Augusta Schrumpf

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Augusta Schrumpf
Born Augusta Smith
(1813-11-19)19 November 1813
Copenhagen, Denmark
Died 7 January 1900(1900-01-07) (aged 86)
Other names Augusta Smith
Spouse(s) August Schrumpf

Augusta Schrumpf, née Smith (19 November 1813 – 7 January 1900)[1] was a Norwegian (originally Danish) dramatic actress and operatic soprano. She was the prima donna of the national stage of Norway in the first half of the 19th century. She belonged to the pioneer troupe of artists at the Norwegian national stage, and could be regarded as the first opera singer in Norway.


Augusta Smith was born in Copenhagen, Denmark; her father was Norwegian, and her mother was Swedish. She was hired as a student actress at the newly opened (1827) theatre of Johan Peter Strömberg (from 1837 known as the Christiania Theatre) in Oslo by Böcher in 1829; this was the first lasting theatre in Norway, and the Norwegian national stage during the 19th century. Until the employment of Laura Gundersen in 1849, the theatre employed actors from Denmark and Germany. She debuted 21 September 1829 as Rosine in The Barber of Seville by Pierre Beaumarchais. Norway did not have an opera, but during this period, opera and theatre was often combined, as it was in Denmark and Sweden, were the artists often worked both as actors and singers, and it was decided that some operettas should be performed at the theatre. In the season of 1831-32, Deux mots by Nicolas Dalayrac was performed in Oslo directed by August Schrumpf, with Augusta Smith in the main part. This was the premiere of the opera in Norway and the breakthrough for Smith, who starred in the main part in the majority of the singing parts, whenever such were performed in the theatre.

She married the violinist August Schrumpf in 1832.

Among her other parts were Fenella in La muette de Portici by Daniel Auber (1843), where she received much praise, and Angela in Le domino noir; productions by Auber were very popular in Norway during this time. She played Hildur in Kung Sverres ungdom by A. Munch when the theatre was re-opened under the name Christiania Theatre in 1837. She also participated in concerts arranged by the musical society which performed chosen excerpts of famous operas in Oslo during this time, such as an aria from La clemenza di Tito by Mozart (1833).

She did not belong to a particular genre, but performed all sorts of parts, from tragedy to vaudeville. She was described as natural, warm and sensitive. During the 1850s, there were criticisms that no Norwegian actors were active on the Norwegian stage.

She performed for the last time on 16 March 1860, retired with a pension, and moved to Bergen.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Bricka, Carl Frederik. "Schrumpf, Augusta". Dansk biografisk Lexikon / XV. Bind. Scalabrini - Skanke / 302 - Retrieved 2017-04-24.