September 10, 2013

Lottie Montal (née Louise Felicie Augustine Jean, 1851-1933), Parisian-born singer, at the time of her appearances at the Alhambra, Leicester Square, London, in 1874.
(cabinet photo: The London Stereoscopic & Photographic Co Ltd, London, 1874. Please note that this photograph has suffered water damage.)

In 1874 Miss Montal was married in London as his third wife to the French-born touring violinist, Horace Remy Poussard (1829-1898). In 1887 Miss Montal was married in New Zealand to Wynne Aubrey MacLean (1857-1890). After his death she lived for a while in London, where she taught singing. She died in London on 13 October 1933.

The Alhambra, Leicester Square, London, week beginning 3 August 1874
‘The Alhambra was crowded to repletion on Monday. The herione in The Pretty Perfumeress, recently played by Miss Kate Santley, is now personated by Miss Lottie Montal, an arch, bright-eyed, clever little lady from Australia, who sings nicely and acts charmingly.’
(Reynold’s Newspaper, London, Sunday, 9 August 1874, p. 5d)

The Alhambra, Leicester Square, London, week beginning 10 August 1874
‘Notwithstanding the repeated statement that everybody is out of town, we found a large assemblage at the Alhambra on Monday evening, so that it is evident the programme must have especial attractions for those who have not yet gone to the seaside, hillside, moorside, or lakeside… . Filling the place of Miss Kate Santley as Rose Michou, the heroine of Offenbach’s opera bouffe La Jolie Parfumeuse, we have an Australian prima donna, new to the London boards, by name Miss Lottie Montal. It was singular to notice, in one scene especially, the remarkable similarity in Miss Lottie Montal’s conception of the character to that of Miss Kate Santley. We are not aware whether this was intentional or accidental, but the result was the same, and the likeness went far to secure the favour of the audience, apart from Miss Montal’s own claims, which, personal and otherwise, are considerable. With a graceful figure and remarkably easy action Miss Montal combines pleasing features, eminently calculated to add to charm to such a character as that she is now depicting. Her voice is not powerful, neither has it the finest quality of tone, but one great merit belongs to it, which is not likely to pass unappreciated in opera bouffe, it is very flexible, enabling the fair owner to execute any florid passages with great ease. This was noticeable in the drinking song of the second act, one of the prettiest melodies of La Jolie Parfumeuse, in which Miss Montal revealed her best qualities as a singer. The song was rendered with much sparkle, dash, and vivacity, and was deservedly encored. In many other instances Miss Montal was entitled to very sincere congratulations, and the more she becomes accustomed to the large area of the Alhambra the more successful we believe she will be. The somewhat “risky” scene of the second act, considerably toned down since the first night, leaves nothing at present to offend the fastidious, which (thanks to the droller of Mr [Harry] Paulton, who aids Miss Montal admirably here) it is full of fun. The lady, greatly to her credit, resists the temptation to make the incident too suggestive, and we feel grateful. It might easily be played so as to “make the unskilful laugh,” but it would certainly tend “to make the judicious grieve,” and Miss Montal’s judgment in leaving well – or ill – alone must be highly commended… .’
(The Era, London, Sunday, 16 August 1874, p. 11a)

Following her engagement at the Alhambra, Miss Montal was due to appear at the Criterion Theatre, London, but illness intervened.


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