Puslapio vaizdai

delssohn's concerto in G minor before Frederick Wieck, the father and teacher of Clara Schumann, the statement marks the difference between amateur and professional requirements.

The lack of spontaneity in Bülow's piano playing was in astonishing contrast to the fire, dash, and freedom of his conducting. The orchestra was, in fact, his natural instrument, and this explains his passionate devotion to the new school of composition, which had the development of orchestral music as its vital factor. His mental equipment for a conductor was complete. The ear and memory of musical genius were Bülow's in a most astonishing degree. His phenomenal memory had, in fact, no boundary line.

I have referred to Bülow's astonishing feat of memorizing Kiel's concerto, which the man who wrote it could not accompany without notes. His accuracy was almost infallible. He was once rehearsing a composition of Liszt's for orchestra, in that composer's presence, without notes. Liszt interrupted to say that a certain note should have been played piano. «No,» replied Bülow; «it is sforzando.» «Look and see,» persisted the composer. The score was produced. Bülow was right. How everybody did applaud! In the excitement, one of the brass-wind players lost his place. «Look for a b-flat in your part,» said Bülow, still without his notes. «Five measures farther on I wish to begin.» I once called on Bülow, by appointment, at a certain hour. As I waited outside the door, watch in hand, for the precise moment agreed on (it was one of his peculiarities to resent violently any deviation from his hours; to be a moment too early was just as heinous an offense as to be a moment too late), I heard him reading Bach's «Chromatic Fantasie» at the piano, so slowly conning each note that I knew he was committing it to memory. «There,» said he, when I entered, "it's done. I am going to play it in a concert to-night, and I've learned it by heart since dinner. I do not like to be so hurried, but I had no time, and I am determined to make them hear Bach whether they like it or not. Do you know how to be perfectly sure of your piece in public? Play it over with each hand separately three times the day before the concert, and do not play it at all the day you perform. Then you are certain not to forget the notes.>>

Long before middle life he knew by heart even the smallest details of the classical works of Beethoven, Mozart, Haydn, Scarlatti, Bach, Handel, and those of the modern school, such as Chopin, Schumann, Brahms, Jensen,

Raff, Liszt, and Wagner. Not only were their piano compositions on his finger-tips, but still more surprising were his feats of musical memory as an orchestra and opera conductor. The Hanover, Meininger, and, above all, the Munich Opera-house, furnish a list of the most incredible achievements of his skill as a leader of the operatic stage. Will there ever again be an orchestra trained to play the Beethoven symphonies without notes, as the Meininger Orchestra played them under Bülow's baton?

Here, too, the instinct of the teacher shone preeminent. He founded the Symphonic Concerts in Berlin to offset the Philharmonic Concerts of Taubert. This successfully accomplished, he wrote to a friend: «As I do not like to see my work go to pieces, I am happy that Hans von Bronsart will be my successor in Berlin. I go with pleasure to Munich, where I am sure to find a more congenial atmosphere.» The «atmosphere >> was operatic. All Wagner's operas, regardless of cost, were put on the stage by order of King Louis, under the direct inspiration of the composer, and the leadership of Bülow.

Bülow's fame as an interpretive musician may safely rest upon his conducting of the works of Wagner and Beethoven. The incomparable production of «Tristan und Isolde » in Munich in 1865, of the «Meistersinger » in 1868, his training, in 1880, of the hitherto unknown Meininger Orchestra, with which he «concerted » all over Germany and Holland, and finally, the Philharmonic Concerts in Berlin and Hamburg, are immortal in the annals of the conductor's baton.

Bülow's own shortcomings as composer and pianist did not make him blind to the abilities of others; but he demanded artistic sincerity. Pot-boilers were his abhorrence. «I do not see how Jaell can play the same piece an hour every morning, year after year,» he exclaimed indignantly, as he kicked the music under the piano after reading (by request) one of this popular artist's paraphrases. He was just as ready to extol as to condemn. One day a foreigner, young and unknown, entered Bülow's music-room as he sat talking over business matters with Wagner. The stranger presented a letter of introduction, to which the artist paid little attention, and sat down patiently to wait. Wagner continued to talk, and to escape hearing a conversation not meant for his ear, the visitor approached the piano. The score of «Rheingold» stood open on the rack. Before he realized it he became absorbed in the music, began to play it at first sotto voce, and soon, abandoned to its

charm, with a most superb mastery. Wagner, on the point of taking leave, turned back and stood motionless to listen; the splendid genius of the player became more and more evident; and, unable to restrain themselves, Bülow and Wagner rushed to embrace the unknown musician. It was Camille Saint-Saëns.

Bülow had barely received his appointment as court pianist to Ludwig I of Bavaria when the blow fell which ruined his life. Before him stood two alternatives: should he sacrifice his artistic or his human feelings? To adhere to Wagner, who had broken up his home, and to the movement to which he was enthusiastically pledged, meant to stamp out every emotion of resentment that is keenest in man. Bülow, with incredible self-abnegation, resolved that the progress of music, to which he had devoted his life, should not suffer in his quarrel. He continued to support the career of the rising genius, and never flinched from his resolution to force Wagner's success onward until that success was absolute. None the less the inner struggle destroyed him. His health never recovered. His fickleness to friends and benefactors became proverbial. His irritability developed almost into mania. The natural sweetness and loyalty of his nature were turned to bitterness. The cruelty of his epigram set his path with enemies. But his work for music went forward unceasingly, and it is impossible to overestimate what his self-sacrifice has done for it.

In the early days of the Wagner struggle Bülow threw the whole weight of his personality into the scale. Musicians and press eyed the Wagnerian innovations askance, and even Bülow's own orchestra, which found its technic inadequate to the new demands, privately declared the Wagnerian effects to be humbug. Bülow nursed his wrath as if it had been a personal affront, and one day at a rehearsal of the Meistersinger » he stopped the orchestra just before a peculiarly treacherous passage, laid down his baton, and said sarcastically to the delinquent horn-blowers, "Look out, gentlemen; there 's humbug ahead.»

Bülow's part in accomplishing Wagner's triumph has prevented recognition of the breadth of his own views, and of his ultimate freedom from party bias. Brahms is as conservative as Wagner is revolutionary, yet it was Bülow who brought Brahms to the front, and trumpeted his fame in notes of the most lavish praise and admiration. He was just as untiring in his efforts to forward the fortunes of Raff, whose dangerous gift of melody fairly

VOL. LII.-59.

betrayed him into many a salon-stuck. Bülow even played Raff's concerto, which is brimful of light melody. When Jensen could not obtain a hearing, Bülow put his music on his recital programs, wrote an exquisite critique on his genius, and thereby produced for his favorite a host of admirers. He was always in the opposition. When one battle had been successfully fought, he turned to find a new fray. When the tide of popular fancy turned against Mendelssohn, Bülow hastened to play and edit his compositions. His editions of the « Capriccio » (Op. 5), and of the «Rondo » (Op. 14), are the most exquisite extant. He always found time to write a friendly preface to a meritorious work, and no paragraph ever emanated from his pen that was not thoughtful and suggestive. He concerned himself about the little canons of Kunz, the forgotten beauties of Scarlatti and Gluck, and the noble literature of Beethoven. His name was the "open sesame» to popular approval, and it was never refused to anything which he believed to be of value to music.

Bülow loved culture passionately. There is an authentic story of his making a day's journey to Stockholm with a well-known savant, and discussing with him every current topic of politics, literature, science, and art, except music. In the evening the traveler was astonished to find his delightful companion on the platform giving a piano recital.

When he made a concert tour, he provided himself with the history of the countries he traversed. He went through Italy one entire season with a history of Rome under his arm. Undoubtedly the author who had the greatest influence on him was Schopenhauer. To the day of his death he could repeat pages of his books by heart; when he was in the university he used to sleep with his favorite volume under his pillow. Once a fellow-student came in, and playfully threw the book across the room, to Bülow's intense anger. Schopenhauer is a poor consolation to a man of sorrows, and his influence was no help to Bülow's inner life and feeling. Under his tuition his scholar became a confirmed pessimist. His emotional pessimism, his refractory nervous organization, his quick and vivid musical intelligence, and his wide and varied culture, all worked together in everything he did, and no estimate of his influence upon the music of to-day is just which does not find each of these elements vital in it.

The pathetic part of music is its loneliness. Bülow could recognize the genius of SaintSaëns because he was great himself. But he learned early that from his public he could

expect no similar recognition. He had not the genial art of emotional, musical speech which is nature's universal language. He grew to hate the laity, which would rather feel than reason about what it listens to. As he became older, more cold, more intellectual, and more unhappy, his temper toward his hearers grew worse and worse. «If you will alter the stage as I propose," he said to Wagner, in my hearing, we shall lose only a couple of rows of hogs from the auditorium.»><

Social rank did not count in his estimate of values. He broke up an audience of titled personages assembled to enjoy one of his rehearsals, by causing the bassoon players to perform their parts alone until the listeners all left in disgust. «Now,» said he, cheerfully, when the last of his noble hearers had departed, we 'll go to work.» He kicked the name-board of a certain piano off the stage because it degraded the artist into an advertisement. In the presence of an enthusiastic audience he once noticed two laurel wreaths on the piano. He picked them up, looked at them, and then kicked them under the instrument. He did this because he resented the idea that musicians should be treated differently from other men. He wished music to be a manly calling. He would not have it degraded into a matter of patronage. «Go, take that laurel wreath to Herr Franz Lachner [his predecessor in Munich], who is on the pension list,» he exclaimed to an usher. «I am not superannuated.» Like Liszt, Bülow realized with shame that music was an art the exponents of which were the pets and playthings of noble patrons. Like Liszt, he asserted the right to live on equal terms with people of culture-as a private gentleman. To build music up into the rank and standing of an independent profession was the dream and struggle of Bülow's life. Every musician who values his own manhood owes to him an opportunity of self-respect heretofore unheard of.

His naïveté was equal to his insolence. The haute société of Berlin was gathered to examine a phonograph. There were cylinders of sentiments from the Emperor and various

noble personages, and Bülow was asked to play into the instrument. When he came to hear his own performance repeated through the tube, his amazement and horror were boundless. «That machine is n't worth anything,» he exclaimed. «It is n't true; I never played like that, never!»>

I have said that there was a lack of feline character in Bülow's physique. He was, however, very feline in his nature. When he saw a friend whom he liked in the street, he would run toward him, embrace him, and kiss him on both cheeks. Within ten minutes his manner would change, and he would say some thing so bitter, so personal, so wounding, that the victim would never forget its sting. Months or years after the same man would perhaps receive, unexpected and unasked, some practical advancement in his fortune that could be traced directly to Bülow's helpful hand. Bülow's love of helpfulness and his passion for sarcasm were continually at war. He not only worked with voice and pen for musicians whose talent constituted their only claim on him, and whom he insulted between whiles, but the proceeds of his concerts were freely spent on artistic interests. One whole tour was made to increase the capital to bring out Wagner's operas. Musicians' widows, music societies, monuments, and publishing schemes all profited by his generosity. And yet at the end of a century of bitterness, hatred, and rancor, unparalleled in the history of art, this «gospel of music,» as its cult fondly called the doctrines which they advocated, is, after all, not a final and conclusive revelation of the laws of beauty. It is but one wave of musical development. In the great ocean of music nothing is lost. The Wagner cult, which has beaten with such fury upon the shore of art, which proclaimed it to be its mission to efface everything old and timeworn, has effaced nothing, and a new generation will witness a new development peculiar to itself; but into the broad current of the world's musical life the passionate, forceful nature of Bülow has passed, and there it will be more and more felt for good.

Bernard Boekelman.





NCE upon a time a number of children lived together in the Valley of Childish Things, playing all manner of delightful games, and studying the same lesson-books. But one day a little girl, one of their number, decided that it was time to see something of the world about which the lesson-books had taught her; and as none of the other children cared to leave their games, she set out alone to climb the pass which led out of the valley.

It was a hard climb, but at length she reached a cold, bleak table-land beyond the mountains. Here she saw cities and men, and learned many useful arts, and in so doing grew to be a woman. But the table-land was bleak and cold, and when she had served her apprenticeship she decided to return to her old companions in the Valley of Childish Things, and work with them instead of with strangers.

It was a weary way back, and her feet were bruised by the stones, and her face was beaten by the weather; but half way down the pass she met a man, who kindly helped her over the roughest places. Like herself, he was lame and weather-beaten; but as soon as he spoke she recognized him as one of her old playmates. He too had been out in the world, and was going back to the valley; and on the way they talked together of the work they meant to do there. He had been a dull boy, and she had never taken much notice of him; but as she listened to his plans for building bridges and draining swamps and cutting roads through the jungle, she thought to herself, «Since he has grown into such a fine fellow, what splendid men and women my other playmates must have become!»

But what was her surprise to find, on reaching the valley, that her former companions, instead of growing into men and women, had all remained little children. Most of them were playing the same old games, and the few who affected to be working were engaged in such strenuous occupations as building mud

pies and sailing paper boats in basins. As for the lad who had been the favorite companion of her studies, he was playing marbles with all the youngest boys in the valley.

At first the children seemed glad to have her back, but soon she saw that her presence interfered with their games; and when she tried to tell them of the great things that were being done on the table-land beyond the mountains, they picked up their toys and went farther down the valley to play.

Then she turned to her fellow-traveler, who was the only grown man in the valley; but he was on his knees before a dear little girl with blue eyes and a coral necklace, for whom he was making a garden out of cockle-shells and bits of glass, and broken flowers stuck in sand.

The little girl was clapping her hands and crowing (she was too young to speak articulately); and when she who had grown to be a woman laid her hand on the man's shoulder, and asked him if he did not want to set to work with her building bridges, draining swamps, and cutting roads through the jungle, he replied that at that particular moment he was too busy.

And as she turned away, he added in the kindest possible way, «Really, my dear, you ought to have taken better care of your complexion.»>


THERE was once a maiden lady who lived alone in a commodious brick house facing north and south. The lady was very fond of warmth and sunshine, but unfortunately her room was on the north side of the house, so that in winter she had no sun at all.

This distressed her so much that, after long deliberation, she sent for an architect, and asked him if it would be possible to turn the house around so that her room should face the south. The architect replied that anything could be done for money; but the estimated cost of turning the house around was so high that the lady, who enjoyed a handsome income, was obliged to reduce her way of living and sell her securities at a sacrifice to raise money enough for the purpose.

At length, however, the house was turned around, and she felt almost consoled for her impoverishment by the first ray of sunlight which stole through her shutters the next morning.

That very day she received a visit from an old friend who had been absent a year; and this friend, finding her seated at her window in a flood of sunlight, immediately exclaimed: «My dear, how sensible of you to have moved into a south room! I never could understand why you persisted so long in living on the north side of the house.»> And the following day the architect sent in his bill.


THERE was once a little girl who was so very intelligent that her parents feared that she would die.

But an aged aunt, who had crossed the Atlantic in a sailing-vessel, said, «My dears, let her marry the first man she falls in love with, and she will make such a fool of herself that it will probably save her life.»


A THINLY clad man, who was trudging afoot through a wintry and shelterless region, met another wrapped in a big black cloak. The cloak hung heavily on its wearer, and seemed to drag him back, but at least it kept off the cold.:

That's a fine warm cloak you 've got,» said the first man through his chattering teeth.

«Oh,» said the other, «it 's none of my choosing, I promise you. It's only my old happiness dyed black and made over into a sorrow; but in this weather a man must wear what he 's got.»

"To think of some people's luck!» muttered the first man, as the other passed on. «Now I never had enough happiness to make a sorrow out of.»


THERE was once a man who married a sweet little wife; but when he set out with her from her father's house, he found that she had never been taught to walk. They had a long way to go, and there was nothing for him to do but to carry her; and as he carried her she grew heavier and heavier.

Then they came to a wide, deep river, and he found that she had never been taught to swim. So he told her to hold fast to his shoulder, and started to swim with her across

the river. And as he swam she grew frightened, and dragged him down in her struggles. And the river was deep and wide, and the current ran fast; and once or twice she nearly had him under. But he fought his way through, and landed her safely on the other side; and behold, he found himself in a strange country, beyond all imagining delightful. And as he looked about him and gave thanks, he said to himself:

«Perhaps if I had n't had to carry her over, I should n't have kept up long enough to get here myself.>>


A SOUL once cowered in a gray waste, and a mighty shape came by. Then the soul cried out for help, saying, «Shall I be left to perish alone in this desert of Unsatisfied Desires? »

«But you are mistaken,» the shape replied; «this is the land of Gratified Longings. And, moreover, you are not alone, for the country is full of people; but whoever tarries here grows blind.»


THERE was once a very successful architect who made a great name for himself. At length he built a magnificent temple, to which he devoted more time and thought than to any of the other buildings he had erected; and the world pronounced it his masterpiece. Shortly afterward he died, and when he came before the judgment angel he was not asked how many sins he had committed, but how many houses he had built.

He hung his head and said, more than he could count.

The judgment angel asked what they were like, and the architect said that he was afraid they were pretty bad.

«And are you sorry?» asked the angel. «Very sorry,» said the architect, with honest contrition.

«And how about that famous temple that you built just before you died?» the angel continued. «Are you satisfied with that?»

«Oh, no,» the architect exclaimed. «I really think it has some good points about it,—I did try my best, you know,- but there's one dreadful mistake that I'd give my soul to go back and rectify.»

« Well,» said the angel, «you can't go back and rectify it, but you can take your choice of the following alternatives: either we can let the world go on thinking your temple a masterpiece and you the greatest architect that ever lived, or we can send to earth a young fellow we've got here who will dis

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