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Musical Items

The initial performance of the “Passion Play” took place at Oberammergau, May 24th.

The election of officers of the Manuscript Society of New York has been postponed two weeks.

Paderewski was presented with a silver wreath by the New York College of Music students.

The Cincinnati Music Festival, one of the features of May in musical affairs, closed with brilliant success.

Emil Paur has been elected conductor of the New York Philharmonic Society for the third term. The salary is $6000 a year.

In Holland a law has recently been passed requiring piano-tuners to pass an examination before a government official before plying their trade.

Sir Arthur Sullivan has arranged, as a march, his setting of Kipling’s “The Absent-Minded Beggar.” The song broke all records with regards to quick sale.

The celebrated tenor and Wagnerian singer, Heinrich Vogel, died recently. He was also a composer of songs, “The Stranger,” one of his many ballads, being well known.

In the seventies are the composers Edouard Lassen and Carl Goldmark. Each has just celebrated his seventieth birthday, and each is still actively employed in musical work.

The total expenses of the season of the Chicago Orchestra, Theodore Thomas, conductor, were $123,000, and the receipts $106,000, leaving a deficit of $17,000, which the guarantors will pay.

Peter Fassbender, a Swiss composer, has been given the prize of 625 marks for the best music for the song to be sung in competition at the great singing festival to be held in Brooklyn in July.

The vocal department of the Women’s Philharmonic Society of New York closed a brilliant season with a concert in the Chapter Room of Carnegie Hall, under the direction of Madam Anna Lankow.

Mr. E. A. MacDowell was represented at the Crystal Palace concert the other day, when his “Concerto in D-minor” for piano and orchestra was given for the first time in England, with Mme. Carreño, soloist.  

Everybody who for the past twenty years has listened to the “Bells of Corneville” will be shocked to hear that Corneville has no bells. Therefore the little village is passing the hat around for subscriptions to buy a bell.

Chicago is to have a musical college on the lines of the Art Institute, where music is to be taught for music’s sake, if the plans now under consideration do not miscarry. Bernard Ulrich is at the head of the enterprise.

Herman Ritter, who has lately returned from a concert-tour around Europe, is making preparations to bring his famous viola alto to America next season. Ritter’s repertoire includes “Harold Symphony” and Scharwenka’s “Viola Sonata,” opus 106.

In 1883 three now famous men were at the University of Strasburg-Roentgen, Paderewski, and Tesla. Then Roentgen was a Professor of Physics, Paderewski was an Instructor in Music, and Tesla was installing the electric-light plant at the university.

Richard Storrs Willis, the musician and poet, died of heart-failure at Detroit last week, aged eighty- two. He was born in Boston and educated at Yale. His first venture in the publishing business was with the Musical Times, afterward known as the Musical World.

Siloti and Sapellnikoff are having a marble bust of their teacher, Tschaikowsky, executed by the

Russian sculptor, Robert Bach, for the foyer of the Gewandhaus, where, later on, a similar tribute of gratitude will be paid to Liszt by the first-named pianist.

Pictures of the human voice thrown upon a screen at the Academy of Natural Sciences, in Philadelphia, created enthusiasm among the scientists present. It was demonstrated that the vibrations of each separate tone of the human voice possessed its own individual geometric figure.

For a prize of 12,000 francs offered by the authorities of Koenigsburg for the best popular opera-or one which will become popular-there are over four hundred competitors. And, to deal justly, the luckless authorities will have to hear the four hundred or more operas played from the original scores.

Marcella Sembrich, the operatic prima donna, will take to her home in Dresden next month, as tangible evidence of the public’s recognition of her art, a sum approximated at $95,000. This little fortune will represent her earnings during the six months of her professional activity in the now ending season.

While experimenting with a fluted, flexible brass tube Edison discovered that, by simply blowing through it, distinct flute-like tones were obtained. Other tones in an ascending octave were produced by increased pressure of breath. This discovery may lead to the manufacture of a new musical instrument.

Boito has brought nearly to completion his opera, “Nero,” on which he has been at work for many years. The chief characters are Nero; Simon; Magus, a vestal; and Etera. The work is in five acts, and includes the scene of Nero fiddling while Rome is burning. The composer expects to produce his opera in 1902.

The Sousa Band has arrived safely on the other side, and on Sunday afternoon, May 6th, played for two hours on the Champs de Mars, which is the very center of the Exposition grounds. A concert was also given in the Art Palace, which was more select in its character. There is every reason to believe that the Sousa tour abroad will be a triumphant one.

There has been incorporated in New York an “American Institute of Music.” It is designed to establish “an institution to encourage and develop popular interest in the study of the art and literature of music, to provide popular musical instruction, to maintain a musical library and museum, and to erect and maintain a suitable building.” Mr. Frank Damrosch is one of the leading incorporators and trustees.

Perosi is a rapid writer. Recently there arrived in Rome from Lombardy a band of pilgrims led by Cardinal Ferrari. The night before their reception at the Vatican they asked Perosi to compose an appropriate piece of music. During the night he wrote it, early in the morning it was rehearsed, and before noon it was performed in presence of Leo XIII, who warmly congratulated the composer on his rapid- transit work.

During the month of June Mr. C. H. Richter, Director of the Academy of Music, Geneva, Switzerland, has engaged the services of the well-known pianist Eduard Risler for a series of lectures. These lectures, or causeries, or lessons, will be similar to those given by von Bülow at the Raff Conservatory in Frankfort, Germany. The lectures by Eduard Risler will be given at the Académie de Musique, 4 Boulevard Helvétique, Geneva, beginning June 15th.

One of the great features of the performance of “Samson,” by the People’s Choral Union, of New York City, May 13th, at Carnegie Hall, was the chorus of one thousand voices. Handel’s work had not been heard there for a quarter of a century. It seems a matter of regret that such a production, involving so long a preparation and such eminent talent, could not be heard more than once. But such is the fate of the higher class of oratorio music.

Brooklyn will be the scene of an elaborate musical festival lasting from June 19th to July 4th, inclusive.

It will be officially known as the Nineteenth National Saengerfest of the Northeastern Saengerbund. Six thousand singers from the States of New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Rhode Island, and Maryland, and delegations from certain Western States, will participate. The orchestra will number 125 musicians. At a matinée concert 5,000 school-children and 600 women will sing.

Eduard Strauss and his fifty artist-musicians will arrive in New York on the Steamship Saale about October 18th next. A great popular concert will be given at the Metropolitan Opera House, New York City, when Herr Strauss will play a new waltz composed especially for the occasion, entitled “Welcome to America,” as a compliment to the American people. The tour of the orchestra will take in the whole continent of North America, including Mexico, the Pacific Coast, and Canada.

From June to September there will be an international music exhibition at the Crystal Palace, London, to illustrate the progress of musical art during the nineteenth century. It will include the musical instruments and appliances constructed or in use during the last hundred years, musical engraving and type-printing, a loan collection of instruments and pictures, and a number of modern oil and water-color paintings on musical subjects. Then there will be lectures, historical concerts, and other musical attractions.

May 16th Paderewski, with his wife, sailed in the Oceanic for Europe, a number of friends witnessing his departure. Paderewski, it is said, takes with him from this country over $170,000 as the profits of his recent tour, so he is justified in stating that “he found no lack of appreciation as compared with former years, and is financially satisfied.” He will go to his villa at Lausanne, Switzerland, where he will put the finishing touches to his opera, “Manru,” which is to be produced in November at Dresden under the direction of von Schuch.

The Grau Opera Company will start back from Europe October 20th, and proceed direct to San Francisco, where it will remain for three weeks. As no grand opera company has ever visited San Francisco since 1890, when Patti and Tamago sang there, it will be an epoch in California musical history. The company, which will number 225 persons, will arrive in New York October 27th, and cross the continent by special train. In returning it will be heard in Los Angeles, Salt Lake City, Denver, Kansas City, Lincoln, St. Paul, and Minneapolis, from where it goes direct to New York, where the season opens December 18th.

Sir George Grove, who was born at Clapham, Surrey, in 1820, died in London, May 28, 1900. He was educated as a civil engineer, and was at one time associated with Robert Stephenson. In 1852 he was secretary to the Crystal Palace Company. Later he was editor of Macmillan’s Magazine, and one of the principal contributors to Dr. Smith’s “Dictionary of the Bible.” He also edited “Dictionary of Music and Musicians,” contributing valuable biographies of Beethoven, Mendelssohn, and Schubert. In 1882 he was appointed Director of the Royal College of Music at Kensington, a post he held until 1894. He was knighted by the queen in 1883.

Verdi has been obliged to pay 26,000 francs taxes for erecting, at his own expense, a fine building for indigent musicians in Milan, says Mr. Finck. The expense has been so far $100,000. The building was begun in 1896, and is now nearly completed. Sixty men and forty women will be provided for at once, and the funds are invested in such a way that in a few years a larger number will be provided for. The portrait medallions in the large salon may be taken as indicating who Verdi considers to have been the eight greatest composers of Italy-Palestrina, Monteverdi, Frescobaldi, Scarlatti, Marcello, Pergolesi, Cimarosa, and Rossini. Verdi’s own portrait is nowhere to be seen, nor even his name. In the chapel Verdi has set aside a place in which he desires to be buried.

HOME NOTES. 

The Monteagle Summer School of Musical Art, of which Dr. H. G. Hanchett, of New York, is director, will hold its sessions from July 5th to August 18th, at Monteagle, Tenn. The development of the past two seasons warrants a prosperous and helpful season this year.

The Maurice Grau benefit, given in New York recently, netted $13,000.

Emil Liebling has booked many engagements for June in the West.

Leonora Jackson won an ovation at the Louisville Music Festival.

The Oratorio Society of Hoopeston, Ill., of which August Geiger is director, gave two concerts on the evenings of May 17th and 18th, respectively.

The pupils of the Toledo School of Music, Toledo, Iowa, gave a concert on April 12th. They were assisted by Miss Myrtle Louthan. Miss Mary Theresa Louthan is the director.

The pupils of Walter Krentzlin, of Cambridge, Mass., gave their annual recital on May 3d.

A pupils’ recital was given at the Faelten Pianoforte School on May 12th.

A unique entertainment-“Walk through Kensal Green Cemetery, near London, via Chelten Hills Hall,” was given at the Chelten Hills Hall on May 4th, under the direction of Miss Mary Susan Morris. The affair was a decided success.

At the Sunday Evening Choral Service, May 13th, in the Central Congregational Church, Philadelphia, Mr. Frederick Maxson, organist, Rossini’s “Stabat Mater” was rendered by an augmented choir.

Mary E. Hallock, one of the coming American artists, had the honor of an audience with Paderewski, during which he played for her his whole “Piano Concerto in A-minor.” Miss Hallock expects to bring out this composition next season.

The commencement exercises of the Goetze Conservatory of Music were held on May 18th.

The Fourth Annual Pianoforte Recital by the pupils of Miss Kathryn R. Glinnon, of New York City, was given on April 26th.

Prof. Johannes Wolfram, of the Cleveland School of Music, gave an “Historical Lecture on the Troubadours, Minnesingers, and Meistersingers and their Relation to the Crusades,” on May 18th.

Madam Jenny Grau-Maier, of New York City, has been giving a series of song-lecture recitals, which have proved instructive, as well as interesting and entertaining.

A piano-recital, by Miss Isabella Heaton, was given in Recital Hall, Cleveland, O., on April 19th.

The Faculty of the Cedar Rapids College of Music gave their ninety-eighth recital on April 10th.

The fourth piano-recital of the seventh season was given by E. R. Kroeger, of St. Louis, Mo., on April 25th. The program consisted entirely of transcriptions from the works of Richard Wagner.

A chamber music concert, by Emil Liebling and Earl R. Drake, was given on April 23d, before the members of the Liebling Amateurs and the Drake Violin Club.

The pupils of the Alton Conservatory, Alton, Ill., gave a recital on April 7th.

The pupils of Miss Nora F. Wilson, Columbus, O., gave a class-recital on April 17th. They were assisted by Miss Alice Speaks, contralto.

A summer course of instruction in pianoforte, voice, and the German language will be given July 2d to August 25th, in Boston, Mass., conducted by the Misses Hermine Bopp and Grace Lee Wilbour.

The May Festival of the Albion College, Albion, Mich., of which Otto Sand is the musical director, was a great success. Each of the concerts was admirably given.

The pianoforte recital, given by the pupils of Mrs. S. T. Hendrickson, Wichita, Kan., on May 4th, showed that good quality of work which is being done under the direction of Mrs. Hendrickson.

Mr. Wilson G. Smith, of Cleveland, O., gave his third piano-recital on May 22d.

At the Victoria Musical Festival, given on April 28th and 30th, respectively, “The Messiah” was rendered by a combined chorus of Victoria and Nanaimo vocalists. The entertainment was given in aid of the Canadian Patriotic Fund for the South-African War.

A graduates’ piano-recital was given in the chapel of the Stephens College, Columbia, Mo., on May 23d. T. Cail Whitmer is the musical director.

Mr. Frank J. Benedict, Hartford, Conn., gave an organ-recital on May 9th, assisted by Mrs. Ruth Thayer Burnham, contralto.

The First Annual Music Festival of the Limestone College, Gaffney, S. C., was held on May 8th and 9th.

 

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