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fixed during the composer's occasional visits to the city in August and September, and such alterations in the score determined upon as the nature of the instrument demanded; so that early in October the whole was ready for Malzel to transfer to its cylinder. On Beethoven's return to his city lodging, between the 15th and 20th of September, his notes to Zmeskall become as usual numerous, the principal topic just now being the engagement of a new servant. While with the assistance and under the direction of the excellent Streichers, Beethoven got his lodgings and wardrobe into decent order, with the aid of Zmeskall he obtained that servant spoken of by Schindler, who was a tailor and carried on his trade in the anteroom of the composer. With the help of his wife he attended the master with touching care till into the year 1816—and this regulated mode of life did our friend much good. Would that it might have endured a few years longer. At this stage of the case there came also evidences of love and admiration from Princess Lichnowsky, which are well worth more detailed notice. The Prince was in the habit of frequently visiting his favorite in his workshop. In accordance with a mutual understanding no notice was to be taken of his presence, so that the master might not be disturbed. After the morning greeting the Prince was in the habit of looking through any piece of music that chanced to be at hand, watching the master at his work for a while and then leaving the room with a friendly "adieu." Nevertheless, these visits disturbed Beethoven, who occasionally locked the door. Unvexed, the Prince would walk down the three flights of stairs. As the sartorial servant sat in the anteroom, His Serene Highness would join him and wait until the door opened and he could speak a friendly greeting to the Prince of Music. The need was thus satisfied. But it was not given long to the honored Maecenas of Art to rejoice in his favorite and his creations. This is touching and trustworthy. To return to "Wellington's Victory." Schindler, supposing the Panharmonicon to have played it, remarked in the first edition of his book: "The effect of the piece was so unexpected that Malzel requested our Beethoven to instrumentate it for orchestra." He is mistaken as to the reason; for Malzel had only, in Beethoven's words, "begun to engrave." In truth, he was musician enough to see from the score, how very effective it would be if instrumentated for grand orchestra, and sagacious enough to perceive, that the composition in that form might prove of far greater advantage to them in London and probably be more attractive afterwards when performed by the Panharmonicon. But there was another consideration far more important. Before the age of steam a journey from Vienna to London with the many huge cases required for even a part of Malzel's A Benefit For Wounded Soldiers 255
collection, was a very expensive undertaking. The problem now was, how to provide the necessary funds. Beethoven's were exhausted and his own were very limited. To go alone and give exhibitions at the principal cities on the way, involved little or no risk for Malzel, as the experience of the next year proved; but to make the journey direct, with Beethoven for his companion, was impossible until in some manner a considerable sum of ready money could be provided. The only resource of the composer, except borrowing, was, of course, the production of the two new Symphonies, one of which had been copied for trial with small orchestra at the Archduke's, thus diminishing somewhat the expenses of a concert. It was five years since he had had a benefit, and therefore one full house might be counted on with reasonable certainty; but no concert of his had ever been repeated, and a single full house would leave but a small margin of profit. Moreover, his fruitless efforts in the Spring to arrange an "Akademie" were discouraging. Unless the new Symphonies could be produced without cost to himself, and the interest and curiosity of the public so aroused as to insure the success of two or three subsequent concerts, no adequate fund for the journey could be gained; but if so great a sensation could in some manner be made as to secure this object, the fame of it would precede and nobly herald them in London. Beethoven was helpless; but Malzel's sagacity was equal to the occasion. He knew that for the highly cultivated classes of music-lovers, able and ready to appreciate the best, nothing better could be desired than new Symphonies by Beethoven; but such auditors are always limited in number; the programme must also contain something surprising, sensational, ad captandum vulgus, to catch the ear of the multitude, and open their pockets. His Trumpeter was not enough; it had lost its novelty; although with an orchestra instead of pianoforte accompaniment, it would be something. Beethoven alone could, if he would, produce what was indispensable. Time pressed, Malzel had long since closed his exhibition, and every day of delay was a serious expense. The "Conflagration of Moscow," the model of his Chronometer and the cylinders for his Panharmonicon were all finished, except the "Victory," and this would soon be ready. Before the end of the year, therefore, he could be in Munich, as his interest imperatively demanded, provided Beethoven should not be his companion. There was nothing to detain him in Vienna, after the "Victory" was completed, but his relations to the composer. Him he knew too well to hope from him any work deliberately written with a view to please the multitude, had the time allowed, which it did not. Preparations were making in October for two grand performances on the 11th and 14th of November, in the R. I. Winter Riding Academy, of Handel's "Timotheus" for the benefit of the widows and orphans of Austrians and Bavarians who had fallen in the late campaign against Napoleon. On this hint Malzel formed his plan. This was, if Beethoven would consent to instrumentate the "Victory" for orchestra—in doing which, being freed from the limitations of the Panharmonicon, he could give free play to his fancy—he (Mfilzel) would return to him the score, risk the sacrifice of it for its original purpose, remain in Vienna, and make it the popular attraction of a grand charity concert for the benefit of the Austrians and Bavarians wounded in the battle at Hanau, trusting that it would open the way for two or more concerts to be given for their own benefit. Under all the circumstances, it is difficult to decide, whether to admire the more Malzel's good judgment, or his courageous trust in it and in Beethoven's genius. He disclosed his plan and purposes to the composer, they were approved by him, and the score was returned. While Beethoven wrought zealously on his task, Malzel busied himself with the preparations for the concert. His personal popularity, the charitable object in view, curiosity to study Beethoven's new productions, especially the battle-piece, secured the services of nearly all the leading musicians, some of whom were there only in passing or temporarily—Dragonetti, Meyerbeer, the bassoon-player Romberg, and others. Tomaschek, who heard the "Victory" next year, writes that he was "very painfully affected to see a Beethoven, whom Providence had probably assigned to the highest throne in the realm of music, among the rudest materialists. I was told, it is true, that he himself had declared the work to be folly, and that he liked it only because with it he had thoroughly thrashed the Viennese." There is no doubt that this was so; nor that they, who engaged in its performance, viewed it as a stupendous musical joke, and engaged in it con amore as in a gigantic professional frolic. The University Hall was granted on this occasion and the 8th of December was fixed for the concert. Young Gloggl was in Vienna, visited Beethoven, and was by him granted the privilege of attending the rehearsals. "I remember," he writes, that in one rehearsal the violin-players refused to play a passage in the symphony and rebuked him for writing difficulties which were incapable of performance. But Beethoven begged the gentlemen to take the parts Spohr Describes Beethoven's Conducting 257
home with them—if they were to practise it at home it would surely go. The next day at the rehearsal the passage went excellently, and the gentlemen themselves seemed to rejoice that they had given Beethoven the pleasure. Spohr, playing among the violins, for the first time saw Beethoven conduct and was surprised in the highest degree, although he had been told beforehand of what he now saw with his own eyes. Beethoven had accustomed himself [he says] to indicate expression to the orchestra by all manner of singular bodily movements. At piano he crouched down lower and lower as he desired the degree of softness. If a crescendo then entered he gradually rose again and at the entrance of the forte jumped into the air. Sometimes, too, he unconsciously shouted to strengthen the forte. It was obvious that the poor man could no longer hear the piano of his music. This was strikingly illustrated in the second portion of the first Allegro of the symphony. In one place there are two holds, one immediately after the other, of which the second is pianissimo. This, Beethoven had probably overlooked, for he began again to beat time before the orchestra had begun to play the second hold. Without knowing it, therefore, he had hurried ten or twelve measures ahead of the orchestra, when it began again and, indeed, pianissimo. Beethoven to indicate this had in his wonted manner crouched clean under the desk. At the succeeding crescendo he again became visible, straightened himself out more and more and jumped into the air at the point where according to his calculation the forte ought to begin. When this did not follow his movement he looked about in a startled way, stared at the orchestra to see it still playing pianissimo and found his bearings only when the long-expected forte came and was audible to him. Fortunately this comical incident did not take place at the performance.
Malzel's first placards announcing the concert spoke of the battle-piece as his property; but Beethoven objecting to this, others were substituted in which it was said to have been composed "out of friendship, for his visit to London." No hint was conveyed of Malzel's share in the composition. The programme was: I. "An entirely new Symphony," by Beethoven (the Seventh, in A major). II. Two Marches played by Malzel's Mechanical Trumpeter, with full orchestral accompaniment—the one by Dussek, the other by Pleyel. III. "Wellington's Victory."
The success of the performances was so unequivocal and splendid as to cause their repetition on Sunday, the 12th, at noon, at the same prices, 10 fl. and 5 fl. "The net receipts of the two performances, after deducting the unavoidable costs, were 4006 florins, which were reverently turned over to the 'hohen KriegsPrasidio' for the purposes announced" ("Wiener Zeitung,"
December 20). The "Wiener Zeitung," "Allg. Mus. Zeit." of Leipsic, and the "Beobachter," contained excessively laudatory notices of the music and vivid descriptions of its effect upon the auditors, whose "applause rose to the point of ecstasy." The statements of the contemporary public prints are confirmed by the veteran Spohr, who reports that the Allegretto of the Seventh Symphony "was demanded da capo at both concerts."
Schindler calls this rightly "one of the most important moments in the life of the master, at which all the hitherto divergent voices, save those of the professional musicians, united in proclaiming him worthy of the laurel." "A work like the battlesymphony had to come," adds Schindler with good judgment, "in order that divergent opinions might be united and the mouths of all opponents, of whatever kind, be silenced." Schindler also preserved a "Note of Thanks" prepared for the "Wiener Zeitung" and signed by Beethoven, which ends with a just and merited tribute to Malzel:(For the "Intelligenz-Blatt" of the "Wiener Zeitung.") I esteem it to be my duty to thank all the honored participants in the Academy given on December 8, and 12, for the benefit of the sick and wounded Austrian and Bavarian soldiers who fought in the battle at Hanau. It was an unusual congregation of admirable artists wherein every individual was inspired by the single thought of contributing something by his art for the benefit of the fatherland, and cooperated without considering rank in subordinate places in the excellent execution of the whole. While Herr Schuppanzigh at the head of the violins carried the orchestra by his fiery and expressive playing, Hr. Chief-Chapelmaster Salieri did not scruple to beat time for the drummers and salvos; Hr. Spohr and Hr. Mayseder, each worthy of leadership because of his art, collaborated in the second and third places and Hr. Siboni and Giuliani also occupied subordinate positions. To me the direction of the whole was assigned only because the music was of my composition; had it been by another, I should have been as willing as Hr. Hummel1 to take my place at the big drum, as we were all filled with nothing but the pure love of country and of joyful sacrifice of our powers for those who sacrificed so much for us. But our greatest thanks are due to Hr. Malzel, since it was he who first conceived the idea of this academy and there fell to him afterward the
'In a foot-note to Schindler's account of the performance of the battle-piece, Moscheles, the English translator, says: "I must claim for my friend Meyerbeer the place here assigned to Hummel, who had to act in the cannonade; and this I may the more firmly assert as the cymbals having been intrusted to me, Meyerbeer and I had to play from one and the same part." At the repetitions of the work on January 2 and 84 ensuing, Hummel directed what may well be called the "battery." As there were two large drums, one on one side of the stage and one on the other. Hummel no doubt played one and Meyerbeer the other. Being pianists, nothing but instruments of percussion could have been assigned them.