The Etude
Name the Composer . Etude Magazine Covers . Etude Magazine Ads & Images . Selected Etude Magazine Stories . About . Donate .


The World of Music

At Home.

Our old friend Uncle Tom’s Cabin has now been turned into an opera.

Weingartner will arrive in Boston in January for the purpose of conducting German opera in that city.

A national opera is to be formed in Montreal, Canada, and Max Rabinoff has been appointed director.

Mr. Louis Arthur Russell, of Newark, N. J., recently gave a concert of his own compositions.

The new Century Opera Company, New York, of which the Aborn Brothers are managers, has arranged to exchange artists with the Boston Opera House.

The 29th Biennial State Sangerfest of the German-Texan Singers’ League was recently held in Houston, Texas. The St. Louis Orchestra assisted under Max Zach.

The fiftieth anniversary of the German Wallace College, Berea, Ohio, has been celebrated by the dedication of the new College of Music, a building erected at a cost of $100,000.

A harp orchestra is being formed by Mrs. Dorothy Johnstone Baseler, a noted harpist of Philadelphia, who is an artist of exceptional attainment.

Over twenty pageants have been given in America this year, some of them extending over three or four days. This suggests a new field for the composer, since appropriate music is always desired.

Mr. Louis Koenmmenich, conductor of the Oratorio Society in New York, has been appointed conductor of the Mendelssohn Glee Club.

Canadian musicians are deeply lamenting the death of Dr. J. Humphrey Anger, formerly of Oxford University, England, and for many years head of the musical theory department of the Toronto Conservatory of Music.

A unique music festival was recently given in Seattle in which a chorus of twelve hundred voices were employed. The singers were all members of the High School and Grammar School. It is estimated that five thousand people attended each of the three concerts given.

Caruso is supposed to be very wealthy, and does indeed earn an enormous income from singing at the Metropolitan and from his talking-machine records. Nevertheless, he is a very generous spender, and is providing in addition for quite a number of indigent relatives.

The Municipal Band of Habana, which visited this country in connection with the Maine Monument dedication, recently gave a concert in the Mall, Central Park, New York, on a Sunday afternoon. Stretched above the Mall were a Cuban and an American flag, and an audience of 15,000 people, gave the visitors an enthusiastic welcome.

The fifth musical festival of the Chicago North Shore Festival Association was successfully held at Evanston. The Chicago Symphony (it is a little difficult to remember that this is the Thomas Orchestra with a new name) was engaged for the occasion, and Ysaye and Schumann-Heink were among the artists engaged.

The Philadelphia Orchestra was so successful last season that an increase of revenue amounting to $15,000 is the cheerful report of Harvey M. Watts, the business manager. This will afford some relief to the few wealthy residents of Philadelphia who have acted as guarantors in the past.

Mr. Arthur L. Manchester, formerly director of music at Converse College, has accepted a position as director of music at Southwestern University, Austin, Texas. Mr. Manchester, who has contributed much valuable material to The Etude, and to other musical magazines, has our very best wishes for his future success.

Next season New York is to be regaled with a new musical spice in the form of a Spanish zarzuela, a kind of musical comedy from Spain in which are pictured the customs and habits of the districts in which it originated, Castile, Andalusia, etc. A Spanish theatre company has been formed for the production of these unique works.

A centennial festival in honor of Wagner’s hundredth anniversary has been held in Milwaukee by the combined German choral societies. About a thousand voices were heard at one time, accompanied by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. The festival was not only an artistic success but it has started a movement for the purpose of securing a symphony orchestra for Milwaukee.

The New York Philharmonic Orchestra under the leadership of Josef Stransky is going to make a tour in the West. This is the first time the historic Philharmonic has been so far afield, but it has been heard in many parts of the South, East and in Canada. The manager declares that the tour is not being made for money, and that the management will be satisfied to come out even as regards expense.

The degree of Doctor of Music was conferred by Villanova College, Pa., upon Mr. Herbert J. Tiley, who besides being a composer, organist and conductor, is general manager of Strawbridge & Clothier’s, one of Philadelphia’s greatest departments stores. Mr. Tiley has organized and conducts a splendid choral society formed among the employes of the big emporium.

A singing teachers’ association has been started in Boston, of which Stephen S. Townsend is President and founder. The executive officers include Clarence E. Hay, Leverett B. Merrill, F. W. Wodell, and Frank E. Morse. There are about forty charter members enrolled. The object of the association is to further good fellowship among men of the profession of the sort calculated to promote common benefits to all.

An interesting “First Annual” Festival of music was recently held in San Diego, at which the San Diego Symphony Orchestra performed with the assistance of the San Diego Choral Society and the Philomel Chorus. The conductor was B. Roscoe Shryock, and many able artists assisted. Well done, San Diego! We hope the “first annual” will mark the starting point for a long series of successful festivals.

The Sinfonia Fraternity optimistically held their thirteenth convention on Friday the thirteeth (sic) of June, 1913! At this convention it was announced that the winner of the prize of $100 and the gold medal, offered for a string quartet, was Henry A. Lang. Mr. Lang is especially successful as a writer of music in this form. He was the winner of the prize offered for a chamber music composition by the National Federation of Musical Clubs, two years ago.

The sensation created by the statement of a London physician that Caruso’s knuckles emitted a musical tone if struck has not yet simmered down. The New York Sun exclaims, “If a single knuckle joint of that greatly gifted man, when rapped lightly, gives out a musical note of specially high pitch, what an ineffable chord would sing through a startled world if somebody were to impose upon him (purely in the interest of art, of course) the blow known in sporting circles as ‘a good smash in the slats!’”

The annual meeting of the Oliver Ditson Society for the Relief of Needy Musicians was held recently in Boston at which Mr. Arthur Foote was elected President for the year, (and the following gentleman were elected to various offices: A. Parker Browne, George W. Chadwick, Charles H. Ditson, Charles F. Smith, Arthur R. Smith. Application may be made to any of these officers at 6 Newbury Street, Boston. Attention is called to the fact that this fund exists solely to help in cases of destitution, and is not for educational purposes.

A symphony entitled New England was produced at the Norfolk Music Festival under the direction of the composer, Edgar Stillman Kelley. In it the composer has endeavored to present the ambitions, struggles and attainments of the New Englanders, taking his themes partly from an old New England choral, and partly from the songs of the birds peculiar to that section of the country. Mr. Kelley is himself a New Englander, and believes that if American music is to be written it will be written by Americans who confine their musical inspirations to the music peculiar to their own native section of this vast country.

The concerts of the Volpe orchestra have begun again in Central Park, New York, and eager crowds are listening to music of the highest order interpreted by this organization. We trust that due information of this fact will reach Mayor Gaynor, whose recent letter on the subject of classical music betrayed an ignorance of the wide interest in music in New York, unpleasant to see in one occupying his exalting position. Mr. Gaynor might take a lesson from his municipal colleague in Philadelphia, Mayor Blankenburg, who has done all in his power to encourage music and musicians in the city of Brotherly Love.

Boston is not usually supposed to be sleepy so far as music is concerned, yet a story is wafted down to us from the rarefied atmosphere of The Hub that some members of the distinguished audiences which gather to hear the Boston Symphony have occasionally been known to fall asleep, and even in some cases to emit sounds faintly reminiscent of a pianissimo on the trombone. In order to rectify this peculiar situation it is said that Karl Muck recently adopted methods suggestive of “Papa Haydn” with his Surprise Symphony. He instructed his men to play a certain sforzando in the Overture to Euryanthe with real emphasis, and to follow it immediately with an almost inaudible pianissimo. The effect was so surprising that at least one millionaire dropped his opera glasses, and even his English groom who was outside the building was heard to drop an “h.”

Abroad.

Arnold Schönberg, having been criticized into fame, has been invited to London next winter to conduct his own works.

Louis Lombard, who began as an itinerant fiddler, and made a fortune in Wall Street, has been made a Knight of the Order of the Crown of Italy by King Victor Emmanuel.

There is said to be a church in the south of England where the boy members of the choir have left one by one to engage in the more profitable occupation of attending golfers as “caddies.”

Mme. Melba recently celebrated the twenty-fifth anniversary of her appearance at Covent Garden. King George sent a special message of congratulation to her through Sir William Carrington.

The prize of $2,000 offered by the French Academy, one of the most highly coveted awards in the field of literature, has been awarded to Romain Rolland, the author of Jean-Christophe, the wonderful life-story of a musical genius.

The posthumous work of Massenet known as Panurge has been produced at the Theatre Lyrique, Paris. It possesses the master’s usual supple control of musical effects but is not free from the saccharine qualities which mar his more familiar works.

Debussy has set a tennis game to music. The work is a dance-pantomime written for Nijinsky, the Russian dancer, and is entitled, Jeux. It now remains for Sousa to write a similar work about a game of baseball.

An “electrophone” connection has been made between London and the stage of the Paris Opera House, so that Londoners may hear the Paris opera without leaving their native city. It is said that similar connections will be made between Covent Garden London’s home of opera, and Paris, so that the operatic exchange will be mutual.

An opera by Friedrich Weigmann, entitled Der Klarinettenmacher, has been successfully produced at Bemberg. The libretto of the opera is by George Richard Kruse, who was formerly well known in America as an orchestra conductor and is now director of the Berlin Lessing Museum.

A clerk in Manchester, England, recently played 1400 tunes on the piano from memory. It took sixteen hours, and at the end of that time the clerk fell off the piano-seat, having exhausted both his strength and his repertoire and doubtless his audience also.

Following its remarkable production at the Metropolitan in New York last winter, Moussorgsky’s Boris Godounov has been produced in Russian at the Theatre des Champs-Elysees, Paris. It is also to be sung in French at the opera house next fall.

A new and improved version of Leoncavallo’s La Bohème has been produced at Palermo. The work is re-christened Mimi Pinson, which is perhaps as well, for the composer of the popular Pagliacci has suffered with his Bohème in comparison with the Bohème of Puccini.

The outstanding feature of the London summer musical season has been the special Saint-Saens Jubilee, given in honor of the great French master. A concert of the master’s works was given at the Queen’s Hall, at which he performed a Mozart concerto, and some music of his own. A performance of Samson and Delilah, his operatic masterpiece, was given the following evening at Covent Garden.

The “movie” has moved to a new sphere of action. It has become a popular feature of life in London, and the centenary of Wagner has been celebrated by moving-picture scenes from the life of the master in a London theater. Suitable selections from the Wagnerian dramas are played by a competent orchestra during the exhibition, and the whole effect is said to be most interesting.

The Shapiro Symphony Orchestra of London consists entirely of women, except for the conductor, who happens to be a mere man. They have been so successful that at their first concerts many people were turned away, and now the number of the orchestra has been increased to 100 performers, and the large Queen’s Hall has been the place selected for future concerts.

Saint-Saens returned from an ovation in London in honor of the seventy-fifth anniversary of his start in a musical career, only to attend a similar ovation in Switzerland. Paderewski was among the many notable musicians who gathered together to do honor to the veteran French composer. Saint-Saens played together on two pianos (sic?) and each conducted works of his own composition which were received with the utmost enthusiasm by the large audience.

One of the largest and most efficient music schools in the world is the London Guildhall School of Music. Last year the number of students who received tuition was: First term, 2,107; second, 2,035; third, 2,123. The receipts from tuition and examination fees were about $120,000. Of this sum about $84,400 went to the professors of whom there are now 114. The school is directed by Landon Ronald, and is largely under the control of the London city fathers.

Henery Hadley, conductor of the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra, has been conducting some of his own works with the London Symphony Orchestra. The works chosen were the overture, In Bohemia, his second symphony, The Four Seasons, and a Symphonic Fantasie. We are very pleased to record that the works met with emphatic approval. Mr. Hadley has conducted his works previously in the British capital, and there is no composer in America more worthy to represent the younger American composers abroad.

Humility among musicians is by no means common and Sir George Grove once said that Schubert was the only modest musician that ever lived. While this is probably not entirely true there can be no doubt that Schubert was unduly self-depreciative. His chamber-music is admittedly among the highest music of its kind, and yet in writing to his brother Ferdinand, he once said, “It would be better for you to give your attention to other quartets than mine, for they are of no value, except in so far as they may please you, who like everything I have written.” A sum of nearly $400 was recently paid to a Berlin auctioneer for the letter containing this statement. “MacDowell,” says Mr. H. T. Finck, in the New York Post, “and probably one or two more might be named, but most musicians have wisely born in mind the motto of the German comic poet,

’ Bescheidenheit ist eine
Zier Doch weiter Kommt man ohne ihr.’ “

Lovers of Charpentier’s Louise will be glad to learn that his new work, Julien, was enthusiastically received at its premiere in Paris. Julien is a poet of mercurial temperament whose search for spiritual truth leads him into queer places. At one time he becomes an “apostle of universal love,” but he becomes discouraged at the banality of people in high places, and seeks life anew among the humble; here again disillusion meets him, and he seeks oblivion by plunging into the Bacchanalia of Montmartre. Mysticism and allegory play a prominent part in the work, which seems rather vague and meaningless after Louise. The music is said to be slightly Wagnerian, but is nevertheless excellent. In the meantime, Julien contains some “quotations” from Louise, but is published by a different concern. Consequently the publisher of Louise in (sic) making trouble over the alleged infringement of copyright.

A London medical expert has made an anatomical examination of Caruso, and says that he “combines to a greater extent than any other singer I have ever examined the physical characteristics necessary for perfect production of vocal sounds in almost unlimited volume.” The learned doctor goes on to say that even the bones of Caruso are musical. “For instance, if you tap one of his knuckles smartly with your forefinger, it gives out a higher-pitched, more resonant tone than the average person’s muscles.” This is doubtless true, but mercy on us! who in our midst would dare to rap Caruso’s knuckles for him?

England seems to be continually preparing for a German invasion. Perhaps one of the most formidable weapons in her arsenal is the kinesounder. It has for its object the supplying of sounds for picture theatres. It is a weird arrangement controlled by levers, and can produce many effects, including barking dog, tug whistle, birds, wind, siren, sleighbells, bump, fire alarm, motor car (and boat), pot crash, glass crash, heavy wood crash, light crash, cannon, waves, slaps, crackle, splash, galloping horses, train, door-latch, waterfalls, thunder, etc. Having produced an instrument of this kind, Johnny Bull feels that he can sit back in his chair fully prepared for anything Richard Strauss and the German Emperor can concoct for the benefit of the European concert.

 

<< The Music of the People in Russian Masterpieces -- Modest Altschuler     The Romance of the Chopin Preludes - By Mrs. Burton Chance >>

Monthly Archives

The Publisher of The Etude Will Supply Anything In Music