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Musical Items

Sousa’s band leaves this country for its Paris engagement April 1st.

Petschnikoff and Hambourg are going to the Pacific coast for an extended tournee.

Heinrich Ehrlich, music critic of the Berliner Tageblatt and a pupil of Thalberg, is dead at the age of 77.

Ossip Gabrilowitsch, the Russian pianist, will come to America in the fall and make a tour of this country.

Mme. Patti’s diamonds, valued at $1,250,000, were the principal feature at Lady Lansdowne’s war-concert at Covent Garden.

It is again rumored that Cecil Chaminade, the gifted French woman composer and pianist, will tour this country next season.

Ernest von Dohnanyi, who arrived in America a couple of weeks ago, was spoken of in Europe as a rising star in the piano world.

The last living pupil of Chopin has just died at Nice, having passed her four score years by one. Her name was Anna Deybel-Maynd.

The composer of “Annie Laurie” and other familiar melodies, Lady John Scott Spottiswoode, died in London, at ninety-one years of age.

The prose writings of Mr. Richard Wagner, translated by Mr. W. Ashton Ellis, have lately been published in England, in eight volumes.

Fannie Bloomfield Zeisler, the American pianist, celebrated the twenty-fifth anniversary of her début at Central Music Hall, Chicago, March 24th.

The Emperor William II has ordered a May festival, beginning May 16th, at the Court Theatre in Wiesbaden. “Oberon” will open the series of operas.

“Romeo et Juliette,” by Berlioz, has just been played in Munich for the first time under the direction of Mr. Henri Porges. It was an enthusiastic success.

Mascagni has dedicated the score of his new opera, “The Masks,” to himself. The peculiar dedication reads: “To myself in highest esteem and unchanged affection.”

It is said that Joseffy is to resign from the National Conservatory of Music at the end of this season, and devote his time to private teaching and to more frequent public performances.

Herr Arnold Mendelssohn recently presented “Der Baerenhæuter,” an opera in three acts, which fact is interesting only because the composer is a descendant of Mendelssohn.

The German Liederkranz, Dr. Paul Klengel, conductor, presented Cesar Franck’s oratorio, “Les Beatitudes,” at Carnegie Hall, New York (March 25th). It was the first time yet given in America.

Owing to the lethargy of the directors and members of the Society of American Musicians and Composers, President Edward McDowell has resigned. The inactivity of this organization is to be lamented.

Fraulein Margaretiia Peterson has lately achieved great success in Copenhagen, Budapest, and Berlin as the interpreter of Ludwig Schytte’s new dramatic scene “Hero,” for voice and orchestra.

Mr. Ernest Rupert Sharpe, an American who enjoys the distinction of being the only English-speaking man who has been invited to study the Wagnerian roles at Beyreuth, gave a song-recital in Boston March 5th.

Giordano is at work on a score for a libretto made from one of Rostand’s unacted comedies. He will also make an opera of “L’Algeon” if the play is a success.

Mascagni is to use as his next subject an early Roman tragedy.

Sir Arthur Sullivan’s setting of Kipling’s “The Absent-Minded Beggar” has broken all records in English musical history. More than 60,000 copies were sold in three days. The composer has arranged it as a march for orchestra.

Mr. Victor Herbert’s second orchestral concert at Carnegie Hall, aside from the interest in Mr. Herbert’s orchestra, offered the first performance in New York of Mr. Herbert’s own “Suite Romantique,” which was well received.

Madam Melba has been named Kammersängerin to the Court of Austria. It is a title rarely conferred, and the number of foreign artists who have received it is very small. Madam Patti is the dean of these artists, having held her appointment for twenty-six years.

At Carnegie Hall, New York, recently Madam Marcella Sembrich gave a recital of songs embracing a wide field, and sung in several languages. The air, “It Was a Lover and His Lass,” an old English song, first printed in 1600, found especial favor with her audience.

Goetz’s delightful opera, “The Taming of the Shrew,” was brilliantly brought out some time ago at Dresden under von Schuch. The music is so refreshing, so melodic, so humorous, and so descriptive, that one wonders why the work has not been heard there for more than seventeen years.

Mr. Louis Breitner’s concert at the Waldorf-Astoria, accompanied by orchestra, under Gustav Hinrichs, was well attended, but the radical difference between French and American taste in music was, unfortunately, too conspicuous. Mr. Breitner is a great pianist—without emotion.

The monument of Richard Wagner will be placed in the Thiergarten, opposite Hohenzollern Street, Berlin. The monument will correspond in size approximately to the monuments of Goethe, King Frederic William III, Lessing, and Queen Louisa and her husband which are in the Thiergarten.

The famous Konservatorium of Leipzig is about to be destroyed. It was here that Mendelssohn, in 1843, instituted the Leipzig Hochschule. The Konservatorium was attended by many of the most famous composers of that time, and by many foreigners, principally Americans, English, and Russians.

The third annual dinner of the Musical Directors’ Association took place on Sunday, March 25th, when the chair was taken by Sir Alexander McKensie, Principal of the Royal Academy of Music. The composer guest of the evening was Mr. Fred. H. Cowen, conductor of the Philharmonic Society. This is one of London’s notably successful associations.

A Perosi stock company, with a capital of $50,000, has been formed in Milan for the performance of church music. The company has bought the church of Santa Maria della Pace for $19,000, and will turn it into a music hall. This spring, Perosi’s “The Slaughter of the Innocents” and “The Entry of Christ into Jerusalem” will be performed.

The famous Banda Rossa of fifty members will begin its spring season in Boston, on April 16th, under the magnetic baton of its composer-conductor, Eugenio Sorrentino. The performances of this Italian band give us stronger musical impressions than anything heard here since the French Guarde Republicane Band was brought to our shores by Gilmore.

Theodore Thomas has determined to make the Newberry Library, of Chicago, heir to his collection of music. Apart from hundreds of valuable scores and manuscripts preserved, the most interesting part of the collection is the complete series of programs of concerts dating as far back as 1855. These programs show the evolution of music in the United States, and will be a treasure to the future historian of music in this country.

A new dramatic scene, “Hero,” for soprano and orchestra, composed by Ludwig Schytte, has lately finished a long series of successful presentations at the Royal Theater in Copenhagen, and following numerous presentations in different orchestral concerts in Budapest, will now be heard in Berlin, where Schytte is  located as teacher of piano. The composer was lately assured by Dr. Hans Richter that he (Richter) would secure a  number of productions for “Hero” England.

The Flemish story of Martin et Martine, set to music by M. Emile Trépard, which has awakened so much interest, is based on the story that Martin was a prisoner of war brought from the east, who was imprisoned in the belfry of Cambrai with the daughter of a noble of the country who had fallen in love with him; and the two were made to ring the hours. So much for the legend. Historically the two Jacquemarts of Cambrai were two automata, constructed in accordance with the request made by the communal chiefs of the Emperor Maximilian.

Giuseppe Verdi, the great composer, has just given another $10,000 toward the endowment of his home for aged and impoverished musicians near Milan. This makes the third generous gift of the composer toward this worthy enterprise. Some two years ago he bought a beautiful estate, and erected at his own expense a substantial structure. Finding that contributions from others came in very slowly, he offered to devote all his income from his great operas toward the support of the inmates. Now that even this annual allowance proves insufficient, he contributes $10,000 more, hoping that his example will induce others to help in the work.

Under the direction of J. Fred. Holle, and sung by a trained chorus of eighty voices, the great Bach “B-minor Mass” was presented in Bethlehem, Pa., March 27th, for the first time, in its entirety, in America. The soloists were Kathrine Hilke, of New York, and Lucia Brickstein, of Bethlehem, sopranos; Mrs. W. L. Estes, of South Bethlehem, contralto; Nicholes Douty, of Philadelphia, tenor, and Arthur Beresford, of Boston, basso. An orchestra of thirty-five pieces accompanied.

The “B-minor Mass” is the most colossal work of its kind, and its final production in America marks an important epoch in our musical history. The performance at Bethlehem was very satisfactorily given, and a large gathering of representative musicians from different cities attended.

 

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