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Musical Items

A memorial to Sir Arthur Sullivan was unveiled in St. Paul’s Cathedral, London, last month.

A German exchange, in praising the playing of Godowsky, calls him “The American pianist.”

The latest report about Paderewski is that he has sold his Polish estate and will settle in Switzerland.

New buildings are to be erected for the Paris Conservatoire, at a cost of something more than $600,000.

Old English songs, with accompaniments played on the harpsichord, are being introduced in recitals in London.

A concert in honor of Saint-Saëns was given at Shepheard’s Hotel, Cairo, Egypt, February 4th. The composer was present.

Thomas Ryan, a member of the once popular Mendelssohn Quintet Club, of Boston, died in New Bedford, Mass., March 5th, aged 73.

The French Minister of Instruction has decided to allow women to compete for the celebrated Prix de Rome, so much coveted by French musicians.

Victor Herbert is said to be at work on a new light opera, which is to be of a somewhat higher class, musically, than the kind generally offered to the public.

Reynaldo Hahn, composer of the opera “Carmelite,” recently produced with success in Paris, and the writer of several very much used songs, was born at Caracas, Venezuela.

The great competition of male singing societies, June 4th-6th, at Frankfort-on-the-Main, will draw a large attendance. The stage will accommodate 1000 vocalists and a large orchestra.

In addition to being a violinist of the first rank, Kocian is a fine piano-player. It is becoming more common that the great singers, violinists, and ‘cellists pay attention to piano-playing.

One of the violins used by the late Camilla Urso was sold to a Paris amateur for $2000. It was a Guadagnini. The other violin is still owned by her family, a Guarnerius, and is valued at $7000.

A sister of Rubinstein died recently in St. Petersburg, aged 70. She was a fine singer in her younger days. One sister still survives who is a very successful teacher in singing in the Russian capital.

A German in China has been looking up works on music in the libraries of that country. So far he has catalogued upward of 1500 works on the art, some of them dating back to the time of Confucius.

Emile Sauret, the celebrated violinist and teacher, who has been teaching in London for a number of years, will locate in Chicago, where he has accepted a position with the Chicago Musical College.

Mr. Frank Van der Stucken, director of the Cincinnati College of Music, has sent in his resignation, to take effect at the close of the present school year. He will devote his time to composition.

A new addition to the tenors of the Grau Opera Company was Aloys Burgstaller, who was trained at Bayreuth by Frau Cosima Wagner. His repertoire consists of three rôles, Siegmund and the two Siegfrieds.

The Wagner season at the Prinz Regenten Theater in Munich will consist of 24 performances, August 8th to September 14th. The Ring operas, Lohengrin, Tristan und Isolde, Tannhäuser, and Die Meistersinger will be given.

The first concert in aid of the pension fund of the Boston Symphony Orchestra brought in nearly $3000. A second concert has been planned to take place near the end of the season, when Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony will be given.

The program for the Worcester, Mass., Music Festival is to be changed. Instead of seven concerts there will be but five, and the price of the tickets is to be reduced. More rehearsals of the chorus with the orchestra have been arranged for.

Mondonville, a popular French composer of the eighteenth century, with a good income and a very rich wife, was nevertheless so economical that, when he wrote his music manuscripts, he always carried the lines to the edge of the paper.

The Royal Choral Society of London pays its expenses out of the proceeds of the concerts in which “Elijah” and the “Messiah” are sung. The last report shows that the society has lost $50,000 in the past twenty years in giving new oratorios and cantatas.

More than three hundred manuscripts were submitted in competition for the gold medal offered for the best musical setting of the words of the hymn “America,” by the Rhode Island Society of the Cincinnati. The award will be announced about July 4th.

The Philadelphia Orchestra gave a Beethoven Cycle, March 20th, 21st, 24th, 25th, 26th. The closing concert included the “Emperor” concerto, played by Constantin von Sternberg, and the Ninth Symphony, in which the vocal parts were sung by the Mendelssohn Club.

According to a German exchange, Gounod used the organ very freely in the composition of his operas, but in seeking melodic ideas he was accustomed to play on the guitar. His favorite instrument has lately come into the possession of the historical collection of the Paris Opera.

The manuscript of Beethoven’s “Coriolanus” overture is now in the possession of Felix Moscheles, of London, son of Moscheles, the famous pianist. Mark Hambourg, who is an enthusiastic collector of musical memorabilia, has been promised this manuscript when the collection is broken.

Miss Ethel Smyth, the English composer whose opera, “Der Wald,” was produced in Germany and England, and accepted by the management of the Metropolitan Opera Company, New York, is engaged on an opera in English, the libretto of which she prepared in collaboration with Mr. H. B. Brewster, an American who lives in Paris.

Sir Herbert Oakeley, for many years professor of music in Edinburgh, Scotland, University, from which post he retired about twelve years ago, is to publish a volume of reminiscences. As he is in his seventy-third year, his recollections cover a large span of years. He is the composer of the tune generally used for the hymn “Sun of my soul.”

Mr. Heinrich Conried, the successor to Maurice Grau in the management of the Metropolitan Opera Company of New York, is a native of Austria, and gained his first prominence as an actor in a Vienna theater. In 1877 he came to New York City to take charge of the Germania Theater. Later he became the manager of the Irving Place Theater.

The competition for the Sonzogno prize of $10,000 for the best opera brought out a large number of contestants, 234 in all, of whom 198 are Italian, 19 French, and 6 English. The requirement that the libretto should be in the Italian language put a handicap on composers outside of Italy. It is not likely that the verdict will be announced for quite a time.

The trustees of the Chicago Orchestra have asked for a fund of $750,000 to put the orchestra in permanent shape. Part of this money is to be used for the erection of a building to serve as the home of the orchestra, similar to that put up in Boston several years ago for the Boston Symphony Orchestra. One hundred thousand dollars have been subscribed up to the present time.

According to a foreign correspondent, the Abbé Perosi, who was lately made director of the choir of St. Peter’s, Rome, has asked to be allowed to employ women sopranos and contraltos in place of boy sopranos and male altos. It is scarcely probable that his idea will be accepted, as the practice and ruling of the Roman Catholic authorities in the large cathedrals is against the use of women in the choir.

The next biennial convention of the National Federation of Musical Clubs, which enrolls about ten thousand members, will be held in Rochester, N. Y., May 19th-22d. An interesting program of concerts and papers on subjects connected with club-work will be given, including one by the American Symphony Orchestra of New York City. The Corresponding Secretary of the Federation is Edwine Danforth, 535 West Avenue, Rochester, N. Y.

 

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