A Prize of One Thousand Dollars, and a second prize of Five Hundred Dollars, for an original orchestral work, are offered by Mr. Harry Harkness Flagler, President of the Symphony Society of New York. The judges of the contest will be Mr. Walter Damrosch, George W. Chadwick, John Alden Carpenter, Franz Kneisel, and Leopold Stokowski. For the conditions of the contest, address The Symphony Society, 33 W. 42nd St., New York City. The competition closes October 1, 1920.
Angelo de Presse, a well-known teacher and director of music, died at Haddon Heights, Friday, February 14th, at the age of seventy-seven years. He was a native of Munich, Bavaria, and was educated there at the Conservatory, later becoming Director of Opera at Bamberg, and instructor in the Royal Institute for young ladies of nobility, and the High School at Augsberg. He came to the United States in 1865. He formerly was connected with the Wesleyan University, Delaware, Ohio; Lake Forest Seminary in Illinois; and other institutions. He directed the music in the Christian Science Church, Newark, and the free Synagogue, New York City.
The National American Music Festival will be celebrated at Lockport, N. Y., September 6 to 11, 1920. Tickets are on sale by the National American Music Festival, Box 216, Lockport, N. Y. The morning sessions will be devoted to lectures and round-cables on matters of importance to teachers and students, the meetings to be addressed by men and women of eminence in the musical world. The afternoons and evenings will include concerts and recitals by eminent musicians, of interesting programs.
A Prize of Two Hundred Dollars is offered by the Tuesday Musical Club for the best original composition submitted under certain definite conditions. The competition will be judged by Messrs. N. Lindsay Norden, conductor of the Mendelssohn Club of Philadelphia, Charles Heinroth, and Charles N. Boyd, of Pittsburgh. Address inquiries to Mr. Chas. N. Boyd, 4229 Fifth Ave., Pittsburgh, Penna. The competition closes July 1, 1920.
The Roses of Mercatel, a new Opera, composed by Prof. J. Vick O’Brien, of the Carnegie Institute of Technology to the libretto of Colonel Frank P. Day, of the same Institute was produced at the Theatre of the Division of Arts, Carnegie Institute, early in February. The plot of the Opera was founded on a war-time incident of the finding of roses in a war-torn garden in France, while Col. Day was at the front.
The British Music Society will hold a Conference in London, from May 3rd to the 8th. The proceedings will include morning meetings, evening concerts, a banquet, and a general meeting on the final day.
Signor Odoardo Barri, an old time composer, has recently passed away at the age of 81. He was best known by his song, Boys of the Old Brigade. Besides this he was the composer of over 1,500 songs.
Wilhelm Mengelberg, the noted Dutch orchestral director, will be the guest conductor of the New York Symphony Society at a concert next year.
Caruso is to sing with the Bracale Opera Company, in Havana, at the close of the present season, receiving, it is said, $10,000 a performance.
Solar Spectrum, a new opera which is being written by the Belgian violinist, Isadore Berger, is to feature “color harmonies” as well as musical ones.
The young daughter of the late Coleridge-Taylor is following a musical career, and already a number of songs and piano pieces to her credit.
Louis Diemer, the French pianist, died recently, aged 76 years. Beside his work as teacher at the French Conservatoire, he specialized in data concerning ancient instruments, in particular the harpsichord. He was one of the prime movers in the establishment of the Société des Instruments Anciens. He is well known for his editions of Rameau’s and Couperin’s works.
Amy Elsie Horrocks, pianist and composer, died lately in Paris. She was born in Brazil, of English parentage. She composed numerous songs, as well as compositions in larger form. Undine, an orchestral tone-poem, had performance at Queen’s Hall, London, with success. Her most famous song was The Bird and the Rose.
A Vieutemps Festival in commemoration of the hundredth anniversary of the birth of the famous Belgian violinist and composer, is to be held in August under the direction of Eugen Ysaye (the conductor of the Cincinnati orchestra) and under the patronage of King Albert of Belgium.
A unique living memorial of the great Handel is the annual Oratorio Festival at Whitsuntide, which has been given by the Charity Children of London every year since 1704. From four to five thousand little ones sing in this festival.
Baltimore is to have its own Opera Company, under the direction of David Melamet. The company is presenting two operas this season.
M. Pierre Monteux, the French conductor, has been engaged for two years to direct the Boston Symphony Orchestra.
Tarass-Boulba, a new opera by Marcel Samuel-Rousseau, was recently produced at the Theatre Lyrique in Paris, with much success. The composer was a winner of the Grand Prix de Rome in 1905.
Tokio, Japan, has a new and unique music library which contains about four thousand books on music. By the will of the late Dr. W. H. Cummings, the library will come into possession of a manuscript of Handel, the first edition of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, and the original manuscript of Bach on Chamber Music, beside several of Beethoven’s personal letters.
The city of Waterloo, Iowa, has been sued by a professional musician, Harley L. Burns, for $25,000 for the loss of his fingers. Mr. Burns fell on an icy sidewalk and lay unconscious for several hours, during which time his fingers were frozen and had to be amputated. He was awarded a verdict of $9,395.00.
A blind men’s band, is a unique possession of Toronto, Canada. It numbers twenty-six members. Each musician prepares his own music-score in Braille characters, first having listened to the playing of it by a seeing musician, the leader, who adopts this method with each member. Everything practiced and played by the band is memorized as a matter of necessity. Some of the musicians are soldiers who lost their sight in the world war.
The falling rate of exchange in Germany may result in the failure of operatic ventures there. Director Max v. Schillings, the new director of the Berlin Opera House, in an interview with Musical America> declares that it takes him twelve hours a day to attend to the tangled business affairs of the Opera, leaving only a modicum of time and energy for the artistic side.
A great Opera Trust, according to report, is being proposed in this country, which would control all presentations of opera, all singers, all opera houses, etc., etc. It would also regulate prices, with the usual obvious advantage to its own capacious pocket—in the customary Trust manner.
The One-Hundred-and-Fiftieth anniversary of the birth of Beethoven was celebrated in Japan by lectures and concerts.
During the recent “strike” at the Paris Opera, the seating capacity of the house was increased, at the strikers’ orders, by tearing out some of the boxes, and filling the space with single seats, to be sold at a moderate price.
London is said to be fairly overwhelmed with chamber music. Many new string quartets and trios have been formed, which perform everything from old-time to modern chamber music.
St. Louis organists are trying to force increase in salaries from churches and movie theatres by strike methods.
French Opera at New Orleans has finally come to an end, consequent upon the burning of the old French theatre there.
A chorus of mixed voices is the newest feature of the up-to-date movie theatre, in addition to its orchestra. A plan is being tried out at the immense and gorgeous new “Capitol” Theatre in New York under the direction of William L. Stewart and Nathaniel Tinsten.
$450.00 in prizes is offered by the National Musical Festival for compositions for piano, violin, or voice. For information as to conditions, apply to Mr. A. A. Van de Mark, General Director, Box 216, Lockport, N. Y.
An exodus of orchestra men is taking place from Austria and other German territory, because of the low wages paid.
Mr. Tanabe, a Japanese, has been appointed by the Keimei Kwai (a Japanese society for the advancement of invention) to make scientific inquiry into Oriental music. Mr. Tanabe has already studied Chinese, Korean, and Hindoo art and music.
Henry K. Hadley’s opera, Cleopatra’s Night, is regarded by many as the best American opera written so far. It has been one of the most successful.
A $25,000 endowment was bequeathed to the San Francisco Orchestra by the late Mrs. Irwin, of that city.
Lieut. John Philip Sousa, it is said, will take his famous band abroad for a tour of sixteen months. Their first concerts will be in London, where they will play an engagement of eighteen weeks, afterward proceeding to the Continent. Mr. Harry Askin is Lieut. Sousa’s personal representative.
Puccini is writing a new opera, to a libretto of Gioacehino Forzano. The name of it is La Brigata Spendereccia.
Gallignani, Director of the Verdi Conservatory at Milan, has written an opera called Pietro Calvi.
The Opera season of the Chicago Opera Company in New York was such an immense success that all seats were sold out in advance in spite of the death of the leader, Campanini.
J. D. Rockafeller’s free concerts at the Metropolitan Museum in New York were attended by from five to six thousand people.