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p ^^o.? 



f 



HARVARD COLLEGE 
LIBRARY 



THE BEQUEST OF 

EVERT JANSEN WENDELL 

CLASS <»> iSfti 
OF NEW YORK 



1918 



^ 



,^ ^. ay^^.^^^^'^ 









^— . HARVARD OeUltf UBRAKY 

THE BEQUEST OF 
EVERT JANSEN WENDELL 

\9ie 






THE LOOKER-ON 



OCTOBER, 1895. 




PADEREWSKI AND HIS ART. 

By Henby T. Finok. 

biographic sketch. 

'HE question of nationality plays a curious r61e 
in the history of the pianoforte. For about a 
century and a half almost all the great piano- 
forte players and composers — Bach, Mozart, Beethoven, 
Weber, Schubert, Mendelssohn, Schumann — were Ger- 
mans. But with Schumann and his wife the list of 
Germans, supreme in this department, practically came 
to an end, unless we except Hans von Bulow, who was 
a great teacher rather than an inspired interpreter ; 
and Brahms, whose pianoforte works are not idio- 
matic. Thus the field was left open for Slavic and 
Hungarian competitors. Hungary gave us Liszt, 
Heller, and Joseffy ; Russia produced Rubinstein, 
Essipoff, and Pachmann ; Scotland, D' Albert. But 
the land preeminent for pianists is Poland. Chopin 
was a Pole, and so was the brilliant Carl Tausig, 
who, had he not died at the age of thirty, would, 
in the opinion of his pupil, Joseflfy, and many others, 
have surpassed even his master, Liszt. While there 
is good reason to believe that Josef Hofmann, who so 
delighted two continents as a prodigy, will ultimate- 
ly take his place in the first rank. The two Schar- 
wenkas, Moszkowski, Leschetitzki, and Slivinski are 
among the minor Polish masters. And now, to cap 
the climax, we have Paderewski, whom Poland will 

some 




2 THE LOOKER OK 

some day honor as now it honors Chopin ; so that, mnsi- 
cally speaking at any rate, it is safe to say, ^'Noch ist 
Polen nicht verloren" — Poland is not yet lost. 

Modem Poland has less than eight million inhabi- 
tants, and is about one-third the size of Califomia. 
Why this insignificant comer of Europe should have 
produced four of the world's greatest pianists — ^we 
might even say five, since Rubinstein's father was a 
Polish Jew — is as inexplicable as the problem of 
) genius in general. Is it accidental, or a consequence of 
the romance, pathos, and tragedy of Polish history! 
"" Is it due to the influence of the Polish women, world- 
^ famed for their beauty and their gift of inspiring 
A^***'* poetic fancies in their admirers? We know not; we 
only know that Poland has taken the place of Germany 
as the home of great pianists. Oddly enough, many 
American journalists seem to imagine that Poles are 
Germans, since they are constantly speaking of "Herr 
Paderewski." They might as well sx>eak of "Herr 
Grover Cleveland" or " Signor Bismarck." 

Ignace Jan Paderewski — who, since the death of An- 
ton Rubinstein, must be regarded as the greatest of liv- 
ing pianists — was bom on November 6, 1860, in Podolia, 
a province of Russian Poland, which might be called 
the granary and garden of Russia. In our minds the 
word ''Russian" is inseparably associated with pic- 
tures of snow and ice, but Podolia has a climate similar 
to that of South Germany. Its wheat is the heaviest 
known, and used to be exported to Italy and Greece as 
early as the fifteenth century, while the luxuriant 
growth of the grape-vines, mulberries, and melons at- 
tests the mildness of its climate. To be a gentleman 
farmer in such a country is not the worst fate that 
might befall a man ; nor could a musical genius pass 
the days of his childhood under more favorable circum- 
stances than those which surrounded Ignace on his 
father's farm. 

Paderewski' s father was an ardent patriot who 
aroused the suspicions of the Russian officials, and in 

1863 



THE L O OKER - ON. % 

1863 he was banished to Siberia. After a few years' 
exile he was allowed to return, bnt, althongh he lived 
till 1894, his spirits were broken, and the only solace of 
his laat years was the growing fame of his son, who, he,, 
mttst have felt, would, like Chopin, do more to make 
known and endear Poland to the world than any of her 
kings and politicians had ever done. Politicians are 
not usually musicians, and Paderewski's father was no 
exception to the rule; it was from his mother that^ 
Ignace, like Bubinstein and many other musicians, in- 
herited his talent — in accordance with Schopenhauer's 
doctrine that men of genius derive their intellectual 
gifts from the maternal side. Ignace's mother, how- 
ever, died when he was still a child, thus throwing 
him on his own resources. 

It is related of Chopin that he was bo sensitive in his 
infancy that he could not hear music without crying, 
and of Mozart that he fainted on hearing the sound of 
a trampet. Ignace appears to have been similarly 
sensitive to sounds. As a boy he used to crawl on the 
piano stool, strike the keys, listen to the vibrations 
that make np a tone, and modify his touch till he 
got the exact q^nality his delicate sense of tonal beauty 
craved. He also had the sense of absolute pitch — that 
is, he could name every note he heard and tell the com- 
ponent parts of every chord without seeing the key- 
board. Eager as he was to listen and learn, there was 
hardly any food for his musical appetite except the 
folk-songs of the peasants, which in Poland are beauti- 
f nl and characteristic. Once a liddler tried to give him 
a few lessons on the piano, of which he knew bat little 
himself. Subsequently an old piano teacher was en- 
gaged to visit the isolated farm once a month. He 
taught the boy and his sister how to play simple ar- 
rangements of operatic tunes for one or two performers; 
bnt of systematic instruction there coold be no ques- 
tion under such circumstances. 

He was twelve years old when he went to Warsaw, 
where at last he vras able to hear good music and to take 



THE LOOKER-ON. 



1»E 




lessons, Janotha being his teacher on the piano, and 
Boguski in harmony. In the library of the Conserva- 
tory he also found opportunities, which he did not 
neglect, for studying the works of the classical and 
romantic comi>oser8. But for a long time his lack of 
early training remained a disadvantage. Even at six- 
teen, when he attempted his first concert tour, in Rus- 
sia, he was technically far from satisfactory. Miss 
Fanny Morris Smith relates that ^^ during this journey 
he played his own compositions and those of other 
people; but, as he naively confessed, they were all his 
own, no matter what he played, for he did not know 
the music, and as he had little technic and could not 
manage the difficult places, he improvised to fill up the 
gaps." 

There is reason to think that the Russian amateurs 
who heard Paderewski on this tour were not particu- 
larly spoiled or critical. St. Petersburg and Moscow 
enjoy good concerts and operatic performances, but in 
provincial towns musical culture has not reached the 
highest possible level. I am indebted to Miss Szumow- 
ska, Paderewski' s charming and talented pupil, for an 
anecdote relating to this first tour, which he is fond of 
telling. He had announced a concert at a certain small 
town, but, on arriving, found that no piano was to be 
had for love or money. Finally, he ascertained that a 
general living some miles away had a piano. The gen- 
eral was perfectly willing, on being applied to, to lend 
his instrument ; but when the pianist tried it, he found, 
to his dismay, that it was so badly out of repair that 
some of the hammers would stick to the strings instead 
of falling back. However, it was too late to back out. 
The audience was assembling, and in this emergency a 
bright thought occurred to the pianist. He sent for a 
switch, and engaged an attendant to whip down the 
refractory hammers whenever necessary. So bang went 
the chords, and swish went the whip, and the audience 
liked this improvised duo more, perhaps, than it would 
have enjoyed the promised piano solo. 

After 



THE L OKER ■ ON. « 

After this maiden tonr, Paderewski resumed his stud- 
ies at the Warsaw Conservatory, and two years later he 
was considered sufficiently advanced to be appointed to 
a professorship. In the following year, aged only nine- 
teen, he married a Polish girl. Early marriages are 
rarely advisable, especially in the case of penniless 
artbts who wish to carve their way to fame. Pade- 
rewski' s married life lasted only a year — a year of pri- 
vation and poverty — a year in which he probably did 
not earn one-tenth of what he can now earn in two 
honrs. His wife died, leaving bim an invalid boy, 
bright in mind bnt paralyzed in body, who now is taken 
care of by Mr. Gorski in Paris, and to whom his father 
is devoted. 

Grief has ever been a fertilizer of genius. After hia 
great loss, Paderewski gave up his whole soul to his 
art, in which he now made more rapid progress than 
before. He went to Berlin,. where his opportunities for 
hearing good music were, of coarse, very much better 
than they had been at Warsaw. Hero he took lessons 
in composition of Kiel, whose best service to his pupil 
was that he fanned his enthusiasm for bis own two 
idols. Bach and Beethoven. Professor Urban, of Kul- 
lak's Academy, was also his teacher for a time, and at 
the age of twenty-three he accepted a position as pro- 
fessor at the Conservutory of Strasburg. 

Up to this time, apparently, no one had suspected 
Paderewski's latent powers. It takes genius to dis- 
cover genius. It BO happened that during his Strasburg 
days he became intimately acquainted, at a summer 
resort, with the famous Polish actress, Mme. Modjeska, 
who was perhaps the first to recognize his rare gifts. 
She describes him as at ttus time *'a polished and 
genial companion ; a man of wide culture ; of witty, 
sometimes biting tongue ; brilliant in table-talk ; a man 
wide-awake to all matters of popular interest, who 
knew and understood the world, but whose intimacy 
she and her husband especially prized for the ' eleva- 
tion of his character and the refinementof bis mind.' " 

Hia 



6 TBE LOOKER OK 

His familiarity with mtwical literature was already 
exhaustive. To amuse these same friends he once ex- 
temporized exquisitely upon a theme in the character- 
istic style of every great composer from Palestrina to 
Chopin. When he had finished, they begged him to 
play it once more according to himself, and that time 
it was the most beautiful of all. 

The suspicion naturally arises that it may have been 
doe largely to the sympathetic encouragement of the 
famous Polish actress that Paderewski gave up the 
drudgery of teaching, and went to Vienna to prepare 
himself for the career of a concert pianist under the 
guidance of his famous countryman Leschetitzki, who 
may be safely asserted to have shown himself, next to 
Liazt, the most successful trainer of pianists. 



CONQtrEST OF PARIS AND LONDON. 

'V^T^HILE the Germans and Austrians are un- 

^ V I donbtedly the most musical of all nations, 

Qj^N^ they are not very quick in discovering a 

new genius, unless they happen to have a 

Schumann among their critics. Pade- 

rewski's debut in Vienna was a pleasant 

enough affair, but did not do much to 

establish his fame, and it remained for 

Paris to discover his merits and proclaim 

them to the world. The Parisian public 

and press received him so cordially that 

the curiosity of London was aroused, but 

when he crossed the Channel and gave bis 

first concert there, on May 9, 1890, the result was a 

disappointment. The Academy said; '* If this artist 

did himself full justice on this occasion, we cannot 

understand the fuss that has been made of him. He 

is a virtuoso player, but apparently not of the highest 

order." The Athencewm, while conceding that he 

certainly succeeded in astonishing the small audience, 

accused 



THE LOOKER -on. t 

accused him of sensationalism and exaggeration, snm- 
ming np its verdict in these words: "He is certainly 
not a model pianist, and his playing gives as mnch 
pain as pleasure to listener of refined tastes." Bnt 
when he gave his second concert, a week later, the 
critics took back everything they had said. The 
Academy found his readings "poetical in a high de- 
gree," and \\\» Aihencbum-vBA "enabled to agree with 
the eulogy bestowed npon the Polish artist by Parisian 
critics. It is only fair to add," it continues, "that at 
the previous recital M. Paderewski may have been 
unfavorably influenced by the sparse attendance and 
the inferior pianoforte on which he played." 

Sparse, indeed, had been the attendance at that first 
London recital; the receipts did not exceed ten pounds. 
But with every succeeding recital the audiences grew 
in number, and to-day, when Paderewski gives a con- 
cert in that city, the receipts rarely fall below $5,000, 
which is as mnch as Mme. Fatti received in the most 
brilliant period of her operatic career. Nor are the 
mnsic-lovers of other English cities less multitudinous 
and eager to hear him than the Ix>ndoners. In 1894, 
when Ms manager arranged an English provincial tour 
embracing twenty-two cities, the seats were in many 
of these places all sold as mnch as two months ahead 
of the date of the concert I 
In Edinburgh the excite- 
ment was so great, and the 
hall so crowded, that at 
least a dozen ladies had to 
be carried out in a fainting 
condition. On another oc- 
casion, in London, it was 
noted that a number of ama- 
teurs had provided them- 
selves with breakfast and 
Innch, and waited patiently 

^ day long for the doors of „ — 

St. James's Hall to open. cSt 

Reports ■'•^ 



THE LOOKER-ON. 



FIRST TWO AMERICAN T0UB8. 




EPORTS of Paderewski's extraordinary suc- 

Vcess in England had, of coarse, preceded 
him to America, and when he made his 
first appearance in New York, on Novem- 
ber 17, 1891, he was greeted at Carnegie Hall by 
a large and brilliant audience. It does not at 
all follow that because an artist succeeds in 
London, Paris, or Vienna he will have the same 
jj^^f happy fate in New York. Many musicians — 
j especially singers — ^have a tale of woe to tell on 
/ that score, and it is an undeniable fact that the 
ij / New York musical public is the most critical 
H and fastidious in the world. Paderewski, how- 
ever, triumphed at once ; he is an artist of too 
high a type to be dependent on the lottery of 
luck. As he walked across the stage and seated 
himself at his Steinway Grand, his appearance 
and demeanor at once indicated the keynote of 
his whole performance — an honest devotion to 
his art which scorns any sort of trifling with 
the audience, or posing as a genius, in the old 
style, by personal untidiness. 

While the public at once recognized Paderewski' s 
greatness, the critics, with a few exceptions, lagged 
behind. A writer in a musical paper thus summed 
up the situation satirically: " Paderewski, the pianist, 
came and did not conquer at once. . . . The press 
all the week was a study. Praise was given, but 
grudgingly, and the fatal comparison of names was in- 
stituted. If Paderewski had only had Joseflfy's hair, 
Rosenthal's appetite, Rummel's laugh, Rubinstein's 
powers of perspiration, Pachmann's grin, why, then 
Paderewski would have been a great pianist," etc. But 
the public paid no heed to these insinuations, and 
when, after two concerts with orchestra (at which he 
played concertos by himself, Saint-Saens, and Beetho- 
ven), 



THE looker-on: g 

Ten), he began a serieB of solo recitals at the Kadison 
Sqoare Garden concert hall, it was found that this 
hall was too small to contain all the enthusiasts, and he 
had to return to Carnegie Hall, which has a seating ca- 
pacity of twenty-seven hundred, with standing-room for 
abont a thousand more ; and this hall was thenceforth 
crowded at every recital, although the price of seats 
was almost on an operatic scale. 

In less than six months, Paderewski gave the enor- 
mous number of one hundred and seventeen concerts, 
his fame growing all the time like an avalanche. His 
last concert in New York was given at the Metropolitan 
Opera House, for the benefit of the Washington Arch 
Fund. The great pianist volunteered his services for 
this occasion, Mr. Higginson generously gave the assist- 
ance of the Boston Symphony Orchestra free of charge, 
so that the proceeds of the concert, $4,375, could be 
turned over to the Fund intact. Mr. Paderewski felt 
grateful towards Washington's countrymen for their 
cordial recognition of his genius, and he played on 
this occasion like one truly inspired, so that after he 
had interpreted his own concerto, with the superb 
accompaniment of Mr. Nikisch and his orchestra, not 
a few of those in the audience felt convinced that they 
had just heard the greatest pianist that ever lived. 

As Mr. Paderewski had given his services for a patri- 
otic purpose, it was proper that patriotic compliments 
should be exchanged after the concert. Mr. Parke 
Godwin and Mr. Richard Watson Gilder, as members 
of the Washington Arch Committee, came on the stage, 
and Mr. Godwin made a short address, in which lie 
thanked all those who had contributed towards the suc- 
cess of the concert, and then spoke of Mr. Paderewski's 
home in Poland, expressing the hope that that unlucky 
country might some day be released from its oppres- 
sors. A smile lighted up Mr. Paderewaki's fine fea- 
tures as these words were spoken ; but instead of 
responding in words, he shook his head, pat his finger 
on his lips, sat down once more at the piano amid 

thunders 



10 THE LOOKMRON. 

thunders of applause and played a Liszt rhapsody as 
he alone can play it. It was an historic event, which 
those who were lucky enough to be present will never 
forget. 

After such a brilliant success, it was not surprising 
that Paderewski's managers succeeded in persuading 
him to return for a second tour, beginning in the au- 
tumn of 1892. In New York he again took x>ossession 
of Carnegie Hall, and gave there eleven concerts, 
including two with orchestra, and every one of them 
was crowded to the doors. Stranger things happened 
in the West, as the following newspax)er item shows : 
"Paderewski played on Monday evening in Cleveland, 
and the Lake Shore and Michigan Southern Railroad 
Company ran special trains, one from Sandusky and 
the other from Norwalk, for the benefit of the resi- 
dents of those two cities who wished to hear him." 

Of course the receipts varied with the size of the 
halls. One Chicago concert yielded over seven thou- 
sand dollars ; but if New York did not reach such a 
high figure, that was simply because it has no concert 
hall as big as the Chicago Auditorium. Here are a few 
official figures covering fourteen consecutive concerts : 
Binghamton, $1,500; New York, |6,069; Boston, 
$2,364 ; New Haven, $1,926 ; New York, $5,060 ; Roch- 
ester, $1,S62 ; Albany, $1,360 ; Hartford, $1,916 ; Boston, 
$2,996; New York, $6,624; Buffalo, $2,060; Philadel- 
phia, $6,324 ; Brooklyn, $3,162 ; Boston, $3,999 ; total, 
$43,690, or an average of ^,113. 

The total number of concerts given during this sec- 
ond tour in twenty-six American cities was sixty-seven, 
and the receipts amounted to $180,000 — ^a sum never 
before reached by any instrumental performer, and 
rarely equalled by a prima donna in the palmiest days 
of the hel canto. These financial results show that 
those managers who offered Rubinstein $2,600 an even- 
ing for an American tour a few years ago were not so 
rash as some fancied they were. Paderewski reached 
that average, and it is possible that Rubinstein, with 

the 



THE LOOKER-ON. 11 

the prestige of his life-long reputation as pianist and 
composer, might have exceeded it. It is interesting to 
compare Rnbinsteln's net earnings in 1872 — |£iO,000 for 
216 concerts — with Paderewski's gross receipts of i 
about $180,000 for sixty-seven concerts, of which, per--* 
haps, $150,000 are net. For the nnmber of concerts 
given he earned abont nine times as much as Rubin- 
stein. This does not prove that he is nine times as 
great a pianist as Rubinstein, bnt it does indicate that 
masical cnltnre in America had made enormous strides 
in twenty years. 



PBBSOITAI. TEAIT8 AlTD AITEODOTEB. 

C>j^ MERICA, thanks to onr full purses, our ready 
t/W enthusiasm for what is best of its kind, and 
O/ oir "magnificent distances," is at once the 
Eldorado and the terror of European artists. 
We came very near ruining the career of little Josef 
Hofmann by overwork, and even the leonine Rubin- 
stein, at the age of forty-one, found the American 
tonr so exhausting that he wrote in his autobiog- 
raphy : "May Heaven preserve us from such sla- 
very I . . . The receipts and the success were 
invariably gratifying, but it was all so tedious that 
I began to despise myself and my art." Notiiing — 
not even the offer of $2,600 an evening — could induce 
Rubinstein to repeat the experiment. Paderewski, al- 
though he nearly suffered nervous collapse after his 

first 



12 



THE LOOKSROK 








4 ^-s 



first tour, luckily was willing to come again, and as 
his second tour was more reasonably arranged, he might 
have come out of it fresh and smiling but for the 
Chicago trouble. 

One of his noblest traits is his genuine modesty — a 
trait which has not been altered by the fact that he 
now receives homage as the greatest living pianist and 
one of the most gifted composers. Sir George Grove 
praises Schubert as "one of the very few musicians who 
did not behave as if he considered himself the greatest 
man in the world." In this respect Paderewskl resem- 
bles Schubert. " Paderewski," said the pianist De 
Pachmann, in one of those quaint little speeches he 
loves to address to his audiences, "Paderewski is the 
most modest artist that I have ever seen. I myself am 
the most unmodest artist, except Hans von Bulow. 
He is more unmodest than I am." 

To his colleagues and rivals Paderewski is pleasant 
and generous. He invites them to dinners and inter- 
ests himself in their affairs. He and Mr. Joseflfy are 
excellent friends, who thoroughly appreciate each 
other's good points. 

Paderewski belongs to the modem school of musi- 
cians in being a man of general culture and refinement. 
He is not one of those numerous musicians who care for 
nothing but their own art. He is interested in the 
other arts, too, as well as in literature and life. He is 
as brilliant in table-talk as at the piano, and is a most 
sympathetic and intellectual companion. He has very 
decided opinions of other composers, and his taste is 
remarkably catholic. He likes Grieg' s songs better than 
his pianoforte works, while Brahms' piano pieces, as he 
once said to me, hardly exist for him : "they seem all 
treble and bass." But he admires the chamber-music 
of Brahms. His worship of the romantic Chopin, 
Idszt, and Schumann does not interfere with his en- 
joyment of the classical Mozart and Beethoven. He 
adores Bach and Schubert, and at the same time he is a 
thorough Wagnerite. To hear "Parsifal" or "Tris- 
tan," 



THE LOOKER-ON. 13 

tan," lie says, you ought to go to Bayreuth, for the 
" Meistersinger " to Vienna, for "Tannhauser" to 
Dresden; while of the "Plying Dutchman," the best 
I>erf ormance he ever heard was at a small German city 
of thirty thousand inhabitants. 

Like most Poles, he has a great talent for acquiring 
a knowledge of languages. He speaks Polish, Russian, 
French, Gterman, and English fluently, and he is an 
excellent letter-writer, as the few who have been 
favored by him are aware. In recent years, however, 
he has acquired almost a horror of letter- writing, and 
seems to have fallen into the bad habit of Chopin, who 
would rather get into a cab and deliver a message per- 
sonally at the other end of Paris than write a note of 
twenty lines. 

Genius involves hard work, in a pianist as in a poet. 
Ease and finish are the rewards of years of toil. When 
we know how persistently Paderewski works to perfect 
his playing, we hardly wonder that he shirks the duty 
of writing letters. His triumphs were not too easily 
won ; he had to practise and study many years to earn 
them. To this day he will practise ten or twelve hours 
or more a day when preparing for a concert tour, to 
keep his fingers supple and his memory reliable. But 
the secret of his success lies in this, that he practises 
not merely with the fingers, but with the brain too. He 
once told me that he often lies awake for hours at night, 
going over his next programme mentally, note for note, 
trying to get at the very essence of every bar. 

This mental practice at night explains the perfection 
of his art, but it is not good for his health. Indeed, if 
he ever sins, it is against himself and the laws of health. 
He smokes too many cigarettes, drinks too much lem- 
onade, loses too much sleep, or sleeps too often in the 
daytime. For this last habit he is, however, not en- 
tirely to blame ; for, whenever he gives a concert, all 
his faculties are so completely engaged that he is quite 
exhausted at the end, and unable to go to sleep for 
hours. His favorite antidote to this artistic insomnia 

is 



14 TBE LOOKER Oir. 

is a game of billiards. Of this game he 10 passionately 
fond, and he regards it as a sort of tonic ; for, he says, 
" If I walk or ride, or merely rest, I go on thinMog all 
the time, and my nerves get no real rest. Bnt when I 
play billiardH, I can forget everything, and the result is 
mental rest and physical rest combined.' 

Like Liszt and Rubinstein, Paderewski has an intense 
personal magnetism which especially attracts women. 
I have seen an andience compel the poor pianist to add 
Ave pieces to the sixteen on the programme, the chief 
applanders being women. Often have I seen half the 
ladies in the parqnet leave their seats while these extras 
were being called for and crowd as near the stage as 
possible so as to get a closer view of the magnetic per- 
former and his bewitched fingers. After the concert-, 
those who were Incky enough would crowd into his 
room, while others would wait below to see ^rm 
drive off. 

To conclude these remarks on Paderewski' s personal- 
ity, let me quote a line of Mr. J. G. Hnneker: "His 
life has been full of sorrow, of adversity, of vicions- 
ness never. His heart is pure, Ms life clean, his ideals 
lofty." 

HOW PADEB£WSKI PLATS. 

,T is often said that a trace of oharlatanism is 
essential to the success of even a genias. Pade- 
rewski is a living refutation of this assertion. 
He never resorts to clap-trap, trickiness, or sen- 
sationalism in order to win applause. He makes 
no concessions to the popular craving for cheap 
tunes, but gives his hearers only the choicest 
products of the highest musical genius, &om 
£ach to the present day. He never stoops to 
conquer, never allows anything trashy or trivial 
to mar the artistic harmony of his theme. He 
does not need to resort to any such tricks to 
succeed. His popularity has been won by his 



^ 



4 personal genius and his sincere devotion to 

the 



THE LOOKER-ON. 15 

the very best mnsic. What prepossesses an audience 
at once in his favor is the genuine simplicity of his 
bearing, the absence of all desire to pose. He never 
indulges in any antics or capers, but comes on the stage 
with modest bearing, takes his seat at the piano, prel- 
udizes a moment — ^what superb chords I — till all is quiet, 
and then plays as only he can play. 

Perhaps the first thing that strikes the average spec- 
tator on seeing Paderewski at the piano is the entire 
absence of effort in his performance. He seems to 
shake the notes from his sleeves like a prestidigitateur; 
technical difficulties do not exist for him; indeed, 
from his playing one might fancy that there was no 
such thing as a difficult piece, and that anybody might 
do what seems so absurdly easy. 

Charlatans draw attention to their skill by an obtru- 
sive brilliancy of execution and a parading of difficul- 
ties. It cannot be denied that this is a good way to 
"astonish the natives," and that it often brings a cer- 
tain kind of success. But astonishment is a state of 
mind which is soon dulled, and for permanent success 
with the public it is necessary to appeal to the deeper 
and more aesthetic emotions. The secret of Paderewski' s 
permanent success lies in this, that he makes us forget 
that there is such a thing as technique by his supreme 
mastery of it and by making the musical ideas he inter- 
prets so absorbingly interesting to all classes of hear- 
ers. Paradoxical as it may seem, it may be said that 
the genius of a musician is most unmistakably revealed 
in his power over the unmusical. Genius makes ex- 
tremes meet ; that is to say, it fascinates not only those 
who have the most highly cultivated taste for music, 
but also those to whom the art is usually a sealed book 
and the playing of ordinary academic pianists "all 
Greek." Genius translates this Greek into English, or 
any other language you please. It is an emotional 
Volapuk which makes aU music intelligible to every- 
body. 

This is not mere "sentiment," or "fine writing." I 

really 



k 



16 THE LOOKER our. 

really know of unmusical individuals who shun piano re- 
citals as intolerable bores, but who never miss a Paderew- 
ski recital, because, when he plays. Bach and Beethoven 
are no longer riddles to them but sources of pleasure. 

Vanity is the principal cause of the failure of many 
brilliant pianists. They try to show the public not how 
beautiful the music of Chopin or Schumann is, but 
what clever performers they themselves are. The pub- 
lic soon notes their insincerity, and neglects their con- 
certs. Paderewski, on the other hand, never plays at 
an audience. He hardly seems to play for it, but for 
himself. I once asked him if he ever felt nervous in 
playing, and he said he often did, but only because he 
feared he might not satisfy himself. He is his own 
severest critic. 

Paderewski almost always begins a concert with Bach, 
Handel, Scarlatti or some other very old master, follow- 
ing this up with Mozart or Beethoven, then the German 
romantic school (Weber, Schubert, Schumann), and 
linally the Slavic and Hungarian schools — Rubinstein, 
Chopin, Paderewski, Liszt. This historic arrangement 
has the obvious advantage that it leads the individual 
hearer through the same stages of development that the 
musical race went through. Each of the recitals thus 
becomes an object-lesson in musical history, adding 
instruction to pleasure. 

It should be borne in mind that the excessive fatigue 
of constant travel has had the natural result of making 
some of his recitals less interesting than others. If there 
are any who have heard him but once and who were 
disappointed, they will herein find the explanation. 
Even when he is in the concert mood, it often happens 
that he has to play two or three pieces before he is at 
his best — a common experience with artists. But it is 
not always so, especially when Bach heads the list. On 
such an occasion an expert who had never before heard 
him play would be apt to say to himself, " This man is 
evidently a Bach specialist ; he has played his best card 
first." Later on he would feel inclined to pronounce 

him 



THS LOOKER-ON. Vt 

htm a Beethoven specialist ; but not till after the Schn- 
mann, Chopin, and Liszt numbers would he discover the 
whole truth, namely, that Paderewski is a specialist in 
all good music. Like Liszt, he has the mocking-bird 
gift of imitating the style of all the great pianists and 
composers, often surpassing them in their own song. 

That he is preeminent above aU pianists in the matter 
of beauty and variety of tone-color is a fact beyond all 
dispute. Dr. William Mason, a pupil of Liszt, considers 
him in this respect superior even to his master. Having 
heard Liszt only once, I feel hardly entitled to an opin- 
ion in this matter, but I do not for a moment doubt Dr. 
Mason's judgment. The gift of a beautiful tone (touch) 
comes by nature, like a beautiful face, but it can be im- 
proved by cultivation and exercise. We have seen that 
aa a boy Paderewski used to listen to the vibrations 
that make up a tone, and modify his touch tiU he got 
tb^e vibrations just as his delicate sense of tonal beauty 
wanted them. Something similar to this he does to this 
day at his recitals. He has no looks, no grimaces, for 
the audience. No public smile ever sits on his lips, yet 
if you look closely you will observe subtle changes of 
expression on his features : he is listening intently to 
bis own playing, and if the tone is as beautiful as he 
wishes it, an expression of pleasure flits across his fea- 
tures. He seems to be far away in dreamland, playing 
for himself alone ; and his reward is not the applause of 
tlie audience, but the delight in his own playing. 

Tone, in a modem piano, is as much a matter of ped- 
alling as of finger-touch. By pressing the right pedal, 
we lift the dampers from all the strings and allow the 
sympathetic overtones to add their voices to the tones 
we strike, thus enriching and deepening the colors. No 
other pianist, except perhaps Chopin, haa understood 
the art of pedalling as Paderewski understands it. In 
this respect he is epoch-making; his pedalling is a 
source of unending delight and study to connoisseurs. 
No expert could mistake his chords and arpeggios for 
those of any other pianist. No other has quite such a 

limpid 



18 THE LOOKER-ON. 

limpid yet deep tone, a tone of such marvellons carrying 
power that its pianissimo is heard in the remotest x>art8 
of the house ; no other can, like him, make yon hear 
soft, voluptuous horns, lugubrious bassoons, sui)erbly 
sustained organ-pedals, and amorous violoncello tones. 
So perfect is his pedalling that he never by any accident 
blurs his harmonies and passages, while at the same 
time he produces tone-colors never before dreamt of in 
a pianoforte. By rapid successive pressures of the i)ed- 
al he succeeds in giving the piano a new power, that 
of changing the quality of a tone after it has been 
struck, as every one must have noticed, for instance, 
in his performance of his popular Minuet. 

Hans von Bulow, in his edition of Beethoven's piano- 
forte works, marks certain passages quasi violoncello — 
or some other instrument which the composer evidently 
had in mind. Bulow himself was not very successful 
in suggesting these orchestral tints, whereas Paderew- 
ski constantly does so in the most fascinating manner, 
especially in Liszt, whose style is often orchestral in its 
suggestiveness, without ceasing to be idiomatically pi- 
anistic. If occasion calls for it, Paderewski can convert 
the piano into a small stormy orchestra ; but he has a 
way of his own for producing orchestral effects which 
depends on the skilful use of the pedals instead of on 
muscular gradations of forte and piano. For instance, 
as the surging sounds of some mighty arpeggios grad- 
ually die away over the pedal, you will hear above them 
a weird sustained tone, like that of a muted horn from 
another world ; another moment you will hear the wail 
of an oboe, or the majestic strains of trombones, or the 
sonorous boom of a bell ; and in the Chopin Berceuse 
he converts the piano into an seolian harp whose har- 
monies seem to rise and fall with the gentle breezes. 
By the clever use of pedal and arpeggios he produces 
that "continuous stream of tone" which was char- 
acteristic of Chopin's playing, and which, in its un- 
broken succession of multi-colored harmonies, reminds 
one of the magic tone-colors and mystic sounds that 

coma 




THE LOOKER-ON. 19 

come up from the invisible Wagnerian orchestra at 
Bayreuth. 

BACH AS A MODEBN BOMANTICIST. 

O^'^ji^HEN Mozart once came across a composition 
^% ^y *^® neglected Bach he exclaimed, 
z'*^*'^^ ' ' Thank heaven, here at last is a piece from 
^•-^ which I can learn something.'' Beethoven 

said of this same composer that his 
^ name should not be "Bach" (brook), 
but "Ocean." It is well known with 
what enthusiasm Mendelssohn revived 
Bach, and how the Philistines ridiculed 
him for it; well known how Schumann 
^ and Wagner worshipped Bach, and de- 

^\ clared him the master of masters. At 

^^^ first hearing, nothing could seem less sim- 

ilar than Chopin and Bach, yet the influence of Bach 
becomes more and more obvious in the latest and most 
mature works of Chopin ; and through his life, when- 
ever Chopin prepared for a concert, he, to use his own 
words, " shut hinself ujp for a fortnight to play Bach." 
Yet the public persists in considering Bach a mere 
bundle of dry counterpoint. Why? Because he is 
seldom interpreted as he ought to be in the modem 
romantic spirit. It remained for Liszt to show to the 
world what there is in Bach. Bead what Wagner 
wrote when Liszt played for him the fourth prelude 
and fugue from the " Well-Tempered Clavichord " : " I 
knew indeed very well what I was to expect of Liszt at 
the piano ; but what I now learned to know I had not 
exi)ected of Bach himself, well as I had studied him. 
It showed me how little study aTnounts to compared 
with reveJMion.^^ 

Let the young ladies who are studying music bear 
that last sentence in mind. They will learn more by 
hearing Paderewski play once than by taking a hun- 
dred ordinary lessons. For Paderewski is the Liszt 
of to-day. He plays Bach as Liszt played him. He 

makes 



20 THE LOOKER our. 

makes a chromatic fantasia and fugue sound like a 
modem improvisation. He scorns the ^^ angular &sh- 
ion" of playing Bach which was in vogue among the 
older pianists, but treats him as a modem romanticist. 
He convinces you of the fact that Bach, though he was 
bom in 1686, is really one of the most modem com- 
I)osers; a comi>oser, in truth, of whose works most 
are still "music of the future." They would not re- 
main so long were there more Liszts and Paderewskis 
to reveal their wealth of tone, their organ-like sonor- 
ity, and above all their marvellous j)olyphonic web of 
melodies. Paderewski plays these interwoven simul- 
taneous melodies with such clearness that the ear can 
follow each as easily as if it were played on a sei)arate 
instrument of the orchestra. When you hear him play 
Bach, you realize that they who say there is no mel- 
ody or emotion in him, simply do not see the forest on 
account of the trees. 




THE IDEAL BEETHOVEN PLATEB. 

<^^1 N amusing episode in Paderewski' s American ex- 
/•v»V periences was brought about by the question 
^ whether he could play Beethoven. We all 
know that D' Albert is (as Bulow was) less satis- 
factory in Chopin and Liszt than in Beethoven 
and Brahms, and as a rule it is also true that pian- 
ists of the Chopin-Idszt school are not equally in- 
teresting in Beethoven and the so-called German 
"classical" school in general. As Paderewski be- 
longs to the Chopin-Liszt school, it was natural to 
suppose that he was not a great Beethoven player ; and 
the first year the critics, with very few exceptions, said 
so. It cannot be denied that he did not always make 
so deep an impression with Beethoven as with composers 
of the romantic school ; but this, I insisted, was quite 
as much the fault of Beethoven as of Paderewski, since 
Beethoven, with all his wealth of ideas, is not an idio- 
matic writer for the pianoforte, and his works for that 
instrument are, therefore, in the matter of style and 

fascination, 



THE LOOKER-ON. 21 

fascination, inferior to those of Bach, Chopin and Scnu- 
mann, and do not stir a modem audience so deeply as 
compositions of the romantic, idiomatic school. On 
this point most professionals and amatenrs are agreed; 
yet, thanks to a strange kind of conservative terrorism, 
very few have the courage to express their convictions. 
Beethoven is exi)ected to arouse as much applause as 
Chopin, and if he fails to do so, the pianist is blamed ! 

On this subject the eminent pianist and teacher. Dr. 
William Mason, contributed some articles, at the crit- 
ical moment, to the Century and Evening Posty which 
threw much light on the matter and brought out the 
comic side of the discussion. Dr. Mason frankly con- 
fessed that, in his opinion, Beethoven's pianoforte 
works are not idiomatic; adding: "Forty years ago 
my teachers, Moscheles, afterwards Dreyschock, and 
finally liszt, used to say that Beethoven's piano com- 
I>ositions were not KlamerTndssig . . . not written in 
conformity with the nature of the instrument." He 
also pointed out that "whenever a pianist makes his 
first appearance in public as a Beethoven player, he is 
at once subjected to strictures on all sides by numerous 
critics who seem to have been lying in wait for this 
particular occasion, and there immediately arise two 
parties, each holding positive opinions, of which the 
one in the negative is usually the more numerous. This 
is by no means a new fad, but quite an old fashion, 
dating back, at least as far as the writer's experience 
goes, something over forty years and probably much 
further." No pianist was spared in this process, not 
even Liszt, of whom many of the critics said that he 
could not play Beethoven, whereas, according to 
Wagner, he was the first who revealed the inner spirit 
of Beethoven's music. 

Following out Dr. Mason's suggestions, I made some 
researches and found that, according to the great com- 
poser's contemporaries, Beethoven himself could not 
play Beethoven! C. Pleyel, for instance, wrote that 
he had no "school," that his playing was "not pure," 

that 



IHE LOOKBRON. 



i^m 






^f^' 




that he "pounc 
too much," a 

created difficolt 

which he conld not 
overcome. After 
this reductio ad 
absuTduin little 
more was heard 
about PaderewBki's 
inability to play Beethoven. Br. Mason summed up his 
verdict on Paderewski by saying that, on the whole, 
^' he stands more nearly on a plane with Liszt than any 
other virtuoso since Tausig. His conception of Bee- 
thoven combines the emotional with the intellectual in 
admirable poise and proportion ; thus he plays with 
a big, warm heart, as well as with a clear, calm, and 
discriminative head, hence a thoroughly satisfactory 
result. Those who prefer a cold, arbitrary, and rigidly 
rhythmical and ex-cathedra style will not be pleased." 



THE L O OKER -ON. 23 



THE BOARDS WHICH SHAKESPEARE 

TROD. 

By Wm. H. Fleming. 

Pbeyiotjs to Shakespeare's day permanent theatres 
did not exist in England. Plays were acted by stroll- 
ing bands of actors. These actors wandered from town 
to town, stopping at any place where they conld gather 
an andience. They erected a raised platform which 
they used as a stage. This platform might be placed 
in an inn yard, or on the common in the centre of the 
town. Abont the time of Shakespeare the Elizabethan 
drama began to find a home in permanent theatres. 
With two of these, the Blackfriars and the Globe on the 
Bankside, Shakespeare' s name and fame are forever asso- 
ciated. For the companies acting in them his plays were 
written, and on their boards his plays were first acted. 

Both of these theatres were built toward the close 
of the sixteenth centnry. The Blackfriars was on the 
north side of the Thames, and was nsed as a winter 
theatre. The Globe was on the south or Surrey side of 
the Thames, and was occupied in summer. 

The building used as the Blackfriars Theatre was 
originally a dwelling-house. This house was purchased 
in 1596 by James Burbage and converted into a theatre. 
The Globe was completed in 1599 and opened in 1600. 
Of it, Halliwell-Phillipps, an authority on this subject, 
gives the following account: "The exact position of 
the Globe Theatre will be gathered from the annexed 
view of London, which was published a few years after 
its erection, and contains by far the most interesting 
representation we have of the building. A person 
entering Southwark from London Bridge, after pass- 
ing the last gateway, its poles and its traitors' heads, 
would proceed a short distance along the High Street. 

Turning 



THE LOOKER-ON. 



THE LOOKER - ON. 25 

Taming then to the right, threading the streets and 
alleys that lay on the south of the church and Win- 
chester House, he would arrive at the Globe, the circu- 
lar building which is seen amidst the trees in the open 
space below the thickly populated fringe of houses 
known as the Bankside, the theatre itself being only 
about two hundred yards from the margin of the river. 
A little farther on is the Bear Garden, the flags indicat- 
ing that the doors of both establishments were open to 
the public. It would appear from this engraving that 
there was in the original Globe Theatre a circular sub- 
structure of considerable size, perhaps constructed of 
brick or masonry, which probably included a corridor 
with a passage to the pit or yard and staircases leading 
to other parts of the house. XJx>on this substructure the 
two wooden stories, in portions of which were included 
the galleries and boxes, were erected. The building 
waa constructed mainly of wood and was partially 
roofed with thatch, but the larger portion of the inte- 
rior was open to the sky. This latter circumstance, 
however, did not exclude winter performances, for, 
amongst the very few records in which the exact dates 
are mentioned, is a notice of one that took place in the 
month of February." 

In this theatre the following Shakespearian plays 
were acted: " Romeo and Juliet," "King Richard II.," 
"King Lear," "Troilus and Cressida," "Pericles," 
" Othello," " Macbeth," " The Winter's Tale." It was 
destroyed by fire in 1613 during the performance of 
"King Henry VIII." This event is described by Sir 
Henry Wotton : "King Henry, making a mask at the 
Cardinal Wolsey's house, and certain cannons being 
shot oflE at his entry, some of the paper or stuflE where- 
with one of them was stopped did light on the thatch, 
where, being thought at first but an idle smoke, and 
their eyes more attentive to the show, it kindled in- 
wardly and ran round like a train, consuming, within 
less than an hour, the whole house to the very grounds. 
This was the fatal period to that virtuous fabric, where- 
in 



TBE LOOKER-ON. 



in yet nothing did perisL bat wood, straw, and a few 
forsaken cloaka; only one man had his breeches set on 
fire, that perhaps had broiled him if he had not, by 
the benefit of a ready wit, put it out with bottled ale." 
The Globe Theatre was rebuilt and opened in 1614. 
The illustration on page 80 gives an accurate idea of the 
exterior of the New Globe. Both these theatres were 
octagonal. In the prologue to "King Henry V." 
Shakespeare describeB them as "this wooden O." 

The 



THE LOOKER ON. 27 

The interior of the Elizabethan theatres was very 
cTtide. In 1596 John De Witt, Canon of St. Mary's 
Chnrch, Ulrecht, visited London. He attended a per- 
formance at the Swan Theatre. This was built in 1695, 
and, like the Globe, was sitoated on the Bankside. He 
made a i)en-and-ink sketch of the interior, the original 
of which is now in the Royal Library at Berlin, of 
which the following is a copy. 

It will be noted that De Witt gives only a view of 
the stage and rear part of the theatre. When making 
his drawing he evidently stood in the pit, looking 
toward the stage. Hence that part of the interior of 
the theatre facing the stage does not appear in the 
picture. Accompanying the sketch is a description by 
De Witt of the Swan Theatre: "This theatre will seat 
three thousand spectators. It is built of flint-stone, a 
material which abounds in Great Britain, and is orna- 
mented with wooden columns, so cleverly stained to 
imitate marble as to deceive any but a very close ob- 
server. As its shape seems to be modelled upon the 
ordinary Roman work, I herewith send you a drawing 
of it." From this I infer that, like the Coliseum at 
Rome and other Roman amphitheatres, it was oval. 

The stage was entirely disconnected from the walls of 
the building. The sx)ectators could walk all around. 
The front was uncovered. About half-way back were 
two columns, and extending back from the tops of them 
was a roof. It joined a two-story building. In the 
first story some of the audience sat. The second story 
was used by employees of the theatre. One of them is 
seen in the illustration coming from a door on the right, 
and waving a flag, which was the signal to the outside 
public that the i)erf ormance was about to begin. The 
two doors, which are just back of the columns, were 
used by the actors for entrance and exit. Their wait- 
ing-room was underneath the stage. In this room, hung 
on the wall, was a placard called a "plot" or "plat." 
On it all the stage directions were written in large let- 
ters. This the actors were supposed to consult and to 

plaj 



28 THE LOOKER-ON. 

play their parts accordingly. It also gave directions to 
the musicians. The orchestra, which plays so impor- 
tant a part in the Shakesi)earian dramas, particularly 
those which are historical, was seated on the stage. 
There was no drop-curtain in the Shakesi)earian thea- 
tres. Nor was there any scenery. The importance of 
the latter fact cannot be overestimated. It explains 
the frequent appeals which Shakespeare makes to the 
imagination of his audiences. In ^^ Eling Henry Y." the 
scene of the action changes many times. There was, 
however, no scenery to make this visible to the eye of 
the spectator. Hence, before each act is a prologue. In 
this Shakespeare appeals to the imagination. Before 
Act L Chorus says : 

''But pardon gentles all, 
The flat unraised spirit that hath dar*d 
On this unworthy scaflFold to bring forth 
So great an object: can this cockpit hold 
The vasty fields of France? or may we cram 
Within Uiis wooden O the very casques 
That did affright the air at Agincourt? 
O, pardon ! since a crooked figure may 
Attest in little place a million; 
And let us, ciphers to this great accompt, 
On your imaginary forces work. 
Suppose within the girdle of these walls 
Are now confined two mighty monarchies, 
Whose high-upreared and abutting fronts 
The perilous, narrow ocean parts asunder. 
Piece out our imperfections with your thoughts; 
Into a thousand parts divide one man. 
And make imaginary puissance: 
Think, when we talk of horses, that you see them 
Printing their proud hoofs i' the receiving earth; 
For 'tis your thoughts that now must deck our kings, 
Carry them here and there, jumping o'er times, 
Turning the accomplishment of many years 
Into an hour glass: for the which supply. 
Admit me Chorus to this history; 
Who prologue-like your humble patience pray. 
Gently to hear, kindly to judge, our play." 

Before Act 11. Chorus describes the preparations for 
the invasion of France, and concludes : 

*' . • . and 



THE L OKER' ON. 29 

'' • • • and the scene 
Is now transported, gentles, to Southampton; 
There is the playhouse now, there must you sit: 
And thence to IVance shall we convey you safe, 
And briDg you back, charming the narrow seas 
To give you gentle pass." 

During Act III. King Harry and his army sail for 
France, which Chorus describes. In Act IV. the Battle 
of Agincourt is represented. Chorus in the Prologue 
describes the preparations for the battle, and adds : 

" And so our scene must to the battle fly; 
Whereto for pity I — we shaU^much disgrace 
With four or five most vile and ragged foils. 
Right ill-dispos'd in brawl ridiculous. 
The name of Agincourt." 

In the last act, the action of the drama takes place in 
Calais, in London, and again in France, all of which is 
described by Chorus in a prologue. At the present 
time the dramatist would have trusted to scenery to 
produce these effects, but Shakespeare, having no sce- 
nery, had to appeal, by word of mouth, to the imagina- 
tion of the audience. 

The i)eople who frequented the Elizabethan theatres 
were far from reputable. The Lords of the Council in 
a letter to the Lord Mayor of London, 31 December, 
1631, wrote : 

"Wee have receaved a lettre from yow renewing a 
complaint of the great abuse and disorder within and 
about the cittie of London by reason of the multitude 
of playhowses, and the inordinate resort and concourse 
of dissolute and idle people dailie unto publique stage- 
plaies." 

The audience was composed mostly of the fast young 
noblemen and of the lower classes; e. ^., tradespeople, 
apprentices, idlers. The former, by paying an extra 
price, obtained seats on the stage, where chairs or stools 
were placed. Here they smoked, ate, guyed the actors, 
and the audience in the pit. The latter were called 
"groundlings." They occupied the ground or pit of 
the theatre just in front of the stage. They were un- 
ruly 



THE LOOKES-OK. 



THE LOOKER-ON. 31 

ruly and misbehaved. The Porter in *'King Henry 
Vlll.," describing the crowd in the Palace Yard, says : 

" These are the youths that thunder at a playhouse, and fight for 
bitten apples ; that no audience but the Tribulation of Tower Hill, 
or the limbs of Lime-house, their dear brothers, are able to endure.*' 

These audiences often contained criminals. Hence a 
pair of stocks was kept npon the stage, so that any thief 
canght stealing could be immediately confined in them. 
The si)ectators, both those on the stage and those in 
the pit, guyed the actors; and the latter retorted in 
kind. And yet this audience was perceptive and recep- 
tive. The time was one of great activity. Life, both 
national and individual, was full of zest. With the 
Shakespearian dramas, the people who thronged the 
theatres were sympathetic and enthusiastic. 

The actors were men, no women being allowed to ap- 
pear on the stage until after the Restoration. They 
did not by any means restrict themselves to the author's 
words. Great liberty, even license, was allowed them. 
One of the stage-directions in Polio I. is : " Speak and 
rayle what they list," which means that the actors 
could indulge in any by-play, or make any reference 
to current events or to i)ersons they wished. It is to 
this Shakespeare refers when Hamlet says to Polo- 
nius: 

"€k>od my lord, will you see the players weU bestowed f Do you 
hear, let them be weU used ; for they are the abstract and brief chroni- 
cles of the tune : after your death you were better have a bad epitaph 
than their iU report while you live.** 

Shakespeare, like most of the dramatists of that time, 
acted in his own plays. Amongst other parts, he took 
that of the Ghost in "Hamlet," Adam in "As You 
like It." 

It is not strange, then, that the Elizabethan theatre 
and all connected with it were under a social ban. Both 
actors and audiences were considered disreputable. 
They had no social position. Shakespeare felt this 
keenly. In two sonnets he expresses this feeling : 

"Alas t 'tis true I have gone here and there 
And made myself a motley to the view, 

Qor'd 



32 THE LOOKER-ON. 

Gor'd my own thoughts, sold cheap what ia most dear» 

Made old offences of affections new. 
Most true it is that I have look'd on truth 

Askance and strangely. • • • 



O, for my sake do you with Fortune chide 

The guilty goddess of my harmful deeds, 
That did not better for my life provide 

Than public means which public manners breeds. 
Thence comes it that my name receives a brand. 

And almost thence my nature is subdued 
To what it works in, like the dyer's hand.** 

Under the circninstances existing in the Shakeex>eft- 
rian theatres, real acting, in Mr. Irving' s opinion, was 
impossible. In an address delivered at Oxford he said : 

*'Pignre to yourself a crowd of fops, chattering like 
a flock of daws, carrying their stools in their hands, 
and settling around and sometimes on the stage itself, 
with as much noise as possible. To vindicate their im- 
portance in their own eyes, they kept up a constant 
jangling of petty, carping criticism on the actors and 
the play. In the interval of repose which they allowed 
their tongues they ogled the ladies in the boxes, and 
madei a point of vindicating the dignity of their intel- 
lects by being always most inattentive during the most 
pathetic i)ortions of the play. In front of the house 
matters were little better; the orange girls going to and 
fro among the audience, interchanging jokes — ^not of 
the most delicate character — with the young sparks 
and apprentices, the latter cracking nuts and howling 
down some unfortunate actor who had offended their 
worships; sometimes pipes or tobacco were being 
smoked. Picture all this confusion, and add the fact 
that the female characters of the play were represented 
by shrill- voiced lads or half -shaven men. Imagine an 
actor having to invest such representatives with all the 
girlish passion of a Juliet, the womanly tenderness of 
a Desdemona, or the pitiable anguish of a distraught 
Ophelia, and you realize how difficult under such cir- 
cumstances great acting must have been. In fact, 
while we are awe-struck by the wonderful intellectu- 
ality 



„ 3l l>MJff" * 11^ ■ ~ 1 """^T*"" 



THE LOOKER-ON. 33 

ality of the best dramas of the Elizabethan period, we 
cannot help feeling that certain subtleties of acting, 
elaborate by-play, for instance, and the finer lights 
and shades of intonation, must have been impossible. 
Recitation, rather than impersonation, would be gen- 
erally aimed at by the actor." 

Such were some of the conditions under which ''Ham- 
let," "King Lear," "As You Like It," "Cymbeline," 
and the other great traged ies and charming comedies of 
Shakespeare were acted. It is for this reason that 
these theatres possess more than an antiquarian inter- 
est. The student of the Shakespearian drama must 
constantly bear in mind the circumstances surrounding 
the presentation of those dramas. Shakespeare was 
the stage manager of the Globe Theatre Company. He 
knew perfectly the resources and the limits of the 
stage. He wrote his plays to be acted. When one re- 
members the crude condition of the stage at that time, 
his success as a dramatist becomes more remarkable. 
Without scenery or appropriate costumes, with the 
crudest stage properties, with an audience to a great 
degree uncultured, coarse, he yet produced his dramas. 
It is another, added to many, triumphs of mind over 
matter, and bears testimony to Shakespeare's genius as 
a dramatist. 



Oabkw, Couht di Qu.vtz. . . . M" «'ft«™«' "/ "^ VWTW 



CiJTAIH FOUOHK M" **J''^ •" "^ """y "/ **■ 

HONBUUB Buius Hit highnen' man of biufoen. 

Phiuppe. ... t ^n attached ond(ru»(edmq/or. 



C^SAS. . j Btionging (o (fc« reHntu o/ (he 

* * ' * J grtat Ameriean AmreM. 

MiBBViEOnnAFAiaFAi S Of Fa^axCwiiitji, Virginia. 

t betnrfhed to fheprteoe. 

UBS. Faiefai J Mooter of the gnat Ameriean 



MaOAMB la DDOHKSSB DI VtRDAH. 



; Bi^r of the Prinee de Mont- 
! braiaon. 



qbi^^ 5 An aiBterent of the htmte of 

I Fairfax. 

r During Napoleon'i escile to El- 
ba and the benefleent reign 

"^oa, of hit matt graeiout mt^ea- 

tg, LmtU XVnt. King of 
I France. 



TWE LOOKER ON. 36 



ACT I. 

ScoENS.— The ahaXtau of the Prince de Montbraiaout near Paris. 

A terraced garden^ the terraces of which rise one above the 
other to the drop^ which shows the wooded vista of the park. 
At Centre broad steps lead from the upper terrace to the 
level garden. At Left is seen the mng of a stately chateau^ 
to which t?^e terraces lead. Statues and urns adorn the 
terrace balustrades^ from which vines and flowers trail to 
the earth. There is a garden seat at right, by it a little 
table upon which is a large vase ; the vase is empty. 
Afternoon. Light fanciful music. 

Duchess de V. (cdUing off Right). Philippe t Philippe ! Have jou 
the flowers? Make haste, Philippe I 

(Enter the Duchess on first terrace from right, a small garden 
sprinkler in her hands. She is a white-haired woman of 
sixty, richly dressed in old brocade, worn in the fashion of 
Louis XVI. time. She crosses the terrace slowly to the steps 
at Centre. Pausing, she turns and glances right as she calls) 
Are you coming, Philippe? 

Philippe {answering off Right). I am coming, madame. I have 
an armful of the fleur-de-lis. 

Duchess (descending the steps and crossing to table at Right as 
the music dies). I have flUed all the chateau with the flowers. What 
■hall I do with these? 

(Enter Philippe on terrace from Right, his arms full of the 
fteur-delis.) 
Philippe. Tou see, madame t 

Duchess. Ah, you have plucked too many. We pull our rarest 
flowers so carelessly. 

PhUippe. No I no I Madame, they are quite common, the heds 
are full of them. 

Duchess. The commonest things are those that we should value 
most. 

Philippe. Madame is sad? 

Duchess. Give me the flowers. I will put them in this empty vase. 
We may well be profuse on such a day. Ah — 

(Arranging flowers in vase on table at Right, and pouring 
water about and upon them ; then, as she puts the sprinkler 
down) 
they are indeed superb t Lilies of France I Why, Philippe, if my 
brother must pluck flowers to hold within his withered hand, why does 
he not choose those of his own land rather than this wild flower from 
across the seas? 

PhUippe. His fancy— 

Duchess. Fancy ! 'Tis indeed the word— caprice; ah yes, caprice I 
Tou were with the prince in Paris, you have seen Mademoiselle Fair- 
fax. 



36 THE LOOKER-ON. 

faz« Is she so beautiful, so beautiful that she can make an old man 
forget his years, a pri&oe his royal blood? 

PKUippe, Madame remembers that his highness* former marriage 
was as this will be. 

Dtiehest. But that was years ago, and he was young, and loved as 
young men love. He is an old man now. 

Philippe. Madame I 

Dwhen. No, no, Philippe ! I wiU not say that I approve. The 
prinoe is old enough to have outgrown such a folly I 

Philippe. Folly is never outgrown, it lasts, madame. Mon Dieu ! 
how long it lasts I 

DuehesB. My brother will be absurd with a young wife. 

Philippe. Pardon, madame, not absurd! The Prinoe de Mont- 
braison has lived seventy years and I have never heard him called ab- 
surd. Such a man as your brother, madame, cannot be absurd. 

Dueheee. But this engagement has set the court and Paris langph- 
ing! 

Philippe. Madame, madame t Not laughing! Not laughing at 
the Prince de Montbraison ! Not laughing at the king's own cousin I 

Duchess. I fear it is so. 

PhUippe. They dare not ! He is the first and finest gentleman in 
France I He had no model, and there will never be a copy. 

Duchess. I trust this marriage may not bring him sorrow. And 
you Philippe, you think 

Philippe. His highness the Prinoe de Montbraison is to entertain 
Mademoiselle the American. Madame la Duchess will know, when 
she sees mademoiselle, that mademoiseUe is an angeL 

Duchess (moving Left). If he would only leave love-making to his 
grandson. Gtaston could better play the lover*s part. 

Philippe. Madame ! If the prince should hear you ! I dare not 
speak his name. He wishes to forget that the young count ever 
lived. 

Duchess. Does my brother ever hear from (Gaston? 

PhUippe {deprecalingly). Madame I 

Duchess. Has Gkuaton ever written since his flight ? 

Philippe. Madame ! 

Duchess. Does my brother know where he has fled? 

Philippe. Madame ! 

Duchess. Tell me, Philippe, tell me all that you know of my 
nephew ! 

PhUippe. Has not his highness given orders that his grandson's 
name shall not be mentioned? 

Duchess. My brother cannot presume to dictate my course I 

(Looking anxiously over her shoulder as she speaks^ then in a 
lower voice) 
TeU me, PhUippe ! 

PhUippe. Madame knows of Monsieur Gaston's disgraceful afTec- 
tlon for the usurper Napoleon. 

Duchess^ 



TSE LOOKER -Oir. 37 

l>Heh«M. It has caused me many tears. 

PkiU^ie. When the usurper was exiled to E3ba, Hoosieur OaBton, 
fcAriiig arrest for plotting hu return, fled here. HJs grandtather, the 
prince, saw hint— and such a scene I The son of kings to share in a 
usurper's plots I Therojal blood of France disgraced by such a Mend- 
ship I The young count flushed and answered that his blood was not 



It 
to let the young count pass, for I knew that the govermnent had or 
dered his arrest and that the prince alone could save him. Then Uon- 
■ieur Oaston fled the coanb?. 

Duehett. 'Twas the next day that I returned from Lisbon, and I 
have never heard my brother speak poor Qaston's name. I wonder it 
be knows his hiding-place? 

PhQipft (deprteatingly). Madame I 

DuchtM. He may be poor. I too have known what 'twas to be an 
exOe. He may even have need of bread I 

I^Uippe. Oh no, madame. 

Dtteheaa (turning to him). Uy brother does not knowT 

mtippe. Uoniienr Oaatos is In America. 

DwAeta. 



38 THE LOOKER our. 

Ducheu. He may starve there t 

FhUippe. It is impossible ! His bighneos sends him gold by every 
ship that leaves Calais I 

Dueheu, And Gaston? Gaston knows? 

PhiUppe. No, madame. His highness says that *tiB not his affair. 
DuehesM^ In whose name does he send the gold ? 
PhUippe {bowing law). Madame la duchesse, his highness has in- 
structed me to send it in your name. 

DuehesB. In mine !— will my brother ever forgive him, Philippe? 
Philippe. The man may, the prinoe — never ! 

(Enter Captain Fauehe followed by eoldiere. Rights 9d Ent.) 
Duehees (turning). Captain Fouche. 
Fouehe (bowing low), Madame la duchesse. 
Duche$8, You oome from Paris, captain ? 
Captain, Direct from Paris, madame. 
Duc^st. And the news ? 

Captain, None worth the telling since madame la duchesse (botr- 
ing) has dimmed the lustre of the court and made life only beautiful at 
Montbraison. 

Dueheee, Does not Mademoiselle Fairfax console you for my ab- 
sence? 

Captain, She too is fled the capital. Paris is dull indeed. I paswod 
her carriage on the highway. All that is most beautiful and best 
(bowing) comes to the chateau Montbraison. 

Ducheee. Followed by that which is most gallant and most gay. 

(Courte^ifing to Captain FotLche,) 
Captain, Alas, madame, I come on business. 
Ducheae, From the court ? 

Captain, Alas, madame, not from the court. May I ask if the 
Prince de Montbraison is at leisure ? 
Duchees, Gk>, Philippe ! 

Philippe, Madame, the prinoe is at his toilet. I dare not inter- 
rupt him. If monsieur 

Ducheae (as Philippe heeitatee). Can find amusement in the 
chateau until my brother leaves his apartment. 

Captain, Most willingly, were I not charged to act without 
delay. Madame, it is with deep regret I am compelled to inform you 
that I am sent to search the chateau for a proscribed adherent of the 
usurper who has returned to France. 
Duchese, Captain Fouche I 

(Sweeping to the steps at Centre, then turning.) 
Sir t You address the Duchess de Virdam ! You forget that this is the 
home of the Prince de Montbraison ! 

Captain (bowing low). Madame, my seeming want of respect is 
more pardonable than a neglect of the duty that I owe my king ! 
Duchess, This indignity comes not from the king ! 
Captain. My orders come through his majesty's government t 
Duchess (ascending the steps). Whom do we harbor? What 

traitor ? I go to tell his highness of this outrage I 

Captain^ 



^ 




THE LOOKER' OK 39 



Captaibu I am sent to 

{Olandng aipaperg in his hand,) 
DiiefteM. Monsiear ! 

Captain (gtancing up), Gaston, Count de Galvez. His description 
— Madame! 

J)uehe88. Qaston I 

(She reels. The ooptotn eprings up the etepa and eupporte 
her to the garden.) 
My nephew I 

Philippe. Monsieur Gaston I 
Captain, Madame, explain ! 

Philippe, Hush I Hush I Monsieur, the prince's grandson I^Mon 
Dieu ! The prince I 

(Light, graceful music. Enter the Prince de McntbraiMon on 

upper terrace from chateau, crossing slowly to the steps at 

Centre, He is dressed in the fashion in vogue during the reign 

of Louis XV, His coat is of superb brocade trimmed with 

gold lace, his knee-breeches are of white satin, his stockings 

of white silk, his high-heeled shoes have diamond buckles. 

He wears a powdered wig, a sword hangs at his side. He 

carries a ^ight cane, a lace handkerchief, a gold snuff-box. 

His long lace ruffles almost hide his hands. Though very 

old he is erect and stately, and leans but slightly on his cane 

cu he crosses the terrace and comes slowly down the long 

flight of steps, raising his hat and bowing,) 

Duchess ((Mside), Captain Fouche, on your honor as a gentleman, 

no word of this till I have spoken with you I 

Captain (aside), I obey, madame. 

Philippe (moving to meet the prince, extending his hand). Tour 
highness must be careful of the last step I 

iVinos (motioning him away petulantly). Now I now I Philippe I 
I have known how to walk for some years, and I have been going up 
steps and coming down steps all my life. I was near to walking up the 
steps of the guillotine with my poor cousin Louis to oblige my friends 
the revolutionists. 

PhUippe, I thought 

Prince, Oh, Philippe, have I not for the last fifty years been trying 
to break yon of that bad habit of thinking ? And yet you will persist? 
Captain (bowing). Your highness—— 
Prince (graciously). My dear Fouche— »- 

Duchess (quickly). Captain Fouche has done us the honor to stop 
at the chateau for an hour*s refreshment. 

Prince, Nay, nay, not for an hour. We shall not let him go upon 
his way before to-morrow, and your attendants (seeing soldiers)— you 
travel as a gentleman should travel, captain— Philippe will see that 
they lack nothing. 

Captain, I thank your highness. My men will look to their 
horses. (Soldiers exit to Right.) 

Duchess, 



40 THE LOOKBR'Oir. 

Dueh€$$* Goine« Oaptain Fouche, I wait your arm. (2b prince) We 
will rejoin your highness presently. 

(Th$ ducheiB and Captain Fauehe pass off the lower terrace 
into chateau Left,) 

Prince (to Philippe as he takes snuff)* '^^ captain comes from 
Paris? 

Philippe. From Paris. 

Prince. He did not say he passed a coach upon the highway? 

Philippe. He passed the coach of Mademoiselle Fairfax. 

Prince. O mon Dieu I mon Dieu I (Listening.) I do not yet hear 
wheels. Tou can see no carriage approaching, Philippe ? 

Philippe (looking off Right). I can see as far as the park gates, hut 
there is no carriage in sight. 

Prince. Philippe. 

Philippe. Your highness? 

Prince. How do I appear, Philippe ? 

Philippe. Like a prince, your highness. 

Prince. But there is selection even among princes. 

Philippe. like the Prince de Montbraison. (HeeiioHng.) Your 
highness 

Prince. Well, Philippe? 

Philippe (hesitating). Your highness will not be angry? 

Prince. How can I say till I have heard you? 

Philippe, Monsieur Qaston 

Prince (turning quickly away, his hand trembling upon his cane). 
I will not hear his name, I will not hear his name I He has di^g^raced 
the royal blood of France I I will not hear his name ! 
(His hand stUl trembling.) 

Philippe. I ventured, as your highness sends him gold 

Prince (turning upon Philippe). How dare you taunt me with 
my weakness I If you refer to it again I shall withhold the gold, 
and then, mon Dieu I then he will starve! How shall you feel 
then? 

Philippe. I only ventured to think 

Prince. I am amar.ed at your presumption I 

Philippe. Your highness 

Prince. I shall not object to your thinking for yourself, if such a 
course seems right to you, but to presume to think for me ! 

Philippe. Your highness will pardon— » 

Prince (relenting), I do not wish to be severe, but a prince thinks 
differently from his major^omo. He would not be a prince if it were 
otherwise. 

Philippe. But your highness differs from every one. 

Prince. So much the worse for them t There need never arise any 
difference of opinion between us, Piiilippe, if you will only agree with 
me. 

(Sound of wheels off Right.) 

Prince. My guests I 

Chloe. 



TBE LOOKEHOir. 



Chioe (^>eaking off Right). Lord I Lord I HIm ViiglDla, chUd, 
l«t Colonel Alexander aoBlat yo' down, do, honey I 

JXrm (moving lUgM). Philippe, you will mention bi madam* la 
dnchesoe th« fact that my gtwsta are arriving. 
{Exit Philippe L^.) 
Catar (tpeaktng off Btghf). Colonel Alexander, «ab, ycf bare 
fo'got your cane, sah. 

Mn. Fairfax {aptakfng off Bight), Huah, Chloe 1 Cieear, be 
silent. Toor band, Colonel Alexander. 

(EnierVirginia Fairfax, Right, dreued tuperbly in thefathion 
of the day, foUowed by Chloe and Ccetar oarrying band- 
boat* and parcel*. Ccetar wear* a colonial livery and pow- 
dered wig. Mr*. Fairfax foQowt, leaning upon Colonet 
AUxand^iaryn.) 
Prince (advaneing and kitting Virginia't hand a* he bowt above it). 
Ah, mademoiaelle, this ia a great honor that you confer upon me. 
(To Mr*. Fairfax) Uadame, I have much to thank you for. 

Virginia, And tbia layoarcbateauT It is not strange that Frenoh- 
men love thedr homes, they are so beaatUul. 

Prinee. Nay, mademoiselle. It is not my chateau, 'tis yours, and I 
tha most devoted of your slaves. (To Cotonel Alexander) Colonel 

Alexander, 



42 THE LOOKER ON. 

Alexander, it ie with the linoerest pleasure that I welcome a friend of 
my old and dear oomrade, your oountfyman, ICr. Franklin, to Mcmt- 
braiflon. 

CMiomA. A'most eminent man, sir, in oonyem^on both witty and 
instnictiye* 

Prim/ot* Ah, very witty, very witty. We crowned him with roses 
at the oourt of my poor cousin, the late Idng. I very well remember 
the occasion. A most charming man. 

{JBnUr tke ditcAess and Captain Fauche on flr$t terrace from 
chateau,) 
Dttchsst (aside to Captain Fouehe), You will not use Gaston's 
nameP Tou will be considerate 7 

Captain (aeide to dueheca). Madame, I have pledged my word. 
Duckeac (aeide), I cannot thank you now. (On et^ps) Will your 
highness present your friends ? 

Prince, Madame la Duchesse de Virdam, Madame Fairfax, Made- 
moiselle FairfaiE, Colonel Chichester Alexander, of Virginia. 

Ducheea (oourteeying), Madame, we have had the pleasure of meet- 
ing Captain Fouobe in Paris. 

Captain (bowing. It has been my greatest fortune. 
Ducken May I lead the way to the chateau? 
Prince, By all means, let us go in. 

(Mra. Fairfax and the ducheee^ f Mowed by Couar and Chloe 
with boaDcSt ascend the etepe and pass along the terrace^ Left^ 
Colonel Alexander following etowly. The prince extende hie 
hand with elaborate courtesy to Virginia*) 
Prince, Mademoiselle, may I conduct you ? 
Virginia (glancing hack as they mount the steps). The terrace is 
so lovely, and the fleur-de-lia— — 

Prince (as they numnt the stsps). Ah, you must see my gardens. 
Captain (turning suddenly from Bight), One moment, Prinoe de 
MontbralBon. 

Virginia. The captain calls you back. 
Prince, Tou will pardon me } 
Virginia. Unwillingly. 
iYtnce. You are so gracious t 

(He bends abone her hand. She turns from Attn, taking Colonel 
Alexander's arm, and passes slowly off at Left, The prince 
turns and comes down the steps.) 
Prince, Captain Fouche? 

Captain, Can your highness grant me a moment ? 
Prince, I am quite at your service, my dear friend. 
Captain, I desire to explain my presence. 

Prince, Nay, nay, it needs no explanation. We are but too 
charmed to have you here. 

Captain, Your highness* kindness is but another reason that I 
state my business instantly. 
Prince, Business? 

Captain, 



THE LOOKER-ON. 43 

Captain. I must inform your highness that I am sent to watch 
these grounds— if neoessary, to searoh the chateau I 

iVtnce. Search the chateau? 

Cajgiain, A proscribed adherent of the usurper Napoleon has re- 
turned to France and lies concealed in this yicinity I 

iVtfioe. Search the chateau 1 Search this chateau I Search the 
chateau of Henri Louis Francois de St. Honore D'Orleans, Prince de 
Montbraison, for a proscribed traitor I Sir, you are mad I 

Csptotn {fiWDiag). Such are my orders. 

iVinoe. Pardon, pardon I It is impossible I Captain, you are 
mad! 

(Stopping Mm as he would tpedk,) 
Pardon ! I will not brook a contradiction ! Tou are mad ! 

Captain. I must inform your highness that I bring the written 
order. 

Prinee, From whom does such an order emanate?— Hon Dieu! 
mon Dieu I I under surveillance I Oh, mon Dieu t 

Captain. Tour highness is at perfect liberty. I am ordered to 
watch the chateau. 

Prince. Pardon, I can see no difference— *tis the same thing. Who 
has dared to order such an outrage ? 

Captain. The prefect of police— 

Prinee. The prefect of police I Gonni ! Were it the king, I might 
submit. The prefect of police ! It is beyond belief I Mon Dieu t mon 
Dieu I These are the days of sans culotte ! The king shall know of 
this! 

Captain. My duty is most painful— your highness' annoyance 



Prinee. Pray do not be distressed, my friend. It is your duty to 
obey. But the prefect of police ! Mon Dieu ! He shall be shot I By 
St. Denis, he shall be shot! He shall learn that Henri Louis 
Francois de St. Honore D^Orleans, Prince de Montbraison, rejects his 
insolence and can revenge an outrage I 

Captain, 1 regret 

I^^inee. There ! there ! My dear Fouche, take it not so to heart. 
I have been too much moved. I have forgot myself, I fear I have 
forgot myself. Tou will pardon my hasty utterance and accept my 
apology. If aught that I have said reflected upon you, I much regret, 
I very much regret its utterance. 

Captain. 1 assure your highness that you have been most 
courteous. 

PHnee, 1 am much relieved. I feared—- 

Captain. And may I beg that you will seclude yourself within the 
chateau till after sunset. Tou will thus avoid all danger of an en- 
counter with the traitor whom we seek. 

Prinee (MsUing). Does the prefect of police advise 

Coptoin (bowing). Not so, 'tis I who ventured to recommend it. 

Prinee {moUifled). I will act upon your suggestion. I thank you 
for it. 

Captain^ 



44 THS LOOKMR'OK 

Captain. I may continue to execute my orders feeling that I still 
retain your highnees' good opinion f 

PHnee (ffraciouBlpy Nay, nay, my esteem* my dear Fouche, my 
high esteeoL 

Captain* I thank yoor highness. I will instruct my men. 
Prince. Tou are my guest. Remember we shall dine at &▼«. I 
myself shall make the salad. 

Captain. Your highness overwhelms me. 

{ExU Captain Fouehet Right Upper Entrance.) 
Pritice (glancing (rfter him). An admirable man. I really fear that 
I was hasty in my anger. As my j^oot cousin, the late king, so often 
told me, I should control my temper. I really think it has gone tnr 
enough; I will begin to-morrow. But, mon Dieu I the prefect of the 
police I What would Le Grand Monarque have said if the prefect of 
police sent a captain of guards to search Versailles for traitors t Tis 
without precedent— unhf^ard of 1 

{Standing by table. Right. Be sees the Jtowere.) 
La fleur-de-lis, my favorite flower. If there is danger I cannot chow 
mademoiselle the beauties of my gardens till to-morrow, so I will 
take her these. 

{Slowly taking the ftowere from the fHue.) 
Virginia— I like the name— Virginia, PrincessedeMoatbraison. Tea,! 
like the name. 

{Arranging the ftowere thoughtfuUy in hie hande.) 
"A proscribed adherent of the usurper Napoleon has returned to 
France, and lies concealed in this vicinity " — ^those were his words, and 

yet 

{Suddenly hie hande tremble and the ftowere faU one by one 
upon the table,) 
Gaston— if it were Gaston I— I— I— will go in. 

( TSiming to the terrace.) 
IwiUgoin. Philippe I Philippe I 

(Enter Oaeton at Left Sd EnJtrance. He ie a ditiinQuiehed 
and handeom^ young man. He weare a long cloak over hie 
riding-dreee and carriee a riding^whip in hie hand. Am the 
prince calle he etarte forward.) 
Oaeton. Let me assist your highness ? 
Prince (tuming—etarte back). Gaston I 
Oaeton (bowing). At your highness' service. 
Prince. Sir t How dare you present yourself before me t Are 
you returned to France to share in the usurpers* plots against your 
blood? 

Oaeton. Not so, nor to bear again the reproaches that I do not 
merit I 

Prince. S[now you that your arrest is ordered by the govern- 
ment? 

Oaeton, I know it, sir. 

Prince. Know you that gendarmes watch the chateau, thinking 
that I harbor traitors ? 

Oaeton, 



TBE LOOKER Oir. 46 

OatUM. Sir, I know it. 

(fMvr dueheta on terrace, 
Uft.) 

Prine». Then know that the 
Prince de Hontbraison harbors no 
traitors against the crown I 

(Moving quickly Right.) 
Captain Fouche 1 1 

Ducheaifnoe^ng forward on the 
terrace). Henri D'Orleana I 

iYmcs (turning aghatt). Bien 
meroi t Hj sister I 

DtuJicMt (nuking down steps). 
Oaatonl 

Oa$ton (embracing Iter). Dear 

Prince (ahmgging hie shouidere 
ae he brutheeatear lightly from hie 
eyee). Women and sentiment were 
ever my tyrants I Hon Dieul what 
ia right and what is wrong T 

Captain (aneu>ering off Right). 
Who calls T 

iYmce. Quick I to the chateau I 
Tib the capt^u's voice I 

Oaeton. Slr.Ioarenot. Let him 
Hnd me here 1 

Prinee{b)oking Righ^. HaoomesI 
Go I go I Parbleau I will you defy 
me too ? Oo 1 go I 

Dueheet. Oaston 1 Oaston t the 
chateau I "' 

(Oa^on and the dueheta ascend the rfepa to terrace and paee 
quickly off at Left). 

Captain (entering mght). Who calls f 

Prince (turning caimly to the captain aa he takea a pinch of tnuff), 
Hy dear Fouche I 

Captain. Who called my name T 

Prince. Pray give me your opinion ot this snnff. Twss brought to 
me by Colonel Alexander. He reoommends it hi^y. 

Coptaut. Tour highness 

Prinee. Tou like the quality ? 

Captafn (compefisd to try the tnvff). Exceedingly, but prince— 

Prince. Tis really incomparable. 

Caiptain. Your highness called my name f 

Prfnee. I, sir? I never call, it cracks the voloe, 

Ca^ptain. A^gentleman but now entered the chateau. I saw him od 
the terrace I 

Prinee. Twas Colonel Aleuuider. 

Captain, 



46 THE LOOKER'OK 

Captain. His ooat was blue I 

JVtfMSi 0ir, he may have changed his ooat. Tou do not say he has 
but one. Pray take another pinch of snuff. 

Caplain. No more. I must rejoio my men. 

JMnos. I will make inquiry and learn who called. 
(3^ coptaim bom and exiiM Bight.) 

Prince {eUming hi$ Bnuff'box), A stubborn and persistent man, but 
manageable. 

(EnterVirginiacn terrace. Chroeeing to Right eke gaMeeoJfinio 
the dietance. The prince paueee a moment watching her.) 

Prince (aeldCt gently). 80 fair— bo young. I somi'times think so 
sad. (To her) Mademoiselle admires the view 7 

Virginia (eighing). Tour highness spoke ? 

PHnce. The ▼iew«— it pleases you f 

Virginia (peneivelg). I know not why, but it recalls to me the 
▼lew from my own home across the broad Potomac to the blue May's'- 
land sho' b^ond. 

Prince (genUgt (U ehe comee down the etepe to him). This is your 
home, my child. 

{Then lightlg, ae Virginia tume away her head) 
How often have I heard my friend, the Marquis de Lafayette, speak 
of the broad Potomac and of the home of that estimable man, Mr. 
Washington. Mademoiselle seems sad. May I speak to madem<Mselle? 

Virginia. I hoped to find you here alone that I might speak to 
you. 

Prince. Permit me to lead you to a seat. 
{He leade Virginia to the eeai at Bight.) 

Virginia (taking up the eoattered fiear-deMe). These ilowers— 
let me restore them to the yasep Will you, prince? 

Prince. MademoiseUe, to-night the marriage contracts are to be 
signed. Tou are quite sure that you shall not regret, quite sure that 
you are willing to link your young life with the fewer years of an old 
man? Tou will not let my deep regard weigh in this matter. 

Virginia (toying with the flmoere). Prince de Montbraison, my 
hand is pledged to you; it shall never be withdrawn by me. 

Prince (powing low). Mademoiselle I 

Virginia. But before the signing of the contracts it is my duty, my 

hard duty 

(Her voice lyreake.) 

Prince. Nay, nay, be not distressed-— another time. 

Virginia. It must be now. 

Prince. I listen, mademoiselle. 

Virginia. I— I was beloved— I loved—— 
(The prince bowe tow.) 
I knew that it would hurt yon, but 'twas but honorable, but just, that 
I should tell you. Believe me, I would not wound your heart, or give 
you pain that might be spared. Tou know I would not, prince? 
Mademoiselle, I know it. 

Virginia. 



THE LOOKER-ON. 47 

VirginicL, Twas in America, at my own home. Twas a young 
Frenchman whom I loved— a refugee, proscribed, unhappy, friendless. 
How well I loved him he will never know. 

iVtnce. And he? 

Virginia. He had no lands— a refugee — no name— was far too 
proud to share with me my wealth, and so we parted. 

IVifiee. And you, you have forgotten him? 

Virginia (aadly), Tes, I have forgotten him. 
(She weeps,) 

Prince (a little brokenly). Mademoiselle, I value your confidence 
and trust so highly that I can forget in their enjoyment the sorrow 
that I feel. 

Virginia. And you are satisfied ? 

Prince (kiaeing t?ie hand tJuxt she extends to him), I am the 
happiest of men. 

Virginia, Surely the most chivalrous ! 

Prince. Mademoiselle, it is the duty of every prince to be a gentle- 
man I I will leave you alone till you are more composed, and then, 
with your permission, I will rejoin you here. 

( Virginia bows. Exit the prince slowly. Right, ) 

Virginia {stiU seated). Ah, Gfaston I Qaston t I have turned the 
last page of the romance of my life, and the last sweet hopes have 
faded as the fragrance fades from the withered immortelle when the 
snow falls in far-away Virginia. If you and I ever meet again, Qaston, 
it can be but in sadness, it can be but as strangers, to part as though 
you had never loved me, as though I had never trusted my hand to 
your hand, nor listened to fond words from your lips. 

{Enter Oaston on terrace from chateau, HepauseSf not seeing 
Virginians face, ) 

Oaston. A lady (She moves,) Virginia t 

Virginia (rising). Gaston I GhistonI Your voice I Oaston I 
(Turning away she covers her face with her hands.) 

Oaston (at her side). Virginia ! I will not ask what happy chance 
has brought us here together. I dared not hope to see your face for 
months. I thought the sea between us yet. 

Virginia. And I— I thought that we had parted forever. 

Oastcn* Tou will forgive my pride? I could not offer you a beg- 
gar's hand, I could not ask you for a pledge, I could not bind you by a 
word. But I— -I hoped, I trusted. I returned to France to gather up 
the scattered remnant of what once was mine, meaning to lay it at 
your feet. 

Virginia, And you 

Oaston. My lands are seised, my moneys scattered by those whom 
I most trusted, and I am himted litre a criminal ! 

Virginia. Oh, Oaston t Gaston I 

Ckuton. But it is naught, I can forget it alL Tour eyes draw all 
the sting of failure from my heart, their witchery steals from me 
every fear I 

Virginia. 



48 THE LOOKER OK 

Virginia, Nay I Why are yoa here, here at the chateau of the 
Prince de Mostbraiaon? 

QiuUm. It was my last reiort I am his daughtar's son. 

Virginia {breaking from him), Tou I Oaston de OalvaJL 

GajtoA. I, Qaston, CkHmt de QalTea. This is the only home that 
I have ever known. 

Virginia (HnJHng upon a teat at hefi^ ooverliHy harfaee vriih her 
handt). What have I done? What is it I have done ? 

OcuUm. Uj love, look up. Weep not, look up and bid me hope ! 

Virginia. I dare not raise my face to yours, I dare not meet your 
eyes. Tou must not hope. 

Oa$ton. Not hope ? 

Virginia. Tou must not hope, nor I. I— am betrothed 1 

Chuton {gtarting hack). No t no I 

Virginia (riHng). I am the betrothed of the Prince de Montbrai- 
son I 

Oatton, No I no ! 

Virginia, TIs true I Tis true ! 

CkMtion {90omfuUy), Mademoiselle, I wish you Joy. 

Virginia, Tou think that I am heartless, proud, ambitious, vain I 

Ocuion (seom/u/Jfr). Are you not these, and fickle too ? 

Virginia (proudly), I am not, sir, nor shall you lay the burden at 
my door I I loved you, sir 1 Nor shame to say I loved you well^! Tou 
jilted me— left me without a word I Tour pride foi^t my heart ! 
How could I guess your purpose? My blood's as proud as^ours and 
will as little brook a slight as yours will brook humility. Tou left me, 
and I took a woman's way to wreck my life I 

Cfaston (hia head beni). Then I alone must bear the blame. 

Virginia (gently). Nay, Gaston, if you will bear the blame, I will 
not let you bear it all. Fll share it too. 

{At nh€ apeake, enter the prince omlsi terrace from Bight. He 
paueee^ eeeing them,) 

Oaelon, Nay—I will bear all the blame t I love you as I loved you 
then, I love you more deeply since absence teaches me how dose your 
heart is knit to mine t Virginia I 

(Am Gaston epeake the prince caichee hie meaning, pute hie 
flngere over hie eare and movee hurriedly aeroee the etage 
towards the chateau, Ae he reachee the eUpe, Oaeton catehee 
Virginia in hie arme. It ie too much,) 

Mnce. Sir! Rel e ase her from your arms ! Begone I 

Oaeton (releaeing Virginia), Tour highness 

Prince, Silence I I wiU hear nothing. 

(Enter the ducheee^ Mre, Fairfax, CoUmei Alexander, ond 
Philippe on terrace from chateau,) 

Philippe, Monsieur Qaston I 

Ifrs. Fairfax, Monsieur de GMves I 

Virginia, Prince 1 Tou will not hear me I 

Prince, Tour pardon I He must begone I Hence, sir! Begone! 

Philippe. 



THE L OSBR • OUT. i% 

Phaippt (fooking Right). The gendumeB 1 
(Enter Captain Foucke and soldiera.) 
Captain. Honaieur de Qalvez, foUovr me I Mad&me, your pardon. 
Toar highoem, I but execute my orders I 

Virginia {dinging to him). OastoQ t Oastou I 
Dweh£m. Captain Fouche 1 

Captain. Hadame, it is ray duty 1 Sir, you will follow mef 
Ooiion, I follow you. Farewell, Tirgioia. 
Virginia (to thepriwx). Oh, speak I Speak in hiflbehaU I 
Prince, Hademoisalle coniinande 7 
Virginia. Nay, I entreat I 
Captain (to rnddien). Forward I 

Prince iadvaneing). Hold, Captain Fouohe I Release yourprisonerl 
Captain. Uy orders from the prefect of police I 
Prinee. Sir I Henri Loafs Francis de St. Honore D'Orleans, 
Prince de lifontbraison, yields not his grandson to the prefect of 
police I 

Captain. Tour highness leaves me no choice I I must enforce my 
orders. Forward I 

iVinoe. Hold, sir I I recognize no order from Qie prefect of 
police! 

(Thruating Qaaton up thefirtt $tepg, where he is seized by Col- 
onel Alexander and the dnehe$». The prince Haride with 
drawn tword before him, holding the way.) 
Let him who dares lay hands upon my guest I Back, sir, or draw 
jour sword Upon the cousin of the king I 

{The attain hesitatee, bowtlow, j/idding the point at the cur- 
tain falls ilowly at the prince atande with hie award 
trembling in hie hand.) 




50 TSE LOOKBB-OK 



ITALIAN OPERA. 

By William Fosteb Apthoep. 

Few forms of art have had harder things said of 
them than Italian oi)era. Perhaps, as Madame Neigeon 
said of herself and kind, it has done all that was need- 
ful for that; but it has had a long and rather glorious 
career in the world, it has exerted no little influence 
upon musical thought and doings wherever it has estab- 
lished itself; x>erhai)S its sins, such as they are, have 
been as much owing to its very prosperity as to any- 
thing else. 

The bane of all Opera has been that it has so long 
been regarded as an article of elegant luxury. It was 
probably predestined to this; for, unlike the folk-song 
and dance, which sprang from the very heart of the 
people, or the manifold forms of counterpoint, which 
were slowly developed in the Church and the austere 
seclusion of monasteries, opera may truly be said to 
have sprung from the noblesse^ from elegant society. 
It was the first important outcome of the so-called 
Florentine Music Reform of the seventeenth century, 
which movement was mooted by a coterie of art-loving 
nobles in Medicean Florence; and, after going through 
a brief apprenticeship as the choice entertainment of 
courts and private palaces, it was first publicly estab- 
lished in .Venice, the most luxurious city in southern 
Europe. It was, so to sx)eak, bom in the purple, and 
has almost always preserved a certain scent of musk; 
among other art-forms which have to do with music, it 
has been, from the beginning, principally noteworthy 
for the amount of money it has cost and for the splendor 
of its trappings. 

For some time, Italian opera was the only form of 
opera. It was, after a while, imitated in France — with 

considerable 



THE LOOKER 'OK 51 

considerable freedom, to be sure — ^and servilely copied 
in Germany and England. But, side by side with these 
imitations, the original form flourished brilliantly as an 
imported exotic. No matter what Prance, Germany, 
and England may have done toward developing ope- 
ratic forms and styles of their own, they had imported 
Italian opera, too, and it soon became as firmly estab- 
lished an institution in those countries as the native 
forms themselves. And, by Italian oi)era, I mean it in 
the fullest sense of the term: oi)eras written to Italian 
texts by Italian composers, and sung in the Italian 
language (not in translation) by Italian, or Italian- 
taught, singers. And, like most costly exotics, it 
appealed principally to the leisured, affluent, and lux- 
urious classes wherever it was thus transplanted. It 
was the "fashionable" entertainment par excellence , 
for some time, decidedly more so than native opera. 

In Italy itself it was for a while equally and almost 
exclusively "fashionable"; but, after awhile, a split 
came about in the form: the opera huffa^ which began 
in the shape of short comic or burlesque interludes, 
given between the acts of longer serious operas, gradu- 
ally established itself as an independent form, and was 
more especially cultivated by the bourgeois middle 
class and "the people," while the opera seria continued 
the pet darling of the aristocracy. It is to be noted 
that, perhaps for this very reason, the opera huffa 
became the particular form in which Italian genius 
expressed itself with the greatest frankness and origi- 
nality; it became the form most sharply and distinc- 
tively characteristic of Italy. It is also worth noting 
that the lighter comic forms of opera had a similar fate 
in Prance, Germany, and England; they cannot strictly 
be said to have copied much from the Italian model — 
probably more because the latter was so characteristi- 
cally Italian, through and through, as to be essentially 
inimitable, than because no attempts were made at imi- 
tation,— whereas serious opera in Prance, Germany, and 
England was distinctly based upon the Italian opera 

seria^ 



« T'HZ L -yKEZ'OJi 



Bi3 I3e F»b:a ««r«-A>«i^ifc; the Ger- 



T1A.1 S. v//;*^ loii 1^ Fji.^'-.aA baZad <^Ka fdUowed 



^.c>£seft cf ier-ii^ti^iHiss:: cf izesr ovm. viihont much re- 
zarf f :r luliia ^j^fr* i-i/jL Afti like nifMra 6i(#*a 
iji I'^ J. irese T-r^-:.^ f jTBs arq:iired. mud kmg main- 
i^i::*^!. a c<:r» s^l&tiIt difcfsirnre and origiBal '^na- 
il :&il '* fiaTcr a thrrir Rs;<«niT^ coantcieB diaB aeiioiu 
op^ra diri. Tb^j belciLz^ wjk espedaUy to ''the 



j^: .« tr.^a to iii.e e? i^re cat^o^e 



ai«d th^ir zr^izstL d-rTrl:jgK&t ns Mate amenable to 
the inSa^Bce of <jie*!i5c cadTe coiiditio]i& 

It 9eem3 alzD-:««t like a I z-zial ccToUarj to thisi as it 
eertainl T is a £art« that Iialiaa opera h^^a has seldom, 
if ever, floorish^ed so thiiTinglT aa aa exotic in foreign 
soil as Italian op^ra s^ria, Upoa the whole, comic 
f ofms seem never to have borne transplanting as well as 
serious ones. We find abondant exemplification of 
this in our own coontrv. With bat few exceptions, 
the Italian, French, axMi German operas which have 
fonnd greatest and most lasting faror with the Amm.- 
can public have been of the seiiooa, or tragic, rather 
than of the condc type. French aperc^^Mufft (that is, 
when given in French) had but an ephemeral ix>palarit7 
in the United States; of French opira-comique and the 
Oerman 8ing$piel we know next to nothing here; and 
the few Italian apere huffe which have been really 
popular in this country— like Rossini's Barhiere^ or 
the Biccis' Crispino e la comare — can weigh but little 
in the balance against the popular serious Italian 
operas. Mozart's Don Giovanni has always been 
token quite seriously by our public, not as an opera 
huff a; and it is highly probable that Wagner's Meister- 
einger appeals to the majority of audiences here more 
by its serious than by its humorous side. 

But Italian opera seria long maintained its ix)sition 
as the pet darling of the more luxurious i)art of musical 
society all over the world. To be sure, it did bettor 

than 



THE LOOirMBOir. U 

than this, too; but this is the phase in which we most 
instinctively think of it. Its influence was, in a way, 
nnqnestionably debilitating; in an article of luxury 
this was natural enough. It counted among its sworn 
admirers a host of cultivated, but only half -musical, 
I)eople; its praises have been sung by more musical 
ignoramuses, by more enthusiasts entirely devoid of 
musical education, than any form of music known to 
history— with the x>ossible exception of the Wagnerian 
Music-Drama, which has of late years been particu- 
larly favored in this way. And the irresjwnsible 
dithyrambics of such rabid Italophiles have done incal- 
culable injury to i)opular musical thought. When a 
Stendhal or Balzac signs an opinion, the average reader 
takes it for granted that Stendhal or Balzac knows 
what he is talking about. The reader does not trouble 
himself to think that a man may be a great literary 
genius without being the least bit of a musician. What 
French and English musical Italophiles have done in 
this way to promulgate the belief that, as Berlioz said, 
"Music is an art about which everybody knows," con- 
stitutes one of the most deplorable pages in the history 
of culture. 

I think the time when Italian opera most exerted its 
debilitating influence upon popular musical thought — 
that is, upon that musical thought which takes its cue 
from high places — was during one of its most glorious 
periods: the famous period (ranging, roughly si)eak- 
ing, from about 1830 to 1850) of the The&tre-Italien in 
Paris. Pew forms of art have ever had so astoundingly 
brilliant an avatar. Italian opera had gone somewhat 
Into eclii)se in Prance, after its defeat (under Piccinni) 
by Prench grand op&ra (under Gluck) in the seventeen- 
seventies. But, as Saint-Saens has said, ^^ the school of 
Melody'' (meaning the Italian opera) " would not own 
up b^ten, and was secretly preparing for the revenge 
which Rossini was so resoundingly to take, aided by 
the most brilliant phalanx of singers that ever ex- 
isted." To Rossini's name add those of Bellini and 

Donizetti, 



U THE LOOKER-OX. 

Donizetti and yoa have the three di majareM of the 
Th^tre- Italian in this, iiA most funoos period. 

Such sinzinz ad was d<:«ne at that farored hoase has 
prrA«ably n-jt b*rt?n heard since; arcoimtB are quite 
tni'^twortLy, and, although in a somewhat diff^^nt 
style, it pliiinly was fully up to the finest Tocal feats of 
the days of HandeU Ha><e, aiid Porpora. Vocal art 
ran never have ri'y^n higher than it rose then. The 
dingers who, successively or together, graced the boards 
of the Theatre-Italien in those great days were, among 
others, Persiani and Grisi, for soprani ; Malibran and 
Allx)ni, for contralti ; Bnbini and Mario, for tenors ; 
and Tamburini, Ronconi and Lablache, for basses. 
Such a galaxy has never been brought together since. 
Remember that it is literaUy true that these tenors, 
baritones, and basses sang the most taxing and difficult 
roulades and JU/riture with all the ease, flexibility, 
grace, and purity of tone of the soprani and contralti 
The composers then wrote for the singers, and yon may 
be sure they wrote nothing that they conld not sing to 
I>erfection, I particularly mention this supremacy of 
vocal technique, not only because it is an historical 
fact, but also because it implies something artistically 
higher than mere flexibility of voice ; it implies that 
complete and absolute command over the whole vocal 
technique which is necessary for all the highest flights 
of the art of singing: perfectly true intonation, the 
production of an entirely beautiful vocal tone, grace 
and distinction of phrasing, and that ^^ coloring the 
voice " which is one of the finest elements of emotional 
expression. These great singers did not merely astonish 
you with pyrotechnic difficulties, they made them sound 
musically and well, and drew tears from their hearers 
at will. And their singing was dramatic, too ; it struck 
fire from hearts and sent thrills through audiences. 
Some of them, especially Lablache, Tamburini, Ronconi, 
and Grisi, were most admirable actors ; people are too 
I)rone to forget this nowadays, remembering only the 
tradition that Rubini was no sort of an actor, and sel- 
dom, if ever, even tried to act. 

^ If 



THE LOOKER-ON. 65 

If anything is thoroughly to be regretted in the de- ^ 
cline of Italian opera of this school, it is the parallel 
decline in the art of singing. Indeed it is only by 
figuring to ourselves what this singing was like that we 
of to-day can form any exact notion of the character of 
the music itself. One might just as well try to form an 
idea of the true character of Chopin by hearing him 
played, say, by the late Ignaz Moscheles or Johann 
Baptist Cramer, as to appreciate the true nature of 
Rossini, Bellini, or Donizetti by hearing them sung by 
any but a very, very few of the singers of our own day. 
It took that superfine delicacy of art by which, as the 
late Julius Eichberg (no great friend of the school, by 
the way) once said of Alboni, she *^ could turn a phraae 
which was absolutely dripping with idiocy into a 
divine x>oem I " And, if it could be turned into a divine 
poem, the phrase was probably not so very ** dripping 
with idiocy" in itself. You cannot make a silk purse 
out of a sow's ear. 

The real weakness of the music lay in its stunted, 
stencil-plate forms, and also in its sui)er-elegance. As 
regards the forms, it is curious to note that the com- 
posers, when young men, had run away from their re- 
spective conservatories before their musical education 
was completed. They began their public careers when 
but half fledged ; in this they have since been imitated 
by many Italian singers, much to the detriment of the 
art of Italian singing. And, for their super-elegance, 
that was but part and parcel of Italian opera in general 
being so largely an article of aristocratic luxury. 

This side of the business, however, received a rude 
shock when Giuseppe Verdi came above the horizon. 
Verdi's apx>earance was epoch-making, esi)ecially in 
one particular : he brought into Italian opera seria a 
spirit which had nothing to do with the court or elegant 
drawing-room, but was essentially what the French call 
populdcier; he represents the violent irruption of the 
''musical peasant" into opera seria. He could be 
vocally elegant, at a pinch, too— as in ^^Ilbalen^^ in 

~ lYavcUore 



5« THE LOOKER - OK. 

Th'ovdtore — ^bnt this was not his most congenial vein, 
and even in ^^Ilbalen^^ he is elegant in somewhat 
sombre and uncourtly colors. Where he was most 
characteristic was in the fierce glow of his passion and 
the from-the-shoulder directness and coarseness of his 
expression. Where Bellini sang like a petit maitre 
demigod, Verdi yelled like a brigand ; for years he 
may be said to have given mnsical expression to the 
^^ dangerous classes." And Italian opera society was 
just effeto enough to be ready for him : they found a 
tartness of flavor to his musical sansculottism that was 
exactly to their taste. He overran Europe and the 
musical world. It was the beginning of the end ; ele- 
gant musical society was joining hands with the pro- 
letariat in a sufficiently decadent way. If Verdi had 
not been the man he was, it might have gone ill with 
Italian opera — ^worse even than it has 1 

But Verdi, beside unquestionable genius, had also a 
power of mental growth well-nigh uni)aralleled in the 
history of art. He seems to have seen clearly enough 
whither Italian opera had been tending for generations, 
and also perhaps that he himself was the man of all 
others to accelerate Nature — unless he were careful. 
But he was careful, and his genius grew apace. Verdi's 
gradual change of base as an opera composer belongs, 
not to past, but to contemporary musical history. I 
will say nothing of it here, save that for years he 
has sturdily upheld nearly the whole glory of Italian 
music on his own shoulders, and that if there is a 
saviour of Italian opera, he is that man. He has at 
once prevented the Rossini-Bellini-Donizetti x>eriod 
from being Italy's operatic swan-song, and contributed 
more than any one else to its being now virtually a 
closed period, belonging to the historic past. 




THE LOOKBB-ON. 61 



SINGERS, THEN AND NOW. 

By H. E. Kbehbisl. 

I SPENT my Bammer vacation, some years ago, among 
the Iroquois Indians of the Six Nations Reserve in 
Canada, investigating the rites of their Condoling 
Council. These rites are celebrated on the '^raising 
up " of the chief to take the place of a Senator or Coun- 
cillor who has died. They consist, in part, of chants, 
expressive of their sorrow at his death, and of com- 
memoration of the founders of the League. These 
chants were sung for me by Chief John Buck, Head 
Fire Keeper of the Onondagas and Chief Councillor of 
the confederated nations — a good, sweet, simple soul, 
albeit a pagan. He was universally admired and loved 
among the farmer Indians of the Reserve because of 
his manly virtues and his eloquence. He became my 
friend, and when, a year later, I received by mail the 
three purple wampum beads which notified me of his 
death, I was more than anything else desirous to be 
present at the Condoling Council which would follow. 
But I did not receive a reply to my telegrams and 
letters in time to reach the Reservation. So I decided 
that, as I had been made an Indian, I would hold a 
Council myself. Bringing out the phonographic record 
I had collected on the Reserve I spent a half -hour 
listening to Chief John Buck, chanting the same hymn 
which at the Onondaga Long House his friends were 
chanting for him. 

The incident occurs to me now in connection with 
some reflections touching the comparative merits of 
the singers of the present and those of past generations. 
Are we poorer in the possession of Melba, Sembrich and 
Calve, the De Reszke brothers and thelbr associates at 
the Metropolitan Oi)eift House, than our fiithers and 

grandfathers 



58 THE LOOKER - ON. 

grandfathers were in the favorites of their day t It is 
a troublesome question, but how its difficulties would 
vanish, did we but possess the ability to conjure up 
their voices as I, by the aid of science, can bid the 
Onondaga Chief sing to me from his grave I As it is we 
must rely upon written and oral traditions, that differ 
in kind if not in degree. We shall probably never 
meet a man who, having heard Jenny lind, will admit 
that she had an equal in the forty odd years that have 
passed since he heard her sing. But how are we to 
know that his judgment is correct! Will he tell us 
how old he was when he heard the nightingale t How 
susceptible his soul! How much was his enjoyment 
influenced by the extravagant price he paid for it % or 
by "The fair, the chaste, the nnexpressive she," who 
shared the pleasure with him! Yet we must know 
these things if we are correctly to estimate the value of 
his judgment. Do we not know that the older x>eople 
of his younger days thought the star he worshipped a 
pale and lifeless orb, compared with the luminaries of 
their youth ! Nor is the case bettered when we turn to 
the written record. Analysis can determine, the record 
can preserve the range of a singer's voice and give a 
hint of its flexibility or of other mechanical and tech- 
nical attributes, but all that is vital in the singer's art 
eludes analysis and defies record. I oi)en Volume D 
of Bumey's "Present State of Music in Germany" 
(printed a quarter of a century ago) and find this trans- 
lation of Nuantz's characterization of the great Sene- 
sino: '^Francesco Bamardi, called Senesino, had a 
powerful, clear, equal, and sweet controMo voice" 
(Nuantz really wrote, ^^Toezzo soprarw^^ but Bumey 
changed it because he fancied that inasmuch as ELan- 
del wrote only contralto parts for Senesino, his voice 
must have lost some of its high tones in later years), 
'^ with a perfect intonation and an excellent shake ; his 
manner of singing was masterly, and his elocution un- 
rivalled; though he never loaded adagios with too 
many ornaments, yet he delivered the original notes with 

the 



THE LOOKER-ON, 59 

the utmost refinement. He sang allegros with great 
fire, and marked rapid divisions," (runs or rondolade), 
^^from the chest, in an articulate and pleasing manner ; 
his countenance was well cialculated for the stage, and 
his action was natural and noble : to these he joined a 
figure that was truly majestic, but more suited to the 
part of a hero than of a lover." Now how did Senesino 
sing ? He was " suited to the part of a hero " ; was he 
a precursor of Albert Niemann, or Jean de Reszke? 
Such a comparison is impossible; there is no basis 
upon which it can be made. Senesino was one of the 
ornaments of the period when singing was the be-aU 
and the end-all of operatic representation. When he 
and Parinelli, Sassarelli, Ferri, and their tribe domi- 
nated the stage, it strutted with sexless Agamemnons 
and Gsesars. Telemachus, Darius, Nero, Cato, Alex- 
ander, Scipio, and Hannibal ran around on the boards 
as languishing lovers, singing woful ballads to their 
mistresses' eyebrows, ballads full of trills and scales 
and florid ornaments. They represented the art that 
came from the great Roman schools, and we know what 
marvels of vocal feats they could perform. We know 
that Sassarelli sang cadences of fifty seconds' duration ; 
that Ferri with a single breath could trill upon each 
note of two octaves, ascending and descending; and 
that Farinelli once sang so beautifully in the part of a 
hero brought in chains before a tyrant that Senesino, 
who was playing the part of tyrant, burst into tears 
and threw himself into Farinelli' s arms. But how much 
does a knowledge of all this help us in making a com- 
parison of them with the heroic singers of to-day % It 
only emphasizes an obvious truism ; other times, other 
manners, in music as in everything else. The great 
ringers of to-day are those who appeal to the taste of 
to-day, and that taste differs as do the clothes we wear 
from the style in vogue a century and a half ago. 

Thanks to German influences the world over, the 
opera is returning to its original purposes. Greatly as 
his art differs from the tentative efforts of the Floren- 
tine 



60 THE LOOKER OK 

tine reformers, who invented the lyric drama while 
trying to recreate Oreek tragedy, Bichard Wagner 
rounds out a cycle with Peri, Cuccini, Monteverde, and 
their immediate successors. Music is again become a 
means of dramatic exjpression, and the singers who ap- 
peal to us most powerfully are those who are best able 
to make song subserve that purpose, and who, to that 
end, give to dramatic truthfulness, to effective elocu- 
tion, and to action the attention which mere voice and 
beautiful utterance received in the i)eriod which is 
called the Golden Age of Singing, but which was the 
Leaden Age of the Lyric Drama. ^ 

The people of New York City enjoy a unique i)osition 
among the communities of the world, so far as oi)eratic 
singers are concerned. For seventy years they have 
heard all the great singers of Europe. I do not attempt 
to mention all, but only those of the highest rank whose 
names occur to me. 

Madame Malibran was one of the first Italian opera 
company that ever sang here. Before that time there 
had been a i>eriod of seventy-five years during which 
English op^ra was scarcely absent a year from our 
theatres; a i)eriod, moreover, in which some of the best 
of the English singers, such as Madame Caradori- Allan, 
Mrs. Leesugg (who married the Canadian Hackett), Mrs. 
Holman (the sister of Michael Kelly), Mrs. Oldman, 
Incledon the bass, and Phillips the tenor, api)eared in 
the ballad ox)eras. However foolish these ox>eras may 
have been otherwise, they still surpassed the Italian 
ox)era8 of the period in developing singing actors in- 
stead of mere costume- wearing singers. 

Madame Cuiti-Dainorean came in 1844, Bosio in 1849, 
Jennie lind in 1850, Sontag in 1863, Grisi and Mario in 
1864, La Orange in 1866, Frezzolini in 1867, Piccolomini 
in 1868, Nilsson in 1870, Lucca in 1872, Tietjens in 1876, 
Gerster in 1878, and Sembrich in 1878. I omit the sing- 
ers of the GFerman opera as belonging to a different 
category. Adelina Patti was always with us until she 
went to Europe, in 1861, and remained twenty years. 

Of 



Of tbe Bifin who were the qxtistic ^asooiates of these 
prime donne, mention may be made of Mario, Benedeth, 
Corsi, Salvi, Bonconi, Formes, Brignoli, Amadio, Co- 
letti, Campanini, and many more, none of which, ex- 
cepting Mario, were of much importance compared with 
the women singers. In this former generation the popu- 
lar admiration for men was in inverse ratio to the admi- 
ration for women. Is it because this is woman's era 
that the men are the ^^ stars" nowadays! Or is this 
also explained to some extent by the prevalent liking 
for that which is dramatic t 

The great majority of these singers, even those still 
living and remembered by the younger generation of 
to-day, exploited their gifts in the operas of Rossini, 
Bellini, Donizetti, the early Verdi, and Meyerbeer. 
The last seemed to them a radical in his modernity. 
Grisi was acclaimed a great dramatic singer, and it is 
told of her that once in "Norma" she frightened the 
tenor who sang the part of PolliOj by the fury of her 
acting. But it is to be found that, measured by the 
standards of to-day, say by Calve' s Carmen or Miss 
Brema's Ortrvdj that it must have been a simple age 
that could be impressed by the tragic power of any one 
acting the part of Bellini' s Druidical priestess. The sur- 
mise is strengthened by the circumstance that Madame 
Grisi created a sensation in **I1 Trovatore" by showing 
signs of agitation in the tower scene, walking about the 
stage during Manrico^s "AA, cAe la morte ognora^^ as 
if she would fain discover the part of the castle where 
her lover was imprisoned. The chief charm of Jenny 
lind, in the memory of the older generation of Ameri- 
can men and women, is the pathos with which she sang 
simple songs. Madame Nilsson also won her first suc- 
cess here in concerts by the way in which she sang 
''The Old Folks at Home." In the case of musicians 
and critics, it was her brilliant execution that placed 
her on the eminence she occupied. 

Mendelssohn esteemed her greatly as a woman and 
artist, but he is quoted as once remarking to Chorley : ' ' I 

cannot 



62 THB LOOKSBrOK. 

cannot think why she always prefers to be in a bad the- 
atre." MoscheleSy recording his impressions of her in 
Meyerbeer's "Camp of Silesia" (now "L'EtoUe du 
Nord "), reached the climax of his praise in the words : 
"Her song with the two concertante Antes is, perhaps, 
the most incredible feat in the way of bravura singing 
that can i)ossibly be heard." She was credited with 
fine powers as an actress, bnt we are comx)elled to ques- 
tion her dramatic sincerity when we read that she com- 
pelled her managers to cut out the parts of Isabella^ in 
"Robert Le Diable," in order that no rival should ap- 
pear in an opera with her. Compare this with the mod- 
em spirit as exemplified by Madame Lehmann, who was 
not only willing to sing second parts that had "blood 
in them," but whom I have known to go into the scene- 
room of the Metropolitan Opera House and hunt mimic 
stumps and rocks with which to fit out a scene in Sieg- 
fried, in which she was not even to appear. That, like 
her superhuman work at rehearsals, was "for the good 
cause," as she herself expressed it. 

Most amiable are the memories that cluster around 
the name of Sontag, which include at least one of the 
notable concerts given by Beethoven in the closing years 
of his life. Her career was wof ully ended by her sudden 
death in Mexico in 1854. She was a German, and the 
early part of her artistic life was influenced by German 
ideals, but it is said that only in the music of Mozart 
and Weber, which revived in her strong national emo- 
tion, did she sing dramatically. For the rest she used 
her light voice, which had an extraordinary range, 
brilliancy, and flexibility, very much like Patti and 
Melba use theirs to-day in mere unfeeling vocal dis- 
play. " She had an extensive soprano voice," says Ho- 
garth, " not remarkable for power, but clear, brilliant, 
and regularly flexible ; a quality which seems to have 
led her (unlike most GFerman singers in general) to cul- 
tivate the most florid style, and even to follow the bad 
example set by Catalani, of seeking to convert her voice 
into an instrument, and to astonish the public by exe- 
cuting 



THE LOOKER-ON. 63 

cuting the violin variations of Rhode's air, and other 
things of that stamp. Madame La Grange had a voice 
of extraordinary compass, which enabled her to sing 
contralto roles as well as soprano, but I have never heard 
her dramatic powers praised. As for Piccolomini, read 
of her where you will, you will find that she was 
"charming." She was lovely to look upon and her 
action in soubrette parts was fascinating. Besides, she 
was announced when she came here as a lineal descend- 
ant of the hero of Schiller's "Wallenstein," and like 
Mario, had a pope in her family. Mario's pope was 
Alexander IV., Piccolomini' s was Pius II. Mario was a 
lineal descendant, through a brother, of Lucrezia Borgia, 
so that it has been remarked that when he sang '^ Scmo 
un Borgia^'* in Donizetti's opera, it had more meaning 
than might have been supposed. But this did not 
make Mario the great singer he was, and is a digression 
induced by the bewitching little Piccolomini. Until 
Melba came Patti was for more than thirty years peer- 
less as a mere vocalist. She belongs, as do Piccolo- 
mini and Sontag, in an artistic sense, to the comic 
genre ; so did Sembrich and Gerster, who never knew 
it. I well remember how indignant Gerster became 
during her first American season at a criticism which 
I wrote of her Amina in *'La Sonnambula," a perform- 
ance which is still among my loveliest and most fra- 
grant recollections. Contrasting her Lucia with her 
AmtTia, I made use of Catalani's remark concerning 
Sontag : " Son genre est petity mats elle unique dans 
san genre.^^ She almost flew into a passion. ^^ Mon 
genre est grand ! " said she, over and over again, while 
Dr. Gardini, her husband, tried in vain to pacify her : 
"Come to see my Marguerite next year." Now Mar- 
guerite does not quite belong to the heroic rdles, 
though we can all remember how Lucca thrilled us by 
her intensity of action as well as of song, and how 
Madame Nilsson sent the blood out of our cheeks, 
though she did stride through the opera like a combi- 
nation of the grande dame and Ary Scheflfer's spirituelle 

pictures. 



64 TMB ZOOJCJOt-Ojr. 

piatoree. But suck aa ii is, ULadame Geister acUeyed a 
aucoeas of iaterest only, and that because of her efforts 
at originality. Sembricli and Gerster, when they were 
first heard, had as much execution as Melba or Nils- 
son, but their voices had smaller emotional power than 
those of the former, and less beauty than those of the 
latter— beauty of the kind that might be called classic, 
since it is in no way dependent on feeling. Its highest 
exemplar is still the voice of Patti, in its middle reg- 
ister. 

I find that I am in danger of doing for Patti and 
Nilsson, Lucca and Gterster that which I faulted the 
memory-mongers for doing in the case of Jenny Idnd. 
But it cannot be helped. These singers sang in the 
operas In which Melba and Eames are singing to-day, 
and though the standard of judgment has been changed 
in the last twenty-five years by the growth of German 
ideals, I can find no growth of potency in the perform- 
ance of the representative women of the Italian opera, 
save in the case of Calve, supremely great since she 
came before us in the rdles of Carmen and SarUmzcL. 
For the development of dramatic ideals we must look 
to the singers of German affiliations, Madame Johansen, 
a worthy pioneer, Madame Matema, and another, Lillie 
Lehmann, whose artistic stature and achievements we 
thought we appreciated while she was with us, but 
who, now that she is gone, looms up before us as a 
veritable Teutonic goddess of the world of art. As for 
the men of yesterday and to-day, no lover of the lyric 
drama would give the declamatory warmth, graceful- 
ness, strength of pose, and action which mark the per- 
formance of Jean de Reszk6 for one of the high notes of 
Mario (for which we are told he would reserve himself 
all the evening), were it ever so lovely. Neither does 
the fine, resonant, equable voice of Edouard de Beszke, 
or the finished manner of Plancon, leave us with curious 
longings touching the voices of Lablache and Formes. 
New York may well be content, and fair-minded critics, 
who are neither eaten up with false conceptions of 

Wagnerism. 



TnE LOOKER-ON. 65 

WagDerism, nor devotees of "linked sweetness long 
drawn out," will find particnlar gratification in the 
knowledge that the plans of Messrs. Abbey, Schoeffel & 
GtraxL for next season contemplate a company and a 
repertory which will keep alive the traditions of good 
singing, encourage appreciation of correct intonation 
and phrasing and the proper emission of tones, and 
alao satisfy the existing taste for operas that are Bome- 
thing more than concerts in stage furnishings and cos- 
tame. 



66 THE LOOKER-ON. 



THE BEGINNINGS OF MUSIC. 

By Louis C. Elson. 

Collins, in his ''Ode to the Passions," nses the fol- 
lowing lines : 

" When Muflio, heavenly maid, was young, 
While yet in early Greece she sung', 
The Paaaions oft to hear her shell 
Thronged around her magic oeU." 

Spite of this poetic dictum the historian finds that 
when Music sang in early Greece she was by no means 
young, but was already quite an antiquated maiden. 
Herbert Spencer, the lamented Huxley, and many others 
who have studied into the beginnings of things acknowl- 
edge that primitive man i)ossessed music of some sort, 
and even go so far as to suggest that it might have come 
to mankind through imitation of certain sounds of 
nature, possibly of bird carols. 

There is so much of musical tone in nature — ^the drip- 
ping of water, the sighing of the wind among the trees, 
etc. — that one need not be at all imaginative to believe 
that the earliest music was the result of imitation if it 
was not ah ovo inherent in the human race. It is also 
probable that nature gave to man some indication of the 
manner in which to fashion musical instruments. Some 
of the earliest legends echo this view. The invention of 
the lyre, for example, is attributed by the Egyptians 
to the god Hermes (the Roman Mercury), in a legend 
which palpably demonstrates the possibility of natural 
origin for at least one instrument. Hermes was wander- 
ing on the banks of the Nile after one of the great inun- 
dations. A tortoise had been left high and dry by the 
receding waters. It had died, and the heat of the son 
had desiccated its flesh so that only a few tendons 
remained attached to its shell. The ancient god struck 

his 



THE LOOKER ON. 67 

his foot against the shell, the tendons resounded, and 
the lyre was born. 

One can in similar manner account for the origin of 
the flute. The wind whistling through the tube of a 
twig of bamboo might readily lead the observant savage 
to construct either flute or Pan's pipes. The horn came 
to prehistoric man directly from nature, and its name 
still remains indicative of its origin. That the drum 
should be a prominent instrument among forest-dwellers 
was a foregone conclusion, since every hollow tree-trunk 
was a natural drum. 

The oldest instruments that can be verifled are of the 
flute family. Naturally enough these began with the 
whistle. Many whistles of bone and of horn have been 
found among the relics of the cave-men, the dwellers 
upon the earth in Paleolithic times. Some geologists 
assign to these an age approximating 200,000 years ! 
Among these relics there has also been discovered a 
primitive flute with three finger-holes and a blow-hole, 
on which the skilful performer could bring forth at 
least six tones. 

The harp was probably early upon the scene, possibly 
as soon as primitive man had learned to twist sinews 
into a bowstring. Every bow was a one-stringed harp, 
and if its owner tested the soundness of its string before 
going ui>on the hunt or into the battle, a musical sound 
must have resulted. There are tribes at present in 
Africa who sometimes string their bows with two strings 
for musical purposes, giving a clear demonstration of 
the line of development of the ancient harp. 

One inherent proof of the tremendous antiquity of 
our art is found in the fact that almost all ancient peo- 
ples ascribe the beginning of their music to the gods. 
Ancient mythology is full of legends describing the 
origin of music, and the fact that this is always celes- 
tial goes far to show that the beginning was even then 
lost in remote antiquity. Osiris, that ancient Egyptian 
god who blends within himself the attributes of Bac- 
chus and Apollo, is pictured as attended in his wander- 
ings 



68 THE LOOKER-ON. 

ings by an entire train of musicians, and Horos, his 
brother, was considered by the old Egyptians as the God 
of Harmony, by which they meant, not the modem 
blending of tones in chord-formations (for of this the 
ancients knew nothing), but the melodic progressions 
and intervals of music. We have already seen how 
the god Hermes (the ancient Egyptians called him 
**Thoth") invented the lyre; he would not have been 
an Egyptian deity if he had not intertwined it with 
plenty of symbolic meanings. Egypt has three seasons, 
and therefore the lyre, which originated from the 
defunct tortoise, had three strings; the deepest string 
was representative of the wet season, the middle string 
of the growing season, and the highest indicated the 
harvest time. At a later time, when Egypt became the 
home of ancient science, the tones of the scale, seven in 
number as with us, were symbolical of the planets and 
were even called by their names. In his evident search 
for a natural origin for music the Egyptian priest (the 
scientist of the ancient world) held that music was 
derived from the sounds made by the planets in their 
courses, a practical harmony of the spheres. At a later 
epoch (about 600 years B.C.), Pythagoras, who had 
studied in Egypt, brought this theory to Greece as his 
own, and even pretended that he was the only mortal 
who had ever heard this celestial harmony. 

One of the most celebrated of the ancient Egyptian 
songs is connected with mythological legend. Maneros 
(who corresi)onds to the Greek Idnos, son of Apollo) 
was one of the sons of the gods; he died in his youth, 
and a song arose in memory of his untimely demise. 
This song represented the fleeting character of human 
existence. It was sung at all Egyptian banquets. 
When the mirth was at its highest (and the old Egyp- 
tian was emphatically an epicurean) an image of a 
corpse was handed around the table, and the guests 
chanted the song of Maneros, which contained the fol- 
lowing lines: 

* Cast your eyes upon this corpse, 
You will be like this after death, 
Therefore drink and be merry now.'* 



THE LOOKER-ON. ^ 69 

Oddly enough, according to Plutarch, the song be- 
came a very lively and joyous one. 

Almost contemporaneous with some of these old 
Egyptian legends must have been the stories which the 
ancient Hindoos have scattered along their mythology 
to prove that their gods were also good musicians and 
helped mankind to the knowledge of tone which it pos- 
sesses. 

Mention of the art is made in the earliest sacred boo 
of India. The Gandharbas (Genii of Music) and Apsa- 
rasas (Genii of the Dance) appear in this mythology 
very soon after Brahma and the beginning of things. 
Sarisvati, wife of Brahma and Goddess of Speech and 
Oratory, at Brahma's command brought the art of 
music to man and also gave him his best instrument 
(according to Hindoo taste), the Vina. There is a host of 
musical deities in the ancient Hindoo mythology: 
Nared, one of the demigods, became protector of the art 
in its first days on earth; Maheda Chrishna allowed five 
modes or scales to spring from his head in true Minerva- 
like style, his wife, Parbuti, added another, and Brahma 
added thirty more. All of these various scales were 
represented by nymphs, and there were also seven chief 
tones in the scale which were personified by seven heav- 
enly sisters. The ancient system must have been very 
complex, for one of the sacred books narrates that when 
Chrishna was on the earth as a shepherd, sixteen thou- 
sand young shepherdesses, or nymphs, fell in love with 
him, and they all tried to win him by music; they sang 
to him, and each one sang in a different key, and thus 
were established the sixteen thousand keys which once 
upon a time existed in India. From such a celestial 
parentage sprang the music of the Hindoos. Naturally 
there were songs coming from such a source which had 
supernatural powers; songs which could call down rain 
in periods of drought, or cause fire to descend from heav- 
en as Elijah did. The musical legends of the ancient 
Greeks were less complex, but fully as poetic. It is 
probable that the deeds of actual musicians who existed 

at 



70 THE LOOKER-ON. 

at the dawn of history were told in an exaggerated and 
mythical manner in the stories of Orphens and Arion. 
NaturaUy the Pythian games, which were dedicated to 
Ax)ollo, presented plenty of mnsic and were a recognition 
of the belief that mnsic originally sprang from him. 

With ancient Greece we obtain the first insight into that 
poetic fancy which wreathed mnsical legend around the 
voice of the waters. Dozens of such legends can easily 
be collected, and they all bear a striking similarity. 
The oldest of them all, however, is the tale of the Sirens 
in the Straits of Messina, who sang so beantifolly that 
the passing sailor steered straight to the reef on which 
they were seated and perished miserably. The story is 
almost identical with that of the Lorelei, who was suj)- 
posed to sit npon the dangerous rocks near St. Goar on 
the Rhine, luring the GFerman sailors to destruction, 
and giving rise to one of Heine's best-known x>o^nis. 
In almost the same fashion the Scandinavian deity, 
Wannemoinen, sits in the caves of the sea, playing on 
a harp which he has made of dead men' s bones, and mak- 
ing such sweet music that he entices the seamen down 
to him. Here then we have southern, central, and north- 
em Europe telling tales in ancient, mediseval, and 
modem times, and all coinciding in many details. The 
ethnologist or philologist finding stories so similar 
among different races would argue migrations or com- 
mon descent, but in this case the coincidence teaches a 
different lesson ; it proves that in all climes and in all 
ages mankind was peculiarly moved by the rippling 
sound of the waters, and was also impressed with the 
dangers that lurked under the pleasing tones. In each 
case the same circumstances brought forth the same 
train of reasoning and the same legends. 

The mermaids of the north are less dangerous per- 
sonages, because they generally preside over springs, 
brooks, and less perilous divisions of water. There has 
seldom been a stranger transformation of a word than 
that which has changed *^ Nixie " (the sweet and pure 
spirit which guarded the waters of the Norwegian 

springs) 



THE LOOKER-ON. 71 

springs) into * ' Old Nick, ' ' the embodiment of eviL The 
water-lily has appropriately been chosen by the northern 
people as the emblem of these pure and innocent fair- 
ies. They are pictured as extremely fond of music, and 
almost all their disasters, in the Scandinavian fairy tales, 
come from their tarrying too long at the peasant 
merry-makings, where music plays an important part. 
Per contra, they are often ready to teach their art to 
mortals. In Sweden there is a musical family named 
Necker, all the members of which are reputed by the 
peasantry to have derived their music, and their name 
also, from the Nixies. The Swedes have a special Neck 
called Stromkerl, who dwells in the cascades and in the 
plash of water-mills, and the Norwegians have one named 
Fossegrim, who dwells in placid rivers, and both of these 
seem to have taken up the music-teaching profession. 
The Norwegian one can be engaged (for an indefinite 
number of terms) by throwing a white ram, on a Thurs- 
day night, into a stream which flows northward ; the 
other can be hired by a present of a lamb ; both seem 
to have the motto, " Terms invariably in advance." 

We have examined the celestial origin of our art in 
Egypt, Greece, and India. Let us close with a glance at 
the musical legends of that quaintest of all the nations 
of antiquity, China. The ancient Chinaman invented 
printing, and gave the world no benefit ; powder, and 
no general evil resulted ; the compass, and no mariner 
was helped ; and he also first discovered the laws of 
acoustics, and a principle of notation, and yet the world 
waited a couple of thousand years before building upon 
the good foundation. Their musical deity was Fo-Hi, 
who had some adventures suspiciously like those of 
Noah. The Chinese employ a pentatonic scale like 
our own diatonic scale with the fourth and seventh 
notes omitted. Such a five-noted scale is not without its 
beauty, as *'Auld Lang Syne," "Bonnie Doon," or 
* * There is a Happy Land ' ' sufficiently prove. Of course 
its origin was celestial. Fo-Hi went out into the bam- 
boo forest and fell asleep. While he lay in slumber the 

mystical 



72 THE LOOKER-ON. 

mystical bird of China (first cousin to the phcenix), the 
Foang-hoang, perched ni>on a bongh above his liead« 
It sang its scale, which was onr own diatonic scale. 
Fo-Hi noted it down, but, alas, it was the female bird 
which >5ang, and in China everything female is held in 
some contempt (although they have no "shrieking 
Sisterhood'' there), and the scale was therefore useless. 
At this moment the male bird came and perched be- 
side its mate. He sang the five-noted scale as employed 
in China to-day, and Fo-Hi at once adopted it for his 
musical works. In this legend, possibly over 4000 
years old, the invention of the diatonic scale, the pen- 
tatonic scale, and the chromatic (which can be formed 
by combining the two) are indicated. It is probable 
that China achieved these scales as early as Egypt did, 
and this old legend remains as a record of it. 

Let no investigator despise the legends of music — 
they are inferential history, they show us the beliefs of 
ancient times in connection with our art, and they 
prove that even at the dawn of history music was so old 
that no man could give its origin. No race exists upon 
the earth but has its music, and even the most debased 
peoples have generally their musical legends. It would 
be a task not unworthy of the scientific researcher to 
gather all the available musical legends of the world into 
a single work. Such a work would give clues for further 
investigation and might lead to discoveries in a field 
which is rather obscure at present, and it would present 
to the psychologist the many ways in which music has 
impressed the human mind — it would give the poetry of 
musical history. 






Let u8 begin our Friendly Observations with onr- 
selveB, my dear Looker-On; for there is no other subject 
in regard to which it is so difficult, and so necessary, to 
be at once observant and friendly. For the most part 
self-criticism vibrates between the two extremes of blind 
partiality and impatient disgust. It is not often that a 
man sees his own faults and foUies; but when he does 
he is far less apt to make due allowance for them than 
for those of other men. The reason is plain. His own 
faults, besides woonding his vanity, nsnally have to be 
paid for, which is very annoying. It is therefore per- 
fectly natural that he should either ignore or exaggerate 
them. 

And yet there is no knowledge better entitled to be 
called useful than the knowledge of our own capacity 
and outfit and position. It is easy enough for a man to 
be his own worst enemy; bat in order to be his own best 
friend he must be patient, and honest, and careful, in 
taking stock of himself and in estimating the demands 
and dangers of the work in which he is engaged. If 
any one needs to do this it Is the critic. But such is 
the perversity of human nature that he is the very man 
who most frequently leaves it undone. 

It is a mighty perilous affair to set up in business as 
a Looker-On. 

Wh«a 



74 THE LOOKER'OK 

When I first visited the Hot Springs of Arkansas, 
twenty years ago, the philosophic citizen of that ebullient 
town who undertook my education, advised me, as a 
measure of safety, to leave my gun in the trunk, and 
added the sage counsel: ^^ Whatever you do, don't 
make remarks on a game, or look on at a fight; more 
people die of that disease out here than of any other." 

But in a less vivacious state of society the outward 
perils of criticism are few and slight, compared with its 
inward and personal dangers. There is something in 
the very occupation which exposes the mind engaged in 
it to peculiar risks. He who is continually busied in 
correcting others often succeeds only in spoiling himself. 

Every one can see that the critic is likely to be 
tempted to the folly of superciliousness and a carping, 
censorious habit of mind. The fact that he is occupied 
in passing judgment ui)on the work of his fellow-men 
has a tendency to obscure his remembrance of the truth 
that he is of the same flesh and blood with them. The 
easiness of detecting mistakes— for example, in playing 
the piano, or in writing good English — ^makes him for- 
get the difficulty of avoiding them. But the critic who 
is a mere fault-finder is a futile personage. In his over- 
drawn picture of the ^' Degeneration" of the age he 
proves himself degenerate. It is the business of the 
Looker-On to take a symi)athetic view of things, and to 
reckon obstacles in estimating i)erf ormances. He should 
be ready to credit men with the virtues of their defects, 
as well as to notice the defects of their virtues. He 
should have as keen an eye for merits as for faults, and 
remember that his own discernment may be as truly 
shown in praise as in blame. 

After all, the most immaculate art is not always the 
most precious. There is many a prim, self-satisfied 
prig who has never done anything in the world who 
would be very much less missed than the man who, 
in spite of his errors, has succeeded in doing some- 
thing good. The best rose tree is not that with the few- 
est thorns, but that which b^rs the finest roses. 

Another 






THE LOOKER- OK 75 

Another temptation of the Looker-On is to lay un- 
due weight upon his critical authority, and to imagine 
that his opinion, when printed, becomes a verdict. Crit- 
icism undoubtedly has its functions and powers, but it 
is well to remember that they are not absolute. It can- 
not create great art ; although it has often succeeded in 
exj)osing the pretensions of false art, and thus awakened 
the desire for something better. It cannot call genius 
into existence, but it can make the way plainer and more 
easy for talent. It cannot really write a bad thing up 
and keep it up, any more than it can write a good thing 
down and keep it down; but when bad things have been 
unblushingly lauded, and good things stupidly neglect- 
ed, an honest criticism can do much to clear the atmos- 
phere and let both api)ear in their true light. 

The first duty of the Looker-On, then, is to avoid the 
scornful disdain of the high and mighty, and the super- 
ficial enthusiasm of the light and flighty, and to try to 
see things as they are. This seems like a humble task. 
But if we will attempt it conscientiously, we shall find 
that it is difficult enough to satisfy our ambition, and 
useful enough to be well rewarded. There is still a very 
promising ox)ening in literature for writers who can ob- 
serve accurately and describe truthfully. People are 
quite ready to read the criticisms of men like Sainte- 
Beuve, and Arnold, and Dowden, and Saintsbury, and 
Birrell, and Lowell, and Curtis, and Stedman, because 
they are clarifying and illuminative. Their permanent 
value dei)ends upon the closeness of their correspondence 
with the facts. Critics themselves are judged, in the 
long run, by the lucidity with which they have perceived, 
and the sincerity with which they have expressed, the 
real relations of life and art. 

It cannot be denied that the Looker-On, virtuously 
resolving to tread this plain path of accurate observa- 
tion, truthful interpretation, and fair judgment of people 
and things, will meet with many temptations to turn 
aside into other ways, less arduous and more alluring. 

There are at least three schools of current criticism 

which 



76 720? LOOKER'OK 

which demand small effort and make large promise of 
immediate remuneration. The first of these may be 
called the thnd-and-blonder school. The easiest way in 
the world to attract ix>pnlar notice is to set out npon a 
career of indiscriminate abuse. It is said that the late 
Lord Randolph Churchill first gained the public ear by 
the Tivacity and violence with which he boxed it. The 
old comedian's recipe for keeping the attention of the 
audience was very simple: *^ When you are at a loss what 
to do, smash the china ! " Preachers, even, do not dis- 
dain the path to fame by way of vitui)eration. And crit- 
ics, from Jeffreys down, have been prone to follow it. 
Those who adopt this method delight in nothing else so 
much as in flaying a new poet, or beating down a new 
musician, or in driving a new actor off the stage with 
verbal cabbage-stalks and the stale eggs of ridicule, or, 
best of all, in drawing a fierce indictment of imbecility 
and immorality against the present generation of man- 
kind. There is a twist in unregenerate human nature 
toward this kind of work, at least in certain moods. 
I suppose the mildest-mannered of men has moments in 
which he would like to cut a throat, or scuttle a ship. 
The ability to inilict pain gives a sense of power. But 
then, I am quite sure, no one will maintain that this is 
a h^thy state of mind, or calculated to foster clear 
perceptions and sound judgment. 

At the other extreme is the puff-and-plunder school 
of criticism. This also has an easy method and some 
attractions. It deals in unqualified praise for cer- 
tain qualified performers. It revels in the discovery 
and announcement of new Shakesi)eares, Thackerays, 
Gtarricks, Titians, Beethovens, and Jenny Linds — but 
always within the boundaries of the family circle or 
stock company to which the critics belong. Their point- 
of -view is, that appreciation, like charity, begins at 
home — ^and ends there. Verily they have their reward. 
They usually make a contract for it. They resemble 
the hero of Lowell's " Fable for Critics " : 

** Not a deed wotdd he do, nor a word would he utter, 
TQl he*d weighed its relation to plain bread and butter.** 



THE LOOKER-ON. 77 

I wonld be nnderstood as si)6akiiig now only of those 
who profess to be impaxtial and unbiassed observers. 
For the writers who are openly employed in the service 
of publishing houses, or art firms, or dramatic enter- 
prises, to draw favorable attention to their produc- 
tions, we should have nothing but respect. Theirs 
is an honorable business, and one that offers oppor- 
tunity for the exercise of a very fine skill. There is 
no branch of commerce which has been more im- 
proved in modern times. I know an advance agent 
whose conversation is as brilliant and engaging as that 
of Sydney Smith, and a book-announcer who writes his 
notices in the purest English, sparkling with wit and 
full of apt illustrations. The advertising pages in the 
backs of the magazines are as entertaining to me as the 
earlier columns of reading-matter — which are treated 
with more consideration and cost less money. But 
then, I like to know, and to remember, the difference 
between the two kinds of pages ; and I cannot help 
thinking that critics are sometimes tempted, by various 
considerations, to forget or to obscure it. 

The Looker-On, in these days of universal advertise- 
ment, must be on his guard against the peril of being 
transformed into a sandwich man or a bill-poster. 

There is another school of criticism, midway between 
the thud-and-blunder and the puff-and-plunder, which 
may be called the gush-and-wonder school. It is the 
literary representative of those familiar people who 
say, " I don't know anything about music, or painting, 
or books, hut IJcnow whai Ilike^'^ and then they pro- 
ceed to tell you at great length and with much enthusi- 
asm the story of their confessedly unreasonable likings. 
In private life they are often amusing and sometimes 
profitable. It is pleasant to observe the transparent 
revelations of character in their unstudied admirations. 
I have seldom spent a more diverting half -hour than at 
a New England tea-party where the dear old ladies of 
the sewing circle were raving over "Trilby," and de- 
claring that they would all be perfectly delighted to go 

and live in the Latin Quarter of Paris ! 

But 



78 IHE LOOKER-ON. 

But it is worth remembering that a taste which is 
not based npon knowledge, and backed np by good 
reasons, is better adapted to private enjoyment than to 
public expression. The critic who is forever telling 
the world what he likes, without taking pains to ex- 
plain and justify his liking on good and sufficient 
grounds, is not much of a critic after all. He is only 
an exclamation point. 

Real criticism — criticism that is worth the amount 
of human labor that is needed to produce a page of 
print, and of human patience that is required to read it 
— is something more than the expression of personal 
prejudices and prepossessions. It is the discovery of 
principles, and the illustration of laws, and the conse- 
quent illumination of life and art. 

The art of music, and painting, and sculpture, and 
poetry, and fiction, and acting are not affairs of chance ; 
they are products of skill; and skill always has an idea 
behind it and an aim in front of it. The critic's busi- 
ness is to apprehend the idea, and to appreciate the 
aim, and measure the means, which have been used to 
bring them together. Take, for example, the art of 
story-telling. The short stories of Miss Wilkins, and 
Miss Jewett, and Mrs. Slosson are better than the 
tedious tales which are printed in the Weekly Wrap- 
ping-Paper^ not merely because you and I like them 
better — the sentence must be reversed — ^we like them 
better because they are better. And the question that 
the Looker-On has to answer is. Why ? Their excellence 
is very different. Miss Wilkins is dramatic; her stories 
always have a situation and an epigram. Miss Jewett 
is idyllic; she makes a little picture, and the figures 
and the landscape belong together. Mrs. Slosson is sym- 
pathetic; she has the faculty of putting herself in the 
place of the quaintest, remotest characters, and making 
you feel the pathos and the humor of their point-of- 
view. In all of these writers there is a quality of dis- 
tinction, a choice of method, and an artistic perfection 
of result, which the critic ought to consider, if he in- 
tends 



THE LOOKER-ON. 79 

tends to write about them, and of which he must be 
able to give some intelligent account, if he wishes 
thoughtful readers to have any respect for his observa- 
tions. 

I do not mean by this that the Looker-On should 
divest himself of all personal likings in regard to art or 
literature, and look on at the passing show as coldly as 
at the progress of an experiment in chemistry. To do 
that would be to yield to one of his perils — ^and not the 
least of them. The gusto of criticism comes from emotion 
and enthusiasm, even as its nutritive quality comes from 
intelligence and reason. I would not choose to live 
ux)on spicy salads, nor upon unsalted porridge, but 
ui)on wholesome dishes well flavored. How admirable 
in this resi)ect is the book which Mr. W. D. Howells 
has lately given us with the title "My Literary Pas- 
sions" I It is full of generous admirations, expressed 
with piquancy and vigor ; but they are by no means 
blind. He never forgets, nor fears, to give a reason for 
the faith that is in him ; and the story of his love for 
books, interwoven with the story of his life, is an in- 
struction in living, as well as a guide to reading. 

But the danger of indulging too strong predilections 
in the matter of art is that they have a tendency to 
become exclusive and narrow. Because Abana and 
Pharpar are beautiful rivers, it does not follow that 
the Jordan is a mere mud-puddle. Miranda sings the 
part of Marguerite to perfection ; and Bubio plays the 
nocturnes of Chopin magically ; and Antonius is a 
wonderful interpreter of Wagner's music ; but shall we 
therefore refuse to listen to all other musicians ? Let us 
avoid provincialism, and keep an open mind. It takes 
all sorts to make a world, and there are varieties of 
excellence. The object of culture is to create a high 
standard and a catholic taste. 

The honest Looker-On desires to do something, in a 
humble way, to promote this object. He is not a parti- 
san of any school in art. He is an admirer of all good 
work, by whomsoever it may be done ; and he wants to 

understand 



80 THE LOOKER-ON. 

understand the secret of ita performance and the sonice 
of its i>ower. He tries not to forget his own limitations, 
nor to ignore the perils of his occupation. If he fails 
to appreciate things that are well done, if he falls into 
a state of mind where ^' man pleases him not nor woman 
either," he suspects that it may be due to some imper- 
fection in his own vision — some cloud of conceit, or 
spleen, or prejudice— more than to the degeneracy of 
mankind in general and artists in particular. He knows 
that he cannot see things as they are, unless he keeps 
his eyes clear and his glasses clean. He feels and con- 
fesses that in order to play the Looker-On decently and 
profitably he must take frequent and careful looks 
within. 




It is a very lock; state of affairs for operatic singers and managers 
tJiat tlie London and New York seasons do not coincide, but that the 
English season begins a tew weeks after the American ends. Were it 
not for tbis tact Messrs. Abbe; and Oran and Sir Augustas Harris 
would soon coroe to grief. The sio^rs would put themselves up at 
auction and demand even more exorbitant rates than at present, whQe 
the managers would Iiave to tel^raph for reserved rooms in a poor- 
house. I saw a statement in a London paper the other da; to the 
effect that Harris's payroll for his London Company amounts to about 
t2G,000 a week, and I fancy ttiat Abbey and Qrau expend a much big- 
ger sum than that. Were these managers to bid against one another 
Helba and Jean de Beezkg would probably demand 96,000 a ni^t, like 
Patti and Paderewski 

Owing to the fact that the London season lasts far into July, I had 
an opportunity to attend some of the closing performances of the past 
summer. A glance at the repertory, however, cured me of all desire 
to go, for it consisted chiefly of the oldest barrel-organ operas, which 
seem to have enjoyed a sort of revival, thanks to the popularity of — 
Patti and Tamagno I If any further comment were needed on the 
present state of operatic taste in London it would be provided by this 
list of the operas given, and the number of times : Fautt, 8 ; Carmen 
and Cavallerui, ; Borneo, Otello, Pagliaad, S ; Trovatttre, i ; Harold, 
Lucia, Bigoletto, Traviata, Lohengrin, Fra Diavolo, 8 ; Orfeo, Pht'Ie- 
Mon and BawHe, Le Prophite, Don Juan, Figaro, Barbier, Falttaff, 
Tan»hAiiaef, 3; Mefigtofele, Navarraiae, Hugvenots, Petrvceio, 1, 

Was the refusal of Jean de BeszkS to sing in London a consequenoa 
of such a repertory, or was the repertory a consequence of his refusal 
to sing? Perhaps chiefly the former, lor it is well known that be fi 
heartily tired of the barrel-organ operas and now finds his chief d» 
I^^t in singing the Wsgner operas. He will certainly be heard In 
New York Uiis winter In a much finer repertory than that which 
Harris provided for Uie Londoners. Harris had, indeed, promised the 
great tenor a chance to make his ddbut in London as Tristan ; but the 
refusal of Mottl to conduct Triatan and Isolde except after a number 
of rehearsals such as Harris thought he could not grant, caused the 
project to fall to the frround, London's loss will be New York's gain ; 

for 



82 THE LOOKER-ON. 

for now 106 shall be the fl»t to hear Jean de Beesk^ as Triataii, and 
under a oondnctor greater even than Mottl^Anton SeidL 

• 
WmLB in London I had a welcome opportanity, at a dinner-party, 

of hearing a soprano formerly well known to Americans as Miss Amy 
Sherwin« who is now the wife of Hr, Hugo GKhrlits, the genial and swy 
oessful manager of the Paderewski concerts. Mrs. GOrlitz is an Aus- 
tralian, and I was particularly interested in finding that her voice has 
the same purity, sweetness, and spontaneous charm as that of her 
countrywoman, lime. Helba. It nxade me wonder whether we are to 
have, in the near future, a distinct and unmistakable school of Aus- 
tralian singers. I hope so ; there is plenty of room for one. 

Mrs. Sherwio-G^^rlitz has not only a beautiful voice but a charming 
style, and her enunciation is a model of clearness. I tried to persuade 
her to visit America again, but she has so many engagements in Eng- 
land that she does not care to cross the ocean again, even althoqgh 
Mr. (}5rlitz will, as usual, accompany Mr. Paderewski on bis coming 
American tour. He is convinced that it will be a bigger success even 
than his first two tours ; one of the best reasons for believing so being 
the fact that his last recital in London drew a larger audience (over 
15,000) than any previous concert. 

At the same dinner-party I had the pleasure of meeting Bignor 
Randegger and several other London musicians and critics, one of 
whom told me he had expected to find Mr. Joseph Bennett am<mg the 
guests ; adding that my onslaughts on that eminent critic, especially 
in niy Wagner biography, had won me many friends in London ; for 
Mr. Bennett has an unpleasant way of showing his daws in the T>aiii§ 
T^legfrapK^ which has the largest circulation of all London papers. I 
hope it was not my presence that prevented Mr. Bennett from enjoy- 
ing the excellent dinner provided, for I can assure him that in spite of 
all critical tilts I do not bear him the slightest personal ill-will, and 
should have been d«;lighted to make his acquaintance. 

Musical critics ought to follow the example of the lawyers who 
are often intimate friends in private no matter how much they may 
abuse each other in court. If Mr. Bennett has enjoyed my oomments 
on him half as much as I have his frequent intimations, during the 
last ten or twelve years, that he *' believed ** I was "a musical critic 
in New York,** there is no reason why we should not be the best of 
friends. I am not so sensitive as my instructor in philosophy, the 
late Professor Bowen, of Harvard, who during the last twenty years 
of his life delivered a violent annual course of lectures against John 
Stuart Mill, chiefly, I believe, because that philosopher once referred 
in a book to " one Bowen, an obscure North American metaphysician.*' 

Aftkr leaving London I spent a few days in Paris, where I could 
not resist the temptation to attend a performance of the " WalkQre." 
I wanted to see whether it was the charm of Wagner's art alone that 
had given this work such extraordinary popularity in Paris (where it 
bad more performances in two years than it ever had in any (German 

city). 



THE LOOKER-ON. 83 

city), or whether the performance itself contributed to this success. 
I came to the conclusion that to Wagner alone, and to the scene- 
painters, belonged the credit. A more mediocre lot of singers I never 
heard anywhere. Not that they were bad, for most of them had an 
ag^reeable quality of voice and sang in time, but their voices were too 
weak for this music, and they had no conception of the true Wag- 
nerian style of song. Consequently they missed many of the finest 
points— almost as many as the conductor, who had absolutely no con- 
ception of the dramatic fire and passion inherent in Wagner's score. 
The orchestra in itself was admirable— but the best-drilled army will 
lose a battle if it has no good general. The scenic effects, on the 
other band, especially the colored clouds, were admirable, and the 
ride of the Valkyries is nowhere so realistically done as iu Paris. 

The Grand Op^ra is a superb building, without and within, but in 
the matter of comfort and acoustic properties it leaves a good deal to 
desire. Most of the seats, even in the boxe<«, are inconveniently 
placed, and unless you are in the parquet the huge central chandelier 
is a luminous obstacle to enjoyment of what goes on on the stage. 
In the matter of illumination and side-lights the Paris Op^ra is far be- 
hind the times. The audience, too, is not quite up to date. While 
there was no loud talking — at any rate near my seat — a number of 
spectators had a most offensive habit of interrupting the fiow of the 
musio by applauding the vocalists. Possibly this applause was paid 
for ; it should be hissed down by those who are not paid. Upon the 
whole I was disappointed with the Grand Opera, and came to the con- 
clusion that it is not what it was even twenty years ago when I first 
heard a performance in it. It is a noteworthy fact that for first nights 
and spedal occasions the Paris Op6ra now usually imports the leading 
sneers from Germany. « « 

At Vevey I had the pleasure of spending a few days with Mr. E. 
A* MacDowell, whom Mr. Seidl is not alone in regarding as a more 
original composer than Brahms. Like all great composers Mr. 
MacDowell is a lover of nature, and the view of the upper end of Lake 
Geneva from his windows was fine enough to inspire any number of 
masterpieces of American music. I say American music, for although 
many of Mr. MacDowelPs pieces were inspired and penned abroad there 
is a distinct national as well as individual flavor to them, which will 
mark the beginning of a new American school of music. Mr. MacDow- 
ell is not only an original thinker, he is also a conscientious artist. 
When he has a happy thought he does not, like too many of our com- 
posers, write it off hastily and carelessly, as if it were intended for 
the columns of an ephemeral newspaper, but keep^ on rewriting 
and filing till his innate sense of form and style is satisfied. Every 
connoisseur feels this at once in playing his music ; there is not a re- 
dundant bar, hardly a detail that could be improved. 

Mr. MacDowell is fortunate in having a wife who is not only a 
charming companion but a most excellent musician and critic, to 
whose judgment he can always refer in case of doubt when he is re- 
vising 



84 THE LOOKER-ON. 

▼ifling bis oompontions. At Vevey he was not writing a naw work, 
but revising one several years old. He seemed to be more or leas dis» 
oouraged about it, and was not quite sure whether he ought not to 
destroy it altogether. It will probably prove one of his best works. 
I say this only " on general principles,** for I did not see the score and 
the hotel piano was so badly out of tune that he could not play for me. 
I was sorry I did not have an opportunity to meet another eminent 
American composer who Is spending the summer near the Lake of 
Geneva — ^Hr. Templeton Strong. He has his own villa near Vevey 
and had placed his music-room at Mr. MacDowell*s disposal, but be 
himself had gone up into the high Alps, in an almost inaooessible 
place where clouds abound. The two composers are intimate friends, 
and Mr. MacDowell has an aggravating habit of sending postal-cards to 
his friend in the gray clouds, telling him how bright the sunshine is 
down at Yevey and how brilliant the colors on the lake. 

V 

After leaving Vevey I had no more opportunity to meet musicians 
or hear music — excepting cowbells and the yodling of guides and peas- 
ants. But in the large Alpine hotels one has abundant opportunity to 
keep informed on musical topics, as on all ethers, since the reading- 
rooms are always supplied with the leading newspapers in various 
languages. In good weather no one in his senses would waste a mo- 
ment on newspapers when he might be climbing and enjoying Alpine 
scenery ; but on a rainy day, when fresh midsummer snow is falling 
on the mountain-sides that encircle your hotel, a warm reading-room 
and a newspaper are not to be sneezed at. Thus it happened the 
other day that I picked up a copy of a Paris paper and found therein 
an article by Frandsque Saroey on conservatories, embodying some 
sensible reflections. 

The charge is not infrequently made in American newspapers that 
our conservatories turn out few pupils who beoome distinguished as 
performers or composers. But I do not think that Europe is any bet- 
ter off in this respect. England, France, Italy, Germany have scores of 
conservatories, with thousands of pupils, but are not good singers and 
players extremely scarce in those countries — not to speak of good com- 
posers ? It is true that in France most of the eminent composers were 
in their day students at the Paris Ck>nservatoire, and frequently win- 
ners of the Prix de Rome, yet in the article I have referred to M. Sarcey 
thinks it necessary to combat the idea that we ought to expect music 
schools to supply the world w ith musical geniuses. He rightly contends 
that if the Paris Conservatory does not launch many original musicians 
into the world the reason is that originality in any art is a very rare 
thing, and one that cannot be taught by the best schools and teachers 
in the world. The duty of professors is to teach their pupils musical 
grammar ; the rest they must have in themselves ; and if a genius is 
so seldom found in the conservatories that is not their fault but their 
misfortune ; which, however, does not diminish their general utility. 
After all, schools are not built for geniuses but for ordinary pupils. A 
genius cannot learn from an ordinary proteBsor but only from another 
^nius^as Tausig from Liszt, Josef Hofmann from Rubinstein* 





DRAMATIC 
NOTES 




By Wm. H. Fleming. 



Thkbb is a prevalent opinion that the drama in this country at the 
present time is in a decadent condition. There is some reason for this. 
Many of the plays which are presented on the hoards of our theatres, 
when judged either from the moral or intellectual standpoint, are of a 
low character. They are deficient in thought. Scenery, instead of 
beings an accessory, has too often become the primary factor in the 
representation. The frame has become more important than the 
picture, the setting than the jewel. " The play " has ceased to be 
" the thing,** and has become secondary to the scenery and the cos- 
tumes. The moral tone also of many of the plays is objectionable. 
Vice is made amusing, sometimes alluring. 

This condition of the drama is, I am inclined to think, but tempo- 
rary. There is enough of the standard drama still presented at our 
theatres to lead me to this conclusion. First in importance is Mr. 
Irving's work. The effect of that in elevating the drama is almost 
incalculable. The fact that he has been knighted by Queen Victoria 
is profonndly significant. The statute of Elizabeth, by which players 
were classed with vagabonds, and their profession made unlawful, is, 
I believe, still on the statute-books of England. And yet, solely on 
account of his work as a player, has he been honored. And justly so, 
for the plays which he puts upon the stage are works of art and are in 
the highest degree educative. In the tour which he has just begun in 
America he will present the following dramas: " Faust,*' * 'King Arthur,** 
"Waterloo,** "Don Quixote," "Louis XI.,'* "The Bells,*' "The Lyons 
MaU.** " Much Ado About Nothing,'* " Macbeth,** " Merchant of Venice." 
"CJharlesL,** "The Ck)rsican Brothers,** "NanceOldfield,**" Olivia, or. 
The Vicar of Wakefield,** and "Journeys End in Lovers Meeting.** Of 
these the following have never been previously presented in this 
country: "King Arthur,** "Waterloo,** "Dox Quixote,'* " Macbeth,** 
** The Corsican Brothers,'* " Journeys End in Lovers Meeting.** These 
productions will be, in every detail, dramatically correct, and produced 
exactly as they were at the Lyceum Theatre. Some idea of the scru- 
pulous care exercised can be gained from the fact that the company 
which Mr. Irving has brought with him consists of one hundred and 
twenty-five persons. Not only the acters, but also the managers, the 
Qboms, machinists, electricians, leader of orchestra, are all brought 

frcm 



86 THE LOOKER ON. 

from London and are part of the Lyceum Theatre Company. All the 
8Cf uery, which weighs some seven hundred tons, is brought with him. 
The result of all this care ia that Mr. Irving presents each of the plays 
as a work of art. His season in New York City begins October 28th 
and lasts for eight weeks. There is a supplementary season b^in- 
ning May 4th next, and lasting for two weeks. 

• 
Mb. Richard Mansfixld is also an exponent of the beat diama. 

During the coming season he expects to present at the Qarrick Thea- 
tre ** Bicheiieu,** "The Fool*s Revenge," "The House of the Wolf," a 
dramatisation of Stanley Weyman*s story of that name, and ''Bodlan.** 
In addition to these, which Mr. Mansfield has not previously acted, 
will be plays from his regular repertoire. He expects to occopy his 
stage in November. 

Previous to that, beginning October 7th, Madame Modjeaka will 
act for two weeks. She will open her engagement with '* Measure 
for Measure," and will present among other plays " Much Ado About 
Nothing," '* Macbeth," <* Magda." She, like the two great actors 
mentioned, is an honor to her profession, and, like them, ia a great 
artist. « » 

Mr. Daly's Shakespearian revival the coming season will be 
" Henry lY." He has arranged the two parts as one play. FaMag 
will be played by Mr. Lewis, and Prinot Hai by Miss Rehan. 



THE PRISONER OF ZENDA. 

Mr. AivTHOmr Hopb'b novel with the above title has been dramatjaed 
by Mr. Edward Rose. The play was put on the stage at the Lyoeum 
Theatre last month and acted by Mr. Sothem and his company. It is 
a romantic play, and as such is a refreshing variation from the mor^ 
bid, sensational society plays which to a great extent occupy the 
boards of our theatres. 

The plot of the play is described in the following passage taku 
from the book : '* It is perhaps as strange a thing as has ever been in 
the history of a country, that the king's brother and the king's per- 
sonator, in a time of profound peace, near a placid, undisturbed coun- 
try town, under semblance of amity, should wage a desperate war for 
the person and life of the king." 

The play is divided into a prologue and four acts. In the former 
Prince Rudolph, the heir apparent to the throne of Ruritania» is ac- 
cused by Gilbert, Earl of Rassendyll, of undue intimacy with his 
Countess. The consequence is a duel, which is fought in the house of 
the Earl, whither the Prince has escorted the Countess. It is fought 
in the night. The Prince is wounded. On the conclusion of the duel, 
Duke Wolfgang, the Black Elphberg, cousin to the Prince, and heir to 
the throne of Ruritania in case the Prince dies, says, " It is morning, 
and my day has dawned." In the four acts which follow, the struggle 

between 



THE LOOKER-ON. W 

between these two for the possession of the throne is faithfully por- 
trayed. 

The dramatization has heen well done. The dialogue is good. It 
is terse, at times humorous and pathetic. The action is regular. 

Mr. Sothern assumes the dual oharacter of Rudolph the Fifth, the 
King, and of Rudolph Rassendyll, a young Englishman. It is a finished 
piece of acting, oscillating between the comic and the serious. The 
former is especially noticeable in the coronation scene. Mr. Sothem's 
humor in this scene has a coolness and audacity which are very effect- 
ive. In the serious passages, e. gr., the love-affair with the Princess 
Flavia, he is not IxMsterous or violent. lake the elder Salvini, he gives 
one the impression of being stirred profoundly, of feeling intensely, 
but also of having control over his emotions. I observed that in pro- 
nouncing the word " exquisite " he put the accent on the second in- 
stead of the first qrllable. In such a finished actor as Mr. Sothern this 
Is a defect. 

The other characters are well acted, notably (}olonel Sapt, Mr. 
Buckstone; the Princess Flavia, Miss Kimball; and Antoinette De 
Mauban, Miss Shotwell. 

The play as a whole is remarkably well presented. It is refined ; 
at times thriUing, though never powerful ; and there is an intei^ 
mingling of pathos and humor. It bids fair, and justly so, to be pop- 
ular. 





MCrSICIANS AND MUSIC-LOYERa 
Br WnxiAX Fanrnt Afthobp. 

IfB. Apthobp's book * conBisto of a series of essays, the first one of 
which giTes the title to the volume. They have been published in the 
reviews. Two of them, those on Bach and Jfusieions and Jfitne- 
LoverBf were originally deUvered as lectures before the Lowell Insti- 
tute in Boston. In the latter essay he refers to the lack of ** the crit- 
ical habit" in the average music-lover, and that, in Mr. Apthorp^b 
opinion, is " the fundamental obstacle to intelligent conversation on 
music ** between professionals and music-loving laymen. " When,** he 
says, " people are talking about music they are not talking about the 
music itself at all, but about how it makes them feel.** 

''Few people really talk about a symphony, a song, or an opera ; 
what they do talk about is the impression the work has made upon 
them. . • . Most people speak of music merely subjectively, speak of 
how they like it or do not like it ; only the few either speak or think 
of it objectively, of what it really is or is not." 

In the case of trained musicians it is the reverse. What interests 
them is the music itself. With one of them Mr. Apthorp listened to 
a fine performance of Schumann's overture to Manfred, The only 
oomment the musician made was: " How much more effect Schumann 
has drawn from his horns here, by using the open notes, than he often 
does by writing chromatic passages for them." Aoother fact illus- 
trating the same truth is that Berlioz, in liis essays on Beethoven*s 
symphonies, " seldom rises above the consideration of technical details." 

In specifying the different requisites of musical appreciation, the 
author mentions ** the distinct recognition of a melody of the melodic 
phrase " ; and ** the perception of the relation borne by one part of a 
composition to another, that is, the perception of the organic char- 
acter of its structure." These two are the essential elements in an 
intelligent appreciation of music. 

The effect of music on the emotions is, in the case of the artist, 
very minor. ** He looks upon music as music ; the most perfect 
orchestral thunder-storm in the world leaves him cold and indifferent 
if it is not at the same time a fine piece of composition." 

Such is the critical standard by which Mr. Apthorp judges music 
and mus i cians. In the following essays he apphes it to Bac^ Handel^ 
Meyerbeer^ Offenbach, Bahert Frants, and Otto Drese^-the last two of 
whom he describes as <'Two Modem Olassidsts*'— and John SuUivan 

* ** MMtd am amd Uutto^Lomn,^ OhM. SorlbiMr'tBoos. 

DwighL 



THE LOOKER'OJSr. 89 

Dwight. The last essay is on Musie and Sdente. The result is a book 
which, while written in a popular vein, possesses real critical value 
and will amply repay stadious perusal. 

LETTERS OF A BARITONE.* 
By Franoib Walker. 

DUBING late years there has been no lack of books descriptive of 
such places of general interest as Paris or Italy. I take it that the 
demand for this class of book indicates a desire on the part of the read- 
ing public not so much for general information as for the point of 
view of many and various-minded men about places with which they 
(the public) are more or less familiar. It also goes to prove that the 
public realize that books of travel differ not only as two portraits of 
the same man would differ, but also as the details of the simplest oc- 
currence would differ if written by two men. 

If the public cares for the point of view of the author the interest- 
ing question arises as to the kind of eyes through which the public 
likes best to see its foreign countries. On this point there can be little 
doubt. The sales prove that an author like Mr. H. T. Finck, who can 
look at nature with the eyes of a poet and at peoples with the intelli- 
gence of a philosopher, and who can moreover convey by the medium 
of a happy style his ideas to others, is by far the most popular. V ig^r 
of style, directness of observation, sympathy, and humor are the qual- 
ities that we find in Mr. Walker's Letten of a Baritone. Italy is in 
these pages clearly and ideally presented before us. The softness of 
the air and the blue of the Italian sky we feel and see. The palaces 
of Venice and Florence gain a new beauty and splendor in our imagi- 
nation by Mr. Walker's descriptions. The few lines descriptive of the 
people whom the author met are sufficient to bring them before us and 
to make us feel that we know them. 

The book consists of a series of letters written by the author to his 
sister. They consist, in the main, of descriptions of the author's ex- 
perience while pursuing the study of art in Italy. The reflections on 
the various methods of voice-culture are of more than passing interest 
and should be read by every student of vocalism who is not confident 
of his ability to discover charlatanism, or to justly estimate the quali- 
ties that go to make up the great or successful teacher. Knowledge 
may be power; but not always is the knowledge of technique joined to 
the ability to apply principles to many and variously endowed pupils. 
We quote from the preface to Mr. Walker's book : 

** The bulky packet of my old letters which you gave me last year— 

those sent you from Florence when I was studying singing in that 

charming city — now returns to you in this form. They are published 

with the sincere desire to make easier for others the way which for me 

was fraught with difficulties. Those difficulties were not merely the 

ordinary ones that beset the stranger in a strange land. Truly, they 

are always many for the student who, not overburdened with money, 

* GQuM, Scrilmer*! Sons. 

and 



00 THE LOOKER-ON, 

and therefore anxioui to aoooinpliBb much in a short time, goee to a 
foreign country provided with but meagre instruction aa to how be 
may live there eafely and economically. 

" Before such a ventun it is well.to know what preparation to make 
for it, and especially how to avoid the pitfalls of charlatanism. Ite 
unscrupulous, plausible wrecker of voices is found everywliere, but the 
thoughtful student may learn how to avoid him at home and abroad. 

" It is my earnest hope that these letters may be of interest and use 
to many in our profession and to those desirous of entering it. To 
some they may afford help to clarify things and theories about which 
doubts have arisen. For others there is practical information about 
the cost of living and studying in Italy ; and perhaps some will find 
herein sympathy and encouragement, if they too work against great 
disadvantages and grow weary and despondent upon that long, steep 
path which must be travelled by whoever would arrive at any excel- 
lence in vocal art. 

' ' I have aimed to be fkir in my description of Italy as a land toward 
which students of singing should continue to direct their steps. I am 
always grateful for what the song-dowered country has given to me, 
and the deep sense of my indebtedness to her has made it a pleasant 
task to send back thus to your keeping the letters which recount the 
experiences of my student-days in Florence. Written as they were to 
you — ^the choicest of comrades— they may be helpful to some who, 
like yourself, cannot turn from the nearer duties to travel afar. Such 
may, perhaps, by some things in these pages, be at least aroused to 
fresh enthusiasm for the greatness and beauty of the art of song. 

'*Tou will remember that those old letters contained some things 
which might possibly have been allowed to keep plaoe herein, had it 
been my design to make a book acceptable to the widest conceivable 
circle of readers. They.have been cut out to make room for whatever 
was likely to be of more direct use to singers, to students of singing, 
and to lovers of music generally. Still, with the belief firmly fixed in 
my mind that every serious student needs to keep himself in touch 
with all the arts and with all beauty, I have ventured to retain in my 
pages some of the necessarily sketchy descriptions of things and scenes 
which were to me valuable or beautiful. Many such details, which at 
a first glance may seem extraneous to the main purpose of the book, 
will perhaps ultimately be found confiuent with that purpose, and of 
interest as having belonged to the daily life of a student who was in 
great earnest to make all sources feed him in his growth into an 
artist. 

<* Florence was very beautiful to me, and all the Tuscan country 
about had even more than the old charm in its hi^ways and byways. 
Never before had the towers of the lovely city seemed to spring so 
lightly into air so delicately asure, and never before had the valleys 
and hills beyond her battlemented walls been so alluring. Around all 
lay Italy— bright Italy, which has given me so much that now I cannot 
do less than try in this poor fashion to win for her the affection and 
interest of those who should surely love her for the sake of the art she 
has ever cherished with true devotion.*' 



By F. Towmskmd Sodtbwiok. 

TBI ever-changiDg needa of & ILving language oecesailate not odIj 
th« birth ot new word* for new !deM, but the impoeition of unac- 
ouatomed burdens upon tha already overworked elder brothers in the 
▼ocabulary. 

The word Elocution stood, and yet ttands, for vocal culture for 
speech purpoaea, and for the arts of reading and reciting in public Of 
lata, the study of Pantomime— that is, expression by bodily action 
alone — which is sacjondaiy to elocutionary expression, has come to 
have, with many artists, greater prominence even than the voice. 
Statue posing and exhibitions of pure pantomime have grown out of 
the earlier rudimentary studies in posture and gesture. The influence 
ot French art, in which pantoiniine has ever held an honorable place, 
haa been felt in America, chiefly through the prominence given to 
actiiHi by the disciples of Delsarte, until the word elocution, which is 
aasociated in the minds of many with this as well as allied forms of 
entertainment, is In danger of losing its apedflc and useful meaning of 
vocal expression <u»i»ted by bodily action. Again, out of the needs 
of training the body for ease, grace, repose, and precision in expression, 
there has come into prominence a system of gymnastic exercises which, 
originally designed tor artistic bodily development, have been fotmd 
to be of great hygienic value, while answering to a greater degree 
than others to the requirements ot thousands who, without ambition 
to appear In public, wish to acquire a oertain degree of ease of manner 
and grace of action in society. 

This system differs fundamentally from others, not because of the 
fwomioenoe given to any particular set of movements, but from the 
fact that it is based upon and continually associates movement with 
expfeMton. Originally, as bos been said, taught in conjunction with 
IMntomimic expression, the Delsarte system of eeathetio physical cult- 
ute to atill associated In the minds of Ute majority with elocution, and 
no school of elocution pretends to ignore it. 

Apart from the training of the reader and reciter, each ot the 
braachea of study we have mentioned is equally useful in the prepara- 
tion tor two other arts which, widely dissimilar in some respects, have 

yet 



92 THE LOOKER-ON. 

yet much in oommon. These are Actiog and Oratory. Eloeotion and 
Oratory are by no means synonymous ; the latter term includes much 
that is not in the province of the former. Rhetoric, for example, and 
the practice of extemporaneous speaking and debate, belong to 
oratory exclusively. Again* the stage makes notably dilTerant r^- 
qui rements from the platform, and these must be met by dilTerent 
methods, or, perhaps one should say, by different applications of the 
same methods. 

Oratory and Acting are at the opposite poles of ezpressiTe art 
Recitation, which partakes of characteristics peculiar to each, oocnpies 
a somewhat undeflned position between them. In neither sphere are 
the conditions of artistic success identical. The actor is rarely a good 
speech-maker, nor always successful as a reader, while the clever 
speaker, or even the best-equipped elocutionist, may fail utterly upon 
the stage. 

Nevertheless, these arts. Pantomime, Elocution, Oratory, Acting, 
with all their diversity, have much more of unity. Whatever may be 
their relative importance artistically or socially, they are all phases of 
human expression, bodily and vocal, and the single word Expression, 
in spite of objections that may be made to its use, seems destined to 
hold its place as the inclusive designation of all arts of manifesting, by 
the living body, the various activities of the mind or soul within. 

It has been objected that the word includes too much ; that music, 
painting, and literature are also expression. The musician says, '* I 
teach musical expression, and so long as you are unable to do that you 
have no right to the exclusive use of our common property in the 
word.** One may answer that although the teacher of expression 
may not be able to translate the laws of his art into the language of 
musical theory, the laws are identical, and a precedent for the mo- 
nopoly might be found in the tendency of painters and sculptors to 
dignify their Art with a capital letter ; but it should be remembered 
that our use of the word in a technical and restricted sense by no 
means prohibits its use in the broadest possible application. So long 
as there is no possibility of misunderstanding, no harm is done. If 
the musician will permit us still to speak of a melodious voice, or a 
musical tone, and the painter will allow musicians and elocutionists to 
dabble in " color," as they have hitherto done, we will grant to all the 
privilege of using our special designation, Expression, in any sense for 
which the dictionary may be authority. 

As a last resort, the teacher of " {esthetic physical culture, elocution, 
pantomime, oratory, and dramatic art," may plead nature*s first law 
of self-preservation in defence of his appropriation of a single word to 
which no art seems to have a prior claim, and which will enable him 
to convey to the casual inquirer the nature of his occupation in a 
manner commensurate with the brevity of life. 



ENOELBERT HUMPERDINCK. 



THE LOOKER-ON 



NOVEMBER, 1896. 



HUMPERDINCK AND HIS OPERA. 

By H. E. Keehbiel. 

^^r^HEBE are few things in contemporaneous musical 
^y history which invite the interest and irritate the 
curiosity of the studious observer so much as a really 
striking success in operatic composition. In the United 
States, where opera exists only as an exotic, and where, 
consequently, only one or two novelties are added to the 
current list every year, and they such as already bear 
the stamp of popular approval, public thought is not 
directed to the wherefore of the additions. The case 
is different in Germany, Italy, and Prance, where 
every year hundreds of new operas are written, scores 
are read and a few are chosen. There has been a 
mighty revolution in the province of musical creation 
since the beginning of the romantic era ; symphonies 
are no longer composed in a day, or operas to order in a 
month or less ; but it does not follow that the output, to 
use an industrial phrase, is smaller now than it was in 
pre-Beethovenian days. In fact it is probably greater 
because of the much greater number of professional 
musicans. Music is become a popular, a democratic 
art- It is no longer the exclusive property of the Church, 
as in its artistic manifestation it was prior to the seven- 
teenth century ; or the pretty plaything of royalty and 
nobility, as it became when secular interests acquired a 
foothold in it, and as it remained until almost the begin- 
ning of the nineteenth century ; and there are probably 
ten musicians now to one in the time of Haydn. So, 
although the difficulties of composition have grown since 
contents became more important than form, the numer- 
ical 



106 THE LOOKER-Oir. 

ical increase in practitioners, the enhancement of the 
prizes to be won financially and socially, the extension 
of institutions devoted to the cultivation of the art, and 
other causes have combined to stimulate the productive 
faculty as it never was stimulated before. There is 
much talk of sterility, yet the a^ is not sterile ; but it 
is extremely hard to please, and the tides of taste 
change rapidly. Only geniuses of the first rank can 
pursue their courses indifferent to the restlessness which 
consumes the multitude around them. And such 
geniuses were always few and must perforce become 
fewer with the decadence of that ingenuousness of 
appreciation and enjoyment which goes hand in hand 
with the growth of technical mastery and the spirit of 
criticism. It is a comforting reflection, however, that 
in spite of the turbulence of the artistic sea, which lifts 
mediocrity to the skies one moment only to engulf it 
the next, something appears on the waves periodically 
to prove that old principles still preserve their validity 
and old impulses their force. 

Of all recent operatic phenomena Engelbert Humi>er- 
dinck' s ' ' Hansel and Gretel ' ' is the most interesting and 
instructive. In several respects the work is unique, 
the most remarkable, perhaps, being that while it treats 
of a subject which comes from the nursery, and hereto- 
fore might have been thought of for the stage, if at all, 
only in connection with the old-fashioned Christmas 
pantomime, its musical investment lifts it to a lofty 
artistic plane, and consorts it with the lyric drama of 
Richard Wagner. Ever since the death of the great 
Oerman poet-composer the minds of critics and musi- 
cal historians have been occupied with the question 
whether or not progress in operatic composition was 
possible in the direction pointed out by him. Of his 
influence upon the style of composition throughout 
the Occidental world there has been no doubt for several 
decades ; but for the greater part it manifested itself in 
the modification of old methods rather than the adop- 
tion of new. In Gfermany , it is true, attempts have been 

made 



THE LOOKER-ON. 107 

made to follow Ms Bystem, but though there have been 
occasional proclamations of success (as in the case of 
Cyril Kistler's " Kunihild,'' and Max Schilling's " Ing- 
welde," for instance) in the end it has been found that 
the experiments have all ended in failure. Naturally 
enough the fact provoked discussion. If no one could 
write in Wagner's manner, was there a future for the 
lyric drama outside of a return to the style which he 
had striven to overthrow ? If there could be no such 
future did not the circumstance afford indubitable 
proof of the failure of the Wagnerian movement as a 
creative force? These questions were frequently an- 
swered in a spirit antagonistic to Wagner, but the 
answers were both over-hasty and short-sighted. It 
needed only that one should come who had thoroughly 
assimilated Wagner's methods, and who had the genius 
to apply them in a spirit of individuality, to demonstrate 
that it is possible to continue the production of lyric 
dramas without returning to the hackneyed manner of 
the opposing school. The composer who did this was 
Humperdinck, and it is peculiarly noteworthy that his 
demonstration acquires its most convincing force from 
the circumstance that instead of seeking his material in 
the myths of antiquity, as Wagner did, he found them 
in the nursery. 

While emphasizing this fact, however, it is well not 
to forget that in turning to the literature of folk-lore 
for an operatic subject Humperdinck was only Carrying 
out one of the principles for which Wagner always con- 
tended. The Mdrchen of a people are quite as much a 
reflex of their intellectual, moral, and emotional life as 
their heroic legends and myths. In fact they are fre- 
quently only the fragments of stories which when they 
were created were the embodiments of the most profound 
and impressive religious conceptions of which the people 
were capable. The degeneration of the Sun-god of our 
Teutonic forefathers into the Hans of Grimm's tale who 
could not learn to shiver and shake, through the Sin- 
fiotle of the VoUunga Saga and the Siegfried of the 

Nihelungerilied 



108 THE LOOKER-ON. 

NiheluTigerdiedy is so obvious that it needs no commen- 
tary. Neither does the translation of Brynhild into 
Domroschen, who is onr Sleeping Beauty. The progiess 
illustrated here is that from myth to MdrcheUj and 
Humperdinck, in writing his fairy opera, or nursery 
opera if you will, paid tribute to German nationalism 
in the same coin that Wagner did when he created his 
'^ Ring of the Nibelung." The difference is not of kind 
but of degree. 

Everything about ** Hansel and Oretel" is charming 
to those who can feel their hearts warm toward the 
family life and folk-lore of Germany, of which we are, 
or ought to be, inheritors. The opera originated like 
Thackeray's delightful ^^ fireside pantomime for great 
and small children^" ''The Rose and the Ring." The 
composer has a sister who is Frau Adelheid Wette, 
wife of a physician in Cologne. She, without any 
particular thought of literary activity, has been in the 
habit of writing little plays for production within the 
family circle. For these plays Herr Humperdinck pro- 
vided the music. In this way grew the first dramatic 
version of the story of "Hansel and Gretel," which 
everybody who has had a German nurse or has read 
Grimm's Fairy Tales knows tells the adventures of a 
brother and sister who, driven into the woods, lost 
themselves there and fell into the toils of the Knusper- 
hexe, that is the Crust Witch, who enticed little boys 
and girls into her house of gingerbread and sweetmeats 
and there ate them up. The original i)erformers of the 
titular parts in the little play were the daughters of 
Frau Wette. Charmed with the effect of the fanciful 
little comedy, Herr Humperdinck suggested its expan- 
sion into a piece with scope enough for theatrical pro- 
duction ; and the opera was the result. It was brought 
forward for the first time in public on December 23, 
1893, in Weimar, and created so profound an impression 
that it speedily took possession of all the principal 
theatres of Germany, crossed the Channel to England, 
made its way into Belgium and Holland, and is now 

preparing 



7 HE L OKER - OJST. 109 

preparing at the Op6ra Comiqne in Paris. For this 
surprising saccess, comparable only with that achieved 
in recent years by "Cavalleria Rusticana," the credit 
is chiefly dne to the mnsic, but the sweet simplicity of 
the old nursery tale is so well preserved in the dramatic 
version and the succession of scenes so artfully con- 
trived that it would be unfair to undervalue Prau 
Wette's collaboration. 

"Hansel and Gretel " is not only Wagnerian in being 
a draught from the well of German nationalism, but also 
in its musical structure. Herr Humx)erdinck was person- 
ally associated with Wagner during the last two years of 
his life, and has ever since been identified with the festi- 
val representations at Bayreuth. He was bom at Siegberg 
on the Rhine, on September 1, 1854, the son of a teacher 
at the local Gymnasium. After concluding his gymna- 
sia! studies he spent four years at the Conservatory 
directed by Ferdinand HiUer, in Cologne, and won 
a free scholarship in the Conservatory at Munich. 
Thither he went, and there spent two more years of 
music study. A composition for chorus and orchestra, 
" Die Wallfarth nach Kevlaar," won the first prize of- 
fered by the Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy Institute, of 
Berlin, which carried with it the means to travel in Italy. 
At the Villa d' Angri near Naples, in the spring of 1880, 
he met Wagner, who invited him [^to go with him to 
Bayreuth and make a copy of the score of *' Parsifal," 
and to help prepare that drama for performance in 1882. 
It was just such work as some of the best known of the 
younger musicians of to-day had done under the super- 
vision of the great regenerator of the lyric drama; notably 
Anton Seidl, who acted as Wagner's artistic secretary 
while the first Bayreuth festival was preparing. It has 
fallen to the lot of Mr. Seidl to direct the musical portion 
of ** Hansel and Gretel " in New York, and the fact has 
a pretty significance in view of the similarity of the rela- 
tionship which he and Herr Humperdinck bore toward 
Wagner in the closing days of his life. As Seidl ma- 
nipulated one of the machines which carried the Rhine 

nixies 



no THE LOOKER-ON. 

nixies in the festival of 1876, so Hnmperdinck, I believe, 
rang the bells of the Temple of the Grail in 1882. After 
the " Parsifal " festival Wagner sought rest in Venice. 
There, as a feature of the Christmas festivities which he 
was planning, he intended to arrange a performance of 
his youthful symphony in C which, while a member of 
his household, Seidl had written out in score from the 
individual parts found in the attic of Tichatschek^s 
house in Dresden. Seidl was conducting the perform- 
ances of the Richard Wagner Theatre in Berlin when 
he received a letter asking him to come to Venice and 
conduct the rehearsals of the orchestra of the laceo 
Benedetto Marcello that had undertaken to play the 
symphony on Prau Cosima Wagner's birthday. Seidl 
accepted the invitation, but Angelo Neumann, the 
director of the opera company, refused to grant him 
the requisite leave of absence, and Seidl never saw his 
master alive again. In his stead Hnmperdinck went to 
Venice, where Wagner tried to secure for him the 
directorship of the Idceo, but failed because of a change 
in the political feeling between Italy and Germany. 
Hnmperdinck then went to Barcelona to assume the 
leadership of the Conservatory concerts there, afterward 
to Cologne as professor of theory at the Conservatory, 
and finally to Frankfort, where he is professor at the 
present time; but meanwhile he has been active at all 
the Bayreuth festivals, and Siegfried Wagner, whom 
Seidl vainly tried to teach the pianoforte when he was 
a lad, is Herr Hnmperdinck' s pupil in comi)08ition. 
Fran Wagner is so interested in him and his opera that 
she has herself undertaken at one of the German the- 
atres to solve the scenic crux of the third act — ^the ride 
of the witch on her broom-stick. 

Hnmperdinck has built up his musical structure in 
^^ Hansel and Gretel " in the Wagnerian manner, and he 
has done so with such fluency and deftness that a musi- 
cal layman might listen to it from beginning to end with- 
out suspecting the fact, save from the occasional employ- 
ment of what may be called Wagnerian idioms. The 

little 



THE LOOKER-ON. Ill 

little work is replete with melodies nearly all of which 
derive their physiognomy from two little songs which 
the children sing at the beginning of the first and second 
acts, and which are frankly borrowed from the folk- 
song literature of Germany. These ditties, however, 
and each of the lyrics which are united in the work, 
contribute characteristic themes out of which the or- 
chestral part is constructed; and these themes are 
developed in accordance with an inter-related scheme 
every bit as logical and consistent as the scheme at the 
bottom of "Tristan and Isolde.'' As in that stupen- 
dous musical tragedy and " The King of the Nibelung " 
the orchestra takes the part played by the chorus in 
Greek tragedy, so in "Hansel and Gretel" it unfolds 
the thoughts, motives, and purposes of the personages of 
the play and lays bare the simple mysteries of the plot 
and counterplot. The careless joy of the children, their 
freedom from fear in the presence of danger, the ap- 
prehension of the parents, promise and fulfilment, 
enchantment and disenchantment — ^all these things are 
expounded by the orchestra in a fine flood of music — 
highly ingenious in its contrapuntal texture, rich in its 
instrumental color, full of rhythmical life — on the sur- 
face of which the idyllic play floats buoyantly like a 
water-lily which 

" starts and slides 
Upon the level in little puffs of wind, 
Tho' anchored to the bottom." 

It is a most engaging work, a refreshment to the mind 
scorched and wearied with the fevered passions of 
the one-act operas which came into vogue with it— a bit 
of gentle fancy which, in this age of restless striving, 
reflects the enduring childhood of art. 




1 12 THE L O OKER - ON. 



THE PRESERVATION OF OPERETTA. 

By W. J. Hekbebson. 

The present state of comic opera in America is some- 
thing that must bring grave anxiety to lovers of that 
delightful form of art. I use the expression comic 
opera out of deference to popular si)eechy which ignores 
the fact that Mozart's ^'Nozze di Figaro" and Verdi^s 
'^ Falstaff " are comic operas and elects to dignify by that 
title such notable works of art as "Wang" and "The 
Princess Bonnie." Let us for the time, then, drop the 
proper appellation, " operetta," and call it comic opera; 
for Heaven knows it is comic enough, with that comedy 
which runs so close to pathos. Operetta ought to be one 
of the most artistic kinds of amusement placed before 
the public. It is capable of the highest achievements 
in literary and musical refinement, beauty and humor. 
It is a form of amusement which, when at its best^ 
appeals to the most cultivated ladies and gentlemen and 
equally to the workingmen and women. Yet, as a matter 
of fact, nine-tenths of the operettas, or comic operas, 
produced in this country at the present time are insults 
to the average intelligence of any large community. 

Of course every city is made up of a good many sorts 
of human beings. It is undeniable that there is a public 
for such stuff as "Wang" or "The Princess Bonnie," 
and the fact that such "works" draw money into the- 
atres may be pleaded as a justification of their produc- 
tion. But do they pay in the long run ? Do they draw 
upon the taste of so laxge a part of the public ? Do they 
establish reputation for the theatre or the manager! 
The answer to these questions is found in the history of 
the Gilbert and Sullivan operettas and the Savoy Theatre. 
Would Mr. D'Oyly Carte's handsome London theatre 
ever have gained the world-wide reputation it now 
enjoys except by the constant production of the best 

operettas! 



THE LOOKER-ON. 113 

operettas ? It is true that Mr. Carte has had failures 
and that at times he has lost large sums of money. But 
he has never lost his dignity; he has never blotted the 
fair fame of his theatre; and he is to-day a rich man. 
But Mr. Carte is a man of considerable cidture. He is 
an educated musician, who, when he desires to hear an 
applicant sing, can sit down at the piano and play the 
accompaniment at sight. He is not merely an adventu- 
rous speculator. He is a manager who knows the nature 
of the materials in which he deals. 

The history of the Gilbert and Sullivan operettas in 
this country ought to be highly instructive to our mana- 
gers ; but it is not. The first of these works to be pro- 
duced here was "H. M. S. Pinafore," which James C. 
Duff unsuccessfully laid before every manager in New 
York before he went to my father and rented from him 
the Standard Theatre. " Pinafore " ran five months at 
the Standard, and its career was stopped only by the hot 
weather. Most of that time it was running at four 
other theatres in New York, while the country was 
scoured with it by travelling companies. The result of 
its success led to the production of other operettas at 
the Standard. ^ ^ Patience ' ' ran six months, and against 
the advice of my father, who was then D'Oyly Carte's 
partner, it was taken off to make way for '^ Claude 
Duval." I was business manager of the Standard at the 
time, and I know what I am talking about when I say 
that the last week's receipts of " Patience " were $6,300. 
The operetta would have run a year if Mr. Charles 
Harris had not carried his point with Mr. Carte. 

I am quoting these facts for what purpose % Simply 
to show that refined comic opera pays better than the 
coarse and stupid vulgarity of the contemporaneous 
kind. To appeal to the intelligence of a community is 
to get a substantial response. It is an undeniable fact 
that there are more persons in New York ready to go 
to see such works as "Patience," "Olivette," "The 
Mascot," '-'Die Fledermaus," and "Erminie," than 
there are to enjoy such concoctions as " Wang," "Cas- 
tles 



U4 TBE LOOKER-ON. 



ties in the Air," " The Ogallallas," or " Kismet." The 
snccess of Smith and Be Koyen's ^^ Robin Hood " ought 
to have taught onr managers a lesson ; but it did not. 
It ought to have shown them that refinement, pictu- 
resqueness, and pure melody were better qualities than 
horse-play, cheap *^gags," exhibitions of the female 
form, and music-hall ditties. But it did not. 

What started oi)eretta down hill in this country! I 
have no desire to speak evil of the dead ; but a r^ard 
for truth compels me to say that in my opinion the 
later methods of John A. McCauU are to be blamed. 
One or two newspapers in this town are extremely fond 
of referring to Mr. McCaull as *^the father of comic 
opera" in this country. Mr. McCaull' s career b^an 
with " Olivette," which was his first production. The 
father of comic opera here was James C. Duff. Mr. Mc- 
Caull did a great deal toward popularizing comic oi)era 
in this city and throughout the country when he was 
associated with Mr. Aronson in the first years of the 
Casino. Mr. McCaull then had a good stock company, 
and his productions were notable for general excellence. 
But in his later days he x)ermitted the leading comedi- 
ans of his comx)any to introduce all kinds of ^^gags," 
and De Wolf Hopper and Digby Bell, laboring under the 
delusion that the general public was as much excited 
about baseball as they were, accustomed their audiences 
to hearing references to strikes and sliding to bases at 
any period from the fall of man to the present, and at 
any place from Moscow to the tombs of the Pharaohs* 

It must be patent to any person who has carefully 
watched the development of comic ox)era in this country 
that the cause of its descent from the high plane on 
which it started has been the increase of the influence 
of the personal element. In the early days it was the 
oi)eretta itself that the manager counted upon as his at- 
traction, and he expended his efforts on securing a good 
company and a high level of general excellence in the 
performance. To-day the ^^star" system rules in the 
field of operetta, and we are expected to enjoy in place 

of 



THt; LOO^Elt'Olr. 115 

of the old artistic ensemble the personal methods of 
some acrobatic comedian or the exposed charms and 
eqnally exposed vocal antics of some would-be prima 
donna. Men like Smith and De Koven are set to work 
to build an operetta around the doll face and explosive 
vocalization of Miss Russell, and the result is ^^The 
Tzigane," an indescribable production of which the 
libretto is a complete model of what a libretto ought 
not to be, and the music, while at times forcible and 
eloquent, is far away from the suave melody and charm 
of " Robin Hood." 

^^The Mikado" came as a note of warning about the 
time that this star system was getting a firm hold on 
the operetta stage ; but it does not seem to have warned 
any one. It was an enormous success, and it was con- 
ceded to be one of the most artistic comic operas ever 
produced. But our managers failed to read its lesson. 
The only effect its success had was to make them eager 
to secure anything by Gilbert and Sullivan, even their 
confessed failures. Mr. French, for instance, produced 
"Utopia," a work utterly unsuited to America and in- 
trinsically far below the standard of its authors. It failed 
and Mr. French forthwith retired permanently from 
the field of comic opera. To this day he does not know 
why " Utopia" failed. He says that it was by Gilbert 
and Sullivan, and therefore it must have been good ! 

It seems to me highly probable that if the productions 
of oi)eretta in the next two years continue to be of the 
same kind as they have been in recent times, this form 
of entertainment will cease to have any attractiveness. 
" Rob Roy" stands alone as the commendable product 
of the last two years. Almost everything else has been 
-pooTj especially in literary merit. It is a great pity 
that so enjoyable a form of entertainment should be 
I)ermitted to go to the dogs. What can be done for its 
preservation! 

In the first place let the newspaper writers do their 
duty. Let them condemn all cheap rubbish, and let 
them repeat again and again the assertion that this sort 

of 



116 THE LOOKER-On. 

of thing is not good enough for the public. The man- 
agers — ^and some of the librettists and composers, too— 
have a theory that it is possible to write works that aie 
too good for the public, and that it is necessary to write 
down to the comprehension of amusement-lovers. What 
utter nonsense 1 As if it were possible to produce any- 
thing too good for a public that enjoys the comedies of 
Bronson Howard, Pinero, Labiche, and Carleton, and 
the music of Suppe, Strauss, Offenbach, and Audian! 
The trouble is that the managers are not able to meas- 
ure public taste. I am thoroughly convinced from their 
labors and from conversations with them that there are 
not three managers in the comic opera business in this 
country to-day whose intelligence and taste are up to 
the level of those of the general public. 

It was the public which made the success of the 
Offenbach works, of Audran's two good ox)erettas, of 
the Strauss productions, and of the Gilbert and Sullivan 
works. If any man, or combination of men, will pro- 
duce to-day as good an operetta libretto as that of 
"Die Fledermaus" it will meet vdth a high and satis- 
factory measure of success. For after all is said and 
done, the libretto is the more imi)ortant part of a comic 
opera. The public will not sit through two hours and a 
half of dreary inanity for the sake of hearing a dozen 
bright and agreeable musical numbers. On the other 
hand very ordinary music vnll satisfy the public demand, 
if there is a good, sparkling comedy to refresh the mind. 
It was the dull and uninteresting libretti that killed 
"Ruddigore" and "The Yeomen of the Guard." 
Yet there are managers who still quote the failure of 
these works as evidence that the public does not appre- 
ciate good comic opera, but would rather go to see Mr. 
De Angelis in one of his numerous styles of falling down, 
or Miss Fox in her lifelike impersonations of herself. 
" Ruddigore" and "The Yeomen of the Guard" failed 
not because they were good, but because their books 
were stupid and not amusing, and Sir Arthur Sullivan's 
music could not save them any more than Mr. De 

Koven's 



THE L OKER - ON. 117 

Koven's music could save "The Kuickerbockers " or 
" The Tzigane." 

Unfortunately good music is easier to get than good 
books. We have three or four composers who can 
write good operetta music, and several more whose 
work would always be accepted if accompanied by 
good books. De Koven, Herbert, Englander, Chadwick, 
Kerker, Puemer, and Edwards are names that will 
readily occur to the lover of operetta as those of men 
whose music pleases. But where are the librettists ! 
Even Sydney Rosenfeld, by far the cleveri?st of the lot, 
has quite fallen out of sight lately. It is my belief 
that he finds it more profitable to write plays. I know 
that operetta managers have been offering absurd prices 
for books, and at the same time asking the librettists to 
sacrifice all their ideas to the stage-carpenter, the ballet- 
master, and the star. These low prices are offered be- 
cause the making of an operetta book in the present 
condition of the comic opera stage in America is a pure 
piece of hack-work. Books have to be written for Mr. 
Wilson, Mr. Hopper, Mr. Seabrook, Miss Russell, Miss 
Fox, Miss D' Arville, Miss Hall ; and all artistic ideas 
have to be sacrificed in most cases to the star's personal 
I>eculiarities and demand for the centre of the stage. 
Mr. Wilson in producing "The Chieftain" has shown 
a commendable desire to rise above the ordinary level. 
It is a pity that he did not get a better libretto, for he 
will probably blame good operetta in general for un- 
favorable comment drawn forth by one weak book. 

The preservation of operetta depends upon the estab- 
lishment of a comic opera theatre with a good stock 
company. There will then be a field for the best libret- 
tists. At present there is none. The stock company 
system is what has kept operetta up to a high level in 
Germany, and it is what preserves it in England. In 
Prance it has been going down hill ever since the stars 
began to be in the ascendant. The best operetta that 
has been produced in New York in some two or three 
years is "Rob Roy," which was written for a stock 

company. 



118 THE LOOKER -ON. 

comi)any. Perhaps the time ia not so far distant yfbm 
some one of our managers will see what a good field 
there is for a comic opera theatre condncted on princi- 
ples similar to those of the Savoy Theatre, London. 
But I do not know jnst now where we are to find an 
American B'Oyly Carte. 






Qtmos, Oomn db Gauvk. 



)An adherent of the umrper 
JVopoIom. 

Ou-uiK RrocHB M" "■"'^ *" *^ """* "-^ **■ 

4 miyeaty, Louie XVUL 

MimwiTOB Bmue. £ifa htpAness' man of buHnett, 

) An attaehed and trvited major- 
domo. 
SBdonging to the rettnve tf the 
great American heireea. 

UaaVaaaoATimtAX i Qf Fairfaa> CoufUjf, Virgmia, 

I betrothed to the prince. 

M,^ F4IEF4X. i Mother </ the gr^ii, ^meriemi 

( A«ireas. 

M*nAiiii ^ DdCBBBSE DB ViBDAll. j 

(>^^g^ An, <idft«rent q< fAs AoKW </ 

i>Hrin(r JVogxiieon's esriZe fo £S- 
6a ond tA« bene^Ioent re^ 

"■* efhie moat groofama OM^ies- 

^, Lowia XVUL, King of 



*SMOe(cib«rl[iinibereC iBBLowa-OKfOr AotL 



120 THE LOOKER-ON. 

ACrn. 

S0B3IS.— Solon of iht Chateau. 

A large and etately apartment in t?ke &tifle of I/mU XIV, 

At Centre a great window opening upon a mooniU terrau; 

beyond the terras i$ men a dim vista of the garden. At 

Bights between the doore^ it a great mirror. At Left a tabk. 

At Right are eard»tabU$. There are doore at Ltft. Vn- 

lighted eandiee are all about the room. The only light foBi 

through the great window. Centre, from the moonlit garden. 

The curtain rieee elowly to the tune, faintly played, 

** Carry Me Back to Old Virginia.** Ae the curtain rim 

Chloe ie seen standing in the great window. Centre, her tur- 

bitned head thrown b<iek, eoftly winging to hermif. 

Chloe. ** Carry me back, carry me back, carry me back to Old 

Virginia ebo*,** etc 

{A$ $he singe Virginia enters elowly, Left, pausing a» she heart 
Chloe singing, and Hands listening tUl the song is ended.) 
Virginia {as the song ends). Oh, Chloe t Chloe I you will break 
my heart with that old aong. I am so homesick ! 

Chloe (taking Virginia in her arms and bending above her). Dare, 
honey, dare ain't no country like it fo' to cure the homesidE heart 
Doan* cry, honey, Chloe 11 take yo* home, Chloe *11 take yo' home. 
(Then crooning softly as she soothes Virginia) : 

** I aeea the blue Potomac a stretching far away, 
I sees the blue Potomac a shining all the day, 
I sees Virginia's wooded hUls, 
I sees the May Viand sho', 
I wants to go home to Viiginia to stay fo'ever mo'." 

(As she sings C<zsar has entered and stands at Left, skakmg 
his hand slowly, in time, as Virginia sobs on Chlot^s bread.) 

Chloe (singing softly) : 

*' Oh, honey, let me take yo', let Chloe take yo' home I 
Where the laurel am a bloomin'. 
And the swamp flowers soon will blow ; 
Oh, honey, let me take yo' home ! Home to Virginia she' 1 " 

Coisar (rubbing the tears from his eyes). Dare ain't no place like 
home, sho' 'nuf. 

Virginia. Oh, take me home, Chloe, take me home I 

Chloe. Doan' cry, honey, doan' cry, child, we knows what's hesTj 
on yo' heart and we knows that the good Lord won't forget his Miss 
Virginia and Massa (Gaston. 

Coesar. He won't forget Miss Virginia, 'cause He's seed her on her 
own plantations, and He knows how good she is. He won't forget her. 

Virginia. Hush, hush, Caosar, They are bringing lights. Chloe, 
take me to my rooms, 

Chloe, 



'T/i 



THE L OOKER - ON. 121 

Chtoe. Yes, child, yes, honey. Dry yo* eyes ; lean on old Chloe*ii 



Ccemir {oB he exiU singing gently) : 

" I sees the blue Potomac a shining all the day," etc 

(Exit Virginia and Chloe, Left, foUofwed by Ccuar. The muaie 
dies. Enter Philippe, Right, toith lighted candle. He goes 
silently about, lighting the candies one by one tiU the room 
blazes with them. As he lights the last candle, enter Oaston 
from Right.) 

Cfaston (pausing). Philippe I 

PhUippe (turning). Monsieur Oaston I 

Chuton (advancing). What says the Prince, Philippe ? 

PhUippe. Monsieur Gaston, he says nothing. 

0€uton (turning away). And Mademoiselle— Mademoiselle Fairfax? 

Philippe. I have not seen Mademoiselle Fairfax since she left the 
terrace. 

Qiuton (pacing the floor). I cannot bear the solitude of my own 
rooms. Philippe, can I not see the prince ? 

PhUippe. Monsieur le Ck>unt, his highness is engaged with his 



Oaston (pausing). And Captain Fouche ? 

PhUippe. Captflkin Fouche is engaged in watching the movements 
of Monsieur le Count (bowing) at a respectful distance. 

Oaston. I should have preferred arrest to this humiliation and em- 
barrassment. Oh that I had never set my foot in France again, or 
that I had never left my country to find such happiness, such sorrow 
in America I 

Philippe (gently). Monsieur Oaston I 

Oaston. Ah, Philippe, it is not easy to resign one's hope, to recon- 
cile one's heart to such a fate 1 

PhUippe. 1 know, monsieur. (Looking Centre.) Captain Fouche I 
(Enter Captain Fouche through the great window, Centre, from 
terrace.) 

Oaxton (bowing as he turns). Monsieur le Capitain. 

Captain (bowing). Monsieur le Count. Philippe ! 

PhUippe. Has monsieur commands? 

Captain. Bring writing materials. 
(PhUippe bows and exits. Left,) 

Fkmche (after a pause). Monsieur le Count is conscious that my 
position is most difficult. 

Oaston. Sir, I am aware of it. 

Foticlie. 1 will inform Monsieur le Count that I am about to write 
to Paris for further and more positive instructions. 

Oaston (shrugging his shoulders). Your confidence does me honor. 

Fouche. 1 am powerless to act in this matter without further in- 
structions from the prefect of police. I dare not take upon myself 
the responsibility of openly opposing the Prince de Montbraison, He 
recognises me only as his guest. 

Oastoun 



US THE looker-on: 

Qadon* How tooBy monsiflur, will jou reoeiye th« narimry in- 
■tractions? 

{EnUr FMtlppe^ Left, with wriiitig materiaUt which Ju plaea 
Ofi table. Left.) 
Fhilippe* Bmb monsieur further commands ? 
t\imehe» Summon one of my guards, Qo out by the window, Toa 
will find them near the chateau. 
(Exit PhUippe, Centre,) 
nuehe {turning to Oaaion a$ he eeate himedf towHte), Pardon me, 
Monsieur le Count, I shall receive the neoCTwnry instructions upon the 
return of the messenger who bears this note to Paris. 
(He vfHtet,) 
Oaeton, Should I escape meanwhile 7 

Foudie (paueing). No one should more heartily congratulate yoa 
than Captain Fouche. 

(To eoidier who eqppeare in the window^ Centre,) 
Order the guard doubled* Place sentinels upon the terraces I 
Soldier* Should the prisoner attempt to pass the line? 
F^m^he. Fire on him I 

(The eoidier mdutee and exite,) 
Fouehe (to Oaeton). Monsieur le Count, I am compelled to do my 
duty. 

Oiuton* Sir, were I an officer in his majesty's army I could pursue 
no other course. 

(The eoldier reappeare at Centre,) 
Soldier (ealuHntf). The guard is doubled ! 
Fouehe (to oMier)* One moment 1 

Qaaton (botving ae he tvme away). Monsieur le Capitain, I leave 
you to your correspondence. 

(Exit Gaston, Sight. The Captain writee on in eHenee, then 
folding the letter, eeale it, addreeaee it. Then to the aoldier) 
Foudie. You will deliver this letter to the prefect of police t 

(Aehe epeake Virginia i» Been at the door at Left. Shepaueee 
there, listening.) 
You will say that I cannot act without imperative orders; you will say 
what measures I have'taken to prevent the escape of the prisoner; yoa 
will make all haste to Paris and deliver this letter to the prefect of 
police in person I You will return ? 
Soldier (ealuting). Within the hour ! 
Fouehe. So then I 

(Exit eoldier. Centre,) 
Virginia (aa ehepausee in the door, Left). May I speak with yoa, 
Captain Fouehe? 

Fottehe (rising hastUg a$ he sees her). Your pardon, mademoiseUe. 
Virginia (entering). I— I have an interest in Monsieur de (halves- 
may I ask what will befall him should he suffer this arrest? 
Fouehe. Imprisonment, I fear, mademoiselle. 
Virginia^ A long imprisonment ? 

Fouehe. 



TEE LOOKER'Oir. 123 

FowHie (shrugging hU sTundders), Who knows ? 
Virginia, It could not be imprisonment for life? 
Fauehe (shrugging his shoulders). Again, mademoiselle, who 
knows? 

Virginia, la there no hope, no chance of his escape? 
Faueh€, Mademoiselle must judge I 

{As he speaks he puints to window^ Centre. A sentry passes 
sUjfwly before it in the moordight.) 
Virginia (sweeping up stage). They dare not fire on him ! 
Fouche. Such are their orders I 

Virginia (turning hack). Whogires such orders? Who has dared? 
Fouehe (povnng). Mademoiselle, Monsieur le Prefect of Police I 
(The prince stands in the frtndoto. Centre, euperbly dressed. He 
leans upon his cane, a fleur-de-lis held lightly in his hand.) 
Frinee. My dear Fouche— still harping on that vulgar person. 
(As he slowly advances) 
Tut I tut I my dear Fouche, tut I tut I 

(Fouche and Virginia how low.) 
In my time such persons were not talked of in good society. 
(Ae he takee snuff.) 

F^ouehe. Tour highness will pardon me 

Prince. I pray you do not mention it. 

^Ottc^. I must instruct the guard— mademoiselle. 

(Virginia courtesies to him.) 
Prince (detaining him). My good Fouche, you are my guest. If it 
amuses you to place guards about the chateau by all means place them. 
Enjoy yourself in your own way. My guests are unrestricted I 
Fouche. Sir, it is my duty. 

Prince. Tut I tut t my dear Fouche, tut ! tut ! Duty is a word 
much misapplied, a tissue strong through inclination only. 

(Fouche bows low and exits. Right. For a moment there is a 
pause; both are at a loss.) 
Prince (seeing the flower in his hand). Mademoiselle, will you ac* 
oept this fleur-de-lis ? I plucked it as I crossed the terraces, plucked it 
with my own hands for you. 

Virginia (Jiesitates). I thank your highness. 
iVffiee. You will accept the flower? 

Virginia (taking it). It has no perfume, prince, but it is beautif uL 
(She toysufith the flower andstands embarrassed for amoment^ 
then looking up) 

What can I say to your highness ? Shall I tell you again 

Prince (gently). Mademoiselle, believe me, you cannot tell me any* 
thing I do not know, nothing that I do not imderstand. Let me en- 
treat you to say nothing on this most painful subject. 

Virginia (forgetfully plucking at the flower in her hand). Captain 
Fouche but now despatched a messenger to Paris to the prefect of 
police! 

Prince (who winces as Virginia tears theflowsr). May I implore, 

mademoiselle? 



124 THE LOOKER'Oir. 

mademobelle? Lei m admire the moonlit terrace— the patk by 
moonlight hat been much commended. 

{A»he9peak9hetumBtothewindow, TkemntrjfaUM^pacu 
bjf* The prince etarte back,) 
Hon Dieu 1 How cold the night air grows I 

{Taking enuff.) 
I must atk Foiiche if tlie prefect of police is a man of family. Hon 
Dieu I It ie said that Heaven protects the fatherless, bat I fear there 
are exceptions to all rules. 

Virginia (etiU plucking at the flower). Your highness does not 
know that the guard is ordered to fire upon Monsieur de Ckdves shouid 
he attempt to leave the chateau I 

.^"iiioe. Mademoiselle 1 Your lips alone could tell me such a thing ! 
Fire on the Count de Qalvez I Fire on my guest I My grandson I 

Virginia (the Bhattered flower falling to the floor). It is the order 
of the prefect of police I 

Prinee, The prefect of police t Canaille t Does he think these are 
the days of the Conunune? By St. Denis I By my royal blood ! 

{He cheeke himeeift one hand trembling on hie eane^ hi* ward 
half drawn.) 
Virginia, Your highness I 

Prince. Your pardon^ mademoiselle^ a gentleman should never 
lose his temper. Bat the provocation I Mon Dieu I The provoca- 
tion! 

Virginian May I tell your highness that I loved (Gaston de Galvezf 
May I entreat your highness to save him ? 
Prince. And you, mademoiselle? 

Virginia. I— I shall confide my future, my life to him who could 
do this for me with perfect faith, with absolute trust* knowing that 
my Father in heaven 

{The Prince bowe low,) 
would not be more just to me, or kind to me than my husband. 
{She movee elowly^ Left,) 
Prince {offering hie hand). Mademoiselle, permit me to lead yon 
to the door. 

{Slowly and with great ceremony he leade her to the door at 
Left; bowe low above her hand. Exit Virginia^ Left,) 
Prince (as hepaueee, glancing after her, then elowly tume into the 
Salon). She loves him, she has not foigotten— she never will forget 

( Hepaueee again, eeeing the flower upon the carpet.) 
My fleur-de-lis I My gift. The flower I plucked with my own hands, 
broken, shattered, tossed aside, 

{He tume it with hie cane.) 
forgotten. 

{He tume away.) 
I— I feel the heat— the air oppresses me— *tis stifling— Philippe— nay— 
I will not call— the fresh air will revive me. 

{He leane againet the window, breathing unevenly.) 

Twas 



THE LOOKER-ON. 126 

but the heat. I need not call Philippe. 
(He stands silently a moment^ tJien elowly eta though thinking) 
How fair the garden is, and yet she could not wander with me down 
those moonlit paths, breathing the heavy fragrance of the flowers, 
her thoughts all poems and those poems all of love, for I— I am not 
young, and youth alone knows such delights. I was a hero once, I 
once was yoimg, and I remember, 

(Turning elowly into the ealon,) 
I remember. 

(Seeing the fleur-de'lia.) 
Poor flower, if younger hands had plucked, you would not lie neglected 
there. 

(He stoops and taking up the flower places it in hie breast.) 
I had hoped that her love might make me young again. If it were 
mine I know I should grow young. It will be mine. Did she not say 
" I shall, with perfect faith, confide my future, my life, to him who 
could do this for me " ? 

(Pausing t half startled, he repeats) 
"With perfect faith— with perfect faith I "--Mon Dieu! I— I blush to 
think that Henri Louis Fran9ois de St. Honore D*Qrleans, Prince de 
Montbraison, could for one moment hesitate to answer faith with 
faith I Mademoiselle I 

(Calling as he moves quickly Left,) 
Nay ! (pausing) I will not play the hero I I— I will be the man I Fouche 
has sent a messenger to Paris to the prefect of police ! I too will 
write I I will write to my cousin the king ! 

(He sits at table. Left, and writes rapidly in sUenoe, The soldier 
paces beyond the window in the moonlight. The Prince 
pauses, strikes a bell on the tcU}le, writes on. Enter Philippe. 
Bight.) 
JPkQippe. Your highness? 
Prince. A letter I It needs but my signature. 
(WrUing.) 
Henri Louis £ran9oiB de St. Honore D^Orleans, Prince de Montbraison. 
(Scrateh, scratch, scratch, all flourishes made boldly across 
the paper,) 
The waxt 

(Rising, he folds the letter and seals it, Philippe holding the 
wax as the princess fingers tremble.) 
Instantly I Without delay t In my name I To the king t 

Philippe (bounng to the earth), I will despatch the swiftest courier I 
Prince (as Philippe reaches the door). Philippe ! 
Philippe. Your highness? 

Prince. The courier I Then bid my guests assemble here. 
Philippe. Monsieur Gaston (hesitating). 
Prince. Must I repeat bid all my guests ? 
Philippe (bounng). Instantly t 
(ExU Philippe, Bight.) 

Prince 



ii6 tSB tOOJ^R'Olf. 

FHmm {after a MoaMiif « paiite). It is the lint favor I have evvr 
Mkedtheldiigtognuitme. He cannot refnta. MonaieorlePrefactof 
Ftoliceahall know with whom ha deala. Bat ahotdd his majeaty refuse? 
MonDieal I wiU not think of it I 

(A 9igk» at h$ adlfugU hi» r%ffUM and er t mma to the mimrt 

Bightf amd aianding htfctt U arr an ffe $ hi» toilet ^ humming 

o 01^ UitU Jf)reneh mmg in a eraeked voice. SuddaUjf he 

jMNcaet, the twne diet from hit lipt.) 

Ayl What? MonDieal Awrinklel It ia mpoeaible I Tie deariy 

marked. Is it that I have amfled too mach? One moat be gradons. 

(9§tMtg.) Nay. That I have frowned too much? (JVoi0fitN{^.) Naj, 

nay, *tis aome bad cometio— I will change the make. 

{HaiftadJtf) 
And yet one cannot always remain yoong. I moat learn how to grow 
old gracefully. But *tia a strange sensation when one disooTers one's 
first wrinkle. Tis a sad revelation. 
(Alter the dwohett^ Ltft.) 
Duehttt {impaHuUl^t at the erottt% the takm). Henri I 
Frinet{tvfniimgaffdblif\, Marie— mon Diea I How charming. F^ 
mit me to compliment your toUet, and yoar beaaty I Twas never 
more distinguished than to-night. 
Duehett. A trace to compliments I 
{Atwimdow^ Cbitre.) 
You see these guards? Yoor ch a t eaa is sorroanded I Yoar guests 
hamiliatedl Gaston cannot esci^ I (Mi» Henri, what shall you do? 
Primee (taMig tnuff). Madame, my doty. 
Dudhett. Yoa shall not put me oflfl Answer mel What shall 
you do? 

Prinot. Madame, I have answered you I I— Henri Louis FranfiNS 
de St. Honore D*Orleans, Prince de Montbraison, will do— my duty I 
(Ailsr PhUippt, Left.) 
JXros. My guesto, Philippe? 
FhOippe. 1 am come to announce them. 

{Openi$tg wide the door at Left.) 
Mnee. Let there be music on the terrace, we may dance to-nighi 
(Ai he tpeolet enter Mrt, Fairfax and Virginia^ Ixft^ Oatton 
and Captain Fouehe^ Eight.) 
Duehett (ofide taiih turprite). Gaston I 

Prinee. Madame 1 Mademoiselle I Will not Colonel Alexsnder 
join us? 

Jfrt. Fairfax. Colonel Alexander joins us soon. He is engaged 
with Monsieur Burns in drawing up the marriage contracts. 

iVInce. His task needs no excuse. Madame, will yon indulge me 
with a game of cards? We play each evening. 

Jfrt. Fairfax {turning). Yirginia, you will play with his highness? 
Virginia {turning tlowly). You called me, mother? 
Prince. Nay, nay, Madame Fairfax, I shall lose to you. Captain 
Fodche, Madame la Duchess shall be your antagonist 
{FhQippe arranget ehairt at tabtet^ Right.) 

Prince 



THE LOOKER'Oir. 127 

IVIfiM. Let U8 sit. 

(Ab Philippe moves Bight to exit) 
Philippe, let there be music on the terrace; it will complete the beauty 
of the night. 

(Exit PhUippe, Bight.) 
Prince (dealing earde aa he eite at tahU^ Bight, He eita in such a 
poeition thai it ia possible for hvn to obaerve Oaaton and Virginia, 
who stand at Left), What is the latest gossip of the court ? 

Jfrs. Fairfax (glancing at her carda). Tis said the king suffers 
from a slight indisposition. 

Prince. Mon Dieu ! Mon Dieu I It is not possible I I wager 
twenty francs I 

Ducheaa (to Fouche). You did not tell me that his majesty com- 
plains. Who has attended him? 
Fouehe. Doctor Radieu. 

Ifra. Fairfax. Doctor Badleu? An excellent practitioner. I my- 
self gave him Lady Washington's fkyorite prescription for the ague. 
Prince* Tou win, madame. 

Ifrt. Fairfax (ahuffling and dealing). Tour highness may now 
have revenge. Ah, hark ! how sweet the music is I 
(Jftiste sounds without.) 
Oaston (aa he atanda with Virginia by the great window listening 
to the music^the prince watching them as he plays^^cuide). And this 
— this then shall end our dreams, Virginia? 

Virginia (aside to him as she stands in the window). My word is 
pledged. Tes, this is the end— all dreams end so. 
(Half turning.) 
Chsston (aside to her). You remember that evening when the 
moonlight lay like gold upon the silver of the river, and the swamp 
magnolias scented all the air, and one white bud that I had plucked 
for you lay on your breast. 

Virginia (dreamily). I have it still, but *tis all yellow now. 
Ckuton. You loved me once ? 

Virginia. Gaston, I need not tell you that again— I must not now. 
Qation. The prince knows this ? Knows of our love ? 
VirginicL. He knows of it. 

(She stands, plucking at the leaves of a vine that trails by the 
window.) 
Prince (as he plays). Captain Fouche I 
Captain (dealing). Your highness ! 

Prince. I trust I do not interrupt your play. Who sings in the 
new opera? 

Fouche. It is postponed. Mademoiselle Felice has a cold and can- 
not sing. 

Prince. A national calamity t My poor Felice I Mon Dieu I A 
most charming creature. I must send to inquire after her health. 
Mon Dieu I I really must. Marie, I charge you not to let it slip my 
mind I 

Dudhess 



i 



U8 THE LOOKSR-ON: 



DrntkemiwUk aaperU^ What cam jowt hlghiwm for singenat 

iBMOflifot 

I hav* DO UnM of life I 

Jfrt. Fiairfax. Tour highiw— kM6s onoa again. 

iViaoB. ^Agaiii I And how fkraa G^taia Fooehe ? He wins? 

/badbe. Naj» he loav* f oUowiag your highneaa's had eanmple ! 

iViaee. The ladiea are Tietoriocis in everything; their amilei be- 
guile and blind na I 

Jfra. JVxtr/ttB. Flattervl 

Gatiom (ofide to FiryMa). And yon ahall not regret this step? 

VirgMa {atide). My word is pledged. 

OoaUm* But does your heart oonaent? Tell me« Virginia I 

Virginia {tumimg from tk€ window and cro§9img to Ltft om tft< 
speoJks). Ton hare no right to question me I will not answer yoo. 

Mrt^Faiirfaat. When does your highneas entertain the king 7 

lV«ioe(wJbo kastsoldbscllAe aoene Mioeen Qiu^Um ftmd Vtrgtaia). 
Ah, pardon. His majesty will be my guest for n few days while he 
hunts. 

Jfri. Fairfax. Tou will show him the splendors of the Chatisaii de 



iVtaoe. Splendor, madame, perished from the earth with Le Grand 
Monarqoe. "Tie but a fragment that Is left to us. 

Jfrs. Fairfax. A great king, but I fear not a good man. 

PrimcB. Depend upon it, madame, God will think twice before 
damning a man of his <iuality I 

Gaston (aside, /oOoi9lny Virginia^ ^^^\ Ton will delay, you will 
not sign the contract? 

FtryMa (aside). I haTe pledged my word ! 

Gaston. At least I will not be a witness to the act t Adieu I 
{At he speaJkf As funis. Centre,) 

ynrginiaiaM/Bquiiciklg). Tou cannot pass the guards I 

ChuUm. They shall not keep me ! 

Virginia. They will fire I 

Gaston. Let them I I care not I 

FIryinia. Gaston I 

OaaUm. Adieu. 

(Breaking from her he turns to Centre and panmB a» hsstandt 
oomfronUd hg the prinee. Foiuche and the ladiee have 
risen. 

Fouche (half advancing). Monsieur ! 

Prinee (waving Oaeton gracefully hack). Tut I tut I my deer 
Fouche, tut I tut I Calm yourselves 1 The figure at the window 
was but one of Fouche's guards. Oaptain, you must make your peace 
with the ladies for this fright. 

(Stepping out upon the terrace—iomuekiane) 
The minuet. 

Duchese* Your highness does not mean to dance. 

iVinoe 



TSE LOOKEM'Oir. 189 

jPrinMiJbowing OBhe standain tcindoWf Centre, against theshadows^ 
his shauldera shrugged). Madame la Duchesse, if I am not already old 
eiLOug:h to know my own mind I despair of ever attaining to years of 
discretion. 

{Advaneling aa the music sounds without.) 
Madame Fairfax, your hand I Qaston, mademoiselle will honor you. 
F\mche {to duehess). Madame will dance ? 

(The duchess lays her hand in his.) 
Oasion (aside to Virginia). How often we have danced together I 
This is the last time I may ever take your hand in mine. 
Prinee. Madame I 

(Slowly and graeefuUy they dance the minuetf the sentinel 

crossing and recrossing the window. Centre, as the music dies 

and the dance ends. Enter from Left Colonel Alexander and 

Monsieur Buras. They carry papers in their hands, which 

they place upon the table. Left.) 

CdUmeL Your highness, it is my pleasure to inform you that the 

marriage contracts await your signatures. As Miss Fairfax's g^uardian 

and representative, I am content. 

MoneieuT Buras (adSusting his gkuses). All proper forms have 
been compiled with. The signatures aJone are necessary. 
CdUmel (to Virginia). Mademoiselle ? 
Ckuton (aside to Virginia). It is the end I 

Virginia (aside as she moves slowly Left). Forgive me, and— and 
forget. 

(She hesitates, leaning for support upon a chair.) 
Duchess (starting forward). Mademoiselle Fairfax is pale I 

(Enter soldier right. Unnoticed he gives letter to Fouche.) 
Fou^ (aside). From Paris? 
Soldier (saluting). From the prefect of police. 
Fouche (aside as he reads). Quard all the doors I 

(Sfkdier salutes and exits Right.) 
Prince (advancing and taking Virginians hand, he leads her slowly 
to the table. Left). Mademoiselle Faii^ax is not paie I-nnt here— a pen 
—where does mademoiselle place her signature? 

Maneieur Buras (pointing with his finger as he smooths the parch- 
ment). Mademoiselle signs here. 

(Soldiers appear at doors and at the window. Centre. Philippe 
enters at Right unobserved and crosses to the prince.) 
Fouche (advancing). Your pardon I I am ordered instantly to 
I arrest Oaston, Count de GhJvez, and to convey him with all speed to 
I Paris! 

Prince (aside). 'HLj messenger t 

(Philippe bows low as he presents the letter. The princess hand 
trembles as he takes it from the salver.) 
Prince (to Virginia). Sign, mademoiselle I 

(Virginia signs.) 
Fowiie (erouing to Ocuion, lie lays his hand on his shoulder, as the 

prince 



ISO THS LOOKEROir. 

pHmM wtf* t n m b U»g jhgw opena the UtUr. Uonrienr le Ooont, jen 
" IT I Caoam, air I 
wtoOtuton.) 

Primoi (fmrmbtQ gr^mdlfy, Yaar p«rdon t Wbftt mema» ttu> out 
ngat TbMtioldiMiI Let them withdnw I 

FomtAt. It ta impoilbto I A meMBnggr bnt now brings wtei 
from tb» prafact ol police I Tour highnww must appeal to him I 

PHmee. J^pe«l I Henri Looia Praafvia de Bt. Hooore D'Orleao^ 
Prinea da MoBtbniaoB. sniaal to the iKvfect of police? Sirl Too 
will aK7to Mcoaiear la Prafact of FoUoe that myooaBin tba iangit 
pleaaed to inwinlwiiiaiKl hia order*, and that be grants free azul entirr 
pardon to Oaaton, Coont da Galves I While mf cousin the Hug n- 
maina upon tba tbrona of Prsaoa it is naoeoessary for the Piiaee 
de MoatbralsoB to appeal to tha clemency of Honaieur le Prefect of 
Polieal 

(He hands fks laHer proudly to the attain, who botos totk 
earth tn tUemee, tumbtg owcv-) 
TlMpenll 

Jfoasinir B. Yoor hlghaeaa ahoold sign here. 
PHnee (doaUifr Mt pea acpoai the paper and writing n^ldlf). I 
see tba placet 

JfoMimrS. Kot there r 

Oosfoa (wftt/aeliiv). I thank your bigfaiteaa. I— X will go siaee 
I am free. 

JVtees. Stay, tir I Your signature 1 
Oaettm (ttartitg). Ky slgnatareT 
PriH«e, Your name is wi this contract I 
Virginia, Oh, prince t 

Prince (<u Oatton heeOatet). It but awalta your signature 1 Toar 
gallantry 1 DoyondelayT 

(Bit geat^ forvee Oatton info the teat, and jtloeea thepeit hi 
kiikoad.) 
Place your name there by hers. 
Oostoii. AndyouT 

Frtnee. Hon Diea I Hare I not pleased the ladie* ? What more 
oaa any gentleman desire r 

{A» Virginia attt Ooston teane above the contract, pen is 
Aoad, hit head near her», the prince mavee hie handkerehi^ 
grae^fvUg above their head* ae a bteeaing, and takee eitmf 
at 

CUBTAIN. 




TaJE LOOKER-ON. 131 



A DRAMA AS A WORK OF ART. 

By Wm. H. Fleming. 

Abt is founded upon Nature, of which it is the imi- 
tation, OP, to speak with greater precision, the represen- 
tation, re-presentation. Conformity to Nature, there- 
fore, is the primary test of perfection in Art. Nature 
is the criterion by which all works of Art must be 
judged. 

There can, I think, be no dissent from the proposition 
tliat Art is founded upon Nature. Albert Diirer " was 
X>erhaps the first European artist who studied Nature 
carefully for its own sake, and with a view to making 
it a subject of Art." The result of that study is ex- 
pressed in these words : " Depart not from Nature, 
neither imagine of thyself to invent aught better, for 
Art standeth firmly fixed in Nature, and whoso can 
thence rend her forth, he only possesseth her." Near- 
ly three centuries later Sir Joshua Reynolds wrote: 
** We can no more form any idea of Beauty superior to 
Nature than we can form an idea of a sixth sense, or of 
any other excellence, out of the limits of the human 
mind. Nothing can be so unphilosophical as a suppo- 
sition that we can form any idea of Beauty or excellence 
out of or beyond Nature, which is, and must be, the 
fountain-head from whence aU our ideas must be de- 
rived." This truth forms the sum and substance of 
"Modem Painters." Ruskin, speaking of that work, 
says : "Prom its first syllable to its last, it declares 
the perf ectness and beauty of the work of God, and tests 
all work of man by concurrence with, and subjection to, 
that." 

While it is true that Art is based on and must be 
true to Nature, the inference does not follow that there- 
fore 



182 THE LOOKER-ON. 

fore Alt is only a representation of Nature. It must be 
like Nature, but that likeness is only relative. Nature 
is continually changing ; is in flux, is protean. Forms 
and colors are in process of evolution. Even those arts 
which have motion — c.gr., Poetry, Music — cannot repre- 
sent Nature more than approximately. Art, therefore^ 
cannot imitate Nature absolutely. Nor should it. The 
function of Art is not imitation but idealization. The 
appeal is to the imagination. Of the work of Art we 
can say, as Theseus did of the acting of the Athenian 
mechanicals : '^ The best in this kind are but shadows : 
and the worst are no worse, if iifuiginalion amend 
them.^^ "Art," says Hegel, "is no mere imitation or 
mirroring of Nature. It is a transcendence of Nature, 
i.e. J of the actual. Every great artistic work must 
have Nature for its basis and its starting-i)oint ; but in 
proportion to its greatness it rises from this foundation. 
It lives and moves, as it were amphibiously, in the two 
worlds of the actual and the ideal." 

The material world is but a mirror which reflects 
something that transcends itself. It is the expression 
of the mind and feeling of the Creator. It is " The 
Gkurment of Life which the Deity wears." God mani- 
fests Himself in Nature. Similarly the artist expresses 
himself in his work. He, like Gk>d, is a creator. His 
creative work, i.e.j the art-product, be it a building, a 
statue, a picture, a symphony, a poem, is the medium 
through which he reveals his innermost thoughts and 
feelings. In it he expresses those ideas, moods, visions, 
which the aspects of Nature awaken in him. " A work 
of Art is not made up of, or exhausted in, a series of 
lines, curves, surface-forms, colors, sounds. It is noth- 
ing if it does not disclose feeling and thought (mind)." 
As before said, not imitation but idealization is the 
supreme function of the artist. "Art," says Bacon, 
"is man added to Nature." The artist, if great, por- 
trays Nature truthfully, with a subtle, indefinable 
ideality which is his own. The work of art is 
like 

'« ... the 



THE LOOKER'Oir. 133 

'* . • . the pools that li« 
Under the forest bough 

In which the lovely forests grew, 

As in the upper air, 
More perfect both in shape and hue 

Than any spreading there." 

The analogy between Nature and Art is not limited 
to appearances, snperfices. It extends much deeper 
and further — ^viz., to growth in Nature, composition in 
Art. In each case the source is not external but inter- 
nal. In a plant, a bird, it is the life within which finds 
expression in growth ; in an art-product the source of 
composition is what Schiller has described as "der 
SpteUrieb, ' ' the play-impulse. The animal works when 
a privation is the motor of its activity, and it plays 
when the plenitude of force is this motor, when an ex- 
uberant life is excited by action. When not hungry 
the insect flits about in the sunlight, the bird sings,* 
the lion roars. A man when well fed and vigorous is in 
a plus condition. This superabundance of vitality 
expresses itself among savages in a crude attempt at 
decoration, among the highly civilized in Art. In the 
former it is sensuous, in the latter it is sesthetic play. 
The source in each is the same. 

This activity is independent of any pressure of ma- 
terial need. It is indulged in for its own sake. It is 
sx)ontaneous. As Herbert Spencer expresses it : " The 
higher but less essential powers, as well as the lower 
but more essential powers, thus come to have activities 
that are carried on for the sake of the immediate grati- 
fication derived, without reference to ulterior benefits ; 
and to such higher powers, aesthetic products yield 
those substituted activities as games yield them to vari- 
ous lower powers." In this respect the activity which 
manifests itself in the play of the higher animal, a 
primitive man, a savage is similar in essence to that 

^ Socrates wmju those who think BwaiiB sln^ as death approachea beeanae they 
bewail death are In error, ** and do not reflect that no bird ainga whan it is hungtjt or 
cold, or afmotad with an^ other patai,'* m<|. Fhado, 85. 

exercised 



1S4 THS looker-on: 

exercised by the nuui of cultore in the production of 
the greatest work of Art. The difference is not one of 
essence, but of degree. The play-impulse has develoj^ed 
into the art-impulse. 

Further, the play-impulse and the art-impulse are 
similar in that both are imitative.* The play-impulse 
finds expression among animals in such gambols as 
simulate its serious activities — e.g.j search for prey; 
among savages, in games which imitate those activities 
which are necessitated by the struggle for existence, or 
by warfare — e.g.y the mimic chase or mimic fighting. 
*' All simple, active games," says James, ^^ are attempts 
to gain the excitement yielded by certain primitive in- 
stincts, through feigning that tiie occasions for their 
exercise are there." The art-impulse manifests itself 
in an imitative delineation of the beautiful in Nature. 

Between the two, however, there is one well-defined 
difference. Play does not manifest itself in Art until 
there is in it an element of order. Hence there is no 
Art among animals. The caper of the savage becomes 
a dance only when there is rhythm, the shout a song only 
when there is melody. ^^ The beautiful cannot have its 
origin in tumult, in the simultaneous reverberation of a 
crowd of sounds in which the ear can distinguish no 
measure or harmony, nor can the plastic arts discover 
it in the mere wanton medley of colors and of lines." 

Order is an essential, in fact the primal quality, of 
the work of Art. It is the presence ol this quality which 
distinguishes the expression of the play-impulse of the 
man of culture from that of the animal or the savage. 

To recapitulate: man i)08sesse8 a life which is sensual 
and is conditioned by material needs. Coexisting 
therewith he possesses a life which is emotional, spirit- 
ual. Each manifests itself at times in action. This 
action possesses the two qualities, spontaneouaness, 
imitativeness. In the less evolved, the sensuous, this 
action is play. In the highly evolved, the intellectual 
and spiritual, this action is Art. 

#**^imtUkt6,tlMii, toinstincUTelniiuui. By this he to dtaHngniriied ftvm ocbier 
^^\^m.\m that he to, of All, the most ImitatlTe, and throoffh thto inrthiet raoslvvs hto 
earUMtedooatioiL*' Artototle,**Poettos,**|Matl.,ieoUoiiT. 

Art, 



THE LOOKER-ON. 136 

Art, then, being based npon Natare, its sonrce being 
an impulse common to animals and men, and the work 
of the artist being in essence or character similar to that 
of the Creator, each being the expression of thought, 
feeling through a material medium which appeals either 
to the eye or ear, it necessarily follows that the methods 
followed by the artist must be similar to those followed 
by God in creation. The laws which regulate the pro- 
duction of a work of Art are similar, absolutely similar, 
to those which govern the growth of a flower, a tree, a 
bird, an animal, a man. The artist's model, therefore, is 
Nature and her processes. Nature must be the pattern 
for all his forms of hue, or tone, or curve. The architect 
for his shapes and forms, his outUnes and exquisite 
grace of curve, imitates, with more or less modification, 
those which are everywhere visible in the material 
world. The painter for his colors and the way they 
should be combined imitates those found in the flowers, 
the opal, the morning and evening clouds before or after 
rain. The musician in his quest of beauty bom of sound, 
for his melody and harmony, imitates the soxmds of 
wind and ocean, the singing of birds, the human voice. 

The highest product of creation is man. He, both 
physically, intellectually, spiritually, is the ideal Art 
form. " The human form,'' said Goethe, " is the Alpha 
and Omega of all known things." There are certain 
latent affinities between the aspects of nature and human 
thought and emotion. In fact, the analogy between the 
mind and feelings of man and the objects in the exter- 
nal world is so close that the latter are beautiful only to 
the degree that they express qualities that are human. 
"It is," says Jou&oy," "in proportion as objects rec- 
ognized as beautiful resemble man, or in so far as they 
mirror our humanity, that they are to that extent 
deemed more beautiful by us. It is the grace of the lily, 
the tenderness of the color of the rose, the peace of the 
sky at sunset, that are the source of their charm ; but 
grace, tenderness, and peace are human characteristics." 
Every great work of Art, therefore, must conform in all 

particulars 



is< TEE looker-on: 

particulars to man. Only to the degree that it exjnresses 
qualities which are peculiarly human, which are intel- 
lectual, emotional, spiritual, does it manifest the high- 
est beauty. 

Of all men who have lived probably no one possessed 
a more artistic sense, united with a more perfect artistic 
technique, than William Shakespeare. Describing the 
function of his own art, he say s : ^^Thepmposeof play- 
ing, whose end, both at the first and now, was and is, 
to hold as 'twere the mirror up to nature"; and to do 
so ''with this si)ecial observance, that you o'erstep 
not the modesty of nature." To essay that, to endeavor 
to improve on Nature, is ''a wasteful and ridiculous 
excess." It is simply attempting 

" to paint the my. 
To throw a perfume on the violet. 
To smooth Uie ioe, or add another hue 
Unto the rainbow, or with taper-light 
To eeek the beauteous eye of heaven to garnish.^ 

Nature, both in its appearances and processes, is the 
model of Art. Nothing unnatural is beautiful. Only to 
the degree in which Art conforms to Nature is it endur- 
ing, X)erf ect. 

In studying Art, therefore, the best method is one 
simOar to that pursued by scientists in the investigation 
of Nature— viz.. Classification. This is literally the 
making of classes. Its basis is the recognition of the 
Unity underlying Variety in Nature. Its method is 
the grouping of various species under the proper genera, 
families, orders, classes. Herbert Si)encer, in the essay 
on the *^ Classification of the Sciences," defines it as fol- 
lows: ^'A true classification includes in each class those 
objects which have more characteristics in common with 
one another than any of them have in common with 
any object excluded from the class. Further, the char- 
acteristics possessed in common by the colligated 
objects, and not possessed by other objects, are more 
radical than any characteristics possessed in common 
with other objects— involve more numerous dependent 

characteristics. ' ' 



THE LOOKER-ON. 137 

characteristics." In other words, characteristics which 
objects in the same class have in common mnst be greater 
in number and in degree than those which they have in 
common outside this class. Classification is simply a 
recognition of the likeness or unlikeness of certain 
objects. It xmderlies not only Nature but also Language, 
Reasoning, Art. In studying the latter, as the former, 
therefore, the first step is to classify. The scientist 
classifies or puts together certain kinds of rocks, plants, 
animals, men. This is the method pursued by the 
Creator in His works. Bocks that are alike are grouped 
in the same mountain ranges, or at the bottom of the 
same streams ; leaves that are alike grow on the same 
tree or similar kinds of trees ; feathers or hair that are 
alike grow on the same birds or beasts ; men that are 
alike are placed in the same climate, country, family, 
race. The Creator's method is in strict accord with 
Classification, putting like with like, and men haye 
progressed in knowledge of Nature only to the degree 
to which they have pursued a similar method, and have 
classified. This truth applies with equal force to the 
study of Art. 

The recognition of this fact is neither universal nor 
forcefol. Hence this plea for its application to the 
8X)ecial form of Art which is the subject of this pai)er — 
viz., the drama, and particularly the Shakespearian 
drama. While, this is not the only method by which a 
play can be studied properly, it is facile princeps^ in 
fact it is the one which is absolutely necessary in order 
to appreciate a play as a work of art. It is the only 
one by means of which the study of the Shakespearian 
drama can be taken out of the domain of chaos where it 
now is, and be made scientific. It reveals the laws of 
dramatic construction, and thereby does for a play 
what the laws discovered by Kepler and Newton did for 
the study of astroAomy. The methods usually pursued 
are necessary and yield rich fruit. No one can make 
any pretensions to Shakespearian scholarship unless he 
is thoroughly familiar with them. I therefore do not 

disparage 



188 THB LOOKER^Oir. 

dispaasge them* At the same time tliey are inoomplete 
and defective, both in method and resnlt. They canse 
too minute attention to details. This b^ets a mental 
short-dghtednees which is always fatal to the apprecia- 
tion of any artistic masterpiece as a whole. In order to 
apprehend the play as an organic work of art, to per- 
ceive the Unity which underlies the Variety, it must be 
studied according to the methods of Classification. This 
method is simply resolving the play into its constituent 
parts, separating like from unlike and joining like witii 
like. To descend to particulars the play must first be 
divided into the five parts of which a i)erf ect drama is 
comx>08ed — ^viz., Introduction, Growth, Climax, Fall^ 
Catastrophe. This analysis must be further applied to 
the Action of the drama. The Main Action must be 
clearly defined from the Sub- Action. All the factors 
forming the Main Action must be Classified ; so also 
must those forming one or other of the different Sub- 
Actions. Then the plot which binds these divisions, 
actions together, and makes the play an organic whole, 
must be traced. The result is, the x>arts of the play 
which are various and numerous are reduced to Order. 
Out of Variety — ^Variety of Character, of Passion, of 
Action — ^there is develoi)ed Unity. The multifarious 
details are seen to be, not heterogeneous but homo- 
geneous ; not unrelated but correlated. The connection 
and harmony of all parts of the play become api>arent 
The result is, the play becomes ffistheticaUy intelligible. 
As an ultimate result of this method of study, one will 
have a comprehensive and clear conception of the play 
as a complete, perfect^ organic Art-product. To be 
more si>ecific, the following will be some of the most 
imix)rtant results of this method of study : 

1st. The law of art-comx>osition will become manifest. 
The evolution of a drama, like movement, growth in 
Nature is in strict accordance with laws. The move- 
ment of the heavenly bodies is not more x>erfecfly 
harmonious with the laws of gravitation, or the growth 
of an organism is not more in accord with its structure 

and 



THE LOOKER'OK 139 

and environment than is the evolution of a drama in 
harmony with the laws of art-composition. This fact 
is made apparent by the application of the scientific 
method to the study of the drama. This method is 
both analytic and synthetic. It is unbuilding and 
also rebuilding. It is both deductive and inductive. 
After the play has been reduced to its component 
factors and they are classified, then they are again 
united and the play is reconstructed. In the latter 
operation the laws of composition become manifest. 
As a result of this the following qualities, which are 
inherent in products of Nature, and therefore must of 
necessity be inherent in every work of Art, become 
manifest:* Unity, Variety, Complexity, Order, Con- 
fusion, Counteraction, Comparison, Contrast, Comple- 
ment, Principality, Subordination, Balance. Derived 
from these are: Grouping, Organic Form, Symmetry. 
This statement of attributes of a work of art is not 
exhaustive. It, however, mentions the principal ones. 
The study of a drama after the method of classification 
will, as it progresses, reveal the existence therein of 
these properties ; and also the underlying laws of com- 
position in accordance with which the artist has con- 
structed his play. 

2d. It makes apparent the fact that the primary ele- 
ment in a Shakespearian drama is not Characterization 
but Plot. As to the perfection of Shakespeare's charac- 
ters there can be no uncertainty. All competent to 
form an opinion will agree with Dr. Johnson: " They are 
the genuine progeny of common humanity." But while 
true to Nature they are, as Gervinus says : " Not Nature 
only without the assistance of Art. They are neither 
mere abstractions and ideals, nor common chance per- 
sonifications, such as life brings indifferently before us, 
but they stand in the free, true, real artistic medium 
between both." But the opinion expressed by Gervi- 
nus, which is so common as to be almost universal, 

•For ibis summary I am indebted to ProfesaMr Baymond*8 scliolarljr and original 
work, ^^Qeneflii of Art-Fbrm,** p. 131. 

"that 



140 THE LOOKER'OHr. 

^'that Shikespeare's characters have always been hifi 
greatest glory/' is erroneous. Scholars have been led 
into making this error by two canses : One, the fact that 
8hakesi>eare's great advance beyond the Greek drama 
is the perfection of his character-drawing. The other 
and princiiHil one, that the plays are studied almost 
wholly from the testhetic standx>oint. In both cases 
the attention is directed primarily to the characters, 
and, secondarily, to the plot. The great poets of the 
world have been before all else artists. In their work 
it is not the intellectual, the sesthetical which is supreme. 
It is the art. When the construction of the dramas is 
criticaiUy studied the fiict becomes evident that the 
transcendent greatness of the plays is the Plot. Plot 
in a drama is simply design. It is the modns operandi 
by which the artist out of a chaos of characters, actions, 
passions, evolves order. This order is not that of 
mechanical regularity. It is far deeper and more vital 
It is that of a living organism. It is, as previously re- 
marked, absent in the play of the savage. It is present 
in the lesthetic play of the artist. It is the primal 
element in all art-work. After enumerating the ele- 
ments of Tragedy, Aristotle says : *^ The most important 
of these elements is the composition of the incidents 
(the plot or fable). For Tragedy is a representation 
(imitation) not of men and women, but of action and 
life. " " Art, ' ' says Ruskin, * * is human labor r^gulat^d 
by human design, and this design, or evidence of actiTe 
intellect in choice and arrangement, is the essential 
part of the work." The word Art is derived from the 
Latin arSj which means, ^^ skill in joining together, 
combining." That in turn is derived from the Greek 
aroj the definition of which is "to join, pin together, 
fit, fasten." The main object in art composition is to 
reduce the factors which may be numerous and various 
to unity and order for the purpose of making them 
ffisthetically intelligible. This is the function of Plot. 
It is only when a play is studied critically from the 
standpoint of its construction that the design or 

plot 




THE LOOKER-ON. 141 

plot is recognized as the primary and essential qnality 
of the drama. It is unreasonable to suppose that 
Shakespeare was ignorant of the supreme imi)ortance 
of Plot. LoweU writes, ^'It is singular that the 
man whose works show him to have meditated deeply 
on whatever interests human thought should have 
been supposed never to have given his mind to the 
processes of his own craft.** The converse is true. 
It is reasonable to believe that Shakespeare did rec- 
ognize the fact that Plot is the primal element in 
a drama. The perfection of his own plots prove this. 
His plays, with the exception of some written in his 
tentative, his playwright period, are the i)erf ection of 
symmetry — they balance around a common centre. 
"The key to every man is his thought." The key to 
every drama is the plot, which is simply the poet's 
originating, constructing thought. The recognition of 
this fact is one fruit of the study of the plays according 
to the method here advocated. 

3d. The study of a drama after this manner is similar 
in every stage to Shakespeare's method of constructing 
it. The student is thereby brought into intellectual 
and imaginative sympathy with the dramatist. As a 
consequence he is able to judge accurately, to appreciate 
fully the x)erf ection and beauty of the drama. Shake- 
sx)eare's method was first analytic, then synthetic. He 
analyzed a romance or history, selecting some, rejecting 
other incidents. Then using those selected and adding 
to them others of his own invention, out of them, as 
raw material, he created a drama. This operation is 
followed, step by step, by the student. The details are 
seen to be perfect in themselves. Further, that each one 
is essential, for in a i)erf ect drama there is no lay figure, 
not a needless word or action. Then passing from 
specials to generals, the growth of each division of the 
drama is traced. Finally the drama is perceived to be 
organic. Each and every part is seen to be vital and to 
be in living connection with every other part, and that 

all 



142 THE LOOKER.Oir. 

all together conBtitute a perfect work ot dramatic 
art. 

By thia method of study the scholar follows the 
natural order of intellectoal growth, which is from the 
concrete to the abstract. He rises, like Shakespeare 
himself, to the region of the imagination, and 

*' • • . apprehends 
More than oool reason ever comprehends." 

While there is, as Coleridge has stated, an antithesis 
between Science and Poetry, this antithesis is not great 
in degree or inherent in Nature. Essentially, Science 
and Poetry are alike, both being expressions of truth. 
As in Nature, so in method are they similar. ''The 
highest reach of science," says Matthew Arnold, "is, 
we may say, an inventiye power, a faculty of divination 
akin to the highest x>ower exercised in poetry." And 
again, ''without poetry our science will appear incom- 
plete. . . . For finely and truly does Wordsworfli 
call poetry 'the imprisoned expression which is in 
the countenance of all Science.' " The critical study, 
therefore, of Poetry as of Science is the joint work of 
reason and of imagination ; of the imaginative reason. 
This is true of Science. " Bounded and conditioned by 
co-operant reason, imagination becomes the mightiest 
instrument of the physical discoverer," says Tyndall. 
The scientific method of studying the Shakespearian 
drama equally demands the use both of reason and im- 
agination. It is by means of both that " the still and 
mental parts" of the drama, the hidden but vital con- 
nection of all the factors in the play, and the artistic 
result of that connection, are perceived. By means of 
both the student apprehends not only what is really in 
the play, but also what is potentially there. The pro- 
duction of that beauty, both that which is real and that 
which is potential, and the perception of it as well, is 
the result of the concurrent action of the highly trained 
intellect and a most refined and disciplined imagina- 
tion. The method of study advocated in this paper 

necessitates 



THE LOOKES-Oif. 



14S 



necessitates the exercise of both. Hence it is in accord 
"with Shakespeare's method of construction, and better 
tlian any other will enable the student to appreciate the 
Sliakespeare plays. 



[Mr. 



mlBX wlU contribDta a •erica of artiolM ob 

ths metbod of itodf advooatod iboTa. Tim* It will ra 




144 



THE LOOKER'Om 




PADEREWSKI AND HIS ART. 

By Hxnbt T. FnrcK. 

ryX ADEREWSKI plays Mozart with the simplicity of a 
jjiPju; happy boy, and Schubert with all the i)oetry per- 
^^ tinent to that master of melody and exquisite modu- 
lation. *'Onr pianists," wrote liszt in one of his let- 
ters, ^^have scarcely an inkling of the glorious treasures 
hidden among Schubert's pianoforte compositions.'' 
While Schubert is, in his sonatas, distinctly inferior to 
Beethoven, in his short pieces he is more original and 
idiomatic than Beethoven, and luckily these pieces are 
coming more and more into vogue at recitals. H'o other 
pianist plays Schubert more frequently than Pade- 
rewski ; certainly no one plays him more lovingly, or 
with such ravishing tone-color and depth of emotion. 
What could be more bewitching than the dainty way 
in which, in the ^^ Soirees de Yienne," he sets off Schu- 
bert's exquisite melody amid laszf s inimitable jew- 
eller's work I 

One of the pieces which he is usually compelled to 
repeat is the song *'Hark, Hark, the Lark." He plays 
tUs with a rubato which is simply enchanting, arubato 
concerning which more wiU be said presently. Pade- 
rewski proves that a free, elastic temx>o is as great a 
charm in Schubert as in Chopin or Liszt. And how his 
fingers do sing the melody on the keyboard 1 Young 
pianists are usually advised to go and hear great vocal- 
ists, so as to get a ^'singing " style on their instrument 
But in this case matters must be reversed. There are 
few operatic vocalists of the day who could not learn 
from Paderewski how to sing. 

A critic once foolishly said that Paderewski had all 
the great qualities except passion. Surely this critic 
had never heard him play the Schumann or Rubinstein 
concerto, a Chopin polonaise, or, especially, the Schu- 

bert-Lisst 



THE LOOKER-ON. 146 

bert-Iiszt ^^Erl-Eing," Ms interpretation of whicli 
stamps him as the most dramatic and impassioned of 
living pianists. Gk)ethe's weird ballad-— the galloping 
of the horse, the fears and entreaties of the child, the 
father's consoling words, the Barking's blandishments, 
and the tragic end — ^are related by him on the piano 
with a thrilling vividness to which the words could add 
hardly anything. On hearing him play the Impromptu 
in B flat one realizes why Rubinstein should have 
exclaimed, ^^ Once more, and a thousand times more, 
Bach, Beethoven, and Schubert are the highest summits 
in music." 

^^I am sorry to find Mendelssohn's pianoforte works 
neglected in this country," Paderewski once said to a 
London critic. ^^ Play them yourself, master, and bring 
them into vogue once more," was the answer. He did 
so, and he turned them, like everything he touches, 
into gold. He makes people feel ashamed of their 
prejudices against this or that composer, or certain 
forms of music. Many an amateur considers Mendels- 
sohn mawkish and antiquated, but let him hear this 
Polish pianist play the ^^ Yariations S6rieuses," and he 
will cry peccavi ! and confess that Mendelssohn was a 
great genius after aU. Even the ^' Songs Without 
Words" seem to lose their ultra-sentimentality under 
his hands. 

At one of his New York concerts Paderewski made a 
genuine sensation by his performance of Liszt's fantasia 
on Mendelssohn's ^^ Midsummer Night's Dream," one 
of the best of Liszt's arrangements. It is one of his 
attempts to convert the piano into an orchestra, and 
with Paderewski at the piano the success is surprising. 
Those rapid, rippling violin passages were not only as 
good as in the orchestra, they were better ; no group of 
violinists I have ever heard has succeeded in producing 
such an airy, graceful effect with them. Another per- 
formance by him of this piece was remarkable for the 
fact that he actually struck a few wrong notes — ^a fact 
which, to some of his admirers, was a positive relief, 

for 





Ii6 THE LOOKBR-OK. 

for it proved that he had not sold his soul to the deyfl, 
after all, in return for the gift of flawless pianism, as 
there had been reason to 8a8i>ect before. 

Dr. Riemann has truly said that Mendelssohn would 
have made five or ten pieces oat of one of Schnmaim's. 
This pithy conciseness is what makes Schumann so 
very difficult to interpret. Unless every note is 
brought out in its proper perspective, the poetic effect 
is lost. Two other characteristic traits of Schumann's 
music are rhythmic energy and harmonic subtlety, 
one calling for masculine vigor, the other for f emimne 
refinement of feeling. Paderewski is preeminent as a 
Schumann interpreter because he unites these traits in 
his style. Under his hands, too, Schumann's compli- 
cate rhythms become as clear as a simple waltz move- 
ment, and when he plays a *^ NachtstQck," how he does 
make every part of the harmony sing in turn or in com- 
bination I He has, too, the very rare gift of revealing 
the Jean-Paulesque humor in Schumann's works, and 
nothing could be more amusing than the droll yet 
stately manner in which, when he plays tiie ^'Papil- 
lons," he reels off that quaint old dance, the CHross- 
vatertam. 

Schumann's Concerto is now generally regarded as 
the best work of its class in existence. How does 
Paderewski play it ? Lest I surfeit the reader with my 
own opinions, let me quote, in answer to this question, 
what a German critic, F. R. Pfau, wrote on the occa- 
sion of what he calls Paderewski' s *^ colossal success" 
in Dresden, on February 16, 1896: *'No one who has 
heard him play the Schumann Concerto will ever for- 
get the impression. Strange that he, a Pole, living in 
France, should have been able to penetrate to the inner 
spirit of this thoroughly (German music, and interpret 
it in a manner that is above all praise. The tender 
melodies as he plays them float in a fragrant atmos- 
phere that brings before the mind's eye all the &iry 
world of Gferman romanticism, while on fhe other hand 
the grand climaxes in the first movement are played by 

him 



TBE LOOKER-ON. 147 

him with an overwhelmiiig effect that snggesta the pas- 
sion of a Soutiiem artis^." 



THB BBAL OHOPIIC 

"TTJ NTONE who will examine a few of Mr. Pade- 
(3^ rewski's programmes will see at a glance that 
Chopin is hia favorite ; nor is it strange that he should 
prefer his countryman, whose national Polish melan- 
choly, Slavic rubato and ravishing tone-colors he brings 
out as only a Slavic pianist can. Before he came into 
the concert world Chopin's music had been played by 
so many great pianists that it seemed as if it would be 
as impossible to throw new light on it as on the charac- 
ter of Hamlet ; yet he revealed beauties previously un- 
suspected. Before hia arrival Pachmann had made a 
repntation as a Chopin specialist, and it must be ad- 
mitted that as an interpreter of the delicate, dainty, 
brilliant side of Chopin he sometimes 
equalled Paderewski. But he failed to do 
justice to the masculine, dramatic, ener- 
getic side of Chopin's genius, thus help- 
ing to perpetuate the absurd notion that 
Chopin was always a "feminine" com- 
poser. This misconception has been cor- 
rected for all time by Paderewski' s per- 
formance of the xtolonaises, sonatas, and 
scherzos. He brings out the muscular, 
dramatic side, not by pounding — his 
sense of tonal beauty is too keen to per- 
mit him ever to pound, even in moments 
of the greatest excitement — but by ner- 
vous powers of expression ; Ai« rArility 
is •mental rather than muscular, and the 
brain ia mightier than the arm. He re- 
veals to us all the masculine force, all 
the stirring scenes, that are embodied ia .^sp-,, - - 

the Ar'" 



148 THE LOOKER-ON. 

the dwarf pieces of the giant Chopin. When he plays 
the B minor sonata it is like a mnsio drama^ erery 
moment of absorbing interest. 

Paderewski does not play a Chopin ballad ; he recites 
it just as an actor would recite the story which it tells, 
with dramatic mbato, dwelling on emphatic words and 
hurrying over others, according to the movement of the 
story. This is what is meant by tempo rabaJto. Some 
of Chopin's pupils have said that he advised them to 
confine the slight changes in i)ace to the melody, mean- 
while preserving strict time with the accompaniment 
He may have said that to his pupils, but I decline to 
believe that he played that way himself. I am con- 
vinced that his rubato was more like Wagner's dra- 
matic '^modification of tempo," which affects the jiace 
of all the parts. Certainly that is the rubato as liszt 
understood it, and as Paderewski uses it in playing 
liszt, Chopin, Schubert, and to a less extent, the mas- 
ters of the classical school. He lingers over bars which 
have pathos in their melody or harmony, and slightly 
accelerates his pace in rapid, agitated moments ; but he 
does all this so naturally, so unobtrusively, tihat one 
does not consciously notice any change in the pace— it 
seems the natural movement of the piece. 

One of the lessons taught by the great Polish pianist 
is that there is no such thing as a cast-iron tempo for 
any piece, or a single, invariable correct way of play- 
ing it. During his second American season, for in- 
stance, he played Chopin's G major nocturne three 
times, giving those who heard it each time a chance to 
marvel at the sx>ontaneity and recreativeness of his 
playing. It was quite a different piece each time, vary- 
ing with his moods. The first time it was somewhat prim 
and '* classical" in spirit, the second time romantic 
and dreamy, the third time languid and melancholy- 
This is what distinguishes music from mechanism. 

What 



^■^,. 



THE ZOOKER-Oir. 



LISZT AND HIS BHAPeODIBS. 

"JJKHAT Liszt said in regard to the " glorious treas- 
O^ nres ' * Mdden among Schnbert' s neglected piano- 
forte compoaitionB may be jnBtly applied 
to Mb own worka. TTie Liszt niiasiinary 
has a large field ; few, even among profes- 
I sionals, know how Tery large it is. The 
number of Liszt's compositions exceeds 
I twelve hundred. Among them are one hun- 
dred and fifty-five original pieces for piano 
(two hands), and three hundred and fifty- 
one transcriptions for the piano of pieces 
by other composers. Only a small proportion of these 
are known to the public ; but they are gaining ground 
every year, in spite of the amazingly persistent opposi- 
tion of the critics, one of whom wrote not long ago that 
" to play Liszt well requires little more than the neces- 
sary amount of physical force 1 " When I read one of 
these criticisms I am always reminded of what Saint- 
Saans wrote in regard to Wagner's " Walkure" : "A 
thousand critics writing each a thousand lines a day for ^^g^^r-.^ 
ten years would injure this work about aa much aa a ^^>^^'i 
child's breath would do towards overthrowing the pyra- ^^-^^^^^C^ 
mida of Egypt." The vast majority of music-lovers are ^T^ ^'^^p,'..- 
enthusiastic over Liszt's works, and they know that they 
are in very good company : pianists like Joseffy, B' Al- 
bert, Fachmann, Tansig, BUlow ; conductors like Hans 
Richter, Anton Seidl, Theodore Thomas, Arthur Nikisch, 
Felix Mottl ; composers like Saint-Saens, Tchaikovsky, 
Dror&k, Wagner, who once declared Liszt "the great- 
est musician that ever lived." 

Faderewski, too, is a most devoted admirer and cham- 
pion of Liszt, and I shall never forget the amiably sar- 
castic smile on his lips when a certain critic begged him 
not to play any more of the rhapsodies. He played two 
at hia next recital I If questioned on the subject, his 
answer leaves nothing to be desired in point of decision 

and 



190 TSE LOOKER-OK. 

and •nthnilagm ; bnt It Is In his performancet that he 
most eloquently reveals hi> lore of Liszt. Schnmann 
once said of Thalberg that he had the gift of dressing 
up commonplace Ideas In anch a way as to make th«m 
interesting. Liszt had the higher gift 
of taking the ideas of the greatest com- 
posers and transcribing them for the 
piano in snch a way as to make them 
' even superior to the original. Thnsfae 
sDcceeded in doing with mnsic what 
no poet has ever succeeded in doing 
with Terse — translate it successfully 
into another idiom. These Liszt trans- 
criptions include almost everything 
that is best in all branches of the art, 
and in making them accessible to all who p<»8e8a & 
piano he did an inestimable service to music. But to 
realize the full charm of these transcriptions one mnst 
hear Paderewski play them ; he can even take the taint 
of sensationalism out of the earlier ones, which Liszt 
himself in later years disliked. 

To realize what is meant by a " tornado of applause," 
one must hear Padeiewski play one of liszt's Hungarian 
Rhapsodies. Why does the public applaud these so 
frantically? Because they are "sensational," as the 
the critics say ? They are nothing of the sort. Bungling 
pianists may make one think so, for they give obtrusive 
prominence to their difficult passages, while ignoring 
their poetic spirit. When Paderewski plays a Liszt 
rhapsody no one thinks of runs or sensationalism; it is 
all melody, poetry, rubato, local color, exotic charm; 
the ornamentations being used to give the gypsy national 
coloring, and no more sensational or inartistic in them- 
selves than the six harps which Wagner uses to give the 
prismatic tints to the rainbow scene in " Rheingold." 

Hear what the greatest of living French composers has 
to say of Uszt' s rhapsodies : ' ' Although built ujwn bor- 
rowed themes, they are genuine artistic creations, where 
the author manifests a most subtle talent. ... It is 

entirely 



THE ZOOKEn-OS: 161 

entirely wrong to conaider them merely brilliant. In 
them we find a reconstmction and, if we may say so, 
a civilizing of national mnsic of the highest interest. 
The composer did not aim at difficulties (which did not 
exist, for him), bnt at a picturesque effect and a vivid 
reproduction of the outlandish orchestra of the gyp- 
sies." 

To speak of Idszt's rhapsodies as merely "brilliant" 
or "sensational" is to display a woful ignorance; 
for they contain the quintessence of the melodies, 
rhythms, and ornaments of two of the most musical of 
all nations, the Hungarians and the Gypsies. They are 
coUections of musical odes, ballads, idyls, songs of 
war, of sorrow, love, and conviviality, all welded into 
organic works of art by Liszt's rare genius and techni- 
cal mastery. In Liszt's rhapsodies these gypsy orchids 
are arranged in a spontaneous disorder, which is in- 
finitely more natural and artistic than the academic 
artificiality of a symphony in four geometrical move- 
ments. They will ever form the delight of those whose 
musical enjoyment does not consist in _^ 

the pedantic analyzing of sonatas, bat j^ V-^ 
who lake pleasure in the spontaneous /* 
melodies in which the naive populace, 
in its moments of poetic emotion, has 
embodied its joys and sorrows. 

Liszt himself has, in his book on the 
Hungarian Gypsies, told us how their , 
performances excite and almost craze / 
their hearers. In the golden age of / 
Gypsy bands the collector used to carry 
a golden plate to collect contributions, 
and gold was freely sprinkled among 
the bank-notes lavishly bestowed by 
the cavaliers in return for the pleasure given them by 
the music, while many wept for joy. We are more dig- 
nified in the expresssion of our pleasure, but hardly 
more reserved, as the "tornadoes of applause" evoked 
by Paderewski show. Mr. Joseffy, himself a Hungarian 

and 



us THB ZOOKER-OW. 

and one of the gnatesfe of pianicrts, has jnstlj pointed 
out that Paderowski surpasses Liszt's own pupils in his 
inteipretation of these rhapsodies, which might be said 
to form the transition between European and Asiatic 
music. Note what loving attention he gives to their 
lavishing folk melodies, erquisite harmonies, and or- 
chestral variety of tone-colors. Even these astonishing 
glissandos in the tenth rhapsody, which under the hands 
of ordinary pianists sound like cheap tricks, are trans- 
formed by his dainty touch and exquisite shading into 
effects of caressing beauty and genuine artistic value. 

But it is in his modifications of temjK), his inimitable 
rubato, that lies the chief witchery of Paderewski^s 
lisrt playing. Liszt carries the rubato even farther 
than Chopin; there are movements where hardly a dozen 
successive bars have the same x>ace. Paderewski plays 
the rhapsodies like improvisationA— inspirations of the 
moment. It \& the negation of the mechanical in music, 
the assassination of the metronome. When ordinary 
pianists play a Liszt rhapsody there is nothing in their 
performance that a musical stenographer could not 
note down just as it is played. But what Paderewski 
plays could not be put down on pax>er by any system of 
notation ever invented. For such subtle nuances of 
temxK) and expression there are no signs in our musical 
alphabet. But it is precisely these unwritten and un- 
writable things that constitute the soul of music and 
the instinctive command of which distinguishes a genius 
from a mere musician. 

PABXBSWSKI AS A 00KP08XB. 

^n FTER all, the greatest pleasure a great pianist 
^ can give is when he plays his own comx>ositions. 
Even when they are not of the highest order they 
gain a charm from their authoritative and sympathetic 
interpretation, and when they are of the highest order 
the combination is irresistible. Creative genius betrays 
itself infallibly in interpretation as well as in compo- 
sition, and when the pianist plays his own piece he 

can 



i. PADERWE5KI. 



THE L OKER - OJV. 158 

can give it the oliarm of an improvisation. All the 

greatest pianiata — Chopin, Liszt, Enbinstein, etc. — 

were composers &a well as yirtnosi, 

and all were at their best in playing 

their own pieces. Of Paderewski it 

must be said, as of Chopin, Liszt, and 

Rabinstein, that great as is his shill as 

pianist, his creative power is even more 

remarkable. 

Althongh he is a Pole and Chopin 
his idol, yet his music is not an echo of 
Chopin's. To a London jonrnaUst he 
once remarked on the subject of Polish 
mnsio: "It is almost impossible to 
write any nowadays. The moment yon 
try to be national, every one cries out 
that yon are imitating Chopin, whereas 
the truth is that Chopin adopted all 
the most marked characteristics of 
our national music so completely that it is impossible 
not to resemble him in externals, though your methods 
and ideas may be absolutely your own." His musio 
has Chopin's thoroughly idiomatic piano style, but in 
invention and development it is bis own, and it has an 
individuality as striking as that of Grieg or Dvorik. 

He wrote a set of Polish dances at the early age of 
seven, but did not publish anything before he was twenty- 
two. A glance at his three dozen or more piano pieces 
shows that in form as in spirit they belong to the Polish 
branch of the modem romantic school. Among them 
are Krakowiaks, Mazurkas, Polonaises, and other Polish 
dances, also a Caprice, Intermezzo, Legend, Barcarolle, 
Sarabande, Elegy, Melodies, etc., all of them short 
pieces such as are characteristic of the romantic school. 
To the "classical" form he has paid deference only in 
his concerto and his sonata for violin and piano, al- 
though even here he avoids the artificiality and inter- 
minableness of the "classical" school. It is to be 
hoped that he will have the courage to pay no further 

Ixibute 



IM Tax LOOKEROK. 

tribute to the obsolete sonata f orm, but follow in ite 
iootflteps of CSbopiii and lisst ia compositioii as \m does 
in playing. In Hiat direction lies the concert music of 
the future. 

It is not my intention to make an analysis of Pade- 
rewski's compositions. I will merely call attention to 
a few of the most jMpular and important ones. To the 
public at large the best known is his Minuet. WheneFer 
he plays this piece (usually as an encore), the audience 
bursts out into applause after the first three bars, to show 
its delight at his choice. It is not too much to say that 
this Minuet is quite on a par with Mozart's &biou8 
*^ Bon Juan" Minuet^ but with modem refinements of 
harmony and tone^x>lor of which Mozart never dreamed. 
A writer in the GFerman periodical Ueber Land und Meet 
tells an amusing anecdote about this Minuet : ^^ When 
Paderewski was a professor at the Warsaw Cionserva- 
tory, he was a frequent visitor at my house, and one 
evening I remarked that no living comxK)ser could be 
ooi&x)ared with Mozart. Paderewski' s only reply was 
a shrug of tiie shoulders, but the next day he came 
back, and, sitting down at the piano, said, ^I should 
like to play you a little piece of Mozart's which you 
perhaps do not know.' He then played the Minuet. I 
was enchanted with it and cried, ^ Now you will your- 
self acknowledge that nobody of our time could furnish 
us with a composition like that I' ^WeU,' answered 
Paderewski^ ^ this Minuet is mine.' " 

One of the most charming of tiie shorter pieces is the 
^^ Chant du Yoyageur " (opus 8, No. 8)— a piece that has 
brou^it tears to the eyes of many hardened profession- 
ale. Its first three notes suggest by their beat tiiat 
celestial melody in Chopin's great Scherzo (opus 20) as 
if to show its affiliation with the Chopin achool ; the 
rest of it is an expression of a new individuality in 
mnaio--one destined to mark a new epoch. I have never 
heard an opos 6 so mature, so original, so deeply raoio- 
tional. But you mast hear him play it to i^alize all its 
diuunns. 

A 



THE Z OKER ■ ON. 165 

A. masterpiece among Mb short works is the Th^me 
Yari^ opos 11. The theme itself has the simplicity of 
a Glack melody, but on it is boilt an original harmonic 
Btmctnre that Chopin might have been 
proud of. It is a superbly romantic and 
emotional work. Of his Variations et 
Fn^e, No. 1, it may be said that the 
theme has a ballad-like character, and 
the variations are not mere musical^ 
rhetoric — the art of saying the same 
thing in different ways — but they tell, 
a tale with bright and tragic episodes. 
One of the variations, with an obstinate- 
ly repeated baas, suggests the tolling ^ ^' i '-'*• 
of funeral bells. His Legend begins V' '^ 
with a mysterious plaintive narrative, leading up grad- 
ually to a terrific tragedy, after which the tone poem is 
finished in quieter stanzas. His Cracovienne is as exo- 
tic, as weirdly half -Asiatic, as the most Polish of Cho- 
pin's mazurkas or the most Magyar of Liszt'srhapsodies. 
The four songs included in opus 7 resemble Chopin's 
Polish songs, but are not equal to the piano pieces. 
Daring his second American tour he occasionally 
hammed and played for his friends a set of six new 
songs which he had not yet committed to paper. They 
sabseqnently appeared in print in a translation by Miss 
Alma Tadema and an American version by Mrs. H. D. 
Tretbar. Of these, perhaps, "My Tears are Flowing," 
"The Piper's Song," and "Over the Waters" are the 
best ; but they are all good. They were first sung in 
England by Mr. Lloyd to the composer's accompaniment^ 
and created quite a sensation. There is a suggestion in 
them of C^rieg, but this is merely evidence of the curious 
affinity between Norwegian and Polish music. 

The sonata for violin and piano to which reference has 
been made was played in New York by Professor Brod- 
Bky and the composer. It is original in its themes and 
admirably salted to the charaoter of the two instrnments. 
One of its modem features is its brevity— it lasts only 

twenty 



156 TEE LOOKES'OK. 

twenty minutes. A more important work is the piano 
concerto opuB 17. What vigor in th» opening all^ro, 
what poetry in the romance, what life and spirit in the 
finale I Hans Richter once said that the supreme test 
of a bom composer lay in his slow movements; he 
I>ointed to Beethoven, Schubert, and Dror&k, among 
others, in proof of his assertion. Had he known the 
dreamy Romanza of this concerto he would cert^nlj 
have added Paderewski. I know of nothing more saperb 
in the whole range of piano literatare, and it is only his 
opus 17. It reveals Paderewski, too, as the first Polish 
composer who is as great a master of the orchestra as of 
the piano. 

THE POLISH FAMTASIA. 

(^HE greatest of Paderewski's works are his Polish 
(7 Fantasia and his opera. The opera he has just 
completed, and it will have its first 
performances in Bnda Pesth, London, 
and Dresden. It is on a Polish sub- 
ject, its scene being laid in the Car- 
pathian Mountains. Mr. Alexander 
Mc Arthur, formerly Rubinstein's sec- 
retary, had the privilege in Paris of 
hearing him play parts of this opera. 
He says that "like all Poles, Pade- 
^=- ., . ,. rewski is superstitious, and believes 

^jr \ that any undertaking spoken of before 
I i Ji \| its completion more or less presages 
I *J / |\ ill-luck; consequently I had to give 
^y -/b \ '■ him my word of honor I would keep 
ff f f-' \ silent on the matter of this new opera. 
— •"• — ^^-^ However, there is one thing I can say 
without overstepping the mark, which is, that this 
opera of Paderewski's is going to do more for his 
fame than even his piano-playing has done, and that 
it will mark an era not only in the great pianist-com- 
poser's career, but an era in art itself. It is an abso- 
lutely 



THE LOOKER-ON. m 

Intely superb work, great in intensity and full of truly 
liTunan pathos." 

In the summer of 1893 Paderewski wrote his Polish 
Fantasia, which has brought him more fame, both as 
composer and pianist, than anything else he has ever 
done. It had its first performance on October 4th, of the 
same year, at the Norwich Festival in England, of which 
it was pronounced the most attractive and sensational 
feature. As I have not yet had the pleasure of hearing 
this work, I must quote the opinions of other critics in 
whose judgment I have confidence. The London Sun- 
day TiTfies wrote of it : " The new Fantasia proved to 
be a symphonic poem for piano and orchestra in four 
movements (not three, as stated in the analysis), and a 
thoroughly well-thought-out musicianly work to boot. 
Its chief characteristics are its intense national feeling, 
its constructive skill, and its enormous difficulty. The 
themes are all original, and it takes a quick ear to per- 
ceive on first hearing with what skill the whole of them 
are derived or develoi)ed from two or three main sub- 
jects. The bold introductory passages merge imper- 
ceptibly into the well- worked allegro moderato ; the 
impetuous scherzo, with its mazurka -like rhythm, 
brings a great change, but in the andante (a gem of 
dreamy, plaintive melody), the composer is in reality 
metamorphosing material from his allegro ; while the 
finale, after starting with a dashing Cracovienne, ob- 
tains its most grandiose effect from the theme of the 
scherzo, given here in augmentation.'* 

In an account of the Norwich Festival we read that 
" Paderewski made a capital rehearser, calm and quiet, 
never indulging in unnecessary stoppages, and mani- 
festly delighted with his own music " ; in another that 
"Mr. Paderewski is by no means an easy performer for 
an orchestra to accompany, as he rarely plays his music 
twice alike" ; while a third writer said that the Fanta- 
sia "takes the breath away," and is so difficult that 
"few besides its composer will venture to play it." 
It was also said that before appearing in public with 

his 



158 THE LOOKER-On. 

his new woik Paderewski had hired an oidiettni to 
rehearse with him privately. Many compoaefB^ dcmbtp 
leBs, would be glad to follow anch a good eacample be- 
fore adding the fimshing touches to their woikB -/but 
few can afford such a luxury. 

In London the Polish Fantasia aroused the same en- 
thusiasm as at Norwich ; and in Paris, last spring, 
Lamoureux had to repeat it three times in the Tust 
Cirque d' ^Xk. Mr. Alexander Mc Arthur, who was pres- 
ent at these concwts, wrote: ^'What struck me most 
forcibly about the Fajitasia was, that while the themes 
are distinctly Polish, they are nevertheless just as dis- 
tinctly non-Chopineeque, something truly wonderfnl in 
a Polish Fantasia written for the piano. . . . Padeiew- 
ski has not stooped to steal his themes from national 
melodies. They are all his own. . . . The orchestration 
is superb, and it is owing to this fact especially that the 
non-traces of Chopin can be proven. In &ct, fine as the 
piano i)artition undoubtedly is, that for the orchestra is 
still finer. The ease with which Paderewski handles 
combinations of the most difficult harmonic effects is 
wonderful, and his skill in contrapuntal groupings mar- 
vellous. • . . The piano i)artition is of the most startling 
difficulty, yet there is not a bar written for mere effect" 

OOKQUXST OF OBRMAmT. 

I'P^NE more imi)ortant event in Paderewski's career 
15^ remains to be related— his conquest of Gtermany. 
For two or three years he had limited his activity almost 
entirely to England and America. Being able to draw 
a four or five thousand dollar house whenever he pleased, 
he probably saw no particular reason for touring in the 
impoverished continent where half that sum would 
seem a big receipt. However, in May, 1894^ he con- 
sented to play his new Fantasia at the biggest of the 
German music festivals, the Netherrhenish, at Air-Ia- 
Chapelle. The result waa thus described by Mr. Otto 
Moersheim : ^' I was dumfounded by both the compo- 
sition and the performance, and after it was all over got 



THE LOOKER 'ON. 16« 

as orasy as the rest of the audience and joined in a 
hnnah snch as the venerable citj of Chariemagne has 
rarely witnessed. Aix-la-Chai>elle stood on its head 
for once and the walls of ttie Kurhans riiook." Ifr. 
Floersheim considers the Fantasia ^^the most diftonlt 
piece of mnsio ever written for piano^" its style being" 
^^ a combination of Liszt and Chopin in a most happy 
blending, with a lot of Paderewski tiirown into the 
bargain." Begarding his perhaps ha makes this sig- 
nificant confession: ^^I had not heard him for two 
years, and in the meantime I had heard lour times 
Rubinstein, any number of times IVAlbeH, Sammel, 
Kosenthal, and some of the ol^r great pianists of 
Europe, and I had gradually lulled myself into lAie 
thought that perhaps after all I had overrated Pade- 
rewski. I had been told it so often in Berlin that finally 
I began to distrust my own judgment, and said to my- 
self, ^ ^ Well, perhaps they are right and you are wrong. ' ' 
With the first movement of the Schumann ooneerto, my 
doubts were again dispelled, and as the work proceeded 
I once more and most firmly became convinced that for 
charm, poetry, and beauty Paderewski' s playing <A Hie 
piano outrivals that of all other pianists I ever heudin 
my life, and henceforth nobody shall ever dare again to 
BhB>ke me in this artistic belief." 

After the ice had thus been broken in Germany, 
Paderewski consented the more readily to attack the 
citadels of Dresden and Leipsic. His triumphs there in 
February, 1896, were perhaps even greater than in 
London, Paris, and New York. The King of Saxony 
invited Paderewski to give a special recital in the royal 
palace at Dresden, and the musical public was simply 
frantic ; even the conservative Leipsicers, who rarely 
have a good word for a newcomer, for once became 
gushing rhapsodists. ^^The success was colossal," 
wrote the Leipziger Zeitung ; ^^not since Liszt has a 
pianist been received as Paderewski was last evening." 
"Never since the Albert Hall was built has such 
applause been heard there as last evening," wrote the 

ATueigerj 



160 THE looker-on: 

Anzeiger; and the TageblaU of February 3d had the fol- 
lowing : ^^ Paderewski haa for some years been enjoying 
the greatest triumphs in Austria, France, England, and 
America, but, for unknown reasons, avoided Germany 
ahnost entirely. . . • C!onceming his colossal suc^cess 
in our sister-city of Dresden our readers have already 
been informed. . . . Such positively &bulous enthu- 
siasm no other artist has aroused in Leii)sic as far back 
as our memory goes. The public did not applaud, it 
raved. If Paderewski has hitherto avoided Germany 
in the belief that he might be coolly received, he must 
have been radically cured of that idea last evening." 

In conclusion, let me quote the testimony of Alex- 
ander Mc Arthur, who wrote the biography of Rubinstein 
and lived for years under his roof. Of Paderewski he 
says: ^^From the first bar to the last he holds yon 
breathless by a series of novel and original effects. His 
is an absolutely new school of piano playing, unique, 
thoughtful, i)oetic, and altogether the originality of his 
readings is something extraordinary, something that, 
even apart from his marvellous technic, exquisite grace 
and tone-nuance, gives a charm and interest that are 
endless." 




THE LOOKER-ON, 161 



** TOUCH" IN PIANOFORTE PLAYING. 

By William Poster Apthobp. 

It is not often that a purely technical point in any- 
thing relating to music comes in for general discussion, 
especially in the daily press. Yet such has been the 
case, in the course of the last year or two, with a tech- 
nical point connected with what is commonly, and i)er- 
haps too loosely, called "touch " in pianoforte playing. 
The discussion has been carried on, by one party, with a 
quiet sobriety quite usual in arguing questions of scien- 
tific research, if somewhat less frequently shown in con- 
troversies on questions i)ertaining to art; the other 
party has at times permitted itself a display of emotion 
hardly compatible with calm scientific reasoning, and 
smacking strongly of what would doubtless caU itself 
righteous indignation. Certain propositions regarding 
"touch " in pianoforte playing have been received with 
horror, which would look more like scorn, had it been 
expressed with less violent verbosity. 

Likely enough, a great part of the trouble has arisen, 
as it frequently does in such cases, from a misunder- 
standing: from a lack of perfect scientific accuracy of 
statement, on the one hand, and on the other, from a 
half -careless, half -wilful misconception of the real gist 
and scope of the statements made. Some persons, and 
those most inclined to be violent on the subject, seem 
plainly enough to have considered what they conceived 
might be the artistic bearing of certain theories which 
have been advanced, instead of taking due pains to 
understand exactly what those theories were. Another 
source of trouble has undoubtedly been the unfortunate 
vagueness of our current musical terminology, and the 
consequent confusion between the general and the spe- 
cific sense of a common musical term. 

Looking back upon the discussion, one finds that 

what 



t&e vwd 




iJi ivir X ia» Veem waed, so I use 



in tile 



>i ■ 



I 1 :-"L— ^ ?:: 



s. a iJ. * n^^Li-^nn* n jf jay inier anas the pianist 
Tx-7 xjT-^ IT xj* LjfT^siI :f Ixf ieiLt g ifae qoriBty of 
-5 St* -rr* cij^L f^» i 1:^ '-i** Tae:f «Tb?r or boA pedals, 
i- M-n-T I- ^«T. r a» c i -Jinr irnra rbe key after it has 
':•— a i-7Z7-«e^I * .'•- • ir trz^r^tszy vcnich\ r plprnwin g the 
k--', :r iitf :iLxxit-r :f Tr«?arLix sivtcsaiie notes in a 
oi-Lfi-:!! Tiriiw*. y r-f xls*-^ rial it is a qoestion of 
i.-T^«rs^lzx ~ 5 i-'7-~ i'C 3e^r»»*al keys* either simiil- 
^:iJi»-«. 'i^I^ :c in *^' ^'>?s*l».cl 

TTii* 5i:r-> ri-^'a i* cae whirh can be answered 
ccc^.l-rttrly s^rra ii-^ exasiiaarion of the mechanical 
az.d aovrL?Ti-rjI r^ss^r? iliti-?* of the caasL Smtiment has 
nciiiiiirTo d-^ wi:i h. f:riiispiirdyaqiiestionof fact. 
Let me Sr^:i by c^rosid^^fin^r the mechanical apparatus 
wMoh interreiies t^ i»i! e n the pianist^s finger and the 

string 



TEZ LOOKER" OK 163 

string from whieh the tone is produced. This appara- 
tus consists of three principal, and independeTity parts. 

/ 




First, the key itsell This is a horizontal, or nearly 
horizontal, lever of wood, faced on its outer i)ortion 
with ivory; at its fulcrum, it is kept in place by a ver- 
tical metal pin which passes through a small hole. 
When at rest, its inner end is slightly down and its 
outer end up. Its motion is that of an up-and-down see- 
saw (bcLscule) : when its outer end is depressed, its inner 
end is correspondingly raised; when the depressing 
force is removed from its outer end, it falls back of 
itself into its original position. What slight lateral 
motion may be imparted to it comes from the necessary 
looseness of its attachment to the instrument at the 
point where it plays on its fulcrum. Were it in any 
way attached to its contiguous part of the apparatus, 
this i)ossible lateral motion, however slight, might not 
be entirely negligible; but, as it is not so attached, the 
effect of its lateral motion, slight as it is in any case, 
can safely be rated as null. 

Next, the action. This is the technical name of a 
somewhat complex vertical wooden frame which plays 
freely on a horizontal hinge at its inner comer. As it 
plays on a hinge, its motion describes the arc of a circle 
in a vertical plane; no other motion is possible to it. 
When at rest, its lower portion rests upon a capstan on 
the inner part of the key. When the inner end of the 
key is raised (by depressing the outer end), the action 
is raised with it; when the inner end of the key is 

allowed 



164 THE LOOKSR'OHr. 

allowed to faU back to its original position, the actioa 
falls with it Bemember— f or this is important— that 
there is no connedian between the key and the action, 
but only contact ; the action rests upon the key, but is 
in no wise fastened to it. When it falls, it falls of its 
own weight. 

Last, the HAmfKB. This is a wooden hammer, faced 
with felt on its striking surface, which plays freely 
on a horizontal hinge at the outer, or anterior, end of 
what, in an ordinary hammer, would be called its 
^< handle." Like the action, its motion describes the 
arc of a circle in a vertical plane; and this is the only 
motion i)0S8ible to it. When at rest, it rests, very near 
its hinge end, ui>on the upi)er portion of the action; so 
that when the latter is raised, it is raised, too. But, 
as its ^'handle" is the radius of the arc it describes 
when in motion, and the hinge is the centre of a circle, 
of the circumference of which that arc is a portion, it 
follows that a very slight motion imparted at its point 
of contact with the action (near the centre) results 
in a far more extended and rapid motion of its felt- 
faced "head" (on the circumference). As there is no 
connection, but merely contact, between the key and the 
action, it is equally important to remember that there 
is nothing more than contact between the action and 
the stem of the hammer. If the action is raised very 
gently, the hanmier is carried upward by it; if, on the 
other hand, the action is raised by a more sudden im- 
pulse, the hanmier is thrown upward by it — ^that is, a 
sufficient impetus is imparted to the hanmier to make 
it leave all contact with the action and fly upward 
through the air on its hinge. 

This throwing of the hammer, instead of raising it in 
constant contact with the action, is the most important 
element in the whole business. For it is only by being 
thus thrown that the hammer can possibly be made to 
impinge upon the string which is stretched above it. 
The greatest amplitude of motion which can possibly be 
imparted to the action by the key is insufficient to carry 

the 



THE LOOKER-ON. 166 

the "head" of the hammer from its original position 
of rest all the way up to the string. The action can 
carry the hammer part way on its journey to the string, 
but must perforce throw it the rest of the way. It is 
mechanically impossible for the "head" of the ham- 
mer to be in contact with the string and the stem of the 
hammer to be in contact with the action at the same 
moment. 

A careful examination of the construction of this 
apparatus, herein described, must convince any (ration- 
al) person that the pianist can have no possible control 
over the motion of the hammer after the loiter has 
severed its contact vrith the action. Up to this moment 
there has been mediate contact — ^through the key and 
the action — ^between the pianist's finger and the ham- 
mer; but, so soon as the contact between hammer and 
action ceases, so soon as the hammer is thrown by the 
action, this mediate contact between finger and hammer 
ceases also. The pianist's control over and responsi- 
bility for the motion of the hammer consequently ceases 
at the same moment. But remember that all contact 
between the hammer and the action ceases before the 
hammer has touched the string. Therefore the pianist' s 
control over the motion of the hammer must also cease 
before the hammer has touched the string — that is, be- 
fore the tone is produced. 

No possible reasoning can controvert this; it may, 
and must, be regarded as a scientifically ascertained 
and proved fact. The pianist has in reality consider- 
ably less control over the motion of the hammer than 
the baseball pitcher has over that of the ball he de- 
livers, or the billiard-player has over that of the ball 
he strikes or pushes with his cue. The cases have this 
in common, that, in all three of them, the player must 
perforce resign all control over the object thrown after 
he has thrown it; but both the pitcher and the billiard- 
player can impart a " twist" to their ball, the after re- 
sult of which — ^acting against the resistance of the air 
or the surface of the billiard-table-— can be more or less 

accurately 



166 TEB looker-on: 

accurately precalculated; the pianifit, howcTer, con im- 
part no anch ^^ twiat " to the hammer, which can only 
describe its prescribed arc of a circle in a vertical plane, 
swinging on its hinge. 

Now to the tone produced. It is scientifically un- 
questionable that the amount and quality of tone pro- 
duced depend upon three things, and upon these three 
alone. 

1. Upon the character of the string and the resonat- 
ing apparatus in the pianoforte. 

2. Upon the character of the hammer. 

8. Upon the manner in which the hanmier comports 
itself at the moment of its impact upon the string. 

Now, the first two elements fall out of the discussion 
of themselves; they are what mathematicians would call 
constant quantities, in which the pianist is impotent to 
produce any variation by his manner of striking, push- 
ing down, or otherwise depressing the key. Remains 
the third element, the manner in which the hammer 
comi)orts itself at the moment of its impact upon the 
string— in other words, its manner of striking the string, 
Here, too, we immediately find one ^^ constant quan- 
tity," the hammer itself ; and two more : the point at 
which it strikes the string, and the angle at which it 
strikes it. These also are constant. 

There is only one i)ossible variable in the behavior 
of the hammer (constructed and imi>elled as described 
above) at the moment of its impact upon the string, and 
this is ITS VELOCITY. It does not matter in the least 
how or when this velocity was acquired, nor from 
how far or near the string the hammer was thrown. 
Whether the hammer was slowly raised by the action 
part way on its journey and then thrown the rest of the 
way, or was briskly thrown from the outset, does not 
affect the case in the least, as long as its final velocity 
at the moment of impact remains the same. And, as 
the velocity of the hammer at the moment of its impact 
upon the string is the only possible variable in its man- 
ner of striking the string, it is necessarily also the only 

efficient 



THE LOOKER-ON. 167 

efficient element in the production of tone oyer which 
the pianist can exert any control by his manner of 
striking, pushing down, or otherwise depressing the 
key. No matter whether he jams the key down, or 
coaxes it down, or pushes or pulls it down — ^I will add, 
no matter who or what jams, coaxes, pushes, or puUs it 
down— the only possible effective difference, in so far 
as the production of tone is concerned, is the velocity 
imparted to the hammer, and retained by it at its mo- 
ment of imi)act. This is tantamount to saying that the 
only element in the pianist's treatment of the key 
which can have any possible influence upon the produc- 
tion of tone from tilie string * is its force or gentleness. 
All that counts in this one particular is whether he hits 
hard or soft. 

Now, any variation in the velocity of the hammer at 
the moment of its impact upon the string — which 
velocity depends directly upon the force of the down- 
ward stroke or push given the key by the finger — may 
cause a corresx)onding variation in the quality {Klang- 
farbe) of the tone produced; the higher the velocity of 
the hammer, the shorter the moment of impact and the 
quicker the rebound; f the length of the moment of im- 
pact, brief as it is in any case, may have some influence 
upon the development of overtones of the string, and 
thus upon the quality of tone produced. But, be this 
as it may, what any variation in the velocity of the 
hammer at the moment of impact necessarily must 
cause is a corresx)onding variation in the dynamic in- 
tensity (loudness) of the tone produced. So it stands 
to reason that different velocities in the hammer, though 
they may produce different qualities of tone, can do so 

* Bemember that I only say ** prodMeticn of tone.** 

t Thflva is one item in this oonoernlng which I am somewhat in doubt, and I do not 
know that it has jet been scientiflcaUy ooosldered. The question that presents itself 
to my mind is this: Xaj not the greater flattening: out of the soft ourred surf aoe of 
the f!aoe of the hammer, wider a stroor blow upon the string (that is, at high 
Telocity), tend to lifng*^»^" the moment of impact, so as more or less to compensate 
for the naturally superior quickness of rebound Y At all erents, this llattenix^ out of 
the hammer would increase the mtrfaeeqf impact , and thus introduce a new element, 
which might be well worth considering. 

only 



If3 THS ZOOKBR-Olir. 

only hy prodncing different dynamic intensities of ton« 
at the same time. 

Tbe qaestion is nnswOTed ! It is a scientifically 
proved fact that thx piaxist has iro nrrLCKHcB ufos 
•niE grAJJTT of tox* {Klangfarbe) pbodfcxd theouqh 

THE MjUCXEK Uf WHICH HE STRIKES, PUSHES DOWTT, OK 
OTHEKiriSE DEPKESSES A BEXOIX KET, INDEFEXDEBT OF 
THE DT^AKIC CfTE^tSITT OP THE TOXE PBODUCED. Aid 

there is no more rational excuse for the statement of 
this fact calling forth exhibitions of sentiment or 
violent language than there wonld be for any one to 
express righteoos horror at the statemrait that ^e earth 
rerolres on its own axis. And let me say also, to con- 
clnde, that it is equally irrational and foolish to diaw 
illogical conclusions from this scientific fact, or to im 
pnte snch conclnsions to those who state it as a fitct. 



THE LOOKER-ON, 169 



MUSIC IN SHAKESPEARE. 

By Louis C. Elson. 

When the physician reads the medical allusions in 
Shakesi>6are's plays and notes the subtle touches em- 
ployed in the portrayal of the insanity of Ophelia^ the 
feigned mental alienation of Edgar ^ or the broad refer- 
ences to baser diseases in the FalstafBan scenes of ^ ^ ELing 
Henry lY.," he is apt to claim the x)oet as almost a profes- 
sional brother. The lawyer does much the same because 
of Hamlet^ Justice ShallotDy and Portia. The theologian 
finds scattered through the poet's work So many quota- 
tions of Scriptural language that he is fain to argue 
therefrom that Shakespeare had a theological training. 
The musician, too, may join in this chorus of homage, 
and can readily prove the poet's technical acquaintance 
with the divine art by citations from the musical scenes 
that are present in almost all of the plays. 

This field has, however, received less attention than 
the others, since the practical musician has rarely found 
time to make himself a Shakesi>earian, and the literary 
conunentator has generally lacked the ability to sift the 
technical musical terms used by the poet. 

It is refreshing to enter into a field of Shakesi)eariaii 
research which is comparatively free from the micro- 
scopic examination and comment which have so thor- 
oughly gleaned all that the other phases of this versa- 
tile mind offer for analysis. 

After careful collation and comparison of the many 
musical texts in the plays and sonnets, one reaches the 
inference that Shakespeare was able to sing in part- 
music and was probably able to dance. His knowledge 
of instrumental music, although extensive, was not 
quite as secure or technical as in these two other 
branches of the art. 

Let us begin with a couple of errors in the instrumen- 
tal 



170 TRE LOOKER'OK. 

tal field. The 128th sonnet shows that Shakespeare was 
not intimately conversant with the construction of the 
virginals (the flimsy predecessor of the piano, need 
chiefly in the sixteenth and seventeenth centoriesX ^^^ 
he speaks of 

" those jacks that nimble lecq^ 
To kiss the tender inward of thy band.** 

The jack was inside of the instrument, and conld by no 
possibility touch the hand of the performer. If the 
passage be regarded as metaphor, it is as free as if a 
modem poet spoke of Paderewski's finger-tii>8 pressing 
down the bounding hammers of the pianoforte. In the 
plays there is a single line referring to the virginals. It 
is in ^^ Winter's Tale," where the jealous Leomtts^ watch- 
ing Hermume and PoltxeneSy mutters, 

** StiU TirginaUing upon his palm.** 

The reference is to the fingering of the instrument, and, 
as used here, in connection with Hermione and Polix- 
eneSj is very suggestive. 

In "Hamlet,'' when the players with the recorders 
come ui)on the scene (the recorders was the name given 
to the straight flute, similar to but somewhat larger than 
the modem flageolet), the hero, in a most eloquent 
simile, alludes to the stops of the instrument, and adds : 

" Though you can fret me, yet you cannot play upon me." 

The recorders had neither frets nor stops. The intro- 
duction of the word "fret" may have been for the 
purpose of making a pun, for Shakespeare makes the 
obvious pun on "frets" and "fretting" in other 
plays. But even in the field of instrumental music 
Shakespeare shows startling profundity of knowledge. 
In the orchestral music of this time it was customary to 
sustain one si)ecial tone-color throughout each move- 
ment, a custom which may be studied even in the later 
works of Bach ; thus, if the flute were prominent in the 
flrst measures of a composition, it remained so to the 
very end, and neither violin nor oboe, nor any otiier 
instrument, might usurp its place of prominence in that 

particular 



THE LOOKER ON. 171 

partictilar composition. At times composers broke this 
role and allowed the instruments to interchange more 
freely. Music in which such changes took place was 
called ^^ broken." This fact fully explains the lines in 
" King Henry V.," where the king woos with — 

« Come, your answer in broken music; for thy voice is music and thy 
English broken." 

That Shakespeare soon drops the music-lesson in the 
" Taming of the Shrew " seems to indicate that he under- 
stood his instrumental limitation, but even in this scene 
there is an indication of technical knowledge that 
deserves recording. Twice does the shrewd Bianca 
(who prefers the company of Lucentio\ before beginning 
the music-lesson, send the troubled Hortensio away to 
tune his lute. The saucy LucerUio endeavors to send 
him off a third time to retune the bass. In this we have 
a graphic picture of the great defect of the lute ; its 
players were always tuning and retuning. Mattheson, 
who wrote a musical work on the subject more than a 
century later, says that if a lute-player lived to be 
eighty years old it was probable that he had spent about 
sixty years tuning his instrument. 

It is not my purpose in this article to speak of all the 
musical allusions of Shakespeare. Dismissing all those 
hundreds of references, however eloquent, the meaning 
of which is clear, and confining my comment only to 
those which have not been thoroughly elucidated, or 
which illustrate in some pregnant manner the life and 
customs of the Elizabethan epoch, there will still be 
abundance of matter to bring this paper to a reasonable 
length. 

Before doing that, however, I shall refer to Shake- 
speare' s allusions to dancing. They are so full of hearti- 
ness and zest that they prove that Shakespeare not only 
understood but enjoyed the Terpsichorean art. Several 
of these references are in "Twelfth Night," where Sir 
Andrew Aguecheek brags mightily of his abilities in the 
dance. In this play Shakespeare alludes to the Gkdl- 
iaxd, the "Coranto" (Courante), the Jig (Gigue), the 

Cinq-pas 



ITS TBS LOOKSB'ON: 

CSnq-pas (he makes an unworthy pnn on ^'Sink-ar 
paoe"X ^® Passy-measore (Paaso Mezzo), and the Parin 
(PktvaneX and it is very evident from the paaeagesy and 
provable by other evidence, that England loved beet the 
hearty dances. The very slow and stately Pavane was 
sometimes danced at court, but almost everybody liked 
better the qnick-paced Oalliard. When Sir Toby Belch 
expresses his <iiw^«Ti for a ^* Passy-measnre or a Pavin " 
he voices the dislike of the rank and file of the English 
people of the sixteenth century for the slow Spanish, 
Italian, and French dances. 

In '* Winter's Tale" the poet causes the clown to 
speak of hornpipes. This is a very natural allusion 
(although it had no more to do with Bohemia than the 
seacoast which Shakesi)eare placed there), for tke horn- 
pipe was an English dance. It took its name and origin 
from the long wooden horn which the old English shep- 
herds were wont to play, (this instrument gave rise to 
the English horn of the present orchestra), and was a 
lively rustic dance at the first. Even Bach paid tribute 
to the English origin of the hornpipe, for he introduced 
it into his Suites under the title of ^^Anglaise." 

There are some i)ertinent allusions to dances in 
^^Love's Labour's Lost," where Armado is addressed by 
his l>age thus : 

Moth. ICMter, will you win your love with a French brawl ? 

Arm, How moan'st thou? brawling in French? 

Moth. No, my complete master: but to jig off a tune at tlie 
tongue's end, eanary to it with your feet, humour it with turning np 
your eyelids. 

The French Brawl or Branle was probably one of the 
very few dances which France borrowed from England. 
It was a round dance in which all the particix)ants took 
hold of hands and danced in a circle. AU these circular 
dances date back to the remotest past, probably being 
sacrificial dances ages ago (the sun- worshipping dances, 
the Egyptian dance around the bull-god Apis, the 
Israelites' dance around the golden calf, are examplesX 
but they took an especial hold upon the English taste 

and 



THE LOOKER'Oir. 178 

and lead one to suppose that the Draids may have been 
the first to dance them on English soil. The Canaries 
was also a dance of English origin which made its way 
into continental society ; it was a more elegant species 
of Jig. 

One more quotation and we have done with this 
branch of onr subject. This quotation shows a wonder- 
ful insight into the peculiarities of some of the dances 
and may well lead us to suppose that Shakespeare had a 
practical acquaintance with them. It is in ^^ Much Ado 
About Nothing," where Beatrice says to Hero: 

'* Here me, Hero : wooing, wedding, and repenting is as a Scotch 
Jig, a measure, and a oinque-paoe: the first suit is hot and hasty, like 
a Scotch Jig, and full as fantastical ; the wedding, nuuinerly-modest, 
as a measure fuU of state and ancientry ; and then comes repentance, 
and, with his bad legs, falls into the cinque-pace foster and fastor, tiU 
he sink into his grave." 

Here we have the wild pace of the Scotch (at present the 
Irish) Jig, the stately style of the Passo Mezzo, only a 
trifle quicker than the very slow Payane, and best of 
all, the queer tottering irregularity of the five-step 
dance called the Cinq-pas, aU brought together to make 
an unsurpassable simile. 

To return to the subject of music, we find Shakespeare 
draws numerous metaphors from the musician's count- 
ing of time. Perhaps the most poetical of these is in 
the prison scene of ^^ King Bichard II.," where the 
royal captive says : 

« Music do I hear? 
Ha, ha ! keep time : how sour sweet music is, 
When time is hroke and no proportion kept I 
So Ib it in the music of men's liyes. 
And here have I the daintiness of ear 
To check time broke in a disordered string ; 
But for the concord of my state and time 
Had not an ear to hear my true time broke, 
I wasted time, and now doth time waste me." 

In '^Bomeo and Juliet/' a play replete with muedcat 
allusions, there is a pun on the smaller divisions of 

The replacing of a large note by several 

smaller 



174 TBS LOOKEB-OK 



smaller ones was caUed " Biyisioii " in the Elizabethan 
times ; therefore Juliet in the chamber scene, says : 

" SoBM «qr the Imrk nuJcet sweet diviiioii ; 
This doth not so, for she divideth as.** 

Shakespeare could not resist the temptation to make 
a pan, even in the most serious scenes. 

Bat the most remarkable reference to time-keeping is 
one that seems hitherto to have e8cai)ed the interpie- 
tation of the commentators. It occurs in '^ Bomeo and 
Juliet," when Benvolio questions Jfercutio regarding 
Tybalt. The lines are as follows : 

Ben. Why, what is Ty belt? 

Jfer. More than prince of cats, I can teU yoo. 0» he is tha 
coorageoos eaplatn of complements. He fights as yon sing prick- 
song, keeps time, distance, and proportion ; rests me his minim rest, 
one, two, and the third in your bosom." 

The parts of this sentence relating to 7^da2^ the prince 
of cats, and to the punctilios of the professional duellist 
of the time, have been fully explained. The allusion to 
the prick-song has been passed over in complete silence, 
notwithstanding it contains one of the most graphic of 
Shakespeare's metaphors. Morley, contemi>oraneoiLS 
with Shakespeare, defines the prick-song as the descant 
ui)on a plain song or ground (bass-i>art), which was writ- 
ten, or pricked down, and not i>erformed eztemi)ora- 
neously ; and Playf ord, shortly after the same ei>ocli, 
says of the counting of it : 

" Measure in this science is a Quantity of the Length or Shortnen 
of Time, either by natural sounds, pronounced by the Voice, or Artifi- 
cial, upon Instruments ; which Measure is 6y a eeriain mcHon cf the 
hand or foot, expressed in variety of notes." 

We have here a sure clue to the Shakespearian mean- 
ing. The i>oet is making an apt comparison between 
the motions of the hand (down, left, right, and up) and 
the motions of the expert fencer ; any conductor of the 
present time, in directing his orchestra, goes through 
these motions, and ^^the third in your bosom" is an 
exquisite play of fancy. In this same play, ^'Borneo 
and Juliet," there is a very direct bit of sarcasm that 

has 



TEE LOOKER ON. 176 

has not always been understood. Shakespeare always 
enjoyed scattering through his plays allusions to the 
popular songs of his time. In '' Romeo and Juliet" he 
not only alludes to " Heart' s-Ease" and to "My Heart 
is E^ull of Woe," but, as the musicians are departing 
from the house of Capulet, where Juliet is supposed to 
be dead, he introduces a whole dialogue based upon 
^' A Song to the Lute in Musicke," the words and music 
of which were the production of Richard Edwards, 
Master of the Children of the Boyal Chapel of Queen 
Elizabeth. In this dialogue Peter displays his wit at 
the expense of the musicians, who are packing up their 
instruments to depart from the house of mourning. 
Peter sings the words : 

''When gpriping: grief the heart doth wound. 
And doleful dumps the mind oppress^ 
Then Music with her silver sound" — 

and then catechises the musicians thus : 

JW. Why " silver sound " ? Why " music with her silver sound *•? 
What say you, Simon Catling? 

Firfst Mu8. liarry, sir, because silver hath a sweet sound. 

Pet, Pretty ! What say you, Hugh Rebeck ? 

Sec. Mu8. I say *' silver sound " because musicians sound for silver. 

Pet. Pretty too ! What say you, James Soundpost? 

Third Mu8. Faith, I know not what to say. 

Pet, O, I cry you mercy ; you are the einger: I wiU say for you. It 
is " music with her silver sound,** because musicians have no gold for 
sounding. 

Richard Grant White in commenting on the words " O, 
you are the singer" says: '^Shakespeare understood 
the violin. The soundpost stands under the highest 
string of the instrument, called the cantor e — singer." 
This is one of the most abstruse modes of running a 
witticism to earth that is on record. It seems much 
more rational to suppose that Shakespeare desired to 
satirize the lack of wits which existed among many 
singers of his time. The ordinary musician is obliged 
to study for his attainments, but the singer, gifted by 
nature with a sweet voice, can sometimes get along with 
scarcely any education at all. That Shakespeare en- 
joyed 



17C THS LOOKER'OS: 

joyed soek a ffing at the ignonnt Tocalist can be 8Ml 
bj vtadTiag the eeeae in ^'Moch Ado aboat Nothing" 
where BaWuuar^ the incarnation of self-conceit^ fishee 
in vain tor a coiaplinient for his singing of '^ Sigh no 
aore, ladies.^' Shakespeare pfrobably meant that Jame9 
8omndpo9(M education had extended no higher than hia 



One may nadfly beliere that Shakespeare took his 
part occasiiMially in the txoUiBg out of a catch ; the 
iMcchanalian mnsic of ^^ Twelfth Night" is altogether 
too realistic to hare been invented from hearsay evi- 
dence, and the introdnction of the worda of Bobert 
Jones' ''Corydon's Fuewell to Phyllis" ihronghont 
the oonTersation in this bacchanalian scene shows how 
mnch the poet delighted in such revelry. There was 
emphatically a Bohemian streak in Shakespeare' 8 natnie, 
and that he held this to be a Intimate characteristic 
of a strong mind may be assumed from the jMrtiality 
which he shows for Prince Halj who sweeiNi from the 
wildest debaachery to the highest heroism. 

The snbject grows wider and wider the more it is 
studied^ It would be pleasant to see how Shakesi)eaTe 
has made minute differences in the appreciation of 
music the touchstone of many of his charactere ; how 
he has always balanced his jesting references to the art 
by earnest and poetic lines of appreciation in the same 
plays which contain the mockeries and scoflhigs. 

Space bids us refrain, however, content to dip a little 
of the crystal water from the boundless lake : 

« BIgfaiiig that Natare f orm*d bat one sooh man. 
And Iwoke the die.** 



^f '-) 



TEE LOOKEIt'Oir. IW 



MUSICAL COMMENT AND GOSSIP. 

By Henby T. Pikok. 
fiftieth bibthday op " taknhaubeb." — waombe 

GUILTY OF HIGH TBEASON. — ^BUGEirB D'ALBEBT AKD 
TEBESA OABBEirO. — ^ABTIFIOIAL YOI0E8 TO OBDEB. — 
GLADSTONE OK MU8I0. — KIKISOH IN LEIPSIO AND BEB- 
UN. — ^DVOBAK BEMAINS IN EUBOPE. ! 

I 

Dbesden had the honor of first producing Wagner's 
"Rienzi" (1842), "Flying Dutchman'' (1843), and 
''Tannh&user" (1845). The Dresdeners lutve there- 
fore had three recent opportunities for indulging in 
those commemoratiye performances so dear to the Ger* 
man heart, and they made good use of them by bringing 
out these ox>eras in bright new dresses, and mending 
matters generally. They do not like to be reminded of 
the fact that the "Flying Dutchman," after its fourth 
performance, disapi)eared from their opera house for 
twenty years. "TannhSuser" had its fiftieth birthday 
on the nineteenth of the past month, and the well- 
known Dresden critic, Ludwig Hartmann, took this 
occasion to issue a brochure of sixty-five pages, in 
which he tells the history of this opera, which to-day 
is more popular than ever. It seems that the first per- 
formance lasted five hours — ^from 6 to 11 — although 
some cuts had been made, whereas Hans Richter and 
Anton Seidl manage to compress the same opera into 
four hours or less. " Lohengrin," too, when first pro- 
duced by liszt, lasted an hour too long. The trouble, 
as Wagner pointed out in a letter to Liszt, lay with the 
singers, who had not yet mastered the new style of 
melodious declamation, but dragged mercilessly. 

Hartmann calls attention to the curious fact that al- 
though "TannhSuser" made such a stir in Dresden, the 
local newspapers paid hardly any attention to it What 

Uttle 



178 THE LOOKER-ON. 

little they did say was nncomplimentary, so that it was 
small wonder that four years elapsed before this opera 
was brought out in another city (Weimar, by laszt). 
Wagner has been often blamed for the violent polemics 
in which he indulged in those days, but when one 
reads the criticisms in which his works were at that 
time pulverized and annihilated, while charlatans were 
lauded to the sky, one feels some sympathy with 
him. The most favorable notice was written by Ed- 
ward Hanslick, who, as is generally known, has been 
during the last four decades the most violent enemy of 
Wagnerism. This would give the affair the necessary 
spice of humgr, were it not supplied otherwise by the 
critical prophets, one of whom, the famous Moritz 
Hauptmann, wrote, two years after the first i>erformance 
of ^^Tannh&user," that not one note of Wagner's music 
would survive him. « « 

A i^w weeks ago the opera composer, Kienzl, got 
hold of, and published in a German newspax)er, a long 
poem which Wagner wrote during the revolutionary 
movement in Dresden in 1849. The i)oem, at any rate, is 
in his own handwriting ; but I cannot say that it throws 
any new light on the question as to how far Wagner 
took part in that rebellious uprising. That question 
was still a mooted point at the time when I wrote my life 
of Wagner, and I was unable to get access to the official 
documents. Better luck attended the efforts of Hugo 
Dinger, who has written a book with the uninviting 
title of ** Richard Wagner's Gteistige Entwickelung." 
I 8upx)Osed at first that this was merely one of the 
countless* tiresome eesthetico - metaphysical treatises 
which the Oerman Wagnerites have inflicted on a 
weary world ; but to my surpris6 and joy I found that 
the third chapter contains a number of interesting 
revelations regarding the revolutionary episode in 
Wagner's life. Dinger had influential friends in gov- 
ernment circles, who secured permission for him to 
examine the judicial documents in Dresden. He was 

thus 



THE L OKER - ON. 179 

thus able to nail many lies — ^for instance, Count Beust's 
slanderous statements that Wagner had set fire to the 
Prince's palace, and that he was condemned to death 
in contuTfMciam. 

On the other hand, Dinger proves conclusively that 
what Wagner did do was more than sufficient to con- 
vict him of high treason. It was high treason merely 
to "recognize the provisional government," and the 
I)enalty for high treason was death. Wagner not only 
"recognized" this "government," but worked for it 
with all his might and main, by word and deed. It is 
probable that he did not carry a rifle, nor fight on the 
barricades like his friend, the subsequently famous 
architect Semper. But he knew all about the plots, 
accompanied Boeckel once when he ordered bombs, 
addressed recruits, and helped to give signals and watch 
for reinforcements on the Blreuz tower. Had he been 
caught — and he escaped by a mere accident, by refusing 
his friends' invitation to go in their wagon — ^he would 
have been condemned to death like the other culprits, 
and subsequently would have had the sentence com- 
muted to ten years' imprisonment— in which case the 
seven latest and greatest of his operas would have never 
been written. 

The oddest thing about the whole matter is that 
Wagner did not realize the seriousness of his misdemean- 
or, but would have gone back to Dresden after peace was 
restored had not his wife warned him that the police 
were after him I Dinger's book is full of other interest- 
ing details which I am sorry I did not have when I 
wrote my biography. I was able, however, to make use 
of them for the German translation of that work which 
will appear in a few months at Breslau. I have therein 
summed up this episode in the following words : " That 
Wagner's actions were ill-considered, foolish, and cen- 
surable, must be admitted. The object of my biography 
is to tell the truth about Wagner, not to make him out 
an immaculate saint, as GlasenaDP, Ellis, and others 
have attempted to do." 

EUGENS 



180 THX LOOKSR'OSr. 

BroKHX D' Albxbt, the Scotch pianist and compoo^, 
with the French name and Oennan predilections, ap- 
pears to be pursued by bad Inck. He has lost the con- 
dnctorship of the Weimar opera. He gave a concert in 
Dresden the other day for the benefit of the BUlowmon- 
nment fond, which yielded only 64B marks, or abont 
tlSS. If my memory serres me right, he intended to 
give a concert in Hambnig last spring, but had to 
abandon his plan because the adyance sale was too small 
to iMiy expenses. On the other hand, when Joachim 
gave a concert in Hamburg, a few weeks ago^ for the 
Bnlow funds, the yield was 5,134 marks. 

The sum so fsr raised for the Billow monument in Ham- 
burg is said to amount to about $4,000. No monttment, 
however, will give the admirers of the witty pianist and 
conductor so much satisfiiction as the announcement that 
Breitkopf and HSrtel will soon publish a volume of his 
letters. This correspondence will doubtless contain 
much spice, irony, malice, and entertainment. Bulow 
would deserve immortality as a musical critic if he had 
never achieved any other ban-mot than this, that '^ Italy 
was the cradle of music and— remained the cradle." 

To return to TV Albert for a moment. The readers of 
The Look£B-Ok are, of course, aware that he has agwi 
obtained a divorce, this time from the fascinating and 
talented South American pianist, Teresa Carrefio, whom 
it would be a pleasure to hear again in New York. The 
Berlin Boersen-Courier gives a brief account of the last 
act in the divorce proceedings, which I herewith trans- 
late as an interesting bit of double musical biography : 
<< < Wilful desertion on the i>art of the husband ' was 
given as the ground for the divorce, other deei>er reasons 
being merely touched ui)on. The court decided to 
question both x)arties personally, and they were in con- 
sequence summoned by telephone, one after the other, 
by their attorneys. After a brief consultation, the court 
decided that the marriage between Carreno and D' Albert 
was annulled, and the husband alone declared the guilty 
I>arty. Divorced again, the two famous artssts, accom- 
panied 



LOOKER ON. 181 

panied by their counsel, left the court, D' Albert with- 
out visible signs of emotion, Carrefio in tears and appar- 
ently deeply agitated." 

Thx London Times the other day printed a startling 
telegram from Australia saying that Professor Anderson, 
of the University of Sydney, had succeeded in construct- 
ing an artificial larynx which he applied successfully 
in the case of a man who had lost the use of his voice. 

So far there is nothing in tliis information that will 
seem very startling in these days of surgical wonders. 
But when the telegram adds that by changing certain 
tubes the man operated on can at will talk or sing in a 
soprano, tenor, or bass voice, we reach a different atmos- 
phere. If this be true, then vocal teachers will soon 
have to shut up shop, for voices will presently be 
turned out in the machine-shops, and we shall have 
singers who will be Patti, Scalchi (easy), Jean and 
Edouard de Reszke in succession — or possibly at the 
same time, like Mr. Grossmith. 

But what if Professor Anderson, or the correspondent 
of the London Times^ should prove to be a wag f The 
Times is not noted for its sense of humor, and possibly 
some one has played a practical joke on it. 

In the Jcurnal des Debats I find a curious item about 
Mr. Gladstone, which would indicate that the eminent 
statesman is not as well informed in musical matters as 
he is in politics and Homeric lore. The other evening, 
so the Journal relates, some one spoke of Wagner at 
dinner, and Mr. Gladstone was quite surprised to hear 
that that composer was dead and had been dead more 
than twelve years. Mr. Gladstone, on the same occa- 
sion, expressed the opinion that the ^^best musical 
works are those which please the greatest number of 
I)eople." If that is true, then the greatest of all com- 
posers — ^the writers of music-hall songs — ^are strangely 
and unjufrtly neglected by the critics and the cyclopte- 

dias 



182 THE L OKER -ONI 

dias. But then, has it not always been the lot of lane 
genius to be ignored I 

However, Mr. Gladstone's dictum is not really so 
foolish as it seems. Popularity for a year, or for ten 
years — ^particularly immediate popularity — is no test 
whatever of merit in music or in any other art ; but 
when we look backward, down the vista of decades and 
centuries, we find unquestionably that only the best 
and fittest survives. It takes years for the light of a 
fixed star to reach this planet, but when it arrives it is 

hereto stay. « « 

* 

Possibly some of the Boston critics will feel a tinge 
of remorse when they read of the great triumphs which 
Mr. Arthur Nikisch is winning in Leipsic and Berlin 
as concert conductor. It was they who drove him from 
Boston, and now he has captured the two most de- 
sirable positions in all Germany, and is stirring up 
' at enthusiasm. Mr. Nikisch has his faults, as man 
'II' L conductor, and I once saw a very undiplomatic 
letter he had written to an amiable critic ; but if yon 
do not rub his fur the wrong way he is a most delight- 
ful companion. As a conductor he has ideas and the 
power to impress them on others. He is not a mere 
animated pendulum, but insists that a conductor has 
a right to his own conception of a piece, just as an 
actor has in regard to a role. The good Leipsicers, 
who have so long suffered under the drowsy baton of 
the conservative Reinecke, will now have a chance to 
learn something about modern music ; and how thej 
relish this relief may be inferred from the fact that one 
of them, on hearing of Nikisch' s appointment, sent 
him a telegram reading, " We congratulate ourselves/ " 
As Leipsic and Berlin are only a few hours' ride 
apart, Mr. Nikisch will find it easy enough to take care 
of the Berlin Philharmonic concerts besides those of 
the Leipsic Oewandhaus. His first Berlin programme 
was very tempting. He engaged Josef Hofmann to 
play a Chopin concerto, and the orchestra played 

Tchaikovsky's 



TETE LOOKER'OK 183 

Tchaikovsky's fifth symphony, Beethoven's third 
"Leonora," and Wagner's **Tannhauser" overture. 

* 

Akekca has lost another great mnsician who, though 
he came to us from abroad, might possibly under more 
favorable circumstances have made his home among 
us permanently, like Theodore Thomas, Anton Seidl, 
and many others. I refer to Anton Dvorak, who for 
three years presided over our National Conservatory of 
Music. It is doubtless a mistake ever to harness Pe- 
gasus, but Dr. Dvor&k was lucky to get $12,000 a year 
instead of the thousand or so which he earned at the 
Prague conservatory. Mrs. Thurber's generosity has 
enabled him, in three years, to lay aside more for his 
children than his compositions will yield him in a life- 
time. 

The great Bohemian must have been surprised to find 
that so few of our American composers and would-be 
composers came to him for instruction and advice. I 
was surprised, too, until I found that the members of 
our Manuscript Society apparently consider themselves 
quite on a level with the greatest living orchestral com- 
poser. A swelled head is a great stumbling-block in 
the way of progress. 

But the three years which Dr. Dvordk si)ent in Amer- 
ica were not lost to art. Whatever may be thought of 
the Afro- American elements in his latest compositions, 
it cannot be denied that they impart to them a charming 
local color, something quite new in music. The slow 
movement of his " New World" symphony is a gem of 
the first water, the most beautiful thing ever composed 
in America. His American chamber music, too, is the 
best he has written, and if he completes his opera, 
'^ Hiawatha," we shall doubtless have some fine speci- 
mens of Americanized dramatic music. And for all this 
beauty and novelty the world has to thank Mrs. Jean- 
nette M. Thurber, to whose inspiration and generosity 
Dr. Dvordk's visit to America was due. 

Personally, Dr, Dvor&k is not a social man. He is 

shy, 



IM THE LOOKER -OV. 

shy, and wUle in New York seldom went out to call tst 
dine. He nsnally comi>06ed very early in the jnoming 
and always gave np an honr a day to religions devotion. 
He once told me that he f onnd himself in a peculiar 
position, inasmnch as he was too Wagnerian for the 
conserratives and too conserratiye for the Wag:nerite6. 
In the harmonic and orchestral sphere he is to-day more 
Wagnerian than ever, bnt in the shaping of kis ideas 
and the choice of forms he has been largely influenced 
by Brahms. It was Brahms who " discovered " him, 
and he is one of the few men to whom Brahms ever 
writes a letter. 

I often had a littie chat with Dr. Dvordk when I visited 
the conservatory to deliver my weekly lecture on the 
history of music. I became better acquainted with him 
when the editor of the Century asked me to get an 
article out of him on Schubert. It was not an easy thing 
to do ; he refused at first point blank, saying he was not 
a writer. But by making it as easy as possible for him, 
I finally succeeded. I submitted a series of questions 
to him and then came for an answer, which he gave in 
the most fluent and eloquent manner. Of course I 
could not reproduce his exact words, but I did the best 
I could, and afterward had him revise the manuscript, 
so that every line in it had his approval. Subsequently 
he was pleased to get a letter from the greatest living 
authority on Schubert — Sir G^rge Grove — ^who wrote 
to him that it was the best article on Schubert ever 
written. But Bvor&k never saw the number of the 
magazine in which it appeared ! 




THE LOOKER-ON. 185 



THE MANUSCRIPT SOCIETY OF 

NEW YORK. 

Devoted to the Advancement of Musical Composition in America. 

In his charming work on ** The Art of Music," Dr. Hubert Parry re- 
marks that in music, form and design are most obviously necessary, 
because the very source and reason of existence of the art are so ob- 
scure. The instinct of the 'artist makes it a necessity for him to find 
terms which will be understood by other beings in whom his appeal 
can strike a sympathetic chord. The stronger the delight in the 
thought or feeling, the greater is the desire to make the terms in 
which it is conveyed unmistakably clear ; and this instinctive desire 
is one of the main incitements to the development of design. 

Of all types of humanity those who are possessed with artistic dis- 
positions are notoriously most liable to an absorbing thirst for sym- 
pathy, which is sometimes interpreted by those who are not artistic 
as a love of approbation or notoriety ; and though it does sometimes 
degenerate into that unhappy weakness, its source at least is not un- 
worthy of respect. 

The necessity of some such sympathy must have influenced the 
feelings of four young musicians,'as they met together on the evening 
of August 27, 1889, to listen to each other's compositions. These men 
were Addison F. Andrews, Louis R. Dressier, Joseph Harrison (now 
deceased), and the writer of this article. The 'suggestion was then 
made that a Manuscript Musical Club be formed, starting with these 
four names as a nucleus. This, in brief, is the history of the inception 
of the Manuscript Society of New York, now probably the most nota- 
ble organization of composers in the world. 

During the' first season of 1889-1890 seven private meetings were 
held, the majority of these being at Gerrit Smithes studio, which be- 
came a regular meeting-place of the society during that time. 

In the following year, and continuing for some period, the society 
was enabled through the courtesy of Messrs.' Mason & Hamlin to hold 
its private meetings, and transact its business, at their commodious 
Hall on Fifth Avenue. 

These arrangements have now been superseded by the acquisition 
of new and commodious dub-rooms at No. 17 East Twenty-second 
Street. 

The first officers of the society were : Gerrit Smith, President ; 
Louis R. Dressier, Secretary ; Charles B. Hawley, Treasurer ; Addison 
F. Andrews, Librarian. 

The present officers are : Gterrit Smith, President ; S. N. Penfleld, 1st 
Yice-President; John L. Burdette. 2d Vice-President; Louis R. Dressier, 

Treasurer ; 



18H THE L OOKER-OX. 

Treasurer; Harry W. Liadsley, CorrespoDdin^ Secretary; J. Hazard, 
WilHon, Recording Secretary ; Sumner Salter, Librarian and Secretary 
of MuHic Ck>mmtttee. 

Hoard of Directors : Homer N. Bartlett, George F. Bristow, John 
L. Burdett, Frederic Dean, Louis R. Dressier. Henry G. Hanchett. 
Victor Harris, Robert JafTray, Jr., Harry W. Lindsley, S. N. Penfield. 
Silas G. Pratt, Summer Salter, P. A. Schnecker, Gerrit Smith, J. 
Hazard Wilson. 

The membership of the society is no longer confined to New York- 
alone, nor to this country; but in its broad organization it numbers 
as active and honorary members composers from all over the United 
States and across ths sea, from London, Paris, and Berlin. 

The group of four men has now developed into a society of nearly 
nine hundred members, included in which number is almost every 
distinguished composer in the country. In the ranks of the society 
are many professional musicians, such as conductors, singers, aod 
instrumentalists. Many of the most prominent musical patrons in 
New York City are associate members. The first subscribing member 
was Mrs. G rover Cleveland, the first honorary member M. Alexandre 
Guilmant, and the first life member Mr. John Jacob Aster. Since 
then an imposing array of new members attests the esteem in which 
the society is held by those w^ho are invited to join its institutions. 

The original prospectus stated the object of the society to be the 
advancement of musical composition in America, and the develop- 
ment of a Kpirit of honest musical criticism. Since then the society 
has also made it a part of its purpose to collect original manuscripts 
and to give annual exhibitions for the interpretation of the same. 

Another dream of the founders has lately been realized, viz., the 
attractive new club- rooms, which go far to prove not only the pros- 
perity of the society but its adherence to one of its primary and vital 
aims, namely, the promotion of fellowship and good feeling. Here, 
almost any day at lunch-time may be found groups of the most 
prominent musicians of New York. At the long table, which invites 
hospitality, one may find himself seated next to Dr. Wm. Mason, or 
Anton Seidl, or Walter Damrosch, or listen to the brilliant flights of 
Xavier Scharwenka, or the genial sayings of Jos. Mosenthal, or the 
dry witticisms of George F. Bristow. 

Many and various are the subjects broached at the broad board. 
It n)ay be a manuscript by Rossini, or an autograph of Beethoven, or 
a letter of (rrisi's which is going the round of inspection. It may be 
a discussion as to the tendencies of modem music, it may be a ques- 
tion of dynamics or rhythm, or it may be only Joseph Mosenthal 
speaking French to an Italian waiter. But in no case is it considered 
a breach of decorum for the speaker to leave the table and seek the 
seclusion of the piano to give an illustration or to enforce an argu- 
ment. If there is a lull in the conversation it is probably the quieting 
inlluence of some lady members who have just come in. The club is 
proud of its lady members, and always pauses to do them honor, and 

the 



IBS THE LOOKER-ON. 

tb« society is proud of its increased list of women composers. Scarcely 
a eoncert is ^ven without the appearance of some women composers, 
and this fact speaks well for the development of musical composition 
in a direction hitherto not encouraged or suspected. 

As may be seen by the prospectus quoted below the public concerts, 
now numberinj^ four yearly, are still ipven by the courtesy of Messrs. 
Chickerinic ft Sons in their hall; while the six monthly private meet- 
ings will hereafter be held in the attractive hall of the new Mendels- 
sohn Clab building. Three of the public concerts are given with 
orchestra, and one is a chamber music concert. From among its list 
of members the society can now choose as conductors Anton Seidl. 
Walter Damrosch, Emil Paur, Theodore Thonuis, Rheinhold Herrman, 
and others. 

In the early days of the society it was possible for each composer 
to conduct his own work. While this was often of value to the 
composer as an object lesson it was also of occasional value to the 
audience as entertainment. The vision of a well-known composer 
rushing into Chickering EUdl on a stormy [evening, with upturned 
trousers, and suddenly grasping the baton before a fashionable 
audience was almost enough to bring smiles in spite of the dramatic 
beauty of his orchestral work. Nor was it less a cause for surprise 
and merriment when another famous composer, forgetting it was his 
turn to conduct, left the audience waiting a quarter of an hour while 
he went out to compose a new symphony. If these early days were 
full of pleasant associations and incidents they were not, however, 
devoid of unceasing labor and care on the part of those who were 
interested in the growth and welfare of the society. Many has been 
the time when failure seemed imminent; many has been the time 
when money had to be advanced; but through it all there shone forth 
the unquestioned value and future dignity of an organization which 
now rests secure upon its own foundations. 

The critics were kindly at first, but as several seasons went by and 
there was not apparent the desired improvement in musical develop- 
ment, they criticised only actual facts, and forgot to lend encourage- 
ment to ideals. Finally they forgot to criticise at all, which was the 
strongest proof of their condemnation. Still the society continued to 
exist. 

Until the Manuscript Society began its missionary work of making 
it possible for a prophet to receive honor in his own country, it was the 
^reat exception when an American work could be heard in public. 
The American composer lived in a German atmosphere, instructive to 
be sure, necessary, I think, but the atmosphere of the school-room, the 
doors of which had some day to be thrown open and the scholars pven 
an opportunity to meet and greet the great world outside. Many of 
these scholars have in their turn become teachers. They now say, Let 
us build an institution where we may express our thoughts publicl)' 
and in our own language. This institution is the Manuscript Society. 

Alfred Bruneau, a composer of the younger school of French musi- 
cians 



THE LOOKER -OX. 189 

cians headed by C^ear Fraack, sajs that the American composers are 
at the beginning oF tbeircareer, and that the school now having left its 
cradle muBt tend toward the search for national talent, local color, and 
characteristic ideal. 

Another French critic says that American music is not yet bom, 
but is "seeking itself." Writers in the Oerman papers have praised 
the schooling and elegant thought of the American composers, but 
denied originality. 

Id ending this article I cannot do better than to quot« the oloaJng 
sentences from an essay by Mr. Henry E. Krehbiel : 

"So tar as the future is concerned, the American composer, who is 
following the example of his brethren o( Great Britain, France, Italy, 
and Russia in studying German ideals, will stand an equal chance with 
them in the struggle for recognition ; at toon at he it pat upon their 
Itvtl in respect of encouragement at home and abroad. These things 
are necessary for the development of that ' vigorous forward man,' 
who, as Bagehot has contended in his discussion of the origin of literary 
schools, will strike out the rough notion of the style which the Ameri- 
CAU people will find congenial, and which, for that reason, will find 
imitation. The characteristic modeof expression which will be stamped 
upon the music of the future American composer will be the joint crea- 
tion of the American's freedom from conventional methods, and his in- 
herited predilections and capacities. The refiective Oerman, the 
mercurial Frenchman, the stolid Englishman, the warm-hearted Irish- 
man, the impulsive Italian, the daring Russian will each contribute his 
factor to the sum of national taste. The folk-melodies of all nations 
will yield up their individual charms and disclose to the composer a 
hundred avenues of emotional expression which have not yet been ex- 
plored. The American eompoter toill be the truest representative of a 
vnivertal art, became he will be the tr^ett type af a citizen of the 
tuortd." Oebrit Smith. 



WILLIAM C. CARL. 

Mb. Caru llie organist of the First Presbyterian Churth, bis rt- 
turni'il from aa fXteniled tour tlirougb the West. 

IIo did not jotpnd this trip to be anythinir but a pleasure joumev, 
and was lu much Rurprised as any one could be whea it bt-cam^ an 
artistic tnurnre. His (arthevt boundary was tlie Pacific Ocean; liut it 
his NVw York on^uK^ments had not inlerfcred he would have fow 
beyond it to Austraha. 

A representative of that country used his best endeavors to ptr^ 
Buotlu Mr. <.'arl to Ihie course, and perhaps another season will Gnd iiini 
in the hind of the Kold-Helds aad the kangaroos. 

In lookinf," over th" notices that api>eared in some Western papers. 
commenting on his recitals, I was astonished to note the (liscemn]<-r,t 
and intclli};eDce thai characterized them. The most frequent observa- 
tion W.1S the mention of Mr, Carl's magnetic personalitr. sometiiing 
appreciated, hut not defined. 

The instant atid complete silence that follOKcd his appearance tt 
the or^':m was noted aa unusual, and also as a certain proof of tbe 
inimi^diute sympathy that was established between the young organ tat 
and lii-i ea^er listeners. 

Such a silence fell upon the great audience when I heard Paderevr- 
ski for tlie lirst time. I can never forget it, for it seemed to me that 
gr(.Mt unci suKtll were alike overpowered in the presence of that great 
genius. 

In several small towns the idea of an organ recital was as novel as 
!i bull-li«-ht would be Id New York. 

To the cruder Western mind the organ filled a part of the Sunday 
service; but that it might be made a pleasure at any other time was 
nut tliou>,'lit of, and its piiKsibilities unknown. 

Curiosity incited Investigation, investigation created enthusiasm. 
and as a result Mr. Curl has booked many engagements tor the future 
in t1ies<- very towns, which fact tctls its own story of the pleasure 
given and tlie popularity gained. In the larger tonus, where the 
musical experience of the community was greater, the principal com- 
ment was in regard to Mr. Carl's technique. His exact phrasing was 
a revelation to many, and his marvellous registration received fine ap- 
preciutioQ from those of the audience who were familiar with tlie 
organ and its almost unlimited capabilities. Be was recalled again 
and again, and repeated many times the new sonata in C minor by 

GuilmanC, 



THE LOOKER-ON. 191 

Guilmant, which brought forth such favorable comments from all the 
Eastern papers last spring. It is no new truth that it is because of 
the full, deep tones of the organ that most performers rely upon effect, 
and slight the very exact phrasing demanded of a pianist. 

Mr. Carl plays with the precision of a great pianist, with the 
warmth and tone- color of a Guilmant. He is, in fact, the beloved 
pupil of that great master of the organ, " who is unexcelled for brill- 
iancy of execution" and whose visit to this country will ever be 
remembered by music-lovers. A teacher, I take it, cares for his pupil 
with an artistic rather than a personal love. It is the pupiVs success 
that stimulates and creates this love, that brings them closer together, 
that creates in the mind of the teacher a passion for his pupil's suc- 
cess that could not be equalled by his own personal ambition. When 
a pupil has created this feeling by his ability and progress, and when 
his teacher is a Guilmant, we may expect much of him. Mr. Carl's 
perpetual growth of power and technique is no longer a wonder to us, 
and we recognize and appreciate the genius that can bnng from the 
organ the thunder-like roar of the ** storms" or the sweet notes of the 
vesper hymn. 

Each summer for many years Mr. Carl has found his way back to 
bis master's villa, at Mendon; each fall he has returned with new 
treasures of feeling, new abilities of expression, new results of com- 
position. 

In future Mr. Carl will spend even a greater part of his time 
visiting all parts of the country; opening new organs, giving recitals 
(assisted by local artists), and adding his share to the musical culture 
and enjoyment to lovers of the great art. 

As an evidence of Mr. Carl's earnest work, he has given a number 
of free recitals for several succeeding seasons in this city, and in con- 
sequence has received unusual testimony of the benefit derived from 
them by organists of less ability or fame. 

To students these recitals have been invaluable, affording them an 
opportunity to listen to one who had accomplished early in life what 
they were anxiously aspiring to attain. 

Organists whose duties deprive them of hearing the organ played 
at the Sunday services are very glad to avail themselves of these per- 
formances during the week, just as the students of art gaze with 
admiration and careful criticism upon the famous pictures produced 
by the skilful artist. 

It gives us great pleasure to state that Mr. Carl will give four re- 
citals during the coming season at the First Presbyterian Church, Fifth 
Avenue and Twelfth Street, the dates of which are, Thursday, October 
31st, November 7th, 14th, and 21st, at four o'clock, when a number of 
important novelties will figure on the programmes, several of which 
are dedicated to the young artist. 



THE PLACE OF ELOCQTION AMONG THE ARTS. 

BT F. TowSSWro SOUTHWIOK. 

To the Aclor and public speaker elocution is a meau to ao end ; a 
niean.t more or less valuable, According to its quality. In the estima- 
tion of many it in to be shunned as productive of artiflciatitjr and vocal 
d el eri oration. To the general public elocution means " speakinp 
|iie<'eH " with more or lesa fluency and disregard of the sensibilitiraaf 
one's unfortunate auditors. Few, even among its devotees, realize the 
true dignity and value of this study as a mental discipline. This is 
br-cau!te few have ever studied elocution in an intellectual way. 

The "old school" elocutionist of the better class wasted much 
time over the pedantic and cumbersome system formulated by Dr. 
Rusii. The result was that the average pupil, having little time for 
study, found himself, at the end of the brief course, with a formidable 
vocabulary of technical terms, but with little real knowledge of bow 
to use his voice. The cheaper class ot elocutionists, falling back upon 
purely imitative methods both ot study and instruction, and neces- 
sarily relying ujion vocal trickery and the' coarser sorts ot comedy for 
whatever poor success of a public sort they could command, neither 
dreanied tliemsclves nor could enable others to ctmceive ot aught Ibat 
could elevate either student or audience. 

In every generation a few superior and truly intellectual elocution- 
ists have kept before the public the possibilities ot the art, but there 
is no denying that to the world in general elocution stands for trash 
and claptrap on the one hand, or tor good literature, violently mur- 
dered, on the other. 

Yet there is no art of them all that has a more honorable history, 
or is in itHelf a grander means ot personal culture than this sasit 
despised elocution. It is the elder brother ot the Drama and the 
father of Music. 

Literature owes as much if not more to the artsof recitation pure and 
simple than to any otlier. If the actor points to Shakespeare as the 
representative of his art, the elocutionist can go back to old Homer, 
who was in his times a reciter, and can even claim a good share of the 
glory of the Greek tragedy, which originally, as we know, partook far 
more ot the character of recitation than of what we denominate dra- 
matic expression. 

Nor is the function of the elocutionist obsolete to-day. There are 

thousands 



THE LOOKER-ON. 193 

thouBands of refined people nho enjoy liateoiDg to genuine interpreta- 
tions ol the masters ot Eogliah prose and poetry. There are other 
thousands who could be taught to love Tennyson, Browning, Lowell, 
aod others of the poets, if only the readera would do for their art 
what the musicians are doing everywhere to-day for theirs. It is a 
mistake to aBsume that audiences care for nothing but trash. Too 
many audieuces do, because they know no better, or have learned to 
expect nothing better from their entertainers. Artists like Churchill, 
Riddle, Richardson, Powers, and others whose names will occur to the 
reader do not need to condescend to their audiences. But even on 
occasions when a certain amount of cheapliterature may be demanded, 
the reader must be wofuUy lacking in respect for himself and his 
art who will not give at least one worthy selection worthily rendered. 
Nearly all of literature that deserves the name lends itself to vocal 
interpretation. The older poets were either reciters or balladistB— 
that is, dramatic soloists ; their excellencies of expression, dramatic 
Gre, and musical cadence they owe very largely to the fact that they 
were composed not for the eye but for the ear. One test of modern 
poetry is still its vocal effect. 

Consciously or unconsciously, the poet has before him an audience 
that is moved not by the rhetorical but by the musical or emotional 
contents of bis poem. The same thing is true of all great prose 
writing. Trace back any fault in composition, and it will be seen that 
it ia a violation of some perhaps unrecognized law of vocal expression. 
If these laws are forgotten or ignored, written expression, which, after 
all, is but the symbol for speech, will deteriorate. In fact, much ot the 
verbosity or obscurityof certain modern authors may t>e easily referred 
Ui this ever-widening gap between th« written and the spoken word. 
When, as ia certain to be the case, expression comes to its own again, 
not the least ot the blessings it will bring with it will be the reatora- 
tioQ of the ancient criterion to literature — its oratorical effect. 



BOOK REVIEWS 




4^i 



l/S'li*-!''*)! • I • *<m *i* f • t-*.4/»-4r« 





("V'CLOP-KDIA OF MUSIC AND MUSICIANS.* 
Edited by John Denison Champlin and William Fogteb Afthobp. 

A FEW years a^ro the Scribners published a ** Cyclopaedia of Music 
and MusiriaDs/* which everv musician and musto-lover would hare 
been delighted to possess, but which was so expensive that odIt 
wealthy amateurs could afford to buy it. It is true that for tbrHt 
such sumptuously printed, hound, and illustrated volumes, of al^mt 
flye hundred pages each, $75 was not a dollar too much, but it was 
more then the average music-lover, whose purse is apt to be slender, 
could pay. Luckily, however, the publishers have now issued a new 
edition, little inferior in beauty, and with all the valuable features of 
the flrst, but with the price reduced to $15, which, considering the 
importance of the work, makes it a ** genuine bargain,*' as the iadifs 
say. 

Of muHicul dictionaries there are a multitude in the field, and those 
of Hiemann (of which an English version by Mr. Shed lock is to appear 
soon) and Grove are of course essential to every musical library. But 
even those who have Riemann and Grove ought to add to it the '' Cyclo- 
paedia of Music and Musicians,*' which has some important features 
missing in the other works. Suppose, for instance, that you want to 
'*read up" about Mozart*s '*Don Giovanni.*' Riemann's ** Lexicon** 
makes no special menticn of the opera, and Grove g^ves it eight lines, 
whereas in th«» "Cyclopaidia" you will find four columns about it, 
giving its history, original cast, plot of the .libretto, names of the 
principal anas, costume portraits of eminent singers, etc. Moreover, 
suppose you do not, for the moment, happen to remember who wrote 
*' La ci darem la mano," then all you have to do is to look that line up 
in its alphabetical place, and you will be referred to the article on 
•*Don (liovanni." 

Another feature in which the ''Cyclopaedia " is superior to all otber 
works of its kind is to be found in the bibliography attached to each 
article. This enables you, in case you want more information about 
this same opera than the ** Cyclopaedia" can give, to go to the library 
and look up the books and periodicals it refers to~Dwight*8 Journal 
of Music, Hanslick's ** Moderne Oper,'* Edwards^s •* Lyrical Drama,** 
etc., etc. This feature alone makes the '* Cyclopaedia" indispensable 
to every critic and student. In compiling these bibliographic refer- 

* 8 vols. Clias. Scribner^B Sons. 

ences 



THE LOOKER-ON. 195 

ences the editors, John Denisoa Champlin and William F. Aptborp, 
have shown the most comprehensive erudition and patient research. 
The writer of this notice f requentJy receives letters from all parts of 
the United States, asking ''Where can I find an article on 'Peer 
Gynt ' ? " or some other composition; and his answer almost invariably 
is, *♦ Consult Scribner's * Cyclopsedia of Music and Musicians.' " 

Biographic notices of mere performers and musical literati do not 
come within the scope of this work, but, on the other hand, modern 
composers, especially those of America, receive an unusual share of 
attention. Paine, MacDowell, Chadwick and others are discussed at 
considerable length, and lists of their principal works given. In the 
matter of portraits, too, the '* Cyclopaedia" is more profusely supplied 
than any other work of its kind. The articles are written in choice 
English and in the most impartial spirit. 

In those cases where the authors have taken their information 
largely from other musical books of; reference — ^l\lendel, Fetis, Rie- 
mann, etc. — they honestly and frankly indicate their sources. But an 
examination of the articles shows that the authors do not claim too 
much vrhen they say that their statements are not made at second 
hand, but are based on original research. It is possible that errors 
occur, but the reviewer ^has never came across one, although he has 
used the book constantly for several years. Grove, on the other hand, 
is frequently misleading, and even Riemann is not infallible, although 
his fourth edition is a great improvement on its predecessors. The 
greatest difficulty with all musical cyclopasdias is that new composers, 
players, and singers will persist in coming forward. But, after all, 
most of them are comets who hardly deserve to have their names 
recorded among the stars of the musical firmament. Mascagni and 
Leoncavallo, for instance, are not to be found in Scribner's "Cyclo- 
paedia." Riemann, in his last edition, grudgingly gives them some 
little space, but the tone of his comments indicates that he feels confi- 
dent that in his fifth edition he will be able to omit them again, as 
being no longer of any consequence. 

WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE: A STUDY IN ELIZABETHAN 

LITERATURE. 

The purpose of Prof. Wendell's book ♦ is, as he informs us, " to pre- 
sent a coherent view of the generally accepted facts concerning the 
life and work of Shakespeare.*' Its object is by means of serious criti- 
cism " so to increase oiir sympathetic knowledge of what we study 
that we may enjoy it with fresh intelligence and appreciation." The 
method by which this object is to be attained is " to see Shakespeare 
. . . as he saw himself." 

The facts of Shakespeare's life,so far as we know them, are succinctly 
rehearsed. Then follows a chapter on " Literature and the Theatre 
in England until 1587." The former is summed up as follows : '* In 
1587, then, one may safely say that for above thirty years a certain 

* Charles Scribner^s Sods. 

graceful 



196 



THE LOOKER'OX, 



graceful poetic culture bad been the fashion ; that its chief coascious 
object — so far as it had aoy^was to civilise a barbarous laoguage ; 
that it delighted in oddity and novelty, and that it inclined to diiidain 
publication.** A description of the English theatre follows. 

The form which the Renaissance took in Southern Europe was 
Architecture and Painting. In England it found expression in the 
Drama- When Shakespeare began to write he found a theatre, erode 
to be sure, but still well regulated and firmly established. He also 
found himself preceded by and surrounded by a group of dramatic 
writers. This environment, without any doubt, had a powerful influ- 
ence on the manifestation of his genius. Prof. Wendell briefly, but I 
think accurately, describes this environment. 

For the purpose of '* defining Shakespeare's artistic individuality," 
he then analyzes the poems and the plays in the order in which he 
supposes they were written. In so doing he follows the chronological 
order as elaborated by Prof. Dowden and Dr. Furnivall. Of course the 
dates at which the different plays were written will always be a mooted 
question. The data upon which to form an absolutely accurate opin- 
ion do not exist. For all practical purposes, however, the order followed 
by Prof. Wendell is sufficiently correct. One of the distin^ishing 
traits of Shakespeare's genius, mentioned by Prof. Wendell, which is 
manifested both in the poems and plays, is *' that to a remarkable de- 
gree words stand for actual concepts.** He discarded the euphuisms 
of the day. He eschewed the practice of writing pretty phrases. " To 
him, beyond any other writer of English, words and thoughts seemed 
naturally identical.*' 

In the first dramatic work Shakespeare did he was the playwright. 
He took old plays and remodelled them, here and there adding, and in 
other places ex purgating. I n com paring the work in the early plays with 
that which follows. Prof. Wendell makes this distinction which, I 
think, is well founded : '* While the interest of the preceding plays is 
chiefly historical, the interest of those to {come remains intrinsic; 
apart from any historical conditions they are often in themselves de- 
lightful." Further, '* while in the preceding plays one finds at bottom 
hardly anything more significant than versatile technical experiment, 
one finds throughout those to come constant indications of growing, 
spontaneous, creative imagination.*' It is impossible within the limits 
of this criticism to follow in detail the author's comments on all the 
plays. 

Prof. Wendell's book is the fruit of careful study and mature reflec- 
tion. It is scholarly and suggestive, and is a valuable addition to 
Shakespearian literature. Wm. H. Fleicino. 




By Wm. H. Fleming. 



MADAME HODJESKA AS ISABELLA. 

Id h«r eDgagement, during October, at the Qarrick Theatre, Ma- 
dame Hodjeaka presented Jfeosure /or Jtfeasure. This play i a seldom 
acted on the modem atage. The plot of the pla; is as follows : 

The Dulie Vincentio decides to leave Vienna. Before doing so he 
comtnissioas Angelo to act as his deputy. 

Old Eacalua, an ancient lord, becomes his secondary. Claudio, a 
young gentleman, has been too intimate with Ju)iet, and thereby 
violated an old, and for many years obsolete, law of Vienna. The new 
governor, Angelo, decides to enforce this law, and 

'^ Now putfl the drowsy and DPglected BiCt " 

in force. Claud io appeals for assistance to his sister Isabella, who is 
about to enter a convent. At Claudio's request she goea to Angelo 
and pleads for her brother's life. Angelo, whose life hitherto has been 
blameless, is suddenly overcome with a passionate desire for Isabella, 
and, as she retires Baying, 

"Hearen keapjrourbonoDrBBlBl" 

Aogelo, in an aside, responds : 

For I un tbat way golmc Ut temptation. 
Where prayers crow." 
When Angelo is left alone, in a soliloquy, he reveals his most 
hidden thoughts and feelings : 

" What'a thla, wbat'i thU < la thli her Fault or mine f 
Tbe teoiptererthe tempted, whoalns moet! Bal 
Hot she ; nor doth ihs tempt : but It Is t 
That, lying by the Tlolet la the sun. 
Do as the carrion does, not aa the flower, 
Oomi[A nlth Thtuoua seasoD," 

Angelo yields to the temptation and when Isabella again goea to 
him to plead for her brother's life, declares : 

" Pl^Dly conoelTe, I lore you," 

and makes the salvation of her brother's life depend on Isabella's 
sacriBco of her honor* 

Isabella 



198 THE LOOKER'OX. 

Isabella reix>rt6 to her brother : 

'* Yr*. brdber. jf « may lire. 
Tberr i% a deTilt»h mercy In the jodgre. 
If y<iu*Il implore it, that will free your life. 
But fatter yua till death." 

Claudio*9 df siire to live, and dread of death, are so intense that he b^ 
his sister, even on the oondition of her dishonor, to save him. 

** Sweet «li»ter, let me lire. 
What bin you do to sare a brother*s life. 
Nature dwpeiMes with the deed so far 
That it t>eoomea a virtue/* 

I*<ibella, with the utmost 8<'om and contempt, rejects this proposition : 

** O you beast ! 
O faithleaa coward ! C) dishonest wretch : 

• • • • • 

MtTcy to thee would prore itself a bawd ; 
Tis beftt that thou dieat quiclsly/* 

An^^elo denies all appeals for mere}* and orders Claud ios execution. 

The Duke, who has assumed the disguise of a friar and returned to 

Vienna, becomes informed of these facts. He^ by a subterfuge, saves 

Claudio and calls Angelo to a strict aooount. The latter confesses and 

says: 

•'Then, gotid prince. 
No 1i>Q}s^r session hold upon my shame. 
But let roy trial be mine own confeswon. 
Immediate sentence then and sequent death 
la all the ^ace I beg." 

Tlie Duke condemns him to death : 

*' *An Anx-elo for Claudio, death for death!* 
liiuste St ill (tays haste, and leisure answers leisure; 
Ltke doth quit like, and Mtagwn still h\3T Meaaurey 

Isabella, with a charity and forgiveness which are almost divine, 
beseeihes the Duke to pardon Angelo. The Duke grants her petition. 
Claudio now appears, and is ordered by the Duke : 

*• She, Clauilio, that you wronjr'd, look you restore." 

Angolo is commanded to love Mariana, to whom he is betrothed, 
and the Duke savs : 

*' Dear Isabel, 
I have a motion much imports your food. 
Whereto if youMl a wiilinf ear incline. 
What's mine is yours and what is yours is mine.** 

Such is the plot of this play. 

Of course Isabella is acted by Madame Modjeska. The character of 

Isabella is entirely original with Shakespeare, and is one of the most 

finely drawn of any of the poet*s creations. She is, as Lucio describes 

her, 

** . . .a thing enskied and sainted,*' 

and this she remains all through the trying experiences of her dramatic 

life. 



THE LOOKER-ON. 199 

life. In some respects Isabella is a difficult character to act. She has 
the delicacy and reflnemeDt of feeling of the true woman, and as well 
the strong affection of the sister. These two emotions are brought 
into conflict. She is tempted to do wrong from a good motive, to 
sacrifice her honor in order to save her brother*s life. 

The portrayal of this mental and emotional struggle as done by 
Madame Modjeska is a fine piece of dramatic art. Her voice, like 
Cordelia's, is " soft, gentle, and low." This adds greatly to the effect 
of her pleading with Angelo for her brother's life. When Angelo 
positively refuses to be merciful and to save Glaudio, her sense of 
right and justice becomes outraged, and Madame Modjeska with great 
force rebukes him : 

*^. . . man, proud*nuui, 
Drest In a little brief authority, 

• • • • • 

Playv 8uch fantastio tricks before high heaven 
As make the angels weep ! " 

The climax of the play is the scene between Isabella and Glaudio in 
the prison. In this scene Madame Modjeska is at her best. Isabella 
tells Glaudio : 

" There is a devilish mercy in the Judge.** 

When she plainly declares what it is, viz., mercy dependent on the 
sacrifice of her honor, she tells Glaudio it is better he should die. 
When Glaudio, however, begs her to make the sacrifice, her love for 
her brother, her grief at his impending death immediately give way 
to wrath at his baseness and pusillanimity : 

" Wilt thou be made a man out of my vice ? ** 

She utterly scorns him : 

"... Take my defiance ! 
Die, perish I •' 

Madame Modjeska acted this scene grandly. The different shades 
of feeling, fraternal love, deep sympathy, passing into the strongest 
contempt, are all portrayed by her with great refinement and power. 
No woman on the English-speaking stage could act this character as 
perfectly as does Madame Modjeska. Her portrayal is dignified and 
fascinating; at times full of pathos, at others of scorn, and always 
charming. 

The other principal characters are fairly well acted. The play is 
properly staged, and should be seen by all lovers of the Shakespearian 
drama. 



Wi hear tbat^Rhea is makiD^ a gr«at sncccas in h#r new plat, 
" Ne)l Owynne," Paul Eester's Bve-act diuoa. It is said she will be 
M«n ID it bere before.the Mason clocea. 

)IH. WiLUAM B. RtlOXS, whoK fine tenor voice adds its own de 
lig-ht to all the princip*! muaical fvstivulB of this citj and of the 
couDlrv at large, haa opened the seaaon with a verjr large number of 
en(,'a£ementa. 

Wk are id receipt of a. small booh, issued by Gustave L. Becker, No. 
70 West ti3th Street, containing valuable suggestiona to parents who 
desire to have their children taught music thoroughly. It may be 
obtained free OD application. 

)f R. John Cornklius Grioob, of the Metropolitan Ccdlege of Uusic, 
IS to give a series of illustrated lectures on Worship Husic before the 
Divinity School ot Yale College. There will be seven of them, and 
they thoroughly cover the subject. 

Mfc Hei;fRICH Ubtk is coming rapidly to the front. He is to ap- 
p<>ar at the first Damrosch Oratorio Concert. He has also many minor 
enKag'ementB. He is a young man of refined and powerful voice, and 
of a. temperament which is sure to attract. 

We liave seen an advance copy of the QermanOperaSouvenir, which 
is to be sold at a nomioaJ price — ten cents — at all the performances ot 
tlie German Opera Company. It is beautifully illustrated, and is, in 
sliort, a unique and telling book ot its kind. 

V 

Miss Mabv Locisb Cl4RT, the remarkable young contralto whose 
singing ot "Ben Bolt" has perhaps done more than anything ebe to 
popularize in this country the song of Du Haurier's heroine, will 
be heard this season in work ranging all the nay from her favorite 
oratorio of "Samson and Delilah" to "Trilby recitals." She will 
sing in moat ot our leading cities, including Chicago, Boston, SI. 
Louis, Toledo, Cincinnati, Piitsburg, Washington, Philadelphia) ud 
Brooklyn. 

THK 



THE LOOKER-ON 



DECEMBER, 1895. 



A NEW JULIETTE. 

By Fbedebio Deaii^. 

^^9r HEBE is an old-time stage tradition to tke effect 
^£U that "a woman can never play the part of 
Juliet until she is too old to look it.'' If this 
be tnie of Shakespeare's creation what shall be said of 
€(onnod's heroine? For, here is required the same 
beauty, the same girlish figure, the same poetic child 
possessed of the fervor, the passion, the self-devotion 
of highest womanhood, and, in addition, a voice of 
girlish purity charged with true dramatic fire. Truly, 
a combination rarely to be found, and, she who is thus 
endowed of the Gods must indeed possess the rarest of 
qualifications for such a rdle. 

With the opening of the present season of grand 
opera at the Metropolitan Opera House, a new prima 
donna was presented in the role of Juliette. She came 
unheralded, save by the customary press notices that 
accompany every newcomer, be she worthy or unworthy 
of the newspaper praise lavished upon her; in the 
interviews had with her prior to her public appearance, 
she was described as a modest, unassuming little 

woman; 



208 THE LOOKER-ON. 

woman ; and, save for an occasional picture of a face of 
rare beauty, we knew but little of h&r whom we to-day 
delight to call an ideal Juliette. 

Frances Saville is ever a beautiful picture whether as 
the light-hearted belle of a Veronese baU, as the loying 
woman clinging to her Romeo in spite of all opposition, 
or as the sorrowful, dying wife who gives up her life to 
be with him whom she loves more than life. As she 
trips down the steps of Capulet's palace she is the per- 
sonification of youthful charm. The face, the figure, 
the dress, the manner, all picture the Juliette of our 
fancy, light-hearted, happy, free from all sorrow, from 
all care. But a lover crosses her {)ath and note the 
change. Here is the same beauty to be sure; but a 
new look has crept into the eyes, a new being is this 
for whom there is no world save RomeOj no atmosphere 
save love. Truly we can quote Leigh Hunt's criticism 
of a Juliet of by-gone days, and say of Mme. Saville 
that '^love, tenderness, and sorrow were rarely repre- 
sented with more efifectual truth." 

^' Romeo and Juliette " is the most poetic of Shake- 
speare's plays. It has been set to music by the most 
poetic of modem French composers, and has in this 
new exponent of its heroine one of the most poetic of 
Juliettes. Mme. Saville besides possessing youth and 
beauty, a voice of surpassing loveliness and true dra- 
matic power, is endowed to a large degree with that 
nameless something we call magnetism, magnetism of 
voice as well as magnetism of personal presence. 
Though her tones are beautiful they are not cold, and 
though her action is full of tragic power she is ever the 
same winsome attractive being, an ideal personifica- 
tion 



THE LOOKER-ON. 209 

tion of the heroine of the greatest love story ever told. 
Mme. Saville sings as though she loved to sing. How 
joyous was the waltz in the first scene, how tender were 
the low pulsating notes with which she converses with 
her lover in the moonlight, how sorrow-laden were the 
tones of the heart-broken wife over the dead body of 
her lover-husband. There is a feature of Mme. SaviUe's 
singing that must be here noticed, as it is ever present 
in her work, and that is a reserve power that makes 
every note appear easy, every eflfort free from possibility 
of failure. Is it a cadenza? You feel confident no note 
will be sacrificed. Is it a passage demanding special 
force? Ample strength is held in reserve for still greater 
power than is needed. And thus a feeling of perfect 
security is begotten, and one rests in the satisfaction 
of knowing that no difficulties will arise that will not 
be met and conquered, no beauties of the score, or 
interpretation of the part will be lost sight of. 

It is a pleasure to see so charming an actress in the 
part. Mme. Saville inherits from her Gallic mother 
the power of expression by look and gesture. The 
French, as a race, are bom actors and actresses, and 
the mother of our JuliettCy a cultivated singer, pos- 
sessed to a rare degree this same power of mimicry. 
Du Maurier tells us there is no genius without a drop 
of oriental blood in his veins. Mme. Saville inherits 
from her father's family this " golden taint of genius," 
and thus right honestly does she come by her talent. 
This mixture of the Oriental and southern European 
ha3 produced in the daughter capabilities and powers 
accorded only to the few. That she has not been 
n^ligent of her gifts is shown by her excellent use 

to 



210 THE LOOKER' ON. 

to which she has already put them. The best of 
training, under the most capable masters, has given her 
power to become a pet of the European music centers, 
and, surely if she continue in other r61es her good 
work done in JvZiettey she will end by finding herself 
enshrined in our '^ heart of heart." 

The performance of the opera in which Mme. Saville 
made her American debut was in every way satisfac- 
tory. Romeo and Juliette^ the culminating point in 
Gounod's career, is in itself a work of great beauty and 
charm, and with such interpreters as Jean and Edouard 
de Reszke, Plan^on, Bauermeister, and a host of others, 
there could be no other verdict than that of well done. 

There were other newcomers in the cast that deserve 
a word of praise. M. de Yries, the Mercuiio of the 
evening, is an addition to the company. His portrayal 
of the character was strong and harmonious throughout, 
and his Queen-Mab recitation received the recognition it 
deserved. Miss Clara Hunt, who essayed the part of 
StephanOy sang creditably for the first api>earance on any 
stage, and Binaldini, Yaschetti, Castelmary, Mauquiere 
contributed their share toward making a successful 
premier. 

But methought that there was an unusual charm 
about the entire performance, more x>o^tic beauty in 
the balcony scene, more than usual tragic power in the 
last act of all. Romeo was more impassioned in his 
wooing, Capulet more obdurate, the good Friar more 
then ever sorry for the fate of the i)oor lovers, the ever- 
present, never-to-be-gotten-along-without Mile. Bauer- 
meister was more than usually urgent in her importuni- 
ties in the rdle of the ^^ original woman's rights' dame " 

—the 



THE LOOKER-ON. 211 

— ^the strong-minded Nurse — ^wliUe the baton of the 
conductor Bevignani exerted an nnnsnal power over the 
gentleman of the orchestra. 

And wherein lies the secret? Can it be possible that 
this newcomer could so permeate every scene as to give 
additional power and beauty not only to the entire work, 
but to the task of each individual worker? Solve the 
riddle as you will, no more charming performance of 
Romeo et JvUette^ and no more poetic interpretation 
of Gounod's heroine has been seen in this city for many 
a day. 

Welcome to our new Jvliette I 




212 THE LOOKER- ON. 



SHAKESPEARE'S DRAMATIC 
CONSTRUCTION. 

Julius Oesar. 

Bt Wm. H. Flsmino. 

Nearly every fact mentioned in this play is taken by 
Shakespeare from Plutarch. Plutarch's record of them 
is a history; Shakespeare's is a drama. Wherein is 
the difference between these two forms of literary com- 
I)Osition? A history is a narration of events; a drama 
is a representation of events by means of action. The 
word drama is derived from the Greek word dran^ 
to do, to act. Aristotle's definition of tragedy is: 
^^ An imitation of one entire, great, and probable action, 
not toldy hut represented, which, by moving in us fear 
and pity, is conducive to the purging of those two 
passions in our minds." In answering the question: 
What is that which we call dramatic? James Russell 
Lowell {Old English Dramatists, p. 26) not only de- 
fines with perfect accuracy the drama, but also makes 
very lucid and vivid the difference between it and his- 
tory. ''In the abstract it is thought or emotion in 
action, or on its way to become action. In the concrete 
it is that which is more vivid if represented than 
described, and which would lose if narrated." Plutarch 

tells 



THE LOOKER-ON. 213 

tells us about the conspiracy which resulted in the death 
of Julius Csesar. Shakespeare puts the conspirators on 
the stage; we hear them speak; we see them act. 
This, however, is not the only difference between these 
two species of literary composition. They differ not 
only in form but in nature. "History and poetry,'* 
says Aristotle (Po^^tc^, Chap. IX.), "are distinguished 
herein that the one relates what has occurred, the 
other relates of what nature the occurrence has been. 
. . . Poetry refers to the general, and history to 
the particular. The general is how such and such a 
man would speak or act according to probability or 
necessity. . . . The particular, on the contrary, is 
what Alcibiades has done or suffered." 

Dramatic poetry is not actual but imaginative truth. 
It appeals not so much to the intellect as to the imag- 
ination; to the ^imaginative reason; to the intellectual 
emotions. Poets are the ideal interpreters of life. 
Shakespeare adds to Plutarch's facts a subtle, indefina- 
ble ideality. After Claudio had cruelly slandered Hero 
and then deserted her at the marriage altar. Father Fran- 
cis advised that she be hidden, and a notice of her 
death published. The effect of this, he said, would be : 

^ Wlien Claudio shall hear she died upon his words, 
The idea of her life shall sweetly creep 
Into his study of imagination, 
And every lovely organ of her life 
Shall come apparell'd in more precious habit. 
More moving, delicate, and full of life, 
Into the eye and prospect of his soul. 
Than when she lived indeed : " 

r. A. about N. iv, 1| 226, teq. 

In 



214 THE LOOKER' OK 

In these words, which are the Tery highest leaeh of 
imaginative poetry, Shakespeare describes his own 
work in this drama* By his vivifying imagination be 
resurrects these men. 

^ • . . graves at his oommmd 
Have wak'd their sleeperi^ op'd and let 'em forth 
Bj hia 80 potent art^ Temp. v. 1, 48. 

He recreates them. He reveals to ns ''the idea," 
i. e.| the image, of their lives, and this he does so per- 
fectly that we perceive not so much the body as the 
mind and spirit. Not to the naked eye but to the eye of 
the mind are revealed the thoughts, emotions, inten- 
tions, the conflict between ''blood and judgment"; 
the subtle interflow of good and evil ; in a word, all 
these powerful, though silent and invisible, forces which 
constituted the springs of action in each of these men. 
As a result, '' every organ of their lives " is disdoeed, 
and Brutus, Cassius, Csesar, Antony, and the othera 
appear before us not as shades of the departed, but as 
living men. 

'' More moving, delicate and full of life 



Than when they lived indeed.'* 

Of course, this idealism of the poet must be founded 
on realism. He must possess imaginative verity. He 
must see into the very " heart of heart " of a man or 
woman, and in his drama portray that man orwoman 
with perfect truthfulness. Shakespeare would have 
erred if he had ascribed to Portia the morals of Cleo- 
patra^ oi to Brutus the baseness of lago. At the same 
time historical accuracy in every minor detail is not a 

requisite 



THE LOOKER' ON. 215 

requisite of a great drama. Sciolists speak of Sliake- 
speare's incorrect history. By so doing they manifest 
ignorance of the nature of a historical dramai and also 
their lack of the critical faculty. Such in the words of 
Sir William Davenant {Prrface to * * Gondibert " ) " take 
away the liberty of the Poet, and fetter his feet in the 
shackles of the Historian." Shakespeare did not, nor 
was it necessary that he should, follow history literally. 
Into Brutus's mouth he puts these words : 

** My aaoestora did from the streete of Borne 
The Tarquin drive, when he waa call'd a 



This is not historically correct. Brutus was not of 
that family. '' Brutus who expelled the Tarquins," 
says Proude, (Cte^ar, p. 607,) "put his sons to death, 
and died childless ; Marcus Brutus came of good plebe- 
ian &mily, with no glories of tyrannicide about them ; 
hut an imaginary genealogy suited well with the spu- 
rious heroics which veiled the motives of Cs&sar's 
murderers. '* 

Plutarch says CsBsar was stabbed twenty-three times. 
Shakespeare speaks of ^^Csesar's three and thirty 
wounds." As a matter of history Csesar never uttered 
the words M tu Brute t They were original with 
Shakespeare. The latter was not a historian, but a 
poet. He knew that if Cffisar, when he saw his trusted 
friend Brutus raise the dagger, had expressed his 
thoughts and feelings it would have been in such words 
Et tu Brute ! Por as Antony in his speech said : 

'\ . • when the noble Gsesar saw him stob. 
Ingratitude, more strong than traitor's arms, 
Quite vanquished him.'' 

These 



216 THE LOOKER-ON. 

These words, therefore, while not historically, are poet- 
ically true.* 

I have descanted, possibly more at length than some 
may think needful, npon the difFerence between a his- 
tory and a drama, becaose that difference is essential, 
and must always be borne in mind by the oitical stu- 
dent. A knowledge of that difference guards against 
an incorrect method of studying a historical drama. It 
must be studied, not as history, not with reference to 
the correctness or incorrectness of its statements, but as 
a drama. To do the former is entirely to misconceive 
the intention of the poet, and, as a consequence, to fail 
utterly in comprehending and appreciating the poem. 
It is a mistake similar to that pointed out so long ago 
by Plutarch {Morals. Of Hearing) : ^' He that goes 
about to split wood with a key, and to unlock a door 
with an axe, does not so much misemploy his in- 
struments, as deprive himself of the proper use of 
both." 

There are two kinds of tragedies. In one the hero is 
the active agent in causing the catastrophe ; in the other, 
the hero is passive, the catastrophe being produced by 
forces outside of, independent of, himself. In the two, 
the dramatist portrays human life as dominated by one 
or the other of the two great forces which control it; in 
the former, Free- Will; in the latter. Fate, overruling 
Providence. Both these forces are referred to in this 



^''Tnith, namtiTe and pasl, iathe idol of histoiuns (wlio wonhip adnd 
thiog), andiratli, opentiTe and bj ita effecU oonUnnally alive, ia the mistres 
of poeti^ who hath not her existence in matter, bat in reason." 

Sn Wx. Datsv A»T, iV^oee lo *' QmdibaV* 

drama 



THE LOOKER-ON. 217 

drama. Cassias alludes to the fonner when, in his first 
conversation with Bratns, he said : 

** Men at some time are masters of their fates. 
The faulty dear Bratus, is not in our stars, 
But in ourselTes, that we are underlings." 

C<esar refers to the latter, mz.^ Fate, overroling Provi- 
dence, when he asks Calphnmia : 

^ . • • What can be avoided. 
Whose end is purposed by the mighty Gods 7 ** 

And again: 

''Of all the wonders that I yet have heard 
It seems to me most strange that men should fear; 
Seeing that death a necessary end. 
Will come when it will come.'' 

Shakespeare has written both kinds of tragedies. His 
art is many-sided, catholic. Examples of the former 
are Macbeth, Richard III. In these plays the hero, by 
his own will, expressing itself in a series of deeds, is 
the direct canse of the catastrophe which overwhelms 
him. An example of the latter is Romeo and Juliet. 
In this play Shakespeare describes the 

**. . . misadventured piteous overthrows," 
of 

''A pair of star-cross'd lovers," 

whose lives are sacrificed owing to a feud which was 
not of their causing. Othello is also a tragedy of the 
second kind. And so also is Julius Caesar. Caesar is not, 
as were Macbeth and Richard m. the direct cause of 
his own death. In this drama he is not only active, but 
passive. Forces outside of himself bring the action to 

a 



218 THE LOOKER-ON. 

a climax. Other forces, still outside of himself, carry 
the action forward to the catastrophe. While he is the 
cause of the action, he is such not as doiTig anything 
in the drama^ not as an a/^tor therein^ but as represent- 
ing a sentiment, embodying a principle, vtz.j Imperial- 
ism. While living he is the passive cause of the con- 
spiracy ; when dead, he is the equally passive cause of 
the retribution. It is his wounds, 

^ Which^ like dumb mouths, do ope Uidr raby lips 
To b^ the voice and utterance of my tongue: 

that caused Antony to speak. It is his 

** • • . wounds, poor, poor, dumb mouthfl^** 
which had power to 



**• • • move 



The Btonee of Rome to rise and mutiny " 

that demand vengeance. 

A third characteristic of this play, wherein it differs 
from most others is — ^no one person dominates it. The 
action centers around Julius Csesar. He, however, is 
passive. The forepart, all preceding the Climax, is 
dominated by the conspirators. Of these, at the begin- 
ning, Cassius is the leader. He soon gives way to 
Brutus, who becomes the master-spirit. The after-part, 
all following the Climax, is dominated by the revengers, 
of whom Antony is the controlling personality. But 
no one person dominates the action of this play from 
beginning to end as did Henry V. , Henry VIII. , Corio- 
lanus, Hamlet in the plays bearing those names. Tliis 
drama, unlike those, is not a delineation of a x>erson, 
but of a principle. It describes not so much the for- 
tunes 



\ 



THE LOOKER-ON. 219 

tunes of Csesar as it does the conflict between Repub- 
licanism and Imperialism. True, Antony said : 

''All the conspirators save only he (Brutus), 
Did that they did in envy of great Csesar." 

This opinion is questionable. But whether Antony 
was correct or incorrect of one fact there is no doubt ; 
ziz.y the avowed and ostensible motive which governed 
the conspirators in assassinating CsBsar was not dislike 
of him personally, but the belief that he embodied a 
principle which threatened the life of the Republic. 
As the play proceeds, this idea is iterated and reiterated. 
This was the final consideration which induced Brutus 
to join the conspirators. 

** It must be by his death : and, for my part, 
I know no personal cause to spurn at him, 
But for the general." 

He reiterated this opinion in his first conference with 
the conspirators, 

" We all stand up against the spirit of Csesar," 

and then expressed regret that in order to destroy the 
principle which, as he thought, Csesar embodied, it was 
necessary to kill Caesar : 

** O, that we then could come by Caesar's spirit, 
And not dismember Csesar.'^ 

After the murder he told Antony the motive which 
led him to stab his friend was 

" • • ^ P*ty ^ the general wrong of Rome." 

It was the one reason which Brutus gave to the citizens 
iorthe justification of the assassination: ^^If there be 

any 



220 THE LOOKER-ON. 



ftny in this aasembly, any dear friend of Cssar's, to 
him I say that Bnttas' love to Gssar was no less Uian 
his. If, then, that friend demand^ why Brutus rose 
against Ciesar, this is my answer — ^Not that I loT'd 
Cesar less, but that I lov'd Rome more." In this 
statement Brutus was sincere. The motive which gov- 
erned him, and which was announced as the motive of 
all, was a desire to save the Republic : 

** I dew mj belt lover fiv the good of Bome.** 

Ciesar's spirit, as the expression of treason against the 
Republic, was the cause and object of the attack. 

As Cssar's spirit was the cause of the action m fDct9 
it also qf the reaction. It caused the conspiracy which 
culminated in the assassination. It likewise caused 
the retribution which brought to Cassius and Brutos 
defeat and death. For, as Antony stood over the 
mangled body, apostrophizing it as 

**. • • thou bleeding pieoe of earth," 



he said the consequence of that murder would be : 



** A euTBe shall light upon the limbe of men; 
Domestio fury, and fierce civil rtrift^ 
Shall cumber all the parts of Italy : 

And GuBsar'B spirit rang^g for revenge. 
With Ate by his mde, oome hot from heU, 
Shall in these confines, with a mcmarch's voioe^ 
Cry'HavocI' and let dip the dogs of war:" 

and so it did. 
Nor did Ccesar's spirit cease to range for revenge 

until 



THE LOOKER-ON. 221 

until it brought death to Bratns and Cassius. At the 
close of the battle of PMlippi, jnst previous to commit- 
tiBg suicide, Brutus said : 

'' O Jaliufl GflosaTy thou art mighty yet I 
Thy Bpirit walks abroad, and turns our swords, 
In our own proper entrails." 

As I previously said, no one man dominates this play. 
It does not treat of Julius Caesar as an individual ; it 
does not dramatize his personal life and fortunes. It 
treats of him only so far as he is the embodiment of a 
principle. The unity of the drama is not in a person 
but in the action. That action relates to the Con- 
spiracy, its formation, its culmination, its consequence ; 
the avowed object of which conspiracy was, by killing 
Cffisar, to preserve to the Koman people 

'' Peace I Freedom I and Liberty ! " 

In conclusion this play is unlike most of the Shake- 
sperian dramas in that it is simple. I use the word in 
its original sense (Latin simplex) ^ i. e., not complicated. 
The action of the drama is not involved. There are no 
sub-actions. There are several episodes. These are 
very brief, and of very minor importance. The move- 
ment from beginning to end consists almost wholly of 
the Main Action. That moves steadily upwards to the 
Climax. From there it advances, almost without inter- 
ruption to the Catastrophe. The Introduction consists 
of Act I. and describes the formation of the Conspiracy. 
With the completion of that the action of the drama 
b^ins. This ushers in the second division or Growth 
which consists of Act II., Scenes 1 and 2. Its subject 

is 



222 THE LOOKER-ON. 

is fhe planB of the oonspintors which are i>erf ected. 
The Climax or third division extends from Act n., 3, to 
Act III., 2 inclasive. It describes all that immediately 
precedes and all that immediately succeeds the assassi- 
nation. The Fall, the fourth dramatic divisiony extends 
from Act in.y 8, to TV.finU. It marks the b^:inniiig 
of the end. The action changes its coarse. It fore- 
shadows the Betribution. This is followed by the 
Catastrophe, Act Y., which brings the action of the 
drama to a conclusion with the defeat and death of 

the conspirators* 

(2b he eonlmiMl.) 




THE LOOKER- ON. 223 



A DESIDERATUM IN CONCERT-GIVING. 

By William Posteb Apthorp. 

Ws are living in a more and more Inxnrions age, 
one of the marked characteristicB of which is that many 
things which, years ago, were to be regarded as Inxn- 
ries haye now become, or [are fast becoming, sheer 
necessaries. Times change. A little over a hundred 
years ago, Mozart wrote home in high glee from Paris 
about the " luxury " of being able to write a symphony 
for an orchestra that contained a pair of clarinets. 
Twenty years ago. Von Bulow stepped angrily up to the 
edge of the Boston Music Hall platform, at a private 
rehearsal with orchestra, and wished to be informed 
what he was going to do without a fourth horn? ^ ^ Uh 
guatrienie coTj ce n^est pas un luxe^ wyons! H me 
faut dbsolv/ment un quatri^me cor! (Come, a fourth 
horn is no luxury I I absolutely must have a fourth 
horn !) " And nowadays we feel ourselves rather ill-used 
if, at a performance of selections from Wagner's Nxbel- 
ungen^ four ordinary band-instruments are substituted 
for the prescribed quartet of authentic Bayreuth-tubas. 
The time may not have quite come yet, but it is fast 
coming when we shall feel our poverty and provincial- 
ism at the absence of a real Bayreuth-tuba, much as we 
used to feel them thirty or forty years ago, whenever a 
double-bassoon part had to be played on a bass-tuba, 
or a second-bassoon part on a 'cello. 

This 



224 THE LOOKER-ON. 

This modem loxuy, or rather this changing of 
whilom Inxiuiee into neoesBariee, is an excellent thing 
in its way. I have eometimee thought it woold be well 
to have it more thorongh-going than it actually is. We 
now fully appreciate the imix>rtance of giving a com- 
poser's score just as he wrote it; it would be better still 
if we showed an equal appreciation of the importance of 
giving it under just the conditions he had in mind when 
he wrote it. It seems to me that there is one not onim- 
portant item in c<mcert-giving which has sadly &llen 
out of notice— -one missing luxury which ought long 
since to have become a necessary. 

The enonnous growth of the modem orchestra, and 
the corresponding development of the art of modem 
orchestration have had as their result something more 
than the mere demand for large instrumental masses 
and once rare instruments. It should be a source ot 
satisfaction to us that here, in America — or at least in 
New York and Boston, probably also in Chicago — ^we 
are in a condition to meet this demand more fully than 
it is met anywhere in Europe, with the exception of 
Paris and London. But, as I have said, this particular 
demand is not the only result of modem orchestral 
writing. 

Time was when the traditional division of instra- 
mental music into orchestral and chamber-music was 
quite rational ; it was a classification in fact as well as 
in name. Under the head of chamber-music came all 
compositions for the pianoforte (except concertos), either 
alone or with other instruments ; also, all those forms of 
concerted writing — ^trios, quartets, quintet8,etc. — ^in which 
each i)art in the score is to be played by a single instm- 

ment. 



THE LOOKER-ON. 225 

ment. Under the head of orchestral music came all com- 
positions for more or less full orchestra, such as sympho- 
nies, overtures, suites, divertimenti, etc. The propriety 
of giving chamber-music in smaller halls than those used 
for orchestral performances was universally acknowl- 
edged; and this acknowledgedly valid principle was 
pretty generally carried out in concert-giving practice. 
Snt it is to be noted that, with time, orchestral music 
began to appeal to a larger public than chamber-music ; 
more people cared to go to symphony or x)opular or- 
chestral concerts than to (nearly always '^ classical") 
chamber-concerts. Hayden's, Mozart's, Beethoven's, 
Schubert's, Mendelssohn's, and Schumann's symphonies 
and overtures were enjoyed by hundreds, where their 
quartets and trios were enjoyed by tens. These larger 
audiences had somehow to be housed — ^for concert- 
giving organizations are naturally loth to refuse good 
money when it is offered — ^and orchestral concert halls 
began to be built larger and larger. The orchestral 
concert hall got at last to vie in size with the opera- 
house. Indeed, there are not a few opera-houses in the 
world that would be only too glad to be able to count 
upon such audiences as habitually attend symphony 
concerts to-day. • 

That this building of large concert halls, for orches- 
tral purposes, had a purely financial basis, need not be 
said — ^it goes without saying. A large audience pays 
better than a small one; here you have the whole 
reason in a nutshell! For it is unquestionable that 
these large halls were often utterly out of proportion to 
the music played in them ; they were simply " gouffres 
d, recettes (abysms for gate-money)," as Berlioz once 

called 



226 THE LOOKER- ON. 

called the huge opeia-honses that preceded them. It 
was not until the modem style of oichestration — ^intro- 
duced by BerlioZy and then developed by Meyerbeer, 
Wagner, liszt, and the whole grand army of contem- 
porary composers— came into general vogue, and the 
works of the modem school became popular, that con- 
cert orchestras could produce their proper effect in the 
tone-swallowing spaces in which they were forced to 
play. Our large modem halls (that is, the good ones) 
are right for Berlioz, Liszt, Wagner, Brahms, and other 
modem composers. And do not think that the effect- 
iveness of this modem music in laige halls comes prin- 
cipally from the laige masses of instruments employed, 
nor from any ^^brassiness" in the scoring; it comes 
from the whole modem system of orchestration, by 
which composers are enabled to draw an enormous 
volume of tone from even very inconspicuous orchestral 
means. It is the modem style of orchestral treat- 
ment which is so effective in large halls, not merely the 
composition of the modem orchestra. 

But the older orchestral music suffers aa much in 
these vast spaces as it ever did ; indeed it suffers more, 
by comparison with the effectiveness of the new. The 
orchestral works of Beethoven, Schubert, Mendelssohn, 
Schumann, Oade, Cherubini — ^let alone Mozart and 
Haydn — are completely depapseeSy out of their native 
element, in our modem concert halls ; now and then a 
heavily " trombonized " movement may tell; but the 
effect is for the most part dull, lifeless, breezy, and 
inadequate. ^^ Give me a hall in which the violins cut 
like a trumpefy^^ once said a noted conductor, "and I 
will show you what a Haydn symphony is like! " I 

am 



THE LOOKER-ON. 227 

am folly convinced that the growing disfavor with 
which some of the older composers are regarded — and 
this disfavor really existo, though it» proportions aad 
violence have been exaggerated by some critics — ^is 
largely owing to the terrible handicapping put npon 
the older orchestral music, by forcing it into immediate 
comparison with the brilliancy of modem orchestration 
in over-large halls. 

We cannot long conceal from ourselves the fact that 
the older orchestral music — especially the works of 
Haydn and Mozart — has virtually fallen into a category 
by itself; that the old classification of instrumental 
music into orchestral and chamber-music is superan- 
nuated and no longer up to the exigencies of the times. 
We need a new classification ; what has hitherto been 
lumped together under the general head of " orchestral 
music" should be reclassified as large-hall music and 
small-hall music. And, as in old times they had small 
halls for chamber-music, and larger ones for orchestral, 
we now need halls of medium size for this new inter- 
mediate category: the orchestral music of the older 
composers, especially Mozart and Haydn. And to this 
intermediate category should properly be added most 
instrumental concertos. 

Orchestral performance in very large halls has had 
another evU effect, beside placing the older music at 
an undue disadvantage. It has, gradually and insidi- 
ously, had an untoward effect upon orchestral playing. 
I remember once expressing the wish to Mr. Wilhelm 
Gericke, that we (in Boston) could have at least some 
symphony concerts in a hall the size of that of the 
Paris Conservatoire. "Yes," replied Gericke, "I 

should 



228 THE LOOKER-ON. 

should like that, too — with the Conservatoire oreha- 
Ira ! " You see, a very large hall affects the orchestral 
players themselves quite as much as, if not more than, 
it does the audience; the players cannot hear them- 
selves play in an over-large hall as well as they can in 
a smaller one. And the habit of playing in very laige 
halls sooner or later breeds a f alling-off in the matter 
of delicacy and finish of style. The artistic material 
of which the orchestra of the Paris SocieU dee Concerts 
is made up, is not, upon the whole, superior to that to 
be found in some other orchestras ; except two or three 
phenomenal wind-players, its comi>osition is not unpar- 
allelled. The drilling it undeigoes is certainly not 
more arduous than that of many another orchestral 
body. Why is it, then, that it stands almost undis- 
putedly at the head of all orchestras in the world? I 
am perfectly sure that one reason is that it habitually 
rehearses and plays' in the Conservatoire hall; a hall 
of very moderate dimensions, and flawless acoustics, 
where every faintest shade of delicacy in playing is 
distinctly to be felt. 

Even in our best orchestras the pianissimo or piano 
cantilena of the strings already seems like a lost art. 
And no wonder I Let there be but a grain of passionate 
emotion in a cantabile melody, and playing it piano 
with the first violins alone in one of our vast halls will 
not do: it will lack the first requisite of all artistic 
performance, the ^^ eternal get-there. '' Modem com- 
posers seldom write an emotional cantilena for the fibrst 
violins alone. They usually double the part with 

• 

something else. But the older composers did write 
such cantilenas J and piano at that ; we nowadays hear 

them 



THE LOOKER-ON. 229 

them played forte^ or we hardly hear them at all. 
Conductors well know that a short symphony by Haydn 
or Mozart requires more careful rehearsing nowadays 
than a symphonic poem by liszt; the scoring is so 
transparent that the slightest want of finish in the 
playing of any part is immediately i)erceiyed as a 
blemish. And our orchestral players are growing less 
and less used to such minute painstaking. Let them 
but play every now and then in a hall appropriate to 
the older music, and they will soon o^u their eyes to 
the habitual quality of their own playing; it will be 
the first step in the direction of acquiring the careful 
habit. The Paris Conservatoire orchestra need not 
remain forever solitary on its present eminence; we 
can do as well here, if we only have a mind and create 
the right conditions. 




280 TSB LOOKER-ON. 



OLGA NETHERSOLE AND HER GENIUS. 

By H. Gorbok JoHKSoif . 

Mb. Tbeb, in hia Harvard address of a year ago, gave 
a significant definition of the diamatio art. ^^ Acting," 
he said, <^is an affair of the imagination. The aetor 
more than any other artist may be said to be the 
passion-winged minister of thought. Children are bom 
actors. They lose the faculty only when th^ wings of 
their imagination are weighed with self -consdonsness. 
It is not every one to whom is given the capacity of 
always remaining a child. It is Hsuja blessed gift of 
receptive sensibility which it should be the endeavor 
(the unconscious endeavor, perhaps) of every artist to 
cultivate and retain." 

The significance of this definition lies in the care with 
which Mr. Tree seeks to avoid prescribing any mathe- 
matical laws as the welLspxings of the dramatic art, to 
which that art is necessarily subject. The actor recog- 
nizes the idleness of maintaining that one can climb to 
any permanent eminence in the dramatic profession, 
without those qualities which a strenuous training in 
the laws and practices of the art alone can give. But 
these laws and practices are no better than the foot- 
notes of adroit commentators. All that is most essen- 
tial, most luminous in acting is the outcome of the 
pre])onderance of the imaginative &iculty. 

Dramatic genius is the retention into maturity of 

the 



OLGA METHERSOLE. 



THE LOOKER-ON. 231 

the inborn receptiye sensibility to all the impres- 
sions and influences of life that belong to the soul 
fresh from the hand of God, and true acting is the 
reflex of the individual personality to these sensa- 
tions. 

No better illustration of the truth of Mr. Tree's defini- 
tion has ever been seen in America than the actress 
who, when those words were si>oken, was playing at the 
Boston Museum. Olga Nethersole is not only swayed 
by an acute and subtle imagination, which makes her 
an actress of great genius, but she is the most perfect 
child who has ever made a great and valuable contribu- 
tion to our dramatic privileges. We have had the 
opportunity of seeing her as we did not those actresses 
with whom we naturally compare her — ^Bernhardt and 
Dusd — ^in the infancy, so to speak, of her dramatic life. 
Growth from girlhood to the present i)eriod of woman- 
hood has not given to her delicately powerful imagina- 
tion any very considerable docility. Maturity has 
given her a wider imaginative scope, and that is very 
nearly all. She acts to-day as we can conceive of the 
child Olga Nethersole, acting twenty years ago — ^if the 
child's imagination could have stretched itself to suffi- 
cient scope to grasp such characters as Camille or Frou- 
Frou. Her imagination is stiU childishly rampant. 
She has kept it the ruling center of her life, largely 
untouched by the discipline of the world. Her success, 
therefore, is the best possible proof of the essential 
truth of Mr. Tree's definition. It was achieved, not 
because of strenuous training according to conventional 
artistic laws, or because of utter subjection to them, 
but in spite of them. Olga Nethersole has shown us, 

when 



232 THE LOOKER - ON. 

when we most needed to see it, that, law or no law, the 
divine insanity of imagination which we call genius can, 
in acting at least, win its way to success. When Ameri- 
can drama was feeling the enthralling influence of Mr. 
Henry Irving^s idolatry of artistic golden calves, this 
young English prophetess api>eared among us and pro- 
claimed afresh the worship of the actor's true Gt)d. It 
was this that made her alike fascinating to the pleasure- 
loving theater-goer and interesting to the soberer stu- 
dent of her art. The impulses of her genius were so 
true that in her presentations she could not go far 
astray. That genius was so unadulterated, so unformed 
by any influences outside of itself, that it made her the 
perfect expression of itself. 

Olga Nethersole is of all actresses pre-eminently the 
embodiment of pure genius and what it can accomplidh 
in the dramatic life. It is with her as such that we are 
to deal in this paper. With the history of her personal 
life we have nothing to do. The morbid curiosity that 
seeks to know the details of an actress's personal ex- 
I>erience is unwholesome, and tends to degrade the 
stage. The critic who descends to such insipidities 
deserves the scorn of the intelligent public who read 
him, and, as well, of the actress whom he criticises. 
But with Olga Nethersole, the actress, we have much 
to do* She has been here among us proclaiming great 
truths. Acting is an affair of the imagination of child- 
hood ripening into manhood and womanhood, unspotted 
by the world ; and of the modem spirit which considers 
every form of life as evanescing into every other form 
by infinitesimal gradations, which knows nothing except 
relatively and under conditions, and which defines 

truth 



THE LOOKER - ON. 233 

truth as attention to infinitesimal detail. This has 
a place in dramatic representation and a message 
through its means. So Olga Nethersole has been 
telling us, and this surely is the world's busi- 
ness. 

What is most essential, most luminous in acting is, 
as we have just said, an affair of the imagination. But 
this faculty of i)owerf ul and subtle imaging may take 
one or two forms. It may give to its possessor the 
capability by scanning the text of a part, of projecting 
himself into the soul of the character, and of repro- 
ducing directly the appropriate accompaniment of 
action with force and truth. That is the method of 
insight, or, on the other hand, this keen and delicately 
adjusted third eye of the sold may read the words as 
symbols of action, and image upon its retina in the 
actor's brain the picture not of the character of the 
man who speaks them, but of himself, uttering them 
with all their troop of expression and manner and 
action. An actor of this sort has in his brain not the 
thought of a character which, out of the materials of 
his art and his own personality, he must suitably 
rehabilitate, but moving and doing phantoms, whom 
through his art and his personality he must make visible 
and let live. This is the method of action, the rarer 
and dramatically the higher form. The impersonations 
of an actor of the former sort are completely successful 
only in so far as his imagination gives him a clear and 
consistent mental picture of their soids, their motives 
and environments, his art is the servant of his intellect. 
With an actor of the second sort, assumptions will be 
over-exaggerated or meaningless whenever they pass 

the 



234 THE LOOKER-ON. 

the bounds of the capability of his imagination to 
register on his brain moving and doing phantoms; 
his intellect is the servant of his art. Both are imper- 
fect and faulty, both need for their highest develop- 
ment a thorough education and a steady discipline in 
the methods of the other. 

Olga Nethersole's genius is of this rarer and, dramat- 
ically more x>erfect, second sort. She is most perfectly 
the expression of her genius when she is doing. The 
most striking characteristic of her acting is a nearly in- 
cessant motion, which at first seems a bewildering rest- 
lessness. Tet it is soon seen to be clearly deeper than 
the superficial thing which it had api>eared. Her 
CamiUe, her Frou-Frou, her Juliet, would be essentially 
changed were they acted without this apparent super- 
abundance of motion. However good the conception of 
these characters might then be, it clearly would not be 
Olga Nethersole's. 

This wealth of action in which she so exults is no 
mannerism of her genius, but one of the great channels 
through which its stage expression seeks to interpene- 
trate and irradiate the hearts and understandings of her 
audience.. Attitude, gesture, muscle-contraction and 
extension are all ministers of her genius, as the air is 
the minister of the sun in the diffusion of its light. Ju- 
liet, in the farewell-scene with Bomeo, as he climbs out 
upon the trelliswork, throws herself at full length Jipou 
the broad balcony and reaches her hand down to him 
caressingly through the railing. The perfect love of 
the girl Juliet, unwilling to hold her lover back to his 
danger, and yet loathe to let him go, could find no more 
fitting representation. 

Again, 



THE LOOKER - ON. 235 

Again, in that great scene of confession where Comille 
tells Armand Duval of the loneliness of her life without 
father, mother, brother, or sister, or even friends who 
are not servile in their friendship, and of the dreams of 
a return to the higher living and the purer happiness of 
her childhood, built upon his love, and overwhelmed by 
the memories of a shameful past which had surged up 
at the first thought of his possible defection, we could 
not — ^without the restless pacing up and down, the 
clinching and unclinching of the hand, the mobile face, 
at one moment turning to gaze upon Armand, the next, 
as the full ignominy of the fallen woman sweeps over her, 
hiding itself from him — have had portrayed the eager, 
dissatisfied, longing Camille of Olga Nethersole. 

In her power of muscular expression Olga Nether- 
sole reminds one slightly of Sarah Bernhardt. She is 
not yet such a perfect autocrat of her muscles as Bern- 
hardt. One questions whether she would quite dare to 
play the eavesdropping scene in Cleopatra, concealed 
from the waist up. She rejoices, however, in imperson- 
ations and situations that demand for their adequate ex- 
pression strong and changeful muscular movement, 
whether of face or body matters little. Her Camille is 
throughout a study of the highest sort of facial muscu- 
lar expression. The look of beatific happiness that 
steals into Camille' s face as she breaks with her old life 
and refuses to answer YarviUe's note ; the strength that 
shines from every feature as she bids M. Duval be of 
good cheer, for she will not falter in her resolution 
to give Armand back to his father and to social 
respectability; the forced happiness with which 
she veils her grief as she bids him farewell in 

pursuance 



236 THE LOOKER-ON. 

porsnance of that promiae, aie all genius-brandecL 
Olga Nethersole, a8 Juliet, in the i)otion-8oene crouch* 
ing on the floor, trembling, chattering with honor, 
pooTB such a flood of nightmare fear into her every 
muscle as only Bernhardt else could do. The whole of 
her passionate nature i>ortrays Juliet's wild and fearful 
imaginings with a true tragic force by the speaking of 
her muscles. 

This virile, action-picturing imagination of Olga 
Nethersole's has a more subtle manifestation and a 
more i)Owerful influence. Her conceptions are in two 
ways molded by this force. The interpretation of a 
character which appeals to her is the one most largely 
and most readily amenable to this x>ortrayal by action. 
It is the romping child of a ^' Frou-Frou " that appeals 
to her, and of this conception she never for a moment 
loses sight. Once for an instant she struggles out of it, 
when she confesses to her husband her longing to fulfill 
the duties of her wifehood and motherhood, only, when 
that longing has been spumed, to become the child 
again. To have created successfully from Hal6vy's 
drama that other Frou-Frou, who, waking from her 
childishness, remains true to her newly discovered 
womanhood, would have demanded a deeper insight 
into Frou-Frou's mind and heart, and far less emphasis 
upon her girlish exuberance. 

Again, the impersonations of an actress of Olga 
Nethersole's sort have, as we have said before, meaning 
and reality only in so far as they fall within the limits 
of the capability of her imagination to register concep- 
tions in her brain of their moving and doing phantoms. 
This mercilessly logical law of mere being demands that 

within 



THE LOOKER-ON. 237 

witliin the compass of each assumption, considered indi- 
vidually, shall be movement, that is development or 
groivth. 

Obedience to this law controlled her rendering of 
Juliet. To her presentation of the Veronese heroine 
she brought personal qualities which of themselves 
could not have failed to make the rendition of more 
tlian ordinary interest. Her perfect bodily grace gave 
to her Juliet an unusual beauty, and her own simple 
faith in the power of unaided love saved her from the 
slightest taint of the coquetry with which thoughtlessly 
theatrical Juliets have marred the plighting of her 
vows. But a yet more radical and more characteristie 
innovation remains. As the play grows, JuUet grows 
with it. Olga Nethersole is true to her text, and marks 
clearly the distinction between the girl of sixteen and 
the woman she afterward becomes under the influence 
of love and sorrow. Notwithstanding the fault found 
with her by so many professional critics, she could not 
have successfully portrayed Juliet had she sacrificed 
this conception to any conventionalities, for in so doing 
she would also have sacrificed all the opportunity for 
growth in her impersonation so essential to her genius 
for its truest expression. Her Juliet is in its concep- 
tion and its presentation modem and realistic. 

Olga Nethersole's implicit obedience to the impulses 
of her genius, and her consequent complete manumis- 
sion from the thralldom of tradition nowhere find a bet- 
ter illustration. The termination of the potion-scene 
is the most exquisite torture of tradition and the i)er- 
fect quintessence of modem realism. Juliet who had 
been crouching on the fioor chattering with a nightmare 

fear 



238 THE LOOKER' ON. 

fear and horror, suddenly springs to her feet, her eyes 
fixed on the spot where a moment before she had sewt 
the phantom, the dread in her face supplanted by a 
look of determinate purpose. Hurrying after the phan- 
tom with the words, ^^ Stay, Tybalt, stay. Borneo, I 
come,'' she gropes her way, as if blinded, to the table 
where she has left the potion and clutches it in hm: hand 
with a convuIsiTe shudder. With the words, *' This do 
I drink to thee," uttered slowly and with a passionate 
solemnity, she deliberately and without haste drinks 
the sleeping draught. Juliet, as the potion takes its 
certain but gradual eflFect, slowly sinks from tiie conch 
and rolls upon the floor. 

But this modem Olga Nethersole- Juliet has a wider 
significance than its forceful originality. The success- 
ful invasion into the Shakespearian rdles of the modem 
spirit means that through this medium the nineteenth 
century is finding an expression for a characteristic 
with which Shakespeare's own age had little in common. 
The sciences of observation have developed in modem 
times the spirit of the relative in place of the spirit of 
the absolute to a degree unknown before. ^^ The moral 
world, ever in contact with the physical, has been in- 
vaded from the ground of the inductive sciences by this 
relative spirit. There it has started a new analysis of the 
relations of body and mind, good and evil, freedom and 
necessity. Hard and abstract moralities are yielding to 
a more exact estimate of the subtility and complexity 
of our life. Character meiges into temperament, the 
nervous system refines itself into intellect. Man's phys- 
ical organism is played ux>on, not only by the physical 
conditions about it, but by remote laws of inheritance. 

And 



THE LOOKER-ON. 239 

And even when we have estimated these conditions, 
he is still not yet isolated, for the mind of the 
race, the character of the age sway him this way or 
that throngh the medium of language and current 
ideas. It seems as if the most opx)osite statements 
about him were true, he is so receptiye. All the 
influences of nature and of society ceaselessly play- 
ing upon him, so that every hour in his life is unique, 
changed altogether by a stray word, or glance or 
touch." 

In the expression of this relative spirit through the 
medium of dramatic form Olga Nethersole excels, and 
the Juliet is perhaps the best proof of her excellence. 
With a truthfulness at once as rare as it is subtle, she 
portrays Julief s irresponsible girlish affection ripening 
into the woman's purposeful love by delicate and fugi- 
tive gradations. The love of Olga Nethersole's Juliet 
from the moment when in the ball-room scene she first 
sees her Komeo, to the moment when by the tomb of 
the Gapulets she dies by the self-inflicted stab of Romeo's 
dagger, never falters in its growth, and yet never at 
any isolated moment manes us conscious of the change 
it is undergoing. That love when the time of bitter 
test comes is not wanting ; the girl's affection flnds its 
perfect fulfillment. Not till then have we been fully 
conscious of the change, and only by looking backward 
over all that has gone before can we understand the 
process. 

Her charm, in large measure, lies in this i)ower of so 
I>erfectly interpreting the modem spirit. Whatever 
woman she personates, whether Juliet or Frou-Frou, 
Sylvia Woodville or Camille, Olga Nethersole maintains 

with 



240 THE LOOKER-ON. 

with wonderful skill the fusion of indiyidoality and 
enTironment. Each character, by the gift of nature or 
the discipline of experience, learns to accept the limita- 
tions of the situation in which she is placed, of her 
inheritance, of her past acts, of the individualities of 
others around her, and, having accepted them, to find 
in the end, though they may have seemed very hard 
at first, her largest usefulness and her truest happiness. 
Each is mastered by her environment, only to find the 
apparent defeat her life's real victory. Olga Nether- 
sole's Juliet is a non-resisting Juliet. She surrenders 
without a single serious struggle to Romeo's love, and 
to her own love for him, and finds the whole happiness 
and purpose of her life in maintaining her utter sub- 
mission inviolate. When that is impossible, she finds 
nothing for which to live. 

But the submission to environment, when it is a hard 
and bitter experience, rather than the natural, joyous 
surrender of Juliet, summons to its portrayal Olga 
Nethersole's highest powers. The Nethersole-Juliet, 
except in the i)otion-scene, and the scene where she 
refuses to obey her father and marry Paris, is without 
any very considerable tragic sorrow. Moments of 
acute suffering there are, when, for instance, she first 
learns of Tybalfs death, and of Romeo's banishment, 
and the instant when she discovers the dead Romeo, 
outside the Capulet's tomb ; but these do not strew with 
thorns the path she is treading in the following of her 
purpose. The idea of faltering in her perfect rest, in 
her love, because of Tybalf s murder, or Romeo's banish- 
ment, does not cross her mind, and the sight of the 
dead Romeo takes from her life all its purpose. Olga 

Nethersole 



THE LOOKER- ON. 241 

Netliersole makes you feel tliat it was a joy to Juliet 
to die. 

A word must, even at the risk of digression, be said 
in commendation of this interpretation. The nature 
of fhe tragic in Borneo and Juliet has been one of the 
most misunderstood things in our literature, and the 
highest praise is due to this young actress, who has 
had the originality to perceive, and the courage to 
embody her perceptions, that Juliet's life was filled 
not with the bitterness of sorrow, but with its love- 
transmuted form of joy. 

Modem drama is charged with being immoral in its 
subjects, inartistic in its form. The charge may be eas- 
ily, though by no means necessarily, true. Art, to be 
art at all, must inform or control noble matter with 
some variety, some compass, some alliance to great ends, 
some largeness of hope in it. The drama would indeed 
be inartistic that dealt solely with the pessimistic black- 
ness of the world's sin and evil, with the helplessness 
of its pain. But go deep enough into your study of sin 
or suffering, and you always must find some brightness 
there. There is always grandeur in endurance, always 
nobility in conquest, in self-denial, self-renunciation. 
Art that tries to deal with evil must emphasize not the 
sin but the sinner ; that which seeks to grapple with 
pain must emphasize not the suffering, but the suf- 
ferer. It is good that now when the world most 
needs it, Olga Nethersole has come among us with a 
genius whose best expression is in its insistence upon 
the greater importance above the suffering or the sin of 
the human life which bears or struggles. life, the 
importance of life, the power of life, that is the mes- 
sage 



242 THE LOOKER- OK 

sage she brings in no uncertain tones. We need it, 
and are better for it. Our art needs it^ and is the 
better lor it. We wish in every undertaking of a glo- 
rious and hopeful future a warm Godspeed to Olga 
Nethersole. 




THE LOOKER-ON. 243 



THE WORD OF A VIRGINIAN. 

By Gebtbude Blake Stanton. 

She was a magnificent creature, and for twenty-eight 
years all Virginia, and esx)ecially her own county, had 
been telling her so in word and deed, and in the kind of 
homage no one but a beautiful woman gets anywhere 
outside of Virginia. In other parts of the world she 
was called a beauty, and told she was beautiful, in many 
different tongues ; but she had a taste for the native way, 
and would return to hear just how beautiful she was in 
the soft Virginianese. She had a history of duels, heart- 
breaks, and even a suicide, while poetry, tradition, and 
songs in her name surrounded her with a nimbus of ro- 
mance which counted for more in Virginia than any- 
where else. It was said that she cared more for her 
birth as a Virginian than for her beauty. 

I was one of the epicurean sort of men who take their 
beauties without speech, and so I refused to be presented 
to her. I don't know whether she realized that I avoided 
her or not. She never seemed conscious of me until one 
night at my sister's house when I happened to be stand- 
ing quite near her, just as she sent the man beside her 
across the room for her cloak. It was one of those re- 
vealing pauses when she thought herself quite alone, and 
I saw a nameless something about her apart from her 
beauty which held my eyes. She felt it, and turned her 

face 



244 THE LOOKER-ON. 

Ibm fall upon me, and in a flash I realized tAiat she was 
more of a woman than I had thought. The dark eyes 
were very serious and there was something in them 
whioh shot a pang of pity through me despite their 
splendor as a pair of woman's eyes. She seemed con- 
scious of my thought, a curious expression came orer 
her &ce yeiling for a moment its splendid lines and col- 
ors in a mist. But only for a moment ; in the next the 
superb audacity of her pose and expression gave me 
doubt of what I had seen. I was included merely as a 
detail in her rapid glance over the room which was fill- 
ing with people. She was quickly surrounded, but I 
saw her say something to the man who had brought her 
doak. He came up to me, it was Page Talcott, and I 
remembered having heard that he was her cousin. 

<< Miss Talcott will permit me to present you." 

'^ It is impossible to be other than willing to obey such 
queenly commands." I smiled to myself at the stilted 
phrases and followed my guide. I was presented. 

*^ People don't usually pity me ; why did you look at 
me like that? " 

^^ It is something of a distinction to have given Miss 
Talcott a new sensation." 

''Ah, I didn't expect that sort of thing, — it was 
hardly worth while." 

" What did you expect? " 

'' That you might speak the truth with your lips as 
you did just now with your eyes. ' ' She turned her back 
on the room and we made a solitude of our own which 
is sometimes possible in a crowd. 

** But if it seems on nearer view — ^well, hardly worth 

"You 



THE LOOKER 'OK 246 

'^ Yon looked at me as if I were a starving child on a 
winter night and when, on nearer view, yon see that I 
am a fnll grown woman and it is summer, your interest 
dies?" 

*^ I might help the child, the woman in the summer 
is good to look at — ^but her world and mine — ah, well, 
again it is hardly worth while." 

'^ Are you then a coniirmed philanthropist? " 

" No, only a simple lover of men and — ^women.'* 

'^ Of men and women, then it is not only starving 
children " 

'^ I said men and women." 

^^ Ah." She put her face into the June roses which 
she carried, and drew in their fragrance with a hint of 
a sigh and the fleeting shadows coming about her eyes 
again. 

^^ Poor child, you are a poor starving child after all." 

** Help me, then, why don't you." 

"How can I?" 

" I don't know, but I am hungry — soul hungry." 

" I can't give you bread — ^I might suggest some way 
for you to find it — ^but I must know you better first. 
What do you feed on now? " 

"Oh, admiration, homage, worship." 

" At first it tasted sweet, and now? " 

"Flatl" 

" What do you live for?" 

"The best I know." 

" And that is, of course, self." 

"Teach me something else." 

" Have you never been in love? I don't mean with a 
man ; with an idea, an aim, an aspiration outside self? " 

^*No, 



246 THE LOOKER-ON. 

'^ N09 1 wish I oould be in love with anything, any 
one. Wait, yes, I have been in love with the idea of 
moving men with the exercise of power. I have taken 
pleasure in acting. . Ton will have to be caiefol ; this 
very unusual frankness may turn out a pose. I hardly 
know what is real in me. I have as many changes of 
self as changes of raiment — all charming, men say — it 
would be insufferably dull, otherwise.'' 

*^ May I tell you what I think would be good for 
you?" 

" Yes, do." 

"The stage." 

"The stage?" 

" Yes." 

" But that would only aggravate the disease; more, 
more, more self." 

" No, no, I mean the real stage, the serious stage, the 
stage of work, and study, and labor. Not Miss Talcott 
of Virginia will star, but Miss Jones, Brown, or Robin- 
son, working obscurely for several years, gathering life's 
fullness into herself and giving it expression again, so 
that men and women shall feel its heights, its depths, 
its comedy, its tragedy, as art alone can make them 
feel." 

" Ah, yes, I remember now; I have heard you are a 
dramatist of the new school, whatever that may mean. 
You naturally think of your own metier" 

^ * You don't think I go about the country advising 
young women to go upon the stage? Heaven forbid ! I 
say this to you because I feel a possibility of dramatic 
power in you which is rare, and because I believe your 
whole nature is being cramx)ed, stunted, dwarfed for 

lack 



THE LOOKER^ ON. 247 

lack of expression. You must feel, throw off in ex- 
pression, and feel again in order to grow. Yon have 
been limited to one set of emotions, one phase of life." 

** I don't feel anything but weariness any more ; it is 
all so intolerably alike after the first round." 

"Because you have had all sweets. Try the brown 
bread of work. When once you get the wholesome 
taste of realities in your mouth you will never forget it, 
and the sweets, when you have time for them, will be 
all the sweeter. I^ow I am preaching; stop me, 
please." 

"The stage?' 

" No, first some work to see if you have the fiber of 
endurance; some hard work, some study.'' 

" Set me a task." 

"But not so capriciously. Think Jt over at least a 
night, a day. You must give up much, you know, all 
this that you call your life." 

"I will think, but it will be strange to do so. I 
can't say how long it will take me ; will you come and 
see me in a week? " 

People said a mood, a caprice, a pose ; but I saw her 
day by day and felt the growing earnestness, and knew 
that she was so far at least, sincere. In study she had 
much of the naivete and sweet seriousness of a very 
intelligent child. Very soon I found myself thinking 
of my Hester Talcott as quite another woman from the 
Hester Talcott other men knew. Yet I was a hard 
taskmaster, unsparing, critical, brutal even, with an 
instinct of self-defense against her growing ascendency. 
For her own sake there must be one man in the world 
who could keep his senses when she let her eyes rest 

upon 



248 THE LOOKER-ON. 

upon him. The sex charm was predominant in ho*; 
through me she should r««ch her possibilities as human 
being. 

I was myself surprised at her powers of concentra- 
tion. The original, untrained mind bent to its task 
with the hot ardor of the bom student. The time of 
probation was soon over, and studies direct from the 
dramas of the day b^gun. Here her real power came to 
the surface, and all went so well that on my next trip 
to New York I made an engagement for her under an 
assumed name. In a few weeks she would b^gin the 
obscure apprenticeship at a good theater. She learned 
and really created the princii)al imrt in the play I had 
just finished. She had worked along with me, suggest- 
ing much, inspiring more, until I felt at last I had 
written something worth while. We were rehearsing it 
together ; there was one great scene in it between the 
man and the woman. When we came to that, the 
subtle flattery of her exquisite conception of my work 
touched me like wine. Acting melted into reality, 
reality lost itself in exaltation. It was in the part to 
take her in my arms — ^but for us the play ended there. 
Great God ! did she love me already ; what else could 
her kiss mean? I held her from me, the great lids 
drooped heavily over her eyes. 

'^ This isn't acting, this is " I diopi)ed her hands, 

my hopes for her, my more than man's love for her — 
this was my time to prove it. I drew in my breath 
sharply. In a moment I had sprung back into the 
part. 

'^ Ah, yes, yes, that is good — ^very good — a great ad- 
vance. We don't need to go over the rest. That was 

always 



THE LOOKER- ON. 249 

always the sticking point, you know.'* I tamed from 
her and canght up my hat. To get away — ^that was all. 
I dared not once look at her standing there with the 
consciousness of that kiss between us. Somehow, I got 
out of the room, somehow to the railroad station. I 
knew there was a train for New York due in a short 
time. All that night in the train, the pulse of her lips 
beat warm against mine, the feel of her arms was on my 
shoulders, the clasp of her fingers against my neck, the 
faint x>erf ume of her nearness came and went. And I 
had dared to write of it, as if I had ever known what it 
was before. • 

It took some days to get hold of myself, and just as I 
was about to go back, some real affairs turned up .to 
detain me. The morning I took the train for Virginia 
I got a letter from my sister in which there was this 
paragraph: 

"You had better come back and look after your 
pupil. She has broken loose, and returned with 
greater zest than ever to her native element. What an 
old prig you are, Roger, to think you could turn a 
woman like that into a student. Why, the whole 
world is her stage, and all the men and women merely 
actors. She played a part to subjugate you because 
you wouldn't yield to ordinary tactics. I wish I knew 
whether you yielded to the acting." 

I arrived quietly at my sister's, and knowing the 
house was full of young i)eople, told the servants to 
leave me unannounced. After some supper in my own 
room, I strolled around outside with my cigar, and 
finally leaned against one of the windows going into the 
drawing-room, and watched what went on inside. 

Hester 



250 THE LOOKER-ON. 

Hester Talcott was the center of the group. With 
a pang I realized that it was not my Hester Tal- 
cott. 

The cloud of thought which had hung over her, soft- 
ening and chastening her, had lifted, revealing a de- 
moniacal brilliancy, which had perhaps been the unde- 
tected secret of her sx)ell. They were all talking, it 
seemed, of some tradition in the Talcott family. I 
made Qut that Hester's mother and grandmother had 
been celebrated beauties, and each had married her 
hundredth offer ; that there was an old family wedding- 
ring in Hester's possession, with quaint chasing and 
some inscription about the fate of a Talcott being the 
hundredth man. They tried to make Hester say 
whether she would hold to the custom, and whether she 
had kept count. She parried cleverly. 

^^ Hester slays her thousands," said Page Talcott. 

*' No, Page, I haven't got an even hundred yet." 

" Then you do keep count ! " 

"Wait and see " Hester sprang up and left the 

room. In a moment she was back, carrying a long sheet 
of white paper which she flourished Don Juan style. 
She would not let any one get near her ; she flung her- 
self from them into the middle of the room. The light 
struck upon a heavily chased gold ring she wore. She 
caught her skirt, and with a rapid swirl was off into a 
dance. She fluttered the long, white sheet of paper 
above her head, pressed it to her heart, let it stream 
like a ribbon behind her, trampled it under her feet. 
I forgot to be disgusted; I held my breath — surely 
there was a demon in the woman. At last she came to 
a sudden halt in front of Page Talcott and held the 

paper 



THE LOOKER-ON. 251 

paper out with a pretty affectation of concession for 
him to count. 

'^ Mustn't read the names, just count," she panted. 

"One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, 
ten " 

" Oh, that's too tiresome ;" she wheeled off from him. 

^ ^ Let me count ; there must be more than one hun- 
dred names there. ' ' 

** No, there are just ninety '' 

They waited for the next word. 

** Odd ! " It came half smothered in Hester's inimit- 
able laughter. Then with a queer sort of defiance-— 
"but I am going to end it all. I am going to marry 
my hundredth offer, like my good mother and grand- 
mother before me. I am going to live and die in old 
Virginia." 

Suddenly I seemed to realize that she was in earnest. 
Why or how I could not tell, but I knew her face when 
it took that look. She meant it. Instinctively I 
stretched out my arms toward her — "Hester," I said, 
but my voice was lost in my sister's 

"What guarantee will he have that he is the hun- 
dredth?" she said. 

" The word of a Virginian." 

"I think you are encouraging the gambling spirit, 
Hester." 

Marriage is a lottery, say the wise. Mine shall be 
frankly so, that is aU. ' ' 

With a quick good-night, thrown carelessly into the 
room, she was gone. 

Indignation, disgust, disillusion turned me hot; my 
thoughts seethed; I could grasp nothing clearly, but 

the 



252 THE LOOKER' OK 

the idea that I must see her at once. She should 
account for herself to me. How could I get to her 
without my sister or some of the others seeing me? 
While I tried to think this out, I was aware that 
people were saying good-night ; the keyed-up spirits 
had fallen flat, the evening was over. Lights went 
out in the great room and appeared again in various 
parts of the house. Nothing could be done that night. 
I relit my cigar and wandered off at random through 
the box-bordered paths, which brought me within 
sound of the negroes' quarters. They were swarming 
about, singing. The words came faintly to me. I 
went nearer and listened : 

^ BoekB and a' moantaini, 
Fall on m«, 
Hide me from an angij Gawd— — ^ 

The sleepy rhythm soothed, in disregard of the text. 
Nothing could hapx>en until morning, and in the morn- 
ing she would come to me and tell me that it was all a 
bit of acting. Of course, she couldn't have meant a 
word of it, my sweet, woman-hearted Hester. I went 
back to the house, and climbed in my window, pulling 
in the shutters after me. 

"An angry Gawd— , 
Bocki and a' moontaine— * 

The distant anger of the Almighty hurling rocks 
upon his people lulled me to sleep. 

I knew nothing till the noise of the falling rocks 
seemed turning into the sound of horses' hoofs thud- 
ding ui)on the ground beneath my window, and the 
daylight lay full in my room. I got up and looked 

out; 



THE LOOKER-ON. 263 

ont ; old Sandy was leading two saddle horses around 
to the front piazza. There were some half -hushed 
voices. Page Talcott helped Hester to mount, and 
jumped into the other saddle himself. They rode 
slowly down the avenue, and turned into the lane. 
They made a superb pair, each with the characteristic 
Talcott poise of head and shoulders. I watched 
them out of sight, pushing back the bushes to do so, 
and bringiilg down a shower of dew ui)on my head. 
Then I dressed and stepped out of my window. It 
was several hours until breakfast. I walked myself 
out of temper before my sister came downstairs. I 
caught sight of her at last, clipping roses into her 
basket as she cam^. The girls came fluttering out in 
their white dresses, every one foolishly in love with the 
sweet, young morning, and willing to linger in its 
promise, I alone ready to commit myself to the prosaic 
day by the ceremony of breakfast. 

There was a smell of frying chicken and crusty corn- 
bread from the dining-room, and my sister said 
they wouldn't wait for Page and Hester, and we went 
in. 

^ ^ Are your guests in the habit of taking these early 
rides?'' 

**Not often," and my sister tossed me a yellow rose 
from behind the urn. 

** You know Page has been in love with Hester since 
they were babies, but they say he is one of the few men 
left in Virginia who hasn't proposed to her," said one 
of the girls." 

^^ Got up early this morning to make up for lost time, 
I reckon." 



264 THE LOOKER-ON. 

^^111 bet anything yon like, Page has made up hk 
mind to take a chance in Hester's lottery/* 

And they fell to betting on the chances of his being 
the hundredth man, while I realized that my old super- 
ior contempt of them and their ways was coming to the 
surface again. After the meal I went directly to the 
library, where I shut myself in and made elaborate 
prei)arations for work, but all the time I was listening 
to the beat of horses' hoofs, until the mocking sound 
got into my head, muflling the thoughts I was trying to 
put upon xMtper* 

I could not tell the real sound when it came, and it 
was only the babble of voices, the rush of laughter, and 
the clatter of feet upon the piazza, which told me that 
the riders had returned. Laughter and gay words 
floated in to me. 

Confound it all I I didn't want the woman if she had 
promised herself to her cousin in that way, and if she 
hadn't, then all was well. What the devil had got into 
my pen? I couldn't help catching some of the banter- 
ing talk from the piazza, and I put my head down on 
the table before me, to wait until there was quiet, but 
as I did so I felt some one was in the room behind me. 
She came swiftly up to me. 

<<Why didn't you come into the drawing-room last 
night? " 

** Is it true?" 

*^ What true?" 

*^ About you and — and the hundredth man,*' all tiie 
scorn I felt got for once into my voice. 

**Yes, it is true." 

"The play is over then? " 

"The 






C4 



Lt nor vmB laflL ir zda 
:?* 

^* Yes. I W» IS 315^ 

soul aad k^«d sba. ir 'ntt mcr ^vou avr 3lj x^n* 
socHiiedh?* 

**My God. ciilii. woic in yni. jk&x** 

**Tatta«wI jCT«d T-m; via iaseel 3d*^ w^Z-ba: rr ^si^ 
nuoi's vmr to a^ki^ ^ass trzm. si*-. ^Sihl T*:a j^ a»w Fcr 
me, tibe leal ne. ima cKcii iccfLfzx.^ 

**Oued ftocLiix? I car*ti iZ* I cij«d rco :ttzcl** 



*'I would Boi tikke to<£ ih&s v^y, im a ssocm of ib.^ 
senaes. I wantied y^c^i to p^okb y^c^^iKlf frss^ I waiii^xi 
to help you.* 

"Help me? Wky cool-ii'i jvu haw jost iowd m^? 
There's no help like that." 

" Bat don't you see. I wanted to show yoa th;iif 1 
loved yoa move than any man had loved bef oi^. 

^'Bnt yonr kaving me wh^i I had shown vvMU 
had given myself — no wcHnan foigives a thin^ lik^ 
that." 

"Bnt I thought ^" 

" You wouldn't have thought. You would hav^ Mt 
how it hurt me. If you had loved euoxigh> you txmUl 
not have done it." 

" But I was trying to control myself ,— the mtti\ In luts 
for your sake." 

"I had rather had you controlled by lovo* UA mn 



256 THE LOOKER' ON. 

hear it now. All that you didn't say, all that you con- 
trolled. I am just a woman after all.*^ 

" You want to hear it, Hester, hear how I love you 
and crave you with every fiber of my aoul and body? " 

" Thank God." 

"Ah, thank (Jod indeed, Hester." 

<< For this one moment." 

" For all time and eternity." 

" For this moment, don't, don't end it yet." 

" End it ? " My arms tightened round her, she let me 
look close into her eyes, and brush a lock of hair from 
her forehead with my lips. The lids drooped heavily as 
I had seen them once before, my lips touched them— 
she started. 

"Our moment is over," she said, and pushed me ever 
so lightly from her. 

"Hester!" 

" There is a barrier between us." 

"There can be none, for you love me." 

"There is one." 

"What is it?" 

" The word of a Virginian," with a pitiful little smile. 
Then she drew quite away from me, her great eyes 
opened full, the pride of her race sprang out in her pose. 

" You have given your word to your cousin? " 

" What was to prevent? " 

" Your love for me, — or what you are pleased to call 
your love." 

" Had you given me cause to consider that? " 

" Your own heart had given you cause if you were a 
true woman. And aU that last night? He is the hun- 
dredth man, I suppose." 

"Ah, 



-. - * '-' — ^._T 



^ • 



c« 



tlie crowi- 



4» 



much." 



'iis^ X T.r 'Z ^ .:^ >. Trr,r '^ 



(jC ninamr ir T.r^ a. 



c -mt *: ^mrr"- iirr ts.t rif j.-^itr ^.*t. 7Ar 



Ci 



i:k ilzjl:a. T:»tr ilti i j: 



l< a 



~ «^ 



Xou ii i§ a M^il ^ T - I 



» ;j • c* '^•. 

yon abjecilT; jici li^r*. E. ei!r. xii? 2^ i:*^ I j:'^^ jr^^T 

Before I tiH-w irinz sht LlL. <a» *- '■rss^ riL iiic kii?*» 
and cbsf ir^ x.7 ir^ei. "^^^^ i:5a=^i imil soii r' t.jttx » 
me as I sii>:i»?*i z.: ti5s& irec. tiz^'w ri^i irfc Ir^^ai a2»d 
let her bnt sLnr ax ^sGifx if v.irsCiT wiS.i I )sad. 
someidiere seea ir tii* f^r* :* a ni^ii-f-ral sair a. 

** Ah, Go(L d:^i. i;a*i j>:i ai il** ibax war; I ca&^ 
bearit.'* 

" Ko, I ki»T K ; HI- -i--*^ f'.^Lii ssasl beir^ loT^fd ia 
that war. I ca::"i I-i-t^ v-ra arr oih*r mav. I haT>? 
tried, and so I can i^^t^t br^c^rz to tou.'^ 

" And loTing me that uray, yon will belong to your 
cousin?" 

^' I shall not lore yon this wiiy always. I shall fight 
it down. I shall kiU it." 

"Horrible, horrible! Why can't yon let mtfrisgi^ 
alone if yon won't many me? "' 

" Because I am yery hnman, and if I didn*t marry 
some day I should yield to yon, and then — ^then — ^thew 
would be no more happiness for either of us* I tell 
you I love yon too much. ' ' 

"Only don't marry. There is the stage; oh, ohild^ 

woman 



258 THE LOOKER-ON. 

woman Hester, haven't yon strength enough to live for 
that? Yon are a great artist, yon knovr." 
^^ Am I? Conld I be famous? " 
" Yes, yon could be famous." 
^'I lay my talent at your feet, Roger; I shaJl never 
act again. I wanted you to feel that I vras an artist. 
What do I care for the rest; what does a woman care 
for a career? It was all for you, you, you. There 
is nothing I could not do for you and the love of 
yon." 

^^ Except the one thing I ask " 

^^ Stop, I shall marry the man who has wooed me, not 
the man I have wooed." 
*' Hester, can you never believe I love you? " 
^^ Yes, but not as I love, a great love makes a man 
obedient to it, as to a Gh>d, a love which will obey a 
man is a poor love." 

" Yet you are making your love obey a woman." 
^^ A woman's love must be a txune thing." 

*' Leave subtleties. Oome here, Hester " 

^^Hush, you have seen. It is not for this world 
that kind of love." 

"Then we will change this world ; you belong to me. 
Come here where you belong, sweetheart." 

"Ah, yes, yes, that is good — ^very good — a great 
advance ; we don't need to go over the rest — that was 
always the sticking-point, you know." Her laugh 
struck my face with stinging challenge." 

"Another bit of play acting to please a single spec- 
tator this time, a sheer waste of your power. But a 
skirt dance for the crowd is more your role." 
Again the laugh, clear, ringing, with a music which 

seemed 



THE LOOKER-ON. 259 

seemed to borst straight from a woman's heart. The 
blood tingled angrily to my face as from a blow. 

" Yoa shall decide my rdle in. another moment. I 
most give this one to my Cousin Page." She pulled a 
letter from some concealment in her gown, and taking 
the knife from my desk deliberately cut it open. With 
an effort at self-control I watched her. The laughter 
went out of her face as she read. 

"Ah, poor boy, poor Page, he really cares. I would 
never let him speak. I turned him off — so he will 
■write to me. Ah, well — that makes the ninety-ninth." 

The latent savage stirred in me. I sprang at her, 
catching her in my arms, crushing the letter away from 
her face, and compelling her eyes to mine. 

*' You witch-woman, how you have made me suffer!" 



260 THE LOOKER-ON. 



IRVING AND TERRY IN MACBETH. 

By Wm. H. Fleming. 

This play was written by Shakespeare in the very 
maturity of his power. In it, he, at times, attains a 
grandeur and sublimity above which he never rises. It 
portrays 

''The fierce dkputo 
Betwixt demnetion end impevtoaed cUj — J* 

Macbeth vacillates for some time between loyalty and 
treason. The temptation to murder the king and seize 
the throne becomes irresistible. He yields. Equally, 
if not more guilty, is Lady Macbeth. In the play 
Shakespeare portrays this mental, emotional, moral 
struggle, together with its consequences. 

In forming a critical estimate of an actor's work it is 
necessary to judge both his conception of a character 
and his acting of that character. Mr. Irving has not 
left us in doubt as to his conception of Macbeth. ^^ I 
have," he says, ^' deduced some theories of my own as 
to how Macbeth' s character should be considered. For 
one thing, I believe it is evident that he conceived the 
murder of Duncan long before his meeting with the 
witches. He was a man of sentiment, not of feeling. 
Many essayists credit Macbeth with feeling, but he is 
undeserving of the least sympathy. He was nothing 
more than a thorough-going, black-hearted scoundrel. ' ' 
This opinion is, I think, mistaken. Macbeth certainly 
was a scoundrel and at times, e.^., after he had mur- 
dered 



'HT L y: VF?- vX :^l 



dered DaneaB aai But^~ax '* a i^revcfinf .xi^c. b^s^- 
hearted sooxukird.*" Be dcsc:^^^ liztsi^ sis ib^ft 



rd iC 1^ fib* SBBk SDI«UC A 



Bnt when he first met ihe witcb^ while he wae 
I)otent]anT, he wm not in reality •* a thorough-going* 
bhick-hearted sconndi^*' If he had bei» thei^ would 
not hare heai any misgiTing within him« which there 
certainly was. He gires expression to this in a soUI- 
oqny nttered jnst after the witches had predicted that 
he should be ^* thane of Cawdor/* and *^*King here- 
after." 



CkiiiKitbeiU,CMPotbegood: iffll. 

WliT intli it s^cB Be cwMt of 

t\mnutmM4wtg m a tziitb ? I SB thsiie of GnrdoT : 

If good, why do I yield to Uiat nnggut iop 

Whon borcid image doth anfix Bf Italr 

And make nij eMttrf lieut knodc aft m j xib8» 

Agamst Uie OK of naftnre ? * 

Not wonld there have been that yacillation, that inde- 
clsion, which early in the play characterizes his con- 
duct: 

''If chance will have me Eling^ whj, chanoe maj crown me^ 
Without mj stir." 

Bnt a moment later when the King names Malcolm as 
his successor : 

" The Prince ci Cumberland I that is a step 
On which I most fall down, or else o'er*leapi 
For in my way it lies. Stars, hide your fires I 
Let not light see my black and deep desires : 
The eye wink at the hand ; yet let that be 
Which the eye fears, when it is done, to see." 

still 



262 THE LOOKER-ON. 

Still later, after his conference with Lady Macbeth, he 
reverses this decision and tells her : 

** We will proceed oo farther in this busiiieai : " 

Surely no one knew Macbeth better than his wife, 
whom he dearly loved. In her soliloquy, uttered just 
after receiving his letter, she describes him : 

"Thoa woold'it be great ; 
Art not without ambition, bat without 
The illnev ahoold attend it ; what thoa woald*8t higUj 
That wookf It thoa holil j ; woold'at not plaj &]ae^ 
And jet woold'it wrong!/ win.'' 

Even at the very close of his career his better nature 
asserts itself, his outraged conscience is heard. In 
words inexpressibly pathetic, he says : 

" Sejtan I — ^I am rick at heart, 



I have liVd long enoogh : mj waj of life 

Is faU*n into the aear, the jellow Imi, 

And that which ahoold aooompanj old age^ 

Ab honour, Iotc^ obedience, troopa of friendii^ 

I must not look to have ; but, in their atead, 

Caraee, not loud but deep, mouth-honour, breath. 

Which the poor heart would fain denj, and dare not" 

When Mr. Irving says Macbeth was ^'nothing moie 
than a thorough-going, black* hearted scoundrel," he 
is, in my opinion, in error. Shakespeare portrayed 
him, and intended so to do, as a man whose natural 
temper would have deterred him from evil, unless 
strongly tempted ; a man 

** too full o' the milk of human kindneM 
T6 catch the neareat waj— " 

that is, too thoroughly human (for the word ^^ kind- 
ness" 



THE L l>: JCE2- OX StS 



nes8 '" is Imsr VMd in i^ Oid l^rlifd^ sbbm. ri^. liini^ 
Tiatttral) lx> use Tioileza. hicodT loauis 10 s«u^ th« 
throne. 

Mr. Irrine arts liis oaDCPjidon ol th^ chanKm* ud 
does not pcfftny sxlt Tial^oit sxnu^xrl^ in Marhetk. 
Rather lus Macbeth is a man ^iriko has delibentelT d^ 
termined to murder the King and s»ae the thivme^ 
Failing, as I beliere he does, to conceire this character 
correctly, his acting of it mnst of necessity be defect- 
ive. Xot beliering that Macbeth is at war with him- 
self, he ooold not ledte correctly those soliloquies in 
which Macbeth erpresses his indecisicou e^g.^ the one 
just before the mnrder of Duncan : 



If it VCR 

1Xwmn6autqmddj 



Later in the pbiy, after the mnrder of Dnncan and 
Banqno, Macbeth throws all scmples aside — 

'Framtliis wmmbI 
Tlw TCfj fintlb^ of Bj heut ahaD be 
Hie findinsi of m J hand.* 

Mr. Irving's portrayal of Macbeth when he has reached 
this condition is much truer and more effective. Irre- 
si)ective of his own conception of the character, his 
elocution is woefully defective. His tendency to mouth 
his words, to express them in a thick, guttural sound 
has increased since last he was here. The result is, his 
intonation is very indistinct, not a little of what he says 
is unintelligible or inaudible. This was especially no- 
ticeable in the soliloquy : 

'* Li this a dagger which I see befbre me. 
The handle toward mj hand ? Mg.'' 

His 



264 THE LOOKER-ON. 

His mannerisms, which seem to have become more pro- 
nouncedy direct attention to the actor and not to the 
character which is portrayed. One sees and tiiinks not 
of Macbeth, but only of Irving. In passages the rendi- 
tion of which requires intensity and tragic force, Mr. 
Irving is unequal to the demands upon him. He is not 
a great tragedian. His embodiment of this character 
—we say it with r^grel^is a failure. 

Equally disappointing is Miss Terry's x>ortrayal of 
Lady Macbeth. Miss Terry has the proper physique 
to act this character. Lady Maobeth was not a large, 
gross, Amazonian woman — ^her hand was ' ' little. " It is 
likely she was a small woman of a highly organized 
nervous temperament. But her nature became prosti- 
tuted to an unholy ambition, and she became Macbeth's 
^ ^ fiend-like queen. ' ' An overmastering ambition silenced 
the warning of conscience ; deadened her womanly feel- 
ings. Miss Terry lacks the tragic power to act this 
character. She is an ideal Portia, or Beatrice, or Ophe- 
lia, but is unequal to the task of portraying Lady 
Macbeth. She does not possess that i)ower which is 
necessary to make Lady Macbeth the dominating force 
in the forepart of the drama. She is better in the 
sleep-walking scene. That is pathetic. But even in 
this she does not i)ortray the utter ruin of a strong but 
perverted nature. Her acting lacks force and is disap- 
pointing. 

The minor characters are very well acted. The 
staging of the play is all that could be desired. Mr. 
Irving is always faithful to Shakespeare's text. He 
may, in order to shorten the representation, omit 
some passages, but he never adds to Shakespeare's 

words. 



THE LOOKER-ON. 265 

words. For this he deserves the thanks 6f every 
spectator. The scenery, dresses, music — down to the 
smallest details — are all historically and dramatically 
correct. 

I hesitate to criticise unfavorably any work of 
Mr. Irving's. As a stage-manager no man since 
Shakespeare's day has done so much to elevate 
the stage and make it a great educational force. 
His staging of this play, as of all in his repertoire, 
is a work of art. But candor compels me to say 
that neither he nor Miss Terry, great as they 
are in some roles, are able to act Lord and Lady 
Macbeth. 

I know it is a false standard to judge one actor or 
actress by another. It may be ungracious to do so. 
Still as I witnessed this production of Macbeth, I could 
not but recall another one, given many years ago with 
Edwin Booth and Charlotte Cushman in the leading 
roles. Both of these artists conceived the characters 
correctly, and both possessed tragic force and genius 
sufficient to portray them. Never to be forgotten were 
three of the scenes. One was that of the hesitating 
Macbeth who had just told his wife : 

" We will proceed no farther in this bnedneBB.'' 

By his side stood Charlotte Cushman. She was larger, 
taller, and towered above him. She was wrought up 
to the intensest feeling. She attempted to infuse her 
own demoniac energy into the man. With one hand 
she patted him on the back lovingly, firmly, yet re- 
proachfully ; with the other, she grasped her own 
breast as she said : 



266 THE LOOKER- OK 

** I hate given nick tod know 
How tendw 'tis to loTe the babe that milka me : 
I woald, while it wis smiling in mj face 
Hare pluck'd mj nipple from his boneless gmna 
And dash'd the brains ont, had I so sworn as jon 
Have done to this ^ 

Boothy and every one in the audience as well, felt the 
masterful power of this woman who so unsexed her- 
self to gain the throne for her husband. 

At the banquet scene both were supremely great. 
Booth was the utterly unnerved Macbeth. Charlotte 
Cushman impressed every one with her dominating 
power. She was at times the hostess ; at others, the 
wife. As the latter she was at times tender ; at others, 
sarcastic. When she found Macbeth's fears were un- 
controllable, she rose, and with all the gracious dignity 
and authority of a queen, dismissed the guests. 

'* At ODoe, good night : 
Stand not npon the order of joor going. 
But go at onoe. 

In the sleep-walking scene in the last act she came on 
the stage dressed in her night robes, carrying a lighted 
taper. She placed it on a table, then walked diago- 
nally across the stage. All the while she was asleep. 
Her eyes were open, and revealed her mental desola- 
tion. Her sorely charged heart found relief in a sigh 
which was full of tragic pathos. It was a sigh which 
revealed the abysmal deeps of Lady Macbeth's person- 
ality, wherein was raging one of those " greater storms 
and tempests than almanacs can report." When she 
left the stage the impression made on every beholder 
was that of a great, but perverted, nature approaching 

its doom. 

Booth's 



THE LOOKER-ON. 267 

Booth's Macbeth, at the conclusion of the play, was 
equally powerful — and unforgettable. The Scotch King, 
as Booth acted him, was overcome with grief and des- 
peration. 

'' I £^ to be aweary of the soiiy 
And wish the estate o' the world were now undone — 
King the alaram-bell I — Blow, wind I Come, wrack I 
At least we'll die with harness on our back." 

And SO he does, fighting bravely as he meets death at 
the hand of Macduff. 




268 THE LOOKER-ON, 



THE INFLUENCE OF THE POET 

ON MUSIC. 

By Louis C. Elsoit. 

In the old Oreek days, Mausikej whence our modera 
term ^^ Music," meant the union of all the beautiful 
arts of the Muses. We are not surprised, therefore, to 
find that in ancient Greece composer and poet were one, 
that poetry and music were not sisters but were abso- 
lutely branches of the same Art. Aeschylus, Euripides, 
Sophocles, and even Aristophanes, were comiK>ser8, 
although we generally think of them as poets only. It 
is possible that even oratory, in its early days, was 
closely intertwined with music, for Cicero is known to 
have had a slave with a pitch-pipe, behind him during 
his great speeches, to help him modulate his voice in 
certain passages. 

In mediaeval times one finds the same union of the 
two arts in the works of the Troubadours and Minne- 
singers. The Troubadour, it is true, allowed himself an 
assistant in the guise of a Jongleur, but even when this 
underling was employed, he was in no sense a collab- 
orator, for he did no more than play the accompaniments 
to the knightly Troubadour's compositions, the music 
and words being furnished by the latter alone. It ifr to 
be noticed that wherever the poet and musician were 

thus 



TEE LOOKER-ON. 269 

thus nnited in a single person poetry seems to have 
taken the lead, and music was, in the strictest Wagner- 
ian sense, the ^^ Handmaiden of Poetry.'' The moment 
that music became more complex the divorce between 
the two arts took place, yet poetry still retained the 
leadership and the poet still remained the power which 
moved the musician. 

Thus, for example, Shakespeare, who probably never 
wrote a note of music in his life, wielded a direct and 
tangible influence upon the art. No man that ever 
lived caused so much music to be written or gave the 
motive to so many different comx>ositions. In the field 
of opera his influence was the most direct, and each of 
the important plays has furnished a libretto for the 
oi)eratic composer, some of them a great many times 
over. Thus, "The Tempest'' has been set fourteen 
times as an oi)era, beginning with Dr. Ame in the mid- 
dle of the last century, not to speak of its rather absurd 
most recent treatment as a ballet, by Ambroise Thomas, 
six years ago. "The Merry Wives of Windsor" has 
had nine settings, of which the Nicolai version ("Die 
Lustigen Weiber von Windsor," composed in 1849), 
and Verdi's very recent " Falstaff " promise to live in- 
definitely. "Measure for Measure" thrust Wagner 
into music with "Das liebesverbot. " "The Taming 
of the Shrew " awakened a musical genius for the world 
in the shape of Hermann Goetz. "Henry VIII.," with 
those audacious interpolations which the French ven- 
ture to give to Shakesx)eare, caused St. Saens to bring 
forth his greatest opera. "Romeo and Juliet" has 
been set some twenty times as an opera, and has inspired 
a great symphony (by Berlioz) as well as overtures and 

symphonic 



270 THE LOOKER-ON. 

symphonio poems galore ; Gounod's settiiig remains the 
masterpiece among the operatic attempts with this play. 
«< Othello " with its four settings bronght forth one 
masterpiece, the opera of Yerdi, although some portions 
of Rossini's settings do not vanish from the rei)ertoire 
after 80 years of wear. ^' Hamlet " with a dozen set- 
tings presents Thomas's work as possibly permanent 
It would become wearisome to pursue the list in detail; 
more than ISO operas exist upon Shakespearian libretti, 
and such glorious works as Locke's '^ Macbeth " music, 
and Mendelssohn's music to scenes in *' Midsummer 
Night's Dream/' are also to be credited to the same 
source. This influence began to be exerted even in the 
century in which the poef s later plays were written, 
and Henry Purcell, the greatest musical genius that 
England ever produced, was at work ui)on Shakespearian 
topics about sixty years after the poef s death. 

There are many stories told of rapidity of composition 
on the part of the great tone-masters, but when these are 
sifted they generally prove to be more or less mythical ; 
one, however, bears all the tests of historical investiga- 
tion, and is strictly true ; it shows how quickly Shake- 
si)eare could kindle a flame in a true composer's nature. 
It was on a Sunday morning in midsummer of 1826 
that Schubert was taking a stroll around the suburbs of 
Vienna with a party of friends. They were on the 
homeward journey, having turned back at Potzleindorf, 
and were passing through Wahring, when Schubert 
saw his friend Tieze sitting in a little open-air restau- 
rant, ^^Zum Biersack." In an instant the party of 
friends had joined their new-found companion and were 
seated at the table ordering their own refreshments. 

Beside 



THE LOOKER - ON. 271 

Beside ISeze's plate lay a little volnme which he had 
evidently been reading ; Schnbert at once seized it, and, 
as was his wont, began looking through the pages for 
musical subjects. The volume was ^' Shakespeare's Short 
Poems and Sonnets." Suddenly, the musician paused 
and read and reread one of the x>oems, and then burst 
forth : '' If I only had music-paper here ! I have thought 
of the very melody to fit this poem." Instantly one of 
the party, Doppler by name, took the bill of fare, and, 
drawing the requisite lines across its back, handed it to 
Schubert. Then and there, in the confusion of a Vien- 
nese restaurant on a* Sunday morning, and in the short 
space of time while the party were waiting for their 
breakfasts to be prepared, was composed Schubert's 
''Hark, Hark, the Lark," a setting which gives to 
Gloten's morning serenade to Imogen a double immor- 
tality. 

Toward the end of the sixteenth century music had 
gone to the end of its intellectual tether ; the art had 
become more and more complex until the most diiSicult 
mathematical problems with tones were evolved on 
every hand. The influence of the amateur is generally 
a most healthy one in the domain of art ; it was a set of 
amateurs who guided our art to a pleasanter path. The 
culmination of their efforts was the opera, which began 
in 1600 as an effort to bring words and music into closer 
combination, as they had been in the old Greek days. 
But in evolving emotional music these cultured antiqua- 
rians had brought about something higher than the old 
Greek form which they attempted to copy, and they 
had also (like the fisherman in the ''Arabian Nights ") 
uncorked a genii that they could not control, for the 

effect 



272 THE LOOKER-ON. 

effect of the new music waa such that the public began 
to value the music above the words. For a time the 
influence of poetry in this wedding of the arts was nulli- 
fied, the French proverb that '* whatever is too stupid 
to be spoken may be sung," became true, and it was 
not until the last half of the next century that Oluck 
arose to bestow a prox>er balance between the two arts, 
only to be followed by Rossini who undid all his prede- 
cessor's work by a baleful genius for tunes wiHiout 
meaning or dramatic puri)ort. 

While Italy was thus proving untrue to the art that 
she had established, Germany was very weakly follow- 
ing her lead in many of the vocal forms. There was, 
to be sure, a Bach, reconciling the old intellectuality 
with the modem emotion, in the oratoric field, but in 
the song-forms nothing worthy was evolved, because the 
musician held that i)oems were merely p^gs whereon to 
hang pretty tunes, while the i)oets cared little for the 
short lyric, and generally essayed the larger and more 
abstruse styles of expression. 

It was, therefore, a very real musical influence when 
Goethe introduced short lyrics into his works. Such 
songs as the ^^ Mai-lied," Gretchen's ^'Meine Buh' ist 
hin," the songs of the Harper in ^'Wilhelm Meister," 
all meant a new epoch in music. Whenever a true 
poet appears the great musician is not far behind; 
Goethe awakened Schubert and was therefore a distinct 
factor in the evolution of the German Lied. This lat- 
ter form, which owes its glory to the triumvirate com- 
posed of Schubert, Schumann, and Franz, is the Meis- 
sonier of musical art, the presentation of a gem in small- 
est compass. Naturally, its completeness depends upon 

the 



THE LOOKER-ON. 273 

the manner in wMch Poetry and Music second each 
other. The ideal poem for musical treatment is one in 
which the poet has not been too definite, where he has 
left something important for the composer to say. If 
one takes Goethe's " Erl-King " as an example, it will 
be seen at once where the poet has left room for the 
composer. The first lines 

" Who gallops so late through the night-wind wild T 
It is a father and his child/' 

is a barren statement, but the composer can give the 
movement of the gallop, and can evoke the howling 
wind in a manner that shall give to the two lines all 
their latent force. The conversation of the father and 
child is brief enough, but it allows the composer to con- 
trast the sturdiness of the former with the timid anxi- 
ety and feebleness of the latter in artistic juxtaposition. 
The enticing words of the ' ' Erl-king " permit of a use 
of all the melodic sweetness that a composer possesses, 
while the final impatience of the spectral monarch and 
his seizure of the struggling child, the cry of agony 

" O father I he clutches me now with his arm. 
The Erl-King has done me a deadly harm/' 

gains tremendously in realism by the addition of music. 
The terror-stricken gallop to the castle, the pulling up 
at the door, and the discovery of the catastrophe, the 
death of the child, are all merely outlined by the poet, 
and the colors are filled in by the composer. Here, 
then, we have the true exposition of the supplementing 
of poetry by music, whether we take the setting of 

Schubert, 



274 THE LOOKER-ON. 

Schubert, or the still more graphic one by Carl Loewe 
as oar guide. 

The use of the strophe-form in song-comixMEdtioii, the 
repeating of a single tune over and over to each succeed- 
ing stanza of the poem, although a frequent attribute 
of the folk-song, is a distinct lessening of the bond of 
union between the two arts. A familiar example may 
be cited to prove this ; ELingsley's poem, '^ The Three 
Fishers," has been sung in this form in every English- 
speaking country, to the wonderfully powerful melody 
of HuUah, yet any one who reads the i>oem will see that 
the preamble, ** Three fishers went sailing out into the 
west," calls for a different musical treatment from that 
required by the picture of the second verse, wherein 
three wives agitatedly watch the storm from the light- 
house-tower, or from the dread climax where "Three 
corses lay out on the shining sands.'' The dramatic 
power of the later poets in short lyric forms is gradu- 
ally emancipating music from this false direction, and 
the art-song, in which each poetic turn of sentiment is 
reflected by a similar change in the music (the Ger- 
mans graphically call this Durchcomponirung) is gradu- 
ally abolishing the strophe-form save in the treatment 
of the simplest and most monochromatic of poems. 
Germany has been particularly fortunate in the poetic 
influence that was brought to bear in this matter, for 
Goethe was followed by Heine, and the latter brought 
the short lyric to its most powerful expression. Heine 
was a direct inspiration to the German song-composers. 

Schubert was removed from the scene before the 
poet's power had fairly asserted itself, but if one exam- 
ines the settings of *'DieStadt," or "Am Meer," it 

wiU 



THE LOOKER - ON. 275 

will be evident that his style of dealing with poetry- 
was changing for the better because of the influence of 
Heine, and it is not too much to say that the highest 
powers of Schumann and Franz were evoked by the 
same poet, who therefore had quite as much to do with 
the establishment of the Lied as any composer whatso- 
ever. 

When the importance of portraying poetry by music 
is understood as Wagner endeavored to make it under- 
stood, the day of haphazard translations will have 
passed by forever. At present, too many of our native 
composers merely grasp the fact that some masters have 
achieved great results by musical treatment of Goethe 
or Heine in the original, and then take with avidity an 
English translation of the poets for their musical treat- 
ment, forgetting that translated poems generally resemble 
decanted champagne. How carelessly this branch of 
musical art is carried on may be instanced by such 
translations (actual cases) as that of Brahms's ^^Wie 
bist du, meine Konigin? " into *^How dost thou fare, 
my radiant Queen?" or by the havoc that has been 
made with Goethe's "Erl-King*' in the celebrated 
Augener edition (London), in which the words of the 
child, set by Schubert to high- treble tones, are given to 
the father, while the child responds in the notes in- 
tended by the composer for the parent, becoming quite 
a bass- voiced infant in the transfer, not to speak of a 
subsequent stanza which runs 

" O father, my father, and saw you not plain 
The Erl-king's pale daughter glide fast through the rain T 
O no, my heart's treasure, I knew it full soon 
It was the grey willow that danced to the moon/' 

a 



276 THE LOOKER-ON. 

a sudden change of weather, in a single verse, that 
would scare even a New Englander. It may be nrged 
that these are extreme cases, but it is the sorrowful 
truth that, did not space forbid, many more equally 
startling examples in prominent editions might be cited 
oflFhand. 

Thanks to the musical thunderstorm that cleared the 
atmosphere when such works as ''The Mastersingers of 
Nuremberg," or '* The Flying Dutchman," were written, 
the great composers of the present see more clearly what 
is needed in the combination of the arts than their pred- 
ecessors did, but our native poetry is yet almost an 
un worked mine to our native composers. How much of 
progress has been achieved within the half -century may 
best be illustrated by tracing the actions of Yerdi in the 
matter. At the beginning of the epoch we find him 
utterly indifferent as to the worth of the poetry he set 
to music, judging it only by its immediate stage value ; 
if a drinking-song were requisite for enlivenment of a j 

scene it appeared even if the scene in question were a 
funeral. Two slaves carried out the mandates of this < 

musical overlord of poetry ; Solera and Piave were ready 
to deliver anything from prayers to cabalettas at any | 

point of their librettos. '' Un Ballo m Maschera " was 
a historical libretto ending with the assassination of Gus- 
tavus III. ; forbidden in Naples, the Roman authorities ' 

gave permission to attempt the performance if the 
murdered party were not a king. Verdi made not the 
slightest objection to changing the hero into the " Gov- , 

emor of Bosion^^^ and this gentleman was duly assas- , 

sinated at a masked ball which must have been held in 
Massachusetts in the time of the Puritans. When this 

master 



THE LOOKER-ON. 277 

master essayed the setting of Shakespeare, a half -cen- 
tury ago, he caused Macduff to roar forth a dashing 
" Ldberty-song " because Italy was then furious against 
Austrian tyranny, and the audience would go wild over 
the subject, — and they did. Fancy a Macduff singing 

" Our Country forsaken 
Our tears should awaken ; 
'Gainst tyrants, unshaken, 
Our Spirit should rise; " 

and tlien fancy this same comi)oser, changed with the 
spirit of the time, studying the meaning of our great 
poet before setting another of his plays to music, forty 
years after ; calling to his aid the most careful librettist 
of Italy, Arrigo Boito, heightening every trait of 
Othello and lago with reverent hand, blending salient 
points from "King Henry IV." with "The Merry 
Wives of Windsor" in order to accentuate the char- 
acter of Falstaff, and, in short, showing allegiance, in 
every note, to the art he had once regarded merely as a 
vehicle for gaining applause for his music. 

The reforms of Wagner bring us to the starting point 
again, for we have been traveling in a circle ; once more 
we find the poet and musician united in the same 
person, once more we find the poet giving the direction, 
the composer the fulfillment, as a sounding-board is 
directed by the vibrations of a string, yet amplifies and 
glorifies the tone ; but there is a distinction — ^in ancient 
Greece the music was probably of a simplicity that 
made it possible of attainment by any cultivated poet ; 
it probably consisted of melody only, or at least no 
harmony beyond a simple drone bass ; to-day it is too 
much to demand a second Wagner, it is unwise to ex- 
pect 



278 THE LOOKER-ON. 

pect the i)oet to master an art which in itself demands 
a lifetime of stndy» or to demand that the musician 
shall be able to express himself in words before he 
Tentnres to give a still higher expression in tones ; bnt 
it is not too much to expect that the wedding of the 
two arts shall not become a mesaUiaficey that the poet 
shall insist upon his thought being carried out and not 
subverted, and that the composer shall listen to the 
poet with some effort to catch his note, before he com- 
mences his song. A year before his death, the greatest 
of recent song-composers, Robert Franz, wrote to the 
author of this article the following important words 
regarding his mode of composition : 

** One of the chief characteristioB of mj songs maj lie in the 
hd that I do not make music to the text which I use, but allow it 
to develop itself from, the poem. The first two veises of a Hdne 
poem run: 

**Jf your eyes are very clear 

And upon my songs you ponder, 
Tou will see a fair young maid 
Through their measures gently wander. 

** If your ears are very sharp, 

E'en to hear her Toice endeavor, 
And her sighing, laughing, singing; 
They shall rule your heart forever. 

^'I instinctively followed this suggestion of Hdne, and did this 
chiefly from the conviction that a closer connection ruled between 
Poetry and Muac than barren minds could comprehend. Every 
truly lyrical poem holds latent within itself its melody." 

Herbert Spencer, in his essay ^^On Education," 
states the same fact with more detail. He says, ^ ^ Per- 
haps 



THE LOOKER-ON. 279 

Iiaps it will suffice to instance the swarms of worthless 
ballads that infest drawing-rooms as compositions that 
Science would forbid. They sin against Science by set- 
ting to Mnsic ideas that are not emotional enough to 
prompt musical expression ; and they also sin against 
Science by using musical phrases that have no relation 
to the ideas expressed even when these are emotional. 
They are bad because they are untrue. And to say 
that they are untrue is to say that they are un- 
scientific." 

Extremes meet in this case, for the most conservative 
composer and the most thoughtful scientist echo the 
thought of the most radical musical reformer ; and the 
above extracts, and this entire article with its state- 
ment of the poet's influence on music, only amplify 
Wagner's . terse sentence, not to be read or compre- 
hended by every one who runs, yet containing the pith 
of the entire subject — " Music is Truth." 









IfflMlI-ffiWAlNS- 

* people • and -^inys- in. 
iBooks 5ociel)^*^J\ealLife V 




Naa 

ON THE DEPASTDia WOMAJI. 

We hear a good deal, in these latter daj^ about the Coming 
Woman. She casts her shadow before. If her substance is to 
florrespond with it in all points, she will be somewhat fearfully 
and wonderfully mad^ and will ^ve abundant occupation to 
The Lookeb-On. 

But meantime there is another figure on the ^age not unworthy 
of oar attention. I suppose we must call her the Departing 
Woman. If this is to be her last appearance, as the hand-bills 
say ; if she is to be finally and forever displaced by the new 
arrival, then there is all the more reason for making our obeer- 
vatione with promptness and predion before she vanishes &om 
onr sight. 

Friendly these observations must be, perforce. For, apart 
from all considerations of prudence in making remarks upon a 
queen whose abdication is not yet accomplished, and who still 
retains tiie power of inflicting con^derable punishinmta and 
bestowing great rewards, setting e»de all these motives of self- 
preservation and interest, I must cunfess an immeasurable grati- 
tude and an unutterable attachment to the Departing Woman. 

She has played her part well. She has filled a large and 

noble 



THE LOOKER-ON. 281 

noble r5le with credit and renown. She has moved us to happy 
laughter, and purifying tears. Wanting her presence, life's drama 
would have been dull and worthless, and often base. And if, 
forsooth, the next act is to be played without her, I for one 
would join heart and hand in applauding her while she still 
lingers on the stage, and never suffer her to leave without her 
well-earned ovation of praise. 

This Departing Woman, according to modem accounts, has 
been horribly handicapped. It must be true, or else so many 
people would not agree in saying it. But in spite of her handi- 
caps she has done wonders. 

Her education has been abominably n^lected. At least so 
they tell us. And yet, somehow or other, she has succeeded in 
performing the largest, and by no means the worst, part of the 
world's teaching. I will venture to say that seventy-five men 
out of every hundred who know how to read and write and 
cipher learned these primaiy accomplishments from a woman. 
In the army of instruction it may be true that most of the 
generals and staff-officers have worn the trousers; but what 
advance would they have made without the patient, skillftil work 
of the more numerous captains and non-conmiissioned officers 
in skirts? 

Is it a less important, or a less difficult task to awaken the 
young mind to a desire of knowledge, and to train it in the first 
exercise of its powers, than to make new discoveries in the 
sciences and new inventions in the arts? 

Even here the Departing Woman has not &iled to make her 
mark. There is hardly one of the branches of modem learning, 
or of the departments of modem industry, from astronomy to 
cotton-spinning, that does not owe something to her insight and 
skill. But if she has devoted her attention chiefly to the sunpler 
nidiments of knowledge and the finer arts of living, this also has 

been 



282 THE LOOKER-ON. 

been very much to the world's gain. No other oonld be firand 
at onoe so capable and so interesting. In oonversationy in letter- 
writingy in all the deUcades of human interoourse, she has been, 
and still is, our mistresB, and the molder of mankind. 



It is true, I suppose— ^t all events it is commonly 
that her character has suffered fix>m the tyrannies of man. And 
yet she has been broad enough to exerose a controlling and 
guiding influence on all sorts and conditions of men, and strong 
enough to do the main part in upholding the moral standards 
of the world. 

I do not fimcy that she has had a better chance in Armenia 
than in other countries. Here is what an Armenian said of her 
the other day : 

'^ It is the Armenian woman who has preserved the Arm^iian 
nation. The patient dignity, the devoted fiuth, and the unflinch- 
ing heroism of the Armenian wife, mother, and daughter are 
traditional among their native hills and in the archives of their 



raoe.^' 



Where is the nation from which you will not hear a like 
testimony ? The world's highest work has been done, the world's 
noblest deeds have been achieved, the world's upward and onward 
movement has been maintained hitherto, under the influence and 
inspiration of the Departing Woman. Who could have expected 
it from such a poor, dwarfed, down-trodden, and neglected 
creature? 

In religion her pre-eminence and power have been acknowl- 
edged as a matter of course. It has been generally admitted 
that she has kept far ahead of man in sudi afiBiiis as praying 
and reading good books and going to church and exercising the 
heavenly virtues of fidth, hope, and charity. There has even 
been a disposition to grant her a monopoly of these things. I 

am 



THE LOOKER - ON. 283 

am sure that when we get a sight of the Directory of the Celestial 
City we shall have no right to be surprised or offended at the 
predominance of feminine names. 

Sut I do not mean to dwell upon this side of the subject. I 
want to stick close to its teiTestrial aspect Looking at the 
practical results of religion^ and at the church as an institution 
which is designed to benefit this present world^ it would be hard 
to overestimate the good influence of the Departing Woman. 

She may not have kept up to date in her views of Moses^ but 
she has xmderstood how to help the poor. Her perception of 
fine points in doctrine may be a little hazy along the edges, but 
she knows what it means to love God^ and your neighbor as 
yourself. She has been the mainstay of hospitals^ and asylums^ 
and benevolent societies. 

I honestly believe that nothing but her unconquerable prejudice 
in favor of good works and plain, wholesome religion, has kept 
the church many a time from degenerating into a theological 
debating society, and talking Christianity clear out of sight 

This is no small service. It is all the more remarkable as 
coming fix)m a person who is alleged to have a comparatively 
small mind. 

And when we come to think of it, there is a lot of practical 
benefits that she has conferred upon society which are not exactly 
of the nature that one would have expected from her. 

Take, for a concrete example, street-cleaning. That is rough 
work ; for more than a hundred years it has been " a dirty 
business " in New York in aU possible senses of the word. And 
yet I think it is no more than fiur to say that the present convic- 
tion of the people of New York that the streets can be cleaned, 
and their determination that they must be cleaned, are the results 
of the work begun by a woman — ^Mrs. F. P. Eannicutt— who 
gave no rest to mayors, or common councilmen, or uncommon 

conmiitbee-men, 



r.* 



284 THE LOOKER' ON. 

oommittee-men^ until she had shown tibem what ooold be done 
with a broom. 

I will admit for the sake of argoment, that the Departing 
Woman has her limitations, prejudioes^ and pectiliarides. But 
I will not consent to call them fiuilts. Many of them, as, for 
instance, her views in regaitl to mice^^are endearing, although, 
or perhaps because, thqr are not altogether reasonable. Some 
like her inability to keep acoounts— her own, I mean, for she 
often shows amazing skill in keeping those of other people— can 
do no great harm so long as we recognise them. And others, 
such as her unaccountable fondness for reading aloud, her firmly 
rooted opinion that the shortest way to every man's heart is through 
his stomach and her invincible tendency to give a personal turn 
to all conversation, while in themselves things not conformable 
to philosophy, are yet, in their ultimate and undesigned result^ 
highly beneficial and productive of much pleasure. So that, 
upon the whole, we may conclude that even the limitations and 
peculiarities of the Departing Woman have added to the Joy of 
Life and increased the Grayety of Nations. 

Charles Lamb 8a3rs a gentle thing about her in the '^ Essays 
of Elia " : '^ If she does not always divide your trouble, upon 
the pleasanter occasions of life she is always sure to treble your 
satisfaction. She is excellent to be at a play with, or upon a 
visit ; but best when she goes a journey with you." 

And is not this true of life itself, which is only a longer 
journey ? Woman — not the Coming Woman, but the Departing 
Woman — ^has made a decided success as a companion in this 
protracted voyage, and all the more because she has not been a 
commercial traveler or a rival in trade, but a friendly comrade, 
without envy or competition. 

It nuiy prove an unambitious spirit that she should have been 
willing so long to allow man to win and defend the kingdom of 

home, 



THE LOOKER-ON. 286 

Lome^ whfle ahe was content to rule and adorn it I am not 
going to dispute that point All I saj is^ that the result has 
been highly satis&ctoiy. 

There has been a certain charm about her way of doing things, 
a delightful consistency in her very inconsistencies, and an air 
of superiority in her very shortcomings that has gone far to 
enliven the tedious stretches of conscious existence^ and made us 
feel that she is a peison whom it would be ^' gey ill to live wi'oot'' 

She is absurdly subject, for instance, as all men say, to the 
caprices of fashion. But somehow she manages to subjugate 
them all in turn to her feminine quality. She may wear wings 
on her shoulders, or hang a wire cage from her waist, or carry ^ 
hump on her back, but through all these quaint disguises she 
looks like herself. For the one thing that the Departing Woman 
has not desired is — ^to be mistaken for a man. 

She is open to compliment And, in spite of what the doctors 
of psychology have said about its necessary effects, she can digest 
it without injury. 

She is capable of receiving the homage of gallantry without 
fidling into the insolence of a tyrant in petticoats. But she 
has her own old-fashioned taste in the matter, which is quite 
unlike the preference attributed to the Coming Woman. The 
Departing Woman has not been pleased by courtesies offered to 
her person in disparagement of her sex. She would rather be 
deferred to as a woman, than praised for the accidental symmetry 
of her foot, or the exceptional perfection of her mathematical 
faculty. In short, she has the singular humor of not cariDg to 
be r^arded as a freak of nature, even for the sake of becoming 
a missing link in the chain of evolution toward a new order of 
society. 

She has her own little vanities of course, perhaps almpst lo 

many 



286 THE LOOKER-ON. 

many of them as her husband or her brother; but tfaqr appear 
like humilitieB by oompariaon with the grandeur of her fixed 
idea that there is no quality in the world quite so worthy of 
reverenoe as that which belongs to her alone — the quality of 
womanliness. 

And to tell the truth most of the men who have had any ideas 
at all have shared in this one. All the poets and painters and 
sculptors and dramatists and novelists have used their arts to 
glorify " das ewig Weibliche/' 

The world's literature would be a blank without the figure of 
the Departing Woman. She has been the central point of fine 
ambitions, the prize of noble conflicts, the guiding star of heroic 
hopes. She peoples the Palace of Imagination with her presence, 
and all the Temples of True Fame edio with her name. What 
were Greek Drama without Antigone and Iphigenia? or the 
poetry of the Renaissance without Beatrice and Laura? or 
Shakespeare's stage without Perdita and Juliet, Cordelia and 
Desdemona? or modem fiction without Ellen Douglas and 
Flora Mclvor and Jeannie Deans, without Lady Esmond and 
Loma Doone and Romola and Lucy Desborough. And what 
are all these shapes of lovelinesB and vital power but fonns of 
her who has inspired man's best efforts since time began, his 
counterpart, his other self, 

<< Not like to like, bat Uke in difference," 

— ^the Departing Woman ? 

For my part, I am sure that the best thing that we can do is 
to pray that she may not depart after alL She has done so 
much for us that we should be lost without her. Let her stay 
with us and she shall have a better chance than ever before. 
Set her up in another kind of type, if it must be, but let her 
keep the same meamng. And, merciful Heaven, forbid that she 
should ever lose the inscription whidi she has carried on her 
heart since it began to beat — ^^ hviyda wmiaai!^ 



THE LOOKER- ON. 287 



MUSICAL COMMENT AND GOSSIP. 

By Hekbt T. Finck. 

Concert Hall Befonns — Last Stage of the Mascagni Fever — A Berlin Fail- 
axe — PerBonally Conducted Operas — The Absurd Attitude of Singers — 
Music in Scandinavia — Prizes for Women — The Most Popular Com- 
posers — Dr. Spitzka on Nordau, Wagner, and Liszt — The Paderewski 
Craze. 

Beslioz, in one of those delightful essays on music which 
Mr. Apthorp has done into idiomatic English with a literary art 
rare among translators, dwells at some length on the harm which 
comes to music from the excessive size of our operarhouses and con- 
cert halls. He points out that what might be called the "musical 
fluid/' the unknown cause of musical emotion, ''is without force, 
warmth, or vitality at a certain distance from its point of departure. 
We hear^ but we do not vibrate. Now, we mud vibrate ourselves 
with the instruments and voices, and be made to vibrate by them 
in order to have true musical sensations." 

There is much truth in this contention, and I have sometimes 
wondered whether Berlioz's propensity, to write for a colossal orches- 
tra, did not spring partly from an instructive desire to compel the 
auditors at the other end of a big hall to " vibrate " with his music 
It might possibly be asserted, too, with some show of justice that 
one reason why Wagner's music moves and stirs modem audiences 
like no other music, is because of its sonorous orchestration, which 
enables it to reach the topmost parts of the gallery before it has lost 
its glow of color. No doubt, the increasing dimensions of our opera- 
houses have helped to drive the thinly orchestrated works of the 
Italian and French schools from the stage, and it may be safely as- 
serted that Humperdinck's fairy-opera, ** Hansel and Gretel," with 
all its charming music, could not have won its extraordinary success 
in Europe, if the composer had not wisely given his orchestration 
Wagnerian fullness and resonance. 

The science of applied musical acoustics is still in its infancy, 
and it remains for architects of the future to make possible once 
more the performance of works that are not sonorous ** music of the 

future." 



2S8 THE LOOKER-ON. 

future." But, there are other needed refonsB in our oonoert halls 
that might earilybe attended to at once. The other day Dr. Fri- 
denberg had a letter in the Evening Po$ty in which he complained 
about the exceaeive light in these places. ** There is no reason,'' he 
wrote, ^ why, at the concerts at the Cam^e or the Metropolitan 
Opera House, the eyes of thousands of helpless auditors should be 
exposed for hours together to the glare of innumerable bright elec- 
tric lights. To say nothing of the discomfort, the strain thus in- 
flicted upon the eyes is injurious and productive in many cases of 
headache and other liervous derangements. As the people file out 
of the house, at the close of a concert, you may observe a number of 
burning, blinking, weary-looking eyes, that welcome the darkness 
of the street" 

A " dim religious light " is quite as desirable in a concert hall as 
in a church, in order that the attention may not be distracted firom 
the thing for which the people assemble. You cannot enjoy mucic if 
there are a hundred sights in glaring light to divert your attention ; 
still less, if that light makes your eyes smart, and your head adie. 

By generalizing this assertion, we come to another and still 
more serious defect in our amusement halls — the lack of proper 
means of ventilation. Everybody knows the exhilarating eflect of 
fresh air — ^knows that he can work or enjoy himself twice as much 
in pure air as in a vitiated atmosphere. Yet the air in our places 
of amusement is almost always so stagnant and filthy that the brain 
is wearied after an hour's attention, and everybody wishes for the 
end of what was dearly paid for in the hope of keen enjoyment 
People remember such depressing experiences, and when the ques- 
tion next comes up, ** Shall I attend to-night*s concert? " the answer 
is very apt to be, " Oh, dear I I felt so tired and sleepy the last 
time I went, I guess I'll stay at home." If managers and artists 
suspected how much money they lose from this cause, they would not 
sleep a wink until they had bribed some expert to solve the problem 
of ventilation — without chilling draughts. It can be done; but 
architects, like shipbuilders, are only just beginning to study the 
problems of comfort and health. 

^* ^p ^p ^^ 

In the last number of The LooKER-Oiir I incidentally referred 
to the fact that the distinguished German critic, theorist, historian, 
and lexicographer. Dr. Riemann, expresses his contempt for Mas- 
cagni, and his surprise at those who caught the '^ Mascagni fever.'' 

He 



THE LOOKER - OK 289 

He thinks that the success of " Cavalleria Busticana " was partly 
due to its libretto, partly to the clever advertising skill of the pub- 
lisher, Sonzogno ; and he refers to the absolute failure of his next 
two operas, *' Amico Fritz '' and " I Rantzau," in which " the weak- 
ness of the music was no longer covered by the merits of the libret- 
to." Since this was written, Mascagni has produced three more 
operas, each of which added another fiasco to his repertory, both in . 
Italy and in Grermany ; while the absurdly overrated " Cavalleria,'' 
too, has proved its ephemeral character by its virtual disappearance 
from most opera-houses. 

It is always a more or less invidious and unwise thing to cry 
'' I told you so " ; but I cannot help recalling with satisfaction an 
article that appeared in the Epoch some years ago, in which surprise 
was expressed at my audacity in opposing nearly all the musical 
experts and critics in treating Mascagni as a charlatan, and in 
laughing at the so-called '' new school of Italian opera " as a chi- 
mera. Well, gentlemen and confreres, where is that " new school " 
now ? What has become of all these much-advertised operas, these 
musical or unmusical settings of coarse, vulgar scenes of peasant 
life, of jealousies, adulteries, and murders? With one or two ex- 
ceptions, you will not find them on current repertories, and it seems 
the very irony of fate that a recent book which treats of them, 
Pfohl's '' Modeme Oper '* — though intended, as its title indicates, 
to be a guide to current operatic literature — should already have a 
merely historic value, or would have, were it not for its excellent 
chapters on the Bohemian Smetana, the German Cornelius, and the 
immortal octogenarian Verdi, whose last three operas alone consti- 
tute a real *' new school of Italian opera." 

The five consecutive fiascos have cooled the Mascagni fever, 
which has now entered on its very last stage — the personal. It is 
an interesting bit of ephemeral musical history that the man who 
discovered Mascagni and foisted him on the world, had to fall back 
on him, a few weeks ago, as his only savior from immediate collapse. 
He organized an Italian Opera Company and went to Berlin, 
where he announced a four-weeks' season, at which the gems of the 
"new Italian school" were to be produced. But the Berliners had 
already had enough of these paste diamonds, and left them on the 
manager's hands. Result: the "four-weeks' season" lasted just 
nine days, and the Italian singers might have had to walk home 
had it not been for Sonzogno's happy thought of having the " Ca- 
valleria 



290 THE LOOKER-ON. 

▼alleria Rusticana" ''penonally conducted" by the oompoaer. 
Mascagni was hastily summoned from Italy, and the people flocked 
to tee him. The wily manager rubbed his hands joyfully, and at 
once set out on a tour through Germany with his ** personally om- 
ducted" "CavaUeria" — ^his last and only trump card, and that 
only good in the hand of its maker. Mascagni received $250 a 
night for conducting, and he was worth it, so the manager thinks. 
But ocular curiosity is soon satisfied, and the latest report is that 
Mascagni, tired of these self-exhibitions, is about to accept the posi- 
tion of director of the conseryatory of Pesaro. Sic irantU gloria 
mundL 

% a|e 9|e 3|e 

I wonder 'if Hans von Billow's delightful pamphlet, entitled 
*' Letters from Scandinavia," will be included in the two volumes of 
hb correspondence which Breitkopf & Hartel have nearly ready 
for the market If not, these letters ought to be reprinted in book 
form, together with his pamphlet on Wagner's Faust Overture and 
some other critical essays. Pamphlets are almost as ephemeral as 
newspapers. Some years ago I tried to get those '' Scandinavian 
Letters " from several German music sellers, but failed until one of 
them called my attention to a sort of literary detective company in 
Leipsic, which hunts up such things for a slight consideration, and 
which promptly put me in possession of the desired document. 

The Scandinavian countries have always seemed to me worthy 
of more attention than they get from musicians. There are Grid's 
songs, for instance, gloriously original in harmony and steeped in a 
most bewitching Northern atmosphere. Our vocalists never sing 
them, simply because difficult intervak occur in them, and because 
their own convenient " Italian method " has taught them that all 
songs which are not written for the singer's benefit — to give him a 
chance to show ofi* his good points — ** are unvocal." Grieg has just 
completed a new volume of songs, but they will of course be 
neglected, like their predecessors. As Sebastian B. Schlesinger, a 
friend of Robert Franz, and himself a good song-writer, has said, 
** Singers generally do not consider that they are put into the world 
to interpret the works of composers, but regard the latter as having 
been put into the world for their special benefit, and the creators 
must take a back seat while the interpreters sit in the front row. 
Music is good if it suits their voices ; if it doesn't, it has ' no sort o' 
interest ' for them." 

There 



THE LOOKER - ON. 291 

There seems to be a good deal of activity in the concert halls of 
the Scandinavian capitak. I see that the season at Christiania 
opened with a concert under the direction of no less a personage 
than Grieg, who produced on this occasion a new work of his, a 
'' Legend " for orchestra, which, it is to be hoped, we shall hear on 
this side of the Atlantic before the end of the season. 

At Copenhagen woman seems to have come to the front. Femi- 
nine orchestras and players are not a new thing, but heretofore they 
have been associated chiefly with dime museums and beer-gardens. 
At Copenhagen they have recently had a Woman's Exhibition, and 
in connection therewith prizes have been offered for which only 
lady musicians were allowed to compete. The successful instru- 
mental works were thereupon executed by a feminine orchestra, 
while a cantata that had received a prize was sung by a choir of 
ladies, both under a female conductor. 

* * * * 

Who are the two most popular composers in New York? Wag- 
ner, of course, for one. The directors of the London Crystal- 
Palace concerts declared publicly a year or two ago that a Wagner 
programme was more certain to draw a large audience than any 
other kind of a programme that could be made up, and New York 
is a much more Wagnerian town than London. So anxious, in- 
deed, are New Yorkers to hear Wagner, that even the wretched 
performances given last spring were a great financial success. But 
who comes next to Wagner? It is hard to say, but I believe that 
we shall not go far astray in naming Liszt. No other composer 
evokes more enthusiastic applause from the most refined audiences, 
especially when Paderewski plays or Seidl conducts. Paderewski, 
though not a pupil of Liszt, has done for that master what Seidl 
has done for Wagner, and I shall never forget the enthusiastic 
applause which he evoked at his first New York recital this season 
by his performance of Liszt's first concerto. And with what raptur- 
ous delight are Liszt's Hungarian rhapsodies always received when 
Paderewski plays them I 

I make these remarks by way of introduction to an amusing 
critical curiosity which lies before me. It is a reprint of an article 
on Max Nordau which appeared in the Arnerioan Journal of In- 
sanity. Its author is Dr. £. C. Spitzka, well known as one of our 
best authorities on mental diseases — a most interesting department 
of medicine and psychology to which I, too, devoted considerable 

time 



292 THE LOOKER' ON. 

time during mj student days in Berlin, under the excellent Prof. 
Westphal, who, as is often the caae, went crazy himself a few yean 
ago from constant association with madmen. Ahmnihe omen, as the 
Frenchman said. 

On page four of Dr. Spitzka's pamphlet I discoyered the reason 
why he sent it to me— obviously as a challenge. The doctor fiankly 
confesses hb ignorance of music, but this, of eourae, does not prevent 
him from posing as an authority on the subject If Max Nordau 
claimed that the modem craze for Wagner was a proof of " degen- 
eracy," Dr. Spitzka tries to prove the contrary by claiming that 
there i$ no Wagner eraze^ that " Linda di Clamounix " and *' Trova- 
tore *' draw larger audiences than Wagner's operas (has the doctor 
been asleep fifteen years ?) and that ** Parsifal " sufl^ a " jawning 
neglect " — when, as a matter of fiict, the ** Parsifal " festivals at 
Bayreuth are the most profitable of modem operatic enterprises. 
But, of course, the doctor does not know that ** Para&l " is not 
allowed to be sung except at Bayreuth. 

Dr. Spitzka's comments on Liszt are in the same vein. I quote 
them without comment, as jokes ought not to be explained : " It 
were to be fervently wished that Nordau could have been present 
at a recent entertainment given by the leading German- American 
musical society. He would have been struck by the look of hope- 
less bewilderment of some, of the visible efibrt bom of courtesy to 
repress hisses on other, and the unmitigated disgust on all faces when 
Liszt's horrible mal-interpretation of the 'Lorelei ' was performed, 
and he would have surely cancelled this portion of his work." 

Most assuredly he would I But does not Dr. Spitzka think that 
a cobbler — ^beg pardon — ^an alienist ought to stick to his asylum, 
and leave musical diagnosis and prognosis to those who know some- 
thing about music ? In spite of Dr. Spitzka, there is a Wagner- 
Liszt *' craze " ; and if it is a mental disease the job of curing it 
will prove too big for one man, for then all the world's a madhouse 
and all the men and women merely lunatics. The opponents of 
Wagner and Liszt usually lack a sense of humor, or they would see 
that they are in the position of the twelfth juror, who declared that 
an agreement could have been easily reached had it not been for 
the stubbornness of the other eleven jurors. 

4: :|c He s|e 

The New York correspondents of newspapers in other cities have 
been busy of late in telling their readers about the " hysterical 

craze" 



THE LOOKER-ON. 293 

craze " of New York women over Paderewski, and preaching severe 
little sermons on the subject. When women shout themselves hoarse 
over the winners of a boat race or a football match, these corre- 
spondents apparently see nothing wrong or unfeminine in their 
doings ; but that thej should " enthuse " over a genius, the greatest 
living pianist, seems very unbecoming and hysterical to them. As 
a matter of fact, their pictures are absurdly overdrawn. It is true 
that the applause is more demonstrative at a Paderewski concert 
than anywhere else ; but there is a very good reason for that It is 
true, too, that hundreds of women crowd down toward the stage 
while he is playing his encores ; but many do this simply to get a 
near view of his hands in playing and of the expression of his fefip 
tures. It is also true that his room is invaded after each perform- 
ance, and that there are some unbidden guests who ask foolish 
questions. But most of these visitors are personal friends who go 
there to shake hands with him, as he is so busy that it is almost 
impossible to see him anywhere else. Let us be grateful if there is a 
Paderewski craze. It is infinitely better than if he was neglected 
by his generation, like so many geniuses of the past. Schopenhauer 
compared men of genius to grapes which men never enjoyed^ fresh, 
but waited till time had changed them into raisins. We have for- 
tunately learned to like our grapes fresh and luscious from Nature's 
garden. 





ESSAYS ON SCANDINAVIAN LITERATURE.* 

This work of Prof. Bojesen which was published but a few 
months ago, poesesses an interest aside firom its literary value, be- 
cause of his recent and sad death. In buoyant health, in the prime 
of life, full of intellectual vigor he was suddenly taken hence. 
This volume was the second of three which he was preparing on the 
great literary personalities of Norway, Sweden, and Denmark. The 
first volume was devoted to Henrik Ibsen. In the one under con- 
sideration he studied Bjomson, Kielland, lie, Andersen, Brando^ 
T^fn^r, and also devoted one chapter to Contemporary Danish lit- 
erature. In the succeeding volume, not published, he proposed to 
treat of some prominent Swedish and Danish authors. 

For the task which he undertook he was thoroughly well 
equipped. To its performance he brought broad and de^ cul- 
ture, and a fine critical insight. I know of nothing in all the range 
of literature which better describes the vocation of the literary critic 
than the opening paragraphs of the essay on Greoige Brandes : '' It 
is a greater achievement in a critip to gain an international fiune 
than in a poet or writer of fiction. The world is always more ready 
to be amused than to be instructed, and the literary purveyor of 
amusement has opportunities for fame ten times greater than those 
which fall to the lot of the literary instructor. The epic delight — 
the delight in fable and story — ^to which the former appeals, is a 
fundamental trait in human nature ; it appears full grown in the 
child, and has small need of cultivation. But the faculty of genei^ 
alization to which the critic appeals, is indicative of a stage of intel- 
lectual development to which only a small minority even of our 
so-called cultivated public attains. It is therefore a minority of a 
minority which he addresses, the intellectual ilUe which does the 
world's thinking. To impress these is fiu* more difficult than to im- 
presB the multitude ; for they are already surfeited with good 

writinft 

* Chts. Scriboer's Bona 



Ik FAVORITE JULIET 



THE LOOKER-ON. 295 

'writing, and are apt to reject with a shoulder-shrug whatever does 
not coincide with their own tenor of thought. 

AVhat I mean by a critic in this connection is not a witty and 
agreeable eauaeur, like the late Jules Janin, who, taking a book for 
his text, discoursed entertainingly about everything under the sun ; 
but an interpreter of a civilization, and a representative of a school 
of thought, who sheds new light upon old phenomena — men like Les- 
sing, Matthew Arnold, and Taine. The latest candidate for admis- 
aiou to this company, whose title, I think, no one who has read him 
will dispute, is the Dane, Georg Brandes." 

The first of Prof. Boyesen's essays is devoted to Bjornstjeme Bjom- 
son, who is, he says, " the first Norwegian poet who can in any sense 
he called national. The national genius, with its limitations as well 
as its virtues, has found its living embodiment in him. Whenever 
he opens his mouth it is as if the nation itself were speaking. If he 
writes a little song, hardly a year elapses before its phrases have passed 
into the common speech of the people ; composers compete for the 
honor of interpreting it in simple Norse-sounding melodies, which 
gradually work their way from the drawing-room to the kitchen, 
the street, and thence out over the wide fields and highlands of Nor- 
way. His tales, romances, and dramas express collectively the su- 
preme result of the nation's experience, so that no one to-day can 
view Norwegian life or Norwegian history except through their me- 
dium." Boyesen then gives a sketch of Bjornson's life and an ex- 
haustive analysis of his tales, romances, and dramas. This essay ex- 
tends to nearly half the book, which is not too much room to allot 
to it, considering the overshadowing literary influence of the subject 
on the life and literature of Norway. 

l^hese essays are all interesting and instructive, and manifest on 
the part of the critic a comprehensive grasp of the subject, and an 
ability to express that in good English. 

THE ODES OF HORACE.* 
[Translated into English by W. R Gladstone.] 

The principal characteristic of Horace's genius, that which has 
made him a favorite with scholars, is — charm. Of all the lyrical 
singers of the ages none is more popular than the Venusian poet. 
His poetry possesses that requisite of great art, universality. His 
kindliness of heart, his width of observation, his varied experiences 

of 

* Chas. Scribnei's Sons. 



296 THE LOOKER-ON. 

of life have all tended to develop in him a quality which is best 
described by the Latin word urbanitas. These qualities find ex- 
pression in his iM>etry and give to it a charm which has made it 
popular with cultured people in all lands and ages. No poet prob- 
ablv is more difficult to translate. In fact he is almost untranslat- 
able. It is almost as difficult to catch and reproduce his wit, his 
fire, hif» jx^rfect form as to capture the fragrance of the flower, the 
song of the bird. And yet no poet has had more translators 
Among the latent of these is Mr. Gladji^tone. He'brings to the task 
thorough familiarity with the subject, coupled with ripe culture as 
a cla&tical scholar. He thinks one requisite of success in translat- 
ing Horace is " the necessity of compression." Coupled with that 
the translator must exercise great freedom. " Ever}' one of the 
Odes, as a rule, has a spirit, genius, and movement of its own ; and 
I hold that the translator of Horace should both claim and 
exercise the largest poi^sible freedom in varying its meters, so as to 
adapt them in each case to the original with which he has to deal.*' 
This method of translating has been fallowed by Mr. Gladstone 
with the happiest results. While he has not translated Horace 
literally, he has in some measure caught the spirit, and reproduced 
the meaning of the poet. How well Mr. Gladstone has done this 
can bfi^t be illustrated by comparing an ode translated by Bulwer 
Lytton, who attempted to translate literally, with the same ode 
trans1at(Ki by Mr. Gladstone. There is none better for this pur- 
pose than the ode "To his Lyre" (I. 32). Bulwer Lytton's 
translation begins as follows : 

" We are summoned. If e'er under ihadow seqaestered, 
Jlaa sweet dalliance with thee in light moments of leisure 
Given birth to a something which lives, and may, haply, 
Live in years, later." sfq. 

The same stanza is rendered by Mr. Gladstone: 

" They call for thee. In sport, in shade, 
Thou, {) my Lyre, some strains hast played, 
Which yet may live. But now inspire 
A patriot tire." seq. 

While the lattor is not so literal as the former, it has far more 
deftly caught the .spirit, the lilt of the original, and conveys to ub 
Horace's poetry. 

The book is a fine specimen of the bookmaker's art. 



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