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The World of Music


With the Production of Herodiade at the opera in Paris, a movement was started for the erection of a monument to the great French composer, Massenet. Over 140,000 francs have already been collected.

London has a College for Choristers which, according to report, will supply choir boys trained for special service upon short notice.

Pietro Yon, the Italian Organ virtuoso so well-known in the United States, has been elected to the position of Honorary Organist of the Vatican Basilica of St. Peters. Yon is thirty-five years old, for two years he was assistant organist at the Vatican. In 1907, he became organist of St. Francis Xavier’s Church in New York. During the last two years he has been devoting his time to concert playing.

A Noon Hour of Music for a certain period every year has been the custom of the Brick Presbyterian Church in New York. This church is located upon Fifth Avenue in the heart of a high class business district. Only a few years ago it was in New York’s most exclusive residential section. The services are held on Friday only. In many cities there are splendid church buildings that have been encompassed in the business sections by the advance of commerce. These churches often possess musical equipments costing thousands and thousands of dollars. Why should not these valuable tax free auditoriums be used for the public good every noon every workday of the year. It would mean a great deal to have a place where the worker might repair for a few minutes to listen to exalting music. There also might be less Bolshevistic criticism of wasted investment. Fortunately, many churches are opening their doors for spiritual and altruistic service during the week. The war is responsible for a great change in this respect. Fortunately the need for music is more and more recognized in all church work.

The Official Bulletin of the National Federation of Music Clubs has reached our offices. The entirely new undertaking of the Federation which is managed by the Federation itself shows a splendid spirit and independance (sic) of purpose. The Etude wishes it great success. The various departments of the magazine are conducted by women who are directing different phases of the work of the Federation.

Alfred Dolge, whose remarkable industry and initiative resulted in the upbuilding of a city in New York (Dolgeville), largely devoted to musical industries died in Milan in January. Mr. Dolge was the author of an excellent book upon the history of the pianoforte industry.

A Transposing Keyboard has been invented by a professor of bacteriology, Dr. Morris Stoehr of Mt. St. Vincent College. Thus the pianist can play the music in the key in which it is written and transpose it to any key merely by turning a lever.

Karl Feininger, born in Baden, seventy-eight years ago and well-known to musicians of two continents died on Jan 31st. Mr. Feininger was a veteran of the Civil War.

Luigri Denza, one of the best known of modern Italian song writers and for many years professor of singing at the Royal Academy of Music in London, died at his home in Maida Vale on Jan 23d last. His famous song Funiculi Funicula so often mistaken for an Italian folk song was written to celebrate the opening of an inclined plane railroad (funicular) up mount Vesuvius.

Emil Ring, former conductor of the Cleveland Philharmonic, died in that city early in February. Mr. Ring was fifty-eight years of age.

Milk Served in Bottles with clean straws at 10.30 A. M. in public schools east and west has produced remarkable results. The gain in the Darwin School in Chicago was three pounds in three months against the customary average of slightly over one pound. The school work of the children it is reported showed great improvement. Frequently a “stupid” child is only a hungry child, with his brain power reduced by injudicious feeding. Music teachers, perhaps this may have a thought for you.

The Boston Symphony Orchestra has retained the noted French conductor, Pierre Monteux, for two more seasons.

Frederick Stock, conductor of the Chicago Orchestra, has presented the Chicago Civic Association with the sum of $1000.00 to start a fund to assist in the publication of American works deserving of presentation.

A Walter Damrosch Fellowship of Music is to be established at the American Academy in Rome. In order to create a fund a remarkable start has been made through a concert given February 27th, in New York, with the participation of the New York Symphony, the Philadelphia Symphony and the New York Philharmonic. This is possibly the greatest group of orchestral players ever assembled at one time in American musical history. There were 225 men in the ensemble, with Coates, Mengelberg, Stokowski, Stransky and Bodansky.

Prokofieff’s Love of Three Oranges was produced in New York by the Chicago Company and made a great hit. The composer conducted.

Dr. Owen Hugh Evans, a fellow of the Royal Academy of Music, London, and for many years a leading teacher and conductor in the middle west, died at Marysville, Ohio, on Feb. 15th, in his seventy-fourth year. Dr. Evans was born in Wales and came here in his twenty-first year. He also studied in American schools and at Leipzig.

Gustav Mahler is ranked as the greatest symphonic composer since Beethoven by Willem Mengelberg in an interview in Musical America. He gives Richard Strauss second rank to Mahler. Mengelbeng (sic) is now in his second year as a guest conductor in New York.

The Taming of the Shrew in operatic form under the name of La Mégère Apprivoisée was given in Paris early in the year. The composer is Charles Silver, who won the Prix de Rome in 1891. The role of Katharine was played by Marthe Chenal. The opera is reported to have made an immediate hit.

Osteopathy has a firm friend in Galli Curci who has given thousands of dollars to its charities. At a recent concert at the Metropolitan Opera House in New York it was necessary to sell out the stage for the first time in the history of that house,—netting $10,000 for the Osteopathic Hospital.

The Bach B. Minor Mass was magnificently sung in New York in February by the Schola Cantorum under the direction of Kurt Schindler.

Enrico Bossi, the famous Italian organist has been giving a series of recitals in Budapest and has been received with great acclaim.

A New Swedish Invention substitutes pictures projected from celuloid films for the customary scenery. It is suggested that this may result in great economy in theatrical presentations.

Sniegurotchka Rimsky-Korsakoff’s fairy opera had its first American presentation in New York at the Metropolitan Opera House on January 22d. The opera is forty years old but the recent successes of Boris Godunov, Prince Igor, Coq d’Or and other Russian music has created a demand for modern Muscovite works of art. The opera was heard with great delight and its American premiere may be regarded as a great success. The story has to do with Sniegurotchka, daughter of Old King Winter and Fairy Spring, who having been permitted to come to earth falls in love with a rich merchant. Just as their engagement is announced in the fifth act a brilliant shaft of sun-light strikes the Snow-maiden and melts her. As she expires her lover leaps over a precipice to his death. The gorgeous settings of Boris Anisfeld came in for as much attention as did the music and the singers. Lucrezia Bori was the Snow-maiden.

Havana turned out for the Sousa Band as it does for opera. The Spanish papers described the box-holders and their attire as if it were the first of the opera season. The Band of course made an immense hit and one of the papers remarked, “We wish that the United States would send us more things like the Sousa band and fewer refugees from the Volstead Act.”

Karl Muck, of unpleasant war time memories, is now conducting the Wagnerian Repertoire at the Madrid Grand Opera. Query—How near does his salary come to the Boston Symphony figure of $25,000 a year?

Hans Pfitzner is so popular in Berlin that there was recently a “Pfitzner Week” during which his operas Palestrina and Christelflein were given and also a new choral work of large dimensions “From the German Soul” (Von Deutschen Seele).

2536 Pieces were Played at the open air Organ Concerts in San Deigo (sic), California, under the direction of Dr. H. J. Stewart.

Verdi’s Aida is fifty years old.

The Rubinstein Club of New York has just celebrated its thirty-fifth anniversary under the direction of William R. Chapman.

Gismonda has just made a great success at the Sultan’s Theatre in Cairo.

A series of Saint-Saëns Festivals, including the principal works of the composer have been planned in various parts of France for this Spring.

The Boston Symphony Orchestra played a memorial concert to Arthur Nikisch who conducted the orchestra from 1889 to 1893. Nikisch was deservedly popular in America and his contribution to American musical history was of immense value to our country.

Felix Borowksi, Director of the Chicago College of Music, narrowly escaped death from a bullet fired by a pupil suddenly affected by some mental disorder which made him insane.

A Negro Performance of Martha given by the Chicago South Side Opera Company under the direction of James A. Mundy, was highly praised by the leading Chicago papers.

The American Song Composers’ Festival will be held in Greenwood, Ind., May 23d, 24th and 25th. These remarkable festivals are due entirely to the enterprising and skillful management of Grace Porterfield Polk.

The Ashes of Roget de Lisle, composer of La Marseillaise have been moved to the Panthéon in Paris to honor his memory.

The Pennsylvania Federation of Musical Clubs holds its Fourth Annual Convention in Philadelphia, April 17th, 18th, 19th and 20th. Owing to the splendid initiative of the State President, Elizabeth Hood Latta, the convention promises to be the largest by far in the history of the organization. Most of the meetings will be held at the Bellevue-Stratford Hotel with the two famous women’s musical clubs, The Philadelphia Music Club and Matinee Musical Club. On one evening a large meeting will be held at Witherspoon Hall with the Philadelphia Music Teachers’ Association in the position of host.

Radio Music which has been so much discussed in the press of late appears to be very much more successful in outlying districts than it does in metropolitan centres where it is said that the “interference” through cross currents is such that the results are very unsatisfactory. However, the genius big enough to devise the original apparatus will unquestionably not stop at a little matter of static interferences. At present there are four Radio Stations maintained for broadcasting music and news, named as follows: Station Kdka, at East Pittsburg, Station WJZ at Newark, N. J. Station Wbz at Springfield, Mass. Station KYW at Chicago. Ill. Since the wave length is 330 meters and since the service, according to report, reaches out 1000 miles in all directions, it will be seen that a goodly portion of the country is already covered. The program at Pittsburgh includes Music, Time, News, Market Reports, the Heinroth Organ Recitals, Church Services on Sunday, etc. The idea is having such a boom that the Musical Forecast, a local musical paper of Pittsburgh, where the Westinghouse has its headquarters, devotes three pages of its issue to notes, news and advertisements of the various firms selling radio equipment.


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