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At Home.
Vladimir de Pachmann will give a special Liszt program in Boston in honor of the Liszt centenary.
 
Mr. and Mr. Victor Herbert have recently celebrated their silver wedding. Hearty congratulations !
 
Emmy Destinn, the soprano, is said to have completed the libretto of an opera, and is now looking for a composer to set it to music.
 
In connection with the army manœuvres in Texas concerts were given by the massed bands of the army engaged. The total number of musicians in the massed band was 358.
 
Mr. M. P. Möller, the well-known American organ manufacturer, has donated a line organ to the leading church in his birthplace, Bornholm, Denmark.
 
Josef Lhevinne has told an interviewer that American students in Europe expect results in too short a time. They often expect to be full-fledged artists at the end of a year’s study.
 
Albert Mildenberg, the American composer, is suing the Metropolitan Opera Company for damages and libel amounting to $50,000 for the loss of the manuscript of an opera he submitted to the recent contest.
 
Henri Scott, the well-known bass singer, is back from Europe. He is to sing in French, German and Italian rô1es with the Philadelphia Opera Company. He is American by birth, and was a first-rate oarsman when at college.
 
Otto H. Kahn, a member of the Board of Directors of the Metropolitan Opera House, has just returned from Europe, and he tells us that the opera centers of the Old World are becoming jealous of the operatic splendors of the New World.
 
Among the concert pianists coming to these shores from abroad this season is Katharine Goodson, the English virtuoso. She is to appear four times with the Boston Symphony and twice with the Cincinnati Orchestra. She has already proved popular with American audiences.
 
In speaking to an interviewer recently. Henry Savage, the well-known American impresario, who has recently returned from Europe, remarked : “I found thirty members of my old English grand opera company singing in the leading opera houses on the continent.”
 
Rumor hath it that Toscanini may leave the Metropolitan. It is said that he has been offered a larger salary than New York can offer to go to Buenos Ayres. American music-lovers are sometimes apt to forget that in one part of America opera is the most popular form of entertainment. But that is not in the North.
 
It has been proposed to build in Chicago a 20-story skyscraper for the accommodation of musicians who need studios. While every effort will be made to keep the building sound-proof, we believe that even the most reckless aviators will avoid crossing this building should it ever be completed.
 
It is said that an English electrician is in New York with a device to replace the human orchestra with an electrical machine. The president of the National Association of Theatre Producing Managers threatened that the theatre orchestras will be replaced by these machines unless the union musicians lower their demands.
 
Mr. N. J. Corey has been meeting with great success in the West in his lecture on “The Legend of the Holy Grail.” This is given with stereopticon and illustrations as well as from excerpts from Parsifal.
 
A new symphony orchestra is to be formed in San Francisco, backed by some millionaires of that city. Henry K. Hadley has been appointed as director at a salary of $10,000 a year. The leadership of the orchestra carries with it the appointment to the Chair of Music at the University of California. Mr. Hadley has been doing very successful work as a composer and as director of the Seattle Symphony Orchestra.
 
The open-air pageant given at Peterboro, N. H., in memory of MacDowell proved to be a very great success. It lasted four days, and the concerts given, while not confined solely to the music of the American master, was a carefully planned tribute to him. The festival lasted four days, but the open-air concerts of the third day were postponed on account of the rain. The MacDowell Choral Club ably supported the soloists. There was an orchestra of thirty members.
 
A novel method which might well be adopted elsewhere was introduced by the Government officials in providing an organ for West Point Chapel. The architect in the first place built the chapel along lines best suited for the accommodation of the organ. When the time for selecting an organ builder arrived, a conventional specification for an organ was made up and submitted to a selected number of makers, who were invited to suggst (sic) improvements best in keeping with the building. The contract was awarded not to the cheapest bidder, but to the one whose suggestions met with the highest approval from competent judges.
 
There has been a good deal of friction between Andreas Dippel, manager of the Chicago-Philadelphia opera companies, and Ricordis, the famous publishers of Milan, with regard to the rights for the production of Puccini’s operas in this country. Dippel declares that Ricordis demand too high a royalty for the composer in view of the declining popularity of Puccini’s works in this country, while Ricordis claim that a composer of grand opera should receive at least as high a royalty as the composer of a musical comedy. Negotiations have now been completely broken off, and it is said that the Italian publishers contemplate starting a rival opera in Chicago for the purpose of exploiting the Puccini works.
 
The Etude desires to take another occasion to warn its patrons against the many piano frauds arising through the very questionable practice of making people believe that they have won enormous prizes in the way of a rebate for solving a perfectly inane puzzle printed in some unscrupulous papers. These puzzle contests in many cases border upon crime. A piano firm in the West wrote to one woman who had answered a “puzzle” advertisement, telling her that her correct answer entitled her to $200 and a diamond ring. The woman was poor, but she got money enough together to make the lengthy trip to the city and capture her prize. When she got there she found that the prize would be paid to her IF she bought a piano at an enormously high price for a worthless instrument. A short time later she, with her child, was found in the streets begging money to get home. Of course, only the most gullible are taken in by swindlers of this kind, but those who know should leave nothing undone to protect the gullible from being swindled.
 
Abroad.
It is said that Melba is building a home for herself in Australia.
 
An opera by Busoni is to receive its initial production at Hamburg.
 
The Paris Opera Comique Company has been giving a season of opera in Buenos Ayres.
 
A hitherto unknown letter by Beethoven to his “Immortal Beloved” has been discovered in Berlin.
 
Weingartner, the great conductor, will cross the Atlantic this season to preside over a fortnight’s opera in Boston.
 
Filippo Capocci, the “dean of Italian organists” and a musician of high repute, died recently in Rome at the age of seventy-one.
 
Raoul Pugno, the great French pianist, is working on a lyric drama founded on a work of the Italian poet d’Annunzio, entitled La Cité Morte.
 
Last year’s performances of the works of Massenet totalled 3,000. Of the twenty-two operas he has written, nine hold the stage.
 
A posthumous work of Jensen’s, an opera founded on Schiller’s drama Turandot, has been performed in Baden-Baden.
 
A wealthy widow of Scotland has left to the University of Glasgow a fortune of $40,000 to endow a chair of Musical History.
 
It is being whispered as possible that Debussy will succeed Fauré as director of the Paris Conservatory. Fauré, however, shows no signs of resigning his post
 
It is reported that Mascagni has been invited to write two new operas, one to be produced on the opening of the Panama Canal, in 1915, and the other to be staged in Japan.
 
A hitherto unpublished hymn in honor of Rome, composed by Franz Liszt, has been found in the Saint Cecilia Library, Rome. It was written at Tivoli during the last active part of his life.
 
Massenet, the French opera composer, has completed two new works, a Panurge on Maurice Lena’s poem, Jongleur de Notre Dame, and a grand opera entitled Roma.
 
During his holiday in Norway the German Kaiser, one evening after dinner on his yacht, the Hohenzollern, seized the conductor’s baton and directed the concert.
 
In honor of the late Gustav Mahler two presentations of his eighth symphony will be given in Vienna this coming season. It will be remembered that this work demands a thousand performers.
 
A society of women musicians has been formed in England for the betterment of musical conditions in that country. The first president of the society will be Liza Lehmann, the composer of In A Persian Garden.
 
Marino Corgialegno, a Greek merchant of London, out of a fortune of two and a half million dollars, has bequeathed $75,000 for an upper school of music to provide a permanent and appropriate building for the conservatory or musical and dramatic society of Athens.
 
An orchestral society has been formed in Berlin consisting solely of physicians and surgeons. Over sixty medical men attended the first meeting, and it was decided that their wives and daughters might be permitted to join.
 
Serious forest fires have occurred near Fontainebleau, France. Among those who have suffered loss of property has been Harold Bauer, the eminent pianist. His home was burnt down and his wife’s jewels lost. He is to tour the United States during the coming season.
 
Madame Schumann-Heink has been so successful at the Bayreuth Festival this year that she has been reëngaged to sing there in two years’ time. She was equally well received at the Munich Festival and has entered into a new contract to sing there again.
 
It is stated that Hans Richter, whose life has so long been identified with English musical affairs, and who enjoyed the intimacy of Richard Wagner in Bayreuth days, has definitely decided to open a school in Bayreuth for opera students.
 
Another long-distance pianist has appeared on the horizon. The Paris newspapers have recorded the fact that a Bohemian named Thorpe played the piano for thirty hours and fifteen minutes without stopping. Piano joyriding is all very well, but there is no sense in “hogging” it.
 
Strauss came next to Richard Wagner in Vienna as the favorite operatic composer for the season, but it was Johann Strauss, not Richard! The Viennese think so much of the works of the waltz king that they mount his light works with all the care of grand opera.
 
Richard Strauss has signed the contracts to tour South America, conducting a series of orchestral concerts. He will visit Brazil, Peru, Argentina, and Chile. It is said there is little chance of his visiting the United States for some time to come, as he is sore over the failure of Salome in this country.
 
An amusing letter of Mozart’s was sold in London the other day for $310. It is to Mme. de Waldstetten and was written at a time when Constance Weber, Mozart’s future wife, was her guest. Mozart informs her that Constance’s mother threatens to send the police if her daughter does not return home at once.
 
A monument to the memory of the Norwegian composer, Richard Nordraak, has been erected in Christiania. It will be remembered that Nordraak was the composer of the Norwegian national hymn, and his patriotic spirit greatly influenced Grieg into producing music so rich with the flavor of the Northland.
 
Somebody in Manchester, England, has invented a means of making a musical instrument from discarded meat tins. On the bottoms of the tins are indents or raised “pimples,” or both, according to the note required, and the tins are then hung up and struck with a stick. The problem of “what to do with our meat cans” has long been puzzling the industrious and economical housewife. She will now be able to turn them into musical instruments of surpassing sweetness, and console herself with the tinkling tintinnabulation of the tins.
 
The Hungarian Government has given its patronage to the festival at Buda-Pesth in commemoration of the hundredth anniversary of Liszt’s birth which is to take place in October. The program has been definitely settled to be as folows (sic): On October 21, after an opening speech from Count Apponyi. the Coronation Mass will be given in the cathedral, and in the evening there will be a performance of The Legend of Saint Elizabeth. The two following days the principal piano works of Liszt will be given in a series of concerts by Eugen d’Albert, Frederic Lamond, Emil Sauer, Moriz Rosenthal and other well-known virtuosi. The symphonic, works will be conducted by Felix Weingartner, Siegfried Wagner and Stepan Kernes at a grand concert on October 24, while on the next day there will be a performance of Christus at the opera.
 
So much attention is being paid to the fact that the present year marks the hundredth anniversary of the birth of Franz Liszt that one is apt to forget that another great composer was born in 1811. Ambroise Thomas, the French opera writer, possessed a great talent for refined and delicate orchestration and knew well how to write for the voice. The most popular of his operas is undoubtedly Mignon, and few coloratura sopranos have not attempted to sing the Polacca from this tuneful work. The polacca attracts singersof this type as much as the “jewel song” from Faust, and is no less widely known. While Mignon is the most popular of his works, many people consider it inferior to Hamlet, which was originally written for a tenor, and then altered for Fauré, the baritone. Sembrich sang in this opera in America in 1884. The aria from Ophelia’s mad- scene offers remarkable opportunities for the vocalist. Thomas was director of the Paris Conservatory from 1871 until his death in 1896. Preparations are now being made in France to celebrate his centenary.
 
 
 

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