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The Guitar And Mandolin
It seems entirely superfluous for us to consider here certain odd instruments, strangers to the symphonic orchestra, which, although having a perfectly musical character, are connected with this art only on account of their picturesque quality and local colour, and have been used by composers only in exceptional cases or as hors-d'oeuvres.
Difficulties Of Different Instruments Considered
From the sum of the foregoing information, it will be seen, although this has not been the precise question, that all instruments are not equally easy or difficult to learn, and that there are some that demand an infinitely longer period of study than others in order to arrive at relatively equivalent results.
The Study Of Singing
If it is wrong to hold with the proverb that a hare is necessary in order to make a civet, since an excellent one can be made with a cat, it is nevertheless absolutely true for the singer, since for him nothing can take the place of the voice ; and, in order to make a singer, a voice is necessary.
The Bel Canto
It is true to say also that nowadays what is demanded of singers is no longer what was demanded of them then.
Importance Of Musical Studies
Let us add that it is quite permissible to lighten and vary the solfeggio studies by the sight-reading of melodies with words, at first selecting very simple ones, such as popular songs.
Hygiene Of The Voice
Let us add finally that an excellent practice from a hygienic point of view, as well as a process of study, consists in effecting every morning before breakfast a complete cleansing of the vocal apparatus by means of gargles and nasal douches with warm borated water, and immediately afterward practicing a few vocalization exercises.
The Accompaniment
Every singer who is anxious to bring into prominence the qualities of his style should attach enormous importance to the matter of being accompanied well, either by the piano or orchestra.
Studies Necessary For Composers
No study, however ably it may be conducted, can result in producing a composer worthy of the name out of any individual who is not natively endowed with that entirely special instinct that leads one to create and invent combinations of sounds, and which in various degrees is called having ideas, having the creative faculty, and lastly, having the sacred fire, or having genius; for there is no doubt that one may have a little genius, facility, originality, gleams of genius, or have a great deal of genius.
The Science Of Music - Study Of Harmony And Counterpoint
This small collection of preliminary knowledge constitutes what we will henceforth call being a good musician. By solfeggio, we possess the Language; by the piano, we have been able to make ourselves familiar with the Art. Now we are going to enter directly into the domain of Science.
Orchestration And Instrumentation
It is the question of acquiring a simply summary knowledge of the management of one of the instruments belonging to each of the three principal groups of the orchestra: strings, wood and brass.
Habits Of Great Composers
Certainly there is a portion of truth in this : a man is not equally disposed to compose at all times ; but it is wholly and rigorously true only for lazy and listless minds ; the others know how to help themselves, to solicit Inspiration and force her to collaborate with them when it pleases them.
Progress Of Art
It is thus that art progresses and transforms itself. And the modest workers who thus contribute to its slow evolution may be compared to those microscopic madrepores.
Rectifying A Musical Education
The question that presents itself now is altogether different : it concerns what advantage can be derived from incomplete musical education, ill understood and ill directed at the start, and how it can be rectified, completed, or ameliorated.
Suggestions For Amateurs
All the same types of defective or incomplete preliminary instruction, begun too late or badly directed, that we have passed in review in studying the most proper means that can be employed for some profit to be gained, all these same types, we repeat, are necessarily and still more frequently found among the amateurs.
The String Quartet
Of all forms of composition, the String-Quartet is the only one that presents the peculiarity of never admitting any kind of padding or accompaniment.
The Dilettante
As for the amateur composer, we will not devote a special paragraph to him, because he is subject to the same laws as the artist ; and, truth to tell, there is no real difference between them. The public has no reason to be more indulgent to one than to the other.
Various Kinds Of Instruction
It now remains for us to consider for the last time Musical Instruction in its entirety, but from a different point of view from all that has gone before.
Class Instruction
I think it may be useful to enter into a few details regarding other reasons which make me prefer class teaching in each of these branches of musical technique.
Conservatory Instruction
Instruction in the Conservatories and other large schools is something quite peculiar to itself.
European Conservatories
Without any doubt, Italy was the cradle of the first Conservatories,—very different at first from those of today. The most ancient establishment bearing this name of which I have found any certain trace, is the Conservatorio di Santa Maria di Loreto, which seems to have been founded in Naples, about 1537, by a learned and also a celebrated Flemish musician named Jean Tinctoris.
American Convervatories
Never having had occasion to visit the United States, it is impossible for me to express a personal opinion of the numerous schools of music that are found in every large city, or as to their absolute or relative value.
The Old Greece And The New
THERE is a Greece of yesterday and a Greece of today, and every Philhellene believes that there will be a Greece of tomorrow. A country that has emerged from so many catastrophes of history cannot be easily extinguished in life, language, literature, art, or in political aspiration.
Vido - A Greek Quarantine
How many travellers in Greece spend their first night on Greek soil in a house of their own construction? Built, too, with an axe and a needle ! Not Mycenaean, Doric, Ionic, or Corinthian in style, but historically Greek and essentially nomadic.
There are two ways of entering Greece. You may sail directly to the Piraeus, the port of Athens, and come at once under the spell of Propylaea and Parthenon. That is to enter by the front door. Or you may land at Corfu, and go from one to another of the Ionian Islands.
Corfu - Part II
But we had not come to Corfu to pay our respects to Saint Spiridion. Where were Nausicaa and the gardens of Alcinous, and the ship of the Phaeacians which the gods had turned to stone? Where was the ball which the princess had thrown into the river?
THE Greek coasting steamers are somewhat uncertain. You can never tell just when they will arrive or depart. The wilfulness of the managers and the wilfulness of the weather are factors in this uncertainty.
Far Seen Rocky Ithaca
The steamers from Brindisi to Greece stop at Corfu and Patras; but they make no account of Ithaca. It does not lie in the pathway of trade.
Thus the present outlook for Zante is not a cheerful one. But the soil is fertile, and were many of these currant vines uprooted and grains grown instead, the island, it is claimed by competent authorities, could well compete for the European market.
A Bit Of Exegesis
THERE are some words whose meaning cannot be learned from the dictionary of a foreign tongue. They must be learned from life, manners, customs, scenery, climate. This is especially true of Greece, whose literature reflects so much of its life.
The Parthenon
ATHENS is the centre of Greece, the Acropolis is the centre of Athens, and the Parthenon is the centre of the Acropolis,—I do not mean measured by the surveyor's chain, but by the highest standards of human interest.
The Propylaea
The Propylaea, as its simple name implies , is a prelude, a Vorspiel, an overture in stone. It was built on the rocky slope of the Acropolis and constituted one of the grandest approaches to a temple ever reared.
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