St. Stephen's Catholic Church
Price: $1; $2 reserved seats
Chamber (includes Solo)
7 June 2016
“Rev. Dr. Cummings will read the Poem of Religion and Music, written by him for the purpose of being set to music in oratorio form, for which a premium of $1,000 is offered.”
“The sacred concert at St. Stephen’s church, the proceeds of which are to be applied to the enlargement of the church, which is now in progress, passed off last evening before a one-third house. The entertainment opened with an organ symphony by Mr. Max Brauen, which was followed by a quartette, defective in time, led by Madame De Lussan. The solo, contralto ‘Ave Maria,’ by Madame Anschutz, was well sung. Next followed a duo by Madame Adelina Murio Celli and Signor Ardavani. This is the first appearance in the United States of Madame Murio Celli, who is mentioned as one of the Imperial Mexican opera. This lady’s voice, judging it not only in the duo but subsequently in the solo ‘quam Dilecta,’ is not pleasing. The broken surfaces of the interior of the church may have added some harshness; but the material of the lady’s voice has in it too much of the shrill and nasal accent of the German for the liquid, mellow and round tones of the Italian. The solo, ‘Ruth and Naomi,’ by Miss Louise Gaskell, was received by the audience with an inclination to applaud. Messrs. Otto Fleming and H. Millard sang solos. The solo with piano and violin obligato [sic], ‘Ave Maria,’ by Madame De Lussan, Herr Mollenhauer and Mr. George W. Morgan, was a fine piece of harmony. The choruses, at different times, were sustained by the church choir.
Between the first and second parts of the programme the Rev. Dr. Cummings read a poem on ‘Religion and Music.’ From a single hearing we can hardly speak critically, but at several points a little smoothing down of the rythm [sic] and metre would greatly add to the harmony of the verse.”