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Don Giovanni, and "The Garland" of Mendelssohn. This gentleman has a capital tenor voice, and sings like a musician.

Royal Society Op Female Musicians' Concert.—The concert at the Hanover Square Rooms in aid of the funds of the Royal Society of Female Musicians was attended by a large audience. The artistes were Mile. Parepa, Mad. Reider, Mad. Sainton, Miss Palmer, Miss Rachel Gray, Miss Eliza Hughes, Miss Emily Grcsham, Miss Augusta Thomson, M. Jules Lefort, Mr. Wilbye Cooper, Mr. Santley, the London Glee and Madrigal Union, Mr. G. W. Cusins, M. Leopold de Meyer, Herr Engel, Mr. Sydney Prattcn, and the London Quintet Union—Professor Sternaale Bennett officiating as conductor. The programme included twenty-two pieces, the most noticeable of which were Hummel's " Quintet in E flat major," admirably played by Mr. \V. G. Cusins (pianoforte) and the London Quintet Union (Messrs. Willy, Webb, Pettit, and Reynolds); the "Shadow Song" from Dinorah, given with much brilliancy by Mile. Parepa; the scena from John Burnett's Fair Rosamond, "Ah me! he comes not 1" sung with genuine dramatic expression by Miss Augusta Thomson; Beethoven's " O beauteous daughter of the starry race," most effectively rendered by Mr. Wilbye Cooper; and Engel's Oclobre, so well delivered by M. Jules Lefort, that it was re-demanded; Vincent Wallace's new song, "The Bellringcr," sung by Mr. Santley and similarly honoured; a new ballad, by Miss Virginia Gabriel, " The Skipper and his Boy," well suited to Mad. Sainton, who sang it with that exquisite expression which she knows so well how to infuse into pathetic ballads; the prayer from Lurline, given with grea£ taste by Miss Hughes, and the trio from Spohr's Azor and Zemira, "Semi fugge l'ombra intorno," excellently interpreted by Mad. Reider, Miss Augusta Thomson, and Miss Palmer. The chief instrumental feature of the concert was M. Leopold de Meyer's execution of a fantasia of his own composition ; the astonishing power and brilliancy of this accomplished pianist has on several occasions been remarked, but never was the originality of his style more apparent than last night; he not only delighted but fairly astonished the audience by the delicate play of light and shade—the ease, the piquancy, and the command over the instrument that characterised his performance, and the applause at the conclusion was so vociferous that an encore was the result. Herr Engel also deserves honourable mention for Lis solo on the harmonium; while the London Glee and Madrigal Union were encored in Elliott's "Come see what pleasures in our plains abound." The concert was most successful, and it is to be hoped that in a pecuniary sense it may benefit a charity which has for its object the relief of those who, after administering for years to the gratification of the public, find themselves from various causes reduced to poverty in their declining days.

Mb. F. Scotson Clabk, the pianist and harmonium player, gave a concert on Thursday morning at Collard's Pianoforte Rooms, Grosvenor Street, which was attended by a crowded audience. The programme was enriched by Professor Bennett's piano, violin, and violoncello, played lorace Poussard, and Mr. W. Pettit. a grand duo for pianoforte and harmonium, Sur des Motifs de Robin des Bois, with Miss A. M. Wyatt—Mr. Clark presiding at the harmonium, and a solo of his own composition on the harmonium, on airs from Sonnambula. Among the vocalists we may name Miss Henderson, Miss Palmer, Miss Augusta Thomson, and Miss Eliza Hughes, as having especially distinguished themselves.

A Morning Concert,in aid of the funds of the London Home, Notting Hill, was given at St. James's Hall, on Thursday, and attracted a large assembly. The following artistes assisted gratuitously :—Mad. Catherine Hayes, Miss Parepa, Mad. Lemmens Sherrington, Miss Stabbach, Mad. Sainton-Dolby, Mr. Wilbye Cooper, Mr. Santley, and the London Glee and Madrigal Union, vocalists; Miss Arabella Goddard, M. Sainton, and Master Drew Dean, instrumentalists. The first part was conducted by Herr Wilhelm Ganz; the second by Mr. Lindsay Sloper.

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Organ Fob -godmanchesteb Pabish Church.—This large and powerful instrument, containing 32 stops distributed over two complete manuals, and an independent pedal organ, was publicly opened on Monday and Tuesday last at the factory of the builders, Messrs. Bryceson and Fincham, Brook Street, Euston Road. Mr. Frederic Archer (late organist of the Royal Panopticon) gave two grand performances. The selection comprised the following overtures,—A Midsummer NigMs Dream, La Gazza Ladra, Melusine, Zampa, Oberon, William Tell, Jubilee, Preciosa, besides the graver works of Bach, Handel, Mozart, Rinck, &c. Mr. Archer's dexterity and manipulation was the subject of general remark amongst the large and musical audience assembled on each occasion. Mr. W. H. Strickland, of St. Mary Magdalen, Munster Street, gave the concluding performance, also of sacred as well as secular music, and received frequent encores. The organ is chiefly remarkable for its rich and powerful swell, as well as the evenness and beauty of the numerous solo stops. Amongst the novel appliances introduced is a "Tremulant" acted on by a bar occupying a horizontal position between the swell and the great manuals, which is a great improvement on the ordinary pedal or draw stop, and allows the performer to introduce far more delicate effects by its use.

Godmanchester Organ.

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Chbist Church, Mabylebone.—There were twenty-three applicants. The Vestry met on Thursday, 31st May, and reduced them to six, viz., three ladies and three gentlemen. The following hod the highest number of votes :—Mrs. Arthur Willmore, S3; Miss Lindley, 31; Miss Bloomer, 20; Mr. Swannell, 22; Dr. Hatchens, 19; Mr. George Loder, 18. These had to play at the church on the succeeding Thursday, and go to the ballot on Saturday. The pieces selected to be played were the double choruses, " Fixed in his everlasting seat" (from Handel's Samson), the "Old Hundredth Psalm," and a chant and voluntary selected by the candidates. The result of the ballot on Saturday was—for Mrs. Arthur Willmore, 58; Miss Bloomer, 22; Miss Lindley, 12; Mr. George Loder, 9; Mr. Swannell, 1; Dr. Hatchens did not make his appearance at the contest.

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HER MAJESTY'S THEATRE. — This Evening (Saturday, June lfi), wl'l be repealed (third time this season) Moiart's chefrt'o-nvre II. DON GIOVANNI with the following powerful cast:—Oouna Anna, Wile Tmww; Doni.a Elvira. Mil* V»mnl; Zerilna, Mad. Borghimamo; l.epor. lo Sisn r ClAMPl: Don Ottavlo, Signor Giuglini; MaMltto. Mgoor KoitcoKl; Il -Comm»ndatore. Signer Castelli; and Don Giovanni Signor EvtaARm. 1 he Minuet will be danced bv Mile. CLAliniKA Cuccbi and Mile. Mom.ACCHl. In active menarallon and will shortly lie produced, with new and extensive icenery, property, Snd deeorationl. Weber l grand romantic opera of OBF.HON. Pr incipal character, by Mile Tiiiei", Mile. Lemaikk, Mile. Vakiki, Mile. B.UNSTTI, Mad. AIBONI, Signor Belabt Signer Evmamii, SIgnor AiniOHirRl, Signor Casielli, Signor Mrrciiriali, and Signor Moksini. In order to socwe pbices for theie grand perform-ncei, far y anulication Is earnestly recommended to bemade-at the Box-office of the Theatre, which ii open dally fr..m 10 to 6. under the direc ion of Mr. Nugent. Notice.-In consequence of the numerous applications at the Box-office or thei Theatre from the gentry fesi.ilng in ihe vicinity of the metropolis, ihe Lessee and Director lias decided upon

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Signor Ffllah ; Mem, SIgnor Castt-lm ; Guardiano, Signor Romilli ; Man ello, Mpnor Vialstti; Urbano, Mad. Ukrchi'mamo; Margherita, Mile. LotuSA MlCHAt (her second appearance in this country) j Dames d'Onore, Miles. Nardi and Di.i L'am M:; Valentin.!, Mile. Titiess. Conductor, Signor Aroiti The Opera will commence at 1 o'clock. In order to secure places for this grand Morning Performance (positively the only one this season), earlv application should be made at the Box.olhcc of the Theatre, w hich Is open daily from 10 until 0, and on the nights of performance until the end of the 0|iera.

HEU MAJESTY'S THEATRE. — IL DON GIOVANNI. Titikn*. Boughi-mamo. Vansri; Ciampi. Eterardi. Rottcom, iturtUy, June 16) will be repeated Mnsart't chef-d'cei.vre, th tbe follow.pnwrrfnl rust:—Ummk Ann.i, Mile, vvw. MihrH, Mile. Vaneri; Zerlma, M..d. Buar.Hi Mauo; Leporrllo, Slpnor Ciahpi; Don Ottavio. Signor GlOOUNI; Masetto, Signor Ronconi ; 11 Cummend-ttore, Signor Castilli ; Rnd Don CioTanni. Signor Everaroi. The Minuet will be da> ced hy Mile. Clacdina Cuccm and Mile. Morlaixhi. Conductor—Mr. Benedict. The Opera commences at 8 o'clock. Pit tickets, 8>. Gd.; Gallery Stalls, 6s.; Gallery, 3s. | tu be had at the Bojc-offlce of the Theatre, which is open daily i 10 to 6.

ROYAL ITALIAN OPERA, COVENT GARDEN— Grand Conceit Production of OBrFO.—On W dncsday. June .7, a Gil AND

KVKNING CONCERT will take place. On this occasion ihe flist |»irt of the Concert will comlst of a Mill elianeous Selection. After whic h will he produced the celebrated lyric work. hy (iluck, entitled ORFKO E EURVDICK, lllustraied by coslno cs, scenery, and decorations. '1 he .Subscribers to tile Onera lor the Saturdays of the season, as well as those for the second alternate weeks, will be presented with theintree to the above performance. Box Subscribers will receive Boxes, and StRll Subscribers will receive Stalls. On Tuesday next, June 19, will be performed (for the first time this season) Flolow's Opera, MARTHA. Principal rharacters by Mad. Pejico and Mile. Didieb; Sfgnori Graziani, Taoliapico, Zbmjer, and Mario.

T71RENCH PLAYS. —ST. JAMES'S THEATRE.—

JJ EVERY EVENING. Mile. Dd-"»" »» »..»..»- »t <
Orchestra Stalls, 7s. 6d.; Balcony Stalls,
from £-i 2s. Commence at 8. *"

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MFERDINAND FULLER has addressed the following ■ letter to the Editor of the Niederrheinuche MusikZeitupff, with reference to a subject which must interest all musical readers :—

"In a note to an account of Beethoven's Fidelia, in Paris, the question is mooted whence Berlioz hit upon the idea of attributing to Beethoven a joke given at lengtli in the article mentioned. I told it him years ago, and it was communicated to me by a person who certainly did not invent it, namely by old Paer himself. The latter— whom I frequently met during my youth, in Paris, and part of whose character it was to be more than friendly with every one—often spoke to me about his acquaintance, in Vienna, with Beethoven, for whom he

expressed deep admiration. Among other things he informed me lhat Beethoven went with him one evening to the Theater an der Wien, when his (Peer's) Leonora was performed. Beethoven, he said, sat next him, and, after repeatedly exclaiming 'Oh, que e'est beau, que e*est inUressant!' at last observed, 'llfaut que je compose etla.' Pucr appeared quite proud of having thus been the cause of the composition of Beethoven's Fidelio, and the truth of this story, which I had flora his own lips, is beyond a doubt. Fkrdinajid Hiller." ,

Every trait which can contribute to an elucidation of Beethoven's character, and to the history of the origin of his works, is welcome. Paer's statement, however, differs materially from the version given by M. Berlioz. According to Paer, Beethoven was ingenuously moved by what he saw and heard, and involuntarily expressing his feeling and inclination to set the same subject to music. Here we find no indication of the rudessc humoriste, nor of the "malicious irony " which Berlioz describes: Voire opera me plait, jai envie de le mettre en musique!

Friedrich Treitschke *, at that period stage manager and poet of the two court theatres in Vienna, and who, at Beethoven's request, arranged the libretto of the opera when it was revised in 1814, has written as follows :—

"It was at the end of 1804, that the Baron von Braun, the new proprietor of the Imperial Privilegirtes Theater an dcr Wieu, suggested lo Ludwig van Beethoven, then in the prime of his youthful powers, that he should compose an opera for that establishment. It was thought, from the oratorio of Cliristusam Oelberg {Christ on the Iff ount of Olives), that the composer would produce as great things in dramatic music ai he had previously done for purely instrumental music Besides a money payment, he was offered free lodgings in the theatre. Joseph Sonnleithner undertook to furnish ihe libretto, and selected the French story VAmour Conjugal (by Bouilly), although it had been already set to music by Gavctux, as well as composed, with Italian words, by Paer, under the title of Leonora, both versions being translated into German. Bccihoven did not, however, fear his predecessors, but set, heart «nd sonl, about his task, which was nearly concluded about the middle of 1805."

The first performance took place on the 20th November, under unfavourable circumstances. The nobility had quitted the capital, and the inhabitJints avoided the theatre, so that the audience, at the first three representations, consisted principally of the French military.

The question now arises: When was Paer's Leonora written, and at what period of Paer's residence iu Vienn* was it performed? In the autumn of 1798, Gaveaui's Amour Conjugal was produced for the first time iu Paris. At that time Paer was living in Vienna, where Beethoven also had been since 1792. Paer remained in the Austrian capital till 1802, but as early as Easter of that year accepted the post of Capellmeister in Dresden, his wife (previously Mile. Riecardi) being engaged as prima donna at the Dresden Italian Opera. From Dresden, in 1806, Paer followed the Emperor Napoleon to Warsaw, and thence, after the peace of Tilsit, to Paris, where he eccupied a very honourable position until his death, on the 3rd May, 1839Paer's Leonora, therefore, while he, the composer himseH was in Vienna, can only have been given during the interval between 1799 and 1801 inclusive, or, if not therein 1803, at the beginning of which year, according to Gcrber's Lexicon, Paer "again visited Vienna for a short period, and composed a new oratorio for the Witwen Akademie, during Lent {den Fasten), 1803."

In the list of Paer's operas from 1799 to 1808, in Gerber. Leonora is wanting; 1799, Camilla; 1800, GrUelda, H Morto vivo; 1801, Achilles, Poche ma Bone, Der Bravsekopf, Der lustige Schuster; 1802, Vlntrigo amoroso

* In his article on Fidelio, in the Orpheus, Musical Pocket-Book for 1841 (Aug. Schmidt, Vienna).

his first opera in Dresden; 1803, Die Wegelagerer Sargino. According to this, Leonora may have been composed in 1802, and produced in Vienna at the beginning of 1803, when Beethoven may have experienced the impression described, have nourished his design till the following year, and then suggested the subject to Sonnleithner for the opera which the Baron von Braun wished to obtain.

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THE extra performances at the two Italian Operas continue, and resemble one another. The singers do not seem to enjoy them, the public does not attend them, and we need scarcely add, that the managers, to all appearances, lose money by them.. Why then do these representations take place? Last Monday, at the Royal Italian Opera, the Purilani, in many respects the most masterly of Bellini's works, was performed to empty boxes—and this at a theatre where the "cast" of the Puritani is as good if not better than could be formed in any other in Europe. To frequent an Italian Opera in England a certain amount of musical taste (due allowance being made for the mere fashionableness of a certain kind of amateurism), and a considerable amount of money are required. Accordingly, the operatic habitues of London constitute but a limited class ; .but as this is the class that support Italian Operas, it is to it that the managers of our Italian Opera Houses should appeal. It is easy, no doubt, and, for a time may be profitable, for directors to address themselves to persons outside this circle (as on the extra nights of which we complain), but in the long run any such scheme must be attended with failure. The singers and musicians, by a natural law which makes oft-repeated pleasures no pleasures at all, cease to take interest in an occupation which, from delightful, becomes irksome; the subscribers soon remark the Journalier tone which pervades not only the extra, but also the so-called (and justly entitled) ordinary, performances ; and suddenly the director is surprised to find that these extra performances represent to him simply an extra loss. They not only fatigue the artists but weary the public, and, as the number of opera-goers is not increased by trjem, but rather the contrary, it is somewhat difficult to understand what can prompt managers to persist in giving them.

If questioned on the subject managers would, we believe, reply that an increased number of performances is rendered necessary by their increased expenses, and by the extraordinary number of singers which it is now the fashion at each house to engage. This argument is based, of coarse, upon the supposition that the amount of money received from the public is in proportion to the number of representations given. We believe any such hypothesis to be false, but it is one that is likely to find, and indeed has found, favour in the eyes of directors. The rival lessees of oar two Opera Houses are so determined to ruin one another, that at the beginning of a season each endeavours to -cut off the other's supplies by buying up all the singers, from soprano sfogato to basso profondo, that happen to be in the market. At Her Majesty's Theatre, the parts of " Raoul," the "Duke of Mantua," " Almavivo," and "Edgardo," are played by four different tenors. Mr. E. T. Smith does not absolutely want four tenors, but he does not want either Giuglini, Mongini, Belart or the newly acquired Steger to be engaged by Mr. Gye. Mile. Lotti again, and several other vocalists who might be mentioned are chiefly of negative service to Her Majesty's

Theatre; singing there only at long intervals, but prevented by their engagements from singing at Covent Garden. Mr. Smith has a number of artists in his company who are of no use to him, except in so far that by retaining their services he has prevented them from being of any use to Mr. Gye; and Mr. Gye pursues much the same method with regard to Mr. Smith. This system of management, however ingenious, is expensive, and has moreover this disadvantage—that unless carried out to the fullest extent it answers no purpose whatever. It is of no avail to retain the services of four tenors if there are four other tenors alive just as good — and to engage eight (supposing eight to represent the maximum of really attractive tenors in the world) is what, even in these days of managerial extravagance, no one has yet dreamed of.

In their efforts to ruin one another we are very much afraid the rival impresarii will in the end ruin themselves. On the other hand, if they would pursue an emulative, instead of an envious, line of policy, there is just a chance that both might succeed. Wo should be glad, for our part, if they, would content themselves with engaging small but highly efficient companies, so that, at least, the apparent necessity would be done away with of giving these wearisome extra performances.

1

PRINCE GALITZIN advertises a "Russian Concert" for. the 20th at St. James's Hall, and amateurs of music are asking one another who this Prince Galitzin is, and what this Russian Concert is to be that he proposes to give for the benefit of Garibaldi, and at which the Prince himself is to conduct. Some even go so far as to ask how it is that a Russian nobleman in such a position as Princo Galitzin occupies, ventures to get up an entertainment in honour of a man whom the despotic party in Austria and Russia regard as a rebel ■and a revolutionist of the worst kind. The late Czar would not precisely have smiled on a Russian prince who had announced a concert for the benefit of Garibaldi; but though the Garibaldi of 1860 is still the Garibaldi of 1848, the Emperor Alexander is not the Emperor Nicholas, nor is the Russia of the present day to be judged of by the Russia of the past reign.

As for the Prince Galitzin, who is to make his appearance on Wednesday at St. James's Hall, he is the son of Princo Nicolas Galitzin, to whom Beethoven dedicated three of his last quartets, and under whom Prince George (he of St. James's Hall) served against us and our quondam allies in the Crimean war. Prince George Galitzin has an estate at Tamboff, and has long paid especial attention to the musical education of his peasants. He himself teaches the children to sing, and admits those who have attained a certain proficiency into a choir which he has spent eighteen years in forming, and which includes every range of voice from the highest sopranos to lower basses, by at least half an octavo than are met with in this country or in Italy. These picked choristers—of whom, when we heard them four years ago at Moscow there were as many as eighty, of all sizes and ages—arc excellent musicians, and read any part music at sight. That they have a good knowledge of harmony may be inferred from the fact, that they will sing any chord of four notes in any key on the chord being named, and without hearing it struck. This was shown at the time of the coronation of the Emperor Alexander, in Prince Galitzin's house at Moscow, where the Tamboff choir sung various sacred compositions by Mozart, Bortniansky, &c, and afterwards underwent a sort of cxamination in the presence of Oulibicheff, Josse, the chef (Forckestre of the Theatre Francais, Durand, the organist of the Pantheon, Lablache, Tagliafico, and a number of other musicians and amateurs. A variety of chords were named, all of which were satisfactorily given-by the singers. The service of the Russian Church is sung without accompaniment, and Prince Galitzin's singers, who are, above all, singers of sacred music, are in the habit of performing without the aid of any instrument. SeVeral times at the conclusion of a long piece the Prince verified the final chord at the piano, when it appeared that, contrary to all precedent, the voices had not fallen even the eighth part of a note.

Another remarkable thing in the performance of these TambofF singers, is the manner in which, in certain compositions, they do, or rather do not, take their breath. Thus, they will chant the creed or the Lord's prayer from beginning to end without stopping to breathe even for an instant. Such at least is the effect upon the audience; but as the Galitzin choristers live, like the rest of us, by inhalation, we imagine the Prince must have arranged some system by which they take their breath in sections, say ten at a time, 60 that out of the eighty, seventy only are continually singing.

The advertisements do not set forth explicitly that Prince Galitzin has brought his choristers with him to London; but we know that it was his intention to do so, and if he has left them behind, all wo can say is, that he had better telegraph for them to TambofiF without delay.

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MLeopold De Meter's pianoforte-playing seems to • be universally appreciated. Such a result is by no means surprising, inasmuch as he comes forward with ingenuous frankness, and says "Je suis Virtuoseet voila tout." To be a virtuose of the first water, however, is no such easy matter, and M. de Meyer is doubtless aware that the way of the tiXwewe-proper, and the way of the "classic"performer (so termed), who gives undivided attention to the old masters, differ entirely. Like two parallel lines they can never meet; or at the best—supposing an idiosyncratic sympathy on the part of the virtuose towards the "classic" style, or on the part of the "classic" towards the brilliant mechanical feats of the virtuose—they may be compared to the asymptotes of the hyperbola, which, though continually approaching each other, can never by any possibility come into actual contact. A critic in The Times (apparently a new hand), writing of M. de Meyer's performance at Mad. Anichini's recent concert, would seem to entertain this opinion, to judge by the tenor of some of his observations :—

"Among the instrumental pieces was a grand fantasia, for pianoforte alone, composed and performed by Herr Leopold de Meyer, pianist to the Emperor of Austria, and in his particnlar walk, the most extraordinary ' manipulator' now before the public. This gentleman combines a force and vigour of hand, which few have equalled, with a delicate lightness of touch and liquid softness of tone that have never been surpassed. He brings these opposite qualities into play with marvellous address, blending or alternating them as the humour seizes him, and with such consistency that, while the ear is always satisfied, the taste is never offended. M. de. Meyer's_/bn<a«'a-playing, moreover, —like his music—is quite as original as it is astonishing. He has a vein exclusively his own, and is indebted to no other source than that of his invention, whether for ideas or for the method of handling them. Making no pretence to be an exponent of what is conventionally termed the 'classical' school, he does not provoke criticism by an imperfect conception and execution of acknowledged masterpieces. He moves

within the sphere most congenial to his artistic nature, and he does wisely, for in that sphere he stands aloof from competition. It is not intended by this to insinuate that M. de Meyer would fail if he ventured on higher and more intellectual ground; but at the same time, as sincere appreciators of his really exceptional talent, we should counsel him to leave the "great masters" (and especially the "old masters ") to themselves; for, in order to ride comfortably over their domain, he would have to invent a new and peculiar bridle to restrain his Pegasus within bounds."

The Morning Post, without theorising, expresses itself with unreserved enthusiasm about the playing of M. de Meyer at the concert for the benefit of the Royal Society of Female Musicians :—

"Of the instrumental performances, nnoxocptionably excellent as they all were, Herr Leopold de Meyer's Fanlaisie Originate, composed by himself, unquestionably produced the greatest effect. His ' czdeutio* foudrot/unte'—to use the words of an eminent French critic—seemed to electrify the audience, who listened with evident astonishment to the prodigious tours de force uf the Briarean pianist; and at the termination of his performance gave vent to their delight in a perfect storm of ap|iiause, which could only be quelled by a repetition of the entire piece."

We could quote further, but have copied enough to show that when a really clever artist, be ho foreigner or be he native, prefers to do no more than ho can do to perfection, he may rely upon unanimous acceptance.

THERE has just been founded in Russia an institution which does honour to that country. The Gazette du Nord published in its last number but one, an account of the situation of the Fund for the Relief of Literary Men and Savants in Russia. This society, established only a few months by the (lite of Russian authors, and by the directors of the principal papers and reviews, is not, the Gazette du Nord says, a mutual benefit society. To share in its advantages, it is sufficient for any one to bo a literary or scientific man, to be presented by a member, or merely to write to the Committee. Widows and orphans also have a right to assistance. A great degree of eagerness, exceedingly honourable to the national character, has been manifested among all classes to aid the Society in carrying out its proposed aim. The Emperor and his family have been pleased to put their names down for au annual subscription of 1,300 silver roubles, 240/. The most celebrated 'literary men have engaged to give a certain per-centage on the produce of their works ; several artists have done the same; and the directors of the principal reviews have resolved to pay the Society a fixed royalty on every subscription to their publications. Some well-known publishers have entered into a similar agreement for the works they may bring out; and many private individuals, connected neither with literature, science, nor art, have liberally contributed to show their wish for the diffusion of knowledge, as well as their respect for those who devote themselves to it. The Society lias already been enabled to grant annual pensions to the amount of 2,160 silver roubles, 365/., and to distribute in the form of temporary aid, 1,300 silver roubles, 208/. The capital, which, on the 2nd (14th) February, was only 8,536 silver roubles, 1,365/., at present amounts to 18,236 silver roubles, 2,918/. The number of members is 407. M. Sasonoff announces that the Gazette dtc Nord has opened, in favour of the Literary Fund, a subscription list, and invites not only his compatriots in : Paris, but every one interested in the cause of liberty of | thought, to contribute to it.

THE THEATRES.

Just at this present time the non-lyrical theatres do not afford much matter of discourse, nor are we aware that any important novelty is forthcoming. Bills wear a stereotyped look, as if managers had resolved to depend on the same resources for a long time.

The immobility of the Olympic programme rests, we believe, on a solid success. Mr. F. Robson's Uncle Zachary is stamped as one of his very best semi-serious parts, ranking with Daddy Hardacre and Samson Burr in the Porter's Knot; and the farce called B.B. chiming in with the prizefighting mania, caused by the arrival of Heenau, has continued efficient as a provocative of mirth, though the feeling to which it immediately appealed no longer animates the public. Whenever Robson makes a "hit" in a new part, the prosperity of the Olympic is certain for weeks; of that fact there can be no question. The other members of the company, particularly Mr. Addison, have had an opportunity of distinguishing themselves in the new version of La Belle Mere, which, under the title of Dearest Mamma, has been played with great success.

Thanks to the pre-eminence of Mr. and Mrs. Wigan in their own natural style of acting, and to the broad humour of Mr. Toole, the drama, It's an ill Wind that blows nobody Good, though scarcely substantial enough for the Adelphi Theatre, has kept its place for several weeks, and will not be removed till the end of Mr. and Mrs. Wigan's engagement. Mr. Falconer's comedy, The 'Family Secret, assailed with more or less vehemence by nearly all the oritics, gives equal signs of vitality at the Haymarket, and promises to remain there as long as Miss Amy Sedgwick. For practical purposes in the theatrical world, what are all the rules of art, all the laws of taste, compared to that stage-tact, by virtue of which a number of established favourites are placed effectively before the public. Mr. Falconer has written a very indifferent play, but ho has allowed his audience to look at a great many persons, who are constant objects of delight, and he can laugh at his censors, sound as their doctrines may be.

A successful burlesque at the Strand is certain of longevity, and though we are now forgetting Whitsuntide, Mr. F. Talfourd's Easter-piece, The Miller and his Men, still flourishes in the bills. There is a large class of Londoners that never grows weary of burlesque, and this finds its particular source of recreation at the Strand Theatre, where all is done to give effect to the most grotesque kind of humour.

The symbol of immobility at the Princess's is Mr. Phelps, who fills up the recess produced by the closing of his own theatre, with a course of legitimate performances before a West-end audience. He is steadily and creditably working his way through all his leading parts, and some weeks) will probably elapse before his agreeable task is finished. Messengers from the East inform us that Mr. James Anderson is labouring with similar zeal for the same cause at the National Standard.

The French plays at the St. James's Theatre, under the management of M. Talexy, deserve much more extensive patronage than they apparently receive. M. Octave Feuillet's last new comedy, La Tentation, is a heavy work to produce, with a long list of dramatis persona, and we do aot know where we should find a play of such magnitude, acted with such general efficiency as by the company of ■which M. Brindeau and Mile. Duverger were chiefs. Then, for a light piece of the conversational kind, nothing

can be more charming than the Cheveu Blanc, aa acted by Mile. Duverger and M. Paul Devaux. Since the days of Mr. Mitchell there has not been au attempt made for the establishment of French drama in London, that can in any way compare with the enterprise of M. Talexy.

HER MAJESTY'S THEATRE.

On Saturday the Huguenots was repeated.

On Monday — an extra night—Semiramide was the opera.

The Barbiere, on Tuesday, introduced Signor Ciampi, the long-announced buffo, in the character of Doctor Bartolo. The attractions of the opera and new singer were further enhanced by the last act of Rigoletto for Mile. Brunetti, Madame Lemaire, Signors Mongini, Sebastiano Ronconi and Vialetti, and the new ballet Adelina, and drew one of the most crowded audiences of the season. Signor Ciampi made an immense " hit," one of the most legitimate, in fact, ever remembered at Her Majesty's Theatre. The place left void by the death of Lablache seems likely to be filled up. This is saying a great deal when it is considered that Signor Ciampi is only 21 years of age. But his powers are rare indeed. He has a capital full-toned voice, sings like a thorough artist, possesses the finest musical instincts; and, as an actor, is natural, versatile, and entirely original. The first decided sensation he produced was in the air which Bartolo sings to Rosina, after discovering she has purloined his paper to write a letter. This was rendered with such true comic spirit and unction, and so admirably vocalised —not a note being slurred, nor a point missed, as to create quite a furore. The artist from this moment was scrutinised with eager eyes from all parts of the house; he did not quail, however, under the examination, but went on improving his position, satisfying the entire audience at the end that a genuine artist stood before them—one destined to take his station in the highest rank. We shall soon have an opportunity of speaking more definitively of Signor Ciampi, who will shortly appear in Don Pasquale, the Matrimonio Segreto, and Cenerentola.

On Thursday, the Huguenots was repeated.

ROYAL ITALIAN OPERA.

A Vert admirable performance took place on Monday night of Bellini's Puritani, the melodies of which, always fresh, exquisite, and expressive, have rendered, and will continue to render it, one of the most popular operas, not only with the crowd, who are only able to feel its sensuous beauty, but with those sufficiently well informed to appreciate the qualities which constitute it the artistic masterpiece of the composer. Had Bellini lived to go on writing, his Puritani may be accepted as a guarantee that he would have progressed in the right direction.

Much was said last season in praise of Mad. Penco's "Elvira," but not a word beyond its genuine deserts, as a remarkably earnest, intelligent, and refined impersonation. An objection might bo raised, that, in the great scene of the second act, where the unhappy Elvira is distracted and demented by the supposed infidelity of her lover, a laudable anxiety to give all the necessary pathos, leads her into an abuse of the occasionally effective vibrato.

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