We are so excited to discover this wonderful item. This will make the perfect unique, one of a kind gift for the opera lover.
This is an original hand painted caricature on USMS Philadelphia paper of the illustrious American Operatic baritone singer David Bispham. David Bispham himself has signed and dated a personal dedication to the caricaturist's wife:
"To Mrs Beaumont with kind regards of David Bispham Oct.6.1903".
Mrs Beaumont's husband Herbert Beaumont was the caricaturist and he has monogrammed the portrait 'HB Sep 1903' at the bottom. Presumably all three were travelling aboard U.S.M.S. Philadelphia during the autumn of 1903. Throughout his operatic career David Bispham regularly travelled by ship in First Cabin Class between the USA and England to appear in concerts; he was a noted baritone singer for both the metropolitan Opera Company, New York and The Royal Opera Company of London.
American operatic baritone David Skull Bispham (1857-1921) was born in Philadelphia. Bispham was the first American born operatic baritone singer to succeed in gaining an international reputation. In his twenties he travelled to Europe to study singing in Florence with Luigi Vannuccini and in Milan with Francesco Lamperti. He made his operatic debut in London, England in 1891. There he was contracted to sing in Wagner roles by The Royal Opera House, Covent garden for ten seasons! He was also the leading Wagnerian baritone at that time of the Metropolitan Opera Company, New York City between the year 1896 to 1903. In his later years Mr. Bispham was one of Nelson Eddy's early voice teachers. Bispham's popular rendition of the song 'Danny Deever' performed by him was a personal favorite at the White House of President Teddy Roosevelt. David Bispham was personal friends with many of the leading lights in Opera at that time including singers such as Lillian Nordica, the De Reszke brothers and Olive Fremstad. He was close friends too with leading conductors such as Hans Richter, Arthur Nikisch and Felix Mottl too name but a few!
USMS Philadelphia was was named the City of Paris from her time of building until her re-naming to Philadelphia in 1901. She was a British-built passenger liner that held the Blue Riband as the fastest ship on the north Atlantic route from 1889 to 1891 and again from 1892 to 1893. She was just one of the many transatlantic ocean going liners owned by America's largest shipping company American Line, based in Phildelphia which became even larger when they purchased the Inman Line in 1886. The route that Philadelphia regularly travelled was between Philadelphia and New York City and the British ports of Liverpool and Southampton. She saw military service serving in the Spanish–American War as US Yale, her services were needed again during World War I as the transport ship Harrisburg. After the war, she continued with the American Line until 1920, eventually going to the ship graveyard to be scrapped in 1923.
Housed in a red mount behind glass in an attractive modern frame, this artwork is ready to hang.
Size: Actual caricature 9.25" by 6". Frame 12.75" by 10.75"
Condition: Some foxing and age darkening to the paper, one small tear at 7 o'clock and a tiny indent to the paper by the date 1903. The paper portrait is historically attached to old card backing.
A fantastic opportunity to own a piece of American operatic history....a stunning conversation piece for the opera lover. We will be sad to part with this amazing portrait of Mr Bispham with its dedication in his own hand.
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Prior to purchase, please study all images and condition information, as these form an integral part of the description.
UNIQUE American Opera, David Bispham Signed Caricature 1903, US Operatic Baritone On USMS Philadelphia Paper
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