The Danish Music Review. Associate editor: Carl Willum Hansen
The Danish Music Review
Associate Editor: Carl Willum Hansen
How to Make a Dictionary
By Gunnar Heerup
"The International Cyclopedia of Music and Musicians", ed. by Oscar Thompson, was issued in 3 editions in 1938, 1943 and 1944. 1946 saw the publication of a 4th edition, ed. by Nicolas Slonimsky. This dictionary is one of the finest works of reference I have had the opportunity of seeing. Paper, printing, binding and general arrangement are excellent. On the, cover the following words are printed, "In this first post-war edition the, entire book has been brought up to date". I cannot possibly verify the correetness of this statement in all respects, but I dare, say that as far as Denmark and Danish music, are concerned this assertion is void of truth.
If one did not know better, one would think that all intercourse between the United States and Denmark stopped in the year 1924, and yet the truth is this: the editor would have obtained all necessary information about Danish musie if he had taken th.e trouble to send a post-card to Denmark. During the War a post-card to Sweden would have been of the same use.
Excepting the years of death of a few composers, practically nothing of wh,,at has happened in this country these last 20 years has been included in the book. We are, pleased to learn that Fini Henriques the composer and William Behrend the musical historian are still alive in the dictionary. On the other hand, we are sorry to find that all Danish composers - with. the, exception of Knudåge Rilsager - ceased composing in 1924, and with. some astonishment we learn that a number of Danish composers have not yet been born. This holds good of Ebbe Hamerik, Vagn Holmboe, Finn Höffding, Herman D. Koppel, Svend S. Schultz and Svend Erik Tarp, who have all contributed to the great forms of music - the opera, the ballet, the symphony, the concerto, etc. Their names are not contained in the dictionary. Nor has Professor Knud Jeppesen, our leading musicologist, been found worthy of a biography, though his name, is known all over the world - -with the exception of the United States. It may interest our Swedish friends that the composer Gdsta Nystroem, who is approaching the age of 60 in Europe, has not yet been born in the United States.
The article on Egisto Tango shows how dangerous it is to take up one's residence in Denmark. You simply disappear from the musical world. Thus we have no news of him after 1925, when he went to the Vienna Volksoper. The faet that for nearly 20 years he has been the conductor of the orchestra of the Royal Theatre and Opera House in Copenhagen is not even hinted at. We should do justice to the editor, however, and point out that a number of Danish coniposers who have sunk into oblivion in this country still figure in the book, Krygell, for instance, who receives 12 lines of comment. In comparison 8 lines, abundant in mistakes, are awarded to Carl Nielsen, whom we in Scandinavia rank with Sibelius. The latter is dealt with in an artiele of more than 8 pages.
Enough of that. The editors of the book have aeted in an irresponsible manner, not only to Danish musie, but also tb the international public who are likely to buy the dietionary, and one's confidence in the reliability ,ind soundness of the book in other respects has been shaken.
You ask how such a thing can happen. The reply is simple. From an American point of view the Scandinavian countries are so small that they are void of interest, of culture even. lt is only natural therefore that among a staff of contributors numbering 100 names of international reputation a Scandinavian should not be ineluded. lt is easier to copy artieles from an old dietionary. In the present case A. Eaglefield-Hull's "Dietionary of Modern Music and Musicians" issued in 1924 seems to have come in useful, and great care has been taken to avoid alterations in these valuable musical documents.
Who raved about One World and Equality Among the Nations? Certainly not the editors of "The International Cyclopedia of Music and Musicians".
The Emotional Aspect of modern Music
Theauthor discusses the subtle question of what is ineant by subject-matter in music, referring to - and at the same time questionflig - the conventional classification of modern Danish composers into two groups: those who write music of a, rather diverting type, and those whose music is of a more serious nature, a distinction of some importance in this country, since We have composers who are active inside both branches. The moral qualities of music are emphasized: musie with an "edifying" tendency has a moral connotation; "subversive" musie is immoral. He finishes by asking the composers if they do not think the present time requires, music with certain emotional qualities rather than music that merely sparkles.
Nodern Danish 1.Music in Copenhagen,
The list at page 51 completes the list of new foreign music in the last number.
Aksel Sehiötz's Illness
In December 1946 Aksel Schiötz, the Danish singer, was operated on by Professor Olivecrona in Stockholm. He was suffering from a tumour of the auditory nerve. The operation was satisfactory, and his recovery is proceeding well, though it may take inonths before he is all right again. - The following recordings made by Aksel Schiötz are recommended: "The Beautiful Maid of the Mill" (Schubert) and "A Poet's Love" (Schumann). He was a member of the cast at the first performances of Britten's "The Rape of Lueretia".
Grace Moore's Death
When a Dutch plane crashed in the airport of Copenhagen on January 26th, Grace Moore, the famous American operatic star, was killed. The night, before she, had sung to an audience of 4000 enthusiastie Copenhagen citizens. In the, same accident Gerda Neumann, the wellknown Danish musical artiste and sister of Ulrik Neuniann, and Hans Henning Thornsen, the Danish concert agent, lost their lives. The latter was the London correspondent of The Danish Music Review. His death is a great loss to the editors.
The I. S. C. M. in Copenhagen
The international jury has selected the following works for the ISCM Festival, which. will take place in Copenhagen from May 29th to June 4th. Members of the 19i7 jury are: Johan Bentzon (Denmark), Sten Broman (Sweden), Raphael Kubelik (Czechoslovakia), André Souris (Belgiurn) and Hugo Weisgall (U.S.A.). Johan Bentzon was replaced by Erik Tuxen owing to Bentzon's illness. The meeting was presided over by Professor Edw. J. Dent.
I. S. C. M. 2 1 st -Uusical Festival, Copenhagen
Thursdag Mag 29th. lst Orchestral Concert at Broadcasting House at 8 p.m.
Vagn Holmboe (Denmark): Symphony No. 5.
Frank Martin (Switzerland): Petite Symphonie concertante.
Vitezslav Novak (Czechoslovakia): De profundis.
Roberto, Gerhard (Republican Spain): Don Quizote, Ballet suite.
Saturday Mag 31st. lst Chamber Music
Concert at the Odd Fellow Building at 4 p.m.
Willi Burkhard (Switzerland): String-quartet No. 2.
Anton Heiller (Austria) : Toccata for piano.
Georgi Kosa (Hungary) : Trio for two violins and cello.
Jan Kapr (Czechoslovakia) : Piano sonata.
Herman D. Koppel (Denmark):
Sextet for wind instruments and piano.
Sunday June Ist. 2nd Chamber Music Con cert at Lund (in Sweden, 21/2 hours' journey from Copenhagen) at 4 p.m.
Karl Birger Blomdahl (Sweden): Trio for Strings.
Aaron Copland (U.S.A.): Piano sonata.
Niels Viggo Bentzon (Denmark): Partita for piano.
Serge Prokofieff (Russia) : Violin sonata.
Benjamin Frankel (England): String-quartet No. 2.
Monday June 2nd. Chamber Orchestral Concert at the 0. F. B. at 8 p.m.
David van de Woesfyne (Belgium) : Serenade for 12 instruments and piano.
Elizabeth Maconchy (England): Clarinet concerto.
Adone Zecchi (Italy): Duae Fuga compositae sonis quatuor.
Gino Negri (Italy) : Spoon River Anthology for solo voices,
choir and orchestra.
Camille Schmit (Belgium): Préludes joyeux.
Fartein Valen (Norway): Sonetto di Michelangelo.
Hilding Rosenberg (Sweden): Concerto for strings.
Tuesday Jane 3rd. 3rd Chaniber Music
Concert at the 0. F. B. at S p.ni.
Rudolf Escher (Holland): Arcana Musae Dona, suite for piano.
Klement Slavicky (Czechoslovakia) Trio for wind instruments.
Ernest Bloch (U.S.A.): Stringquartet No. 2.
André Jolivet (France): Sonata for piano.
Ildebrando Pizetti (Italy) : Tre composizioni corali.
Wednesday June 4th. 2nd Orchestral Concert at Broadcasting House at 8 p.m.
Gösta Nystroem. (Sweden): Sinfonia breve.
Michal Spisak (Poland): Bassoon Concerto.
Harald Sæverud (Norway): Galdreslåtten, symphonic Dance and Passacaglia.
Jean Absil (Belgium): Variations symphoniques.
Roger Sessions (U.S.A.) : Symphony No. 2.
In choosing works by Prokofieff and Sessions, the jury has made use of its right to select for artistic reasons a few works not submitted for judgment.
Additional arrangements: opera andballet at the Royal Theatre, orchestral concerts at the Tivoli Gardens, chamber music, etc.
The following countries have joined the ISCM: Argentine, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Czechoslovakia, Denmark, Egypt, France, England, Holland, Hungary, Iceland, Norway, Palestine, Poland, Sweden, Switzerland, U.S.A., Yugoslavia. - Admitted recently: Portugal, Italy', Republican Spain and China.