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Carl Meisel (search for this): chapter 22
vigorous attacking of difficulties; utmost delicacy of sentiment and feeling; wonderful staccato; remarkable finish in trills, with an intonation as nearly perfect as the human ear will allow. When to these are added a comprehensive mind, with a warm musical soul vibrating to its work, we have an artist who may be nearly called a phenomenon in the womanly form of Camilla Urso. Signed by the whole orchestra, namely, Carl Zerrahn, William Schultze, William Wieser, Stephen A. Emery, Carl Meisel, Otto Dresel, Thomas Ryan, Wulf C. J. Fries, B. J. Lang, Ernst Perabo, etc. The outside world of mere lovers of music sometimes give their opinions of Camilla's playing in remarks equally earnest, though hardly scientific. One auditor, after listening to her in wide-mouthed amazement, declared with a most emphatic gesture, that she was woman enough to vote. At a concert in Chicago, an admirer, who was asked whether there had been any flowers on the stage that night, answered,
se where she had left her property had gone to see the annual parade in honor of Washington's birthday, some one entered and possessed himself of her jewels. Search was unavailing, nothing was ever again heard of them. On her return from Canada her mother met her in New York. The joy of mother and daughter, reunited after so long a separation, may easily be imagined. They spent some time together, and then professional duties called the child away. She had received overtures from a Mrs. McCready, a reader of some celebrity at that time, to accompany her in a tour through the West. They proceeded as far as Nashville, Signor Urso remaining in New York, when Camilla discovered that the contract was not to be fulfilled, the readings not to be continued,--in short, that she had fallen once more into the hands of swindlers. The McCreadys, after treating her with great injustice and unkindness, left her penniless in Nashville. A pitiful position for a young girl scarcely fifteen ye
Emilie Girouard (search for this): chapter 22
e harmonic pictures or the wordless songs! And in the hands of a genius whose thoughtful brain and ardent heart have comprehended and mastered its powers, what a magical shell is this crooked, stringed, sonorous thing of wood! The brain and heart of a true violinist came into the world one summer-day in the city of Nantes, France. This beautiful old Huguenot city was then the residence of Salvator Urso, a musician from Palermo, Sicily, and his Portuguese wife, whose maiden name was Emilie Girouard. Signor Urso was an organist and flutist of rare merit, educated thoroughly in all the principles of his art by his father, who had dane hearty service to music in younger days. On the 13th of June, 1842, Camilla Urso was born,--the first child of a happy union. Though four brothers followed her, the little daughter was most passionately beloved by her father, who gloried in her inheritance of that gift which had been his resource and constant pleasure. The warm Southern sky never
ed, at one of their concerts, Mendelssohn's great concerto. The minister of fine arts, Count Newerkerque, sent for her to play at the palace of the Louvre. Never had she performed before so distinguished an assembly as there in the beautiful cabinet of the minister. Two hundred and fifty gentlemen were present. Diplomatists, princes, and soldiers, with their hard-won crosses, rendered homage to the fair violinist, who saw with delight the faces of Alexander Dumas, Lord Cowley, and Professor Alard. Her finest morceau on this occasion was a Fantasie-Caprice of Vieuxtemps. From Paris she went to Arras, Boulogne, Valenciennes, and Cambray. At Boulogne she appeared at two successive concerts given by the Musical Society of that town,--a circumstance almost unknown in the records of the society. After spending fourteen months abroad, she returned to America, where she has remained ever since. Her life since then has been the same story of travel, study, and concerts. She has
that, if he should ever advance in position and influence, she might claim his protection, and he would be happy to do her any favor in his power. The wily Man of destiny, whose ambition was even then planning the renewal of the empire, and an attempted mastership of Europe, has probably forgotten the pledge. Camilla has never reminded him of it, preferring to depend on her own powers for all place she may hold in the world's esteem. In 1852 the little Urso received propositions from a Mr. Faugas, of North Carolina, to come to America. He offered her a salary of twenty thousand dollars a year; and, as the family was in need of the assistance the child's violin could give, the offer was gladly accepted. Preparations were made for an extensive tour, and a concert-troupe of eight was engaged. Auber, hearing of her intended departure, presented her with the following testimonial, which she justly regards as one of her dearest treasures-- National Conservatory of music and of d
e not forthcoming, and the engagement was hastily broken. The Germania Society now offered an engagement, and the little Urso played for them a year, meeting everywhere with great applause and admiration. At the end of the year she joined Madame Alboni, who was then singing in this country, and performed at six concerts with her in Trippler Hall, New York. In 1852 Madame Henriette Sontag, Countess Rossi, came to this country to make a trial of the public which had received Jenny Lind wit such enthusiasm and generosity. She won honors everywhere by her dramatic talent and marvellous voice. Hearing of Camilla Urso's success, she proposed to add her to her own concert-troupe. At the conclusion of his daughter's engagement with Alboni, Signor Urso accepted the overtures of Sontag, and Camilla joined her at Cincinnati, in December, 1853. Brief as was their connection, the most tender relations were established between them. Nothing could be more beautiful than the sight of
etricious as it is inartistic, but seldom has such an airy spirit of humor expressed itself through the violin. A little story found its way into the Musical Gazette recently, which is so characteristic that it ought to be quoted entire. Ole Bull, Camilla Urso, and Miss Alida Topp met at a party, a few evenings since. You play beautifully, my child, said the Norwegian to Miss Topp, but you can't do the greatest music. No woman can; it takes the biceps of a man. My arm is strong enough, answered the brilliant young pianist, laughing; I break my pianos as well as a man could, and Steinway has to send me a new one every week. You see, responded Ole Bull, turning to Madame Urso, you see how these people treat their pianos.--They bang them, they beat them, they kick them, they smash them to pieces; but our fiddles I how we love them I Oh, yes, indeed, was Camilla's earnest answer, with a flash of her most expressive eyes. Her fiddles are three, her favorite one being
years of training were interrupted by a series of concerts in the departments and a three months tour hi Germany. This was a special indulgence, as pupils of the Conservatoire are not allowed to play in public. Camilla performed at Heidelberg, Baden-Baden, and Mayence, receiving everywhere the recognition due to an artist, not to a prodigy. That German public, so devoted to music in its highest forms, led by masters of such varied genius, took the child to its heart. Nobles and princes paiBaden, and Mayence, receiving everywhere the recognition due to an artist, not to a prodigy. That German public, so devoted to music in its highest forms, led by masters of such varied genius, took the child to its heart. Nobles and princes paid her compliments and bestowed beautiful presents upon her. A countess, who took the most affectionate interest in her, insisted on giving her an ornament she had worn at her own confirmation,--a large cross of pearls attached to a long chain of red coral. From these triumphs she returned to Paris and her studies with Massart. In a few months she appeared at the public concerts of Paris, at the Salle Herz, the Societe Polytechnique, the Conservatoire, and the Association of Musical Artists.
Otto Dresel (search for this): chapter 22
cking of difficulties; utmost delicacy of sentiment and feeling; wonderful staccato; remarkable finish in trills, with an intonation as nearly perfect as the human ear will allow. When to these are added a comprehensive mind, with a warm musical soul vibrating to its work, we have an artist who may be nearly called a phenomenon in the womanly form of Camilla Urso. Signed by the whole orchestra, namely, Carl Zerrahn, William Schultze, William Wieser, Stephen A. Emery, Carl Meisel, Otto Dresel, Thomas Ryan, Wulf C. J. Fries, B. J. Lang, Ernst Perabo, etc. The outside world of mere lovers of music sometimes give their opinions of Camilla's playing in remarks equally earnest, though hardly scientific. One auditor, after listening to her in wide-mouthed amazement, declared with a most emphatic gesture, that she was woman enough to vote. At a concert in Chicago, an admirer, who was asked whether there had been any flowers on the stage that night, answered, None but Camel
oon discovered the insinuating Faugas to be a swindler. The moneys for Camilla's services were not forthcoming, and the engagement was hastily broken. The Germania Society now offered an engagement, and the little Urso played for them a year, meeting everywhere with great applause and admiration. At the end of the year she joined Madame Alboni, who was then singing in this country, and performed at six concerts with her in Trippler Hall, New York. In 1852 Madame Henriette Sontag, Countess Rossi, came to this country to make a trial of the public which had received Jenny Lind with such enthusiasm and generosity. She won honors everywhere by her dramatic talent and marvellous voice. Hearing of Camilla Urso's success, she proposed to add her to her own concert-troupe. At the conclusion of his daughter's engagement with Alboni, Signor Urso accepted the overtures of Sontag, and Camilla joined her at Cincinnati, in December, 1853. Brief as was their connection, the most tende
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