The World of Music
Etude Magazine. May, 1910
Mme. Schumann-Heink will remain in America another season, and has canceled her European engagements.
Mr. Frederick W. Wodell has recently completed an oratorio, entitled The Song of Faith, which will be produced in Boston shortly.
The Creation was recently given by the Angola Choral Society, under the direction of A. G. Harshmann.
Busoni's suite burlesque, Turandot, was recently produced for the first time by the Philharmonic Society of New York.
Parker's Hora Novissima was recently sung by the Fourth Church choir of Hartford, Conn., under the direction of Ralph L. Baldwin, with great success.
E. P. Nevin, the son of Ethelbert Nevin and nephew of Arthur Nevin, has now come to the front as a composer.
Rachmaninoff's opera, The Miser Knight, has obtained a second hearing in Boston, where it has been received with the greatest possible favor.
Clarence Eddy was the soloist at the dedication of the new organ at King's Chapel, Boston. He was accorded a most hearty welcome for his fine work.
The Musical Art Society at Chicago, under the direction of Mr. Frederick Stock, recently gave its second concert with great success. The program consisted of miscellaneous pieces.
America's candy bill is reported as $500,000,000, or $50,000,000 more than the cost of all the schools of the land, and several times the outlay for musical education.
In the recent production of Tschaikowsky's Pique Dame in New York the youth and beauty of Elvira de Hidalgo, the new Spanish singer, were made manifest, though it is said her vocal powers are somewhat limited.
Maud Powell, the eminent American violinist, is achieving great success in the West. There are few violinists to-day who better deserve the enthusiastic praise her work is calling forth.
Willy Hess, the concert master of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, has been called to Berlin to succeed the late Professor Holle as director of the violin department of the Royal Academy of Music.
Mr. Hammerstein announced that he has to face a deficit amounting to about $100,000 on the Philadelphia opera season. This will be met in whole or in part by E. T. Stotesbury, the Philadelphia banker, and chairman of the boxholders' committee.
The American Musical Society, founded last year under the presidency of Arthur Farwell, now numbers fourteen local centers, from New York to San Francisco. The New York center, with 117 members, is at present the largest and most active.
Mr. Arthur Foote has retired from his post of organist at the First Church (Unitarian), Boston. He has served as organist there for thirty-two years, and in that time has done a vast amount of work which cannot fail to be of permanent value to the best interests of music in America.
The Philharmonic Orchestra of New York, the oldest orchestra of that city, has been on tour through the Eastern States. It is said that the influence of the new conductor, Gustav Mahler, has been very pronounced and beneficial.
Abram Ray Tyler, A.G.O., Professor of Music at Beloit College, Wisconsin, gave the inaugural recital upon the fine new organ of the Casson Avenue Presbyterian Church, of Brooklyn. He was assisted on the piano by Chester W. Beebe, the organist of the church.
Robert Thallon, a well-known organist, died at his home in Brooklyn recently. He was of Scotch descent and was brought to this country when but a year old. He was educated at Leipsic and Florence, and on his return from abroad started a school of music. He was organist at the Central Congregational Church and at the Plymouth Church.
A handsome new Conservatory of Music, connected with the Whitman College (State of Washington) was recently dedicated. The services were held in "MacDowell Hall," and took the nature of a memorial to the famous American composer. The Etude extends its best wishes to this splendid enterprise in the Far West.
The Metropolitan Opera has united with the Boston Opera Company, to form a kind of operatic "trust." Chicago will be included in this deal. Gatti-Casazza will act as advisory associate of the Boston Opera Company and Henry Russell will act in the same capacity to the Metropolitan forces. Mr. Hammerstein says he is going to get the best singers, and, anyway, he doesn't care.
A banquet was recently given at the Hotel Plaza, in New York, in honor of Walter Damrosch, who has now reached his twenty-fifth year as a conductor. Among those who did honor to the guest of the evening were Mrs. Bloomfield-Zeisler, Mme. Carreno, Mme. Nordica, Mme. Gadski, Victor Herbert, Rafael Joseffy, Frederick S. Converse, Dr. Wullner and many of the most distinguished musicians of America.
Few singers are earning a larger income to-day than Lina Cavalieri, yet she said in an interview the other day that she has known the time when she lived for a week on a crust of bread, and eventually obtained a post singing in a café in Rome from six to twelve each evening for sixty cents a night. Out of this she provided for a bedridden uncle, a sick father and three hungry children.
In one of the musical papers recently we saw an account of how two young girls set up for themselves as musical accompanists. They are willing to confess that they are not geniuses, but they pluckily set about their task, one playing the piano and the other the violin. Their particular mission was to accompany amateurs. They soon made many friends in this way, and were eventually able to purchase a home in New York and another in the country, and at the same time to support a family of four.
The programs of the midwinter series of musical events, including public programs, examination recitals, organ recitals, etc., etc., of the Conservatory of Music of the University of Wooster, Ohio, have been received. These musical affairs have been under the direction of the musical director of the institution, Mr. J. Lawrence Erb, and indicate the high aims and purposes of the conservatory. Prof. Tyler also gave a recital at Columbia University on January 11.
The long-expected production of F. S. Converse's opera, The Pipe of Desire, has at last taken place. The work attracted a good deal of attention and was heartily applauded by those present. Critics are busy finding fault with the music, but on the whole they are saying many nice things about it. This is the first production by the Metropolitan Opera Company of an opera sung in English during the regular season. It is also their first production of an opera by an American composer.
Death has robbed Philadelphia of one of her foremost organists in taking Dr. David D. Wood. He was born in Pittsburg in 1838; through an accident he was rendered blind in early childhood, but he did not permit this to stand in the way of his securing a sound musical education. He was organist and choirmaster at St. Stephen's P. E. Church in Philadelphia for forty-six years, and during that time brought up the music of that church to an extremely high state of efficiency. He had a marvelous repertoire and remarkable technical skill.
Fifteen years ago, out of nearly a thousand girls in the State School for Women at Columbus, Miss., only fifty-five studied piano and voice. To-day the State Legislature has provided a $40,000 building to accommodate the present list of 250 piano students, 60 voice, 20 violin and 500 sight-singing students. There isn't room for all the students from the normal department. This remarkable condition of affairs is almost entirely due to the enthusiasm and organizing ability of Miss Weenonah Poindexter, the head of the music department. In addition to this, Miss Poindexter has been successful in organizing concerts—now on a sound financial footing, adequately guaranteed—at which appear such soloists as Paderewski, Sembrich, Paur, Bispham, Bloomfield-Zeisler, Gadski, to say nothing of such organizations as the Damrosch Orchestra and the Ben Greet Players. Hats off, gentlemen, to Miss Poindexter!
Richard Strauss has sold the rights of his new opera, Sylvia and the Star, for $62,500.
Emil Sauer has been having a very busy season in London, where his genius is much appreciated.
An extended notice of the death of Carl Reinecke, the eminent Leipsic teacher, appears in another column.
Marguerite Melville, an American pianist of exceptional ability, well known in Berlin, has made a successful London debut.
The two hundredth anniversary of the birth of Pergolesi has been celebrated in Munich under the auspices of Ludwig Schlitter, who has made a life-study of the works of the Italian composer.
An opera entitled Mandanika, by Gustav Lazarus, has been given with success in Berlin. The composer's name is one familiar to readers of The Etude, and it is with great pleasure that we congratulate him on his good fortune.
The ubiquitous cinematograph has now found a place at La Scala Opera House, Milan, where it has been used with thrilling effect in the Damnation of Faust, Berlioz's masterpiece.
Miss Marie Hall, the English violinist, has completed arrangements for a tour through South Africa. It is said that the amount she has been offered is the largest ever paid to a violinist. The guarantee is stated to be $50,000.
The London Musical News has recently celebrated the publication of its one thousandth issue. It is therefore about twenty years old. This journal is a weekly musical magazine of particular interest to English readers.
The Berlin production of Arthur Nevin's opera, Poia, has been postponed until the arrival of Theodore Roosevelt in the German capital. It is felt that the production of this opera by an American composer, attended by the famous ex-President of the United States, would be an admirable arrangement.
Sir Arthur Sullivan's opera, Ivanhoe, has been revived during the late season of English opera at Covent Garden. We are told it sounded a little old-fashioned. It is unlikely that it will ever attain the popularity the composer's light operas have steadily maintained.
Australia has a Bach Society in Adelaide which consists of a picked chorus of a hundred singers, all of whom have been examined as to their capacity to read music at sight quickly and fluently. We confess to a keen interest in the remarkable evidences of the musical growth which is going on under the "Southern Cross."
The death of Giovanni Battista Lamperti, at the age of seventy, took place recently in Berlin. He was the son of the famous Francesco Lamperti, by whom he was trained. He left Italy, however, and has had a long career as a vocal teacher in Paris, Dresden and Berlin. Like his father, he was an exponent of the "bel canto" school, and was not very much in favor of the more recent developments of the singer's art. His death will be regretted by many who have had the advantage of studying under him.
The death of Judas Colonne, better known as Edouard Colonne, occurred on March 28 in Paris. He was born at Bordeaux, July 24, 1838, and graduated at the Paris Conservatory with great distinction. He was the founder of the "Concerts du Chatelet," by which he and his orchestra earned a worldwide reputation. He visited America and was accorded a very good reception, though his name is better known in Europe than here. He was an excellent conductor, remarkable for the perfection of detail which he secured from his men.
Under the direction of Dr. Harriss, a well-known Canadian musician, the Sheffield Choral Society, one of the finest of its kind in England, has started on a tour of the whole of the British Empire, with a view to linking their musical interests more closely with those of the mother country. The chorus will consist of 200 members, and their entire repertoire will be sung from memory. After leaving Canada they will go to New Zealand, Australia, British South Africa, and so home to England.
Miss Cecile Ayres, a young American pianist who has been studying in Berlin for some years, recently gave a recital in the Bechstein Hall, Berlin. There is nothing unusual about that, for American pianists frequently give similar recitals in the German capital. However, the newspaper criticisms were so unanimous in their approval of her work at the keyboard, and laid such stress upon the individuality of the player, that we may look for excellent work from this young virtuoso in the future. The German papers lay particular stress upon the fact that the pianist's program was excellently chosen, and that her work was not distinguished merely by technic, but by grasp and poetic interpretation as well.
The London Music says: "Another harrowing story comes from Italy, says a contemporary. It is enacted in singing-schools. A journalist has been investigating some of the methods in vogue in Milan. He found one master who had invented a kind of mouth-opener, an instrument in the form of a triangle with partitions like a row of teeth, which the pupils have to hold between their jaws. Another receives applicants in a darkened room and makes them swear on the Bible that they will never divulge the secret of his method. Yet another puts the flatiron method quite in the shade. He places a quarto volume weighing six pounds on the unfortunate student stretched out on the floor, and adds weight in proportion to strength. Shades of Tosi, Porpora and Lamperti! What have become of your glorious traditions?"
Etude Magazine. May, 1910
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