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October 02, 1938 - Image 9

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The Michigan Daily, 1938-10-02

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Six Solo Artists, Four Ensemble Groups Corn
Schedule Of 60th Choral Union Concert Pro


Choral Concerts
Giving City Fame
A sMUsic Center
Present Society A Far Cry From Modest Beginning
Of 60 Years Ago; Four Church Choirs Joined
To Establish Earliest Organization

Personalities And Biographies
Of Choral Union Stars Given,

The Choral Union as Michigan students know it today is one of this
country's foremost choral societies and brings to Ann Arbor a series of
concerts during the year and a May Festival such as are seldom heard out-
side of the large musical centers.
Now under the auspices of the School of Music, and composed chiefly
of students, it is a far cry from its inauspicious beginning in the days when
State Street was a dirt road and Michigan's only musical entertainment
was the barbershop quartet and the church choirs-in 1879, to be exact-
four of the church choirs, those of the Methodist, Congregational, Presby-
-__-- 4>terian and Episcopal churches banded
together under the fairly pretentious
name of the Choral Union.
Pres. Sink's Message They met for their own pleasure
Anfih me~nto 'v niPf v

,. ,,*

The 60th Annual Choral Union
Concert Series will present 10 im-
portant attractions. Lawrence Tib-
bett, Kirsten Flagstad, Josef Ilof-
mann, Jose Iturbi, Gregor Piati-
gorsky, and Yehudi Menuhin will
be heard in recitals. Four out-
staiding ensemble groups will
participate. The Cleveland Sym-
phonyOrchestra will be heard un-
der the baton of Artur Rodzinski,
and the Boston Symphony Or-
chestra under Serge Koussevitzky.
The Roth String Quartet of Buda-
pest will come to Ann Arbor for a
second time, and the Budapest
-University Chorus under Vitkor
Vaszy will make its University
The University Musical Society
takes grateful pride in announc-
Ing this annual series, which for
three score years has continued
without interruption. This satis-
faction, However, is tempered
with sadness, for there will be
absent from the audiences one
who was familiarly known to
thusands of concert patrons, Levi
D. Wines, who passed away on
Aug. 9 at the age of 8. Mr. Wines
became a member of the Univer-
sity Choral 'Union in January,
1880; and since that time had
been active in the development of
Ann Arbor's musical activities.
Until 1924 he sang in the Chorus
and to the time of his death served
as treasurer. It was he who during
all these years carried the respon-
sibility of placing in the hands of
participating performers, just be-
fore each concert, the honorari-
ums for their services. Truly his
long period of nearly 60 years of
service has worthily exemplified
the legend of the University Mu-
sical Society: "Ars longa vita
The University M1usical Society
is deeply appreciative of the loyal-
ty and continuous support of the
.music-loving public and con-
fidential trusts that this year's of-
ferings will be graciously and en-
thusiastically received.
President, University Musical
Featured Vocalist
Professional Doctor
Dr. F. C. Farago, soloist with the
Budapest University Chorus, is a man
of extraordinary versatility: A sur-
geon by ┬░profession, he joined the
Chorus to gratify his love of art,
and although he has often sung in
concert and on the radio, and has
had many offers to sing in opera,
he prefers to continue as baritone
soloist with the Chorus.
He was born in Budapest 33 years
ago, the son of an important offi-
cial in the ministry of education. At
the age of four his musical talent was
unmistakable, but his parents wished
him to enter the medical career. He
did so, but secretly kept up his musi-
cal and vocal education. Upon com-

aa vegaVo ive concerts1 n me,
various churches. Their membership
record was not impressive, but evi-
dently their musical skill was, for
the University took notice of them
and offered University Hall for the

Tried Bigger Things
With their new and comparatively
impressive surroundings, they began
to attempt more elaborate choral ar-
rangements, with their own members
as soloists. Perhaps some of the rem-
iniscences you have heard from the
old grads on their musical prowess
had their origin in these early solos.
Our budding little organization, how-
ever, was not long content with its.
town (and occasionally student) solo-
ists, and began to get. even fancier
Began Branching Out
The group began to branch out
more and more until, in 1894, they did
an unprecedented thing and invited
the Boston Festival Orchestra to come
and accompany them. The custom had
been growing of having the last con-
cert of the season the most elaborate
one, for which the members had all
season to practice, and this big con-
cert, usually held in May, occasion-
ally attracted out-of-town guests and
was the highlight of the musical sea-
son. The early Management was evi-
dently as canny as any modern musi-
cal impressario, and after thinking
over the group's budget, decided that,
as long as they were paying travelling
expenses for so large a group as the
Boston Orchestra, they might as well
get their money's worth, so they in-
vited them for two days.
At this first May Festival, they had
a Friday evening, Saturday afternoon
and evening concert. The ticket sale
from other towns was so great that
special trains were arranged to bring
in concert-goers for the Saturday
Success From Start
Even with its first little difficul-
ties the Festival was a great success
and was the predecessor of the great
four-day festival now held yearly in
Hill Auditorium. The Boston Festival
Orchestra returned to Ann Arbor for
10 successive years. Emil Mollenauer
was the conductor. The Chicago Sym-
phony, under Frederick Stock, ap-
peared at the May Festival for 31
years, until 1936, when Leopold Stow-
kowski brought his 100-piece Phila-
delphia Orchestra.
The Philadelphia entourage, under
Eugene Ormandy, returned in 1937
and has been re-engaged for the com-
ing season. At the Festival, a dozen
or more renowned soloists are heard,
including opera stars, concert singers1
and instrumentalists.
Stanley Was Director'
The University Choral Union con-
tinued under the direction of Dr. Al-
bert Stanley, musical director until
1921. Earl V. Moore then took over
the conductorship and still continues
in the same capacity.
As the chorus gradually undertook
more difficult scores, the concerts
during the year also changed in har-
ater. With the amount of rehearsal
necessary for the large choral works.

Iturbi's Genius
Brou'ht Fame
I Early Years
Directed Piano Faculty
At Geneva Conservatory
Before Coming Here
At an age when most children mess
the piano keys up with their, jam-
laden fingers, Jose Iturbi was a recog-
nized concert pianist, giving perform-
ances before amazed and excited
Spanish audiences. At seven, this
precocious genius was attending the.
local conservatory, studying and giv-
ing lessons to pupils three and four┬░
times his age.
The people of Valencia, where he
was born, made up a purse to send the
wonder youth to Paris. These were
extremely hard days for Iturbi. He
studied at the Conservatory all day,
played in the cafes of the Boulevards
at night to earn money for board and
room. But, these efforts were amply
rewarded, for, at 17, he was grad-
uated with the highest honors.
It was during a lean period at the
beginning of his career that Iturbi,
under a nom de plume, was playing
in the cafe of a fashionable hotel in
Zurich. The telephone rang. A call
for Jose Iturbi. The young pianist
confessed his identity, answered. The
director of the 'Conservatory of Ge-
neva spoke. It was a pleasure, he
said, to offer him the position of head
of the piano faculty, a post once held
by Liszt. Iturbi stayed in Switzer-
land 'itwo years, then left to embark
on the life he had chosen, that of a
virtuoso. That was the real be-
ginning of a concert career which
was to catapult him into internation-
al fame.
The Spanish pianist arrived in this
country for the first time in October,
1929, sailed for Europe in January,
1930. In these several months he had.
made his name a household word in
musical America. Returning for his
second American tour, the following

Musical Prodigies From
Foreign Lands Gained
Lasting Fame In U.S.
Yehudi Meuhin, born in New York,
was raised in San Francisco from the
age of nine months. At three he was
given a tiny violin; at four a child's
size instrument was placed in his
hands and he began lessons on it first
with Sigmund Anker, then with Louis
Persinger. At seven Yehudi made his
first big public appearance as solo-
ist with the San Francisco Orchestra.
In the following year he gave a re-
cital at the Manhattan Opera House,
New York, and after a year of further
study sailed with his parents for study
in Europe with Georges Enesco and
Adolph Busch. After achieving instant
success at his Paris debut with the
Lamoureux Orchestra, Yehudi re-
turned to his native land for the sen-
sational debut with the New York
Symphony Orchestra, Nov. 25, 1927,
playing the Beethoven Concerto.
Another outstanding event in Ye-
hudi's early days was his appearance
in the Berlin Philharmonic Hall play-
ing the three B's (Bach, Beethoven,
Brahms) Concertos in one orchestral
appearance with Bruno Walter con-
ducting the Symphony Orchestra.
This great historical event was re-
peated later that month in both Paris
and Dresden.
Throughout his formative years,
Yehudi had the rare privilege of study
and discussion with such friends as
Arturo Toscanini, Bruno Walter, Sam
Franko and Sir Edward Elgar. For
the past two years he has been in re-
tirement, studying and perfecting his
technique. His present engagements
include appearances in the leading
cities of America, the British Isles
and Continental Europe.
A Quartet of
Naturalized Americans
All four members of the renowned
Roth String Quartet are Hungarians
hailing from Budapest, now natural-
ized American citizens. Each studied
for a period at the famous Buda-
pest Academy of Music; three of them
have been pupils of Jeno Hubay and
the fourth of the celebrated peda-
gogue Schiffer, assistant of David
Feri Roth, founder and first violin,
was born in 1899, and before organiz-
ing the Quartet, held the post of first
concertmaster of the Grosse Volksoper
in Berlin. Jenn Antal, second violin,
born in 1900, was a concert artist.
Ferenc Molnar, viola, born in 1895,
was a professor of music in Budapect.
Janos Scholz, cello, was born in 1903
of a family for generations associated
with the musical life of the capital,
and himself was a noted chamber
music player before joining the Roth
Each member of the group was thus
a solo artist of distinction before the
Quartet was organized in 1926. In that
year it made its first outstanding suc-
cess in Paris, where its debut concert
was so enthusiastically received that
it was forced to give 18 more concerts
the same season in the French capital.
Two years later, it made its American
debut at the Pittsfield Chamber Mu-
sic Festival under the auspices of
Mrs. Elizabeth Sprague Coolidge, and
since then its popularity has been
parallel on both sides of the Atlantic.
It has been especially popular at
American universities, having played
at more than 50 in the past decade.
It recently gave its 600th concert at
England's-Oxford University.
"Playing for college audiences isi




Tibbett's Life
Hard Struggle
He Credits Love Of Music
As Well As Ability For
Surmounting Obstacles
The school of life has been a hard
one for Lawrence Tibbett, yet it has
been his best and most valuable
teacher. The most famous American
baritone has not allowed his tremen-
dous successes to blot out the mem-
ory of the many years of hardship
and privation and is always ready
with sympathy and encouragement
for those treading the tortuous path
that was once his.
"I was lucky to be born with a
good voice," confesses Tibbett, "but
that, alone wasn't enough to carry
me through. Added to the voice, thank
God, was a passionate love of music,
and my enthusiasm, instead of wan-
ing with accomplishment, increased
year by year.
"At times I crawled on bloody
hands and knees toward my goal; I
slaved, I sacrificed, I fgught and died
a hundred deaths. But for that I de-
serve not one cheer. Hundreds of
thousands of men have struggled
harder than I to achieve an ambition
and every one of them has suffered
more than I.
These were just a few of my ex-
periences: Doing whatever my voice
could find to do, in church choirs,
light opera, and moving picture the-
atres; of being near to eviction be-
cause I could not meet the rent; then,
there was that most crucial time of
all, when I borrowed on my life in-
surance, all that I had, that I might
go to New York and get the final
studies I needed to put me on a high-
er plane. That was a crisis of harrow-
ing uncertainty.
"Hard struggles and experience al-
ways leave their mark on a man's
mind. He thinks more deeply; he has
broader views; he has a stronger fel-
low feeling for humanity. These are
the things that experince and struggle
brought me."
tained at the theatre ticket office."
The New York public, stimulated by
a good deal of advance ballyhoo,
bought every seat and standing room.
What they saw was a stocky little
Polish boy with pink skin, a turned-
up nose and complete self-possession.
He stepped out upon the huge stage
before the orchestra of 100 musicians,
took his place at the contrastingly
enormous piano, struck the first notes
of the Beethoven Piano Concerto No.
1, and musical history was made.
Little Josef was then 10 years old.

Kirsten Flagstad Returns; Iturbi, Hofmann, Ment
And Piatigorsky To Play; Boston Symphony,
Roth Quartet, Budapest Chorus Comning

Lawrence Tibbett To Open
Series In Recital Oct. 22
Cleveland Orchestra Nex

American solo artist scheduled to ap-
pear in the series.
The Cleveland Orchestra, with Ar-
tur Rodzinski conducting, will play
here Nov. 7. For almost 20 years the
Cleveland Orchestra has experienced
a steady growth in reputation, and is
ranked among the foremost organiza-
tions of its kind. Mr. Rodzinski has
served as guest conductor of the New
York Philharmonic Symphony Or-
chestra and of many other renowned
orchestras in America. For 10 weeks
last season he conducted the NBC or-
Iturbi Is Third Artist
Jose Iturbi, world-famed Spanish\
pianist, will present tne third concert
Nov. 22. Trained at the Valencia and
Paris Conservatories in his youth, he
has won fame as both a conductor and
pianist. He has played in Ann Arbor
>n two previous occasions, and two
years ago served as guest conductor
at one of the May Festival concerts.
Kirsten Flagstad, spectacular Wag-
nerian soprgno discovered two years
ago at Bayreuth by Gatti-Cassazza,
and who has been a feature attraction
at the Metropolitan Opera ever since,
comes here Nov. 30. So great is her
popularity she has even been credited
with being the saviour of the Met
itself. Her concert appearances have
been equally successful, and she capti-
vated Ann Arbor audiences on her
two previous appearances here.
The Boston Symphony Orchestra,
with Serge Koussevitzky conducting,
will play the last concert of 1938 Dec.
7. This distinguished orchestra, now
in its fifty-eighth year, tours rather
infrequently, but has been in Ann
Arbor many times before, most re-
cently in 1936. Maestro Koussevitzky
has directed the BostonSymphony for
10 years, and during that time has
improved its personnel and broad-
ened its repertory to a substantial
degree. It has become especially not-
ed for its renditions of contemporary
Hofmann Comes Jan. 10
Josef Hofmann, who last season
celebrated his golden jubilee in Ameri-
ca, will appear here as the second
pianist in the series and the first
artist of the new year, Jan. 10, 1939.
Mr. Hofmann first appeared in Ameri-
ca Nov. 29, 1887, at the age of 10,
at the Metropolitan Opera House,
following a sensational tour of Eur-
ope. His debut was immediately hailed
by the New York press, and the prodi-
gy grew up to be one of the recognized
geniuses of the musical world. To-
day, at 60, he is still in his prime, and
his devoted following throughout
America grows larger every year.
TherBudapest University Chorus,
under the direction of Viktor Vaszy,
will be heard here for the first time
Jan. 25. Although well-known in
Europe, and wit ha tradition dating
back to the eighteenth century, this
organization has only made one brief
tour of America, in 1936. The group
will be in this country five weeks
this year. Thee chorus is composed
of 40 male vocalists and its repertory
consists chiefly of its native Hungar-
ian folk sonngs.
Menuhin Returns To Stage
Yehudi Menuhin, violinist, who a
decade ago startled New York with his
debut as a child of 10, and who has
just returned to the concert stage

Lawrence Tibbett will provide the initial attraction when the 10-concert
schedule of the Choral Union opens Oct. 22. The distinguished baritone will
be making his first appearance in Ann Arbor since 1935. He will be followed
during the year by five solo artists and four ensemble groups, one of the
most impressive arrays of talent in the 60 years of the Choral Union's exist-
Mr. Tibbett, who has been termed "the most interesting artist before the
public today," has gained fame not only in concert and opera-but in motion
pictures and radio, until today he is perhaps the best known musical figure
in America. He is the only native,&

Program Of Concerts
Lawrence Tibbet, baritone ...
... ................. Oct. 27
Cleveland Orchestra .... ..Nov. 7
Artur Rodzinski, Conductor
Jose Iturbi, pianist ....... Nov. 22
Kirsten Flagstad, soprano . Nov. 30

Boston Symphony Orchestra.
....... . ...... ..D ec.
Serge Koussevitzky, conductor


Josef Hofmann, pianist . . Jan. 10
Budapest University Chorus
. . .............Jan. 25
Viktor Paszy, Conductor
Yehudi Menuhin, violinist .Feb. 15
Gregor Piatigorsky, violoncellist
......... . ....Feb. 27
Roth String Quartet of Buda-
pest..................March 9
Feri Roth, first violin
Jeno Antal, second violin
Ferenc Molnar, viola
Janos Scholz, violoncellist
Greatest Stars
Dot 60-Year
Concert History
For 60 successive years the Choral
Union has presented to Ann Arbor
audiences the best obtainable in con-
cert performers. The list of artists
who have appeared locally reads like
the roll of a musical who's-who. The
past 10' years, for example have pre-
sented the following stars:
Rosa PonSelle, Galli-Curci, Vladi-
mir Horowitz, Flonzaley, Quartet,
Fritz Kreisler, Roland Hayes, Prague
Teacher's Chorus, Rachmaninoff and
Yelly D'Aranyi.
Giovanni Martinelli, Detroit Sym-
phony Orchestra, Paderewski, English
Singers, Lener-Budapest String Quar-
tet, Claudia Muzio, Jascha Heifetz,
Vladimir Horowitz and Elisabeth
Fritz Kreisler, Claire Clairbert, Al-
exander Brailowsky, Don Cossack
Russian Chorus, Detroit Symphony
Orchestra, Jose Iturbi, Albert Spauld-
ing, Paul Robeson and Rachmanin-
John McCormack, Boston Sym-
phony Orchestra, Ossip Gabrilo-
witsch, Revelers Quartet, Detroit
Symphony, Don Cossackis, Yehudi
Menuhin, Percy Grainger and Rosa
Boston Symphony, Lawrence Tib-
bett, Detroit Symphony, Efrem Zym-
balist, Nathan Milstein, Myra Hess,
Budapest String Quartet, Segrid
Onegin, Vladimir Horowitz, and Pad-


October, he played 77 concerts from
cost to coast. His third trans-con-
tinental tour during 1931-32 dupli-
cated and confirmed his first tri-
umphs. Since then he has come back
every season and has played more
concerts in this country in the past
nine years than any other pianist ex-
cept Paderewski.

E.. Pad rw ca a epreckwihawysgvsu
All artists are nomads. The world an experience which always gives us
is their home and music is an inter- nthrl. Feri Roth sy "Some
natona laguae. ut turi hs Iof the members of our college audi-
national language. But Iturbi has Iences are so well educated in music
his preferences. For many yearshe e saesowl dcte.i ui
has preaerpied-a-terre in yayershe that they are highly critical, and we,
has had a ederrn nPatis and know that we must play even better
recently the French Government dee- than our best for them. They do not
orated him with the .Cross of thethaneothesotsereyadunt
Chevalier of the Legion of Honor for have the polite reserve that adults
his services in behalf of Gallic" music, sometimes do, and will not evade the
issue if they don't like us. So we must
In the summer he spends his holiday
in Spain.mmwo hours fro Val ia make them like us. They'll always tell
m pm. Two hours from Valencia usone way or another.''
he owns a large orange grove where us-Roth, Antal, Molnar and Scholz
he lives for brief but happy weeks not only work together but play to-
the life of a Spanish country gentle- gothonly work ther but pat-
man. gether as well. They spend their vaca-
Iturbi's spiritual home, however, is dions together and exhibit a camra-
the United States. He is happy here, derie rare among those who must
admires the tempo and spirit of the spend long hours of gruelling practice
country, find sthe musical public the together.


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