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780*942 B72f 67-09300 


Fifty years of music 


SEF 6 
M? L 1993 
1 199* 


., liil ,1111 


K I K T Y Y K A II S K M 11 S I C 

Till-: AUTHOR 




First Published 


Great Britain 



FOREWORD ...... 9 

The House of Boosey 










The House of Chappell 





xn. QUEEN'S HALL . . . . ' . 102 















INDEX 197 


THE AUTHOR Frontispiece 


LITTLE FRIEND OF HERS . . facing page 38 



CHAPPELL & CO. ..... 82 





DURING THE WAR . . . . .190 




"THIS year, next year, some time, never." These 
are the few little words that have recently been 
causing me considerable perplexity. To be as brief 
as possible, I have been asked to collect and publish 
my musical reminiscences, the which cover a period 
of fifty years, dating from January 1880 to the 
present year of grace. To make my task more 
difficult, I have kept no diary, and so cannot 
specialise in dates. Obviously, then, the sooner I 
take my task in hand the better. 

I think I can give a fairly full summary of the 
many musical facts and features with which I have 
been associated, firstly at Messrs. Boosey's, and 
secondly at Messrs. ChappelPs, whose chairman I 
still am. 

I do not wish you to look upon these reminiscences 
as a history of fifty years of music. Treated from 
such a point of view, they would probably bore 
most of us to death. 

I want you to consider that you and I are going 
to have a chat about interesting things that have 
happened in the world of light music during the 
fifty years that I have been, naturally, a somewhat 
prominent figure. 

I am even prepared occasionally to digress if I 
find you nodding, till I have been able to assert 
my ability to keep you amused and awake. 

We shall discuss grand operas, light operas, 
concerts, serious and otherwise, publishing and 


performing rights in music, music piracies, and, 
more particularly, the desperate and costly lawsuits 
that have had to be embarked upon from time to 
time to teach the hardened Philistines - and their 
number is legion - that musical property is entitled 
to the same legal protection as other property. 

We have, further, to deal with the terrible inroads 
that have been made upon composers* rights by the 
invention of mechanical music. This new form of 
music has made shocking havoc of the sale of the 
composer's printed copy without any adequate 
monetary compensation to the owner of the same. 

One of the most potent factors in the future of 
music has been the introduction of broadcasting, 
which, so long as a reasonable sum is paid to the 
composer for the use of his work, does make him 
some amends. 

Finally, I will endeavour as far as possible to give 
an idea of the personality of some of the various 
artistes I have met, both men and women, without 
a knowledge of whom it is very difficult to appre- 
ciate the world of music as it actually exists. 

The Howe of Boosey 



IN 1880 I was just sixteen years of age. My uncle, 
John Boosey, the director of the publishing depart- 
ment of Boosey & Co., had adopted me, and had me 
educated at the Charterhouse. Partly, perhaps, on 
account of his already failing health, he was anxious 
I should at once embark on a business career. John 
Boosey had been for many years a conspicuous 
figure in the music-publishing world. He knew very 
little about music, but he had a fine taste for 
literature. He was a man of exceptional ability, 
and would no doubt have made a big position for 
himself, no matter what business or profession he 
had adopted. 

It is curious to recall the circumstances which 
eventually necessitated Messrs. Boosey & Co. giving 
up their old-established book-publishing business 
and devoting their time entirely to music publishing. 

My great-great-grandfather was a parson. I 
expect it was from him that I inherited the austere 
side of my character. My great-grandfather was 
originally a book publisher. His address was Pater- 
noster Row. In the course of his business he had 
occasion to import a great quantity of foreign music, 
particularly operatic music, into this country. It 
was about this time that Verdi was already becom- 
ing famous by the production of his epoch-making 



operas, II Trovatore and La Traviata, to mention only 
two among a long series of remarkable successes. 
Messrs. Boosey were the sole agents for these and 
other Italian operas, the publishing rights of which 
they controlled for this country. It was obvious 
that here was an entirely fresh field for publishing 
only waiting to be exploited. By degrees, therefore, 
Boosey & Co. devoted less time and attention to the 
literary side of their business, and, by the time they 
settled down in their new home in Holies Street, the 
whole of their efforts was devoted to the pushing 
of their by now very remarkable musical catalogue. 

Some time, however, after they had established 
themselves as music publishers, they received 
a severe check. They had always looked upon 
themselves as owning the copyright for Great 
Britain in these various foreign publications. Other 
music publishers, no doubt jealous of their success, 
questioned the validity of their title. It was claimed 
that, under the then existing copyright law, the 
works were non-copyright. The opera that was made 
a test case of was Bellini's Sonnambula (Jeffrys v. 
Boosey). The judge's ruling was against Messrs. 
Boosey & Co. In consequence, Boosey & Co. not 
only lost a very expensive lawsuit, but all their 
valuable Continental copyrights into the bargain. 
John Boosey, who had a considerable knowledge 
of copyright law, always maintained he thought the 
position might have been reversed on appeal. I 
never went sufficiently into the subject to form an 

Meanwhile, it was evident Messrs. Boosey* & Co. 
must build up their catalogue in another direction, 
and John Boosey lost no time in shaping his musical 
adventures afresh. He was one of the first, if not the 
first, English publisher to publish cheap editions of 


all the classical pianoforte music, thus bringing it 
within reach of that public who had not had the 
opportunity or perhaps money to buy it before. 

As a matter of fact, at the time I am writing of, 
most big music-publishing houses ran a musical 
library, and any music required of a classical or 
serious nature could always be obtained through 
the same. There were many more music-publishing 
houses in those days than we can find in London 
to-day. The three leading houses were always 
Boosey & Co., Chappell & Co., and Novello & Co. 
Messrs. Augener and Schott represented important 
foreign catalogues, and other prominent publishing 
houses were Messrs. Hutchings & Homer; Ashdown; 
Enoch; Cramer; Francis, Day & Hunter; Joseph 
Williams, also Robert Cocks. 

John Boosey, by way of striking out another new 
line in publishing, decided to make a feature of 
British ballads. The concerts were the outcome of a 
chat between Madame Sainton Dolby and John 
Boosey. The actual year of the first ballad concert 
was 1867, but ballad concerts did not concern me 
until I arrived at Boosey's in 1880. The concerts 
were given at St. James's Hall. 

St. James's Hall was owned by a private company, 
but a great proportion of the shares were held by 
the Chappell family. Thomas Patey Chappell, the 
head of Chappell & Co., was chairman of the com- 
pany, and his brother, Arthur, for many years 
directed the Saturday and Monday Popular cham- 
ber concerts, which were one of the most con- 
spicuous musical features of the hall. John Boosey, 
therefore, had to be content with concerts on a 
Wednesday afternoon or evening, and his concerts 
obviously were of a completely different character 
from those run by Chappell's. John Boosey's object 


in giving these concerts was to engage the best 
ballad writers of the day, and also the best English 
singers obtainable. By this means he obtained almost 
a monopoly in this class of publication. 

It would take far too long to give the names of 
the various famous artistes, both vocal and instru- 
mental, who appeared at these concerts, but in 
passing I may mention, among others, Madame 
Carlotta Patti, Miss Louisa Pyne, Madame Sainton 
Dolby, Madame Antoinette Sterling, Madame Tre- 
belli, and Madame Patey, who, with Weatherly and 
Stephen Adams, godfathered "Children of the City," 

Eyes that never saw a meadow, 
Hands that never plucked a flower, 

were two of Weatherly's happiest lines. Sims Reeves 
was, of course, the star turn. Other distinguished 
artistes were Edward Lloyd, Foli, and Charles 
Santley. Carlotta Patti had a very beautiful 
voice and was a great artiste. Unfortunately she 
was afflicted with lameness, otherwise it was the 
opinion of a great many critics she might have vied 
with her sister, Adelina, on the lyric stage. 

Sims Reeves, of course, was always an enormous 
draw - 1 should say he was the biggest draw as an 
English artiste, whether for oratorio or popular 
concerts, that our concert world has ever known. 
The trouble was you never could tell whether he was 
going to turn up. An impression on the part of the 
public was that he did not take sufficient care of 
himself. This is quite inaccurate. He was a most 
careful man in his living, and, through the anxiety 
of his wife, almost too much care was bestowed in 
endeavouring to shelter him from every possible ill 
or accident. I remember a very humorous incident 


happening on one occasion. Sims Reeves was down 
in the programme to sing for the first time a new 
song, words by Longfellow, and I think music by 
John Francis Barnett. The song had a most un- 
fortunate title. Longfellow's two first lines began as 

Stay, stay at home, to stay at home is best, 
Home-keeping hearts are the happiest. 

The moment Sims Reeves endeavoured to impart 
these absolutely praiseworthy sentiments to the 
public, a roar of laughter went all round the hall, 
and he was compelled to come to a dead stop. He 
looked round in amazement, and could not think 
what had made people laugh. However, he was the 
idol of the public, so they very speedily settled 
themselves down and allowed him to tell them all 
about the beauty and comfort of staying at home. 
While on the subject of Sims Reeves, I may note that 
Tennyson's poems were just becoming famous. Soon 
after the publication of his "Maud, ' 'John Boosey sent 
the poem "Come into the Garden, Maud" up to Balfe 
and asked him if he would set it as a tenor song for 
Sims Reeves. Needless to say, Balfe's inspiration 
was a most happy one. Sims Reeves made a big hit 
in the song, and it is still a classic ballad to-day. Of 
course this all happened long before my time. 

Another great favourite was Madame Antoinette 
Sterling. Her musical education had probably been 
very sketchy, but she had a gorgeous voice, and in 
songs like Arthur Sullivan's "Lost Chord," the 
Scotch song "Caller Herrin'," and "The Better 
Land," by F. H. Cowen, she used to bring down the 
house. Molloy and F. E. Weatherly's little gem of a 
song, "Darby and Joan" was another great favourite. 
If in a hundred years' time the whole world has not 



flown itself to death or motored itself to death - in 
fact, is not a sheer tangled wreck, owing to the mania 
for speed - some dear old gentlemen with a love for 
antiquities and folk songs will unearth such a ballad 
as "Darby and Joan" and discuss the marvellous 
beauties of the folk songs of a generation ago. 

Handsome Michael Maybrick, as is well known, 
composed songs under the nom de plume of Stephen 
Adams. He was particularly happy in the songs he 
wrote for Edward Lloyd. "The Blue Alsatian 
Mountains," "The Maid of the Mill," "The Star of 
Bethlehem," and "The Holy City" are among the 
many hits Edward Lloyd helped him to, "The 
Holy City" sold by millions of copies in America* 
This class of song was often, and I believe still is, 
sung in the American churches. We must not forget 
also Stephen Adams 5 famous song "Nancy Lee." 
When Maybrick first brought it to John Boosey, it 
had sentimental words. John Boosey said it must be 
a sea song, and he was right. Some of us possibly 
can still remember a very droll sketch by Du Maurier 
in Punch, depicting an evening party at which ten 
young baritones turned up, each armed with a copy 
of "Nancy Lee." This, of course, was long before the 
vogue for community singing. Maybrick used to 
tell a very funny story against himself. He and 
Molloy had been dining with John Boosey a little 
way out of town. They talked so much that they 
lost every means of conveyance home and had to 
walk. Molloy mixed very little in the musical world, 
so there is some excuse for what followed. Maybrick 
had been singing at John Boosey's, and Molloy said 
to him half way up to Town: "You have got a 
splendid voice, Maybrick; what a pity you waste it 
on those rubbishy songs of Stephen Adams'!" Both 
gentlemen reached Town safely, so presumably no 


blood was shed. After the sad tragedy of his brother's 
death, Maybrick's appearances on the concert plat- 
form were few and far between. 

Molloy was a great raconteur. It was he who told me 
the delightful tale of two bachelor friends who never 
had a secret from each other. Suddenly one man, to 
the great surprise of his friend, got married. He asked 
his friend down to meet his wife. After dinner his 
wife retired into the drawing-room, and the married 
man said to his friend across the table: "Tell me, what 
do you think of my wife?" "Well," said his friend, "I 
don't like her!" "Neither do I," said the married man. 

Another interesting remembrance was the way in 
which Theo Marzials was discovered. He had pub- 
lished his charming little ballad, "Twickenham 
Ferry," on his own account at Messrs. Weekes in 
Hanover Square. Randegger brought Marzials' song 
and, last but not least, the new Welsh soprano, Mary 
Davies, to John Boosey. He at once recognised the 
charm of the composer, who often wrote his own 
words, and the possibilities of thenewsoprano. Mary 
Davies was engaged for the ballad concerts, and parti- 
cularly in Marzials ' ballads became one of the principal 
attractions. She had a keen sense of humour, also a 
very refined and beautiful style in serious work. Her 
rendering of "Rose Softly Blooming" and Mendels- 
sohn's "Hear My Prayer" were perfection. 

Diplomacy is a valuable quality in publishing, as 
in most other walks of life. On one occasion when I 
was away from Boosey's, Marzials sent up a manu- 
script, "Never to Know." On my return, John Boosey 
said: "That manuscript of Marzials is no good; send 
it back." I looked at it and liked it, but I did not say 
so. I used to casually play it at home. One morning, 
John Boosey said: "What is that you are playing?" 
444 Never to Know,'" I replied. "Have you sent it 


back?" he enquired. "No," I said, "I have been too 
busy." "Keep it," he said; "it will be a success." 
And it was. 

Marzials used to pretend his nationality was 
obscure, as he was born in the train somewhere 
between Paris and Brussels. I believe he was dis- 
tantly related to the Brontes. 

It is curious how, if a composer once loses touch 
with his public, he never regains it, even if he 
recommences to write as well as ever. Authors 
probably suffer from the same experience. Marzials' 
royalties on the sale of his songs dwindled by degrees 
almost to nothing. His last letter acknowledging 
a small cheque was quite in his old vein: "Thanks 
for your cheque," he wrote, "it won't make me 
much richer nor you much poorer, thank God." 

Charles Santley was another favourite who had a 
wonderful sense of humour. "The Vicar of Bray," 
"Simon the Cellarer," and "The Curate's Song" by 
Gilbert and Sullivan were among his big successes. 
No one ever sang Hatton's famous song " To 
Anthea" as he sang it. "To Anthea" is probably 
the most inspired English love lyric, both in respect 
to its words and its music, that exists in the concert 
world of England to-day. It is curious to note how 
Hatton's songs now seem to be quite forgotten. 
"The Wreck of the Hesperus" is another fine ballad 
of his, which Santley used to made a big success 
with. It is hardly eyer heard now. 

Jack Foli was originally discovered, I believe, by 
his wife, in California. He was engaged upon the 
roughest work, but she heard him singing and brought 
him over to Europe to be educated. He was a real 
good-hearted fellow. I remember an occasion when 
Vert, the then celebrated agent, had run a tour in 
the provinces, for which Foli had been engaged. 


Foli knew that the tour had been very unsuccessful, 
but he did not learn it through Vert. When Vert 
handed him his cheque for the tour, he tore it up and 
threw it on the fire. I am reminded of another mu- 
sician who twice did the same thing in connection 
with myself. On two separate occasions I had bought 
a light opera of Howard Talbot's (he will be re- 
membered as the composer of The Chinese Honey- 
moon). Both these other operas, however, were 
total failures, and in both instances he tore up the 
cheque we had sent him and refused to accept a 
penny. Poor fellow, his real great stage success was 
The Arcadians, written in collaboration with Lionel 
Monckton. We must not forget, though, that his 
Chinese Honeymoon ran for one thousand nights at 
the Strand Theatre. 

It is all important to find the right new song for 
the right new singer. It is not so easy to make a suc- 
cess as a newcomer at a ballad concert, and prin- 
cipally for the reason that you only havethi^a-rwr 
four minutes on the platform r --jdui!iBg~^ : B3ch time 
you have got to get hold of your audience. Of 
course, some newcomers are lucky enough to have a 
new song in readiness for their first appearance 
which is absolutely adapted to their style. 

In this connection I am reminded of the occasion 
when Alfred Scott-Gatty brought Plunket Greene to 
me. Plunket Greene introduced the famous ballad 
"Off to Philadelphia," and of course made an ex- 
traordinary success immediately. We must not for- 
get, also, that Plunket Greene is the author of a 
delightful book on dry-fly fishing and its surround- 
ings. It is entitled Where Bright Waters Meet. 

Some new singers do not come to a concert al- 
ready equipped, and in their case it is a question of 
taking a lot of time and trouble to find a number 


that really suits them. I had great difficulty in find- 
ing a song for Muriel Foster. Her style was almost 
too severe for an ordinary ballad concert. Another 
artiste who wanted careful nursing was Susanne 
Adams. Neither of these artistes could claim they 
were handicapped by a poverty in good looks. 
Anyhow, they were both happily placed at the finish. 

Kennerley Rumford's first success at the ballad 
concerts was made in a burlesque version of "Long 
Ago in Alcala," from Messager's Mirette. He followed 
this up with Maude White's "Three Little Songs." 

I used to find ballad concerts handicapped by it 
being necessary so very frequently to repeat the 
same songs and solos over and over again. I oc- 
casionally introduced a totally different element into 
my programmes. On one occasion, Violet Cameron 
sang Tosti's "Good-bye/' Edna May also sang a 
ballad. The concert artistes, I am afraid, were scan- 
dalised. On another occasion a noted prima donna 
wrnte me a most indignant letter, because a bril- 
liant light-opera artiste appeared in the same pro- 
gramme as herself! I wrote and said I regretted her 
distress, but that at all events the light-opera artiste 
sang absolutely in tune. I heard no more. 

Among the humorous incidents of the old ballad 
concerts I notice that an unfortunate baritone, by 
name Alfred Moore, apparently always sang the 
last item on the programme, and, by a cruel shaft of 
satire, almost always seemed to sing the song with 
the, under the painful circumstances, distressing 
title of "Fly Not Yet." Imagine the unhappy public, 
after three solid hours of ballad singing, being 
requested by the last artiste on the programme 
to "Fly Not Yet. 5 ' I have no doubt a large number of 
them did fly before he sounded his imploring note. 



ONE of the greatest difficulties in the early days of 
music publishing was to know how adequately and 
fairly to pay a composer for his successes and to 
mitigate one's loss in the event of a failure. Many 
instances occurred of the purchase of valuable copy- 
rights, particularly operas, at the price of a mere 
song, the which works often resulted in a very big 
profit to the publisher. On the other hand, the pub- 
lisher would pay a heavy price for subsequent 
works the purchase of which would result in a dead 
loss. These results were obviously unsatisfactory 
both to composer and publisher. 

Two of the most noteworthy instances on record 
were in connection with two of the most popular 
operas ever written. The whole of the publishing 
rights in Gounod's Faust were acquired by Messrs. 
Chappell for a sum round about 100. It is true that 
Faust was not a pronounced success at its first pro- 
duction in Paris. It was Henry Chorley, the well- 
known critic and librettist, who always insisted that 
Faust was bound to become a big favourite with the 
public. Thomas Chappell had immense difficulty in 
securing its production in London. Would-be critics 
insisted there was only one striking melody, "The 
Soldiers' Chorus," in it. Thomas Chappell happened 
to know it was the late Queen Alexandra's favourite 
opera, and it was only his tact and insistence on this 



point that enabled him to place the opera with the 
two rival London opera managers of the day, Gye 
and Mapleson. 

Gounod's next opera was Mireille. John Boosey 
paid 1,000 for it. The music was delightful, the 
libretto impossible. The purchase was a melancholy 
one for Boosey & Co. 

The other instance was Lecocq's La Fille de Ma- 
dame Angot. Messrs. Boosey & Co. paid round about 
100 for the whole of the publishing rights in this 
opera. It was, of course, a gold-mine. Lecocq's next 
opera was entitled Pompon, named after the curious 
little knob that some French infantry regiments 
wore upon their casquettes. One thousand pounds 
was paid by Boosey's for this opera, and the opera 
was absolutely stillborn. 

If I remember rightly, Madame Angot, a classic 
in light opera if there ever was one, was refused in 
Paris, and was ultimately first produced in Brus- 
sels. I believe that Les Cloches de Corneville, by 
Planquette, had a similar experience. The most 
experienced of theatre managers may make mis- 
takes. Bizet's immortal opera Carmen was quite a 
failure upon its first production in Paris, The Merry 
Widow, Lehar's masterpiece, had a peculiar send 
off. It was ^produced by the Direction of the 
Theater an der Wien as a stopgap. The management 
had no belief in it. The Press was less than luke- 
warm. But the public took to the opera immediately. 

I remember Lowenfeld standing up in the dress 
circle of the Prince of Wales' Theatre after the dress 
rehearsal of Audran's La PoupSe, and saying he 
would sell the whole production, lock, stock, and 
barrel, for 500. Not that Lowenfeld was a manager 
of experience. Perhaps for this reason he loved to 
have a little argument with his public on a first 


night. Another production of his certainly did not 
please his first-night audience. He asked his audi- 
ence what was the matter with it. A wag in the 
gallery replied it was "made in Germany." 

I must confess I most strongly deprecate any 
speeches from the stage on a first night. The custom 
is constantly abused. It only panders to an hysterical 
element in the gallery. One cannot be surprised if 
one occasionally hears a voice from upstairs calling 
out: "This is very slow, I am going home!" 

Talking of opera composers, it seems pathetic to 
think what enormous sums would have been netted 
by composers such as Balfe and Wallace, had they 
not lived, in a sense, so long before the time when 
they might have come into their own. 

New ballads were often in the same predicament 
as new operas, so at last John Boosey, profiting by 
experience, decided that the only fair course was to 
pay composers a royalty upon all copies of their 
works sold, something like ten per cent, on the 
marked price of the copies. This was indeed a 
revolution, but a well deserved one. In due course, 
composers of position decided they would like to 
have a sum down on account of their royalties, and 
I certainly do not blame them. As soon as one 
publisher initiated the royalty system, the other 
publishers were naturally compelled to follow suit. 

The royalty system is practically unknown among 
French publishers. They generally pay the composer 
a lump sum for so many performances of an opera. 
They pay for each separate performance. The 
French publishers also control the material, that is 
to say the bnd parts, etc. These are only hired out 
to the theatre manager, Choudens, the well-known 
French publishers, must have made a fortune out of 
the hiring of the material of Faust and Carmen. 


These two operas, and many more published by 
Choudens, still bring in a handsome revenue. 
Heugel, of Paris, is also equally well placed, he 
being the publisher of practically all Massenet's 
works, in addition to many other operas, which 
help to make up the standard repertoire in France. 

French publishers are not always too generous to 
their composers. For some strange reason they have 
always refused to make them any payment upon 
the sale of discs of their compositions in connection 
with mechanical music. 

In this connection I was immensely struck by the 
hardship experienced by a little Italian composer, 
Silesu, with a composition entitled "Un Peu 
d' Amour." His French publisher purchased all his 
rights for all countries for 5. The French publisher 
offered it to Chappell's on a royalty basis, 3d. a 
copy, I believe, on all copies sold. It sold by thou- 
sands. It was after this that I discovered the posi- 
tion of the composer. I was so shocked - imagine a 
publisher being shocked - that I gave him a volun- 
tary royalty - 2 d. a copy, as far as I remember - 
on all further copies of the little work sold in Great 
Britain and America. I am glad to think that the 
poor little composer even then received some 
hundreds of pounds on the further sales of his com- 

In the old days the leading singers also received a 
royalty for a term of years upon all new songs intro- 
duced by them. Antoinette Sterling, for instance, 
would have a royalty on "The Lost Chord' 5 of 
Sullivan's, "The Better Land" of Cowen's, "Darby 
and Joan" and "Love's Old Sweet Song," both by 
Molloy. These are merely a few among her many 
successes. There was a special reason for giving the 
leading singers royalties, because if a leading 


soprano, contralto, tenor, or baritone introduced a 
new song at the ballad concerts, all the smaller 
singers, according to their voices, would take up the 
ballads made popular by the star artistes: After a 
while, however, a certain W. M. Hutchinson ap- 
peared on the horizon, and he saw at once, being 
publisher and composer, that he could never get his 
songs advertised through concerts under the big 
ballad concert system. He therefore approached all 
the smaller singers, and paid them so much a time 
for so many concerts, provided they sang one of the 
songs that he was pushing. The type of song that 
Hutchinson wrote and published was much of the 
same type that Lawrence Wright has made so popu- 
lar to-day. It is a class of song that appeals to quite 
a different public than the ordinary musical public, 
who are specially catered for by the big publishers. 

I was the first of the leading publishers to under- 
stand immediately that this new system was going 
to deal a severe blow to our old system, so, although 
we still paid the big singers royalties, I set to work at 
once subsidising the small singers in the same way 
that Hutchinson did. Hutchinson often used to say 
to me that art and he were strangers. I never dis- 
puted the fact with him. But he was certainly a 
very astute business man. 

I believe Dame Clara Butt is almost the only 
one, other than the artistes who preceded her, one 
might almost say by a generation, whose marvel- 
lous voice and strong personality compelled pub- 
lishers to pay her a royalty in the same way that 
royalties were paid to singers so many years pre- 

It seems a strange thing, seeing that in these days 
women can almost always do everything that a man 
can do - and can very often do it better - that in 


the realm of musical composition, although they 
have been extraordinarily successful as song writers 
and writers of dance music, they have practically 
never produced an opera or big musical work that 
has held the stage or concert platform. I approach 
this subject with extreme trepidation, because I feel 
somehow that Dame Ethel Smyth's penetrating eye 
is focused upon me., I can almost hear her saying: 
"What about me?" Granted she has gone much 
further than most women; but, as a rule, success has 
only come to the women who have written popular 

Before I arrived at Boosey's, Claribel's songs, 
although entirely unpretentious, were a household 
word. So were Virginia Gebriel's. They must have 
had a charm, as is witnessed by the big public they 
commanded. Madame Sainton Dolby, in addition to 
singing, used also to write ballads. 

Coming to a later date, we of course have the 
popular songs of Amy Woodforde-Finden. Her 
"Indian Love Lyrics" have had an enormous sale 
both here and in America. Liza Lehmann also had 
frequent successes. Some of her concerted vocal 
numbers in narrative form made an instant appeal. 
She was very happy with some of her settings of 
Lewis Carroll and other authors with rather a 
similar sense of humour. Her "Persian Garden" of 
course was a big success. I blush to say I refused it. 

Prominent also among English women writers is 
Maude Valerie White. There is, at times, something 
intensely virile about her music, and, in addition to 
being an admirable musician, she has an unfail- 
ing command of dramatic melody. She has been 
writing an opera for some years, but it has not yet 

When I first came to Boosey & Co.'s, women 


composers, and certainly new women composers, 
had ceased to be plentiful. I came across Florence 
Aylward through a chance MS. sent through the 
post. One very rarely picks up anything worth 
having submitted in this way. I gave Florence 
Aylward the words of "Beloved, It is Morn" to set, 
and it was her big success. 

Another woman composer who had a very big 
vogue was Hope Temple. She did not need dis- 
covering, she was one of the most beautiful girls in 
London. I found the words of u An Old Garden" 
and sent them to her. It is very useful if you can hit 
upon words which you think are adapted to a par- 
ticular composer, and make good with them. Hope 
Temple was very ambitious, and insisted on going to 
Paris to study music seriously. It very frequently 
happens that under these circumstances a composer 
loses his or her natural gift of simplicity and melody. 
She commenced her musical studies under Andr6 
Wormser, the composer of the delightful L'Enfant 
Prodigue. Sir Landon Ronald's brilliant rendering 
of the music of this play at the piano will not easily 
be forgotten by music lovers. Hope Temple subse- 
quently studied under Andre Messager, and, even- 
tually having married him, probably came to the 
conclusion she had studied him or with him suffi- 
ciently. I shall never forget my surprise at a musical 
at-home given by the Messagers in Paris. Reynaldo 
Hahn sat down at the piano and sang, in English, 
Hope Temple's "Colin Deep." The words were 
written by myself. 

Madame d'Hardelot for many years had a whole 
string of successes. Many Continental artistes of the 
first rank have made a feature of her songs, and 
naturally this sympathetic assistance has helped 
very much to establish her reputation. One of the 


most popular of her songs, "Because," was pub- 
lished by Chappell & Co. 

Another woman composer who has had very big 
hits is Teresa del Riego. "O Dry those Tears" had 
an immense sale here and in America. It only had 
one verse when she brought it to me, but I explained 
to her how easily she could add a second verse, 
without which the song would have been too short 
and slight to introduce at concerts. The song 
"Homing," introduced by Madame d'Alvarez, was 
another of her big successes. 

The fact remains that women, except in the 
lighter forms of music, have not been conspicu- 
ously successful. I am not overlooking Chaminade, 
with her delicate art and charm. 

Women's limitations are equally marked in the 
realms of poetry. An exception must be made, 
however, in connection with Elizabeth Barrett 
Browning's "Portuguese Sonnets," surely among the 
most beautiful love-sonnets in our language. 



MY experience of copyright lawsuits was not so 
varied at Boosey 's as it was destined to become later 
on at Chappell's. Not that John Boosey was a 
pacifist. He loved a fight over a copyright. And -his 
most devastating campaign was in connection with 
Villiers Stanford. He had read in various newspapers 
that Stanford was the coming English composer. 
John Boosey delighted to back up the coming 
man, a very spirited and correct frame of mind. 
Stanford certainly came, but in not quite the fashion 
that John Boosey contemplated. 

One of my first publishing experiences abroad 
was shortly after I came down from Charterhouse. 
John Boosey read in the Press that Stanford's first 
opera, The Veiled Prophet, had made a big success in 
Hanover. I was promptly packed off to Hanover to 
report upon it. I was so young that my elder cousin, 
C. T. Boosey, was sent over with me to chaperone 
me. When we arrived at Hanover, we found there 
would be no further performances of the opera for a 
week. If I remember rightly, the baritone had been 
dining out somewhat frequently. Well, we made the 
best of the situation. The same afternoon we visited 
the Hanover Zoological Gardens. There we met 
several English boys who were over in Hanover to be 
crammed in French and German. Among them was 
Charles Monckton, a younger brother of Lionel 



Monckton, also at Charterhouse, who was destined to 
be later on one of my most popular Chappell com- 
posers, Charles Monckton and I shared the dis- 
tinction of sitting at the bottom of the classical form 
during the first term we were at Charterhouse. 
Masters at classical schools such as Charterhouse 
do not recognise any claim to intelligence on the part 
of their scholars except through the medium of 
Latin or Greek. Monckton during a short stay in 
Hanover had perfected himself in French and 
German. My classical education being very deficient, 
my form master, Romanis, a delightful man other- 
wise, satisfied himself I was equally foolish in other 
educational directions. We read Shakespeare once a 
month. One afternoon, when we were reading Julius 
Ccesar, Romanis suddenly asked me: "Boosey, what 
is the meaning of the line: 'Shall Brutus bootless 
kneel 3 ? " I simply longed to say: " Without his 
boots, sir," but, being at that time young and timid, 
I gave him the correct answer. Later in the afternoon 
he asked the form what was the difference between 
the speeches of Mark Antony and Brutus. The class- 
ical scholars did not know. It was an easy question. 
I said: "Mark Antony appealed to their passions, 
Brutus to their reason. 55 "Come up top, Boosey, 55 he 
said. Once there, however, and classical authors 
being restarted, I rapidly made my way down to the 
bottom of the form again. I was really rather glad, 
because Monckton honestly seemed to have missed 
me, and was genuinely glad to have me back again. 
When the examinations came on at the end of the 
term, I obtained 98 points out of a possible 100 
for the Shakespeare paper. I think Brutus's boots 
must have pulled me through. I merely mention this 
little incident to draw attention to some of the 
peculiarities of a classical education. 


Another humorous incident occurred at the same 
time. I must note it before I forget it. I sent a little 
poem to the Carthusian., the school paper. The 
editor replied to me through the agony column: 
"Poeta nascitur non fit." Even my scanty know- 
ledge of Latin enabled me to perceive that the 
editor thought none too well of me. Nothing 
daunted, I sent the poem to the Weekly Graphic, 
then edited by Arthur Locker, the father of poor 
Locker who died the other day. A few days later a 
little rosy- faced boy with black curly hair who was 
at Gown Boys introduced himself to me, and said 
his father had written to him to ask if I was one of 
the masters or one of the boys. I should add that 
the Graphic sent me a very pleasant little honor- 
arium for my poem, the proceeds of which I rapidly 
conveyed to the school tuck-shop. 

Upon the night of Forbes-Robertson's representa- 
tion of Hamlet at Drury Lane, his definite retire- 
ment from the stage, some twenty old Carthusians, 
among whom, for some obscure reason, I was pre- 
sent, gave him a little supper at the Carlton Hotel. 
On looking through the list of those present, I 
noticed the name of my little friend Locker. I found 
a big man with a black beard, but with the same 
kindly face that graced him years before. He intro- 
duced himself to me, said he easily recognised me 
again, and we had a chat over old days. He himself, 
as we all know, made a big position for himself in 
the journalistic world. 

To get back to music. I should add here that the 
kindly German baritone had a second round of din- 
ners, in consequence of which we stayed another 
week in Hanover. I am not sure Boosey's did not 
suspect us of taking the baritone out! 

This is all a digression, you will say, and has 



nothing to do with lawsuits. I admit it. But I warned 
you. Now to return to the dusty atmosphere of the 
Law Courts. 

Well, John Boosey asked what I thought of The 
Veiled Prophet. I said it was a very effective opera, 
but I did not see commercial possibilities in it. There 
was one beautiful old Irish air in it, "Bendemeer's 
Stream," delightfully handled by Stanford. John 
Boosey said that if the opera was effective on the 
stage, he was satisfied and would buy it. He did not 
seem to take into account the fact that the central 
figure, the Prophet, had to appear all through the 
evening heavily veiled. So John Boosey went ahead. 
He bought for a big sum Savonarola, Stanford's 
next opera, and subsequently gave Gilbert a Becket 
and Stanford a commission to write a third opera, 
The Canterbury Pilgrims. This work was produced 
by Carl Rosa at Drury Lane Theatre. 

So far John Boosey had not heard a note of Stan- 
ford's operas on the stage. He and I had the stage box 
for the first performance of The Canterbury Pilgrims 
at Drury Lane. In due course we listened to the over- 
ture. John Boosey looked at me, I thought, rather 
wistfully. "A little like Mozart," he said. "Yes, a 
little," I replied, by way of cheering him up. Well, I 
was never quite sure if it was Mozart or Stanford who 
disappointed him. But he left the box quite early, 
and did not appear again. Subsequently, Stanford 
called on me at Boosey's, and said I should be glad 
to hear that Frank was giving a series of opera per- 
formances at Drury Lane in German, and was going 
to produce Savonarola. I said I was very glad to 
hear it; but that, of course, as he had already re- 
ceived 500 when the opera was produced in Ger- 
many, he would not expect a second payment of 
500, which was due upon the first production of 


the work in London. Stanford said he certainly did 
expect the second 500. This was the subject of the 
lawsuit. John Boosey had rather thoughtlessly made 
the contract for the second payment to turn upon 
the production of the opera in London and not in 
English. A season of German opera had never been 
given in London before, hence John Boosey's mis- 
take. Upon this point he fought the action, and I 
think quite justifiably lost it. I said to John Boosey, 
however : "You have bought, at Stanford's re- 
quest, the performing rights in the book. If Frank 
wishes to produce the opera, you are entitled to 
demand a sum for the performance of the libretto." 
This perfectly fair demand was met by a refusal. 
The judge's ruling was that the opera was of no use 
to Stanford unless he controlled the libretto, which 
we had paid for. I have always maintained that, had 
this decision been taken to the Court of Appeal, we 
had every chance of upsetting it. John Boosey, how- 
ever, was so weary of the money spent, and the 
worry of it all, that he decided not to appeal, and 
that was the end of my first serious lawsuit. 

The second lawsuit was of a lighter character. A 
country manager called on me one day and said he 
wanted to give a revival of Offenbach's Brigands in 
the provinces. John Boosey had acquired the copy- 
right of practically all Offenbach's operas. The Grand 
Duchess, Trebizand, and many others. I told the 
manager we were quite prepared to license the 
Brigands, and that it had the inestimable advantage 
of an English adaptation by the great W. S. Gilbert. 
The contract was accordingly practically settled. 
Meanwhile, I thought it would be very unfair to 
Gilbert to produce a juvenile work of his after he had 
justly acquired such a great reputation, so, although 
we had bought all rights in his libretto, I wrote to 


him explaining all the circumstances, and said if he 
would revise his work, we would tear up the old 
agreement and make any terms with him for the new 
version that were fair and reasonable. Mr. Gilbert's 
reply was characteristic: 

"DEAR SIR" (he wrote me), -"You know per- 
fectly well my version of the Brigands was never 
intended for stage representation; it was only a 
hack translation for copyright purposes, and I 
shall always retain a vivid sense of your dis- 
courtesy in not consulting me in connection with 
your proposal to revive the work." 

Obviously I had nothing to reply to this. Let the 
good work proceed, said I. Incidentally, Mr. W. S. 
Gilbert's statement was incorrect. No doubt he had 
forgotten. His version of the Brigands had been 
produced for a run in the provinces some time pre- 
viously. I was able to produce the programmes of 
these performances. Mr. Gilbert's next move was to 
apply for an injunction to restrain us from pro- 
ducing his version of the opera. 

The application came before Mr. Justice Denman 
late in the afternoon after a heavy day. I was very 
dissatisfied with the way our case was presented by 
a well-known Q.C. of his day. By the merest accident 
Mr. Justice Denman said that the argument was 
very complicated, and that he would take the case 
the first thing in the morning. That delay just saved 
us. I said to our solicitors, upon the adjournment, 
that I could not permit the Q.C. to take our case into 
court the following morning. My solicitors were 
dumbfounded. "What are we to do?" they said. 
"Such a situation has never arisen before." "I am 
sorry," I said, "but it has arisen now. It is vital I 


win this action. I wish the junior to take the case 
into court." I insisted, and the necessary steps were 
taken. The following morning, when we went down 
to the Law Courts, a telegram awaited us from John 
Boosey, who was very ill at the time. He said we 
must settle with Gilbert at all costs. "What are we 
to do?" said our solicitors. "All the expense has been 
incurred," I said. "We will adopt John Boosey's 
advice when the case has been heard." So we went 
ahead, and we won hands down. John Boosey was 
duly grateful. And, strange to say, the Q.C. was 
sweetly amiable, and on a later occasion in the Law 
Courts he invited me to tea with him. Needless to 
say, I did not go, although I thanked him in my 
best diplomatic manner. 

Awkward situations often arise between counsel 
and clients in the Law Courts. Some years later, 
when I was fighting a desperate battle against the 
music pirates in connection with copyright, our 
counsel, who was a most gifted and brilliant man, 
was not able to turn up in court on the most vital 
day of our argument. He sent a demand for 40 
as his refresher, although he was not there. I 
refused to pay. "You can never engage him again 
if you don't pay," said my solicitors. "I am terribly 
sorry," I said, "but I won't pay" ; and I didn't. 
There are certain traditions in the Law Courts 
which it is very difficult for a layman to understand. 
This was one of them. 

To return to Gilbert. Only recently I turned up a 
very charming letter from Sir Arthur Sullivan asking 
if he could not mediate between us. I explained how 
hopelessly impossible it was. Gilbert, having lost 
his action, wrote to The Times saying it was very 
unfair that Keen and Colman could protect their 
mustards and that he could not protect his literary 


property. I replied to The Times that the only al- 
teration I had made in his work was to cut out one 
lyric. I asked them to print it, since he apparently 
attached so much importance to it. This they did. 
It really was a very bad, let us say sad, lyric. Gilbert 
replied that, his work being a translation, he could 
not be responsible for the gymnastics of the French 
authors, Meilhac and Halevy. I am compelled to tell 
this story as it happened. But I am equally com- 
pelled to add, being in no hope of favours to come, 
that no one has a greater admiration of Gilbert's 
talent as a master of the art of writing lyrics than I 
have myself. Thus ended my second important ex- 
perience of copyright legislation and the Law Courts. 




I REMEMBER being present one day on the stage at 
Drury Lane when Gus Harris was producing a new 
melodrama. I forget for the moment the name of the 
play, but it was the one that introduced the De- 
fence of Rorke's Drift. I suddenly noticed Gus con- 
ducting round the stage, with great cordiality, a 
newcomer who was unknown to me* He was invited 
to inspect the Maxim guns and all the other stage 
properties that were to give an air of reality to the 
mock combat that was to follow. On enquiry I 
found that the newcomer was Harry Higgins. Hig- 
gins, with Lady de Grey and other Society leaders, 
was organising a syndicate that, under Harris' di- 
rectorship, was to revive grand opera in all its former 
splendour at one or the other of the national 
theatres, Covent Garden or Drury Lane. If I re- 
member rightly, Gus Harris for a short time ran 
grand opera at both these theatres simultaneously. 
It was the introduction to the British public of those 
great artistes, Jean and Edouard de Reszke and 
Planon. Also - although ladies should be mentioned 
first - of Melba, Madame Emma Eames, Calv6, and 
others. I am only mentioning a few prominent 

For some seasons, Harris, with Higgins 5 support, 
kept this venture going by means of subscriptions 
from all the most prominent members of Society. 



It was the first serious attempt, since the rivalry 
in the old days between Gye and Mapleson, to pre- 
sent grand opera in London upon a grand scale. 

We must remember that grand opera has never 
received any Government support or subsidy in this 
country. Grand opera could not exist in any of the 
leading capitals of Europe without liberal State aid. 

The latest suggestion of a subsidy from the State, 
of 17,500 per annum, for the stabilisation of grand 
opera in this country is, of course, an extremely 
humorous one! 

Higgins was at one time a Guardsman, and was 
eventually a very prominent solicitor. He had a 
pronounced sense of humour. On one occasion a 
prima donna from abroad was asking him very high 
terms for an appearance. Higgins, in the whisper of 
a voice which he was compelled to make use of, 
murmured in her ear: "We are only asking you to 
sing, you know!" 

When the Harris-Higgins combination faded 
away, other brilliant seasons were given at Covent 
Garden, many of them too recent to make it neces- 
sary for me to give details of them. But their exist- 
ence is generally limited to only twelve weeks in the 
year. Opera on this scale has never been possible 
for a longer term, and it remains very much a 
fashion of Society, a hot-house plant. There has 
never been a sufficiently large public in London to 
support opera for any longer space of time. Of 
course, the expenses were and are enormous, as also 
are those of orchestral concerts generally. 

Talking of grand opera brings my memory back 
to poor Goring Thomas. He never contrived to have 
either of his operas Nadeshda or Esmeralda pro- 
duced during the grand opera season. They were 
produced by Carl Rosa. 


No amount of experience can guarantee you 
against not occasionally missing a composer who is 
destined to become popular. On the other hand, 
some composers, through no apparent fault of theirs, 
never attain the popularity their works entitle them 
to. There may be causes and accidents beyond their 

Goring Thomas had a most refined and delightful 
gift in composition. He had studied mostly in Paris, 
and the school that influenced him was obviously the 
French school of Massenet and his followers. Natu- 
rally, he was not content to be merely a writer of 
poetical imaginative songs, although they did, 
and rightly, attain a wide popularity. I have only 
to cite "A Summer Night" and "Time's Garden" 
among the most prominent of them. 

His whole thoughts were centred upon a success in 
opera. Both his grand operas produced in London 
only had a succds d'estime, and I think it broke his 
heart. His first opera, Esmeralda, founded upon 
Notre Dame of Victor Hugo, contained some de- 
lightful music and a great deal of real poetry, the 
libretto being by Theo Marzials. Georgina Burns, 
Barton McGuckin, my old friend Ben Davies, and 
Leslie Crotty were all in the caste. Nadeshda, in 
which that very charming woman and admirable 
actress, Madame Valleria, appeared, was even less 
successful than Esmeralda. 

It is true that this British soil is an arid soil for 
the cultivation of grand opera in any case. 

A short while before his last illness I offered 
Goring Thomas, on behalf of Boosey & Co., a settled 
income for three years, leaving it entirely to him to 
devote himself to any form of composition he pleased. 
Whilst very grateful for the offer, he said he could 
not accept it. He would feel tied. 


He was one of the most delightful and gentle of 
men, the essence of courtesy and consideration for 
all he met. He could not have had an enemy in the 
world. He always reminded me in type of another 
old friend of mine now dead, Sir Frank Dicksee. 
In their separate arts they were equally first of all in 
search of beauty, and the enemies of the affectations 
that so often pass for art in this present day. 

Prima donnas of distinction are always in one 
sense or another interesting personalities. I re- 
member the late Dame Melba once telling me 
that I had no conception of the enormous power and 
influence which a great prima donna exercised both 
in the political, social, and financial world. I said 
I quite appreciated that the position must be a very 
commanding one. 

One of the most remarkable instances of the 
advent to fame in the case of a prima donna, in my 
opinion, came with the first appearance in this 
country of Madame Tetrazzini. She had sung for 
some years in South America and in the Western 
States with considerable success. I think I am right, 
however, in saying that her first big European suc- 
cess was made in England some years ago at Covent 
Garden. The critics suddenly discovered that she 
was another Patti, and such was the force of public 
and musical opinion in this country that Tetrazzini 
from that time forth did occupy the position of a 
big prima donna, and, with it, all the commanding 
influence that Melba stated to me appertained to 
the distinction. 

I can still just remember Madame Patti and 
Madame Christine Neilson. I remember as a small 
boy asking Josiah Pitman, at that time a well- 
known factotum at Covent Garden, if he could let me 
have two tickets to hear Patti at the opera. His 


reply was very significant. "My dear boy/' he said, 
"I cannot oblige you. You do not seem to realise 
that Patti's notes are banknotes!" The last time 
I heard Christine Neilson sing was at a concert at the 
Albert Hall. I remember she walked up and down 
the platform the whole time she was singing. It 
seemed to give her more freedom. 

I remember on one occasion a prima donna being 
furious because she had paid for thirty bouquets to 
be handed to her over the footlights upon a very 
important first night of a new opera, and only 
twenty-eight bouquets turned up! 

Upon another occasion a very famous prima 
donna arrived late for a rehearsal. The musical 
conductor, also a very great man, was an autocrat. 
"You are late, madame," he said. "Late," she 
replied; "you forget I am a star." I suppose she 
imagined it was the privilege of stars to be only 
visible at a very late hour. The conductor replied, 
witheringly, "Madame, the only stars I recognise 
are those that are in heaven!" Many curious inci- 
dents followed upon this first meeting. 

Miss Mary Garden was another very interesting 
personality. When I first met her she was possessed 
with a desire to assume more liberal proportions 
physically. Evidently she shares the opinions of the 
witty Frenchman who stated that there were three 
sexes: "L'homme, la femme, et la femme maigre!" 
In our day la femme maigre has been taking pre- 
cedence of la femme. I am all for la femme. It is so 
long since I last met Mary that I am unaware if she 
attained her ambition in this direction. She has 
certainly attained it in other directions. In America 
she is more than a prima donna, she is a director of 
prima donnas and grand opera. She of course was 
always an enormous favourite in Paris. It was not on 


account of the quality of her voice, but because of 
the artistry of her singing. In Paris they attach far 
more importance to this quality than to the sheer 
quality of the voice itself. It speaks much for their 
artistic perceptions. I remember hearing Mary 
Garden in Manon of Massenet's at Brussels. I have 
never forgotten the impression she gave me of being 
a very great comedienne. 

I remember Tom Chappell once telling me that in 
the old days, before my time, when Madame Grisi, 
Mario, and Ronconi were enormously popular, they 
had the greatest dislike of appearing at private 
musical at-homes. I believe all three of them, by 
way of putting a prohibitive price upon these en- 
gagements, refused to appear at any of them for a 
sum of less than 30 each for the evening. How these 
conditions make us smile when we remember the 
enormous sums that musical stars to-day command 
when asked to appear at Society functions. 

Madame Calv, of course, I know very well. She is 
delightful company. 

I also just remember hearing Madame Gallet 
Marie at His Majesty's Theatre many years ago in 
Carmen. She was the original creator of Carmen in 
Paris. Naturally, her physical equipment when I 
heard her was gravely impaired, but one could well 
understand how it was she made such a big success 
in this amazing r61e. 

Destinn had a gorgeous voice, and was superb in 
rdles like Madame Butterfly, although she was not 
physically suited to the part. 

As far as I can remember, the last concert I ever 
gave at the Queen's Hall was a recital for Frieda 
Hempel, unrivalled in her rendering of Mozart 

Madame Nordica was another very beautiful 


prima donna. Her husband went up one day in a 
balloon and never came down again. I am perfectly 
certain it was not because he had any wish to run 
away from her. 

I must not forget that delightful prima donna, 
Jeritza, whom I met on one of my return visits from 
America. She used to play a great deal of chess with 
her husband, and it seemed to me she generally con- 
trived to win. I came to the conclusion eventually, 
however, that it was perhaps just the natural 
chivalry of our sex - we being always prepared to 
make any sacrifice so long as we can add to the 
happiness and content of a pretty and charming 
woman - that permitted of these victories. 



IN my early days at Boosey's one of the most suc- 
cessful composers of operettas was Edmond Audran. 
Audran's operetta Olivette, which was a failure in 
Paris, had been produced in London with an adapt- 
ation by H. B. Farnie, and in it Florence St. John 
made one of her early successes. H. B. Farnie had 
the gift of turning many French operettas that were 
comparative failures in Paris into London successes. 
Audran's next success, published by Boosey & Co., 
was the famous La Mascotte. This piece ran for one 
thousand nights in Paris, an extraordinary run in the 
French theatrical world. The American Rose Marie 
has recently had the same experience. The libretto 
of La Mascotte handicapped its chance of success 
in London; the subject was considered rather risqut, 
but it came through all right. We were particular in 
those days. The Comedy Theatre, in Panton Street, 
had just been built, and Alexander Henderson opened 
it with this production. Violet Cameron, who was at 
that time the prima donna, made a great personal 
success. I remember that after the first night of the 
piece the first theatrical supper-party I ever at- 
tended was one given by Alexander Henderson, the 
then producer of all the light opera successes in 
London. There were many charming women pre- 
sent, including Violet Cameron, Florence St. John, 
and the unapproachably lovely Kitty Munroe, one of 




the sweetest and prettiest women that ever graced 
the London light opera stage. There were also a 
great many men of distinction at the supper-party, 
an altogether different class of man to the men who 
frequented similar supper-parties under the new 
regimes which succeeded that of Henderson. Hen- 
derson was a man of very superior manners, very 
good-looking, and something of a sportsman also. 
He was a good whip, and drove a coach and four. 
H. Brougham Farnie, his lieutenant, who was re- 
sponsible on the stage for all his productions, was an 
extraordinary type. He had an intensely plebeian 
appearance, but at heart was an absolute aristocrat 
and Tory, It was he who dictated to Alexander 
Henderson which French light operas it was neces- 
sary to produce. 

Lecocq I orily met once, I met him at the finish of 
his career. I went to Brussels to see the first night 
of his piece Ali Baba, which had a very good Press, 
but was a hopeless failure. 

These were the days, also, when Planquette, 
Serpette, and others were writing. Serpette, a very 
cultivated composer and good musician, spoke a 
little English and delighted in trying to make jokes 
in English. On one occasion he turned up to see me 
one Sunday morning, and with a pathetic voice 
said: "What a funny country! I could not get a 
shave this morning. Everybody say, 'God shave 
the Queen/ and nobody shave poor Serpette. 55 

Lacome also at this period was still writing oper- 
ettas. I happened to see in The Times a notice of a 
new piece of his entitled Ma Mie Rosette. I went over 
to Paris to have a look at it, and was charmed with 
the story and even more so with the music. I bought 
all the rights for Messrs. Boosey, and with a separate 
company I produced the opera at the old Globe 


Theatre. We had a wonderful cast. First of all, that 
remarkable artiste, Oudin, played the part of Henri 
IV, the dominating personality in the opera. I was 
able to secure Juliette Nesville, who created the 
soprano role in Paris, and who, speaking very pretty 
English, made an equal success in London. I also 
had in the cast, Courtice Pounds, Jessie Bond, 
Frank Wyatt, Leonard D'Orsay, and that little 
picture of a woman, Jennie McNulty. The piece was 
very indifferently received by the Press until it had 
run a hundred nights. George Dance wrote the adapt- 
ation, for me. It was his first introduction, I be- 
lieve, to the operatic stage. Ivan Caryll was the con- 
ductor, and added some charming numbers to the 
score also. The piece was not a financial success, al- 
though Lacome, upon its withdrawal, wrote me a 
letter stating that he could not express too warmly 
his appreciation of the wonderful interpretation I 
had obtained for his piece in London. We had the 
chance of paying a large sum of money to transfer 
the piece to the, at that time, quite new Prince of 
Wales' Theatre, but, in point of fact, it never once 
at the Prince of Wales' played to as good business as 
at the Globe. Meanwhile, Penley, who had just pro- 
duced Charley's Aunt at the Royalty, took up our 
lease of the Globe Theatre and ran Charley's Aunt 
there for one thousand nights. Ma Mie Rosette was 
a big success in Australia. 

In the meanwhile, and some time before the pro- 
duction of Ma Mie Rosette here, Alexander Hender- 
son had produced Planquette's melodious opera 
Rip van Winkle also at the Comedy Theatre. This 
was the opera in which Fred Leslie, that extra- 
ordinarily gifted artiste, made such an overwhelming 
success in the part of Rip. There was a touch of 
genius in his creation. During the run, Fred Leslie 


had a disagreement with Farnie, and Farnie said he 
proposed to get rid of Leslie, as there was a man in 
the country who could play the part equally well. 
I said: "If you do, you will make one of the biggest 
theatrical mistakes of your life." Farnie would not 
listen to reason, Fred Leslie's agreement was not 
renewed, and the new man who came to London 
to play the part was not accepted as a suitable sub- 
stitute for Leslie. 

Among the other French successes were Madame 
Favart, with Florence St. John as lead, and Falka, 
one of Violet Cameron's most successful parts. 
Suppe's Boccaccio was also given, and, although the 
music was delightful, the piece did not catch on. 
This opera remains in my memory as the first opera 
in which Marie Tempest appeared. She had pre- 
viously sung at Arthur Chappell's Saturday and 
Monday "Pops," under her own name of Miss 
Etherington. I remember Farnie saying to me that 
he did not think she would ever make good, as she 
could not hold the stage. Those who have studied 
our Marie's appearances since then can well afford 
to smile at this premature judgment. 

Audran was the most generous of little hosts. 
When I visited Paris he took me everywhere, and 
refused to let me spend a penny. He had many other 
successes, including Miss Hellyet, La Poupee, The 
Grand Mogul, and, lastly, Gilette de Nar bonne, which 
he always told me brought him in more money from 
the French provinces than any of his other operettas. 
Henderson and Farnie arranged with John Boosey 
to do Gilette de Narbonne in London. At the last 
moment they wanted to back out of their agreement, 
and John Boosey released them, because Kate 
Santley wished to do the piece at the Royalty 
Theatre. This she did, but not with the success that 



would have attended its production had it been pro- 
duced by those dictators in London of comic opera. 

I recall quite well that, when little Audran 
became hopelessly ill, his wife and he used to dine 
every Sunday evening at the Restaurant Larue, 
and there I used to meet them. When dining with 
them one Sunday night, one of the most pathetic 
and curious experiences I ever came across in a 
restaurant was seeing the great violinist, Sarasate, 
dining there all by himself at a table among a crowd 
of people and reading some letter which apparently 
had profoundly affected him. He was crying like a 
child, oblivious to all the other diners sitting round 
him. I knew him quite well, but thought it was 
kinder not to intrude upon him at such a moment. 

I have often wished I could obtain a criticism, 
from someone qualified to judge, of the respective 
merits of Sarasate and that other great artiste, 
Kreisler. Surely they had many points of resem- 
blance in common ? 

It is pitiful to reflect upon the amount of beauti- 
ful music that has been lost to the world through 
the incapacity of composers, again and again, to 
select librettos which visually tell their story and 
hold the stage quite apart from the music. 

In plain words, a grand opera should be able, in 
the first place, to tell its story through visual in- 
terpretation, whether the words sung are under- 
stood by the public or are incoherent. 

Two of the most notable examples in this respect 
are the operas Faust and Carmen. In both instances 
the librettos live and make their effect quite apart 
from the music. It is impossible in the case of these 
two operas not to follow the narrative, even if the 
opera itself, through over-heavy orchestration or 
indistinct singing, should be otherwise obscure. The 


same criticism applies to works such as La Vie de 
Boheme, Cavalleria Rusticana, Pagliacci, and even 
Madame Butterfly. 

I first saw Madame Butterfly as a play produced, 
I think, at the St. Martin's Theatre. A few days 
later, Puccini was lunching with me, and I asked 
him to see the play, which I told him should make, 
in my opinion, an excellent subject for musical 
treatment. Puccini saw the play, agreed with me, 
and in due course Madame Butterfly was the out- 
come of our conversation. When I suggested Madame 
Butterfly , however, my idea was that it should be a 
one-act opera, or at all events an opera in two scenes. 
I did not consider the subject sufficiently strong to 
build up upon it a three-act opera. However, the 
ultimate success of the opera was sufficient to nega- 
tive my suggestion as to the form in which it should 
be presented. 

My general criticism with regard to librettos ap- 
plies with equal force to works of a lighter character. 
There is no doubt that Edward German's delightful 
scores, Merrie England and Tom Jones, would have 
permanently held the stage had the librettos been 
on an equality with the music. 

Arthur Sullivan always impressed upon me - not 
that I needed conversion - that Edward German 
was the one British composer who was capable of 
carrying on the tradition he had established of a 
delightful new form of English light opera. What a 
pity, therefore, that he never had a W. S. Gilbert, 
or a libretto worthy of his setting. Basil Hood wrote 
admirable lyrics, witness "The Yeomen of Eng- 
land," but he had not the dramatic instinct. 

Another instance of a charming score lost through 
a deficient libretto was that of Montague Phillips' 
Rebel Maid. Messrs. Chappell have sold thousands 


of vocal scores of the opera simply because the music 
made such an appeal to amateur operatic societies. 
The fact of the libretto being amateurish naturally 
did not weigh with amateurs, who were only inter- 
ested in reproducing the musical side of this delight- 
ful composition. 

I once asked Albert Carre, who was the director 
of the Opra Comique in Paris and the author 
of La Basoche, why La Basoche was not a greater 
popular success than it had been. For the libretto 
was in itself a masterpiece of stage construction 
and intensely interesting in addition. Carry's reply 
was that the action was so complicated it was 
impossible for the audience to follow the plot unless 
they were seated in the theatre at the absolute 
rising of the curtain. 

Among other composers who have grievously 
suffered through the inefficiency of their librettos 
are those two masters of light music, Franz Lehar 
and Louis Ganne. 

I was present at the first performance in 
Dresden of Richard Strauss' Elektra. Elektra was 
modelled on the severest form of old Greek tragedy, 
the chorus were practically charged with the task 
of informing the audience as to what was happening 
off the stage in connection with the drama. The 
orchestration was all-powerful, in fact overwhelming, 
so that when the chorus endeavoured to inform us 
of all the horrors that were taking place at the back 
of the curtain it was quite impossible to follow what 
these horrors were, even if you were proficient in 
the German text, which I confess I was not. 

Speaking of first nights, I remember a curious 
experience when I attended two first-night suppers 
on consecutive evenings in Berlin. The first supper 
was given in connection with the production of a 


light opera by Oscar Straus, and the second supper 
the following night was given to celebrate the pro- 
duction of a new work by the great Richard Strauss. 
I need hardly suggest how very different the per- 
sonnel of the two supper-parties was ! Berlin was a 
very gay city before the war. The night-life was 

Speaking of the importance of opera librettos, I 
am reminded of the last time I met that gifted little 
composer, now dead, Victor Jacobi, at the Ritz Hotel 
in Budapest. He was about to produce his new 
opera Sybil. He gave me the story of the libretto, 
and I considered it so strong that I said I did not 
require to hear the music, and that I would purchase 
the opera right away, which I did. It was one of my 
great disappointments that the opera did not make 
a big success in London. Something went wrong 
with the adaptation, and unfortunately, in passing 
it on to another management, I had parted with the 
right to supervise and approve it. It contained some 
very delightful music. 

Of course there have been occasions when a beau- 
tiful libretto could not save indifferent music. I 
always considered the libretto of The Beauty Stone 
among the most beautiful subjects for a grand opera 
that I can imagine. Albert Carre shared my opinion, 
but he was not sufficiently impressed by the music. 



I HAVE made so many visits to America that I am 
rather confused as to their chronological order years 
ago. The first time I went to America was on that 
very uncomfortable little Cunarder, the Umbria. 
She was only 6,000 tons, and she rolled most ter- 
ribly. I went to America with a view to looking 
into the question of our publishing agency over 
there, we being represented by Messrs. Pond & Co. 
I came to the conclusion that it was essential we 
should have a house of our own, and in due course 
I took premises and started a branch there. I think it 
was in 1891 that I opened up in New York, and 
engaged Mr. George Maxwell as manager. George 
Maxwell subsequently has for a long while repre- 
sented Messrs. Ricordi and the popular Italian 
operas in America. 

It was on one of my early visits to America that I 
travelled over with Loie Fuller. She had at that 
time lost all her money in her production of A Mid- 
summer Night's Dream at the Globe Theatre, and 
she had not yet invented her wonderful new skirt- 
dances. I remember that she and I gave a concert 
on board, and Mr. Chauncy Depew took the chair. 

I took her out to supper in New York, and can 
still see her sitting in front of a huge pink water- 
melon twice the size of herself. I was so frightened 
she would fall into it. It was the first time I heard 



from a neighbouring table the once popular expres- 
sion, "What funny things you see when you haven't 
got a gun. 55 

America was a very different proposition for a 
visitor in those days. In a sense, the hotels and res- 
taurants were very primitive. I stopped at the 
Hoffman House in New York. Among other subjects 
I had to tackle was the question of the new United 
States copyright law. It was at the time that 
America insisted that copyright could only be 
claimed by authors outside the domicile of the 
States on condition that their works were set up in 
America from American type. The same applied to 
engraving. A very able man and a delightful fellow in 
addition, Mr. Scaife, a well-known lawyer in Boston, 
claimed that music was exempt from this formality 
probably through a slip in the wording of the Act. 
We tested the point in the law courts in America, 
and we won the day. It was of enormous importance 
to English music publishers and composers, as it 
avoided the necessity, either of engraving works 
twice over, or having the whole of our engraving 
done in America. It is not worth while at this 
moment going into the details of the legal argument. 

I remember arriving in Boston in very hot 
summer weather, and for some extraordinary reason 
I found myself arrayed in a frock coat and a silk hat. 
I went to see Scaife, who put me up for his clubs, 
and, in the course of a stroll through Boston, we 
arrived at a famous park with a big ornamental lake. 
Upon this lake they had various white mechanical 
swans. You were able to sit across these swans as 
though you were riding, and, by means of machinery, 
paddle yourself across the lake. I insisted, in spite 
of my costume, on making this experiment, and I 
remember Scaife was absolutely dumbfounded at 


the idea of an Englishman not being sufficiently self- 
conscious to refuse to divert himself, in spite of his 
garments, in this particular manner. Any how, it won 
his heart, and he took me down to his country seat 
outside Boston, where we had a wonderful time. 

In the course of my wanderings I found myself up 
at Chicago at a famous little hotel called the Riche- 
lieu, long since extinct. It had quite a distinguished 
company of foreign artistes staying there. I re- 
member the divine Sarah Bernhardt, with a large 
St. Bernard dog. Beamish came up to me in the hall 
in a state of collapse, dragging the dog after him. 
"What am I to do?" he said. u Madame insists I am 
to take this dog down the town and get him mar- 
ried!" Minnie Hauk and many others, and that 
never-to-be-forgotten good fellow, Cecil Clay, with 
his wife, Rosina Yokes, were also staying at the 
hotel. Cecil was Fred Clay's brother. 

It was at Chicago that I heard for the first time 
the opera Cavalleria Rusticana. Minnie Hauk was 
singing in it. We could have bought it even then for 
3,000. I cabled over to Boosey's, but they were 
rather scared at the price, and nothing happened. 
Only imagine what thousands of pounds were made 
by Ascherberg out of the purchase of this opera and 

Beamish, in addition to owning the most chic 
hotel in Chicago, and there were very few chic hotels 
at that time, was a wine merchant, and electrified 
me, after a long period of search on my part - all 
their champagne being hopelessly sweet - by pro- 
ducing some of the original famous '74 Pommery & 
Greno. I was only there three or four days and re- 
ceived a lot of hospitality from the Cecil Clays. 
Beamish was also good enough to take a great liking 
to me, and it was very hard for an Englishman at 


that time to make much headway in the States. 
When I left the hotel he insisted on making me a 
present of two bottles of the famous Pommery and 
some whisky. 

I think it was on this occasion that I met Marshall 
Wilder, He was a very small person, but during one 
or two seasons was very popular in London Society 
as a raconteur. His head barely came above a dining- 
room table, and he used to run round the table at 
dinner-time rather like a black retriever, retailing 
his latest new pieces of humour. I must confess I 
was not greatly impressed by his stories. There 
was only one I remember which made an impression 
upon me. He was describing how a well-known 
clergyman was preaching in the States one Sunday, 
and was very annoyed by a little man sitting under 
the pulpit, who kept on potting at the congregation 
with a pea-shooter. The clergyman leant over the 
pulpit and remonstrated with the small person 
beneath him, who replied: "All right, old man, you 
peg away with your yarn; I'll keep the beggars 
awake!" I think the word he used was beggars. 
The American spelling may be different from the 

It was on this occasion also that I met Forbes- 
Robertson, who had gone to New York to take up 
the leading part in a very strong play of Sardou's, 
he being engaged by an American Society lady who 
wished to make her appearance on the stage as a 
professional. I remember the play quite well and 
the superb performance that Forbes-Robertson 
gave in it. 

It was during this visit that I first of all heard the 
brilliant orchestra that used to give big concerts on 
a Sunday evening at the Madison Square Hall. 

I shall have a great deal more to say about the 


United States on a later occasion. This was one of 
the visits upon which I received my first impressions. 
On this occasion I remember going as far north as 
Quebec, and it was a wonderful experience after the 
cooking that then prevailed in America, to arrive at 
the well-known H6tel Frontenac, where the cooking 
was of the best French order and where you were 
able to obtain the best French wines. Front enac 
reminded me very vividly, on account of its position 
looking over the river St. Lawrence, of the view 
opposite Pest, when one stayed at the Hungaria, and 
looked across the Danube to Buda on the other 
side, lighted up all night. 



WHEN one thinks of Paris as it was fifty years ago 
one can realise how many changes have taken place. 
I used very often to stay at the little old-fashioned 
and chic hotel, the Meurice, in the Rue de Rivoli. 
Very often also at the Bristol on the Place Vendome. 
At the latter hotel one often experienced the excite- 
ment of being woken up by a crowd in front of the 
hotel, indulging in a demonstration of welcome. It 
took you a little while sometimes to realise that 
they were not cheering you, but celebrating the 
arrival of some European potentate who had turned 
up at the hotel overnight. 

How many of the old restaurants, too, have 
disappeared, and how much more flashy are many 
of those which have supplanted them. The Maison 
d'Or is no more. The restaurant boasted it was 
never closed all through the famous Siege of Paris. 
The famous Caf6 Anglais is another landmark that 
has disappeared, also the Caf6 Bignon. 

The Cafe Voisin no longer exists. It had long since 
lost its original character. It was said to be possessed 
of the finest cellar of red wine in Paris. I think 
Nicol of our Caf6 Royal must have been inspired by 
it. And the proprietor was a great racing magnate. 
What an air of distinction he had! Even as I write 
these lines the famous Paillard is no more! 



Paris, in fact, generally has lost a great deal of 
the distinction and elegance it possessed in those 
days. It is no longer so refined! The change was 

The invasion of the nouveaux riches, of all the 
younger financially successful nations, no doubt 
demanded a different standard of entertainment. 

The glittering Pr Catalan has taken the place of 
the quaint little old farmhouse so famous in the 
early morning for its glass of milk and other sim- 

Gone are all the little, horse victorias. The shriek 
of the motor-horn has replaced them. 

There is only one thing that never changes in 
Paris, that always remains old-fashioned; it is the 
intense seating discomfort of the theatres. 

Another thing that strikes one forcibly is the 
change in the night-life of Paris. In the old days, 
visitors always took part in it. To-day it appears 
to be run entirely by professionals. The visitors 
look on. Maxims, perhaps, of all the night-houses 
retains its character, or want of it. How different 
to the night-life of Berlin, particularly before the 

The famous restaurant, Durand's, is also a 
memory of the past. I remember taking the night- 
train from London to Paris in the old days and arriv- 
ing at the Hotel Meurice in the early hours of the 
morning. It was a gorgeous sunrise. And it was the 
day following the appalling fire disaster at the 
charity bazaar. 

The last time I ever breakfasted at Durand's was 
during this visit. I suddenly looked through the 
window against my table, and, between us and the 
Madeleine, innumerable hearses of the unhappy 
victims of the fire were all gathered in the square 


together. They made a mass of the most gorgeous 
spring flowers one could imagine. Paris lends itself 
to these dramatic and picturesque surprises. What 
beauty and what tragedy side by side! 

I first met the famous Josef at the old Paillard's 
before it was rebuilt. Josef had very clearly defined 
views as to how the real gourmet should breakfast 
and dine. "One plat for breakfast/ 5 he used to say to 
me, "and two plats for dinner, the best possible, and 
to which you should be permitted to return more 
than once during the meal." I frequently thought of 
it in after days when I used to shoot every 12th of 
August with an old friend of mine in the North. 
The dinner menu on the 12th invariably consisted of 
some twenty plats. 

Josef, after leaving Paillard's, opened a restaurant 
in the Rue Marivaux. This was before he migrated 
to the Savoy Hotel. 

Josef used to tell me of a curious experience he had 
in America. He was engaged as private chef, at a 
fabulous salary, by one of the American millionaires. 
On arriving at New York he was told he could not 
land until he had paid a tax percentage value upon 
his salary as imported labour. The amount of the tax 
staggered him. He refused to pay. Meanwhile, he 
sat on the quay with his wife and his child in a 
blinding snowstorm until the millionaire heard of 
his plight and came down and released him. He did 
not stay in America long. 

Of course there are many other famous old 
restaurants that still exist and maintain their 
reputation. Such are the Tour d'Argent, La 
Perouse, and the always delightful Foyots, the 
last one with the saving grace of no music during 

At the same time there was a restaurant at 


Brussels, L'Etoile, which before the war had no diffi- 
culty in challenging comparison with any of the 
famous French houses. Frenchmen would journey 
all the way from Paris to lunch and dine there. 
I trust L'Etoile still exists. Also the Filet de 

No, Paris is not the Paris that it was fifty years 

The circumstances attending the first production 
of La Basoche in Paris were very curious. Some 
little while before La Basoche was produced, I was 
at a dance in the old Marlborough Rooms, Regent 
Street, given by Henry J. Leslie to his company to 
commemorate the hundredth performance of the 
Red Hussar. Miss Marie Tempest was, of course, the 
leading lady. Among those I met that night was 
Ivan Caryll, the composer. It was the first time I 
had met him, and I soon noticed he could be very 
useful picking up new light operas abroad. On that 
particular evening he gave me an idea, in his broken 
English, of the story of La Basoche, which was on 
the eve of production in Paris. He subsequently 
played the music over to me. I was very enthusiastic 
over the work, and said we must go to Paris and see 
it. He said there was a difficulty in that direction. It 
appears Edward Chappell knew that Leslie's thea- 
trical ventures had not recently been prospering, and 
Edward ChappelFs project at the conclusion of the 
dress rehearsal was to come forward with an offer 
for the work, presuming that Leslie's option had 
lapsed through want of sufficient funds. I said to 
Caryll I thought that difficulty might be surmounted. 
"Let us take Leslie with us to Paris," I said, "He 
has the option, and Messrs Boosey & Co." with 
whom I then was "have the money." This was 
agreed upon, and in due course we found ourselves at 


the dress rehearsal of La Basoche in Paris. We had 
not been five minutes in our stalls when Edward 
Chappell hurried over to see me and asked if we 
were intending to buy the opera. I said yes, if we 
liked it well enough. I was still more enthusiastic 
over the work at the conclusion of the dress rehear- 
sal than I had been before. Edward Chappell then 
suggested it would be absurd for us to bid against 
each other, and would we entertain the project of 
jointly publishing the opera with Messrs. Chappell, 
either party to retire if they did not wish to go fur- 
ther, I said I was perfectly agreeable to share with 
them, and there we left the matter. 

That same night I was having supper at the Caf6 
Americain with Gus Harris and Henry Pettitt, the 
dramatist. I spoke at some length about the opera, 
and said that, were I a theatrical manager, I should 
not hesitate to buy it for London. On the other 
hand, I said, it required very serious alterations for 
the English stage, and I doubted if there was any 
manager in London clever enough to do what was 
wanted. The next day I went over to London, and 
Gus Harris asked if I would go and see him. Partly, 
possibly, owing to my warm recommendation of 
the piece, he had gone to Choudens, the well-known 
publishers, the first thing next morning, and had 
bought all the publishing and performing rights in 
the work for Great Britain, I think for a sum of 
2,000 or 3,000. When I got back to London, he said 
if my firm would like to take half his bargain he 
would be prepared to sell half at the same price it 
cost him. Messrs. Boosey & Co. did not care to pur- 
chase the half share, which was necessarily repre- 
sented largely by the performing rights. No doubt 
they looked upon it as rather a gambling transac- 
tion. In this case we should have made a very 


handsome profit when Gus Harris sold it to D'Oyly 
Carte for, I think, 6,000 or 7,000. D'Oyly Carte 
was compelled to buy it, having opened the Royal 
English Opera House with only one opera, Ivanhoe, 
in his so-called repertoire. 



THE question whether we are a musical nation has 
agitated our Press and our public for many years. 
What is the correct answer ? I think it may be 
safely affirmed that for many years there was a 
genuine taste for oratorio and ballad concerts; also, 
up to a certain point, for chamber music. The 
Saturday and Monday "Pops" had an immense 
vogue, until the popularity of orchestral concerts 
gradually supplanted them. In the old days very 
few orchestral concerts existed. Auguste Mann 
gave orchestral concerts at the Crystal Palace, and 
the Philharmonic Society gave occasional concerts 
also. It is curious, however, to think that in these 
recent days, in spite of orchestral concerts under 
the baton of the most distinguished English con- 
ductors and the most famous conductors from 
abroad, the Lener Quartette, whose programmes are 
made up of the old classical chamber-music favour- 
ites, should have once more achieved a remarkable 
success in this country. 

So many quaint stories exist as to how far we are 
a musical nation. Arthur Chappell used to tell me 
a tale of a dear old lady, who was at a big dinner- 
party, and was asked if she was musical. "God for- 
bid," she replied ; "I am Wagnerian!" 

Another quaint story in the same direction was 
related to me by Henri Loge, the pianist and 

EM 65 


composer. He was asked to play the piano at some 
distinguished duchess' house after a dinner-party. 
The piano was evidently something very ancient, and 
was a small upright, propped up against the wall 
of the salon. Loge at the end of his effort apologised, 
and said he feared he could not quite do himself 
justice upon the particular piano in question. The 
Duchess' reply was extremely brief and cutting. 
"That piano," she said, " has been in our family for 
sixty years, and nobody has ever complained of it 
before!" This incident somehow suggests to me Mr. 
Snowden's mental attitude towards Free Trade. 

Robert Newman, whose acquaintance with the 
concert world and the music-loving public was very 
extensive, always declared that the public you could 
rely upon consistently for concerts never numbered 
more than ten thousand. Of course there are plenty 
of musical snobs among us who turn up for special 
occasions, because they think it is the right thing to 
do. They probably have never heard of one of 
Sheridan's immortal flashes of wit, when his son 
said he would like to go down a coal-mine. "Why?" 
asked Sheridan. "I should like to say I have been 
down." "Say so, then," replied Sheridan. However, 
the musical snobs have to pay for their seats, so 
obviously we must encourage them. 

Certainly there is no such genuine taste in Eng- 
land for grand opera as that which prevails almost 
universally on the Continent. Meanwhile, we shall 
no doubt continue to call ourselves a musical nation, 
because, although we are not adepts at humbugging 
other countries, we have a perfect genius for hum- 
bugging ourselves. 

One curious point in connection with our artistes 
is the loyalty of our public to old favourites. Once 
they have established a reputation, they can go on 


singing until there is not a musical note in the box. 
How very different is the condition of artistes with 
big musical reputations in Italy. The moment they 
go off the note, or fail to satisfy the artistic require- 
ments of the music public, they are overwhelmed 
with an avalanche of disapproval, a disapproval 
openly and violently expressed. The fact speaks for 

When Sims Reeves sang for us at St. James's 
Hall shortly before his retirement you would hear 
one old lady say to another, in a rapt voice as they 
left the hall, "I have seen him, my dear." The ques- 
tion of hearing him did not arise. On one occasion a 
similar old lady actually penetrated into the ar- 
tistes' room and implored me to let her stand in the 
corridor as the great man passed out. "Of course 
you can, my dear," said kind-hearted Ella Russell; 
"stand here." When the great tenor appeared it was 
too much for the old lady. "Oh, Mr. Reeves," she 
said in a quivering voice, "I heard you sing for the 

first time in the year " and she mentioned a 

year somewhat around the date when Noah led the 
animals into the Ark. Reeves was most indignant 
"Nothing of the sort," he said, and swept past her 
as though she had been so much dust. "Poor old 
dear," I thought, "heart-broken a second time, and 
at her age, too." Treats like these never come to con- 
cert-givers and publishers. It made me think of 
Marzials. Whenever I had to refuse one of his man- 
uscripts he used always to say : "Never mind, in 
the next world we shall publish and you compose, 
and then we will get our own back again!" 

Before passing on to the second part of my me- 
moirs, which deals with my experiences at Messrs. 
Chappell & Co., it is worth while recalling to 
mind one or two of the humorous incidents that 


had so far attended my progress in the musical 

I remember on one occasion Lamoureux was con- 
ducting a rehearsal at the Queen's Hall for a big 
concert he was giving. The tenor who was rehears- 
ing was running through "Salve d'Amore," and 
when he arrived at the C in alt, it was obvious that 
it was out of his reach. He, therefore, obliged with a 
falsetto C, so as not to be altogether out of the pic- 
ture. Lamoureux looked extremely surprised and, 
turning to the orchestra, said: u Le bateau est parti!" 
The orchestra were greatly amused, and the tenor, 
not understanding, took it as a high compliment to 
himself and bowed his thanks. 

I remember another very humorous incident in 
connection with a tenor. A well-known tenor came 
in to me one day and said he wished to speak to me 
very privately. I said: "With pleasure," and con- 
ducted him into a fairly dark corner of the estab- 
lishment. He explained that this corner was not 
nearly secluded enough for him to impart to me the 
important news that had brought him to see me. I 
thought to myself: "This must mean a tenner at 
least," It did, but not in the sense I imagined. When 
he felt himself quite secure from any interruption he 
broke his news to me. He said: "I am going to let 
you into a secret, which I have not yet revealed even 
to my own mother." I was half excited and half 
alarmed. I may mention he was a high baritone, and 
a very clever artiste. He said at last: "What I want 
you to know is I believe my voice is really going to 
be a tenor." I gave a thankful sigh that the news 
was not more alarming and expensive. Subsequently 
this artiste did sing as a tenor. But he was a really 
good baritone. 

Sometimes a very comical incident used to occur 


through the post. I remember receiving a letter in an 
unknown hand- writing from a gentleman who evi- 
dently lived in the purlieus of Putney. He wrote to 
me and said: "Dear Sir, - For years past I have 
been in the habit of setting words to music, and have 
now in my possession some 200 or 300 of these MSS. 
It occurred to me it would be an excellent thing for 
you to come down and dine with me one evening 
<a la Bohemian and sans ceremonie,' when I could 
give you a better impression of my work at my 
piano here than I could give you elsewhere, and at 
all events, if no business resulted, I trust and be- 
lieve you would not spend an altogether unenter- 
taining evening." I first of all thought of replying 
that all our dining- out staff were engaged that week, 
but subsequently concluded it would be better to let 
his letter flutter gently into the waste-paper basket. 
Two days afterwards I received a further letter, 
which said: "Dear Sir, - As you have not responded 
to my invitation, I hereby beg to withdraw it." 

Another very curious incident happened to me. 
I had to attend the funeral of someone sufficiently 
well known in the musical world. I arrived at 
Golder's Green, and in due course took my place in 
a back pew. I naturally did not look about me very 
much, but by degrees was very surprised to find that 
I did not know anybody present. At the conclusion 
of the service I met a friend outside and said: "I 
cannot make out why I did not see any of you 
fellows in the chapel." He said the service had duly 
taken place, but apparently there were two chapels 
and I had been attending the wrong funeral. I had 
been weeping over an unknown person. Funerals, 
we know, are grave occasions, but I could not help 
being struck by the humorous side of my experience. 

It somehow recalled to my mind the story I had 


recently heard of a nervous curate, who in the 
absence of his pastor had to conduct a similar 
service. At the conclusion of the service, just as the 
sorrowing relatives were gathered together before 
parting, the poor little curate felt he must say some- 
thing, so, approaching them blushingly, he stam- 
mered and exclaimed: "The cemetery is filling up 
nicely, isn't it?" 

A very well-known individual in the musical 
world came to me one day and asked if I had heard 
his wife had died. I said I had not, but I expressed 
the usual regrets customary on these sad occasions. 
"Well," he said, "perhaps it is best she should have 
gone first. After all, a man can always pop into his 
club and have a cigar!" This quite seriously. 

I remember on one occasion a well-known com- 
poser bringing to me a new song. He was evidently 
very bent on finding a home for it, and brought 
along for the first time his little boy, I suppose the 
boy was about eight years old. When the father had 
finished playing the MS., he turned to his hopeful 
son and said: "You've heard that before, my little 
man, haven't you?" "Yes," the little boy replied, 
"and we're all sick of it!" Poor little boy, I hope he 
was not badly smacked when his father took him 
outside. It just shows it is sometimes dangerous to 
tell the truth even to your own father! 

I remember a very interesting occasion when the 
Fishmongers' Company in the City gave one of their 
famous dinners, to which they invited a great many 
eminent writers both in the theatrical world and in 
the world of fiction. Comyns Carr, better known as 
Joe Carr, was making an after-dinner speech. He was 
one of those -itfen who spoke most admirably on 
occgjsions like these, although he was not always so 
Chappy when he put pen to paper. He was discussing 


a subject of rather a broad nature when he suddenly 
looked up at the gallery* Those who know the Fish- 
mongers' Hall will remember that there is a gallery 
overlooking the dining-tables, and that at intervals 
along the gallery certain golden lyres are placed. 
Joe Carr happened to look up at the gallery at the 
moment that various ladies were entering to hear 
the speeches, each seating herself behind one of the 
lyres in question. "I see I must moderate my re- 
marks," said Joe Carr; "the ladies have arrived. 
They are behind the lyres. Perhaps I ought to say 
their husbands are in front of them." 

Seymour Hicks and Joe Carr were very funny 
together, Seymour one night at supper said to 
Carr: "You remember that awful failure of mine at 
Drury Lane, Joe? It only ran a fortnight." "Ran?" 
said Joe, "It never ran at all. It walked." 

On another occasion I was at a little supper-party 
at the old Graf ton Galleries. One of the little fairies 
was drinking milk. "Milk!" said a very cheery friend 
of mine who was present. "The very first drink I 
ever tasted." "Yes," I said, "and even then you 
pinched it!" 

Referring to our old friend Farnie, whom we have 
discussed briefly, he happened to be lunching one 
day with John Boosey and his wife, I being present, 
and he enquired as to whether an old and confiden- 
tial employee at Boosey's, named Cherry, was any 
relation to Cherry the composer. Mrs. John Boosey, 
who had a very quick wit, replied at once: "No, 
Mr. Farnie, these cherries are not off the same 

It was Mrs. John Boosey who, when Punch had 
been running for months a series of short para- 
graphs supposed to be humorous and entitled 
"Happy Thoughts," wrote to the editor and said: 


"Happy Thought, discontinue 'Happy Thoughts. 5 " 
The hint was taken. 

I shall have occasion later on to refer to some 
more humorous incidents, but I think I may well 
conclude this part by quoting a very comic little 
verse that my old friend F. E. Weatherly once 
addressed to me. He always insisted I was a sort of 
understudy for the German Emperor. This was 
before the war. Here is his verse: 

I must not call you Emperor, 

I dare not call you Kaiser, 
Prime Minister, or Councillor, 

Or Spiritual Adviser, 
Mikado, Pope, or President, 

Or even Holy Czar, 
Such names are not th' embodiment 

Of all you really are! 
One name alone remains to me, 

I use it willy-nilly, 
Henceforth to me you can but be 

My dear, my little Willie! 

What far distant days these early reminiscences 
take me back to. These indeed were the days of 
"The Glory of the Young Green." 

The glory of the young green 

That groweth with the bud, 
It sets the pulses singing, 

It dances in the blood; 
It stirs the young to madness, 

It wakes the old to mirth; 
The glory of the young green 

Is over all the earth! 


The glory of the young green, 

It drinketh in the showers, 
It heralds forth the ring-time 

Of birds and bees and flowers; 
It mingles with the blue skies, 

A flag of life unfurled; 
The glory of the young green 9 

Itfilleth all the world! 

The House of Chappell 



THE house of Chappell was founded apparently 
much about the same time as Boosey's. The original 
partners were Samuel Chappell, Francis Tatton 
Latour, and John Baptist Cramer. Their first deed 
of partnership was dated December 3rd, 1810. 

Very much interesting matter might be written in 
connection with their beginning, but it is outside the 
scope of these memoirs. Their first newspaper ad- 
vertisement is worth recording. It appeared in the 
Morning Chronicle of January 23rd, 1811, and ran 
as follows: 

"Chappell & Co. beg leave to acquaint the 
nobility and gentry that they have taken the 
extensive premises lately occupied by Goulding 
& Co., 124 New Bond Street, and have laid in a 
complete assortment of music of the best authors, 
ancient and modern, as well as a variety of instru- 
ments, consisting of grand and square piano-fortes, 
harps, etc., for sale or hire." 

It is interesting to note also that a portion of 
ChappelFs present pianoforte salons are built upon 
ground that once formed part of the garden of the 
great William Pitt, who became Earl of Chatham in 



Messrs. Chappell also appear to have been among 
the most active in forming the famous Philharmonic 

One of the most interesting documents in their 
possession is a letter from the great Beethoven in his 
own handwriting, addressed to Ferdinand Hies in 

Speaking of a new work he wishes to find a pub- 
lisher for, he writes: "Pardon if I come heavily upon 
you, but my income is such that I have to look to 
every side and corner for bare life. Potter says that 
Chappell in Bond Street is now one of the best 

Chappell's for a considerable time, commencing in 
1866, financed and ran the famous "Readings by 
Boz," a series of reviews by Charles Dickens in 
lecture form from some of his best-known novels. 

He appears to have had much the same appre- 
ciation of Chappell's as Beethoven had. He wrote as 

"I do believe that such people as the Chappells 
are very rarely to be found inhuman affairs. To say 
nothing of their noble and munificent manner of 
sweeping away into space all the charges incurred 
uselessly, and all the immense inconvenience and 
profitless work thrown upon their establishment, 
comes a note this morning from the senior partner 
to the effect that they feel that my overwork has 
been indirectly caused by them, and by my great 
and kind exertions to make their venture success- 
ful to the extreme. There is something so delicate 
and fine in this that I feel it deeply. 55 

William Chappell, Tom Chappell's elder brother, 
had retired from the firm some time previously to my 


arrival. He is best known for his remarkable col- 
lection of national English airs, published in book 
form subsequently under the title of Popular Music 
of the Olden Time. 

Arthur Chappell, Tom Chappell's younger bro- 
ther, directed from 1859 to 1901 the world famous 
series of Saturday and Monday " Pops." Ad- 
mirers of Robert Browning will remember the 
tribute he pays to Arthur Chappell and the "Pops" 
in a well-known sonnet. 

The building of St. James's Hall owed its incep- 
tion to the house of Chappell & Co. Tom Chappell 
largely financed it during the earlier stages of its 
existence. It cost 70,000 to build and was opened 
on March 25th, 1858, oddly enough with a concert 
in aid of the Middlesex Hospital, the hospital which 
Messrs. Chappell have been closely associated with 
ever since. 

One of Tom Chappell's most notable and lasting 
enterprises was the acquirement of practically all 
the remarkable Gilbert and Sullivan operas, which 
D'Oyly Carte produced first at the old Opera 
Comique and subsequently at the Savoy Theatre. 
H.M.S. "Pinafore" and The Sorcerer were the only 
two operas of the series that were published else- 

Arthur Sullivan and Thomas Chappell were close 
personal friends. It was Arthur Sullivan who pro- 
posed Tom Chappell as a member for the exclusive 
Portland Club, and certain clubs were very exclusive 
in those days. 1 believe Tom Chappell was the only 
instance of anyone connected with trade who was 
ever admitted as a member. 

Tom Chappell was one of the original directors of 
the Royal College of Music, also one of the original 
governors of the Royal Albert Hall. 


Thomas Patey Chappell, "that prince of music 
publishers," as Gounod once called him, remained 
until his death an example of all that was highest 
and most honoured in the world of music publishing. 

I first came to him in 1894; he died in 1902 at the 
age of eighty-three. He was in office until the very 

Although they have already been published, I 
make no apology for reproducing here some lines I 
wrote in appreciation of him almost thirty years ago. 

"The death of Thomas Patey Chappell, while it 
has removed from the musical world a unique and 
charming personality, has deprived the music- 
publishing world of the head and chief of its 
representatives. Thomas ChappelPs experiences 
extended over a period of nearly seventy years, 
and during that time there were practically no 
musical celebrities he had not come into contact 
with. It is not the intention of this sketch to 
present a dry record of his career, which is already 
a part of music history; but it may be noted, in 
passing, that the publisher of the long-famous 
operas, Gounod's Faust and Balfe's Bohemian 
Girl, was identical with the publisher of the com- 
paratively recent brilliant series of light operas by 
Gilbert and Sullivan. Although the fact is not 
generally known, Thomas Chappell was the 
actual founder of the Saturday and Monday 
popular concerts. They were first started with a 
view to making St. James's Hall the leading con- 
cert hall in London. The hall itself was originated 
by Tom Chappell, he having been its first, and 
during his lifetime its only, chairman. But, so far 
as the management of the concerts was concerned, 
he remained always in the background, having that 


somewhat rare quality in people of conspicuous 
ability, a dislike of personal notoriety. He was also 
one of the original directors of the Royal College of 
Music, and was associated with many other enter- 
prises that required for their furtherance the 
support of a high character and an unblemished 

"The name of Tom Chappell stood for that 
commercial integrity which has given the English 
people so proud a position in the world of com- 
merce. In all the many departments of business 
which he controlled, to clearness of judgment and 
broadness of views he added a splendid liberality: 
sure factors of success in any walk in life. Added 
to which he possessed that rarest of qualities, the 
gift of being successful without making enemies. 

"It is to the personal side of his character, 
however, that it is most delightful to turn. Tall, of 
slight build, singular distinction of appearance and 
refinement of manner, together with a courtesy 
that was born in him, he was in the best sense of 
the word an aristocrat. He was the personification 
of that old school of English gentleman that it is 
so often asserted has died out from among us. And, 
in whatever sphere of life he had been placed, this 
same quality would have made him stand out 
from all other men. 

"In his home life he was possessed of one of 
those sweet personalities that bring sunshine into 
the lives of all who come into daily contact with 
them. He was ever even tempered in turns 
grave or gay - but always delightful in conversa- 
tion. Neither in heart nor mind was he ever in any 
sense an old man; and that almost constant at- 
tendant upon unhappy old age - selfishness - was 
a quality unknown to him. 


"At the early age of fourteen he was called away 
from school to be a support to his father who was 
stricken with blindness; and this circumstance 
possibly added to what was evidently the natural 
bent of his character. As a young man, old people 
leaned on him; and as an old man, young people 
leaned on him. 

"It would be quite impossible for me to 
conclude this quite inadequate sketch without 
introducing one brief personal note. I found him 
with me - as he was with all the world - princely 
in his generosity; and it was not merely what he 
gave, but his way of giving, that endeared him so 
much to the many he benefacted. In an age that 
contains so much that is flippant and fugitive he 
was a man to respect as well as to love; and there 
are few men who can command these two attri- 

"He was laid to rest in the little churchyard of 
old Teddington Church in the same sweet simple 
manner in which he had lived. It was a day full of 
soft warm sunshine and gentle breezes; and, as I 
looked upon the little corner of earth that con- 
tained him, into my heart came the immortal 

"His life was gentle, and the elements 
In him so mixed that Nature might stand up 
And say to all the world, 'This was a man!' " 





DURING the period that elapsed between my leaving 
Boosey's and going to ChappelTs, I made a very 
serious attempt at writing. 

Literature always appealed to me as the most 
delightful way of passing one's time and earning 
one's living. Unfortunately, my inclination lay more 
in the direction of verse. I used to write under the 
name of William Akerman, Akerman being my 
mother's family name. 

Among other efforts, I wrote a version of Rip Van 
Winkle as a grand opera. Franco Leoni set it, and 
it was produced at His Majesty's Theatre with 
Hedmondt in the title role. I also wrote an English 
version of a delightful French play by Xanrof, Le 
Prince Consort. It was given at the Comedy Theatre 
under the title of His Highness, my Husband. 
It had an admirable cast: Miriam Clements, 
Lottie Venne, Leonard Boyne, Eric Lewis, and my 
poor brother, Philip Cuningham. Subsequently, 
when Dolly Ulmar meditated giving up the musical 
stage and devoting herself, as Marie Tempest had 
done before her, to legitimate drama, I wrote for 
her a dramatic version of Henri Murger's La Vie de 
Bohgme. We never produced this. I fancy we con- 
cluded the great popularity of Puccini's opera would 
give the play no chance. I am not so sure, however, 
upon reflection, whether we judged rightly. 



It is an advantage even for a music publisher to 
have some acquaintance with literature and verse. 
Certainly the most prolific lyric writer and the 
happiest in his ideas was Fred Weatherly. But it 
is very rare for the happiest lyric author to approach 
the gorgeous lyrics of the Elizabethan period. Take 
the following two lyrics, for instance, which are not 
particularly well-known. The first is entitled " Grieve 
Not, Dear Love," set to music by Frank Moir: 

Grieve not, deare love, although we often parte, 

But know that Nature doth us gently sever, 
Thereby to traine us up with tender arte 

To brooke the day when we must parte for ever; 
For Nature doubting we should be surprised 

By that sad day, whose dread doth chiefly fear us, 
Doth keep us daily schooVd and exercised, 

Lest that the fright thereof should overbeare us. 
Grieve not, deare love, although we often parte, 

But know that Nature doth us gently sever, 
Thereby to traine us up with tender arte 

To brooke the day when we must parte for ever. 

The second one is "An Old English Love-song." 
The latter was beautifully set by Frances Allitsen. 
She was a Miss Bumpus, so it is not surprising she 
had a fine sense of literature: 

Dear, if you change, Til never choose again-, 

Sweet, if you shrink, Til never think of love-, 
Fair, if you fail, Til judge all beauty vain', 
Wise, if too weak, more wits Til never prove. 
Dear, sweet, fair, wise, 
Change not, shrink not, nor be weak, 
And oh! my faith shall never break. 


Earth with her flow'rs shall sooner heav'n adorn, 
Heav'n her bright stars through earth's dim globe 

shall move, 

Fire heat shall lose, and frost of flames be born, 
Air made to shine, as black as night shall prove. 
Earth, heav'n, fire, air, 
The world transformed shall view, 
Ere I prove false to faith and strange to you. 

Speaking of Henri Murger, Julia Neilson and 
Fred Terry sang and recited a poem of his, "La 
Ballade d'un Desespere," very little known, I believe, 
in this country. Bemberg wrote a charming musical 
setting. Here is an English version of it: 


(From Henri Murger's "Ballade d'un Desespere.") 

SCENE. A miserable attic. A rickety chair and table. 
A mean bed in a corner of the room. A poet 
sits at the table, his head buried in his hands. A 
half-starved dog crouches at his feet. The snow is 
falling in the street and forcing itself through a 
broken pane of glass in the window. Knocking 
heard without. 

WHO knocks at my door so late? 


'Tis I! Let me inl 

Your name! 

Let me in! Let me in! 


Your name! 

Let me in! Oh Heaven, the snow falls fast in the 

I am cold as the dead, as the dead are my hands and 

my feet. 
I am come from the north and the south, and the 

east and the west, 
And I seek but to sit by the embers, to warm me 

and rest 

Your name! 


Let me in! Let me in! Give me shelter awhile! 
I am Fame! I am Glory! Immortal the light of my 

You shall longingly hold me, entreat me so softly to 


Mocking shadow, away! 

Oh listen, my voice is the voice of your youth, of 

your love, 
Twin gifts from the hand of the pitying Father 

above - 
I am Youth! I am Love! 


Take thee hence; she I loved is no more; 
She was false, we are parted, the dream of my 
madness is o'er! 


I am Art! I am Song! I am strong, and will make 

for thee wings 
To sing and to rise from this earth and these animal 


Too late: I have sung, and the world's jaded senses 

were dumb. 
I shall ne'er sing again, for my lips and my heart 

they are numb! 


I am Wealth! I am Riches! The world shall be 
spread at your feet! 


What is wealth without love? My love's heart has 
forgotten to beat! 


I am Power! I am Empire! All mighty the pride 
of my state! 


Can you bring back the dead that have left all my 
days desolate? 

Let me in! Let me in! You shall know me, and 

know of my name; 
I am Death -Death himself. From the sepulchre 

silent I came. 
You can hear the keys rattle and clank at my lean, 

hollow side, 
They shall open the gates of f orgetfulness swiftly and 

I am come from the shadows of nothing to bring you 



From the pain and the press of the world, and my 
word it is - Peace. 


(Throwing open the door, through which a flood of light 
streams into the room.) 

Come, enter, sweet comfort of Heaven, my poverty 

Make your home on my threshold, my threshold of 

hunger and care; 
Despair is my portion - eat, drink, and be merry 

with me; 

I am weary of waiting -I long, I am praying for thee. 
How oft have I sought thee! How oft hath a horrible 

Laid hold of me, stricken me, keeping me prisoner 


Hath death any terrors or body or soul to dismay 
Like the dread of this living? Come, carry me 

painless away! - 
Away - stay - here's one, my poor dog, hath ne'er 

done me an ill; 
One caress of my hand, honest friend, then lie silent 

and still- 

Oh Death, a brief moment, he also is waiting for thee, 
'Tis the one living thing that will weep for the 

memory of me! 

[He falls dead as the light dies away. The 
dog crouches beside him, his head on the 
shoulder of the dead man. 

So much for verse. The fact is that, the moment 
my work became very exacting at Chappell's, I 
realised it was impossible to pursue the double 
vocation of would-be poet and publisher. 





IN 1894, Mr. Edward Chappell, son of the late Mr. 
William Chappell, and Mr. Tom ChappelTs nephew 
and junior partner, being in failing health, Mr. 
Chappell engaged me to assist him in directing the 
publishing destinies of the house. 

Mr. ChappelPs first idea was to engage me solely 
to run a series of ballad concerts. I explained to him, 
however, that he was securing the least valuable 
half of the loaf, and that the concerts would be of no 
use to him unless he could count on me to provide 
him at the same time with a new ballad catalogue. 
Mr. Chappell saw the force of this argument, and so 
it came about that I was fully engaged to promote 
the general publishing interests of Messrs. Chappell. 

I should mention that it was about this time that 
Messrs. Boosey & Co. removed their famous ballad 
concerts, which they had given at the St. James's 
Hall for .twenty odd years, to the newly constructed 
Queen's Hall. This was the main reason why Tom 
Chappell decided to run a series of ballad concerts at 
the St. James's Hall. These concerts were run as the 
"St. James's Hall Ballad Concerts," under my 

During my direction of Boosey & Co. I had been 
responsible for the exploitation of the majority of 
Molloy's successes, including "Love's Old Sweet 
Song"; the majority of Stephen Adams' successes, 



"The Holy City" being the last song I published for 
him; all Marzials 5 successes; and likewise the many 
hits of Hope Temple. 

This is what I was up against. 

I had a desperate struggle at the beginning. I had 
some single successes, such as Denza's "May 
Morning," Leslie Stuart's "Bandolero," Capel's 
"Love, Could I only Tell Thee," and others. But, 
when a business has been going down hill for a long 
while, you have got to stay the avalanche before you 
can push your enterprise up the hill again. Chappell's 
had had no successes except some charming ballads 
by the always delightful Paolo Tosti, and one big 
hit with Isidore de Lara, "The Garden of Sleep." 
This last song followed on several songs written by 
de Lara for ChappelFs. Alfred Cellier was spending a 
week end with Tom Chappell at his delightful home 
at Teddington. Tom Chappell showed him the MS. 
of "The Garden of Sleep." Cellier said to Tom 
Chappell the same evening: "That song of de Lara's 
has a phrase that sticks in one's memory. It ought 
to go." And it did go! 

Meanwhile, Boosey's, always through the in- 
fluence of their ballad concerts, were still bound to 
command those of the first-rate ballads that came 
on the market. Clara Butt was an invaluable ally 
of theirs. She introduced Cowen's "The Promise of 
Life," a very big success, also "Abide with Me," by 
Liddle, an equally big success, and finally Elgar's 
"Land of Hope and Glory." Boosey's also had a 
very big run with Wilfrid Sanderson, whose legiti- 
mate success was helped by their backing; some big 
runs with songs by W. H. Squire; and lastly Amy 
Woodforde-Finden's enormous success with the 
"Indian Love Lyrics." Lastly, they had a remark- 
able sale for "I Hear You Calling Me," the one song 


out of dozens written by Charles Marshall that 
instantly established itself. No doubt it was greatly 
helped in America, particularly, by McCormack's 
singing of it. Nor must I forget to mention "Bird of 
Love Divine," by Haydn Wood. 

However, at last our efforts by means of our 
ballad concerts were rewarded. Florence Aylward 
headed our list with "Beloved, It is Morn"; George 
Aitken came along with "Maire, My Girl." Molly 
Carew, anew composer, wrote several hits. Coningsby 
Clarke, once my secretary at ChappelTs, wrote 
several very popular little songs last but not 
least, "The Blind Ploughman," the fine words by 
Marguerite Radcliffe Hall, author of The Garden of 
Loneliness. Eric Coates began to come to the front; 
Dorothy Forster, with "Rose in the Bud," had 
several big successes; Alma Goetz, with "Melisande," 
and Sheridan Knowles, with "Fat LiT Feller," 
added to the list. Guy d'Hardelot came out with 
"Because," and followed up this, her first big suc- 
cess, with several others. Frank Lambert contri- 
buted "She is far from the Land" and several other 
winners; Liza Lehmann, with several light songs and 
some excellent concerted numbers illustrating hu- 
morous words, stood in a class of her own. My very 
old friend and loyal supporter, Hermann Lohr, 
beat all his previous records with "Little Grey Home 
in the West," of which none of us at the beginning 
expected such great things. The war helped this song 
enormously. "Where My Caravan" and other songs 
of his were already big favourites. Montague Phil- 
lips, with his musicianly but always melodious songs, 
was another of our staunch supporters. Teresa del 
Riego, with "O Dry those Tears," which had an 
enormous sale, "Homing," introduced by Madame 
d' Alvarez, and several others, made good. Finally, 


Haydn Wood, who somehow slipped through Messrs. 
Boosey's hands, landed up with "Roses of Picardy," 
an enormous favourite with our boys at the Front, 
and several more real successes. All these songs owed 
their inspiration to the Chappell ballad concerts. 
This was the more valuable half of the loaf I pro- 
mised Tom Chappell, if he would make the con- 
certs the foundation for the publishing. 

Apart from Gilbert and Sullivan, however, Chap- 
pell's were very poorly supplied with light operas. 
In this respect they were suffering from an overdose 
of Hopwood & Crew. Some time previously, Tom 
Chappell had bought Edward Chappell a share in 
Hopwood & Crew. Naturally, Hopwood's had to be 
looked after too. Thus it came about that they 
published The Geisha, The Belle of New York, Little 
Christopher Columbus, etc. This was a difficulty I had 
to deal with, and by degrees an alliance was formed 
between Chappell's and George Edwardes. Chap- 
pell's published practically all the operas that Ed- 
wardes produced. And, to make our position 
stronger, we had an agreement with Lionel Monck- 
ton, Paul Rubens, Ivan Caryll, and others to write 
exclusively for us. 

Meanwhile, and shortly before Tom Chappell's 
death, I felt our board of directors wanted strength- 
ening, and I urged him to invite Harry Chinnery, 
once a well-known member of the Stock Exchange, 
to join the board. Harry Chinnery had married a 
stepdaughter of Tom Chappell, one of the Misses 
Ellis, famous beauties in their day. Harry Chinnery 
did join us, and a great asset he became. He was a 
splendid fellow and the most loyal of friends. Inci- 
dentally, he gave me more work to do, but I cannot 
blame him. He insisted on making a new agreement 
with me in which I was to make myself responsible 


for the running of Chappell's huge piano-factory. 
As he rightly said, what was the use of my making 
money out of the publishing if it was lost, on the 
other side, by the pianos. I took the job on, but it 
did not make my task any easier. 

The famous Saturday and Monday "Pops," ac- 
cording to Groves' Dictionary of Music, registered 
their thousandth performance on April 4th, 1887. 
The Monday "Pops," so far as Chappell's are con- 
cerned, definitely closed down in 1898. The Saturday 
"Pops," however, under our direction, continued up 
to the season 1902-1903. By this time, Arthur Chap- 
pell had retired. Meanwhile, Johann Kruse appeared 
upon the scene. He said he would like to make an 
attempt to revive the "Pops" with his quartette. 
I warned him in the frankest manner he would 
probably lose a lot of money, but he was not to be 
put off. He booked St. James's Hall for forty 
concerts, twenty Saturday "Pops," and twenty 
Monday "Pops." He did his utmost, but I fear my 
prognostication proved only too true. The "Pops" 
definitely disappeared with the end of his season. 

I continued to run ballad concerts for Messrs. 
Chappell for two years at the St. James's Hall. We 
then migrated to the Queen's Hall. The story of our 
acquisition of the Queen's Hall I shall tell later. 

We started the ballad concerts at the St. James's 
Hall with practically the same artistes who had been 
associated with the hall previously. We had Mary 
Davies, Louise Dale, Antoinette Sterling, Sims 
Reeves, poor Joseph Maas (a victim to salmon fish- 
ing), Ben Davies, Santley, and Foli. All of them 
artistes whose reputation was already made. To 
these later on we added Alice Gomez, introduced by 
Hamilton Aide, Carmen Hill (a real ballad singer), 
Margaret Balfour, Dora Labbette, and others. We 


had also three delightful tenors, each with a dis- 
tinction of his own. First of all the ever-to-be-re- 
gretted and lovable Gervase Elwes, Evan Williams, 
who when he was v in good voice was unsurpassable, 
and the always delightful Joseph Hislop. All these 
three tenors had certain resemblances. They were all 
exquisite artistes. Madame d' Alvarez had already 
made a success on the opera stage in New York, but 
was practically unknown to the concert world in 
London until we introduced her. In addition to her 
success in her classic repertoire, she made, as before 
stated, big hits with us in "Homing," by Teresa del 
Riego, and "The Blind Ploughman," by Coningsby 
Clarke. We also had Emma Calv6, Alma Gluck, 
Mary Garden, and Guilia Ravogli. I still felt, how- 
ever, the necessity of breaking new ground. It is true 
we always had a humorous interlude. Margaret 
Cooper was inimitable with songs at the piano. 
Maurice Farkoa was another great favourite. His 
tragic death in New York hardly received any at- 
tention in the London Press. Others we introduced 
were Cissie Loftus, then in the height of her popu- 
larity, Nora Blaney and Gwen Farrar, and that 
little genius, Ivy St. Helier. Lily Hanbury recited 
in a beautiful work by Thom6, "The Trumpeter's 
Betrothed," the violin obligate played by Johann 
Wolff. Lastly, Julia Neilson and Fred Terry ap- 
peared in the "Ballade d'un D6sesp6r6," already 
quoted in the previous chapter. 

Meanwhile, it occurred to me that it would be a 
great attraction to the public to see the leading 
stage-favourites on the concert platform. This was 
quite an experiment and immensely successful. 
Lady Bancroft led off with Tennyson's "I'll be 
Queen of the May, Mother." When she came to the 
moving death-scene, I turned the organ on. The 


organ before now has saved many a bad ballad. So 
no wonder Lady Bancroft triumphed. Madame Ella 
Russell, my leading soprano that afternoon, burst 
into tears and fled from the artistes' room, weeping. 
Hope Temple shortly followed her example. It was 
one of the moistest afternoons any artistes 3 room has 
ever experienced. Sir Squire Bancroft gave "The 
Raven." He was not quite so successful as Lady 
Bancroft, although "Nevermore" came out very 
clearly. Dame Madge Kendal was one of my great suc- 
cesses, also Mrs. Pat Campbell in "She Dwelt among 
the Untrodden Ways." The fee I paid Mrs. Pat was a 
very handsome one. If only Wordsworth could have 
come back again and asked for a small performing 
fee! Mrs. Langtry gave us "A Lesson with the Fan." 
This was before Guy d'Hardelot had set the words, 
which were to make such a success with Marie Tem- 
pest as interpreter. Lady Tree also appeared for us* 
Likewise Lewis Waller. I could not persuade Ellen 
Terry to join the glad throng. She wrote to me that 
she recited abominably, and only saved the inflic- 
tion for her friends. I have no doubt I replied by 
saying how much we missed by not being counted 
among her friends ! Florence St. John, Violet 
Cameron, Edna May, Ada Reeve, and others all 
appeared for us at different times, but it was the re- 
citations that caught on. 

The result of my great success, however, in in- 
troducing the most famous actors and actresses into 
my ballad concerts as reciters was the discovery by 
those Society ladies who are always busy doing good 
for some charity, generally at other people's expense, 
that here was a gold-mine open to them in connec- 
tion with the various charitable causes they were 
interested in. 

Society ladies were able to advertise three or four 


star theatre-turns at the same concert, because 
they paid the artistes nothing. The ladies, how- 
ever, received all the kudos for organising the great 
entertainment. Meanwhile, we, who had to pay 
artistes, could not afford to compete, and the 
artistes lost their fees. I have often said to these 
amateur concert-givers, when they have asked me 
if such and such an artiste could be induced 
to appear for a certain charity: "Do you realise 
this artiste's appearance costs you nothing, but 
you are asking her [or him] to subscribe 400 or 
500 towards your charity?" Take the case of 
John McCormack, or Kreisler the violinist. If either 
is announced for a concert, charity or otherwise, the 
concert may realise anything up to 1,000. If the 
artiste gives another concert the following week, 
for his own benefit, his receipts are bound to be 
grievously affected. 

I was bound, finally, to make a contract with my 
artistes that one of the conditions of their engage- 
ments must be that they could appear at no charity 
concerts without my permission. This answered its 
purpose quite well where musical artistes only were 
concerned ; but, naturally, stage artistes were much 
more independent, as my offers to them were only 
few and far between. 

This reminds me of a very humorous incident told 
me by my friend Sir Harold Boulton when he was 
one of those all too kind ones called in to arrange a 
charity concert. He interviewed a very popular 
singer whose husband had recently died. She was 
evidently a strong advocate of the late Sir Arthur 
Conan Doyle's creed that after death you could 
converse with those you loved and who presumably 
were inhabiting another planet. This lady replied to 
Harold Boulton that she must consult her husband 


as to whether she could help him with his concert. 
She left poor Harold Boulton very bewildered while 
she went out of the room to get into communication 
with her late lamented consort. Upon her return she 
said she had had a chat with her husband, and that 
he advised her she could not possibly sing for less 
than a sum which she named. Harold Boulton ex- 
claimed: I am afraid we could not possibly pay as 
much as that; would you mind going back and 
asking him if you could not take a little less? 55 She 
said she would try, but was doubtful of the result. 
She once more left the room, but reappeared very 
rapidly and said that her husband was absolutely 
firm. Those were the lowest terms she could accept. 
The result was negotiations came to nothing. I only 
hope for Harold Boulton's sake that he discovered 
another lady singer whose husband was not recently 

At one time, when heavy orchestral concerts 
became very much the vogue, I thought it would be 
a good idea to introduce a light orchestra into the 
ballad concerts. For this purpose I engaged Ivan 
Caryll as conductor, whom I considered, for light 
opera and light music, one of the best conductors 
we have ever had. He and I went abroad, and got 
together a wonderful repertoire of light music from 
the various Continental spas, where such pro- 
grammes were very popular. The orchestra we 
engaged was practically the Eichter Orchestra. 
One or two of the critics, who did not know it was 
the Richter Orchestra, said the tone of the orchestra 
was very coarse. So little was this class of music 
understood in this country at that time that others 
spoke with contempt of Luigini's "Ballet Egyptien." 
Messrs. ChappelTs reply was to offer a prize of 300 
to any English composer who would write as good 



a suite. Puccini, Messager, and, I think, Edward 
German were the judges. No one qualified for the 
prize, but George H. Clutsam was proxime accessit, 
and we duly rewarded him and gave him an audition. 

We only had two vocalists at each of these con- 
certs, but the concerts did not catch on with the 
ballad-concert audiences. They wanted all ballads, 
and looked on ballads as their illustrated catalogue, 
of which we were depriving them. At a later stage 
the concerts began to go better, but I found we were 
losing our ballad audience, and drawing a new 
audience altogether, and this we could not afford 
to do. 

Subsequently we engaged an admirable light 
orchestra conducted by Alick MacLean, which at 
the Queen's Hall ballad concerts, used more spar- 
ingly, was greatly successful. Henry Wood also 
conducted light music at the "Ballads" with his 
Queen's Hall orchestra. 

In connection with our modified new policy, I had 
occasion to write the following letter to The Times: 


"There is a certain amount of misunderstanding 
in the very kind preliminary notices that the 
Press have given to the new form of concert we 
are inaugurating on the Saturday afternoons at 
the Queen's HaU, alternating with the symphony 
concerts. In many directions it has been stated 
that this change signifies the passing of the ballad. 
This is really not accurate. We do not think the 
ballad is ever likely altogether to pass, but it has 
become necessary to review its present position 
under existing circumstances. 


"The fact is, there is such an enormous amount 
of music published to-day, as compared with 
yesterday, that an immense number of very feeble 
ballads help to strangle those of real merit. A 
much severer test of criticism, in our opinion, has 
to be applied in bringing new ballads before the 
public. For this reason we find that concerts made 
up entirely of ballads are a hindrance, rather than 
a help, to the best ballads, more particularly as it 
is not so easy to find vocalists of the first rank. 

"The fact that we give sixty promenade con- 
certs during the season, in the second part of 
which we always give two ballads; the fact that 
at the Sunday afternoon concerts at the Queen's 
Hall a good new English song is always included 
in the second part; and lastly, the fact that there 
will always be two good ballads included in our 
new programmes is, we think, a sufficient answer 
to the general statement that the ballad is 

Among the last and most successful concerts 
artistically that we gave at the St. James's Hall was 
a series of recitals by those two inspired artistes, 
Marie Tempest and Chaminade, whose art and 
temperament were most happily blended. 

Another great difficulty in giving concerts is to 
compete with the numerous, sometimes very good, 
artistes who give recitals and who must have the 
hall filled even if hardly anybody pays for a ticket. 
There is no means of getting rid of this very terrible 
form of competition. 

I have often wondered if there is anybody living 
who has given as many concerts as I have. They can 
be numbered by hundreds. When one realises, how- 
ever, that I have given concerts almost without 


intermission for fifty years, including the immense 
number, serious and otherwise, that I gave for 
Chappell's at the Queen's Hall, it can be easily re- 
cognised how I have broken all records. The question 
may be asked: How far has music benefited by my 
efforts? My modest reply is: The artistes have cer- 
tainly benefited. 

One of the most trying experiences of anyone 
giving concerts is the holding of auditions. 

If the novice, he or she, is really very bad - and 
they both generally are, because they insist on en- 
deavouring to appear in public long before they have 
studied sufficiently - 1 generally shake them warmly 
by the hand, and thank them for having let me hear 
them. This pleases them, and at the same time 
exonerates me, because it removes the necessity of 
my having to hear them again. 

One of the great difficulties in the profession is 
that so many attempt a career as singers, and, when 
they fail, promptly become teachers, so that in a 
very short while, if not already, the teachers will 
largely outnumber the pupils. 

And so the snowball daily grows. An occasional 
humorous incident occurs. I remember a very 
famous lady golfer coming down to a voice trial. I 
suppose she did not think I knew anything about 
golf. Neither do I. But I knew all about her. When 
she appeared on the platform, I said: "Do you mind 

teeing off from this side, Miss ?" (No, I shall not 

reveal the name.) She is a fine upstanding girl with a 
charming personality. Well, she sang, and I said to 
myself: "If only your voice would carry half as far 
as you can drive a golf-ball, your fortune would be 
made!" But it didn't. 

I remember another occasion when a very emi- 
nent professor in the musical world sent an artiste 


down to me, and it took us about ten minutes to get 
her on to the platform, she was so damaged about 
the legs. Really, he had no sense of humour. 

But I dare not pursue this topic further. I might 
exceed my time limit. 



IT will undoubtedly interest people in the musical 
world to know how it was that Messrs. Chappell ob- 
tained the lease of the Queen's Hall. 

I was very startled when Mr. Thomas Chappell, 
the chairman of the St. James's Hall company, in- 
formed me one morning that he had had a very good 
offer for the St. James's Hall, and that, as a good 
many of the public were shareholders in the hall, he 
did not feel he would be justified in refusing such an 
offer if it matured. 

I explained to him that the loss of the St. James's 
Hall would be a great blow to our interests, since 
it was the hall where the famous Saturday and 
Monday Popular Concerts had always been given 
and since it was also the hall where I was then 
running ballad concerts for Messrs. Chappell. Tom 
Chappell replied that he quite appreciated all this, 
but his duty to his general shareholders must come 

I admitted the justice of his argument, but merely 
asked him, if he had to sell, at all events to give me, 
as managing director of his business, a month's 
notice before his final decision was given, so that I 
could have a chance of making arrangements to 
place our concert interests elsewhere. This he 
agreed to. 





Subsequently I never referred to the subject 
again, because I was satisfied that any decision he 
came to would be come to on public grounds, and 
would not be assailable by any arguments of 

Shortly before his death he said he had come to 
the conclusion he would not sell St. James's Hall. I 
did not know what his reasons were, but naturally I 
was very cheered by his decision. 

After his death, certain parties interested as share- 
holders were again approached with an offer for the 
hall. They thought naturally it would be judicious 
to accept it without saying a word to me or to 
the then chairman of the company, Mr. Stanley 

The lease of the Queen's Hall, through a variety of 
circumstances which would not interest the general 
public, had eventually become vested in Messrs. 
Ravenscroft, who were represented by a very intel- 
ligent solicitor, Mr. J. S. Rubenstein. 

Rubenstein always felt that the Queen's Hall 
would do much better if St. James's Hall no longer 
existed; and ChappelTs, from their point of view, 
had equally positive views as to the position of 
the Queen's Hall as a rival to their St. James's 

Rubenstein, in his lighter moments, used to ask 
why we did not sell St. James's Hall for a big popular 
restaurant, and I in reply used to say that he had 
much better convert the Queen's Hall into a per- 
manent circus, the shape of it being eminently 
suitable for some such scheme. ,1 even pictured 
to him visions of himself in a red coat, cracking 
his whip and leading a piebald horse into the 

This of course was all very frivolous, but when 


I discovered, as I have explained previously, 
that the St. James's Hall had been sold, I 
realised that we were in a very dangerous position 
with regard to the future of the various concert 
enterprises that were so important an asset to our 

I must, however, first explain what led up to my 
dramatic discovery in connection with the hall. 

I was passing along the Strand one morning when 
I happened accidentally to meet a lawyer just 
opposite Romano's. His firm were connected 
with some of the Chappell family, and he, having 
a cheerful disposition, said : "Will you step into 
Romano's and have one?" Naturally, I replied: 

While we partook of a rapid cocktail, he startled 
me by saying: "Is not this good news about St. 
James's Hall?" I said: "What news?" He evidently 
realised at once that I had heard nothing, and sought 
refuge in the peculiar characteristics of the oyster, 
which, I am told, sometimes can be extremely se- 
cretive. Anyhow, I, having been put upon the track 
that St. James's Hall had been sold without my 
knowledge as managing director of Messrs. Chappell 
& Co., thought: "This is desperate." However, I was 
suddenly inspired. 

The Queen's Hall at that time was in a transitory 
stage, principally because one or two musical agents 
who had run the hall found they could not make it 
pay. The question of the lease was more or less in 
the air. I picked up the telephone and rang up my 
friend Rubenstein. 

"You have often suggested to me, Rubenstein," I 
said, "what a splendid thing it would be if St. 
James's Hall could be sold. The Queen's Hall would 
then be the only possible concert hall in London." 


"Yes," he replied. "Well/ 5 I said, "supposing the 
hall were sold, would you consider Messrs. Chappell 
& Co. responsible and desirable lessees for the Queen's 
Hall?" "Naturally," he replied. "Well, now," I 
said, "if you can give Messrs. Chappell & Co. a lease 
of the Queen's Hall within twenty-hour hours with- 
out saying a word to a soul, you will find that St. 
James's Hall is sold and that one of the dreams 
of your life has been accomplished." 

He promptly agreed, and within twenty-four 
hours I had signed, on behalf of Messrs. Chappell, a 
long lease of the Queen's HalL My word had been 
kept, St. James's Hall was sold. 

Subsequent to the sale of the St. James's Hall, it 
being bought by some speculators who had in view 
the building of the present Piccadilly Hotel, certain 
delays occurred, and the purchasers informed me 
that they would not be able to start their building 
operations for a couple of years. They proposed, 
therefore, to keep St. James's Hall open as a Con- 
cert Hall until they were ready. This did not suit 
my book at all. I saw that there might be a question 
of cutting prices where the rent of the two halls was 
concerned, and that my Queen's Hall deal might in- 
volve me in a loss much more considerable than I 
contemplated. I therefore promptly made a deal 
with the building syndicate to take St. James's Hall 
off their hands at a fixed rental, by which means I 
was able to maintain the rent of the two halls and to 
make competition impossible. 

Messrs. Chappell ran the two halls for two seasons, 
and came very well out of the deal. 

The obvious moral of this page of musical history, 
as you will no doubt have gathered, is that, had I 
been a teetotaller, Messrs. Chappell would never 
have acquired the Queen's Hall! 


Upon the outbreak of the great European War, 
Sir Edgar Speyer, an intimate friend of the then 
Prime Minister, Mr. Asquith, was a tenant of Messrs. 
Chappell & Co., the lessees of the Queen's Hall, and 
was running at the Queen's Hall the famous prom- 
enade concerts under the musical direction of Sir 
Henry Wood. He was at the same time financing the 
equally famous symphony concerts, also under the 
musical direction of Sir Henry. 

Messrs. Chappell & Co. were very soon awake to 
the fact that, in spite of the war, Sir Edgar Speyer's 
programmes were aggressively German in fact, con- 
tained nothing but German music. Messrs. Chappell 
came to the conclusion that under war conditions 
such a position could not be tolerated. They there- 
fore gave Sir Edgar notice that his tenancy must 
be terminated. On the other hand, Messrs. Chappell 
did not like to feel that through their necessary 
patriotic action so many orchestral players were 
thrown out of work for an indefinite period, and 
therefore they decided to run the promenade con- 
certs and the symphony concerts themselves. They 
ran the symphony concerts from October 1915 to 
March 1927, and the promenades from August 1915 
to October 1926. 

Messrs. Chappell & Co. meanwhile continued to 
run their ballad concerts, and in addition gave 220 
afternoon and 136 evening orchestral concerts on 
Sundays during this period, also 57 Sunday evening 
ballad concerts from November 1912 to March 

Particular stress also must be laid upon the fact 
that while the Royal Albert Hall, licensed by special 
charter, may give concerts on Sundays for a profit, 
concerts given at the Queen's Hall on Sundays are 
only tolerated under the licence of the County 


Council on condition that any profits made are to be 
handed over to this or that charity. It may be taken 
in a general sense that there are no profits on con- 
certs run on these broad lines, but our Government, 
in spite of this fact, insists religiously on the pay- 
ment of the entertainment tax, a monstrous tax 
demanded upon receipts, and not on profits. This 
tax, spread over a series of years, represents a pay- 
ment of thousands and thousands of pounds, a fur- 
ther eloquent tribute to the encouragement given 
to art and music by those in authority. Artistic en- 
deavour in other countries is subsidised by the 
various Governments. In this country it has to be 
paid for as a luxury for providing the great army of 
artistes with a living wage. It never occurs to our 
authorities, also, that it is a monstrous thing to per- 
mit one hall to trade for a profit on a Sunday, and 
the other hall, not only to be liable to have any pro- 
fit made confiscated, but to be taxed out of existence 
for the pleasure of making a yearly loss. This state 
of things is on a par with the marvellous system 
by which places of entertainment on the north 
side of Oxford Street are compelled to close their 
doors and have their refreshment licences termin- 
ated half an hour earlier than similar houses on the 
southern side of Oxford Street. Truly we are a re- 
markable people, and we still cherish the fetish that 
we are more business-like than our Continental 

There is no doubt that Sir Henry Wood rendered 
an inestimable service to orchestral music in this 
country when he absolutely refused to recognise the 
deputy system which prevailed so long among 
orchestras. It will be remembered that Sir Henry 
originally conducted the London Symphony Or- 
chestra, which admittedly contained all our best 


orchestral players. He was, however, up against 
the detestable custom which permitted the best 
players, when it suited their convenience, to absent 
themselves from an important concert and to send 
a deputy to represent them. Hence the formation 
of the Queen's Hall Orchestra. 

Over and over again, when I have been producing 
a new operatic work of importance, I have been 
notified by one or other of the orchestral agencies 
that they could guarantee me the engagement of an 
orchestra, containing the best players in London. I 
have always replied, "Yes, they attend when it suits 
their convenience." But my experience has often 
been that on the first night of a new operatic work 
I have found seven or eight or more players in 
the orchestra who have never attended a single 
rehearsal of the work, but appeared upon the 
scene because the principals considered that they 
had a better engagement at the last moment 

In the first place, this system is grossly unfair to 
the younger members of the orchestral union, in- 
asmuch as they are only handed the leavings of the 
leading players, who retain everything of import- 
ance in their own hands. The younger members of 
the union have admitted to me that the system 
worked very unfairly against them. It was much 
more satisfactory to have an orchestra whom you 
could rely upon being present in their full strength 
at every rehearsal and for a first performance, even 
if they were not always the pick of the orchestral 

A great deal of nonsense is written in the Press 
about the superiority of the Continental orchestral 
players. I say, without hesitation, that the best 
orchestral players in England can hold their own 


against any combination of similar artistes from 
abroad. It is only the wretched system that occa- 
sionally lets them down. Foreign conductors have 
again and again spoken to me of the extreme merit 
of our leading players, and particularly of their ex- 
traordinary ability to read new scores. On the other 
hand, I have always maintained with great regret 
that their attitude has been extremely difficult, in- 
deed often tyrannical. The climax was reached re- 
cently when I, as chairman of the Performing Right 
Society, was informed by a deputation of these 
artistes that they understood the Performing Right 
Society was increasing its fees to one or two of the 
leading restaurants and hotels who made a feature 
of light music, and that in their opinion this increase 
of terms was going to throw many of their members 
out of work. I discussed a case in point with these 
gentlemen. It was a case where one of the most 
prominent hotels during the season thought nothing 
of paying 1,000 a week for the possibly two or 
three orchestras who performed for them daily and 
nightly, and in this case the Performing Right 
Society was asking, for the benefit of composers, a 
paltry l or 2 a week extra for the right to perform 
their English and European repertoire. I asked these 
gentlemen where they would be but for the reper- 
toire which enabled them to take their 1,000 a 
week in fees. I asked them whether a payment of 5 
a week by a very wealthy hotel was an excessive 
payment to make to composers for performing 
rights when the executants took 1,000 a week. I 
warned them, at the same time, very prophetically 
that, if they wanted to fight, they had much better 
reserve their energies to combat the terrible in- 
vasion of mechanical music which, at so many 
cinemas and even restaurants, was breaking up 


orchestral playing altogether. My words have not 
been forgotten* 

Meanwhile, I notice with the greatest pleasure 
that the London Symphony Orchestra, under their 
new conductor, Mengelberg, are undertaking to 
drop their so-caUed privilege of supplying deputies, 
and agree to attend in person at all rehearsals and 
concerts. This is a great victory for Sir Henry Wood, 
and he thoroughly deserves our heartiest congratu- 
lations upon the success of the firm stand he long 
ago took up. 

With conductors such as Sir Thomas Beecham 
and Sir Henry Wood we are also quite on an equality 
with conductors from the Continent, although it is 
an excellent thing to invite eminent conductors 
from the Continent to visit us. 

I was much impressed by a remark Robert New- 
man once made to me. He said very few conductors 
would have the requisite vitality to carry through 
a continuous series of promenade programmes, every 
night for two months, such as Sir Henry Wood did. 

I often wonder if some of the quaint old stories of 
conducting are quite forgotten. I am thinking first 
of all of a, in his time, well-known caterer who used 
to run the Covent Garden promenades. He was 
terribly indignant one night because, during an 
orchestral selection, a brief solo passage for the first 
violin occupied a few moments. He wanted to know 
why he was paying all the orchestra when only 
one was playing! He was equally indignant on 
another occasion when a piano passage was being 
played. He wanted to know why he had so 
many in the orchestra if they could not make more 

We must not forget, either, another famous 
occasion, when the conductor had a little difference 


with one of his orchestra. The member of the 
orchestra concluded the argument by saying: "If 
you speak to me like that again, I will follow your 

Lastly, I must not forget a priceless story which 
Sir Landon Ronald is responsible for. It appears 
he was conducting an orchestral concert up at 
Glasgow. A distinguished conductor from the 
Continent, whose name I forget, also conducted 
two or three numbers in the same programme. 
After the concert one of the little flapper fiends, who 
are daily in search of autographs, came and asked 
Sir Landon for his autograph. He wrote it down 
in her book, apparently in pencil. Very shortly 
afterwards she returned and said she had made a 
mistake. She thought he was the conductor from 
abroad, and it was his autograph she wanted, and 
not Ronald's. She asked if he could lend her a piece 
of indiarubber! 



IN dealing with this subject - and it is well to re- 
member that, at one time, musical piracies threat- 
ened to annihilate musical copyright altogether 
it is necessary to turn to the Copyright Act of 1842. 
This Act was the first serious attempt to protect 
literary, artistic, and musical property, and so to 
ensure to the author or composer a fair reward for 
the creation and labour of his brain. 

The Act of 1842 was in many respects a much 
better drafted Act than the last Copyright Act of 
1911. In one serious direction, however, it hope- 
lessly failed. If a starving man steals a loaf of bread 
he is subject to imprisonment. Sheep stealing was at 
one time, as we know, a hanging matter. 

The only way to protect a man whose brain work 
was stolen was to proceed against the culprit in a 
civil court and sue for damages. In the case of book 
piracies the protective clauses in the Act of 1842 
were probably sufficient. And for this reason. The 
process of setting up a book in type, purchasing 
sufficient paper, printing it, etc. was a very costly 
one. A pirate who wished to steal must obviously be 
a person of means. Heavy damages could be awarded 
by a civil court, and the delinquent would pre- 
sumably be able to pay. 

It was quite a different matter with music. Popular 



songs only required two or three pages of paper, 
and they could be photographed or litho'ed in any 
old shed or barn which happened to be handy. They 
could then be retailed to an army of street hawkers 
for distribution. This in fact was what was done, 
and in 1902 popular songs were sold by thousands, 
both openly on the London streets and everywhere 
throughout the provinces. 

What was to be done? We formed, on paper, a 
very formidable "Musical Defence League." But our 
supporters were merely moral. They occupied much 
the same position as do Society ladies whose names 
appear on the programmes of charity concerts. But, 
in using the names of our sympathisers, our prin- 
cipal object was to drive the fact into the heads of 
the general public, and simultaneously into the 
heads of several very dense Members of Parliament, 
that composers were not able to live upon suction, 
but required quite as much nourishment to keep 
body and soul together as any other members of the 
community. It is amazing to think how difficult it 
has always been to make the public understand that 
music must be paid for in the same way that any 
other commodity must be paid for that the people 
are in daily need of. 

Our greatest opponent in the House of Commons 
all through our campaign, was a Mr. Caldwell, 
member for one of the Glasgow divisions, a very 
wealthy man, who, I believe, made his fortune out 
of copyright patterns on calico. At one election in 
Glasgow we ran a Socialist candidate against him, 
in the hope of securing the seat for the Conservative 
candidate. We were not successful, however. 

Meanwhile, we did obtain a small measure of 
assistance from the Government. They gave us the 
Copyright Act of 1902, This Act gave a constable the 



right to seize upon sight any music in the street 
he had reason to think was pirated, without a 
warrant. Previously to this Act he could only 
seize music upon a warrant, and how could this 
possibly help him against an elusive street 

At last one day a solicitor, Percy Becher, intro- 
duced by Hermann Lohr, came to me and said he 
thought there was a roundabout, admittedly a 
difficult and expensive, way by which we might be 
able to seriously undermine our enemies, the pirates. 
Briefly it was this. To publish and sell pirated music 
on one's own initiative, without any outside help, 
was only a civil offence. But, if you could prove that 
two or three persons had conspired together to 
reprint and sell your music, a charge of conspiracy 
might lie against them, and they would be subject, 
on conviction, to imprisonment. We took this 
matter into our careful consideration, and even- 
tually submitted a case to the late Mr. Muir, a 
counsel with an extremely clear mind and with a 
remarkable gift of clarity in submitting his argu- 
ments. Mr. Muir was of opinion we could succeed, 
so we went ahead at once. We secured all the neces- 
sary evidence, and launched our prosecution against 
two or three of the most notorious pirates. We 
obtained judgment in our favour, and a severe 
sentence was passed upon more than one pirate 
king. This was our first great victory, but it was 
only obtained at an enormous cost, and it was 
obvious we must secure further legislation to enable 
us to hold our ground. We had to make, if possible, 
the printing and selling of pirated music an offence 
punishable by imprisonment, and we eventually 

In 1905, however, the situation grew worse and 


worse, and, at a fully attended meeting of music 
publishers, we notified we could accept no more 
music for publication and could make no further 
payments to singers until our mutual wrongs were 

The following is the notice we published (reprinted 
from the Daily Telegraph of April 10th 9 1905): 



"At a meeting of the Music Publishers' Associ- 
ation, held on Friday, at the office of the associa- 
tion, 27 Regent Street, it was unanimously 
decided by the undermentioned firms that, in 
consequence of the present deplorable position of 
music composers, and of the music publishing and 
retail trade, brought about by the want of pro- 
tection against music piracies: 

"1. No further new publications shall be issued 
by any of the firms in question until further 

"2. No fresh contracts for payments to artistes 
and singers of new publications shall be entered 
into for the present; 

"3. No further money shall at present be spent 
upon newspaper advertisements. 

"The undermentioned publishing houses par- 
ticularly desire to point out that their present 
attitude is dictated by no hostile spirit towards 
any person or persons connected with the music 
trade or the music profession, but is merely a 


measure of self-preservation on behalf of the 
music industry and the music composers. 










We were always being informed that we had 
brought the piracies on ourselves by the prohibitive 
price at which we sold our music. Mr. Caldwell was 
particularly attached to this argument. Smuggling, 
he said, was the outcome of heavy duties on wine, 
spirits, tobacco, etc., piracies were the outcome of 
our high-priced music. He would no doubt have 
been interested to study the present iniquitous tax 
of two hundred per cent, upon whisky as against a 
twenty per cent, tax upon foreign wines imported 
into this country. 

It was about this time that some wag hit upon a 
further device to draw attention to our position. 
Lord Balfour (then Mr. Balfour, and at that time 
Prime Minister) had just published a little treatise 
on Free and Fair Trade. It was in a paper cover, was 
very brief, and was published at Is. Suddenly a 
pirated copy of this little work appeared on the 
streets, retailed at one penny. It contained a note 
by the editor on the front page, stating that the 
work educationally was of such value to the masses 
that it had been found necessary to bring out a 


penny edition, the shilling edition putting it out of 
the reach of the average purchaser. Messrs. Long- 
mans, the publishers of the original edition, imme- 
diately rang up the music publishers, asking first 
if we had seen the pirated copy, and particularly 
asking our advice as to how they could deal with the 
matter. Our reply was very short and to the point: 
"As we have not yet discovered a means to protect 
our music, it must be obvious to you we cannot 
suggest any method by which you can protect your 

About the same time several of Kipling's poems 
were pirated and also put upon the streets at Id. 
a copy. I read a statement in one of the journals the 
other day that those penny editions of Kipling's 
poems, being very rare, were being sold at 3 and 
4 a piece, but I can hardly credit it. 

The Acting Committee of the Musical Defence 
League already numbered among its names the 

Sir C. Hubert H. Parry Mr. Hamish MacCunn 

Sir Alex. C. Mackenzie Mr. Stephen Adams 

Sir Chas. Villiers Stan- Mr. Ivan Caryll 

ford Mr. Edward German 

M. Andre Messager Mr. Lionel Monckton 

Signor F. Paolo Tosti Mr. Paul A. Rubens 

Mr. T. Stanley Chappell Mr. Sidney Jones 

Sir Edward Elgar Mr. Leslie Stuart 

Dr. F. H. Cowen Mr. David Day 
Dr. W. H. Cummings 

Mr. Alfred Littleton 
(Chairman, Messrs. Novello & Co., Ltd.] 

Mr. Arthur Boosey 
(Messrs. Boosey & Co.) 


Mr. W. EL Leslie 

(Managing Director, Messrs. John Broadwood & 
Sons, Ltd.) 

Mr. J. Herbert Marshall, J.P. 
(President, Provincial Music Trades Association) 

Mr. William Boosey 
(Managing Director, Messrs. Chappell & Co., Ltd.] 

An indignation meeting was organised by them 
at the Queen's Hall to protest against the continued 
neglect of the authorities to protect the property of 
the composers. They also organised a petition to 
Parliament, which eventually numbered some hun- 
dreds of signatures. A few names taken at random 
are given here to illustrate how widespread at last 
was the realisation of the public as to the nature 
and justice of the agitation: 

Sir Lawrence Alma The Marquis of Down- 

Tadema shire 

Professor Hubert von Lord Arthur Hill 

Herkomer Lady Arthur Hill 

Sir Henry Irving Mr. W. S. Gilbert 

Sir Squire Bancroft Mr. Rudyard Kipling 

Sir A. Conan Doyle Captain Basil Hood 

Sir A. C. Mackenzie Mr. Sidney Grundy 

Professor Ray Lankester Mr. Louis N. Parker 

Madame Melba Mr. W. W. Jacobs 

Miss Marie Corelli Mr. Jerome K. Jerome 

Mr. Arthur Bourchier Mr. Anthony Hope 

Mr. Cyril Maude Mr. Israel Zangwill 

Mr. George Alexander Mr. John Hare 

The Countess of Gains- Mr. Fred Terry 

borough Mr. Arthur Collins 
The Countess of Lucan 


But among all the names one stands out prominently 
as that of the man without whose aid all our efforts 
might have been in vain. That man was the late 
T. P. O'Connor. He was an enthusiast, he loved 
music, and above all he loved championing a cause 
which had for its incentive the protection of the 
weak against the strong. 

He assisted in drafting the Bill of 1906, and by 
his influence induced the Government to star the 
Bill, which indicated that, although a private Bill, 
it had their full support. 

The session was nearly at an end. Had we not 
forced our Bill through that session, the whole of 
our work at the next session would have had to be 
gone over again. The Bill passed the third reading 
in the House of Commons, and all it required was 
the confirmation of the House of Lords and the royal 
assent. We had arrived, however, at the last night 
of the session, and apparently the House of Lords 
was not sitting. A special meeting of the House of 
Lords was called. T. P. himself told me it was the 
only occasion, to his knowledge, that the House of 
Lords had been summoned to pass a private Bill. 
Three members of the House of Lords attended. 
I think it was Lord Ribblesdale who introduced the 
Bill. Our difficulties were not yet at an end. It had 
to be laid on the table of the House of Commons 
before the morning, otherwise the royal assent could 
not have been obtained. By some extraordinary 
coincidence it was the one night that the House of 
Commons adjourned at a comparatively early hour* 
T. P. was just in time, as the House was being locked 
up for the night, to get hold of one of the clerks of 
the House of Commons, and with his assistance to 
slip through the door and lay our Bill upon the table. 
The curtain was then rung down. We gave a dinner 



to T. P. to celebrate his great achievement, His 
Grace the late Duke of Argyll kindly consenting to 
take the chair. Among those present were: 

Sir Alexander Mackenzie 
(Chairman of Committee) 
The Earl of Plymouth 
The Earl of Lytton 
Viscount Knutsford 
Lord Balcarres, M.P. 
Lord Monkswell 
Lord Burnham 
Sir Edward H. Carson, 

K.C., M.P. 
Sir Harry B. Poland, 


Sir Charles Wyndham 
Sir C. Hubert Parry 
Sir Charles Villiers Stan- 

Sir Edward Elgar 
Sir Ernest Clarke 
Sir J. Herbert Marshall 
C. B. Stuart- Wortley, 

Esq., K.C., M.P. 
Horace E. Avory, Esq., 

T. E. Scrutton, Esq., 

J. M. Le Sage, Esq. 
H. Beerbohm Tree, Esq. 
George Alexander, Esq. 
A. W. Pinero, Esq. 
J. Comyns Carr, Esq. 
J. M. Barrie, Esq. 
M. Andre Messager 
Signor F. Paolo Tosti 
Edward German, Esq. 
Hamish MacCunn, Esq. 
Ivan Caryll, Esq. 
Lionel Monckton, Esq. 
Leslie Stuart, Esq. 
Michael Maybrick, Esq. 
Paul A. Rubens, Esq. 
Sidney Jones, Esq. 
Howard Talbot, Esq. 
Landon Ronald, Esq. 
Bernard Partridge, Esq. 
T. Anstey Guthrie, Esq. 
Henry J. Wood, Esq. 

T. P., in his speech after dinner, stated that but 
for me there would have been no Copyright Act of 
1906. He was far too generous. I did not spare my- 
self, but the victory was his, and he deserved all the 

In 1911, when the long-overdue Copyright Bill 
was passed, all preceding Copyright Acts were 


annulled, with the exception of our two little Acts of 
1902 and 1906. The curious position, therefore, now 
is that it is a criminal offence by statute to pirate 
music, but only a civil offence to pirate books and 
other forms of art copyright. 



IT is impossible to complete these memoirs with- 
out devoting a whole chapter to that remarkable 
man, George Edwardes. 

I met him first of all when he was acting manager 
for the Cartes at the Savoy Theatre. When he left 
them they were not able to give him a benefit, as , 
I believe it was against the rule of the theatre, but 
I believe they treated him very generously. He then 
proceeded to invent the entertainment which was 
practically his own creation. He produced light go- 
as-you-please farces with music. In Town was the 
first of them to make good with the public. The 
book of this production was by Basil Hood, and in 
it Arthur Roberts made a notable success. 

Edwardes always had a curious way of producing 
his pieces; one might almost say that half of them 
were written on the stage. By degrees he extended 
his operations, and eventually we found him in 
complete command at Daly's Theatre, having justly 
gained a reputation for producing the most lavish, 
beautiful, and entertaining musical comedies that 
had ever been put upon the London stage. 

One may say that he invented the term "musical 
comedy"; but, when his big success came, his pro- 
ductions were altogether on a broader scale. He pro- 
duced the very best works by English composers of 
light music that were procurable, and he also opened 



his theatre and theatres to all the recognised big 
successes of the Continent, including more particu- 
larly the run of theatrical hits that owed their origin 
to Vienna and Budapest, 

He had an unfailing flair for pretty faces. The 
ladies of his choruses were always the prettiest and 
most elegant girls that even this wonderful country 
can provide. They were always a source of wonder 
to Continental managers, whose chorus ladies natur- 
ally were built on entirely different lines. 

He had an equal taste in costume and scenery, 
and never lost sight of the extreme importance of 
having strong comic relief in each of the operas he 

If I were asked what was the final reason of his 
success as a producer, I should be inclined to say 
it was his extraordinary gift in knowing what to 

He very often made a slight mistake in selecting 
numbers which did not come up to his expectations, 
but he invariably was able to tell at rehearsal such 
numbers as he knew would not please the public, 
and, the moment he formed his decision, these 
numbers were ruthlessly cut. 

Daly's Theatre, of course, was his own specula- 
tion. At the Gaiety Theatre he was managing di- 
rector of the Gaiety Company. He also produced 
several successes at the Prince of Wales 5 Theatre. 
The direction of these three theatres gave him a 
commanding control of the best artistes. All of our 
best composers of light music wrote for him, and, 
in addition to Harry and Percy Greenbank as lyric 
authors, he had enlisted the services of that very 
serious Cambridge don, Arthur Ropes, better known 
for his brilliantly witty verses under the name of 
Adrian Ross. 


Previously to George Edwardes' directorship of 
the Gaiety Theatre, John Hollingshead had been in 
management there. Hollingshead was first of all a 
literary man, and upon the staff of Punch. It seemed 
an odd freak of fortune that transformed him into 
the manager of a burlesque theatre. But for a time 
he was very successful at the Gaiety with Nellie 
Farren, Connie Gilehrist, Kate Vaughan, Edward 
Terry, and Royce. Meyer Lutz, with his brilliant 
orchestra and his famous pas de quatre, was a con- 
spicuous figure in those days. My last memory of 
Hollingshead was when he was manager of the then 
famous Corinthian Club (now the Sports Club), 
where all the young bloods of their time collected 
for supper and dancing. Very smart it was. I have 
known nothing like it since. Perhaps, however, the 
eyes of youth lent an extra glamour to it. Hol- 
lingshead had a supper-party there one night - one 
among many - and introduced me to a noble lord 
who, he informed me, was a lineal descendant of 
a great nobleman at the time of the Armada. I had 
a very quaint American with me named Drake, and 
I assured the company he was a lineal descendant 
of Sir Francis. I am afraid the deception was too 

Edwardes also made an early success at the Gaiety 
with those wonderful artistes, Nellie Farren and 
Fred Leslie. I believe there was a good deal of 
jealousy between them at first, but they soon learnt 
to appreciate each other's sterling qualities. 

In succession to them, Edwardes by degrees built 
up that wonderful company that, in the new Gaiety 
Theatre, helped themselves, or were helped by their 
manager, to success after success. 

Seymour Hicks was in the heyday of his vivacity 
- infact, he has changed very little since. My charming 


little friend, Ella, was a wonderful foil to him. 
I never see a little piece of string without thinking 
of her! When I was first married we lived at Bed- 
ford Park. She was living there also, and I danced 
with her when she was twelve years old. Yes, I am 
much older than she is. She never seems to have 
grown up in the hard sense of the word. Lucky Sey- 
mour! Seymour was and is a marvellous fellow. He 
once sold me an operetta entitled Captain Kidd. 
There was a lot of "kidd" about it. I had scarcely 
recovered from this first blow when he sold me an- 
other operetta, Cash on Delivery. He produced this 
under the title of C.O.D., so with "Kidd" and "Cod" 
I was amply provided for. And yet no one believes 
in the simplicity of music publishers. 

Kitty Seymour, Teddy Payne, Arthur Lonnen, 
George Grossmith - what a foil to Teddy Payne - 
fascinating Gertie Millar, Connie Ediss, who would 
frequently smoke a big black cigar at a morning 
rehearsal: what names to conjure with! It is only 
necessary to add to these attractions the names of 
Monckton and Caryll with their delightful numbers, 
and Ivan Caryll in the Gaiety orchestra as a prince 
of light-opera conductors! 

We must not forget, also, Olive May and Rosie 
Boot, both of whom still grace the peerage. Then 
there was Maggie Fraser, who when she donned 
Scotch kilts made you feel you would be quite pre- 
pared to live on haggis for the remainder of your 
life, if you might be permitted to share it with her. 
Grace Palotta, too, was inimitable in Lionel Monck- 
ton's "Soldiers in the Park." 

I remember during the Boer War all these girls 
rehearsing a new song by Lionel Monckton, "When 
the Boys Come Home Once More." One of the verses 


girls, only tell us this, 

Is there nothing that you miss? 

Arerit you longing for a kiss 

When the boys come home once more? 

It was too much for the poor girls, they burst into 
tears, and the rehearsal had to be held up until they 
had pulled themselves together. Poor little dears, 
if they could have foreseen the Great War th#t came 

At Daly's Theatre we had an equal galaxy of 
talent. We had Marie Tempest, Maggie May, Evie 
Greene, Letty Lind, Lily Elsie, and that most charm- 
ing of women, Lilian Eldee, who had considerable 
literary ability, and was responsible for the English 
lyrics of Messager's little masterpiece, Veronique. 

Hayden Coffin was in his prime, Huntley Wright 
inimitable; George Huntley; in due course Berry, in 
fact every artiste of note in the light opera world, 
was at our command. 

Arthur Roberts, as before stated, had made a big 
hit in In Town, one of George Edwardes' first suc- 
cesses. Roberts had, however, previously, in addi- 
tion to his success in pantomime, appeared in light 
opera under Farnie's management. Prince Soltykoff 
at that time was much interested in the theatre. 

Had one space, there are many delightful tales to 
tell of George Edwardes. I remember on one occa- 
sion George Graves had made his first big success in 
a light opera at the Prince of Wales' - the music, if 
I remember rightly, by Leslie Stuart -in which 
Graves played a peppery old colonel with a very 
rough cough. George Graves was rehearsing a new 
piece, and did not like his part. He came up to 
Edwardes on the stage and said: "Governor, this is 
an awful part; I can make nothing of it." Edwardes 


took the script in his hand, and said: "My dear boy, 
what is the matter with it? It is a beautiful part. Why 
don't you make that funny little noise you made 
as the colonel in the last production here? 55 George 
Graves looked at me, and we could not help smiling. 

Poor Edwardes was very muddled up when Tol- 
stoi died. Arthur Cohen came into his room and 
said: "Have you seen, George, that poor Tolstoi is 
dead?" Edwardes replied: "Is he? What a pity! 
Such a charming fellow! What was that lovely song 
he wrote - c Good-bye, My Love, for ever'? 55 The 
idea of Tolstoi writing one of Tosti's love ballads 
also appealed to my risible faculties. 

I must also tell a golfing tale which Edwardes was 
responsible for and which was quite a classic in 
golfing circles. I was playing golf with Edwardes at 
Aldeburgh. We were neither of us quite in the front 
rank. At the second hole, I sliced, and he pulled, and 
it was quite a long time before we met again on the 
second green. "How many, George?" said L "The 
same number as you, Willie," he replied. As he had 
not seen me since I left the tee, I thought it was very 
clever of him. Edwardes then addressed his ball for 
a putt, and said: "Like as we lie. 55 1 turned round to 
Paul Rubens, who was walking round with us, and 

said: "Like as we lie be d d, it's lie as we like! 55 

Paul Rubens subsequently put this into one of his 
lyrics in the Three Little Maids: 

Golf is a game where you're like as you lie, 
You can lie as you like if you will. 

"That's mine," I said to Paul, "Yes," he replied, 
but it comes in very well here. Not that Paul Rubens 
had any occasion to depend upon others for his wit. 
I remember when he was in a nursing home off the 


Marylebone Road, and I said, by way of cheering 
him up: " After all, Paul, you have a charming view 
from this window. Here in front of you is the temple 
of Castor and Pollux. 55 I was referring to a curious 
church with a Greek dome. Paul in a flash replied: 
"Castor Oil and Pollux! 55 

Speaking of George Edwardes and his tact with 
artistes reminds me of Gus Harris. Gus was sitting 
at his managerial desk when Barton McGuckin, the 
tenor, in an evident fury, invaded the sanctum. It 
was during a dress rehearsal, I think of Nadeshda 
by Goring Thomas. Barton was indignant at a 
helmet he had been given to wear; said it made him 
look an idiot. Gus put it on his own head, with a 
beautiful smile. "What is the matter with it? 55 said 
Gus. "Do I look an idiot? 55 No one understood all 
these little managerial artifices better than George 

It is curious how the opera Dorothy originated. 
As far as I remember, owing to some stage dispute, 
B. C. Stephenson had to write his libretto to the 
music already written by Alfred Cellier. George 
Edwardes first produced Dorothy, and the original 
cast consisted of Marion Hood as soprano, Redfern 
Hollins as the tenor, Hayden Coffin, and, of course, 
Arthur Williams. The opera met with no success 
originally, but Henry Leslie saw it and thought he 
could make a success with it. At one time, Henry 
Leslie looked like becoming a big light-opera 
manager. He died most unhappily at New York, 
becoming blind before his troubles ended. 

Anyhow, Leslie put Marie Tempest into the title 
role of Dorothy, and substituted Ben Davies for 
Redfern Hollins. This, of course, gave him a tre- 
mendously strong cast. At the last moment, Tom 
Chappell, who was publishing the opera, said to 


Leslie: "You have got a singer. Coffin, who has just 
made a big success, and you have not got a single 
song for him in the opera." Tom Chappell ransacked 
the shelves that contained derelict compositions by 
various composers, and discovered a printed copy of 
the famous song, "Queen of my Heart," actually 
written by Alfred Cellier, which had lain on the 
shelves for years and was absolutely unsaleable. He 
and Alfred Cellier took this song down to the 
management, and, in due course, Coffin sang it and 
made an enormous success with it. 

Coffin had just previously made his stage debut in 
an opera by the young American, William Fullerton, 
and had immediately established himself as a 
favourite with the public. 

There is no doubt that the introduction of this 
one song largely contributed to the opera's eventual 

B. C. Stephenson, the librettist, was a very 
interesting man. It was he who was originally 
responsible for the acquiring of a royal charter 
for Lloyds, the famous insurance centre in the 

I was always informed that B. C. Stephenson had 
many years previously acted as private secretary 
in turn to Disraeli and Gladstone, but I was never 
able to verify this. He had also written a good many 
adaptations of French plays. He was always ready to 
tell you a good tale, even if it was against himself. 

I remember his telling me one of his experiences 
which I never forgot. He had just produced an 
English version of a famous play by Sardou, which 
he entitled Peril. He told me that one morning he 
was walking along Piccadilly when he met a friend 
of his. His friend said: "By Jove, Stephenson, that 
play Peril of yours is immense." Stephenson felt 



fearfully flattered and said: "Do you like it, old 
man?" " 'Like it'? I never miss a performance of it. 
I am there every night." Stephenson was in the 
seventh heaven. "Yes, old man," his friend con- 
tinued. "You know that scene in the boudoir, when 
the two are on the sofa? I always feel that, one 
night, something might happen, and I should not 
like not to be there!" 

The death of George Edwardes found Messrs. 
Chappell & Co. with a considerable holding in 
shares in the Adelphi Theatre, which Edwardes 
had been managing, and a further holding in shares 
in the Gaiety Theatre Company. I was chairman of 
the Adelphi Company, and had to consider what 
programme to adopt. Edwardes had had a big 
success with The Quaker Girl, by Monckton. The 
first thing I did was to engage W. H. Berry for the 
theatre. We then produced a light opera, Tina. 
Most of the music and very delightful it was - was 
by Paul Rubens. Haydn Wood also wrote some 
very pretty numbers for us. The book of Tina was 
founded upon a very clever Hungarian libretto, 
but here again the adaptation was far from giving 
me satisfaction. We had a very strong company 
among others, that sweet actress and singer, Phyl- 
lis Dare; a gallant young baritone, Godfrey Tearle; 
Mabel Sealby, and, last but not least, our old 
friend Berry. Incidentally, also, I gave Margaret 
Bannerman, in Tina, her first appearance on the 

Almost at the same time I had to find a pro- 
gramme for the Gaiety Theatre, which was in very 
low water. George Grossmith and Paul Rubens 
were very anxious to produce a new work of their 
own. I, however, with my frequent experiences of 
the result of weak librettos and charming music, 


was not satisfied with the prospect. Fortunately, 
about this time, I happened to be in Berlin. I was 
at the Hotel Bristol, a most comfortable hotel, 
famous for its wonderful lunches. One afternoon in 
the lounge I heard the orchestra in a fascinating 
intermezzo. I immediately asked the name of it, 
and was informed it was a well-known number from 
a very popular German operetta entitled The Opera 
Ball. Oddly enough, I had never heard of this 
opera. I looked through the opera, and found that 
the intermezzo, from a popular point of view, was 
the only number that appealed to me. What I did 
discover, however, was the fact that the libretto of 
the opera was none other than our famous old 
farce, The Pink Dominoes. Here, I thought, is our 
subject for the Gaiety, with one of Paul Rubens' 
sparkling scores to make sure of a triumph. I think 
my friend George Grosssmith, will remember I had 
a terrible struggle to convert him and Paul Rubens 
to my way of thinking. But I succeeded at last, with 
the result that To-night's the Night re-established 
the Gaiety, and saved the situation financially. 
Meanwhile, I persuaded Sir Alfred Butt to come 
along and join our two boards. I was much too 
busy with other matters, and had no intention of 
devoting my attention entirely to theatrical manage- 
ment. The piece I wanted to produce at the Adelphi 
- and I had much opposition from my friend Pat 
Malone-was High Jinks. It had a big part for 
Berry, made a great success, and re-established the 
theatre. Alfred Butt followed this with his irresis- 
tible production of The Boy, the joint work of 
Pinero and Lionel Monckton. Eventually, Alfred 
Butt brought us along a wonderful offer for our 
shares in the two theatres, and we all came to the 
conclusion we could not do better than accept it. 


One of the great successes I made for ChappelTs 
was the acquiring of a half -interest in the lease of the 
Lyric Theatre, in which it will be remembered that 
William Greet and Engelbach were joint lessees and 
held a sub-lease. When Greet died, Engelbach said 
to me: "Would Chappell's care to take his half- 
interest?" as he, Engelbach, was very old and did 
not care to be saddled with the whole responsibility. 
On behalf of Chappell's, I accepted his offer. 

At this time, Doris Keane had just produced her 
famous Romance at the Duke of York's Theatre, and 
it had not immediately caught on with the public, so 
Engelbach suggested that we should bring it up to 
the Lyric, which we did, and we all know what a 
phenomenal success the play had. 

Our general policy at the Lyric has been to let the 
theatre. By letting it we could always show a sub- 
stantial profit. 

One of our directors, I remember, was very careful 
of the pennies. One morning he was going out of the 
office to get a shave. He suddenly remembered it 
was Queen Alexandra's Rose Day, and he had not 
a rose. He borrowed a rose from one of the clerks! 

While on the subject of Greet and Engelbach, 
owing to circumstances which for the moment are 
not very fresh in my mind, Messrs. Chappell found 
themselves sharing a lease of the Savoy Theatre 
with Greet and Engelbach upon the death of D'Oyly 
Carte. We did not hold the theatre very long, but 
one of our experiences in connection with the 
theatre was such that it is extremely difficult to 
give an explanation of it. 

We revived from time to time all the various 
Gilbert and Sullivan operas with their original 
casts, and we never succeeded in giving any revival 
that was good for more than a six or seven weeks' 


run. Some considerable time afterwards, when I was 
associated with George Edwardes on the board of 
the Adelphi Theatre, I suggested to him that, as 
the Gilbert and Sullivan operas were playing to big 
business in the provinces, it might be worth while 
to once more attempt a revival of the series at the 
Adelphi Theatre. George Edwardes would not hear 
of the idea, and said that the attraction of the 
operas, at all events in London, was finished. 

After George Edwardes 5 death, when I was again 
puzzled for a while as to what we should do with the 
Adelphi, I returned to my old belief, and thought I 
would like to try the revivals which Edwardes had 
some time previously turned down. I approached 
Rupert Carte on the subject, but he said he could 
not do any business, as he meant eventually to pro- 
duce the operas in London himself. As we all remem- 
ber, he has since fulfilled his intention, and has had 
the most amazing success with the London revivals. 

At another time I had intended to bring a French 
company to the Lyric to give some performances 
of the big Paris success, Ta Bouche. Just before 
signing the contracts, I was informed that the Lord 
Chamberlain could not license the piece, even in 
French. The Lord Chamberlain gave me an inter- 
view, and was most courteous. He seemed amused 
when I told him I thought anything might pass in 
French. He asked me why I thought so, and I said 
because some amazing plays in French introduced 
by Sacha Guitry had passed the censorship. My 
efforts, however, were all in vain. The book of Ta 
Bouche was quite possible. The lyrics, I admit, were 
very daring. The musical score was a little gem. 

How is it that some actresses preserve the gift of 
never growing old? Phyllis Broughton possessed this 


gift in an extraordinary degree. I very well remem- 
ber my last meeting with her. I was taking a train 
up from Margate, I believe. On taking my seat and 
looking round, I perceived a very charming lady 
sitting in the corner of the Pullman. I said to my- 
self, "There is no mistaking who that fellow pas- 
senger is." Some of us will, no doubt, remember 
Phyllis Broughton invariably on all occasions wore a 
dark red carnation. There was Phyllis, and there was 
her carnation. I said to her, "Phyllis, your carnation 
betrays you." She did not look a day older than 
when I first knew her. I asked her whether, on 
arriving at Victoria, I could give her a lift in my 
car. She said it was unnecessary, as she was always 
met by a four-wheeled cabman, who had a white 
horse and whose name was George. She said he was 
an old pensioner of hers. 

She informed me there was only one occasion 
when she felt uncommonly like a snob. She had 
been to some big garden-party - 1 think at the 
Rothschilds - and, on coming away, flunkeys were 
fetching up one by one the big imposing cars. A 
flunkey came to her and said, "Can I call your car, 
madame?" She said, "Yes, call George." Whereupon 
George, with his white horse, appeared upon the 
scene of splendour! 

On getting out, eventually, I saw George right 
enough, and safely deposited Phyllis in her coach. It 
was only three or four weeks afterwards that I read 
of her death. 

Another actress who has the gift of never growing 
old is Germaine Gallois. I met her at lunch one day 
during her last appearance in London with Sacha 
Guitry and the delightful Yvonne Printemps. They 
were playing in IS Amour Masque. 

I have known Madame Gallois for some years* It 


was always a great regret to me that I had never 
heard in Paris the score which I always understood 
was one of Andre Messager's most happy efforts in 
the lighter school of music he occasionally permitted 
himself to indulge in. I refer to Isoline. Part of my 
regret was owing to the fact that, in this production, 
Germaine Gallois had appeared in the role of Venus, 
and I had not seen her in it. She always was Venus, 
and, judging from my most recent experience, she 
still retains her invincible title. 

Certain stage beauties seem to possess the gift of 
defying the march of time. Just such another was 
Marie Studholme. 

The last occasion that I met Gertie Millar and 
Lily Elsie was at the first perfomance of the delight- 
ful little Evelyn Laye in Bitter Sweet, when that 
charming artiste, Peggy Wood, had to retire for two 
or three weeks after a long and strenuous run of over 
500 nights in Noel Coward's opera. Both Gertie 
Millar, in severe black, and Lily Elsie were present, 
and, quite apart from any question of dates, one 
could not have met two more charming types of de- 
lightful English womanhood. 



I FIND it impossible to fill in various gaps in con- 
nection with my work for Chappell & Co. without 
referring to the many ventures which I made in 
connection with the Italian composer. Franco LeonL 
Leoni was originally brought from Italy by Barton 
McGuckin, the tenor, who considered he might have 
a good chance of making a career for himself in this 

I published songs for Leoni at Boosey's, and sub- 
sequently some further songs at ChappelTs. 

I then got him to write a choral work on the sub- 
ject of Sardanapalus. This work was given at the 
Queen's Hall with soloists, chorus, and orchestra, 
but the performance was rather a scratch one. 

I then introduced him to Messrs. Novello & Co., 
who gave him a choral work to write entitled The 
Gates of Life. 

This work was done at the Albert Hall, and ex- 
tremely well received by the public, but fiercely 
assailed by the critics. 

I believe it is at present one of Novello & Co.'s 
most popular standard choral works. 

After this I asked Leoni to make a musical setting 
for the opera stage of Basil Hood's charming play, 
Ib and Christina, founded upon Hans Andersen's 

We had this work performed at the Savoy 



Theatre, but it was a little beyond the compass of a 
light-opera theatre ; we therefore gave some special 
matinees of it at Daly's Theatre, during George 
Edwardes' regime, with a very strong cast, who gave 
a very fine reproduction of the work. Susan Strong, 
Edna Thornton, Ben Davies, and Gordon Cleather 
were in the second production. They were all good, 
and Ben Davies just delightful. 

Some time afterwards, Hedmondt, the tenor, 
produced a grand opera version of Rip van Winkle, 
also composed by Leoni, at His Majesty's Theatre. 
Meanwhile, I took Leoni over to Paris and got 
Albert Carre to give him an audition of Ib and Chris- 
tina, with a view to its being produced at the Opera 
Comique. Albert Carre accepted the work. 

I also introduced Leoni to the Covent Garden 
people, and they produced the opera of his entitled 
L'Oracolo, which had considerable success, and 
which Scotti, the baritone, made quite popular in 

Subsequent to this, I had an opera of his, Tzigane, 
on a gipsy subject, presented at the Opera House at 

Finally, I organised, on behalf of Messrs. Chap- 
pell, a big choir and orchestra for the production of 
great choral works at the Queen's Hall. Leoni was 
the conductor. 

He there produced a very big sacred work en- 
titled Golgotha, for full choir and orchestra, and 
with the additional advantage of Maggie Teyte, 
Clara Butt, Gervase Elwes, and Kennerley Rumford 
in the leading solo parts. 

Meanwhile, Albert Carre was not able to produce 
Ib and Christina, owing to the difficulty of finding 
children to play the two important roles, which 
had to be rendered by little people. He therefore 


accepted, in place of Ib and Christina, a version by 
Leoni of Paolo and Francesca. This work was even- 
tually produced at the Opera Comique, 

I am not aware as to what other works Leoni 
has produced since he left England and returned to 

I shall never forget my first meeting with Mario 
Costa. Mario Costa's great-uncle, Sir Michael Costa, 
had been a very famous figure in the English musi- 
cal world, many years before my time, as a great 
conductor. Mario Costa made his debut before the 
English public - or, rather, I should say, the Eng- 
lish smart set -in conjuction with our delightful 
friend Paolo Tosti. These two used to sing duets to- 
gether at all the smart Society functions, and were 
very much sought after. Mario Costa perhaps 
shared with Tosti the reputation of being the most 
popular song-writer in Italy. He is best known 
to our public, in a popular sense, by his famous 
"Francesca" march. Andre Wormser, a most gifted 
musician and composer, had produced at the Prince 
of Wales' Theatre, London, his marvellous little 
play, VEnfant Prodigue, a pantomime in music 
without words. This play was an entire novelty at 
the time. The work was assisted by a small orchestra, 
and the musical standard of the whole production 
was very high. Subsequently, another play upon 
similar lines was given at the Prince of Wales' 
Theatre, I think, by Lowenfeld. This was UHistoire 
d'un Pierrot, by Mario Costa, which had achieved a 
great popularity abroad. Following immediately 
upon Wormser's work, it had not the same appeal 
by way of novelty, and, of course, Wormser was a 
musician of extraordinary attainments. The qualities, 
however, that Mario Costa's work did contain were 
those of the purest form of melody and intensely 


sympathetic and moving themes. The work made a 
profound impression on me, and I made up my mind 
to meet the composer. 

Costa was in Paris at the time, and on my next 
visit to Paris I wired to him to come and see me - 
in fact, to dine with me. He missed the first appoint- 
ment, but next morning I, having been rather late 
the previous evening, was informed by my waiter 
that Signor Mario Costa was coming upstairs to 
make himself known to me. I was only just awoken 
from my slumbers, and did not feel like receiving 
any kind of composer, but it was too late to hold up 
the entrance of Mario. I sprang out of bed and flung 
a Burberry round me, and Mario gazed at me in 
amazement. "Why," he said, "I thought you would 
be a Jew publisher with a black beard, and you are 
a sportsman!" Anything less like a sportsman than I 
felt at that moment cannot be imagined. Anyhow, 
be that as it may, we became the greatest of friends, 
and the next three or four days we spent wandering 
about Paris, sitting about till all hours of the morn- 
ing and talking of the various forms of art that in- 
terested both of us. These were the days before taxis 
existed. We had a dilapidated victoria, driven by a 
weird English coachman, probably well known, to 
many habitues of the Paris of that date. His name 
was William, and the animal that was associated 
with him was a mare which he informed us was 
known as Louise Michel. Mario and I agreed that 
Louise Michel went much more piano than her 

I could tell many delightful tales of our adven- 
tures, but I fear these memoirs are already becom- 
ing too lengthy, so I will only add that I spent many 
years doing my utmost to secure for my loyal little 
friend the recognition which I was sure he was 


entitled to. We eventually did produce his opera, 
Capitaine Fracasse, at the Opera House in Turin. 
This same work has been rewritten and strength- 
ened, and has been revived at Monte Carlo with 
great success last December. 

It was finally completed and scored when I was 
living at Streatley-on-Thames. I had a sweet little 
house in Streatley Wood and, incidentally, two gar- 
deners' cottages. In one of these I installed Mario, 
and there he resided until he was able to show me 
his work was absolutely completed. 

Mario Costa has this supreme quality, which is 
shared by so many brilliant men - his extraordinary 
simplicity and a heart which obstinately refuses to 
grow old with the march of years. He admits him- 
self that he has made big sums of money for 
Choudens, Ricordi's, and other publishers, and that 
the house that has endeavoured to treat him with 
all possible generosity is the only house that has not 
financially benefited from the wonderful gifts he 

Among these brief sketches of character, I cannot 
pass over a generous tribute to Paul Rubens. He 
was educated at Winchester and Oxford. He had a 
most engaging personality. He was generosity it- 
self, and charming to all the world. It was the 
greatest pleasure to me to work for him and to help 
him as much as I was able. He had a wonderful gift 
of refined, joyous, and delicate melody. Like Lionel 
Monckton, he was never banal. He also had an ex- 
traordinary gift for writing very brilliant lyrics with 
very witty ideas. Such lyrics as "The Miller's 
Daughter," "I Loved Her in Velvet," and many 
more are not easily forgotten. I often begged him to 
spend a little more time in polishing them, but that 
was not in his nature. He occasionally wrote his own 


librettos, but I do not think he was so happy in this 
direction. He had not Noel Coward's extraordinary 
sense of the theatre and gift for what is drama, 
humorous or otherwise. He was a gentleman in the 
purest and most delicate sense of the word, and it 
was a terrible blow to his many friends when he 
passed away from us at so comparatively early 
an age. 

Lionel Monckton was also a very old friend of 
mine, and a very strange character. He was at 
Charterhouse at the time I was, and he subsequently 
migrated to Oxford. By nature he was somewhat 
caustic in style and distinctly a cynic, but in his 
business relations with me I always found him the 
fairest and most reasonable man I could hope to 
deal with. He had an extraordinary gift of melody, 
as we all of us still remember, and he also at times 
was wonderfully happy in his lyrics. He wanted 
knowing, but when you knew him you could rely 
upon him, and he was very loyal. 

Ivan Caryll was, perhaps, one of the most extra- 
ordinary characters, certainly as a musician and 
composer, that I ever met in the light-opera world. 
He was generous to a fault, he had not the slightest 
idea of the value of money, in fact he only used it for 
the entertainment and enjoyment of himself and his 
friends. Wherever he took up his quarters, either on 
the Riviera, in Long Island, America, or elsewhere, 
you always found him installed in a palatial resi- 
dence. On one occasion, I remember, he spent his 
morning walking about the boulevards in Paris 
meeting various acquaintances and asking them all 
to dine with him at La Rue's the same evening. I do 
not think I am exaggerating if I say that we sat 
down to dinner numbering not less than forty guests. 
He was extraordinarily clever in making contracts 


with managers for the production of his operas in 
fact, he made far more contracts than even his in- 
dustry and rapidity of work enabled him to fulfil. 
He was an excellent judge of a scenario or play, 
which stood him in good stead on several occasions. 
His success with May Yohe in Little Christopher 
Columbus was remarkable, and one must not forget 
how happy was his collaboration with Lionel 
Monckton for many years at the Gaiety. I maintain, 
without hesitation, that he was one of the finest 
conductors of light opera I ever met. He was not 
only so exceptional in the brightness and brilliance 
of his orchestra, but he knew how to produce a 
perfect ensemble between his orchestra and the 
artistes on the stage, and it must be remembered 
that the artistes in this particular kind of work are 
not all possessed of wonderful voices, and many of 
them required a lot of nursing. It is not impossible 
he found the process of nursing some of them very 
pleasant! There were some very pretty women at the 
Gaiety. At one time it looked as though he really had 
outrun the constable, but he eventually made good 
with the extraordinary success of The Pink Lady> 
which enabled him to clear off all his liabilities and 
start the world afresh. 

The score of his which Ivan Caryll always looked 
upon as indicating the high- water mark of his talent 
was the opera which George Edwardes produced 
entitled The Duchess of Dantzig. It will be remem- 
bered that this was the opera in which Evie Greene 
made such a big success - in what we may call the 
prototype in music of Sardou's great play, Madame 
Sans-Gne, so brilliantly presented by Madame 
Rejane. The production of this play also gave me an 
opportunity to make the acquaintance of Sardou 
himself. I was always most anxious to meet him, as 


I had such an admiration of his work. I remember 
we had a long talk about The Duchess of Dantzig. 
I was explaining to Sardou that George Edwardes, 
when producing The Duchess of Dantzig, went to 
enormous expense because he would insist on all the 
furniture upon the stage not being imitation but 
real. I remember Sardou saying how very foolish it 
seemed. " After all," said Sardou, "the theatre is an 
imitation of life, it is not life itself, and obviously 
imitation furniture serves its purpose every bit as 
well as would the furniture were it genuinely old and 
of the period." 

I remember that at that time we still heard a good 
deal indirectly of the famous Dreyfus case. As is well 
known, Sardou and Zola were two of the foremost 
champions on behalf of Dreyfus. There was also a 
mysterious veiled lady, often referred to in the 
French Figaro, who was helping Sardou and Zola 
to unravel certain mysteries. The story is that, 
when Dreyfus* innocence was established, Sardou 
asked this little lady what they could do for her to 
show their appreciation of the help she had given. 
Her reply was: "Maitre, I have only one ambition 
in the world, and that is to write a successful play." 
I have heard it stated often that Sardou either 
made her a present of a scenario or assisted her in 
putting one together. Be that as it may, the lady 
did write a very successful play, which was not 
only produced in Paris, but in London also. 

At one time Ivan Caryll was collaborating very 
frequently with George R. Sims, whom I knew very 
well. They wrote a light opera, Dandy Dick Whitting- 
ton, which was produced at the old Avenue Theatre, 
and from which we hoped great things which did 
not mature. It was about this time that George 
Sims gave a dinner at Verrey's, the oldest French 


restaurant in London, older even than the famous 
Cafe Royal. The dinner was to celebrate George Sims' 
success with his prize bulldog at the big show of the 
year. An effigy of the dog, in ice, graced the centre of 
the table. I remember that I could make nothing of 
my neighbour on the right, who lived in Kensing- 
ton Palestine Gardens and apparently was a mil- 
lionaire. I tried him on every subject, sport, theatres, 
books, politics - no response. At the end of dinner I 
unearthed his secret. He informed me that he went in 
for breeding bulldogs, and that the process was so 
absorbing he had no leisure or desire to interest 
himself in any other subject. I wonder if he is still 



IN discussing the Copyright Act of 1911 it is im- 
portant to remember that no comprehensive Copy- 
right Act had been passed by Great Britain since 
the year 1842. It is extremely unlikely that the 
Copyright Bill of 1911 would have found its way on 
to the statute book except that the Government 
were compelled to pass an up-to-date Act, enabling 
them to become signatories to the famous Berne 
Convention, which was a convention signed by all 
the principal European Powers for the protection of 
international copyright. 

The Government, as a first step, appointed a 
Royal Commission to report on the whole subject of 
copyright with a view to giving them guidance as to 
the wisest provisions that should be made in the 
new Act, which was obviously necessary. The Com- 
mission consisted of the following: 

Lord Gorell E. Cutler 

L. Alma-Tadema Anthony Hope Hawkins 

G. R. Askwith W. Joynson-Hicks 

H. Granville Barker Algernon Law 

William Boosey Frederick Macmillan 

C. W. Bowerman Walter Raleigh 

Henry R. Clayton T. E. Scrutton 

Henry Cust E. Trevor LL Williams 

KM 145 


The only name of importance missing was that of 
T. P. O'Connor, who fought so hard for the pro- 
tection of musical copyright. He was unavoidably 
absent abroad at the time this enquiry took place. 

In many respects the 1911 Act was an admirable 
act when first drafted, but, unfortunately, on its 
passage through the House of Commons - and more 
particularly through one of those lethal chambers 
which are called House of Commons Committees, 
and consist generally of some forty members totally 
ignorant of the subject they are discussing the 
unhappy Bill when finally returned to the House 
was so torn to pieces and dilapidated that it was 
obvious certain of its provisions when brought into 
a court of law would bewilder the most brilliant 
judges that ever sat upon any Bench. 

In the first place the Bill was in charge of Sir 
John Simon, and, so long as he was in charge of it, 
his admirable knowledge of his subject and his 
lucidity of expression prevented ignorant people 
from making the Bill grotesque by their various 
amendments. He, unfortunately, through stress of 
work, was called away at the most critical moment, 
and from that date onwards the unhappy Bill was 
tossed about from one ignorant person to another, 
and absolutely idiotic amendments were passed 
which we unfortunate people interested, who sat 
listening to the discussion in the committee room, 
were powerless to give any advice upon. 

With regard to the original report of the com- 
mission to the Government, the point I wish to lay 
the greatest stress upon is that the whole of the 
commission, with one exception, that of Mr. Trevor 
Williams, chairman of the Gramophone Company, 
came to a definite conclusion that a composer's rights 
with regard to mechanical music should be on 


exactly the same basis as were his rights with regard 
to the printed copy. This vital recommendation was 
absolutely ignored when the Bill had to be finally 
dealt with in the House of Commons. The gramo- 
phone companies, who have always been very ably 
represented in the House of Commons, brought 
forward a pathetic appeal that if the unhappy com- 
poser were to be allowed to be properly remunerated 
for the records of his composition, which were 
obviously going to seriously affect his profits on his 
printed copy, a grave injustice would be done to the 
workmen who were engaged in the manufacture of 
mechanical instruments. The Labour bugbear, as 
usual, terrified the Government. 

A great many weeks were taken up in hearing 
evidence from every possible source as to the fair 
way of dealing with this newly created property in 
music. It would serve no useful purpose to give a 
long list of names of authors, composers, book pub- 
lishers, and music publishers who all testified to 
the necessity of properly protecting music under 
the newly discovered conditions by which it was 
reproduced mechanically. 

The question became so urgent that we peti- 
tioned Mr. Winston Churchill, who was then at the 
Board of Trade and a member of the Government, 
to receive a deputation from us on the question of 
mechanical music and how it affected composers' 
rights. I shall never forget the interview. Mr. 
Winston Churchill, with the rapidity which I sup- 
pose always characterises brilliant brains, stated at 
once that he did not consider the question at all 
complicated. He said he had evidence that experts 
could read pianola records of music without it being 
necessary to place the same upon the instrument 
which reproduced them. On the other hand, he said 


he was satisfied that no one could read the gramo- 
phone records, and that it was necessary for them 
to be mechanically reproduced to give effect to the 
invention of the composer. He therefore said that, 
in his opinion, pianola records were an infringement 
of copyright and that gramophone discs were not. 
I stared in amazement at his decision, and, being 
still very young and inexperienced, I am afraid I 
lacked the courage to tell him what I thought of his 
amazing proposition. He was, however, as usual, 
perfectly satisfied with himself, and perfectly cer- 
tain that he had found the solution of this difficult 
question. I asked him by what right gramophones 
could make money out of the composer's invention 
without paying, as apart from the question that the 
pianola would be infringing rights. He said he did 
not require to discuss it, it was obvious. 

By some amazing tradition in Government offices, 
copyright matters at that date were in charge of the 
Board of Trade, who handled railways. What on 
earth railways had to do with artistic invention, 
goodness only knows. Possibly these wiseacres dis- 
covered some affinity between a train of thought 
and the ordinary locomotive. Anyhow, with such a 
view being held by a member of the Government 
who was responsible for artistic property and the 
protection of it, it is not surprising that the Act of 
1911 was defaced, so far as mechanical music was 
concerned, with a tissue of absurdities. 

As I before stated, the moment Sir John Simon 
had to abandon the unhappy Bill in the House of 
Commons committee, there was no hope for us. 
Amendment after amendment of an absolutely 
impossible nature was proposed by people totally 
ignorant of their subject, and in almost every case 
accepted. One of the worst off enders - although, 


I have no doubt, with the most excellent intentions 
- was Mr. Josiah Wedgwood. The result was that 
the first time a dispute arose in connection with 
mechanical reproduction, and the point was raised 
in the law courts, the judges expressed themselves 
as totally unable to make head or tail of the mean- 
ing of the clauses which dealt with the reproduction 
of music mechanically. I refer, of course, in par- 
ticular to the clauses under section 19 of the Copy- 
right Act. It would serve no useful purpose to em- 
bark on a legal argument here as to the clauses which 
are appallingly inscrutable and idiotic. I fear they 
will remain on the statute book for many years be- 
fore Parliament finds another opportunity to deal 
with this vital question. It is true the Act gave us 
the power after a certain number of years to peti- 
tion the Board of Trade to revise the rates of pay- 
ment payable on reproductions of copyright works, 
and this right of appeal we took advantage of very 
recently. After a long and tedious enquiry the Board 
of Trade awarded us an increase of a fraction of 
a penny. 

The whole point is this. The composer should have 
the absolute right to deal with his mechanical rights 
as he has to deal with his printing rights, and it was 
a sheer robbery to place him in the condition he was 
placed in, by which, if he parted with his work, he 
had to part with it at a compulsory fixed percent- 
age, no matter what its merit might be. Further- 
more, the second injustice was that, if he parted 
with his right to one maker of records, he was com- 
pelled to part with his rights on the same terms to 
all other makers of records. The greatest hardship 
was that all these other record makers had the right 
to reproduce these compositions at any price they 
pleased. Consequently, they being only governed 


by the necessity to pay the same rate of percent- 
age that the more expensive records had to pay, 
the amount received by composers from the cheaper 
records was absolutely contemptible. What is even 
more grossly unfair is that the interpreter of a 
musical work, be he or she singer or violinist or in- 
strumentalist, has absolute freedom of contract and 
can command any terms before granting permission 
for the reproduction of his or her rendering of the 
work on any mechanical instrument. In other words, 
artistes like Melba and Caruso could command thou- 
sands of pounds from the sale of records of Puccini's 
music, while the wonderful Act of 1911 only per- 
mitted Puccini to draw hundreds of pounds upon 
the same records. 

It is necessary to note that it was only our won- 
derful legislators who contrived this humiliating 
position for the composers. None of the other signa- 
tories to the Berne Convention dreamt of placing 
their composers in so humiliating a position, al- 
though of course, so far as this country was con- 
cerned, they naturally could only obtain the same 
benefits that our composers obtained under our Act. 

The only concession we have reason to be thankful 
for in connection with the Act is, therefore, as be- 
fore stated, that it is still a criminal offence to pirate 
music, but only a civil offence to pirate books and 
other forms of artistic property* We trust that 
authors, artists, book publishers, etc., are content 
with their position. 

I think it is not out of place to reproduce here 
a condensed article which I wrote for the National 
Review in March 1928, which seems to put in a con- 
cise form the present position of composers so far 
as mechanical music is concerned under the Copy- 
right Act of 1911. 


(Published in the "National Review," March 1928) 

"Briefly, how far has the discovery and develop- 
ment of mechanical music affected the composer 
and his ability to earn an income commensurate 
with his talent. 

"Fundamentally, the whole of the mechanical- 
instrument industry is based upon the creation of 
the composer. Without the composer, the gramo- 
phone industry would be non-existent. 

"It is true the legislature gives the composer 
power to withhold his work altogether from me- 
chanical reproduction, a proviso not to be lost 
sight of, But it then pronounces that, if he wishes 
to exercise the right granted him by statute, he 
shall only be permitted to do so under the most 
iniquitous conditions. 

"It will be necessary, in the first place, to re- 
view the Act of Parliament under which authors 
and composers for the first time had their pro- 
prietary rights, so far as mechanical contrivances 
are concerned, recognised in the artistic property 
created by them. 

"That Act was the Copyright Act of 1911, 
which, incidentally, with two exceptions, re- 
pealed all previously existing Copyright Acts. 

"In the first place, to prepare the way for the 
new Act of 1911, the Government of 1909 ap- 
pointed a Royal Commission, of which I was a 
member, to report upon the whole subject of copy- 
right. With regard to the new and difficult ques- 
tion of the mechanical reproduction of musical 
and other copyrights, our recommendation was 
as follows: 


" 'The committee, with one dissentient (the 
chairman of H.M.V.), have come to the con- 
clusion that the author shall have freedom of 
action with regard to the exercise of his right. 5 

"Article 13 of the revised Berne Convention of 
1908 expressly states: 

" 'The authors of musical works shall have 
the exclusive right of authorising (1) the adap- 
tation of those works to instruments which can 
produce them mechanically, (2) the public per- 
formance of the said works by means of these 
instruments. 3 

"At the Berlin Conference of 1908 the delegates 
made the following express declaration in connec- 
tion with composers and mechanical instruments: 

" c ln view of the wide field left open to me- 
chanical instruments by the convention as re- 
gards works already published, it may be con- 
sidered that, in future, composers should be put 
in a position to make their own terms with re- 
spect to their property, and that the differences 
between rival owners of mechanical instruments 
can best be settled on ordinary commercial 
lines. 5 

"This clause was subscribed to by Sir Henry 
Berne and Lord Askwith, who represented Great 
Britain at the Berlin Convention, and was re- 
commended to our Government. 

"These weighty recommendations, however, 
were defeated by a very clever parliamentary 
manipulation on the part of the gramophone 
people, who first of all pleaded that they were 
a young and struggling industry, and secondly 


that, if the poor composer were to possess the 
same rights in his music in mechanical form as. 
in its printed form, the public would be made to 
suffer by being deprived of the wonderful benefits 
accruing from an admittedly marvellous inven- 

"What was the result? The Legislature, by a 
series of amazing provisions in section 19 of the 
new Act, after admitting that the composer had 
the same rights in the mechanical reproduction of 
his work as in the printed copy, immediately pro- 
ceeded to rob him of those rights. He was first of 
all informed that his rights must be subject to 
a compulsory licence; that, if he gave permission 
to one record manufacturer to make use of his 
property, he must grant permission to all manu- 
facturers. He was further informed that he must 
submit to a compulsory remuneration of 5 per 
cent, on the marked price of the record. If his 
composition occupied only one side of the record 
and another composer occupied the other side, he 
must accept 2| per cent, on the marked price. 
Furthermore, and this is one of the wickedest 
features of the section, he had no control as to 
the price at which the record should be published. 
Should a popular composition of his be published 
on a 3s. record, and he receive his miserable 5 per 
cent, or 2|- per cent, on the same, there was no- 
thing to prevent the manufacturer round the 
corner publishing the same record at Is., giving 
him in proportion the same paltry percentage, 
and ruining the sale of the more expensive record. 
It is true that the Government, by a benevolent 
benediction, decreed that the royalty should in 
no case be less than ^d. per copy, to be divided 
between the composer, the author, and the agent 


who had created the popularity of the composi- 

4 'Imagine such a condition of copyright pre- 
vailing in the book world! An author publishes 
a work, say, at 10s. , a publisher round the corner 
publishes the same work at 6d. on a compulsory 
remuneration of 5 per cent. What becomes of the 
author's property? As a matter of fact. Wool- 
worth gramophone records, containing innumer- 
able copyright matter, are sold to the public at 
6d. each. 

"Now, let us see what has been the result of 
this legislation. The sale of the composer's printed 
copy has been practically wiped out of existence 
by the success of the gramophone records. More 
than one well-known music publishing house has 
gone out of business, others are following. Mean- 
while, let us study the increased profits of the 
gramophone companies. The l shares of the lead- 
ing companies are five, six, and seven times their 
original value. They pay enormous dividends and 
huge bonuses. One of the biggest gramophone 
companies within the last few weeks, as certified 
by their balance sheet, made a net profit of over 
1,000,000 on the year's turnover. The dividends 
they declared amounted to 400,000 odd, and 
they carried forward to reserve over 500,000. 

"During the present year, to quote the City 
Editor of the Evening Standard, the ordinary 
shares of the five best-known gramophone com- 
panies have increased in market value by a total 
of more than 8,500,000, and most of them are 
still rising. To-day the market value of the or- 
dinary shares of these companies is more than 
14,704,000, although the nominal value is only 
about 1,500,000, for most of the companies have 


built up their present position on comparatively 
small capital. It is estimated that over sixty-six 
million records are now being manufactured in 
this country yearly. One company alone is pro- 
ducing at the rate of about ten thousand records 
an hour." 

[It must be remembered that these figures 
apply to the year 1928.] 

"To add to the bitterness of the pill, while the 
composer is starved, no sum is too extravagant 
for the gramophone companies to pay to the 
executants of the composer's music. It is currently 
reported that the singing royalties of two very 
popular dark comedians during the last year have 
totalled the sum of 80,000. 

"I am not attempting to suggest that the public 
are not entitled to have their music in any form 
they please. Just as they are entitled to live on 
potted meat, if they so prefer, so are they equally 
entitled to take their enjoyment out of tinned 
music. When I speak of 'tinned music,' I intend no 
reflection upon the frequently extremely artistic 
records produced by gramophone companies; 
but, tinned or otherwise, the music is the com- 
poser's invention, and he is entitled to be paid 
for it. 

"And remember this also. The gramophone 
companies have none of the expense of making 
music popular. They only fatten on the successes 
made by the enterprise of others, either by theatre 
productions, concert speculation, or other means 
of advertisement. 

"It is interesting to note in Greville's recently 
published Memoirs a letter he quotes as written 
by the poet Southey to Lord Brougham when 
Southey was offered a title. Southey writes: 


" 6 A11 that he asked for was a repeal of the Copy 
right Act, which took from the families of literary 
men the only property they had to give them. 5 

"History repeats itself. All that the composers 
ask for is the repeal of the clause of the Copyright 
Act which similarly robs them of the property 
which is their own creation. 

"Let these enormously wealthy gramophone 
companies come into the open market, and bid 
for what copyrights they wish to acquire. This 
is what the publisher has to do, and he has in 
addition to create the demand for the composi- 
tion before it is of any value to the mechanical- 
instrument exploiter. It is a monstrous travesty 
of justice that our Legislature should have de- 
liberately robbed the composer of half his copy- 
right, and that, so far as popular music is con- 
cerned, the more valuable half. 

"Our Government has always been notoriously 
backward in its protection of artistic property. 
France and Italy are far ahead of us in their legis- 
lation. Germany is the only other country besides 
ourselves that retains the compulsory licence 
clause. And even Germany does not fix arbitrarily 
the amount of the royalty that shall be paid upon 
the record. 

"Energetic steps are now being taken to form 
an international union of all those authors and 
composers whose countries of origin are signa- 
tories to the Berne Convention, and to induce 
those Governments who have deprived the 
composer of so valuable a part of his property 
to come into line with the more enlightened 
Governments who have recognised that the 
advancement and protection of copyright are 


among the first evidences of a nation's civilisation. 

"Mean while, the copyright lamb is being penned 
up with the gramophone wolf, and naturally the 
gramophone wolf, as befits his kind, is out to 
nibble off all the wool he can from the back of 
the poor lamb. 

"The British composer is worse off, so far as 
mechanical contrivances are concerned, than the 
composer of any other of the Powers that are 
signatories to the Berne Convention. Surely it is 
not too much to ask the Government to remedy the 
grave injustice our composers are suffering from." 

Subsequent to the above article comes the 
gravest news from Russia that the Soviet Govern- 
ment, in conformity with their notorious Five 
Years Plan, are embarking upon a mass production 
of gramophones and more particularly records . Their 
output of records during 1931 is estimated to reach 
8,000,000, and in 1932 they estimate to produce 
1,250,000 gramophones and 15,000,000 records. 

In face of this amazing proposed output, it is 
vital to remember that Russia is not a member 
of the Berne Convention Copyright Alliance, and 
that no copyright treaties exist between Russia 
and the other European Powers. 

Considering that there is a distinct falling off 
in record sales to-day, it may well be that the 
Soviet pirates are biting off more than they will 
be able to chew. Nevertheless, it is the gravest 
menace to the property of unhappy composers 
who do not happen to be blest by being Russian. 

Determined efforts will very shortly be made 
to place these pirate copies in countries who 
guarantee protection to the composer for the 
exploitation of his property. 



IT is very interesting to note the various schools of 
light opera that have followed one another, each the 
product of a different nationality, the which was 
predominant for a term of years. 

In 1880, when I first entered the field of publish- 
ing, French operetta almost universally prevailed. 
The immortal Offenbach, who one might almost say 
invented, and he certainly perfected, this form of 
composition, was already disappearing into the past. 
His works are seldom heard now. La Belle Helene, 
however, is constantly in the French repertoire. It 
is odd it has never been revived here. Offenbach had 
the inestimable advantage of two admirable libret- 
tists, Meilhac and Halevy. Later on they were to 
inspire Franz Lehar in The Merry Widow. 

The successor to Offenbach was Charles Lecocq. 
His Madame Angot was a masterpiece. Girofle Girofla 
and others of his works were a considerable success 
abroad, but Madame Angot was the only one of his 
operas that fairly established itself in this country. 

Little Audran, a great friend of mine, and Plan- 
quette had not the same musicianly qualities as their 
predecessors, but their music had great charm. 
Audran had numerous successes. He told me once 
that, at the finish, Gilette de Narbonne was his biggest 
annual source of income from the French provinces 



alone. It was a failure here. Chivot and Dura were 
his two principal librettists. Chivot, a little, short, 
plump, and rosy man, was responsible for the senti- 
mental side of his librettos, and Duru, a tall, thin, 
melancholy man, provided the comic relief. There 
was an admirable reproduction of the two of them 
years ago in Punch. Planquette was best known in 
this country by his Rip van Winkle, a fascinating 
light-opera score, which gave Fred Leslie his first 
opportunity to establish himself as an absolute 

Serpette also was an admirable musician and a 
great wag into the bargain. He was credited with 
helping many a French composer with his orchestra- 
tion. Lacome was an exceptionally fine musician. 
His Jeanne, Jeanette, and Jeanetton was produced 
here with success, and I also produced a charming 
opera of his at the Globe, Ma Mie Rosette. On Ivan 
CarylTs advice, a very sound critic, I bought a grand 
opera of Laeome's for Chappell's somewhat on the 
lines of Carmen. I never found an opportunity to 
have it produced here, but were it produced, and it 
has a strong libretto, I feel sure it would compel 

Another of the most brilliant composers of the 
French light school was Louis Ganne. One might 
almost say he was the last of his school. In addi- 
tion to providing France with two national anthems, 
"Marche Lorraine 55 and "P&re, la Victoire," every 
kind of music, where melody, technique, and in- 
spiration are required, came equally easy to him. 
Among countless compositions, his trio, "L'Extase," 
stands out pre-eminently. So does his fascinating 
ballet suite, "Phryne. 55 He was never banal, but al- 
ways commanded a wealth of melody. H. B. Farnie 
used to say to me that, however superior critics 


might sneer, the gift of original melody was a quality 
you could not put a price on. The gift of popularity 
he also said was often unattainable, but frequently 
inspired. It is curious how many composers have 
not the gift to write more than eight consecutive 
bars of real melody. Those who can may easily rank 
among the immortals. Louis Ganne was a very in- 
different business man, and not always happy in his 
librettos. I was present at the first night of Les 
Saltimbanques in Paris. What a delightful score. Un- 
fortunately, a day or two before, I had bought an- 
other new operetta in Paris founded also on a circus 
scenario, L'Auberge de Tolnu Bohu, which was pro- 
duced at the Comedy Theatre under the title of The 
Topsy Tuny Hotel. There is no doubt the success of 
Les Saltimbanques was greatly helped by the libretto 
being founded on circus incidents. A circus always 
appeals passionately to a French audience. 

In conclusion, I am bound to say, although my 
late friend, Andre Messager, would be horrified could 
he hear me, that I consider his lighter operas by far 
the happiest of any of the music that he wrote. 
Veronique may be considered the high- water mark 
of French light opera. Messager shared with Mark 
Twain the privilege of reading his obituary notices 
before he was dead. They cheered him up a lot. He 
wrote several lighter works, after reading them, 
which had a great success in France last but not 
least, IS Amour Masque, rendered by three great 
artistes, Yvonne Printemps, Germaine Gallois, and 
Sacha Guitry. 

The English composers, who began to create a 
school first of all of musical comedy and subse- 
quently of light opera, may be dated from the arrival 
of George Edwardes to the command of Daly's 
Theatre and the control of the already famous 


musical house, the Gaiety. I am excepting from this 
general survey the permanent success of the Gilbert 
and Sullivan operas, which were a creation in them- 
selves, quite distinct from ordinary light opera in 
the general acceptance of the term. The composers 
who headed this new movement were Sidney Jones, 
Lionel Monckton, Leslie Stuart, Ivan Caryll (al- 
though he was a Belgian by birth), Howard Talbot, 
and, last but not least, Paul Rubens. All these 
composers were sooner or later under the control of 
George Edwardes for production purposes, and 
under the control of Chappell & Co. for publishing 
purposes. George Edwardes and Chappell & Co. 
worked together for a long period and established 
a formidable run of successes. 

Our composers were very much handicapped at 
the start, so far as the Continent was concerned, 
because all their musical hits were immediately 
made use of on the Continent for the purpose of 
propping up and furnishing Continental revues at 
music halls, particularly in Paris, with the result 
that our hits were already familiar on the Continent 
before we had the opportunity of playing our pieces 
in their entirety on the Continental legitimate 
theatre stages. This unfortunate circumstance was 
primarily due to the operations of the minor French 
Performing Right Society, who claimed that, as our 
composers were members of their society, they had 
the right to license the separate numbers to the 
music halls who subscribed to their repertoire. I 
fought energetically against this rule, and eventu- 
ally succeeded in establishing a protective clause in 
conjunction with the society. The society agreed 
that in no case would they grant permission to their 
subscribers, music halls or otherwise, to introduce 
our musical numbers into their revues until a full 



two years had elapsed after the first production of 
our works in their entirety in the various capitals of 
Europe. Gilbert and Sullivan's Mikado had already 
been produced with conspicuous success on the Con- 
tinent. The first of George Edwardes 5 productions, 
however, which took our Continental neighbours by 
storm was the brilliant Geisha. The music of San 
Toy was also principally written by Sidney Jones; 
but, by this time, Lionel Monckton was a consider- 
able contributor to the Daly successes. In collabora- 
tion with Ivan Caryll, he was also creating success 
after success at the Gaiety. But, with the production 
of The Country Girl at Daly's, Monckton established 
his right to create a score entirely of his own making. 
Even in this instance, however, George Edwardes 
was always on the qui vive to introduce new com- 
posers with special numbers to add to the strength 
of his organisation. It was in this way that he in- 
troduced Paul Rubens. Monckton's Quaker Girl, 
produced by George Edwardes at the Adelphi 
Theatre, was a further confirmation that Monckton 
was quite sufficiently equipped to stand on his own. 
It would serve no useful purpose to give a full 
account of George Edwardes' many successes. They 
are all recent theatrical and musical history. I have 
often wondered why Sidney Jones did not follow 
up his original brilliant success of the Geisha. Mean- 
while, Lionel Monckton, in conjunction with Ivan 
Caryll, wrote success after success. I have only to 
name The Girls of Gottenberg, The Messenger Boy, 
Our Miss Gibbs, The Runaway Girl, and The Torea- 
dor, among many others. Monckton seemed to pos- 
sess an inexhaustible flow of melody, always refined 
and popular in the best sense. Added to which, upon 
occasions he was equal to writing very pointed and 
happy lyrics of his own. Ivan Caryll, in addition to 


the productions in which he collaborated, was re- 
sponsible for The Earl and the Girl, The Duchess of 
Dantzig, Cigale, written in collaboration with Au- 
dran, and incidentally giving Geraldine Ulmar the 
biggest success of her career; also the phenomenally 
successful Pink Lady, founded on a French libretto. 

Among Paul Rubens' notable successes, as distinct 
from his separate numbers, were The Three Little 
Maids and Miss Hook of Holland, produced by 
Frank Curzon. 

Leslie Stuart's biggest success was, of course, 
Florodora, produced under Horace Sedger's manage- 
ment at the Lyric Theatre. Here also was produced 
Little Christopher Columbus, by Ivan Caryll, where 
May Yohe made such a big hit in the two numbers, 
"Lazily, Drowsily" and "O Come, My Love, to Me." 

In concluding this brief survey of English light 
operas, I cannot omit to mention the remarkable 
scores ofMerrie England and Tom Jones, by Edward 
German. In both these instances the shortcomings 
of the librettos alone interfered with a huge theatri- 
cal success. 

I have often wondered what became of an English 
composer, Harold Garstin. He wrote a most charm- 
ing score for a light opera produced at the Adelphi 
Theatre, but I have never heard of him since. 

I have often wondered, also, why Hubert Bath 
did not follow up his big success of Shon Maclean 
with a light opera on similar lines. I should have 
liked to have seen Frank Bridges also represented 
on the lyric stage. 

Meanwhile, my greatest pleasure is to remember 
that the last light opera I purchased before I re- 
signed my direction of Messrs. Chappell & Co. was 
the work of an Englishman, both libretto and music. 
I refer to Bitter Sweet, by Noel Coward. 


Noel Coward is a remarkable young man. I for- 
get for the moment the name of a very clever play 
of his that I saw in N"ew York. That beautiful 
actress, Jane Cowl, was playing in it. 

The first musical piece of Noel Coward's that was 
offered to me was This Year of Grace. I did not 
hesitate a moment about taking it. 

I don't suppose Coward ever professed to be what 
one may call a professional musician. But he has 
a charming gift of melody, and his harmonies always 
enable him to steer clear of the commonplace. He 
writes brilliant lyrics, and he has an absolute genius 
for stage effect. When you add to these qualifica- 
tions the fact that he is an admirable actor himself, 
and has the rare capacity of selecting his company 
and being able to get exactly what he wants out of 
each of them, the success of Bitter Sweet is not hard 
to understand. 

I am sure he would be the first to admit how much 
he owes to Charlie Cochran. There are three degrees 
of theatrical managers: the first and rarest, the man- 
ager who can judge of a play or an opera by reading 
it and visualises it before it is put on the stage; the 
second, he who can sometimes judge of a play when 
it has been put upon the stage; and the third, he 
who cannot judge of a play under either of these or 
any conditions. Cochran belongs to the first order. 



UPON taking into consideration the Austrian and 
Hungarian school, which in a sense followed upon 
the English school, it must not be forgotten that 
Vienna always possessed composers who had & flair 
for stage music of the lighter quality. One only has 
to remember that masterpiece, the Fledermaus, 
written by the inspired Viennese, Strauss, of 
"Blue Danube" fame and many other wonderful 

Fledermaus was a very fine comedy as a book. 

Then again, Suppe occupied a conspicuous place 
in the domain of light opera, handicapped only- 
the old story - by insufficient librettists. The music 
of Boccaccio is very hard to beat. 

Franz Lehar was the acknowledged king of light 
opera in Vienna, and by dint of The Merry Widow 
established a European reputation. 

Other acknowledged masters were Leo Fall, a 
very fine musician, and Straus of Waltz Dream 

They also had serious competitors in Budapest. 
Kalman, Jacobi, and Szirmai were constantly pro- 
ducing hits. They were great friends, and were 
known as "The Three Musketeers." Kalman had 
big successes in every capital of Europe except in 
London. His Gipsy Princess had a phenomenal run 



everywhere, and the sale of the music was corres- 
pondingly enormous. The Gipsy Princess failed 
in London, I fear, through the selection of the cast, 
which in some instances was not happy. Poor little 
Sari Petrass appeared in it. I shall never forget 
her initial successes with Jacobi in the Marriage 
Market, produced in Budapest. What a picture 
she was! 

Szirmai also was very popular on the Continent. 
I shall never forget Szirmai's tales to me of the 
Bolshevist invasion of Hungary. According to 
him, the most crying need of the Bolshevists was 
for boots. Szirmai was so obsessed by this idea that 
he told me he hid his boots in his piano. I said he 
ought to have been inspired, under the circum- 
stances, to write a world famous march! 

My first introduction to The Merry Widow hap- 
pened very curiously. Mario Costa had asked me to 
endeavour to secure the musical rights of a very old 
German comedy entitled Peace in War. I told him 
I had an appointment in two or three weeks' time 
with Sliwinski, the famous Berlin agent, who dealt 
very largely with operettas in all countries. I was 
on my way to Prague in connection with the pro- 
duction at a Prague Theatre of Leoni's Ib and 
Christina, which was duly produced there. Accord- 
ing to arrangements, Sliwinski met me there. I 
explained to him that I wanted him to obtain the 
rights of this old German comedy for Costa. He 
said that, by a most extraordinary coincidence, this 
very play had been set to music by Rheinhardt, the 
composer of a very successful Viennese piece called 
The Sweet Maiden. He actually produced from his 
bag the contract in connection with the same, which 
he was taking to Vienna for Rheinhardt to sign. He 
said he had two pieces coming out in Vienna in the 






autumn: this piece of Rheinhardt's and an opera 
entitled The Merry Widow, by Lehar. He said, if I 
would bring George Edwardes to Vienna to see 
these pieces, he would hold them back and give us 
the first offer of them. Curiously enough, about this 
time, Lord Kilmarnock, who was attache at the 
Viennese Embassy, wrote to Paul Rubens, and 
suggested that Rubens should acquire The Merry 
Widow, as he felt sure it would be a hit in London. 
Paul Rubens at that time was running the Apollo 
Theatre. Paul, knowing I was going to Vienna, 
asked me to see to the matter for him, but I was 
compelled to tell him I had already given the option 
to George Edwardes. Such is luck in theatrical 
matters. With considerable difficulty I induced 
Edwardes to come to Vienna in the autumn, although 
he was very busy. We heard Rheinhardt's piece 
the first night of our arrival, and it turned out 
to be of no use to us. On the second night 
we went to The Merry Widow, which, as I have 
elsewhere stated, was put on at the Theater an der 
Wien more as a stopgap, and which the manage- 
ment thought very little of. Edwardes and I 
saw the piece, and it was clear to both of us it was a 
certain hit. On the following morning, Sliwinski came 
up to me at the Bristol Hotel in Vienna, and said he 
understood Edwardes was going that same day on 
to Budapest, and was he actually going to leave 
Vienna without purchasing The Merry Widow*! 
I said I could not imagine it was possible. I saw 
George Edwardes, and pointed out to him that, if he 
did not secure The Merry Widow at once, somebody 
else would have it. I finally induced him to sign for 
the piece at once with Sliwinski before he left 
Vienna. The Merry Widow came to Edwardes at a 
very happy moment, because he had produced one or 


two pieces recently in London which had not come 
up to his expectations. 

I have often wondered why it never occurred to 
any French composer of light opera, the French 
being so quick in dramatic perception, to discover 
the musical possibilities of one of Meilhac and 
Haleyy's best comedies, La Veuve Joyeuse. 

It is very interesting to remember other instances 
in connection with The Merry Widow. George 
Edwardes had a conviction that Lily Elsie would 
make a big hit in this part. I confess I did not quite 
share his opinion, as she had had very little oppor- 
tunity up to then of displaying the qualities which 
eventually made her such a big favourite with the 
public. I can remember - and I am sure Lily Elsie, 
whom I greatly admire, will forgive me for men- 
tioning it -meeting her for the first time at the 
Savoy Hotel at a dance which was given to cele- 
brate the thousandth performance of The Chinese 
Honeymoon. She was in the cast of The Chinese 
Honeymoon. As I first remember her, she had no sort 
of claim to the distinction she obtained afterwards. 
She did not waltz very well, and she altogether 
lacked the extraordinary charm which she acquired 
later on. It is interesting to recall what a perfection 
of charm and grace she did become later on, and 
Edwardes' foresight was amply justified. It is true 
The Merry Widow is what is called an actor-proof 
part. I can recall many humorous incidents in con- 
nection with this and subsequent productions of The 
Merry Widow which, for reasons, I must not publish. 

Curiously enough, about the same time, Ivan 
Caryll's Nelly Neil was produced at the Savoy 
Theatre in London by Charles Frohman. On the 
first night I saw, for the first time, Joe Coyne in the 
production. It was his first appearance in London. 


I crossed over to George Edwardes in the stalls, and 
said: "George, there is your Danilo." Edwardes re- 
plied: "I think you are quite right." Joe Coyne was 
duly engaged. At the dress rehearsal of The Merry 
Widow, Joe Coyne said to me: "I am going to make 
the failure of my life in this part." I said: "You 
need not worry, you are going to make the hit of 
your life, and it will establish you as a permanent 
favourite in London." I am glad to think my prophecy 
came true. 

Among Lehar's other big successes at Daly's were 
The Count of Luxemburg and Gipsy Love. Jacobi also 
had a big success at Daly's with The Marriage 
Market. I always regretted that George Edwardes 
did not live to produce Sybil., by Jacobi. It was a 
wonderful book in the original. 

Hugo Felix, another Viennese composer, at one 
time also appeared likely to make a big success. We 
bought a piece of his in Berlin entitled Madame 
Sherry. This was unhappily produced, and did not 
repeat its Continental triumph, although the music 
was delightful. 

There are so many dangerous accidents to guard 
against in producing pieces of this quality, and they 
can be so easily shipwrecked. One always felt that 
with George Edwardes, when he had the right 
quality of musical play, he would make the very 
best of it. 

Franz Lehar still commands a production of his 
new pieces in practically all the capitals of Europe, 
owing to his justly high reputation as composer and 
musician. Where he fails is only when his librettist 
does not sufficiently support him. 

It would be the dream of my life, were I still a 
manager, to produce Lehar's Endlich Allein at a 
first-class London theatre. I refer to his original 


version. There were only two characters in it, a man 
and a woman, and the scene was the summit of a 
snow mountain, where just a man and a woman 
found themselves together. In my opinion, this 
music is the high-water mark of Lehar's talent 
as composer. Lehar subsequently dealt with the 
opera on the ordinary level of a musical play, and 
the first and third acts were commonplace and 
utterly unworthy of the second act, which stood 
alone as a great achievement in beautiful and pas- 
sionate music. 

What a delightful city Vienna was in the past. The 
night-life and dancing were most fascinating. Now 
the city looks an absolute desert. Budapest also 
was a very charming town. I was present at a 
concert there when Kubelik made his debut before 
the public. What a sensation he made! 

I came across the by now famous light opera 
Lilac Time quite by accident. Seymour Hicks, 
Captain Harry Graham, and I were all in Vienna 
together. We had come across to see Kalman and 
to make final preparations for the production of 
The Little Dutch Girl in London. This was a very 
pretty opera, and it had the great advantage of 
Maggie Teyte's appearance in the title role. It was 
not a success in London, however. It is curious what 
a lottery theatrical productions are. Kalman, with 
innumerable successes on the Continent, has never 
had a real success in England. Anyhow, one Sunday 
afternoon, as we had nothing better to do, I sug- 
gested to Seymour Hicks and Captain Graham we 
might try to find a matinee. We found Lilac Time. 
I immediately came to the conclusion there ought to 
be a lot of money in it for England. I produced it 
eventually at the Lyric Theatre. It ran for nearly 
two years in London. It made, and still makes, a lot 


of money in the provinces, and the demand for 
Schubert's charming music is naturally bigger than 
ever. Curiously enough, after buying the piece in 
Vienna, I saw a jazz version in America, which did 
not appeal to me, I also saw a French version pro- 
duced in Paris, which was equally ineffective. I 
remember a little incident at the Hotel Bristol, 
Vienna, when we all arrived there. The waiter of 
our sitting-room looked at Seymour Hicks very 
curiously, and Seymour returned his inspection. It 
turned out that he had been butler at some Scotch 
estate where Seymour had been up to shoot on two 
or three occasions. Naturally this was before the 
war. The poor old waiter seemed very glad to have 
a chance of making use of his English again. 

I remember being in Vienna with my daughter a 
very few weeks before the assassination of the 
Grand Duke. 

A semi-public dance was announced at the famous 
Concert Hall, which is such a picture in scarlet, 
white, and gold. Anybody staying in a first-class 
hotel was able to buy tickets; the ladies were in 
dominoes. We took a box. The Grand Duke and 
Duchess arrived, attended by their suite. They 
passed through the motley crowd on the ballroom 
floor without any sort of police or military escort. 
They took their seats on a slightly raised dais at the 
end of the hall, and then received the various mem- 
bers of the foreign embassies. I remember saying to 
my daughter what an element of danger this absence 
of precautions presented. Within a few weeks after- 
wards the tragedy occurred that plunged Europe 
into the most appalling war of modern history. 

A very curious custom prevails at the semi- 
public supper-parties frequently given at Budapest. 
You are invited as a guest, and then introduced to 


some charming lady whom you take into supper. 
Naturally, you wait in expectation that supper will 
be served to you, but it is not done in that way. 
Apparently, you order your own supper and the 
lady's too. This does not mean that the Hungarians 
are not hospitable. They are the essence of hospi- 
tality. It is just the etiquette on these occasions, 
but naturally at first it very much puzzles a stranger. 
I had this experience one night at the public supper, 
previously referred to, given to Kubelik at his first 
appearance at Budapest, and also at a supper given 
to Felix Wagner. 

Finally, we have to chronicle a long list of suc- 
cesses from the American light-opera stage. The ball 
was first of all set rolling at the Winter Garden 
Theatre under the direction of George Grossmith 
and Leslie Henson. Jerry Kern has been one of the 
most consistently popular American composers of 
light music. Sally was among his first successes at 
the Winter Garden Theatre. The Cabaret Girl and 
Sonny were both very successful productions. Pos- 
sibly, Jerry Kern is so much of a millionaire now he 
will not bother to write much more music. I was 
reading in an American paper the other day that his 
library, which I know he had spent large sums of 
money upon, purchasing rare editions and in some 
cases valuable MSS., realised the sum of 300,000 
at a recent sale. Apparently it cost Kern a little over 
100,000 to complete his collection, so his profit was 
certainly an amazingly happy one. 

George Gershwin also came very much to the fore 
in the light-opera school, but subsequently was 
rather tempted to diverge into more classical fields. 
Vincent Youmans had a very big hit at the Palace 
Theatre in No, No, Nanette, and of course there was 
a remarkable series of American light operas on a 


rather larger scale produced by Sir Alfred Butt at 
Drury Lane. Rose Marie, by Rudolf Friml and Her- 
bert Stothart, was the initial success, and The Show 
Boat also did well. Finally, The Desert Song, by 
Romberg, was a very big success both at Drury 
Lane and in the provinces, and is still to-day one of 
the most popular talking films. 

My own impression is that the production of 
American operettas has been rather overdone. No- 
thing is so damaging to first-class productions as 
are second-class productions that attempt to imi- 
tate something better in their own line that has gone 



IT is very interesting to survey the present position 
of the Performing Right Society in this country. In 
the far distant past, I admit, I was absolutely op- 
posed to the principles of the society. I considered 
that the payment of a fee for the performance of 
new music, and even established music, was calcu- 
lated to injure seriously the sales of established 
favourites, and was very detrimental to the popular- 
ising of new works. In principle, I was often at war 
with Mr. Alfred Moul, who controlled the destinies 
of the Performing Right Society, in the old days. 
On one famous occasion, I remember, he brought an 
action against me, because I compared his methods 
with those of the notorious Harry Wall. It was 
stated in evidence that Harry Wall's record in other 
directions had not been altogether in the said gentle- 
man's favour. Counsel, therefore, suggested that I 
compared Mr. Alfred MouPs operations with those 
of another dealer in performing rights very much to 
the prejudice of Alfred Moul. I was totally unaware 
of the evidence brought forward in connection with 
Harry Wall, and had not the slightest intention of 
suggesting that Alfred Moul's experiences were 
identical with Harry Wall's. Be it as it may, the 
jury awarded Alfred Moul 300 damages. What I am 
arriving at, however, is this. I have always kept a 



perfectly open mind as to the necessity of altering 
our methods of business according to changing con- 
ditions, and I was gradually becoming aware that, 
probably, eventually a composer's performing rights 
might even be more valuable than his publishing 
rights. I was further struck by the fact that the Per- 
forming Right Society was already enormously suc- 
cessful abroad, and that foreign composers were be- 
ginning to reap a harvest in Great Britain which the 
English composer was not sharing in. From that 
moment, on my advice, Messrs. Chappell & Co. en- 
tirely reshaped their policy. I am only too happy at 
this moment to think that I foresaw what was com- 
ing. The introduction of mechanical music was the 
first blow that our composers received. It need not 
have been, had the clauses in the Copyright Act of 
1911 not been so iniquitous so far as composers' 
rights were concerned. At the present moment, com- 

Eosers are enormously dependent upon the fees col- 
>cted for them by the Performing Right Society. 
Naturally, the society has had to contend with a 
huge combination of vested interests, who are al- 
ways out to fight and see if they can obtain some- 
thing of value for nothing. Fortunately, our posi- 
tion has been made so strong that even such an 
inane Bill as the Bill seeking to amend performing 
rights in the last session of the House of Commons 
has been laughed out of court. This Bill was god- 
fathered principally by a collection of wealthy hotel 
and restaurant proprietors. The repertoire of the 
Performing Right Society includes the works of all 
the most popular composers in this country and on 
the Continent. In the season, some of these hotels 
would pay from 500 a week to 1,000 a week to 
their orchestras, and they grudged and fought 
against a paltry 3 or 4 a week to the composers, 


British and Continental, without whose music they 
could have had no orchestras at all. It has never been 
suggested that, if I go to a restaurant and consider 
they are charging me an unfair price for a chop or 
a steak, I should have a right to appeal. The remedy 
is quite simple. If I don't like their prices, I go else- 
where. In the same way, if they think the price of 
my music excessive, they can get their music else- 
where. I have dwelt somewhat at length upon this 
subject, because, perhaps, the public through it may 
be able to appreciate what a desperate struggle we 
have had to make the composers 5 music rights recog- 
nised at all. The printing of the evidence heard in 
committee in connection with this recent comic 
performing right Bill cost nearly 500 - pleasant for 
the poverty stricken public! Why should not the 
wealthy promoters of the Bill pay it? 

I foresee the day when composers will depend al- 
most entirely for their income upon the fees ob- 
tained for them by the Performing Right Society, 
more particularly as the broadcasting authorities 
have had to recognise that they are powerless to 
reproduce music for public performance except by 
treaty with those who hold the copyright. 

The Performing Right Society is absolutely fair 
in its operations, and I am glad to see it in a stronger 
position than it ever was. It has the further advant- 
age of possessing in its new chariman my young 
cousin, Mr. Leslie Boosey, a personality that com- 
mands the respect of everybody. He will see that 
justice is done to all parties. He no doubt greatly 
helped in exposing the recent Bill. 

It should be added that, when the music pub- 
lishers decided to pursue an active campaign in 
connection with performing rights, they also unani- 
mously decided to return all performing rights to 


composers in past contracts, although the said per- 
forming rights had actually been assigned to them. 

Under our new r6gime, Mr. John Woodhouse, the 
well-known lawyer, was general manager of the 
society. He was a desperate fighter, perhaps almost 
too much so, but he was a most able organiser, and 
rendered invaluable help to the society in establish- 
ing it on a sound and fair business basis. 

Representatives of the different Continental soci- 
eties meet from time to time in the most prominent 
European capitals. These meetings are not only use- 
ful, but are very entertaining. On the last occasion 
at which I was present we met in Rome, and inci- 
dentally I had the great pleasure of a brief intro- 
duction to Signor Mussolini, whose personality 
naturally interested me enormously. 

The introduction of broadcasting, especially under 
Government auspices, was an innovation of pro- 
found importance. 

When broadcasting was first introduced, it was 
suggested to me that this discovery was going to be 
of immense help to the concert world, because it 
was going to enormously popularise the giving of 
concerts and the attendance of the public at them. 
I totally disagreed with this theory. The more per- 
fect broadcasting became, the more obvious it was 
that many of the public could sit at home and enjoy 
the music, for practically nothing, that they could 
only otherwise participate in by leaving their com- 
fortable homes and taking their chance of obtaining 
seats at a concert hall. I also felt it was inevitable 
that by degrees, broadcasting being more or less a 
subsidised Government undertaking, the tendency 
would be for the broadcasters themselves to become 
concert-givers. This is what has actually happened. 
We already find serious complaints made by 



conductors of important provincial concerts, such as 
the Halle concerts at Manchester and elsewhere, of the 
utterly unfair competition which they have to wage 
against a Government undertaking which is placed, 
by means of its tax on music, above the reach of the 
profit and loss account which is of such essential 
importance to the average concert-giver. I found the 
powers that govern the broadcasting world became 
so far-reaching in their demands and intentions that 
they were bent more or less on taking the place of 
the ordinary concert-giver altogether. So clearly did 
I recognise this issue that I came to the conclusion, 
on behalf of Messrs. Chappell, it would be far more 
profitable for them to let the Queen's Hall direct to 
the powers that govern broadcasting, both for the 
famous promenade concerts and other big series of 
concerts, rather than to embark on a competition 
which was really a competition with the Govern- 
ment itself. 

I had occasion quite recently to bring an action, 
on behalf of Andre Messager, against the broadcast- 
ing authorities for reproducing a complete opera of 
his, Veronique, without his permission. They claimed 
they had authority from the George Edwardes 
estate. My reply was that their only title to perform 
was by payment of a percentage upon gross receipts. 
The legal arguments by which the decision was ulti- 
mately governed were very complicated, and would 
not interest the public in detail. I can only say I 
totally disagree with the decision, although, after 
a very convincing judgment in our favour in the 
first courts, the Appeal Court gave a decision em- 
phatically against us. Even then, however, a new 
point arose which has not yet been decided. Sup- 
posing the Broadcasting Corporation, under the 
authority which they considered they had received, 


were justified in producing this opera in its entirety, 
the fact remains that the broadcasting of the work 
could be produced, and probably was produced, in 
France and elsewhere as against rights held in those 
countries which no one in this country had any con- 
trol of. In other words, the broadcasting was, unin- 
tentionally, probably a severe infringement of in- 
ternational copyright treaties. 

Meanwhile, it is satisfactory to note that the 
broadcasting authorities are paying a fair and rea- 
sonable sum to composers and copyright owners for 
the use of their property. In my considered opinion, 
his performing right is the only right which for a 
long time to come will bring the composer in any 
substantial income. 

I do not believe that broadcasting in its present 
form is going to make the fortune of any new artiste. 
The artiste's reputation must be made legitimately 
first of all. I would go further and say that music is 
not machinery, but that music by machinery 
threatens more and more every day to put the 
musician out of his profession. However, these are 
some of the propositions that are going to present 
the most terrible difficulties to the musical world for 
a long while to come. 

The introduction of broadcasting on its present 
lines is what finally decided Messrs. Chappell to 
give up concert giving altogether. 



I THINK there is a general impression among the 
public that the great pianoforte-players, apart from 
their one great gift, have personalities of no great 
interest. I used to have this impression myself until 
I was undeceived. 

A very intelligent man once said to me that he 
was no judge of the finest pianoforte-playing, because 
when pianists attained a certain stage of mechanical 
perfection it was difficult for him to judge as to how 
far one was more gifted than another. There is a 
great deal in this, but I think a study of the per- 
sonalities of pianists partly accounts for the reason 
why they hold so more or less commanding a posi- 
tion in their profession. 

One of the most entertaining pianists I ever met 
was the great Madame Carreno. In addition to a de- 
lightful presence, she had a wonderful gift of con- 
versation and a keen sense of humour. She was ex- 
plaining to us one night a very comic adventure 
that befell one of her husbands when he was in 
South America. 

Apparently this husband had taken a grand-opera 
company to South America, but, owing to business 
being terribly bad, practically the whole of his 
company had left him. He finally landed up in a 
certain town with only a pianist, a soprano, and a 



flute-player. He announced some performances - 1 
think it was of The Daughter of the Regiment, by 
Donizetti but at the last moment even the poor 
flute struck, he being owed several weeks 5 salary. 
He sued Carreno's husband, and the action came up 
for trial, according to Madame Carreno, in an extra- 
ordinary rough court-house, where the judge was 
sitting on the so-called bench in his shirt-sleeves, 
with a mug of ale beside him. 

"What is this claim?" he asked. 

Carreno' s husband replied that it was a claim by 
the flute-player for a very large sum of money, 
naming the sum. 

"And you dispute it?" said the judge. 

"Yes," said Carreno's husband. 

"On what grounds?" said the judge. 

"Your Honour," said the opera director, "may I 
ask the flute-player to perform here in court the 
music he has to play, and you shall judge if his 
claim is a fair one, or otherwise?" 

"An excellent idea!" said the judge, and the un- 
happy flute-player was called upon to perform his 
share of the music. 

One can imagine the agony of the flute-player 
and the rest of the court while he wandered through 
his incomprehensible part, the efforts of one instru- 
mentalist as a soloist who should have been sup- 
ported by a full orchestra. After some time the im- 
presario said to the judge: "Well, Your Honour, what 
do you think of that?" 

"It is a preposterous claim," said the judge, "and 
I non-suit him." 

On another occasion I happened to meet the great 
pianist, Rosenthal, on the train, we being both on 
our way to Vienna. Rosenthal was telling me of a 
very curious experience he had had with a leading 


newspaper. He had given a recital in London of some 
of Brahms' music. The critic said that, although no 
doubt technically he gave a very fine performance of 
Brahms' numbers, it was an extreme pity that he 
evidently had no notion of what Brahms meant by 
his music, or how he had intended it to be inter- 

Rosenthal in reply produced a letter from Brahms, 
who was a great friend of his, and, in this letter, 
Brahms said he had never known any pianist who 
had such an extraordinary gift as Rosenthal had for 
absolutely fathoming the deepest meaning of his 
music and reproducing it so faultlessly. 

While we were laughing over this incident, Rosen- 
thai said it reminded him of another curious incident 
that occurred in Vienna. 

One of the great Viennese painters had painted a 
portrait of a very famous Austrian Grand Duchess. 
The portrait made a great sensation, but, when the 
husband saw it, all he said was: "It may be a very 
fine painting, but it is not a bit like my wife, the 
Grand Duchess." When this criticism was repeated 
to the painter, he said: "I should like the Grand 
Duke to understand it is the business of his wife to 
be like the portrait I paint of her!" 

Speaking of criticism, I have again and again 
urged on The Times and other newspapers that all 
their notices of art work should be signed, in fact 
should bear the signature of some one so eminent 
in the art world that at all events his opinion, 
whether correct or not, would carry weight and 
dignity. This custom universally prevails amongst 
the big leading papers on the Continent, and it is 
extraordinary that one cannot induce any of the 
London papers to follow so natural and intelligent 
a lead. It may be they think that the signing of an 


article detracts from their dignity, but, to take the 
French Press as an example, if a new grand opera is 
produced in Paris, articles criticising it are, or were, 
all signed by some master of music, such as Bruneau, 
Andre Messager, or someone of equal rank in the 
artistic world. This must add to the dignity of the 
intellectual side of a newspaper, and cannot detract 
from it. 

I cannot conclude my present notes on pianists 
without referring to an old friend of mine, MyraHess. 
I had to ask her to lunch one day, because I was 
afraid she was going to forsake the famous Chappell 
piano she had always played on, and transfer her 
allegiance to my friend, William Stein way, who had 
a piano named after him. I thought the lunch was 
going to be very depressing. But it was far from 
it. I had quite forgotten that already a great pianist 
had made me laugh! 

I met Myra Hess again in New York when she was 
engaged on an American tour. She always affected 
very dark hotels in New York. I expect she found 
them more restful, and I don't blame her. I called on 
her one day to take her out to lunch, and, on arriving 
in the hall, I got the impression I was in a coal- 
mine. Eventually, from a distance, I noticed two 
little white specks approaching me. When they ap- 
proached nearer I found they were Myra Hess' 
white gloves. It was a droll experience. 

Before sailing for England, I sent her some roses 
to the same hotel, but took the precaution at the 
same time of sending her an electric torchlight, so 
that I could be sure she would not mistake the 
colour of the flowers. 

I remember on one occasion being so inspired by 
a charming lady pianist that I addressed the fol- 
lowing lines to her: 


Oh, Velvet Eyes, sweet Velvet Eyes, 

I realise it is not wise 

To dedicate this virgin heart 

To one who only lives for art, 

Who, to be truthful, only dotes 

On sharps and fiats and nasty notes, 

Who, soul secure, disdains all gales 

Of passion save arpeggio scales! 

Mere man can only hope to please 
You through the mystery of keys, 
Ah, Velvet Eyes, there is one key,. 
If you will take the truth from me, 
That from all keys stands far apart, 
It just unlocks a human heart, 
And all the harmonies you prize 
Are hid within it, Velvet Eyes. 

Speaking of pianists, a curious incident once 
occurred which I think is worth recording. 

Certain promoters of star turns invited me some 
time ago to attend a matin6e at the Hotel Cecil. 
They claimed they had discovered a pianist who 
would be absolutely blindfolded, as testified by well- 
known doctors, and who, in spite of this extra- 
ordinary handicap, would be able to sit down at the 
piano and play correctly any piece of music put in 
front of her. 

Of course there are so many means of deluding 
the public in this kind of entertainment, but I was 
sufficiently interested on this occasion to go to the 
Hotel Cecil to see what happened. Two doctors tes- 
tified that the lady was blindfolded, and she had 
then put before her an overture of an opera written 
by a well-known French composer, who was very 


little known in this country. She played this over- 
ture absolutely correctly. 

By way, however, of testing this challenge, I 
asked Sir Edward German if he would come down 
with me. I also asked him to write some music es- 
pecially for the occasion, so that we could really 
discover if this lady could do all that she claimed 
to do. Edward German, who was a terrible sceptic, 
agreed, and he wrote out a theme in the very 
smallest handwriting, which was hardly legible. In 
addition, he purposely wrote down harmonies ex- 
tremely complicated and difficult. 

I asked the master of the ceremonies if the lady 
would be prepared to perform, as a test, a piece of 
manuscript music I had with me, written by Sir 
Edward German expressly for the occasion. He said 
manuscript music might present certain difficulties, 
but that the lady was quite prepared to do her best. 
The little scrap of music was then placed on the 
piano before this blindfolded musician, and she, 
mechanically but correctly, reproduced every note 
of it. 

Edward German was astonished. 

We never had any explanation of how this result 
was arrived at, and, strangest of all, although her 
matinee was brilliantly successful, we never heard 
any word of her subsequently. 

We naturally assumed that she would have been 
brought forward as one of the big turns of the music 
halls. From that day to this, her name and her work 
are buried in obscurity. 



A VERY amusing incident happened to me on one 
occasion in Paris. The great pianist, Saint-Saens, 
had often appeared for us at the Popular Concerts, 
but I had never had the opportunity of a chat with 
him. He had asked me when next in Paris to call and 
see him. I made enquiries as to where his flat was, 
and was directed by a stranger to the escalier de 
service. I knocked at the door, and found myself in a 
kitchen, surrounded by every form of kitchen 
utensil. Facing me was an open stove, on every side 
pots and pans! Saint-Saens happened to hear my 
voice in the kitchen and came and released me. He 
was extremely amused at my very original way of 
calling upon him. I had a very interesting chat with 
him, and he illustrated to me at the piano the 
Chinese music scales. I am afraid they were much 
too complicated for my comprehension. 

One night in Paris, at the Caf6 de Paris, I heard a 
very pretty new valse. I could not for the life of me 
find the name of the publisher or composer. Six 
months afterwards a young Frenchman turned up 
at Chappell's with a letter of introduction from a 
lady I knew in Paris. Would I look at some music of 
his? "The usual waste of time," I thought, and 
opened his packet. There on top lay the famous 
"Valse Bleue," which I had been looking for every- 
where. It had a very big run. Poor little Alfred 
Margis - he died quite young! 



Another delightful valse writer also disappeared 
when the big war broke out. I am speaking of 
Rudolph Berger. How delightfully Marie Tempest 
sang his valses! He lived in Paris, and always ac- 
counted himself a Frenchman, but at the outbreak 
of hostilities it was discovered he was really an 
Austrian, so of course he had to quit Paris at the 
shortest possible notice. He was a pathetic figure. 
He was never heard of again. 

We occasionally had very humorous experiences 
at the music halls in the old days. On one occasion 
I had to see the famous Brothers Isola in connec- 
tion with some business. It will be remembered that 
for some time they directed the destinies of the 
Opera Comique. On the occasion to which I refer, 
however, they were running one of the well-known 
music halls. It was before the war, at the time when 
Paris had gone quite mad over the desperate 
struggles of the various champions who were fight- 
ing for international honours in the wrestling world. 
On this particular night the Isolas wanted to show 
me a little delicate attention, and asked if I would 
like to have a couple of chairs on the stage to see 
the final of some wonderful wrestling match between 
two huge and very imposing-looking champions. 
I accepted with pleasure. I sat for some time on the 
ropes, together with a few privileged persons, while 
these two mountains of flesh kept rolling over each 
other and trying to secure the final coup that would 
mean victory. 

Suddenly there was a stir in the front of the house. 
Something had evidently gone wrong. The specta- 
tors had come to the conclusion that neither of these 
two gentlemen seriously meant to win; and, quick 
as lightning, an official called out: "Lower the cur- 
tain." We knew what that meant. The public picked 


up the little wooden stools that are still one of the 
usual uncomfortable appendages of the French 
theatre, and hurled the whole of these stools upon 
the stage. It was an avalanche, and I consider that 
my friend and I were extremely lucky to have 
escaped with our lives. What eventually became of 
the two stout gentlemen I never heard. I quitted 
the hall quite satisfied with the warmth of my recep- 
tion and the compliment that had been paid me. 

The Great War brings back some quaint memories 
to me. On one occasion, not so many months 
before hostilities commenced, I was supping at a 
popular night restaurant in Berlin with several 
young German officers. We were discussing the 
next war, presumably between France and Germany. 
My young friends astonished me by saying that 
by far the most popular war in Germany would be 
one against England. It was all discussed in the 
most amicable spirit, but it certainly left me most 
amazed. I have no doubt it owed its origin to the 
Fashoda incident, which in his own country had 
created a very bitter feeling against the German 
Emperor himself. 

Another very humorous incident occurred to me 
during the war itself. I was playing golf at Sunning- 
dale with George Askwith. It was the day he had 
received information of his elevation to a peerage. 
He played a very fine game of golf and hopelessly 
out-distanced me. At the conclusion of the game 
I was informed of his very well deserved distinction, 
which no doubt accounted for his exceptional form. 
I determined never again to play golf with any man 
on the particular day he had been elevated to the 
peerage. The humour of the situation, however, 
was not yet reached. We returned to his house - 
it was a dark autumn afternoon - and he introduced 


me in his smoking-room to a friend who I under- 
stood was a Sir William Robinson, a well-known 
resident at Sunningdale. We began discussing^ the 
progress of the war, and I gave my amateur views 
on the general situation. The man in the corner 
never said a word. Shortly afterwards the smoking- 
room door opened again, and Askwith introduced 
me to a new comer, Sir William Robinson. Heavens 
alive, I thought, who is the other man? It was Sir 
William Robertson! And I had been expounding 
my views as to the war before him! What a situa- 
tion! I have often wondered since if Sir William 
Robertson appreciated the pitiful humour of my 

Lord Northcliffe, who was anxious to speed up 
the war, asked if I would contest a by-election at 
Tewkesbury in the National interest, as apart from 
the combined political party interests. I imagine 
his attention had been drawn to me because I had 
been helping Tommy Gibson Bowles, who was en- 
gaged upon a similar mission at Leicester. I in- 
troduced myself to Bowles, being greatly taken 
by his patriotism and pluck. We became great 
friends, and he put me in charge of the Market 
Harbor ough side of the constituency. We had a 
very spirited contest, but naturally had no chance 
of success against the combined Conservative and 
Radical forces. 

Still less chance had I at Tewkesbury, but I did 
my best. The constituency covered some hundreds of 
square miles, and I had less than three weeks to get 
over all the ground. By the aid of a rapid motor, I 
addressed four separate meetings every night, 

Pemberton Billing was then at the zenith of his 
popularity. Our opening meeting at the Cheltenham 
Town Hall was absolutely packed. Hundreds were 


turned away. They told me it was a record political 
meeting for Cheltenham. Such was the curiosity 
to hear and see Billing. 

During the day-time I used to address various 
villagers also. As often as not I would pull up my 
car on the village green. I soon found out that I was 
followed around on my pilgrimage by two or three 
brakes full of bookmakers. It seems that, when the 
racing season is over, the bookies are habitually 
employed and paid for political purposes. They 
were quite polite. They would pull up opposite the 
meeting and say: "Fire away, Guv'nor; we'll have 
a go at them when you've finished." 

Occasionally when I was very late and the village 
halls were all closed, my final meeting was held in 
the village churchyard. I found the village tomb- 
stones most inspiring. I was able to visualise the 
dear departed turning in their graves at the thought 
of the political struggle being waged above them. 

On polling day the combined Conservative and 
Radical cars numbered over four hundred. I had 
six at my disposal. It makes one smile when one 
realises you may petition to unseat a successful 
candidate if hired cars have been used to bring up 
the electors to the polling booths. However, the 
electors obviously did not want me, so it was not 
worth while wasting more time and money over 
such a desperate adventure. 

It was a very interesting experience, although it 
cured me of any ambition to ever become a member 
of the House of Commons. Within a very few weeks 
of my defeat, however, our object was secured, and 
the change in the Government that we were fighting 
for was accomplished. 



IN 1920 I again visited America, and it was on this 
occasion that I was staying with poor Ivan Caryll 
in one of the many mansions he occupied from time 
to time. He had a delightful place on Long Island* 
About this time I was considerably worried as to 
the future of our American house. It had been very 
profitable up to date, but I was very doubtful as to 
what the morrow might bring. I remember sitting 
in a wonderful old Italian garden in the bright sun- 
shine one Sunday morning,, and I expressed some of 
my disquietudes to my host, Ivan Caryll. He re- 
plied to me that it was quite useless for me to ask 
for his advice. I said, "I think I know why. You con- 
sider we should be wise to exchange our catalogue 
with the famous Harms catalogue, we representing 
Harms in London, and they representing us in New 
York." Caryll replied, "Yes, you know I have always 
thought so." "Very well," I said, "let's follow your 
suggestion. Will you ring up Harms on the tele- 
phone." Caryll did so. We had five minutes' con- 
versation over the telephone, when the whole of the 
deal was settled there and then. Since 1920, Harms 
have represented us in New York, and we have re- 
presented them in London. I give every credit to 
Ivan Caryll for this proposal. During all this period 
I have found Messrs, Harms the fairest people in 
the world to do business with, and I think neither 



they nor ChappelFs ever regret the treaty made be- 
tween us. It is musical history that Messrs. Harms 
have since acquired a controlling interest in Messrs. 
Chappell's business and are at present directing its 

I cannot forget on one occasion arriving at New 
York at six o'clock in the morning. It was a bitterly 
cold day, and everything was frozen. I had one of 
my most unpleasant experiences with the Customs 
on the quay on landing. I had to undo every case 
and submit to a rigorous search. When I got up to 
New York I called at one of the clubs to see a very 
amusing American friend of mine. I complained of 
my sad experience, and the only sympathy I got 
from him, and he had the most wonderful stutter, 

were words to this effect: "I think you're a d-d-d d 

1-1-1-lucky fellow to get into a dry country like this 
at all with a name like yours! ! !" It reminded me 
of a famous occasion when I was leaving the old 
Eccentric Club at two o'clock in the morning, and 
dear old Arthur Roberts came into the club con- 
siderably over the odds. As I went out of the club 
he was gazing at the ceiling, and I said, "Good night, 
Arthur." He replied, "I know you, you are Boosey; 
I am sober." 

My very last visit to America was an extremely 
painful one. Caryll was rehearsing a new piece, and 
it was during these rehearsals that the fatal illness 
developed that carried him off. I was with him 
when he died. Strangely enough, during the same 
week, little Victor Jacobi, who was in New York, 
told me he was feeling very ill, and had been ordered 
to a nursing-home. I went and saw him in the home. 
I never, however, imagined he was as ill as he was. 
Two days afterwards they told me he was dying. 
After poor CarylTs burial I got on to the steamer 


for my return to England, and had only been a few 
hours out of the harbour from New York when a 
cable was handed to me on board that little Jacob! 
had died that morning. As the cable was handed to 
me - I was in the Ritz grill-room - the orchestra on 
board were playing the charming music of his opera 

I cannot refer to Ivan CarylTs death without re- 
calling a very painful incident. Caryll had bought 
from Sacha Guitry the right to set a libretto of his 
entitled L? Amour Masque. He had paid Guitry 
1,000. Guitry's libretto arrived almost the day 
before Caryll died. Upon Caryll's death, I, as an 
executor of the Caryll estate, wrote to Guitry and 
explained the painful circumstances, and said I 
feared the Caryll family would be left very hard up. 
Under the circumstances, I said to Guitry that no 
doubt he would be willing to refund the 1,000 as 
it was all important the Caryll family should collect 
all that was due to them, and Guitry of course would 
be free to place his libretto elsewhere. Guitry replied 
he did not see his way to refunding the 1,000. 1 was 
compelled, therefore, to bring an action against him 
in Paris for the return of the same, which case I 
won. Guitry then appealed, and the appeal was not 
reached in the Paris courts until nearly three years 
later. I won the case again in the French Court of 
Appeal, but by that time, what with the collapse 
of the French franc and the ghastly expense of 
litigation, not one penny returned to the Caryll 
family from the 1,000 originally paid by Caryll. 
What made the position even more pathetic was 
that Sacha Guitry had his libretto set to music by 
my old friend Andr6 Messager, and the piece in 
Paris and in the French provinces scored a very 
big success. Such is life! 




My gallery of ghosts, 

I pass down it every day; 
I see all the well-known faces 

That have come and passed away. 
There is naught to mark their passing, 

Save a little slab of stone, 
And I stand amid the silences, 

AN old friend of mine once said: "The first part of 
one's life is spent in making friends, the last half in 
losing them." I am terribly conscious of the truth 
of this dictum. 

My memory itself I find often plays me false. I 
begin to wonder if I shall one day resemble a dear 
old gentleman I used to meet at a southern watering- 
place. He had once, I believe, been Postmaster- 
General in one of Gladstone's administrations. After 
I had known him and talked to him for a fortnight, 
I came into the hotel one afternoon and found him 
in the smoking-room. The first thing he said to me 
as I sat down beside him was: "Do you happen to 
know a Mr. William Boosey in this hotel? He is a 
charming fellow! I think you would like him!" I said 
I knew him quite well, and agreed he was a charm- 
ing fellow! What else could I have said? What would 
you have said, reader? 



In the world of music all the old landmarks have 
been obliterated. Everything is in the melting-pot. 
There will be many surprises; none of us can tell 
what the outcome of it all will be. There will be a 
great many disappointments; there may be some 
successes. It will be very much easier for the new 
generation to lose money over music, and very much 
harder to make it. We shall not live to see the ulti- 
mate outcome of these tremendous changes. My 
own mind is perfectly clear on one point. It is for 
the younger generation to entirely reconstruct the 
world of music. Mechanical music and music broad- 
cast are revolutionaries. It is for the young men of 
to-day and to-morrow to find the method of deal- 
ing with them. They must not emulate some of the 
poor old politicians, dear old gentlemen who cannot 
realise that the face of the whole world has changed. 
Music must not, shall not, be all mechanical. But 
the young men must see to it. They have a desper- 
ately difficult task in front of them; but youth, as 
it should do, glories in surmounting obstacles, no 
matter how imposing. I, myself, am deeply conscious 
of the more than generous appreciation that has 
marked my long passage through the world of music, 
both on the part of colleagues and rivals as pub- 
lishers, and, last but not least, on the part of artistes 
and composers. To the younger generation, authors 
and composers, singers and artistes, generally, as 
I leave them, I bestow upon them my blessing and. 
my warmest good wishes for their ultimate success. 

We must not part upon a sad note. We must never 
despair. The world is always young, or rather it is 
always being born again. There was never a winter 
was not followed by a spring. That is mankind's and 
music's salvation* 

I appeal to Sir Henry Newbolt: 



This is the song which year by year, 

While in its place the school is set, 
Every one of its sons must hear, 

And none that hear it dare forget; 
This they all with a cheerful mind 

Bear through life like a torch aflame. 
And, falling, fling to the host behind: 

"Play up, play up, and play the game" 



Adams, Stephen, 16, 18, 89, 117, 120 

Adams, Susanne, 22 

Aide, Hamilton, 93 

Aitken, George, 91 

Alexander, George, 118, 120 

Allitsen, Frances, 84 

Andersen, Hans, 136 

Argyll, Duke of, 120 

Askwith, Lord, 145, 152, 188 

Asquith, H. H., 106 

Audran, Edmond, 24, 46, 49, 50, 

158, 163 

Avory, Horace E., 120 
Aylward, Florence, 29, 91 


Balfe, 17, 25, 80 

Balfour, Margaret, 93 

Balfour, Lord, 116 

Bancroft, Sir Squire, 95, 118 

Bancroft, Lady, 94, 95 

Bannerman, Margaret, 130 

Barker, Granville, 145 

Baraett, John Francis, 17 

Barrie, Sir James, 120 

Bath, Hubert, 163 

Beamish, 56 

Becher, Percy, 114 

Beecham, Sir Thomas, 110 

Beethoven, 78 

Bellini, 14 

Bemberg, H., 85 

Berger, Rudolph, 187 

Berne, Henry, 152 

Bernhardt, Sarah, 56 

Berry, W. H., 126, 130 

Billing, N. Pemberton, 189, 190 

Bizet, 24 

Blaney, Nora, 94 

Bond, Jessie, 48 

Boosey, Arthur, 117 

Boosey, C. T., 31 

Boosey, John, 13, 14, 15, 17, 18, 19, 

24, 25, 31, 34, 35, 37, 49, 71 
Boosey, Leslie, 176 
Boot, Rosie, 125 
Boulton, Harold, 96, 97 
Bourchier, Arthur, 118 
Bowerman, C. W., 145 
Bowles, T. Gibson 189 
Boyne, Leonard, 83 
Brahms, 182 

Brentford, Lord 5ee Hicks 
Bridges, Frank, 163 
Bronte family, 20 
Brougham, Lord, 155 
Broughton, Phyllis, 133, 134 
Browning, Elizabeth Barrett, 30 
Browning, Robert, 79 
Bruneau, 183 

Bumpus, Miss. See Allitsen, F. 
Burnham, Lord, 120 
Burns, Georgina, 41 
Butt, Alfred, 131, 173 
Butt, Clara, 27, 90, 137 

CALDWELL, 113, 116 

Calve", Emma, 39, 44, 94 

Cameron, Violet, 22, 46, 49, 95 

Campbell, Mrs. Patrick, 95 

Capel, J. M., 90 

Carew, Molly, 91 

Carr, J. Comyns, 70, 71, 120 

Carre", Albert, 52, 53, 137 

Carreno, 180, 181 

Carroll, Lewis, 28 

Carson, Lord, 120 

Carte, D'Oyly, 64, 79, 122, 132, 133 

Caruso, 150 

Caryll, Ivan, 48, 62, 92, 97, 117, 120, 

125, 141, 143, 159, 161, 162, 163, 

168, 191, 192, 193 




Cellier, Alfred, 90, 128, 129 

Chaminade, 30, 99 

Chappell, Arthur, 15, 49, 65, 79, 93 

Chappell, Edward, 62, G3, 89, 92 

Chappell, Samuel, 77 

Chappell, T. P., 15, 23, 44, 78, 79, 

80, 81, 89, 90, 92, 102, 103, 128 
Chappell, T. S., 117 
Chappell, William, 78, 89 
Cherry, 71 
Cherry, Walter, 71 
Chinnery, H. J., 92 
Chivot, 159 
Chorley, Henry, 23 
Choudens, P., 25, 26, 63, 140 
Churchill, Winston, 147 
Claribel, 28 

Clarke, Sir Ernest, 120 
Clarke, R. Coningsby, 91, 94 
Clay, Cecil, 56 
Clay, Fred, 66 
Clayton, Henry R., 145 
Cleather, Gordon, 137 
Clements, Miriam, 83 
Clutsam, G. H., 98 
Coates, Eric, 91 
Cochran, C. B., 164 
Coffin, Hayden, 126, 128, 129 
Cohen, Arthur, 127 
Collins, Arthur, 118 
Colman, 37 
Cooper, Margaret, 94 
Corelli, Marie, 118 
Costa, Mario, 138, 139, 140, 166 
Costa, Sir Michael, 138 
Coward, Noel, 135, 141, 163, 164 
Cowen, Sir F. H., 17, 26, 90, 117 
Cowl, Jane, 164 
Coyne, Joe, 168, 169 
Cramer, J. B., 77 
Crawford, Earl of. See Balcarres, 


Crotty, Leslie, 41 
Cummings, W. H., 117 
Cuningham, Philip, 88 
Curzon, Frank, 163 
Cust, Henry, 145 
Cutler, E., 145 



D' Alvarez, Marguerite, 30, 91, 94 

Dance, George, 48 

Dare, Phyllis, 130 

Davies, Ben, 41, 93, 128, 137 

Davies, Mary, 19, 93 

Day, David, 117 

De Grey, Lady, 39 

De Lara, Isidore, 90 

Del Riego, Teresa, 30, 91, 94 

Denman, Mr. Justice, 86 

Denza, L., 90 

Depew, Chauncy, 54 

De Reszke, Edouard, 39 

De Reszke, Jean, 39 

Destinn, E., 44 

D'Hardelot, Mme. Guy, 29, 91, 95 

Dickens, Charles, 78 

Dicksee, Sir Frank, 42 

Disraeli, B., 129 

Dolby, Mme. Sainton, 15, 16, 28 

D'Orsay, Leonard, 48 

Donizetti, 181 

Downshire, Marquis of, 118 

Doyle, Sir Arthur Conan, 96, 118 

Drake, 124 

Dreyfus, 143 

Du Maurier, G., 18 

Duru, 159 


Ediss, Connie, 125 
Edwardes, George, 92, 122-28, 130, 

133, 187, 142, 160-62, 167, 169, 


Elde"e, Lilian, 126 
Elgar, Sir Edward, 90, 117, 120 
ElBs, Miss, 92 
Elsie, Lily, 126, 185, 168 
Elwes, Gervase, 94, 137 
Engelbach, 132 
Etherington. See Marie Tempest 

FALL, LEO, 165 

Farkoa, Maurice, 94 

Farnie, H. B., 46, 47, 49, 71, 126, 


Farrar, Gwen, 94 
Farren, Nellie, 124 
Felix, Hugo, 169 
Foli, Jack, 16, 20, 93 
Forbes-Robertson, Sir Johnston, 

Forster, Dorothy, 91 



Foster, Muriel, 22 
Frank, 34, 35 
Fraser, Maggie, 125 
Friml, Rudolf, 173 
Frohman, Charles, 168 
Fuller, Loie, 54 
Fullerton, William, 129 



Gallois, Germaine, 134, 135, 160 

Ganne, Louis, 52, 159, 160 

Garden, Mary, 43, 44, 94 

Garstin, Harold, 163 

Gebriel, Virginia, 28 

German, Edward, 51, 98, 117, 120, 

163, 185 

Gershwin, George, 172 
Gilbert, Sir W. ., 35-38, 51, 80, 92, 

118, 132, 161, 162 
Gilchrist, Connie, 124 
Gladstone, W. E., 129, 194 
Gluck, Alma, 94 
Goetz, Alma, 91 
Gomez, Alice, 93 
Gorell, Lord, 145 
Goulding, 77 

Gounod, Charles, 23, 24, 80 
Graham, Harry, 170 
Graves, George, 126, 127 
Greenbank, Harry, 123 
Greenbank, Percy, 123 
Greene, Evie, 126, 142 
Greene, Plunket, 21 
Greet, William, 132 
Greville, 155 
Grisi, 44 
Grossmith, George, 125, 130, 131, 


Groves, 93 
Grundy, Sidney, 118 
Guitry, Sacha, 133, 184, 160, 193 
Guthrie, T. Anstey, 120 
Gye, 24, 40 


Hatevy, 38, 158, 168 
Hall, M. Radcliffe, 91 
Hanbury, Lily, 94 
Hare, John, 118 
Harms, 191, 192 

Harris, Augustus, 39, 40, 63, 64, 128 

Hatton, J. L., 20 

Hauk, Minnie, 56 

Hawkins, Sir A. Hope, 145 

Hedmondt, E. C., 83, 137 

Hempel, Frieda, 44 

Henderson, Alexander, 46, 47 

Herison, Leslie, 172 

Herkomer, Professor Herbert von, 


Hess, Myra, 183 
Heugel, 26 
Hicks, Seymour, 71, 124, 125, 170, 


Hicks, Sir W. Joynson, 145 
Higgins, Harry, 39, 40 
Hill, Lord Arthur, 118 
Hill, Lady Arthur, 118 
Hill, Carmen, 93 
Hislop, Joseph, 94 
Hollingshead, John, 124 
Hollins, Redfern, 128 
Hood, Basil, 51, 118, 122, 136 
Hood, Marion, 128 
Hope, Anthony. See Hawkins 
Hugo, Victor, 41 
Huntley, G. P., 126 
Hutchinson, W. M., 27 

Isola, Brothers, 187 

JACOBS, W. W., 118 

Jacobi, Victor, 53, 165, 166, 169, 192, 


Jeffrys, 14 
Jeritza, 45 

Jerome, Jerome K, 118 
Jones, Sidney, 117, 120, 161, 162 
Josef, 61 



Keane, Boris, 132 

Keen, 37 

Kendal, Dame Madge, 95 

Kern, Jerome, 172 



Kilmarnock, Lord, 167 
Kipling, Rudyard, 117, 118 
Knowles, Sheridan, 91 
Knutsford, Viscount, 120 
Kreisler, Fritz, 50, 96 
Kruse, Johann, 93 
Kubelik, 170, 172 


Lacome, Paul, 47, 159 

Lambert, Frank, 91 

Lamoureux, 68 

Langtry, Lily, 95 

Lankester, Professor Ray, 118 

Latour, F. T., 77 

Law, Algernon, 145 

Laye, Evelyn, 135 

Lecocq, C., 24, 47, 158 

Lehar, Franz, 24, 52, 158, 165, 167, 

169, 170 

Lehmann, Liza, 28, 91 
Lener (Quartette), 65 
Leoni, Franco, 83, 136, 137, 138, 


Le Sage, Sir J. M., 120 
Leslie, Fred, 48, 49, 124, 159 
Leslie, H. J., 62, 128, 129 
Leslie, W. H., 118 
Lewis, Eric, 83 
Liddle, S., 90 
Lind, Lettie, 126 
Littleton, Alfred, 117 
Lloyd, Edward, 16, 18 
Lloyds, 129 
Locker, Arthur, 33 
Loftus, Cissie, 94 
Loge*, Henri, 65, 66 
Lohr, Hermann, 91 
Longfellow, 17 
Longmans, 117 
Lonnen, Arthur, 125 
Lowenfeld, 24, 138 
Lucan, Countess of, 118 
Luigini, 97 
Lutz, Meyer, 124 
Lytton, Earl of, 120 


McCormack, John, 91, 96 
MacCunn, Hamish, 117, 120 
McGuckin, Barton, 41, 128 

Mackenzie, Sir Alexander, 117, 118, 


McLe'an, Alick, 98 
Macmillan, Sir Fredk., 145 
McNulty, Jennie, 48 
Malone, J. A. E., 131 
Mann, Auguste, 65 
Mapleson, Henry, 24, 40 
Margis, Alfred, 186 
Marie", Madame Gallet, 44 
Mario, 44 

Marshall, Charles, 91 
Marshall, J. Herbert, 118, 120 
Marzials, Theo. 19, 20, 41, 67, 90 
Massenet, 26, 41, 44 
Maude, Cyril, 118 
May, Edna, 22, 95 
May, Maggie, 126 
May, Olive, 125 
Maybrick, Michael. See Stephen 


Maxwell, George, 54 
Meilhac, 38, 158, 168 
Melba, Dame Nellie, 39, 42, 118, 150 
Mendelssohn, 19 
Mengelberg, 110 
Messager, Andre", 22, 29, 98, 117, 

120, 126, 135, 160, 178, 183, 193, 
Millar, Gertie, 125, 135 
Moir, Frank, 84 
Molloy, J. L., 17, 18, 19, 26, 89 
Monckton, Charles, 31, 32 
Monckton, Lionel, 21, 31, 92, 117, 

120, 125, 130, 131, 140, 141, 142, 

161, 162 

Monkswell, Lord, 120 
Moore, Alfred, 22 
Moul, Alfred, 174 
Mozart, 84, 44 
Muir, 114 
Munroe, Kitty, 46 
Murger, Henri, 88, 85 
Mussolini, Benito, 177 

Neilson, Julia, 85, 94 
Nesville, Juliette, 48 
Newbolt, Sir Henry, 195 
Newman, Robert, 66, 110 
Nicol, 59 

Nordica, Madame, 44 
Northcliffe, Lord, 189 



O'CONNOR, T. P., 119, 120, 146 
Offenbach, 35, 158 
Oudin, 48 


Parker, Louis N., 118 

Parry, Sir Hubert, 117, 120 

Partridge, Bernard, 120 

Patey, Madame, 16 

Patti, Adelina, 16, 42 

Patti, Carlotta, 16 

Payne, Teddy, 125 

Penley, Charles, 48 

Petrass, Sari, 166 

Pettitt, Henry, 63 

Phillips, Montague, 51, 91 

Pinero, Sir Arthur, 120, 131 

Pitman, Josiah, 42 

Pitt, William, 77 

PlanQon, 39 

Planquette, R., 24, 47, 48, 158, 159 

Plymouth, Earl of, 120 

Poland, Sir Harry B., 120 

Potter, 78 

Pounds, Courtice, 48 

Printemps, 4 Yvonne, 134, 160 

Puccini, 51, 83, 98, 150 

Pyne, Louisa, 16 



Randegger, Alberto, 19 

Ravogli, Guilia, 94 

Reeve, Ada, 95 

Reeves, Sims, 16, 17, 67, 93 

Re"jane, Madame, 142 

Reinhardt, 166, 167 

Ribblesdale, Lord, 119 

Richter, Dr. Hans, 97 

Ries, Ferdinand, 78 

Roberts, Arthur, 122, 126, 192 

Robertson, Sir William, 189 

Robinson, Sir William, 189 

Romanis, The Rev. P. W., 82 

Romberg, Sigmund, 173 

Ronald, Sir Landon, 29, 111, 120 

Ronconi, 44 

Ropes, Arthur, 123 

Rosa, Carl, 40 

Rosenthal, 181, 182 

Ross, Adrian, 123 

Royce, 124 

Rubens, Paul, 92, 117, 120, 127, 128, 

130, 131, 140, 161-163, 167 
Rubenstein, J. S., 103-5 
Rumford, R. Kennerley, 22, 137 
Russell, Ella, 67, 95 


St, John, Florence, 46, 49, 95 

Saint-Saens, 186 

Sanderson, Wilfrid, 90 

Santley, Charles, 16, 20, 93 

Santley, Kate, 49 

Sarasate, 50 

Sardou, 57, 129, 142, 143 

Scaife, Laurie, 55 

Scott-Gatty, Alfred, 21 

Scotti, 137 

Scrutton, Sir. T. E., 120, 145 

Sealby, Mabel, 130 

Sedger, Horace, 163 

Serpette, Gaston, 47, 159 

Seymour, Kitty, 125 

Shakespeare, William, 32 

Sheridan, 66 

Sil6su, Lao, 26 

Simon, Sir John, 146, 148 

Sims, George R., 143, 144 

Sliwinski, Adolph, 166, 167 

Smyth, Dame Ethel, 28 

Snowden, Philip, 66 

Soltykoff, Prince, 126 

Southey, 155 

Speyer, Sir Edgar, 106 

Squire, W. H., 90 

Stanford, Sir C. Villiers, 31, 84, 35, 

117, 120 

Steinway, William, 183 
Stephenson, B. C., 128, 129, 130 
Sterling, Antoinette, 16, 17, 26, 93 
Stothart, Herbert, 173 
Straus, Oscar, 53, 165 
Strauss, Johann, 165 
Strauss, Richard, 52, 53 
Strong, Susan, 187 
Stuart, Leslie, 90, 117, 120, 126, 161, 


Stuart-Wortley, C. B., 120 
Studholme, Marie, 135 
Sullivan, Sir Arthur, 17, 26, 37, 51, 

79, 80, 92, 182, 161, 162 
Supp, 165 
Szirmai, Albert, 365, 166 




118, 145 

Talbot, Howard, 21, 120, 161 
Tearle, Godfrey, 130 
Tempest, Marie, 49, 62, 83, 95, 99, 

126, 128, 187 
Temple, Hope, 29, 90 
Tennyson, Alfred, Lord, 17 
Terriss, Ellaline, 125 
Terry, Edward, 124 
Terry, Ellen, 95 

Terry, Fred, 85, 94, 118 

Tetrazzini, 42 

Teyte, Maggie, 137, 170 

Thomas, Goring, 40, 41, 42, 128 

Thome", 94 

Thornton, Edna, 137 

Tolstoi, 127 

Tosti, F. Paolo, 22, 90, 117, 120, 

127, 138 

Trebelli, Madame, 16 
Tree, Sir Herbert, 120 
Tree, Lady, 95 
Twain, Mark, 160 





Wagner, Richard, 65 

Wall, Harry, 174 

Wallace, 25 

Waller, Lewis, 95 

Weatherley, F. E., 16, 17, 72, 84 

Wedgwood, Josiah, 149 

White, Maude Valerie, 22, 28 

Wilder, Marshall, 57 

Williams, Arthur, 128 

Williams, E. Trevor Lloyd, 145, 146 

Williams, Evan, 94 

Wolff, Johannes, 94 

Wood, Haydn, 91, 92, 130 

Wood, Sir Henry, 98, 106, 107, 110, 


Wood, Peggy, 135 
Woodhouse, John, 177 
Woodforde-Finden, Amy, 28, 90 
Woolworth, 154 
Wormser, Andre", 29, 138 
Wright, Huntley, 126 
Wright, Lawrence, 27 
Wyatt, Frank, 48 
Wyndham, Sir Charles, 120 
Wordsworth, 95 



Vaughan, Kate, 124 
Venne, Lottie, 83 
Verdi, 13 
Vert, N., 20, 21 
Vokes, Rosina, 56 

YOHE, MAY, 142, 163 
Youmans, Vincent, 172 

Zola, Emile, 143