Central Park Mall
Harvey Bradley Dodworth
25 January 2013
“The usual Saturday afternoon concert in the Park took place yesterday, and notwithstanding the threatening appearance of the weather during the earlier part of the day, there was a vast attendance. Fully an hour before the time appointed for the commencement of the music all the extensive sitting accommodations provided under awnings and otherwise had been filled, and a large throng were promenading along the avenues of the Ramble and around the Lake. At the same time the drives were rapidly becoming thronged with the gayest and most elegant equipages. Casting the eyes from the vast assemblage upon the lines of vehicles, the imagination pictured these as so many baskets of fair flowers being hurried forward to be laid down at the shrine of the Muse. And, indeed, the gay and elegant attire of the ladies rivaled that of the fairest flowers. At precisely half-past three P.M. the performance began, according to the programme published in these columns yesterday morning.
The execution of the various pieces merited and received considerable applause. Musical people could but notice the terpsichorean effect of the Petersdorf March and the Mabel Waltz, as well as the pleasure manifested on all countenances during the Overture to Fra Diavolo, the selections from Don Giovanni and the Midsummer Night’s Dream.
Turning from the music toward the assemblage, at about half past four, the scene was very fine and unusually interesting. Whether moving through the dense crowds of promenaders or taking a stand along the drives there were constantly passing the natives of nearly all climes, and the accents of all living tongues were falling on our listening ears.
It must be added that the turnouts could not be surpassed for beauty, variety and costliness. Quite a number of ladies displayed their skill and grace in handling the bridle and reins. Perhaps it were desirable that more display of the bridle be made on such occasions in the Park—the proportion of equestrians being usually too small. Excellent order prevailed and enjoyment seemed the rule of the people until the evening came on and the gay throng dispersed.”