Prague Concert Life, 1850-1881

Event title:

Benefit [musical-]festival arranged by Mr Hraba in aid of fire victims in Chrudim

Venue: Hraba's Restaurant (Garden restaurant)

Event type: Popular social musical and dance events

Date: 12/08/1850

Season: Summer

Beneficiary: Fire victims in Chrudim
Benefactor: Hraba,Josef

Programme unspecified:

General participants:
  • ensemble of the Royal 13th Rifles Battalion: participating ensemble
  • WHIT, Emil: director of ensemble


Information was first published in a report appearing in the Lokalzeitung section of Bohemia 9/8/1850. This stated that ‘For the benefit of fire victims in Chrudim Mr Hraba arranges on 12th August in his brilliantly lit garden venue a great festival [Fest], of which Mr Kapellmeister Whit will personally undertake the direction and also in which the band of the Jäger-Battalion garrisoned here [in Prague] will participate.’ Admission tickets were noted to be available from the music shop of [J.] Hoffmann’s widow [Hoffmann himself had died in October 1849, although the shop continued to bear his name until this time]. The event was listed in the Tagesanzeiger text of Bohemia 11/8/1850 as ‘Monday, 12th August. Afternoon on Hraba’s Garden: Music-production for the benefit of fire victims in Chrudim.’

An unsigned review of this performance was published by Bohemia 15/8/1850. This reported that ‘The Music Festival arranged by Mr Hraba on Monday for the benefit of the fire victims in Chrudim was so extraordinarily popular that the quite roomy venue of the garden could barely contain the crowd of visitors; the expectations of the festival-arranger seemed to have been exceeded. The glorious evening, the precise and good playing of the bands distributed into three points in the garden of the Infantry-Regiment Wimpffen and of the Jäger-Battalion that is stationed here [in Prague], the beautiful lighting and the sociable ... crowd made this truly the most delightful festival of this season. The profit for our unfortunate compatriots will be certainly be very plentiful.’

Bohemia 8/8/1850 reported that news had been brought to Prague by the preceding day’s train from Vienna that at 4pm on 6th August a fire had broken out in Chrudim. The blaze had been fanned by strong winds and had spread so quickly that by the afternoon of 7th August 150 houses had been burnt to ashes [eingeächert].

Summary of sources:

Bohemia (08/08/1850)
Bohemia, ein Unterhaltungsblatt (09/08/1850)
Bohemia, ein Unterhaltungsblatt (11/08/1850)
Bohemia, ein Unterhaltungsblatt (15/08/1850)