What made the Joachim Quartet special: Leipzig visits in the 1880s

Contemporary reviews Reviews in the musical press for the Quartet’s concerts outside of Berlin are quite consistent in the 1880s, and bear out the points made by Moser’s biography. The Quartet’s concerts in Leipzig were in 1881, 1883, 1884, 1885, 1896, 1898, and 1899. The first visit to the Leipzig Gewandhaus on November 26, 1881 made […]

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What made the Joachim Quartet Special II

Andreas Moser’s biography of Joachim addresses this question. Since Joachim had quite a bit of say in what he wrote, it is interesting to read the list of special qualities: Joachim’s confidence in his interpretation. “If there was ever an artist who knew what he wanted, it was Joachim.” This came partly from his training and […]

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What made the Joachim Quartet so special?

This is the big question. Since there are no recordings, we must rely on the account of witnesses, which are subjective. First, though, there are some relevant facts that should be taken into account: The many years that they played regularly together. Three of the four played together for 28 years, from 1879-1907. The turnover was […]

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Chamber music as the opposite of modern concert life

Arthur M. Abell, the Berlin editor of the Musical Courier from 1893-1917, was a violinist and prominent figure in Berlin music circles. He relied on the journalistic technique of sharing insider knowledge: (supposedly) personal conversations and gossip from the best sources, as exemplified in his infamous book Talks with Great Composers.  In a column dated […]

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Robert Hausmann and the Schumann Cello Concerto

Hausmann first performed the Schumann Cello Concerto in Leipzig on January 29, 1879. His previous concerto performances had been of more popular-style, now-forgotten works (Lindner, Dressler, Raff). He played it in London the following year, for the first time since Piatti had played it on a Music Society concert in 1866. Although the reviews were […]

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The musical Hausmann family

Not only were the cousins Georg and Robert Hausmann both professional cellists who played the same cello with some of the same people in the same places, Robert’s sister Marie was a singer who had a cousin Marie who was also a singer. Robert’s sister Marie was born in 1847. She studied singing with Julius […]

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Hausmann Heights

In 1852 The Musical World responded to a reader’s question as to the respective heights of George Hausmann and the double bass virtuoso Giovanni Bottesini (1821-1889). There don’t seem to be any pictures of George, but there are many photographs of Bottesini. This trait seems to have run in the family: Robert Hausmann was 1,90 […]

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