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Cantata : "der Glorreiche Augenblick" 299
written. Nothing of the kind is known to exist, and doubtless never did. "It is said the censor would not allow the piece"—it certainly never came to performance; and until its production was made sure, Beethoven would of course—even if he had the time—not have engaged in a work of such extent. Beethoven had announced a grand concert for November 20, in the large Ridotto Room, but advertisements in the "Wiener Zeitung" of the 18th postponed it till November 22d, then till the 27th, and finally till the 29th. On November 30th, the newspaper reports: At noon of yesterday, Hr. Ludwig v. Beethoven gave all music-lovers an ecstatic pleasure. In the R. I. Ridotto Room he gave performances of his beautiful musical representation of Wellington's Battle at Vittoria, preceded by the symphony which had been composed as a companionpiece. Between the two works an entirely new, etc., etc., cantata, Der glorreiche Augenblick. One would like to know what Beethoven said when he read this; for the symphony supposed by the writer to be composed as a companion-piece (Begleitung) to the "Wellington's Victory" was the magnificent Seventh!1
The solo singers in the Cantata were Mme. Milder, Dem. Bondra, Hr. Wild and Hr. Forti, all of whom sang well, and the Milder wonderfully. "The two Empresses, the King of Prussia" and other royalties were present and "the great hall was crowded. Seated in the orchestra were to be seen the foremost virtuosi, who were in the habit of showing their respect for him and art by taking part in Beethoven's Academies." All the contemporary notices "Highly respected Sir!
"To your valued letter I have to make reply as follows: I certainly have in my autograph collection the autograph of the orchestral score of the funeral march contained in the great Sonata for Pianoforte, Op. 26: The score consists of six sheets and twelve pages—written throughout in Beethoven's hand. On the 1st, 8th and 12th pages there are marginal notes for the copyist.
"The piece is orchestrated for 2 flutes, 2 clarinets in C, 2 horns in D, 2 horns in E, to which are added four staves for instruments which are not named, probably for trumpets and trombones. [To judge by the setting rather for the string quartet.]
"I received this score of the celebrated master from the art and music dealer Tobias Haslinger in the year 1829-30 with the remark, here faithfully reported, that he gave me the manuscript with pleasure as a souvenir, inasmuch as he would by no means print or publish the composition in this form. This score therefore is unique I The piece is in B minor. . . .
"Your ever ready
Together with the other music to "Leonore Prohaska" the march is printed in the Complete Edition of Breitkopf and Hartel, Series 25, No. 272.
'The circumstances connected with the last postponement of this concert and the onerous conditions which Count Palffy sought to impose upon Beethoven are interestingly told by Dr. Frimmel in his "Beethoven-Studien, Vol. II," p. 41 el seq.
agree as to the enthusiastic reception of the Symphony and the Battle, and that the Cantata, notwithstanding the poverty of the text, was, on the whole, worthy of the composer's reputation and contained some very fine numbers. The concert, with precisely the same programme, was repeated in the same hall on Friday, December 2d, for Beethoven's benefit—nearly half the seats being empty! And again in the evening of the 25th for the benefit of the St. Mark's Hospital, when, of course, a large audience was present. Thus the Cantata was given three times in four weeks, and probably Spohr, who was still in Vienna, played in the orchestra; yet he gravely asserts in his autobiography that "the work was not performed at that time."
The proposed third concert for Beethoven's benefit was abandoned and there is no clue to the "new things in hand" for it, which Beethoven mentioned in a letter to Archduke Rudolph, unless possibly the "Meeresstille und gliickliche Fahrt" may have been begun for the occasion. The most remarkable and gratifying thing in the letter, however, is to find Beethoven once more speaking of "pleasures and joy"—whence arising, we learn from Schindler. True, he does not, nor cannot yet, speak from personal observation; but his well-known relations to the composer began while the memories of these days were still fresh; and what he records is derived from Beethoven himself for the most part, though, as usual, he has inserted a statement or two, honestly made, but not the less incorrect on that account. But first, a paragraph from an article by Schindler in Raumer's "Hist. Taschenbuch," published in 1863: The r6le which Rasoumowsky played in Vienna at this time was one of unparalleled brilliancy. From the first weeks of the Congress his house was full. Thus Gentz notes under date Sept. 18: "Visited Rasoumowsky; there innumerable visitors, among others Lord and Lady Castlereagh, Count Mlinster, Count Westphalen, Mr. Coke, the Marquis de SaintMarsan, Count Castellafu, all the Prussians, etc." But as balls soon became the order of the day and Count Stackelberg had given his on October 20, 1814, when the Czar and Czarina of Russia, the King of Prussia and other grandees of all kinds appeared, he also planned one for December 6, and Gentz, who permitted himself the magical vision for only a moment and had to work that night till two o'clock on his dispatches, assures us that this feast was the most beautiful of all that he had attended since the arrival of the French monarch. It was only overshadowed by that which Czar Alexander gave in the same palace, which he borrowed for the occasion from his princely subject. Turn we to Schindler: The end of the second period (in Beethoven's life) showed us the composer on a plane of celebrity which may fairly be described as one of
Honors Received At The Vienna Congress 301
the loftiest ever reached by a musician in the course of his:artistic strivings. Let us not forget that it was the fruit of twenty years of tireless endeavor. The great moment in the history of the world with which this celebration of his fame was synchronous could not fail to give the incident a brilliancy unparalleled in the history of music. The apparent extravagance of the statement is pardonable when we add that nearly all the rulers of Europe who met at the Vienna Congress placed their seals on our master's certificate of fame. As Rasoumowsky was not elevated to the rank of Prince until June 3rd, 1815, Schindler, in his next sentences, is all wrong in making that incident "the cause of festivities of a most extraordinary character to which Beethoven was always invited."
There (Schindler continues) he was the object of general attention on the part of all the foreigners; for it is the quality of creative genius combined with a certain heroism, to attract the attention of all noble natures. Shall we not call it heroism, when we see the composer fighting against prejudices of all kinds, traditional notions in respect of his art, envy, jealousy and malice on the part of the mass of musicians, and besides this against the sense most necessary to him in the practice of his art, and yet winning the exalted position which he occupies? No wonder that all strove to do him homage. He was presented by Prince [Count] Rasoumowsky to the assembled monarchs, who made known their respect for him in the most flattering terms. The Empress of Russia tried in particular to be complimentary to him. The introduction took place in the rooms of Archduke Rudolph, in which he was also greeted by other exalted personages. It would seem as if the Archduke was desirous always to take part in the celebration of his great teacher's triumph by inviting the distinguished foreigners to meet Beethoven. It was not without emotion that the great master recalled those days in the Imperial castle and the palace of the Russian Prince; and once he told with a certain pride how he had suffered the crowned heads to pay court to him and had always borne himself with an air of distinction. There is reason to believe that these receptions in the apartments of the Archduke did not begin until those at Rasoumowsky's had come to their disastrous end. Huge as the palace was, it lacked space for the crowds invited thither to the Czar's festivities. A large temporary structure of wood was therefore added on the side next the garden, in which, on the evening of December 30th, a table for 700 guests was spread. Between five and six o'clock of the morning of the 31st, this was discovered to be on fire—probably owing to a defective flue—the conflagration extending to the main building and lasting until noon. Within the space of a few hours several rooms in this gorgeous establishment, on which for 20 years its creator had expended everything that splendor, artistic knowledge and liberality could offer, were prey of the raging flames. Among them were the precious library and the inestimable Canova room completely filled with sculptures by this master, which were demolished by the falling of the ceiling. The loss was incalculable. To rebuild the palace out of his own means was not to be thought of; but Alexander lost no time in offering his assistance and in sending Prince Wolkonski to him to learn how much money would be required to defray the principal cost. The Count estimated it at 400,000 silver rubels, which sum he requested as a loan, and received on January 24,1815. But the sum was far from enough, and in order to obtain further loans, ownership of the splendid building had to be sacrificed.
And thus Rasoumowsky also passes out of our history.—Among the visitors to Vienna at the time of the Congress was Varnhagen von Ense, who had gone into the diplomatic service; he came in the company of the Prussian Chancellor von Hardenburg. His attitude toward Beethoven had cooled—probably because of Oliva's complaints touching Beethoven's behavior towards him. His brief report of his meeting with the composer derives some interest from its allusion to Prince Radziwill, to whom Beethoven dedicated the Overture, Op. 115 (which was not published until 1825). The report (printed in Varnhagen's "Denkwiirdigkeiten," Vol. Ill, pp. 314-15) is as follows: Musical treats were offered on all hands, concerts, the church, opera, salon, virtuosi and amateurs all gave of their best. Prince Anton Radziwill, who was already far advanced in his composition of Goethe's "Faust" and here gave free rein to his musical inclinations, was the cause of my again looking up my sturdy Beethoven, who, however, since I saw him last had grown more deaf and unsociable, and was not to be persuaded to gratify our wishes. He was particularly averse to our notables and gave expression to his repugnance with angry violence. When reminded that the Prince was the brother-in-law of Prince Louis Ferdinand of Prussia, whose early death he had so deeply deplored and whose compositions he esteemed highly, he yielded a trifle and agreed to the visit. But it is not likely that a more intimate acquaintance followed. I also refrained from taking the uncouth artist to Rahel, for society rendered him obstreperous and nothing could be done with him alone, nothing could be done unless he was disposed to play. Besides, though famous and honored, he was not yet on that pinnacle of recognition which he has since attained. The compositions of the year 1814 were these: I. Vocal Trio: "Tremate, empj, tremate." Practically composed in 1801-02, but not known to have been completed and written out for performance and publication until "something for Milder" was needed in the concert of February 27th. II. "Germania's Wiedergeburt"; chorus in Treitschke's "Gute Nachricht."
Ill "Fidelio"; revised and altered.
IV. "Un lieto Brindisi"; cantata campestre, four voicei
Compositions And Publications Of 1814 303 V. Elegiac Song: "Sanft wie du lebtest," four voices and strings. VI. Chorus: "Ihr weisen Gründer."
VII. Sonata for Pianoforte, E minor, Op. 90. VIII. Overture in C, Op. 115. IX. Cantata: "Der glorreiche Augenblick."
X. Three vocal pieces and march (orchestration of the march in the Sonata, Op. 26), for Duncker's tragedy "Leonore Prohaska."
XI. Canon: "Kurz ist der Schmerz"; second form as written in Spohr's Album "on March 3d, 1815."
XII. Song: "Des Kriegers Abschied."
XIII. Song: "Merkenstein," Op. 100; "On December 22d, 1814." XIV. "Abschiedsgesang"; for two tenors and bass ("Die Stunde schlagt"). Note on the publication in the "Completed Works, etc.": "Beethoven wrote this terzetto at the request of Magistrate Mathias Tuscher for the farewell party of Dr. Leop. Weiss before his removal to the city of Steyer." Beethoven inscribed it: "From Beethoven, so that he may no longer be touched up." (Um nickt wetter tuschiert zu werden. The pun on the Magistrate's name is lost in the translation. Tuschiren means to touch up with India ink.) The publications of the year: I. Irish Airs, Vol. I, complete, published by Thomson. II. Chorus: "Germania's Wiedergeburt"; published in June. III. Song: "An die Geliebte," by J. L. Stoll; published as a supplement to the "Friedensblatter," July 12. IV. Six Allemandes for Pianoforte and Violin, advertised by Ludwig Maisch on July 30. (The author lacks means and opportunity to determine the authenticity of these dances. It is, however, hardly probable that a Viennese publisher would venture at that time to use Beethoven's name thus without authority.) V. "Fidelio"; Pianoforte arrangement by I. Moscheles. Published by Artaria and Co., in August.