[merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors]
[ocr errors]



TOMIME eiery Wednesday at Two o'clock.

On Monday, January Gth, and every Evening during the week. Her Majesty's Servants will perform the popular farce, by J. iJ. Buckstone, Esq., entitled.


Bob Ticket, Mr. Atkins; Pugwaah, Mr. Bars by; Mr. Skinner, Mr. Hope; Susan Sweetaui-le, Miss Keeley; Miss VVad.l, Miss Stuart; Miss Tibbie, Miss Bland; M ss Gimp, Miss Harfk-ur • Deborah, Mrs. Dow ton. After which will tie produced, with that attention to complett-ne.-s in every department by which the Christinas Annuals of this Theatre have been so pre-eminently distinguished, the New Grand Comic Pantomime, entitled

Harlequin and the House that Jack Built;

It a man do build a dwelling upon common land from sunset to sunrise, and enclose a piece ground, wher*in there shall be A tree, a bea*i feeding, a Are kindled, a chimney smoking, :«nd provision in th« pot, such dwelling shall lie freelr held by the builder, anything herein to the contrary nevertheless i otwithstending."—Old Forest Charter.

I he novel effects and splend d scenery by William Beverley, agisted by Messrs. C. Pitt. Crave-i, Brew, \c. Ma-ks, symbolic devices, personal appointment*, and designs for the costumes by tnn celebrated Dyfcwy kyn. The overture and music composed and arranged by Mr. J. H. Tully. The machinery h\ Mr. Tucker and assistants. The trtcko, pioDeriie*, changes, and transform tioni by Mr. Neednam, agisted hv Messrs.

CHndon. H. Aaau.», i£ «—•«■... ^ - •, ———I.. ^atm,

and Mr. Palmer. The Ga* Appointments by Mr. Hinckley. The Choregraphic Arrangements l»y Mr. Cormark. The Hai lequinade ami Comic Scenes by Messrs Cormack and B 'Jones. Toe I'erfu ne of the f lowers supplied by Him me I s process. The Grotesque Burtc-que Opening invented and written by K. L. Blanchard. And the whole arranged and produced under the immediate superintendence of Mr. Robert Roxby. v

Harlequin.1!, Messrs Cortnack and St. Maine; Columbines, th* Misses Gunnisi; Pantaloon*, Me»grs. G. Tanner and Morlcy; Clowns, Messrs Forrest and Huline; Grote>que, Slgnor Loreuzo; 186l<6'i, Mr. Stilt. Sprites, by the Ridgways and Suwell Family.

Doors open at half-past G, to commence at 7 o'clock. Tickets for boxes, pit, and galleries may be had at the box-office before the opening.


Regent Street and Piccadilly.


THE Sixth Concei t of the Fourth Season (70th Concert tn St. Jamei'i Hall) v.ill take place on Monday Evening. January 13, 186'i, on which occasion Signor Piattit Mom. Sainton, aud Madame Salntou-Dolby will make their first appearances.


Part 1.—Quartet, in B minor. Op. 4">, for Two Violins, Viola, and Violoncello (Spohr), MM. Sainton, L. Rtcs, H. Webb, and Piatti. Song, "Name the glad day" (Dussck), Miss Banks. Song. "Divinities du Styx" (Alccste) (GlOck), Madame Salnton-Dolby. Sonata Caracteristiquc, in K. flat, Op. 81 (Beethoven), Mr. Charles Hall6 (firsttime at the Monday Popular Concerts).

Part II.—Sonata, In F major, for Pianoforte and Violoncello (Beethoven), Mr. Charles Hallfe and Signor Piatti. Song, " Never forget" (G. A. Mucfarren), Miss Banks. Song, "In a drear-nlghted December" (J. W. Davisnn), Madame Sainton. Dolby. Trio, in G major, lor Pianofone, Violin, and Violoncello (Haydn), MiVi. Halle, Sainton, and Plattl. Conductor, Mr. Benedict. To commence at eight o'clock precisely.

Notice.—It is rejpectfully suggested that such persons as are not desirous of remain, ing till the end of the performance can leave either before the commencement of the last Instrumental pi**ce, or hetween any two of the movements, so that those who wish to hear the whole may do so without interruption.

',' Between the last vocal piece and the Quartet, an Interval of Five Minutes will be allowed. The Concert will finish not later than half-past ten o'clock.

Stalls, 0s.; Balcony, 3s.; Admission, Is.

Ticket, to be had of Mr. Austin, at the Hall, 28 Piccadilly; CHAPPELL and CO., 60 New Bond Street, and of the principal Muslcselleri.


To Advertisers.Advertisers are informed, that for the future the Advertising Agency of The Musical World is established at the Magazine of Messrs. Duncan Davison & Co., 244 Regent Street, corner of Little Argyll Street (First Floor). Advertisements can be received as late as Three o'Clock P.m., on Iridaysbut not later. Payment on delivery.

~ f Two lines and under 2s. 6d.

CI crms -J Ev(Ty additiwai \Q words Gd.

To Pitblisiters And Composees.All Music for Review in The Musical World must hencefonoard be forwarded to the Editor, care of Messrs. Duncan Davison & Co., 244 Regent Street. A List of every Piece sent for Review will appear on the Saturday following in The Musical World.

To Concert Givers.No Benefit-Concert, or Musical Performance, except of general interest, unless preciously Advertised, can be reported in The Musical World.


THAT we are to have three Italian operas in London this season is beyond a doubt; that we are to have one English opera is not at all likely. Is this a manifestation of musical progress?. Is it a sign merely that English music is acceptable when none other is to be had? Is it n proof only that the public has no national feeling on the subject? Unfortunately, the real effect of English opera, represented in the most advantageous light, cannot be tested. Either our artists will not coalesce, or managers are afraid to embark in the expense of securing fhe best talent. Compare the constitution of our National Opera with that of the Grand Opera, or OpeVa Comique, of Paris. In our opera ^i.igcia wiy are engaged; while in Puris, at either of the national establishments (there are two), all the available talent is secured. The consequence is that both theatres nourish, and both are kept open nearly throughout the entire year. Let us suppose an English manager to have the means or the will to procure the following company of native artists :—Soprani—Mesdames Louisa Pyne, Florence Lancia, Lemmens-Sherrington, Parepa and Guerrabella; Tenors—Messrs. Sims Reeves, W. Harrison, Swift and Haigh; Basses—Messrs. Santley, Weiss, H. Corri, G. Honey, Patey, &c.; Contraltos—we say nothing of contraltos, since there is no first-class singer of that register on the stage; but one or two we have no doubt could be enticed from the concert-room. Let us fancy this company established at one of the great theatres, and all bent on aiding in the general completeness of the performance, in place of being absorbed entirely in considerations of self or eaten up with jealousy and spleen. What might be anticipated as the result? A veritable National English Opera—a goal to stimulate young artists in their studies — a legitimate success for the undertaking. In Paris, each of the national theatres we have mentioned engages a double company of singers, from which these benefits accrue;—the principal artists, upon whom falls the chief labour of sustaining the opera, have not their powers and capabilities imperilled by singing every night, and a performance is never postponed in case of the illness of a singer, as another is always prepared to take his place. Do our English managers ever reflect upon these manifest advantages? We fear not; indeed, we are rather inclined to think that they trust too much to providence in their race for fame and for lucre. In their visit this year to England foreigners will naturally desire to take back to their distant homes a knowledge of what English music is like, and how English composers write. They will naturally take up the Musical World or the Times to instruct them where the national opera is being performed. On investigation of either of these journals they will ascertain that the Traviata is being given at Her Majesty's Theatre, Rigoletto at Covent Garden, and the Trovatore at Drury Lane. Perchance the Bohemian Girl or Maritana is being perpetrated at the Surrey Theatre or at the opera in Shoreditch; and seeking in either of these temples of the Muses to obtain some idea of national genius and national enterprise, the strangers will return home with no very exalted impression of English composers, English singers, English orchestras, and English managers.

Is any body to blame for this state of things? Who is to blame for it? We put these interrogatories because we ourselves cannot answer them. Time was when Braham, Sinclair, Kitty Stephens, Mary Paton, and a host of no mean vocal talents were wont to appear in the same opera at Drury Lane or Covent Garden, and the word rivalry was never uttered by the public, nor dreamt of by the critic. Are artists now grown so diffident that they fear to provoke comparison? or have they become so assured of their merits that they would fain convince the public of their superiority by arguments more potent than singing? Let us do our English singers justice. In most instances— excepting, of course, a few of our best vocalists — their education has been so restricted to their art and advancement in their profession, that no opportunity has been afforded them of considering anything without themselves. This eternal rotation of self-communion has naturally engendered great reliance, profound knowledge of their own capabilities, with, in most respects, total ignorance of other's merits; so that it inevitably follow* they entertain a thorough conviction of their individual worth, and act upon that conviction irrespective of any ulterior consideration: all which demonstrates that we possess no true school of English vocalisation, and that until we do we cannot expect singers to display those liberal impulses and unselfish acts which should stimulate and govern the disciples of a pure, a noble, and a refining Art.


IT may be remembered that some weeks back a report came from Vienna (which was alluded to and commented on in one of the letters of our Berlin correspondent), to the effect that Herr Richard Wagner's opera of Tristan und Isolde would not be brought out at the Imperial Opera (the Karntnerthor). This report, however, has since elicited a rejoinder from that preux chevalier de I'Avenir, Herr Hans von Biilow, in a letter which a spirit of justice prompts U9 to reproduce in the Musical World. After begging the editor of the paper to which it was originally addressed to insert it, Herr Hans von Billow proceeds as follows: —

** The correspondence in question commences with the news of Herr Wagner's departure for Venice; Herr Wagner is at this moment still in Vienna. As far as regards any pecuniary compensation, cither already paid, or to be paid, to the composer by the management, for a forced renunciation on his part, of the performance of his new work, such a thing is, even presumptively, altogether out of the question, since the opera of Tristan is definitively accepted. The sole point remaining to be settled is the period of performance. This depends entirely upon the time which may elapse before the management are enabled to secure the services of a tenor, the necessary steps having already been taken. On the occasion of the production of the opera being postponed, in consequence of Herr Ander's continuous indisposition, definite terms were agreed on, between the management of the Imperial Opera House and Herr Richard Wagner, as regards the sum he was to be paid, as well as

regards other details: but Herr Richard Wagner refused the offer of a sum to be paid him on account, in consequence of the production of his work being postponed. It strikes me as being hardly worth while to refute the idle reports circulated respecting the general rehearsal, which, as is well known, was most brilliantly successful, although the unbecoming mention of a patroness of princely rank, as well as the suspicion cast upon the zeal and good feelings of the members of the company, deserve our censure. Herr Andcr may have been guilty of inconsiderate and stupid statements in private, but the deplorable state of his health, and his profound anxiety to preserve the remains of his voice ('Material'),once so brilliant, demand, on this point, our indulgence. The accuracy of all the above facts is vouched for by the editor's most obedient servant, Hans von Biilow, Royal Prussian Court Pianist."

So, the Viennese will have to listen to Tristan und Isolde, after all! And Herr Ander ?—,we wonder if he can survive Herr Hans von Billow's cutting allusion to "the remains of his voice once so brilliant?" We for our own parts are not surprised that the unhappy tenor should feel disinclined to sing in Herr Richard Wagner's last chefd'eeuvre, which, according to its composer's own confession, excels even Lohengrin and Tannhdtiser in "Futurity." If he does sing in it, there is one thing very certain, — that he will no longer have the " remains" of a once splendid voice; he will possess only the manes of "the remains " —the residue of the remainder. Peace then to his manes!

ACORRESPONDENT of a theatrical turn of mind is desirous to know whether "Rose Cheri" was the real or the assumed name of the late popular and much regretted French comedienne. Well then, her real name was not Rose CheVi, but Rose Cizos. Her father and mother, Jean Baptiste Cizos and Juliette Garcin, were, thirty years ago, strolling players, known principally at Etampes and Chartres, but they afterwards travelled much in the southern provinces. Their daushters. Rose nnd Anna, were brought upon the stage when mere babies. One day, at Perigueux, the celebrated Prefect Romieu, seeing the two girls playing together, exclaimed, " Quelle jolie paire de Cizos" (Ciseaux) —what a pretty pair of scissors! This official pun had great success, but the father was vexed at it, and ever afterwards took the name of Cheri, which was simply a common term of endearment used towards him by his wife and children. M. Romieu amply indemnified M. Cizos for the liberty taken with his patronymic, by giving him aletter of introduction to Bayar, the dramatist, then in vogue in Paris. This circumstance led to the removal of the family to the capital, and was the foundation of their fortunes.

On April 5, 1842, the favourite piece of La Jeunesse Orageuse was in the bills of the Gymnase, and the house was crowded. After the performance of the opening interlude, an unusually long pause ensued, during which the audience became impatient; and at length M. Monval, the manager, came forward to say that Mile. Nathalie, who was advertised for the principal part, was suddenly taken ill; but that in order that the public might not be disappointed, a young lady, unknown in Paris, had kindly consented, &c, to undertake the character. This announcement was received with murmurs. Presently a beautiful, modest-looking girl, almost a child, came forward, and at once prepossessed the audience in her favour. Her soft, yet penetrating voice, and charming manner gained all hearts as she went on, and at the fall of the curtain she was unanimously called for. "What is your name?" inquired M. Monval, as he prepared to lead her on the stage, "Rose Cizos." "That name will never do," said the manager hurriedly; "the* public will laugh at it— give me another." '' My father called himself Cheri in the provinces," said the timid debutante and thereupon the name of Rose Ch6ri was for the first time proclaimed in that Gymnase Theatre, of which she was ever since the principal ornament.

One morning, in the year 1847, the Cizos family was assembled in its little drawing-room, when Scribe, the great dramatic author, came in with a look of importance, and dressed with scrupulous care. "Good morning, M. Scribe," said Rose, shaking him by the hand; "have you brought me a new part?" Yes, mademoiselle, I have come to offer you a part which you ought to have had before this." "Ah! what is the catastrophe?" "Wait till you know the beginning;" and then making a bow to M. and Mad. Cizos, M. Scribe formally and solemnly demanded the hand of their eldest daughter for M. Lemoine-Montigny, manager of the Gymnase. The proposal was accepted, but the marriage was put off for two months for the following reason. Mile. Rose Cheri's dramatic services had been too much needed by her family for them to suspend them even for a short period, and the country priests with whom Cizos had been in contact would not administer the "first communion "— that grand ceremony which must precede a Catholic marriage — so long as the girls were (on the stage. Monseigneur Afire, the late lamented Archbishop of Paris, took a more liberal view of the dramatic profession in relation to religion, and during two months Rose and Anna Cheri were wont to hurry away from rehearsal to receive religious instruction from the vicar of St. Elizabeth. They subsequently received their first communion in the church of St. Roch, and on May 12th, Rose Cheri was married to M. Lemoine-Montigny, and her sister, Anna, to M. Lesueur, the well-known actor at the Gymnase.

MUSIC AT MANCHESTER. Sib,—Being at Manchester for a day or two, I was glad to avail myself of the opportunity of attending one of M. Halle's concerts in the Free-Trade Hall. Luckily the programme on Thursday was one of more than ordinary interest; and as you cannot receive the Guardian until too late for your current number, I, as a contributor to the Musical World of some years standing (although taut soil peu idle of late), claim the privilege of forestalling your hebdomadal extract from that well-conducted sheet.

The Hall was crowded, and no wonder, the sterling nature of the attractions considered. M. Halle, I was told, had created an orchestra for Manchester. A provincial orchestra! Rara avis! Nothing more true. Only the best of London orchestras could have given a more striking performance (a better read, or felt, I could not have desired) of the magnificent C minor symphony of Beethoven. And, then, it was listened to throughout with an attention that would have done credit to the intelligent musicloving crowds that flock to the Monday Popular Concerts. Equally good was Spohr's fine overture to Jessonda, Hector Berlioz's ingenious arrangement of the Invitation pour la Valse (Weber), and Auber's graceful prelude to Le Lac des Fees, with which the entertainment brilliantly concluded. M. Halle is a first-rate conductor, as well as a first-rate trainer.

For singer there was the clever Mile. Parepa, who gave "Ocean, thou mighty monster," and the grandest of the two airs of Astriaffamente (Die Zauberflote) with splendid energy, besides treating the audience to a ballad of Whittaker's (encored), and Paer's sparkling variations on "La Biondina," so recently "revived" at the Monday Popular Concerts. The old English ballad was welcome in its place, and so were the Italian variations.

For solo-players we had "the pianist of the Monday Popular Concerts," as the Times somewhere christened Miss Arabella Goddard and M. Charles Halle — twin-stars of classical pianist, "Gemini," "Castor and Pollux," or whatever you please. At any rate, in Mozart's superb duet-sonata in D major, for two pianofortes, the great Teutonic "virtuoso," and the young and captivat

ing English "virtuoso," played together with Marchisio-likc unanimity, as if they had been playing together, and doing nothing else, for the last twenty years. I have never listened to a more admirable performance. There must surely have been an electric current incessantly passing from the ten fingers of the lady to the ten fingers of the gentleman. And how thoroughly was the music of Mozart appreciated! Such applause when his two gifted interpreters appeared on the platform! Such attention throughout the entire sonata! And such a burst of delight from the united audience at the end of all! Bravo, old cotton-spinning Manchester! Miss Arabella Goddard (a distinguished favourite here, by the way), had already achieved a triumph in the first part, with Liszt's fantasia on the quartet in Rigoletto, a more perfect example of dexterous, brilliant, and at the same time elegant manipulation than which I cannot call to mind. The hearers, enraptured with the young performer, whose agile fingers ran like lightning up and down the key-board, summoned her back with acclamations, and would not be satisfied until she had resumed her seat at the instrument. Then she treated them to Mr. Benedict's vigorous and admirable "Erin "—how she plays which I need not inform the readers of the Musical Would. It was, in short, from first to last, a concert to remember.


Moseley Arms, Manchester, Jan. 3.

Her Majesty's Theatre.—Some difference is still pending between the noble proprietor and Mile. Sarolta (or M. Bagier) respecting the contemplated arrangements for the season. The difficulty is merely a pecuniary one, and will probably be settled to the satisfaction of lessee and undertaker.

Madame Linu Goldschmidt and Mb. Sims Reeves arc agreed upon another tour (of one fortnight's duration) in the country.?

Miss Kate Ranoe. — The name of Kate Ranoe cannot be unfamiliar to our readers. We had occasion to mention the young lady in no measured terms of approbation, when she appeared as a singer at Jullien's Concerts, and at the Surrey Music Hall. Sinpo tlmn Miss Ranoe has henn acting and the Ply

mouth Theatre, with a success that has reached even the Metropolis. The effect she created as Eily O'Connor in the Colleen Eaton, when that ubiquitous drama was produced at Plymouth under the direction of Mr. Newcome, induced the management of the New Adelphi Theatre to engage her, and she accordingly appeared on Saturday week as the heroine of the Colleen Bawn, Mrs. Boucicault being prevented from sustaining her original character byjindisposition. Miss Ranoe made a decided hit both as actress and singer, and we have no doubt that she is destined before long to take a prominent position among the leading comediennes of the day.

A Good Example. — Mr. George Crawshay, of Montagu Street, Russell Square, has, in consequence of the embarrassed state of the funds of St. Mark's Hospital, Paddington, placed in the hands of the secretary a cheque for 500i. This liberal donation, the largest ever received since the opening of this charity, which, like the Royal Free Hospital, Gray's Inn Road, depends on voluntary contributions for the vast amount of relief afforded, is in acknowledgment of professional services rendered to one of Mr. Crawshay's domestics, while under the care of Mr. Ure, a surgeon to the hospital. This must be exceedingly gratifying to that gentleman's feelings, for it is too often the case that medical officers got little more than thanks for their very arduous and attentive labours.

Exetek Hall.—At the performance of the Messiah by Mr. G. W Martin's National Choral Society, last Monday, as a tribute to the late Prince Consort, the side galleries and front of the orchestra were draped with black, the base of the organ being festooned in like manner, the sombre colour heightened (or rather deepened) by a narrow white border running Found the "sable livery of woe." To the music desks were appended black bows and streamers; all the principal singers and many of the chorus wore deep mourning, while none were entirely without some mark of respect. Add to this a densely crowded audience, almost without exception clad in the same sombre attire, and it must be owned that the general effect was of it depressing character. Although, no doubt, excellent in intention, we question the taste of draping the hall in a manner which would have been appropriate enough before the interment of the Prince, but seemed rather out of date a week after the ceremony. The oratorio was preceded by^the "Dead March " in Saul and a portion of the funeral anthem, "When the ear heard him," composed by Handel for Caroline, Queen of George IL The overture to the Messiah was omitted, to the disappointment of those who had not read the advertisements in the papers. A printed apology with ccrtifi. cate of Mad. Sainton-Dolby's indisposition was circulated in the room, and to Miss Leffler, who took the place of our most accomplished native contralto at At very short notice, much praise is due for her careful reading of the part, moro especially of "He was despised," in which the time was not dragged, as is too often done with a mistaken view to deepening the pathos of this most pathetic of airs. The soprano music was entrusted to Miss Eleonora Wilkinson, whose voico at present has scarcely sufficient power or cultivation for so arduous a task. Of Mr. Wilbyc Cooper and Mr. Lewis Thomas, it is sufficient to Bay that they sang as they invariably do, like true artists, producing the customary effect in the best known airs; Mr. T. Harper's trumpet, as usual, sharing the applause bestowed upon the final bass solo. The chorus, as we have previously had occasion to observe, contains many fine and fresh voices, but is yet far more numerous than efficient. Young ladies and gentlemen should be reminded that, although amateurs, they are placed in the orchestra for other purpose than that of eyeing the audience through double-barrelled lorgnettes, and that attention to what is going on is expected of them by the public. We should then be spared such mistakes as occurred at the commencement of "The Lord gave tho word," to say nothing of a frequent want of precision, rendering many parts far from satisfactory. That they can do better was evinced by "All we like sheep," and "Hallelujah," the most satisfactory achievements of the evening.

St. James's Hall.—At the first concert of the sisters Marchisio, on Thursday evening (see another page) the instrumental "lion" was M. Vieuxtemps, whose superb execution of his own FaniaisieCaprice—one of the most original and attractive pieces of which the modern repertory of the violin can boast — created what may be termed, without over-colouring, a " sensation." In addition to the great Belgian virtuoso there was M. Lamoury, a violoncellist of more than ordinary ability, who performed a solo by Servais so cleverly, and with so much taste, that the absolute emptiness of the composition he had selected was forgotten. The young pianist, too, M. Arthur Napoleon—who, as a boy, some years since, afforded so niuiAi puifictinn bv his performances, and who returns to us, after a lengthened sojourn in the U nited States, a young man, still full of "promise"—besides joining M. Vieuxtemps in a brilliant duet, played a couple of solos, one by Liszt, a sort of olla podrida on airs and fragments of airs from Norma, the other a "Grand Galop de Concert," by himself. Both were given with remarkable spirit; and after the last, which seemed most to the taste of the audience, M. Napoleon was recalled. Among the other singers was Miss Ellen—we beg pardon, "Mademoiselle Elena"—Conran, who, as Donna Elvira, in a trio from Don Giovanni, and in the trying cavatina of Norma (" Casta Diva") showed herself mistress o fa voice of such genuine beauty, and of a talent so incontestable, that she need not have been afraid to own that their happy possessor was a veritable "daughter of Erin." Mr. Swift — a son of Erin, and a worthy one so far as minstrelsy is concerned — afforded an excellent specimen of his capabilities in "Love sounds the alarm," from Ads and Galatea, which he delivered with a force and energy that proved how thoroughly he had entered into the spirit of the song—one of Handel's most racy and vigorous Signor Ciampi, the well-known bass, whose successful debut at Her Majesty's Theatre, in the character of Don Bartolo, won him subsequent access to the Royal Italian Opera; Mile. Dario, a lady with a strong "soprano" voice that wants nothing so much as cultivation; Mr. Walter Bolton,"prima tenore of the Teatro Reale, Lisbon, and the principal Italian theatres;" and Signor Eugenio Coselli, a " bassbaritone," each contributed a solo, as well as joining in the celebrated sestet from Don Giovanni (" Sola, sola"), which was not the best performance of the evening. An orchestra, conducted by Signor Vianesi, besides accompanying the vocal music, began the concert with an overture, called "Stabat Mater"—a composition bearing the name of Mercadante, but apparently owing some few of its materials to Rossini. Altogether the concert, in spite of its extreme length and the "miscellaneous" character of the programme, gave evident satisfaction.;

[ocr errors]

The subjoined is an abridgement of the report which appeared in the Manchester Guardian, of Mr. Halle's last concert in the Free-Trade Hall: —

"Prior to the commencement of the concert, and as a tribute of rospect to the memory of the late Prince Consort, the ' Dead March' in Saul was performed by the band, followed by the National Anthem, by Mr. Leslie's celebrated choir, which constituted the vocal element of the concert, commencing with an additional stanza by Mr. W. H. Bellamy. The performances of Mr. Leslie's choral body more than confirmed the opinion we have already expressed of them, the acoustical properties of the Free-Trade Hall adding greatly to their power, and rendering more apparent those gradations of light and shade which are the life and soul of part-singing. These qualities were manifested in a marked degree in all the pieces, and it is difficult to select any for special eulogium. Morley's madrigal,'My bonny lass she smileth,' and Pearsall's partsong, ' O who will o'er the downs so free,' were the two that took most, both being encored, though others — Mendelssohn's setting of the 43rd Psalm, Reay's part-song, 'The dawn of day,'a serenade ofPinsuti's and a glee of Calcott's for example, — well deserved a similar compliment. Beethoven's grand concerto in E flat, for piano and orchestra, was played by Mr. Halle entirely from memory, and with almost unapproachable excellence. The band accompaniments, too, were admirably rendered. The andante from Spohr's symphony Die Weihe der Tone, was given to perfection by the orchestra, the flutes, clarinets and bassoons being especially remarkable. The exquisite grace and beauty that Mr. Halle imparts to the lighter compositions of Chopin, Schubert and Mendelssohn (a selection of one from each master constituting his second solo performance) all who have been accustomed to hear him know full well, and those who have not been so accustomed cannot be informed by any language we can command."

From Manchester, we also learn that the annual performance of the Messiah on Christmas Day attracted an enormous audience to the Free-Trade Hall. The intelligent critic of the Manchester Examiner and Times gives an interesting report, from which we extract the following : —

"Such is the attractive character of the greatest of Handel's great works, that, although announced for performance on- two consecutive days, the Free-Trade Hall was densely packed in every part; indeed, it was, perhaps, the largest audience ever gathered on a similar occasion, though Christmas Day has, for the last twenty years, been noted for bringing together vast crowds to listen to the Messiah. The 'principals' were Mad. Rudersdorff, Miss Fanny Huddart, Mr. Swift, and Herr Formes. The last not having sung in oratorio here for some years, we were glad to find him in such good voice, and fully equal to the task of giving truthful expression to the bass music of this wonderful oratorio. His singing of ' But who may abide' was as pure in voice and as earnest in feeling as the best musician would desire. 'The trumpet shall sound,' with Mr. Elwood's accompaniment, deserves equal commendation. Miss Huddard won a hearty encore in 'He shall feed His flock' — a compliment to which she is no stranger in Free-Trade Hall. Many of our musical readers will remember Mr. Swift in the farewell operas of Mad. Grisi; few visitors to Manchester have found more favour. This was the first time this gentleman had attempted the music of Handel; and we may congratulate him upon his manner of accomplishing a task of such difficulty — that of singing music new to himself, but familiar to the great proportion of those who heard him. For ',Comfort ye my people,' he received warm applause, and into ' Thy rebuke ' and 'Behold, and see,' he threw the same truthful character of expression. It was in the great air of' Thou shalt break them,' however, that Mr. Swift realised fully all that we had expected from him, and in this there was a true appreciation, as well as a skilful delivery, that could find liberal favour when compared with the best that have gone before him. The band and chorus mustered about 200. • For unto us,' as usual, met with an encore, and ' All we like sheep' escaped barely a similar honour. The 'Hallelujah' was also very fine, and the great mass of people, rising, was an impressive sight. We must not let Mr. Banks pass without a line of compliment, for he has long shown how thoroughly he is master of his position in the English school of music, among which tradition and our respect for the great composer has placed the noble works of Handel."

A correspondent from Windsor reports an interesting performance of pianoforte music, at the Town Hall, by Mr, W. Gr. Cu« sins. The programme was as sub"

"part L—Prelude and Fugue in C minor (No. 2 of the 48), S. Bach; 'the Harmonious Blacksmith,' variations by Handel; Grand Sonata in E flat (Op. 31, No. 3), Beethoven; Romance, ' Genevieve,' W. S. Bennett; Song without words (No. 6, Book 5), followed by Andante and Hondo Capriccioso, Mendelssohn.

"part II.—Two waltzes in D flat and C sharp minor, followed by grand polonaise in A fat, Chopin; Wanderstundcn (No. 2), Stephen Heller; Fantaisie-etudc, 'Pcrles d'ecume,' Kullak; Grand fantasia (Mose in Egitto), Thalberg."

Mr. Cusins entitled his first part " Classical," and his second part " Modern "—why, considering that Chopin is dead, and Bennett (happily) living, it would be difficult to say. Nevertheless, the performance could not fail to interest, and we are not surprised to hear that Heller's " Wanderstunden," was encored, and that at the end of the concert, the audience requested him to repear the spirited Fugue of Bach with which it had commenced.


Tan programme of the above concert, which was under the personal direction of Herr Ferdinand Hiller, comprised the following pieces : — First Part: 1. Concert-Overture, by F. Hiller (new —manuscript); 2. Aria from Handel's Sampson, sung by Mad. Ollermans van Hove, from the Hague; 3. "Weihnachtslied," for six voices, by Sethus Calvisius (1587); 4. Violin-Concerto, No. 7, by L. Spohr, played by August Kompel; 5. First finale from Weber's Euryanthe. — Second Part: Beethoven's Ninth S) mphony.

Hiller's new overture consists of a single fiery allegro, without any introduction, or other change of tempo. It is the effusion of a lively fancy, which is restrained, by the sure musical knowledge of the composer, within the limits of a beautiful form, and moves, with great dash and spirit, in the domain of musical ideas. It was most favourably received by all competent judges and impartial listeners; and is, without a doubt, one of the fiuest orchestral works Hiller's muse has produced.

For many years, Mad. OfFermans van Hove has enjoyed in Holland a wide-spread and -well mcrttoJ ■< luic.niuit us an artistically accomplished singer. This reputation she has justified here, also, wTiere she appeared for the first time. In Handel's little triller air from Sampson, " Mit Klagclaut und Liebesgirren" (with violin obbligato), more especially, she proved herself a most accomplished vocalist, educated in an excellent school. Her voice, which is of considerable compass, and very pleasing in the upper notes, is distinguished for the freshness of its quality, ringing through everything else in the Ninth Symphony. Indeed, her singing of the entire soprano solo part in this work, convinced every one she was a thorough musician.

The " Weihnachtslied " of the celebrated and learned old musician, astrologer and chronologist, Sethus Kalwitz (1556—1615) of Thuringia, was given a capella by the chorus very purely and gracefully.

August Kompel, who has been accustomed to such brilliant ovations at his concerts in Holland, carried away here, also, the audience, though the latter were not very much inclined to applaud on this particular evening. His execution of Spohr's seventh Violin-Concerto was admirable, and elicited signs of the most hearty approbation, besides procuring for him the honour of being called on.

The pleasing finale from Euryanthe did not produce the effect which it never fails to produce on the stage. The reason of this is to be sought in the character of the composition itself, and not in the manner in which it was executed. The solo3 were entrusted to Mad. Offermans, who, however, did not sing the part of Euryanthe with the same excellence that she sang Handel's air; to Mile. Adele Assmann, of Bremen, a pupil of the Conservatory here; to a very good musical amateur (tenor), from Crefeld, and to Herr Karl Bergstein, of Aix-la-Chapelle, who rendered the part of Lysiartus, as well as, subsequently, the difficult bass part in the finale of the Ninth Symphony, with a degree of expression, which stamped him as a thorough master of his art.

The insertion of the Ninth Symphony in the programme was a mark of respect to the birthday of Beethoven, namely, the 17th

December. It was played in splendid style, the execution of the first, allegro, the scherzo and the Jinale being especially good. — From the Niederrheinische Musik-Zeitung.

The United States National Hymn.—"Some months have elapsed since the day appointed for the opening of the manuscripts sent in to the Committee upon a National Hymn, and impatience is manifesting itself, in many quarters, for the announcement of the expected award. Aside from any interest which the public at large may take in the subject, the great number of the competitors—only a few short of twelve hundred—makes it inevitable that there are thousands of eager expectants sitting upon the anxious seat in this regard. For it can hardly be that each competitor has less than a dozen friends who are solicitous for his success. We have hitherto thought it worth our while to inform ourselves as far as possible upon the subject, and we learn that the Committee are upon the verge of the conclusion of their labours. They have not yet, however, decided upon making an award; and we remind our readers, that in their advertised conditions of competition, they expressly stipulated that they were not to give the prize to the best hymn sent in; but that they should reject all, whatever their intrinsic merits, if they found none exactly suited to the purpose. Their mode of proceeding, we understand, has been this:—The manuscripts containing words alone were first opened, the music being laid aside for separate consideration. The verses were then read by the member who opened the envelope containing them. If they were condemned nt once by a nearly unanimous voice, they were cast into a waste-basket ready at hand; if not, they were reserved for future consideration. But, by a waste-basket, must not be understood any of those wicker concavities, known to ordinary mortals by that name. A vast washing-basket — a "buck-basket," big enough to hold Falstaff himself—was made the temporary tomb of these extinguished hopes; and this receptacle was filled, it is said, five times with rejected manuscripts, which were seized upon for incendiary purposes by the cooks of the gentlemen at whose houses the meetings of the Committee took place. Alas for the hapless writers! Were even the priceless manuscript plays of the Shakspearian age that Warburton's cook purloined and used to put nnder pics so lamented as those remorsely incrcmatsd hymns will be? The mass of these manuscripts, we are informed, were ftithpr thp. morMt cnmmnniilQcf, uciiiier rhyme nor reason.

From the whole collection only about thirty were reserved as worthy of a second reading, and these, on a second and third examination, were reduced about one half. Several were also preserved on account of their absurdity or grotesqueness. They were so bad as to be good.

"The hymns sent in with music were about three hundred in number. To enable them fairly to judge of the merits of these, the Committee called in competent musical aid, and after a winnowing of the heap over the pianoforte, the residuum, found worthy of a more particular hearing, were sung. This second examination left less than twenty compositions in the hands of the Committee. We hear that among the rejected musical manuscripts were very many that were evidently sent in by persons who were ignorant of the very first principles of harmony, and who to their ignorance added utter lack of native musical capacity. It has been stated that the Committee called in two eminent musicians to pass judgment, as experts, upon the compositions sent in to them. But we are informed that this report is not correct, and that judgment upon the merits of contributions has, in all cases, remained entirely 'with the Committee, among whom are gentlemen of well-known musical taste and cultivation. But even with their stock thus reduced the Committee hesitated about their decision ; and, finally, determined to call the public to their aid. It is to the public heart and to the general ear that the words and music of the hoped-for hymn are to be addressed; and, therefore, it appears to us that this determination is a wise one. It is to be carried into effect by the performance of the songs, now in tho hands of the Committee, at concerts in New York and Brooklyn, in which soloists, a chorus, and an orchestra, will test in the most satisfactory manner the fitness of these hymns for national purposes. The names of the authors and composers will be withheld; and, indeed, they are yet entirely unknown to the members of tho Committee themselves. It is not, we believe, intended that the question shall be decided by the amount of applause elicited by this or that hymn; but that the manner in which the performance affects the public shall enter largely into the considerations by which the final judgment of the Committee is effected. The plan is at least an ingenious one, and the concerts, which are to be given at a low price of admission, though in the most creditable style, will doubtless excite a very general interest."—JV. Y. Daily Times.

« ElőzőTovább »