November 29, 1913
Page 30

Not Even President Poincaré Himself Could Make Composer Change His Mind and Appear Again in Public as Pianist and Organist—Thuel Burnham’s American Tour— Kousnetzoff for Metropolitan Opera—The Chaigneau Concerts

Bureau of Musical America, 17, Avenue Nlel, Paris, November 14, 1913.
CAMILLE SAINT-SAËNS announced his positively final appearance in public last week as pianist and organist. At this concert, given at the Salle Gaveau, the master played a varied Liszt and Mozart program. The hall was, of course, packed and a great demonstration of enthusiasm was only natural. Judging from the unanimity of opinion of those who were present M. Saint-Saëns’s scruples as to the possibility of his failing virtuosity are quite unfounded. Many official personages, including M. Poincaré, the President himself, have given the distinguished musician assurances to the same effect, but to no purpose. So these functionaries then decided among themselves to arrange one final demonstration for the master at one of the vast auditoriums of the capital, which is about as suitable for music as it would be for a slaughter house. But they reckoned without their host, for to the astonishment of all the master gave out a very definite statement to the effect that “All the King‘s horses and all the King‘s men would not drag Saint-Saëns onto the platform again.”
Before leaving for a long stay in Algeria and Egypt, the composer said in an interview: “I leave Paris with joy, for the life here is too tiring and inane for me. I shall then at last be able to work again. Oh, no! I shall not compose any operas, but some pieces for organ and piano, and probably a choral work: And I shall still practise the piano and occasionally play at home for my friends.
Thuel Burnham‘s American Tour
Thuel Burnham, the American pianist with the big European reputation, is now making his final preparations for his tour of the United States in the early months of next year. He will arrive in America at the end of December and will open his tour in New York in the first week in January. He will give several concerts in New York and afterward visit Boston, Philadelphia, Denver, Buffalo, Baltimore, Chicago, Minneapolis, etc. In Chicago he will be heard with the Thomas Orchestra, while he will also play with orchestras in other cities.
Kousnetzoff, the celebrated Russian soprano, now appearing so successfully at the Opéra-Comique, has been engaged to sing next year with the Metropolitan Opera Company. I am indebted for this information to Mme. Kousnetzoff‘s professor, M. Bernardi, who has just opened a studio in Paris and with whom she is continuing to study daily. M. Bernardi, who is a bosom friend of Chaliapine, the great Russian bass, is restricting his work to a few pupils who have definitely made up their minds to follow operatic careers. One of the favored few is Mme. Nolkers, of St. Louis, who possesses a soprano voice of great purity and uses it with musicianly skill.
Chaigneau “Matinées Musicales”
Those energetic and genuinely appreciated musicians, the Chaigneaus, have resumed their “matinées musicales.” The programs of these series of concerts, of which there are two, one in the Autumn and the other in the Spring, and which are independent of the opening concerts, are sensibly limited to one hour‘s duration. Short and sweet may be said to be the Chaigneau motto, and the idea that everyone should go away without having one solitary uninteresting moment is indeed realized, as personal experience at the first matinée of yesterday afternoon adequately demonstrated. The program consisted of only three items, Schumann‘s Quintet, op. 44, played by Mme. Thérèse Chaigneau-Rummel, Mme. Joachim-Chaigneau. Jean Alix, Maurice Vieux and Mme. Piazza-Chaigneau; the “Winterreise,” Schubert, sung by Reinhold von Warlich, with Mme. Chaigneau- Rummel at the piano. and “Concerts royaux,” Couperin, by the Trio Chaigneau.
French exponents of chamber music rarely attain to the admirable perfection of ensemble, tone and rhythmical beauty achieved by the executants of the Schumann Quintet and Couperin Concerto yesterday afternoon. The exquisite finish and splendid taste with which these works were rendered met with deserved recognition by the large audience. The art of Reinhold von Warlich is already well known to MUSICAL AMERICA readers. His interpretation of the “Winterreise” was in every way ideal. His variety of tone color and the subtlety of his phrasing are remarkable.
Sufficient praise can hardly be bestowed on Mme. Thérèse Chaigneau-Rummel for the manner in which she supported the singer in this song cycle. Her accompaniments formed a most important part of the performance. She is one of the few piano soloists who know how to play accompaniments.
A Band Composed of Madmen
We are grateful to the editorial department of the Paris Daily Mail for the original of an amusing article from a correspondent in Italy who relates that there is a large asylum for the mentally deficient at a small town near Milan which has its own private band composed entirely of madmen, with the exception of the leader. All told they number nineteen, and all except three learned to play their instruments at the asylum. A carpenter plays the flute, a cook the cornet, a shoemaker the trombone, a tailor the oboe, and so on. Especially good on the piccolo is a former milkman, while an ex-barber vigorously pounds the big drum. The quality of the music discoursed by these crazy musicians is stated to be as pleasing to the inhabitants of the town, where they give frequent concerts, as it is to themselves. This year the band, in view of the Verdi centenary, has devoted most of its energy to that composer, in whose works they are said to excel particularly—which may or may not be taken as a compliment to Verdi.
“Les Trois Masques,” the clever opera by Isidore de Lara, which was threatened with oblivion by the sudden demise of the Champs Elysées Opera House, is now being given at the Théâtre de Sarah Bernhardt, five representations having been arranged with the same cast, chorus and orchestra that interpreted the work in its original home. —C. PHILLIPS VIERKE.

Raymond Roze Trying It at Covent Garden—Not Much Interest Aroused

LONDON, Nov. I5 .—The opera-in-English enterprise of Raymond Roze at Covent Garden continues its course, smoothly and securely, unimpeded by financial difficulties, though certainly not propelled by any vast amount of popular enthusiasm and interest. Now that “Joan of Arc” has been sufficiently dangled before the public gaze, the management is trying its luck with Wagner and “Tristan and Isolde” with “many innovations” has been the first choice. So far the performances have not aroused any exuberant exclamations from the press, nor has the complaint of over-filled audiences greeted the ear.
The fact has been once again emphasised that the popular mind has not yet reached that standard of training and education requisite for sustaining the proper interest in grand opera. Compare the average Englishman‘s acquaintance with grand opera and that of the average German! And how many people out of a hundred in this country have ever heard opera even, in its simplest and easiest form? But far from casting aspersions on Mr. Roze‘s work, one is all the more ready to recognise the enormous amount of good he must be doing. — F. J. T.

Messrs. Jacobs and Tuckerman and Lily Dorn Well Received

The first of the series of concerts for school children given in public and high school auditoriums under the au-spices of the Wage Earners Theater Leagues and the Theater Center for Schools was held on November 21 at Morris High School. Those who participated in the program were: Max Jacobs, violinist of the Max Jacobs Quartet; Lily Dorn, soprano; Earl Tuckerman, baritone, and Ira Jacobs, accompanist.
Mr. Jacobs offered Kreisler‘s “Caprice Viennois” and “Liehesfreud,” Zimbalist‘s “Orientale.” a Polonaise of Wieniawski and “Gypsy Airs” by Nachez with his customary artistic skill. Miss Dorn proved pleasing in Lang‘s “M avourneen,” Massenet‘s “Elegv,” “Boat-Song” by Harriet Ware and Gounod‘s “Ave Maria,” the last being sung with a violin obbligato by Mr. Jacobs. Mr. Tuckerman scored a decided success with Schumann‘s “The Two Grenadiers.” His singing of Newcomb‘s “Two Maidens” and “The Indifferent Mariner” were equally well received by the audience.

Severn Suite Feature of Henius Club‘s American Program
The first musicale of the newly organized Joseph Henius Club of American music was held on November 19 at the New York residence of Ottilie Amend. The program was made up mostly of compositions by Americans, although there were one or two numbers by Debussy and Massenet. A number which proved of much interest was the violin and piano suite “From Old New England” by Edmund Severn, which was introduced by the composer himself with some humorous remarks. The suite was well played by Carl Tollefson, violinist, and Mme. Schnahel- Tollefson, pianist. The other soloists were Lucile Roesing Griffey, soprano; Carlos Salzedo, harpist, and Christine Schultz, contralto. Compositions of the following American composers were offered: A. Walter Kramer, Arthur Bergh, Joseph Henius, Clough-Leighter, Arthur Farwell, Fdmund Severn, Mary Turner Salter, Cadman and Nevin.

George W. Reardon and Hazel Gleason in Joint Concert
George W. Reardon. Baritone, and Hazel Gleason, soprano, on November 20 gave a concert at the Reformed Church at Locust Valley, assisted by the Locust Valley Glee Club and the Matinecock Neighborhood Association Band. Mr. Reardon offered the “Toreador‘s Song” from “Carmen,” “Sound Argument” by Wilson, and participated in the duet. “Over the Heather,” of Mohr, all of which proved pleasing to the audience. Miss Gleason scored a decided success with “Who‘ll Buy My Lavender?” and Campbell-Tipton‘s “A Spirit Flower.”


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