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"Carollings at Morn," for the pianoforte — by Thecla Badarzewska (Oetzmann & Co.). There is no harm whatever in this piece! Birds and huntsmen are graphically suggested, with "Echo " to help them out, now mocking the feathered bipeds, now the unfeathered. There is no harm whatever in this piece. We like its "carol," and we like its horn-blast. Every point is clear in it; there is no mistake about it; there is no harm in any part of it—none whatever —none.
"Vocal Compositions" Solos,—" Come Home," "Prayer for Peace," and "Placido Zeffiretto"—by Williah Vipond Barky (Author's Property). "We hope Mr. William Vipond Barry is not bitten by the spider of Schumannism, for he has genuine musical feeling; but really in the above songs, and especially in "Come home" (which, in a sense of harmony, is not inaptly termed "The Lay of the Dying one"), his accompaniment offers as much to object to as to admire, and is altogether over-written for so unimportant a piece. Here, for example, is one point among several that might be cited, decidedly more Schumannistic than sensible:—
The German title of the song is " Gebet um Frieden;" and both German and English versions of the words are given. Although not superior to its companions in its general tendency, we prefer the Italian arietta, because both melody and accompaniment flow more naturally—flow more naturally.
"Six Secular Songs," the music by Frederic C. AtkinSon (Joseph Williams). One only has come to hand, namely, a setting of Moore's stanzas commencing—
"When thou art nigh it seems
A new creation round j
The lute B softer sound."
They are set with feeling—with feeling.
"Sous le Balcon," serenade, pour piano; "Invitation a la Polka," morceau de Salon, pour piano—Jules Spkenger
(Ashdown & Parry). There is more substance (substance) in these little pieces than is ordinarily to be met with in such "ephemerides." In the "Invitation a la Polka," although its Spohrish harmonies and progressions are not invariably handled with Spohr-like purity, the themes are charmingly quaint, and the whole treatment of the piece exhibits a freshness and piquancy quite grateful in this period of general staleness. (We live in a cheesy period—cheesy.) "Sous le Balcon," though not equal to its companion, is still to be commended, as a total, for its comparative unconventionally. — "Lilian," melodie, pour le piano; "Gently," bluette de salon, composed for the pianoforte— E. Aurele Favarger (Robert Cocks and Co.). Neither "Lilian" nor "Gently," neither the Melodie nor the Bluette de Salon, would be likely to spoil the healthy appetite of an alderman, if played by rose-tipt fingers during the hour (or hours) of repast. The Melodie is a wholly innocent song without words, to describe which we are without words. "Gently" (if "gently" polked to), after the hour (or hours) of repast, would not be likely to give an alderman corns.
"Constancy," Ballad, words and music by Owen Hope (J. H. Jewell). A ballad of some water.
"Valse Brillante," for pianoforte, composed by John Wilson (Chappell & Co.).—"La Grace,'' Morceau de Salon, pour piano, W. Oliver Cramer (Ashdown & Parry). — "Coralie," Mazurka for the pianoforte, by Henry Charles Bannister (do.) "La Grace " has grace, if not originality; there is some vigour, if little fresh thought, in the " Valse Brillante ;" and there is a certain quaint tunefulness in the first part of "Coralie," which is hardly carried out in the second.
"Edith," Romance for the pianoforte, by George Forbes (Ashdown & Parry). — " Fantaisie Arabesque," sur la ballade Ecossaise, "Bonnie Jean;" "Galop Ideal;" "Arabella," melodie de salon, pour le pianoforte, by Dr. Ferdinand Raui.es (Augener & Co.).— "La Gondoletta," barcarolle for the pianoforte, by Henry Chas. Bannister (Ashdown & Parry). —"Welsh Fantasias," for the pianoforte, composed by Brink Ley Richards (Robert Cocks & Co.).—"Rosalie the Prairie Flower," by H. W. Goodban (Ashdown & Parry).—"Edith" is unpretending, pretty and well written, but without much romance about it. Of the three pieces of Dr. Rabies the best is perhaps "Arabella" though even that is tant soitpeu commonplace; the fantasia consists of the Scotch ballad of "Bonnie Jean," with variations and a commonplace coda in galop measure; the "Galop Ideal" is made ideally ugly by the insertion in the principal theme of certain small notes as apoggiaturas. "La Gondoletta" is quaint and pleasing, like the other little piece by the same composer, which we noticed erewhile. Mr. Banister should progress. "Welsh Fantasias," No. 1, based upon the spirited and truly national "March of the Men of Harlech," is one of Mr. Brinley Richards's most effective, vigorous, and highly finished pieces. It belongs to a series of two, and its second title is "North Wales." If "South Wales" turn out as good we shall be glad, and the publishers may rejoice. "Rosalie" is an unaffected and well-knit little fantasia, on the air generally known as " The Prairie Flower."
"Diana," Grand Galop de Concert, pour piano — Adolph Gollmick (Ashdown & Parry). One of those dance pieces, "de salon," showy and brilliant, without being difficult—graceful, correctly written, and without a vestige of affectation—of which Herr Gollmick has produced so many attractive examples, the one under notice being by no means the least attractive of the series.
FERDINAND HILLER'S NEW OPERA* On] Saturday, February 15th, the new four-act opera, entitled Die Katakomben, the words by Herr M. Hartmann, and the music by Ferdinand Hiller, was produced for the first time at the Ducal theatre, Wiesbaden. It is really quite an event for the management of a German Court theatre to decide on producing the unknown work of a German composer, and to do everything in its power to render the performance and the mise-en-scene worthy of the work. Not only the composer, but German music itself, owes a deep debt of gratitude to the Baron von Bose, Intendant of the Wiesbaden theatre, for having opened a path for a German opera, which, doubtless, will continue to enjoy the same success which has hitherto distinguished it.
This work requires, it is true, an audience still capable, in every respect, of a serious frame of mind, that is, with respect to the purport of the drama, and especially the music, and whose appreciation of sterling beauty has not yet been deadened by modern Italian effect-music, and French spectacle-opera. The subject of the story is a serious, not to say religious, one, since it aims at exhibiting the martyrdom of tho first Christian community, and the contrast between the new inward world rising in the minds of men, and the empty nothingness of the Roman world sunk in sensuality. Although the poet may have stretched too sharply the two principal representatives of this contrast, namely, the Roman lady Lavinia and the slave Lucius, the leader of the Christian band, the tone of the drama is, on the whole, well preserved, and not obscured or spoilt by aught that is out of place.
Without criticising the details, we will give enough of the story to characterise the music, and furnish tho reader with an intelligible summary of the whole.
After a short instrumental introduction, the action commences with a Bacchanal in the apartments of Lavinia, a noble Roman lady, of the family of the Caesars. The music is wildly characteristic; the female chorus forms a gentle middle movement, which celebrates, with graceful melody, the Goddess of Love. The wild joy produces no impression on Lavinia. Claudius, the prefect of Rome (barytone), orders the Ionian singer, the slave Clythia, to sing a song; the fair Ionian, who is secretly a Christian, sings how the Lord, "who walked as God upon the earth, forgave the sinning woman who had deeply loved." This song, charmingly composed as a ballad, and received with great applause, causes Lavinia to start; but Claudius recognises in it the "Slave-god of the Nazarenes," and inveighs against the "Devoted race which threatens the Gods of Rome." The whole forms, with the chorus, an introduction full of life and character. The guests disperse. The following duct of Lavinia, who, in the "Desert of the Heart," laments a suffering "which even Gods cannot alleviate," and of Claudius, who in vain endeavours to gain her love, is especially distinguished by the beautiful melodic flow in the part of Claudius, and was received with lively marks of approbation.
Tumultuous sounds ore heard approaching from without; Timotheus, a Christian, is being pursued by the mob, who follow him into the halls of Lavinia. He falls at her feet. In order to clear himself from his crime, he is ordered by the Prefect to light the sacrificial flame before the statue of Venus. The slave Lucius brings the torch, and admonishes him, in a low voice, "not to deny the Lord." Timotheus, strengthened by Lucius's looks, refuses compliance; the people want to drag him off to death, despite the endeavours of the Senator Cornelius (bass), who is himself at heart a Christian, to prevent them from so doing ; but Lavinia protects the fugitive, and haughtily opposes the wishes of the rude crowd.
We have now a fine musical situation, skilfully introduced by the author, and admirably worked out by the composer in a sestet (two sopranos, two tenors, baritone and bass); a vocal piece with full orchestra, and the chorus gradually introduced, such as we should in vain seek in the operatic works of the last ten years,- as far as regards the beautiful melodic fancy, the deep and yet clear way in which the harmonic flow is worked out, and the grandeur of the form and general effect. The impression produced was so great that the house burst forth in two rounds of applause. The only thing which could improve it would bo to make the part of Cornelius, which, in extent, is somewhat unimportant, superior to the first bass; but this alteration would be attended with some difficulty, considering the common notions of singers about the rank of the respective parts and their own in particular.
After Timotheus has been led off, through Lavinia's interposition, the first act is brought to a close by an energetic chorus of the Romans: "Erwacht, ihr Gutter, zum Tag der Rache 1" ("Awake, ye Gods, for the day of vengeance!") through whichtho solo voices are distinctly heard; so that the whole scene, from the entrance of Timotheus, pursued by the
• From the Niederrheinitche Musik-Zeitung. Translated for the Musical World.
mob, forms a grand and magnificent finale, which can never fail to produce the same powerful effect which it produced on the first night The audience, in a state of great excitement, would not cease applauding: and calling for Hiller and the artists, until the latter appeared, and received the thanks they had so well merited, for the first act was quite sufficient to convince every one, capable'of apprcciating'.such performances, that the opera had been most carefully rehearsed under the direction of Herr Hagen, equally well placed upon the stage by Herr Jaskewitz, and studied by every one concerned with real love for the task — a fact which became more and more apparent throughout the whole representation down to tho very last note, i
The first act is well arranged by its author, and conducts us immediately into the midst of the conflict, which is to be unrolled before our eyes. With regard, however, to the personages of the drama, it leads us into error, since, by the course pursued, Lucilius, who is really the exponent of the principal idea, in no way attracts our attention, while Timotheus is placed in the foreground, and monopolises all our interest. But he does not re-appear. He dies of his wounds, as we are informed, at the commencement of the second act.
In the second act we behold the interior of the Catacombs, those subterranean stone quarries and excavations around Rome, in which the first bands of Romish Christians held their religious meetings, and which were subsequently employed as burial grounds. Lucius now appears as the leader of the pious sufferers, as the enthusiastic priest of the new religion. The recitative and air: " Wie lange noch, o Herr, willst du auf Erden In Elend schmachten lassen deine Herdm t" (" How much longer, O Lord, wilt thou allow thy flocks to languish in misery here on earth? ") are very fine ; their simple style may be compared to that of Mehul in Joseph. The song was greeted with loud applause. The following duct between Clythia and Lucius is one of the best pieces in the second act; it is really a pity that its conclusion, or, rather, its non-conclusion, hinders the outburst of applause in which the audience feel inclined to indulge. It merges into a soft prelude, in which Clythia takes her lyre, and endeavours, by playing, to alleviate the sorrow she feels because Lucilius rejects her loving heart. But the strict Presbyter, who already anticipates in his own person the subsequent oaths of chastity, poverty, and the renunciation of all worldly joys, orders her to part at once with her "sounding companion." Tho poet must answer for this, but, speaking in a musical sense, the scene furnishes an opportunity for a wonderfully beautiful and very touching song on the part of tho poor girl, when she lays her lyre on a grave, never to touch it more. Repeated rounds of applause and a call rewarded the efforts of the fair artist (Mad. Dectz) and of the composer.
The stage is empty.—Lavinia appears.—She has spied out the meeting-place of the Nazarenes, and has made her way to it. Suddenly there echoes behind the scenes the chorus of Christians singing the praises of Him who arose from the dead. This simple strain in unison resolving itself at the conclusion only into a harmonic cord on the words; " He has risen again !" when considered in connection with the situation in which the woman, satiated with a sensual and luxurious life, stands alone as though annihilated before an unknown power in the sepulchral and subterranean vaults, produces a remarkable effect, which, despite its awing influence, compelled the audience, after a breathless pause, to break out in a storm of applause. The soul of Lavinia is greatly moved ; she feels a presentiment of a new God, who perhaps, may be able to arouse her "withered heart from the cold bonds of weariness to new life."
She steps behind a piece of rock, for a procession of Christians is advancing: they are burying the body of Timotheus. A funeral procession is always a dangerous thing on tho stage. We ourselves would have made it pass over quite in the background, by which arrangement the chorus of Christians and the song of Lucius, on account of the religious feeling which they breathe, would produce a greater effect. Not until the bier had been removed, would Lucius then advance and call upon the pious band to prepare the sacred meal. Lavinia now suddenly advances, fearlessly and proudly ; Lucius protects her against tho rage of his companions, who are apprehensive of treachery. She acknowledges freely that she is seeking the new God, in whose power she hopes to find other passions and a relief from her disgust for life. The Christians exclaim indignantly against her blasphemy, and wish to prevent her escaping; but Lucius reminds them of the commandments of the Lord, the commandment to love their fellow creatures. He shows himself in all his worth, which enchains and entrances the sinner, Lavinia. He breaks out into a fiery prayer to the Lord to enlighten the proud woman. This prayer, thanks to the co-operation of the chorus, becomes a magnificent hymn, which concludes this act, as the former one was concluded, in grandiose style.
This finale—which, beginning with the funeral procession, and being of a very different character to that which forms the finale of the first act, offers far greater difficulties to the composer—excited still more enthusiasm. Lavinia (Mile. Lehmann) and Lucius (Herr Schneider) were called on, while Hiller himself, unable a second time to avoid satisfying the stormy wish of the public, also appeared, in the midst of long sustained applause, upon the stage.
Tho third act commences with a pleasing chorus of Lavinia's female attendants, who are adorning their mistress for the reception of the victorious Casar, about to make his triumphal entry into Borne. What follows is somewhat long, and has not sufficient action. The principal scene—the grand duct between Lavinia and Lucius in a musical sense one of the most brilliant hits in the opera, with splendidly beautiful points, especially in the part of Lucius (except that, at the conclusion, the instrumentation overpowers the vocal portion, which is never or seldom the case elsewhere in the score)—this scene, we think, does not achieve its dramatic object, since the rejection of Lavinia by Lucius docs not elevate him, while Lavinia, by her humiliation before the man whom she so earnestly beseeches to love her, fritters away rather than excites our sympathy.
The scene now changes to a large open square. Senators and Roman warriors form a procession, under the guidance of the Prefect, Claudius, with standards and eagles, to tho strains of a pompous march, the spirited character of which is enhanced by the chorus. Lavinia appears. With rage and indignation against Lucius in her heart, she calls upon Clandius to suppress the Christians, and discloses to him the entrance to the Catacombs. Claudius hastens to the Emperor, for the purpose of obtaining from him the order for tho destruction of tho Nazarenes, An heroic air of the latter, and a chorus of warriors in praise of the approaching victor terminate this act, also, in a magnificent manner. It brought down thunders of applause, the grand duct, also, being londly applauded.
In the last act, the stage represents the ruins of a temple of Vesta, at the side of which is the entrance to the Catacombs.
Lucius appears. He has received information of Lavinia's treachery. He summons the brethren out of the Catacombs, in order to save them, and deliver himself up alone to death for the sake of his faith. The Christians depart from him and their place of refuge. We think the whole scene is superfluous, since the Christians return, and thus only make up their mind to sacrifice themselves as they come along, which does not produce a good impression. Musically speaking, too, it is not important, and, perhaps, hardly ought to bo so. The more striking is the following grand scene for the tenor, a magnificent recitative, an andante with violoncello eolo: "Mein Durst wird bald gcstill — was ich erjleht, en mild mil Himmehglanz" ("My thirst will shortly be assuaged — what I have prayed for approaches with heavenly glory"); and, lastly, a tiery allegro: " Herbei, ihr Henkerschaare!" (" Come on, ye hordes of Headsmen !") With nn unusually beautiful melodic turn on the words: "Mein Geist ist licht von Himmelsstrahlen, In hlammen stehtmein Ben " (" My soul is light with heavenly rays, my heart is in flame"), the composer goes back to the slow tempo of the beginning, rising, at last, to a high pitch of .enthusiasm, with a more lively rhythm on the words : " liejrei' mich, o Herr, axis meiner Haft, Verschmah' mein Op/er nicht." (" Free me, 0 Lord, from my captivity, and do not despise my sacrifice "). The whole scene is truly magnificent. It was excellently rendered by Herr Schneider, and greeted with long-sustained applause.
Claudius appears, and despatches his military followers to drag out of the subterranean retreat the Christians, who are destined to be offered up on the arena to the wild beasts. The soldiers return ; the catacombs are empty. Claudius is furious; Lucius comes forward to him and exclaims i "Die Beule, die du suchst, stent hier 1" (" The prey you seek stands before you !") At the same time, Clythia, who has concealed herself in the ruins, offers herself as a victim. At this moment, Lavinia, lashed by the Furies, rushes in. In vain she begs Lucius from the Prefect, who is the more immoveable, because she confides to him her love for the slavo. A quartet (Lavinia, Clythia, Lucius, and Claudius) expresses the exciting nature of the situation, and was received with applause.
Tho Christians, who have previously left, now rush in, in order to die with their shepherd and master. The Senator, Cornelius, follows, and acknowledges his belief in the only true God; while even Lavinia herself exclaims: " Mich auch fuhrt in den Tod, Ich auch bin von Hirer Schaar!" ("Lead me, also, to death, for I, too, am one of your band 1") But the Christians reject and avoid her. She stands deserted and alone. Clandius approaches her. " Sei mein 1" he says. But sho proudly rejects him, and kills herself. Claudius rises scornfully before the dying woman, and hurls forth the order for the destruction of the Christians; the latter, however, gathered round their leader, sink upon their knees, and sing with him the following hymn of Victory!
"Uns ist der Sieg,
"To us, on whom you war, is the victory ; God is with us, and you are vanquished 1 Hallelujah !" In this hymn, the composer onco more concentrates the whole force of his genius and the treasures of his musical resources, in order to place most conspicuously before tho audience the moral importance of the entire drama, and the spirit in which he has striven to idealise it by the power of tone. He has been successful. The impression produced was of an elevating nature, and Hiller was again compelled to appear in obedience to the uproariously expressed wish of tho public. Their Highnesses the Duke and Duchess were present, and gave unmistakeablc signs of their satisfaction from beginning to end. The performance, as we have already mentioned, was altogether admirable. The chorus and orchestra vied with the representatives of the principal parts in their devotion to their task, and, if we take into consideration tho state of things at a small theatre, it must be owned that the result was something extraordinary. We cannot close this notice without expressing in the name of German musical art, our warmest thanks to the conductor, Herr Hagon, for his successful exertions to render the first performance of a great and difficult work, by a German brother in art, most effective. We trust the great Royal operatic establishments in Germany will also devote, with zeal and love, to this most important work of a German author and of a German composer resources they so frequently lavish on French and Italian operas.
Reserved Seats At Theatres.—In the Westminster County Court, on Friday last, the case of " Young v. Buckstonc " came on for hearing. This was an action brought against Mr. Buckstonc, the lessee of the Haymarket Theatre, to recover the sum of 35s. From the opening address of the plaintiff's counsel it appeared that, on the 6th of February last, the plaintiff took seven places in the dress-boxes for that evening, and paid 35s. for them, together with Is., the customary fee for reserving the same, but that on the plaintiff and his fricuds arriving at the theatre they found their places already occupied by other persons, and as the boxkeeper was unable to give them seven places in one box he had brought the present action. The counsel further stated in his address that, when the plaintiff reserved the places, the boxkeeper gave him a paper describing the seats so reserved, at tho foot of which tho following notice was printed : "N il. Performances commence at seven o'clock, and places secured until the end of the first act only." This notice was, however, so vague that it was altogether impossible the plaintiff should be able to know at what time the first act would terminate; and he felt quite confident that, under all the circumstances as stated by him, his Honour would at once see the plaintiff was entitled to a verdict. His Honour then asked that tho paper reserving the places to the plaintiff should bo handed up, which was accordingly done; and, while he was perusing the same, Mr. Roberts, for the defendant, addressed his Honour, and stated that he was fully prepared to prove that the places reserved by the plaintiff had been kept for him agreeably to the notico in the place paper, that the first act was over at a quarter to eight, and that the plaintiff and his friends did not arrive at the theatre until a quarter past eight o'clock; and that when they did so arrive the boxkeeper had actually offered them seven places together in tho same box, although not the same places reserved by the plaintiff: this offer, however, the plaintiff refused, and he and his friends then left the theatre. Mr. Roberts "further stated that, from time immemorial, the custom of keeping places in the boxes until the end of the first act of the first piece, or, in the event of a short piece in one act being played first, until.the end of that piece, had been carried out at the Haymarket Theatre, and he was pleased to tell his Honour that sueh a satisfactory arrangement was, in all instances, cheerfully complied with by the numerous patrons of the theatre. His Honour (without considering it necessary for Mr. Roberts to call a single witness for the defence) then summed up, and said that, after carefully perusing the place paper given to the -plaintiff when he reserved his places, he was clearly of opinion that ho had no case. The notice fully stated up to what time the places would be reserved, and if the plaintiff was not aware at what time the first act would end, it was his duty to have inquired of the boxkeeper, when he took the places, tho time up to which they would be kept for him, and who would have afforded him all the information required. That time having expired, and Mr. I Roberts being fully prepared to prove the places were so kept for tho plaintiff, the verdict must certainly be for the defendant, with costs.
MONDAY POPULAR CONCERTS. The eighty-first concert (on Monday night) was for the benefit and last appearance this season of Miss Arabella Goddard. Of this highly interesting event the Morning Post writes as follows:—
"The concert on Monday last, given for the benefit of Miss Arabella Goddard, attracted an immense audience. The great English pianist, who has contributed so largely to the reputation which the Monday Popular Concerts now enjoy, as the very best entertainment of their kind in existence, was most enthusiastically cheered on entering the orchestra. She performed on this occasion Beethoven's solo sonata, I No, Ill; Sebastian Bach's 'Tarantella;' and, with Herr Joachim, Beethoven's 'Kreutzer' sonata; and in all was triumphantly successful. In other respects, too, the fame of the Monday Popular Concerts was fully sustained. Herr Joachim played his very best throughout, and was most ably supported by Messrs. Piatti, H. Webb, and L. Ries. The vocalists were Miss Clari Fraser and Mr. Tennant; the accompanist, as usual, Mr. Benedict."
The subjoined is from the Daily News.
"The concert of last night was for the benefit of Miss Arabella Goddard, who certainly has done as much as any one in contributing to the success of these extraordinary entertainments, in which the utmost degree of popularity has been attained without the smallest sacrifice to what has been generally deemed the popular taste. The programmes of these concerts, not many years since, would have been almost too severely classical for the most refined and most musical audience in London. Their success from the very beginning showed that the popular taste was really much better than had been supposed; and their constantly increasing favour has the effect of still further cultivating and refining the taste of the English public, by making them better and better acquainted with the greatest and most beautiful works of the musical art.
"We need scarcely say that the hall was as full as possible. The fair pianist, on entering the orchestra, had a most enthusiastic reception, a just tribute to her talents and character. Her performances consisted of pieces which she had frequently played before—none the worse on that account, for they were pieces which she had, in a great measure, taught the audience to understand and appreciate. The first was Beethoven's sonata in C minor, Op. Ill, the last of his sonatas for the pianoforte, and certainly one of his most original, profound, and highly elaborated works, full of the grandest and most beautiful inspirations of genius. Miss Goddard's execution of this gigantic work is something marvellous and iudcscribable; and last night she seemed to outdo all her former outdoings, for every time that she attacks one of these terrible productions she appears to have acquired a firmer grasp of it, and a greater power of developing the conceptions of the author. Her second performance was Bach's Prelude and Fugue alia Tarantella, the same that she played at the last Philharmonic Concert. It seems to be one of her favourite pieces, for she has played it often, and her clear, brilliant, rapid execution of it is the very perfection of pianoforte playing. Lastly, she played with Joachim the famous 'Kreutzer sonata,' the finest composition for the piano and violin that ever was written. Great interest was excited by a most charming quartet of Haydn, deliciously executed by Joachim, Ries, Webb and Paque. Its graceful simplicity and elegant gaiety had their full effect on the audience."
The Daily Telegraph contained the following notice :— "The concert of Monday night was for the benefit of Miss Arabella Goddard, who has contributed more than any other individual artist to promote the steadily but rapidly increasing popularity of the most popular, as well as the most ambitious, the most unexceptionable, and the most ably conducted, of London musical entertainments. The fact that every corner of St. James's Hall was filled, and that many applicants for admission were obliged to go away unsatisfied, may be considered to be evidences of the great popularity of the fair and favourite benfficiaire, rather than of the Monday concerts in general. But that hundreds of persons should crowd into a large room to hear a performance of Beethoven's least intelligible sonata argues, in any case, an extraordinary thirst for musical knowledge in the English public; while the circumstance of a young lady relying upon that as the chief attraction of her benefit is as creditable to herself as it is flattering to her audience. Each of the pieces, indeed, in which the pianist performed was a chef-d'autTre, and the mere framing of the programme is an evidence of Miss Goddard's thoroughly artistic taste:
"Part 1.— Quartet In C, Haydn; song, ' The Praise of Tears," Schubert; long, 'Winter,' Mendelssohn; sonata in U minor, On. 111. for pianoforte solo. Beethoven.
"Part 2— Prelude and fugue alia Tarantella in A minor, J. S. Bach; song, ' Eilv Mavoumeen,' Benedict; old English song, 1 Near Woodstock town;' sonata in A, Op. t Beethoven.
"None of the instrumental pieces, however, were new to the constant habitats of these concerts. Even the formidable Opus III. — the cabalistic number which, with the Op. lufi, has become almost a pass-word among musicians for all that is difficult, ungrateful, and unintelligible — has been already interpreted by Miss Goddard's practised fingers. The perfect performance of such a work is indeed an 1 interpretation,' for the executant translates, in fact, the abstruse idioms of a dead language into the familiar accents of a living tongue, and brings out in clear relief the connected meaning which with all our painful labour we are otherwise unable to seize. If the remark was true which declared that to see Kean act was like reading Shakespeare by flashes of lightning, we may with equal justice say, that to hear Miss Goddard play Beethoven's last sonata is like seeing a flood of sunshine burst into a stalactite cave, lighting up what before was dark into a thousand forms and countless hues of varied beauty. From the opening discord which announces tho striking and mysterious character of the introduction to the simple chords into which the heavenly melody of the adagio finally subsides, every phrase and every bar were last night rendered with faultless expression. To say that Miss Goddard played as perfectly as usual is to imply that the extraordinary mechanical difficulties of the sonata were vanquished with the most absolute ease; but it is rare indeed to hear a great pianist perform with so complete an absence of all affectation or exaggeration of sentiment. The marvellous tarantella of Bach — without doubt the brightest and most sparkling fugue in existence — raised almost as much enthusiasm as when played at the Philharmonic last week; while the Kreutzer sonata was magnificently rendered by the accomplished pianist and her worthy coadjutor Herr Joachim, the greatest of all living violinists. The fire and passion infused by him into the whole of this noble composition exercised an irresistible effect on the audience, and their applause, not to be repressed, interrupted the second movement, which indeed was re-demanded, but not repeated. One of Haydn's quaintest quartets opened the concert."
Our own report will appear next week.
Dresden.—After being shelved for nineteen years, Richard Wagner's opera, Der Jliegtnde Hollander, has been revived, under the superintendence or Herr Julius Rictz. This opera, produced under the personal direction of the composer, and performed four times in January and February, 1848, failed to elicit the sympathies of the public, and considerably diminished the interest Herr Wagner had excited by his Rienzi, so that both the composer and the public were completely disappointed. Some part of the blame belonged, it is true, to the artists, who, with the exception of Mad. Schroder-Dcvirent, as Scuta, were very inefficient. The same was true of the band and chorus. On the present occasion, matters were managed very differently; great pains were taken in the getting up of the opera, which was more successful, probably, than the management had expected it. would be. In consequence of long illness and advanced age, Herr von Luttichau has sent in his resignation as Intcndant of the Theatre Royal, and the King has consented,,, to accept it. In recognition, however, of Herr von Luttichau's valuable services his Majesty has conferred on him the order of the " Rautenkrone." The Theatre Royal loses an honourable director and worthy friend. His successor is Herr von Koneritz, who will enter upon the discharge of his duties on the 1st of April. — In two of its late numbers, Nos. 8 and 9, the readers of the Neue Zeitschrift fur Musik have had a good opportunity afforded them of judging with what truth and strict impaniality the criticisms in its columns are penned. In noticing certain musical performances, the Zeitschrift criticises and condemns an overture by Herr J. Rietz, which, although originally in the programme, was, at the request of the composer, withdrawn and not performed at all, the overture to Euryanthe being substituted for it. This high-minded print, enamoured doubtless of so admirable a system, published also a notice of the performance of "Alexander's Feast," on Ash Wednesday, the said performance having been postponed in consequence of the p rincess Sidonia's death.
Riga.—Kiister's oratorio, Die ewige Heimat, will be performed on Good Friday.
Cologne.—The new theatre is fast approaching completion. Herr Brandt, the celebrated machinist of the Ducal Theatre, Darmstadt, is laying down the stage, which will be fitted up with every modern mechanical contrivance. Herr Grossius will paint the greater portion of the scenery. The manager, Herr L'Arronge, has decided that tho first operatic novelty shall be Herr Ferdinand Hiller's highly successful work, Die Katakomben, the dresses, scenery, and decorations for which will be most magnificent. There is no doubt that it will make a great hit.
THE MENTAL HISTORY OF POETRY*
"To search throngh all I felt or saw,
It has now been seen that in the progress of this principle of modulated tone and varied accentuation, the principle governing all that impressivcncss which dwells in the pare expressional form of utterance, the principle which is in reality alluded to wherever the term "Eloquence" is mentioned, and which, for the sake of brevity, we will call the principle of Tone and "Phrase;" — it has been seen, in the progress of this principle throughout the different forms of language, that as the truths and feelings composing the vital import of a communication increase in comprehensiveness and originality, it assumes with steady march a gradually more elaborate form, a more conspicuous, systematic and striking effect. It may also have been observed that it is the degree of this elaboration in effects of Tone and Phrase which determines, so far as outward form is concerned, the different artistic orders of language.
Now, it is capable of complete demonstration, that if the external exemplifications of this principle of Tone and Phrase be carried to a still higher phase of development beyond that they exhibit in poetry,—that if they be carried to a phase of development wherein every effect they actually involve is brought out more distinctly defined, where every contrast is rendered sharper, every change more clearly visible,— the sound which encloses them becomes more positive in character,—clearer, sweeter and pellucid, and the result is Music The "modulated tone" changes to "Mclod\ ;" the "varied accentuation" develops into Time and Measure. It can also be explained that not only is the outward form of this principle as exemplified in the various styles of language (but more particularly in the more artistic forms) identical with that which evolves the material form of music, but that the inward spirit investing it during its probation in language — the spirit of lofty truth and deep emotion —is also identical in nature with that profound and radiant soul which animates Music.f
We are now at length in a position to observe directly and clearly the particulars of the presence of the Musical element m the art of Poetry. The reader will now perceive that all those salient features which produce the outward expression of Poetry—all the characteristic effects of its surface-being (Rhythm, Alliteration, and Metrical Design)—are simply but the outer echoes of music, resounding from ono grand spirit of inspiration, the spirit of comprehensive truth and innermost emotion, which, diffused like the dew of nature over both these arts, is the first offspring of the primitive conditions, and the "prime nourisher" of all art-creation. And it is for the demonstration of this latter portion of the proposition—of the relationship in spirit of these two arts of Poetry and Music, more particularly than for pointing out their connection in form, that this portion of the general subject has been detailed at such length.
Now is, it is to be hoped, apparent, not only the positive fact of the presence of the Musical element in the art of Poetry, but also the precise and remarkable extent of this presence, which is an extent that compasses the whole distinctive outward form of Poetry, and that embraces an important portion of its spirit.
Before leaving this portion of the subject—this consideration of the Musical element in the art of poetry —there may be, in passing, one 'light practical inference here deduced.
It has been shown that the principle of "Numbers" in Poetry is identical with that of " Time" in Music, only that in the latter art it is exemplified in a vastly more elaborate and varied phase of development than in the former.
Now the reader will not find it difficult to understand that this principle is one which dwells solely in the abstract effect of certain inipres
* Continued from Page 181.
f The details of this identity of the "Tone" and "Phrase" of language (both with reference to inward inspiration and outward form, both as an internal principle and an external property) with the "Melody" and "Time" of Music, '(involving the proposition that that inner fineness of thought and individuality of feeling, which remains unexpressed by the comparatively limited and semi-corporeal medium of ordinary speech,—that latent heat of the breast which, consistent with the above circumstances of being left uninterpreted, is the secret incentive of Eloquence, Oratory and Poetry,—is the true moral burthen of music, and flows for the first time in replete fulness and freedom within this etherial channel of sound—it's appropriate and rarefied medium of demonstration—its real language, will be found to be more fully and minutely demonstrated in "The Philosophy of Music."
sions upon the ear, quite irrespective of any "collateral suggestiveness they may possess—that it dictates, amidst impressions of this character, a certain method, order and system,— that in the example of a line of poetry, the abstract impressions upon the ear, wrought by the accentuation in the recitation of the words, are dictated through the prompting of this principle within ; and that thus the appropriate position of these impressions cannot be calculated by means of any purely external and superficial method of counting syllables, unless this inner instinct of numbers—this element in the breast of musical taste — exists. Because, through the irregular length and shape of words, in the expression of a sentence or the intelligible portion of the sentence, the syllables will not always adapt themselves to correlative accents and falls in the rhythmical design, it being often necessary, in the recitation of poetry, to utter several syllables to one fall of the measure, in order to distribute the rhythmical design equally over some intelligible portion of the literal matter. Thus
"t 1 sec belforemethc I Gladtlntor I lie."
In the second foot of this line there are two unaccented syllables instead of one, because in the whole line (owing to the irregular length of words) there is a syllable more than is physically necessary to occupy the five feet forming the " measure" in question.
Now the presence of this extra syllable would quite overthrow the effect of the "metre," were it not so disposed of as to maintain the normal relationship of the five rhythmical accents, and to still produce them upon five comparatively important syllables of the line; and the secret of this manner of disposing of it could not possibly be defined by any superficial rules, but, on the other hand, can only be dictated by an inner instinct and intuitive idea in the breast of musical " Time."
How essential then is it for one who aspires to become a poet to possess this element of inward musical taste—this spontaneous idea of Time in the breast! How futile would it be, not possessing it, to attempt to lay down a system of free and bold accentuated impression, pervading and animating intelligibly divided sentences of language, by means of those incomplete and superficial methods of rhythm which deal only in such rudimentary materials as "syllables," "feet," and "quantity," and which involve no deep and general principle whatever! And thus we are led to the inference, that for the formation or rather development of a free, true, and perfect faculty of numbers in poetic aspirants, what a powerful auxiliary a preliminary training in the principles of Musie would be, in preference to the poring over shallow and artificial systems of rhythm, by the sole means of which not two lines of poetry, exemplifying good, appropriate and tasteful accentuated effect, could be produced.
As the reader might desire some practical illustration of this portion of the proposition of the identity of the principle of "Numbers" in poetry with that of "Time " in music,- a few instances of the correspondence of these two effects are here annexed; and it may be remarked that an intelligent observer will not only perceive the effect of "Time" in music exemplified in poetical numbers, but, in a fainter degree, the effect of "Phrase," and even "Movement" in music, also foreshadowed in Poetry.
To furnish at the outset practical proof that it is really from a latent faculty of musical time in the breast, and not through any artificial and laborious system, from whence all ideas of striking and appropriate rhythmical effect are drawn by poets, let the following example be considered:—
"O'er the glad waters of the dark blue tea." Now, poetic analysts will tell us that this is a line of "heroic" measure, and that it consists of five feet, of two syllables to the foot; thus: "O'er I the glad I waters 1 of the I dark blue I sea;"
—that the general and prevailing laws with reference to the "accentuation " of this species of measure is, that the first syllable of each foot must be accented, the second syllable unaccented, as is demonstrated beneath the above example.
(To be continued.)
Miss Rose' Hersee's Concert, at the Assembly Rooms, Pechham March 81st, was highly successful; more than three hundred stalls being occupied by a brilliant and fashionable audience, and the reserved seats being filled to overflowing. Miss Hersce was encored in " Com'o bello" (Lucrezia Borgia), and in a song by Mr. Balfe. The following artists assisted,— Madame L Vinning, Miss Poole, Miss Fanny Huddart, Miss LcfHer, Mr. George Perren, Mr. Montem Smith, Mr. R. Seymour, Mr. Fielding, M. Fontanier, Mr. J. L. Hatton, Mr. Allan Irving, Mr. Griesbach (Violin), Master Drew Dean (Flute), Mr. J. L. Hatton and Mr. F. Osborne Williams (Pianoforte). t