Prague Concert Life, 1850-1881

Event title:

First autumn beseda. Dance entertainment preceded by concert programme, arranged by Jan Nepomuk Maýr

Venue: Konvikt

Event type: Art music culture

Date: 02/10/1861 7pm

Programme comprising:

MAÝR, Jan Nepomuk : partsong Doboru noc (Goodnight), 4 male vv
     • Maýr, Jan Nepomuk : v Strakatý, Karel : v Peták, ? : v Wiesner, ? : v
ROSSINI, Gioachino Antonio : waltz aria from opera Il Barbiere di Siviglia, v, orch
     • Ehrenbergů, Eleonora z : v
UNSPECIFIED, ? : Variations on Slavonic themes, cl, [pf?]
     • Pisařovic, Julius : cl
Czech folksong Koulelo se, koulelo (It rolled, rolled), v
     • Strakatý, Karel : v
Czech folksong Chodíval k nám chodíval (He came to us, he came), v
     • Strakatý, Karel :
Czech folksong Kdyby moje milá (If my love), v
     • Strakatý, Karel : v
UNSPECIFIED, ? : song Luna jasně svítí (The moon shines clearly), v, [pf?]
     • Ehrenbergů, Eleonora z : v
Czech folksong Větříček od lesa fouká (The little breeze blows from the wood), v
     • Ehrenbergů, Eleonora z : v
VAŠÁK, Emanuel : partsong Když již všecko spočívá (Now when all repose), 4 male vv
     • Wiesner, ? : v Maýr, Jan Nepomuk : v Peták, ? : v Strakatý, Karel : v

Commentary:

This beseda was not reported by the German-language Prague newspapers Prager Zeitung or Prager Morgenpost. However, Bohemia 1/10/1861 reported that ‘(The Autumn Besedas) take place now in the newly refurbished Konvikt Hall on 2nd, 9th, 16th, 23rd and 30th October, then on 6th, 13th, 20th and 27th November. At the start of each Beseda [will be a] concert; arranged by Kapellmeister Mr Mayr [Maýr], followed by dances. The concert programme of the first is as follows: 1. Quartet, sung by messrs Lukes, Mayr, Reichel and Strakatý. Humorous sketch, performed by the Czech actor Mr Šimanovský. 3. Clarinet piece, performed by Prof. Pisarowic [Pisařovic]. 4. Great Waltz, sung in the “Barbier von Sevilla”, performed by Miss v. Ehrenberg [z Ehrenbergů]. Czech folksongs performed by Mr Lukes. 6. Quartet.’

The Národní listy 24/9/1861 report noted that a series of autumn besedas were to be held in the newly refurbished surroundings of the Konvikt Hall on 2, 9, 16, 23, 30 October and on 6, 13, 20, 27 November. However, only the first six productions took place. The programmes of these entertainments were to comprise dance works, preceded by a short ‘concert’ arranged by the director of the Czech opera, J.N. Maýr. Národní listy 30/9/1861 published details of the concert programme of the first beseda, to begin at 7pm, relating that the soloists in the vocal quartets were to be J.L. Lukes, J.N. Maýr, Josef Reichel and Karel Strakatý. The unsigned Národní listy 9/10/1861 review noted that the concert part of the beseda had promised much due to its being arranged by the celebrated director of the Czech opera, Maýr. This immediately demonstrated in the first beseda from the excellent taste of the director in the choice of programme, but there was misfortune in that due to the sudden illness of Messrs Lukes and Reichel the promise of the the arranger of the programme could not be completely fulfilled. The source described the performances and commented that the audience was numerous and received the various works with enthusiastic applause. The review related that dancing continued until midnight. The composer of the ‘ditty’ Luna jasně svítí, which the newspaper’s critic noted he had not been heard for a long time, was unspecified. The programme for the second beseda in this series was listed at the end of the source.

Čas 4/10/1861 published an unsigned review of this event. This began by noting that a series of besedas had been arranged last year before advent by Mr Karel Hof and [Pavel] Švanda from Zemčic, and that they had successfully comprised well-constructed concerts that had drawn select audiences. The first beseda in this new series ‘taking place on Wednesday, was visited by a numerous society, of splendid complexion and with an abundance of the Czech youth. The beseda commenced this time with a concert arranged by the director Mr Mayr [Maýr]. Mr Mayr takes care to arrange that in future in these besedas only excellent forces, as shown on Wednesday, certainly with the prospects of [offering] unusual interest. The leading members of the Czech theatre were this time engaged, and only sudden illness caused us not to hear Messrs Lukes and Reichel. Messrs Peták, Wiesner, Mayr and Strakaý began the concert with the quartet Dobrou noc, in which Mr Peták showed himself to be blessed excellently with a fine tenor, and well-versed in singing quartets. We look forward to hearing him more often. Following that, Mr Šimanovský declaimed Jablonský’s profound poem Tři doby země české with appropriate expression. The celebrated Prof. Pisařovic performed Variations on Slavonic themes for clarinet with a delicate and masterful bravura, as we are accustomed to from this well-known virtuoso. Mr Strakatý gave with his genial voice our follksongs Koulelo se koulelo and Chodíval k nám chodíval, after vociferous applause he sang Kdyby moje milá. Although Mr Strakatý always shows very good taste in his choice of songs, he could still in such multifarious public society leave out the air of cultivation [lit. ‘toho zámeckého pisaře vynechati’]. Miss z Ehrenbergů as a newcomer in besedas was heartily welcomedm and sang twice with splendid success. Before Mr Pisařovic the young lady appeared in the bravura waltz from the opera “Lazebník sevilský [Il Barbiere di Siviglia]”, and procured prodigious applause with her coloratura performance. Following Mr Strakatý she sang the relatively forgotten but very sweet little songs Lůna jasně svítí and Větříček od lesa fouká with deep feeling and with a tasteful performance. With a quartet by Vašák Když již všecko spočívá the above-named gentlemen successfully ended the concert with applause, after which the youth stepped up to dance until midnight.’

This beseda was not reported by the German-language Prague newspapers Prager Zeitung or Prager Morgenpost. However, Bohemia 1/10/1861 reported that ‘(The Autumn Besedas) take place now in the newly refurbished Konvikt Hall on 2nd, 9th, 16th, 23rd and 30th October, then on 6th, 13th, 20th and 27th November. At the start of each Beseda [will be a] concert; arranged by Kapellmeister Mr Mayr [Maýr], followed by dances. The concert programme of the first is as follows: 1. Quartet, sung by messrs Lukes, Mayr, Reichel and Strakatý. Humorous sketch, performed by the Czech actor Mr Šimanovský. 3. Clarinet piece, performed by Prof. Pisarowic [Pisařovic]. 4. Great Waltz, sung in the “Barbier von Sevilla”, performed by Miss v. Ehrenberg [z Ehrenbergů]. Czech folksongs performed by Mr Lukes. 6. Quartet.’


Summary of sources:

Národní listy (24/09/1861)
Národní listy (30/09/1861)
Bohemia (01/10/1861)
Čas (04/10/1861)
Národní listy (09/10/1861)