First Rival of the Metropolitan Opera   (Cone)   0231057482
Item# B0997
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First Rival of the Metropolitan Opera   (Cone)   0231057482
B0997. John Frederick Cone. First Rival of the Metropolitan Opera. New York, Columbia University Press, 1983. 257pp. Index; Bibliography; Chronology of Mapleson’s casts & performances, 1883-86, New York & On Tour. Numerous Photos; Illus.; DJ. - 0-231-05748-2

Biographical Note:

“Hammerstein's company was a huge success, and provided damaging competition to the Metropolitan Opera; eventually this led to the resignation of Heinrich Conried as the latter company's general director, after which it was greatly reorganized. Nevertheless, after giving 463 performances of 49 different operas during its existence, the Manhattan Opera Company suddenly folded in 1910. For years the reason remained a mystery; more recently it has been discovered that Hammerstein and the directors of the Metropolitan, led by Otto Kahn, entered into a contractual agreement which led to the dissolution. Under the terms of the contract, negotiated by his son Arthur, Hammerstein was paid a flat sum of $1,200,000, in exchange for which he promised to stage no opera in the United States for the following ten years. It is widely believed that Hammerstein took the deal because the mounting costs of running the company were taking their toll on his finances, and he was going bankrupt.”

- Oscar Hammerstein III