Tag: women

Fatal fantasy women

Do you know the story of the admirably accomplished Hofrat Dr. Alois Obrist? As a teenager in the 1880s, he studied at the conservatory in Weimar, where he fell under the spell of the Liszt circle, especially the composer Eduard Lassen. The serious Swiss excelled in many areas of music. He continued his composition lessons […]

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The lady violinist, an exhibition of grace

The “Violin Girl” as a solution to the “Piano Girl” Around 1890, English-language press started describing a trend in which women musicians were choosing the violin over the piano. “Violin playing is all the rage now, and is a welcome relief after the feminine piano banging one is forced to endure. Girls do not realize […]

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Joachim’s student Geraldine Morgan

Young women violinists from the United States made headlines such as this in the late nineteenth century. The most frequently profiled were Dora Valeska Becker (1870-1958), Maud Powell (1867-1920), Leonora Jackson (1879-1969), and Geraldine Morgan (1867-1918). While publicizing their very real achievements, these news items also emphasized their conventionally feminine charms. In the “American Girls” […]

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Women are the problem!

In previous posts, I’ve quoted critics who saw a problem in the music world of “too much”–too many students, teachers, virtuosos; too many concerts, with too much music on the program, with pieces that were too long, too loud, too pretentious. Oscar Bie wanted to regulate the number of women who were conservatory piano students, […]

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Too many concerts by dilettantes?

In answer to the question of why there were too many concerts in Berlin (the topic of my previous post), some critics blamed the women pianists who only put on concerts in order to get “certified” as having braved Berlin before returning home to become a piano teacher. To test the validity of this theory/assumption, […]

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Again: There are too many concerts!

Who is to blame? The complaint that there were too many concerts in Berlin was familiar even in the 1880s; in the 1890s the problem started being diagnosed. The music critic Oskar Eichberg was convinced that the number of concerts had grown so much because they were being given for advertising purposes: musicians playing in the […]

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Joachim’s importance for orchestras

Joachim’s students as orchestral players Joachim was a critical force in the first decades of the Berlin Philharmonic. He contributed important administrative and organizational assistance and served as one of the <a href=”https://www.berliner-philharmoniker.de/geschichte/anfang/#event-joseph-joachim-dirigiert”>main conductors</a> of the orchestra from 1882-1887. Perhaps just as importantly, his fame attracted string players to Berlin at a time when there […]

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