Chamber (includes Solo), Choral, Orchestral
14 June 2016
“The pleasant and elegantly frescoed hall of the Liederkranz Society was well filled last night by the guests and friends of the Association, on the occasion of the third social concert and reunion given there this season. Among the audience were many of our best known literary men, musicians and other public notables, while the display in dress and toilette rivaled that of the most fashionable chamber concerts. The orchestra, under the skillful baton of Mr. Pauer [sic], was composed entirely of amateurs led by the veteran music dealer, Schubert, while in the ranks of the chorus we noticed the genial countenance of Mr. Wm. Steinway, Mr. Stein, the baritone, and others equally well known. [program is given]
Criticism would be ill-timed on an occasion when amateurs meet for collective recreation, but there need be no shrinking on the part of these ladies and gentlemen from the sternest criticism, for the entire interpretation was such as might rather be expected from practiced and long-drilled professionals than from ‘dilletanti.’
More particularly the fourth number of the first part of the very enjoyable programme deserves notice, as it richly deserved the tumultuous encore demanded. The sweet tenor voice of William Steinway and the rich baritone of Mr. Stein sustained the difficult soli with skill and effect, while the perfectly balanced chorus furnished a superb and massive undertone, above which rang the clear, rich notes of, first, the tenor, then the baritone, while rolling as with thunder, steadily the voices of the others maintained their part.
We have rarely attended a gathering in which kindlier or more genial elements mingled. Our German brethren excel us in all phases of social life and in their example we could readily and profitably find very much to follow. Mr. Gielfus was as usual the urbane and attentive chaperon of the stranger and the guest, and to him we were, as on other occasions, greatly indebted for courteous assistance.
We understand that there are but seven hundred tickets remaining unsold for the great Liederkranz Ball and that over one thousand applications are on file from members of the society.”
A sophisticated and numerous audience attended the soiree last night. The amateur orchestra’s performance showed diligent study. Wedemeyer’s play on the cello playing was tender and warm and thus well received. Demuth’s skillful performance on the piano was also welcomed fondly by the audience. The women’s trio and the women’s quartet were performed with accuracy and understanding, however, the choice of the pieces was less favorable. Hundt’s [sic] strong and pleasant baritone delighted in the performance of Schubert’s “Erlkönig”.
The highlight of the evening was the performance of Abt’s “Waldabendschleier”, which was dedicated to the Liederkranz by the composer and thus tailored to the choruses’ abilities. Although the men’s chorus did not perform this work with its usual confidence, it was able to correct the weaknesses of the first performance in the ‘da capo’, which was demanded by the audience.