Musical Union Concert
»■■ -»J When the very unfavourable weather which prevailed yesterday evening is considered, it mSist be admitted that a very direct compliment was paid the '-Musical Union by the attendance of an exceedingly large and appreciative audtence at the second concert of the season, given in the Zealandia Hall. There could be no more convincing evidence of the jopularity of the entertainments given by the Union than tbe fact that oh such a night the audience was oot appreciably smaller than those which have graced occasions when the fates were kinder. The exceptional variety and attractiveness of the programme may have influenced n-any in their resolution to brave the. elements, and those who did so can hardly now regret their hardihood, as ihey enjoyed a musical treat of no ordinary quality. In both vipcal and orchestral musk* a high standard of excellence has been set by the' Union, and has been untlinchingly maintained. The chorus was probably never heard to better advantage than in their renderings of the fine compositions of Buck, Brahms, Paning and others. They opened with the splendid " Hymn to Music " (Dudley Buck), which is quite a study in moods, from the gentle and ripping to the tempestuous and thunderous, finishing with a majestic and sonorous unison movement. The interpretation, given was beyond all 'raise, aid the. audience showed its appreciation by a loud outburst of applause. The part song ■■•• O May" (Brahns) is a light, quaint composition, with a dolorous vein running through it. 'Ibis does not interfere with the tunefulness of the melody, but rather adds to its effectiveness. The bracketed part song "Phoebe" provided a nice contrast, being light and crisp, yet withal tender and ye-jiming. In each of these part songs the choir displayed the meaning of the composer, by giving sympathetic and artistic renderings. 7 One -of the most popular itein3 was the chorus ".The Vagabonds' (Eaton Paning), a sprightly, rollicking"" and tuneful composition. The rendering was quite a dramatic one, and the most unmusical person in the audience could haidiy fail to be charmed by the brilliancy and verve of the production. In " !)•' in-lit Woods " (Brahms), the Chorus had a fine opportunity of showing its powers, and from the trial they emerged with honour. It. is a beautiful and majestic part song, full of passion and yet of rest. The ensemble was almost perfect, and the audience enjoyed a most artistic and expressive rendering. The " I.ove Song)" (Brahms) for ladies* voices only wais an exceedingly enjoyable item, . and the singers deserve a word of praise for their crisp and bright rendering of this pretty part song. This was followed by another part song " O where art thou dreaming ?" (H. McCann), in w>uch some very fine phrasing was done. The concluding chorus was "Lord UlUn's daughter " (Jackson), a brilliant and, insome respects, remarkable setting of Campbell's well-known verses. 'I he uniqlue effect was heightened by the 'antasfcic orchestral accompaniment, the instruments combining with the voices in cmiihufising the tragic and weird ia the story. It is a uxost difficult piece of vocalisation, and 'the success achieved Was distinctly creditable. If the chorus achieved a c(-nf-ider-"able degree" of success, the so'oists **ere in no way unworthy of their cojvpai'yMr J. Porteous, who made his final appearance at Union concerts, received a specially warm greeting- He at his best in his song *' The Riderless Steed," singing with all the vigour at>d abandon so characteristic of him, and -jringing out the sentiment of the song admi»ablyMessrs A. S. Cookson and J..S. Taylor sang the duet \ introduced here Ly Mr Harold Wilde and WatK'in Mills, '<Watchman, what of the Night ?" fSarjeant). The vocaHsts gave a veiy /anc interpretation, which t/be audience cordially recognised. Mr Cookson was -jnTortnnately suffering a recovery from influenza, and his voice was hardly up to Ms u->ual standard, but under the circumstam-cs his performance was a meritorious < nc. Mr Taylor sang his part in a faultl-^ss style, and balanced his strong voice v,»*y care fully with the Ughter tenor, jhi lady soloist was Miss Mary Mair, who has always been a popular* vocalist with InvercargiU audiences: She contributed as bracketed items " A Necklace of" Love (Sfeviii) and "Spring Again" (6Uen Wright) The iirst is a light o ml dainty song, expressing a pretty sentiuie.it, and into this Miss Mair infused a-p-opcr degree of foeHng. The second was more florid and brilliant, and this < 'so the vocalist rendered most creditably. Miss Mair pleased the audience both w:-.h tbe quality of her voice and the ability and taste displayed in her renderings of th« songs- The other soloist was Mr T. Brown, one of the most popular baritones in Southland. fle . ' i aag V"Ho ! Jolly Jenkin". (Sullivan), one admirably suited to his voice, though set rather low. His repdering was almost unexceptionable, and he recei'-ed a very flattering recognition from the audience To some of the. audience the g«*JS of tht concert were provided by the orrl.«*fa, and there can be no question l-tst that this view may be supported by round reasoning. The orchestra had undertaker the ambitious task of introducing -"the public the works "of the ...great -fcngliri* composer. Sir Fdward Elffar, wl.ose compositions have attracted widespread notice at Home and abroad. o. his compositions were presented for the
first time in Invercargill, and pos&ib in New Zealand, and no one will do that the orchestra justified its uuisi< to be the pioneer exploiter of .Sir Id ward's work's in the colony. Tii-; on-he tra opened with " Pomp and Cireuu stance," a military march, which was c; ceptionally pleasing. The march cipcnc with some brilliant string work, the gathered in the reeds and wind instri ments, and passed into a grand majes tic movement, for full orchestra. I'or th finale there was a splendid volume c: tone, full and round, joining in a beauti Jul and inspiring melody- Ti»e r>«-xt se lection consisted of the brackvted r.um hers " Chanson de Matin " and "Cinnsoi de Nuit," a study in contrasts, o^e th bright and sparkling greeting t,> tin morning, and the other hailing iho som bre shades of evening. There wes de scViption in the music, which had only t c be applied by the audience to obtain s full realisation of the meaning of the composer. The following selection was " Contrasts " (the gavotte 1700—1900) a quaint selection in which Sir Edward gave his conception of the slow and stately gavotte of tho 18th OMiuwy, and then his knowledge of the less rl'.friiiiicd gavotte of tho 20th crtitury. T i*. " - Serenade Mauresque " there was a plenitude of dramatic feeling, and in The concluding selection, " Imperial Jaivh, ' the audience was treated to a iiew appreciation of the author's powers, and the excellence of the instrumentation- The members of the orchestra are io bo complimented on the success "t-hey achieved with the works of a composer previously unknown to them. A violin sc' > was played by Mr W. J. Ferguson. L.A.11,, who presented the beautiful '* Nocturne in G— Major " (Chopin). His ruidcring was characterised by an intense sj mpa* thy with the intention of the composer. The tone produced was full and mund, and the phrasing in the beautiful arr was exquisitely done. Another very n-uch appreciated item was the " Komanze " for flute and clarinet, played by Messrs E. Le Tetit and F. J. Lillicrap. The Romanze is a fairly simple air by Oscar Klose, the principal theme being sustained by the clarinet, the flute putting in an embellishment of trills, cadenzas and arpeggios. It was a delightful item, and both players deserved the very hearty plaudits which followed their fccni. The piano accompaniments were played by Mrs E. B. McKay, Mr J. McKinnon, and Mr C. Gray. To the last-named gentleman, as conductor, much praise is due for the excellence of the concert, which , was one of the most enjoyable o» the year. - ______„_,_
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Musical Union Concert, Southland Times, Volume 30, Issue 19676, 30 September 1905
Musical Union Concert Southland Times, Volume 30, Issue 19676, 30 September 1905
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