It seems recently as if one were now disposed to make good our earlier
injustice to Berlioz. I speak of conductors and the public, of course, not of the
critics. They are incorrigible. The rapid succession of performances of the
Requiem and the Te Deum, the repetitions of the Symphonic Fantastique, Romeo and Juliet and the Overture to Benvenuto Cellini, and now finally The
Damnation of Faust provide the foundation for a future prosperity, for a
noble popularity of Berlioz's works in our city, which accorded them the
warmest sympathy in the great composer's own lifetime. Now, too, the success
was complete. The applause, which could refer only to the work, was enthusiastic. It would be a splendid victory for it if this performance could be
repeated in this season. It could not be other than successful.
Hanslick, reviewing the same production, takes Berlioz severely to task for distorting the Goethe epic, "a sometimes barbaric butchery," much as Wolf had taken Boito to task on the
"Vom Eise befreit sind Strom und Bäche," as Faust says to
Wagner in Faust 1, Scene 2.
"Der Schäfer putzte sich zum Tanz, mit bunter Jacke. Band und Kranz," etc., sung by the
peasants in the same scene.
"Hör' auf mit deinem Gram zu spielen, der wie ein Geier dir am Leben frisst," as Mephistopheles offers to place himself at Fausts's disposal.
"Die Träne quillt, die Erde hat mich wieder."
"Zur Tür hinaus, wer sich entzweit! Mit offener Brust singt Runda, sauft und schreit,"
breaking up a brawl between Frosch and Brander. Siebel does not figure in the Berlioz work.
"Burgen mit hohen Mauern und Zinnen," sung by the soldiers in Faust I, Scene 2.
"La Captive," composed in Subiaco in 1832 to a
Victor Hugo text while
Berlioz was a Prix
de Rome laureate in Italy.
"Es ist so schwül, so dumpfig hie."
In Faust I "Meine Ruhe ist hin," set by
Schubert as "Gretchen am Spinnerade."
79. Bruckner's Seventh
March 28, 1886
For a whole month now no work by Richard Wagner has been given in our
opera house. Instead, Der Trompeter von Säkkingen has been striding across
our stage, proudly and grandly, three times a week. Who knows how long this
situation might have endured had not the sudden visit of Fräulein Schöller,
the Bavarian Court Opera, brought a temporary interruption of this musical
Fräulein Schöller has just about everything required to be a good Elsa: a
Questia, a part of Gale, Cengage Learning. www.questia.com
Book title: The Music Criticism of Hugo Wolf.
Contributors: Henry Pleasants - Editor, Hugo Wolf - Author.
Publisher: Holmes & Meier.
Place of publication: New York.
Publication year: 1978.
Page number: 201.
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