Fanny Raymond Ritter Concert

Event Information

Dodworth's Hall

Price: $1

Event Type:
Chamber (includes Solo)

Performance Forces:
Instrumental, Vocal

Record Information


Last Updated:
14 June 2016

Performance Date(s) and Time(s)

23 Jan 1866, 8:00 PM

Program Details

The two Beethoven arrangements of songs were listed as "Love's young dream," and "The Minstrel boy."

Performers and/or Works Performed

aka Second aria for piano, violin, and violoncello
Composer(s): Schumann
aka O desired object of my sweet ardour
Composer(s): Gluck
Participants:  Fanny Raymond Ritter
Composer(s): Liszt
Participants:  Fanny Raymond Ritter
Composer(s): Chopin
Participants:  Sebastian Bach Mills
Composer(s): Chopin
Participants:  Sebastian Bach Mills


Announcement: New York Post, 18 January 1866, 2.

     Fanny Ritter “is well known in our musical circles as an accomplished singer of the higher styles of vocal music.”

Advertisement: New-York Times, 19 January 1866, 7.
Announcement: New York Post, 22 January 1866, 2.

     “The programme is classical and refined in character.”

Announcement: New-York Times, 22 January 1866, 4.

     “A concert of more than usual interest.”

Review: New-Yorker Staats-Zeitung und Herold, 22 January 1866, 49.

     [The concert had not yet taken place on this date] – Mrs. Fanny Raymond-Ritter is considered one of the most skillful American artists who also has a remarkable understanding of German classical music, which she had studied. She gave a “very interesting” concert.

Announcement: New-York Times, 23 January 1866, 4.

     “[A]n exceedingly interesting concert” that features the “Kreutzer” sonata.

Review: New-York Times, 26 January 1866, 4.

     “DODWORTH’S HALL.--Mme. Fanny Raymond Ritter, whose name is known in musical literature, gave a very interesting concert at this establishment on Tuesday evening. The lady possesses a powerful soprano voice which she used with judgment.  Her rendering of the vocal pieces was marked by intelligence and warmth; qualities which are very much needed in music of the semi-classical sort.  Mme. Ritter sang morceaux by Gluck, Handel, Schumann, and Liszt.

     The programme opened with Schumann’s Second Trio for pianoforte, violin, and violoncello, opus 80, in which there is more for the eye than the ear; and rather too much for both. It was finely played by Messrs. Mills, Thomas, and Bergner. The two gentlemen first named also gave us the ‘Keutzer [sic] Sonata’ for piano and violin, by Beethoven—a work which is perfect in its proportions, and which was rendered faultlessly by both executants. We do not remember to have listened to a more admirable interpretation of a masterpiece of delicious music. Both gentlemen played with love of the task, and that full apprehension which love alone can bring. The breadth and power of the first movement was amazingly illustrated, and the exquisite luxuriousness of the second was reproduced faultlessly. Mr. Mills’ technique, securing as it does the fullest, roundest, and most even tone, lends unusual fullness to this sort of music.  A Steinway grand was used, and its whole voice came out under the hands of this master.  Mr. Thomas has never placed better than on this occasion. Mendelssohn’s variations for piano and violoncello afforded an opportunity for Mr. Bergner to display his fine tone and method. It is a pity that so good a solo player is heard so seldom.

     The programme ended with a couple of ‘Irish Melodies,’ arranged for voice, piano, violin, and violoncello, by Beethoven—a curious and not very encouraging illustration of what the greatest man may sometimes be called upon to do for the publishers.

     Mr. Mills evidently reveled in Mme. Ritter’s selections.  In addition to taking part in the trio, the Sonata and the Cello variations, he played Chopin’s Berceuse and Etude. The light, dreamy, fanciful grace of the first piece, displaying the adaptability of his touch to the filmiest of subjects, even as the Sonata, exhibited the enormous strength and certainty of his technique.  We trust that Mme. Ritter was as well satisfied with the result of her concert as the audience was with its merit.”

Review: New-York Daily Tribune, 26 January 1866, 8.

     “Mme. Ritter’s Concert at Dodworth Hall was not as largely attended as we expected, when we considered the excellence of the programme and the novelties therein contained. But there is no accounting for the waywardness of the public. Schumann’s Second Aria, for piano-forte, violin and violoncello, was very admirably played by Messrs. Mills, Thomas and Bergner, the latter gentleman exhibiting rare sympathy and refinement in the rendering of his tone. The aria, ‘O del mio Dolce Ardor,’ from Gluck’s opera ‘Paris and Helen,’ is a very beautiful subject finely treated, but we think it inferior to the arietta, ‘Sascia ch’io pianza from Handel’s opera ‘Rinaldo,’ which, beside being pure and flowing in melody, is broad and grand in its style, and full of strong declamatory power in its recitatives. Both pieces are earnest and impassioned, but there is more force and intensity in the selection from Handel. These pieces prove that there is a large and rich repertoire yet to be selected from the works of the old masters, which have been too long neglected. Mme. Ritter sang them smoothly and correctly; she has an excellent voice which has been well trained, her style good, and she sings the German lieder with much expression. But in larger songs, or songs of broader character, her delivery is deficient in coloring, and her tremolo is too hard and forced to appear natural to emotion, or to be effective. The pieces in which she made her best effect were the ‘Invocation’ by Liszt, and the selection from the Liederkreis of Robert Schumann.

     The ‘Kreutzer Sonata,’ by Beethoven, and the ‘Variations, for Piano and Violoncello,’ Mendelssohn, were very ably performed by Mills and Thomas and Mills and Bergner, and proved most interesting features in the programme. Mr. Mills, indeed, played very finely throughout the evening, and won from a very appreciative audience hearty and well-deserved applause.

     Beethoven’s arrangement of Irish melodies for voice, piano, violin and violoncello was interesting as a curiosity, but is certainly hardly worth reviving for concert purposes.

Review: Dwight's Journal of Music, 03 February 1866, 180.

     “In Gluck’s beautiful aria, as well as in Handel’s lovely little arietta, Mme. Raymond Ritter gave evidence of a rich and powerful voice, and warm poetic feeling.  The Goethe-Lisztian invocation, ‘Der du von dem Himmel bist’ as well as Schumann’s great dramatic song, were very effective and well suited to the songstress’s impassioned style of singing.  The charming accompanied Irish melodies made us wish to hear more arrangements by the old Lion, who, it is known, delighted in them, and worked them over and over again, so much had he fallen in love with his task.  Nearly all these vocal selections were introduced for the first time to the public here.  Schumann’s fine Trio in F was worthily executed, and in the ‘Kreutzer Sonata’ Mills and Thomas played most admirably.  Mendelssohn’s Variations were also finely played.  Mills displayed on this occasion only his wonderful technical power and fine touch, but also the most intelligent and artistic conception.  This was altogether a most delightfully arranged and in every way successful concert.”