Prague Concert Life, 1850-1881

Event title:

Second concert arranged by the Court Opera singer Guglielmi

Venue: Žofín Island (Žofín Hall)

Event type: Art music culture

Date: 03/11/1854 5pm

Programme comprising:

GORDIGIANI, L. : Romanza Il tempo passato, v, [orch / pf?]
     • Guglielmi, A.M. : v
UNSPECIFIED, ? : unspecified Melodie, zither
     • Horschelt, ? : zither
DONIZETTI, Gaetano : unspecified duet [duettino], 2vv, [orch / pf?]
     • Guglielmi, A.M. : v Botschon-Soukupová, Cecilie : v
ŠLIKOVÁ, Eliška, Hraběnka : song Reiterlied, v, pf
     • Guglielmi, A.M. : v
SCHUBERT, Franz Peter : unspecified song Der Wanderer, v, pf
     • Guglielmi, A.M. : v
SCHUBERT, Franz Peter : song Der Lindenbaum no.5 from song cycle Winterreise, v, pf, D911
     • Guglielmi, A.M. : v
UNSPECIFIED, ? : unspecified Fantasie for violoncello, vc, [pf?]
     • Goltermann, Julius :
BELLINI, Vincenzo : Cavatina from act 1 of opera La Sonnambula, v, [ orch / pf arr?]
     • Guglielmi, A.M. : v


Mercy’s Anzeiger 28/10/1854 reported that ‘We hear that Mr M. Guglielmi, member of the Italian Opera in Vienna, upon all-round requests will give a second concert during the course of next week. The programme will contain besides Italian works several by Schubert, for which the artist gained universal applause in his performance of Schubert Lieder in his first concert.’ The report also related that Guglielmi had also received enthusiastic reviews from French and German newspapers at the outset of his career, and that the veracity of those reports could be confirmed after hearing his first Prague concert. This suggests that the singer had toured France and Belgian before travelling to perform in Prague. This source gave no more specific details of the forthcoming concert.

Der Tagesbote
1/11/1854 published news that the Court Opera singer Mr Guglielmi would next Friday at 5pm arrange a concert in the Hall of Žofín Island, at which Mrs Botschon-Soukup [Botschon-Soukupová] and Messrs Goltermann and Horschelt would participate. A more detailed report appeared in
Mercy’s Anzeiger 1/11/1854 which listed the programme and participants to the concert. A large audience was expected to attend the concert.

The Czech-language arts periodical Lumír 2/11/1854 published advance notice of this event, reporting that ‘Mr Guglielmi, whose first concert gained universal approbation, will tomorrow at 5 o’clock on Žofín Island give another. Participating will be Miss Lechnerová and Messrs Goltermann and Horschelt.’

On 3/11/1854 Der Tagesbote reported that following the success of his first concert, which had attracted a numerous and distinguished audience, Guglielmi would ‘this afternoon give a second concert’. Participating would be Mrs Botschon-Soukup [Soukupová], Miss Lechner [Lechnerová] and Messrs Professor Goltermann and Horschelt. No further details of the event were relayed by this source which mistakenly identified the venue as the Konvikt Hall. The same issue of the newspaper published a large advertisement announcing ‘Žofín Island. Today, 3rd November, 5pm, on general demand, Second Concert of Signor Guglielmi, Royal Court Opera Singer in the Italian Opera in Vienna.’ The projected programme was then listed in performance order, followed by the admission prices. Admission to the front of the circle cost 2fl and to the rear, 1fl. Admission tickets were available from the music shops of Marco Berra and Hoffmann, in the bookshops of H. Mercy in Zeltnergasse [Celetná] and Fr. Rzíwnatz [Řívnac], and in the evening from the box office. An almost identical advertisement appeared in Mercy’s Anzeiger 1/11/1854 and 2/11/1854, differing only in the wording ‘Friday 3rd November 5pm’ instead of ‘Today...’ An advertisement with the same wording but with 
‘Today...’ was published by Mercy’s Anzeiger 3/11/1854. The daily news section of Mercy’s Anzeiger 3/11/1854 reported ‘This afternoon at 5pm takes place in the Hall of the Žofín Island the second concert of the Royal Court opera singer Mr Guglielmi.’

A review was published two days following this concert by
Mercy’s Anzeiger 5/11/1854. The source reported: ‘The day before yesterday Mr M. Guglielmi gave in the Žofín Island Hall a second, numerously attended, concert. He sang two Schubert Lieder, the Wanderer“ and „Lindenbaum“; a Lied by Countess Schlick, then a Romanze by L. Gordigiani, an aria from Nachtwandlerin transposed half a tone higher, then a duet by Donizetti with Mrs Botschon [Botschon-Soukupová]. All of the songs he gave with an artistic outlook, with deeply felt expression and possessing a noble, melting tone from a faint mezza voce through to a powerful, sonorous full voice; he gained unanimously tumultuous applause and curtain calls. Miss Botschon delighted us through the performance of Löwe’s poetic Lied Mit jedem Pulschlag leb’ ich Dir“. Also the declamation of a poem by Seidl by Miss Lechner, a performance by Professor Goltermann of a Fantasie for violoncello, and finally a solo for the zither played by Mr Horschelt all provided very welcome additions.’

An unsigned review of this event was published by Der Tagesbote 7/11/1854. The correspondent remarked that ‘Through his splendid performance technique, the concert-giver again excelled in performances of songs from diverse genres; his noble voice was moving in its melodiousness and fullness in a concert venue particularly suitable for such production. In all registers his voice is very powerful [and] preserves its sympathetic timbre.’ The singer encored the last stanza of the song by Schlick [Šliková], and gave Schubert’s Lindenbaum following Der Wanderer. The other performers were listed, although no more detailed information was given about the works that they gave in addition to that published by the earlier reports. Mrs Botschon-Soukup’s voice was described as ‘sonorous’. Attending the event was a numerous and ‘distinguished’ audience.

The database record of the programme to the concert collates information from the pre-concert reports and the reviews. The works are given in order of which they were performed by Guglielmi, according to the published detailed advertisements.

Der Tagesbote 5/11/1854 published news that Alexander Dreyschock was setting out on a concert tour of Denmark, Sweden and Norway, and ‘Last Thursday gave with his friends a musical farewell-Soirée [3/11/1854] in which participated Mr Guglielmi and the violinist Königslöw who is currently staying here [in Prague].’ This was obviously a different event from that of Guglielmi’s own concert in the Žofín Hall on 3rd November, since neither Dreyschock nor Königslow appeared on that occasion. Guglielmi therefore perhaps participated in the soirée later that evening following his own concert at 5pm, unless the specification for the soirée of ‘last Thursday’ was not accurate. By 9th November the singer was, according to Der Tagesbote 12/11/1854, in Dresden and had sung in a concert to great acclaim and where among the audience was Prince Albrecht of Prussia, the Count Schönburg, ‘members of the Diplomatic Corps, and other elite of high society’. The source reported that Guglielmi would then return to Prague during the second half of November and would give a concert half of the profit from which would be donated to the local Children’s Hospital. Mercy’s Anzeiger 13/12/1854 in publishing news of the singer’s next concert in Prague on 15th December confirmed that Guglielmi had been engaged on a concert tour through Germany.

Summary of sources:

Mercy's Anzeiger für Böhmen (28/10/1854)
Mercy's Anzeiger für Böhmen (01/11/1854)
Mercy's Anzeiger für Böhmen (01/11/1854)
Tagesbote aus Böhmen (01/11/1854)
Mercy's Anzeiger für Böhmen (02/11/1854)
Lumír (02/11/1854)
Tagesbote aus Böhmen (03/11/1854)
Tagesbote aus Böhmen (03/11/1854)
Mercy's Anzeiger für Böhmen (03/11/1854)
Mercy's Anzeiger für Böhmen (03/11/1854)
Tagesbote aus Böhmen (05/11/1854)
Mercy's Anzeiger für Böhmen (05/11/1854)
Tagesbote aus Böhmen (07/11/1854)
Tagesbote aus Böhmen (12/11/1854)
Mercy's Anzeiger für Böhmen (13/12/1854)