Prague Concert Life, 1850-1881

Event title:

Concert given by the Dulcken sisters

Venue: Platýz

Event type: Art music culture

Date: 04/04/1851 5pm

Season: Lent

Programme comprising:

THALBERG, Sigismond : Fantasie on themes from Donizetti's opera Lucrezia Borgia, pf, op.50
ŠLIKOVÁ, Eliška, Hraběnka : song Stübchens, v, pf
     • Marochetti, Adele : v
arr. unspecified, ?: H. Vieuxtemps: Rêverie , arr. 'melophone' [concertina]
     • Dulcken, Isabella : melophone
THALBERG, Sigismond : song Sprache de Liebe, v, pf
     • Marochetti, Adele : v
CHOPIN, Fryderyck Franciszek : unspecified Nocturne, pf
     • Dulcken, Sophie : pf
MITROWSKY, ?, Countess : unspecified Impromptu, pf
     • Dulcken, Sophie : pf
GOTTSCHALK, Louis Moreau : unspecified piano work Negerlied, pf
SCHULHOFF, Julius : unspecified mazurka, pf
     • Dulcken, Sophie : pf
NIEDERMEYER, Louis : aria da chiesa Pietà, Signore, v, orch
     • Marochetti, Adele : v
REGONDI, Giulio : Fantasie on themes from Meyerbeer's opera Robert le Diable, unspecified [poss. concertina]
     • Dulcken, Isabella :
UNSPECIFIED, ? : Fantasie on the final cavatina from Donizetti's opera Linda di Chamounix, unspecified
     • Dulcken, Isabella :


News of this event was contained in the Tagesanzeiger text of Bohemia 3/4/1851, which specified the date, time (5pm) and venue. The Tagesanzeiger of the following issue of the newspaper, on 4/4/1851, unusually published brief detail of the programme in addition to the date, time (4.30pm), venue of the event.

A review, signed ‘V.’, of this event was published by Bohemia 6/4/1851. The concert was adjudged to have been one of the most favourite entertainments of the season and as brilliant success as the sisters’ first given in the Estates Theatre a few days earlier. The works performed by pianist Sophie and her melophone-playing sister Isabella were listed, including the pieces given as encores. Of both sisters the correspondent noted that the previously positive assessment of their ability following the first performance was entirely accurate. Sophie’s playing was characterized as much by brilliance as by youthful perception, and as calm and sure in execution as technically virtuosic.

Also participating in the concert was the singer Miss Adele Marochetti. Of the vocal works she performed the choice of the ‘highly glorious Pietà’ [undoubtedly Niedermeyer’s Pietà Signore] was thought to have been out of place in the context of the remainder of the transcription- and paraphrase-orientated programme. However, the item served as a replacement for two songs to have been given by Mr Kunz, who did not appear due to hoarseness.

A brief, unsigned, review of this concert appeared in Lumír 10/4/1851. This reported that the sisters again ‘received well-merited all-round applause. The public was not however too numerous, which really is a pity given the excellence of these tender [young] virtuosi. Miss Marochetti-ová sang songs by Countess Šliková and by Thalberg.’ The song performances were not thought to be of the same standard as the performances of the Dulckens, deficient in both expression and execution.

The database programme record comprises combined details from both Bohemia 3/4/1851 and 6/4/1851 texts. The instrument played by Isabella in the two Fantasies was not specified, but was almost certainly the
‘melophone’ that Isabella played in the sisters other concerts. This was an early form of the concertina. The arranger of the work by Vieuxtemps, Regondi, had accompanied the Dulcken sisters on some of their earlier concert tours and was an early proponent of this relatively recently invented instrument.

Summary of sources:

Bohemia (03/04/1851)
Bohemia (04/04/1851)
Bohemia, ein Unterhaltungsblatt (06/04/1851)
Lumír (10/04/1851)