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Selected Content from the October 1895 Edition of The Etude

    Musical Items

    The latest bit of advice from Mme. Patti to girls who are anxious for success as singers is well worth repeating to all aspiring musicians. She tells them: “You must be a good workman at your trade before you can be an artist in your art.” … On August 11th the remains of Paganini were exhumed at the Communal Cemetery, Parma. The countenance of the celebrated violinist was in perfect preservation. Read More

    The Hardest Piano Piece.

    “Among all known musical compositions written for the piano, which is the most difficult of execution?” To this often asked question Le Figaro has endeavored to obtain a definite and final answer by interviewing the best-known pianists and teachers of the piano in Paris. The attempt has not been very successful. Read More

    The Modern Musical Crank

    Of all the cranks in the world, there is none so objectionable as the old, fossilized musician. Why an artist should isolate himself from the rest of the world and become a freak with long hair, and possess all sorts of eccentricities is beyond my conception. Read More

    Absent-Minded Musicians.

    A. von Winterfeld has gathered a number of anecdotes relating to prominent composers and musicians who were as much distinguished for their absent-mindedness as for their musical talent. Read More

    Art and Artlessness.

    Art without technic is artlessness, a Raphael who did not know how to draw, to mix his colors, or to use his brush might be filled with inspiration and yet stand idly helpless before his canvas. Read More

    Creed of the Well-Taught Pupil.

    Inasmuch as music is a message, or a picture, from the imaginary world of the ideal, it follows that there must be great differences in the quality of pieces of music, according to the nobility and purity of mind in composers, and according to the especially noble mood of a great composer at the moment of writing some choicest work. And it shall be my endeavor to know as many as possible of these pieces of music best with knowing; and when I know them, to play them with all possible appreciation and in such a way as to induce my hearers to love them and enjoy them. Read More

    The Other Side of the Story.

    Technic—technic—technic! We never can get too much of it, and although with a good method a moderate technic may be obtained—sufficient to bring the greater part of good piano literature within the reach of every earnest student—we must give a hearty welcome to any improvements, be they mechanical or otherwise, by means of which we may advance the development of technic. Read More

    Difficult Passages as Etudes.

    An excellent way to get pupils to understand and appreciate a passage occurring in the “inner parts” of a composition, is to select that passage, use it as a melody, and harmonize it several ways. The pupil will see it at its true value when he recognizes that it is worthy of standing as a melody. Read More

    That Other Teacher.

    How often is the pupil making such a change told by the new teacher that his former instruction was altogether wrong? That he made a very serious mistake in putting himself under that other teacher’s direction? Read More

    Types of Piano Teachers.

    A YOUNG lady writes to the Musical Times, London, her experience with the typical (in her opinion) music teacher. She begins by pointing to a class of dissatisfied plodders, which are found in all callings, who deplore their fate, and think themselves doomed to everlasting toil, and thus make themselves eternally miserable. Read More

    Letters To Teachers.

    BY W. S. B. MATHEWS. 1. What methods may be used in teaching piano lessons to a child who does not read ? We like Mathews’ “Twenty Lessons to a Beginner,” but there it is necessary that she should read… Read More


    ach, Handel, Mozart, Beethoven, Hummel, Mendelssohn, and many other possessors of honored names in the musical Temple of Fame, delighted and astonished contemporary audiences both of the general public and of musical experts. It is recorded of Bach that the lengthy “Vorspiele” and “Zwischenspiele” on the chorales with which he was accustomed to edify the congregation of St. Thomas, Leipzig, on more than one occasion brought down on him the protests of the clergy, who considered the services interrupted thereby. Read More

    An Interesting Interview With Verdi.

    A correspondent of the London Morning Advertiser recently interviewed Verdi and succeeded in getting from him the following entertaining article:— “France is not playing a very brilliant part in music just now,” said the veteran composer, turning to his old… Read More

    Listening To One’s Own Playing.

    The habit of listening to his own playing, of studying musical effect, should be formed by the student as soon as possible. Of course, this is natural to a certain extent to all players of a musical nature; but, like… Read More

    Discouragements of Piano-Playing.

    To one with sufficient character to profit by it there is in piano study development for all the cardinal virtues— neatness, thoroughness, persistence, patience, endurance, honesty, horror of falsehood, self effacement, largeness, stability—enough to make a noble man or woman of the veriest slattern. Read More

    Woman and Music.

    The London “Lancet” is sufficiently ungallant to utter the following: “There is no room here for the contention that, as compared with the boy, the girl has not had fair play; that opportunities for cultivating the art have in her… Read More

    Woman and Music.

    The London “Lancet” is sufficiently ungallant to utter the following: “There is no room here for the contention that, as compared with the boy, the girl has not had fair play; that opportunities for cultivating the art have in her… Read More

    Notes From a Professor’s Lecture.

    I would ask every student of art to remember this immutable law, that every ill treatment of the body is infallibly followed by deterioration of thought and of feeling. Every motion you make, every thought you think, every emotion you feel, is destructive of a certain amount of tissue, which must be renewed by the nutritious elements of the food circulating in the blood; cease to supply the blood with nutriment, and the brain is powerless to think, and the muscles are powerless to act. Supply the blood with nutriment, but divert the greater part of it to some particular organ, and you starve all other organs. Read More

    Reform Needed.

    The world is coming to a higher standard of morality every day, and what would be winked at twenty-five years ago will not be suffered now. Read More

    An Account of the Gavotte.

    The gavotte, or gavot, originated in the dance of the Gavots, or men of the Pays de Gap, who inhabit a town of that name in Upper Dauphiny, in France, so says an exchange. At a certain period, as a… Read More

    Liszt and Chopin.

    There was a time in which the piano was a species of religion. When the aged Field was on his deathbed, his friends, not knowing what to say in order to prepare him for the last great change, asked, “Are you a Papist or a Calvinist?” “I am a pianist,” responded the dying artist. Read More

    Suggestions for Musical People.

    An important suggestion is in regard to the care of a piano. Presuming that you have a good instrument, one which you prize for its workmanship and finish, as well as for its musical qualities and companionableness, it is worthy… Read More

    The Lecture Recital.

    With the growth of an interest in good music, there has come about a widening of the field of the ambitious teacher of music, and the fashion of the musical lecture or lecture recital. There are, I believe, many communities… Read More

    Phenomenal Voices.

    The singing in Russia—that is, in the Russian Church—is confined entirely to men. All the monks are singers. For a thousand years Russia has been searched for the best voices among the monks, and they are brought to the most… Read More

    Worse Than Wasted.

    There is no one factor of success stronger than that of having acquired good habits of work. Having once formed these, we are left free to look beyond the mere details of the work, and to see how best we may accomplish that which we have undertaken. It is like playing the piano. At first we have to study the music and the keys, and each note we strike requires a separate and distinct effort of the will, but in a little while we begin to read the music readily, and as our fingers wander over the keys we are not conscious of guiding or directing them. Read More

    How Composers are Inspired.

    The creating or composing by a musician is the greatest puzzle to the layman. How often the question was asked of me, “How do you manage to hold on to a musical thought and to put it on paper so anybody can play or sing it just as you had thought it out? How, where, and when comes to you a musical impression—a melody? How is it possible with one thought to encompass all the instruments of an orchestra and to make note of it all? Do you have first the musical idea, and then look up a text or poetry for it, or is it vice versa?” Read More


    —At his benefit a popular singer in an opera house of a Rhenish town, deeply moved, put his hand on his heart and exclaimed: “Never shall I forget what I owe this town and its inhabitants.” And the leading beer-saloon… Read More

    Hints and Helps.

    —Common sense is not as common as it should be. —Are you thinking of doing great things some day, then you would better begin to-day. —To recognize and acknowledge true greatness in others is a stepping-stone to greatness in ourselves…. Read More

    Letters to Pupils.

    To be sure, pure music, that is, instrumental music without words, may sound the same in the ears of a German, a Chinaman, a Norwegian, and a Feejee Islander. But while each of these men recognizes a certain kind of sound as a musical art, it is certainly not true that the same music would be equally understood and relished by the four men. Read More

    How I Read the Etude

    The “ads” in a musical journal show how the country is making musical history, and give an idea of the necessity of being wide awake in the musical profession, as well as other lines of business, in this hustling age. Read More

    The Study of Music.

    It is an absurd decision that all children destined to become anything in a musical way will have the natural disposition to work. More than half probably will not, and one of the most miserable of art cruelties is perpetrated in overlooking their musical possibilities simply because they are idle. Read More

    Philosophic Reflections.

    Sincere appreciation is generally silent; the person who least understands a famous symphony is the one most likely to blister his hands by applauding. Read More

    Points In Music Teaching.

    While there is nothing new in the following, from the British Musician, the maxims set forth for the teacher’s guidance are well put and apply to tutors in all departments of music, and they are worth preserving. The key to… Read More

The Publisher of The Etude Will Supply Anything In Music