20 April 1907
Pietro Mascagni in Berlin
On the occasion of tonight’s concert of the Philharmonic, the Tageblatt has a piece about the composer and conductor Mascagni’s long history with Berlin.
It was back in 1892 when he watched three of his works, Cavalleria Rusticana, L’Amico Fritz, and I Rantzau from the Kaiser’s box at the Königliche Oper. He returned in 1895 and conducted his Silvano; in 1899 he came with the orchestra of La Scala Milan, and in 1902 he conducted the Philharmonic in Rossini’s Stabat Mater.
He is 43 years old but with hardly a wrinkle in his face; there is no gray in his black curly hair. His eyes are as bright as dark jewels and he nervously bites his lip as he feverishly conducts. The strong arm movements with which he steers the Philharmonic pull along his whole body; he puts everything into his task.
With the help of a translator, he tells the reporter that his opera La Festa del Grano is almost finished. When asked what he thinks of Salome, he answers diplomatically that it’s an example of undeniable progress in the realm of program music, and he is strongly in favor of progress in music.
The program for tonight: Overture to Le Maschere; Intermezzo from L’Amico Fritz; Saint-Saëns, Le Rouet d’Omphale, Beethoven, Symphony No. 5, and Berlioz, Hungarian March.
In the theaters
Königliche: Die Walküre
Komische: Die Neugierigen Frauen
Central: Wiener Blut
Theater des Westens: Die Lustige Witwe
Deutsch-Amerikanisches: Mamselle Nitouche
Premonitions of Zoom: “The Cinema as Teacher”
After the Tageblatt published a call for a national archive of moving pictures on 9 April, further examples of the educational value of the cinema are described in today’s paper in an article called “Der Kinematograph als Lehrer”:
–There is a recording of the famous surgeon Dr. Doyen of Paris removing a tumor. You can see everything: the body beneath the skin and the actions of the surgery.
–Other areas to learn about that are not so hard to watch include natural history: one can view reptiles, zebras, giraffes, chameleons, and even living organisms that can only be seen under a microscope; all can be clearly seen in motion on the screen. How much more easily can children learn and remember the names of animals this way instead of looking at posters on the wall.
–You can watch climbing in the Dolomites, and learn where the dangerous places are, how to climb over a chimney, how to use the rope.
–Military recruits can learn from films, such as how to load a canon; the war department already has such instructional films, which of course are kept secret.
Who can guess what the next twenty years will bring?
The post office robbery (reported on 31 March) came to trial. The 20-year-old waiter Walter Rahmke explained that he was in complete despair because he had lost his job at a wine shop through illness, and could not find a new job because he had no funds to register at a job agency. He had gone to his well-to-do uncle, but he refused to help him, and so he came upon the unhappy idea of robbing a post office. The judge gave him six weeks prison, but due to good conduct while in jail for the two weeks before the trial, the sentence was suspended.