Words and Music by Carrie Jacobs Bond
Copyright 1929 by Carrie Jacobs-Bond & Son
Sung first by Grace Moore offscreen
Reprised by her at P.T.Barnum's show in New York City See more »
The Swedish Nightingale
Grace Moore was lucky to get two cracks at Hollywood, first with MGM and later with Columbia. Harry Cohn definitely knew how to showcase her better than the material that MGM gave her.
The story of Jenny Lind, the famous Swedish Nightingale of the 19th Century might have been a good choice and her real story would have been good cinematic material. The plot as presented here had nothing to do with the real Jenny Lind. The only thing that was real was the fact that P.T. Barnum brought her over to the USA for a famous tour. Barnum also marketed her in the same way a century later Hopalong Cassidy got marketed when his old films gave him renewed popularity on television. Wallace Beery played Barnum for the first time here, later on MGM would star him in a film about Barnum.
The acting by Moore and her leading man Reginald Denny is way over the top. The plot is also terribly melodramatic. Denny's character as a composer who goes blind is completely fictional. In real life Jenny Lind married her accompanist and really did live happily ever after.
Moore made one more film for Leo the Lion and then went back to New York and the Metropolitan Opera. Harry Cohn brought her back in 1934 when she made One Night of Love for Columbia and it was a great success. She comes across so much better there than in A Lady's Morals.
Still she does have some nice arias and opera fans will tolerate the melodrama to hear them.
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