Svenska Kuriren -- January 06, 1927Swedish Christmas Concert (Editorial)
p.11. The Swedish Choral Club's Christmas concert, Sunday evening in Orchestra Hall, was given before a packed house, which was very generous with its applause.
The program was very appropriate to the season. Handel's Oratorio "Messiah," was subjected to an excellent execution, thanks largely to Edgar Nelson's able directorship and his untiring efforts to bring the choir to where he wants it to be, "the best in America."
The soloists were excellent, each within their respective field. Should anyone be mentioned in particular, it must be Mrs. Jennie E. Peterson, who sang the soprano part like the artist she is. This evening more than ever before she proved to the public that she is a songbird of the highest rank. She should, with equal honor to herself and her Swedish name, become the leading star in "Messiah's" 2American home town, Lindsborg,Kansas. Should the "Messiah" Choir ever be in need of a first class bass soloist, we can with a clear conscience not only recommend but demand that the Swedish Choral Club's latest acquired talent, Rollin Pease, be chosen. We have not heard anyone sing his part with such ability since the days of our unforgettable Gustaf Holmquist. with this we believe we have said enough, and shall only refer our readers to the Chicago Evening American's well-known music critic, Herman Devries, who, the evening after, wrote in his paper as follows:
"The Swedish Choral Club gave a very successful performance of Handel's 'Messiah' at Orchestra Hall last evening, under the experienced and reliable guidance of Edgar Nelson. The interpreting artists were Rollin Pease, baritone; Jennie Peterson, soprano; Watt Webber, tenor; Mme. Gilderoy Scott, contralto; Harry Carlson, organist, and fifty members of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.
"I think I shall find no dissenting voices to question my opinion, when I give the first place to Rollin Pease, who accomplished one of the finest achievements in 3oratorio singing as yet recorded in his prosperous public career. He is, of course an expert oratorio artist. familiar with all the traditions, therefore, an authority who combines sound musicianship with excellent voice and schooling to set it forth at its best. He sang his entire score without a printed reference and was in exceptionally good vocal form.
"Miss Peterson has a lovely voice. She, too, is a reliable and expert musician, who deserved a goodly share of the applause. Mme. Scott was less effective in her solo, 'Oh Thou That Tellest,' where the tone sounded somewhat muffled, but entirely satisfactory in the duet with Miss Peterson, 'He Shall Feed.' Here the two voices blended exquisitely, with all the delicacy of shading one associates with the muted strings. This episode was therefore one of the most enjoyable moments of the evening.
"Watt Webber knew his music well, and was particularly successful in the recitation, 'Comfort Ye,' and the air, 'Every Valley Shall Be Exalted.' He, too, obtained merited encouragement from the large audience.4
"Harry Carlson, organist, was one of the major reasons for the success of the entertainment. The chorus was fine, producing an excellent massed tone-quality, executing the difficult colorature passages deftly and correctly, and at all times exhibiting a commendable technique."
II B 1 a, III B 3 b
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