtis had attributed the 
source to an affection of the nose ; and an operation 
had been performed. But it brought no relief. The 
first indications of one of these spells would be 
hardened swellings at the sides of the singer's neck. 
Massage and electric treatments never seemed to 
help. An attack would generally last for three or 
four hours, then slowly subside. The effect, how- 
ever, was to leave the tenor limp and nerve-wrought. 

Barthelemy joined Caruso at Signa to assist him 
in preparing the music side of the role of Nadir in 
"The Pearl Fishers", which the tenor expected to 
sing on the opening night of the Metropolitan's 
1916-1917 season. Mme. Frieda Hempel, Giuseppe 
de Luca, and Leon Rothier were of that representa- 
tion, which Maestro Polacco conducted. The pub- 
lic, despite Caruso's presence in the cast, displayed 
slight interest in the opera ; it was given only twice 
thereafter. In other works those which were 
ever favorites with New Yorkers, especially if 
Caruso sang there was no cause for complaint. 
"Manon Lescaut", "Samson et Dalila", "Pa- 
gliacci", "Marta", "Alda", "Carmen", "L'Elisir 
d'Amore", "Rigoletto", and "Boheme" followed. 
What variety was presented in the leading tenor 
characters of these operas ! 














js SL 








A PAGE OF THE SCORE OF " SAMSON ET DALILA" COPIED BY CARUSO 
How he studied the r61e of Samson. 



GOLDEN DAYS 317 

Success crescendoed for the tenor without a pause. 
Not once that season did he miss an engagement. 
His appearances were the same in number as of the 
year before ; his earnings precisely the same. New 
York, Brooklyn, Philadelphia, and Atlanta were the 
only cities that heard him in opera ; but on May I 
Caruso sang in concert in Cincinnati, beginning a 
brief tour which took him also to Toledo and Pitts- 
burgh. The Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra par- 
ticipated in these three concerts ; and Richard 
Barthelemy was Caruso's accompanist. For the 
first two appearances the singer received three 
thousand five hundred dollars each ; five thousand 
dollars was paid him for the concluding one. 

Preparations were made, following Caruso's final 
United States concert of that year (with the Mozart 
Society, of New York), for the journey to Buenos 
Aires. The tenor hesitated about undertaking the 
trip : the World War had reached an acute stage ; 
ships were being ruthlessly torpedoed ; Caruso won- 
dered whether it was a risk to be taken. He went 
about matters with much foresight, and besides 
providing himself with numerous life preservers, he 
had made a suit of clothes which was guaranteed to 
keep him afloat. 

Caruso disembarked from the SS. Saga when it 
reached Rio Janeiro, and boarded the SS. Indiana 
for Buenos Aires. On June 17, and with Mme. 
Vallin-Pardo as leading soprano, he made his first 
reappearance at the Colon Theater in "L'Elisir 
d'Amore." The reception was a repetition of those 
scenes which had greeted his efforts two years 



3 i8 ENRICO CARUSO 

before. "Pagliacci" evoked similar enthusiasm 
when Caruso sang ; and it grew in intensity 
when he was heard in "Manon", "Tosca", 
"Boheme", and "Lodoletta", this last work be- 
ing new to the tenor at that time. Other South 
American cities had insisted they be given the then 
matured Caruso ; so a tour was undertaken to 
Montevideo, Rio de Janeiro, and San Paolo. A 
return trip had to be made to Rio, for two final ap- 
pearances. The operas were " Carmen " and " Manon 
Lescaut"; and, on October 16, 1917, Caruso sang 
in the latter work for the last time in South America, 

Vincenzo Bellezza, one of the Colon Theater 
conductors, sailed with the tenor for New York in 
the capacity of accompanist. They worked together 
on the voyage northwards, and more than one 
passenger aboard the SS. Saga was treated to bits of 
impromptu concerts. Relief at the safe ending of 
his long journey overjoyed the singer. He reached 
New York with his face wreathed in smiles. It had 
been a hard year, without any extended period of 
rest, but all that was forgotten. And there was no 
need to be disturbed over opening the Metropolitan 
season in a new opera ; " A'ida" had been chosen. 

It was at this time that Bruno Zirato was invited to 
accept the post of Secretary to Enrico Caruso. 
Others had preceded him, though none had served 
in a full secretarial capacity. Generally it had been 
an arrangement in which friendship formed a princi- 
pal part, with the compensation being more in the 
form of tickets to the opera performances in which 
the tenor appeared, and occasional "presents", 



GOLDEN DAYS 

wherein cash sometimes figured. After Count Scalzi 
who had been the third person to aid Caruso by 
writing letters and in other minor ways there 
came Luigi Roversi, Enrico Scognamillo, Doctor 
de Simone, and Constant J. Sperco. 

Zirato was the first real secretary Caruso had ; 
for he spent his entire time with the tenor, and made 
of his position a matter of the strictest and most rigid 
business. He served his employer faithfully and 
well, how well those who were close to Caruso during 
his desperate illness during those dragging final 
months best know. While between Caruso and 
Zirato there was a never-ceasing element of friend- 
ship (the singer often addressed his secretary by the 
endearment term of Compare), both men inclined 
naturally toward discipline, and each seemed to take 
a certain satisfaction in maintaining those niceties 
which preserved in their relationship a perfect under- 
standing. The best evidence of Zirato's standing 
with the singer was his uninterrupted continuance 
in office. For the latter was a difficult man to please. 
After her husband's death, and when she had re- 
turned to New York, Mrs. Caruso wished to have 
Zirato near her ; his presence somehow exerted on 
her a comforting effect. So he became her secretary. 

The United States, having joined the side of 
the Allies in the war, was then aflame with patri- 
otism. Although opera was the principal interest 
in the singer's life, he found himself not unwillingly 
drawn into paths traveled by others who were less 
emotional than himself. He had already been a 
large purchaser of Italian bonds ; he turned with 



320 ENRICO CARUSO 

corresponding readiness to his check-book to add 
to his store of securities, this time in the form of 
United States Liberty Bonds. 

His days and the nights also were filled with 
experiences of many kinds. Grateful to a nation 
which had dealt out such bounty and honors to him, 
Caruso felt the American side of his nature throbbing 
in tune with his Italian. He had yielded to an im- 
pulse to give lessons to a baritone whose exceptional 
voice appealed to him ; and for an hour or more 
at a time he would sit at a piano, thumping clumsily 
a few simple chords, while this only pupil he ever had 
struggled to imitate the tones the tenor sang. It was 
not a successful undertaking. After five months 
Caruso reluctantly gave up the task as an impossible 
job. Yet it disturbed him that he had failed. His 
one consolation was the encouragement voiced by his 
friend, Doctor P. Mario Marafioti, who said, "Re- 
member, Enrico, that you will be judged as a singer, 
not as a teacher." 

The work at the Metropolitan wore on ; "L'Elisir 
d'Amore", "Marta", "Samson et Dalila", "Manon 
Lescaut", "Pagliacci", "Carmen", and "Tosca" 
had proved Caruso's expanding artistry ; his voice 
still held ; and he could venture a backward glance at 
a career already distinctive enough to stand as it was. 
At forty-five, and beginning his fifteenth consecutive 
season in the foremost opera house of the world, he 
felt the serene side of his nature coming more to fore. 
Offers from impresari from all parts of the world 
poured in upon him. These offers, fantastic in their 
financial inducements, he read with the most casual 



GOLDEN DAYS 321 

interest. They pleased him ; that was all. His 
mind was filled with thoughts of other matters ; 
of persons, and one of these was an American girl, 
Miss Dorothy Benjamin. He had met her at the 
home of Maestro Fernando Tanara, and again at a 
tea given by Doctor Marafioti. Driving her home, 
Caruso noticed that she had forgotten her gloves. 
He urged her to put on the pair he had been wearing, 
and when they parted insisted she should keep them 
as a souvenir. Then, for months, he had not seen 
her again. But he had remembered. 

Meanwhile, December gave way to January, and 
on the 1 2th of that month, 1918, came the United 
States premiere of Mascagni's "Lodoletta." Miss 
Farrar and Pasquale Amato sang with him ; and 
these artists strove mightily, though in vain, to give 
the opera some popularity. A real opportunity was 
on the way, and it arrived on February 7, when the 
tenor made his first appearance as John of Ley- 
den, in "Le Prophete." What compensation this 
achievement must have given for those early years 
of struggle ! There were experts who continued to 
expostulate over the insistence of Caruso in singing 
such heavy roles. But others thought they recog- 
nized in the man a great artist ; a tenor with every 
kind of voice. Indeed, it has been contended that 
while Caruso did actually begin with a lyric tenor, his 
later days found him possessed of an instrument 
suited for any type of role. There was to appear, 
however, one exception. For when he essayed 
Avito in "L'Amore dei tre Re", the endeavor met 
with an indisputable lack of success. Caruso strug- 



322 ENRICO CARUSO 

gled three times after his first appearance in the part, 
on March 14, 1918, though to no satisfying end. 
The best evidence that he considered it not for him 
was the fact that never afterwards did he attempt to 
sing it. 

And one other annoying experience occurred in 
Boston, at the close of the Metropolitan season in 
April. The music reviewers of that city criticized 
the tenor mercilessly. He insisted they were not 
fair ; he himself felt that he had done himself justice. 
Whatever the facts, Caruso never sang there again. 

An income from his opera duties had brought the 
singer that season the sum of one hundred twenty- 
five thousand dollars for his fifty appearances ; a 
Biltmore Morning Musicale had yielded four thou- 
sand more ; and the talking-machine royalties had 
totaled a huge sum. The gross income, however, 
was reduced by $59,832.15, which Caruso paid to 
the United States Government as income tax. Nor 
would he avail himself of the courtesy proffered by 
"Big Bill" Edwards, then Collector of Internal 
Revenue, to visit the tenor personally at his hotel 
home. Instead, Caruso went, "like any other 
citizen, " to Edwards's office, to tender in person his 
check. 

With benefit performances of every known sort 
offered every little while to secure funds for some 
war-working organization, Caruso was sought out 
on every side. He was more than good-natured ; 
his responses were made gladly, with a full heart. 
It was a matter of pride that, beyond the fact that 
his name had a definite value with the public, in- 



GOLDEN DAYS 323 

fluential men and women showed plainly their re- 
spect for him as a useful citizen. On April 14, 1918, 
Caruso contributed his services at a concert given in 
the Metropolitan Opera House for the benefit of the 
Italian Reservists ; and at the third Liberty Loan 
Rally, held on May I in New York's Carnegie Hall, 
he sang gratuitously again. Three times during 
that month he appeared for other worthy causes : 
for the Italian Relief Fund, at Poli's Theater, 
Washington, D. C. ; at the Metropolitan Opera 
House at an Italian Red Cross benefit concert ; and 
in the same place, three nights later, for the American 
Red Cross. 

Friends marveled that Caruso continued to remain 
in the United States ; it had been his custom to sail 
for Europe before the end of each May. But June 
arrived, finding the singer still established at the 
Knickerbocker. He sang on the tenth of that 
month at the Metropolitan for the benefit of the 
Women's Naval Service, then rested. 

Meanwhile, the infrequent and almost casual 
meetings with Miss Benjamin had been succeeded by 
visits paid to the young woman in her father's home. 
When the Benjamin family departed to the Spring 
Lake, New Jersey, summer place, the tenor's ob- 
jective lay often in that direction. Those closest 
to Caruso did not apprehend that he, an Italian, and 
an artist, might be paying court to an American girl, 
whose upbringing had been so dissimilar to his own. 
Yet, whatever the appearances, his fidelity remained 
unshaken. After Caruso had returned from Ocean 
Grove, New Jersey, where he sang in late July his 



324 ENRICO CARUSO 

first concert on a percentage basis (which netted him 
$6638.83), he was oftener than ever in the society of 
the lady whose attractiveness had first excited his 
admiration. She was different from those comprising 
the entourage which hung upon him ; she spoke his 
native language, and imperceptibly Caruso fell to 
discussing with her certain business affairs which at 
that time arose. Together they went over the 
Famous Players-Lasky Corporation offer of one 
hundred thousand dollars each for two motion 
pictures in which it was the desire of this company 
the tenor should appear ; and they both hesitated to 
have him shown upon the screen in a film as his 
real self, and with such a title, as was at first sug- 
gested, as " My Cousin ". This hesitancy is disclosed 
in a letter written to the tenor by Jesse L. Lasky, an 
officer of the corporation, on July 10, 1918, in which 
the writer stated : "I shall be pleased to discuss this 
matter with you at great length on your return, and 
trust I have, in some measure, satisfied your fears on 
this subject." Both pictures were subsequently 
made, although, regardless of their financial ad- 
vantages, Caruso was never quite happy over his 
participation in either one. 

The singer left, in mid-August, to appear in a 
concert at Saratoga Springs. He took as assisting 
artists Miss Nina Morgana, soprano, and Mayo 
Wadler, violinist, with Salvatore Fucito as his 
accompanist. The success was very large, and the 
fee seven thousand dollars. But throughout the 
trip, and the stay in the famous New York watering- 
place, Caruso was the embodiment of a man carrying 




Copyright Underwood & Underwood Studios, N. Y. 
MRS. ENRICO CARUSO 



GOLDEN DAYS 325 

a troublesome mental burden. There was good 
reason. For just before his departure from New 
York the tenor's proposal of marriage to Miss 
Benjamin had been followed by an unsuspected 
outcome. Her father had insisted upon a financial 
arrangement which neither she nor Caruso could 
countenance or agree to. 

He arrived, still agitated, at the Knickerbocker 
Hotel in New York, where Miss Benjamin and a 
woman friend awaited him. What Miss Benjamin 
had to say was enough to move Caruso to instant 
decision. "You will return here to-morrow morning 
at eleven," he said, "and we will be married." 

At the appointed hour (August 20) Miss Benjamin 
was at the Knickerbocker. She had communicated 
with a friend Mrs. John S. Keith who went to 
her at once. Caruso, Miss Benjamin, Mrs. Keith, 
and Zirato entered the singer's waiting automobile, 
all of them a bit serious of face, for developments 
had progressed swiftly. A marriage license was 
thereupon secured, and the party was driven to the 
Church of the Transfiguration (The Little Church 
Around the Corner) ; but the pastor, uncertain as to 
whether Caruso was already married, preferred not 
to officiate. The Reverend Oliver Paul Barnhill, 
of the Marble > Collegiate Church, at Fifth Avenue 
and Twenty-ninth Street, performed the marriage 
ceremony, with Mrs. Keith and Zirato as witnesses. 
On one page of his personal account book, in which 
the tenor himself made every entry, he wrote : 

"Expenses for my marriage. . . . $50.00" ! 

It was not until some time afterwards that 



326 ENRICO CARUSO 

Mrs. Caruso was presented with her engagement 
ring. 

That first summer which the singer ever spent in 
the United States assumed, then, an aspect different 
from any he had ever known. His attitude toward 
the world was that of a man with new responsibilities ; 
his bearing became more than ever one of dignity and 
reserve. And the Caruso hangers-on astounded 
at their patron's marriage found fewer oppor- 
tunities to thrust themselves upon him, and partake 
of the gratuities he had thrown their way. Mrs. 
Caruso's father was quoted in the newspapers as 
having said some unpleasant words over which the 
tenor was distressed ; but the storm passed, and work 
went on even before autumn quite arrived, the two 
motion pictures having been finished on September 

30. 

There had been during August several other 
benefit concerts in which the tenor had taken part, 
in one of which Liberty Loan subscriptions secured 
from among the audience had netted more than 
four million dollars. He had gone to Buffalo for a 
regular concert, which was to have been given on 
October 8 and was only canceled because of the 
prevalent epidemic of influenza. But before leaving 
that city he appeared, at the request of Governor 
Charles Whitman, at a Liberty Loan drive held in 
the Iroquois Hotel. Mrs. Caruso, who had ac- 
companied her husband, succumbed to the effects 
of influenza upon reaching New York, on October 12. 
She insisted, however, that he keep his engagement 
to sing a special performance of "Pagliacci", given 



GOLDEN DAYS 327 

with Miss Claudia Muzio, Pasquale Amato, and 
Francesco Daddi, under the conductorship of Giorgio 
Polacco, in Detroit on October 15. The tenor re- 
ceived seven thousand dollars for this one appearance. 
A fortnight later he aided at a matinee held in New 
York's Madison Square Garden, promoted by John 
D. Rockefeller, Jr., for the United War Work ; and 
that same evening November 3 he sang, at the 
special request of Secretary Josephus Daniels, at the 
concert given in the Hippodrome for the benefit of 
the Navy Relief Fund. 

It had been a trying and somewhat fortuitous 
summer, yet no rest was in sight. The Metropolitan 
1918-1919 opening drew near; rehearsals were in 
order ; yet Caruso found time to earn a five thousand 
dollar fee by appearing at a Biltmore Morning 
Musicale. After the Metropolitan premiere in 
"Samson et Dalila", with Mme. Louise Homer and 
Alfred Couzinou, under the music leadership of 
Pierre Monteux, he made his first appearance any- 
where as Don Alvaro in "La Forza del Destine." 
The occasion introduced Miss Rosa Ponselle to 
Metropolitan subscribers, and was a memorable 
affair. Matters thereafter settled into the groove 
of routine. November and December carried the 
tenor before his public in "L'Elisir d'Amore", "Le 
Prophete", "Marta", "Pagliacci", and three times 
in "Lodoletta", in an attempt to stimulate interest 
in the Mascagni opera. 

For his year of personal work Caruso had reaped 
an enormous sum. Could he have retained it all, 
it must have represented a fortune. The income 



328 ENRICO CARUSO 

tax had, however, to be considered ; it took from 
the singer the heavy toll of $153,933.70. 

IV 

The winds of life were becoming tempered. With 
Mrs. Caruso at his side there was less need for com- 
panionship of those previous days which Caruso had 
not always voluntarily sought ; and Bohemianism 
was thrust into the past. His wife and his home 
interested him ; he spent more time with his objets 
d'art, his stamp albums, and his scrap books which 
required much attention to keep up to date. Having 
purchased, the preceding summer, his first automobile 
for use in the United States, the tenor fell to using it 
as the easiest means of getting fresh air. His daily 
accumulation of mail increased ; the demands upon 
him grew ; but Zirato relieved him of much which he 
then felt comfortable in delegating his secretary to 
perform. He had also his regular caricature to 
draw, for many do not know that, from 1906, Caruso 
contributed unfailingly to the columns of La Follia, 
a New York weekly newspaper, a sketch of some 
kind. Yet there was always time for the tenor to 
attend personally to whatever was necessary. He 
maintained, with his own hand, a correspondence 
with his sons in Italy ; and about this time he re- 
ceived from Mimmi (then fifteen years old) the 
following letter, written February 15, from Florence. 

My dear Papa : 

The arrival of your letter was a great joy to me. 
I know from you that my new "mammina" if I 



GOLDEN DAYS 329 

can call her so, though for the present I will call her 
sister, for I have heard that she is very young is, 
as you say, very adorable ; and I hope that we will 
get along well together. 

I am very sorry indeed that I cannot come to 
America, but as it is your will " Fiat voluntat tua" 
I must abide by it ; but I am longing for the time 
of your arrival here so that, after many years, we 
will meet and embrace again, and I hope, dear Papa, 
that you will never leave us, or else take us with you. 

In the meantime I will study and try not to lose 
the year. 

I am well and waiting for you. When I see 
boys riding bicycles I feel I too would like one. 
Would you permit me to have one ? I am a big 
boy, now, and I feel I need one so much when I go to 
school, or when I go for a walk. I shall be glad to 
have your news. 

With very much love, dear Papa, from your 
affectionate son Enrico 

Enrico Jr. got his bicycle ; just as a little lame girl, 
to whom the singer had spoken during a Central 
Park band concert, received from him a gift of money 
after he had read a letter written by the child's 
mother, telling how much joy his greeting had brought. 
Was he thoughtless ? In the midst of the whirl of 
things he went to the pains to recommend a tenor 
friend an American for a 1919 engagement at 
Monte Carlo which Raoul Gunsbourg had urgently 
cabled Caruso to accept. The intention was of the 
best, but Gunsbourg's reply read, "I regret, dear 
Enrico, that I cannot engage the tenor you suggest, 
for my company is quite filled. I have, however, a 
place for one artist. It is Enrico Caruso. He is a 



330 ENRICO CARUSO 

fine chap. Will you talk with him and try to get 
him to accept my offer ?" 

It was shortly before this on December 4, 191 8 - 
that the late Cleofonte Campanini, then general 
director of the Chicago Grand Opera Company, made 
quite as flattering an offer, and one even more 
remunerative. Campanini's letter ran : 

Carissimo Enrico : 

I spoke to Longone, asking him to see you re- 
garding my proposal to you to sing in our preliminary 
tournee in the cities of the west, beginning October 
12, 1919, for three weeks. I offer nine appearances, 
all guaranteed. Furthermore, I would like an option 
for a fourth week, the option to be concluded on or 
before September I next. 

The opera would be only one " Pagliacci." But 
if you prefer another one, or ones, it is up to you. 
We will agree on this point later on. I offer you five 
thousand dollars 1 for each appearance. With Eva's 
and my best regards for Mrs. Caruso and for you, 

Affectionately yours, 
Cleofonte Campanini. 

Caruso went to Gatti-Casazza in the matter, and the 
Metropolitan's general manager said frankly that he 
would not be pleased if the tenor accepted Campanini's 
proposal, though admitting that Caruso had the 
right to do so if he wished. Gatti's attitude dis- 
posed at once of the proposal. Caruso recognized 
the impresario's sensitiveness over having him appear 
with an organization then regarded as a kind of rival 
since it had begun to give brief seasons in New 

1 This sum was just twice the amount Caruso was receiving for an ap- 
pearance at the New York Metropolitan. 



GOLDEN DAYS 331 

York, annually. So the singer wrote Campanini, 
expressing his regret in being unable to accept the 
invitation. 

It was a comforting feeling, being respected both 
at home and abroad. The singer's manner was 
undergoing a subtle change as no one realized 
better than he. Inwardly he rather delighted in it, 
but he preserved his dignified exterior until, more 
and more, it became an accepted thing. Almost 
before he quite grasped the significance the season 
neared its end. It was the rounding out of a quarter 
century of activity on the operatic stage. With 
"Boheme", "Lodoletta", and "Ai'da" added to those 
operas he had already sung that season, the month 
of March broke ; and on the 8th, Caruso took Mrs. 
Caruso to St. Patrick's Cathedral, to be baptized. 
Soon afterwards they were remarried, according to 
the procedure of the Catholic church. The witnesses 
were Mrs. Walter R. Benjamin and Bruno 
Zirato. 

The tenor had sung another concert assisted by 
Miss Morgana and Elias Breeskin this time at 
Ann Arbor, Michigan, arranged by the Metropolitan 
Musical Bureau for a seven thousand dollar fee. He 
had also rushed back, on receipt of a telegram from 
Otto H. Kahn, to sing The Star Spangled Banner in 
the Metropolitan on that distinctive occasion when 
President Wilson delivered his address on the League 
of Nations. Although his train did not reach its 
New York station until 7.45 P.M., Caruso was dressed 
and ready to go upon the Opera House stage just 
twenty-five minutes later. 



332 ENRICO CARUSO 

Important as these affairs were to the singer they 
faded in comparison with the one then drawing near. 
For a jubilee celebration is something of an event ; 
this one fairly alarmed Caruso as March 22 dawned 
and he sensed the ordeal he must undergo that night. 
A host of artists participated in the actual program, 
which consisted of the third act of "L'Elisir 
d'Amore", the first of" Pagliacci", and act three from 
"Le Prophete." Besides Mmes. Muzio, Barrientos, 
Matzenauer, and Sparkes, there were the baritones 
de Luca, Scotti, Werrenrath, and Schlegel, the bassos 
Mardones and Didur, and tenors Diaz and Bada. 
Maestri Bodanzky, Moranzoni, and Papi conducted ; 
the auditorium was packed at extra prices, and the 
audience one to cause the heart of almost any man to 
skip an occasional beat. 

The Caruso who came upon a specially set stage 
after the operatic part of the evening was a pale-faced, 
nervous man. Surrounded by the entire Metro- 
politan Opera House personnel, he sat stiffly in a 
chair at the front center of the stage near the foot- 
lights. On a long table, at the rear, were arranged 
the presents he had received. 

James M. Beck had been invited to make the 
official address of the evening, and this he would have 
done if political activities had not intervened. But, 
at actually the eleventh hour, Mayor Hylan sent 
word that if Beck spoke, Police Commissioner Enright 
would not present to the singer a flag of the City of 
New York ; so Beck tactfully withdrew (afterwards 
sending to Caruso a typewritten copy of what he 
had intended to say), and Enright tendered the flag. 



GOLDEN DAYS 333 

The tenor's reply, delivered with hesitating exactness, 
in English, was : 

" My heart is beating so hard with emotion that I 
feel that I am afraid I cannot even put a few words 
together. I am sure you will forgive me if I do not 
make a long speech. I can only thank you, and beg 
you to accept my sincerest and most heartfelt grati- 
tude for to-night, and for all the very many kindnesses 
you have showered upon me. I assure you that I 
will never forget this occasion, and ever cherish in 
my heart my affections for my dear American friends. 
Thank you ! Thank you ! Thank you ! . . ." 

Throughout his enunciation of those few sentences 
the singer clutched with his right hand the staff of 
the municipal flag he had received. He was white- 
faced under his emotion, and it was fortunate that 
Zirato stood just behind, ready to prompt him 
when his mind searched for an elusive word. 

Mr. Kahn, speaking for the Metropolitan board of 
directors, said : 

"In offering you the tribute of our admiration it 
is not the glory of your voice which I have in mind 
primarily, though it is the most glorious and perfect 
voice of a generation, and one which, for having 
heard, posterity will envy us. But in your case we 
admire the voice, the art, and the man. I have in 
mind your boundless generosity, your modesty, kind- 
liness, and simplicity, your unfailing consideration 
for others. 

"Bearing a name which has become a household 
word throughout the world, you have retained the 
plain human qualities of a man and a gentleman 



334 ENRICO CARUSO 

which have won you the affection of those whose 
privilege it is to know you personally. 

"I have in mind your fine loyalty to this country 
and this city. A son of a noble country which has 
taken so glorious a part in the war, you have given 
abundant proof, again and again, of your warm 
attachment to America and New York. You have 
managed even to find a generous thought, a pleasant 
gesture, and a gracious word in giving through the 
painful process of paying an income tax into six 
figures." 

The speaker finished by waving one hand toward 
the table on which lay the gifts from the singer's 
admirers, among which were : a silver vase from 
the Metropolitan Opera Company directors ; an 
illuminated parchment from the thirty-five families 
owning parterre boxes in the Metropolitan, and from 
the box holders of the Brooklyn Academy of Music, 
and the Philadelphia Metropolitan Opera House ; 
a gold medal from General Manager Giulio Gatti- 
Casazza ; another from the chiefs of departments 
back stage ; a loving cup presented by the chorus ; 
a silver vase from the orchestra musicians ; a plat- 
inum watch set with two hundred and eighteen 
diamonds and sixty-one square-cut sapphires, pre- 
sented by Caruso's fellow artists ; and a silver fruit 
dish from the Victor Talking Machine Company. 

Miss Geraldine Farrar expressed the feelings of her 
assembled associates when she kissed her confrere on 
one cheek, and then called for three cheers for 
America. 

His gratitude redoubled, Caruso continued on his 



GOLDEN DAYS 335 

way. A Commodore Hotel Musicale audience lis- 
tened to him on April 2 during the presentation 
of a program which included the participation of 
Miss Mary Garden, Mischa Elman, and Arthur 
Rubinstein. A week later he appeared at a Buffalo 
concert ; and when the Metropolitan season closed 
at Atlanta, Caruso prepared for the concert tour 
under the Metropolitan Musical Bureau manage- 
ment. Miss Morgana and Mr. Breeskin were the 
assisting artists in the appearances the tenor made 
in Nashville, St. Louis, Kansas City, St. Paul, 
Chicago, Milwaukee, and Canton, Ohio. The fee for 
each concert had been seven thousand dollars, but 
one for eight thousand dollars was awaiting him at 
Springfield, Massachusetts, where he appeared with 
Signora Elena Bianchini-Cappelli, with whom he 
had not sung since 1895, in Egypt. 

For more than eighteen months Caruso had taken 
no extended rest. He was more weary than even he 
realized when he and Mrs. Caruso sailed, on May 24, 
aboard the Giuseppe Verdi, for Naples. At Signa 
there would be an opportunity for the quiet and 
recuperation he so sorely needed. He arrived there 
in due course ; but the Villa Bellosguardo was not 
plundered of its wine, oil, and other things, as was 
erroneously reported in the newspapers, during the 
trouble with the Italian Reds. That summer of 
1919 was peaceful for the singer and his wife. For 
the first time in years he had about him his family ; 
a new note of respect was reflected in the attentions 
paid to him by those who visited Signa during those 
months. 



336 ENRICO CARUSO 



Mrs. Caruso was eager that Enrico Jr. should 
finish his education in the United States; Caruso 
himself wished to have his younger boy near him, and 
so on the return voyage he was of the party. They 
landed in New York on September 3 ; and after 
Mimmi had been placed in the Gunnery School, at 
Washington, Connecticut, preparations were begun 
for the City of Mexico season of opera in which the 
tenor had agreed to sing. Since the United States 
Government had furnished assurance that no vio- 
lence might be expected en route, the journey, via 
Laredo, was begun. The private car in which 
Caruso and his party were traveling was met at the 
border by an emissary of President Carranza ; and 
when Saltillo was reached, an armored car and a 
company of soldiers were provided to escort the tenor 
in safety through a zone regarded as dangerous be- 
cause of the proximity of the bandit Villa and his 
men. 

The City of Mexico was finally reached, without 
incidents of an unusual nature, on September 22. 
Ciro Stefanini, one of Caruso's friends, had already 
rented for him the pretentious home of the widow of 
Mariscal de Limantour, former Secretary of the 
Treasury of Mexico. 

Ricardo Cabrera, a newspaperman and respected 
music chronicler of the City of Mexico, said that 
although the Caruso train arrived at the station at 
six o'clock in the morning a throng of people were 
there waiting. 



GOLDEN DAYS 337 

"He was escorted to the house prepared for his 
occupancy, at the Avenida Bucareli N. 85, where he 
breakfasted. Immediately afterwards he went to the 
office of the impresario, don Jose del Rivero," 
declares Cabrera, "where I met him. Since I had 
been honored to be Special Secretary, to be of as- 
sistance in speaking and writing Spanish, I suggested 
that we take a drink of our national appetizer, the 
famous tequila, which is a liquor made of agave in 
the province of Jalisco. Caruso was so pleased with 
this capita (glass) that later, if there was no one near 
to accompany him, he would not infrequently go 
alone to a saloon bar to have his capita of tequila. 

"The Mexican debut of Caruso took place on 
Monday, September 29, 1919, in 'L'Elisir d'Amore/ 
One cannot overestimate the occasion ; or the re- 
sponsibility of Caruso to Impresario del Rivero, who 
had not only guaranteed him seven thousand dollars 
an appearance for the eleven performances in which 
he was to sing but had deposited, the preceding 
March, in the tenor's New York bank, twenty-eight 
thousand dollars as a guaranty of good faith. 

"I remember that when the great artist first ap- 
peared on the stage of the Esperanza Iris Theater 
which is not of the best acoustically, though the 
largest and most modern we have that the audi- 
ence seemed to be holding its breath. Very evident 
was their anxiety to discover whether Caruso was 
really the phenomenon generally reputed, or, as 
some malicious tongues had gossiped, a * tenor of the 
past.' 

"The suspense ended very quickly after the first 



338 ENRICO CARUSO 

cavatina, the Quant 1 e bella, had been reached. Only 
a few bars were sung before the people realized that 
before them was indeed the most astonishing tenor 
of all times ; and this public, so easily carried off its 
feet by enthusiasm when it realizes it has not been 
cheated, rewarded Caruso, after that cavatina, with 
an ovation. Many others were to come ; I doubt, 
though, if any one meant so much to that con- 
scientious artist. When, in the last act of the opera, 
he seemed to surpass himself in Una furtiva lagrima, 
the audience appeared as if crazed. Senorita Ada 
Navarette, who is so popular among us, and who was 
the Adina, Ramon Blanchard, who sang Dulcamara, 
and Maestro Gennaro Papi, who conducted, were 
temporarily forgotten. 

" For the second appearance of Caruso, also in the 
same theater, the management had chosen 'Ballo in 
Maschera', with Senorita Clara Elena Sanchez, 
Signorina Gabriella Besanzoni, and Augusto Ordonez 
appearing in the other roles, and Maestro Attico 
Bernabini conducting. A confirmation of the first 
audience's verdict only excited the populace in 
their desires to hear this newly acclaimed tenor ; 
and the opportunity for twenty-two thousand came 
when * Carmen' was performed on Sunday, October 
5, in the El Toreo bull ring. In this representation 
were Signorina Besanzoni, and MM. Ordonez and 
de Corabi, with Maestro Papi conducting. Caruso 
had every opportunity to disclose the many sides of 
his artistic skill in 'Samson et Dalila', sung in the 
Esperanza Iris Theater on October 9, and in the 
pathetic moments during the mill scene he caused 



GOLDEN DAYS 339 

some of the auditors to weep. On this occasion 
Maestro Papi conducted 'Samson', I am told, for 
the first time in his career. 

"Ballo in Maschera' was repeated, on Sunday, 
October 12, in the El Toreo bull ring ; and the follow- 
ing Friday, in the Iris Theater, the fourth indoor 
performance took place. The opera was 'Marta/ 
and in it Caruso moved some to say, 'This must be 
the way they sing in Heaven/ The theater had been 
packed with the people an hour before the curtain 
rose ; and many who could not gain admittance 
begged, almost piteously, not to be sent away with- 
out having had a chance to hear Caruso. One could 
write at length of the singer and his impression upon 
the thousands who heard him. If we shut our eyes 
now we can hear him singing Lionel's music . . .and 
we weep in the thought that never shall we hear 
him again. We mourn him, as one mourns a de- 
parted brother." 

There followed after those performances another 
"Samson et Dalila" in the bull ring; an indoor rep- 
resentation of "Pagliacci", which was preceded 
(since they would have no other tenor, even in 
another opera, appearing with Caruso) by a sym- 
phonic concert, given as a serata d'onore to the star ; 
an open air "Ai'da", with Senora Escobar, Signorina 
Besanzoni, and Ordonez ; a concert given for the 
benefit of the City of Mexico's educational fund, in 
which Caruso sang gratis ; and an indoor farewell, 
with " Manon Lescaut." The real farewell, however, 
was taken in the El Toreo. A vote of the people 
resulted in the choice of the third act of "I/Elisir 



34 o ENRICO CARUSO 

d'Amore", the first act of "Pagliacci", and act three 
from"Marta." 

Rain began to fall. Before the "Elisir" had 
been finished many of the twenty-five thousand per- 
sons present opened umbrellas . . . and listened to 
Caruso singing to the accompaniment of pattering 
rain. "Caruso had to stop," relates Cabrera, "and 
I recall that when I reached his dressing room he was 
crying over the disappointment of the people. He 
asked me to make the announcement that if they 
would be patient, and wait, he too would wait - 
until midnight, if necessary to finish singing to 
them. Within an hour the rain ceased to fall ; 
and almost miraculously the sky cleared, permitting 
the performance to go on to its marvelous end. I 
cannot attempt to even feebly express the delighted 
madness of the spectators. They would not leave 
the arena. Instead, they waited until he appeared 
to go to his automobile ; then they charged, and the 
car had to move very slowly, because even the guard 
of cavalry soldiers could not keep people from 
climbing upon it. He left that same night for 
New York, taking with him the hearts of the Mexican 
people." 

Caruso's own impressions of his reception in the 
City of Mexico were both vivid and happy. 

"I did not meet President Carranza," he said, 
"because he was at his country home, attending his 
wife who was ill. Before I first appeared he sent me 
a courteous letter, expressing his regret that he should 
not be able to hear me sing. Other officers of the 
Mexican Government whom I met proved agreeable. 



GOLDEN DAYS 341 

They talked not at all of their affairs, but of mine. 
They all bowed before music, and seemed to know it 
well. I loved that foreign land for the reason that it 
reminded me of my own Italy. I saw only Mehico 
as they term it not Mexico. 

"When I faced that premiere audience of three 
thousand people I realized that they had assembled 
in the theater to 'be shown', as they say in America. 
They represented three thousand critics ; and, for 
all my experience, I quaked. I realized that Caruso 
must prove himself; it was my happy fortune that 
I could do so. It was strange, to see the men 
stony-faced, somber leaning a trifle forward, each 
with his right arm advanced slightly, as if it held a 
pistol . . . pointed at me to shoot, if need be. 
Deo gratias as they say in Mexico they did not 
wish to shoot. 

"Although the invitations were many, I accepted 
as few as I could without causing those desiring to 
be hosts to feel that I was not grateful. I regretted, 
particularly, that a sudden illness made it necessary 
to send word to Governor of the State, Manuel 
Rueda Magro, of my inability to attend the dinner 
for which I had sent an acceptance. 

"My lungs were strong enough to preserve me 
from any ill effects from the rarity of the City of 
Mexico atmosphere. So I experienced no physical 
inconvenience. As for drinking (there is no pro- 
hibition in Mexico) it was, on every side, 'Will 
the Seiior Commendador do me the priceless favor 
to accept a little drink?' Had I accepted every 
invitation, I question whether I should have lived 



342 ENRICO CARUSO 

to leave the country. Their pulque I tried only 
once, a single swallow was too much. 

"Owing to the Plaza del Toreo being arranged for 
the opera performances, a smaller toreo was erected 
in a nearby town, where one bull fight was arranged 
for me. I occupied President Carranza's box. After 
a time the people shouted, 'Kill the bull . . . kill 
the bull, Caruso will pay the fine/ 

"'What fine ?' I inquired, curiously. Then I was 
told that it was ordinarily forbidden to kill a bull. 
On any occasion when the conduct of the bull enrages 
the people, they insist on having it killed being 
willing to have the amount of the fine levied upon 
them ; and something this bull had done had aroused 
the ill-feelings of the spectators. But the bull was 
not killed that afternoon, and I escaped having any 
fine to pay. 

" I left the City of Mexico with the most pleasur- 
able thoughts of those who had been so kind to me. 
And I took away a gold medal given me by the 
municipality for having sung for their education 
fund. My stay in the land of manana lingers in my 
memory as one continuous fiesta." 



CHAPTER ELEVEN 
TWILIGHT 

THOSE years which had fallen away were irretriev- 
ably gone, yet in their immediate wake lay serenity 
for Enrico Caruso. He himself probably did not 
sense how little longer he was destined to sing, but 
in some vague fashion he may have caught a con- 
sciousness that the twilight of his career had begun. 
Time's touch had become manifest ; and though 
robust he moved, then, with the deliberate heaviness 
of a man whose physical buoyancy has gone. The 
once black and abundant hair had thinned ; the 
features had matured in a way to give them author- 
ity ; the singer's entire manner was that of one who 
had got somewhere and knew it. Whatever personal 
criticism may have been leveled against Caruso in 
earlier days had been gradually obliterated under the 
softening influences of an inner growth and his accom- 
plishments. The public's estimate of him was a 
prized thing, and that he meant to keep. 

It is true that he was suspicious ; he had need to 
be. His own thoroughness and love of work made 
him a severe taskmaster, demanding the utmost of 
every member of his staff ; yet he was just. But of 
administering praise he was chary. It was enough, 
in his opinion, that an employe was permitted to stay 
on with him. As for other singers : Caruso rarely 



344 ENRICO CARUSO 

commented at all upon them ; and if those who would 
have liked his favorable word were disappointed, they 
at least were not referred to in fault-finding terms. 

Until Zirato went to him, Caruso had made it a 
practice to keep personally not only his own books 
of accounts and attend to many minor matters, but 
he had insisted on cutting the coupons from his bonds. 
Indeed, one of his diversions was to go with his 
scissors to the safety deposit vault where such se- 
curities were kept. In 1919 he was persuaded to 
place such matters in the care of a trust company. 
He would not relinquish to any one else, however, 
his bookkeeping. His cash credits and debits were 
entered with his own hand, each dollar being 
strictly accounted for. There was no slighting of 
a single item of outgo. Tips, moderate losses at 
cards, and purchases of the slightest character, all 
went into Caruso's cash book ; and he drew his own 
checks, and cast his balances in the various New 
York and Italian banks where his deposits were kept. 
He never gambled a penny on the market ; instead 
he bought the bonds of nations, and of corporations 
whose stability had been long proved. Thus, in 
spite of his huge current expenditures, Caruso's 
fortune grew. At the time of writing, his estate 
had not been completely inventoried ; but it was 
then estimated as one which would probably approx- 
imate several millions of dollars. 

The singer reached New York from his Mexico 
journey on November 6, just eleven days prior to the 
1919-1920 season opening at the Metropolitan. 
He appeared in the premiere performance, which was 



TWILIGHT 345 

"Tosca", with Miss Geraldine Farrar and Antonio 
Scotti. Intense though the enthusiasm was on that 
evening, the singer's thoughts were on other and, to 
him, more important matters. The first was the 
anticipated addition to the Caruso family ; the 
second, his debut in the role of Eleazar in Halevy's 
"Lajuive." 4 

Mrs. Caruso said that she never quite compre- 
hended how her husband learned the words and music 
of his part. There was usually, at the beginning of 
any day, some immediate bit of study and practice. 
After he had spent the customary ten minutes or 
more with his salt and water, and other inhalants 
and gargles, the singer would turn to his bath. While 
he proceeded with it either Martino or Mario (his 
valets) might take to him a low music rack, with 
some score placed so that, during his splashing, he 
could read. His accompanist, likely enough, would 
be playing at the piano in a near-by room, from a 
duplicate of that same score ; and if Caruso felt so 
inclined he might sing a bit, in half-voice. 

Breakfast consisting of a cup of black coffee and 
one roll would already have been had, in bed, where 
the mail would have been disposed of; then, after 
the tub, would come a glance at a morning newspaper, 
to read cursorily some story his attention had been 
called to. Business or any pressing matters finally 
out of the way, the tenor would concern himself with 
his voice and his music. If he had no performance 
to prepare for on the approaching evening, his vocal 
exercises would be brief. Should he be scheduled 
for an opera, then the score of the work had to be 



346 ENRICO CARUSO 

played straight through every note of it to the 
end. It mattered nothing if it were to be "A'ida" 
in which he was to sing, or any other work in which 
he had appeared a hundred times or more. He in- 
sisted on refreshing perfectly his memory, and of 
placing in his mind just as firmly the words and music 
of the roles his associates were to sing. Is it any 
wonder that he was always letter perfect ? Such 
preparedness as this enabled him with his voice, 
which had such range, color, and dynamic plasticity 
to sing any piece of music in an opera he knew 
with almost the same confidence as though it were 
part of his own role. He did it, to cite a specific 
instance, during a 1915 Philadelphia representation 
of "Boheme", when Andres de Segurola stood 
in need of help. The basso was suffering from 
laryngitis. On the way from New York to Philadel- 
phia, in the Metropolitan's special train, de Segurola 
confided to Caruso that he would probably have to 
"cut" Colline's "song to the coat." 

"Don't do that," counseled the tenor, "I will 
sing it for you ; but you would better not speak about 
it to Polacco." (Polacco was the conductor of the 
night.) 

When Caruso began the air, Vecchia zimarra, 
instead of de Segurola, Polacco was astonished. 
At the close of the act he rushed back stage, furious 
because he had not been informed of what to expect. 
"We did not tell you, Giorgio," said Caruso, "for 
fear you might say 'No." 

Accustomed as she was to hearing her husband 
so constantly at his practise, Mrs. Caruso confesses 




Copyright Mtshtin, N. Y. 
CARUSO AS ELEAZAR IN " LA JUIVE 

This photograph was taken in Caruso's dressing-room at the Metropolitan Opera 
House, Dec. 24, 1920, the night of his last appearance. 



TWILIGHT 347 

to wonderment over the way the Eleazar role grew. 
"I would hear him occasionally humming some 
phrases/' she said, "and of course there were times 
when I was present during serious moments with the 
piano. But Enrico learned the words and music of 
this character, it seemed to me, with less effort and 
certainly with much less expenditure of time than 
he customarily gave to a new part. He wrote the 
text and notes, and * business* of the action, in a small 
book which he could carry about with him, just 
as he always did. And I daresay that he spent many 
an hour with Mr. Bodanzky, to get the maestro's 
ideas of tempi. For Enrico was careful, always, to 
get the interpretative ideas any conductor with whom 
he was to sing might have with respect to his music. 
His own individuality never was interfered with ; 
on the contrary, he always insisted that he felt freer 
in singing if he knew the precise attitude of a maestro 
toward any opera in question. It was so with 
Maestri Moranzoni and Papi ; and I distinctly recall 
that, while Enrico had previously sung Chenier in 
* Andrea Chenier', he asked Maestro Moranzoni to 
visit him to go over the score which he was preparing 
for the Metropolitan's 1921 revival. He never was 
able to sing it, as all of us know ; on the night it 
was first presented at the Metropolitan he lay des- 
perately ill." 

It was the consensus of opinion that Eleazar was 
the crowning effort of Enrico Caruso's career. The 
critics so wrote ; even the public, though some part 
of it may have preferred him in some other role, was 
impressed as by no other with the artist's vocal, 



348 ENRICO CARUSO 

musical, and dramatic artistry. As The Jew, Caruso 
was a towering figure. He appeared, declared the 
most competent authorities, so natural and so 
spontaneous that it was as though one were hearing 
and seeing, in reality, the character represented. 

The tenor had been long in preparing for it. He 
spent considerable time in the New York Public 
Library, studying his subject and the character of 
Shylock from books and plays. Similar attention 
was given to the costuming side ; and Caruso asked 
a friend Mrs. Seima Shubart to assist him in 
rinding a shawl such as a Rabbi wears while saying 
prayers. This lady at length secured from a New 
York Rabbi a silken white and black scarf which had 
been in use ; and it was the one the tenor wore in the 
scene wherein Eleazar presents the unleavened bread 
to his co-religionists just before the Princess interrupts 
that ceremony. To other essentials small as well 
as large having to do with the faithful portraiture 
of the character of the aged Jew, Caruso devoted 
much effort. How fitting it all was ! For this was 
the last new role in which his best-loved and best- 
loving public was to have him. His associates in 
that cast were Miss Rosa Ponselle, as Rachel ; Miss 
Evelyn Scotney, in the part of the Princess ; Orville 
Harrold, appearing as Prince Leopold ; and Leon 
Rothier, as Cardinal Brogni. Artur Bodanzky con- 
ducted. 

On December 18, 1919, in the Knickerbocker Hotel, 
New York, a girl baby was born to Enrico and 
Dorothy Caruso. Congratulations flooded the father 
and mother, in person, and by telegraph and telephone 



TWILIGHT 349 

from innumerable parts of the world. The tenor 
was like a child in this new experience, which brought 
him delight and joy. The following evening a 
Friday he appeared at the Metropolitan in 
"L'Elisir d'Amore", where he received from the 
audience an ovation which said plainly, " We are 
happy for you !" 

Christened Gloria Caruso, a baby book was at 
once secured for the tiny newcomer. Giulio Gatti- 
Casazza was the first person to write in this book. 
His inscription was: "To Gloria, every glory!" 
She was baptized on February 7, 1920, in the Caruso 
Knickerbocker suite, special permission from Mon- 
signor Lavelle having been secured to allow the cere- 
mony to be performed outside the church. Monsignor 
Gherardo Ferrante officiated ; Signora Marchesa 
Orazio Cappelli was the godmother. Immediate 
members of both sides of the Caruso families, and a 
dozen others, were present. Among those who sent 
gifts were Mr. and Mrs. Henry H. Rogers, Mrs. 
Ogden Goelet, and Italo Montemezzi, the composer. 

The presence of a girl baby in the Caruso household 
gave the singer a new interest ; so deep an interest 
did it become that he was appreciably affected and 
influenced in a number of vital respects. Little 
Gloria thrived ; she had as a frequent companion 
the greatest of tenors, although she did not appear 
to be at all awed over the fact. At first he was merely 
an agreeable and rather attentive person, whom she 
liked. Later, she called him by some name of her 
own conjuring. 

If Caruso had been responsive in other days to 



350 ENRICO CARUSO 

appeals for financial assistance, the coming of Gloria 
softened his heart still more. And how well his 
friends knew him is indicated in a letter written to the 
tenor that January 12, by Miss Farrar. The body 
of the letter ran thus : 

My dear Enrico : 

If I may beg five minutes of your attention from 
the young heiress Gloria, may I ask you to let me 
have your name on a Committee which is making up 
a fund for our first great American singer, Minnie 
Hauk, born long before our time and now in her 
seventieth year, blind, destitute, and in misery ? I 
want to get as much contribution as I can, and I feel 
that the artists at the head of the Committee are 
the people who can interest our public in such a thing. 

It is not agreeable to ask charity, and I never do, 
but in this case it is the first time we have ever had 
the privilege of helping an American name. I am 
asking everybody to give one hundred dollars to this 
subscription as well, but if the calls on your pocket 
have been too many, my real object is for you to 
join the Committee. 

With affectionate wishes to you and Madame 
for 1920. 

As ever, 
Geraldine. 

At the end was a postscript, not the inevitable 
feminine addenda, but a single sentence which must 
have caused the tenor to chuckle : 

P. S. Please make check payable to Mr. Waldron 
P. Belknap, Treasurer, and send it to Mr. Albert 
Morris Bagby, Vice-President, Waldorf-Astoria, New 
York City, marked "Minnie Hauk Fund." 




Copyright by Keystone View Co., N. Y. 



GLORIA 



The photograph was taken in the garden of Mrs. Caruso's rented house at No. 144 
East ssth Street, New York City. 



TWILIGHT 351 

"Pagliacci", "Samson et Dalila", "Marta", 
"Manon Lescaut", "Forza del Destine", and five 
repetitions of "La Juive" had been some of the rep- 
resentations demanding the singer's attention up 
to the christening date of Gloria. Five days later a 
slight attack of bronchitis caused him to miss a 
scheduled appearance in "Manon Lescaut", and he 
had not recovered in time, one week later, to sing 
in "Le Prophete." The indisposition had subsided 
by February 21, for on that evening Caruso appeared 
in "Le Prophete", and, at the Saturday matinee of 
that week, in "La Juive." He missed no further 
performances during that season, for he continued on 
through to May i in Atlanta where he sang 
for the last time there, in "L'Elisir d'Amore." He 
had forty-seven engagements in all (two less than the 
preceding season), and his cachets totaled $117,500. 

But the earnings from Caruso's concert engage- 
ments had been large. During the course of the 
active months at the opera the tenor had managed 
to find opportunities to sing at the Waldorf-Astoria, 
and in Detroit, Pittsburgh, Waterbury, Connecticut, 
and Scranton, Pennsylvania. For these out-of-town 
appearances Caruso received seven thousand dollars 
each. One other appearance outside the opera was 
recorded in New York's Lexington Opera House, 
on the evening of March 28. The occasion was a 
drive for the Italian Dollar Loan, and Caruso's 
associates included Signora Luisa Tetrazzini and 
Riccardo Stracciari. The tenor sang Tosti's A 
Fucchella, in return for which a man in the audience 
purchased fifty thousand dollars in bonds. 



352 ENRICO CARUSO 

His Atlanta contract fulfilled, Caruso turned in 
the direction of Havana. He had never appeared 
there. The people were insistent that he should 
be brought to them, at any price. Adolfo Bracale 
was the impresario who undertook the venture ; and 
in certain respects it was to be that, for he had had 
to guarantee Caruso ten thousand dollars for each 
evening appearance, and five thousand dollars for 
every matinee. To insure to himself a profit, Bracale 
charged very high prices for seats, and this, as events 
proved, was not relished by the Havana public. 

II 

Caruso reached Cuba's metropolis on May 5, and 
went to his quarters in the Hotel Sevilla. Signore 
Maria Barrientos, Carmen Melis, Gabriella Besan- 
zoni, and Escobar, and MM. Mardones, Stracciari 
and Parvis were of the Bracale Company, of which 
Maestro Padovani was principal conductor. A full 
week off was the premiere, to be given at the Nacional 
Theater, and in which Caruso was to be introduced 
to the Cubans in "Marta." The tenor had ordered 
for every role save one a complete set of new costumes, 
of a lighter material than he ordinarily wore, because 
of the extreme heat in Havana. " L'Elisir d'Amore " 
was the opera in which the singer had expected to 
make his debut. When he learned that "Marta", 
for excellent reasons, had been substituted there 
was a commotion. It would never do to undertake an 
important first appearance in a new costume. For- 
tunately, Punzo (Caruso's wardrobier) had thought 



TWILIGHT 353 

to put some old costumes into the trunks ; and that 
of Lionel chanced to be among them. 

The Nacional was packed for that opening 
"Marta" performance. True to form, Caruso was 
excessively nervous beforehand. He knew something 
of the Latin temperament ; and so much was expected 
of him that to fail, in even slight measure, was likely 
as not to arouse a protest. Some experts have in- 
sisted that the greatest vocal moments the tenor 
ever experienced were in Mexico and Havana. " He 
realized," declared one of them, "that his New York 
audience even all the United States audiences 
would accept, and be satisfied, with whatever he had 
to give. But those Mexicans and Cubans . . . they 
were another people/' 

Perhaps. Nevertheless, the Lionel of Caruso 
prompted his listeners that May I2th night to make 
a demonstration which only a supreme voice and 
singing could have aroused. On May 16, at a 
matinee, the opera was repeated ; and two evenings 
later the tenor was heard in "L'Elisir d'Amore." 
After his "Ballo in Maschera", on the 2ist, and 
"Pagliacci", four days later, the recognition was 
"enough." Scarcely equal, it must be admitted, 
to the Mexican ovations, yet sufficient to convince 
Caruso that the trip southwards had not been made 
in vain. 

"Tosca", a "Pagliacci" matinee, two evening 
representations of "Carmen", and one of "Ai'da" 
established a Caruso vogue in Havana. The populace 
clamored for seats, despite the prices. For an 
orchestra place twenty dollars was the box-office 



354 ENRICO CARUSO 

price ; and it angered many people, and furnished 
food for the gossips whose tongues would not be stilled. 
Even before his arrival in the city, a Havana news- 
paper had begun upon Caruso a series of violent 
attacks. His private and professional life were 
made subjects for extended abuse, and had any of 
these articles reached the singer's eyes there might 
have been trouble. They moderated as the season 
wore on, yet they are felt to have caused some damage. 

A testimonial concert of the same nature as the two 
given Caruso in Mexico a Serata d'onore pre- 
ceded, on June n, a mixed bill which included the 
third act of "L'Elisir", and the first from " Pagliacci." 
The auditors put no restraint upon their plaudits, 
with the result that the singer returned to his hotel 
in a satisfied frame of mind. 

Two nights later came "Ai'da", and a crisis in 
one of the most trying opera engagements Caruso 
had known. "La Forza del Destino" was to have 
been given ; it was abandoned because of differences 
between Bracale and the agent of Ricordi and Com- 
pany, over the payment of copyright fees. The 
tenor had sung his Celeste A'ida in a manner that had 
wrought the audience to a frenzy. Signore Escobar 
and Besanzoni had finished their second-act duet ; 
and Caruso was in his dressing room changing into 
Radames's costume for the Triumphal Scene. There 
came a sudden explosion from some part of the 
theater, which threw those present into a panic. 
It proved to be a bomb (believed, to this day, to have 
been instigated by some person or persons angered at 
the alleged excessive prices put upon the tickets). 



TWILIGHT 355 

No lives were lost ; no one was seriously injured ; 
no particular property damage was done ; but the 
frightened people rushed for the street. The police 
and firemen arrived quickly, and aided in preserving 
sufficient order to see the audience safely out of the 
theater. The representation stopped at that point ; 
and without waiting to change from his costume into 
street attire, Caruso went to his waiting automobile 
and clad as the triumphant Radames was driven 
through the streets amid cheers from those near 
by. 

This experience in itself would have been enough 
to unnerve the tenor. Unfortunately, it had come 
only a few days after a first one which, although of 
quite a different character, was still sufficient to 
put Caruso in an uneasy frame of mind. On June 8, 
at Easthampton, Long Island, where the Carusos 
had leased a villa for the summer, Mrs. Caruso had 
been robbed of jewels valued at one hundred and fifty 
thousand dollars. Indications had pointed to the 
theft as having been committed by some one well 
acquainted with the movements of the household, 
which then consisted of Mrs. Caruso, her sister-in- 
law, Mrs. Park Benjamin, their children, and ser- 
vants. A representative for the Associated Press 
had visited the Nacional Theater, during the first 
"Ai'da" performance, with the news. Zirato suc- 
ceeded in keeping it from his employer until after 
the final curtain ; he waited until they were supping, 
at the Sevilla, to relate what had occurred. The 
tenor sent at once a cablegram of reassurance, and, 
after passing over the loss as something not to worry 



356 ENRICO CARUSO 

about, begged Mrs. Caruso to think only of herself 
and Gloria. 

But the tenor was anxious and restless. He wished 
to get the Cuban engagement well over with, and 
after appearing at Santa Clara, in a mixed-bill made 
up of acts from "L'Elisir d'Amore" and "Pagliacci", 
and at Cienfuegos, in "Ai'da", he refused Bracale's 
pleadings that he remain and give in Havana two 
or three additional "popular" performances. He 
was excessively concerned for the safety of his wife 
and child ; several cablegrams each day were passing 
between the singer and Mrs. Caruso. And then came 
another bit of disturbing news, the sale of the 
Knickerbocker Hotel. The information made Caruso 
downcast ; he had become attached to the place ; 
it was home to him ; now, with all else that had so 
recently occurred, he regarded it as an omen of ill- 
fortune to come. 

There was still a New Orleans concert appearance 
which had been arranged for him by the Metropolitan 
Musical Bureau, an appearance the tenor felt 
in honor bound to keep. He would have liked to 
cancel it ; doubtless he would have done so if it had 
not been for his sense of obligation and his pride that 
his word, once given, must at all hazards be respected. 

He therefore sailed from Havana for New Orleans, 
on June 23, on board the SS. Cartago ; and with the 
New Orleans appearance behind him, he proceeded 
direct to Atlantic City, where Mrs. Caruso and Baby 
Gloria were waiting to meet him. 

The Atlantic City objective was consequent upon a 
promise Caruso had made Calvin Child to sing for 



TWILIGHT 357 

members of the Victor organization who were as- 
sembled there in convention. Fatigued as he was, 
the tenor sang his arias and songs with a conscien- 
tiousness in nowise different than if the occasion 
had been a regular public appearance. His concern 
was manifested, after the concert, in his remark 
about the acoustics of the hotel ballroom in which 
the concert had been held. Because of the low ceil- 
ing he had wondered about the impression he had 
made ; and as he joined Mrs. Caruso, Mr. and Mrs. 
Child and others of their party he inquired, "How 
did my voice sound ? To me it seemed out of reso- 
nance." Only a Caruso could take so modest a 
view of his own work. 

A few days were spent in New York ; then the 
Caruso family left, on July 4, for their Long Island 
home. With the exception of a single concert the 
Metropolitan bureau arranged for at Ocean Grove, 
New Jersey (another seven thousand dollar affair), 
there was no further singing by the tenor that summer. 
He had long looked forward to that vacation ; the 
place itself was several miles out of town, a low 
and comfortable house set on the shore of a bit of 
inland water, with woods all about. But the robbery 
had upset Caruso's peace of mind, and detectives 
of the insurance companies which had written poli- 
cies on the stolen jewels were almost too active. 
They would appear at unexpected moments to 
quiz some member of the household and some of 
the questions and insinuations were scarcely pleas- 
ant. The jewels, at the time of writing, had not been 
recovered. In 1921 two insurance companies paid 



358 ENRICO CARUSO 

$75,000 and $18,000 respectively on policies Caruso 
had carried. 

Impresario Bracale exerted unsuccessfully every 
possible influence to induce Caruso to go to Lima, 
Peru, for the season he had prepared to give in that 
South American city. Caruso was worried ; his 
health, further aggravated by headaches, gave those 
close to him more concern than they cared openly 
to admit. 

After the discharge of the chauffeur who had fallen 
into disfavor with his employer, the atmosphere 
about the Caruso country place continued laden 
with oppression. Friends came and went ; there were 
unpretentious dinner parties, and an occasional game 
of cards. Daytime relaxations included a few tries 
at lawn tennis, also a bit of boating, since a small 
craft was moored at the near-by landing. Sponta- 
neous enjoyment, however, seemed rarely to touch 
the singer during his Easthampton sojourn. Mrs. 
Caruso had fixed up a study for him in one wing of 
the house, and he worked there, when he was 
not spending his time with her, or playing with 
Gloria. 

July and August passed ; September induced 
thoughts of the coming season, and on the twelfth 
of that month the Carusos moved into the new 
apartment they had rented in the Vanderbilt 
Hotel. It was the one Alfred Gwynne Vanderbilt 
had planned and, for a time, occupied. On the top- 
most floor, its roominess and convenience seemed 
well suited to the Caruso needs. Yet the tenor 
crossed the threshold with a sense of uneasiness. 



TWILIGHT 359 

III 

There appeared to be no rest for the weary. An 
extensive tournee had been booked by the Metropol- 
itan Musical Bureau : three at ten thousand dollars 
each, and eight at seven thousand dollars. The open- 
ing one, at Montreal, had been set for September 28 ; 
then the route took the little company which 
included as assisting artists Miss Alice Miriam, 
soprano, and Albert Stoessel, violinist to Toronto, 
Chicago, St. Paul, and Denver. From this city 
to Omaha, thence to Tulsa, Oklahoma, and still 
farther south to Fort Worth and Houston, lay the 
itinerary, which finished with two concerts at Char- 
lotte, North Carolina, and Norfolk, Virginia. 

Such traveling was certain to fatigue the tenor, 
yet he did not feel, with the income tax burden im- 
pending, that he could afford to refuse so enticing a 
reward. Before he took train for Montreal he went 
on September 14, to Camden, New Jersey. And 
there, for several successive days, he made what were 
to be his final phonograph recordings. The very 
last record of all was Rossini's Messa Solennelle. 

If Caruso was tired from his efforts covering almost 
continuous singing from the middle of September 
to the end of October, he must have reached New 
York with the consciousness that others agreed with 
the substance of a letter Otto H. Kahn had written 
him, a few seasons before. In it the Chairman of the 
Metropolitan board had said : 

I have so often and so enthusiastically expressed 
my admiration to you, that I can hardly add anything 



360 ENRICO CARUSO 

to what I have already said. And yet having 
just heard you in "Marta" I feel impelled once 
more to send you a line of thanks and of admiration. 
Your voice was always by far the most beautiful 
organ I have ever heard, and your art was always 
great. But the combination of your God-given 
voice, in its most splendid form as it is this season, 
together with the maturity and perfection to which 
your art has grown, is beyond praise. And to sing, 
as you do, with the same artistic perfection, heroic 
parts and lyric parts, is a most astounding artistic 
feat. 

Please do not trouble to acknowledge this letter. 
It is simply meant as a spontaneous tribute of ad- 
miration and gratitude, which is not new to you, but 
which, under the inspiration of your last few per- 
formances, I could not refrain from tendering to you 
once more. 

Believe me, with sincere regards, 

Very faithfully yours, 

Otto H. Kahn. 

The tribute of this art patron would doubtless 
have been echoed by countless numbers throughout 
the world, had they known. For the tenor had be- 
come an idol. Even persons who were not musical 
knew who Caruso was and why. What few of the 
whole vast number even faintly realized was the 
responsibility Caruso's artistic position had wrought. 
He was human, and being human he appreciated as 
he had so often said how machine-like he was ex- 
pected invariably to be. Perhaps this was one cause 
for his sensitiveness to the sort of criticism which 
appeared in three New York daily newspapers 
the Herald, the Times, and the World soon after 



TWILIGHT 361 

he had made his 1920-1921 premiere in "La Juive." 
"L'Elisir d'Amore" had followed, on November 18, 
"Samson et Dalila", on the 24th and three days 
later a "Forza del Destine/' But the Caruso who 
had sung in these operas was not, in the judgment 
of the trio of music chroniclers, the Caruso of the 
season before. Others, perhaps equally capable of 
as correct appraisement, had disagreed with the 
objectors, who attributed to overwork the tenor's 
alleged lapse in vocal powers. " He wants too much 
money," declared one of the three critics. 

In his Vanderbilt Hotel study, Caruso read the 
newspaper articles and was distressed. Matters 
had certainly gone awry since he had left his long- 
established home in the Knickerbocker. The singer 
was superstitious and subject, as are so many having 
the artistic temperament, to being affected by signs 
or occurrences. Thus, to meet in the street a nun 
was a direct order to instantly change the direction 
of his course ; but should chance cause him to see a 
man hunchback, after having passed a woman so 
deformed, it portended good ; otherwise the former 
was an indication of some ill-luck. To pass under a 
ladder, a stage bridge, or any piece of board put up 
amid the scenery, was a thing Caruso never con- 
sciously did. And it was one of his rules to avoid, 
if possible, starting a new undertaking on either a 
Tuesday or Friday. That so intelligent a man could be 
influenced by such superstitions and many others 
which he had is not so strange as may appear. For 
Caruso was highly emotional, and the premonitions 
he sometimes experienced seemed in some fashion 






362 ENRICO CARUSO 

to be identified with that part of him which can best 
be analyzed as the outgrowth of an extreme sensi- 
tiveness. 

Religion, from his earliest youth, had caught and 
held him. The tenor's own mother taught him to be 
" devout and prayerful." Father Tonello remembers, 
as does many another, that Caruso had in his dressing 
room a little statue of the Madonna, one of St. 
Anthony, and one of his mother ; and his reverence 
for the Church, its laws, and its priests never relaxed. 
Above Caruso's bed hung a solid silver crucifix, while 
near by were his prayer book, and his beads. "I am 
aware that some, knowing a few facts of Caruso's 
life," said Father Tonello; "his human weaknesses 
and shortcomings, have branded his religious senti- 
ments as superstitious. There might have been a 
light touch of that in Caruso, as in some other men 
we read of in history. I know that, even in our 
day, there have been some highly educated and 
intellectual men who wore charms or talismans 
to protect themselves from evil. Caruso was not of 
this type. His religion was neither hypocrisy nor 
superstition, but was true faith. Besides the fact 
that occasionally when Caruso and I were alone 
the topic of religion would come up, in many of his 
letters which I keep as precious, I have the testi- 
mony of his belief and faith in God." 

From the many facts at hand it is clear that Caruso 
lived largely according to the golden rule. His 
thoughtfulness of others was never spasmodic. 
Rather was it a thoughtfulness governed, as was his 
life, by a sort of regularity. At Christmas he never 



TWILIGHT 363 

forgot many of the Metropolitan Opera House attaches 
and employes. Gifts of one kind and another were 
rarely omitted (he retained, in a book, the names of 
persons he wished in various ways to remember) ; 
and to members of the chorus and to others the tenor 
tendered money. Some were of course overlooked, 
but such omission was never intentional ; and if 
Caruso ever learned of a seeming slight, where 
generosity should have figured, he hastened to 
make amends. The probabilities are that he did 
not administer, in every manner of respect, with 
unfailing justice ; few men do. But his heart, oftener 
than not, was in the right place. 

On this account he felt aggrieved that he should 
have been criticized, that autumn of 1920, in a manner 
he deemed unjust. In his rundown condition at the 
time, he may have magnified what others passed 
over as not worthy of serious thought. For he 
had been previously subjected to expert consideration 
which, though appearing in the public press, had not 
moved him to such despair as these latest critical 
notices. 

"I know when I sing well or badly," he said, in 
discussing these unfavorable reviews, " and after each 
of those performances that gave offense to those 
writers I came home satisfied." 

Advised to discontinue reading the criticisms 
if they were so disturbing to his peace of mind the 
tenor only shook his head. " So long as I feel I am 
displeasing I must read them." 

The climax came not long after the opening of that 
1920-1921 season. Caruso must indeed have been 



364 ENRICO CARUSO 

far from physical and nervous health to have allowed 
himself to become so disheartened. Or it may have 
been that, fearing he might indeed be slipping, he 
doubted being able to stand up under what, in his 
agitated state, he feared might be actual failure. 
His pride and sensitiveness were too keen to enable 
him to withstand the effects of such a shock. And 
as the days passed, and his self-doubt threw a still 
stronger shadow, Caruso finally surrendered to the 
inner enemy which had pressed persistently upon 
him. 

Few persons knew of it at the time ; it was possible 
to keep the matter secret, and it is perhaps fortunate 
that the newspapers never learned what happened. 
For at the zenith of his career, and with the public 
as completely at his feet as ever, Caruso informed 
Gatti-Casazza of the Metropolitan that he wished to 
resign. 

"If I sing as those critics say I sing," he wrote 
to Gatti-Casazza, "it is time I appeared no more 
before the New York public." 

No bomb, thrown in the opera's executive sanctum, 
could have caused greater consternation. Gatti 
knew too well the temper of his chiefest asset. What 
he had said he should do he assuredly would do, once 
he became convinced no other course lay open. To 
arrest that decision was the task the impresario 
realized must be done, and as quickly as possible ; 
so he went, posthaste, to the Vanderbilt, where he 
and Caruso had a long talk. 

One other friend to the tenor came, fortunately, 
into the situation a few days afterwards. His 



TWILIGHT 365 

knowledge of the conditions, and his counsel, supple- 
menting the appeal Gatti had made, put fresh courage 
into Caruso. He would try again, he agreed, to 
show them what Caruso could do. If he failed . 

"Samson et Dalila" was the opera. Who that 
heard can forget the singing of the tenor on the eve- 
ning of December 3, 1920 ! After the second act this 
friend from whom Caruso hoped to get the truth went 
to him in his dressing room. The singer was changing 
costumes ; but he instantly waved an arm of dismis- 
sal to his valet Mario, and Punzo, his wardrobier. 
Sitting in his undergarments, the tenor took a deep 
puff from the cigarette he was smoking. 

"Well ?" he said, inquiringly. 

The visitor shrugged his shoulders ; then he replied, 
"There is nothing to be said you yourself don't 
know. In the morning the critics will confirm what 
I say." 

And the following day the reviewers for the Times, 
the Herald, and the World wrote in effect that Caruso 
had sung gloriously. 

IV 

Just how did Caruso sing ? Innumerable persons 
have asked the question, which has been variously 
answered. From a strictly technical standpoint this 
matter of curiosity is natural enough ; and there 
can be little doubt that singers and teachers, who 
often heard the tenor, have explained, more or less 
satisfactorily, approximately how he controlled that 
marvelous voice of his. To hear him sing as he sang 
that "Samson" performance was to hear the Caruso 



366 ENRICO CARUSO 

who used a technique quite different from one he 
might employ for a different type of role. For, as 
has already been set forth in these pages, he sum- 
moned at will a quality and volume of voice to suit 
the mood of text and music of what lay before him ; 
to do this required using his vocal apparatus in a 
variety of ways. 

He was gifted, unquestionably, with vocal re- 
sources of a phenomenal order ; and not alone in 
natural beauty of tone, but in compass, flexibility, 
color, endurance, and power. Laryngologists who 
have examined the singer's throat and vocal chords 
state that the length and thickness of the chords 
gave the capacity to sound extreme notes, both low 
and high, while their peculiar softness was largely 
responsible for the richness of timbre. And yet, one 
eminent authority (who was an intimate friend of the 
tenor's and a constant companion fora period of years) 
asserts that Caruso's vocal chords were not only 
unexceptional, but that they did not give him his 
unique voice. This may be a matter of opinion, 
even in scientific circles, yet it would appear that the 
harmonious working of the entire Caruso vocal 
mechanism was chiefly responsible for his superb 
technique. 

Since he did not always possess it, there must exist 
an interest as to just what that technique was, and 
how it was acquired. 

During the singer's early years, as a tenor, it may 
be recalled that his voice is accurately reported as 
having been light to the point of thinness, and that 
the high tones were insecure. That he sang without 



TWILIGHT 367 

marked physical effort during a critical period of 
voice-development was undoubtedly fortunate. And 
an analysis of the evidence at hand would seem to 
indicate that Caruso fell, naturally, into a way of 
breathing which was the correct way, and, there- 
fore, Nature's own. Such must have been the case ; 
otherwise, when Lombardi took him in hand (in 
1896) to develop the needed power of tone and the 
high notes, the subsequent smoothness and liquid- 
like quality never would have ensued. 

Caruso was probably singing with a constricted 
throat in those earliest days. From the accounts 
reported through first-hand sources he could not 
have sung otherwise. How he succeeded as he 
did in securing a natural relaxation of the muscles 
of the throat and of the tongue, is something Caruso 
never satisfactorily explained. It is doubtful if he 
really knew. Something happened, when he was 
ripe to take advantage of whatever the combination 
of circumstances was, to enable him to fall into a 
vocally safe and secure way of delivering his singing 
voice. 

After that point had been reached it was a matter, 
merely so far as vocal technique was concerned 
for him to apply his rare singing instinct, and to 
appear in public as frequently as possible. 

Once his entire vocal mechanism (breath, and its 
control ; vocal cords, throat, tongue, jaw, and lips) 
began to function in complete accord, the develop- 
ment of technique was only a matter of time. Ex- 
perience brought confidence ; and when maturity 
was added to this, the technique acquired could be (as 



368 ENRICO CARUSO 

it always is, by any one markedly proficient in any 
interpretative branch of an art) forgotten. 

Using a minimum supply of breath, and learning 
after long practice to distribute it with the utmost 
conservation, Caruso for a long time never forced 
his tones. To whatever extent he may have done 
so during the years following 1905, it is a fact that 
almost never did he " drive" the voice during the 
period of his fullest vocal glory. He sang beautifully 
because he sang naturally ; and one of the secrets, if 
there be any in singing technique, was the purity 
of his vowels, and his clear attack of consonants. 
Whoever understands the fundamentals which govern 
correct singing technique realizes the importance of 
enunciation. The more distinct it is, the freer and 
more agreeable the tone. 

Singing exclusively for years in the Italian lan- 
guage, and having spoken it always, was an added 
help to the Caruso technique. Every Italian word 
ends with a vowel and every vowel ends as it is begun, 
without a vanishing point, unlike English. It is 
this vanishing point which causes the singer trained in 
the English tongue to unconsciously "swallow" the 
tone, a practice fatal to the emission of a free and 
pure musical sound. 

When Caruso attacked a tone (excepting in later 
years, when he permitted himself an unnecessary and 
a regrettable habit of scooping the higher notes), 
he attacked precisely, with his throat open, the 
tongue and jaw relaxed, the lips forming perfectly 
the vowel of the word to be enunciated, and the 
breath properly supporting the tone but seldom 



TWILIGHT 369 

forcing it. He secured his brilliancy and resonance 
principally from the spaces of the mouth and head, 

especially the latter. They were reinforced by 
the resonance supplied by Caruso's deep chest (his 
entire body aided in this respect), but he directed 
this tone to the front of the face, one might say al- 
most at a sort of disk, made up of that part from 
the base of the nose to the lower part of the fore- 
head and including the cheek bones. 

Many persons will recall that Caruso often frowned 
when he sang, drawing his eyebrows together until 
there appeared furrows just above his nose. He 
always said that this seemed to help in concentrat- 
ing the tone in a way that was most effective. The 
base of the nose always expanded sidewise during 
this physiological singing act ; and it gradually en- 
larged during later years of his life, as a comparing 
of photographs will show. 

But if any one fancies that either the translucent 
warmth or the robust vigor of Caruso's best tones 
came from any pronounced physical effort, such 
belief is incorrect. He was able to reinforce the 
resonance of each tone through "letting it filter" to 
the places where it could radiate to all the spaces 
which yield resonance. To do this his vocal 
mechanism coordinating with such smooth perfection 

was, for him, simple enough. He was spontane- 
ous and natural in delivering a singing tone. There- 
fore, his singing, save in moments of greatest dra- 
matic stress when unusual emphasis was required, was 
no manifestly greater exertion than it was for him to 
talk. If there were any real secret to the Caruso 



370 ENRICO CARUSO 

method, it would seem to lie, to a considerable ex- 
tent, in the fact that he "talked" his tones. 

All the talk, at various times current, that Caruso 
sang "by the grace of God", was scarcely correct. 
His very special endowment, extraordinary as it 
was, for its fullest development required precisely 
what Caruso supplied : intelligent and ceaseless 
work. During the first decade of his career he sang 
almost constantly, no matter where he was. As 
late as 1912 he continued, if in a lesser degree, to do 
so ; and in his rooms, or when he was engaged else- 
where at some task, or even when strolling, he would 
exercise his voice in something midway between a 
hum and a very light tone. Thereafter this practice 
gradually subsided ; and Mrs. Caruso says that 
during the summer of 1920 she heard the sound of 
his voice about the Easthampton house only a few 
times. 

Belief that Caruso did not really know how he 
produced his tones is erroneous. On the contrary 
he understood exactly what he did, and why. His 
communicative powers, however, were not marked ; 
his failure to convey to his one pupil the things he 
sought to convey is striking proof of this. But he 
could explain clearly under questioning. This really 
was the one way to extract from him his knowledge 
of the technique of singing, no less than his knowl- 
edge of his own technique. On occasions he has been 
known to say "yes" to some question about voice 
when he did not really agree. Such instances in- 
variably arose at being quizzed when he was not in 
the mood, or when the questioner's ideas on the 



ran. ad 



should, live! Love 



Love her I must or die 




Copyright by Boosey & Co. 



A PAGE FROM SECCHl's "LOVE ME OR NOT," ILLUSTRATING CARUSO'S ORIGINAL 
METHOD OF TEACHING HIMSELF HOW TO SING IN ENGLISH 

His English rendering is spelt according to the Italian rules of pronunciation. 



TWILIGHT 371 

subject matter were so at variance with his own that 
he did not wish to bother. 

He spoke freely and at length about singing tech- 
nique to only a few persons. Now that he is gone 
one learns of the claims of certain persons, who 
profess to have obtained at first hand from Caruso 
specific information as to how he sang. The only 
documentary evidence thus far come to light is 
presented in a book on the scientific side of the sing- 
ing voice. The material was written by one who was 
a close friend to the tenor ; he personally indorsed 
it shortly before his death. 

Theories expounded by many voice educators to 
the effect that the human vocal instrument is deli- 
cate and requires constant tending were exploded by 
Caruso. He smoked cigarettes constantly and was 
careless about his diet. During an entr'acte of a 
performance in which he was appearing, it was his 
custom to eat an apple ; he smoked before going 
upon the stage, and immediately when he came off. 
In brief, he treated his voice like the exceedingly 
durable instrument a well-used singing voice really is. 

On the way to the theater Caruso was generally 
cheerful, and inclined to jest. Once in his dressing 
room a full two hours before the curtain was sched- 
uled to rise, his attitude changed. Nothing would 
be right ; nobody appeared able to satisfy him. In 
his nervous irritability which always preceded his 
appearance before an audience, the tenor would 
complain about seeming trivialities : some part of 
his makeup, a wig that did not set as he thought it 
should, a tie, or shoes and stockings. Often because 



372 ENRICO CARUSO 

some trifle he reached for on his dressing table might 
be mislaid, Caruso would seize the cover and, with 
an angry jerk, send bottles and all the other para- 
phernalia on the table flying. 

During those two hours which preceded the be- 
ginning of any premiere, the tenor's nervousness 
would not subside. On such occasions he would 
warm up his voice with light scales and other simple 
exercises, to make the instrument pliant and agile. 
Then would come the inhalant ; after that a pinch 
of Swedish tobacco snuff, to clear the nostrils ; and 
finally a gargle of lukewarm water and salt. He was 
then ready for the sip of diluted Scotch whisky, 
and the stage. 

No Metropolitan representation ever began with- 
out the visit, several times, of Ludovico Viviani, 
an assistant stage manager, to inquire if Caruso were 
ready. And it was always, "May we begin, Mr. 
Caruso?" 

Particular to the last detail about his own costumes 
and makeup, and the appropriateness of any other 
matters bearing upon a performance, the singer was 
easily annoyed if an associate did anything he con- 
sidered not good in taste. During one "Marta" 
representation at the Metropolitan, Caruso arrived 
on the stage after he had been informed by Viviani 
that all was in readiness for the second act. The 
curtain should have immediately risen, but there was 
no soprano. Inquiries disclosed that she had not 
yet finished curling her hair. Caruso was furious. 
When the scene had been finished, he told the singer 
that servants not only did not curl their hair, but 



TWILIGHT 373 

that they wore neither silk dresses nor silken stockings. 
The soprano was wise enough to heed the advice ; at 
the next " Marta" in which she appeared the materials 
of her garments were simple, her hair quite straight. 

Paul Althouse once had an experience with Caruso 
over a costume. He had paused at the door of the 
great tenor's dressing room on his way to the stage. 
Althouse had been cast for Turiddu in "Cavalleria 
Rusticana", which was to precede "Pagliacci" with 
Caruso. The latter looked at his younger confrere, 
then gasped. "What !" he exclaimed, "a first tenor 
of the Metropolitan dressed like you ? What a 
reflection on this institution ! Here, Mario," com- 
manded Caruso, "get out my Cavalleria costume." 
He ordered Viviani to hold the curtain ; took Althouse 
into his dressing room ; the change of costumes was 
made and, observing the excellent fit, the singer said, 
"There, you look a Metropolitan first tenor. Caruso 
gives you that costume. Now go down and sing 
like Caruso." 

At the beginning of any opera appearance, the 
tenor's nervousness would hold until he had 
delivered his first few phrases, and he was satisfied 
with his reception. Thereupon his anxiety would 
appear to pass. There were times, however, when 
an entire first act would go badly. He might be 
out of voice or humor ; it was perhaps more frequently 
the case than some who idolized him might be willing 
to admit. The effect seldom failed to stimulate the 
tenor to supreme endeavor in the ensuing act ; and 
some of his noteworthy achievements and successes 
occurred after an unpropitious start. 



374 ENRICO CARUSO 

Then it was that the Caruso voice was called on to 
the limit. To watch him in such circumstances, if 
the role chanced to be heroic, was a rare lesson in 
the technique of singing, for those who could ap- 
prehend. Those who could not, completely confused 
some of the things he did. The brilliancy and power 
of the high tones, delivered with an open throat 
which, with the palate high and the larynx low, 
made a large space, could be so easily misleading to 
the singer or educator ; and more than one voice has 
suffered in fruitless attempts at imitation. The 
reason was commonly due to ignorance of the how 
and why ; to an unwillingness to proceed slowly in 
building up a technique modeled on the same natural 
laws which Caruso obeyed ; and to a misconception 
of the tenor's taking of breath and its regulation. 
It was safe enough for him to sing with such apparent 
abandon ; he always knew the precise way to form 
each tone, whatever its pitch ; and his scale was 
even throughout its entire compass. Caruso did 
not believe in the so-called " registers " of the voice. 
Each pitch he sounded with his voice had what 
might be termed a register all its own. Thus every 
note matched the one immediately next it in pitch, 
so that the texture of the voice, both high and low, 
was relatively the same. 

Yet even that voice needed occasional coaxing. 
In the coats of all Caruso's costumes were little 
pockets, wherein he could slip a tiny vial of salt water, 
to be gargled surreptitiously when, with his back 
to the audience, he found it imperative to clear his 
throat of mucus. He always managed these matters 



TWILIGHT 375 

ingeniously ; a gesture, a step one way or another, 
a momentary tilting of the head, and the thing was 
done. Sometimes, when the action sent Caruso 
from the stage for a few minutes, and there was not 
time enough to go his dressing room, one of his valets 
would be standing in the wings with a glass of the 
precious salt and water. 

In spite of every precaution to have the throat 
prepared for singing, such instances would arise. The 
tenor was faithful in adhering to a specific schedule 
before each engagement. He always rested for two 
hours before he went before the public ; the rest 
consisted of playing solitaire, pasting stamps in an 
album or clippings in a scrap book. During these 
two hours Caruso would not speak above a whisper : 
and if his pantomime were not understood a volo 
(quickly) he would declare the person to be unin- 
telligent, and "not good" for him. The cleansing 
of his throat (lo strumento, he called it) was accom- 
plished with the aid of a French inhaler, into which 
he had placed some glycerine and Dobell solution. 
The steam from this Caruso would inhale for perhaps 
a quarter of an hour ; then his throat would be pulita 
(clean). A few rapidly sung scales and arpeggios 
finished the preparations for the appearance. Caruso 
rarely used many different sets of exercises, at anytime. 

Invariably, he would reach a place of appoint- 
ment in advance of the hour. He was never late in 
his life, for either a performance or a train ; and 
news-stand venders, in the railway stations, found 
him a patron willing to purchase anything from 
magazines to chewing gum. 



376 ENRICO CARUSO 

Scrupulous to be ready for any emergency, he was 
versatile enough to meet many of different sorts. 
Thus, in Mexico, he virtually directed the rehearsals 
of every representation. The stage manager was 
lacking in the quality of experience to which Caruso 
had been accustomed, so he took charge. In Havana, 
where neither "Marta" nor "L'Elisir d'Amore" had 
previously been given, it was the tenor who indicated 
what should be done. During a " Marta " representa- 
tion in Mexico, Caruso's quick mind saved an impor- 
tant incident from falling flat. The soprano, Sefiorita 
Navarette, who had forgotten to bring with her a 
rose, prepared to sing The Last Rose of Summer. 
Noticing that she was without the necessary flower, 
Caruso whispered to her, "Take a rose from your hat 
and give it to me." The soprano did not hear. His 
cue having arrived, the tenor began to sing (instead of 
the words from the score) " Gi-i-ve m-e-ee the r-o-ose, 
t-a-ake o-o-ne fro-o-om yo-our h-a-at." Still Se- 
norita Navarette did not seem to understand. 
Whereupon Caruso himself plucked a flower from the 
lady's hat, placed it in her hand, and soon after 
received it from her, as the action demanded. 

It was this insistence for detail which was partly 
responsible for the tenor's rounded artistry ; and 
who does not appreciate how completely he gave 
all he had to give. After the Vesti la giubba aria, 
in "Pagliacci", he always reached the wings in a 
state of collapse. Martino, Mario, or Punzo - 
sometimes Zirato would be waiting to catch him 
as he came off, panting from his emotion. And it 
would require smelling salts, very often, to bring him 




Copyright Mishkin, N. Y. 



CARUSO AS CANIO IN "I PAGLIACCI ' 



TWILIGHT 377 

back from the half-unconscious condition induced 
by his exertion. In other heroic operas, too, his 
exhaustion would require the aid of strong arms. 
Punzo was the one who could ease him most gently. 

Giulio Gatti-Casazza considered Caruso in a 
class quite his own. . <mi 

" I have heard all the great tenors of my time, over 
and over again," he s;aid. "Many of them were 
wonderful artists, with exceptional voices ; and all 
sang, I remember, some marvelous performances. 
Yet not one, in my judgment, ever sang an entire 
role with the vocal or artistic consistency of Caruso ; 
and certainly no other tenor I can call to mind re- 
motely compares with him in having continued to 
sing week after week, and season after season 
with the same almost unvarying achievement of 
supremacy, almost never disappointing an audience 
through inability to appear. 

" I first heard him sing in the autumn of 1898, at the 
Lirico Theater in Milan, as Marcello in Leoncavallo's 
'La Boheme.' During the same season I had a 
second opportunity, when he appeared as Loris in 
Giordano's * Fedora.' In that role he had a triumph 
so indisputable that his celebrity began. I was then 
general director of La Scala. I was unsuccessful 
in my effort to engage Caruso for the 1899-1900 
season, because he had arranged to go to Petrograd ; 
but we signed a contract for 1900-1901. 

"His La Scala debut, in Puccini's 'La Boheme', 
was not lucky ; he was suffering from laryngitis. 
In such a condition he was indeed kind to have con- 
sented to sing at all, which he only did, at a personal 



378 ENRICO CARUSO 

sacrifice, to avert a postponement of the performance. 
He did not have the opportunity to show the public 
of La Scala his superior qualities ; in subsequent 
representations he improved. But it was not until 
the first 'Le Maschere* of Mascagni, that he had 
a triumph . . . the more difficult to achieve, since 
the opera was a failure. That was what prompted 
me to revive 'L'Elisir d'Amore', in which Caruso 
had a success that remained a sensation in the annals 
of the Teatro Alia Scala. 

"During the same season, in the quartet from 
'Rigoletto', on the program of the concert given 
to commemorate the death of Giuseppe Verdi, he 
sang like an angel, moving his hearers to indescribable 
emotion. Later, he was severely criticised by the 
newspaper reviewers for his Faust in 'Mefistofele', 
in which Chaliapin also sang. I always felt that 
the criticism was unjust. He returned to La Scala 
the next season, for the performances of 'Germania' 
the then new opera by Baron Franchetti and 
his recognition was overwhelming. 

"In his last years, Caruso had, for me, a voice 
darker and more voluminous than when I first heard 
it ; a voice with a tendency to baritonal effects. 
However, I must say that his voice became, during 
that final period of his career, of more extended range 
and security. It was of such endurance and re- 
sponsiveness that Caruso was enabled to sing some 
performances, under unfavorable health conditions, 
without causing the great majority of the public to 
notice that he was not in perfect physical form. 

"Throughout his closing seasons at the Metro : 



TWILIGHT 379 

politan, Caruso could, moreover, sing roles of dra- 
matic character such as John of Leyden in * Le 
Prophete', Alvaro in 'Forza del Destine', and 
Samson in * Samson et Dalila' roles that in the 
days of his singing in Milan or Bologna (where I 
heard him in 1900, in 'Tosca' and 'Iris') he would 
not have dared attempt. He sang in New York 
those dramatic parts ; yet he retained to the end 
his facility to permit him to keep in his repertoire 
such roles as Lionel in 'Marta', Nemorino in 
'L'Elisir', and the Duke in 'Rigoletto' ... all of 
a purely lyric, almost light, character. 

"He was a unique artist, with whom none other 
compared. I do not see how we can ever have such 
another." 



After that December 3d appearance in "Samson" 
the matter of his immediate vocal powers disposed 
of Caruso might have settled into the confident 
calm of preceding Metropolitan years. Reassured 
as to the attitude of those critics who had so upset 
him, he had regained through his own accomplish- 
ment some steadying self-confidence. Had his health 
been better, and had he been less tortured by the 
mental anxieties caused by the Havana bomb ex- 
plosion and the robbery at his Easthampton home, 
the remainder of that 1920-1921 season need not 
have brought the tenor any lessened distinction. 
But physically he was in a miserable state. 

On the fourth of December, while driving in his 
automobile with Mrs. Caruso, he was seized with a 



380 ENRICO CARUSO 

chill. Changing their course, a visit was made at 
once to Doctor Philip Horowitz, Caruso's personal 
physician ; and after examining and prescribing 
for his patient, Horowitz ordered him to go home and 
to bed. 

Rest and quiet were seemingly helpful. Caruso 
suffered from an occasional pain in the left side, of 
which he complained ; he coughed, and occasionally 
spat ; but he declined to treat these matters seriously, 
and since for weeks his temper had been short, those 
of the household forebore to press upon him their 
belief that he should take a complete rest. 

He went to the Metropolitan, the evening of 
December 8, to appear in his first "Pagliacci" of 
the season. There were no outward appearances 
that anything untoward was to happen : the prepara- 
tions proceeded in the usual manner; the first act 
of the opera began, then came the Vesti la giubba. 
Many of that audience which was present will recall 
the breaking of a high tone near the close of the aria 
and how Caruso subsequently tripped (inexactly 
reported in the newspapers as an accidental fall) 
on one of the steps leading to the mimic theater. 
The truth is that just as he gave that full-voiced high 
A which demands after all that has gone before, 
a deal of physical strength to support it Caruso 
felt an excruciating pain in his left side. It made 
him " sick all over " and he momentarily " saw 
black." 

His tripping was deliberately done, in an attempt 
to divert the attention of the auditors from the 
interrupted high note. When he staggered through 



TWILIGHT 381 

the curtains of the mimic theater, he literally fell 
into the arms of Zirato. And amidst his sobs he 
managed to gasp, " My voice ... I thought ... it 
was . . . gone/' 

Some minutes passed before the pain in his side 
had subsided enough to allow Caruso to move. He 
lay crumpled and moaning in the arms of his secretary 
surrounded by anxious-faced members of the com- 
pany. Then, supported on both sides, he walked 
laboriously to his dressing room. 

Zirato pleaded with Caruso to abandon the re- 
mainder of the performance ; vain argument. Then, 
having been sent for, Doctor Horowitz arrived. He 
brushed aside the attending opera house physician, 
Doctor Marafioti, and directly announced that "it 
was nothing serious." Horowitz diagnosed the ail- 
ment as intercostal neuralgia ; and, after strapping 
the singer's left side with adhesive plaster, gave his 
permission for Caruso to continue with the perform- 
ance. Though suffering intense pain, the tenor went 
on. When the curtain fell, he was hurried to his 
dressing room, into his street garments, and then to 
his hotel. 

Such was the will of the singer that he would not 
remain in bed ; for the next morning he arose, though " 
with swollen eyes and a yellow skin. Entreaties of 
Mrs. Caruso and Zirato that another physician be 
summoned were of no avail ; they only enlisted from 
the patient a dogged refusal to consider anything he 
did not wish, such as further medical attention. 
On that day he listened to a Miss Josephine Luc- 
chese sing, and invited his friend Mrs. Shubart to 



382 ENRICO CARUSO 

dine with him and Mrs. Caruso. So the days passed, 
until Saturday evening, December n, when he 
prepared to appear in "L'Elisir d'Amore" in the 
Brooklyn Academy of Music. 

It was only a few minutes before the scheduled 
hour that the tenor, already costumed as Nemorino, 
began to cough ; and looking at his handkerchief, 
discovered on it red stains. Alarmed, he went 
to the washstand, where efforts were made to check 
the hemorrhage. The following half-hour was one 
of deep anxiety for the little group of watchers ; but 
in the theater an audience sat all unaware of the 
frantic efforts going on so near, that Caruso might 
sing to them. 

Viviani had held the curtain ten minutes ; the 
hemorrhage appeared to have been stopped. No 
sooner did the tenor begin to sing than the flow of 
blood recommenced. Doctor Horowitz, summoned 
at Mrs. Caruso's order, arrived during the first act ; 
and he too joined those who stood in the wings, with 
fresh handkerchiefs which were passed; as they were 
needed, to the suffering artist on the stage. What 
he endured throughout that scene, the agitation of 
Mrs. Caruso who sat in the front row, and of others 
near enough to see evidences of Caruso's condition 
were unnerving to them all. Then the curtain came 
down, before some three thousand frightened 
people. 

Back stage, assistant general manager Edward 
Ziegler, press representative William J. Guard, and 
others were adding their pleas to those of Mrs. Caruso 
that the tenor should consent to having the audience 



TWILIGHT 383 

dismissed. He finally agreed ; and Guard's announce- 
ment sent from the theater a serious-faced throng. 

Giulio Gatti-Casazza and other friends rushed 
to the Vanderbilt Hotel as soon as they received the 
news. Doctor Horowitz declared the hemorrhage to 
have been due to the bursting of a vein at the base 
of the singer's tongue (an opinion not concurred in 
by other physicians who were later called into con- 
sultation). At two o'clock Sunday morning Caruso 
fell asleep. 

He seemed better when he awoke the following 
morning, and although the hemorrhage appeared 
to have been checked, there were occasional evidences 
of very dark blood. 

On Monday, being scheduled to sing a Metropolitan 
"La Forza del Destino" that night, Caruso tried 
his voice. It was apparently as clear as ever, and 
heedless of all opposition to sing, he did. What a 
reception his admirers gave him ! In the final act 
he sang almost defiantly, as though to give out to the 
world " Caruso is not ill, he will not be ill ... his 
voice still holds." After the representation he 
dictated cablegrams, with a sort of suppressed elation, 
to friends in many parts of the world, assuring them 
the report of his throat having been ruptured was 
untrue. 

Nevertheless, solemn days followed ; days filled 
with efforts at cheerfulness, through which Caruso 
sought, by following a fairly regular routine, to allay 
the fears of those he loved. But neither his pride 
nor his stubborn refusal to admit to being ill, could 
conceal the fact that he really was. During later 



384 ENRICO CARUSO 

years he had eaten less heartily, his old-time huge 
appetite returning only fitfully. With his poor body 
struggling against the most serious sickness he had 
known, he took less and less food ; finally he refused 
nourishment altogether. Will power kept him on his 
feet and going until December 21 ; then Nature could 
no longer sustain him. Seized again during the night 
by that agonizing pain in his side, he got out of bed 
and bending forward so he might ease his suffering 
by bearing some of his weight on his hands, he leaned 
part way out the window, for air. From time to 
time, at some fresh stab in his side, he would scream 
aloud. The morning found him haggard and drawn, 
yet stubborn still. He was cast to sing that 
night in "L'Elisir"; he intended to sing, but he 
said he thought Gatti should be informed that he 
was n't feeling very well. Once more Mrs. Caruso 
summoned Doctor Horowitz ; and again the physician 
said, after examining his patient, " It is nothing, just 
intercostal neuralgia." So he put fresh adhesive 
tape about the sensitive side and departed. At 
four o'clock that afternoon, after an entire day of 
severe suffering, Caruso gave up his thought of being 
able to sing that night. A few hours later the pain 
eased. 

Twenty-four hours passed without recurrence of 
the former physical agony, although the next day 
after Horowitz's call Thursday Caruso was pale 
and weak. He had sung with his accompanist bits 
from "La Juive" ; it seemed to encourage him, for 
when Mrs. Caruso and Zirato begged him to call in 
physicians for a consultation he became furious. 




o 

w 8 

^J O\ 

2 H 



O (N 



Sec 



TWILIGHT 385 

Friday, December 23, dawned. Caruso rose at 
about eleven and within an hour was singing from 
"La Juive" in his studio. Both Gatti-Casazza and 
Horowitz were present. The former turned to the 
physician, and inquired anxiously, "What do you 
think?" to which Horowitz replied, "Don't you 
hear ? there is nothing the matter with his voice." 
Addressing himself to the tenor Gatti said, "This 
is a matter for you alone. I don't want to make any 
suggestion. You have always decided about every- 
thing concerning your performances ; you must do so 
now." 

" Padrone," returned Caruso, " I will sing." 

Preparations for Gloria's Christmas tree went on 
with only the indifferent assistance of the tenor. 
That was enough to indicate the gravity of his illness, 
for he had always a boyish eagerness to take part in 
such affairs. Mrs. Caruso would have kept him at 
home ; if she could have had her way, there would 
have been physicians conferring on her husband's 
welfare. Instead she was helpless, and compelled 
to allow him to depart to sing that Christmas 
Eve of 1920 in the last performance in which he 
ever took part. 

The climax came at one o'clock the next afternoon, 
when Caruso went to take his bath. His screams 
brought the entire household running, and writhing 
in pain, he was carried to a couch in his dressing 
room. No longer did Mrs. Caruso hesitate to act 
on her own initiative. She wanted other physicians ; 
and directly Doctor Francis J. Murray, of the Hotel 
Vanderbilt, responded to the urgent summons. 



386 ENRICO CARUSO 

He gave injections of codeine and morphine. Within 
a few hours Doctor Evan M. Evans was called. 
He seemed merely to glance at Caruso before pro- 
nouncing his opinion: "A very painful case of 
pleurisy." Gatti-Casazza and Ziegler reached the 
apartment at 4 o'clock ; not long afterward a con- 
sultation was decided upon. On December 26, 
Doctors Samuel W. Lambert, Evan M. Evans, 
Antonio Stella, Francis J. Murray, and Philip 
Horowitz conferred. The diagnosis pronounced the 
ailment pleurisy : forty-eight hours afterwards 
broncho-pneumonia developed, and on December 
29 half a gallon of liquid was taken from the pleural 
cavity with an aspirating needle. It was then that 
a consultation was held, at which the decision was 
reached to operate for empyema. 

Doctor John F. Erdmann was the surgeon selected. 
On December 30 he operated ; and for two days there- 
after the tenor's life hung by a thread. Mrs. Caruso 
slept near by on a hospital bed ; shifts of two nurses 
each were in constant attendance ; cablegrams were 
sent to scores of people. And there was need ; X-rays 
showed that Caruso's left lung had contracted. 

But still more serious times lay just ahead. After 
having recovered sufficiently to receive personal 
visits from friends, the fever returned. A consul- 
tation took place on February 9 ; three days later 
a radical operation was performed by Doctor Erd- 
mann, during which it was necessary to remove 
four inches of one rib. Caruso lapsed into uncon- 
sciousness, hovering between life and death. 

The relapse of which the whole world knew at 



TWILIGHT 387 

- 

the time came on February 14, and on the fifteenth 
he was thought to be dying. Only the best of medical 
and surgical attention, nursing, and the singer's 
own exceptional vitality carried him over a danger 
period which even members of his attending staff 
doubted he would survive. He swung, pendulum- 
like, gaining and losing ; seven minor operations 
were necessary, the last being a blood transfusion 
(the donor being Everett Wilkinson, of Meriden, Con- 
necticut) soon after Caruso's birthday, February 27. 

The convalescence was attended by widespread 
rejoicing. The dread atmosphere of the sick room 
gave way to one optimistic ; the news association and 
New York newspaper reporters, assigned day and 
night to watch the tenor and transmit his physicians' 
bulletins, filed out of Caruso's dining room, which had 
been their headquarters. The balmy May air 
carried fresh hope to the singer, and on the eighteenth 
the medical staff held its final consultation. 

How the people exulted at seeing their favorite 
singer in those first automobile rides he took when 
he had grown strong enough. And what a reception 
they gave him at the opera house, when, with Mrs. 
Caruso, he got out of their car and walked slowly 
towards the entrance to the executive offices. He 
might be thin and haggard and pale ; what did such 
things matter ? Caruso was getting well ! 

And then after the doctors had decided that a 
change of climate would be beneficial passage 
was engaged for Italy. Caruso was going home ; 
and the knowledge of it gave him a further push 
toward health. 



CHAPTER TWELVE 
THE END 

THE journey was nearly finished. Caruso did 
not know ; a gentle Providence may have spared him 
for those last days, spent mostly in Sorrento, so near 
to his own Naples. He gathered strength and weight 
fast, his appetite returned, and a bit of color crept 
into his cheeks. Indeed, photographs taken within 
a month after his arrival in Italy (June 10, 1921) 
showed him looking encouragingly well. It was 
extraordinary, this recovery ; and what news to send 
abroad to the waiting thousands who continued to 
hang on anything that seemingly insured to them 
their singer ! Friends who called to see the Carusos 
reported his progress : his humor was of the best ; 
he was beginning to take daily strolls, to bargain 
good-naturedly with shopkeepers over the price of 
some small purchase. In brief, signs reminding one 
of the old Caruso cropped more and more to the 
surface. 

There were less buoyant moments ; that was to 
be expected. One may not pause literally before the 
gates of death without traversing, every step of the 
way, the long backward journey. But as June gave 
way to oncoming July, Mrs. Caruso grew more 
hopeful. This hopefulness increased one sunny 
afternoon, when a youth ventured to seek the tenor's 



^ , IF 




THE LAST PICTURE. TAKEN AT HOTEL VICTORIA, SORRENTO, ITALY, 

JULY, 1921 



THE END 389 

opinion as to his singing. The boy sang M'appari 
from "Marta", while Caruso listened with glistening 
eyes. He waited, quite motionless, until the air 
was finished ; then he spoke. 

"That is good, though you did not sing it in quite 
the right way. Let me show you how." 

Mrs. Caruso relates how she sat as her husband 
began to sing. "I was not excited," she insists, 
"but, on the contrary, perfectly calm. What I heard 
caused me to grow cold through astonishment, for 
Enrico's voice was as golden, as liquid-like, and as 
pure as though he had never known a day's illness. 
He sang with the perfect ease with which he had 
always sung. Suddenly he ceased . . . and I realized 
that he had finished the song." 

Each day brought renewed happiness to the tenor 
after that experience. His voice was his most pre- 
cious possession ; he had guarded it against as- 
saults through his long career ; and he felt then 
possibly, when no one else was about, he may have 
tested its power that the contracted left lung had 
become normal. He took up with a new zest the 
little pleasures of each day, and, with Mrs. Caruso 
and Baby Gloria, lived in a new and utterly happy 
world. 

When his padrone (as he always called Gatti- 
Casazza) visited him at Sorrento on July 8, the tenor 
behaved like a much indulged child. 

All appeared to be moving well until a few days 
later, when Caruso returned very fatigued from an 
over-long walk. His name-day, July 15, brought 
a return of the first pain in his side he had felt in 



390 ENRICO CARUSO 

months. Mrs. Caruso's apprehensiveness was fired 
anew ; she sought in vain to cancel the dinner her 
husband had planned for a party of friends. None 
of the guests noticed, however, that their host was 
out of sorts. Suggestions that physicians be called 
were met with the same former objections. So long 
as no practitioner was about, Caruso was not ill ; 
it was only when the doctors surrounded him that 
danger hovered. Such was his strange reasoning, and 
it was this attitude of mind which caused him to rebel 
against any proffers of medical aid. 

He was not really strong enough to have attempted 
the trip to Capri and Pompeii, where he wished to 
visit the Shrine of Our Lady of Pompeii to pour out 
his thanks for his recovery. But he went, and lay- 
ing his ten thousand lire offering before the sacred 
Image of the Virgin, the tenor wept in gratitude. 

That effort taxed him greatly; how much may 
be gathered from his feeble resistance, on July 28, 
to the visit paid by the Bastianelli brothers (Giuseppe 
and Raffaele), famous Roman doctors, who had come 
at Mrs. Caruso's call. They discovered the existence 
of an abscess, and counseled that he go to Rome for 
an immediate operation. If only there might have 
been greater haste ! Three days elapsed ; three days 
of precious time which should not have been wasted. 
When, on the following Sunday, Mr. and Mrs. Caruso, 
Giovanni Caruso and the tenor's son, Rodolfo, de- 
parted for Naples, they could go no farther ; the 
singer had grown desperately weak, and a stop had 
to be made at the Hotel Vesuve. 

The indomitable spirit with which Caruso had 



THE END 391 

fought off the Grim Spectre was weakening. A 
physician came ; then others, after a consultation 
had been advised. 

Caruso was growing feebler ; he clung to his wife's 
hand. Once he roused from unconsciousness to 
murmur, "Doro . . . Doro, don't let me die." 

When the array of Italian physicians and surgeons 
finally prepared to operate, they agreed it was too 
late. 

Through that Monday night, and on into Tuesday 
morning of August second, Enrico Caruso hovered. 
What a struggle he had undergone ! What suffering 
had he not endured ! But he was suffering no longer. 
He was at peace in his own land where he had longed 
to be. His mind was wandering, to other places, 
perhaps, where in those golden days of the past he 
had sung to rapt audiences of the old and new worlds. 
And perhaps, in the labyrinths of his consciousness, he 
glimpsed again the odd boxes which run around La 
Scala, the stiff interior of Covent Garden, and all 
those other famous opera houses in which he had 
been a guiding light. Perhaps it was the red and 
gold auditorium of his own beloved Metropolitan 
that his fancy last saw, and that the smile of peace 
flickered at the imaginary parting sweep of its big 
yellow curtains. 



APPENDICES 

COMPILED BY BRUNO ZIRATO 



APPENDICES 

APPENDIX A 
LIST OF DECORATIONS TENDERED TO ENRICO CARUSO 

Italy : 

Order of Chevalier, Commendatore and Grande Ufficiale of the 

Crown of Italy 
France : 

Legion of Honor 

Palm of Academy 
Belgium : 

Order of Leopold 
Spain : 

Order of St. James of Compostella 
England : 

Order of Michael 

Order of British Victoria 
Germany : 

Order of Red Eagle of Prussia 

Order of Crown Eagle of Prussia 



ENRICO CARUSO 



APPENDIX B 



LIST OF OPERAS IN THE REPERTOIRE OF ENRICO CARUSO 



"Aida" 

"Adriana de Lecouvreur" 

"Africana" 

"Amore dei Tre Re" 

"Armide" 

"BalloinMaschera" 

"La Boheme" (Puccini) 

"La Boheme" (Leoncavallo) 

"Carmen" 

"Cavalleria Rusticana" 

"Don Giovanni" 

"Elisird'amore" 

"Fanciulla del West" 

"Faust" 

"La Favorita" 

"Fedora" 

"La Forza del Destine" 

"Germania" 

"LaGioconda" 

"La Juive" 

"Julien" 

"Iris" 



"Lodoletta" 

"Lucrezia Borgia" 

"Lucia di Lammermoor" 

"Madama Butterfly" 

"Manon" 

"Manon Lescaut" 

"Marta" 

"Mefistofele" 

"Pagliacci" 

"PecheursdePerles" 

"Le Prophete" 

"I Puritani" 

"Rigoletto" 

"Regina di Saba" 

"Saffo" 

"Samson et Dalila" 

"La Sonnambula" 

"Tosca" 

"LaTraviata" 

"II Trovatore" 

"Gli Ugonotti" 



APPENDICES 397 



APPENDIX C 

LIST OF THE OPERAS SUNG BY ENRICO CARUSO ONLY A FEW 
TIMES OR SIMPLY STUDIED AND NEVER PERFORMED 

"Amico Francesco," by Morelli 

"Arlesiana," by Cilea 

"A San Francisco," by Carlo Sebastian! 

"Celeste," by Marengo 

"Camoens," by Pietro Musoni 

"Dramma in Vendemmia," by Vincenzo Fornari 

"Romeo e Giulietta," by Bellini 

"Hedda," by Ferd. Leborne 

"Don Pasquale," by Donizetti 

"Flauto Magico," by Mozart 

" Fra Diavolo," by Auber 

"Jupanki," by Berutti 

" Lohengrin," by Wagner 

" Mariedda," by Gianni Bucceri 

"Malia,"byF. P. Frontini 

" Profeta Velato," by Daniele Napolitano 

"Navarraise," by Massenet 

"Voto," by Giordano 

"Maria di Rohan," by Donizetti 

"Le Maschere," by Mascagni 

"Otello," by Verdi 

"Guglielmo Tell," by Rossini 

"II Guarany," by Gomes 

"II Duca d'Alba," by Donizetti 



APPENDIX D 



LIST OF ALL APPEARANCES FROM 1894 TO 1921 WITH DATES OF FIRST PER- 
FORMANCE, CITY, HOUSE, AND TOTAL OF PERFORMANCES GIVEN, AND DIF- 
FERENT IMPRESARIOS AND MANAGERS. 



DATE OP FIRST 

PERFORMANCE 


CITY 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


TOTAL PERFORM- 
ANCES GIVEN 


REMARKS 


1894 


November 


Napoli 


sTuovo 


^'Amico 


2 






i6and 18 






Francesco 






1895 


April 


^aserta 


Himarosa 


^avalleria 




mpresa of Carlo Ferrara 










7 aust 














^amoens 








[une 


^otrone 


Cathedral 


ligh Mass 








[une 


Napoli 


Bellini 


r aust 




Benefit performance 




Fuly 


Napoli 


Bellini 


Rigoletto 








August 


Cairo 


Isbekieh 


Tavalleria 




!mpresa of Enrico Santini 




September 




Gardens 


i^igoletto 














l,aGioconda 














Vlanon 














Lescaut 








October 


Napoli 


Bellini 


Rigoletto 


I 


[mpresa of Gaetano 










Faust 


I 


Scognamiglio 




November 


Napoli 


Vlerca- 


Traviata 


IS 


Double performances oc- 




29 




dante 






curred on : December 








(gia* 






15: Matinee: Romeo e 








Fondo) 






Giulietta ; Evening : 




December 


Napoli 


Merca- 


Romeo e 


IS 


Traviata. December 




7 




dante 


Giulietta 




26: Matinee: Rigo- 








(gia' 






letto; Evening: Romeo 








Fondo) 






e Giulietta. December 




December 


Napoli 


Merca- 


Rigoletto 


10 


27 : Matinee : Traviata ; 




2S 




dante 






Evening: Rigoletto. 








(gia' 






December 29: Matinee: 








Fondo) 






Rigoletto; Evening: 


1896 


January 


Napoli 


Merca- 


Faust 


10 


Traviata. January i : 




ii 




dante 






Matinee : Traviata ; 








(gia' 






Evening : Rigoletto 








Fondo) 









398 



APPENDICES 



399 



DATE or FIRST 
PERFORMANCE 


CITY 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


IOTAL PERFORM- 
ANCES GIVEN 


REMARKS 


1896 


'ebruary 


Napoli 


Vlerca- 






"arewell appearance with 




18 




dante 






Rigoletto 








(gia' 














Fondo) 










February 


^aserta 


Dimarosa 


Faust 




3pera hissed and artists 














dismissed after II act 




April 


Napoli 


Bellini 


fraviata 




'mpresa of Giulio 










ligoletto 




Staffelli 










7 aust 














Vlariedda 








tfay 


Trapani 


Zomunale 


^ucia 




[mpresa of Cavallaro 




[une 


Vfarsala 




Xigoletto 








? irst Sat- 


Salerno 


Verdi 


Uigoletto 


2 


To celebrate Independ- 




urday 










ence Day (Festa 




and Sun- 










dello Statute) 




day of 














June 














August 


Salerno 


^omunale 


Puritani 




[mpresa of Visciani 




September 






Tavalleria 








)ctober 


Salerno 


Jomunale 


Traviata 


2O 


[mpresa of Giuseppe 




15 






Barmen 




Grassi 




November 






Favorita 


in 






IS 






Pagliacci 














A San Fran- 


all 












cisco 








December 


Napoli 


Bellini 


Gioconda 














Dgonotti 






1897 


January 


Napoli 


Merca- 


Gioconda 




Impresa of A. Landi and 




February 




dante 


Traviata 




Baron Mascia 










Dramma 














in Vendem- 














mia 








March i 


Salerno 


Comunale 


Gioconda 


50 


Impresa of Giuseppe 




to May 4 






Manon 




Grassi 










Lescaut 


in 












Traviata 














Profeta 














Velato 


all 






May 15 


Palermo 


Massimo 


Gioconda 




Impresa of V. Florio and 




to 










Di Giorgi. Inauguration 




June 15 










of the Massimo 




July 


Livorno 


Goldoni 


Traviata 




Impresa of Arturo Li- 




August 






La Boh erne 




sciarelli 



400 



ENRICO CARUSO 



DATE OF FIRST 
PERFORMANCE 


CITY 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


TOTAL PERFORM- 
ANCES GIVEN | 


REMARKS 


1897 


September 


Fiume 


Verdi 


La Boh erne 








November 


Milano 


Lirico In- 


La Navar- 




Impresa of Edoardo 




20 




terna- 


rese 




Sonzogno 








zionale 










November 


Milano 


Lirico In- 


Arlesiana 




World premiere 




27 




terna- 














zionale 








1898 


January 


Genova 


Carlo 


Boheme (L) 


13 


Impresa of Giovanni 




20 




Felice 






Massa 




February 


Genova 


Carlo 


Pescatori 


8 






3 




Felice 


di Perle 








June 2 


Trento 


Sociale 


Pagliacci 








to 






Saffo 








June 26 














July and 


Livorno 


Politeama 


Pagliacci 




Impresa of Arturo 




August 




Livornese 






Lisciarelli 




October 


Milano 


Lirico 


Arlesiana 


4 


Impresa of Edoardo 




22 










Sonzogno 




November 


Milano 


Lirico 


Boheme (L) 


7 






November 


Milano 


Lirico 


Fedora 


10 


World premiere 




17 














December 


Milano 


Lirico 


Saffo 


6 






December 










Farewell appearance with 




II 










Fedora 




December 


Petro- 


Grand 


La Boheme 




Impresa of Carlo Guidi 




to 


grad 


Theatre 


Pagliacci 






1899 


January 




du 


Maria di 












Conser- 


Roli,m 












vatoire 


Cavalleria 














Traviata 








March i 


Milano 


Lirico 


Fedora 


8 


Impresa of Edoardo 




to 28 










Sonzogno 




May 14 


Buenos 


La Opera 


Fedora 


3 


Impresa of Amelia 






Aires 








Ferrari 




May 24 


Buenos 


La Opera 


Traviata 


2 








Aires 












June 4 


Buenos 


La Opera 


Saffo 


2 








Aires 












JuneS 


Buenos 


La Opera 


Gioconda 


I 








Aires 












June 22 


Buenos 


La Opera 


Iris 


7 








Aires 











APPENDICES 



401 



DATE OF FIRST 
PERFORMANCE 


CITY 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


TOTAL PERFORM- 
ANCES GIVEN 


REMARKS 


1899 


July 4 


Buenos 


La Opera 


Regina di 


6 








Aires 




Saba 








July 25 


Buenos 


La Opera 


Jupanki 


3 








Aires 












August 8 


Buenos 


La Opera 


Cavalleria 




Farewell appearance 






Aires 




and I and 














II acts 














from Iris 








August 


Buenos 


La Opera 


Cavalleria 




Extra : for benefit vic- 




10 


Aires 








tims Black River flood 




November 


Roma 


Costanzi 


Iris 


9 


Impresa of Eredi Costanzi 




4 










and Vincenzo Morichini 




November 


Roma 


Costanzi 


Gioconda 


3 






ii 














November 


Roma 


Costanzi 


Mefistofele 


8 






22 














December 










Farewell appearance with 




IS 










Iris 




December 


Petro- 


Grand 


Aida 




Impresa of Carlo Guidi 




to 


grad 


Theatre du 


Ballo in Ma- 






1900 


February 




Conser- 


schera 












vatoire 


Mefistofele 








March 


Mos- 


Grand 


Faust 




Impresa of Carlo Guidi 






cow 


Theatre 


Aid a 














Mefistofele 














Ballo in 














Maschera 








May 10 


Buenos 


La Opera 


Mefistofele 


4 


Impresa of Madame 






Aires 








Ferrari 




May 17 


Buenos 


La Opera 


Iris 


6 








Aires 












June 9 


Buenos 


La Opera 


Regina di 


5 








Aires 




Saba 








June 23 


Buenos 


La Opera 


La Boheme 


5 








Aires 












July 12 


Buenos 


La Opera 


Cavalleria 


i 








Aires 












July 28 


Buenos 


La Opera 


Manon 


i 








Aires 












August 5 


Buenos 


La Opera 






Farewell appearance with 






Aires 








La Boheme 




August 9 


Buenos 


Catholic 


Sacred 




Commemoration of King 






Aires 


Cathedral 


Hymns 




Humbert of Italy 



402 



ENRICO CARUSO 



DATE or FIRST 

PERFORMANCE 


Crrv 


.HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


TOTAL PERFORU- 
ANCES GIVEN | 


REMARKS 


I90O 


August 12 


Buenos 


Progress 


Concert 




Benefit organized by 






Aires 


Club 






Dames of Charity 




August 16 


Monte- 


Solis 


Iris 








to Sep- 


video 




La Boheme 








tember 






Cavalleria 








10 






Manon 








October 


Treviso 


Sociale 


Tosca 


12 


Impresa of E. Corti 




23 to 














November 














ii 














November 


Bologna 


Comunale 


Tosca 








15 to 






Iris 








December 














IS 














December 


Milano 


Alia Scala 


La Boheme 


10 


Management of G. Gatti- 




26 










Casazza 


1901 


January 


Milano 


Alia Scala 


Le Maschere 


3 


World premiere 




February 


Milano 


Alia Scala 


Quartet 




Commemoration of 




i 






from 




Giuseppe Verdi 










Rigoletto 








February 


Milano 


Alia Scala 


Elisir 


12 


Revival 




17 






d'amore 








March 16 


Milano 


Alia Scala 


Mefistofele 


9 






May 1 8 


Buenos 


La- Opera 


Tosca 


IO 


Impresa of Nardi, 






Aires 








Bonetti and Company 




June i 


Buenos 


La Opera 


Regina di 


2 








Aires 




Saba 








June 9 


Buenos 


La Opera 


Rigoletto 


4 








Aires 












June 23 


Buenos 


La Opera 


Elisir 


2 








Aires 




d'amore 








July 7 


Buenos 


La Opera 


Lohengrin 


3 








Aires 












JulyS 


Buenos 


La Opera 


Iris 


3 








Aires 












July 27 


Buenos 


La Opera 


Traviata 


4 








Aires 












July 29 


Buenos 


La Opera 


Rossini's 




Commemoration of King 






Aires 




Stabat 




Humbert of Italy 










Mater 








August 17 


Buenos 


La Opera 






Farewell appearance with 






Aires 








Tosca 



APPENDICES 



403 



DATE OF FIRST 
PERFORMANCE 


Cmr 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


TOTAL PERFORM- 
ANCES GIVEN | 


REMARKS 


1901 


November 


Bologna 


Comunale 


Rigoletto 








December 


Trieste 


Politeama 


Elisir 


2 


Benefit Italian Benevo- 




14 and 16 




Rossetti 


d'amore 




lent Association 




December 


Napoli 


San Carlo 


Elisir 


s 


Impresa of R. de Sanna 




3 






d'amore 






1902 


January 


Napoli 


San Carlo 


Manon 


5 






13 














January 


Napoli 


San Carlo 






Last appearance with 




21 










Manon 




February 


Monte 


Le Casino 


La Boheme 




Management of Raoul 




I 


Carlo 








Gunsbourg 




February 


Monte 


Le Casino 


Rigoletto 








16 


Carlo 












March 11 


Milano 


Alia Scala 


Germania 


H 


World premiere 




May 14 


London 


Covent 


Rigoletto 


5 


Management of H. 








Garden 






Higgins 




May 24 


London 


Covent 


La Boheme 


4 










Garden 










June 4 


London 


Covent 


Lucia 


3 










Garden 










June 6 


London 


Covent 


Aula 


4 










Garden 










June 14 


London 


Covent 


Elisir 


2 










Garden 


d'amore 








June 28 


London 


Covent 


Cavalleria 


2 










Garden 










July 4 


London 


Covent 


Traviata 


2 










Garden 










July 19 


London 


Covent 


Don 


2 










Garden 


Giovanni 








July 28 


London 


Covent 






Farewell appearance with 








Garden 






Rigoletto 




November 


Milano 


Lirico 


Adriana de 


6 


World premiere 




6 






Lecouvreur 








December 


Trieste 


Politeama 


Rigoletto 


2 


Benefit Italian Benevo- 




10 and II 




Rossetti 






lent Association 




December 


Roma 


Costanzi 


Rigoletto 


S 


Impresa of Eredi Costanzi 




26 










and Vincenzo Morichini 


1903 


January 


Roma 


Costanzi 


Mefistofele 


5 






10 














January 


Roma 


Costanzi 


Manon 


6 






20 






Lescaut 








Januarys: 


Roma 


Costanzi 


Aid a 


4 





404 



ENRICO CARUSO 



DATE OF FIRST 
PERFORMANCE 


Cmr 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 

CONCERT 


TOTAL PERFORM- 
ANCES GIVEN 


REMARKS 


1903 


February 


Roma 


Costanzi 






Farewell appearance with 




8 










Manon Lescaut 




February 


Lisbon 


San 


Fedora 


I 


Impresa of Jose' Pacini 




M 




Carlos 










February 


Lisbon 


San 


Aida 


I 






20 




Carlos 










February 


Lisbon 


San 


Tosca 


I 






27 




Carlos 










March 4 


Lisbon 


San 


Adriana de 


I 










Carlos 


Lecouvreur 








March 10 


Lisbon 


San 


Lucrezia 


I 










Carlos 


Borgia 








March 19 


Lisbon 


San 


Rigoletto 


I 










Carlos 










Marchand 


Monte 


Casino 


Tosca 


5 






April 


Carlo 












May 19 


Buenos 


La Opera 


Tosca 


2 


Impresa of Camillo 






Aires 








Bonetti 




May 21 


Buenos 


La Opera 


Gerrnania 


3 








Aires 












June 4 


Buenos 


La Opera 


Elisir 


3 








Aires 




d'amore 








June 1 8 


Buenos 


La Opera 


Iris 


4 








Aires 












June 26 


Buenos 


La Opera 


Mefistofele 


I 








Aires 












July 7 


Buenos 


La Opera 


Adriana de 


3 








Aires 




Lecouvreur 








July 25 


Buenos 


La Opera 


Manon 


3 








Aires 




Lescaut 








August 9 


Buenos 


La Opera 






Farewell appearance with 






Aires 








Manon Lescaut 




August 


Monte- 


Solis 


Mefistofele 




Impresa of Camillo 






video 




Iris 




Bonetti 










Tosca 














Manon 














Lescaut 








August 


Riode 


Pedro II 


Rigoletto 


2 








Janeiro 




Tosca 


2 












Iris 


2 












Manon 


2 








' 




Lescaut 







APPENDICES 



405 



DATE OF FIRST 
PERFORMANCE 


Cmr 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


TOTAL PERFORM- 
ANCES GIVEN | 


REMARKS 


1903 


November 


New 


Metro- 


Rigoletto 


4 


Management of Heinrich 




23 


York 


politan 






Conried 








Opera 














House 










November 


New 


Metro- 


Alda 


4 






3 


York 


politan 










December 


New 


Metro- 


Tosca 


3 






2 


York 


politan 










December 


New 


Metro- 


La Boheme 








5 


York 


politan 




2 


i 




December 


New 


Metro- 


Pagliacci 


4 






9 


York 


politan 




I 






December 


New 


Metro- 


Traviata 








23 


York 


politan 










December 


Phila- 


Academy 


Rigoletto 








29 


delphia 


of Music 








1904 


January 8 


New 


Metro- 


Lucia 


3 








York 


politan 










January 


Phila- 


Academy 


Pagliacci 








12 


delphia 


of Music 










January 


New 


Home of 


Musicale 








H 


York 


Mrs. W. 














P. Whit- 














ney 










January 


Phila- 


Academy 


Tosca 








19 


delphia 


of Music 










January 


New 


Home of 


Musicale 








21 


York 


Mrs. 














Orme 














Wilson 










January 


New 


Metro- 


Elisir 


4 






23 


York 


politan 


d'amore 








February 


Phila- 


Academy 


Aida 








2 


delphia 


of Music 










February 


New 


Metro- 






Farewell appearance with 




10 


York 


politan 






Lucia 




March 


Monte 


Casino 


Aida 




Impresa of 






Carlo 








R. Gunsbourg 




April 20 


Barce- 


Liceo 


Rigoletto 


2 


Impresa of Doctor 




and 23 


lona 








Alberto Bernis 




April 27 


Paris 


Sarah 


Rigoletto 




Benefit Russian Train 








Bernhardt 






Hospital 



406 



ENRICO CARUSO 



DATE or FIRST 
PERFORUANCK 


CITY 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


1 TOTAL PERFORM- 
1 ANCES GIVEN | 


REMARKS 


1904 


May 4 


Prague 


Landes 


Rigoletto 




Impresa of Angelo 














Neumann 




May 6 


Prague 


Landes 


Elisir 














d'amore 








May8 


Dres- 


Opern 


Rigoletto 




Impresa of Angelo 






den 


Haus 






Neumann 




May 17 


London 


Covent 


Rigoletto 


4 


Impresa of H. Higgins 








Garden 










May 19 


London 


Covent 


Pagliacci 


5 










Garden 










May 28 


London 


Covent 


La Boheme 


6 










Garden 










June 13 


London 


Covent 


Aida 


4 










Garden 










June 15 


London 


Covent 


Traviata 


3 










Garden 










June 29 


London 


Covent 


Ballo in 


4 










Garden 


Maschera 








July 25 


London 


Covent 






Farewell appearance with 








Garden 






Traviata 




October 5 


Berlin 


Des 


Rigoletto 












Westens 










October 7 


Berlin 


Des 


Traviata 












Westens 










October 


London 


Covent 


Manon 


3 


With San Carlo Opera 




17 




Garden 


Lescaut 




Company of Naples. 














Impresa of R. de Sanna 




October 


London 


Covent 


Carmen 


3 






21 




Garden 










October 


London 


Covent 


La Boheme 


2 






27 




Garden 










November 


London 


Covent 


Pagliacci 


I 






2 




Garden 










November 


London 


Covent 






Farewell appearance with 




3 




Garden 






Manon Lescaut 




November 


New 


Metro- 


Aida 


4 


Management of Heinrich 




21 


York 


politan 






Conried 




November 


New 


Metro- 


Lucia 


2 






23 


York 


politan 










November 


New 


Metro- 


Traviata 


3 






26 


York 


politan 










November 


New 


Metro- 


Gioconda 


4 






28 


York 


politan 









APPENDICES 



407 



DATE OF FIRST 
PERFORMANCE 


Crnr 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


TOTAL PERFORM- 
ANCES GIVEN 


REMARKS 


1904 


December 


New 


Metro- 


Lucrezia 


I 






5 


York 


politan 


Borgia 








December 


Phila- 


Academy 


Alda 








13 


delphia 


of Music 










December 


New 


Metro- 


La Boheme 


2 






16 


York 


politan 










December 


New 


Metro- 


Rigoletto 


2 






21 


York 


politan 










December 


New 


Metro- 


Elisir 


I 






24 


York 


politan 


d 'a more 








December 


New 


Metro- 


Pagliacci 


3 






26 


York 


politan 










December 


Phila- 


Academy 


Pagliacci 








27 


delphia 


of Music 








1905 


January 


Phila- 


Academy 


Lucia 








10 


delphia 


of Music 










January 


New 


Home of 


Musicale 








12 


York 


Mr. J. 














M. Smith 










January 


New 


Metro- 


Tosca 


2 






16 


York 


politan 










January 


New 


Waldorf 


Concert 




Mr. Bagby Morning 




23 


York 


Astoria 






Musicale 








Hotel 










January 


Phila- 


Academy 


La Boheme 








24 


delphia 


of Music 










January 


New 


Metro- 


Ballo in 


2 






27 


York 


politan 


Maschera 








February 


New 


Metro- 


Les Hugue- 


4 






3 


York 


politan 


nots 








February 


New 


Metro- 


Pagliacci 




Benefit Italian Hospital 




21 


York 


politan 










February 


Phila- 


Academy 


Gioconda 








28 


delphia 


of Music 










March 3 


New 


Metro- 






Farewell appearance with 






York 


politan 






Act IV from Gioconda 




March 6 


Boston 


Boston 


Lucia 




and Act I from Pagliacci 








Theater 










March 8 


Boston 


Boston 


Pagliacci 












Theater 










March 10 


Boston 


Boston 


Gioconda 












Theater 









4 8 



ENRICO CARUSO 



DATE OP FIRST 
PERFORMANCE 


CITY 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 

CONCERT 


TOTAL PERFORM- 1 1 
ANCES GIVEN | 


REMARKS 


1905 


March 13 


Pitts- 


Nixon 


Lucia 










burgh 


Theater 










March 16 


Pitts- 


Nixon 


Gioconda 










burgh 


Theater 










March 18 


Cincin- 


Music 


Gioconda 










nati 


Hall 










March 20 


Chicago 


Audi- 


Lucia 












torium 










March 22 


Chicago 


Audi- 


Pagliacci 












torium 










March 24 


Chicago 


Audi- 


Gioconda 












torium 










March 28 


Minne- 


Audi- 


Pagliacci 










apolis 


torium 










March 30 


Omaha 


Audi- 


Lucia 












torium 










April i 


Kansas 


Conven- 


Pagliacci 










City 


tion Hall 










April 6 


San 


Grand 


Rigoletto 










Fran- 


Opera 












cisco 


House 










April 8 


San 


Grand 


Pagliacci 


2 








Fran- 


Opera 












cisco 


House 










April 10 


San 


Grand 


Lucia 










Fran- 


Opera 












cisco 


House 










April 12 


San 


Grand 


Gioconda 


2 






and 15 


Fran- 


Opera 












cisco 


House 










April 1 8 


Los 


Audi- 


Lucia 










Angeles 


torium 










April 26 


New 


Waldorf 


Concert 




Benefit arranged by Miss 






York 


Astoria 






Leary 








Hotel 










May 13 to 


Paris 


Sarah 


Fedora 


6 


First time in France. 




May 20 




Bernhardt 






Management of Edoardo 














Sonzogno and Gabriel 














Astruc 




May 22 


London 


Covent 


La Boheme 


6 










Garden 










May 26 


London 


Covent 


Rigoletto 


3 










Garden 









APPENDICES 



409 



DATE OF FIRST 
PERFORMANCE 


CITY 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 

i 


TOTAL PERFORM- II 
ANCES GIVEN || 


REMARKS 


1905 


Junes 


London 


Covent 


Ugonotti 


3 










Garden 










June 8 


London 


Bucking- 


Act III from 




Before the King and 








ham 


La Boheme 




Queen of England and 








Palace 


Act IV from 




King of Spain 










Ugonotti 








June 10 


London 


Covent 


Aida 


2 










Garden 










June 19 


London 


Covent 


Ballo in 


4 










Garden 


Maschera 








July I 


London 


Covent 


Don 


2 










Garden 


Giovanni 




v 




July 10 


London 


Covent 


Madama 


4 


First time in England 








Garden 


Butterfly 








July 25 


London 


Covent 






Farewell appearance with 








Garden 






La Boheme 




July 26 


London 


Savoy 


Songs 




Dinner offered by G. H. 








Hotel 






Kessler 




August 3 


Ostende 


Royal 


Rigoletto 




Inauguration of the 














Theater 




August 


Ostende 


Kursaal 


Series of 


10 


Management of Georges 










concerts 




Marquet 




November 


New 


Metro- 


Gioconda 


3 


Management of Heinrich 




20 


York 


politan 






Conried 




November 


New 


Metro- 


Rigoletto 


4 






24 


York 


politan 










November 


New 


Metro- 


Favorita 


4 






29 


York 


politan 










December 


Phila- 


Academy 


Favorita 








5 


delphia 


of Music 










December 


New 


Metro- 


Elisir 


2 






9 


York 


politan 


d'amore 








December 


New 


Metro- 


Sonnambula 


2 






IS 


York 


politan 










December 


New 


Metro- 


La Boheme 


4 






18 


York 


politan 










December 


Phila- 


Academy 


Rigoletto 








26 


delphia 


of Music 








1906 


January 


New 


Metro- 


Faust 


4 






3 


York 


politan 










January 


New 


Metro- 


Tosca 


i 






8 


York 


politan 









410 



ENRICO CARUSO 



DATE or FIRST 
PERFORMANCE 


CITY 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


TOTAL PERFORM- 
ANCES GIVEN 


REMARKS 


1906 


anuary 


^ew 


Metro- 


Alda 


3 






IS 


York 


politan 










anuary 


^ew 


iome of 


Musicale 








18 


York 


Mr. J. H. 














Smith 










anuary 


'"Jew 


Metro- 


,ucia 


3 






20 


York 


politan 










anuary 


New 


Waldorf 


Concert 




Mr. Bagby Musicale 




22 


York 


Astoria 










: anuary 


Phila- 


Academy 


L,a Boheme 








23 


delphia 


of Music 










January 


Wash- 


rlome of 


Musicale 








24 


ington 


Mrs. 














Perry 














Belmont 










[anuary 


^ew 


Metro- 


Pagliacci 


3 






3i 


York 


politan 










7 ebruary 


^ew 


Metro- 


Marta 


4 






9 


York 


politan 










February 


New 


Metro- 


Traviata 


i 






12 


York 


politan 










February 


Phila- 


Academy 


Aida 








13 


delphia 


of Music 










February 


Phila- 


Academy 


Carmen 








20 


delphia 


of Music 










February 


New 


Home of 


Musicale 








27 


York 


Mrs. 














Orme 














Wilson 










March i 


Phila- 


Academy 


Faust 










delphia 


of Music 










March 5 


New 


Metro- 


Carmen 


2 








York 


politan 










March 16 


New 


Metro- 






Farewell appearance with 






York 


politan 






Gioconda 




March 17 


New 


Waldorf 


Concert 




Benefit Italian 






York 


Astoria 






Immigrants 




March 19 


Balti- 


Lyric 


Marta 










more 












March 21 


Balti- 


Lyric 


Faust 










more 












March 23 


Wash- 


New 


Lucia 










ington 


Nationa 









APPENDICES 



411 



DATE or FIRST 
PERFORMANCE 


CITY 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 

CONCERT 


TOTAL PERFORM- 
ANCES GIVEN | 


REMARKS 


1906 


March 24 


Wash- 


New 


Pagliacci 










ington 


National 










March 27 


Pitts- 


^Jixon 


Barmen 










burgh 












March 29 


Pitts- 


^ixon 


La Boheme 










burgh 












March 30 


Pitts- 


Sixon 


Faust 










burgh 












April 3 


Chicago 


Audi- 


Faust 












torium 










April 5 


Chicago 


Audi- 


Carmen 












torium 










April 7 


Chicago 


Audi- 


Marta 












torium 










April 9 


St. 


Olympic 


Marta 










Louis 












April II 


St. 


Olympic 


Faust 










Louis 












April 12 


Kansas 


Conven- 


Marta 










City 


tion 














Hall 










April 17 


San 


Grand 


Carmen 










Fran- 


Opera 












cisco 


House 










April 1 8 


San 








Destruction of San Fran- 






Fran- 








cisco by earthquake and 






cisco 








fire. Company disbanded 




May 15 


London 


Covent 


Rigoletto 


4 










Garden 










May 17 


London 


Covent 


La Boheme 


9 










Garden 










May 24 


London 


Covent 


Pagliacci 


3 










Garden 










May 26 


London 


Covent 


Madama 


5 










Garden 


Butterfly 








May 28 


London 




Concert 




Benefit Belgian Charities 




June 9 


London 


Covent 


Tosca 


2 










Garden 










June 25 


London 


Covent 


Alda 


2 










Garden 










July 7 


London 


Covent 


Traviata 


2 










Garden 









412 



ENRICO CARUSO 



DATE or FIRST 
PERFORMANCE 


CITY 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


1 TOTAL PERFORM- 1 1 
1 ANCES GIVEN 


REMARKS 


1906 


July 17 


London 


Covent 


Don 


2 










Garden 


Giovanni 








July 26 


London 


Covent 






Farewell appearance with 








Garden 






La Boheme 




August 4 


Ostende 


Kursaal 


Series of 


10 












Concerts 








October 2 


Wien 


Hof Oper 


Rigoletto 








October 6 


Berlin 


Des 


Carmen 












Westens 










October 


Paris 


Trocadero 


Concert 




Benefit arranged by 




25 










C. Coquelin 




November 


New 


Metro- 


La Boheme 


5 


Management of Heinrich 




28 


York 


politan 






Conried 




December 


New 


Metro- 


Traviata 


2 






i 


York 


politan 










December 


New 


Metro- 


Marta 


2 






3 


York 


politan 










December 


New 


Metro- 


Fedora 


4 


First time in America 




5 


York 


politan 










December 


New 


Metro- 


Lucia 


i 






12 


York 


politan 










December 


New 


Metro- 


Aida 


5 






21 


York 


politan 










December 


Phila- 


Academy 


Fedora 








27 


delphia 


of Music 








1907 


January 


New 


Metro- 


Tosca 


4 






2 


York 


politan 










January 


New 


Metro- 


L'Africana 


2 






ii 


York 


politan 










January 


Phila- 


Academy 


Marta 








IS 


delphia 


of Music 










January 


New 


Metro- 


Pagliacci 


2 






16 


York 


politan 










January 


New 


Metro- 


Manon 


3 






18 


York 


politan 


Lescaut 








February 


Phila- 


Academy 


Aid a 








7 


delphia 


of Music 










February 


New 


Metro- 


Madama 


4 






ii 


York 


politan 


Butterfly 








February 


Phila- 


Academy 


Madama 








H 


delphia 


of Music 


Butterfly 








February 


Phila- 


Academy 


Manon 








21 


delphia 


of Music 


Lescaut 







APPENDICES 



DATE OF FIRST 
PERFORMANCE 


CITY 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


[ TOTAL PERFORM- 
ANCES GIVEN 1 


REMARKS 


1907 


February 


New 


Metro- 


Rigoletto 


2 






27 


York 


politan 










March 5 


Phila- 


Academy 


Pagliacci 










delphia 


of Music 










March 7 


Phila- 


Academy 


La Boh erne 










delphia 


of Music 










March 23 


New 


Metro- 






Farewell appearance with 




matinee 


York 


politan 






Tosca 




March 25 


Balti- 


Lyric 


La Boh erne 




With Metropolitan Opera 






more 








Company 




March 26 


Balti- 


Lyric 


Pagliacci 










more 












March 28 


Wash- 


Belasco 


Madama 










ington 




Butterfly 








March 30 


Wash- 


Belasco 


Ai'da 










ington 












April 2 


Boston 


Boston 


Tosca 












Theatre 










April 4 


Boston 


Boston 


Marta 












Theatre 










April 6 


Boston 


Boston 


Aid a 












Theatre 










April 8 


Chicago 


Audi- 


L'Africana 












torium 










April 10 


Chicago 


Audi- 


Aid a 












torium 










April 12 


Chicago 


Audi- 


La Boheme 












torium 










April 13 


Chicago 


Audi- 


Pagliacci 












torium 










April 15 


Cincin- 


Music 


Aida 










nati 


Hall 










April 17 


St. 


Odeon 


Aid a 










Louis 












April 19 


St. 


Odeon 


La Boheme 










Louis 












April 20 


Kansas 


Conven- 


La Boheme 










City 


tion Hall 










April 22 


Omaha 


Audi- 


La Boheme 












torium 










April 24 


St. Paul 


Audi- 


La Boheme 












torium 









414 



ENRICO CARUSO 



DATE OF FIRST 
PERFORMANCE 


CITY 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


TOTAL PERFORM- 
ANCES GIVEK 


REMARKS 


1907 


April 26 


Minne- 


Audi- 


Alda 










apolis 


torium 










April 27 


Milwau- 


Alhambra 


Pagliacci 










kee 












May 15 


London 


Covent 


La Boheme 


8 










Garden 










May 17 


London 


Covent 


Madama 


4 










Garden 


Butterfly 








May 1 8 


Paris 


Trocadero 


Concert 




Benefit Belgian Charities 




May 25 


London 


Covent 


Traviata 


5 










Garden 










May 29 


London 


Covent 


Alda 


3 










Garden 










June 6 


London 


Covent 


Carmen 


2 










Garden 










June 13 


London 


Covent 


Tosca 


3 










Garden 










June 28 


London 


Covent 


Ballo in 


i 










Garden 


Maschera 








July 3 


London 


Covent 


Fedora 


2 










Garden 










July 18 


London 




Concert 




Benefit arranged by the 














Italian Embassy 




July 20 


London 


Covent 


Andrea 


2 










Garden 


Chenier 








July 26 


London 


Covent 


Pagliacci 


I 










Garden 










July 30 


London 


Covent 






Farewell appearance with 








Garden 






La Boh erne 




October 2 


Buda- 


Royal 


ATda 










pest 


Opera 














House 










October 4 


Wien 


Stadt- 


Aida 


2 










theater 










October 6 


Wien 


Stadt- 


La Boheme 












theater 










October 


Wien 


Stadt- 


Rigoletto 








II 




theater 










October 


Leipzig 


Stadt- 


Alda 








13 




theater 










October 


Ham- 


Stadt- 


Aida 


2 






16 


burg 


theater 









APPENDICES 



415 



DATE OF FIRST 
PERFORMANCE 


CITY 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


TOTAL PERFORM- 1 1 
ANCES GIVEN 


REMARKS 


1907 


October 


Ham- 


Stadt- 


Rigoletto 








18 


burg 


theater 










October 


Ham- 


Stadt- 


Pagliacci 








20 


burg 


th eater 










October 


Berlin 


Staatsoper 


Rigoletto 








23 














October 


Berlin 


Staatsoper 


Aida 


2 






25 














October 


Berlin 


Staatsoper 


Pagliacci 








29 














October 


Frank- 


Opern- 


Pagliacci 








3i 


furt 


haus 












a/M 












November 


Frank- 


Opern- 


Rigoletto 








2 


furt 


haus 












a/M 












November 


New 


Metro- 


Adriana de 


2 


First time in America 




18 


York 


politan 


Lecouvreur 








November 


New 


Metro- 


Aida 


6 


Management of Heinrich 




21 


York 


politan 






Conried 




November 


New 


Metro- 


La Boheme 


2 






23 


York 


politan 










December 


New 


Metro- 


Iris 


S 


Revival 




6 


York 


politan 










December 


New 


Metro- 


Madama 


5 






H 


York 


politan 


Butterfly 








December 


Phila- 


Academy 


Madama 








17 


delphia 


of Music 


Butterfly 








December 


New 


Metro- 


Fedora 


3 






19 


York 


politan 










December 


New 


Metro- 


Tosca 


5 






21 


York 


politan 








1908 


January 


New 


Metro- 


Faust 


5 






6 


York 


politan 










January 


New 


Waldorf 


Concert 




Mr. Bagby Musicale 




13 


York 


Astoria 










January 


Phila- 


Academy 


Adriana 








H 


delphia 


of Music 










January 


New 


Metro- 


Manon 


4 


1 




25 


York 


politan 


Lescaut 








February 


Phila- 


Academy 


Iris 








4 


delphia 


of Music 









416 



ENRICO CARUSO 



DATE OF FIRST 

PERFORMANCE 


CITY 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


TOTAL PERFORM- II 
| ANCES GIVEN 


REMARKS 


1908 


February 


New 


Metro- 


Pagliacci 


3 






6 


York 


politan 










February 


New 


Metro- 


Trovatore 


6 






26 


York 


politan 










March 3 


Phila- 


Academy 


Trovatore 










delphia 


of Music 










March 17 


Phila- 


Academy 


Ai'da 










delphia 


of Music 










March 31 


Phila- 


Academy 


Tosca 










delphia 


of Music 










April 3 


New 


Waldorf 


Concert 




Benefit arranged by Mrs. 






York 


Astoria 






Chas. Steele 




April 4 


New 


Metropol- 






Farewell appearance with 






York 


itan 






Trovatore 




April 6 


Boston 


Boston 


Iris 












Theater 










April 8 


Boston 


Boston 


Trovatore 












Theater 










April 10 


Boston 


Boston 


Manon 












Theater 


Lescaut 








April 13 


Balti- 


Lyric 


Manon 










more 




Lescaut 








April 15 


Balti- 


Lyric 


Trovatore 










more 












April 1 8 


Wash- 


New Na- 


Pagliacci 










ington 


tional 










April 21 


Chicago 


Audi- 


Trovatore 












torium 










April 23 


Chicago 


Audi- 


Pagliacci 












torium 










April 25 


Chicago 


Audi- 


Iris 












torium 










April 27 


Pitts- 


Nixon 


Faust 










burgh 












April 29 


Pitts- 


Nixon 


Trovatore 










burgh 












May I 


Colum- 


Memorial 


Concert 




Management of Wolfsohn 






bus 


Hall 






Musical Bureau 




May 4 


To- 


Massey 


Concert 










ronto 


Music 














Hall 










May 6 


Detroit 


Light 


Concert 












Guard 














Armory 









APPENDICES 



417 



DATE or FIRST 
PERFORMANCE 


Cm 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


TOTAL PERFORM- 
ANCES GIVEN 1 


REMARKS 


1908 


May8 


Buffalo 


Conven- 


Concert 












tion Hall 










May II 


Cleve- 


Hippo- 


Concert 










land 


drome 










May 13 


Roch- 


Conven- 


Concert 










ester 


tion Hall 










May 1 8 


Mon- 


Arena 


Concert 










treal 












May 30 


London 


Albert 


Songs 




Benefit under patronage 








Hall 






of H. M. the King 




June ii 


Paris 


Academic 


Rigoletto 




Benefit Societe des 








National 






Auteurs 








de Mu- 














sique 










October I 


Wies- 


Staatsoper 


Rigoletto 










baden 












October 3 


Frank- 


Opern- 


La Boheme 










furt 


haus 












a/M 












October 7 


Frank- 


Opern- 


Pagliacci 










furt 


haus 












a/M 












October 


Bremen 


Stadt- 


Pagliacci 








ii 




theater 










October 


Ham- 


Stadt- 


Pagliacci 








13 


burg 


theater 










October 


Ham- 


Stadt- 


La Boheme 








IS 


burg 


theater 










October 


Leipzig 


Stadt- 


Rigoletto 








17 




theater 










October 


Berlin 


Staatsoper 


Pagliacci 








20 














October 


Berlin 


Staatsoper 


La Boheme 








22 














October 


Berlin 


Staatsoper 


Aida 








24 














November 


Brook- 


Academy 


Faust 










lyn 


of Music 










November 


New 


Metro- 


Aida 


7 


Management of Giulio 




16 


York 


politan 






Gatti-Casazza and A. 














Dippel 




November 


Phila- 


Academy 


La Boheme 








17 


delphia 


of Music 









4i8 



ENRICO CARUSO 



DATE OF FIRST 

PERFORMANCE 


CITY 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


TOTAL PERFORM- 1 1 
ANCES GIVEN 


REMARKS 


1908 


November 


New 


Metropol- 


Madama 


I 






19 


York 


itan 


Butterfly 








November 


New 


Metropol- 


Traviata 


4 






20 


York 


itan 










November 


New 


Metropol- 


Tosca 


2 






21 


York 


itan 










November 


Phila- 


Academy 


Faust 








24 


delphia 


of Music 










December 


Phila- 


Academy 


Alda 








i 


delphia 


of Music 










December 


New 


Metropol- 


Carmen 


3 






3 


York 


itan 










December 


New 


Metropol- 


Faust 


3 






5 


York 


itan 










December 


New 


Metropol- 


Rigoletto 


I 






7 


York 


itan 










December 


New 


Metropol- 


Cavalleria 


3 






I? 


York 


itan 










December 


New 


Metropol- 


Pagliacci 


2 






26 


York 


itan 










December 


Phila- 


Academy 


Madama 








29 


delphia 


of Music 


Butterfly 






1909 


January 


New 


Metropol- 


Trovatore 


I 






4 


York 


itan 










January 


Phila- 


Academy 


Carmen 








12 


delphia 


of Music 










January 


Brook- 


Academy 


Carmen 








H 


lyn 


of Music 










January 


Mew 


Waldorf 


Concert 




Mr. Bagby Musicale 




18 


York 


Astoria 










January 


Phila- 


Academy 


Cavalleria 








19 


delphia 


of Music 










January 


Balti- 


Lyric 


Madama 








20 


more 




Butterfly 








January 


Phila- 


Academy 


Trovatore 








28 


delphia 


of Music 










February 


New 


Metropol- 


Manon 


3 


Revival 




3 


York 


itan 










February 


New 


Home of 


Musicale 








5 


York 


Mrs. 














George 














Gould 









APPENDICES 



419 



DATE OF FIRST 
PERFORMANCE 


CITY 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


TOTAL PERFORM- 1 1 
ANCES GIVEN 1 


REMARKS 


1909 


March 2 


Phila- 


Academy 


Pagliacci 










delphia 


of Music 










March 8 


Balti- 


Lyric 


Pagliacci 










more 












April 7 


New 


Metropol- 






Farewell appearance with 






York 


itan 






Alda 














21 performances lost 














through illness 




August 20 


Dublin 


Royal 


Concert 




Management of Thomas 








Theater 






Quinlan 




August 25 


Ply- 


Guild 


Concert 










mouth 


Hall 










August 29 


Black- 


Winter 


Concert 










pool 


Garden 










September 


Glas- 


St. An- 


Concert 








3 


gow 


drew's 














Hall 










September 


Edin- 


McEvan 


Concert 








7 


burgh 


Hall 










September 


New- 


Town 


Concert 








10 


castle 


Hall 










September 


Man- 


Free 


Concert 








13 


chester 


Trade 














Hall 










September 


Belfast 


Ulster 










IS 




Hall 


Concert 








September 


London 


Albert 


Concert 








18 




Hall 










September 


Liver- 


Philhar- 


Concert 








20 


pool 


monic 














Hall 










September 


Frank- 


Opern- 


Tosca 








28 


furt 


haus 












a/M 












October I 


Frank- 


Opern- 


Carmen 










furt 


haus 












a/M 












October 3 


Frank- 


Opern- 


Pagliacci 










furt 


haus 












a/M 












October 7 


Nurn- 


Stadt- 


Rigoletto 










berg 


theater 









420 



ENRICO CARUSO 



DATE OF FIRST 
PERFORMANCE 


CITY 


HOUSE 


OPERA OK 
CONCERT 


TOTAL PERFORM- 
ANCES GIVEN 


REMARKS 


1909 


October 


Ham- 


Stadt- 


Lucia 








ii 


burg 


theater 










October 


Ham- 


Stadt- 


Tosca 








13 


burg 


theater 










October 


Ham- 


Stadt- 


Carmen 








IS 


burg 


theater 










October 


Berlin 


Staats- 


Carmen 








19 




oper 










October 


Berlin 


Staats- 


La Boh erne 








21 




oper 










October 


Berlin 


Staats- 


Pagliacci 








23 




oper 










October 


Bremen 


Stadt- 


Carmen 








25 




theater 










November 


Phila- 


Academy 


Aid a 








9 


delphia 


of Music 










November 


New 


Metropol- 


Gioconda 


6 


Management of G. Gatti- 




15 


York 


itan 






Casazza 




November 


New 


Metropol- 


Traviata 


2 






|| 


York 


itan 










November 


Brook- 


Academy 


Madama 








22 


lyn 


of Music 


Butterfly 








November 


New 


Metropol- 


Pagliacci 


5 






24 


York 


itan 










November 


Phila- 


Academy 


Gioconda 








3 


delphia 


of Music 










December 


New 


Metropol- 


Aida 


4 






3 


York 


itan 










December 


New 


Metropol- 


Tosca 


I 






II 


York 


itan 










December 


Balti- 


Lyric 


Pagliacci 








17 


more 












December 


New 


Metropol- 


Faust 


I 






25 


York 


itan 










December 


Phila- 


Academy 


Pagliacci 








28 


delphia 


of Music 








igio 


January 4 


New 


Metropol- 


La Boheme 


3 








York 


itan 










January 


Boston 


Boston 


Pagliacci 








IS 




Opera 














House 










January 


Brook- 


Academy 


Aid a 








17 


lyn 


of Music 









APPENDICES 



421 



DATE OF FIRST 
PERFORMANCE 


Cmr 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


TOTAL PERFORM- 
ANCES GIVEN | 


REMARKS 


1910 


January 


New 


Metropol- 


Germania 


5 


First time in America 




22 


York 


itan 










January 


New 


Waldorf 


Concert 




Mr. Bagby Musicale 




24 


York 


Astoria 










February 


Balti- 


Lyric 


Gioconda 








2 


more 












February 


Phila- 


Academy 


Rigoletto 








10 


delphia 


of Music 










February 


Phila- 


Academy 


Germania 








IS 


delphia 


of Music 










February 


New 


Metropol- 


Rigoletto 


I 






18 


York 


itan 










March 7 


Brook- 


Academy 


Gioconda 










lyn 


of Music 










March io 


Phila- 


Academy 


Aida 










delphia 


of Music 










March 21 


Brook- 


Academy 


Rigoletto 










lyn 


of Music 










March 23 


New 


Metropol- 






Farewell appearance with 






York 


itan 






Aida 




March 28 


Boston 


Boston 


Aida 




With Metropolitan Opera 








Opera 






Company 








House 










March 30 


Boston 


Boston 


La Boheme 












Opera 














House 










April 4 


Chicago 


Audi- 


Gioconda 












torium 










April 6 


Chicago 


Audi- 


La Boheme 












torium 










April 9 


Chicago 


Audi- 


Germania 












torium 










April ii 


Cleve- 


Keith's 


Marta 










land 


Hippo- 














drome 










April 13 


Chicago 


Audi- 


Aid a 












torium 










April 1 6 


Chicago 


Audi- 


Pagliacci 












torium 










April 18 


Mil- 


Audi- 


Aida 










waukee 


torium 










April 20 


Chicago 


Audi- 


Faust 












torium 


i 





422 



ENRICO CARUSO 



DATE OF FIRST 
PERFORMANCE 


CITY 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


TOIAI. PERFORM- 
ANCES GIVEN 


REMARKS 


1910 


April 22 


St. Paul 


Audi- 


'agliacci 












torium 










April 25 


St. 


Coliseum 


^a Boheme 










Louis 












April 27 


Chicago 


Audi- 


i'agliacci 












torium 










April 29 


Chicago 


Audi- 


^a Boheme 












torium 










vlay 4 


Atlanta 


Audi- 


Alda 




Vlusic Festival Associa- 








torium 






tion 




tfay 7 


Atlanta 


Audi- 


Pagliacci 












torium 










May 1 8 


Paris 


Trocadero 


Concert 




Benefit L'Ecole 














Managere 




Vlay 21 


Paris 


Chatelet 


Aida 


3 


Management of Metro- 














politan Opera Com- 














pany of New York and 














Gabriel Astruc 




May 23 


Paris 


Chatelet 


Pagliacci 


3 






fune 9 


Paris 


Chatelet 


Manon 


5 












Lescaut 








fune 19 


Paris 


Dpera 


Excerpts 




Benefit for victims of 










from Faust 




" Pluviose" 










and La 














Boheme 








fune 25 


Paris 


Chatelet 






Farewell appearance with 














Manon Lescaut 




September 


Brux- 


La Mon- 


La Boheme 


2 






24 and 25 


elles 


naie 










October I 


Frank- 


Opern- 


Aida 










furt 


haus 












a/M 












October 4 


Frank- 


Opern- 


Carmen 










furt 


haus 












a/M 












October 8 


Muen- 


Staats- 


Carmen 










chen 


oper 










October 


Muen- 


Staats- 


La Boheme 








ii 


chen 


oper 










October 


Ham- 


Stadt- 


Rigoletto 








IS 


burg 


theater 










October 


Ham- 


Stadt- 


Carmen 








18 


burg 


theater 









APPENDICES 



423 



DATE OF FIRST 
PERFORMANCE 


CITY 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


TOTAL PERFORM- 
ANCES GIVEN 


REMARKS 


I9IO 


Dctober 


Ham- 


Stadt- 


Marta 








20 


burg 


theater 










October 


Berlin 


Staats- 


Aida 








24 




oper 










October 


Berlin 


Staats- 


Barmen 








27 




oper 










October 


Berlin 


Staats- 


Ilisir 








3 




oper 


d'amore 








November 


New 


Metropol- 


Armide 


3 


Revival 




H 


York 


itan 










November 


New 


Metropol- 


Aida 


4 


Management of 




17 


York 


itan 






G. Gatti-Casazza 




November 


New 


Metropol- 


Gioconda 


4 






23 


York 


itan 










November 


New 


Metropol- 


Pagliacci 


3 






25 


York 


itan 










December 


New 


Metropol- 


Fanciulla 


7 


World premiere 




10 


York 


itan 


del West 








December 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


Fanciulla 








20 


delphia 


itan 


del West 






I9II 


January 3 


Brook- 


Academy 


Pagliacci 










lyn 


of Music 










January 


Chicago 


Audi- 


Pagliacci 








H 




torium 










January 


Chicago 


Audi- 


Fanciulla 








18 




torium 


del West 








January 


Cleve- 


Keith's 


Pagliacci 








19 


land 


Hippo- 














drome 










January 


New 


Home of 


Musicale 








24 


York 


Mrs. 














Corne- 














lius 














Van- 














derbilt 










January 


New 


Waldorf 


Concert 




Mr. Bagby Musicale 




3 


York 


Astoria 










February 


New 


Metropol- 


Germania 


2 






I 


York 


itan 










February 


New 


Metropol- 






Last appearance. Illness 




6 


York 


itan 






prevented him from 














continuing after per- 














formance of Germania 














on this date 



424 



ENRICO CARUSO 



DATE or FIRST 
PERFORMANCE 


CITY 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


IOTAL .PERFORM- 
ANCES GIVEN 


REMARKS 


I9II 


November 


Mew 


Metropol- 


Alda 


s 


Management of 




13 


York 


itan 






G. Gatti-Casazza 




November 


^ew 


Metropol- 


^anciulla 


5 






16 


York 


itan 


del West 








November 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


Gioconda 








21 


del- 


itan 












phia 












November 


Mew 


Metropol- 


'agliacci 


9 






24 


York 


itan 










)ecember 


^ew 


Metropol- 


Gioconda 


5 






7 


York 


itan 










)ecember 


Mew 


Metropol- 


Armide 


4 






16 


York 


itan 










December 


^ew 


Metropol- 


fosca 


2 






21 


York 


itan 








1912 


anuary 


Brook- 


Academy 


^a Boheme 








2 


lyn 


of Music 










[anuary 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


^a Boheme 








9 


del- 


itan 












phia 












[anuary 


Mew 


Metropol- 


Cavalleria 


I 






17 


York 


itan 










[anuary 


Brook- 


Academy 


Pagliacci 








27 


lyn 


of Mu- 














sic 










[anuary 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


Pagliacci 








30 


del- 


itan 












phia 












February 


Mew 


Metropol- 


Rigoletto 


3 






6 


York 


itan 










February 


New 


Metropol- 


La Boheme 


I 






19 


York 


itan 










March 5 


Boston 


Boston 


Fanciulla 












Opera 


del West 












House 










March 12 


Brook- 


Academy 


Alda 










lyn 


of Mu- 














sic 










March 30 


New 


Metropol- 


Manon 


3 








York 


itan 


Lescaut 








April 12 


New 


Metropol- 






Farewell appearance with 






York 


itan 






Pagliacci 



APPENDICES 



425 



DATE or FIRST 
PERFORMANCE 


Crnr 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


TOTAL PERFORM- 
ANCES GIVEN | 


REMARKS 


1912 


April 17 


Boston 


Boston 


Pagliacci 












Opera 














House 










April 19 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


Aida 










del- 


itan 












phia 












April 22 


Atlanta 


Audito- 


Alda 












rium 










April 25 


Atlanta 


Audito- 


Pagliacci 












rium 










April 27 


Atlanta 


Audito- 


Rigoletto 












rium 










April 29 


New 


Metropol- 


Concert 




Benefit " Titanic" vic- 






York 


itan 






tims 




Vlay 16 to 


Paris 


Opera 


Fanciuila 


3 






June II 






del West 














Rigoletto 


3 






September 


Muen- 


Staats- 


Tosca 








26 


chen 


oper 










September 


Muen- 


Staats- 


Rigoletto 








28 


chen 


oper 










October 


Stutt- 


Staats- 


Pagliacci 








I 


gart 


oper 










October 


Stutt- 


Staats- 


La Boh erne 








3 


gart 


oper 










November 


New 


Metropol- 


Manon 


5 


Management of 




it 


York 


itan 


Lescaut 




G. Gatti-Casazza 




November 


New 


Metropol- 


Gioconda 


3 






H 


York 


itan 










November 


New 


Metropol- 


Pagliacci 


6 






20 


York 


itan 










November 


New 


Metropol- 


Fanciuila 


4 






25 


York 


itan 


del West 








November 


New 


Metropol- 


La Boheme 


3 






28 


York 


itan 










December 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


La Boheme 








3 


del- 


itan 












phia 












December 


New 


Metropol- 


Aida 


4 






9 


York 


itan 










December 


Brook- 


Academy 


Pagliacci 








24 


lyn 


of Music 







426 



ENRICO CARUSO 



DATE or FIRST 
PERFORMANCE 


CITY 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


TOTAL PERFORM- 1 1 
ANCES GIVEN 1 


RKMABKS 


1912 


December 


New 


Metropol- 


Les Hugue- 


5 






27 


York 


itan 


nots 






1913 


January 


New 


Metropol- 


Tosca 


4 






4 


York 


itan 










January 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


Gioconda 








7 


del- 


itan 












phia 












January 


New 


Metropol- 


Manon 


5 






22 


York 


itan 










January 


New 


Waldorf 


Concert 




Vlr. Bagby Musicale 




27 


York 


Astoria 










January 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


Manon 








28 


del- 


itan 












phia 












February 


New 


Metropol- 


Cavalleria 








17 


York 


itan 










March 4 


Brook- 


Academy 


Tosca 


i 








lyn 


of 














Music 










March 18 


Boston 


Boston 


Pagliacci 












Opera 














House 










March 25 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


Les Hugue- 










del- 


itan 


nots 










phia 












April 18 


New 


Metropol- 






farewell appearance with 






York 


itan 






Tosca 




April 1 8 


Atlanta 


Audito- 


Manon 












rium 


Lescaut 








April 24 


Atlanta 


Audito- 


Gioconda 












rium 










April 26 


Atlanta 


Audito- 


Tosca 












rium 










May 20 


London 


Covent 


Pagliacci 


2 










Garden 










May 24 


London 


Covent 


Aida 


5 










Garden 










Junes 


London 


Covent 


Tosca 


3 










Garden 










June 1 8 


London 


Covent 


La Boheme 


3 










Garden 










June 28 


London 


Covent 






7 arewell with La Boheme 








Garden 









APPENDICES 



427 



DATE or FIRST 
PERFORMANCE 


CITY 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


TOTAL PERFORM- 1 1 
ANCES GIVEN 1 


REMARKS 


1913 


September 


Wien 


Staats- 


Rigoletto 


2 






27 




oper 










September 


Wien 


Staats- 


Carmen 


I 






29 




oper 










October i, 


Muen- 


Staats- 


Pagliacci 








3 and 5 


chen 


oper 


Carmen 














La Boh erne 








October 8, 


Stutt- 


Staats- 


Carmen 








10 and 12 


gart 


oper 


Tosca 














Rigoletto 








November 


New 


Metropol- 


Gioconda 


4 


Management of G. Gatti- 




17 


York 


itan 






Casazza 




November 


New 


Metropol- 


Hallo in 


5 






22 


York 


itan 


Maschera 








November 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


Aid a 








25 


del- 


itan 












phia 












November 


New 


Metropol- 


Manon 


4 






27 


York 


itan 


Lescaut 








December 


New 


Metropol- 


Pagliacci 


7 






5 


York 


itan 










December 


New 


Metropol- 


Aida 


3 






8 


York 


itan 










December 


New 


Metropol- 


Tosca 


4 






19 


York 


itan 










December 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


La Boheme 








23 


del- 


itan 












phia 












December 


New 


Metropol- 


Manon 


4 






3i 


York 


itan 








1914 


January 


Brook- 


Academy 


Pagliacci 








27 


lyn 


of Music 










January 


New 


Metropol- 


La Boheme 


2 






30 


York 


itan 










February 


New 


Metropol- 


La Fanciulla 


3 






4 


York 


itan 


del West 








February 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


Tosca 








10 


del- 


itan 












phia 












February 


New 


Metropol- 


Julien 


5 


New Opera 




26 


York 


itan 










March 3 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


Pagliacci 










delphia 


itan 









428 



ENRICO CARUSO 



DATE OF FIRST 
PERFORMANCE 


Cmr 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


TOTAL PERFORM- II 
ANCES GIVEN 


REMMJKS 


1914 


March 24 


Brook- 


Academy 


Gioconda 










lyn 


of Music 










April 22 


New 


Metropol- 






Farewell appearance with 






York 


itan 






Tosca 




April 27 


Atlanta 


Audito- 


Manon 












rium 










April 30 


Atlanta 


Audito- 


Hallo in 












rium 


Maschera 








May 2 


Atlanta 


Audito- 


Pagliacci 












rium 










May 14 


London 


Covent 


Aida 


3 










Garden 










May 16 


London 


Covent 


Tosca 


4 










Garden 










May 25 


London 


Covent 


Madama 


4 










Garden 


Butterfly 








May 28 


London 


Covent 


Ballo in 


2 










Garden 


Maschera 








June 6 


London 


Covent 


La Boh erne 


2 










Garden 










June 29 


London 


Covent 






Farewell appearance with 








Garden 






Tosca. His last in 














England 




October 


Roma 


Costanzi 


Pagliacci 




Benefit arranged by 




1 9 










Comm. Ricceri 




November 


New 


Metropol- 


Ballo in 


2 


Management of G. Gatti- 




16 


York 


itan 


Maschera 




Casazza 




November 


New 


Metropol- 


Carmen 


7 






19 


York 


itan 










November 


New 


Metropol- 


Gioconda 


2 






25 


York 


itan 










December 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


Gioconda 








I 


del- 


itan 












phia 












December 


New 


Metropol- 


Pagliacci 


4 






5 


York 


itan 










December 


New 


Metropol- 


Aida 


2 






12 


York 


itan 










December 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


Aida 








IS 


del- 


itan 












phia 












December 


New 


Metropol- 


Manon 


3 






24 


York 


itan 









APPENDICES 



429 



DATE OF FIRST 
PERFORMANCE 


.Cmr; 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


TOTAL PERFORM- 
ANCES GIVEN 


REMARKS 


1914 


December 


New 


Metropol- 


^es Hugue- 


3 






30 


York 


itan 


nots 






I9IS 


January 


New 


Metropol- 


Manon 


I 






I 


York 


itan 


Lescaut 








January 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


Pagliacci 








IS 


delphia 


itan 










February 


Brook- 


Academy 


Carmen 








2 


lyn 


of Music 










February 


Mew 


Metropol- 






Farewell appearance with 




17 


York 


itan 






Pagliacci 




March 14 


Monte 


Casino 


Aida 




[mpresa of R. Gunsbourg 




to April 


Carlo 




Pagliacci 








IS 






Lucia 








May 20 


Buenos 


Colon 


Aida 


I 


[mpresa of Walter Mocchi 






Aires 








and Da Rosa 




May 30 


Buenos 


Colon 


Pagliacci 


4 








Aires 












June 7 


Buenos 


Coliseo 


Songs 




Italian Benefit 






Aires 












June 10 


Buenos 


Colon 


Manon 


3 








Aires 




Lescaut 








June 20 


Buenos 


Colon 


Manon 


8 








Aires 












June 27 


Buenos 


Colon 


Lucia 


2 








Aires 












Julys 


Buenos 


Coliseo 


Songs 




French Benefit 






Aires 












July 9 


Rosario 




Pagliacci 








July II 


Tu- 




Pagliacci 










cuma 












July 14 


Cor- 




Pagliacci 








and 16 


doba 












August 4 


Buenos 


Colon 


Pagliacci 




Benefit Critic Association 






Aires 












August 10 


Buenos 


Colon 






Farewell appearance with 






Aires 








Manon 




August II 


Buenos 


Colon 


Lamento 




Benefit Italian and 






Aires 




from 




French Red Crosses 










Pagliacci 








August 12 


Monte- 


Solis 


Manon 


3 






to 


video 




Pagliacci 


3 






August 30 






Manon 


3 












Lescaut 







430 



ENRICO CARUSO 



DATE or FIRST 
PERFORMANCE 


CITY 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


TOTAL PERFORM- 1 1 
ANCES GIVEN 


REMARKS 


1915 


September 


Milano 


Dal 


Pagliacci 


2 


Benefit arranged by 




23 and 




Verme 






Toscanini. His last 




25 










appearance in Italy 




November 


New 


Metropol- 


Samson et 


5 


Revival 




15 


York 


itan 


Dalila 




Management of G. Gatti- 




November 


New 


Metropol- 


La Boheme 


4 


Casazza 




J 9 


York 


itan 










November 


New 


Metropol- 


Tosca 


i 






27 


York 


itan 










November 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


Manon 








30 


del- 


itan 












phia 












December 


New 


Metropol- 


Pagliacci 


4 






2 


York 


itan 










December 


New 


Metropol- 


Marta 


4 






IS 


York 


itan 










December 


New 


Metropol- 


Manon 


2 






IS 


York 


itan 








1916 


January 


New 


Metropol- 


Ballo in 


2 






I 


York 


itan 


Maschera 








January 4 


Brook- 


Academy 


Aida 










lyn 


of Music 










January 5 


New 


Waldorf 


Concert 




Mr. Bagby Musicale 






York 


Astoria 










January 6 


New 


Metropol- 


Manon 


3 








York 


itan 


Lescaut 








January 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


La Boheme 








25 


del- 


itan 












phia 












February 


Mew 


Biltmore 


Concert 




Friday Morning 




9 


York 


Hotel 






Musicales 




February 


New 


Metropol- 


Rigoletto 


5 






ii 


York 


itan 










February 


New 


Metropol- 


Carmen 


4 






17 


York 


itan 










March 14 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


Pagliacci 










del- 


itan 












phia 












March 24 


New 


Metropol- 


Aida 


i 








York 


itan 










April I 


New 


Metropol- 






Farewell appearance with 






York 


itan 






Carmen 



APPENDICES 



DATE OF FIRST 
PERFORMANCE 


CITY 


HOUSE 


OPERA on 
CONCERT 


TOTAL PERFORM- II 
ANCES GIVEN 1 


REMARKS 


1916 


April 4 


Boston 


Boston 


La Boh erne 




With Metropolitan Opera 








Opera 






Company 








House 










April 7 


Boston 


Boston 


Aid a 












Opera 














House 










April 12 


Boston 


Boston 


Rigoletto 












Opera 














House 










April 15 


Boston 


Boston 


Pagliacci 












Opera 














House 










April 1 8 


Boston 


Boston 


Ballo in 












Opera 


Maschera 












House 










April 21 


Boston 


Boston 


Marta 












Opera 














House 










April 24 


Atlanta 


Audito- 


Samson et 












rium 


Dalila 








April 28 


Atlanta 


Audito- 


Marta 












rium 










April 29 


Atlanta 


Audito- 


La Boh erne 












rium 










November 


New 


Metropol- 


Pecheurs de 


3 


Revival 




13 


York 


itan 


Perles 




Management of 




November 


New 


Metropol- 


Manon 


3 


G. Gatti-Casazza 




16 


York 


itan 


Lescaut 








November 


New 


Metropol- 


Samson et 


5 






24 


York 


itan 


Dalila 








November 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


Samson et 








28 


del- 


itan 


Dalila 










phia 












December 


New 


Metropol- 


Tosca 


I 






4 


York 


itan 










December 


New 


Metropol- 


Pagliacci 


4 






15 


York 


itan 










December 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


Marta 








19 


del- 


itan 












phia 












December 


New 


Metropol- 


Marta 


3 






25 


York 


itan 









432 



ENRICO CARUSO 



DATE or FIRST 

PERFORMANCE 


CITY 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


TOTAL PERFORM- 
ANCES GIVEN | 


REMARKS 


1916 


December 


New 


Metropol- 


Elisir 


5 






30 


York 


itan 


d'amore 






1917 


January 


Brook- 


Academy 


Alda 








2 


lyn 


of 














Music 










January 


New 


Metropol- 


Carmen 


S 






5 


York 


itan 










January 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


La Boheme 








23 


del- 


itan 






, 






phia 












February 


New 


Metropol- 


Rigoletto 


5 






7 


York 


itan 










February 


New 


Metropol- 


Alda 


4 






12 


York 


itan 










February 


Brook- 


Academy 


Marta 








27 


lyn 


of Music 






1 




March 6 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


Rigoletto 










del- 


itan 












phia 












March 18 


New 


Metropol- 


Concert 




Italian War Benefit 






York 


itan 










March 23 


New 


Metropol- 


La Boheme 


i 








York 


itan 










April 10 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


Pagliacci 










del- 


itan 












phia 












April 20 


New 


Metropol- 






Farewell appearance with 






York 


itan 






Rigoletto 




April 23 


Atlanta 


Audito- 


Elisir 












rium 


d'amore 








April 26 


Atlanta 


Audito- 


Tosca 












rium 










April 28 


Atlanta 


Audito- 


Rigoletto 












rium 










May i 


Cincin- 


Music 


Concert 




Management of Metro- 






nati 


Hall 






politan Musical Bureau 




May 3 


Toledo 


Terminal 


Concert 












Audi- 














torium 










May 5 


Pitts- 


Syria 


Concert 










burgh 


Mosque 










May 8 


New 


Astor 


Concert 




With Mozart Society 






York 


Hotel 









APPENDICES 



433 



DATE or FIRST 

PERFORMANCE 


CITY 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


1 TOTAL PERFORM- 
| ANCES GIVEN 


REMARKS 


1917 


June 17 


Buenos 


I^olon 


llisir 


3 


[mpresa of W. Mocchi and 






Aires 




d'amore 




Da Rosa 




June 20 


Buenos 


^olon 


Pagliacci 


4 








Aires 












June 26 


Buenos 


Colon 


Vlanon 


3 








Aires 












July 2 


Buenos 


Colon 


Songs 




Benefit "Caja Dotal" 






Aires 












July 4 


Buenos 


oolon 


Songs 




Fourth of July Celebration 






Aires 








for benefit U. S. Red 














Cross 




July 6 


Buenos 


Colon 


Songs 




Benefit Charing Cross 






Aires 








Hospital of London 




July 12 


Buenos 


Colon 


Tosca 


2 


First performance given 






Aires 








for benefit Italian Red 














Cross 




July 15 


Buenos 


Colon 


La Boheme 


2 








Aires 












July 20 


Buenos 


Colon 


La Boheme 




Extra performance for 






Aires 








benefit Belgian Chari- 














ties 




July 27 


Buenos 


Colon 


Elisir 




Extra performance for 






Aires 




d'amore 




benefit Press Club of 














Buenos Aires 




July 29 


Buenos 


Colon 


Lodoletta 


2 


New Opera 






Aires 












July 30 


Buenos 


Colon 


Act III from 




Benefit " Cantine Mater- 






Aires 




Lucia 




nali " 




August 6 


Buenos 


San 


Songs 




Benefit " Pantheon In- 






Aires 


Martin 






ternational Artists " 




August 12 


Buenos 


Coliseo 


Pagliacci 




Extra performance. 






Aires 








Last appearance in opera 














in Buenos Aires 




August 13 


Buenos 


Colon 


Songs 




Benefit Italian War Com- 






Aires 








mittee 




August 16 


Monte- 


Solis 


Manon 


2 


Impresa of W. Mocchi and 




to 


video 




Lescaut 




Da Rosa 




August 25 






Pagliacci 


3 












Manon 


3 












Carmen 


3 






September 


Riode 


Lirico 


Pagliacci 




Impresa of W. Mocchi and 




3 to 18 


Janeiro 




Carmen 




Da Rosa 



434 



ENRICO CARUSO 



DATE OF FIRST 
PERFORMANCE 


CITY 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


TOTAL PERIORM- 1 
ANCES GIVEN 1 


REMARKS 


1917 


September 






Elisir 








3 to 18 






Lodoletta 








continued 






La Boheme 














Manon 








September 


Rio dc 


Lirico 


Act I Elisir 




Benefit Italian Red Cross 




19 


Janeiro 












September 


San 


Munici- 


Elisir 








25 to 


Paulo 


pale 


d'amore 








October 






Carmen 








ii 






Tosca 














La Boheme 














Manon 














Pagliacci 














Lodoletta 








October 8 


San 


Munici- 


Act I 




Benefit Italian Red Cross 






Paulo 


pale 


Pagliacci 














Act III 














Elisir 








October 


Rio de 


Lirico 


Carmen 








13 


Janeiro 












October 


Riode 


Lirico 


Manon 




His last appearance in 




16 


Janeiro 




Lescaut 




South America 




November 


New 


Metropol- 


Aid a 


3 


Management of G. Gatti- 




12 


York 


itan 






Casazza 




November 


New 


Metropol- 


Elisir 


5 






IS 


York 


itan 


d'amore 








November 


New 


Metropol- 


Marta 


5 






21 


York 


itan 










November 


New 


Metropol- 


Samson et 


4 






23 


York 


itan 


Dalila 








November 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


Manon 








27 


del- 


itan 


Lescaut 










phia 












December 


New 


Metropol- 


Manon 


3 






5 


York 


itan 


Lescaut 








December 


New 


Metropol- 


Pagliacci 


3 






7 


York 


itan 










December 


New 


Metropol- 


Carmen 


2 






10 


York 


itan 










December 


New 


Metropol- 


Tosca 


I 






IS 


York 


itan 










December 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


Pagliacci 








18 


delphia 


itan 









APPENDICES 



435 



DATE OF FIRST 
PERFORMANCE 


Cmr 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


TOTAL PERFORM- 
ANCES GIVEN 


REMARKS 


1917 


December 


New 


Metropol- 


Rigoletto 


I 






29 


York 


itan 








1918 


January 


New 


Metropol- 


Lodoletta 


5 


First time in America 




12 


York 


itan 










January 


Brook- 


Academy 


Rigoletto 








IS 


lyn 


of Mu- 














sic 










February 


New 


Metropol- 


Le Prophete 


5 


Revival 




7 


York 


itan 










February 


New 


Biltmore 


Concert 




Friday Morning Musicale 




18 


York 


Hotel 










February 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


Lodoletta 








19 


del- 


itan 












phia 












March 14 


New 


Metropol- 


L'Amore dei 


4 








York 


itan 


TreRe 








March 19 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


L'Amore dei 










del- 


itan 


TreRe 










phia 












April 9 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


Samson et 










del- 


itan 


Dalila 










phia 












April 14 


New 


Metropol- 


Concert 




Benefit Italian Reservists 






York 


itan 










April 19 


New 


Metropol- 






Farewell appearance with 






York 


itan 






Elisir d'amore 




April 22 


Boston 


Boston 


Le Prophete 












Opera 














House 










April 25 


Boston 


Boston 


Pagliacci 












Opera 














House 










April 27 


Boston 


Boston 


Samson et 












Opera 


Dalila 












House 










May i 


New 


Carnegie 


Concert 




Third Liberty Loan Rally 






York 


Hall 










May 20 


Wash- 


Poli's 


Concert 




Benefit under auspices 






ington 








Italian Embassy 




May 24 


New 


Metropol- 


Concert 




Benefit Italian Red Cross 






York 


itan 










May 27 


Mew 


Metropol- 


Concert 




Benefit American Red 






York 


itan 






Cross 



436 



ENRICO CARUSO 



DATE OF FIRST 

PERFORMANCE 


Crnr 


HOUSE 


OPERA OK 
CONCERT 


TOTAL PERFORM- 
ANCES GIVEN 


REMARKS 


1918 


une 10 


''Jew 


Metropol- 


Concert 




benefit Women Naval 






York 


itan 






Services 




July 27 


)cean 


Audito- 


Concert 




Management of R. E. 






Grove 


rium 






Johnston 




August 17 


Sara- 


Conven- 


Concert 




Management of Metro- 






toga 


tion 






politan Musical Bureau 






Springs 


Hall 










August 3 1 


Sheeps- 


Open air 


Songs 




Benefit Police Reserve of 






head 








New York 






Bay 












September 


New 


Waldorf 


rlymns of 




[Commemoration Lafa- 




6 


York 


Astoria 


Allied 




yette Day 










Nations 








September 


New 


Central 


Songs 




People's concerts arranged 




12 


York 


Park 






by Mayor Hylan. 








Mall 






First time he sang 














where was no charge for 














admission 




September 


New 


Century 


Songs 




Benefit Tank Corps 




IS 


York 


Theatre 










September 


New 


Carnegie 


Concert 




Liberty Loan Rally pro- 




3 


York 


Hall 






moted by Allied Musical 














Arts 




October 5 


New 


Madison 


Songs 




Liberty Loan Rally pro- 






York 


Square 






moted by United Mov- 








Garden 






ing Picture Producers 














of America 




October 9 


Buffalo 


Iroquois 


Songs 




IV Liberty Loan Rally 








Hotel 










October 12 


New 


Metropol- 


Concert 




Benefit Italian Blind 






York 


itan 






Soldiers 




October 15 


Detroit 


Arcadia 


Pagliacci 




Management Central 














Concert Company 




November 


New 


Madison 


Songs 




Benefit United War 




3 after- 


York 


Square 






Works 




noon 




Garden 










Novembe 


New 


Hippo- 


Songs 




Benefit Navy Relief 




3 eve- 


York 


drome 






Fund 




ning 














Novembe 


New 


Biltmore 


Concert 




Friday Morning Musi- 




7 


York 


Hotel 






cale 




Novembe 


New 


Metropol- 


Samson et 


5 


Management of G. Gatti- 




II 


York 


itan 


Dalila 




Casazza 



APPENDICES 



437 



DATE or FIRST 

PERFORMANCE 


CITY 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


TOTAL PERFORM- 
ANCES GIVEN 1 


REMARKS 


1918 


November 


New 


Metropol- 


Forza del 


6 


Revival 




IS 


York 


itan 


Destino 








November 


New 


Metropol- 


Elisir 


5 






20 


York 


itan 


d'amore 








November 


New 


Metropol- 


Le Prophete 


6 






23 


York 


itan 










November 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


Elisir 








26 


delphia 


itan 


d'amore 








December 


New 


Metropol- 


Marta 


5 






7 


York 


itan 










December 


New 


Metropol- 


Lodoletta 


3 






18 


York 


itan 










December 


New 


Waldorf 


Concert 




Mr. Bagby Musicale 




23 


York 


Astoria 










December 


New 


Metropol- 


Pagliacci 


4 






25 


York 


itan 








1919 


January 


New 


Metropol- 


La Boheme 


2 






8 


York 


itan 










January 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


Samson et 








21 


del- 


itan 


Dalila 










phia 












February 


New 


Metropol- 


Aida 


2 






12 


York 


itan 










March 2 


Ann 


Hill 


Concert 




Management Metro- 






Arbor 


Audi- 






politan Musical Bureau 








torium 










March 3 


New 


Metropol- 


The Star 




League of Nations Rally 






York 


itan 


Spangled 














Banner 








March 3 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


La Boheme 










del- 


itan 












phia 












March 22 


New 


Metropol- 


Act III 




To celebrate the 25th 






York 


itan 


Elisir 




year of his operatic 










Act I 




career 










Pagliacci 














Act III 














Prophete 








March 25 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


Forza del 










delphia 


itan 


Destino 








April 2 


New 


Commo- 


Concert 




Commodore Hotel Musi- 






York 


dore 






cales 








Hotel 









438 



ENRICO CARUSO 



DATE OF FIRST 
PERFORMANCE 


Cmr 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


TOTAL PERFORM- 
ANCES GIVEN 


REMARKS 


1919 


April 6 


Buffalo 


Broadway 


Concert 




Management Metro- 








Audi- 






politan Musical Bureau 








torium 










April 14 


New 


Metropol- 


barmen 


I 








York 


itan 










April 17 


^ew 


Metropol- 






? arewell appearance with 






York 


itan 






Aid a 




April 21 


Atlanta 


Audito- 


"orza del 












rium 


Destine 








April 24 


Atlanta 


Audito- 


Marta 












rium 










April 26 


Atlanta 


Audito- 


Pagliacci 












rium 










April 29 


Nash- 


ilyman 


Concert 




Management of Metro- 






ville 


Audi- 






politan Musical Bureau 








torium 










May 2 


St. 


Coliseum 


Concert 










Louis 












M ay 5 


Kansas 


Conven- 


Concert 










City 


tion 














Hall 










May8 


St. 


Audito- 


Concert 










Paul 


rium 










May n 


Chicago 


Medinah 


Concert 












Temple 










May 13 


Mil- 


Audito- 


Concert 










wau- 


rium 












kee 












May 16 


Canton 


Audito- 


Concert 










Ohio 


rium 










May 19 


Newark 


ist Regi- 


Concert 












ment 














Armory 










May 22 


Spring- 


Audito- 






Management of Edward 






field, 


rium 






Marsh 






Mass 












Septembe 


Mexico 


Esperanza 


Elisir 




Management of Jose del 




29 


City 


Iris 


d'amore 




River 




October 2 


Mexico 


Esperanza 


Ballo in 










City 


Iris 


Maschera 








October 5 


Mexico 


El Toreo 


Carmen 










City 











APPENDICES 



439 



DATE OF FIRST 
PERFORMANCE 


CITY 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


i| 

iO 

si 

3 < 

H 


REMARKS 


1919 


October 9 


Mexico 


Esperanza 


Samson et 










City 


Iris 


Dalila 








Dctober 12 


Mexico 


El Toreo 


Salic in 










City 




Maschera 








October 17 


Mexico 


Esperanza 


Marta 










City 


Iris 










October 19 


Mexico 


El Toreo 


Samson et 










City 




Dalila 








October 23 


Mexico 


Esperanza 


Pagliacci 










City 


Iris 










October 26 


Mexico 


El Toreo 


Alda 










City 












October 28 


Mexico 


Esperanza 


Songs 




Benefit Educational Fund 






City 


Iris 






of the City of Mexico 




October 30 


Mexico 


Esperanza 


Manon 




Serata d'onore 






City 


Iris 


Lescaut 








November 


Mexico 


El Toreo 


Act III Elisir 




Farewell appearance 




2 


City 




Act III 














Marta 














Act I 














Pagliacci 








November 


New 


Metropol- 


Tosca 


I 


Management G. Gatti- 




17 


York 


itan 






Casazza 




November 


New 


Metropol- 


La Juive 


7 


Revival 




22 


York 


itan 










November 


New 


Metropol- 


Pagliacci 


5 






26 


York 


itan 










November 


New 


Metropol- 


Forza del 


5 






28 


York 


itan 


Destino 








December 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


Elisir 








2 


del- 


itan 


d'amore 










phia 












December 


New 


Metropol- 


Samson et 


5 






10 


York 


itan 


Dalila 








December 


New 


Metropol- 


Marta 


4 






13 


York 


itan 










December 


New 


Metropol- 


Elisir 


5 






19 


York 


itan 


d'amore 








December 


Brook- 


Academy 


Marta 








23 


lyn 


of Music 








1920 


January 6 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


La Juive 










delphia 


itan 









440 



ENRICO CARUSO 



DATE OP FIRST 
PERFORMANCE 


CITY 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


TOTAL PERFORM- 1 1 
ANCES GIVEN 


REMARKS 


1920 


January 


New 


Metropol- 


Manon 


I 






IS 


York 


itan 


Lescaut 








January 


New 


Waldorf 


Concert 




Mr. Bagby Musicale 




19 


York 


Astoria 










February 


New 


Metropol- 


Le Prophete 


s 






4 


York 


itan 










February 


Brook- 


Academy 


La Juive 








24 


lyn 


of Mu- 














sic 










February 


Pitts- 


Syria 


Concert 




Management of Metro- 




28 


burgh 


Mosque 






politan Musical Bureau 




March 2 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


Marta 










del- 


itan 












phia 












March 14 


Water- 


Audito- 


Concert 




Management Metro- 






bury 


rium 






politan Musical Bureau 




March 28 


New 


Lexington 


Songs 




Italian Loan Rally 






York 


Opera 














House 










March 30 


Phila- 


Metropol- 


Forza del 










del- 


itan 


Destino 










phia 












April 5 


Scran- 


Armory 


Concert 




Management Metro- 






ton 








politan Musical Bureau 




April 1 8 


Detroit 


Arcadia 


Concert 




Management Central 














Concert Company 




April 23 


Mew 


Metropol- 






Farewell appearance with 






York 


itan 






La Juive 




April 26 


Atlanta 


Audito- 


Samson et 












rium 


Dalila 








April 29 


Atlanta 


Audito- 


La Juive 












rium 










May i 


Atlanta 


Audito- 


Elisir 












rium 


d'amore 








May 12 


Habana 


Nacional 


Marta 




Impresa of Adolfo 














Bracale 




May 1 6 


Habana 


Nacional 


Marta 








May 18 


Habana 


Nacional 


Elisir 














d'amore 








May 21 


Habana 


Nacional 


Ballo in 














Maschera 








May 25 


Habana 


Nacional 


Pagliacci 








May 28 


Habana 


Nacional 


Tosca 










APPENDICES 



441 



DATE OF FIRST 
PERFORMANCE 


Cmr 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


1OTAL PERFORM- 
ANCES GIVEN 


REMARKS 


1920 


Vlay 30 


labana 


STacional 


J agliacci 








[une 2 


iabana 


^acional 


Carmen 








[une 5 


-Jabana 


^Jacional 


Carmen 








[une 8 


iabana 


^acional 


Aida 








[une II 


iabana 


Sfacional 


Act III Elisir 




Serata d'onore 










Act I 














Pagliacci 








[une 13 


iabana 


^acional 


Aida 




>ast appearance. Per- 














formance suspended 














after scene I of Act II 














because of explosion 














of a bomb 




[une 17 


Santa 


La Cari- 


Act III Elisir 




'mpresa of Adolfo Bra- 






Clara 


dad 


Act I 




cale 










Pagliacci 








[une 19 


Cien- 


Terry 


Aida 




'mpresa of Adolfo Bra- 






fuegos 








cale 




fune 26 


New 


Athe- 


Concert 




Management Metropoli- 






Or- 


naeum 






tan Musical Bureau 






leans 












June 30 


Atlan- 


Ambassa- 


Concert 




Promoted by Victor 






tic 


dor 






Talking Machine 






City 


Hotel 






Dealers Association 




August 14 


Ocean 


Audito- 


Concert 




Management Metropoli- 






Grove 


rium 






tan Musical Bureau 




September 


Mont- 


Mt. Roya 


Concert 








27 


real 


Arena 










September 


To- 


Massey 


Concert 








30 


ronto 


Hall 










October 3 


Chicago 


Medinah 


Concert 












Temple 










October 6 


St. 


Audito- 


Concert 










Paul 


rium 










October 9 


Denver 


Audito- 


Concert 












rium 










October 


Omaha 


Audito- 


Concert 








12 




rium 










October 


Tulsa 


Conven- 


Concert 








16 




tion Hal 










October 19 


Fort 


Coliseum 


Concert 










Worth 












October 22 


Hous- 


City Audi 


Concert 










ton 


torium 









442 



ENRICO CARUSO 



DATE OF FIRST 

PERFORMANCE 


CITY 


HOUSE 


OPERA OR 
CONCERT 


I TOTAL PERFORM- 1 1 
1 ANCES GIVEN 


REMARKS 


1920 


October 25 


Char- 


City Audi- 


Concert 










lotte 


torium 










October 28 


Nor- 


Taber- 


Concert 










folk 


nacle 










November 


New 


Metropol- 


La Juive 




Management of G. Gatti- 




IS 


York 


itan 






Casazza 




November 


New 


Metropol- 


Elisir 








18 


York 


itan 


d'amore 








November 


New 


Metropol- 


Samson et 








24 


York 


itan 


Dalila 








November 


New 


Metropol- 


Forza del 








27 


York 


itan 


Destino 








November 


Phila- 


Academy 


La Juive 








3 


del- 


of Mu- 












phia 


sic 










December 


New 


Metropol- 


Samson et 








3 


York 


itan 


Dalila 








December 


New 


Metropol- 


Pagliacci 




Stricken with acute pain 




8 


York 


itan 






on side during aria. 














Performance continues 














after twenty minutes 














rest 




December 


Brook- 


Academy 


Elisir 




Hemorrhage attacks him. 




II 


lyn 


of Mu- 


d'amore 




Audience dismissed 








sic 






after Act I 




December 


New 


Metropol- 


Forza del 








13 


York 


itan 


Destine 








December 


New 


Metropol- 


Samson et 








16 


York 


itan 


Dalila 








December 


New 


Metropol- 


Elisir 




Performance canceled at 




22 


York 


itan 


d'amore 




the last moment on 














account of illness 




December 


New 


Metropol- 


La Juive 




Last appearance in his 




24 


York 


itan 






life. 






INDEX 



INDEX 



ABARBANELL, LINA, 225. 

Abbot, Miss, 225. 

"Adriana de Lecouvreur ", Caruso 
creates role in, 165, 166; in America, 
252. 

"Alda", Caruso sings at Petrograd 
in, 118, 119; in New York, 185; 
in Monte Carlo, 190, 307; in Ger- 
many, 246; in Paris, 271. 

Alda, Frances, 272, 280. 

Allen, Julia, 254. 

Alten, Bella, 207, 236, 272. 

Althouse, Paul, experience with Caruso 
in regard to costume, 373. 

Amato, Pasquale, in various operas, 
201, 266, 271-273, 280, 284, 306, 
327; Caruso plays trick on, 202; 
friendship for Caruso, 283. 

"Amico Francesco", L', 46-48. 

" Amore dei tre Re ", L', 321. 

Angelini, Signor, 95, 126. 

Annunzio, Gabriele d', 311. 

Arachite, Sergeant Angelo, 41. 

Arcangeli, Alessandro, 130, 135, 142, 
167. 

Argenti, Signor, theatrical agent, 79. 

Arimondi, Vittorio, in various operas, 
118, 122, 176, 190, 196, 197, 201; 
helpful of advice to Caruso, 103 ; his 
account of experiences at Petrograd, 
1 19 ; tells of Caruso at Monte Carlo, 
191 ; Caruso plays trick on, 202. 

"Arlesiana ", L', 94, 100. 

"Armide", 283. 

Arnoldson, Sigrid, 103, 118. 

Astruc, Gabriel, Paris representative of 
Caruso, 196, 209 ; on the Caruso furore 
in Paris, 196, 197 ; letter to Caruso, 
2 58 259 ; lays plans for engagement 
of Metropolitan in Paris, 270; Caruso 
writes to, on Paris engagement, 274. 



BADA, ANGELO, 312. 
Bagby Musicales, 207, 225. 
"Ballo in Maschera, II", 119. 
Barcelona, engagement at, 193-196. 
Baretti, Rosa, Caruso's nurse, 10. 
Barnhill, Rev. Oliver Paul, 325. 
Baroni, Alice, 101. 
Baroni, Giuseppe, 194. 
Barthelemy, Richard, 314, 316, 317. 
Bastianelli brothers (Giuseppe and 

Raffaele), 390. 
Bathori, Jane, 158. 
Battistini, Mattia, in various operas, 

103, 118, 119, 122, 232. 
Beck, James M., 332. 
Bellezza, Vincenzo, 314, 318. 
Bellincioni, Gemma, 43, 101, 107, 

108; her judgment of Caruso, 99. 
Belmont, Mr. and Mrs. Perry, 225. 
Bel Sorel, Signora, 101. 
Benjamin, Dorothy, marriage to Caruso, 

321, 323-326. See CARUSO, MRS. 

ENRICO. 

Benjamin, Mrs. Park, 355. 
Benjamin, Mrs. Walter R., 331. 
Bensaude, Maurizio, 169. 
Bensberg, Kate, 57. 
Benvenuti, Signora, 167. 
Berlin, engagements in, 200, 234, 

265, 300. 
Bernis, Doctor Albert, impresario 

of Liceo Theater, Barcelona, 193- 

195- 

Beronne, Mr., 219. 
Berriel, Enrico, 194. 
Berutti, Arturo, 108. 
Bevignani, Vincenzo, 161, 162. 
Bianchini-Cappelli, Elena, 50, 54. 
" Black Hand ", the, attempts blackmail 

on Caruso, 268, 269. 
Bodanzky, Arturo, 348. 



446 



INDEX 



"Boheme, La", story of Caruso's 
first appearance in, 8488 ; said to 
be too strong for Caruso's voice, 
91 ; at Genoa, 95 ; at Milan, 100, 
130-134; in Russia, 103; at Monte 
Carlo, 156; in New York, 236, 253; 
in Germany, 298. 

Boito, Arrigo, commends Caruso, 116; 
invites Caruso to create role in 
"Nerone", 297. 

Bonci, Alessandro, 128, 129. 

Bonetti, Camillo, his first impression 
of Caruso's singing, 74, 75 ; takes 
place of Mme. Ferrari, 143. 

Bonini, Signer, 59. 

Borelli, Nedea, 82. 

Borelli, Signer, 147, 152. 

Borgatti, Signor, 143 ; rivals Caruso 
at Bologna, 128, 129. 

Bori, Lucrezia, 272, 298. 

Borlinetto, Signora, 82. 

Borucchia, Signor, 114, 168. 

Boston, Caruso severely criticized in, 
322. 

Bracale, Adolfo, 352, 358. 

Brambilla, Linda, 135, 142. 

Brancaleone, Signor, 74. 

Breeskin, Elias, 331, 335. 

Bressler-Gianoli, Mme., 201. 

Brombera, Signor, 103. 

Bronzetti, Giuseppe, his school, 13-18. 

Brozia, Mme., 271. 

Bruno, Elisa, 169. 

Bucalo, Emanuele, 152, 153. 

Buenos Aires, engagements at, 107, 
108, 124-127, 142-146, I74-I77. 
309-311,317, 318. 

Burke, Thomas, his description of 
Caruso's singing, 212-216. 



CABRERA, RICARDO, his account of 
Caruso's singing in Mexico City, 
336-340. 

Calmetti, Gaston, letter to Caruso, 258. 

Calve, Emma, 160. 

Cambon, Paul, letter to Caruso, 232, 

233- 
Campanari, Giuseppe, 189. 



Campanelli, Alfredo, 16. 

Campanini, Cleofonte, 165, 169, 201 ; 
makes offer to Caruso in behalf of 
Chicago Grand Opera Company, 
330. 

Candida, Federico, 57, 100. 

Canessa, Achille, his bust of Caruso, 

97- 

Cappelli, Elena Bianchini, 335. 

Cappelli, Marchesa Orazio, 349. 

Carbonetti, Federico, in "L'Elisir 
d'Amore ", 136-139. 

Carelli, Emma, in various operas, 
59, 114, 124, 126, 130, 135, 142. 

"Carmen", Caruso experiences dif- 
ficulty in Flower song, 70; in Ber- 
lin, 234, 282. 

Carobbi, Silla, 114. 

Carotini, Signora, 118, 122. 

Carozzi, Signor, 95. 

Carrera, Signora, 126. 

Carrier, E. de, 239. 

Caruso, Anna Baldini, mother of 
Enrico, 10-13, 18, 19, 23. 

Caruso, Assunta, sister of Enrico, to; 
death, 311. 

Caruso, Enrico, his farewell to America, 
1-6; the telling of his life, 6-9; 
birth, 10; schooling, n; compan- 
ionship with mother, II, 12; early 
capriciousness of, 13 ; in Father 
Bronzetti's school, 13-16; his first 
training in singing and music, 14; 
how he learned the words and notes 
of his opera roles, 16, 76, 122; 
further instruction in music received 
by, 17; influence of his mother, 18, 
19; end of his schooling, 20 ; enters 
Meuricoffre plant, 21; his first 
operatic venture, 21 ; his disposition, 
22; death of mother, 23 ; his singing 
of church music, 23, 24; love for his 
stepmother, 25, 26; advancement 
in business, 26; sings at cafes and 
baths, 27, 28 ; first meeting with 
Edoardo Missiano, 28; comes 
under the instruction of Vergine, 
28; Vergine's method with, 29-31; 
not a musician, 3 1 ; incident of his 



INDEX 



447 



Majori engagement and Baron 
Zezza's overcoat, 32-34 ; his military 
experiences, 34-40; celebrates re- 
lease from military service, 41 ; in 
amateur representation of "Caval- 
leria Rusticana", 42; fails in trial 
for the Mercadante Theater, 43-45 ; 
his debut in " L'Amico Francesco ", 
46-48; his appearance at Caserta, 
50, 51; substitutes in "Faust" at 
the Bellini Theater, 51, 52; sings 
in Cairo, 52-55 ; sings in " Rigoletto " 
at the Bellini Theater, 56; at the 
Mercadante, 57-59; sings twice a 
day, 58; failure at Caserta, 59; 
his Sicilian tour, 60-65 ; sings at 
Salerno, 65-73 ; commended by 
de Lucia, 68 ; and Josephine Grassi, 
68, 69, 79, 80; the breaking of his 
voice, 70-72; his vocal endurance 
and dependableness, 72, 73 ; prog- 
ress of, 74; acquires greater poise, 
75 76; second Salerno season, 
76-80; at the Massimo Theater, 
Palermo, 81, 82; engaged for the 
Lirico, Milan, 82, 83 ; four periods 
of his career, 84; visits Puccini 
and is chosen to sing in "La Bo- 
heme", 84-88; alliance with Ada 
Giachetti, 89; difficulties with 
Sonzogno repertoire, 90-94; his 
Genoa engagement, 95-97; more 
serious work, 98 ; his success in 
"La Fedora", 99-101 ; son born to, 
100; Russian engagement of, 102- 
104; sings before the Czar, 104; 
South American engagement, 104 
108; at home, 109-112; engagement 
at Costanzi Theater, Rome, 112- 
1 17 ; contract with Vergine annulled, 
115; charmed by smoothness and 
purity of singing, 115; second 
Russian engagement, 118123; ar ~ 
rangement of his day, 121, 122; 
further study, 123; second South 
American engagement, 124-127; 
Treviso engagement, 127; Bologna 
engagement, 128, 129; his first pro- 
duction of "La Boheme" at La 



Scala, 129-134; his singing of 
"L'Elisir d'Amore", 135-140; hos- 
tility toward, 141; third South 
American engagement, 142-146; 
never read books, 145 ; sings in 
charity performances at Trieste, 
147; his experiences at the San 
Carlo, Naples, 145-153; at Monte 
Carlo, 154-157; creates tenor role 
in "Germania", 156-158; at Co- 
vent Garden, 158-161 ; engages 
for Metropolitan Opera House, 
161-165 ; reluctance to do business 
through agent, 163, 164; loath to 
concede that others had helped him, 
166, 167; at Trieste and Rome, 
167; Metropolitan engagement can- 
celed owing to retirement of Grau, 
168; at Lisbon, 169; makes new 
engagement with Metropolitan, 170- 
172; purchases Villa alia Panche, 
near Florence, 173 ; in South America 
again, 174-177; arrival in New 
York, 177-180; first meeting with 
Conried, 181, 182; his first appear- 
ance at the Metropolitan, 183 ; 
newspaper comments on, 184-187; 
sets up his own establishment, 187; 
regards America as possible future 
home, 188; proposal of Conried to, 
188; sings in private musicales, 
189; at Monte Carlo again, 190, 
191 ; his liking for pranks, 191, 202, 
207 ; asked by Leoncavallo to 
create role in "Rolando", 191-193; 
his experience at Barcelona, 193- 
196; sings at Paris, Prague, and 
Dresden, 197; purchases Villa 
Campi, 198; again at Covent 
Garden, 199; birth of second son, 
200; sings at Berlin, 200; sings 
with San Carlo Company at Co- 
vent Garden, 201 ; tour of the United 
States with the Metropolitan, 203, 
204; his conscientious thoroughness 
in the details of his characters, 205, 
206; his generosity, 206, 207, 232, 
2 33> 2 59> 3 22 3 2 3 > enthusiasm for, 
207, 208 ; successes at Paris, 208- 



448 



INDEX 



21 1 ; at Covent Garden, 212-218; 
his singing described by Thomas 
Burke, 212-216; sings at Court and 
receives gift from King and Queen, 
216; at Ostende, 218-220; not 
quite happy when at leisure, 221 ; 
beginning of his third season at the 
Metropolitan, 221 ; his receipts, 221, 
222; featured by the press, 223, 
224; humorous experiences of, 
223, 224; sings at concerts, 225; 
in the San Francisco earthquake, 
227-229 ; guilty of certain exagger- 
ations of public conduct, 230; at 
the height of powers as singer, 231 ; 
letter to his brother, Giovanni, 232; 
in Vienna and Berlin, 233, 234; re- 
ceives title from Kaiser Wilhelm, 
234; decorated by France, 235; 
fourth season with the Metropolitan, 
235-238; receipts, 236; in London 
and Paris, 238, 239; decorated by 
Belgium, 239; letters to, 239-244; 
pleasure in his children, 239-242 ; 
decorated by the King of England, 
243 ; life beginning to be domi- 
nated by orderly procedure, 245 ; in 
Germany, 246 ; his collection of ob- 
jects of art, 247-251 ; receipts, 251 ; 
his endurance, 251; as fitted for 
heroic and lyric roles, 252, 299, 302, 
313, 321, 360, 379; compared to De 
Reszke, 253 ; disliked to appear in 
concerts, 254; why he used music 
in concerts, 254; learns of the death 
of his father, 255-257; deserted by 
Ada Giachetti, 257 ; letter of Gaston 
Calmette to, 258 ; letter of Coquelin 
to, 260, 261; illness of, 261-264; 
receipts, 263 ; makes concert tour 
of England, Scotland, and Ire- 
land, 265 ; in Germany, 265 ; re- 
ceipts, 266; interview with Ada 
Giachetti, 267; his feeling for Ada 
Giachetti, 267, 274; threatened by 
the " Black Hand ", 268, 269 ; and the 
Paris trip of the Metropolitan, 269- 
274; Otto Gutekunst's reminiscences 
of, 275-280; his "different voices", 



281,282, 366; friendship for Amato, 
283 ; unable to complete 1911 engage- 
ment with Metropolitan, 284, 285 ; 
sings for records, 285-292; income 
from records, 291 ; rumors concern- 
ing, 292, 293 ; at fancy-dress charity 
ball in London, 294; adjudged 
resident of London, 294; his im- 
proved art in 1911-1912 engagement 
at Metropolitan, 295, 296; sings in 
benefit performance for families 
of victims of Titanic, 297 ; growing 
cynicism of, 297; invited to create 
tenor role in "Nerone", 297; first 
appearance at Paris Opera, 298 ; 
enthusiasm for, in Germany, 298, 
300; his diet, 301 ; final London ap- 
pearance, 303 ; suffers from nervous 
breakdown, 303 ; sings for Italian 
workingmen in Germany, 304; his 
feelings opposed to the Austrians 
in the War, 305 ; at Monte Carlo, 
306-309; terms of picture engage- 
ments with the Metropolitan, 306; 
his views on the uncertainty of his 
profession, 307-309; in Buenos 
Aires again, 309-311; his anger at 
being accused of pro-Germanism, 
311; sings in Milan, for last time 
in Italy, 312; hard study put upon 
his parts, 313-315; letter of Otto 
Kahn to, 315; suffered from head- 
aches, 316; the 1916-1917 season in 
New York, 316, 317; his final 
engagement in South America, 317, 
318; his secretaries, 318, 319; 
buys Liberty Bonds, 320; gives 
lessons, 320; meets Dorothy Ben- 
jamin, 321; sings in "Lodoletta", 
"Le Prophete", and "L'Amore dei 
tre Re", 321, 322 ; criticised severely 
in Boston, 322; income, 322; courts 
Miss Benjamin, 323, 324; in motion 
pictures, 324, 326; sings at Saratoga 
Springs, 324; married to Miss 
Benjamin, 325; sings at various 
concerts, 326, 327; contributes 
sketches to La Follia, 328; refuses 
offer of Chicago Grand Opera Com- 



INDEX 



449 



pany, 329-331; remarried to Mrs. 
Caruso with Catholic rites, 331 ; his 
jubilee celebration, 332-334; con- 
cert tour, 335; in Mexico, 336-342; 
beginning of the twilight of his 
career, 343 ; kept his own accounts, 
344; the estimated value of his es- 
tate, 344; his daily habits, 345 ; his 
part in "La Juive", 345-348; per- 
fect in his operas, 346; daughter 
born to, 349; asked to subscribe for 
Minnie Hauk, 350; concerts, 351; 
sings in Cuba, 352-356; in New Or- 
leans, 356; spends summer at Long 
Island home, 357, 358 ; moves to Van- 
derbilt Hotel, 358; season of con- 
certs, 359; makes final phonograph 
records, 3 59; tribute of Otto Kahn 
to > 359> 360; criticism of, in New 
York papers, 360, 361 ; sensitive to 
criticism, 360, 363 ; superstition of, 
361; a religious man, 362; lived 
largely according to the golden rule, 
362, 363 ; informs Gatti-Casazza 
that he wishes to resign from the 
Metropolitan, 364; makes final 
trial and remains, 365 ; his technique, 
365-371, 374; had vocal resources 
of phenomenal order, 366; never 
forced his voice, 368 ; his brilliancy 
and resonance, how secured, 369; 
made no pronounced physical effort 
in singing, 369 ; his nervousness before 
and after the beginning of a perform- 
ance, 371-373 ; how he prepared 
for singing, 372, 375; particular in 
regard to costumes, 372, 373 ; how he 
coaxed his voice, 374, 375 ; his in- 
sistence for detail, 376; gave, in 
singing, all he had, 376; considered 
by Gatti-Casazza in a class by him- 
self, 377-379; illness and final 
performances, 379-387; last days 
and death, 388-391; list of decora- 
tions tendered to, 395 ; list of operas 
in repertoire of, 396 ; list of operas 
sung rarely or simply studied by, 
397; list of appearances of, 398. 
Caruso, Mrs. Enrico, marriage, 321, 



323-326; remarried with Catholic 
rites, 331; her account of how 
Caruso studied the role of Eleazar, 
347; robbed of jewels, 355, 357; 
in Caruso's last illness, 379-391. 

Caruso, Enrico, Jr., birth, 200; his 
father's delight, 239-242; letter to 
his father, 328, 329; put to school 
in America, 336. 

Caruso, Giovanni, brother of Enrico, 
10; birth of son, 232; present at 
Enrico's last illness, 390. 

Caruso, Marcellino, father of Enrico, 
10, 24, 25. 

Caruso, Maria Castaldi, stepmother of 
Enrico, 25. 

Caruso, Rodolfo (Fofo), 100, 390. 

Caruso, Gloria, daughter of Enrico, 

349- 

Caruson, G., 147. 
Caserta, Caruso sings at, 50, 59. 
Castagneto, Prince Adolfo di, 149-153. 
Castaldi, Maria, 25. 
Cavalieri, Lina, 196, 211, 252. 
"Cavalleria Rusticana", Caruso's first 

appearance in, 50; in Salerno, 68; 

in South America, 108, 126. 
Chaliapin, Feodor, 142, 298. 
Chicago Grand Opera Company, makes 

offer to Caruso, 330. 
Child, Calvin G., his reminiscences of 

Caruso, 285-292. 

Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, 317. 
Cincotta, Antonio, of the " Black 

Hand", 269. 

Clasenti, Signer, 176, 194. 
Cochran, W. Bourke, 297. 
Connaught, Duke and Duchess of, 297. 
Conried, Heinrich, engages Caruso 

for the Metropolitan, 170-172; 

Caruso's first meeting with, 181, 

182; decorated, 207; succeeded by 

Gatti-Casazza and Dippel, 262. 
Coquelin, Constant, letter to Caruso, 

260, 261. 
Corsi, Emilia, 95. 
Corti, Enrico, 127. 
Costanzi Theater, Rome, engagement 

of Caruso at, 112-117. 



450 



INDEX 



Couzinou, Alfred, 327. 

Covent Garden, engagements of Ca- 
ruso at, 158-161, 199, 201, 212, 232, 
238, 239, 299, 303 ; opera in, as 
described by Thomas Burke, 212- 
216. 

Cuba, engagement of Caruso in, 352- 
356. 

Cucini, Signora, 118, 119, 143. 



DADDJ, FRANCESCO, 201, 327. 

Dalmaro, Mary, 114. 

Danesi, Mile., 43. 

Danise, Giuseppe, 310. 

Darclee, Ericlea, 143, 169. 

Daspuro, Nicola, Caruso sings to, 
4345 ; engages Caruso for season at 
Lirico Theater, Milan, 77, 78, 82, 
83 ; insists that Caruso's accomplish- 
ment was due to his own instinct, 
1 66; on Caruso's appearance in 
"Fedora", 210. 

Decorations tendered to Caruso, 395. 

Delia Riza, Gilda, 310. 

DelP Orefice, Maestro, 314. 

Depuis, Maestro, 280. 

De Simone, Doctor, 319. 

Destinn, Mme., in various operas, 
199, 212, 217, 232, 238, 266, 271, 
283, 284, 295, 299, 303, 306. 

Dippel, Andreas, administrative mana- 
ger of the Metropolitan, 262; 
withdraws, 266. 

Di San Giuliano, 243. 

Domprowitch, Mme., 74. 

Donalda, Mme., 212, 232, 238. 

"Don Giovanni", 232. 



EAMES, EMMA, 252. 

Edgerton, Hon. Wilfred, 294. 

Edvina, Mme., 299. 

"Elisir d'Amore, L'", revived at La 
Scala, 135-140; at Naples, 151, 
152; at Buenos Aires, 317; in Mex- 
ico, 337734- 

Elman, Mischa, 335. 

Enright, Police Commissioner, 332. 



Ercolani, Signer, in various operas, 

124, 126, 143, 174. 
Erdmann, Dr. John F., 386. 
Evans, Dr. Evan M., 386. 



FALCO, SIGNOR DE, 77. 

"Fanciulla del West, La", 283. 

Farneti, Maria, 176. 

Farquhar, Lord, 217, 243. 

Farrar, Geraldine, joins Metropolitan 
Company, 225 ; sings with Caruso, 
2 S3> 2 73 3 O1 5 at Caruso's jubilee 
celebration, 334; seeks aid for 
Minnie Hauk, 350. 

Fasanaro, Alessandro, 14. 

"Faust", Caruso's first appearance 
in, 51, 52; in Naples, 59; in Ca- 
serta, 59, 60; in Russia, 122; with- 
out chorus, 223, 224. 

"Fedora, La", Caruso's first appear- 
ance in, 99-101, 106, 107; in Paris, 
203-211 ; in New York, 237. 

Ferraguti, Vittorio, 54, 59. 

Ferrante, Gherardo, 349. 

Ferrara, Carlo, impresario, 48. 

Ferrari, Signora, impresaria, 105-107, 
124. 

Ferraris, Teresa, 158. 

Figueras, Luis Piera, 193196. 

Florexo, Mr., 271. 

Florio, Ignazio, 82. 

Fornari, Vincenzo, 74. 

Fornia, Rita, 254. 

"Forza del Destino, La", 327. 

Franco, Annina, 59, 69. 

Franko, Nahan, 225. 

Fremstad, Olive, 273. 

Fucito, Salvatore, 315, 324. 



GADSKI, JOHANNA, 185. 

Galante, Filippo, 124, 145. 

Galassi, Maestro, 59. 

Ganelli, Elisa, 295, 296. 

Garden, Mary, 335. 

Gatti-Casazza, Giulio, director of 
La Scala, 129; at rehearsal of "La 
Boheme", 133, 134; produces 



INDEX 



"L'Elisir d'Amore", 135, 136; be- 
comes general manager of the 
Metropolitan, 262 ; writes in Gloria's 
book, 349; urges Caruso to remain 
in the Metropolitan, 364, 365 ; his 
estimate of Caruso, 377-379; in 
Caruso's last illness, 385, 386, 389. 

Gatto, Amelia, 16. 

Gatto, Giovanni, 13-16. 

Geniat, Mile., 271. 

Genoa, engagement of Caruso in, 

95-97- 

Gerardy, Jean, 225. 

"Germania", Caruso creates role in, 
156-158. 

Germany, 197, 234, 246, 265, 298, 304. 

Ghibaudo, Signora, 142. 

Giachetti, Ada, in role of Mimi, 85 ; 
lives with Caruso, 89, 94; sails for 
South America, 102; joins Caruso 
in Petrograd, 119-121; in "Tosca", 
127, 128; goes with Caruso to New 
York, 179, 187; abandons Caruso, 
257; final interview of Caruso with, 
267. 

Giachetti, Rina, 201, 232, 239. 

Giacomo, Salvatore di, 69, 73. 

Gilbert, Charles, 238, 239. 

Gilly, Mme. Dinh, 303. 

"Gioconda, La", success of Caruso in, 
74, 78, 81, 207, 222, 226. 

Giordano, Signor, secretary of Caruso, 
191. 

Giordano, Umberto, Caruso in his 
"La Fedora", 99-101; letters to 
Caruso, 211, 237. 

Giorgio, Cavalier C. di, 82. 

Giraldini, Giraldino, 147, 167. 

Giraldoni, Eugenio, 126, 128, 143, 169, 
174, 207. 

Giraud, Fiorello, 169. 

Grassi, Josephine, 68, 79, 80. 

Grass!, Peppo, 6873. 

Grau, Maurice, Caruso's first arrange- 
ment with, 161-164; retires from 
Metropolitan, 168. 

Greffulhe, Countess, 196, 238, 271. 

Guard, William J., 382. 

Guarini, Signor, 74. 



Guarnieri, Antonio, 127. 
Guerrini, Virginia, 169, 176, 190. 
Gunsbourg, Raoul, 156, 329. 
Gutekunst, Otto, 294; his reminis- 
cences of Caruso, 275-280. 



HAMMERSTEIN, OSCAR, proposes to 
give operas in Manhattan Opera 
House, 226. 

Harowitz, Dr. Philip, 380-386. 

Harrold, Orville, 348. 

Havana, Caruso sings in, 352-356. 

Hempel, Frieda, 316. 

Herbert, Victor, 225. 

Higgins, Henry V., 154, 155. 

Homer, Mme., in various operas, 
207, 222, 254, 271, 327. 

"Huguenots, Les", 299. 

Hylan, Mayor, 332. 



"Iris", 114, 115, 125, 126, 129, 252. 



JADLOWKER, HERMAN, 273. 
Journet, Marcel, in various operas, 
159, 160, 199, 212, 232, 239, 307, 

39- 

"Julien", 301. 
"Juive, La", 345-348. 



KAHN, OTTO H., suggests that Caruso 
sing in "L'Elisir d'Amore", 140; 
favors having the Metropolitan 
Opera Company sing in Europe, 
269; letter to Caruso, 315; his 
address at Caruso's jubilee cele- 
bration, 333, 334; tribute to Caruso, 

359, 360- 

Keith, Mrs. John S., 325. 
Kessler, George A., 218. 
Keyes, Margaret, 254. 
Kirkby-Lunn, Mme., 199, 239, 303. 
Kotlarsky, "Sammy", 254. 
Krusheniska, Salomea, 118, 119. 
Kubelik, Jan, 220. 
Kurz, Selma, 199, 212, 233, 239. 



452 



INDEX 



LABIA, FAUSTA, 168, 169. 

La Cote d'Or, 43. 

Lambert, Dr. Samuel W., 386. 

Landi, Alberto, 74. 

Lapeyerette, Mme., 271. 

La Puma, Signer, 143. 

Lasciarelli, Arturo, and Caruso, 

84-88. 

Lasky, Jesse L., 324. 
Lavelle, Monsignor, 349. 
Leary, Miss, 207. 
Lejeune, Mme., 212. 
Leonardi, Signer, 108. 
Leoncavallo, Ruggero, asks Caruso to 

create role in "Rolando", 191-193. 
Lerma, Maria de, 108, 122. 
Le Volpi della Scozia, 62-65. 
Lisbon, engagement of Caruso at, 169. 
Litvinne, Feha, 307. 
Livorno, engagement of Caruso at, 

84-89. 

"Lodoletta", Caruso sings in, 318,321. 
"Lohengrin", Caruso in, 145, 146. 
Lombard!, Vincenzo, 30, 66-73, 77- 
London, Covent Garden. See Covent 

Garden. 
Lorello, Enrico, 66; becomes Caruso's 

secretary, 112. 
Lorini, Elvira, 108. 
Luca, Giuseppe de, 95, 165, 174, 176, 

316. 

Luca, Salvatore de, laboratory of, 17. 
Lucchese, Josephine, 381. 
Lucente, Signor, 167. 
Lucia, Fernando de, praises Caruso, 68. 
"Lucia di Lammermoor", Caruso 

in, 61-65. 

Luppi, Oreste, 130, 135. 
Lutio, Raffaele de, 17. 
Luzzatto, Attilio, 117. 



"MADAMA BUTTERFLY", 212-217. 
Magini-Coletti, Antonio, 127, 137, 

138. 

Magni, Ludovico, 57. 
Maguenat, Alfred, 307, 309. 
Majori, engagement of Caruso at, 32, 

33- 



Mancinelli, Luigi, 199. 

Manhattan Opera Company, 266. 

"Manon", 126, 153. 

"Manon Lescaut", 53-55, 79, 176. 

Mansueto, Gaudio, 169. 

Marafioti, Doctor P. Mario, 320, 321, 

381. 

Marchi, Emilio de, 114. 
Marconi, Francesco (Checco), 118. 
Mariacher, Signor, 143. 
"Mariedda", 60. 
Marinuzzi, Gino, 310. 
"Marta", 175, 353, 376. 
"Maschere, Le", Caruso creates role 

in, 135, 141. 

Mascheroni, Edoardo, 107, 151. 
Mascia, Baron, 74. 
Masini, Angelo, 43, 118, 2x1. 
Masola, Signora, 69, 77. 
Massa, Giovanni, 95, 97, 98. 
Massiano, Edoardo, first meeting of 

Caruso with, 28. 
Matzenauer, Margarete, 295. 
'Mefistofele", 116, 119, 120, 124, 125, 

142. 
Melba, Nellie, at Covent Garden, 155, 

159, 160, 199, 212, 232, 239, 299; 

at Monte Carlo, 156, 157; sings 

before King of England, 217; in 

Paris, 259. 

Melis, Carmen, 298, 299. 
Mendiorez, Signor, 126. 
Menotti, Delfino, 101, 107. 
Mercadante Theater, Naples, 43-45, 

57- 

Metropolitan Opera Company, Caruso 
makes engagement with, 161-165 ; 
engagement canceled owing to re- 
tirement of Grau, 168 ; Caruso con- 
cludes new engagement with, 170- 
172; Caruso's first appearance with, 
182; first season with, 182-189; 
other seasons with, 203208, 221- 
229, 236-238, 246, 251-254, 262-264, 
266-269, 282-284, 295-301, 305, 

306, 313-315. 3 l8 ~323 327 344- 
351; travels to Pacific Coast, 226 
229; gives opera in Paris, 269-274. 
Mexico, Caruso sings in, 336-342. 



INDEX 



453 



"Mignon", 45. 

Milan. See SCALA, LA. 

Mingardi, V., 124. 

Miranda, Lalla, 219. 

Misiani, Antonio, of the "Black 

Hand", 269. 

Mocchi, Walter, 309, 311. 
Mod rone, Duke of, 133, 138. 
Monaco, Cavalier Alfredo (Monaciello), 

H9-IS3. 
Monte Carlo, Caruso sings at, 154-157, 

306-309. 

Montesanto, Luigi, 312. 
Monteux, Pierre, 327. 
Montevideo, 127, 176, 318. 
Monti-Baldini, 114. 
Morgana, Nina, 324, 331, 335. 
Morichini, Vincenzo, 111-114. 
Moscate-Ferrara, Mme., 50. 
Moscow, 122, 123. 
Mugnone, Leopoldo, 79, 81, 82, 114, 

117, 129. 

Murray, Dr. Francis J., 385, 386. 
Muzio, Claudia, 312, 327. 



NAGLIATI, MAJOR, 36-40. 

Naples, Caruso sings in, 57~59, 147- 

153. 

Napolitano, Daniele, 77. 
Navarette, Senorita, 376. 
"Navarraise, La," 92-94. 
Nawisky, Eduard, 200. 
"Nerone", 297. 
Neumann, Angelo, 197. 
New Orleans, Caruso sings in, 356. 
Nielsen, Alice, 201. 
Niola, Amelia Tibaldi, 20. 
Niola, Doctor Raffaele, 20. 
Nordica, Lillian, 160, 207, 222. 
Nuovina, Signora de, 93, 94. 



ODDO, SIGNOR, 64. 
O'Hagan, Lady, 294. 
Operas, in repertoire of Caruso, 396; 
rarely sung or simply studied by, 397. 
Ormeville, Carlo d', 105. 
Ostende, Caruso sings at, 218, 219. 



PACINI, REGINA, 160, 169. 
Pacini, Signor, 126, 167. 
Padovani, Adelina, 147. 
Pagani, Signor, 69, 72, 73. 
"Pagliacci, I", Caruso in, 72, 73, 246, 

304, 312, 326, 327; effectiveness of 

Caruso's singing in, 258; energy 

required by, 376. 
Palermo, Massimo Theater, Caruso 

sings at, 81, 82. 

Palmieri, Giuseppe, establishment of, 17. 
Pandolfini, Angelica, 165, 169. 
Paolicchi-Mugnone, 82. 
Pareto, Signorina, 309. 
Paris, Caruso sings at, 196, 197, 208- 

211. 

Parkina, Mme., 217. 
Pasini-Vitale, Lina, 168. 
Patiti, at the San Carlo, 148-153. 
Patti, Adelina, 218. 
"Pearl Fishers, The", 95, 97. 
Penchi, Signora, 74. 
Petri, Elisa, 108. 
Petrograd, Caruso sings in, 102-104, 

118-122. 

Pignataro, Enrico, 50, 69, 77, 197. 
Pini-Corsi, Antonio, 85, 95, 169. 
Pinkert, Regina, in various operas, 

95, 137, 138, 151, 152, 197. 
Pinto, Amelia, 142-144, 158. 
Plan^on, Pol, 160, 185, 199, 222. 
Podesti, Vittorio, 118, 119, 272. 
Polacco, Giorgio, 298, 316, 346. 
Pome, Maestro, 298. 
Ponselle, Rosa, 327, 348. 
Potenza, Signor, 57. 
Prague, Caruso at, 197. 
Procida, Baron Saverio, 152. 
"Prophete, Le", 321. 
Puccini, Giacomo, selects Caruso to 

sing in "La Boheme", 84-88; gives 

role of Cavaradossi to de Marchi, 

114. 
"Puritani, I", 66, 67. 



RAPPOLD, MME., 225. 

Rapponi, Ida, 126. 

Rejane, Mme., writes to Caruso, 274. 



454 



INDEX 



Renaud, Maurice, in various operas, 
157, 159. i6o 190, 196, 199, 259. 

Reszke, Edouard and Jean de, 243, 
244, 258. 

Ricceri, Temistocle, 304. 

Ricordi, Giulio, 298. 

Ricordi, Tito, letter to Caruso, 205. 

"Rigoletto", Caruso in, in Naples, 
56, 59; in Salerno, 65, 66; at 
Buenos Aires, 144; at Monte Carlo, 
157; in London, 159; in Rome, 
167; in Spain, 194-196; in Paris, 
196, 259; in London, 199, 231; in 
Berlin, 200; in Belgium, 218-220; 
in Vienna, 233. 

Rinskopf, Maestro, 220. 

Rio de Janeiro, 177. 

Riso, Signora, 59. 

Robinne, Mile., 271. 

Roggeri, Mme., 310. 

"Rolando", 192, 193. 

Rome, engagement of Caruso at, 112- 
117. 

Rossato, Signer, 59. 

Rossi, Giulio, 169. 

Rosslyn, Lady, 294. 

Roth, Maestro, 200. 

Rothier, Leon, 316, 348. 

Roversi, Luigi, 319. 

Royer, Mary, 156. 

Rubinstein, Arthur, 335. 

Ruffo, Titta, 211, 233, 298. 

Russ, Giannina, 190. 

Russia, 102-104, 118-123. 

SAER, LOUISE, governess of Caruso's 

children, 239-242. 
Salerno, Caruso sings in, 65-73, 7~ 

80. 
Sammarco, Mario, 143, 158, 201, 239, 

299, 310. 

"Samson et Dalila", 313, 365. 
San Carlo, Naples, Caruso sings at, 

I47-I53- 

San Francisco earthquake, 227-229. 
Santarelli, Signora, 101. 
Santini, Maestro, 55. 
Saratoga Springs, Caruso sings at, 324. 



Sarmiento, Alfredo, 53, 314. 

Scala, La, Milan, Caruso's first ap- 
pearance at, 129-142. 

Scalise, Maestro, 74. 

Scalzi, Count, 319. 

Scandiani, Signor, 239. 

Schafer, Fraiilein, 197. 

Scheff, Fritzi, 160. 

Schirardi, Ernesto, 17. 

Scognamiglio, Gaetano, 314. 

Scognamillo, Enrico, 319. 

Scotney, Evelyn, 348. 

Scott, Henri, 254. 

Scotti, Antonio, in various operas, 
74, 75, 154, 160, 161, 168, 183, 185, 

199, 2O7, 212, 217, 227, 232, 236, 

238, 239, 252, 272, 298, 299. 

Sebastiani, Maestro, 57, 59, 69. 

Segurola, Andreas de, 143, 195, 272, 
346. 

Sembrich, Marcella, 183, 189, 236. 

Serafin, Tullio, 259. 

Severina, Mme., 239. 

Shrewsbury, Earl of, 294. 

Sicily, tour of, 60-65. 

Sicofanti, at the San Carlo, 148-153. 

Simonelli, Giovanni, 168. 

Simonelli, Pasquale, 170-172, 179, 181. 

Siracusa, Maestro, 60. 

Slezak, Leo, 272. 

Smith, James H., 207, 225. 

Sonzogno, Edoardo, publishing house 
of, 43 ; Caruso member of his com- 
pany, 82, 83, 90-94, 98; letters to 
Caruso, 1 06, 208, 209; generous offer 
of Caruso to, 165. 

Sormani, Maestro, 136, 137. 

South America, engagements of Caruso 
in, 104-108, 124-127, 142-146, 173- 
177, 309-3ii3i73i8. 

Spain, Caruso sings in, 193-196. 

Spasiano, Giuseppe, 15, 16. 

Sperco, Constant J., 319. 

Spoto, Signor, 169. 

StafFelli, Giulio, 60. 

Stagno, Roberto, 43, 99. 

Stefanini, Giro, 336. 

Stehle, Adelina, 43. 

Stella, Dr. Antonio, 386. 



INDEX 



455 



Stoller, Mary, 200. 
Storchio, Rosina, 95. 
Stracciari, Riccardo, 169, 254, 351. 
Sturani, Giuseppe, 310. 



TABOGO, SIGNOR, 108. 

Taft, President, 297. 

Tanara, Fernando, 321. 

Tango, Egisto, 127. 

Terzi, Signer, 82. 

Tetrazzini, Eva, 169. 

Tetrazzini, Luisa, 103, Il8, 351. 

Thevenet, Mme., 196. 

Thos, Constantino, 153. 

Tomagno, Francesco, 43. 

Tonello, Father, his account of how 
Caruso received the news of his 
father's death, 254-258 ; on Caruso's 
religion, 362. 

Torresella, Fanny, 167. 

"Tosca", the tenor role in, 112-114; 
Caruso's success in, 129; in South 
America, 143, 144, 174; in New 
York, 1 86, 223. 

Toscanini, Arturo, 298, 312; con- 
ductor at La Scala, 129-138, 158; 
in Buenos Aires, 174, 176; principal 
conductor of the Metropolitan, 262- 
271. 

Traversi, Camillo Antona, reports 
interview with Caruso, 307-309; 
letter of Caruso to, 311, 312. 

"Traviata, La", 57, 58, 84, 188. 

Trentini, Emma, 147, 201. 

Trieste, 147, 167. 



VALLIN-PARDO, MME., 317. 
Vanderbilt, Mrs. Cornelius, 284. 



Vedova, Professor della, 264, 265, 293. 

Vendome, Duke and Duchess of, 239, 
240. 

Vergine, Guglielmo, his methods with 
the young Caruso, 28-3 1 ; recom- 
mends Caruso to Daspuro, 44; ad- 
vises Caruso to sing in "L'Amico 
Francesco", 46; his faith in Caruso, 
77, 78; and Milan engagement of 
Caruso, 83 ; annuls contract with 
Caruso by adjustment, 115. 

Viafora, Gina, 187. 

Vienna, 233. 

Vigna, Arturo, 156, 183, 190, 196, 222. 

Villani, Peppino, 21. 

Visciani, Impresario, 67. 

Vitale, Edoardo, 167, 169. 

Viviani, Ludovico, 372. 

Vix, Genevieve, 310. 

Voghera, Tullio, 254, 314. 



WADLER, MAYO, 324. 
Whitehill, Clarence, 212, 217. 
Whitney, Mrs. W. Payne, 189. 
Wilkinson, Everett, 387. 
Wilson, President, 331. 
Wilson, Mrs. Orme, 189, 226. 



ZANOLINI, MR., 206, 207. 

Zeppelli, Alice, 309. 

Zezza, Baron, 33, 34. 

Ziegler, Edward, 382, 386. 

Zirato, Bruno, Secretary to Caruso, 

318,319,325,331. 
Zuccani, Giovanni, 44, 45. 
Zucchi-Ferregni, Signora, 77. 
Zucchi, Francesco, theatrical agent, 

48, 49, 59, 65. 



ML Key, Pierre Van Rensselaer 

420 Enrico Caruso 

C38K3 



husic 




UNIVERSITY OF TORONTO LIBRARY