Prague Concert Life, 1850-1881

Event title:

General examinations for pupils of the Private Institute for the Blind

Venue: Seminary Institute for the Blind

Event type: Examinations and didactic events

Date: 21/07/1851 9am-12noon

Season: Summer

Programme including:

General participants:
  • Seminary Institute for the Blind: pupil(s) of institute
UNSPECIFIED, ? : unspecified vocal works, vv
KLEIN, Bernhard : unspecified Ave Maria, vv
MOZART, Wolfgang Amadeus : unspecified fugue, 2vl, va, vc
UNSPECIFIED, ? : unspecified Concerto for two violins, 2vl, [orch / pf arr?]
     • Pospíšil, Jan : vl Pawikowský, Leopold : vl
CRUSELL, Bernhard Henrik : unspecified Concerto for clarinet and orchestra, cl, orch [/ pf arr]
     • Bartík, Josef : cl
MOSCHELES, Ignaz : Concerto for piano and orchestra Gesellschaftskoncert, pf, orch [/ pf arr?]
     • Goldschmidt, Eleonore : pf
UNSPECIFIED, ? : unspecified Overture, [arr] pf 4 hands
     • Riedl, Anton : pf Čermák, Josef : pf
DUSÍK, Jan Ladislav : Concerto for pianoforte and orchestra Military, pf, orch [/ pf arr?], nr.8, B-flat major, op.40
     • Zawadil, ? : pf


Bohemia 17/7/1851 published news that the public examinations of 29 pupils of the private Institute for the education of the blind poor [Privat-Erziehungsinstitute für arme Blinde] would take place between 9am and 12 noon on Monday 21st July. The examinations were noted to cover religious education, singing, music, natural history, geography employing the use of a tactile map, history of Bohemia, grammar , numeracy, writing with chalk, and ‘Bleifeder und Stacheltypen’ [possibly typography]. No specific advance details were given about the musical content of the examination.

A review, signed ‘H-r.’ of this event was published within the Lokalzeitung section of Bohemia 27/7/1851. The critic reported that the occasion was a ‘brilliant success’. Following a short prayer pupils were examined in religious studies, and the Ave Maria by B. Klein was sung by both the blind students and their teachers. This ‘left a particular impression, [being] performed with a perfection that is difficult to surpass.’ Tests in literary subjects then alternated with performances of instrumental music and vocal items, with the correspondent noting that of especial interest were the examinations in natural history and geography. The musical items were listed along with the soloists, all of whom were praised and were received with enthusiastic applause by the audience. Particular praise was accorded to the young Eleonore Goldschmidt who, playing the ‘Gesellschaftskoncert’ by Moscheles ‘with clarity and stamina’, gave every reason to believe that she would develop into a very good pianist. The two ‘small and unremarkable-looking’ young boys Anton Reidl and Joseph Čermak performed with ‘very surprising effect’ an unspecified overture for piano four hands. The ‘precision, clarity and vitality’ of their playing ‘fully deserved the applause that they gained.’ Also receiving considerable approbation was Zawadil for his performance of ‘Dussek’s beautiful Concerto militaire’. The review concluded with the comment that the ‘extraordinary attendance of this concert proves that the inhabitants of our capital will always be won over by the beautiful, good and noble’ that was manifest in the content and quality of the event as well as by the art and ability of the ‘unfortunate’ blind participants.

Summary of sources:

Bohemia (17/07/1851)
Bohemia (27/07/1851)