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March 18, 1951 - Image 10

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Publication:
Michigan Daily, 1951-03-18

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'4

THE MICHIGAN DAILY

SUNDAY, MARi1 8, 1951

THE MICHIGAN DAILY N

VIVACIOUS, VERSATILE:
Youth Chorus Director Has Many Jobs

By DAVIS CRIPPEN
Vivacious, white-haired Mar-
guerite V. Hood, director of the
May Festival's Youth Chorus, is :
a woman of many titles and jobs.j
In addition to the chorus of
400 children, Miss Hood is an as-
sociate professor of musical edu-
cation in the School of Education,
supervisor of music in the Ann
Arbor Public schools and president
of the Music Educator's National
Conference.
* * *
THE POSITION as president of
the music educator's group is the
one which really complicates
Prof. Hood's existence. The con-
ference is made up of 20,000 mu-
sic teachers in all parts of the
country and as president of it
Parof. Hood is required to do a
great deal of traveling.
When she was elected to the
presidency she finally bowed to
the fact that there are only 24
hours in a day and resigned as
director of the Women's Glee
Club, a job she'd had for five
years.
Appropriately enough w h e n
Prof. Hood left, the chorus pre-
sented a suitcase to her.
* * *
ANOTHER EFFECT of her new
job is to make it just a little
harder to do all her work. Look-
ing at the pile of papers, on her
desk, Prof. Hood said sadly, "I'm
never caught up, but I'm usually
not as far behind as this."
Prof. Hood is a native of
Drayton, N. D., the daughter of
Noted Arist,
WiI e E1jO
Active Life

* *

.4 4.

[(ape!! Likes
'Good Jazz',
Painting
William Kapell, brilliant young
pianist who has thrilled critics
and audiences throughout the
world and thus earned himself
the title of the pianist with the
"seven league boots career," will
be featured here in the May Fes-
tival.
This "seven league boot career"
officially began in July 1942 when
Kapell made his first appearance
with the Philharmonic Symphony
in New York.
* *
HE PERFORMED Katchatur-
ian's new Soviet-Armenian con-
certo. Because he performed this
concerto so often, in addition to
recording it, Kapell acquired the
first of his many nicknames,
"Katchaturian Kapell."
But of course, Kapell's reper-
toire does not begin and end
with Katchaturian. He has ex-
cited audiences with the mas-
terpieces of all the old masters.
Kapell, however, enthusiastic-
ally believes in the international
importance of American compos-
ers and prefers to play the music
of today.
"The old masters are wonder-
ful, but I think some of the musi-
* * *
WILLIAM KAPELL
* 4

THEBOM STATES VIEWS:

Famous Singer Supports
Suffering Opera-Goers

L

After years of struggling with
librettos and a frustrating tangle
of foreign languages, long-suffer-
ing opera-goers today can expect
a word in their behalf from at
least one quarter of the musical
world.
Blanche Thebom, leading Me-
tropolitan Opera mezzo-soprano,
recently stated: "When a tired
business-man goes to the theatre
he does not want to read a lib-
retto to understand the story. He
wants to relax and enjoy himself
as he would at a Broadway musi-
cal. And," she added,. "there is
no reason why he should not."
* * *
PENNSYLVANIA - BORN Miss
Thebom has other characteristics
as unique as her stand on present-
ing opera in English.
A comparative newcomer to
the Metropolitan Opera, this
long-tressed singer was a primj
secretary in a Canton, Ohio of-
fice just 10 years ago.
Then, with very little vocal'
training but a naturally fine voice,
* 4 *

she attracted one of Marian An-
derson's former accompanists,
who, pleased with her singing,
launched her upon her career by
arranging for additional musical
instruction and establishing con-
tracts.
THEN, FROM HER New York
debut in January, 1944 to her de-
but with the Royal Opera in
Stockholm nearly six years later,
where she was called back for a
record-breaking 45 'curtain calls,
Miss Thebom has established her-
self firmly within the ranks of the
operatic "big time."
However, beyond the scope of
her vocal versatility, Miss The-
bom evidences traits ranging
from a love of love to a love of
the kitchen and collecting ree-
ords.
Perhaps the influence of her
Swedish-born parents has much
to do with the culinary abilities
she possesses. This dark, sophis-
ticated woman often delights her
epicurean friends with such dish-
es as her personal favorite, Swe-
dish meatballs.
* * *
BOASTING AN extensive music
library, Miss Thebom can fre-
quently be found haunting music
shops where she carries on an avid
search for rare and second-hand
albums.
She also enjoys movies, con-
certs of all kinds, and, especi-
ally, dances. Her specialties
. along this line are the rumbas
and sambas.
When; queried concerning the
amorous side of her life, Miss The-
bom responded: "Love is only a
game to all my opera characters;
so I never get my man. However,"
she says flashing her famous
smile, "I reserve that ... for real
life."

OSCAR NATZKA

« *

4 * *

PROF. MARGUERITE V. HOOD
* * * * * *
a country doctor who attended o learns part of the work chosen

Oscar Natzka, Noted Basso
To be Featured in Festival
C.

what is now Wayne University
Medical School. She received
her B. A. from Jamestown Col-
lege in Jamestown, N. D. and
later did graduate work at
Northwestern and the Univer-
sity of Southern California.
In 1942, Prof. Hood came here
to take up her duties in the School
of Music, the Ann Arbor school
system and with the Youth Cho-
rus.
* * *
IN TAKING OVER the direc-
tion of the Youth Chorus, Prof.
Hood became head of an organi-
zation which had been a feature
of the May Festivals since 1913.
To prepare for the festival
each year, every pupil in the
Ann Arbor grammar schools

for the festival. The best sing-
ers are then picked and re-
hearsals start.
After numerous unit rehearsals
and some ten full rehearsals the
group is ready for its festival ap-
pearance.
WITH THE EASE of an experi-
enced politician, Prof. Hood avoid-
ed a question about which of her
many activities she liked the
best.
There was one thing about the
Youth Chorus that stuck in her
mind.
"The kids are always falling in
that fountain between Hill Audi-
torium and the League," she said
smiling. "It's our biggest prob-
lem."#

.

i
3

Tossy Spivakovsky is the type
of artist who prompts violin in-
structors to tell their students,
"Listen, but don't look."
Spivakovsky has gained wide-
spread recognition for his unortho-
dox and individual manner of
holding the bow-arm of the violin
in a, high, angular position.
IT IS THIS unique manner
which has occasioned the violin
instructors' admonitions. However,
many wonder if he gets his tone
and technique by this unusual pg-
sition. Wherever he. gets it, the
critics agree that Spivakovsky's
violin has power.
Born February 4, 1910 in Odes-
sa, the young Russian concert
artist soon commenced his mu-
sical training, which he began
in Berlin. He continued his for-
mal training and developed into
one of the outstanding European
violinists prior to World War II.
Spivakovsky arrived in the Uni-
ted States in the fall of 1943, when
he as invited to play the New
York premiere of the Bartok violin
concerto, under the auspices of
Artur Rodzinski, then director of
the New York Symphony.
* * *
THE PREMIERE brought Spi-
vakovsky over-night fame. He has
appeared during the ensuing years
under the foremost conductors in
the country.

Oscar Natzka, well-known bass-
baritone, will appear as one of the
featured guest artists in this sea-
son's May Festival.
Natzka, a native New Zealander,
was hailed in his first United
States appearances in 1948 as an
"important addition to the Ameri-
can musical scene". Since then he
has had three successful seasons
with the New York City Opera,
and has toured the countries
"down under", in addition to mak-
ing guest appearances throughout
the United States and Canada.
* * *
THE SIX FOOT two inch singer,
who served six years in the Cana-
dian Navy, from which he emerged
a Commander, was a blacksmith
before he was a basso. He was
only a young boy when his father
died, and to support his mother he
became a blacksmith's apprentice.
At first swinging a 14 pound
hammer was hard work for a 15
year old, but in time it is said
to have endowed him with the,
great lung power necessary for
his singing.
After his voice matured Natzka
began to develop a bass of great
power.
* * *
NATZKA WENT to London and
studied there under Albert Garcia,
grandson of the teacher of Jenny
Lind. From the studio of his
teacher he went directly to Covent

II

Garden where he began a long
series of leading roles.
Under the baton of Sir Thom-
as Beecham, he appeared in
"Rigoletto", "Die Meistersinger",
)"Faust" and "The Serf". In 1940
he returned to his homeland to
take part in the Music Festival
of the New Zealand Cantenary
Celebration. +
Following this he enlisted in the
Canadian Navy where he served
for six years doing patrol and con-
voy duty on corvettes in the North
Atlantic.
* * *
MUSIC CAME into his life again
when he was transferred ashore
to sing in a musical revue, "Meet
the Navy", in which he appeared
more than 1,000 times all over
England, Allied Europe and Can-
ada.
Natzka's appearance in Ann Ar-
bor will be one of his current set
of guest appearances throughout
the county. He will be heard
here May 4 and 6, singingas solo-
ist with the University Choral
Union.

BLANCHE THEBOM

Eileen Farrell Gains Fame, y B ek n rdto a ue
y Braig*rdtonlRl

I

cians writing today will be
old masters of tomorrow."
* * *

the

Program Highlights
THREE SYMPHONIES: BERLIOZ Fantastic Symphony;
SHOSTAKOVICH Symphony No. 1; and CRESTON Symphony No.3.
THREE CONCERTOS: CHOPIN Piano Concerto No. 2; PROKO-
FIEFF Piano Concerto No. 3; and SIBELIUS Violin Concerto.
THREE CHORAL WORKS: VERDI "Manzoni" Requiem; LAM-
BERT "Summer's Last Will and Testament" (American premiere);
and American Folk Songs (orchestrated by Dorothy James).
ARIAS FROM 10 OPERAS, including "Carmen," "Herodiade,"
"Marriage of Figaro," "La Boheme," and "Die Fledermaus."
-t

Eileen Farrell is the exception
to the singing rule as far as getting
a big break in show business goes.
Usually unknown artists reach
their brand-new audiences through
* . .
EILEEN FARRELL
* * *
the mediums of radio, records,
concerts and television appear-
ances. But not Miss Farrell. She
made her first hit on radio alone
in 1941 by impersonating Rosa
Ponselle on NBC's "March of
Time."

This single appearance brought
a contract from CBS. The next
year she had her own radio show
and in the summer of 1943, she
became the singing star on the
"Prudential Family Hour."
But singing with its hard work
is no novelty to Miss Farrell's f am-
ily. The child of an ex-vaudeville
singing team, her mother started
to give her singing lessons when
she was very young. As Miss Far-
rell's singing progressed, her
mother sent her to New York to
study under an old friend who was
teaching there.
Just two years later, her radio
career began and since then, her
remarkably powerful and clear
voice has thrilled thousands. She
made her formal concert debut last
October in New York.
Off-stage and off-mike, Miss
Farrell is Mrs. Robert Reagen. She
likes to knit and cook and justifies
her healthy appetite by saying "I
need lots of stamina if I'm going to
be a Wagnerian soprano someday.
I just have to eat a lot."
Completely unaffected about her
singing success, Miss Farrell ad-
vises young singers to "be natur-
al, above all, be natural in your
singing."

WITH THE GENERAL appre-
ciation in the United States has
arisen a consciousness in our
composers that they are not only
composers but American compos-
ers, the young pianist once said.
When 28 year old Kapell finds
time, he takes up paint and brush
to enjoy himself at his favorite
hobby. Kapell also likes "really
good jazz." His desire for only
the best jazz stems from a firm
belief that "people ought to seek
out the finest that is offered in
life."

,,

A

The University Musical Society
presents
TWO GREAT PIANISTS

I

WILLIAM KAPELL
Spectacular Pianist
will play Sunday, May 6
at the
MAY FESTIVAL

Contrary to the popular con-
cept of a violin virtuoso, Spivak-
ovsky is modest, self-effacing,
handsome, athletic and well-
built. By his own admission, he
(Continued on Page 3)

Ii

U

ARTUR RUBINSTEIN
World Famed Pianist
will appear Thursday, May 3
at the
MAY FESTIVAL

V

OCAIL

SOLOIIS

TF

S

I

OSCAR NATZKA

and

0

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S

COLOMAN de PA'TAKY

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FOUR WOMEN ARTISTS TO SING AT FESTIVAL -
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The popular British Basso
of New Zealand

Well-Known Eurobean Tenor who

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