German Liederkranz Annual Masquerade Ball

Event Information

Academy of Music

Adolf Bernstein [cond./composer]
C. Dietz [cond.]

Price: $15 admits one gentleman and two ladies

Event Type:

Performance Forces:

Record Information


Last Updated:
13 February 2016

Performance Date(s) and Time(s)

21 Mar 1867, 8:30 PM

Program Details

With two full orchestras, conducted by A. Bernstein (dance music) and C. Dietz (promenade music).

Henry C. F. Koch, secretary.

Unclear if the Deutscher Liederkranz actually performed at this event, or if their orchestra was one of the two performing.

Performers and/or Works Performed


Announcement: New-Yorker Musik-Zeitung, 09 February 1867, 424.
Advertisement: New York Herald, 23 February 1867, 1.
Advertisement: New-Yorker Staats-Zeitung und Herold, 01 March 1867.
Advertisement: New-York Times, 02 March 1867.
Announcement: New-Yorker Musik-Zeitung, 09 March 1867, 488.
Announcement: New-Yorker Musik-Zeitung, 16 March 1867, 506.

…It is said that the Liederkranz is planning to spend $10,000 for music, decorations, processions, etc.

Announcement: New-York Times, 17 March 1867, 5.

“The two balls par excellence in the German world are the annual masquerades of the Liederkranz and Arion Societies. Between the two there is a very pleasant and healthy rivalry that stimulates exertion and suggests novelties in the way of entertainment and pleasure. This season the Liederkranz takes the lead. . . . [The ball should] attract the attention not only of the Teutonic population, but all the rest of New-York mankind.”

Announcement: New-Yorker Staats-Zeitung und Herold, 17 March 1867, 4.
Advertisement: New York Herald, 21 March 1867, 1.

Regular advertisement and then a second "Special Notice from the Police Dept."

Advertisement: New-York Times, 21 March 1867.

Special notice from the Metropolitan Police District, Precinct No. 26, “Company to the Liederkranz Ball THIS EVENING, at the Academy of Music, will be admitted at the main entrance on Irving-place. Coaches will approach from the north through Irving-pl., passing out through 14th-st. to 4th-av. In taking up, coaches will form in the same order established for the delivery of their company. Gentlemen will please take the coach at the door, and not wait for any particular coach. Fare in all cases will be $1 for each passenger, without regard to distance in the City. No coach will be allowed in line but such as are passed by Inspector. CHAS. N. BRACKETT, Captain and Inspector of Hackney Coaches.”

Advertisement: New York Herald, 21 March 1867.

Runs the same notice from the Police Department as in the New York Times advertisement of the same day.

Review: New-York Times, 22 March 1867, 8.

“When the Germans desire pleasure, they either sing or dance. Last night, several thousands of our Teutonic fellow-citizens yearned for an entertainment which would savor of home delights, and in pursuance of a time-honored custom they met at the Academy, and danced and joked and feasted companionably, and with characteristic good humor, until a very early hour this morning.

…Suffice it to say that this ball, like all great balls, was a success—that is, by 11 o’clock the boxes ‘blazed with beauty and flashed with diamonds;’ the balcony ‘was filled to repletion’ with dashing cavaliers attendant upon their charming companions, while the vast area of the nicely adjusted floor bent beneath the weight of a thousand masqueraders, who beat time with agile feet to the merry music of the band.”

[A tongue-in-cheek account of one attendee’s experience follows.]

Review: New-Yorker Staats-Zeitung und Herold, 22 March 1867, 8.

The annual Liederkranz Carneval Ball has always been the highlight of the carneval season not only for the Germans but also the Americans. This grand event can appropriately be compared to the major masked balls of the metropolitan capital cities of Europe, and the famous opera balls in Berlin and Paris. One was fortunate to obtain a ticket, because a referral from a member was required to purchase one. The decorations this year had to be less elaborate, because of the objection by the Academy’s administration. However, the shimmering, colorful costumes and the already elegant interior of the venue were visually sufficient and quite advantageous for this event. The number of masks compared to the people attending was significant; many of the costumes were made out of the finest and most precious fabrics.

At about 10 pm the house started to fill up and soon the boxes and dance floor were quite crowded. The people in the boxes displayed their elaborate costumes while there were only masked people on the dance floor….

Review: New-Yorker Musik-Zeitung, 30 March 1867, 357.

Regarding attendance, elegance and splendor of the wardrobe, abundance and value of the costumes, the examplary order and level of amusement the event was a complete success.