Harrison Sunday Concert: 9th

Event Information

Steinway Hall

Proprietor / Lessee:
Lafayette F. Harrison

Performance Forces:
Instrumental, Vocal

Record Information


Last Updated:
10 October 2016

Performance Date(s) and Time(s)

01 Dec 1867, Evening

Program Details

Includes other unidentified Scottish ballads, in addition to “Comin’ thro’ the rye.”

Performers and/or Works Performed

aka Queen of the night aria; Vengeance aria; Holle Rache
Composer(s): Mozart
aka Romeo et Juliette, waltz
Composer(s): Gounod
aka Coming through the rye
Text Author: Burns
aka Elegie
Composer(s): Ernst
Participants:  Carl Rosa
Composer(s): Mendelssohn-Bartholdy
Participants:  James Caulfield
Composer(s): Meyer
Participants:  Leopold de Meyer


Announcement: New-York Daily Tribune, 18 November 1867, 5.

“Miss Jenny Busk, who is to appear in a concert at Steinway Hall on the 1st of September [sic], is a Baltimore lady who has just completed a ten years course of study at the Leipzig Conservatory and in other parts of Europe.  Report says that she possesses a high soprano voice of excellent quality.”

Announcement: New York Herald, 01 December 1867, 7.
Advertisement: New York Herald, 01 December 1867.
Advertisement: New-York Times, 01 December 1867.
Review: New-York Daily Tribune, 02 December 1867, 8.

“Mr. L. F. Harrison is unceasing in his efforts to introduce to the New-York public artists who can claim our sympathy and respect. He did so again last night, at Steinway Hall, in his ninth Sunday concert, making us acquainted with the new American prima-donna, Miss Jenny Busk. This young lady hails from Baltimore, and received her musical education in Europe. She sang three times: one of the arias of the Queen of the Night, from Mozart’s ‘Magic Flute,’ the waltz from Gounod’s ‘Romeo,’ and a well-known ballad. Not only did she prove her familiarity with the different languages, but also showed excellent artistic qualities. Her voice is a pure soprano, which points to good studies. Her delivery seemed to us occasionally a little pressed, especially in the higher register of her voice, but thus may have been owing to a very natural nervousness on her part. We are pleased to say, that her success was complete and well-merited. Mr. Leopold de Meyer charmed again by the beauty and purity of his piano playing. He had of course, several encores, and was one of the great attractions of the evening. Mr. Carl Rosa added no less to the success of the concert by his sympathetic violin playing. Mr. James Caulfield was the organist, and Mr. Geo. W. Colby the conductor of the occasion.”

Review: New-York Times, 05 December 1867, 4.

“The ninth Sunday concert, given by Mr. HARRISON, at Steinway Hall, introduced Miss JENNY BUSK to the New-York public, after a long absence. The signs of improvement in this lady’s voice since she last sang here are many; her method is much purer now, though perhaps a little too exact. The benefit of her foreign schooling shone forth mostly in the aria from the ‘Magic Flute.’ Her fluency in various languages was displayed in pieces from the Italian, French and German.  Her reception was most hearty. Mr. DE MEYER also had a welcome back which must have inspired him, for he never before seemed so eloquent at the piano.”

Review: New-Yorker Musik-Zeitung, 07 December 1867, 280.

It is to be hoped that this was Jenny Busk’s last performance.

Review: Dwight's Journal of Music, 21 December 1867, 158.

“The ninth Sunday evening concert [Dec 1st] witnessed the debut of a new prima donna, Miss Jenny Busk, whom we might easily believe to be a German, so faultless was her pronunciation in singing an aria from ‘The Magic Flute.’ She is, however, we are told, a native of Baltimore, and has recently returned from Europe, where she has received her education.  Her voice is a pure soprano of excellent quality, with a freshness and flexibility which give promise of even more than she accomplished. Such faults of style as were discernible might easily be traced to a nervousness which on such an occasion was natural enough, and her reception was a very flattering one. Besides the Mozart aria, she sang the waltz from Romeo, and that difficult, because [sic] insipid ballad, ‘Coming thro’ the Rye.’

“De Meyer coquetted with the piano, after his inimitable, half vexations, half delightful fashion, playing of course his own compositions, and, in response to an encore, taking a theme from the “Duchess of Gerolstein,’ which he worked out in a very fanciful and brilliant manner.

“Carl Rosa played the Ernst Elegie, and Mr. Colfield [sic], at the organ, gave selections from Mendelssohn’s Sonatas.

“And now a word apropos of Sunday Concerts. We do not side with those who, having no idea of music, except as a means of amusement, would close the doors of the concert room on the Sabbath. On the contrary we know that there is more of truth in a Sonata of Haydn’s or a song of Mendelssohn’s, rightly understood, than in a score of sermons. We know also that all good music is, in a certain sense, sacred; but we wish to see all that belongs to the ball-room and all character loss piano-forte jugglery banished from the concert hall on the Sabbath, if at no other time. There is now certainly need of reform in this respect.”