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Title: Garcia the Centenarian And His Times - Being a Memoir of Manuel Garcia's Life and Labours for the - Advancement of Music and Science
Author: Mackinlay, M. (Malcolm) Sterling, 1876-1952
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Garcia the Centenarian And His Times - Being a Memoir of Manuel Garcia's Life and Labours for the - Advancement of Music and Science" ***

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produced from images generously made available by The
Internet Archive)



Antoinette Sterling

AND OTHER CELEBRITIES

BY

M. S. MACKINLAY, M.A.

_In demy 8vo, cloth gilt and gilt top, with =16= Illustrations and
interesting facsimiles in text, =16s.= net._

_Some Press Opinions_

"Mr Sterling MacKinlay has written a charming account of the great
contralto. He has written his book in a light and interesting vein, and
has so much to tell, so many good stories to repeat, that it is sure of
a large reading public."--_Daily Chronicle._

"Told with sympathy and moderation, enlivened by anecdote and
humour."--_Tribune._

"A delightful book of reminiscences."--_Daily Mail._

"Written with refreshing candour, well worth reading."--_Spectator._

"A delightful book. It is brightened with anecdotes of all kinds, while
the record of its principal subject is as impressive as it is
interesting."--_Truth._

"Interesting reading of the kind so entertaining, illustrated with good
portraits: brightly written: will doubtless find a wide circle of
admirers."--_Standard._

"The easy, chatty style of the book, the descriptive touches, the fund
of anecdote, the artless and spontaneous narrations of the great singer
herself, all contribute to make the volume attractive. Nowhere is there
anything heavy or dull."--_Birmingham Post._

"Exceedingly interesting, and lightened up by many a lively anecdote. It
is impossible to give anything like an adequate list of the notable
names that crop up; they include most of the great artists, actors,
singers, writers, and scientists of the present day."--_Glasgow Herald._

London: HUTCHINSON & CO., Paternoster Row



Garcia the Centenarian

And His Times

[Illustration: THE CENTENARY PORTRAIT OF MANUEL GARCIA BY JOHN S.
SARGENT.

SIGNED BY THE MAESTRO SIX WEEKS BEFORE HIS HUNDRED-AND-FIRST BIRTHDAY.

_Copyright, 1905 by Photographische Gesellschaft._

handwritten signatures of subject & artist included as well]



Garcia the Centenarian

And His Times

Being a Memoir of Manuel Garcia's
Life and Labours for the Advancement
of Music and Science

BY

M. STERLING MACKINLAY

M. A. OXON.

AUTHOR OF 'ANTOINETTE STERLING AND OTHER CELEBRITIES'

_WITH ILLUSTRATIONS_

WILLIAM BLACKWOOD AND SONS

EDINBURGH AND LONDON

MCMVIII

[Illustration: THEIR MAJESTIES THE KING AND QUEEN OF SPAIN.

(FROM A PHOTOGRAPH SPECIALLY FORWARDED TO THE AUTHOR BY HIS MAJESTY.)

_Franzen, Madrid._]

Dedicated

_TO_

_H. M. THE KING OF SPAIN_

_BY GRACIOUS PERMISSION_



PREFACE.


In presenting this Memoir of Don Manuel Garcia, I wish to thank those
friends and pupils of the Maestro who have assisted me with
reminiscences, photographs, and other material. But especially I would
thank Mrs Alec Tweedie for the kind way in which she read through the
MS., when it was still in a rough state, and made many invaluable
suggestions with regard to its arrangement and improvement generally.

M. S. M.

OXFORD AND CAMBRIDGE MUSICAL CLUB,
LEICESTER SQUARE,
_March 1908_.



CONTENTS.


FIRST PERIOD. PREPARATION. (1805-1830.)

CHAP.                                                               PAGE

I. INTRODUCTORY                                                        3

II. GARCIA'S CHILDHOOD IN SPAIN (1805-1814)                           13

III. NAPLES (1814-1816)                                               25

IV. PARIS AND LONDON (1816-1825)                                      40

V. OPERA IN AMERICA (1825-1826)                                       57

VI. NEW YORK AND MEXICO (1826-1827)                                   73

VII. OPERATIC CAREER ABANDONED (1828-1830)                            86


SECOND PERIOD. PARIS. (1830-1848.)

VIII. MARIA MALIBRAN'S TRIUMPHS (1830-1836)                          105

IX. PAULINE VIARDOT-GARCIA (1837-1841)                               125

X. JENNY LIND (1841-1842)                                            139

XI. SOME FAMOUS PUPILS (1842-1848)                                   156

XII. CLOSE OF PARIS CAREER (1848)                                    169


THIRD PERIOD. LONDON. (1848-1895.)

XIII. ARRIVAL IN ENGLAND (1848-1854)                                 183

XIV. THE LARYNGOSCOPE (1854-1857)                                    201

XV. CHARLES SANTLEY AND ANTOINETTE STERLING (1857-1873)              214

XVI. TWENTY YEARS OF MUSIC (1853-1873)                               225

XVII. THREE-SCORE YEARS AND TEN (1874-1890)                          237

XVIII. AN OCTOGENARIAN AUTHOR (1890-1895)                            256


FOURTH PERIOD. RETIREMENT. (1895-1906.)

XIX. A NONAGENARIAN TEACHER (1895-1905)                              277

XX. THE CENTENARY HONOURS (MARCH 17, 1905)                           298

XXI. LAST DAYS (1905-1906)                                           318


INDEX                                                                325



LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS.


CENTENARY PORTRAIT OF MANUEL GARCIA                        _Frontispiece_
Painted by John S. Sargent.

                                                            TO FACE PAGE

THEIR MAJESTIES THE KING AND QUEEN OF SPAIN                  _Dedication_

MANUEL GARCIA'S MOTHER                                                12

MANUEL GARCIA'S FATHER                                                24

MARIA MALIBRAN                                                       106

PAULINE VIARDOT                                                      124

JENNY LIND                                                           138

MANUEL GARCIA                                                        200
From a Drawing by Mme. Viardot.

CHARLES SANTLEY                                                      216

ANTOINETTE STERLING                                                  220

CHARLES HALLÉ AND MANUEL GARCIA                                      222
From a Drawing by Richard Doyle.

HERMANN KLEIN                                                        238

MADAME MELBA                                                         268

FACSIMILE LETTER WRITTEN BY MANUEL GARCIA AT 91                      278

FACSIMILE LETTER WRITTEN AT 99                                       294

FACSIMILE LETTER WRITTEN AT 94                                       296

FACSIMILE PAGE OF MUSIC WRITTEN IN HIS HUNDREDTH YEAR                312

FACSIMILE LETTER WRITTEN IN HIS HUNDRED-AND-SECOND YEAR              322



LIST OF WORKS CONSULTED.


    'Albion.' (An American weekly newspaper published from 1823-1826.)
    Appleton's 'Cyclopedia of American Biography.'
    'Athenæum' (1848).
    Brewer's 'History of France.'
    Burney's 'History of Music' (1776-1789).
    Colletta's 'History of Naples' (1734-1825). Horner's translation.
    'Diversions of a Music Lover.' By C. L. Graves.
    Eitner's 'Quellen Lexikon.'
    Elson's 'History of American Music.'
    Fétis' 'Biographie Universelle des Musiciens.'
    'Fitz-Greene Halleck's Memoirs.' By General James Grant Wilson.
    Fuller-Maitland's revised edition of Grove's 'Dictionary of Music.'
    'Harmonicon' Musical Magazine (1823-1833).
    Haydn's 'Dictionary of Dates.'
    'Jenny Lind's Memoirs.' By Holland and Rockstro.
    'Le Guide Musical.'
    'Londina Illustrata.' By Wilkinson. (1819-1825.)
    'Madrid.' By a Resident Officer. (1833.)
    Mapleson's 'Memoirs.'
    'Marchesi and Music.'
    Mendel's 'Musikalisches Conversations Lexikon.'
    'Mexico.' By Maria Wright.
    Morse-Stephens's 'European Revolution.'
    'Musical Reminiscences of Earl of Mount-Edgcumbe' (1824).
    'Paris.' By G. L. Craik. (1834).
    'Recollections.' By Bessie Palmer.
    Sir Felix Semon's 'Zum hundertsten Geburstage Manuel Garcia's.'
      (Privately printed.)
    'Sixty Years of Recollections.' By Ernest Legouvé.
    'Student and Singer.' By Sir Charles Santley.
    'Thirty Years of Musical Life.' By Hermann Klein.
    Wyndham's 'History of Covent Garden.'



FIRST PERIOD

PREPARATION

(1805-1830)



CHAPTER I.

INTRODUCTORY.


MANUEL GARCIA, the Centenarian.

How much do those words imply!--words which it is impossible to pen
without a feeling of awe.

Garcia, a member of that family of Spanish musicians whose combined
brilliancy has probably never been equalled in the annals of the musical
world. The father and founder of the family, renowned as one of the
finest tenors of his day; as a prolific composer, and as a singing
teacher of distinguished ability, as well as conductor and impressario;
in fact, a fine vocalist and an equally fine musician, which in those
days was something of a _rara avis_.

The eldest daughter, Maria Malibran, a contralto whose brief career was
one series of triumphs, while her gifts as a composer were shared by her
sister, Pauline Viardot-Garcia, whose singing drew forth the praise and
admiration of all, and whose retirement from the stage and concert
platform brought with it fresh honours in the field of teaching, wherein
she showed herself a worthy exponent of the high ideals of the Garcias.

And what of Manuel himself? The subject of our Memoir has a triple
claim that his name should be inscribed on the roll of fame. As
professor of singing, he is acknowledged to have been the greatest of
his time. In the musical firmament he has been the centre of a solar
system of his own,--a sun round which revolved a group of planets, whose
names are familiar to all: Jenny Lind, Maria Malibran, Mathilde
Marchesi, Henriette Nissen, Charles Santley, Antoinette Sterling, Julius
Stockhausen, Pauline Viardot, and Johanna Wagner--these are but a few of
them.

Many, too, out of the number have themselves thrown off fresh
satellites, such as Calvè, Eames, Henschel, Melba, Scheidemantel, van
Rooy. One and all have owed a debt of eternal gratitude to Manuel Garcia
and his system.

Again, as a scientific investigator he has given us the Laryngoscope,
which Huxley placed among the most important inventions of the medical
world. Indeed, it is no figure of speech, but a statement of
demonstrable fact, that millions have been benefited by his work.

Thirdly, as a centenarian, he is without question the most remarkable of
modern times.

Of the men who have attained to that rare age, those who possess any
claim upon our interests beyond their mere weight of years are but a
comparative handful.

Of musicians one alone has approached him in longevity, Giacomo Bassevi
Cervetto, who died on January 14, 1783, within a few days of his 101st
birthday, but with little distinction beyond this fact. As to the rest
who go to make up the tale of the world's centenarians of recent years,
it has been generally a case of the survival of the unfittest--

    "In second childishness and mere oblivion,
    Sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans everything."

How different Manuel Garcia when he celebrated his 100th birthday: in
the early morning, received by the King at Buckingham Palace; at noon,
entering the rooms of the Royal Medical Society with short, quick steps,
walking unaided to the dais, mounting it with agility and then sitting
for an hour, smiling and upright, while receiving honours and
congratulations from all parts of the globe. Which of those who were
present will ever forget how he attended the banquet that same evening,
in such full possession of his faculties and bodily strength as to make
his own reply to the hundreds assembled to celebrate the occasion? Could
anything have been finer than this sight of Grand Old Age?

Now the fame of each individual member of the Garcia family would seem
to demand that, in addition to the story of the Maestro's own career,
considerable details should be given regarding that of his father and
sisters. Surely the three last have claims to our attention beyond the
mere fact of being in the one case a parent who exercised a very
important influence upon Manuel Garcia's character and choice of career
in early days, and who was, moreover, the fountainhead from which flowed
the stream of musical talent that in the children broadened out into so
grand a river,--in the other case, the sisters, who were bound not only
by ties of kinship but by a debt of gratitude for the part which their
brother played in their vocal training.

This brings us to the first point, Señor Garcia's position as a teacher.
There is a trite proverb to the effect that the proof of the pudding is
in the eating. It is so in the present case. One can state the fact that
he has been a great master, one can lay down a general outline of his
teaching and applaud the soundness of his methods, but after all the
outer world will in such matters be apt to judge by results alone. Or
let us put it in another way. His knowledge is like the foundations of a
house: experts may examine it closely and admire good points, but to a
great extent the successes of his pupils are the bricks by which alone a
wide reputation is built up.

For this reason I propose to sketch briefly the career of the more
famous among those who studied under the old Spaniard, and in doing so I
trust that the above circumstances will be considered sufficient excuse
for the digressions which will be made at various points.

We now come to a second consideration.

The discovery of the laryngoscope, owing to its far-reaching results, is
of such importance that the chapter dealing with it is bound to contain
matter which will naturally appeal to the special rather than to the
general reader. The desire that the many may not suffer for the sake of
the few to a greater extent than is absolutely necessary has prompted me
to quote but briefly from the text of the important technical papers
which he presented to the Royal Society in 1854 and to the International
Medical Congress in 1881.

In the former of these he sets forth a detailed account of the results
which he himself obtained in connection with the human voice from the
use of the instrument; in the latter he has told the story of the
invention and given a full description of the laryngoscope.

Last of all, there is the question of his remarkable age. As a
centenarian, he passed through many great historical events, and
witnessed a number of changes not only in the musical world, but in the
general advance of civilisation. To mention but a few cases of the
former: his childhood in Spain was passed amid the scenes of the
Napoleonic invasion, followed by those of the Peninsular War, while his
boyhood in Naples caused him to witness the execution of the ex-king
Murat, a few months after the despotic brother-in-law's final overthrow
at Waterloo. His first visit to England was made when George III. was on
the throne; his nineteenth year saw the death of Louis XVIII.; while his
arrival in America to take part in the first season of Italian opera
ever given there was at a time when New York was a town of 150,000
inhabitants, and the United States were preparing to celebrate the
jubilee of the Declaration of Independence. In early manhood he joined
the French Expedition against Algiers, and on his return found himself
in the midst of the July Revolution, which resulted in the expulsion of
Charles X. from the capital and the placing of Louis Philippe on the
throne; while he spent his last months in Paris as a member of the
National Guard during another revolution, that of 1848, which ended in
the flight of Louis and the proclamation of the French Republic.

The first fifteen years of residence in London saw the English nation
throw down the glove to Russia, enter on the Crimean War, and bring it
to a successful close with the fall of Sebastopol, which was followed by
such events as the Indian Mutiny; the accession of William I. to the
throne of Prussia, with Prince Bismarck as his chief adviser; the
capture of Pekin; the American Civil War; the death of the Prince
Consort, and two years later the marriage of the heir to the throne of
England to the beautiful Princess of the Royal House of Denmark.

He was in his sixty-first year when Lord Palmerston died; as for the
Franco-Prussian War and the Siege of Paris, they were looked on by him
in his old age as things of but yesterday; while at various periods of
his life he resided in Madrid, Naples, Paris, New York, Mexico, and
London.

Again, in his work as a teacher, there came for lessons not merely the
children of old pupils, but many even whose parents and grandparents had
studied under him; while before his life was brought to a close England
had been ruled by five successive sovereigns.

His father, whom we shall refer to in this Memoir as the elder Garcia,
was born at Seville on January 22, 1775--over a hundred and thirty years
ago. At the time of his birth Seville could not boast a single piano.
Such a thing seems hardly credible to us who live in the twentieth
century, when it is the exception rather than the rule to come across a
house that does not boast an instrument, which is at any rate
sufficiently recognisable from its general contour for one to feel
justified in saying, "Let it pass for a piano."

Whence the elder Garcia obtained his musical talent it is impossible to
learn. Whatever the previous generations may have been, there is no
record of their having made any mark among the musicians of their time.
Garcia is a fairly common Spanish name, and we find mention of several
musicians of the eighteenth century, and even earlier, who bore that
cognomen; none of these, however, can possibly have had any direct
relationship to the family in which we are interested, and for an
obvious reason. "Garcia" was only a _nom de guerre_ which had been taken
by the founder of the family when he entered upon a musical career, his
baptismal name having been Manuel Vicente del Popolo Rodriguez. The fame
of the new name, however, soon eclipsed the old, and hence in due course
it came to be adopted by him and his descendants as their regular
surname.

In the spring of 1781 the "elder" Garcia, being now six years old,
became a chorister in the cathedral of his native town. Here he quickly
began to display an extraordinary talent and precocity, his first
musical training being received at the hands of Antonio Ripa, and
continued under Juan Almarcha, who succeeded Ripa as Maestro di Cappella
at the cathedral. These two men were considered the first teachers in
Seville, and under their able tuition his powers developed so rapidly,
that even in his early teens he was already acquiring a reputation in
his town not only as singer, but as composer and _chef d'orchestre_.

During the years which Garcia was thus spending in patient study, the
neighbouring kingdom of France was approaching nearer and nearer to that
vast upheaval which was to bring such fatal consequences. The populace
had long been smouldering with discontent against the hated aristocrats,
and at last in 1789 the country flamed up in that terrible revolution
which culminated in that wonderful episode, the storming of the Bastille
on July 14.

When this historical event took place the elder Garcia was in his
fifteenth year. Two years later he made his _début_ at the theatre of
Cadiz in a "tonadilla" into which a number of his own compositions had
been introduced. Not long after this he made his first appearance at
Madrid in an oratorio, while his earliest opera was performed there
under the title of "Il Preso." Such was his success in the Spanish
capital that he was quickly recognised as one of the greatest tenors his
country had ever produced.

The following year, 1792, found France overtaken by a succession of
catastrophes: the invasion by Austria and Prussia, the storming of the
Tuileries, the September massacre, and that tragic end of the French
Monarchy, for the time being, with the execution of Louis XVI.

The last years of the eighteenth century were spent by the elder Garcia
in building up an ever-increasing reputation throughout Spain; while
during this period European history continued to raise fresh landmarks
for future generations to bear in wondering memory, for when he was
nineteen there came the execution of Robespierre, and the splendid
victory of Lord Howe over the French fleet, followed in 1789 by another
glorious naval achievement in the Battle of the Nile.

The first years of the new century brought with them the close of the
elder Garcia's bachelor life with his romantic marriage to Joaquina
Sitchès. The story of the meeting and courtship is one of singular
charm.

Joaquina, who was Spanish by birth, was gifted with a somewhat mystical
temperament, and early declared her wish to pass her life in a convent.
Her parents raised no objection to her taking the veil, and she
forthwith commenced her novitiate.

In due course the time arrived when, according to custom, she must go
out into the world again for a while, in order to prove whether her
desire for the religious life was genuine. Accordingly the beautiful
young novice went much into society, making her appearance at balls,
parties, theatres, and the other gaieties of the capital.

One evening she was taken for the first time to hear Garcia sing. He
made a deep impression upon her, and an introduction followed, which led
to her falling violently in love with the singer. He on his side became
no less completely a victim to her charms, and lost no time in declaring
his passion, and that was the end, or should one not perhaps say, the
beginning? Joaquina paid a last visit to the convent to bid good-bye to
the mother-superior, and soon afterwards the lovers were united.

Señorita Sitchès was possessed of great natural gifts as a singer, and
after her marriage became desirous of associating herself with his
career. She therefore determined to put her musical talents to use and
went on the stage, where she soon became a worthy second to her husband.

And so we come to the year 1805, which brings with it the birth of a
son, the subject of this Memoir.

[Illustration: MANUEL GARCIA'S MOTHER.]



CHAPTER II.

CHILDHOOD IN SPAIN.

(1805-1814.)


MANUEL PATRICIO RODRIGUEZ GARCIA--to give his full name--was born on
March 17, 1805, four days before the death of Greuze. The place of his
birth was not Madrid, as has been so often stated, but Zafra, in
Catalonia.

What of the musical world in 1805? Beethoven had not yet completed his
thirty-seventh year, Schubert was a boy of eight, Auber, Bishop, Charles
Burney (who had been born in 1726), Callcott, Cherubini, Dibdin, Halévy,
"Papa" Haydn, Meyerbeer, Paganini, Rossini, Spohr, Weber, these were all
living, and many of them had yet to become famous. As for Chopin,
Mendelssohn, Schumann, and Brahms, they were not even born; while
Gounod, Wagner, and Verdi were still mere schoolboys when Garcia was a
full-blown operatic baritone.

The year of Manuel's birth was the one in which the elder Garcia
composed one of his greatest successes, a mono-drama entitled "El Poeta
Calculista." It was this work which contained the song that achieved
such popularity throughout Spain, "Yo che son contrabandista." When the
tenor used to sing this air he would accompany himself upon the guitar,
and by the fire and _verve_ with which the whole performance was given,
he made the audiences shout themselves hoarse with excitement.

Among the most enthusiastic of his listeners were the weak old dotard
Charles IV., King of Spain, and his son, the bigoted and incompetent
Ferdinand, who had already made himself a popular favourite and
commenced his intrigues against the Throne. Above all, one must not
forget Don Manuel de Godoy, Prince of the Peace, who was carrying on a
shameful intercourse with the Queen, and was undoubtedly at the time the
most powerful man in the kingdom.

The two most faithful allies of England at the beginning of the
nineteenth century were the small kingdoms of Portugal and Sweden.

In view of the sea-power which the Island Empire had gained since the
Battle of Trafalgar, Napoleon decided that the strength of this alliance
must be broken. Accordingly, on October 29, 1807, the Treaty of
Fontainebleau was signed, by which it was agreed that the combined
armies of France and Spain should conquer Portugal. The little kingdom
was then to be divided into three parts: the northern provinces were to
be given to the King of Etruria in exchange for his dominions in Italy,
which Napoleon desired to annex; the southern districts were to be
formed into an independent kingdom for Godoy, the Prince of the Peace;
and the central portion was to be temporarily held by France.

In pursuance of this secret treaty a French army under General Junot
marched rapidly across the Peninsula.

On receiving the news that the invaders were close to Lisbon, the Prince
Regent, with his mother, the mad queen, Maria I., sailed for Brazil with
an English squadron. Hardly had the Regent left the Tagus when Junot
entered Lisbon on November 20, meeting with a favourable reception at
the hands of the Portuguese, who resented the departure of the Prince
Regent, and had no idea that there was a secret design to dismember the
kingdom.

When the Franco-Spanish plans had thus reached a successful point in
their development, the elder Garcia decided that the time was ripe for
him to seek that wider success which he was ambitious of achieving. He
had already made his name in Spain both as a singer and composer; but
this did not satisfy him. Paris had long been the goal on which he had
set his mind. And what more favourable opportunity was likely to arise
than the present, when the successes of the alliance would naturally
predispose the French people to give a warm welcome to any Spaniards who
visited the country at such a moment? Accordingly he made his last
appearance in Madrid in a performance of oratorio, and at the close of
1807 set out for Paris.

Soon after his arrival in the French capital he had an opportunity of
making his _début_, for on February 11 he appeared in Paër's "Griselda."
How bold a stroke this was may be realised from the fact that, apart
from his never having properly studied singing up to this time, he had
not yet sung in Italian.

The applause of Napoleon in the French capital proved to be no less
enthusiastic than had been that of Charles IV. in Madrid--indeed, so
great was the tenor's success that he was appointed to the post of
_directeur du chant_ in less than three weeks, as well as becoming the
leading tenor at the Théâtre Italien.

The following month brought with it the birth of his first daughter,
Maria Felicita, who was destined to become famous under the name of
Malibran. Some ten months later the mono-drama, "El Poeta Calculista"
was given in Paris for the first time, on the occasion of the elder
Garcia's benefit. Its reception may be judged from the fact that the
performance of the operetta had to be interrupted for several minutes,
so greatly was the singer fatigued by the constant ovations and
insistent demands for encores. The success which he achieved during this
first season in Paris laid the foundation of a world-wide fame.

Now, when Señor and Señora Garcia left Spain at Christmas 1807, they
decided that it would be best not to take with them so young a child as
Manuel then was, and accordingly he was left behind in Madrid with his
grandparents, in whose charge he remained until his tenth year. This
resulted in his passing through some historic scenes, by the memories of
which, in his old age, he formed a link with the past which seemed
wellnigh incredible.

Those were years of war and bloodshed, for, during his childhood, Spain
was convulsed first by the throes of the Napoleonic invasion, and then
by the successive campaigns of the Peninsular War.

Let us take a glimpse of the swift march of events, of which he must
have not only heard reports, but in many cases been the actual witness
during his sojourn in Madrid.

First, however, we will try to get some idea of the Spanish capital as
it was in the early years of the nineteenth century.

We obtain the best impression from a book published in the year 1835,
"embodying sketches of the metropolis and its inhabitants," by a
resident officer.

The most striking feature of Madrid at this time, according to this
writer, was the irregularity in the height of the buildings. It was not
uncommon to see a wretched tumble-down-looking house supporting itself
against the palace of a grandee, displaying its checkered, moss-grown,
weather-stained tiling in mockery of the marble and sculpture of its
next-door neighbour.

"The quarters of Madrid known under the name of the 'Rastro' and
'Barrios Bajos' presented a most unwholesome and ungainly appearance,
being chiefly composed of hovels, with mud walls and tiled roofing,
which contained but a ground-floor, and were inhabited by the dregs of
the population. They were the purlieus of vice and crime, and were not
only a disgrace to the capital, but would have been so to any sixth-rate
town in the kingdom. This, and the great disparity in the buildings of
Madrid at that time, may be accounted for by calling to mind the
capricious way it commenced its importance as a capital.

"It had struggled on, a second-rate town, until the Emperor Charles V.
of Germany (Charles I. of Spain), suffering under a severe fit of the
ague, which he had caught in Valladolid, the royal residence at that
time, came to Madrid for change of air, and recovered; in consequence of
which he continued to reside there till his death. Philip II. decided
its prosperity by ultimately making it the seat of the Court, and after
this it was augmented by bits and scraps as a building mania came on, or
as the times permitted."

The same discrepancy prevailed in the style and mode of living:
everything was in extremes, both in houses, equipages, clothing, eating,
and drinking. Luxury and misery, comfort and squalidness, were
constantly elbowing each other.

As to the inhabitants, had an Englishman been transported blindfolded
into Spain and his bandage taken off when set down in Madrid, he might
readily have believed himself in a seaport town from the great variety
of costumes.

"The _Valencian_, with his gay-coloured handkerchief rolled about his
head in the Moorish fashion, a brilliantly striped _mantã_ thrown
gracefully over his shoulder; the _Maragato_, looking for all the world
like a well-fed Dutch skipper in flesh and costume; the man of
_Estremadura_, his broad buff belt buckled about his loins, and a string
of sausages in his hand; the _Catalonian's_ wild Albanian look and cut,
a red woollen cap falling on his shoulder in the way of the Neapolitan
mariners; the _Andalusian's_ elegant dress, swarthy face, and
immeasurable whiskers; _Galicia's_ heavy, dirty son, dragging after him
at every step a shoe weighing from two to three pounds, including nails,
doublings, and other defences against a treacherous and ruinous
pavement. All these might well have been taken for the inhabitants of
regions hundreds of leagues asunder, differing as essentially in
language as in costume."

But one of the most remarkable features of Madrid was the predominance
of large convents in the finest situations and best streets, often
monopolising more space than should have fallen to their share. The
fronts of the holy houses extended themselves widely up and down the
street, causing a dead blank, and destroying the symmetry of the
_calle_. The monotonous appearance was, however, frequently relieved by
the close-shaven heads of some of the "fathers" appearing at the little
windows of their cells, condescending to look upon what was passing
outside--faces, some fat, ruddy, and shining, others pale and sallow,
with strange black beards and flashing eyes.

The nunneries, in point of usurping place and selecting the most
frequented quarters of the town, yielded nothing to the male convents.
There were no less than three of them in the Calle Alcala, perched in
the very midst of the thoroughfare to and from the Prado.

The sisters used to have a number of latticed windows towards the
street, whence they might see without being seen. These celestial
spouses, as they called themselves, were very troublesome neighbours,
for they were so chary of being seen, even when walking in their garden,
that, not contented with running up a wall twenty feet high at least and
spoiling a whole street, they insisted on doing the same service to all
the houses which had the misfortune to be within eyeshot of them. Hence
there would be seen whole balconies completely boxed up with sheet-iron
opposite a long dead wall, with a few ascetic-looking cypresses peeping
over it.

Here, then, we have some of the principal features of Madrid at that
time, and it was not till several years after Manuel Garcia had left the
capital that the first stir towards improving the place was made; for we
read how in 1835 "commodious flagways are being laid down for the
convenience and security of passengers. Moreover, the convents are to be
pulled down," the same writer continues. "Few of these buildings merit
respect from the shovels. Their architecture is vulgar and extravagant
where the long dead walls do not constitute their only claim to
admiration. Still I must confess I like to see a host of cupolas and
minarets sparkling and towering in the glorious sunset. Nor does the
flowing costume of the friars--black, blue, white, and grey--show amiss
in the motley crowd of picturesque costumes paraded in the streets.
Murillo has immortalised the cowl and cassock, and custom has rendered
both favourites with the mass of the people, who will long regret the
monks and their soup doled out at the convent gate."

And now to return to the point at which we left our narrative to set
down these few details of Madrid at the time Manuel Garcia was residing
there with his grandparents.

Spain had been the consistent ally of France since the Treaty of Basle
in 1795. Nevertheless, Napoleon deliberately determined to dethrone his
faithful friend, Charles IV.

Court intrigues gave him a splendid opportunity for interfering in the
affairs of Spain. The heir to the throne, Ferdinand, Prince of the
Austrians, hated his mother's lover, Godoy, and for sharing in a plot
against the favourite was thrown into prison. He appealed for help to
Napoleon, and Charles IV., on his side, did the same. Upon this,
Napoleon began to move his troops across the Pyrenees, and a French
army, under the command of Murat, approached Madrid. The population of
the Spanish capital at once rose in insurrection and maltreated Godoy,
who fell into its hands. Manuel Garcia was at this time just entering
his fourth year, and the rising which he thus witnessed was one of his
earliest memories.

Charles IV. at once abdicated, and was quickly forced to cede the crown
to "his friend and ally," Napoleon, who conferred it on his brother
Joseph, King of Naples, on June 6th.

But it was one thing to proclaim Joseph King of Spain, another to place
him in power. The patriotism of the Spanish people was stirred to its
depths, and they declined to accept a new monarch supported by French
troops. In every quarter insurrections broke out and _juntos_ were
formed.

One was able to get a graphic picture of the horrors of that outbreak
from the reminiscences which Señor Garcia used to give, for it made an
impression on his childhood which remained undimmed throughout the
successive years of his life. Indeed, it was more than ninety years
later that I recall his speaking of these scenes one afternoon when the
ill-starred war, which his beloved country was at the time carrying on
against the United States, brought to his mind the memory of that other
war nearly a century before.

"During the weeks which succeeded Joseph Bonaparte's assumption of the
Spanish throne," he said, "there arose great bitterness between the
peasants and the invaders. Daily, when the roll-call was read, a number
of French soldiers failed to answer to their names: during the preceding
night the unhappy men would have been murdered in their beds by the
inmates of the houses in which they had been quartered in the
surrounding villages."

The French exacted terrible reprisals for this, and he vividly recalled
the long line of men, youths, and even boys who were forced to run the
gauntlet between the rows of soldiers on their way to wholesale
execution. "Shoot every one old enough to hold a gun." So ran the cruel
order, given out day after day to the soldiers in many districts.

On the 2nd of May a wholesale massacre of the French took place in
Madrid, and the survivors were driven out of the town by the mob. In
consequence of this, Murat was forced to retire with his soldiers
beyond the Ebro, while the province of Asturias rose _en masse_.

But mobs and undisciplined militia can never stand against regular
troops. The Spanish army was defeated, and on the 20th of July young
Garcia witnessed the entrance of Joseph Bonaparte into the capital as
King of Spain.

That same day, however, brought serious disaster to one of the flying
columns which had been sent out in various directions. The Spanish
insurgents at once rose in every quarter, and a guerilla warfare was
begun which proved more fatal to the French army than regular defeats
would have been. Napoleon for the first time had to fight a nation in
arms, and Joseph Bonaparte was forced to evacuate Madrid within three
weeks of making his royal entry, and to retreat beyond the Ebro, as
Murat had done two months before.

Here he was joined by his brother-in-law with 135,000 men, and a rapid
advance was made on Madrid, with the inevitable result that the Spanish
capital was forced to capitulate, and on December 13 the young Manuel
had the excitement of seeing the entry of the great Napoleon into the
town at the head of the French troops.

The events of the next three years of the Peninsular War were not
witnessed by him, for the place remained in the hands of the French
until 1812, when he saw Madrid evacuated by Bonaparte, and occupied on
August 12 by Wellington and his troops after the battle of Salamanca.

With his main army the English general now advanced on Burgos, which,
however, resisted all his assaults; and the Anglo-Portuguese army had to
retire once more into Portugal, while for the last time Joseph returned
to the Spanish capital.

In the summer of 1813 Wellington broke up from his quarters, and,
marching in a north-easterly direction, attempted to cut off all
communication between France and Madrid. The movement completely
overthrew the French domination in Spain, and Joseph Bonaparte fled with
all the troops he could collect. Wellington followed, and came up with
the French army at Vittoria, where he defeated them.

This victory, by which the invaders were driven back into France, was
followed by a burst of national enthusiasm. The Spanish guerillas
destroyed every isolated French post, and on October 8, 1813, Wellington
crossed the French borders with his army.

A few months later Ferdinand VII. was restored to the throne of Spain.

Such were the events through which his native land was passing during
the childhood of Manuel Garcia, and which he was able to recall in after
life.

What memories and experiences must he have had to pour into the ears of
his parents when, in the summer of 1814, he was summoned to join them at
Naples, where they had settled two years previously, having been forced
to leave Paris owing to the strong feeling against Spain!

[Illustration: MANUEL GARCIA'S FATHER.]



CHAPTER III.

NAPLES.

(1814-1816.)


When Manuel Garcia joined his parents in Italy in the summer of 1814,
being at the time in his tenth year, he found Naples under the rule of
King Murat.

Here he saw for the first time his sister Maria, who was now six years
old, while his father he found installed in the position of principal
tenor in the chapel choir of King Murat. The elder Garcia had held this
post for about two years, having been appointed immediately on his
arrival from Paris. Since then he had been devoting himself to a
complete study of the art of singing under his friend and teacher,
Ansani.

This celebrated tenor was able to hand on to him the Italian vocal
traditions of that "Bel Canto" school which had come down from the old
Neapolitan maestro, Porpora.

Soon after Manuel came to Italy he was taken by his father to see
Ansani, who not only heard him sing, but gave him a few informal
lessons. It was a case of winter and spring, for while the pupil was in
his tenth year, the teacher was approaching his seventieth. With this
fact we are brought face to face with an almost incredible link with the
past. Ansani was nearly twenty when Porpora died, in his eighty-second
year. A remark which Manuel Garcia once made rather points to the
possibility that Ansani may have had a few lessons from Porpora himself.
Whether this was absolutely true I know not,--at any rate it may well
have been so. Accept the supposition, and those who had the honour of
studying under the "centenarian" would at once be placed in a position
to say that they were pupils of one whose master had himself received
lessons from a man born in 1687. The possibility is a fascinating one.

Giovanni Ansani himself was an interesting personality. Born in Rome
about the middle of the eighteenth century, it has been reported that he
once met Bach. As, however, the German composer died in the year 1750,
about the time that Ansani was still busying himself with the
feeding-bottle--or its eighteenth-century equivalent--the story must be
regarded with some suspicion, to say the least of it.

After a musical training received in Italy, he sang in various parts of
the Continent. Twenty years before the close of the century he made his
appearance in London, and at once took the first place. He soon left,
however, on account of disputes with Roncaglia.

In 1781 he returned to England, and Dr Burney, who heard him sing in
that year, has described him as the sweetest, albeit one of the most
powerful, tenors of his generation. He was a spirited actor, and had a
full, fine-toned, and commanding voice, while, according to Gervasoni,
he had a very rare truth of intonation, great power of expression, and
most perfect method both of voice emission and vocalisation. His wife,
Maccherini, was also a singer, and accompanied him to London on his
second visit. He himself was always noted for a quarrelsome disposition,
and as a prima donna his wife had an almost equally bad temper. Such
jealousy in fact existed between them that, when either was applauded
for singing, the other was accustomed to go into the pit and hiss.

In 1784 Ansani appeared at Florence, and toured Italy. At the age of
fifty he retired and settled in Naples, where he devoted himself to
teaching. It was some twelve years later that he began to give lessons
to the elder Garcia.

When Manuel joined his parents, he at once commenced to study singing
under his father's guidance. The training of those days was a much
slower process than that which is deemed necessary at the present time.
Months, indeed years, would be spent in the practice of simple solfeggi,
to be followed by exercises in rhythm and studies for intonation.

The monotony of the first portion of this training evidently became very
wearisome in time, for Señor Garcia would afterwards recall how one day,
after being made to sing an endless variety of ascending scales, his
desire for a change became so great that he could not resist bursting
out, "Oh dear! mayn't I sing down the scale even once?" The training of
those days was indeed a hard one, but it turned out artists who had a
very wonderful command over their voices.

After a time Manuel began to find these severe studies irksome. He
seems, moreover, to have had no particular vocation for the lyrical
stage, and the bent of his mind, even at that early period, had a
leaning towards science.

As a boy, he had a soprano voice of beautiful quality, and it has been
asserted that during the stay in Italy he was appointed to a place in
the cathedral choir. Absolute verification of this statement is
practically impossible to obtain, though there seems no reason for
doubting its truth. On the other hand, there is a strong likelihood that
it may have been confused with the fact that the _elder_ Garcia (whose
name was also Manuel) was in the chapel choir.

From this time the training of his voice continued practically without
intermission, under his father's tuition, till his twentieth year. It
was largely due to the fact that work was not stopped during that
dangerous period at the commencement of puberty, that he assigned the
break-down of his voice in after years.

The elder Garcia took the greatest delight and pride in the early
education and musical training of his son, and among many other valuable
lessons, he impressed upon him that a singer must not only know how to
use his voice, but must, above all, be a thorough musician.

As we have already seen, Manuel was taken to see Ansani, who gave him a
few lessons. In addition to this, much help was received from
Zingarelli, when the elder Garcia was too busy to take him. His
intelligent brain could therefore make a blend of Spanish and Italian
methods. To this he added in after life his own observations on the
human voice, and applied the scientific theories which he formed and
eventually corroborated by means of his laryngoscope. It was by the wise
combination of this knowledge that he was able to evolve the magnificent
Method which produced Jenny Lind.

Zingarelli was a man whose name is worth pausing over for a moment, for
some episodes of his life are of considerable interest. In 1804 he had
succeeded Guglielmi as Maestro di Cappella of the Sistine Chapel in
Rome.

When Napoleon in the zenith of his imperial power gave his son the
pompous title of "King of Rome," he ordered rejoicings throughout his
kingdom, and a "Te Deum" was arranged to be sung at St Peter's in Rome.
When, however, the authorities, both French and Italian, were assembled
for the performance of this servile work, Zingarelli refused to have
anything to do with it, and added that nothing would induce him to
acknowledge the rule of the Corsican usurper. Upon this he was arrested,
and, by Napoleon's orders, taken to Paris. Here he was immediately set
free and granted a pension, owing to the fact that Napoleon preferred
his music to that of any other composer.

In 1810 he left Paris for Naples, where three years later he was
appointed director of the Royal College of Music, and he was holding
this important post when Manuel came from Spain. Some eighteen months
later, just before the Garcia family left for Paris, he succeeded
Paisiello as Maestro di Cappella at the Neapolitan Cathedral; and these
two positions he continued to hold until his death at the age of
eighty-five.

During the sojourn in Italy the elder Garcia was not only in Murat's
private choir, but was also _primo tenore_ of the King's Opera Company
at the San Carlo. I remember Señor Garcia one day giving an amusing
account of his father's first appearance there.

Before he set out for his opening rehearsal he had come to the
conclusion that it would be a splendid thing if he could hit upon some
way of proving to the members of the orchestra that he was not one of
the ordinary small fry possessed of a voice and little else. He wanted
to gain their respect both as a musician and as a singer. This is how he
managed to accomplish his desire.

His opening aria in the opera to be rehearsed was in the key of E flat.
The orchestra played the introductory bars, and waited with a casual
interest for the new singer's opening phrase. The tenor commenced, but,
instead of doing so in the key in which they were playing, he began to
sing a semitone higher, in E natural. At first they were horrified at
the discords which resulted. Gradually, however, as the aria went on,
and the vocalist still sang exactly a semitone above the key in which
they were playing, it began to dawn upon them that, instead of being
sharp through nervousness or lack of ear, he was keeping a half tone
too high intentionally throughout the piece. Consequently, when they
heard him continue in E natural, without a moment's hesitation, or a
single false note (for so great a musician was he that he could abstract
himself entirely from his surroundings and from the sound of the
instruments), their disgust turned to surprise, then admiration, and
finally enthusiasm. When the aria was concluded there was an enormous
burst of applause and the wildest excitement among them all, for they
saw what a really great singer they had found in this newcomer. Of
course he sang the remainder of his part in the proper key, but by this
novel entry he won the lasting respect of his comrades.

The anecdote afforded a good illustration of his exceptional powers. The
elder Garcia was certainly a wonderful man, and in some ways a unique
figure in the history of music, for it is doubtful if any other singer
has duplicated his extraordinary talent and versatility. Attention has
already been called to the fact that he was conductor and impresario. As
a composer he was responsible for over forty operas, of which number
seventeen were Spanish, nineteen Italian, and seven French; and in many
cases he was even responsible for the libretto. The greater number of
these works were performed in Spain, France, and America.

When he was in Paris "El Poeta Calculista" was given, as we have already
said, with the greatest success in 1809, and three years later "The
Caliph of Bagdad" received no less appreciation. His power as an actor
was equal to that as a singer, while his Spanish temperament gave a
fire to his impersonations which could not but awaken enthusiasm.
"J'aime la fureur andalouse de cet homme," wrote a contemporary critic;
"il aime tout."

But of all his qualities that which perhaps stood out most was a
remarkable gift of extemporisation. It was this which first attracted
the notice of Rossini, and led him to write the tenor _rôle_ in
"Elisabeth" for the elder Garcia. The result was so satisfactory that
when he set to work on his next opera, "Il Barbiere di Seviglia," he
wrote the part of Almaviva specially for him.

The story of this production, as Manuel Garcia related it, was an
interesting one.

In the December of 1815 Rossini had bound himself to produce a new opera
by the 20th of the following month. He hesitated at first about
accepting a libretto which Paisiello had treated so successfully, but
having obtained that composer's permission he wrote the entire score in
a fortnight. To avoid all appearance of rivalry with Paisiello he named
his work first of all, "Almaviva, or The Useless Precaution"; and it was
accordingly produced under this title in Rome at the Argentina Theatre
on February 5, 1816, with the following cast:--

    _Rossini_             Signora Giorgi Righetti.
    _Berta_               Signorina Rossi.
    _Figaro_              Signor Luigi Zamboni.
    _Bartolo_             Signor Botticelli.
    _Basilio_             Signor Vitarelli.
    _Count Almaviva_      Signor Garcia.

The theatre was packed with the adherents of the older composer, who
resented the new effort as an intrusion on his rights. In consequence of
this the work was unmercifully damned, but it was kept on the stage and
continually grew in favour until it became one of the most popular comic
operas ever written.

These two operas, "Elisabeth" and "Il Barbiere," were not by any means
the only ones in which the elder Garcia undertook the tenor _rôle_ at
the initial performance, for in the course of the long career which
followed he had the honour of creating a number of other parts.

As a singer, according to his son, his forte lay in the rendition of the
lighter and more florid music, the voice being remarkable for its
extraordinary flexibility. It was this faculty which gave his inventive
powers their full scope in the extemporisations which he was wont to
introduce into the various arie. This custom, it may be well to point
out, was quite in accordance with the tastes and actual wishes of the
composers of that time.

Among the old musicians it used to be customary to write a mere outline
or suggestion of the voice part. Particularly was this the case when
there was a return to the original theme, while it applied equally to
the conventional ending found in nearly all arie of that time. The
singers were expected to elaborate the simple melody given them, and to
raise upon this foundation a graceful edifice, adorned with what
ornaments their individual taste dictated, and suited to their own
powers of execution.

The following illustration will prove the truth of the above assertion.
It is a story from the lips of the maestro.

While his father, the elder Garcia, was at Naples, one of the old
Italian composers came to produce a new opera.

At the opening rehearsal the tenor was given his part to read at sight.
When his first aria had been reached he sang it off with perfect
phrasing and feeling, but exactly note for note as written. After he had
finished the composer said, "Thank you, signer, very nice, but that was
not at all what I wanted." He asked for an explanation, and was informed
that the melody which had been written down was intended merely as a
skeleton which the singer should clothe with whatever his imagination
and artistic instinct prompted. The writer of the music asked him to go
through it again, and this time to treat it exactly as though it were
his own composition.

The elder Garcia was skilful at improvising: consequently, in giving the
aria for the second time, he made a number of alterations and additions,
introducing runs, trills, roulades, and cadenzas, all of which were
performed with the most brilliant execution. This time, when the end of
the music was reached, the old composer shook him warmly by the hand.
"Bravo! Magnificent! That was my music, as I wished it to be given."

It may be noted that Lord Mount-Edgcumbe, in his 'Musical Reminiscences'
(published in 1824), refers more than once to the same thing. In
speaking of the famous male soprano, Pacchierotti, who made his _début_
in London in 1778, the following passage occurs:--

     His voice was an extensive soprano, full and sweet.... His powers
     of execution were great; but he had too good taste and too good
     sense to make a display of them where it would have been
     misapplied, confining it to one _bravura_ song (_aria d'agilità_)
     in each opera, conscious that the chief delight of singing lay in
     touching expression and exquisite pathos.... He could not sing a
     song twice in exactly the same way, _yet never ... introduced an
     ornament that was not judicious and appropriate to the
     composition_.

Again Lord Mount-Edgcumbe writes:--

     Many songs of the old masters would be very indifferently sung by
     modern performers, not on account of their difficulty but their
     apparent facility. Composers when writing for a first-rate singer
     noted down merely a simple _tema_ with the slightest possible
     accompaniment, which, if sung as written, would be cold, bald, and
     insipid. It was left to the singer to fill up the outline, to give
     it the light and shade and all its grace and expression, which
     requires not only a thorough knowledge of music but the greatest
     taste and judgment.

But to return to the elder Garcia and his family.

It was during this stay at Naples that little Maria made her first
public appearance, when she was barely five years old. The anecdote was
one which Manuel Garcia was very fond of relating.

The opera in which the diminutive vocalist made her _début_ was Paër's
"Agnese," in which there was a child's part.

In the second act there is a scene where the husband and wife have
quarrelled and are reunited through the intervention of their daughter.
The tiny Malibran attended the rehearsals and knew the whole opera by
heart. On the night of the performance the prima donna either forgot her
part or hesitated a moment. Lo! the little girl instantly took up the
melody, and sang with such vigour and resonance that the entire house
heard her. The prima donna was about to interrupt when the audience
shouted, "Bravo! don't stop her. Let her go on."

It was a period in which the public loved infant prodigies, both musical
and dramatic, and Marietta was actually permitted to sing the part of
Agnese throughout the rest of the scene--a piece of audacity which
delighted the hearers and called forth an exhibition of true Italian
enthusiasm. Two years after this the tiny musician commenced to study
solfeggi with Panseron, while Hérold gave her the first instruction on
the piano.

In the autumn of the year 1815 an event occurred which brought the
Garcia family into a vivid realisation of the changes which had been
taking place in European affairs during the earlier part of the year,
with the battle of Waterloo.

Scarcely had the news of Napoleon's downfall reached Naples when the
townsfolk witnessed the closing scene in the life of his brother-in-law.
The month in which Napoleon landed in France King Murat declared war
against Austria, whose queen, it will be remembered, had but recently
died. He was defeated at Tolentino, and retired first to France, then to
Corsica. In the autumn the brilliant but headstrong ex-king of Naples
was mad enough to make an attempt to regain his forfeited throne, on
which Ferdinand had been reinstated by the Congress of Vienna. Having
landed with about thirty followers on the coast of Lower Calabria, he
was almost instantly arrested by a detachment of the Neapolitan troops,
by whom he was handed over to a court-martial and sentenced to death.

The closing scene is well described in Colletta's 'History of Naples':--

     After the passing of the sentence the prisoner was led into the
     courtyard of the castle of Pizzo, where a double file of soldiers
     was drawn up, and, as he refused to have his eyes bound, he looked
     calmly on while their weapons were made ready. Then, placing
     himself in a posture to receive the balls, he said to the soldiers,
     'Spare my face and aim at my heart.' After these words the muskets
     were discharged, and he who had been King of the two Sicilies fell
     dead, holding in his hand the portrait of his family, which was
     buried with his sad remains in the very church which had owed its
     erection to his piety. Those who believed in his death mourned it
     bitterly, but the generality of the Neapolitans beguiled their
     grief by some invention or other respecting the events of Pizzo.

Manuel Garcia was in his eleventh year when the tragedy took place, and
in after years would recall the sensation which the gruesome incident
made among the Neapolitans.

Almost immediately after Murat's death the Neapolitans found cause for
great affliction and terror in the appearance of the plague, which
seemed to them almost a judgment from Heaven.

The epidemic had only ceased a few months in Malta when it broke out
again in Dalmatia, spreading thence from place to place, till it
attacked the inhabitants of Cadiz at one extremity of the Mediterranean
and Constantinople at the other. At the same time it reached Noia, a
small city of Puglia, situated on the Adriatic.

Eagerness for gain by men carrying on illicit trade caused its
introduction with some goods from Dalmatia.

The first death occurred on November 23, 1815, but a cordon was not
placed round the city till six weeks later; traffic went on as usual,
people left the city and returned, and merchandise was carried into the
provinces and as far as Naples. Fortune, however, or divine providence,
saved the kingdom and Italy, for out of the number of men and quantity
of goods leaving Noia, none happened to be infected.

At last, on January 1, precautionary measures were taken, and the
unhappy city was surrounded by three circuits of ditches, one at a
distance of sixty paces, the next at ninety, and the third, which was
rather a boundary-line than a barrier, at ten miles. Sentries were
placed along these, and numerous fires lighted up the country at night.
Whoever dared to attempt passing the line was punished with death; and
more than one case is recorded of a poor wretch, maddened with the
horrors of the town, rushing across the boundary-line, only to fall
instantly under the musket-fire of the soldiers.

Throughout the winter the Garcias, in common with the other inhabitants
of Naples, lived in constant fear that the plague might break out in the
town.

Since, with the coming of spring, the danger showed little sign of
ceasing, the elder Garcia determined to leave the country and remove
with his family to Paris, from which he had been more than four years
absent. It must have been just about the time of their departure that
the theatre in which the tenor had been appearing during four successive
seasons was destroyed by fire.

The scene which took place is well described by Colletta. The opera
company, it appears, were on the spot rehearsing when the fire broke
out, and at once fled in consternation. Their cries, with the volumes of
smoke issuing from the building, made the danger known, and people
hastened from all parts of the city, but too late. The conflagration
spread, the king and royal family left the palace which adjoined the
theatre, and the fire, catching the whole of the immense structure that
composed the roof, sent forth raging and brilliant flames, which were
reflected on the Monte St Elmo and in the sea below. The sky, which had
been calm, became stormy, and the wind blew the flames in the direction
of Castel Nuovo, until they licked the bare walls of the castle.

Happily the danger did not last long, for in less than two hours the
noble structure was burned to ashes; and the mistake of having from
financial avarice abolished the company of firemen was now acknowledged
too late.

The king ordered the theatre to be rebuilt in the shortest possible
time, and in four months it rose more beautiful than ever, though Manuel
Garcia was never to see it after its phœnix-like reappearance.



CHAPTER IV.

PARIS AND LONDON.

(1816-1825.)


In the spring of 1816 the elder Garcia left Naples, and with his family
set out for Paris, which he had decided to make his home once more.

When he had last been in that city, upwards of four years previously,
Napoleon had still been all-powerful; when he returned Louis XVIII. was
on the throne and Bonaparte in hopeless exile at St. Helena.

After he had settled down he continued the singing lessons of his son,
whose general education was looked after by private tutors,--Reicha,
Basbereau, and others. As to himself, he was at once engaged as _primo
tenore_ at the Théâtre Italien, then under the management of
Catalani,--a woman whose story we will dwell on for a moment.

At the age of twelve she had been sent to a convent near Rome, being
introduced by Cardinal Onorati. Here her voice soon became a great
attraction owing to its extraordinary purity, force, and compass, which
extended to G in altissimo. On leaving the convent, where sometimes the
congregation had openly applauded her splendid notes in the services,
she found herself compelled to perform in public, owing to the sudden
poverty of her parents.

At the age of sixteen she obtained her first engagement at the Fenice
Theatre in Venice, and thence she went to other opera houses in Italy,
meeting everywhere with wonderful success.

In the year of Manuel's birth, Catalani signed her first agreement with
the managers of the King's Theatre in the Haymarket at £2000 per annum,
and remained in England for seven years. She was, however, a prima donna
of the deepest dye, capricious as she was extravagant. Neither would her
disposition endure the possibility of rivalry, nor would the size of her
increasing demands allow the managers to engage any other singers of
position. At last with the close of 1813, having unsuccessfully
attempted to purchase the King's Theatre outright, she fell out with the
directors and left London.

With the fall of Napoleon she went to Paris, where Louis XVIII. gave her
the management of the Théâtre Italien, with a subvention of 160,000
francs. Subsequently, during the Hundred Days, she fled before the
advance of the despot, fearing his wrath, and paid a tactful visit to
Germany and Scandinavia. It was only after the capture of the Emperor
that she dared return, and even then she did so by way of Holland,
instead of coming direct, lest at the last minute he might somehow free
himself and come back into power. However, all was well, Catalani
returned to her position at the Théâtre Italien, and at once engaged
Garcia _père_ on his arrival in Paris.

In the autumn of the year the tenor and his family paid their first
visit to England, but only made a short stay. The little daughter Maria,
who was now eight years old, accompanied them, and was left in England
for some years, her education being carried on in a convent school at
Hammersmith. It was to this fact that in after life she owed her success
in this country as a singer of oratorio and English songs.

Upon the elder Garcia's return to Paris, the "Caliph of Bagdad" was
revived, as well as another of his operas, "Le Prince d'Occasion." As
_primo tenore_ of Catalani's troupe, he appeared as Paolino in
Pergolesi's "Matrimonio Segreto," and sang in all the operas which were
in vogue at that time,--a very different repertoire to that which
audiences are accustomed to hear nowadays.

At last an unfortunate quarrel arose between Catalani and himself, and
at the end of 1817 he went once more to England. This was only a few
months after "Don Giovanni" had been given in England for the first time
at the Italian Opera House, with Mesdames Fodor, Camporese, and Pasta;
Signori Crivelli, Ambrogetti, and Agrisani.

His success in London was great during the ensuing season. He made his
_début_ with Mme. Fodor in "The Barber of Seville," his performance of
Almaviva being, according to a critic of that time, "commensurate with
his transcendent talent," while he appeared in other operas with equal
_éclat_. During the same season he created a further sensation by
singing at the chapel of the Bavarian Embassy in Warwick Street, where
several masses of his own composition were given.

In 1819 he returned to Paris and became once more a member of the
company at the Théâtre Italien, Catalani having failed and resigned the
reins of management during his absence in England. Here he repeated his
old success in "Otello" and "Don Giovanni," and also took part, on
October 26, in the first performance of "Il Barbiere" ever given in
Paris, at the Salle Louvois. It was again received coldly, as had been
the case on the original production in Rome three and a half years
before. Once more the critics demanded the "Barbiere" of Paisiello,
which was accordingly put on the stage at the Théâtre Italien, only to
meet with dismal failure; and thus in the end Rossini triumphed with it
in the French capital, as he had in that of Italy.

The cast of this Parisian _première_ was as follows:

    _Rosina_                Mme. Ronzi de Begnis.
    _Figaro_                Signor Pellegrini.
    _Bartolo_               Signor Graziani.
    _Basilio_               Signor de Begnis.
    _Almaviva_              Signor Garcia.

In addition to appearing at the opera Garcia _père_ continued to compose
prolifically. "La Mort du Tasse" and "Florestan" were produced at the
Grand Opera, "Fazzoletto" at the Théâtre Italien, and "La Meunière" at
the Gymnase, while three others were finished but never performed.

Moreover, he devoted a good deal of attention to teaching singing, his
fame attracting a number of pupils, while at the close of the year 1819
he published a book on his 'Method of Singing.'

In the spring of the following year, in which took place the accession
of George IV. to the throne of England, Manuel Garcia paid a flying
visit to Spain. It was destined to be the last time he ever saw his
native country. The fact is a curious one when we remember his intense
love for Spain, which was so strong that, in spite of his spending the
last fifty-eight years of his life in England, nothing would have
induced him to become a naturalised British subject.

On his return from Madrid he commenced the study of harmony, for, as has
been already stated, his father was a firm believer in the necessity of
every singer being a musician in the broadest sense of the word. For
this work he was placed under François Joseph Fétis, who had just
succeeded Elen as professor of counterpoint and fugue at the
Conservatoire. This was six years before Fétis became librarian of the
institution--a position in which he was enabled to prepare his famous
'Biographie Universelle des Musiciens,' which is one of the greatest
monuments to the achievements of musical genius ever reared. He was
indeed a remarkable man, who displayed talent not only as teacher, but
composer, historian, critic, and author of various theoretical works.

In 1821, the year of Napoleon's death, Manuel's youngest sister was
born--Michelle Ferdinande Pauline,--who was in after years to become no
less famous than Maria. The second and third names were given her in
honour of her sponsors, Ferdinand Paër and Princess Pauline Galitzin.

In the spring of 1823 the elder Garcia was again appearing at the
King's Theatre, and during the season he founded his famous school of
singing in London. It was at this time, too, that he first began
seriously to take Maria's musical training in hand, since she was now
approaching her fifteenth birthday. His daughter soon showed the
individuality of her genius, in spite of a certain fear inspired by her
father's somewhat violent disposition.

He made his reappearance at the King's Theatre in May in Rossini's
"Otello," given with the following cast:--

    _Otello_            Signor Garcia.
    _Desdemona_         Mme. Camporese.
    _Elmiro_            Signor Porto.
    _Roderigo_          Signor Curioni.
    _Iago_              Signor Reina.
    _Emilia_            Signora Caradori.
    _Doge_              Signor Righi.

In speaking of his return to London, the 'Harmonicon' tells us:
"Garcia's voice has an extensive compass and considerable power, and is
round and clear. Its flexibility is remarkable."

On June 5 we find the tenor taking part in the first performance of
Rossini's semi-serious opera, "Ricciardo e Zoraide," with this cast:--

    _Agorante_          Signor Garcia.
    _Ricciardo_         Signor Curioni.
    _Ernesto_           Signor Reina.
    _Ircano_            Signor Porto.
    _Zoraide_           Mme. Camporese.
    _Zomira_            Mme. Vestris.
    _Fatima_            Mme. Graziani.

Four weeks later he is appearing at the _première_ of another of
Rossini's works with the strange title, "Matilde di Shabran e Corradino,
ossia Il Trionfa della Belta," with the principal parts distributed
thus:--

    _Matilde di Shabran_           Mme. Ronzi di Begnis.
    _Corradino_                    Signor Garcia.
    _Isidoro_                      Signor di Begnis.
    _Raimondo_                     Signor Reina.
    _Edvardo_                      Mme. Vestris.
    _Contessa d'Arca_              Signora Caradori.

From all this, it will be seen that Manuel Garcia lived in a musical
world day and night. Awake or asleep, music and musicians surrounded the
boy.

At the close of the London season his father returned to Paris.

An exceptional insight into the musical and artistic circles of the
French capital at this time, when Manuel was a young man of eighteen, is
given by the following paragraph from a paper of that day:--

"On November 15 some of the principal musical composers and theatrical
performers of Paris united to give a dinner to Signor Rossini, in the
great room of M. Martin, Place du Châtelet.

"Signor Rossini was seated between Mdlle. Mars and Mme. Pasta. M.
Lesueur, placed exactly opposite to him, had Mme. Colbran Rossini on his
right and Mdlle. Georges on his left; Mmes. Grassari, Cinti, and Denuri
sat next to these. MM. Talma, Boieldieu, Garcia, and Martin were in the
midst of this group of elegance and beauty. All the arts, all the
talents, were represented by MM. Auber, Hérold, Cicéri Panseron, Casimir
Bonjour, Mimaut, Horace Vernet, &c.

"When the dessert was served, M. Lesueur rose and gave the following
toast--'To Rossini! whose ardent Genius has opened a new path and formed
an epoch in the art of music.'

"Signor Rossini replied by this toast--'To the French School, and to the
prosperity of the Conservatoire.'

"M. Lesueur then gave--'Gluck.'

"Signor Garcia proposed--'Gretry! the most sensible and one of the most
melodious of French musicians.'

"Signor Rossini then gave--'Mozart.'

"M. Boieldieu offered his toast in the following words--'Mehul! I see
Rossini and the shade of Mozart applaud this toast.'

"M. Hérold proposed--'Paisiello! Full of ingenuity and passion, he
rendered popular in all parts of Europe the Italian School.'

"Finally M. Panseron (for M. Auber) gave--'Cimarosa! the precursor of
Rossini.'"

With this the proceedings were brought to an official close and an
unofficial commencement of others, which were doubtless continued into
"the sma' wee hours."

In the January of 1824 the Garcias returned to England once more, for we
find the following announcement made in one of the London musical
papers--

"The Italian Opera (King's Theatre) is to open towards the end of the
present month. Signor Rossini is engaged as composer and director of
the music: he is to superintend the performance of his own operas, and
to produce a new one. The engagements both for the opera and the ballet
are upon a liberal scale. Among these are--

    _Mesdames_--Ronzi di Begnis, Colbran Rossini, Pasta, Vestris, &c.
    _Signors_--Garcia, Curioni, Franceschi, Remorini,
        di Begnis, Porto, &c.
    _Conductor_--Signor Coccia.
    _Leader_--Signor Spagnoletti.
    _Poet_--Signor Vestris.
    _In the Ballet will appear_--Mme. Ronzi Vestris; Mdlle.
        Legras, Mdlle. Idalise Grener, Mdlle. Noblet; M.
        Albert, M. Charles Vestris, M. Ferdinand, &c.
    _Principal Ballet-master_--Mons. Aumer."

The season opened on January 24 with "Zelmira," a new opera conducted by
"the universally fashionable composer of the day, Signor Gioacchiso
Rossini."

How strangely reads the repertoire of the representations given at the
King's Theatre during the next months! Two only are heard at Covent
Garden nowadays, and those but rarely--"Don Giovanni" and "II Barbiere,"
which latter was given with Mme. Vestris as Rosina, di Begnis as
Bartolo, Benetti as Figaro, and Garcia in his old part of the Count. One
may perhaps add to the number of those still heard occasionally the
"Nozze di Figaro"; but this is only given at the most attenuated
intervals.

As for the rest, what can we say of Zingarelli's "Romeo e Giulietta"
and Rossini's "Otello," in which Mme. Pasta makes her _rentrée_? Add to
these "Ricciardo e Zoraide," "Semiramide," "Turco in Italia," "La Donna
del Lago," and "Il Fanatico per la Musica" which Catalani chooses for
her reappearance.

But there are other musical events worthy of attention during these
months.

We read that "Master Liszt, the young German pianist, had a concert at
the Argyll Rooms, when he exhibited talents that astonished all the
leading professors who were present."

Further, we find Signor Rossini giving two subscription concerts at
Almack's Rooms,--how strangely the names of the fashionable concert
rooms of the past sound to us now!--"Tickets two guineas."

They are announced "To Begin at Nine o'clock"; while the composer has
the assistance of the leading operatic artistes of the day--Catalani,
Pasta, Vestris, Garcia, di Begnis, _et hoc genus omne_.

But what is of especial interest is the fact that Rossini not only
conducted, but _sang_. He gave "a cavatino (_sic_) from Figaro," and a
duetto with Mme. Catalani, "Se fiato in corpo avete" by Cimarosa.

The second of these subscription concerts, given on June 9, 1824, is
worthy of our attention, for we find "Mdlle. Maria Garcia" making
apparently her first appearance in London, taking part with her father
in a duet, "Di Caprici," and adding a solo, "Nacqui al'affano," both by
Rossini.

With the close of the London season the elder Garcia returned to Paris.
Here his "Deux Contrats" was performed at the Opéra Comique. But the
early autumn of this year is principally memorable for the fact that he
allowed his daughter to make her first appearance in Paris as a
professional singer,--the concert in which she took part being given at
a musical club which he had just established in that city.

Two months later the entire family went to London, and here Maria's
musical education was continued in the singing-class which her father
had established. The elder Garcia was again engaged as first tenor at
the Royal Opera, his salary having now risen from £260 (1823) to £1250.
Here he continued to gain still greater fame as a teacher, while his
fertility as a composer was shown by two Italian operas, "Astuzia e
Prudenza" and "Un Avertimento."

On June 7, 1825, Maria had the opportunity of making her _début_ in
London at the King's Theatre, as Rosina in "Il Barbiere," under the
directorship of Mr Ebers.

It was owing to a fortuitous combination of circumstances--the sudden
return of Mme. Pasta to Paris, Ronzi losing her voice through illness,
Vestris seceding to the stage, and Caradori, an excellent _seconda
donna_, being _hors de combat_--that Maria found herself engaged to fill
the gap.

Manuel Garcia, by the way, in after years used sometimes to recall the
effect which Pasta's singing made on him, when he heard her in his
youth. He spoke of her as possessing a voice of ravishing beauty,
together with perfection of fioriture and grandeur of dramatic
conception, but in spite of this there was no doubt in his mind as to
his preference for the singing of Maria. Indeed, he would always declare
that his sister was the most natural and most precocious genius with
whom he had ever come in contact.

With her _début_ at the King's Theatre Maria achieved a triumphant
success, which was witnessed by her brother; and she was engaged by the
management for the remaining six weeks of the season for a sum of five
hundred pounds.

Once more we find that curious repertoire of operas in favour at that
time which contrasts so strangely with the taste of the present day, and
serves to illustrate the important changes in the form and character of
music which Manuel Garcia witnessed during his life.

We may, moreover, in this year trace the first introduction of
Meyerbeer's music to English audiences, for we read in the July
'Harmonicon'--

"On the 23rd of last month there was brought out 'Il Crociato in
Egitto,' the new grand opera of Meyerbeer, a composer whose name was
completely unknown in this country only a few weeks ago.... Mdlle.
Garcia, disguised in male attire, performed the part of Felicia with
great ability, both as a singer and actress."

Turning from opera to the concert world of 1825, we learn that "The only
regular subscription concerts now supported in London are the Ancient
and the Philharmonic," though we find Mme. Catalani during May giving a
series of four concerts at the Argyll Rooms, assisted by Mrs Salmon, Mr
Sapio, and Signor Remorini.

In the way of private musical entertainments, the Duke of Devonshire
gave a fashionable concert in May, with Pasta, Velluti, the last male
soprano who ever trod the boards in opera in this country, Puzzi, and a
pianist with the mellifluous cognomen "Szymanowska"; while on June 15, a
state concert was given by his Majesty King George IV. at--Carlton
Palace!

Among the artists taking part in the latter we find Signor and Mdlle.
Garcia, Caradori, Begrez, di Begnis, Curioni, Remorini, Velluti, and
Crivelli.

At the end of the season the elder Garcia, together with his wife, son,
and daughter, sang at several provincial concerts, and their names
appear in the programmes of two of the Gentlemen's Concerts at
Manchester on August 15 and September 9.

Four members of the family appearing together was surely a remarkable
event!

In the same month Maria was one of the soloists at the second York
Festival.

The committee had tried to get Catalani, but, after pecuniary terms had
been arranged, the treaty failed in consequence of a stipulation on her
part that several songs should be transposed into a lower key to suit
her voice.

"The committee had conceded," says the 'Harmonicon,' "to the condition
with regard to detached airs, but refused for those which are connected
with choruses. Then they tried to get Mme. Pasta, but this was refused,
as they could not give her permission to come without materially
compromising the interests of the Italian Theatre Royal. Thus
disappointed, they entered into negotiations with Mr Braham and other
eminent performers, and finally succeeded in obtaining the following
assemblage of talent:--

            Mr Greatorex, _Conductor_.
         Dr Camidge, _Assistant-Conductor_.

            _Principal Vocalists._

    Miss Stephens.                   Mr Braham.
    Miss Caradori.                   Mr Vaughan.
    _Mdlle. Garcia._                 Mr Sapio.
    Miss Travis.                     Mr Knyvett.
    Miss Wilkinson.                  Mr Terrail.
    Miss Goodall                     Mr Bellamy.
       and                           Mr Phillips.
    Miss Farrar.                     Signor di Begnis.

    A Grand Chorus of 350 voices, and 248 Instrumentalists
    in the Orchestra."

A perusal of the programme brings home to us the change which has taken
place in the last eighty years.

Handel naturally figured largely, while Mozart was represented by his
Jupiter Symphony, Beethoven by his Symphonies in C and D and one of the
Leonora overtures. Such names, however, as Pepusch, Spontini, and
Salieri have long since disappeared. Again, the style of Festival
programme was then of a very mixed, and, as regards some of the numbers,
of a very "popular" kind. Festivals of the present day are of a much
more serious character.

Mdlle. Garcia we find set down for such items as "Gratias" by Gugliemi,
"Alma invitta" from "Sigismondo," "O patria" from "Il Tancredi," a
terzetto from "Il Crociato in Egitto," and one of her "chevaux de
bataille," "Una voce poco fa" from "Il Barbiere."

With the York Festival the visit to England was brought to a close, and
at the end of the month the Garcia family embarked at Liverpool for New
York, where Manuel was to take part in the first American season of
Italian Opera.

Before following them there, let us seek a glimpse of some of the
operatic and theatrical events between the year of Manuel Garcia's first
visit to England and his trip to America.

In 1816 John Kemble was playing Coriolanus at his London season; Charles
Kean was at Drury Lane; and at Covent Garden Mrs Siddons reappeared as
Lady Macbeth, while Charles Mathews brought to an end his contract with
that theatre.

Next year Henry Bishop's operatic drama "The Slave" was produced at
Covent Garden, and a novel pantomime entitled "Robinson Crusoe," with
Grimaldi as Friday. It was, moreover, on June 13 of this season that
Kemble played Coriolanus for the last time, and retired. In 1818
Macready appeared in an acting version of "Rob Roy,"--a novel which Sir
Walter Scott had published shortly before.

This year, moreover, saw the birth of Gounod, and the death of Mrs
Billington, heroine of so many Covent Garden triumphs. In 1819 several
oratorios were given under Henry Bishop, with Samuel Wesley the church
musician as conductor; while on June 9, at the benefit of Mr and Mrs
Charles Kemble, Sarah Siddons appeared on the stage for the last time in
her life: a few months before this the beautiful Miss O'Neill retired
from the boards.

Shelley passed away in 1822 (the year which followed that of the
coronation of George IV.); while within a few weeks there took place an
interesting benefit performance, at which "The Rivals" was acted, with
the following cast:--

    _Sir Anthony_             Munden.
    _Captain Absolute_        Charles Kemble.
    _Faulkland_               Young.
    _Acres_                   Liston.
    _Lydia_                   Mrs Edwin.
    _Mrs Malaprop_            Mrs Davenport.

The next year is specially noteworthy for the production, in May, of
Henry Bishop and Howard Payne's opera, "The Maid of Milan," which
contained the air "Home, Sweet Home"; while in the following December, a
tragedy by Mrs Hemans saw the light under the title "The Vespers of
Palermo."

The year is, however, perhaps most important to us from the, at that
time, unparalleled constellation of stars who were appearing at Drury
Lane: Macready, Kean, Young, Munden, Liston, Elliston, Terry, Harley,
Knight, Miss Stephens, and Mme. Vestris.

In 1824, the year of Byron's death, Henry Bishop left Covent Garden for
Drury Lane, and Carl Von Weber was engaged in his place, in honour of
which event "Der Freischütz" was brought out at the English Opera House,
being also produced in the autumn at Covent Garden, where it was given
for no less than fifty-two performances during the season of 1824-25.

And what of the salaries which were being received by theatrical stars
at the beginning of the nineteenth century?

The great Charles Mathews writes at this time of a proposed engagement,
"Now to my offer, which I think stupendous and magnificent, £17 a-week."
John Kemble, for acting and managing, was receiving £36; Miss O'Neill,
at the most brilliant portion of her career, never had more than £25
a-week; while Mrs Jordan at her zenith had thirty guineas; and Charles
Kemble, until he became his own manager, never received more than £20
a-week.

Strange reading, indeed, when we compare it with the salaries which
theatrical stars were receiving during the last few years of Garcia's
life.



CHAPTER V.

OPERA IN AMERICA.

(1825-1826.)


The earliest operatic performances in America were derived not from
Italian but from English sources. Elson tells us in his book on American
music that "The Beggar's Opera," which created such a furore in Great
Britain, probably was the first entertainment of the kind given in the
colonies, being performed in New York as early as December 3, 1750, and
innumerable times thereafter. This was followed by a series of other
ballad operas.

"From the conglomerate Ballad Opera, often the work of half a dozen
composers," Elson continues, "New York passed on to a more unified
art-work, and the operas of Arnold, Storace, and Dibdin were given with
some frequency. During the British occupation, in revolutionary days,
the English regimental bands often assisted in the orchestral parts of
the operatic performances. At a later period many refugees, driven from
France by the Revolution, were to be found eking out a precarious
livelihood in the orchestra.

"At the beginning of the nineteenth century Charleston and Baltimore
entered the operatic field, and travelling troupes came into existence,
making short circuits from New York through the large cities, but
avoiding Boston, which was wholly given over to Handel, Haydn, and
psalms.

"In March 1825 New Yorkers heard a great opera for the first time, for
'Der Freischütz' came to America by way of England. It was adapted and
arranged with the boldest of alterations and makeshifts. Extra dances
were introduced to charm the audience, and the incantation scene was
often given without singing, as melodrama that is, recitation with
orchestral accompaniment, while the fireworks let off during the scene
won public favour at once.

"But the real beginning of opera in New York, and in a certain sense in
America, occurred in the autumn of this year, when the elder Garcia
arrived with his well-equipped opera troupe. Well might a critic of that
day speak of the Spanish tenor as 'our musical Columbus.' The whole
season of opera during that memorable period was a revelation to the new
world."

The company which the elder Garcia brought with him from Europe
consisted of the following principal artists. His daughter Maria, who
was seventeen years old, undertook all the contralto _rôles_, while his
wife and Mme. Barbieri were the soprani. He himself was, naturally,
_primo tenore_, being assisted by the younger Crivelli as the _secondo_.
The latter artist, the son of Gaẽtano, one of the best Italian
tenors, had first met the Garcia family in Naples, where he had spent
some years in vocal study under Millico and Zingarelli.

During the last year of Garcia's stay in Italy Crivelli had written an
opera, which was performed by the San Carlo company, of which it will be
remembered the elder Garcia was a member.

The baritone for the New York season was "Garcia, jr.," as the subject
of this memoir was advertised, and the cast was completed by d'Angrisani
as the _basso cantante_, and Rosich as the _buffo caricato_. The chorus,
which was collected and organised by Garcia only with the greatest
difficulty, consisted chiefly of mechanics settled in America, who were
accustomed to serve in choirs and could read music.

Of the circumstances which brought about this scheme of giving Italian
opera in America we may read in the biography of the poet, Fitz-Greene
Halleck. In it the author, General James Grant Wilson, tells us that
Halleck was one of the two thousand New York pupils of Signor Daponte,
who was for many years professor of Italian literature in Columbia
College there. "To this Signor Daponte, the personal friend of Mozart,
and writer of the libretto of 'Don Giovanni,' the poet told me," says
the biographer, "that we were indebted for the introduction of Italian
opera here, he having, with the late Dominick Lynch and Stephen Price,
induced the elder Garcia to visit them with his troupe, and appear at
the Park Theatre, of which Price was the manager."

When the elder Garcia arrived in New York he was at once visited by this
Daponte, and it is reported that he rushed up to the Italian librettist
and embraced him with the greatest warmth, singing all the while the
aria "Fin ch'han dal vino," the Drinking Song from "Don Giovanni," for
the words of which Daponte had been responsible.

During October and November, in addition to appearing in oratorio, the
Garcia family gave a number of concerts, during which the tenor
delighted to show the perfection of his method. He had a custom of
striking a single chord, and then with his wife, son, and daughter,
rendering a difficult operatic quartette, unaccompanied. At the end he
would strike the chord again, to show that they had not deviated from
the pitch to the extent of even a hair's-breadth. They certainly formed
a quartette of pre-eminent ability; indeed, Chorley, one of the greatest
musical authorities of his day, wrote of them, "The family of Spanish
musicians are representative artists, whose power, genius, and
originality have impressed a permanent trace on the record of the
methods of vocal execution and ornament."

The first mention of their arrival we find in the 'Harmonicon,' which
had a notice on October 25, to the effect that "The Spanish family of
the Garcias, consisting of husband, wife, son, and daughter, have been
engaged by Mr Price."

Some three weeks later a preliminary notice of their forthcoming venture
appeared in a New York paper called 'The Albion, or British, Colonial,
and Foreign Weekly Gazette.' In its issue of November 19 there was
printed the following prospectus, which may be quoted in full, as it
contains several points of interest:--

"Signor Garcia respectfully announces to the American public that he
has lately arrived in this country with an Italian troupe (among whom
are some of the first artists in Europe), and has made arrangements with
the managers of the New York Theatre to have the house on Tuesdays and
Saturdays, on which nights the choicest Italian operas will be performed
in a style which he flatters himself will give general satisfaction.

"For the succeeding eight days the names of persons desirous to take
boxes or benches for the season of three months, or for one month, will
be received at the box office at the theatre, and the applicants for the
longest term and greatest number of seats will be entitled to the choice
of boxes. The seats in the pit will also be numbered, and may be taken
for the same periods.

"The price of the box places will be two dollars; of pit, one dollar;
and of gallery, twenty-five cents.

"The opera of 'Il Barbiera (_sic_) di Seviglia' is now in rehearsal, and
will be given as soon as possible.

"Tickets of the permanent boxes will be transferable. Performance to
commence at 8 o'clock."

In the next issue of the paper we read that

"Signor Garcia has the honour to announce to the public that the opera
of 'Il Barbiere di Seviglia' will be performed on Tuesday next. The
books are now open, and places may be taken at the Box Office."

The advertisement goes on to state that "the best operas of Cimarosa,
Mozart, and Paisiello, with others by Rossini, will be immediately put
in rehearsal."

The opening performance was given at the Park Theatre on November 29,
1825, the opera being "Il Barbiere," cast as follows:--

    _Almaviva_           Garcia, Senior.
    _Figaro_             Garcia, Junior.
    _Rosina_             Maria Garcia.
    _Bertha_             Madame Garcia.
    _Bartolo_            Rosich.
    _Basilio_            d'Angrisani.
    _Fiorello_           Crivelli.

'The Albion' gave the opera company an encouraging send-off in the
following naïve announcement:--

"We have been disappointed in not receiving a _scientific_ critique,
which we were promised from a professor, on the Italian Opera of Tuesday
night; we shall, however, have something to say later, and meanwhile can
state that the experiment has proved completely successful, and the
troupe may be assured of making a fortunate campaign."

It is recorded further that "an assemblage of ladies so fashionable, so
numerous, so elegantly dressed, has probably never been witnessed in an
American theatre."

General Grant Wilson gives us some further details of this fashionable
audience, for, according to him, it included Joseph Bonaparte, the
ex-King of Spain, and the two friends, Fenimore Cooper and Fitz-Greene
Halleck, who sat side by side, delighted listeners. Another account
refers to the representation in these terms:--

"We were last night surprised, delighted, enchanted: and such were the
feelings of all who witnessed the performance. The repeated plaudits
with which the theatre rung were unequivocal, unaffected bursts of
laughter. The best compliment that can be paid to the merit of the
company was the unbroken attention that was yielded throughout the
entire performance, except that every now and then it was interrupted by
judiciously bestowed marks of applause, which were simultaneously given
from all parts of the house. In one respect the exhibition excelled all
that we have ever witnessed in any of our theatres--the whole troupe
were almost equally excellent: nor was there one whose exertions to fill
the part allotted to him did not essentially contribute to the success
of the piece.

"Signor Garcia indulges in a florid style of singing: with his fine
voice, fine taste, admirable ear, and brilliancy of execution, we could
not be otherwise than delighted.... Signorina Garcia's voice is what is
denominated a fine contra-alto"--the gentleman is nothing if not
correct, while we trace in the next words the unquestionable fact that
he has been comparing notes with our "scientific" friend of 'The
Albion.' "Her science and skill are such as to enable her to run over
every tone and semitone with an ease and grace that cost apparently no
effort." The sentence reads for all the world like a twentieth-century
eulogy of an ardent motorist, if we substitute for tone and semitone the
words woman and child.

He concludes with a vivid little sketch of Maria Garcia as she was at
the age of seventeen:--

"Her person is about the middle height, slightly _embonpoint_; her eyes
dark, arch, and expressive; and a playful smile is almost constantly
the companion of her lips. She was the magnet who attracted all eyes
and won all hearts."

This was Manuel Garcia's operatic _début_: it was not his first
appearance before the public, for, as we have seen, he had already been
singing previously at several concerts. It has been asserted by some
that his _début_ in opera was made in Paris in the preceding year, but
he himself declared this was untrue; while his sister, Pauline
Viardot-Garcia, has stated most definitely that it took place in New
York.

His voice was never powerful: he had sung with charm as a boy, and when
his voice broke it developed into high baritone--not tenor, as has been
asserted by many. The latter mistake probably originated in the fact
that sometimes, as will be related later, he undertook the tenor parts
when his father felt indisposed; but on these occasions he always
altered the melody of the higher passages to suit his baritone voice.

In the first and subsequent performances of "Il Barbiere" his artistic
singing of the air "Largo al factotum" made a considerable stir in New
York, and his popularity was thereby considerably increased, but from
the criticisms it is obvious that Manuel Garcia would never have been an
operatic artist of the first rank, and, as we shall see, he was to find
his _métier_ in another field of music.

On the last day of the year we read in 'The Albion' that "The celebrated
opera of 'Tancredi' will be produced at the Park Theatre this evening."

The paragraph which followed immediately after the above announcement
recalls the mixed receptions which the immortal Kean sometimes
experienced when he made his earlier appearances on the American
stage:--

"Mr Kean has returned from Boston. The managers of the Boston theatre
declare in an address to the public that they had no reason whatever to
suppose that any serious or organised opposition existed against Mr Kean
until 4 o'clock of the evening of his appearance.

"That amiable lady and excellent actress, Mrs Hilson, takes a Benefit at
the Park on Wednesday, on which occasion Mr Kean has offered to perform
in a favourite part."

In the next issue, January 7, 1826, we find the criticism of the
performance of "Tancredi." One of the company had apparently discharged
the duties of scene-painter for the production, and with success.

"'Tancredi' has been performed twice to crowded houses by Senior (_sic_)
Garcia and his admirable troupe. Nothing could exceed the enthusiasm
with which it was received. The scenery, painted by one of the troupe,
is of matchless vigour and beauty, displaying magnificent ruins,
paintings, &c., so peculiar to modern Italy.

"The corps has received a most efficient auxiliary in the person of
Madame Barbiere (_sic_). Signorina Garcia takes the part of Tancredi.
The piece, from its own intrinsic merits and the excellent manner in
which it is performed, cannot fail to have a good run."

Evidently the Italian language was not a strong point in the office of
'The Albion.' We have already seen how "Il Barbiere" figured as "Il
Barbiera," and Madame Barbieri as "Barbiere," while Signor Garcia
appeared as "Senior." A still stranger mistake occurred in the notice of
the _première_ of "Otello" on February 11:--

"Rossini's opera of 'Otella' (_sic_) has been produced by the Italian,
troupe. It was a most fortunate effort, and the piece, we trust, will
have a good run. Signor Garcia astonished the audience with his masterly
powers, many of whom had no conception that so much tragic effect could
be given in recitative.

"After the performance Signor Garcia was addressed by Mr Kean behind the
scenes, who complimented the highly-talented vocalist on the great
talent he had that night displayed, and expressed in the warmest terms
the gratification experienced in listening to him. Several of the troupe
were present on Wednesday to see Mr Kean in the part of Othello."

In this American _première_ of Rossini's "Otello," one of the greatest
successes of the season, we find the parts distributed as follows:--

    _Otello_              Signor Garcia.
    _Iago_                Signor Garcia (junior).
    _Elmiro_              Signor Angrisani.
    _Doge_                Signor Crivelli.
    _Roderigo_            Madame Barbieri.
    _Emilia_              Signora Garcia.
         and
    _Desdemona_           Signorina Maria Garcia.

It must be many years since any operatic version of "Othello" has been
performed other than that of Verdi, which was produced in Milan exactly
sixty-one years after the performance of Rossini's setting just
described. Indeed at the date of this American _première_, Giuseppe
Verdi was but a lad entering his teens.

Another important production of the season was "Don Giovanni," given on
May 23, with the elder Garcia in the title-_rôle_. His son appeared as
Leporello, and, as the criticism in 'The Albion' stated four days later:
"In the part of Saporello"--the office shines once more in
spelling--"the younger Garcia exhibited more musical ability than he has
been generally thought to possess. His duet with Don Giovanni in the
banquet scene was spirited enough."

Some other portions of this critique read rather quaintly. It will be
remembered how the editor of the paper was perturbed after the opening
performance of the season at not receiving the "scientific critique,
which we are promised from a professor." He is evidently "still harping
on my daughter," for one reads with infinite regret that--"To enter into
any minute examination of 'Don Giovanni's' _scientific_ merits is beyond
our space and purpose"; while later we learn that "Madame Barbiere's
taste is pure, and her _science_ considerable."

The critic comes to the regrettable conclusion that "Garcia Senior is
not at home in the simple melodies of Mozart," the reason which he gives
for this fact being set forth in a delightful bit of phraseology,--"He
must have a wide field for display: he must have ample room to verge
enough for unlimited curvetings and flourishes."

Maria was able to satisfy this most learned and scientific judge, and we
may presume that she found sufficiency of verging-room in Mozart, for we
are told, "Mdlle. Garcia's Zerlina, though not so simple and rustic as
Fador's (_sic_), the great Zerlina of Europe, is much more pleasing and
fascinating. It was admirably acted, which for a singer is high praise.
The celebrated 'Batti, batti,' was never better sung."

"In proportion as she is excellent," the notice concludes, "must we
regret that a few nights longer and she will disappear from the public
gaze."

Why the good gentleman should have been so perturbed it is a little
difficult to see, for the season did not terminate for four months.
Perhaps the explanation is that, just as other scientific men declared
that the seven days of the World's Creation really meant seven periods,
each extending over hundreds of years, so this one in saying "a few
nights," took each night to stand for a period of a month. After all, as
has been observed in Lewis Carroll's immortal book, it is only a
question of who is to be master, the man or the word.

On August 26 we are informed that "'Il Barbieri de Siviglia'"--mark the
dazzling array of fresh mistakes in spelling--"was performed last night
for the fortieth time without any abatement of attraction."

Finally we are told of the approaching end of the season:--

"_Sept. 16th._--The Italian operas are about to close in this city. We
believe it is not finally arranged how the troupe is to be disposed of,
but the Philadelphia papers express strong hopes of having this
delightful entertainment"--enchanting phrase for such an occasion--"in
that city." The following is Signor Garcia's card:--

"'Signor Garcia respectfully announces to the public that his engagement
is limited to five representations of Italian operas, and will
positively conclude on the 30th inst. On Saturday, September 16th, the
benefit of Garcia, jun.'"--this was how Manuel appeared on the bills
throughout the New York season--"'Tuesday the 19th, benefit of Mme.
Garcia; Saturday the 23rd, benefit of Signor Garcia, Tuesday the 26th,
benefit of Signorina Garcia, concluding Saturday the 30th, this being
positively the last night of performance.'"

And so, on September 30, 1826, the first American season of Italian
opera was brought to a close, after lasting ten months,--seventy-nine
performances in all.

As to the repertoire, we have already set down the names of "Il
Barbiere," "Don Giovanni," "Tancredi," and "Otello"; besides these we
find Zingarelli's "Romeo e Giulietta," which in later years was to be
ousted as completely from the field by Gounod's version as Rossini's
"Otello" was fated to be by Verdi's. The list was completed by
"Cenerentola," "Semiramide," "Turco in Italia," and two operas specially
written by the elder Garcia, with a view to showing off his daughter's
talents, "L'Amante Astuto," and "La Figlia dell' Aria."

As to the composition of the orchestra, we learn that it consisted of
seven violins, two violas, three violoncellos, two double-basses, two
flutes, two clarinets, one bassoon, two horns, two trumpets, and
drums,--twenty-four performers in all. The first violin and leader was
De Luce, while a M. Etienne presided at the pianoforte. That the
orchestral standard was by no means as high as that of the vocalists,
may be readily surmised from the following criticism of one of the
earliest performances:--

"The violins might be a little too loud; but one soul seemed to inspire
and a single hand to guide, the whole band being throughout the magic
mazes of Rossini's most intricate flights under the direction of M. de
Luce; while M. Etienne presided in an effective manner at a piano, of
which every now and then he might be heard to touch the keynote by those
whose attention was turned that way, and just loud enough to be heard
throughout the orchestra, for whose guidance it was intended."

As has been already stated, the performance took place on Tuesday and
Saturday evenings. The latter was a very great mistake, owing to the
strong religious feelings of the city, which kept the inhabitants from
going out on this evening for fear of interfering with preparation for
the Sabbath. As we may read in a notice of the season, which was sent
over by the New York correspondent to one of the English papers:
"Saturdays were fixed on in imitation of London, but on the night which
is your best nobody goes to the theatre, for we are very _serious_ in
this city, and do not go to the late amusements on Saturday."

However, in spite of this _contretemps_, the season turned out a
complete success, for the 79 performances brought in gross receipts of
56,685 dollars (ranging from 1962 dollars on the best night to 250
dollars on the worst), which made an average of some 700 dollars at each
representation.

It is rather ludicrous to read some of the articles which appeared in
the New York papers during the earlier months of the Italian Opera. In
them advice was given to those who had written asking questions as to
how to dress in a fashionable way for the opera nights, according to the
European manner, and how to behave during an opera performance.

In fact, it was thought "the thing" to go to the Park Theatre season,
and the whole affair created the greatest excitement among the
fashionables of Manhattanville.

Finally, we read towards the end of September of the future plans of the
company:--

"They have been invited to New Orleans and also to Mexico, and it is
believed that they will go to the latter place when their engagement
here is over."

With the 1st of October 1826 the New York opera season had become a
thing of the past, and on October 2 the dramatic season of Macready, a
thing of the present, for on that date the tragedian trod the boards of
an American stage for the first time. One cannot perhaps bring the
chapter to a more seemly close than with the announcement which the
ever-fascinating 'Albion' made in speaking of the opening performance:--

"Mr Macready appeared in the character of Virginius, in the presence of
an audience of the most respectable description, and comprising all the
talent and critical acumen of this great city." One can only pray that
the scientific acumen was not absent on that memorable and respectable
occasion.



CHAPTER VI.

NEW YORK AND MEXICO.

(1826-1827.)


Picture to yourself Señor Garcia sallying forth into the streets of New
York on February 4, 1826, and purchasing a paper, to be confronted with
this piece of up-to-date intelligence:--

"The following despatch was transmitted from Strasburg to Paris on
Saturday afternoon, 'The Emperor Alexander I. of Russia died at Taganrog
on December 1st, after a few days' indisposition.' The express which
brought this intelligence left Warsaw on the 8th inst."

Here, then, we find that it has taken exactly nine weeks for important
Russian news to reach New York. A fortnight later a short article
appeared in one of the American papers which gives a rather good insight
into the state of civilisation at that period. It has been sent over by
a London correspondent. Above the contribution is the heading, in large
type, "STEAM GUN EXPERIMENTS." I quote some of the more interesting
portions:--

"At length this formidable weapon, destined, if ultimately adopted, to
change the whole system of modern warfare, has been so perfected by Mr
Perkins that the effects of its projectile power from a musket bore and
with a lead ball may be fully judged. A trial was made last month at Mr
Perkins' manufactory in the Regent's Park before the Duke of Wellington
and staff." A strange piece of reading indeed.

"The adoption of the most destructive implements possible in war will be
most friendly to humanity, by shortening its duration. Offensive war
will profit much less than defensive. A fort may be made impregnable
against an attacking force, and a breach (could such a thing be made
under the fire of steam artillery) could not be stormed. It is
impossible to foresee what changes this discovery may not make in the
history of nations.

       *       *       *       *       *

"It is not exceeding the bounds of probability to suppose that we shall
ere long as commonly see vessels propelled by Perkins' steam-engines
undertaking the most distant voyages, as we now see them employed on our
coasts. In this case, calms, contrary winds, and tides will be
comparatively of little consequence, since a steam vessel, under such
favourable circumstances, can always make some way on her voyage or
retreat into harbour."

Here I may be permitted to quote a series of paragraphs culled from 'The
Albion' of March 25 of this same year, as being good specimens of the
news which the maestro was accustomed to read. They give a series of
vivid glimpses into the days when he was a young man. First, let us see
some of the tit-bits of up-to-date gossip and fashionable news which
the London correspondents have to retail to their subscribers in New
York:--

"Mr Charles Mathews, the celebrated comedian, is on a visit to Sir
Walter Scott at Abbotsford."

"Madame Pasta was expected to be in London by the first of April."
Inauspicious date!

"His Majesty [this would be George IV.] on his return to town will
occupy apartments at St James's. Carlton House will not again be the
Royal residence."

"The expense of postage of letters through the medium of the Twopenny
Post Office by Alderman Thompson's Committee, when he first announced
himself as one of the candidates for the presentation of the City,
amounted to no less a sum than £128."

"_Industry and Talent._--It is a notorious fact that Sir Walter Scott
unites drudgery with lofty genius, and has put his hand to almost every
department of literay (_sic_) labour, without being scared by occasional
want of success."

Farther on we find this heading, in large type, under "Intelligence
received, by the _Bayard_, from Havre"--

    "SPEECH OF THE KING OF FRANCE,

    "Delivered at the opening of the Chambers,
    January 31st."

Then follows a full report of the address which Charles X. had given
eight weeks before.

Next we come to a piece of geographical discovery:--

"The operations of the British armies against the Burmese enable us to
correct many errors and to add to our limited knowledge of the
geography of the East. A short time since, we announced the important
fact that a branch of the Irrawaddy had been discovered to discharge
into the Bay of Bengal. This discovery has been fully confirmed, various
stragglers from Sir Archibald Campbell's army at Prome having found
their way to the coast in that direction, and there got on board English
vessels."

The last quotation which I will make from the issue of that date refers
to the "Seizure of a slave vessel in England." In it we read how "The
French vessel was boarded and subsequently seized by Lieutenant Rye of
the coastguard service. She was found well fitted out with all the
ordinary furniture of a slave-trader, her hold adapted in the usual way
to the reception of slaves. Among her other stores there were, of
course, found manacles and shackles in great abundance: a long chain to
confine the unfortunate creatures in gangs, with all the usual
implements of negro torture that would not be understood by their names,
we are happy to say, by most of our readers."

These, then, were the special plums of "Latest Intelligence" from
Europe, which the twenty-year-old Manuel no doubt devoured with keenest
relish on that morning eighty odd years ago.

I should like to make one more quotation from the same paper, two months
later, for it gives us a glimpse of both the artistic and military
doings of Europe at this time. The article in question is an
appreciation of the President of the Royal Academy.

"Sir Thomas Lawrence is confessedly at the head of the English school of
portrait-painters. He is about forty-seven years of age. The Kembles and
Mrs Siddons have been his favourite associates. At one time he was a
particular friend of the late Queen Caroline. His portraits of George
IV. are excellent. In 1818 he was commissioned to visit the Congress of
Aix-la-Chapelle for the purpose of painting the monarchs, warriors, and
statesmen of Europe. During that visit the doors of his _atelier_ were
open to his friends, and it is impossible to fancy a more interesting
sight than his morning levée. The Emperors of Russia and Austria, the
King of Prussia, Wellington, Richelieu, Blücher, Bernstoff, and a long
train of distinguished personages, were almost always to be met there."

During the opera season of 1826 two strange events took place which
Señor Garcia would recall in after-years. At the time the one filled the
inhabitants of New York with the wildest excitement, the second with the
deepest gloom.

On April 8--three weeks, that is to say, after the future centenarian
had celebrated his twenty-first birthday--the extraordinary duel took
place between John Randolph, United States Senator from Virginia, and
Henry Clay, Secretary of State. The meeting was on the right bank of the
Potomac within the state of Virginia, above the Little Falls
Bridge--pistols, at ten paces. Each of the principals was attended by
two seconds and a surgeon, while Senator Benton was present as a mutual
friend. Needless to say, it ended in the way which was to become so
fashionable among French duellists in later years. The daring
combatants escaped scatheless and shook hands,--the gentlemanly
Anglo-Saxon alternative for each rushing into the other's arms with a
wild cry of "Mon ami! mon ami!" and saluting his late adversary with an
affectionate kiss on either cheek.

As to the second event, one cannot do better than let the story be told
by the notice which appeared in one of the New York newspapers:--

          "JUBILEE OF DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE.

              "FOURTH OF JULY CELEBRATIONS.

           "SUDDEN DEATH OF TWO EX-PRESIDENTS.

     "The death of John Adams, late President of the United States, took
     place on July 4. He was the second President of the United States
     and the first Minister sent by this country to Great Britain after
     the acknowledgment of the Independence.

     "He departed this life, full of years and honours, on the evening
     of the 4th inst., as the bells were ringing for the conclusion of
     the celebration of the auspicious day. The venerable patriot rose
     in his usual health, rejoicing that he had been spared to witness
     the jubilee of his country's freedom. Towards noon he became ill,
     grew gradually worse, and at six fell asleep. He was one of the
     earliest and ablest and most fearless champions of his country's
     freedom, and his name fills a wide space in its history. Only two
     of the signers of the Declaration of Independence now survive.

                   "DEATH OF MR JEFFERSON.

     "Mr Jefferson, late President of the United States, died at his
     residence in Virginia, on July 4, at 10 to 1 o'clock. It is a
     strange coincidence that these two venerable personages should have
     paid the debt of nature on the same day, and that day the Fiftieth
     anniversary of that Independence which they so essentially
     contributed to achieve."

On September 30, as we have seen, the New York venture of Italian Opera
was brought to a conclusion.

A few days later the elder Garcia set off for Mexico, where he had
arranged to initiate a season at the Opera House. He was accompanied on
the journey by the whole troupe, with the exception of his daughter
Maria.

The reason of her remaining behind was that on March 23 of that year she
had given her hand to Monsieur Malibran, a French merchant three times
her own age, and by repute a very wealthy man. It can scarcely have been
a love-match, for the union appears to have been a most unhappy one from
the start. As to the reason for the marriage, some light has been thrown
by Fitz-Greene Halleck's biographer, in a conversation which I had with
him recently.

It will be remembered that Halleck was present at the opening night of
Italian opera in America, in the company of his friend Fenimore Cooper.
The latter must have been busy correcting the proofs of his latest book,
'The Last of the Mohicans,' since this was published in New York soon
after the New Year,--a literary event which of course Manuel Garcia
could quite well remember.

Halleck at once fell under the spell of Maria's voice and personality.
Of his admiration for her singing he wrote these lines, alluding to his
own death:--

    "And when that grass is green above me,
    And those, who bless me now and love me,
      Are sleeping by my side,
    Will it avail me aught that men
    Tell to the world with lip and pen
      That once I lived and died?

    No! if a Garland for my brow
    Is growing, let me have it now,
      While I'm alive to wear it;
    And if, in whispering my name,
    There's music in the voice of fame
      Like Garcia's, let me hear it."

Was ever a more beautiful compliment paid to a singer?

It was not long before the poet obtained an introduction to his ideal.
The acquaintance thus began quickly ripened, and Fitz-Greene Halleck
became deeply attached to her. This warmth of feeling was undoubtedly
returned, and there seems every probability that Maria, girl of
seventeen as she was, might have been well content to wed the American
poet. Her father, however, intervened, and sternly refused to allow
things to go farther.

Here we have a possible explanation of the tragedy which ensued.
Monsieur Malibran came upon the scene and offered himself, and Maria
perhaps decided to accept him in order to escape from the discipline of
an exacting parent. There certainly must have been some very powerful
reason at work to bring about her union with a man older than her own
father, at an age when youth and romance would naturally appeal to her
most strongly, and such a wedding of May and December could not but
appear repulsive in the extreme. Certainly it can hardly have been the
man's reputed wealth which tempted her to take such a step, seeing that
she was already well advanced on the road to becoming one of the
greatest operatic stars of her day.

After the wedding and her family's departure for Mexico, the unhappy
Maria discovered that her husband's affairs had for some time past been
in a very bad state, and that he had really been counting on the income
which would accrue from her talents. Matters grew rapidly worse, and
within a year of the marriage he was declared bankrupt and thrown into
prison. Under these circumstances Maria at once, of her own accord,
determined to resign, for the benefit of her husband's creditors, the
whole of the provision which had been made for her by the marriage
settlements. It was a noble act, which gave rise to strong
manifestations of favour and approbation on the part of the American
public.

For some months after this she remained in New York, singing on Sundays
at Grace Church, and occasionally appearing at the Bowery Theatre in
English operettas, such as "The Devil's Bridge" and "Love in a Village."

By this time, however, the youthful contralto had had her eyes
thoroughly opened as to the character of the man to whom she had given
herself, and at last she bravely decided to cut the Gordian knot by
leaving her husband and returning to Europe.

Accordingly her final appearance on the American stage was announced for
September 28, 1827, and on this night she took her farewell benefit at
the Bowery Theatre, in Boieldieu's "Jean de Paris." Of the closing scene
of that evening we read--

"When the programme had been completed, the Signorina came forward and
seated herself at her harp, but seemingly overcome with emotion again
rose. Mr Etienne, the pianist, thereupon took up the prelude to a
farewell song, specially written for the occasion, and this, on
regaining her composure, she sang in a most touching and effective
manner."

Within a few days of this performance Maria set out for Paris, where, as
we shall see, she was to be joined almost immediately by her brother.

And now we will turn to the fortunes of the rest of the Garcia family,
who had left New York to inaugurate a season of opera in Mexico.

Upon arriving at the end of the journey, the elder Garcia soon found
that the duties of impresario, composer, conductor, chorus master, and
even machinist and scene-painter, must all centre in himself.

But this was not the worst, for at the very outset a calamity fell upon
the company which with any one else would have been sufficient to bring
the season to a close before it had opened, as an Irishman might have
put it.

On reaching the Opera House in Mexico city, they at once began to
prepare for their forthcoming season. Everything was unpacked, and they
commenced going through scenery, dresses, properties, and the rest. All
these they found in order. When, however, they began to look for the
music score and orchestral parts, they found, to their horror, that
nearly the whole of the music had been left behind or lost _en route_.

What was to be done? Their season was advertised to commence in a few
days, and without music it was utterly impossible. The artists were in
despair, and completely lost their heads. The elder Garcia alone
remained calm in the midst of turmoil. They could not perform without
music; very well, he must write out fresh copies of the scores as best
he could. What was advertised for the first night? "Don Giovanni"?
_Bien_; then he would make a start on that. Without losing a moment he
set to work, and actually reproduced the whole of the full orchestral
score from memory! As each number was finished it was given out to
copyists, who prepared the separate parts for the various instruments.

This task being ended, the marvellous man set to work on "Otello" and
"Il Barbiere," which with the first named had always been the most
important in his repertoire. How successfully he carried out his
self-imposed task may be judged from the fact that when "Don Giovanni"
was given, no one present could tell that it was not the original score.
As if this had not been enough work, he promptly proceeded to compose
eight operas for his company to perform; nor was this all, for finding
that the words of the Italian operas were not understood, and that the
people had not the northern affectation of liking them better on that
account, he translated into his native Spanish every work which was
performed. And here a few words may be said upon the memorising of new
operas.

It was customary in those days for managers to allow their artists nine
days to learn a two-act opera. For three acts the time would be
increased to twelve days, and for four acts sixteen. That the elder
Garcia did not always allow so much is borne out by the statement which
Maria Malibran used to make that, on one occasion, her parent bade her
learn a _rôle_ in two days and sing it at the opera.

"I cannot do it, father."

"You _will_ do it, my daughter; and if you fail in any way, I shall
_really_ strike you with my dagger when I am supposed to kill you on the
stage."

"And he would have done it, too," she would add, "so I played the part."

Manuel himself was ever a phenomenally quick "study" in the memorising
of any fresh _rôle_. Short though the periods would be which were
allowed in the ordinary way for learning a work, they were for him a
great deal too long. He was able to commit to memory the whole of his
part in two or three days, while at the end of ten he had picked up the
parts of all the other singers as well, so that if necessary he was
perfectly able to prompt them during the final rehearsals.

His father used to take advantage of this extraordinary memory, and,
when feeling indisposed, would say, "You must go on, and take my part
to-night." The son would proceed to do so, and get through the
performance successfully, singing the tenor _rôle_, in which he would
alter the high passages to suit his own voice.

All this hard work, however, was not accomplished without leaving its
mark, and in a few months he began to feel the effects of the strain
involved in this perpetual rehearsing and singing not only of his own
baritone parts but on occasions of the tenor music. His father was a
hard task-master, and the son, though he had a fine voice, found the
work involved by an operatic career too hard for his physical resources.
At last things reached a point at which, as he once told me, he went
through every successive performance in a state of fear lest his voice
should leave him suddenly when he was on the stage.

His father and mother laughed at this feeling as absurd, and told him
that he must study for a time in Italy, and then make his _début_ there,
as they had set their hearts on it. Partly, therefore, to please them,
partly, it may be, to comfort and assist Maria, of whose intention to
set out for Paris in the September he must have been well aware, Manuel
Garcia left his parents to continue their season in Mexico, and in the
early autumn of 1827 set out for Europe alone.



CHAPTER VII.

OPERATIC CAREER ABANDONED.

(1828-1830.)


Manuel Garcia, in the January of 1828, was present at the operatic
_début_ of his sister, Maria Malibran, in Paris, the details of which he
once gave to me. On another occasion he stated most distinctly that he
left his parents in Mexico about the middle of their stay, set out for
Paris, and, arriving there not long after his sister, remained with her
till after her _début_. He added that during this period she continued
her vocal studies under his tuition.

Under these circumstances one may safely assume that he arrived in the
French capital either in October or in the early part of November, 1827.

With regard to Mme. Malibran's _début_, the following is the story as he
gave it. I related the episode in 'Antoinette Sterling and Other
Celebrities,' from which I am enabled to quote here and elsewhere in the
present memoir by courtesy of the publishers, Messrs Hutchinson.

Rossini was director both of the Théâtre Italien and of the Grand Opera
House, where French alone was performed. He was a great friend of both
Maria Malibran and her brother, and frequently came to visit them at
their house. Moreover, he heard the young contralto sing many times at
social functions, often indeed himself accompanying her at the piano.
Yet, though perfectly aware what a splendid singer she was, the composer
never made her any offer to appear under either of the two managements.

At last her opportunity of making an operatic _début_ in Paris arrived,
but from quite another source. Galli, a famous basso of that time, who
was having a benefit at the Italian Opera House, called one day and told
her that he would put on "Semiramide" if she would like to sing the
title part. After consulting with Manuel, she decided to accept the
offer.

Of the performance itself one of the Paris journals gives a graphic
account:--

"The singer, at her entrance, was greeted with warm applause. Her
commanding figure and the regularity of her features bespoke the favour
of the public. The noble and dignified manner in which she gave the
first phrase, 'Fra tanti regi e popoli,' justified the reception she had
obtained, but the difficult phrase, 'Frema il empio,' proved a
stumbling-block which she could not surmount. Alarmed by this check, she
did not attempt the difficult passage in the 'da capo,' but, dropping
her voice, terminated the passage without effect, and made her exit,
leaving the audience in doubt and dissatisfaction. The prodigious talent
displayed by Pisaroni in the subsequent scenes gave occasion to
comparisons by no means favourable to Mme. Malibran. On her reentrance
she was coldly received; but she soon succeeded in winning the public to
her favour. In the andante to the air, 'Bel raggio lusinghier,' the
young singer threw out such powers, and displayed a voice so full and
beautiful, that the former coldness gave way to applause. Encouraged by
this, she hazarded the greatest difficulties of execution, and appeared
so inspired by her success that her courage now became temerity."

From that night she was the idol of the French public.

Another French critic writes, "If Maria Malibran must yield the palm to
Pasta in point of acting, yet she possesses a decided superiority in
respect to song."

"Since that time," remarks Mr Hogarth, "the superiority of Malibran to
Pasta in song became more and more evident; while in respect to acting,
though no performer has ever approached Pasta in her own peculiar walk
of terrible grandeur, yet none has ever surpassed Maria Malibran in
intelligence, originality, vivacity, feeling, and those 'tender strokes
of art' which at once reach the heart of every spectator. Her
versatility was wonderful. Pasta, it has been truly said, is a Siddons:
Malibran is a Garrick."

On the morning following the Parisian _début_ a note came asking Señor
Garcia to go round to Rossini's rooms. Upon doing so he found him in a
tremendous state of excitement, and prepared to give Maria Malibran a
four years' exclusive engagement, at the rate of more than a hundred
thousand francs per annum, if she would bind herself to sing
exclusively at the Grand Opera House during that period.

The terms were immense for those days. In spite of this, after careful
consideration, the contralto decided to refuse them, feeling that it
would be unwise to abandon Italian and confine herself to French for so
long a time. She _did_, however, appear for him in a few operas, at
enormous fees, with, if possible, greater success than before, at the
Théâtre Italien during April and May.

Now it seemed very extraordinary to Señor Garcia and to his sister that
Rossini should have heard her sing again and again in society without
even mentioning such a thing as engaging her, and yet, after hearing her
at the Opera House in music which she had sung before him on so many
occasions, he should at once make her a magnificent offer for a term of
years. Why was it? They could not understand it at all, and accordingly
asked one day for the explanation.

"It is true," answered Rossini, "that I knew Maria Malibran was a
brilliant singer from listening to her at private houses. But I had
never heard her in a big place before a large audience. Consequently I
felt that I could not make her a definite offer which would at all gauge
her true value. Either I should be offering her less than she was worth,
and by this be doing _her_ an injustice, or I should be offering her
more than she was worth, and so be doing _myself_ an injustice. But now
that I have heard her sing in front of an audience, and have observed
what effect they mutually had each on the other, I can offer the very
largest sum which her singing is intrinsically worth. That is the
explanation of what I have done."

After remaining for a time to see his sister successfully started on her
Parisian career, Manuel Garcia set out for Italy, and took up his
residence there for some months. During this period he made the
acquaintance of Lablache, whose voice was of the most marvellous power.
There is a story which the maestro used to tell of the basso and Carl
Weber which illustrates this fact.

Lablache was originally a double-bass player, and his first appearance
in opera as a singer came about through a happy chance. A celebrated
vocalist was suddenly indisposed just before the performance one night,
and Lablache was induced to take his place and attempt the _rôle_. His
rendering of the character was entirely successful, and he abandoned his
old career for this new one.

A few months afterwards Weber, who had known his massive figure in the
orchestra, heard him sing in opera. After listening to the enormous
voice and magnificent basso notes, the composer exclaimed, "Mein Gott!
he is still a double-bass."

The size of Lablache's voice aroused the emulation of Garcia, who, as
his sister Mme. Viardot puts it, proceeded to play the part of the frog
that wanted to make itself as big as a bull. In trying to imitate this
Gulliver of _bassi_ he undoubtedly did further injury to his voice,
which had already been much overstrained by the hard usage it had
received in Mexico.

When, therefore, about the beginning of 1829, he made a public
appearance at Naples, as his parents had persuaded him to do, he did
not come through the ordeal with much success. "Il débuta à Naples, je
crois," says Mme. Viardot, "et il eût ce qu'il désirait, un four noir."

The next day Manuel collected copies of the newspaper critiques, which
were unanimous in recommending him to tempt Fate no more on the stage,
but to abandon the lyric career for which he was unfitted. These
articles he dispatched to his father with a letter in which he wrote:
"You see from these notices that I can never hope to become an operatic
artiste." ("Je ne puis être artiste.") "From now onward I am going to
devote myself to the occupation which I love, and for which I believe I
was born." With this letter he definitely abandoned the operatic
calling.

He then made his way back to France, and there joined his parents, who
had arrived from Mexico in the late autumn of 1828.

During the period of the elder Garcia's stay in Mexico, political events
occurred which were the very reverse of propitious to any musical
venture.

In 1828 the candidates for the Presidency were Generals Pedraza and
Guerrero. On the election of the former the opposite party took up arms,
and a bloody contest ensued, which terminated in the downfall of
Pedraza's Government and in his flight from the country on January 4,
1829. The months which followed were full of turmoil, and at last in
March it became necessary for all Spaniards to leave.

Owing to this state of affairs the elder Garcia, after some eighteen
months of hard work and considerable financial success, was obliged to
bring his Mexican season to a hasty conclusion. He accordingly prepared
at once to journey to the coast with the £6000 which he had made during
his stay in America.

Owing to the disturbances he had the greatest difficulty in obtaining
the necessary passports. At last, however, he succeeded, and set off for
Vera Cruz with his wife and younger daughter Pauline, who was now seven
years old.

He was provided with a guard of soldiers, which, however, proved to be
too weak, or, what is far more likely, too faithless, to protect his
goods. At a place called Tepeyagualo, in the valley of Rio Frio, the
convoy was attacked by brigands, and he himself obliged to lie flat on
his face while his baggage was plundered of a thousand ounces of
gold--the savings of two and a half years' work. Not only this, but the
men seized everything else which was of value: in fact, he was left with
practically nothing save a small sum of money which he was carrying in a
belt around his body.

After this disastrous experience Garcia and his family made their way to
the coast, embarked at Vera Cruz, and finally arrived in Paris, without
any financial result to show for all the time they had spent in America.
The blow of losing £6000 in cash and all his properties affected him
less than most men: his disregard for money and his love of work for
its own sake were a byword among his friends.

Upon his return the elder Garcia made a few appearances at the Théâtre
Italien in "Don Giovanni" and "Il Barbiere." His voice, however, was no
longer what it had been. He was warmly welcomed by his old admirers; but
these quickly perceived that his travels and misfortune, if not the
advance of age, had much impaired his powers. He himself realised the
change, and almost at once retired from the operatic stage, being in his
fifty-fifth year, and devoted himself exclusively to the teaching which
he had already started in Paris before leaving for America.

Among those who studied under him one may recall Mmes. Ruiz-Garcia,
Rimbault, Favelli, and the Countess Merlin, who in later years was to
publish a life of Maria Malibran, which can be looked on as little more
than a fairy romance woven round a fascinating personality. Then there
was Mme. Meric-Lalande, a brilliant stage soprano, who came to him as a
natural singer of light opera, and after receiving some stricter
training from the old teacher, was highly successful in Vienna, Paris,
and the principal opera houses of Italy.

Of the men, Jean Geraldy is deserving of mention, since he afterwards
became well known both as vocalist in the operas of Rossini and as a
composer of many popular songs and operettas.

But of all the elder Garcia's pupils the tenor Nourrit was by far the
greatest. It was for him that Rossini wrote the part of Arnold in
"William Tell," and Meyerbeer the parts of Roberto in "Robert le Diable"
and of Raoul in "The Huguenots"; while he also created the parts of
Masaniello, and of Eleazar in Halévy's "La Juive."

Nourrit commenced his studies before the elder Garcia set out on the
American trip. When the teacher returned in 1829, his old pupil, who had
now been leading tenor at the opera for four years, came to resume
lessons. Of these Mme. Pauline Viardot still has a strong recollection.
She was then a child not yet ten years old, but, in spite of this fact,
used to assist her father by playing for him when he gave his lessons.
When, therefore, among the others, Adolph Nourrit came to the house, she
often used to accompany him at the piano at the lessons,--an experience
which she still recalls with the greatest delight.

Of her many memories of that time none is more interesting than the fact
that she read off with Nourrit the first melodies of Schubert which
arrived in Paris, and of which theirs was the only copy in the city.

Nourrit's end was a sad one. After having been leading tenor for many
years, he resigned eventually because Duprez was associated with him for
the interpretation of the principal _rôles_; and this fancied slight so
preyed on his spirits that at last, after singing at a benefit concert
at Naples, he threw himself out of the window and perished miserably.

While Garcia _père_ was giving lessons to his pupils, he would compose
at the side of the piano delightful airs which, in the moments when the
pupils were resting their voices, he would give his daughter to play at
the piano. Moreover, he used to write for the use of his little Pauline
many excellent studies; for she had been gently using her voice under
his guidance since she had been but four years old. One of these studies
commenced with a shake on the words "Aspri rimorsi atroci; figli del
fallo mio." And while uttering the phrase he would make her throw
herself completely into the feeling of the words, as well as into the
vocal rendering of the music.

As a teacher the elder Garcia was strict and vigorous, a man of rugged
discipline, so that the musical training which he gave his children was
of the most rigid and thoroughgoing type.

Something of this has been already alluded to in setting down the
experience of Manuel's early studies. There is, further, a well-known
story, doubtless authentic, of a stranger passing near their house in
Paris, and hearing sobs and objurgations proceeding from within. He at
once inquired what was the meaning of these noises, and was answered,
"Ce n'est rien. C'est Monsieur Garcia, qui fait chanter ses
demoiselles." However that may be, there can be no question of the
excellent results of his teaching.

As regards the accusations of violence, strictness, and tyranny which
were brought against him, Madame Viardot asserts that he was much
calumniated both as a father and as a man. "How often," she says, "have
I heard my sister Maria remark, 'Si mon père n'avait pas été si sévère
avec moi, je n'aurais rien fait de bon; j'étais paresseuse et
indocile.' As for myself," she adds, "I never saw my father lose his
patience with me while he taught me the solfège, music and singing."

When Manuel Garcia returned to France after his _début_ at Naples, he
did not immediately begin teaching at the vocal conservatoire which his
father had started. His predilections had always been scientific, and he
was passionately fond of all such studies, but specially of anatomy and
all that had to do with the human body. On his arrival he was suddenly
seized with an idea that he would prefer a seafaring life, and without
thinking the matter over twice he resolved to become an officer in the
French mercantile marine. With this object in view he began the study of
astronomy and navigation, and pursued the work with so much diligence
that he obtained a post on a ship. He was, in fact, on the point of
going on board to take up this new career when his mother and sisters
besought him with tears and supplications to relinquish his intentions.
So ardently did they implore him, that when actually starting he was
overcome with emotion and gave way to their entreaties.

Upon this he settled down with his parents in the Rue des Trois Frères
in Montmartre, and was of great assistance in helping the elder Garcia
to give lessons at the vocal conservatoire. The hall porter of their
house was no less a person than the father of Henry Mürger! Manuel often
used to catch up the boy Henry in his arms and kiss him as he ran about
the passages. "Little Mürger was a most charming child," recalls Mme.
Viardot, "full of fun and the pet of the house. At that time he was
winning prizes at school, and used to arrive home with his arms full of
them. Perhaps he was rather ashamed of his origin, for in the day of his
success he never came to see us. We should have been so happy if he
had."

And what a day of success it was! After having commenced as a notary's
clerk, he gave himself to literature, and led the life of privation and
adventure described in his first and best novel, 'Scènes de la Vie de
Bohème,' published in the year when Manuel Garcia was celebrating his
fortieth birthday. During Mürger's later years his popularity was secure
and every journal open to him, but he wrote slowly and fitfully in the
intervals of dissipation, and died in a Paris hospital over forty-five
years ago.

Unhappily Manuel with his nature found, on settling down in Paris with
his parents, that the somewhat overbearing manner of his father was
difficult to get on with, considering that he himself was now
twenty-five years of age.

At last, after a few months, he made up his mind that it would be best
to absent himself from Paris for a time, in the hopes that this might
result in a pleasanter state of things on his return.

It happened that the turn which events took in Algiers brought an
opportunity for carrying out this desire. A dispute arose about the
payment of seven million francs,--a debt incurred by France in the
Egyptian expedition. Of this sum 4-1/2 millions had been paid, but the
balance remained unsettled till certain counter-claims could be
adjusted.

"After a tedious delay, Hassein, the Dey of Algiers, the principal
creditor, became impatient,"--I quote from Dr Brewer--"and demanded
immediate payment. To this request no answer was vouchsafed; and the
next time the French consul presented himself at court Hassein asked him
why his master had not replied to his letter. The consul haughtily
replied, 'The King of France holds no correspondence with the Dey of
Algiers'; upon which the governor struck him across the face and
fiercely abused the king.

"An insult like this could not, of course, be overlooked; and it was at
once decided by the French Government that a squadron should be sent to
receive the consul on board, and revenge the insult."

As soon as this news became known Manuel talked the matter over with his
sister, Maria Malibran, and through her influence with the
Commander-in-chief he was enabled to obtain an appointment in the
commissariat of the army which was to accompany the expedition.

Accordingly he embarked at Toulon on May 11, 1830, and took part in the
severe conflicts which ended in less than two months with the
bombardment of Algiers and its surrender to the French armament under
Bourmont and Duperré, the deposition of the Dey, and the total overthrow
of the barbarian government. After the fall of Algiers the young
Spaniard returned to Paris to find the capital in a state of uproar.

On July 26 the obnoxious ordinances were made known regarding the press
and the reconstruction of the Chamber of Deputies, which had been
dissolved in May. This at once let loose the furies of revolution, and
hostilities were commenced with the raising of barricades on the very
next day. Repeated conflicts took place between the army and the police,
the latter ultimately aided by the National Guard. On the last day of
the month Charles X. retired to Rambouillet, and the flight of the
Ministry took place. On August 2 Charles abdicated, and five days later
the Duke of Orleans accepted the crown as Louis Philippe I.

These events were quickly followed by the publication of the
Constitutional Charter of July and the retirement of the ex-King to
England. The closing scene of the drama took place in the December of
the year, when Polignac and the other Ministers, who had been members of
the administration of 1829, were tried and sentenced to life-long
imprisonment.

During the last months of 1830 Manuel Garcia attached himself to the
military hospitals. His reason for taking this step was that he had
determined to go through a course of preliminary study in the scientific
side of singing before devoting his life to the career of teaching. At
the hospitals he took up medicine and some specialised studies which
embraced the physiology of everything appertaining to the voice and the
larynx, for he had already perceived the importance of physiology as an
aid to the rational development of the voice. His labours were crowned
with success, and contributed much to the determination of the exact
anatomy of the vocal cords.

During this time he used to carry home in his pockets the most
extraordinary things from his anatomy class. Madame Viardot speaks of it
thus:--

"What do you think he brought? You would never guess. The throttles of
all kinds of animals,--chickens, sheep, and cows. You would imagine that
these would have disgusted me. But it was not so. He would give me a
pair of bellows, which I would insert in these windpipes, one after
another, and blow hard. Heavens! what extraordinary sounds they used to
emit. The chickens' throttles would cluck, the sheep's would bleat, and
the bulls' would roar, almost like life."

At the remembrance of these rather gruesome incidents Madame Viardot
laughs, much in the spirit, one may suppose, of the delicate Spanish
beauty who applauds the thrusts of the matador at a bull-fight.

With the end of the year 1830 we find the first portion of Manuel
Garcia's life brought to a close, the period of preparation. During the
first twenty-five years we have found him brought up in music, learning
the old Italian method of singing from his father and Zingarelli, with a
few lessons from Ansani; while harmony he has studied under Fétis. He
has acquired practical knowledge as an actor and singer upon stage and
concert platform: he has heard nearly all the greatest operatic artists
in Italy, France, and England: he has already had some experience of
teaching, and is well acquainted with the lines followed by the famous
maestri who have gone before him. Moreover, when he makes his regular
start as _professeur de chant_ in 1831, he is able to apply his medical
knowledge to the greatest advantage.

With all these advantages, added to a fine intellect, intuitive
perception, and extraordinary patience, what wonder that when once he
embarks on his career as a singing-master he never again looks back, but
speedily establishes himself as a scientific teacher, with a reputation
unequalled by any of his contemporaries?



SECOND   PERIOD

PARIS

(1830-1848)



CHAPTER VIII.

MALIBRAN'S TRIUMPHS.

(1830-1836.)


And now let us take up the career of Maria Malibran, since the next six
years of Manuel Garcia's life are chiefly concerned with the triumphs of
this his first pupil. We have already seen how, shortly after her return
from America in the early autumn of 1827, she had been joined in Paris
by Manuel; how the two lived there together for some months, while he
helped his sister with her singing and coached her in her operatic work,
and how, after a brilliant _début_ at Galli's benefit in the January of
1828, the youthful contralto was engaged for the Italian Opera season in
Paris, commencing in the following April.

In 1829 Maria Malibran returned to London, where she had made her
_début_ at the King's Theatre four years previously. On this second
visit she received from Laporte sixty-six pounds a performance for a
three months' season, two appearances a-week (40,000 francs in all);
while the principal parts which she undertook were Desdemona,
Semiramide, Romeo, Tancredi, Ninetta, and Zerlina.

This was the scene of that rivalry with Mme. Sontag which wrung from her
the words, "Pourquoi chante-t-elle si bien, mon Dieu?" During the London
season they shared the success, which brought about such coldness
between them that it took all the tact and diplomacy of the Countess
Merlin to persuade them to sing the duet from "Tancredi" together in her
drawing-room.

On January 3 of the following year the two stars again appeared together
in Paris in "Il Matrimonio segreto," given at the benefit of Mme.
Damoreau-Cinti. A few days later they took part in "Tancredi." Rarely
had Sontag given so beautiful a performance as she did in this her last
appearance in the part before retiring into private life. At the close
of the evening, as if to beg her rival's forgiveness for her triumph,
she offered to Malibran, with a charming gesture, the flowers which had
been thrown at her feet on the stage.

On the 18th of the month Henriette Sontag made her last bow before the
public, and retired from the operatic world upon her marriage to Count
Rossi. Thus Maria Malibran found the field clear, and remained without a
rival among the contralti of her time. After this she appeared regularly
each season in Paris and London during that brief career in which she
took the world by storm. Like a meteor she dazzled all by a brilliancy
beside which other stars seemed dim, and like a meteor she was to pass
away as suddenly as she had arrived, within nine years of her _début_ in
Paris.

The salary which the famous contralto used to receive was for those days
almost unprecedented.

[Illustration: Maria F. Malibran

(FROM AN OLD ENGRAVING WHICH BELONGED TO MANUEL GARCIA.)]

Having received in the operatic season of 1829 sixty-six pounds a
performance, as already stated, the following year found her salary
increased to £125 a-night, nearly double what she had had, while in the
next one she was paid £2775 for twenty-four performances.

Her tours through Italy were a series of triumphs. In Rome she was
overwhelmed with praise; at Bologna the enthusiasm was such that the
public subscribed for a bust to be executed in marble and placed in the
theatre; while at Naples, her grandest triumph of all was achieved on
the night when she took leave of the audience in the character of
Ninetta. Six times after the fall of the curtain was she called forward
to receive the reiterated plaudits and adieus of a public which seemed
unable to bear the idea of separation from its new idol. The singer, for
her part, had only strength and spirits left to kiss her hand to the
assembled multitude, and indicate by expressive gestures the degree to
which she was overpowered by fatigue and emotion. Nor did the scene end
within the theatre, for a crowd rushed to the stage-door from all parts
of the house, and as soon as their favourite's sedan-chair came out they
escorted it, with loud acclamations, to the Palazzo Barbaja, and renewed
their salutations as the artist ascended the steps.

Of her first appearance in Milan Señor Garcia gave me a delightful
account. At that time Pasta was a great favourite in the city, her most
effective part being Norma. Such enormous success had she made in this
_rôle_, in fact, that the Milanese always used to allude to her as
"Norma" instead of making use of her own name.

Upon her arrival Maria Malibran was asked by the director of the Opera
House in what part she would like to make her first appearance. She at
once replied, "Norma, signor."

"But, madame, do you forget Pasta?"

"Eh, bien? I am not afraid of Pasta. I will live or die as Norma."
Bellini's opera was therefore announced.

At the opening night Pasta came to hear the newcomer, and took up her
position in the middle box of the grand tier amidst loud applause from
the populace. Maria Malibran made her first entrance without any sound
of encouragement, and the aria was received in deliberate, stony
silence. Her next number was the terzetto. After one of the passages
which she had to render the audience suddenly forgot themselves and
shouted out, "Bravo!" This was instantly followed by cries of "Hush!"
"Silence!" The trio came to an end. Not a hand! Instead were heard
sounds of dispute from all parts of the house: "She is great;" "She is
nothing of the kind;" "She is better than Pasta;" "She is not;" and
these remarks went on for the rest of the evening.

Upon the second night Pasta did not come to hear her new rival. This
time, when Malibran entered and sang her aria, her rendering was greeted
with immense applause, which continued throughout the evening in
ever-increasing enthusiasm. At the close she was called before the
curtain again and again, and when she left the Opera House to drive
home, the populace took out the horses and themselves dragged her to the
hotel. From that moment she was the pet of the Milanese public: Pasta's
reign was over. Señor Garcia added that the latter was a most finished
vocalist, but cold, whereas the singing of his sister was full of warmth
and fire.

Strange to say, Maria Malibran soon found herself mixed up with the
Italian Liberal politics. At Naples already her sympathy for the
Carbonari had excited some talk. At Milan she was _fêted_ by all the
aristocracy, who hated the Austrian rule. On the first night of
Donizetti's "Marie Stuart," while taking the title-_rôle_, she had to
reproach Elizabeth with her irregular birth, calling her "vile bastard."
The whole audience at once saw in this expression an allusion to the
usurpation of Lombardy, and broke out into loud shouts. Next day the
Austrian governor ordered the scene to be suppressed, and at the same
time threatened Maria Malibran with prison if she did not submit. The
singer, however, resisted, declaring that the composer alone could make
alterations in his work; and in consequence of this action the opera was
withdrawn from the bill. This only increased her popularity, and in all
political manifestations the cry would be raised, "Vive Malibran," as in
after years "Vive Verdi" became synonymous with "Vive Victor-Emmanuel."

Similar difficulties arose in Venice. The governor was afraid of Liberal
manifestations, and was for that reason opposed to the engagement of the
contralto at the Fenice Theatre; indeed it was the intervention of the
Emperor alone which made him waive his objection. A sumptuary law of
the sixteenth century, which had never been repealed, enacted that all
gondolas must be painted uniformly black. Maria Malibran wished to
change this. "I have introduced a novelty here," she writes, "which will
mark an epoch in my career: I have had the outside of my gondola painted
grey with decorations in gold. The gondoliers wear scarlet jackets, hats
of pale yellow, the edges bound round with black velvet, blue cloth
breeches with red ribbon down the side, in the French style, sleeves and
collar of black velvet. The awning over the boat is scarlet with blue
curtains."

When she went out in this for the first time the police at once reminded
her of the regulations, but she refused to yield, saying that, rather
than do so, she would leave Venice. The governor was afraid of a public
riot, such was her popularity, and he feared still more the observations
of the Austrian Court, so determined to shut his eyes to the matter. But
the singer had her revenge, for one day when he had gallantly conducted
her to her gondola, she obliged him to take a seat in it, and then took
him through all the canals, while they were met by the ironical cheers
of all whom they passed.

In 1831 Maria Malibran built herself a handsome villa near Brussels, and
from that time on made it a custom to retire to this home whenever she
had a few weeks' rest.

Here in the summer of the following year she received a visit from
Lablache, who was passing through the town on his way south. During
conversation he suggested that they should make a tour in Italy: the
idea pleased her, and without more ado they set off with an opera
company, with the result that they made a perfect triumphal progress
through the principal cities.

On June 2, 1832, Manuel Garcia's father passed away at the age of
fifty-seven.

We have already seen what a prominent figure the elder Garcia was in the
musical world of the early nineteenth century. No less gifted as an
actor than as a singer, his greatest performances were given in such
contrasting characters as Almaviva, Don Giovanni, and Otello. Again, as
a composer he was responsible for over forty operas in Italian, French,
and Spanish, many of which are still treasured among the municipal
archives of Madrid. Lastly, as a teacher of singing he made his mark
both in Paris and London, and a great many of the best qualities of the
modern school of vocalists depend on the joint teaching of the elder
Garcia and his son Manuel; for while the latter was the first to conduct
vocal training on correct scientific principles, the former undoubtedly
laid the foundation of the school from which sprung Grisi, Sontag, and
Alboni. Truly a remarkable man, to whose abilities Rossini bore striking
testimony when he said to Manuel, after the elder Garcia's death, "Si
ton père avait autant de savoir-faire que de savoir musical, il serait
le premier musicien de l'époque."

The spring of 1833 saw Maria Malibran at Drury Lane, receiving £3200 for
forty appearances, in addition to two benefits, which brought an
additional £2000; and on May 1, we read that she appeared in the first
performance of an English version of "Somnambula," in which part "she
drew the town in admiring crowds, tickling the ears of the groundlings
with the felicity of her roulades."

In this opera she had already appeared in the Italian version with
greater success even than Pasta, for whom Bellini had written the
_rôle_. Further, the old Italian musician found in her his ideal
interpreter for one of his most beautiful works, "Norma," with which he
had only made a moderate success at La Scala.

On the night of its production in London, as the composer advanced to
thank her, Maria Malibran rushed towards him with open arms, and sang
the words, "Ah, m'abbracia."

"Mon émotion fut indescriptible," Bellini said afterwards in speaking of
the incident. "Je me croyais en paradis. Je ne pus ajouter un mot, et je
restai comme étourdi."

After the London season of 1833 Mme. Malibran returned to Naples,
remaining there till the May of 1834, when she went to Bologna and Milan
till the end of June, while July was spent in London. The following
August saw her reception at the Court of Lucca, and of this visit a
charming description is given in a letter written by the violinist de
Bériot, to whom she had promised her hand as soon as her ill-fated
marriage with Mons. Malibran should have been dissolved,--a lengthy
process in those days.


     "LUCCA, _August 31, 1834_.

     "DEAR SISTER,--We arrived at the baths of Lucca yesterday, and have
     been spending two delightful days. It would be impossible to find a
     reigning prince with more geniality and amiability than the Duke of
     Lucca. The same might be said of the queen-mother of Naples.

     "The evening which I told you about in my last letter took place at
     her house on Friday last, Mariette sang ten songs, among the number
     being the one by Coutiau, which sent everybody into fits of
     laughter,--not that fashionable affected sort of laugh such as is
     considered etiquette at the Court functions in France and Belgium,
     but the hearty gaiety of the people, for here you do not have to
     put a restraint on yourself at the Court. When you enter the room
     you make your bow to the Queen and the Duke: after that you put
     your hat in a corner of the 'salon' and do whatever you like. I
     should become a furious royalist if we were allowed as much freedom
     as this at other courts.

     "The day after the 'soirée' the Queen sent by her secretary some
     splendid presents. Maria received a magnificent diamond cluster for
     her forehead, while I was given a single stone of great value, set
     in a ring for the little finger of my left hand; so in future I am
     always sure to have a brilliant cadenza. Then there was a very nice
     ornament in the shape of an eagle for Mariette's sister, Pauline.
     But that was not all, for there was a purse of gold, more than
     sufficient to cover all the expenses of the journey. That is what I
     call behaving really handsomely.

     "The rest of the evening was spent at Prince Poniatowski's. The
     Duke was present. He had been very full of fun during the dinner,
     over which he presided, sitting at the middle of the table. In his
     hand he held a big ruler to kill the wasps, of which there are
     great numbers in this country. He never missed one of them.

     "After dinner he gave himself up to dancing, singing, and romping,
     taking every one by the hand, as Labarre used to do when he was in
     good spirits. At last the Duke sat down at the piano and sang a
     _buffo_ duet from the 'Mariage Secret' in piquant fashion.

     "At this moment a little incident interrupted the music, but added
     considerable picturesqueness to the evening. A couple of bats flew
     in at the window, attracted by the light, and amused themselves by
     fluttering and sporting around our heads.

     "The ladies all took to their heels and fled into the next room,
     but the rest of the party, including S.A.R., armed ourselves with
     sticks and whips, and after two hours' conflict succeeded in
     killing the bats.

     "My letter, my dear Constance, has been interrupted by an excursion
     into the country, organised on the spur of the moment. We purpose
     spending two more days at Lucca, at Prince Poniatowski's, with
     S.A.R., who has made himself as charming as usual.

     "When I was in Paris I bought a cane with a knob made of lead. It
     took the fancy of the Duke, and I have given it to him. He has
     given me his own in exchange, and as it has a knob of gold it has a
     double value.

"CH. DE BÉRIOT."

With 1835 we come to an important advance of Manuel Garcia's position as
a teacher, the first official recognition of his growing fame. When at
the close of 1830, fresh from his anatomical studies at the hospital, he
had joined his father in his work, he at once resolved to apply the
knowledge thus gained. It was, therefore, his custom to insist that
every pupil who presented himself should undergo a vocal and medical
examination, while at the same time he made him submit to a special
treatment, if the larynx appeared to him to demand it.

This scientific method of approaching singing made a great stir, and he
soon found himself surrounded by an ever-increasing _clientèle_. With
his pupils, both amateur and professional, he gained such continuous
success that at last, in 1835, he was appointed to a professorial chair
at the Paris Conservatoire, and this naturally marked a very distinct
step in his career.

It has always been stated that he was given the post by Auber, but
investigation proves this to be incorrect. Auber was not appointed to
the directorship of the Conservatoire until the year 1842. At the time
Señor Garcia joined the staff Cherubini was at the head of affairs,
having been made director in the year 1821 (after being professor of
composition there for five years), and he remained in that position
until the close of 1841, when he retired at the age of eighty-one, to be
succeeded by the younger composer.

In the year of Manuel Garcia's appointment to the Conservatoire, his
sister, Maria Malibran, was in London during May and June, having been
engaged by the management of the Royal Italian Opera at Covent Garden
for twenty-one performances at a fee of £2775.

How little did those who listened to her in London that summer foresee
that with the close of the season they were to hear her in the capital
no more, and that in little over a year her life was to be brought to a
tragic end! Yet such was to be the case.

After the close of the London season the contralto retired to Brussels
for a rest, and then in the early autumn set out for Naples.

Immediately on her arrival she received an urgent visit from Giovanni
Gallo, the director of the little theatre of "St Jean Chrysostôme." The
interview led to a delightful episode.

The unhappy impresario was on the verge of bankruptcy, and came to beg
her aid. Maria Malibran refused, but offered to sing for him at his
theatre for a fee of three thousand francs.

The company and orchestra, who had already half dispersed, were hastily
reassembled, and de Bériot himself directed the rehearsals for
"Somnambula." The announcement of the forthcoming performance created
tremendous excitement,--seats fetched incredible prices; and on the
night itself the hall was crammed to overflowing. The tenor was so
affected that he suddenly stopped short, and for some minutes could not
sing a note. The public began to murmur, and the whole success of the
evening was in jeopardy, until Malibran came to the rescue. She at once
commenced to sing the tenor music, and rendered it with such virility of
accent and gesture that the public shouted with enthusiasm. What was
more to the purpose, the tenor was able to recover himself after a few
moments and take up his _rôle_ again. At the fall of the curtain the
ovation was tremendous,--indeed it seemed as if the applause would never
come to an end.

Her generous action had been noised abroad throughout Venice, and when
she went out people fought over bits of her shawl, her gloves, even her
handkerchief, while all the gondolas formed a guard of honour as far as
the Barbarigo Palace where she was staying. Scarcely had she entered
when the Syndic of the gondoliers was announced. On being shown in, he
presented a golden cup filled with wine, and begged her to touch it with
her lips. From her balcony she saw the cup passed from hand to hand
down that long flotilla, stretching away down to the "Riva del Carbone."
Each boatman took a sip, but so small a one, fearing lest the wine
should be exhausted before it had circulated among all his comrades,
that when it came back into the hands of the Syndic it was still half
full: seeing which, he poured the rest of the wine into the Grand Canal
as a libation.

The total receipts of the performance were 10,500 francs, but nothing
less than 15,000 could save the unhappy Gallo from bankruptcy. When he
presented himself next day with the 3000 francs, as arranged, the
tender-hearted artist discovered his predicament, and not only let him
off her fee, but provided him with the further sum necessary for the
settlement of his debt. Perhaps Alfred de Musset was thinking of this
act of generosity when he wrote the lines--

    "Cet or deux fois sacré qui payait ton génie
    Et qu'à tes pieds souvent laissa ta charité."

In remembrance of this memorable performance, the municipality of Venice
decided that the Theatre of Saint Jean Chrysostôme should be called
henceforth the Théâtre Malibran.

The ensuing winter the prima donna spent at Milan, where the Duke of
Visconti, director of La Scala, had offered her a contract for 185
performances, spread over two and a half years, for which she was to
receive 450,000 francs. This visit to Milan marked the zenith of her
fame, and is still referred to as "the glorious year." Here she pursued
still further the studies, which she had already commenced, with regard
to the reform of costume and scenery. Towards the realisation of her
dreams she was supported by the Duke of Visconti, who, besides his
connection with the opera house, was superintendent of the Academy of
Art and Science. Reviving the ideas of Talma, she wished to introduce in
the theatre artistic and archæological truth, and, with this aim in
view, she had copies made of a quantity of costumes from the archives of
Venice, and from the miniatures in some old manuscripts. From these
designs dresses were made for many of the operas, notably "Otello." So
great an interest did she take in the carrying out of this reform, that
she always used to refer to it as "la grande affaire."

There are still extant not only a great number of the designs, which
were copied by her orders, but several albums of sketches for which she
was herself responsible, and these exhibit considerable dexterity,
besides giving proof of the deep interest which she took in the scheme.

In the midst of all this work, and of numberless receptions at which she
was ever the principal attraction, she made frequent appearances at the
Scala in "Otello," "I Capuletti," "Norma," "Somnambula," and "Giovanna
Grey." The enthusiasm of the public had never reached such a pitch
before, and it is from this year that those stamps dated which bore her
head, and were used to close letters: specimens of these are still to be
seen, but they are extremely rare.

On the day of her departure her comrades at the theatre presented her
with a finely executed medal of gold, in which she was depicted in the
costume of "Norma"; while the governor expressed the hope of seeing her
quickly back again. But it was never to be consummated.

On March 26, 1836, the contralto's marriage with Monsieur Malibran was
finally annulled by the courts of Paris. This unworthy husband, soon
after her return to Europe, had heard of her success in the French
capital and followed her thither, demanding a share of her professional
emoluments. With this claim she very properly refused to comply. He had
obtained her hand by means of deception, and she had acquitted herself
of any claim he might have had as her husband, by resigning in favour of
his creditors the property which had been settled on her.

Three days after the marriage had been annulled, she was wedded to
Charles de Bériot, the violinist, and we read that "the Queen of France
presented the bride with a costly agraffe, embellished with pearls."

Next day de Bériot and his wife arrived at Brussels, and shortly
afterwards were heard there for the first time together at a concert
given for the benefit of the Polonais, and in another performance at the
Theatre Royal.

Then came that fatal day in April when the singer had a terrible fall
from her horse, being dragged some distance along the road and receiving
injuries to her head from which she never recovered, though her
wonderful energy enabled her to disregard the results for a time. She
retired to Brussels, and went thence to Aix-la-Chapelle, where she gave
two concerts with de Bériot.

In September they made a rapid journey from France, arriving at
Manchester on Sunday the 11th, where she had been engaged as the
principal attraction for the Festival. The same evening she sang no less
than fourteen pieces in her room at the hotel to please some Italian
friends. On the Monday she took part in the opening performance. Next
day she was weak and ill, but nevertheless sang afternoon and evening.
On the Wednesday her condition became still more critical, but she
managed to render "Sing ye to the Lord" with thrilling effect; and this
was the last sacred piece she ever sang, for that same evening brought
her grand career to its tragic close.

The scene was one which none forgot who were present on that fatal
night.

Before Maria Malibran had even reached the hall she had already fainted
several times. Yet with an indomitable courage she nerved herself to go
through the coming ordeal. With tears in their eyes, her friends begged
her to return without attempting the strain for which she was so
ill-prepared. But no; Maria Malibran refused to break faith with the
public whom she had served so long, so gloriously. Even though her heart
was chilled with presage of impending doom, she forced herself to enter
on her self-appointed task, and carried it through with such success
that when her final duet had been sung, "Vanno se alberghi in petto,"
none who had listened to that rich contralto voice guessed that they
had been present at the closing scenes of their favourite's career.

Her task was over, she had fought in an unequal combat and prevailed.
But still an enraptured audience clamoured to hear her yet again, and
the noisy demand grew ever more insistent, until Maria Malibran came
forward to repeat the closing movement.

As she sang, an agonised expression came over her face, her limbs
trembled, her efforts became more and more painful. It was the struggle
of a brave woman against sinking nature, the vivid glare of an expiring
lamp. Higher and higher rose the voice, paler and paler grew the singer.
Then came a last wild note of despair: the swan song was ended, and
Maria Malibran staggered from the platform, to sink exhausted into the
arms of loving comrades.

A grateful public vied each with the other in doing honour to their
heroine, but, alas! those thunders of applause fell on ears that heard
them not. Maria Malibran lay hovering 'twixt life and death.

But the end was not yet. She rallied, and was borne across to her room
at the hotel, and here she lingered for nine days in a fever before the
end came. On her deathbed her poor brain was in song-land, and almost
with her last breath she sang snatches of her favourite airs.

On October 1, 1836, her burial took place at the south aisle of the
Collegiate Church, Manchester, but the remains were afterwards removed
to Brussels, where they were reinterred in a mausoleum erected by her
husband. Here for many years, on each succeeding anniversary of her
death, the musicians of Brussels were wont to deposit their
visiting-cards at the grille of the now deserted mausoleum, the cupola
of which still towers above the surrounding tombs. It was not long after
the singer's death that "Tom Ingoldsby"--a stripling of seventeen in the
year of Manuel Garcia's birth--put into the mouth of his Lord Tom Noddy
the oft-quoted lines--

    "Malibran's dead, Duvernay's fled,
    Taglioni has not yet arrived in her stead."

Of Maria Malibran's powers as an artist her brother could never speak
too highly. She was richly endowed with the artistic genius of the
family, and was possessed of a contralto of marvellous purity and
richness, being at the same time gifted with great histrionic powers.
Her singing, as has been already stated, was always full of fire and
warmth, while, besides her passion, there was gentle pathos, which had
great effect on the listener. As a girl she was _petite_ and slight,
with burning cheeks and flaming eyes. Though not a beautiful woman, she
was extremely attractive. Her head was well shaped, her mouth rather
large, but her smile very sweet, and she had the most perfect set of
teeth, while her pretty figure was full of graceful curves.

Her versatility was shown not only in her extraordinary vocal and
histrionic achievements and skill in vocal improvisation, but in her
powers as a linguist, while as an artist her sketches were good, and
sometimes amusing. Moreover, her vivacious temperament and ready wit
found an outlet in a love of fun and mimicry. An instance of this is
related by John Parry, the composer and singer of refined comic songs.
The incident took place at an evening party in Naples.

"Such a merry-making, frolicsome sort of party I never witnessed," he
says. "We had much _good_ singing, as you may suppose; but Mazzinghi's
comic duet of "When a little farm we keep"--which I had the honour of
singing with Malibran--carried all before it, in consequence of the
exquisite manner in which she sang the _do re mi_ part of it; and when
she repeated it she executed the florid divisions so delightfully, and
so brilliantly, yet quite differently from the first time, that the
company was enraptured.... The prima donna requested Lablache to sustain
the low F, me to sing B flat, and others the harmonic intervals above,
then to place the finger on the side of the nose, so as to form a drone,
while she imitated the squeaking tones of the bagpipes in such a manner
as to cause the loudest laughter, especially when we sank our voices
very slowly together, as if the wind in the bellows was nearly
exhausted."

Maria Malibran was, moreover, a veritable tomboy when she was in the
company of children, being up to all sorts of tricks, and rested by
painting beautiful pictures; would dress as a man, and drive the coach
from place to place, and when she arrived, brown with the sun and dust
of Italy, would sometimes jump into the sea. Then she would go straight
to the opera and, having sung "Amina," "Norma," or "The Maid of Artois,"
as we shall perhaps never hear them sung again, return home to write or
sing comic songs. At cock-crow she was out galloping her horse off its
legs before a rehearsal in the morning, a concert in the afternoon, and
the opera at night.

Such was Maria Malibran, untiring in energy, scarcely resting a moment.
Little wonder that she did not live to the same age as the rest of her
family, for she died at twenty-eight, whereas her mother lived to be
eighty-three, and her sister Pauline is still living, approaching her
ninetieth birthday, while Manuel entered on his 102nd year before the
Reaper summoned him.

Well did Lablache say of Maria Malibran, "Son esprit est trop fort pour
son petit corps."

[Illustration: Pauline Viardot]



CHAPTER IX.

PAULINE VIARDOT-GARCIA.

(1837-1841.)


After the death of Malibran in 1836, the ensuing years of Manuel
Garcia's life were spent in steady progress of fame as a teacher. The
next event of importance in his career took place four years later.
These intervening years were, however, brightened by much reflected
glory, for as the period between 1830 and 1836 saw the triumphs of his
eldest sister and pupil, Maria Malibran, so this next one brought the
success of his youngest sister, Pauline Viardot, also his pupil.

Her first lessons had been received as a child at the hands of her
father, but seeing that she was only eleven years old when he died, it
may be certainly claimed that her brother was responsible for the
greater part of her training.

It was in 1837, the year which saw the accession of Queen Victoria, that
she made her _début_ as a singer at Brussels. This was not, however, her
first appearance on the platform, for she had already shown herself to
be an admirable pianist. Her earliest lessons in pianoforte had been
received in New York from Marcos Vega, being afterwards continued under
Meyssenberg; but the most important part of her study was done under
Liszt.

The German pianist had already made considerable success by the time his
father died in 1827, when he himself was but sixteen years old. The
event brought a great change in his circumstances, and made it necessary
for him to keep himself by teaching. His services were at once in demand
among the best families, and in due course Pauline was placed under him.
Though she refers to her talent on the instrument as "passable," Liszt
counted her one of his best pupils.

After studying for some time she made her appearance as a pianist at
several concerts organised by her sister and de Bériot in Belgium and
Germany. Composition, too, she learned under Reicha, and it was to him
that she owed that grasp of the technique of her art by which she was
able to give full scope to the richness of her own inspiration.

In 1837, as we have already said, her _début_ as a vocalist was made at
Brussels. After this she went on a concert tour with de Bériot, and sang
at a concert in Paris in 1838 at the Théâtre de la Renaissance, when her
powers of execution were brilliantly displayed in a _cadence du Diable_.

After these preliminary appearances, which were designed to make her
"feel her feet," Pauline Garcia, on May 9, 1839, made her London _début_
at Her Majesty's Theatre, as Desdemona in "Otello." Her success was
instantaneous: without hesitation the public favour which had been
bestowed on her sister was given to her also, with almost greater
enthusiasm. From the commencement it was conceded that she was a
remarkable artist.

She was a mezzo-soprano, with fine clear upper notes, and a wonderful
execution in bravura passages. Moreover, as an actress she was equally
successful in tragedy or comedy, besides being a perfect musician. And
yet, as Señor Garcia would remark, there was not in her case a
"phenomenal voice," as there had been in that of the lamented Malibran.
It was, according to her brother, by no means a great one, and the voice
alone would in ordinary circumstances have been placed in the second
class.

There is a well-known story of a certain painter being asked by one of
his sitters: "Tell me, with what do you mix your paints to get these
wonderful effects?" "Madame," was the reply, "I mix them with my
brains." So, too, Pauline Garcia may be said to have sung with her
brains.

It was indeed the triumph of mind over matter. With her it was another
case which went to uphold the truth of the well-known dictum that
"Genius is the capacity for taking infinite pains." She possessed the
will-power and determination to rise above all obstacles, as Demosthenes
had possessed it centuries before, when he made up his mind to become a
leading advocate, and, in order to attain greater clearness of
enunciation, spent hour after hour by the seashore, where he would
recite, his mouth filled with pebbles. With what a result! The Athenian
ended by becoming one of the world's greatest orators: Señor Garcia's
youngest sister became one of the world's greatest dramatic singers.

In the autumn of 1839 she went to Paris for a season at the Théâtre
Italien, for which she had been engaged by the impresario, Mons. Louis
Viardot, a distinguished writer and critic, and founder of the 'Revue
Indépendante.' Here she shared in the triumphs of Grisi, Persiani,
Rubini, Tamburini, and Lablache; while her principal parts were three
_rôles_ as different as they were characteristic--in the operas of
"Otello," "Cenerentola," and "The Barber of Seville."

Many tributes were paid by those who heard her. Liszt, under whom she
had studied the piano, wrote of her in these terms--

"In all that concerns method and execution, feeling and expression, it
would be hard to find a name worthy to be mentioned with that of Maria
Malibran's sister. In her, virtuosity serves only as a means of
expressing the idea, the thought, the character of a work or a _rôle_."

George Sand called her "the personification of poetry and music," and
set down her impressions on listening to the singer thus: "The pale,
still,--one might at the first glance say lustreless,--countenance, the
suave and unconstrained movements, the astonishing freedom from every
sort of affectation,--how transfigured all this appears, when she is
carried away by her genius on the current of song!"

Her first appearance in Paris was greeted by Alfred de Musset, the poet
of Romanticism and warm friend of Victor Hugo, in those well-known
lines--

    "Ainsi donc, quoi qu'on dise, elle ne tarit pas
      La source immortelle et féconde
    Que le coursier divin fit jaillir sous ses pas."

When de Musset wished to crystallise in prose his feelings on hearing
her sing, he expressed himself in these words--

"Si Pauline Garcia a la voix de sa sœur, elle en a l'âme en même
temps, et, sans la moindre imitation, c'est le même génie.... Elle
chante comme elle respire.... Sa physionomie, pleine d'expression,
change avec une rapidité prodigieuse, avec une liberté extrème, non
seulement selon le morceau, mais encore selon la phrase qu'elle exécute.
Avant d'exprimer, elle sent."

Again, Richard Wagner pays a remarkable tribute to her powers in a
letter to L. Uhl relating to his stay in Paris in 1859, and to the
attempts to arrange for the production of "Tristan" there. In it the
composer recounts how the same difficulty of reading the _rôles_ of this
work was encountered in Germany, which militated much against its
production. "Madame Viardot," he writes, "expressed to me one day her
astonishment that in Germany people always spoke of this difficulty of
reading the music of 'Tristan.' She asked me if in Germany the artists
were not then musicians? I for my part hardly know how to enlighten her
on this point; for this grand artiste sang through at sight, with the
most perfect expression, a whole act of the _rôle_ of Isolda."

Such was the artiste whose _début_ in London in 1839 was followed by so
brilliant a career.

We now come to 1840--a year made noteworthy in the life of Garcia by
another important advance in his career.

Since his appointment to a professorship at the Paris Conservatoire, his
reputation had continued to be steadily consolidated, and his
_clientèle_ included, besides those who were being trained for the
musical profession, a great number of amateur pupils, among whom were to
be found not only some of the most distinguished names in Paris, but
many members of the royal family itself. Throughout this period he had
been steadily working to increase his knowledge relative to the
mechanism of the voice, and at last, in 1840, he found that his
investigations had reached a point at which they might be found of
interest to others.

Accordingly, in this year he set down the result of his studies in the
classical paper which he submitted to the Académie des Sciences de
France under the title, "Mémoire sur la voix humaine," to which was
added the rather odd-sounding subtitle, "Description des produits du
phonateur humain." In it he embodied the various discoveries which he
had made relating to the larynx.

Among the principal points to which he drew attention were the
following:--

     (1) The head voice does not necessarily begin where the chest voice
     ends, and a certain number of notes can be produced in either
     register.

     (2) The chest voice and the head voice are produced by a special
     and spontaneous modification of the vocal organs, and the
     exhaustion of the air contained in the chest is more rapid in the
     proportion of four to three in the production of a head than a
     chest note.

     (3) The voice can produce the same sounds in two different
     timbres--the clear or open, and the sombre or closed.

The memoir on the human voice was duly reported on by Majendie, Savart,
and Dutrochet at a public meeting which was held on April 12, 1841, the
result being that this resolution was passed: "The thanks of the Academy
are due to Professor Garcia for the skilful use which he has made of his
opportunities as a teacher of singing to arrive at a satisfactory
physical theory of the human voice." The circumstance gave occasion for
a somewhat acrimonious discussion concerning certain points of priority
as between Garcia and MM. Diday and Pétrequin, two French scientists.

This was followed up by the publication of the 'Method of Teaching
Singing,' in which Garcia cleared up the confusion which had hitherto
existed between "timbre" and "register."

He defined the expression "register" as being a series of consecutive
homogeneous sounds produced by one mechanism, differing essentially from
another series of sounds equally homogeneous produced by another
mechanism, whatever modifications of "timbre" and of strength they may
offer. "Each of the registers," he added, "has its own extent and
sonority, which varies according to the sex of the individual and the
nature of the organ."

At this time he stated that there were two registers; but in later
years, with the invention of the laryngoscope and the examination of the
vocal cords which resulted from it, he altered the original division
from two to three--chest, medium, and head-voice,--and this is accepted
by all as scientifically correct according to the definition of
"register" laid down by him.

The year which found Manuel Garcia presenting his paper to the Académie
des Sciences saw his sister Pauline married to Monsieur Viardot, by whom
she had been engaged for her first season at the Paris Opera House.
Almost immediately after the wedding her husband resigned his position,
so as to accompany her on her tours through Italy, Spain, Germany,
Russia, and England.

At Berlin, such was her success, that after her performance as Rahel in
Halévy's "La Juive," she was serenaded by the whole orchestra. Here,
too, she astonished all by volunteering at a moment's notice to sing the
part of Isabelle in "Robert le Diable" in addition to her own of Alice,
when the artiste who had been engaged for the former _rôle_ was suddenly
taken ill.

Her actual _début_ in Germany was made at a State concert in Berlin,--an
official ceremony, but still a private one. The first public appearance
in the country was made at an evening concert at the Gewandhaus of
Leipsic in 1843.

Pauline Viardot was twenty-two at the time. With a charming appearance,
and already ablaze with the reflected glory of her sister, Maria
Malibran, the _débutante_ quickly roused the sympathetic curiosity of
her audience to enthusiasm. The entire press praised her virtuosity,
artistic feeling, and nobility of countenance, but above all they
expressed admiration for her gift of revealing the innermost beauty of
the grand musical works in which she lived and felt so profoundly.

They admired, too, that unique talent which wrapped every phrase in the
exquisite charm and grace which she brought to bear. For that reason the
bravura air of Persiani's "Inès de Castro," the final rondo from
Rossini's "Cenerentola," and an unpublished air of Ch. de Bériot, earned
for her at this first concert as much applause as the great air from
Handel's "Rinaldo" and the lighter French, Spanish, and German songs
which she sang in the same programme. These last three varieties of song
she gave with a national colour so characteristic that, as one of the
critics said, "Elles parurent chantées par trois voix et par trois âmes
totalement différentes."

As was her usual custom, she accompanied herself on the piano to
perfection. Clara Schumann, who took part in the concert, was
dumfounded, and never forgot the occasion. Another musician who appeared
that evening was a young violinist, an infant prodigy, twelve years old,
who was to become in later years the great master, Joseph Joachim.

Between 1840 and 1843 Mme. Viardot added to her successes many fresh
operas, principal among them being "Tancredi," the "Gazza Ladra," and
"Semiramide," in which she took the part of Arsace. By the year 1845 her
repertoire comprised, in addition to those already mentioned,
"Somnambula" and "Norma," "I Capuletti" (in which she played Romeo),
"L'Elisire d'Amore," "Lucia di Lammermoor," and "Don Pasquale"; as well
as in German, "La Juive," "Iphigénie en Tauride," "Les Huguenots,"
"Robert le Diable," and "Don Juan," in which she played sometimes the
part of Zerlina, at others Donna Anna.

In 1848 she was in Paris again, and enraptured Meyerbeer with her
rendering of Fides in "Le Prophète," a _rôle_ which she subsequently
sustained on over two hundred occasions in all the chief opera houses in
Europe, being--_teste_ Moscheles--"the life and soul of the opera, which
owed to her at least half of its great success."

Three years later came another triumph, when, at Gounod's request, she
created the part of Sapho. In 1855 she added to her laurels "Le Mariage
Secret." Then came the evenings at the Théâtre Lyrique in 1859, with
"Orpheo" and "Fidelio," and finally her season of opera in 1861, with
"Alceste," "Favorita," and "Il Trovatore."

At the end of a career lasting over a period of twenty-five years, the
artist retired, and in 1865 settled in Baden-Baden as a teacher, her
principal pupils being Désiré Artot, Marianne Brandt, and Antoinette
Sterling. Here in her own grounds she had a private theatre built, a
small square building, capable of holding about a hundred people, in
addition to a diminutive orchestra, stage, and anteroom. In this hall
she was wont to give concerts, to which were invited celebrities from
every land, representatives of the various branches of art and science,
poets, painters, diplomats, and the like; while on more than one
occasion the old Emperor of Germany himself honoured her with his
presence.

At one of these, Mme. Viardot's pupils performed an operetta of her own
composition, while Mme. Artot sang a scene from an opera, and several
others from among the greatest German artists took part in the
programme. These included Joseph Joachim and Ferdinand David, the latter
of whom was at this time Concertmeister in Leipzig.

Antoinette Sterling, who was then studying with Mme. Viardot, sang an
Italian aria, in addition to taking part in the operetta. Her hair was
let down for the occasion, while she wore a costume in the Grecian
style, surmounted by a red velvet cap. This was the only time my mother
ever appeared in "stage costume," or suffered rouge to be applied to her
face.

During this period Johannes Brahms was living in Baden-Baden, and
Antoinette Sterling has left a description of an episode in connection
with the friendship of the composer for Mme. Viardot:--

"Herr Brahms at this time looked almost a boy, rather short and thick,
with a full round face and fair yellowish hair. In honour of Mme.
Viardot's birthday"--(this was in the year 1869)--"he wrote a small
chorus for women's voices, and came himself to conduct the rehearsals,
all of which took place in my rooms. At five o'clock on the birthday
morning, we walked with Herr Brahms through the grassy fields up to her
house, and there, under her window, sang the morning serenade. When she
came down from her room, her face wreathed in smiles, every student
threw her a bouquet, a stipulated price being given for each of these
bunches of flowers, so that none should be more gorgeous than the rest."

We have seen the admiration which Pauline Viardot had aroused in many
composers besides Brahms. One may add to the list the name of Robert
Schumann, for he dedicated to her his beautiful Liederkreis, op. 24. Nor
was Señor Garcia's sister unknown as a writer of music, for she has been
responsible for many beautiful compositions.

After spending some five years in Baden-Baden, Mme. Viardot was forced
to leave the town on the outbreak of the Franco-Prussian War, owing to
her husband being of French nationality. They made their way at once to
London, where Manuel Garcia was residing, and of the months which they
spent there I shall have something to say later, since Mme. Noufflard,
the daughter of Lady Hallé, has given some interesting reminiscences of
that period. When things had become sufficiently quiet again Mme.
Viardot decided to settle in Paris, and there she has resided ever
since.

And what of her life in recent years, in her grand retirement? The year
1905, which saw her brother celebrating his centenary, found her in
splendid old age after many years of widowhood, approaching her
eighty-fifth birthday; living in a handsome house in the Boulevard St
Germain; strong, tall, and of dignified bearing, her hazel eyes still
retaining their true Spanish brilliance; her voice clear and
well-sustained; herself full of vivacity, and with a memory no less
remarkable than that of her brother; full of enthusiasm for music and
art, a grandmother, with the most charming smile and magnetic gaiety,
and still able to add to the number of her musical compositions.

A true Garcia.

One might well be tempted to dwell still further on that wonderful
personality, laying stress on her care as a teacher, on her beneficent
work among the artists whom she instructed, after they had journeyed
from all directions, from the New World as well as the Old, to place
themselves in her hands. One longs to paint her amid her home
surroundings, in an atmosphere vibrating with music, bathed in art; one
longs to show that lovable serenity, that wonderful gaiety and
prodigious activity, which perhaps strike one most of all.

This little sketch of her career will be brought to an end by a
quotation from a letter, in which one may appreciate the exquisite turn
which she gives to every phrase and thought:--

" ...Mais où trouver le temps de faire ce qu'on voudrait? C'est à peine
si on arrive à faire ce qu'on doit! En vieillissant, le temps passe de
plus en plus vite et vous entraîne d'une course vertigineuse vers le
_Grand Inconnu!_ sans arrêt, sans repos, sans pitié. Il y aura peut-être
dans le ciel une immense bibliothèque, où les œuvres du génie seront
rassemblées, et je me promets d'y faire de fameuses séances de
lectures!..."

It is the letter of a moment, but the sentiments, which she expresses so
beautifully, are those of an eternity.

[Illustration:

_Photo by_          _W. & D. Downey._

Yours sincerely Jenny Goldschmidt]



CHAPTER X.

JENNY LIND.

(1841-1842.)


The year 1841 may be looked on as the most important in Manuel Garcia's
career as a teacher of singing, for it saw the arrival of the soprano
who was to become the greatest of all his pupils--Jenny Lind. For this
reason it is my intention to devote a chapter to the events which led up
to her coming to him for lessons, to the period of study which she spent
under his guidance, and to the success which followed on the completion
of this training. For much of the material I am indebted to the
interesting memoir of the prima donna's career written by Canon Scott
Holland, through whose courtesy I have been enabled to quote from the
volume in question.

Born in Stockholm in 1820 of humble parentage, Jenny Lind, at the age of
nine, was admitted to the school of singing attached to the Royal
Theatre. Of the incident which brought about her removal and fixed for
ever the lines of her future career, it is possible for us to read in
her own words, as they were taken down by her son, to whom she told the
story at Cannes in the spring of 1887.

"As a child," writes Canon Holland, "she would sing with every step she
took: one of the forms which the perpetual song assumed was addressed to
a blue-ribboned cat, of which she was very fond. Here is the rest of the
story as Jenny Lind related it:--

"'Her favourite seat was in the window of the steward's room, which
looked out on the lively street leading up to the church of St Jacob.
Here she sat and sang to the cat; and the people passing in the street
used to hear and wonder. Amongst others was the maid of Mdlle. Lundberg,
a dancer at the Royal Opera House, and this girl on her return told her
mistress that she had never heard such beautiful singing as that of this
little one when she sang to her pet.

"'Mdlle. Lundberg thereupon found out her name and sent a note to the
mother, who was in Stockholm at the time, asking her to bring the child
to sing to her; and when she heard her voice, she cried, "The girl is a
genius! you must have her educated for the stage." But Jenny's mother,
as well as her grandmother, had an old-fashioned prejudice against the
stage, and would not hear of such a thing. "Then you must, at any rate,
have her taught singing," said the dancer; and in this way the mother
was persuaded to accept a letter of introduction to Herr Croelius, the
Court secretary and Singing-master, at the Royal Theatre.

"'Off with the letter they started; but as they went up the broad steps
of the Opera House, the parent was again troubled by her doubts and
repugnance. She had, no doubt, all the inherited dislike of the burgher
families for the dramatic life. But little Jenny eagerly urged her to go
on; and so they entered the room where the teacher sat. The child sang
him something out of an opera composed by Winter. When he heard her,
Croelius was moved to tears, and said that he must take her in to the
Count Puke, the head of the Royal Theatre, and tell him what a treasure
he had found.

"'Having been admitted to the manager's sanctum, the first question
asked was, "How old is she?" and Croelius answered "Nine years." "Nine!"
exclaimed the Count; "but this is not a _crêche_--it is the King's
Theatre;" and he would not look at her, she being, moreover, at that
time what she herself has called "a small, ugly, broad-nosed, shy,
gauche, under-grown girl." "Well," said the other, "if you will not hear
her, then I will teach her gratuitously myself, and she will astonish
you one day." With that Count Puke consented to hear her sing; and when
she sang he, too, was moved to tears. From that moment she was accepted,
being taught to sing, educated, and brought up at the Government
expense.'"

Thus did Jenny Lind tell the crucial event of her life in her own
graphic manner.

At eighteen she came out as an opera singer, appearing as Agatha in "Der
Freischütz," Alice in "Robert le Diable," and many other parts. During
the two years that followed, she caused considerable damage to her
voice, partly through overstrain, partly through ignorance of the true
principles of voice-emission. As soon as she realised what had happened
she determined to go to Paris, for she had been long convinced that
there was one man alone from whom she could learn all those
technicalities of the art of singing of which she knew so little and
longed to know so much. And the name of that man was Manuel Garcia,
whose fame as a teacher had, even at that early period of his career,
already travelled to Sweden.

It was not long before her project was put into execution. On Thursday,
July 1, 1841, Mdlle. Lind, now in her twenty-first year, embarked on the
steamship _Gauthiod_ for Lübeck.

After a few days of rest and enjoyment she proceeded to Hâvre by
steamboat and thence by diligence to Paris.

Here we can take up the narrative as it is told by Canon Holland:--

"On leaving Sweden she had brought with her a letter of introduction to
the Duchesse de Dalmatie (Madame la Maréchale Soult) from her relative,
Queen Desideria, the wife of Maréchal Bernadotte, who had become King of
Sweden and Norway in the year 1818, under the title of Karl XIV. Johann.

"As a result of the letter she received an invitation, soon after her
arrival, for a reception at Madame Soult's house. It was understood that
she would be asked to sing, and Signor Garcia was specially requested by
the Duchess to be present that he might hear the new arrival.

"She gave some Swedish songs, accompanying herself on the pianoforte,
but either through nervousness or fatigue she does not appear to have
done herself justice, and her singing did not produce a very favourable
effect upon the assembled guests. Her voice was worn not only from
over-exertion but from want of that careful management which can only be
acquired by long training under a thoroughly competent master.

"Such training she had never had. She had formed her own ideal of the
difficult _rôles_ that had been entrusted to her at the Royal Theatre in
Stockholm, and had tried to reach that ideal by the only means she knew
of--very pernicious means indeed. The result was that the voice had been
very cruelly injured. The mischief had been seriously aggravated by the
fatigue consequent upon a long and arduous provincial tour; and the
effect was a chronic hoarseness, painful enough to produce marked
symptoms of deterioration upon the fresh young voice which had never
been taught either the proper method of singing or the cultivation of
style necessary for the development of its natural charm.

"Manuel Garcia was not slow to perceive all this, and he afterwards told
a lady who questioned him upon the subject that the Swedish soprano was
at that time altogether wanting in the qualities needed for presentation
before a highly cultivated audience.

"Soon after this Mademoiselle Lind called by appointment upon the
maestro, who then occupied a pleasant _deuxième étage_ in a large block
of houses in the Square d'Orleans, near the Rue Saint Lazare. It was a
handsome residence, built around a turfed courtyard, with a fountain in
the centre and a large tree on each side.

"As on this occasion she formally requested the great teacher to
receive her as a pupil, he examined her voice more carefully than he had
been able to do at Madame Soult's party.

"After making her sing through the usual scales and forming his own
opinion of the power and compass of her organ, he asked her for the
well-known scena from 'Lucia di Lammermoor'--'Perchè non ho.' In this,
unhappily, she broke down completely--in all probability through
nervousness, for she had appeared in the part of Lucia at the Stockholm
Theatre no less than thirty-nine times only the year before, and the
music must therefore have been familiar to her. However, let the cause
have been what it might, the failure was complete, and upon the strength
of it the maestro pronounced his terrible verdict: 'It would be useless
to teach you, mademoiselle; you have no voice left.'

"It is necessary that these words should be distinctly recorded, for
their misquotation in the newspapers and elsewhere has led to a false
impression, equally unjust to master and pupil. The exact words
were--'Vous n'avez plus de voix,' not 'Vous n'avez pas de voix.' Jenny
Lind had once possessed a voice, as Garcia realised perfectly clearly,
but it had been so strained by over-exertion and a faulty method of
emission that for the time being scarcely a shred of it remained.

"The effect of this sentence of hopeless condemnation upon an
organisation so highly strung as hers may be readily conceived. But her
courage was equal to the occasion, though she told Mendelssohn, years
afterwards, that the anguish of that moment exceeded all that she had
ever suffered in her whole life. Yet her faith in her own powers never
wavered for an instant. There was a fire within her that no amount of
discouragement could quench. Instead, therefore, of accepting his
verdict as a final one, she asked, with tears in her eyes, what she was
to do. Her trust in the maestro's judgment was no less firm than that
which she felt in the reality of her own vocation. In the full
conviction that if she could only persuade him to advise her, his
counsel would prove invaluable, she did not hesitate to make the
attempt, and the result fully justified the soundness of her
conclusions.

"Moved by her evident distress, he recommended her to give her voice six
weeks of perfect rest,--to abstain during the whole of that time from
singing even so much as one single note, and to speak as little as
possible. Upon condition that she strictly carried out these
injunctions, he gave her permission to come to him again when the period
of probation was ended, in order that he might see whether anything
could be done for her. Intense indeed must have been the relief when
these six weeks had at last expired.

"Once more Mdlle. Lind sought an interview with the master, and this
time her hopes were crowned with success. Signor Garcia found the voice
so far re-established by rest that he was able to give good hope of its
complete restoration, provided that the faulty methods which had so
nearly resulted in its destruction were abandoned. With the view of
attaining this end he agreed to give her two lessons of an hour each
regularly every week--an arrangement which set all her anxieties at
rest.

"The delight of the artist at being once more permitted to sing may be
readily imagined. Though discouraged sometimes by the immense amount she
had to learn--and, with still greater difficulty, to unlearn--she never
lost heart; and so rapidly did the vocal organs recover from the
exhaustion from which they had been suffering, that before long she was
able to practise her scales and exercises daily for the fullest length
of time which a singer could manage without over-exerting the voice."

The lessons were commenced about the 25th of August, and were continued
without a break from then until the month of July, 1842.

Jenny Lind thus describes her first introduction to the new system in a
letter to her friend, Fröken Marie Ruckman:--


     "PARIS, _Sept. 10, 1841_.

     "I have already had five lessons from Signor Garcia, the brother of
     Madame Malibran. I have to begin again from the beginning, to sing
     scales up and down slowly and with great care, then to practise the
     shake--awfully slowly, and to try to get rid of the hoarseness if
     possible. Moreover, he is very particular about the breathing. I
     trust I have made a happy choice. Anyhow, he is the best master,
     and expensive enough--twenty francs for an hour! But what does that
     signify if only he can teach me to sing?"

A fortnight later she writes to Madame Lindblad:--

     "I am well satisfied with my singing-master. With regard to my weak
     points especially, he is excellent. I think it very fortunate for
     me that there exists a Garcia. And I believe him also to be a very
     good man. If he takes but little notice of us apart from his
     lessons, well--that cannot be helped; but I am very much pleased,
     nay, enchanted, with him as a teacher."

And again to Herr Forsberg:--


     PARIS, _February 1, 1842_.

     "Garcia's method is the best of our time, and the one which all
     here are striving to follow."

In a still later letter she writes:--


     PARIS, _March 7, 1842_.

     "To-day, four years ago, I made my _début_ in 'Der Freischütz.'

     "My singing is getting on quite satisfactorily now. I rejoice
     heartily in my voice,--it is clear and sonorous, with more
     firmness, and much greater agility. A great, great deal still
     remains to be done; but the worst is over. Garcia is satisfied with
     me."

The teaching she now received was evidently the exact thing she needed;
for of the management of the breath, the emission of the voice, the
blending of its registers, and other technical details upon which even
the most perfect singers must depend in great measure for success, she
knew nothing.

We have seen Jenny Lind's opinion of her master: what of Garcia's
opinion of his pupil? During my own lessons with him he would often
speak of the Swedish Nightingale, and hold her up as an example in the
most embarrassing way. Among other things he remarked that he had never
heard her sing even a hair's-breadth out of tune, so perfect was her
natural ear. Moreover, when she made a mistake, he only had to point it
out once, explain the cause of the error, and show how it could be
rectified: the fault would never be repeated.

Mdlle. Lind's course of study under Garcia lasted in all ten months, by
which time she had learned all that it was possible for any master to
teach her. After this period she had improved so wonderfully under his
magical tuition that, as he himself picturesquely expressed it, she was
able to look down on her former efforts as from a mountain to a plain.
The result for which she had so ardently longed, so patiently waited, so
perseveringly laboured, was attained at last. Her voice, no longer
suffering from the effects of the cruel fatigue and the inordinate
amount of over-exertion which had so lately endangered, not merely its
wellbeing, but its very existence, had now far more than recovered its
pristine vigour,--it had acquired a rich depth of tone, a sympathetic
sweetness, a bird-like charm in the silvery clearness of its upper
register, which at once impressed the listener with the feeling that he
had never before heard anything in the least degree resembling it.

Few human organs are perfect. It is quite possible that other voices
may have possessed qualities which this did not--for voices of
exceptional beauty are nearly always characterised by an individuality
of expression which forms by no means the least potent of their
attractions. But the listener never stopped to analyse the qualities of
Mdlle. Lind's voice, the marked individuality of which set analysis at
defiance. By turns full, sympathetic, tender, sad or brilliant, it
adapted itself so perfectly to the artistic conception of the song it
was interpreting, that singer, voice, and song were one.

"With such rare power at command, she was able, without effort, to give
expression to every phase of the conception which she had originally
formed by the exercise of innate genius alone. Her acting had grown up
with her from infancy, and formed part of her inmost being. She had
found no one in Paris capable of teaching her anything that could
improve that, though she thought it necessary to take lessons in
deportment. The rest she had studied for herself, though she had
naturally gained experience by observation of others.

"She had acted to herself the part of Norma, which had been the last
_rôle_ she had undertaken in Stockholm before setting out for Paris, and
calmly passed judgment upon her own performance. That she was satisfied
with it one cannot doubt, for she had studied the difficult character of
her heroine to such good purpose that she had reconciled all its
apparent incongruities, and elevated it into a consistent whole,
dramatic and musical, breathing poetry and romance from beginning to
end, yet as true to nature as she was herself, and no longer fettered by
the fatal technical weakness which had so long stood between her ideal
and its perfect realisation. There was no weakness now. The artist was
complete."

When Jenny Lind was drawing near the close of her studies under Garcia,
the crucial question arose, Should the finished artist make her _début_
in Paris? Or should she return at once to Sweden, and reappear in all
the glory of her newly acquired powers in her beloved Stockholm? There
were arguments to be brought forward on both sides. The problem was no
new one. It had been frequently discussed, but her own feeling on the
subject was very strong indeed. She could not reconcile herself to
Paris. From the very first she had suspected the hollowness of its
social organisation. In the September of 1841 she writes--

     "There might be much to say about Paris, but I put it off until I
     am better able to judge. This much, however, I will say at once,
     that if good is sometimes to be found, an immeasurable amount of
     evil is to be found also. But I believe it to be an excellent
     school for any one with discernment enough to separate the rubbish
     from that which is worth preserving--though this is no easy task.
     To my mind the worst feature of Paris is its dreadful selfishness,
     its greed for money. There is nothing to which the people will not
     submit for the sake of gain. Applause here is not always given to
     talent, but often enough to vice,--to any obscure person who can
     afford to pay for it. Ugh! It is too dreadful to see the
     _claqueurs_ sitting at the theatre, night after night, deciding the
     fate of those who are compelled to appear,--a terrible
     manifestation of original sin."

Six weeks later she writes: "All idea of appearing in public here has
vanished. To begin with--I myself never relied upon it; but people said
so many silly things about just one performance, that at last I began to
feel as if I were in duty bound to try. But monstrous and unconquerable
difficulties are in the way. In any case I want to go home again. But if
I can arrange to sing at a concert before leaving, I will do so, in
order that I may not return home without having at least done
something."

All through the ensuing months she was still tortured by doubts as to
the best course to pursue. In the following May she received from the
directors of the Royal Theatre at Stockholm the offer of a definite and
official engagement at the Opera House in which her early triumphs had
been made, but this was not at once accepted.

At the end of June her studies with Garcia came to an end.

During this month it happened that Meyerbeer was in Paris on business
connected with the production of "Le Prophète." Of the first performance
of this opera Garcia retained a vivid memory, and, in speaking of it to
me one day, recalled how, during the preliminary rehearsals, the singers
all grumbled at its great length. Yet for the memorising and rehearsing
of this, previous to its being put on the stage, they were given only
eighteen days,--the same period as for that other lengthy work, "William
Tell."

On June 15 Herr Lindblad arranged an interview with Meyerbeer, and Jenny
Lind sang for him the aria from "Roberto" and from "Norma." The composer
was much pleased with her voice, but seems to have entertained doubts as
to whether it was powerful enough to fill the auditorium of the Grand
Opera.

Garcia himself considered her voice still somewhat _fatiguée_, and not
quite attained to the quality of which in a few months it would be
capable.

It may have been this which Meyerbeer noticed. At any rate, in order to
satisfy himself upon the point, he wished to hear her sing on the stage
of the theatre itself. Accordingly, on the 24th an _audition_ took
place, in which she gave the three grand scenes from "Der Freischütz,
"Robert le Diable," and "Norma." Meyerbeer was delighted, and made such
comments as, "Une voix chaste et pure, pleine de grâce et de
virginalité," while the next day he spoke of her to Berlioz with the
greatest enthusiasm. He was anxious for her to make her appearance in
London soon. Garcia, however, feared that the fame of Grisi would hinder
his pupil from receiving a real chance. He therefore prevented her from
making her _début_ there till five years later, when she achieved a
veritable triumph.

On October 10, 1842, the prima donna opened at the Stockholm theatre
with a performance of "Norma,"--the very opera in which she had closed
her appearances on June 19, 1841.

It must have been a direct challenge to the critical world of Stockholm,
to recognise the change that had intervened between the two
performances. What that change was we learn from an estimate supplied by
a most competent and judicious critic, who sang with her often, both
before and after her visit to Paris. He writes as follows:--

     "When, during the years 1838-40, Jenny Lind enraptured her audience
     at Stockholm by her interpretation of the parts of Agathe, Pamina,
     Alice, Norma, or Lucia, she succeeded in doing so solely through
     her innate capacity for investing her performances, both musically
     and dramatically, with truthfulness, warmth, and poetry.

     "The voice and its technical development were not, however, in
     sufficiently harmonious relation with her intentions.

     "In proof of this it was noticed that the artist was not always
     able to control sustained notes in the upper register--such, for
     instance, as the A flat above the stave in Agathe's cavatina, 'Und
     ob die Wolke'--without perceptible difficulty; and that she
     frequently found it necessary to simplify the _fioritura_ and
     _cadenza_ which abound in florid parts like those of Norma and
     Lucia.

     "Nay, there were not wanting some who, though they had heard her in
     parts no more trying than that of Emilia in Weigl's 'Swiss
     Family,'--a _rôle_ which, in many respects, she rendered
     delightfully,--went so far as to doubt the possibility of training
     the veiled and weak-toned voice in a wider sense.

     "Yet, in spite of this, Jenny Lind, when resuming her sphere of
     action at the Stockholm theatre, proved not only to have acquired a
     soprano voice of great sonority and compass, capable of adapting
     itself with ease to every shade of expression, but to have gained
     also a technical command over it great enough to be regarded as
     unique in the history of the world. Her _messa di voce_ stood
     alone--unrivalled by any other singer.

     "In like manner, in her shake, her scales, her legato and staccato
     passages, she evoked astonishment and admiration no less from
     competent judges than from the general public; and the more so
     since it was evident that, in the exercise of her wise
     discrimination, the songstress made use of these ornaments only in
     so far as they were in perfect harmony with the inner meaning of
     the music.

     "The incredibly rapid development of her voice and technique caused
     many people to question the value of the instruction she had
     originally received before going to Garcia. Such doubts, however,
     must be dismissed as unjustifiable. The true reason why Jenny
     Lind's singing before she went abroad could not be said to flow in
     the track which leads to perfection is undoubtedly to be found in
     the fact that she was a so-called _theatereler_--a pupil educated
     at the expense of the directors of the theatre itself--and, as
     such, was unable to escape from the necessity of appearing in
     public before her preparatory education was completed,--a
     proceeding no less disastrous to the pupil than contrary to the
     good sense of the teacher."

Such, then, was the transformation that had come over her rendering of
Norma. No wonder that Stockholm went wild with enthusiasm, and that from
that time on her career was one long crescendo of success.

Jenny Lind had the priceless power of taking pains, added to which hers
was a glorious voice, properly developed under her master's tender care.
The combination of these gifts, mental and physical, enabled her to
overcome every obstacle which crossed her path, and to reach the lofty
position which she retained up to the time of her retirement from public
life. Her career was the pride of her fellow-countrymen, and the name by
which she became known, the Swedish Nightingale, acted as a constant
reminder of her nationality.

The Swedish people paid their tribute to Garcia by making him a
correspondent of the University of Stockholm, while the Swedish king
created him "Chevalier de l'Ordre de Mérite (Gustavus Vasa)."

But the thing which the maestro prized more than all else was the
undying gratitude of his pupil.



CHAPTER XI.

SOME FAMOUS PUPILS.

(1842-1848.)


The remaining six years which Señor Garcia spent in Paris before
migrating to London were important for the musical world.

We have seen how at this point in his career he was able to claim as
pupils a trio of world-renowned singers--Maria Malibran, Pauline
Viardot, and Jenny Lind. During the period between 1842 and 1848 this
number was greatly increased, for there passed through his hands a
series of artists whose successes were a tribute to their master's
method and powers of teaching, and to his right to be acknowledged by
all the world as the foremost _maestro di canto_ of his age. Henriette
Nissen, Catherine Hayes, Mathilde Marchesi, Johanna Wagner, Julius
Stockhausen, Barbot, Bussine, and Battaille,--these are the principal
ones.

Even if his career had ended in '48, instead of being continued in
England with no less triumphant results, he could well have claimed to
have brought out a greater number of famous artists than any other
teacher: only certainly he never _would_ have claimed it, for he was
ever the most modest of men, the most reticent on the subject of his
own powers.

And now to say something concerning the career of the pupils whose names
have been set down above.

Henriette Nissen (afterwards Mme. Siegfried Salomon) had commenced her
vocal studies with Garcia in 1839, at the same time learning the piano
under Chopin, and had made immense progress in her singing during the
two years preceding the arrival of Jenny Lind. Being a favourite with
the maestro, and a Swede by birth, it is not surprising that Garcia
hastened to introduce her to Mdlle. Lind, and that she became her most
intimate friend at this period. For the following details I am again
indebted to Canon Holland:--

     "The two would frequently sing together, and before long a feeling
     of generous rivalry sprang up between them, which must have been of
     infinite advantage to both. Mdlle. Lind makes frequent mention of
     her fellow-pupil in letters written during this period. 'I go to
     see her pretty often, and we sing together. She has a beautiful
     voice. In future we are going to have music together at Herr
     Blumm's.'"

These meetings at his house became quite an institution. Herr Blumm was
a Swedish gentleman of kindliest disposition and infinite _bonhomie_,
who held the appointment of "Chancelier" to the Swedish legation in the
Rue d'Anjou; and he bestowed on the two young friends innumerable acts
of courtesy and kindness during their study with Garcia.

"I am going to Herr Blumm's," she wrote again, "where Mdlle. Nissen is
waiting for us, with an old relation of hers, and we four are going
somewhere into the country for the day. She is a very sweet girl. The
divine song draws us to each other."

A charming episode is recounted as having happened at the Christmas of
1841. When the festival drew near, Jenny Lind's heart was torn by
yearnings for home.

"Ah! who will light the Christmas tree for my mother?" she wrote. "No
one, no one! She has no child who can bring her the least pleasure. If
you knew how she is ever before me! How constantly she is in my
thoughts! How she gives me courage to work! How I love her, as I never
loved before!"

In the midst of this cruel burst of home-sickness, good Mdlle. du Puget,
in whose house she was staying, bethought her of an expedient, and the
result was seen in the following letter:--

     "Christmas Eve passed off better than I expected, for Mdlle. du
     Puget went to fetch the dear sweet Nissen, and all of a sudden, as
     I was standing in my room alone, she came creeping in to me. We
     sang duets together,--but my thoughts strayed homewards."

It was beautiful, as time progressed, to note the utter absence of
jealousy which characterised this rare artistic friendship between two
young students, each of whom had a reputation to ensure, and a name to
render famous.

In the beginning of 1842, Garcia considered Mdlle. Nissen sufficiently
advanced to make her appearance, and in April her _début_ was made at
the Italian Opera as Adalgisa in "Norma," this being followed by an
immediate engagement for three years under the same management,
commencing at a salary of from three to four hundred pounds for the
first year. At the conclusion of this she toured Italy, Russia, Norway,
Sweden, and England till 1849, when she appeared at Leipsic, and in the
following years sang at most of the Gewandhaus concerts there, while in
Berlin she almost rivalled Jenny Lind in popularity.

In the summer of 1842, the year of Nissen's _début_, Catherine Hayes
came from Ireland, by the advice of Lablache, to place herself under
Garcia, being at the time seventeen years of age. After four years'
study she made her _début_ at Marseilles in "I Puritani." Next year she
appeared at Vienna, and in the following seasons sang in various parts
of the Continent with success.

Her London _début_ was made in 1849, and during that season she appeared
at Covent Garden in the _rôles_ of Lucia, Linda, and Amina. She soon
became one of the most popular vocalists of her day in England, showing
herself to be possessed of remarkable power, while her chief forte lay
in the rendering of ballads.

The year 1844 saw the advent of three interesting pupils, the names of
all curiously enough beginning with the same initial letter,--Barbot,
Battaille, and Bussine.

Joseph Barbot came to Garcia at the Conservatoire at the age of twenty,
and soon proved himself to be possessed of a remarkably fine tenor
voice. At the completion of his training he was engaged at the Grand
Opera, but soon left it for Italy, where he sang with great success.
Perhaps the most noteworthy event of his career took place on March 19,
1859, for on that date he created the title part at the first
performance of Gounod's "Faust" at the Théâtre Lyrique; while sixteen
years later he was appointed to a professorship at the Conservatoire as
successor to Mme. Viardot.

Charles Battaille appears to have commenced earning his livelihood as a
doctor of medicine, the while he carried on his vocal studies. When he
had brought these to a close he gave up his practice, and accepted an
engagement as basso at the Opéra Comique. Here he remained for ten
years, till an affliction of the larynx caused his retirement. From that
time on he devoted his life to teaching, having already, in 1851, been
appointed professor at the Conservatoire. In 1861 he published the first
portion of a voluminous treatise entitled 'L'Enseignement du Chant,'
containing some important results of his physiological study. His
principal claim to fame, however, is the fact that he was chosen by
Meyerbeer to create the bass _rôle_ in "L'Etoile du Nord," while he won
special renown in the "Seraglio," of Mozart.

As to Bussine, he was connected for some time with the Opéra Comique,
and left it for an engagement as principal tenor at the Grand Opera in
Paris. Moreover, he gave much time to teaching, one of his best known
pupils being Duc.

The year 1845 saw the advent of one who ultimately became Garcia's
greatest pupil in the field of teaching--Mathilde Marchesi, or, as she
was at that time, Mdlle. Graumann.

Her father had been a wealthy merchant, but in 1843 he lost his fortune,
and his daughter, being at this time seventeen years old, decided to
adopt the musical profession. She went in the first place to study in
Vienna, but in 1845 came to Paris to place herself under Garcia, who
soon discovered in his new student a remarkable aptitude for teaching.
Of her own recollections of studying under the maestro, Madame Marchesi
has sent me the following details, some of which have already been
narrated in her interesting book of reminiscences, published under the
title, 'Marchesi and Music':--

     "I need scarcely mention how the maestro's clear, intelligent, and
     thorough method furthered my artistic efforts. His ideas on the
     female voice and its development were a revelation to me, and they
     were the foundation of my future career. With Nicolai and
     Mendelssohn I had only studied classical music; now Garcia
     initiated me into the style of the Italian school, as at that time
     a florid execution was the principal aim of all good singers. The
     compositions of Rossini, Bellini, and Donizetti were the chief
     objects of study, and I was obliged, therefore, to work away at
     countless scales, arpeggios, &c., and, what was worse still, with
     the metronome, which sometimes rendered me almost desperate.

     "Besides Garcia, Bordogni and Banderali were also justly
     celebrated at this time, but he alone had made a thorough study of
     anatomy and physiology.

     "All the maestro's pupils were enthusiastic about him, and
     patiently submitted to the necessity of waiting sometimes for hours
     in the anteroom, as he permitted no one to assist at his lessons.
     When at length the anxiously awaited moment had, as we thought,
     arrived, he often sent us home with the remark, 'I am tired,
     children; I will see you to-morrow.' Whenever this occurred we were
     terribly disappointed, but this wonderfully gifted man's next
     lesson made us soon oblivious of the previous day's deprivation.

     "In the spring of 1847 Garcia fell from his horse and broke his
     right arm, which accident prevented him for a time from continuing
     his lessons. He therefore intrusted me with a number of his private
     pupils. I was very much flattered with this mark of distinction and
     the confidence thus placed in me, and as he had on various
     occasions already confided many of his beginners to me, I was not
     afraid of the responsibility, more especially as I was always able
     to go to him for advice in difficult cases."

Four years after Mdlle. Graumann had commenced her studies with the
maestro, she followed him to London, and soon obtained high standing as
a mezzo-soprano concert singer. In 1852 her marriage took place, and two
years later she accepted the post of professor at the Vienna
Conservatoire. From the first her attempts at carrying on the Garcia
traditions of "Bel canto" singing met with the crown of success, and
during the succeeding years Mme. Marchesi turned out such pupils as
Ilma de Murska, Fricci, and Kraus, to bring fresh fame to the already
glorious banner of Manuel Garcia. 1861 saw her removal to Paris, where
pupils came from all parts, while about this time her text-book, 'École
du Chant,' was published.

In 1865 Mme. Marchesi went to teach at the Cologne Conservatoire, where
Antoinette Sterling came to her for a few lessons; while three years
later she returned to Vienna to resume her post at the Conservatoire.
This was resigned in 1878, but she continued to teach there for a time,
after which she returned to Paris, and took up her work there again.

In addition to those already mentioned, her pupils have included Suzanne
Adams, d'Angri, Calvé, Ada Crossley, Eames, Evangeline Florence, Frau
Gerster, Blanche Marchesi, Melba, Emma Nevada, Sybil Sanderson, Francis
Saville, and Tremelli. Truly a wonderful record to add to the list of
exponents of Manuel Garcia's method.

In 1847 an important pupil was coming to Señor Garcia's studio--one who
was destined to do great things hereafter. This was Johanna Wagner, the
niece of Richard Wagner. Her musical ability already began to make
itself noticeable at the age of five, when her father and uncle were
residing at Würzburg; for she used to sing everything she heard, and the
composer in after years would often laugh as he quoted these childish
versions.

In 1844, when Johanna was in her seventeenth year, her uncle obtained an
engagement for her at the Royal Opera in Dresden, where he was
preparing for the first performance of "Rienzi." Though of but tender
years she had such success as Agathe in the "Freischütz," that she was
engaged for three years by the management, and created Elisabeth in
"Tannhäuser."

On October 21, 1845, fifteen months later, the King of Saxony, who had
taken the greatest interest in her progress, sent her to France to study
under Garcia. She arrived at the beginning of February, accompanied by
her father, who had hitherto been her only instructor. Thanks to the
assistance which she received from Garcia during her stay in Paris, she
quickly made her mark.

On her return she went to Hamburg, creating Fides in the German version,
and taking part in the first performance there of the "Prophète." In
1850 she left for Berlin, where she was permanently engaged by the
management of the Royal Opera House. Whilst there Fräulein Wagner was a
great favourite with the royal family, and frequently sang in private
for Frederick William IV. and his Queen, being generally accompanied by
Meyerbeer.

In 1856 the prima donna appeared in London at Her Majesty's Opera House
in "Tancredi," "Lucrezia Borgia," and as Romeo. In 1859 she married Herr
Jackmann; two years later she lost her voice suddenly, and started on a
second career as an actress, in which she made her name no less surely
than as a singer. In this, Johanna Wagner resembled Geneviève Ward, for
that famous tragédienne only entered upon a career of acting after
having sung in opera under the name of Ginevra Guerrabella. With her,
too, it was owing to loss of voice in consequence of overstrain that
the change of career was adopted.

The training of Johanna Wagner by Garcia raises an interesting point in
connection with German singing. Richard Wagner was so delighted upon
hearing the improvement in his niece's voice on her return from Paris,
that he wrote the maestro a letter full of the warmest recognition of
the progress which she had made under his tuition.

But the gratitude did not end here: over twenty-five years later there
came a very signal proof of the extent to which he had been impressed
with Garcia's powers, for, when he was making the arrangements for the
first Bayreuth Festival, he wrote to his old friend, asking whether he
would undertake the training of the singers who were to take part in it.
Garcia was so busy with his teaching in London at this time that he was
unable to accept the offer; but the mere fact that he was asked to do
this is a very material answer to those who would have it that Wagner's
music is not supposed to be treated according to the Italian ideals, but
should be rendered in the style of _Sprechgesang_, which has been a
current German cry.

After the publication of his 'Mémoire sur la Voix,' Señor Garcia had
continued to labour incessantly in perfecting his method, and in 1847
(the year in which Jenny Lind made her triumphant _début_ in London as
Alice in "Roberto," took the town by storm, and earned the name of the
"Swedish Nightingale") this culminated in the publication of what is
without question the most valuable contribution to the books upon the
study of singing. It was issued in two parts, under the title of
'Traité complet de l'Art du Chant,' and was dedicated to King Oscar I.
of Sweden, as a tribute to the nationality of the greatest of the
maestro's pupils.

The work was translated into various languages, and thereby gained a
world-wide reputation. The 'Traité' was acknowledged on all sides to be
invaluable, and it laid the foundations of all important subsequent
investigations into the emission of the voice.

As to Garcia's treatment of his pupils, he exhibited ever the most
untiring patience. The infinite pains he took with them never failed to
win their affection as well as their admiration, and this undoubtedly
contributed in some considerable degree to the progress which they made
under his care. A story has been told by Jourdan, which gives a good
illustration of the great master's care of his pupils.

One day, being upset and ruffled at some remarks made upon his singing
by the maestro, Jourdan left the class in a temper, and did not return
for the next lesson. Garcia, noticing his absence, went to his lodging,
a small room on the fifth floor, and took the young student by the ear,
saying, "Come along, _méchant garçon_, come and have your lesson."

And now we come to 1848, the year in which Manuel Garcia terminated his
residence in Paris.

He did so in consequence of the Revolution, which flared up on February
24, and finally resulted in the flight of Louis Philippe. It was during
these disturbances that the maestro was sought out by Julius
Stockhausen, a lad of twenty-two, who was eventually to become one of
Germany's greatest teachers and singers. Of this period Herr Stockhausen
sent me some reminiscences, and in reproducing them there is a pathetic
interest, owing to the fact that two days after their arrival from
Germany the lieder-singer passed away in his eighty-first year.

     "I first made the acquaintance of the maestro," writes Herr
     Stockhausen, "in 1848. The year had begun with much unrest, and on
     February 24 the Revolution broke out. Owing to the absence of the
     friend under whose roof I was residing at the time, I was obliged
     to enter the National Guard as a substitute. As such I presented
     myself before the maestro in full uniform. He received me very
     kindly, for a relation of mine, Frau Reiter, who had already been
     studying with him, had spoken a few words of recommendation on my
     behalf.

     "What struck me most at the first meeting were the steadiness of
     his glance, the swiftness of his movement, and the rhythm of his
     tread. He was a man of middle age--forty-three years old, his
     manner alert, his voice possessing a friendly ring. When I timidly
     inquired his terms he replied, 'Combien voulez-vous me donner? je
     n'ai plus d'élèves; ils ont tous fui la révolution.' But, honoured
     master, you have just been trying a tenor who has a powerful voice.
     'True; but he has no ear,' replied Garcia. 'When I asked him what
     his occupation was, he replied, 'Je suis tourneur.' 'Eh bien,' I
     answered, 'tournez, tournez encore; pas d'oreille, pas de
     chanteur!'

     "My position as a member of the National Guard and a son of
     artistic parents seemed to interest the maestro, and he asked me
     only ten francs a lesson. After a few days studies were commenced,
     and I used to attend in my regimentals. Unhappily, however, the
     hardships of bivouacking on those cold winter nights proved very
     pernicious for my young voice, so that after a few weeks I found
     myself obliged to cease lessons temporarily. For six weeks I
     struggled against catarrh and sore throat; but at the beginning of
     May there came a happy change.

     "On the 26th of the same month I received an invitation from Basle
     to sing in Mendelssohn's 'Elijah.' Garcia raised no objections to
     my attempting the task, and went through the difficult passages
     with me very carefully, showing me further how I might commit the
     title-_rôle_ to memory in a short time without overtiring the
     voice. When in due course I sang the Elijah in Basle, the audience
     had no idea how my voice had suffered during those weeks of
     military hardship and discipline in Paris."

Such is the characteristic description which Julius Stockhausen gave of
his first months under Garcia.



CHAPTER XII.

CLOSE OF PARIS CAREER.

(1848.)


The first revolution of 1848 broke out in February. The grand Reform
banquet which had been announced was suddenly prohibited on the 21st of
the month, the immediate consequence being that revolutionary tumults
burst out, and the next day brought with it the impeachment and
resignation of Guizot. This was quickly followed by the throwing up of
barricades in the streets; the Tuileries were ransacked, the prisons
opened, and the most frightful disorders committed. At this Louis
Philippe completely lost his nerve, and abdicated on the 24th in favour
of his infant grandson, the Comte de Paris, who was not, however,
accepted by the populace. Upon this the royal family and ministers made
their escape as best they could, and a week later the ex-king landed at
Newhaven as "Mr Smith."

On February 26 a republic was proclaimed from the steps of the Hôtel de
Ville; and this decisive measure was followed by a grand funeral
procession in honour of the victims of the revolution.

The next three months passed by in comparative quiet. The provisional
government, which had been formed in the great public commotion,
resigned to an executive commission, elected by the National Assembly of
the French Republic, and the perpetual banishment of Louis Philippe and
his family was decreed.

With June there came an outburst of still more frightful disorder, owing
to the reconstitution of the National Guard of France, it being enlarged
from 80,000 to 100,000. Among those who enrolled themselves in this body
of men was Manuel Garcia; and it is not surprising that he did so, for,
as all who knew him are well aware, he was a great lover of law and
order.

The precautionary measure acted as a lighted fuse to a barrel of
gunpowder. On June 23 the red republicans rose up in arms against the
troops and the National Guard, more than three hundred barricades were
thrown up, and firing continued in all parts of the capital during the
night. Garcia well remembered George Sand standing on the top of a
barricade surrounded by a band of students, and shouting down to him,
"N'est-ce pas que c'est magnifique, n'est ce pas que c'est beau!"

Next day the troops under Cardignac and Lamoricière, after suffering
immense loss, drove the insurgents from the left bank of the Seine. On
the 25th Paris was declared in a state of siege, while on the following
day the Faubourg du Temple was carried with cannon, the insurgents
surrendered, and the revolution was brought to an end.

But at what a cost had peace been restored! The national losses caused
by the outbreak were estimated at thirty million francs; while during
the four days of fighting no less than sixteen thousand persons were
killed and wounded, among the former being the Archbishop of Paris, who
lost his life while tending the dying on the final day of conflict.

But for all its excitement and bloodshed this four days' revolution
failed to excite much enthusiasm in the maestro. Perhaps it seemed poor
fun after those scenes of the Napoleonic Invasion and the successive
campaigns of the Peninsular War, which he remembered from his childhood.
He may even have grown weary of such scenes, and considered the whole
affair badly managed after the other revolutions he had been through.
Certainly there had been much less fuss when, eighteen years before, he
had seen Charles X. driven out and Louis Philippe made king. He had
passed through too many excitements already.

One can almost imagine the scene that must have taken place in the July
of 1846, when he was informed by a breathless pupil at the beginning of
a lesson that an attempt had just been made on the king's life by Henri.
One can picture him shaking his head reprovingly and replying, "Yes; but
it was not as exciting as some of the other attempts on his life that I
remember. Let me see, it must have been--yes, it was in the July of
1835, almost exactly thirteen years ago to the day, that the first one
took place. Now that really _was_ a fine one! Fieschi fired an infernal
machine as the king was riding down the Boulevard du Temple along the
lines of the National Guard. Louis Philippe was accompanied by his three
sons. They all four escaped, but the Duke of Treviso was shot dead, and
forty persons were killed and wounded. Now that's what I call something
_like_ an attempt!

"Then, next year, there was Louis Alibaud, who fired at the king on his
way to the Tuileries. _Pauvre garçon!_ He was guillotined for his
trouble.

"There wasn't another attempt for some time, but in 1840, again, Darmès
fired at Louis Philippe; that was the year before the attempt made to
assassinate one of the king's sons, the Duke of Aumale; but there was no
result. Much better leave things to Providence. Why, it was only a year
later that the heir to the throne was killed without bothering any one
to risk his neck over it! Yes, he had a fall from his carriage. Bless
me! you must remember that; it was only six years ago. Then there was
Lecompte, who had a try at his unhappy majesty when he was going to
Fontainebleau. How many people did you say were killed to-day when Henri
made the attempt? None? Dear, dear. It's not like the old days. Well,
let's get on with the lesson. What songs have you brought?"

If such a scene as this did _not_ take place, it certainly might well
have done so.

However, what with revolutions, the driving out of kings, and the
general unrest during the twenty years that followed his return from
America as a young man of twenty-three, the maestro came to the
conclusion that the French capital was getting too unsettled to be
suitable for the giving of singing lessons. At the end of the month,
therefore, he shook the dust of Paris from his feet and set out for
London, where he had made up his mind to settle and establish himself as
a teacher.

With this change of _locale_ the second period in Manuel Garcia's life
is brought to a close. Before leaving it, we will cast an eye over some
of the figures prominent in the musical and artistic world of Paris
during the twenty years in which the centenarian made it his home.

Rossini, as we have seen, was director both of the Théâtre Italien and
of the French Opera when Garcia joined his sister in Paris at the close
of 1827. During this time the composer adapted several of his works to
French taste. Of these, "Moïse" and "Le Siège de Corinth" were the new
titles given to "Mose in Egitto" and "Maometto Secondo," of which the
original productions had taken place during the four years following
Manuel's arrival from Naples as a lad of eleven. Rossini, however, only
stayed in Paris for eighteen months, and left after the production there
of his greatest work, "Guillaume Tell," in August 1822, nor did he
return to settle down and become one of the most notable personalities
of the city till a quarter of a century later.

Many interesting musical productions took place during Manuel Garcia's
residence in Paris.

In 1828, the year of his arrival from Mexico, Liszt was a boy of
sixteen, an infant prodigy, just returned from a visit to England, and
beginning to teach pianoforte, owing to circumstances already referred
to in speaking of the lessons which Mme. Viardot had from him.

Berlioz had been sent by his parents some little time before to study
medicine in the French capital. Instead of doing so, however, he had
devoted himself to music, and was at this time a pupil at the
Conservatoire.

Soon after Garcia's arrival there took place the production of one of
Auber's best known works, "La Muette di Portici," or, as it is usually
entitled, "Masaniello." The next year, that in which Schubert died, saw
the completion of "Agnes von Hohenstaufen," the greatest work of
Spontini, whose opera, "La Vestale," had been greeted with enthusiasm
and adjudged Napoleon's prize of 10,000 francs twenty-two years before.

In 1830 came Auber's "Fra Diavolo" and Halévy's "Manon Lescaut."

The following year was an important one in many ways, for there were
produced not only Bellini's two favourite operas, "Somnambula" and
"Norma" (the "Puritani" was given four years later), but Hérold's
"Zampa" and Meyerbeer's "Robert le Diable." But this is not all, for it
saw the advent to Paris of Frédéric Chopin, a young man of twenty-two.
Here he quickly found fame, and became the idol of the salons, giving
lessons to a select _clientèle_ of pupils, and employing his leisure in
composition. He rarely performed in public, though, in Mendelssohn's
judgment, he was "a truly perfect virtuoso" as well as a thorough
musician, with a faculty for improvisation such as, perhaps, no other
pianist ever possessed.

In 1832, a date made memorable on the tablets of literature by the death
of Goethe and Sir Walter Scott, there came Hérold's "Le Pré aux
Clercs," while Berlioz obtained the first proper hearing for some of his
compositions. Their complicated and peculiar nature, however, failed to
win popular recognition, and he was driven to support himself and his
wife by writing musical criticisms.

In the summer of 1833 the birth took place of a musician who was to
become world-famous, Johannes Brahms; while the winter was rendered
memorable in the artistic circles of Paris by the fatal journey which
Alfred de Musset made to Italy with George Sand. In the following April
he reappeared alone, broken in health and sunk in the deepest
depression. A quarter of a century later, when Garcia had long been
settled in London, he was to be reminded of the episode by reading the
version of the events which George Sand gave to the world in the guise
of a novel, 'Elle et Lui'; to which Paul de Musset at once retorted with
'Lui et Elle,' in which he asserted that she had been grossly
unfaithful.

The year, which robbed the world of one musician and brought forth
another,--for with the death of Bellini there came the birth of
Saint-Saëns,--was one full of musical interest, for 1835 saw the
completion of a perfect avalanche of new operas, including Auber's
"Cheval de Bronze," Halévy's "La Juive" and "L'Etoile du Nord," Adolphe
Adam's "Postilion de Longjumeau," and two operas by Donizetti, "Marino
Faliero" and "Lucia di Lammermoor."

In 1836 the first performance took place of Meyerbeer's great opera,
the "Huguenots," given at the Académie Royale de Musique on February 29,
with the following cast:--

    _Valentine_                  Mdlle. Falcon.
    _Marguerite_                 Mme. Doras-Gras.
    _Urbain_                     Mdlle. Flécheux.
    _Marcel_                     M. Levasseur.
    _Nevers_                     M. Dérivis.
    _Saint Bris_                 M. Serda.

The part of Raoul was played by the elder Garcia's famous pupil, Adolph
Nourrit.

It is, moreover, the date of the commencement of a fresh episode in the
life of George Sand (Madame Armandine Dudevant), this time with Chopin,
who was introduced to her by Liszt.

The "Domino Noir" was produced in Paris in 1837, the year which saw the
first performance of Mendelssohn's "St Paul" in England, to be followed
three years later by the "Hymn of Praise," and in 1848, the year of
Garcia's arrival in London, by the "Elijah."

In 1839 Flotow's "Le Naufrage de la Méduse" was produced; but the year
is of far more interest to us from the fact that Richard Wagner, a young
man, twenty-six years of age, first arrived in Paris, resolved to try
his fortune there with "Rienzi," only to be forced to leave the city
after a sore struggle of nearly three years, with his opera still
unperformed.

In 1840, the year of Paganini's death, three operas of Donizetti saw
light, "La Fille du Régiment," "Lucrezia Borgia," and "La Favorita."

In the next year Auber's "Les Diamants de la Couronne" was performed;
and a twelve-year-old musician, newly arrived from Moscow, was given an
opportunity of playing the piano to Liszt, and of being patted on the
head, while he listened to words of warm encouragement. And the name of
the boy-pianist? Anton Rubinstein, who died more than twelve years ago,
at the age of sixty-five.

In 1842, the year in which Massenet was born, Meyerbeer's opera "Le
Prophète" was finished, which was destined not to be produced at the
Grand Opera House till seven years later.

In 1843 Donizetti's "Don Pasquale" was brought out, and in the following
year Flotow's "Stradella" and Félicien David's grand ode-symphony
"Désert." It saw, moreover, the completion by Richard Wagner of "Der
Fliegende Holländer," as the next year, in which Tom Hood died, saw that
of "Tannhäuser."

In 1847 the Parisian public witnessed for the first time Flotow's
"Martha," while in the last year of Garcia's sojourn in the capital,
Nicolai's "Merry Wives of Windsor" and Wagner's "Lohengrin" were
finished; Offenbach was appointed _chef d'orchestre_ at the Théâtre
Français (this being long before "La Grande Duchesse" and "Madame
Favart" had been set down on paper); Gounod was still in his twenties,
and had not yet even composed his first opera, while "Faust" was not to
be brought out for eleven, and "Roméo et Juliette" for just on twenty
years. As for Bizet, he was a mere boy of ten.

Allusion has already been made to George Sand, Henry Mürger, and Alfred
de Musset. One must add to the literary circle of that time such
personalities as these: Balzac, who first tasted success with the
publication of 'Les Derniers Chouans,' about a year after Señor Garcia
had arrived from Mexico, soon following this up with the earliest of his
great works, 'La Peau de Chagrin'; Théophile Gautier, whose first long
poem, 'Albertus,' was published about the same time, to be followed, in
1835, by the celebrated novel, 'Mademoiselle de Maupin,' with its
defiant preface; Alfred de Vigny, whom Manuel Garcia, as a young man of
twenty-five, saw abandon for good in 1830 the publication of his
exquisite poetry, and confine himself after that date to works in prose
alone.

Then there were Alphonse de Lamartine, statesman, poet, and historian,
who, in 1829, had declined the post of Foreign Secretary in the Polignac
Ministry, and by his 'Harmonies Poétiques et Religieuses' achieved his
unanimous election to the Academy; Lamercier, one of the three chief
exponents of the Romantic school, with some of his detached passages
equal in beauty to anything in the language, and others so bizarre as to
border on the ridiculous; Delavigne, representative of the golden mean
of French literature, the half-classic and half-romantic school;
Béranger, the "Horace" of French poetry, whose outspoken ballads
achieved such immense popularity, that in turn Louis XVIII. and Charles
X. threw him into prison because of his freedom of ideas,--for probably
no poet has ever exercised such a power over the destiny of a nation;
Victor Hugo, engaged in bringing out 'Notre Dame de Paris,' 'Le Roi
s'amuse,' 'Les Voix Interieures,' in which the poet's diction is held to
have found its noblest expression, 'Ruy Blas,' almost the most famous of
his stage rhapsodies, and many another work of world-wide fame; Eugène
Sue, whose first hit was made in 1842 with the too famous 'Mystères de
Paris,' followed three years later by 'Le Juif Errant'; the elder Dumas,
who, during these years, published such works as 'Monte Cristo,' 'Les
Trois Mousquetaires,' and 'Les Mémoires d'un Médecin'; while in the year
of the maestro's departure for London, Alexander Dumas the younger was
bringing out his immortal 'La Dame aux Camélias.' Nor must one forget
Paul de Kock, Henri Rochefort, who was then only sixteen years old, Zola
half that age, and François Coppée a child of six.

When we turn to the painting world there is an equal _embarras de
richesse_. What can one say to such a dazzling list of artists as Rosa
Bonheur, Horace Vernet, Paul Delaroche, the founder of the modern
"Eclectic School," Prud'hon, Gericault, Delacroix, Gros, Scheffer,
Decamps, Corot, Rousseau, Troyon, Duprè, Diaz, Jean François Millet (who
took his place with Garcia on the barricades during the Revolution of
'48), nay, even Meissonier himself, whose first contribution to the
Salon in 1834, a water-colour and an oil-picture, the centenarian
remembered to have seen, followed two years later by the
"Chess-Players," the precursor of that long series of elaborate
genre-pictures, in which he depicted the civil and military life of the
seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries.

Truly, had Manuel Garcia passed away in the year of the Revolution, in
accordance with the modern cry of "too old at forty," his career and
experiences would have still been of surpassing interest. But with this
year we only see the scene of his triumphs shifted from France to
England, and have yet to watch him not only carrying through a further
forty-seven years of work as teacher, but appearing in the new _rôle_ of
inventor, and then passing on to that last period, ten years of
wonderful old age.



THIRD   PERIOD

LONDON

(1848-1895)



CHAPTER XIII.

ARRIVAL IN ENGLAND.

(1848-1854.)


At the close of June 1848 Manuel Garcia, at the age of forty-three,
arrived in London, where he was to make a new home and spend the rest of
his days.

What changes had taken place in the capital since he had last been there
in the autumn of 1825! When he left George IV. was still king; when he
returned William IV. had reigned and been succeeded by Queen Victoria,
who had already been on the throne over ten years, while our present
king, as Prince of Wales, was six years old.

Let us glance for a moment at the position of musical affairs in London,
and at some of the artists who were in favour when Garcia arrived.

In the previous year (in which both Mendelssohn and Donizetti had died)
an important event had taken place, for the Covent Garden Theatre was
opened as an opera house, and a new period in its history begun.

The scheme had been originated by Signor Persiani, who took the lease of
the place in partnership with Galletti; then, finding that they had
embarked on an enterprise which was too much for them to carry through
without assistance, they brought in Messrs Cramer, the music publishers,
to help finance the undertaking.

As to the company which took part in the opening season, Signor Costa
left Her Majesty's Theatre in order to fill the responsible post of
conductor of an orchestra which had M. Prosper Sainton as principal
violin; and of the artists themselves the stars were Grisi, Mario,
Tamburini, and the Persianis, while Mdlle. Alboni made a triumphant
_début_, and proved herself another strong card to strengthen the hand
of the new management.

With the launching of this enterprise a triangular duel was fought
between Covent Garden, Drury Lane under Bunn, and Her Majesty's under
Lumley, who, after the famous "Bunn Controversy," had been successful in
securing a trump-card with Garcia's now world-famous pupil, Jenny Lind.

Next let us conjure up the artistic circles of London, among which Señor
Garcia found himself in 1848. What names of the past we find when we
glance in turn at science and literature, the stage and music. In one
and all it was an age of giants.

The scientific world could boast such lights as Brewster, Darwin,
Faraday, Sir John Herschel, Huxley, Miller, Owen, and Tyndall.

Literature poured forth a veritable Niagara of Prose writers: Charlotte
Brontë, Carlyle, Dickens, Disraeli, Grote, G. P. R. James, Douglas
Jerrold, Charles Kingsley, Charles Lever, Bulwer Lytton, Macaulay,
Martineau, John Stuart Mill, Ruskin, and Thackeray; while Poetry was
scarcely less prominent with Arnold, P. Bayley, the Brownings, Clough,
Tom Hood, Horner, Alexander Smith, Sir H. Taylor, and Tennyson.

_En passant_, we may note the following pieces of literary news, culled
from newspapers published during the month in which Manuel Garcia landed
in England.

     The Nestor of literary France died in Paris on Tuesday last,
     Monsieur de Chateaubriand.

       *       *       *       *       *

     Ralph Waldo Emerson will deliver a lecture at Exeter Hall on
     "Domestic Life."

       *       *       *       *       *

     Review of the last new Transatlantic poem, "Evangeline," by
     Longfellow.

       *       *       *       *       *

     Macaulay's 'History of England.' Volumes one and two. Just
     published.

       *       *       *       *       *

     "NEW HISTORICAL ROMANCE," by the Author of 'Rienzi.'
        Now ready at all libraries. In three volumes.

                     'HAROLD.'

          _The Last of the Saxon Kings._

         By Sir Edward Bulwer Lytton, Bart.

Of the Stage we get a strange glimpse from the advertisements in the
papers of July 1848. Three things are specially noticeable in them.
Practically all the theatres boast "a regal air," a large proportion
are managed by ladies, and the bill of fare laid before the voracious
public is, to put it mildly, somewhat of an embarras de richesse.

Opera seasons are, of course, running at Her Majesty's Theatre and the
Royal Italian Opera, Covent Garden. Leaving these and other musical
matters of 1848 for the moment, let us reproduce some of the
advertisements from the papers of that July, for we shall obtain in this
way the best insight into the places of amusement of that time.

     THEATRE ROYAL, DRURY LANE.

     BENEFIT OF Mr MACREADy.

     His last appearance previous to his departure for America.

     THEATRE ROYAL, HAYMARKET.

     Mr B. WEBSTER (_Sole Lessee_).

     "THE WIFE'S SECRET."

    _Sir Walter_        Mr Charles Kean.
    _Jabez_             Mr Webster.
    _Neville_           Miss Reynolds.
    _Lady Eveline_      Mrs Charles Kean.
    _Maude_             Mrs Keeley.

     ROYAL LYCEUM THEATRE.

     Under the Management of Mme. VESTRIS.

     "The Captain of the Watch," after which "The Beggar's Opera," to
     conclude with "Anything for a Change."

     THEATRE ROYAL, SADLER'S WELLS.

     Under the Direction of Miss RAINFORTH.

     Rossini's opera of "Cinderella," after which "No Song, no Supper."

     THEATRE ROYAL, ADELPHI.

     Under the Management of Mme. CELESTE.

     "The Harvest Home," after which "Going to the Derby," to conclude
     with "The Married Bachelor."

     THEATRE ROYAL, MARYLEBONE.

     Under the Management of Mrs WARNER.

    _Macbeth_            Mr Macready.
    _Lady Macbeth_       Mrs Warner.

     After which "The Spoiled Child."

     ROYAL SURREY THEATRE.

     Shakspere's original version of "The Life and Death of King Richard
     Third," after which "A Grand Ballet," to conclude with Boz's
     "Oliver Twist."

     ROYAL OLYMPIC THEATRE.

     Mr H. Spicer's new play, "The Lords of Ellingham," to conclude with
     the Drama, "The Miller and His Men."

     ST JAMES'S THEATRE.

     (French Plays.)

     "L'Almanach des 25,000 Addresses," concluding with "L'Enfant de
     Quelqu'un," with M. Grassot, M. Sainville, and M. Ravel.

     To commence at 7.30.

     PRINCESS'S THEATRE.

     "La Vivandière," to conclude with the "Spirit of Gold," a Ballet,
     and other entertainments.

     ROYAL GRECIAN SALOON.

     An entirely new opera in three acts by Auber, "Le Chevalier
     d'Essone," with a Farce and a Divertissement.

     Commencing at 6.30.

     ASTLEY'S ROYAL AMPHITHEATRE.

     An entirely new grand spectacle, entitled "Marmion; or the Battle
     of Flodden," with other entertainments in the Ring.


     THE DIORAMA, REGENT'S PARK.

     (New Exhibition.)

     "Eruption of Mount Ætna."


     COAL-HOLE TAVERN, STRAND.

     (Opposite Exeter Hall.)

     Chair taken by JOHN RHODES every Evening.

     Glees, Duets, Solos, Catches, Comic Songs, &c., executed by the
     most numerous company of vocalists in the Metropolis, under the
     direction of Mr Warren, R.A.


     MADAME WARTON'S WALHALLA.

     (Leicester Square.)

     "Tableaux Vivants."


     CREMORNE GARDENS.

     Grand Aquatic Tournament.

     Magnificent Water Pageant.

The following paragraph appeared on July 29, and from it we get an
insight into the aftermath which the months of revolutionary disturbance
had bequeathed to the city Garcia had left only four weeks before.


     "_From a Paris Correspondent._

     "The theatres here seem struggling to get on their legs again. The
     only speech that was listened to attentively during my visits to
     the Assembly was that by Victor Hugo, advocating an annual grant of
     680,000 francs to the Paris theatres."

Let us now look at the musical events which were taking place during the
first weeks after Manuel Garcia's arrival in London.

We find many interesting announcements in the concert world; and it is
strange to note that practically none of the halls in which they were
given survive at the present day. On June 23 M. Chopin gives his
_matinée_; while the Philharmonic Society informs the "subscribers and
the public" that their eighth concert will take place at the Hanover
Square Rooms, on June 26, with the following programme:--

     Sinfonia in A, No. 2, Mendelssohn; overture, "Leonora," Beethoven;
     sinfonia in C minor, Beethoven; overture, "The Ruler of the
     Spirits," Weber.

     _Vocal performers._--Mme. Castellani and Signor Mario.
     _Conductor._--Mr Costa. Tickets, £1, 1s. each.

On the same day there takes place in the Great Concert Room of Her
Majesty's Theatre, Mr Benedict's Grand Annual Morning Concert, with the
following artists:--

     "Tadolini, Cruvelli, Vera, de Mendi, Schwartz, Sabatier, Mme.
     Lablache, Miss Dolby, the Misses Williams, Mme. Doras-Gras,
     Gordoni, Marras, Brizzi, Lablache, Caletti, Belletti, Ciabatta,
     Pischek, and John Parry."

Three days later Monsieur Berlioz gives a recital at the Hanover Square
Rooms.

During the same week we find the Musical Union giving a Grand Matinée at
Willis's Rooms, with vocal music, sung by Mme. Viardot-Garcia and
Mdlle. de Mendi: instrumentalists, Molique, Sainton, Hermann, Deloffre,
Hill, Mellon, and Piatti; pianist, Charles Hallé; accompanist, Benedict.

Soon after this Thalberg gives a recital; while "John Parry, the
laughter-provoking and ingenious," holds his concert in the Hanover
Square Rooms. "His new 'whimsy' (for he is the Hood of musicians in his
amount of whim, and whim cannot exist without genius) is 'The Rehearsal
of an Operetta.'"

There is also a notice of Exeter Hall: "Mr Hullah's choralists
celebrated the anniversary of laying the first stone of their new music
hall with the best miscellaneous English concert that one recollects....
Mr Sims Reeves, who seems wisely taking the tide at the flood, and by
increased care justifying his increasing success, was an attraction,
singing among other music Purcell's 'Come if you dare,' with spirit
enough to 'rouse a shire.'"

Then there is a season of Promenade Concerts at the Royal Adelaide
Gallery, Strand, not to mention "M. Jullien and his unrivalled band" at
the Royal Surrey Gardens.

'Musical Gossip' of July 1848 contains some items, the first of which
cannot fail to bring an ironical smile to the face of modern composers.

"We have year after year adverted to the unsatisfactory state of the law
of musical copyright in this country."

"It is now stated that Mdlle. Lind has at last declined to take an
engagement at Norwich: the sum of £1000 was offered her."

"A correspondent at Florence writes: 'Old Rossini is here enjoying his
well-earned _otium cum dignitate_.'"

Now let us turn to operatic matters in that far-off season of 1848.

Mr Delafield had undertaken to finance the Covent Garden venture, for
which a bevy of great names had been secured. As in the preceding season
Garcia's pupil, Jenny Lind, had been the principal star at Her
Majesty's, so in this year another pupil, his sister, Pauline Viardot,
was the star at the rival establishment. In addition to her there were
Alboni, Persiani, Grisi, Mario, Ronconi, Marini, and Castellani.
Unhappily, things did not run as smoothly as might have been wished:
Michael Costa and Delafield were at loggerheads, and in July, soon after
Garcia arrived from Paris, a financial crisis occurred which was only
averted by the assistance of Gye.

On the 20th of the month the first important operatic event took place
of the many which the maestro was to witness here during the last
fifty-eight years of his life. As the "Huguenots" had been produced
twelve years before in the original French version during his stay in
Paris, so now, with his advent to London, Meyerbeer's masterpiece was
given for the first time at Covent Garden in its Italian version, under
the title "Gli Ugonotti," with the part of Urbain transposed for Alboni,
and an additional cavatina written specially for her. The cast on this
occasion was as follows:--

    _Valentine_         Mme. Viardot-Garcia.
    _Marguerite_        Mme. Castellani.
    _Urbain_            Mdlle. Alboni.
    _Raoul_             Signor Mario.
    _Marcel_            Signor Marini.
    _Nevers_            Signor Tagliafico.
    _Saint Bris_        Signor Tamburini.

As to the rival operatic season at Her Majesty's Theatre, it will be
sufficient if we quote a rather typical critique of one of the
representations:--

"'Poor Don Pasquale,' Donizetti's prettiest musical comedy (!),
'produced to fill an off-night,' was an exclamation there was no
escaping from on Tuesday evening. Why was it produced at all? To us the
performance was an execution in the Tyburn acceptation of the word.

"But a murder far more heinous has been committed at Her Majesty's this
week. Poor M. Meyerbeer, how must his ears have tingled when his
'Roberto' was given with one principal character--involving two entire
acts, the two principal soprano songs of the opera, and its only grand
finale--coolly swept away! By past musical performances we were apprised
that neither Mr Lumley nor Mr Balfe recognises the difference between
one of the flimsy Italian operas and those thoughtful works in which
sequence, contrast, and stage effect have all been regarded by the
composer.... If no prima donna equal to 'En vain j'espère' and 'Robert'
be in the theatre, wherefore give the work at all, unless 'the Swedish
lady' is _in extremis_ for a new attraction? Why not withdraw as
superfluous all solos in Mdlle. Lind's operas save Mdlle. Lind's own?
Why not mount 'Don Juan' without Donna Anna's arias? Rapacious as these
propositions sound, they are as defensible as the liberties taken with
Meyerbeer."

We find the first mention of Señor Garcia's arrival made in the 'Musical
World' of July 1, in these words:--

"Manuel Garcia, the celebrated professor of singing in the Conservatoire
of Paris, has arrived in London. He is brother to Malibran and Pauline
Garcia, and was teacher of Jenny Lind."

On July 15 the 'Athenæum' gives further details: "We are informed that
Monsieur Garcia meditates settling here as professor of singing."

With the publication of this news the maestro was besieged with
applications from those who were desirous of becoming pupils. He was at
once regarded as the foremost professor in the capital, and his house in
George Street, Hanover Square, not only saw numbers of students anxious
to enter the profession, but was equally sought out by the aristocracy
and wealthy classes of society, as had been the case in Paris.

On November 10, 1848, he was appointed a member of the professional
staff at the Royal Academy of Music.

The institution had only been founded twenty-five years previously, when
Garcia was eighteen, receiving its charter of incorporation seven years
later.

It was very different from the Academy as we know it now. Up to the
January of the year in which Garcia joined, it had had in all 767
pupils. It may be of interest to those who have been connected with it
during recent years, to learn that the total number of new pupils
admitted to the Academy during 1847 were forty, of which thirteen only
were members of the sterner sex. Assuming that every pupil stayed at the
Royal Academy of Music for a three years' course--the assumption is
rather more than doubtful--we should find the average number of pupils
per term during the first twenty-five years of its existence to have
been exactly ninety. Compare that with the five hundred or more who
attend at the present day.

The principal of the Academy at that time was Cipriani Potter, and we
find some strangely bygone names upon the staff of professors. Sir Henry
Bishop, Mons. Sainton, Moscheles, Goss, George Macfarren, Signor
Crivelli, Sir George Smart, Mme. Dulcken, J. B. Cramer, Julius Benedict,
Lindley, Chatterton, J. Thomas (the harpist), Signor Puzzi, and as an
assistant professor of the pianoforte, Walter Macfarren. These were some
of the colleagues with whom Garcia found himself associated when he
commenced his work at the Academy.

At the beginning of 1849 there came a reminder of the scenes of
revolution through which the maestro had passed a few months before, for
Julius Stockhausen followed him to England, to pursue in the quieter
atmosphere of London those studies which were so rudely broken up by the
alarums and excursions of his duties with the French National Guard.
Stockhausen continued to have lessons from the maestro till 1851, and
during this period sang at various concerts, by means of which
appearances he quickly began to make his mark. During the last year of
his studies he sang for the Philharmonic Society no less than three
times.

The close of 1852 saw his first appearance on the operatic stage at
Mannheim; while between the years 1857 and 1859 he was engaged at the
Opéra Comique in Paris, making especial success as the Seneschal in
"Jean de Paris." In 1862 he settled in Hamburg as director of the
Philharmonic Concerts there and of the "Sing-akademie," a position which
he held till the end of the 'Sixties. During this period he took many
concert tours with Mme. Schumann, Brahms, and Joseph. In 1870 he was
back in England, and stayed till the close of 1871, singing once more at
the Philharmonic, Crystal Palace, and other leading concerts. Three
years after this he went to live in Berlin, to take direction of the
vocal society founded by Stern. Thence he migrated to Frankfort as
professor of the Conservatorium, presided over at the time by Raff; and
it was in Frankfort that he spent the rest of his days.

His principal pupils were van Rooy, Scheidemantel, and George Henschel;
and as a teacher he was generally acknowledged to be the foremost of his
time in Germany, as Mathilde Marchesi was in France. It is therefore a
matter of some note that during the years in which Manuel Garcia was
himself the finest teacher in England, he should, through these two
pupils, have had his banner thus upheld upon the Continent.

Among the most promising of Garcia's earliest pupils at the Royal
Academy was Kate Crichton, who came to study under him at the
commencement of 1849--the year in which Sims Reeves made his operatic
_début_ and music-lovers mourned the death of Chopin.

Miss Crichton soon showed that the maestro had not left behind him in
Paris his cunning in the training of voices. As the time approached at
which the idea of her _début_ was taking shape, the advice of Garcia
upon the point was sought by her father. The letter in which was
embodied his reply may be quoted as showing the deep interest and sound
advice which was ever displayed in his relations with his pupils:--

     MONSIEUR,--Veuillez avoir la bonté d'excuser le retard de ma
     réponse; une indisposition en a été la cause.

     Je regrette que le manque de courage tienne en échec les moyens de
     Mademoiselle Browne et comme Mr Hogarth je juge que l'exercice
     fréquent devant le public est le meilleur moyen de vaincre sa peur.

     Mais aussi je pense que les premiers essays (_sic_) de Mademoiselle
     Browne vont être fort incomplets et par une sorte dans l'usage de
     procédés qu'elle ne domine pas encore complétement et par la
     terreur que bien a tort lui inspire le public.

     Or pensez vous qu'il faille donner à ses premiers essays (_sic_)
     tout le rétentissement possible, ou ne trouvez vous pas qu'il
     serait plus prudent de les faire à petit bruit laissant à la
     débutante le temps d'acquerir l'applomb (_sic_) qui lui manque
     avant de lancer son nom à la grand publicité.

     Je vous soumets ces réflexions en vous laissant d'ailleurs la
     faculté de faire usage de mon nom si vous le croyez utile aux
     interests de votre enfant.

     J'ai l'honneur d'être, Monsieur, Votre trés humble Serviteur,

     M. GARCIA.

At last her teacher thought her ready to make the trial. An engagement
was secured under the management of Alfred Bunn, and on January 23,
1852, Kate Crichton made her _début_ on the opening night of the Drury
Lane season in "Robert le Diable." As to her success we may quote 'The
Times':--

"As Princess Isabelle, Miss Crichton (in whose person we recognised Miss
Browne, the most promising pupil of the vocal art in the Royal Academy
of Music) made her first appearance on any stage. She was successful to
a degree which, since the _début_ of Mr Sims Reeves in 1849, has had no
parallel on the English stage."

Unhappily Miss Crichton's career, so brightly begun, was brought to a
sudden close by her catching a malignant fever at Milan, resulting in
the loss of her vocal powers. Had it not been for this, there is no
doubt that she, too, would have been among that wonderful band of pupils
who won fame in the operatic world for their maestro and themselves.

Miss Crichton, however, during her years of study seems to have caught
the bacillus of old age from her master, for, upon ultimately regaining
the beauty of her voice after many years of retirement, she continued to
sing to her friends until within a few months of her death in her
eightieth year. Among other eminent pupils who acquired from Garcia the
bad habit of longevity, one may recall Stockhausen, who lived to pass
his eightieth birthday; Charles Santley and Bessie Palmer, who are well
on in the seventies; and Pauline Viardot, who is not so very far off
her ninetieth year. Who will assert that old age is not catching?

1850 was a year interesting to musicians from the fact that Frederick
Gye, the new manager of Covent Garden, produced Halévy's opera, "La
Juive," while the great German basso, Herr Formes, made his English
_début_; but the year was memorable for England at large, from the fact
that it saw the death of two of her best-known men--Robert Peel and
Wordsworth.

With the following year--in which Turner passed away--the subject of
this memoir was included for the first time in the census of the United
Kingdom. It affords a curious comparison with the numbers of the present
day, when we note that the Return, taken a month before the opening of
the Great Exhibition, gave the population as 27,637,761, the last figure
of which shows the advent of the maestro with unmistakable clearness.

1852 again brought Garcia's name before the English public as it had in
1848. Just as in that year three rival opera companies in London had
fought for the possession of his pupil Jenny Lind, so now the two
managers--Gye and Lumley--strove for the possession of another of his
pupils, Johanna Wagner, whose name was the only one rivalling that of
the Swedish Nightingale in its magnetic hold upon the musical world.

The January of the following year, 1853, brought another pupil, Bessie
Palmer, the contralto. She tells the story of her difficulties in
becoming his pupil in her book of 'Musical Recollections':--

"By the advice of C. L. Gruneisen, the critic of 'The Morning Post,' I
entered the Royal Academy of Music as a student. When I commenced
studying in September 1851, Manuel Garcia's class, which I had chosen to
enter, was full, so I was placed in Mr Frank Cox's class for six months.
Then Signor Crivelli heard me at one of the Academy weekly concerts, and
suggested that I should become his pupil next term. Imagine my surprise
when the old man positively asserted that my voice was soprano, and made
me learn many of Grisi's songs.

"After some months I found my voice becoming thin and scratchy and my
throat in a constant state of irritation. At last, in January of 1853, I
wrote to M. Cazalet, the superintendent, requesting that I should be
placed in Signor Garcia's class, as Signor Crivelli had quite altered
the tone and quality of my voice, and had made a mistake. M. Cazalet
answered that the committee refused to permit me to go into Signor
Garcia's class, and unless Signor Crivelli would kindly take me back as
his pupil I could not return to the Academy. Of course I wrote at once
and said I would _not_ rejoin Crivelli's class, and certainly would not
return at all.

"On leaving the Academy I went to Garcia's house and explained to him
how my voice had been changed. He made me sing a few bars, and then told
me I must rest entirely for some considerable time, not singing at all,
and not talking too much, so as to give the throat, which was out of
order, complete rest. After six months of quiet I went again to him,
when he tried my voice and said I could now begin to practise. I
therefore commenced lessons at once, and soon found it improving,
thanks to the careful way in which he made me practise, bringing the
voice back to its proper register, and giving me Italian contralto songs
after many lessons."

With this episode we are brought to the year which medical men will
consider the most important one in Manuel Garcia's life, as it was in
1854 that he perfected his great discovery.

[Illustration: MANUEL GARCIA.

(REPRODUCED FROM AN ORIGINAL SKETCH BY PAULINE VIARDOT SOON AFTER THE
INVENTION OF THE LARYNGOSCOPE.)]



CHAPTER XIV.

THE LARYNGOSCOPE.

(1854-1857.)


It was in 1854 (the year which saw the ultimatum of England and France
presented to St Petersburg, the prelude to the Crimean War) that the
important invention was made--or, as the maestro with characteristic
modesty described it, "the idea dawned on him"--of the laryngoscope.

As to its lasting value to the world at large, it will be sufficient to
point out that since that year, according to reliable estimates, 3 per
cent of the entire human race have been benefited by the invention.

With regard to the history of the discovery, an account of the earlier
attempts which had been made has been set down in the number of the
'British Medical Journal' published at the time of the Garcia Centenary.

Before proceeding further, it may be well to warn the reader that the
next few pages are bound to deal with a certain amount of technical
detail which it is impossible to avoid in relating this portion of the
maestro's career.

Although the dentist's mirror was in use among the ancient Romans, the
first trace of an attempt to examine the throat by means of reflected
light is found about the middle of the eighteenth century.

In 1734 Levret, whose name is still held in honour among obstetricians,
described a speculum, consisting of a plate of polished metal, which
"reflected the luminous rays in the direction of the tumour," and
received the image of the tumour on its reflecting surface. Levret seems
to have used the mirror, not as a means of diagnosis, but as a guide in
the application of ligatures to tumours in the throat. At any rate, his
invention bore no fruit.

Half a century later Bozzini, of Frankfort-on-the-Main, devoted much
attention to devising means of illuminating the main canals of the human
body. In 1807 he published a description of an apparatus by which the
throat and the posterior nares could be examined by reflected light. The
official heads of the profession laughed away his invention, which,
though cumbrous, deserved a better fate.

In 1825 Cagniard de Latour introduced a little mirror into the back of
the throat, hoping with the aid of the sun's rays and a second mirror to
be able to see the epiglottis, and even the glottis, but failed. In 1827
another unsuccessful attempt was made by Senn of Geneva; and two years
later Benjamin Guy Babington exhibited at the Hunterian Society of
London an instrument very like the laryngoscope now in use: he employed
it in many cases, but for some reason seems to have left no record of
them.

In 1832 Bennati of Paris stated that he could see the vocal cords by
means of a double-tubed speculum, invented by a patient suffering from
laryngeal phthisis. Trouseau, however, proved to his own satisfaction
that the epiglottis must always make it impossible to see the inside of
the larynx.

In 1838 Baumès of Lyons showed a mirror with which he said the larynx
could be examined.

In 1844 Warden of Edinburgh reported two cases in which he said he had
been able to make "satisfactory ocular inspection of diseases affecting
the glottis," by using two prisms of flint glass. In the same year Avery
of London devised a laryngoscope in which a laryngeal mirror was
combined with a lamp and reflector: the apparatus embodied the essential
features of the modern laryngoscope, but its clumsiness made its
practical application difficult, and in many cases impossible.

Up to 1850, then, the different attempts had met with failure in varying
degrees. When Garcia attacked the problem he was quite ignorant of the
fact that others had been at work, and his reason for wishing to
overcome the difficulty and catch a glimpse of the glottis was perfectly
different from theirs. His was one connected entirely with his work as a
teacher of singing. Ever since he had given attention to the scientific
aspects of voice-emission, he had longed to see a healthy glottis in the
very act of singing. The idea of employing mirrors for the purpose of
studying the interior of the larynx came to him in 1854. The following
is the story of the discovery as he related it one day:--

"During all the years of study and investigation of the problems of the
voice-emission," he said, "one wish was ever uppermost in my mind--'if
only I could see the glottis!'"

One day in the September of 1854, when on a visit to Paris, he was
standing in the Palais Royal. Suddenly there came to him an idea. "Why
should I not _try_ to see it?" How must this be done? Why, obviously by
some means of reflection. Then, like a flash, he seemed to see the two
mirrors of the laryngoscope in their respective positions as though
actually before his eyes. He went straight to Charrière, the surgical
instrument maker, asked whether they happened to possess a small mirror
with a long handle, and was at once supplied with a dentist's mirror,
which had been one of the failures of the London Exhibition of 1851. He
bought it for six francs.

Returning home, he placed against the uvula this little piece of glass,
which he had heated with warm water and carefully dried. Then with a
hand-mirror he flashed on to its surface a ray of sunlight. By good
fortune he hit upon the proper angle at the very first attempt. There
before his eyes appeared the glottis, wide open and so fully exposed
that he could see a portion of the trachea. So dumfounded was he that he
sat down aghast for several minutes. On recovering from his amazement he
gazed intently for some time at the changes which were presented to his
vision while the various tones were being emitted. From what he
witnessed it was easy to conclude that his theory, attributing to the
glottis alone the power of engendering sound, was confirmed, and thence
it followed that the different positions taken by the larynx in the
front of the throat had no action whatever in the formation of the
sound. At last he tore himself away, and wrote a description of what he
had seen.

Six months later, on March 22, 1855, his paper, "Physiological
Observations on the Human Voice," was submitted to the Royal Society of
London. In it was set down the scientific thesis of his discovery in
language which would have done credit to expert anatomists and
physiologists.

On May 24 this was read before the Society by Professor Sharpey at a
meeting held under the presidency of Lord Wrottesley, and was duly
published in the 'Proceedings of the Royal Society,' vol. vii.

Investigation shows that primarily it is an account of the oral cavity
and of the physiology of the voice, exemplified by the mechanical
contrivance of the author's own thoughtful invention, actually used in
an autoscopic manner with the idea of elucidating the action of the
larynx during vocal effort.

As far as Garcia was concerned, the laryngoscope ceased to be of any
special use as soon as his first investigations were concluded. By his
examination of the glottis he had had the satisfaction of proving that
all his theories with regard to the emission of the voice were
absolutely correct. Beyond that, he did not see that anything further
was to be gained beyond satisfying the curiosity of those who might be
interested to see for themselves the forms and changes which the inside
of the larynx assumed during singing and speaking. The method of making
scientific use of the voice is due to his discovery and ocular
verification of the action of the vocal cords and of the glottis in the
emission of sound.

As to the subsequent use of the laryngoscope in another sphere of
investigation, and the far-reaching results which are due to it, it was
nearly two years before the possibility of making practical use was
seen. The medical profession was slow to realise what an invaluable
instrument of observation the musician had provided, and at first it was
treated by superior persons as nothing more than a physiological toy; in
fact, as so often happens when a discovery is made by some one not
belonging to the craft, Garcia's communication was originally received
by the doctors with indifference, if not with incredulity.

It might have been expected that the uses to which the instrument could
be put for diseases of the throat would forthwith have been perceived,
and its value as a means of diagnosis appreciated. Yet, but for an
accident, the paper might have lain buried in the dusty tomb of the
'Proceedings' of the Royal Society.

It is generally said that Türck of Vienna, coming by chance across it
two years after the date of its presentation, was inspired to apply the
invention to the examination of the upper air-passages. "This," says the
'British Medical Journal,' "is not accurate. Türck had been working
independently on much the same lines as Garcia, and had even devised a
laryngoscope. He showed the instrument to a friend, who at once informed
him that the invention was not new, and directed his attention to the
paper in question."

Türck continued his experiments for a time; and it was in this year,
1857, that the instrument was actually used for the first time for
diagnostic purposes. He seems, however, to have given up his experiments
later, owing to the want of sunlight in the winter.

Soon after this, Professor J. N. Czermak of Buda-Pesth, another great
physiologist, visited Vienna, and was shown the instrument, in which he
was keenly interested. With it he made the observations which he
published. This fact gave rise to one of those bitter controversies as
to priority, of which the history of science offers so many examples.

The famous dispute had the immediate effect of directing the attention
of the whole world to the laryngoscope. As to the rights of the matter,
it would appear that while there is no doubt that Czermak owed his
knowledge of the method to Türck and indirectly to Garcia, he made the
important modification of substituting artificial illumination for the
uncertain light of the sun.

One thing is certain, and that is that to Czermak belongs the credit of
making known to the world the laryngoscope, and to some extent the
possibilities lying hidden in the little mirror. He visited the
principal medical centres of Europe, and, luckily being gifted with a
capacious and exceptionally tolerant throat, he was able to give
convincing demonstrations of the value of the discovery, and its
scientific and practical possibilities. If Garcia was the founder,
Czermak was the apostle, of laryngology.

As to the demonstrations with the instrument, many amusing incidents
have taken place. Two in particular I remember hearing Garcia relate.

His pupil Charles Battaille, to whom reference has been already made in
an earlier chapter, was most enthusiastic over it, and, having been a
medical student at one time, considered himself well qualified to
demonstrate its virtues. Hearing that the Turkish Ambassador in Paris
was going to give a dinner to the most prominent French inventors of
that time, he obtained permission to show off the uses of the new
exhibit during the evening. After pointing out that it would
revolutionise the scientific study of the throat, he proceeded to force
the instrument down the gullet of an unfortunate Court official who had
barely finished dinner. The result was disastrous.

The other story was a comical experience of a well-known specialist.

Like all very sensitive areas of the human body, the organ of the voice
is sometimes invaded by special symptoms, notably in hysterical
patients.

When the laryngoscope became a speciality, a young lady who for two
whole years had lost all power of articulation was brought up to London
by her mother for advice and treatment. The experienced laryngologist to
whom she was introduced placed her in proper position before his lamp,
while the parent poured out the prolonged tale of affliction. Without
taking any apparent notice of the latter, he placed the mirror in the
girl's throat with the usual request, delivered in a cool and commanding
tone, "Say 'aw,' please"; when the young lady snappishly drew back her
head with, "How can I with that thing in my throat?"--followed by, "Oh,
dear, I've spoken!" The specialist turned at once to the anxious parent,
and told her she might take her daughter home cured,--as she proved to
be.

In the present state of our knowledge of such matters, it is rather
startling to remember that two and a half centuries ago the famous
physician of Norwich, Sir Thomas Brown, thought it a part of his duty,
as an advanced teacher of his contemporaries, to devote a chapter of one
of his books to stating and proving that food and drink did not descend
into the body by two separate tubes. It appears that at that date the
majority of the British public actually believed that, as Nature had
placed two pipes in the neck, solids were transmitted by one and fluids
by the other during the ordinary act of swallowing.

Most people nowadays are aware that the vibrations of the elastic bands,
of which there is one on each side beneath the membrane of the upper
part of the larynx, produce the sounds of the voice by their effect on
the air issuing from the lungs. Certain qualities of tone, and of course
the pitch of a note, are determined by their length and tension, while
the special characteristics which make the voice of each individual
definitely recognisable are due to the varied forms of the several parts
of the throat, nose, mouth, &c., above that level. Again, the "breaking"
of the voice of a boy on reaching the threshold of adolescence is due
to the mechanical effect of the elongation of the elastic bands above
referred to--so-called "vocal cords,"--produced by the forward growth of
the cartilages of the larynx which determine the formation of the
"Adam's apple." All these simple facts were absolute mysteries
previously to the enlightening device of Manuel Garcia.

Though Czermak took up the laryngoscope and added to its general
feasibility by the introduction of artificial light, it still had many
obstacles to overcome, but in this it only shared the common fate of all
innovations. A number of the men who bore the heat of the day in the
early time of storm and stress are still alive, and must rejoice in the
fulness of recognition which their speciality has gained.

Intralaryngeal medication and surgery soon followed the discovery of the
diagnostic properties, and its principles were extended to the
elucidation and treatment of diseases of the parts situated between the
nose and throat.

Professor Osler has told us that if we take the sum of human achievement
in science and the arts, and subtract the work of those above forty,
"while we should miss great treasures, even priceless treasures, we
should practically be where we are to-day." The achievement of Garcia
supplies a striking comment on these hasty words. He was ten years over
the limit fixed by the professor when by his invention he opened up a
new world to scientific exploration. Subtract the laryngoscope from
medicine, and what a gap is left in modern methods of diagnosis and
treatment! Before its invention threw light into places which had been
dark since the birth of the human race, the larynx was an undiscovered
country, and its diseases lay beyond the limits of medical art.

"Had Garcia's work ended when he was forty, we should still not
improbably be powerless to deal with functional aphonia, with laryngeal
growths, with tuberculosis of the larynx, and with many conditions in
the upper air-passages which can now be treated satisfactorily, because
they can be seen. What is more important, we should be without a means
of diagnosis which has proved invaluable in the detection of unsuspected
disease of the brain and in the elucidation of obscure mediastinal
affections. Abductor paralysis of a vocal cord is often the only
appreciable symptom in the early stage of tabes, and it may give the key
to the situation of a growth in the fourth ventricle, the medulla, or
the cerebellum. Faint appearances, discoverable only by laryngosocopy,
may furnish the first indication of pulmonary tuberculosis before any
physical signs are present. The state of the larynx, in fact, is often a
danger-signal to those who can read its meaning. The laryngoscope may
also reveal the presence of an aortic aneurism or a mediastinal tumour.
Its value in medicine is greater than that of the ophthalmoscope,
because its application is wider, and the indications which it supplies
are often more definite."

While touching general medicine at many points, laryngology is also to a
large extent an autonomous territory in the great federation of the
human organism. The extensions of Garcia's discovery which have been
made in so many directions, have given it a field of usefulness vaster
than was dreamt of by those who first applied the laryngoscope to
medicine.

As to the development of the instrument, Manuel Garcia, the discoverer
of the hidden land, attained his results by the most simple means. He
merely placed the little dentist's mirror (previously heated) with a
long handle against the uvula, holding it at an angle of 135 degrees,
and then, by means of an ordinary hand-mirror, flashed a ray of sunlight
upon its surface. Next Czermak and Türck took the matter up, and made
certain improvements in the instrument, substituting artificial light so
as to render it useful independently of the sun. The laryngoscope was
illumined by a concave mirror fastened to the forehead of the observer.
This mirror received the rays of a lamp situated close to the head of
the subject, and focussed their concentrated light on to the
laryngoscope. The position to be given to the patient was definitely
fixed by these workers.

With the advent of electric light fresh perfections were introduced;
while in 1896 Kirstein, of Berlin, discovered a novel method of
laryngeal investigation which led to the establishment by Killian, in
1902, of a new method of "bronchoscopy," which permits of the direct
exploration of the "bronchiæ."

But all these discoveries are only a continuation of that invention
which assures to Garcia a glorious name in the history of medicine.

With the advent of March 17, 1905, which saw not only Manuel Garcia's
hundredth birthday, but the fiftieth anniversary of this discovery, the
acorn which he had planted in the middle of the nineteenth century had
grown to a stately and wide-branching oak-tree. We shall see later, when
we come to the description of this event, how medical representatives
from every part of the world combined to do honour to him as the author
of a most fruitful addition to the resources of medical art and as the
initiator of a great advance in medical science. It must have brought
the centenarian a great and justifiable pride when on that day he looked
on the representatives of the Laryngological societies encircling the
world, who united to call him Father.



CHAPTER XV.

CHARLES SANTLEY AND ANTOINETTE STERLING.

(1857-1873.)


1841 became a memorable date in the earlier period of Manuel Garcia's
career as a teacher, as bringing Jenny Lind to his studio in Paris. In
the same way, 1857 stood out in the later portion, as bringing to him
the first pupil in London who was to achieve a world-wide reputation,
Sir Charles Santley. In making this statement I leave out of account
Julius Stockhausen, since his lessons had been commenced in Paris.

The circumstances which brought about the advent of Santley are related
in his 'Reminiscences':--

     "One morning in the autumn of 1857 I received a message to go round
     to Chorley's house immediately, as he had something of importance
     to communicate. It was to the effect that Hullah was going to
     perform the 'Creation': he could not offer me any terms, but if I
     was satisfied with this opportunity of making an appearance in
     public, he would be pleased to accept my services to sing the part
     of Adam."

Santley accepted at once, having only a few weeks before returned from
Italy, where he had been studying under Nava.

     "I went to try over the duet with the lady who was to represent my
     _malheureuse cotelette_, and found someone seated in the
     drawing-room, who made me a distant bow on my entrance. After a few
     moments' hesitation I ventured to remark, 'Miss----, I presume.'
     'No,' she replied, 'I am Miss Messent, and I understand I am to
     have the pleasure of singing the duets in the last part of the
     "Creation" with you. Miss---- was to have sung them, but for some
     unexplained reason has given up the engagement.'"

The reason the baritone only learned some years after. Miss---- had made
a small reputation already, which she declined jeopardising by singing
duets with a young man fresh from Italy.

     "I dined with Chorley on the evening of the concert, and met Manuel
     Garcia, who accompanied us to St Martin's Hall.

     "I succeeded better than I had dared to hope. When I walked home
     with Chorley and Garcia after the performance, the latter expressed
     himself as pleased, but pointed out certain defects to be overcome,
     at the same time offering to render me any assistance in his
     power."

It was an offer of which Santley promptly availed himself, and he
commenced lessons forthwith, the maestro being at the time in his
fifty-third year, his pupil a lad of twenty-three. The profit which was
received during those lessons the baritone has never forgotten. As to
his personal memories of the maestro,--"It would require a whole book
to say what I should be bound to say," he wrote to me in a letter during
the preparation of the present memoir.

The feelings with which the world-renowned baritone regards his old
master may best be summed up in the words inscribed on the photograph
which used to stand on the grand piano in Señor Garcia's home: "To the
King of Masters." Moreover, I remember his remarking one day, while I
was studying under the maestro, "You are learning from the greatest
teacher the world has ever known." Nor is he less ardent in his
admiration for Mme. Viardot-Garcia. "No woman in my day has ever
approached her as a dramatic singer," he once said; "she was perfect, as
far as it is possible to attain perfection, both as vocalist and
actress."

Santley is himself remarkable as a man no less than as an artist. After
having made a name which will ever be honoured and reverenced throughout
the musical world for high ideals nobly sustained, he is, though over
seventy, still able to make before the public occasional appearances, in
which he shows how the old Italian method, coupled with a fine intellect
and dramatic instinct, can triumph over mere weight of years. As one
listens it seems impossible to believe that a man who sings to-day with
all the fire, vigour, and passion of youth, can have been before the
public for anything like so long a period as half a century. Up to the
present time Sir Charles Santley remains unquestionably the greatest
baritone this country has produced.

[Illustration: _Photo by Chancellor, Dublin._]

Shortly after Santley had commenced lessons under the renowned teacher,
he received an invitation to a party at Chorley's to meet a pupil of
Garcia, Gertrude Kemble, who was about to make her _début_ at St
Martin's Hall in the Christmas performance of the "Messiah."

"I would have much preferred staying at home with a book," he writes. "I
had made my first appearance at the Crystal Palace in the afternoon, and
felt depressed with the poor impression I had made. The party, which had
been arranged to give Miss Kemble an opportunity of singing before a
small assembly previously to confronting the larger audience at St
Martin's Hall, included the famous Adelaide Kemble, Virginia Gabriel,
John Hullah, Mr and Mrs Henry Leslie, and others.

"I felt great sympathy for the poor trembling girl who was about to
undergo an ordeal for which she was not physically prepared. I learned
afterwards her voice had been much strained by an incompetent professor
during her long residence in Hanover. Manuel Garcia had done wonders
with it since her return to England, but she still had great difficulty
in controlling the upper register, which naturally added considerably to
her nervousness. Nevertheless she sang exceedingly well and with great
intelligence.

"This party," he concludes, "which I would willingly have shirked,
proved a very important event for me,--in less than eighteen months Miss
Kemble became my wife."

The year 1859 was memorable for the fine work of Garcia's two
pupils--Pauline Viardot and Battaille. The former revived Orphée, and
achieved so great a success in the part that it stood out afterwards as
one of her most famous _rôles_. The latter brought out a book on singing
which reflected the greatest credit not only on himself but on the
maestro from whom he had received inspiration and knowledge.

The next year, which saw the capture of Pekin in far-off China, brought
with it a strange coincidence. As we have seen, some improvements in the
laryngoscope had followed its invention, due to the labours of Türck and
the experimental skill and acumen of Czermak, and in due course
questions of priority became a bone of contention, as they had done
nearly two decades previously in connection with Señor Garcia's 'Mémoire
sur la Voix humaine.'

For the annual prize awarded in 1860 by the Paris Academy of Sciences,
under the Montyon foundation, Türck and Czermak submitted contributions
on the art of laryngoscopy. But nice points of priority were brushed
aside by the Academy, and to each there was awarded a "mention
honorable," accompanied by a gift of money.

This action seems to have prompted Garcia to put forward a claim for the
prize in Experimental Physiology to be awarded for the year 1861.
Accordingly he presented a memoir, in which he recapitulated his pioneer
work, and expressed the hope that the favours meted out to the
before-mentioned authors might be extended to himself. The matter does
not, however, appear to have gone any further.

In this year another of his famous pupils, Mathilde Marchesi, brought
out a book on singing, 'L'École du Chant,' founded on her master's
teaching, and with it achieved notable success.

With 1862 there came the first tardy recognition which Manuel Garcia
received from the medical world for the inestimable boon which he had
conferred on them by his invention: the diploma of Doctor of Medicine,
_honoris causa_, was bestowed on him by the University of Königsberg.
But as the year brought in its train this pleasure, so, too, it had its
compensating sorrow, for on the 10th of May, at Saint-Josse-ten-Noode in
Belgium, his mother passed away at the ripe old age of eighty-four.

1868, in which Disraeli assumed the helm of State as Prime Minister, saw
the advent of Antoinette Sterling, who came on to Garcia from Cologne,
where she had been studying under Mathilde Marchesi.

The letter which the maestro sent to Signor Marchesi, after hearing the
contralto, I am able to quote:--


_Translation._

     LONDON, _July_ 17, 1864.

     _To_ SIGNOR S. DE C. MARCHESI, Professor at the Conservatoire of
     Music, Cologne.

     MOST ESTEEMED SIGNOR MARCHESI,--Miss Sterling, whom I have already
     heard several times, possesses a beautiful voice, but she is still
     a beginner. In every way I will do what little I can to continue
     the very excellent direction given to the studies of the young lady
     by your wife, to whom I beg you to present my most distinguished
     salutations. Pray accept the same yourself from your sincere
     friend,

     MANUEL GARCIA.

     I am very grateful for the recommendation. Farewell.

Antoinette Sterling ever regarded Señor Garcia with the greatest
affection and esteem, and used to delight in recalling the following
memories of the days when she had studied with him. I have set them down
before in the little memoir of her career already published.

When Miss Sterling, as she then was, went to the maestro for lessons, he
was so carried away with the voice of his new pupil that he could not
bring himself to keep her to exercises, as was his custom in the case of
others. Almost at once he began taking her through all the Italian
operatic _rôles_. One day she was struggling to execute a particularly
difficult phrase, and at last burst out crying, "You ought not to give
me these songs until I have mastered the exercises properly." "You're
quite right," he answered, and took her back to the exercises once more.

Until Antoinette Sterling commenced her training under him she used the
full extent of her voice, singing from the D below middle C to the top
soprano C sharp--a range of three octaves. She sang all the contralto
arias from opera and oratorio, and at the same time felt equally at home
with the soprano _rôles_.

[Illustration: Photo by Elliott & Fry, Baker Street, London, W.

Handwritten: Antoniette Sterling MacKinlay]

The first thing her new master did on hearing her was to make the
remark, "If you continue as you have been doing, do you know what will
happen? Look at this piece of elastic. I take it firmly at the two ends
and stretch it. What is the result? It becomes thin in the middle. If I
were to continue to do this constantly, it would get weaker and weaker,
until finally it would break. It is thus with the human voice.
Cultivate an extended range, and keep on singing big notes at both
extremes, and the same thing will occur which we have seen with the
elastic. Your voice will gradually weaken in the middle. If you persist
in this course long enough, it will break, and the organ be rendered
useless." For this reason he strongly advised her to abandon the higher
notes, confining herself to genuine contralto music. Moreover, with the
reduced range, he told her strictly to avoid practising on the extremes,
to use them as little as possible, and build up her voice by exercising
the middle portion of it. It is an invaluable hint for all singers. His
pupil realised the wisdom of what he said, and from that time onwards
ceased to use the top half octave of her voice.

After a return to America, during which she was engaged to sing at Dr
Ward Beecher's church, she came over to England again to make her
_début_. Señor Garcia heard of the forthcoming appearance of his old
pupil, and tried to find out her address. She in her turn had lost that
of the maestro. In consequence of this they did not have an opportunity
of meeting again till the eventful evening had passed, and all London
was ringing with the new contralto's praises. He had, of course, been
present at Covent Garden, and at the end of her first song went round to
the door of the artist's room to congratulate her. The attendant met him
with the stereotyped reply, "We cannot let any one in." "But I insist--I
_must_ see her. She is my pupil." The request, however, was met with
stolid indifference, and he was obliged to return to his seat.

When, finally, they did meet again, she at once recommenced her lessons,
and these were continued, as regularly as engagements would permit,
until seven years after her _début_.

On July 5, 1869, Manuel Garcia was elected a member of the Committee of
Management at the Royal Academy of Music, with which he had now been
connected for twenty years.

Twelve months later he was brought to a sudden realisation of the
catastrophe that shook Europe, for July saw the commencement of the
Franco-Prussian War, all the French being ordered to leave German
territory. In consequence of this edict Mme. Viardot was obliged to move
from Baden-Baden, where she had been teaching; and, like many others,
she made her way to England. On her arrival there with her husband she
settled down in London near her brother, till the march of events
rendered it possible for her to return to the Continent.

Of this period Mme. Noufflard, daughter of Lady Hallé, has given some
recollections.

"While Mme. Viardot was taking refuge in London, her house was the
rendezvous of every talent; and I well remember one evening, when
serious music had given way to fun, Saint-Saëns sitting at the
pianoforte to improvise the 'rising of the sun in a mountainous
country.' In the twinkling of an eye Manuel Garcia cut out a large halo
from a newspaper, and was seen slowly emerging from behind a high-backed
chair, his full face, with its paper decoration, disclosing itself at
the top, as the last triumphant chord was struck.

[Illustration: CHARLES HALLÉ AND MANUEL GARCIA PLAYING CHESS.

(REPRODUCED FROM AN ORIGINAL SKETCH BY RICHARD DOYLE.)]

     "I recollect him also as the talented and patient teacher, always
     full of interest even in those whose efforts were feeble. To his
     musical talents was added the charm of courtly manner,
     never-failing wit, and love of fun. The last he gave a fresh proof
     of but two or three years ago, when in answer to the pleasure shown
     by some friend, who had not seen him for some little time, in
     meeting him again at a _soirée_, he replied with the characteristic
     foreign shrug of the shoulders, 'Que voulez-vous? Je suis trop
     occupé pour avoir le temps de mourir.'"

Mme. Noufflard also tells how the maestro used to visit her parents at
Greenhays in Manchester:--

     "I was too young at the time to remember any details of those very
     interesting days; but my earliest recollections of Signor Garcia
     are those of the delight with which we children always greeted him,
     as he was ever ready to enter into our pursuits and to enjoy a
     romp. I remember, as quite a child, having undertaken to teach him
     German, and the solemnity with which he took his so-called lesson
     each day, although the teacher knew far less of the language than
     did the pupil. As we grew older he would often take us to his rooms
     near Manchester Square, and explain the invention and uses of his
     laryngoscope with as much care and precision as if we were the
     whole College of Surgeons listening to him."

What need to recapitulate the events which followed on the outbreak of
the Franco-Prussian War? In less than three months Paris was besieged, a
calamity followed in October by the pitiful surrender of Metz.

With the January of 1871 came the capitulation of Paris, followed by the
conclusion of peace in February, the revolt of the Commune, and the
second siege of the capital in March.

Señor Garcia must have been glad indeed that he had come to England
nearly a quarter of a century before, and was thus able quietly to
pursue his work as a teacher, instead of remaining in Paris to be upset
once more, as he had been with the Revolution of '48.



CHAPTER XVI.

TWENTY YEARS OF MUSIC.

(1853-1873.)


At this point it may be of interest to recall the principal musical
events which took place during the earlier years of Manuel Garcia's
residence in London.

The year of the invention of the laryngoscope is principally of interest
to musicians from the fact that Gye was able to secure for his opera
company a valuable aid in that greatest basso of any time, Luigi
Lablache, then sixty years of age.

The following year brought the London _première_ of "L'Etoile du Nord,"
and of Verdi's new opera, "Il Trovatore"; it is additionally memorable
for the advent of Cerito, on whom the mantle of Taglioni and Vestris had
fallen as a _première danseuse_.

1856 brought in its train a series of catastrophes to music-lovers.
During the twelve months there died not only the veteran tenor, Henry
Braham, in his eightieth year, but, what was a far greater loss, the
immortal Robert Schumann, after two years spent in a private asylum near
Bonn; moreover, a further blow was dealt by the burning down of Covent
Garden for the second time, the ruins being visited next day by her
Majesty, Prince Albert, and the Princess Royal.

The Opera House was rebuilt and opened once more in 1858, the year in
which Lablache died. The Covent Garden season commenced on May 15 with a
notable body of artists, which included Grisi, Didiée, Parepa, Victoire,
Mario, Formes, Rossi, Tamberlik, and Costa; while in the early autumn
the Birmingham Festival was held, with Pauline Viardot and Sims Reeves
as the stars.

In the last month of '58 we find the Pyne-Harrison Company giving a
season of English opera, with W. Harrison, George Honey, Weiss, and
Louisa Pyne as the leading attractions, and Alfred Mellon in the
conductor's seat.

The next year (1859) brings the production in Italian of Meyerbeer's new
opera, "Dinorah," at Covent Garden; while in the autumn the
Pyne-Harrison Company give it in an English version provided by Chorley,
with Charles Santley making his operatic _début_ as Haël. This is
followed at Christmas by Hallé's production at Manchester of an English
version of Gluck's "Iphigénie en Tauride," in which two of Garcia's
pupils take part--Catherine Hayes and Charles Santley.

In the following February Wallace's "Lurline" was produced, and later in
the year Flotow's "Stradella." March 29 is an interesting date, for it
gives us a sight of the theatrical names which were prominently before
the public at this time. On that day a monster benefit was organised, at
which the following stars took part: Webster, Phelps, T. P. Cooke,
Toole, Mrs Mellon, Miss Glyn, Louisa Pyne, Charles Mathews, Catherine
Hayes, W. Harrison, and Buckstone.

A few weeks later, during the Italian opera season, came the first
appearance in England of Faure, as Haël, a part which Meyerbeer had
specially written for him in "Dinorah."

One may perhaps be allowed to note in passing that 1859 brought with it
the first appearance of Henry Irving on the London stage. In the winter
season of 1860 Her Majesty's was running English opera with a fine cast,
which included Lemmens-Sherrington, Mdlle. Parepa, Reeves, Santley,
George Honey, J. G. Patey, and Chas. Hallé as conductor.

With 1861 we come to the English _début_ of the greatest star of the
last half of the nineteenth century, for on May 14 Adelina Patti made
her first appearance at Covent Garden, as Amina in "La Somnambula," amid
such enthusiasm as to ensure her the premier place among the operatic
artists of her day. And indeed after this memorable date the _diva_
continued to appear for no less than twenty-five consecutive seasons at
Covent Garden, her name proving an infallible draw, no matter in what
opera she chose to appear.

During the same season Grisi gave a series of eight farewell
performances, creating an enormous _furore_; moreover, Delle Sedie came
over for Mapleson's season at the Lyceum, being afterwards engaged for
Covent Garden. At the latter house the autumn season opened with "Ruy
Blas," followed later by "Robin Hood," with a cast including Mme.
Guerrabella (Geneviève Ward), Haigh, Honey, and Santley, and this in
turn gave way to the production of Balfe's new opera, "The Puritan's
Daughter," which had a run of no less than fifty-seven performances.

The following February, 1862, saw the production of another of Balfe's
operas, the "Lily of Killarney," the plot being that of the "Colleen
Bawn," which had just had a huge success at the Adelphi Theatre.

The artists engaged for the Covent Garden season of Italian opera
included such names as Patti, Tamberlik, Mario, Faure, Formes, and
Gordoni; while in the autumn of the year Mapleson gave a season of opera
with Tietjens, Alboni, Giuglini, and Santley.

For 1863 may be writ large the five letters FAUST. Mapleson tells the
story of its production in his memoirs. Thomas Chappell had bought the
English rights for £40, after seeing it at the Théâtre Lyrique. The
music of an opera is worth nothing until the opera itself has become
known, and Messrs Chappell opened negotiations with Mr Frederick Gye for
its production during the Royal Italian Opera season.

The work had not, however, made much impression at the Lyrique, and Gye,
on his return from Paris, assured his stage-manager, Augustus Harris,
that there was nothing in it but the "Soldier's Chorus," and refused to
have anything to do with it. Mapleson on hearing it felt convinced it
would be an immense success; and Chappells were ready to pay £200
towards the cost of its production, and to give £200 more after four
representations. He therefore engaged his company, and put it into
rehearsal at Her Majesty's.

A few days before the date fixed for the production, he found that only
£30 worth of seats had been taken. Then came a Napoleonic scheme. He
announced at once four successive performances, and gave the astounding
instructions at the office that for the first three out of these four
not one place was to be sold beyond those already taken. The rest of the
tickets he took home in a carpet-bag and distributed far and wide over a
gigantic free list. At the same time he advertised in 'The Times' that,
in consequence of a death in the family, two stalls for the first
representation of "Faust"--the opera which was exciting so much interest
that all places for the first three representations had been bought
up--could be had at 25s. each.

Meanwhile demands had been made at the box-office for places, and the
would-be purchasers were told that everything had gone up to the fourth
night: this they repeated to their friends, and the opera began to be
seriously talked of. The first performance was received with applause,
the second still more warmly, and the third gained additional favour. No
further device was necessary for stimulating curiosity: the paying
public flocked, and it was given for ten nights in succession, after
which it was constantly repeated until the termination of the season.

The following was the cast of the _première_ at Her Majesty's:--

    _Marguerite_                  Tietjens.
    _Siebel_                      Trebelli.
    _Faust_                       Giuglini.
    _Mephistopheles_              Gassier.
    _Valentine_                   Santley.

Not to be outdone, Gye at once produced his own version at Covent
Garden, with Carvallo as _Marguerite_, her old part in the original
Paris production, Didier as _Siebel_, Faure as _Mephistopheles_,
Graziani as _Valentine_, and Tamberlik as _Faust_.

The year is also noteworthy for the fact that Pauline Lucca made her
_début_ as Valentine in the "Huguenots," while Mdlle. Artot, the pupil
of Mme. Viardot, also made her first appearance here.

With 1864 (in which Meyerbeer passes away) we find the Italian Opera
Company including Patti, Lucca, Tamberlik, Faure, Graziani, Mario, and,
of course, Costa, with an interesting addition at the organ in Arthur
Sullivan; while to the younger generation, at any rate, a strange
realisation of those bygone days is given by the announcement of a gala
performance to Garibaldi.

At Her Majesty's there is an interesting _première_, the first
performance of "Faust" in English, with the following cast:--

    _Marguerite_                    Mme. Lemmens-Sherrington.
    _Siebel_                        Mme. Lucia.
    _Mephistopheles_                M. Marchesi.
    _Valentine_                     Mr Santley.
    _Faust_                         Mr Sims Reeves.

The next year brings the production of Meyerbeer's "L'Africaine" at
Covent Garden, and of Gounod's "Mock Doctor" by the Royal English Opera
Company. At Her Majesty's, moreover, Ilma di Murska makes her first
appearance as Lucia, and Giuglini is obliged to give up the season there
through illness; while among the operatic stars of the year we find
Wachtel, Graziani, Ronconi, and Mario.

1866 sees the _début_ at Covent Garden of Carlotta Patti, coming with a
considerable reputation as a concert singer; while among the artists of
the season are Naudin, and Nicolini, who afterwards married Adelina
Patti. At Her Majesty's, the company includes Gordoni, Santley, Gassier,
Tietjens, and Grisi, who is announced for a limited number of
performances; while the Irish basso, Foley, makes a hit in "Il Seraglio"
under the Italianised nomenclature, "Signor Foli."

Next year, in which the death of Sir George Smart is chronicled, Covent
Garden announces--on July 11--the first production of Gounod's "Romeo et
Juliette" in an Italian version, with Mario and Patti in the
title-_rôles_. At the rival house Mapleson has collected a fine company
in Tietjens, Sinico, Gassier, Santley, Gordoni, Mongini, and two
_débutantes_, Clara Kellogg, fresh from her American triumphs, and
Christine Nillson, who makes her first appearance in "Traviata."

On December 6 a terrible calamity occurred in the London musical world,
with the burning down of Her Majesty's Theatre. At the beginning of the
month, during a rehearsal of "Fidelio," Mapleson's insurance-agent
called to complete the insurance of the house. Colonel Mapleson agreed
to insure for £30,000; but as the costumier's list was not at hand, and
the costumier himself was out at dinner, the agent suggested that the
manager should give him £10 "on account," and thus keep the matter open
till the following Monday, when he--the agent--would call again.
Mapleson replied, jokingly, "There is no fear," and the agent left
without the advance.

At half-past eleven the same evening Mapleson, who was dining in St
John's Wood, was called by an excited servant to look out of the window,
and saw the sky red in the distance. Her Majesty's Theatre was on fire!
The manager hurried to the scene of the conflagration, and found the
house in full blaze. Without a moment's delay he despatched Mr Jarrett,
his acting-manager, to Mr F. B. Chatterton, then the lessee of Drury
Lane, to endeavour to secure that theatre from March till the end of
July. It was of great importance that the emissary should reach
Chatterton, who lived at Clapham, before that astute manager could learn
of the fire; for had he been aware of Mapleson's extremity, he would, of
course, have raised his terms accordingly.

On arriving at Chatterton's house early in the morning, the first thing
Jarrett saw, lying on a table in the hall, was a copy of that day's
'Times.' On this he threw his overcoat, in order to hide the paper from
view, and waited for the manager of Drury Lane to descend and receive
him. Without appearing at all anxious, Mr Jarrett quietly concluded an
agreement by which Mapleson secured the use of Drury Lane Theatre for
the following spring and summer seasons, with a right to renew the
occupation for future years. This document was in Mapleson's hands by
nine o'clock, and it was not till half-past ten that Chatterton learnt
of the fire.

The Monday after, the insurance-agent called on Mapleson and offered him
his sympathy, since, if the manager had paid down the £10 on account of
the proposed insurance, he would have received a cheque for £30,000!
Mapleson replied that he was exceedingly glad that he had _not_ paid the
deposit, as he certainly would have been suspected of setting the
theatre on fire, and would never again have been able to set himself
right with the public.

In 1868 (the year of Rossini's death), the date is rendered memorable by
the _début_ of Minnie Hauk and the discovery of Mme. Scalchi, who was
singing at the time in a building that was little more than a circus;
while Costa resigned his position as conductor, owing to a quarrel. His
place was taken by Arditi and Vianesi, who shared the duties of
conductor.

In 1869 Mapleson and Gye resolved to join forces, the result being a
probably unexampled collection of stars. Ambroise Thomas's "Hamlet" was
given for the first time in England with Christine Nillson as Ophelia,
and "Don Giovanni" was performed with the following extraordinary cast,
which has never been equalled in brilliancy:--

    _Donna Anna_                Tietjens.
    _Donna Elvina_              Nillson.
    _Zerlina_                   Patti.
    _Don Ottavio_               Mario.
    _Don Giovanni_              Faure.

But these do not by any means exhaust the list of stars who took part in
the season under the joint management. To the above quintette we must
add Lucca, Scalchi, Ilma di Murska, Sinico, Tamberlik, Foli, Santley,
and Mongini, while Costa and Arditi alternated the conducting. The
season is probably unexampled in the whole annals of opera.

The next year, 1870 (in which Balfe died), saw the production of Verdi's
"Macbeth" and of Ambroise Thomas's "Mignon," with Christine Nillson and
Faure in the leading _rôles_, under the Gye-Mapleson management. During
this year, moreover, a brilliant benefit was given to Charles Mathews,
and from the list of star performers we can obtain some further idea as
to the rise and fall of the theatrical artists which Garcia witnessed as
he passed through life.

Charles Mathews, of course, took part himself, and was assisted by Barry
Sullivan, Lionel Brough, Mrs Mathews, Mrs Chippendale, Ben Webster, Mrs
Mellon, Mme. Celeste, together with the Bancrofts.

With 1871 (the year in which Auber died) Mario bade farewell to Covent
Garden audiences, before whom he had appeared for no less than
twenty-three out of the twenty-four seasons the Royal Italian Opera had
been in existence.

The Italian tenor was a great friend of Garcia, and the latter used to
tell many anecdotes of him. One of these I will quote. When in London
once, Mario and his wife, Grisi, decided upon giving a wonderful
luncheon to a large party of their friends, among the number being Señor
Garcia. The total cost may be imagined from the fact that they paid £80
for some dessert and other light delicacies for the table, sent
specially over from Paris. After all had assembled Grisi suddenly
exclaimed, "It is far too hot to eat anything here. Let us drive out to
Richmond for lunch. It will be far pleasanter." No sooner said than
done, and carriages sufficient to accommodate the entire party were at
once ordered. A telegram was sent on in advance, so that on their
arrival at Richmond another magnificent lunch was awaiting them. Mario,
without a thought, left behind at his own house the two-hundred guinea
luncheon to waste its sweetness on the servants' hall.

It was in this year that the terrors of the Franco-Prussian War, to
which we have already alluded, drove to London large numbers of
refugees, many of them celebrities connected with the leading musical
and dramatic institutions of Paris. It was a golden opportunity for
music-lovers. At Covent Garden there were Adelina Patti, Lucca, Scalchi,
Tamberlik, Mario, Bettini, Faure, Cotogni, Tagliafico; at Her Majesty's,
Christine Nillson, Tietjens, Trebelli, Marimon, Ilma di Murska, Mongini,
Gardoni, Capoul, Wachtel, Agnesi, Rota, Santley, Foli, and Carl Formes.
In the concert-room there were to be heard the still marvellous voices
of Alboni, Carlotta Patti, and Sims Reeves; or the glorious playing of
Sivori, Vieuxtemps, Wieniawski, Neruda, Joachim, Clara Schumann, and
Alfredo Piatti.

Then among the French refugees were the members of the Comédie
Française, and these gave a memorable series of representations at one
of the London theatres, selecting for it most of the gems of their
matchless repertoire, with casts that included such artists as Got,
Delauny, Mounet-Sully, Worms, Febvre, the Coquelins, Sarah Bernhardt
(who during this season was making her London _début_), Blanche Pierson,
Bartet, Barretta, Reichemberg, and Samary.

The following year, 1872, saw the _début_ at Covent Garden of Albani.
Later in the year, after the close of the opera season, a "fantastical
spectacle" by Dion Boucicault and Planché was produced at the Opera
House, under the title of "Babil and Bijou," in which took part Mrs
Howard Paul, Lionel Brough, and Joseph Maas.

Finally, in 1873, Gye gathered round him a bevy of stars which included
Patti, Lucca, and Albani; Scalchi, Sinico, and Monbelli; Nicolini,
Bettini, Graziani, Cotogni, Maurel, and Faure.



CHAPTER XVII.

THREE-SCORE YEARS AND TEN.

(1874-1890.)


"Every year a man lives, he is worth less." This is what Manuel Garcia
used to assert when he was drawing near to the completion of those
three-score years and ten which have been set down as the natural span
of human life. As far as his own career was concerned, however, the
statement was singularly lacking in truth. His mode of living at the age
of seventy has been well described by Hermann Klein, his pupil, friend,
and collaborator in the final text-book, 'Hints on Singing,' published
some twenty years later, when the veteran musician was over ninety years
of age.

Mr Klein has been kind enough to send over from New York some
interesting reminiscences for insertion in this chapter.

In the year 1874 Mr Klein's parents occupied a large house at the corner
of Bentinck Street and Welbeck Street, Cavendish Square, and I will
leave the sometime musical critic of 'The Sunday Times' to tell the
story of the next few months.

"I find by a letter of my mother's," he writes, "that Señor Garcia first
called to see her at 1 Bentinck Street in November 1873, and took the
rooms on the ground floor on a yearly agreement from the following
March. He moved in punctually on Lady Day 1874, bringing with him his
trusty Erard grand piano (which had even then seen considerable wear,
but continued to serve him faithfully at 'Mon Abri' to the last); also
the noble bust of Beethoven, which used to stand upon a marble ledge or
shelf fixed permanently to the wall between the two windows. The piano
stood in the middle of the room, and he always took care to place his
pupils so that the light fell full upon their faces. I recollect my
mother asking him if he would like another mirror besides the one over
the mantelpiece. He replied, 'No, it is not necessary. I don't want my
pupils to be looking at themselves all the time. They have to look at
me.'

"His lunch invariably consisted of the same simple fare--some
sponge-cakes and a pint of milk, which would be fetched from a baker
close by by my younger brother Charles. I asked Señor Garcia once if he
did not feel hungry long before dinner, teaching as he did all day on
such slender diet. 'No,' he answered, 'I don't feel half the discomfort
from waiting that I should if I took a hearty meal in the middle of the
day and then tried to teach immediately afterwards. Besides, I don't
really need it. Most singers and teachers of singing eat more than they
should. A man with moderate teeth, such as I have, can grow old on
sponge-cake and milk!' And he lived for more than thirty years after
that to prove the truth of his remark.

[Illustration: Photo by Davis & Eickenmeyer.

Handwritten signature: to M Sterling MacKinlay, esq. with Kindest
regards of Hermann Klein New York, '06]

"At this time he had entered on his seventieth year, but in appearance
was not past fifty. He had a light buoyant step, always walked quickly,
and had a keen observant eye, which, when he spoke, would light up with
all the fire and animation of youth. His dark complexion and habit of
rapid gesticulation bespoke his southern origin. He was at home in
Spanish, Italian, English, and French, but preferred the last. His
modesty was remarkable. He could rarely be induced to talk of himself,
but was firm in his opinions. In argument he was a close reasoner, and
would be either a doughty opponent or a warm advocate; the middle line
never attracted.

"His activity during the Bentinck Street period was amazing. Except on
his Academy days he taught at the house from morning till night, and
never seemed to know the meaning of the word fatigue. As to relaxation
or recreation, I never knew him to indulge in any, save on the extremely
rare occasions when I could persuade him to attend an operatic
performance or some special concert, such as one at the Crystal Palace,
when Anton Rubinstein conducted his own endless 'Ocean' symphony. His
criticisms on these events were a delight to listen to. He was, I
remember, immensely enthusiastic over Rubinstein's performance of his
concerto in D minor; but the symphony bored him terribly, and he would
gladly have left before the end came. The only concerts that he attended
regularly were the Philharmonic (to which he was for many years a
subscriber) and those of the Royal Academy students, at which some pupil
of his own almost invariably appeared. At the latter concerts I used
often to sit beside him, and it was wonderful to watch his animated face
as, with suppressed energy, his hand moved in response to the rhythm of
the music. He seemed to be trying to infuse into the singer some of the
magnetism of his own irresistible spirit.

"Manuel Garcia was one of the most inspiring teachers that ever lived.
All of his distinguished pupils, from Jenny Lind downwards, have dwelt
upon his extraordinary faculty for diving deep into the nature of those
who worked with him, and arousing their temperamental qualities to the
highest degree of activity. His profound knowledge of his art, his
familiarity with all the great traditions, and the absolute authority
with which he spoke, combined to awaken a measure of confidence and
admiration such as no other _maestro di canto_ could possibly command.

"Even when annoyed he was seldom abrupt or impatient. His voice had
gone, but he would employ its _beaux restes_ to impart an idea for the
proper emission of a note or phrasing of a passage. His sounds never
failed to convey the desired suggestion. Though his own voice trembled
with the weight of years, he never brought out a pupil with the
slightest tremolo: moreover, he was never guilty of forcing a voice. His
first rule was ever to repress the breathing power, and to bring it into
proper proportion with the resisting force of the throat and larynx.

"Among the aspirants who came to study at Bentinck Street were several
whose names yet enjoy universal reputation.

"He always played his own accompaniments for teaching, and in the
'Seventies' was a very fair pianist. He had at that time a Russian
pupil, an excellent baritone, with whom he was fond of taking part in
duets for four hands. They used to play Schubert's marches, &c.,
whenever the master could find time (which was not very often); and at
the end of a delightful half-hour of this recreation he would exclaim,
'What fine practice for my stiff old fingers! How I wish I could get
more of it!'

"One of his most intimate friends at that period was Joseph Joachim, for
whom, alike as a man and a musician, he cherished the warmest admiration
and regard. When the great violinist received the honorary degree of
Mus. Doc. in 1877, Señor Garcia paid him the highest compliment in his
power, by making the journey to Cambridge especially, in order to be
present at the ceremony and to attend the concert given by the
University Musical Society. I had the privilege of accompanying him on
that occasion, and sat beside him both at the rehearsal and the concert,
Mr (now Sir) Villiers Stanford being the conductor. How he revelled in
Joachim's performance of the Beethoven concerto! Every note of that
masterpiece, as it issued from the fingers of its noblest interpreter,
seemed to afford him most exquisite delight. He was also impressed by
the first symphony of Brahms (given as the 'exercise' for his doctor's
degree, conferred _in absentiâ_), and considered it not only a fine
work, but a remarkable example of reticence in a composer whose powers
had attained maturity long before. We returned to town after the
concert, but in spite of the fatigue involved by this lengthy 'outing,'
the maestro was at his labours at the usual hour next morning, and
feeling, as he expressed it, 'Frais comme un jeune lion.'

"At Bentinck Street Señor Garcia taught several budding Jewish
vocalists, entrusted to his care by members of the Rothschild family,
who showed their love of music by defraying the cost of teaching (and
sometimes of maintaining) the youthful singers. One of these pupils, who
subsequently became a prominent member of an English Opera Company, was
an especial _protégée_ of Baroness Lionel de Rothschild; and one day the
kind lady, accompanied by her daughter (afterwards the Countess of
Rosebery), called to inquire how the girl was progressing. The maestro's
reply was characteristic. 'Madame la Baronne, she has all the musical
talent of her race, but little of its industriousness or perseverance.
Still, as in spite of that she accomplishes in a week what takes most
other girls a month, I hope sometime to make a singer of her.'"

Here I will abandon Mr Klein's narrative, to resume it later in
describing the preparation of Garcia's last text-book, 'Hints on
Singing.'

During the next few years a number of pupils passed through his hands at
the Royal Academy of Music, who were afterwards to take an important
place in their profession.

In 1875 Miss Orridge came to place herself under the maestro. The years
which she spent at the Academy brought victory after victory. She
gained in turn the Llewellyn Davies Bronze and Gold Medals for
declamatory singing, the Parepa-Rosa Medal, and the Christine Nillson's
Second Prize. While still a student at the Royal Academy of Music, Miss
Orridge made her _début_ at the St James's Hall Ballad Concerts, and
also went on a successful tour with Sims Reeves. From that time she
continued to make rapid strides in her professional status, and gave
promise of being one of the best contralto concert singers of her time,
when her career was brought to a sudden close by an untimely death, when
she had been before the public scarcely six years.

At the commencement of 1876 Garcia received the letter from Wagner to
which attention has been already called, embodying the offer for him to
train the singers for the first Bayreuth Festival. This, however, he was
obliged to refuse, owing to his large _clientèle_ in London.

On July 14, 1877, the inventor of the Laryngoscope received his second
recognition for the services which he had rendered to the medical
profession, fifteen years having elapsed since the degree of Mus. Doc.
had been conferred on him, _honoris causa_, by the University of
Königsberg.

An influential meeting assembled to give their support at the ceremony
of presenting him with a service of plate.

Professor Huxley presided, and in his speech bore strong testimony to
the great services that Manuel Garcia had rendered alike to science and
humanity by his important discovery. It was unnecessary, Huxley said, to
do more than remind the physician that in the laryngoscope he had
gained a new ally against disease, and a remarkable and most valuable
addition to that series of instruments, all of which, from the
stethoscope onwards, had come into use within the memory of living men,
and had effected a revolution in the practice of medicine. They owed
this instrument to Signor Garcia.

The following year brought fresh honours at the Royal Academy of Music.
As previously the maestro had been elected a member of the Committee of
Management after twenty years' connection with the institution, so now,
after thirty years, he received a further mark of distinction by being
made one of the Directors of the Academy.

With 1879 Charlotte Thudicum entered the Royal Academy of Music as his
pupil. Success soon came to her, for after a year's tuition she won the
Parepa-Rosa scholarship, and two years later the Westmoreland. On
leaving his hands the young soprano went over to Paris to study opera
with his sister, Mme. Viardot, and upon her return in 1883 was at once
secured for the "Pops," Crystal Palace Saturday Concerts, and other
important engagements, while in the following season she sang with the
Birmingham Festival Choral Society.

In due course she secured fresh laurels by taking part in "Ivanhoe" at
the Royal English Opera House, in which opera she played Rebecca on
alternative nights with another of Garcia's pupils, Margaret Macintyre.

1881 brought Garcia's third recognition for his invention.

The International Medical Congress was to hold its seventh session in
London from the 2nd to the 9th of August, Dr de Havilland Hall, Dr (now
Sir) Felix Semon, and Dr Thomas J. Walker being appointed honorary
secretaries of the section devoted to "Diseases of the Throat," which
was to meet with Dr George Johnson, F.R.S., in the chair.

At the suggestion of the late Sir James Paget, Señor Garcia received an
invitation to read a paper before the Congress, describing his work in
connection with his invention. The invitation was gladly accepted. He
attended, and was introduced to the assembled doctors in the most
flattering terms during the inaugural address by the chairman, who was
one of the vice-presidents of the medical section.

In connection with the friendship which existed between Manuel Garcia
and Sir Felix Semon, one may recall an amusing anecdote recounted in the
latter's short memoir, published for Garcia's 100th birthday.

     "On a certain occasion," the doctor writes, "I delivered a lecture
     at the Royal Institution of Great Britain on the culture of the
     singing voice. In the course of my remarks I attacked the dogmatic
     way in which the question of the registers was treated by different
     authorities, and showed there and then, by the aid of some
     excellent photographs of the larynx during the emission of tone,
     that the mechanism of the registers, even in relation to the same
     kind of voice, may in some cases be totally different from others.

     "The lecture had a humorous sequel, for among my audience were a
     number of the best known singing teachers in London. When I had
     finished, one of these, well known for his obstinate dogmas, came
     up to me in a state of visible annoyance and said, 'You should not
     speak on things that you know nothing about.' A second expressed
     his recognition of the fact that I had taken up arms against the
     theorists, and then proceeded to describe an entirely new theory on
     the register formation discovered by himself.

     "But, last of all, Garcia came up to me with a smile, and remarked,
     'Good heavens, how much I must have taught during my life that is
     wrong!'"

In 1882 Margaret Macintyre and Marie Tempest commenced studying under
the maestro.

The former, a daughter of General Macintyre, was to be the best known of
Garcia's pupils at Dr Wyld's London Academy of Music, where he taught
for some twenty years. The prima donna during her training there carried
off in turn the Bronze, Silver, and Gold Medals of the Academy. During
the last year she had the honour of singing the soprano _rôle_ in the
performance of Liszt's oratorio "St Elizabeth," given at the London
Academy Concert in the St James's Hall in honour of the composer's
presence in London. Two years later she appeared as Michaela in
"Carmen," winning instant success. Moreover, as we have already seen,
she shared with Miss Thudicum the _rôle_ of Rebecca in the production
of "Ivanhoe," while shortly afterwards she took part in the Handel
Festival of 1891. After this she sang with the greatest success as prima
donna in the Grand Opera seasons at Milan, Moscow, and St Petersburg.

Marie Tempest arrived at the Royal Academy of Music in the Easter term
of 1882, and remained there three years under Garcia, carrying off the
Bronze, Silver, and Gold Medals of the Institution. The Academy was
specially prolific of talent at this time, for among the students during
these years were Eleanor Rees, Miss Thudicum, Edward German, Courtice
Pounds, and several others who were to attain wide fame in the musical
world.

Of her studies under Garcia Miss Tempest told me a couple of very
characteristic anecdotes.

When Miss Etherington, as she was in those days, came for her first
interview with the maestro (having arrived from a convent in France only
a few days before), she was wearing a very tight-fitting dress of Stuart
tartan, cut in the Princess style, which showed off her figure to
advantage and drew attention to the nineteen-inch waist of which she was
the proud possessor.

Garcia raised his eyebrows when he saw his prospective pupil step
forward from the group of girls who were waiting their turn to be heard.
However, nothing was said until her song, an Italian "aria," had been
brought to a close. Then came a pause, while Marie Tempest tremblingly
awaited the verdict on her voice. At last the oracle spoke. "Thank you,
Miss Etherington; will you please go home at once, take off that dress,
rip off those stays, and let your waist out to at least twenty-five
inches! When you have done so you may come back and sing to me, and I
will tell you whether you have any voice."

The assembled girls tittered audibly, and the unfortunate victim slunk
out of the room with flaming cheeks.

"He was quite right, though," Miss Tempest concluded; "no one can sing
when laced in as tightly as that. I went home, and--well, I've never had
a nineteen-inch waist since."

The other episode concerned the Academy weekly concerts. Garcia
generally had a pupil singing at these, and would sit in front, nodding,
waving his hand, and generally doing his best to establish telepathic
communication with the vocalists, that he might inspire them with his
spirit. At one of these Marie Tempest was due to sing with orchestra an
air from "Ernani," which had been carefully studied under her master.

The conductor waved his hand and the aria was commenced. After a few
bars Manuel Garcia began to fidget in his seat, then to frown, and to
beat time with his feet. At last the veteran could stand it no longer.
He rose from his seat, leapt on to the platform--approaching his
eightieth year as he was,--and seized the baton from the conductor's
hand, exclaiming, "Mon Dieu! you are ruining my pupil's song. I will
conduct it myself."

Shortly after this episode Miss Tempest, as a member of the operatic
class, took part in a mixed performance which included an act from
"Carmen" and another from the "Mock Doctor."

Alberto Randegger was present at this, and came up to her afterwards,
saying, "Miss Etherington, you must undoubtedly go on the stage."

"After that," said Miss Tempest, "I seemed to be on the boards before I
knew where I was."

"The first piece in which I appeared was 'Boccacio,' at the Comedy
Theatre; from that I went to the Opéra Comique for 'Fay o' Fire,' and
then came 'Dorothy,' and--the rest." What a record it has been, that
series of triumphs in light opera, concert, and comedy, thus dismissed
with a smile and a characteristic shrug of the shoulders as--"the rest"!

Another pupil of Garcia at the Academy about this time was Madame Agnes
Larkcom.

Arthur Oswald, now a professor at the Royal Academy of Music, tells me
that at one of his lessons he was stopped by Señor Garcia with the word
"wrong!" He was surprised, because he felt sure that he had sung the
right notes in time and tune, and with careful attention to the words
and vocal phrasing. "I will give you five minutes to find out," said
Garcia to the puzzled pupil when he asked to be told the fault. At the
end of that time the master said, "Voix blanche, voix ouverte, voix
horrible."

Mr Oswald recounted another episode which was very typical. His friend
William Nicholl, after studying under various Continental and English
masters, was anxious to have an interview with Garcia to make sure that
he had assimilated correct ideas. A meeting was accordingly arranged,
and he went up to "Mon Abri," expecting to be put through some sort of
catechism as to the human voice and the principle of singing. Instead
of this, Garcia, on learning that his visitor wished to teach, motioned
him to the piano-stool. "Will you sit down, please? Merci. Now, you are
the master, I am the pupil. I know absolutely nothing. Give me my first
lesson."

Nicholl commenced to carry out this very practical test of his powers to
the best of his ability. All went well till in an unlucky moment he
mentioned the phrase "voice-production," which was the maestro's pet
aversion. In an instant Garcia leapt to his feet and banged his fist on
the piano. "Mon Dieu! How can you _produce_ a voice? Can you show it to
me and say, 'See, here it is. Examine it?' Non! Can you pour it out like
molten lead into the sand? Non! There is no such thing as
voice-production. Perhaps you mean voice-_emission_. You do? Eh, bien!
Then say so, please."

"Through the good offices of a friend," says another pupil, "I found
myself one day in Garcia's room at the London Academy of Music. He was
just finishing a lesson, and I was struck at once by the extreme
courtesy and patience with which he taught, the charm of his manner, the
directness, the common-sense, and uncommon penetration of his remarks.

"He welcomed me with a few graceful words, scrutinising me with a keen
but friendly glance. Thus I sang to him with much confidence, losing all
the nervousness with which I had looked forward to the examination by so
famous a judge. He accompanied me gently, yet with firmness and
rhythmical decision. When I had finished he looked straight at me, and
to my utter astonishment remarked, 'You are a philosopher, are you not?'

"'Oh, I have studied philosophy to some extent,' I replied.

"'What do you think of your performance?'

"'But I should like to know your opinion,' I blurted out.

"'No, no,' he answered. 'Tell me what you think of it?'

"So I told him that I thought I had a voice and an ear, but I was afraid
I did not succeed in making a strong appeal, and I was sure I did not
know how to sing. He laughed. 'Quite right, quite right; you do not
sing,' he said."

"Manuel Garcia's science and cleverness," writes another, "enabled him
to know at once whether he had to deal with a pupil of promise or not,
and unlikely aspirants were not allowed to waste his time and theirs.

"I remember a notable case in point. A very rich lady offered the master
any price if he would only teach her daughter. He refused, knowing well
he could never obtain serious work from her; but as the mother persisted
he hit upon a compromise. He asked the ladies to be present during a
lesson, and he undertook to teach her, if the girl still wished to learn
singing after hearing it taught. The lesson began. The pupil--who seemed
to the listeners an already finished singer--had to repeat passage after
passage of the most difficult exercises before the master was satisfied;
he insisted upon the minutest attention to every detail of execution.
Mother and daughter exchanged horrified glances, and looked on
pityingly. The lesson was finished, the master bowed the ladies out, and
in passing the pupil the young girl whispered to her, 'It would kill
me!' Señor Garcia, returning from the door, said contentedly, 'They will
not come again. Thank you, mon enfant, you sang well.'

"He was always careful to avoid making his pupils self-conscious by too
many explanations. In one case he found a simple way of teaching
chest-voice to a girl. 'Do you know how a duck speaks?' Señor Garcia
asked her. 'Imitate it, please.'

"With much giggling, to which he listened patiently, she tried to obey,
'Quack, quack.'

"'Good! Now turn this into a singing note; sing one tone lower in the
same manner, and one more.'"

A simple enough device, which spared him and his pupil much vexation.

His knowledge of the human voice and his power of detecting its faults
were equally marvellous. He had a pupil who, by singing higher than her
natural range, had strained her voice, and it was necessary that she
should avoid singing anything in a high register. Once only she
disobeyed him, and on entering his room the next day she was greatly
surprised that the master's face was flushed with anger. At once he
reproached her for having sung soprano. She pleaded guilty. "But how did
you know?"

"I heard you speak, that is quite enough," he said; and he told her that
in ten years not a note would be left of her brilliant voice. However,
on her promising not to disobey his instructions again, Garcia made up
his mind to help the girl to come out under his auspices as an oratorio
singer. "But," he told her, "you will need one year's uninterrupted
study before appearing in public."

The pupil's singing was much admired, for few besides herself and her
master could detect that anything was amiss with her voice. She was not
inclined, therefore, to realise the importance of his decision, and
after a few months' work she cheerfully accepted an invitation to spend
the winter abroad. When she informed him of this he bade her farewell,
saying that it would be perfectly useless for her to come back to him,
because, when accepting her as a pupil, his condition was--"One year's
uninterrupted study."

Thinking it would be an easy matter to talk him over, she came back to
him on her return. But she had not reckoned with the iron will of the
maestro. He refused to give her any more lessons. For over an hour she
sat in his room, and as one lesson after another was given, she could
not keep back her tears. The situation became intense, but the teacher
did not lose control. He was pained to see her sorrow, and at last rose
from his seat and led her gently away, saying, "Never in my life have I
wavered over a decision once made; I cannot do so now. You must make the
best of what you know already; you will probably get engagements, but do
not base your future on singing."

Time has proved that he was right. After a few years she began to lose
her high notes rapidly, and soon her voice was completely gone.

I have already alluded to the maestro's hatred of the tremolo. In this
connection an old pupil has sent me the following note:--

"I was going through the various exercises in the book, 'Hints on
Singing,' and one day, after I had been studying some little time, there
came the usual query, 'What is the next exercise we come to?' 'The
shake,' I replied promptly, and added, 'Shall I take that?' The maestro
gave a quiet smile as he answered, 'Well, no, I think not. You shake
quite enough for the present. We will pass on to the following one. With
this gentle rebuke at the tremolo, of which I had not as yet been able
to get rid, he went on to tell me how he had been at the opera a few
nights before, 'and, Mon Dieu, what tremolo! I could have howled like a
dog as I listened.'"

Not only had Manuel Garcia a remarkably accurate ear, but he possessed
the gift of "absolute pitch," a fact shown by the following anecdote. A
friend called to see him one afternoon, and the conversation turned upon
the question of pitch. Garcia shook his head reproachfully when the
visitor, who was some seventy years his junior, stated that he could not
tell what a note was by ear.

"No sooner had I said this," writes this friend in describing the
incident, "than the old maestro rose from his seat, stood with his back
to the piano, and told me to strike any note I liked and he would name
it. As rapidly as possible I struck the notes, and instantaneously he
called out what they were. I must have sounded upwards of two dozen, one
after the other, so rapidly that he was never left time to consider.
Without a moment's hesitation he named each in turn without a single
mistake."



CHAPTER XVIII.

AN OCTOGENARIAN AUTHOR.

(1890-1895.)


The five years preceding the celebration of Manuel Garcia's ninetieth
birthday are principally noteworthy for two episodes, which I will leave
Mr Hermann Klein to relate, since he was intimately connected with both.

The first took place during the summer of 1892.

"In the midst of this abnormally busy season, M. Maurel elected to
deliver a lecture at the Lyceum Theatre on 'The Application of Science
to the Arts of Speech and Song.' This duly came off, and its main
feature proved to be an exceedingly virulent tirade against the _coup de
la glotte_. This would not have mattered much had it not happened that
Manuel Garcia himself was present, and had to 'possess his soul in
patience,' while M. Maurel executed some ridiculous imitations of what
he considered to be the indispensable vocal concomitants of the _coup de
la glotte_,--a term derided only by certain Paris teachers who have
misunderstood and misdirected its use.

"Age and dignity alike compelled Signor Garcia to sit still and treat
with silent contempt this ill-timed and unjustifiable attack upon his
method.

"When the lecture was over, however, I offered him the columns of 'The
Sunday Times' as a medium for replying to M. Maurel's assertions.

"On the spur of the moment he accepted, and sent a short account of the
lecture, written in his own terse and trenchant manner. Then thinking
better of it, he decided not to take any personal part in the
discussion, and requested me not to print his copy.

"This threw the onus of reply upon me, and the answer proved so far
effectual that M. Maurel was moved to make a protest in other London
papers against any contradiction of his 'scientific argumentation,' save
by M. Garcia himself, and not even then unless supported by something
beyond 'simple denial.'

"Accordingly, the maestro then consented to write a letter to 'The
Sunday Times,' confirming the statement that he had found M. Maurel's
illustrations of the _coup de la glotte_ 'extremely exaggerated,' but
declining that gentleman's invitation to discuss the subject-matter of
his lecture, and adding that it would be utterly impossible to argue
upon theories which still remain to be revealed."

The second episode took place shortly after the maestro had entered his
ninetieth year,--an event which was celebrated at the Royal Academy of
Music by the gift of a silver tea service, subscribed to by the
professors of the R.A.M., the actual presentation being made by Walter
Macfarren, as _doyen_ of the teaching staff.

Some two months after this--that is to say, in the May of 1894--Hermann
Klein received a letter from the veteran teacher, who a few days before
had attended a dinner given at his house in honour of Paderewski, the
other invited guests being Sir Arthur Sullivan, Sir Joseph Barnby, Sir
A. C. Mackenzie, Signor Piatti, and other prominent musicians. The
maestro, it may be mentioned, had never heard Paderewski play in private
before, and was so enchanted when the latter sat down at the piano, that
he remained listening to the music till past midnight. "A worthy
successor to Rubinstein." This was his criticism of Paderewski's genius.

The letter ran as follows:--


     "MON ABRI," CRICKLEWOOD.

     DEAR MR KLEIN,--I want to know the cost of printing music, and in
     this connection would ask you to write answers to the four
     questions contained in the enclosed card. I suppose that in England
     or in France the ream consists of 500 sheets?

     Excuse my troubling you, and believe me your very sincere

     M. GARCIA.

     Your evening was charming!

Hermann Klein answered the questions in person, and thus quickly
discovered the nature of the scheme that was afoot.

Manuel Garcia in his ninetieth year intended to bring out another
text-book on Singing. His old pupil at once offered to assist in the
editing and arrangement of the MS., and the maestro readily accepted
the proffered help. I will leave Mr Klein to continue the story.

"For several weeks in succession I went to 'Mon Abri' regularly, to aid
him in the work. On two points he insisted--namely, the 'catechism' form
of the text, and the title, 'Hints on Singing,' which I candidly
confessed I did not care for. Otherwise any little suggestion that I
made was cordially agreed to. He was very careful about the signing of
the contract with the publishers (Messrs Ascherberg), and on this point
wrote as follows:--

     _Translation_.

     'MON ABRI,' Monday, May 7.

     DEAR MR KLEIN,--I have thought that at the reading of the contract
     between Mr Ascherberg and myself, if it were to be immediately
     followed by the signing, we should not have time completely to
     understand the clauses. As these doubtless will contain the details
     regarding the Colonial, American, and foreign rights, it is
     preferable that we should know in advance what the terms are, and
     we should be very much obliged to Mr Ascherberg if he would be so
     kind as to send us on a copy of the contract. We will send it back
     to him any day that may suit you.--Mille amitiés!

     M. GARCIA.

"Three months later the printing was finished, and early in September
the proofs began to come to hand. We were both away from London when I
received this missive:--

     _Translation._

     GALE HOUSE, LAKE ROAD,
     AMBLESIDE, WESTMORELAND,
     _September_ 7.

     MY DEAR FRIEND,--Are you in town?

     I have been working _like a little nigger_ correcting, transposing,
     suppressing, &c., the proofs. I will send you my first corrected
     proof, and will you please forward it to Ascherberg for the
     printers? but I do not wish to do this until I know that you are in
     town.--Amitiés!

     M. GARCIA.

"The question of a preface now came up. The maestro was somewhat averse
to providing one, but ultimately he yielded to the desire of the
publisher, who was naturally anxious that the 'Hints' should contain
everything calculated to arouse attention. He wrote only a few lines,
however, and I had to persuade him to add more. He also decided to
include a reproduction of the well-known woodcut of himself using the
laryngoscope by the light of an oil-lamp, and a couple of laryngoscopic
mirrors (half-size), which by some mistake nearly came to being omitted.
With the proofs he took infinite pains, and wrote me several notes about
them, of which the following deserve quotation:--

     _Translation._

     DEAR FRIEND,--Among some corrections which I have been making at
     the printer's, I have eliminated pages Nos.---- (I have forgotten
     the numbers). I asked to see the whole of the proofs, and they have
     sent me only those which were uncorrected. If I can get them
     immediately (the newly-corrected lot) you will doubtless have the
     whole set without delay.

     In the preface they have taken out the two little mirrors: now
     one--the smaller--would be necessary, and sufficient to explain the
     laryngoscope.

     As to the preface, I will see what I can add. It seems to me, if I
     am not mistaken, that Mr Ascherberg has the intention of adding an
     editorial preface to the work, with the idea of increasing the
     sale. That, I think, would be a mistake. Praise, if the book
     merits it, must come from without, unless one wishes to turn it
     into blame.

     Send me, not those proofs which I have, but the corrected pages,
     including those in which I have corrected the accompaniments, and
     the whole shall be returned to you without delay. We shall be back
     again on the 18th (September), and if you care to come to me on the
     19th we will prepare the index.--Bien à vous,

M. GARCIA.

"By the middle of October the work was complete and ready for the press.
However, a delay occurred, in consequence of the necessity for waiting
until an American edition had been printed and published in accordance
with copyright requirements. The dear old master grew a trifle
impatient, although he knew the cause:--

     _Translation._

     DEAR FRIEND,--Business having called me back to town, I paid you a
     visit at your house, but did not find you at home. No other cause
     led me to do this than the simple curiosity to know what has become
     of the 'Hints.' I suppose Mr Ascherberg is having them prepared for
     publication in America? If you have time, send me a line.--Mes
     amitiés!

     M. GARCIA.

"Eventually the 'Hints on Singing' were published in the last week of
January 1895. The reception of the book generally afforded pleasure to
its venerable author, and he was particularly gratified by the long
notice of it which appeared in 'The Sunday Times.' Hence the note here
appended. The one that follows it was elicited by some remarks
concerning the 'real' inventor of the laryngoscope, which I, in due
course, answered in the columns of my journal.

     _Translation._

     'MON ABRI,' CRICKLEWOOD.

     MY DEAR MR KLEIN,--I owe you double thanks, first, for the cordial
     congratulations brought by your telegram, and again for the
     flattering article in 'The Sunday Times': two friendly emanations
     which have been greatly appreciated by the inhabitants of 'Mon
     Abri.' I trust your family are all well. Here we are in the best of
     health, and unite in warmest regards to you and yours, wishing you
     all the prosperity that you can desire!--Tout à vous de cœur,

     M. GARCIA.

     _Translation._

     MY DEAR FRIEND,--Since you wish to come to the aid of the artistic
     reputation of the 'maestro di bel canto,' be good enough also to
     favour his scientific reputation by saying that he invented the
     laryngoscope, and that the Laryngological Society of London created
     him an honorary member.

     Ascherberg would like me to do something to push the sale of the
     'Hints.' What can I do?

     This little book has given you more trouble than it deserves, and I
     am sorry on your account.--Tout à vous cordialement,

     M. GARCIA.

"Acknowledging another notice of the book:--

     _Translation._

     'MON ABRI,' CRICKLEWOOD.

     DEAR MR KLEIN,--Thanks a hundred times for the exceedingly
     flattering article you sent me. Let us hope, for the sake of the
     sale, that the public will accept your point of view. If Mr
     Ascherberg should think of bringing out a new edition (when need
     arises), I will point out two or three errors which still exist,
     even in the 'corrected' copies I have received. I had already
     altered them in proof, but they were inadvertently left in.

     What frightful weather! I dare not go out any more. I hope you and
     your family are well.--Tout à vous,

     M. GARCIA."

Here Mr Klein's contribution ends.

Two months after the publication of 'Hints on Singing' the subject of
our memoir completed his ninetieth year, and with this the feeling was
borne in upon him that at last he might enter on a less strenuous life.

Accordingly in the following September he relinquished his
professorship, and membership on the Committee of Management at the
Royal Academy of Music, and thereby severed a connection of nearly half
a century. Already a middle-aged man when he first took up his work at
the Academy under Cipriani Potter, he saw him succeeded as Principal in
turn by Charles Lucas, Sterndale Bennett, Sir George Macfarren, and
finally Sir Alexander Mackenzie, who was holding the position at the
time of his retirement. Allowing for a possible break of a month or two,
Señor Manuel Garcia was actively engaged in teaching singing at
Tenterden Street for the long period of forty-seven years. The Chevalier
Alberto Randegger, who was his colleague on the staff for the greater
part of this time, sent me the following letter:--

"Although Señor Garcia and myself have been good colleagues for many
years at the R.A.M., he was, as you know, so reserved, modest, and
retiring that very, very few people were by him allowed to approach or
frequent his society on very intimate terms."

What of musical London during the twenty years preceding Garcia's
retirement from the Academy? Let us recall some of the artists who were
most prominently before the public, and the more important musical
events which were taking place in the operatic field. The glance need
only be a brief one, for with the last quarter of the nineteenth century
we are among events which are within the ken of most people.

With 1875, the year after Sarasate's _début_, we find three events
worthy of note. There took place the first performance in London of
"Lohengrin," with Albani as Elsa, Cotogni as Telramund, and Nicolini in
the title part. Then in the following September the Carl Rosa Opera
Company appeared in the capital for the first time at the Princess's
Theatre. Lastly, during the season there was heard at Drury Lane a young
Polish singer, who met with emphatic success in baritone parts such as
Don Giovanni, Nevers, Valentine, and Almaviva. He appeared then under
the name of "De Reschi": eventually he was to return and take the town
by storm as Jean de Rezké.

Two years later we hear of the _début_ of Gerster, and of Gazarré, a
Spanish tenor, who bridges over the interval between the retirement of
Mario and the advent of his famous successor.

In this year, moreover, Richard Wagner came to England to take part in
the series of Wagner Festival concerts, which had been arranged with a
view to paying off the debt on the new theatre at Bayreuth.

1878, in which the deaths of Charles Mathews and Frederick Gye are
chronicled, is important for the London production of Bizet's "Carmen"
on June 22. Hermann Klein went to this _première_ in the company of
Garcia, and in his reminiscences has set down an interesting description
of the evening. On the distributing of the parts for "Carmen," Campanini
returned the _rôle_ of Don José, stating that he could not undertake a
part where he had no romance and no love duet except with the seconda
donna. Shortly afterwards Del Puente, the baritone, declined the part of
Escamillo, saying it must have been intended for one of the chorus;
while Mdlle. Valleria suggested Michaela should also be given to one of
the chorus. For some time things were at a standstill, till at length
the principals were, by persuasions and threats, induced to attend a
rehearsal, and all began to take a fancy to their _rôles_, and in due
course the opera was announced.

The receipts for the first two or three nights were miserable, and
Mapleson had to resort to the same sort of expedients as in "Faust" for
securing an enthusiastic reception, knowing that after a few nights it
would be sure to become a favourite.

"It was no easy matter for a performance at the opera to satisfy the
maestro in these days," writes Hermann Klein; "the singing rarely
pleased him in comparison with the part. Upon my reminding him that
'Carmen' had been nearly a failure at the Opéra Comique in Paris three
years before--'I know,' he replied; 'and the poor composer died of a
broken heart three months later. That is the way France generally treats
rising talent, including her own. I place little value on the opinion of
Paris about a new work.'

"Garcia was enthusiastic over the opera. The subject and treatment
appealed to him to a singular degree, while the story he thought
intensely dramatic, and was astonished and delighted at the Spanish
colour in the music."

During the same year the Gatti brothers gave a series of Promenade
Concerts at Covent Garden, with Sullivan conducting.

We may note here a piece of theatrical news. In December Ellen Terry
first appeared at the Lyceum under Irving's management, taking the part
of Ophelia in that memorable production of "Hamlet." 1879 sees the
Italian Opera season given under Ernest Gye (whose father had died from
the effects of a gun accident in the previous December), and the superb
Jean Lassalle is added to the company. Concert-goers find an interesting
fact in this year in the establishment of the famous Richter Concerts.
These were the outcome of the Wagner Festival of two years before, and
were announced for this preliminary season as a series of three
"Orchestral Festival Concerts."

With 1880 comes the _début_ of the great basso, Edouard de Rezké, as
Indra in "Le Roi de Lahore."

Next year Anton Rubinstein was in London for the production of his
opera, "The Demon."

In 1882 (bringing with it the death of Wagner), we may examine the list
of stars at the Opera House once more, so as to note what names have
disappeared, and by whom the gaps have been filled. Among the fair sex
we find Patti, Albani, Trebelli, Sembrich, Valleria, and Lucca, who had
returned after ten years' absence; while the men include Gazaré,
Mierzwinski, Faure, Maurel, Nicolini, Soulacroix, and Lassalle. 1882 was
further noteworthy as London's great Wagner year, for details of which I
am once more indebted to Mr Klein.

"Early in the year a troupe had been formed by Herr Neumann for the
purpose of performing 'Der Ring des Nibelungen' in the leading cities of
Germany, Austria, Holland, England, and Italy. The months of May and
June were chosen for the London visit, and Her Majesty's Theatre was
engaged. In all, four cycles of the tetralogy were given. The casts
included not a few of the famous artists who had taken part in the
initial performance of the 'Ring' at Bayreuth in 1876--among them
Niemann, Unger, the Vogls, Hill, Schlosser, and Lilli Lehmann (who sang
'Woglinde,' 'Helmwige,' and the 'Bird' music); with Reicher-Kindermann
as _Brunhilde_, while Anton Seidl conducted."

During the same month Herr Pollini arranged with Augustus Harris for a
series of performances at Drury Lane, by the entire troupe of the
Hamburg Opera House, and with the very popular Viennese _chef
d'orchestre_, Hans Richter, as conductor.

The Hamburg artists comprised at the time several who were to earn
world-wide reputations.

"Imagine the advantage of hearing 'Tristan und Isolde' and 'Die
Meistersinger' for the first time," writes Mr Klein, "with such a noble
singer and actress as Rosa Sucher, as 'Isolde' and 'Ena'; with such a
glorious 'Tristan' and 'Walther' as Brangaene, with that fine baritone,
Gura, as 'König Marke' and 'Hans Sachs!'"

In 1883 there are two new productions at Covent Garden, Boito's
"Mefistofele" and Ponchielli's "La Gioconda." Then, again, Joseph Maas
makes his _début_ in Grand Opera as Lohengrin, while Carl Rosa
inaugurates his first season at Drury Lane, and brings to a hearing two
new operas by English composers,--the "Esmeralda" of Goring Thomas and
the "Colomba" of Sir Alexander Mackenzie.

In 1884, the year of Sir Michael Costa's death, the great names are
Patti, Albani, Lucca, Tremelli, and Edouard de Rezké.

In the next year Mapleson is once more in command, and the season closes
with the presentation of a diamond bracelet to Adelina Patti, in
commemoration of her twenty-fifth consecutive season at Covent Garden.

In 1886 Ella Russell made her _début_, while both the Abbé Liszt and
Rubinstein paid their last visits to England. It was on this visit that
Rubinstein gave that wonderful series of seven historical concerts at
the St James's Hall, which realised no less than £6000 gross receipts.

The Jubilee year is noteworthy for the advent of Augustus Harris into
operatic management, for we find him giving a season at Drury Lane for
which he has secured a new tenor, Jean de Rezké, then practically
unknown to London audiences. The artist opened in "Aïda," and obtained a
complete triumph.

[Illustration: [Manuscript: Nellie Melba 1906]

_Photo by M. Shadwell Clerke._]

With 1888, Harris becomes lessee and operative director of Covent
Garden, with a strong social support and subscription to grand tier
boxes, and commences work with Melba and the two de Rezkés, Albani,
Trebelli, Arnoldson, Zélie de Lussan, Ella Russell, Lassalle, and
Margaret Macintyre, Garcia's pupil.

In 1889, the year of Carl Rosa's death, we have two important events.
"Romeo et Juliette" is given in French, instead of Italian, with a
superb cast, of which the star parts are taken as follows:--

    _Juliette_                    Melba.
    _Romeo_                       Jean de Rezké.
    _Friar Laurent_               Edouard de Rezké.

Moreover, in July, Jean de Rezké takes part for the first time in an
Italian version of "Die Meistersinger," with this cast:--

    _Ena_                         Madame Albani.
    _Magdalena_                   Mdlle. Bauermeister.
    _Walther_                     M. Jean de Rezké.
    _Hans Sachs_                  M. Lassalle.
    _Beekmesser_                  M. Isnardon.
    _David_                       M. Montariol.
    _Pogner_                      Signor Abramoff.
    _Kothner_                     M. Winogradon.

The early summer of 1890 witnessed the London _début_ of the successor
to Liszt and Rubinstein, of the greatest of the _fin de siècle_ group of
great pianists--Ignace de Paderewski. He was announced for a series of
four recitals at the St James's Hall. The first of these was given on
May 9 before a meagre and coldly critical audience, the second to a
better audience, which improved again with the remaining ones. But it
was not until the following season that the conquest was completed, and
the meagre attendance became a thing of the past. In fact, his Chopin
Recital at St James's Hall, in the July of 1891, drew the largest crowd
and the highest receipts recorded since the final visit of Rubinstein.
The early months of this year, moreover, witnessed an operatic
experiment which was destined to mark the climax of the modern
development of English Opera. D'Oyly Carte built the "Royal English
Opera House," engaged a double company, and opened it with a repertory
of one work, "Ivanhoe." The cast on the opening night of Sir Arthur
Sullivan's work was as follows:--

    _Rebecca_                 Marguerite Macintyre
                                     (Garcia's pupil).
    _Rowena_                  Esther Palliser.
    _Ivanhoe_                 Ben Davies.
    _Richard Cœur de Lion_ Norman Salmond.
    _Cedric_                  Ffrangçon Davies.
    _Friar Tuck_              Avon Saxon.
    _Isaac of York_           Charles Copland.
           and
    _The Templar_             Eugene Oudin.

While the alternative group of artists included Miss Thudicum (Garcia's
pupil), Lucile Hill, Franklin Clive, Joseph O'Mara, and Richard Green.
It ran from January 31 till the end of July; then in November the house
reopened with "La Basoche," in which David Bispham made his _début_ on
the London stage. With the autumn, however, all went wrong, the public
stayed away, and finally, on January 16, 1892, the Royal English Opera
House was finally closed, to be reopened later as the Palace Theatre of
Varieties.

Before leaving 1891 we must note the Covent Garden season, where a very
remarkable collection of artists appeared, who must have compared
favourably with those whom Garcia had heard half a century before. The
new-comers included Emma Eames, Sybil Sanderson, Van Dyck, and Plançon;
while in the company were the de Rezkés, Lassalle, Maurel, Ravelli, and
Montarid; Melba, Nordica, Albani, Zélie de Lussan, Rolla, Bauermeister,
Giulia Ravogli, and Mme. Richard.

Nor must one pass over Signor Lago's venture of an Italian season,
embarked on during the autumn of 1891 at the Shaftesbury Theatre. It was
notable chiefly for the first production in England of Pietro Mascagni's
"Cavalleria Rusticana." In the _première_, which was conducted by
Arditi, Marie Brema made her _début_ in opera as Lola, while the cast
was made up with--

    _Santuzza_              Adelaide Musiani.
    _Lucia_                 Grace Damian.
    _Alfio_                 Brombara.
    _Turiddu_               Francesco Vignas.

In 1892 comes the _début_ in London of Calvé, while Harris engages the
great Wagner singers from Bayreuth, to appear for a season of German
opera on Wednesday evenings at Covent Garden, with Rosa Sucher as
Brunhilde, and Alvary as Siegfried. One must also note the _début_ of
Clara Butt in "Orfeo" at the Royal College of Music.

In 1893, the year of Gounod's death, opera lovers at Covent Garden made
the acquaintance of the younger school of Italian composers in Mascagni
and Leoncavallo. The former first appeared at Covent Garden on June 19,
when he conducted "L'Amico Fritz" with Calvè, De Lucia, Pauline Joran,
and Dufriche. "Pagliacci" was given, with Melba as Nedda and De Lucia as
Canio, while Ancona gave a magnificent rendering of the famous prologue.

The works of two English composers were also produced during the
season,--Isidore de Lara's "Amy Robsart" and Villiers Stanford's "Veiled
Prophet."

With 1894 there are two novelties added to the repertoire,--Verdi's
"Falstaff" and Puccini's "Manon Lescaut"; while the English Jubilee is
celebrated of Joseph Joachim and Alfredo Piatti.

With 1895, the year in which Manuel Garcia concludes his ninetieth year,
Adelina Patti returns to Covent Garden for a few more performances, and
Jean de Rezké makes a temporary absence during the season, for the first
time for eight years.

The following year saw the death of Sir Augustus Harris, and with the
event the present _régime_ came into existence, the formation of the
Covent Garden Syndicate, with Earl de Grey at its head, Higgins as
director, and Neil Forsyth, secretary. Here we will abandon the
narration of the trend of operatic events in London, for those which
took place in the last ten years of Manuel Garcia's life are probably in
the memories of all. Those which took place during the first forty years
of the maestro's life in England seemed sufficiently remote to be worth
recalling, for by them we obtain at any rate a bird's-eye view of the
great names and events of the operatic world during Garcia's active
career as a teacher.



FOURTH PERIOD

RETIREMENT

(1895-1906)



CHAPTER XIX.

A NONAGENARIAN TEACHER.

(1895-1905).


In commencing this chapter I must apologise for the personal tone, which
is almost unavoidable, since I am giving purely personal reminiscences
of the years of study that I spent under Manuel Garcia.

It was early in the May of 1895 that my mother (Antoinette Sterling)
took me up to see her old master, in order that he might give his
decision as to the advisability of my entering the musical profession.

When we had driven out to his house on Shoot-up-hill, we rang the bell,
and a maid came to the door. "Is Señor Garcia well enough to see us? If
he is sleeping, do not disturb him. We can wait till he is rested." The
servant raised her eyebrows in slight wonderment. "Mr Garcia is out
gardening, Madame. I will tell him of your arrival."

This astonishing information was uttered in the most ordinary tone, as
though such a thing were a mere episode of everyday life. We were
ushered into the drawing-room, but were not kept waiting long, for in a
few minutes the door opened and Manuel Garcia entered. With a genial
smile and an exclamation of pleasure he came rapidly across the room,
taking short, quick steps, and was shaking hands with his old pupil
almost before she had time to rise from her seat. The next quarter of an
hour passed swiftly enough. A stream of questions fell from the lips of
the wonderful nonagenarian as to what she had been doing, where she had
been, what were her latest songs, what she thought of the pianist who
had recently come out, what of the political situation, when could she
come to lunch,--and so on.

He was short of stature, a little bent with age, frail-looking perhaps,
but wiry. His eyes were bright and piercing, his profile clear-cut and
distinguished. He had an olive complexion, a gift of his native Spain
which fifty years of London fog and de-oxygenised air had been unable to
take from him.

His white hair was partially covered by a red skull-cap, and his
moustache was closely cut. He spoke in rapid tones, yet with absolute
distinctness of clear enunciation.

Every word gave proof of that keen interest which he felt in all that
was going on around him. In expression, voice, and gesture there was an
amazing alertness, vigour, and mental activity which few men of seventy
could equal, fewer still surpass. His conversation gave evidence of the
fire of youth, tempered with the tolerance of old age.

[Illustration: FACSIMILE OF A LETTER WRITTEN BY MANUEL GARCIA AT THE AGE
OF NINETY-ONE.]

A more intimate acquaintance with the great teacher revealed further
qualities which made him loved, nay, worshipped, by all his pupils.
Loyal and staunch, he had an old-world courtesy, a charm of manner, and
a patience which was quite remarkable.

When Manuel Garcia had heard me sing he asked a few penetrating
questions. Then he turned to my mother and said that he would take me as
a pupil: he thought, however, that it would be better for me to wait a
year before starting work.

There was something almost uncanny in being told by a man ninety years
of age to come back in twelve months and commence singing-lessons. But
seeing and hearing him, one could not doubt that he would be ready and
waiting at the appointed time.

Nor was the supposition wrong. In the first week of April of the
following year, when he was approaching his ninety-second birthday, the
first lesson took place. From that time on, my studies continued under
his care and guidance until April 1900, when he was in his ninety-sixth
year. In this I had the honour of being the last pupil to be regularly
trained by him for the musical profession with the full four-years'
course of tuition.

That he should have been able to continue teaching at all at such an age
is sufficiently astonishing. That during those years he should have
postponed lessons through indisposition upon only some three or four
occasions gives a still keener insight into the extraordinary life led
by him as a nonagenarian.

What a wonderful experience those lessons proved, lasting sometimes
nearly two hours! When he was interested in explaining certain effects
in singing or in recounting stories of artists and operas _apropos_ of
the work in hand, time ceased to exist. The luncheon-bell would ring
three or four times without having any apparent effect, so engrossed was
he in his subject. At the end of the lesson he would, with the old
courtliness of his youth, insist on seeing one out himself. If one
opened the door and stood aside for him to pass, the manœuvre proved
perfectly useless. With a delightful gesture he insisted on his guest
preceding him, saying, "Ici je suis chez moi." Then he would skilfully
slip along the hall and open the front door. There he would
stand--oblivious, and apparently impervious, to draughts and
cold--chatting for several minutes or giving some parting advice before
holding out his hand and wishing one _au revoir_.

Almost more surprising is it that he should have continued to carry on
his correspondence. Many a long letter was received from him during
those years; while on one occasion he actually wrote out the entire
music of an Italian aria, "Liete voci," giving his own elaborations of
the original melody.

During the lessons he would remain seated at the piano, undertaking all
accompaniments himself. These would be given quietly, but with a firm,
rhythmical precision. In the case of the old Italian arie, they would
generally be played from memory. His white expressive hands would weave
elaborate preludes and harmonies into the music, and as one sang he
would sit with closed eyes as though his thoughts were far away. But
they were not, they were very much present. If a mistake were made the
music would cease, the error be pointed out, and a suggestion given for
its correction. This would take the form either of some helpful little
observation, made in clear, precise terms, or of personal illustration,
given in English, or more often French. Though over ninety years old, he
was quite equal to showing how he wanted notes taken or an effect given
by singing the passage himself. On one memorable occasion he sang two
entire octaves, commencing at the low A flat, and ending with a high
baritone G sharp. It sounds an almost incredible _tour de force_, but is
an absolute fact. The voice naturally trembled with age, though in a
surprisingly slight degree. But the timbre, enunciation, and dramatic
power were still there, while every phrase revealed the extraordinary
fire of his Spanish temperament.

When he had been singing thus one day he laughed and said, "I cannot
sing any more. You see how the voice trembles. That, you must not
imitate. The tremolo is an abomination--it is execrable. Never allow it
to appear, even for a moment, in your voice. It blurs the tone and gives
a false effect. Many French singers cultivate it, and I will tell you
why."

There had been at one time, he said, an eminent vocalist worshipped by
the Parisian public. His voice was beautiful in quality, faultless in
intonation, and absolutely steady in emission. At last, however, he
began to grow old. With increasing years the voice commenced to shake.
But he was a great artist. Realising that the tremolo was a fault, but
one which could not then be avoided, he brought his mind to bear upon
the problem before him. As a result, he adopted a style of song in which
he had to display intense emotion throughout. Since in life the voice
trembles at such moments, he was able to hide his failing in this way by
a quality of voice which appeared natural to the situation. The
Parisians did not grasp the workings of his brain, and the clever way in
which he had hidden his fault. They only heard that in every song which
he sang his voice trembled. At once, therefore, they concluded that if
so fine an effect could be obtained, it was evidently something to be
imitated. Hence the singers deliberately began to cultivate a tremolo.
The custom grew and grew until it became almost a canon in French
singing.

The maestro told another story to illustrate the strange way in which
effects were sometimes produced by the old vocalists. A certain artist
was singing Secchi's "Lungi dal caro." Something in his voice gripped
the audience from the first bar. There was an indefinable quality which
they had never experienced before, something which thrilled and stirred
them with an inexpressible weirdness, something which almost made the
blood run cold. When the music ceased, every one drew a deep breath and
remained silent for a few moments. Then came a burst of rapturous
applause. Later on, a fellow musician went up to the singer,
congratulated him, and then said, "Tell me how you were able to produce
that effect upon your audience."

"Did you not hear? No? Then I will tell you how I did it. Throughout the
music I sang the least shade flat. The result you observed."

And now a few words as to Manuel Garcia's Method of Teaching.

He always impressed on singers and teachers alike that the Art of
Singing was not voice-_production_, a term which he loathed, but
guidance in voice-_emission_.

His Method may be perhaps summed up in the doctrine that it was _not_ a
method--in the sense that he had no hard and fast rules,--his object
always being to make each pupil sing in the way most natural and
involving the least effort. He was careful to impress on one the fact
that any visible effort took away from the charm of the singer. If one
gave too free play to the lungs, and sang beyond oneself, he would
remark, "You must not forget the advice my father gave me: 'Do not let
anybody see the bottom of your purse; never spend all you possess, nor
have it noticed that you are at your last resource.'"

The first lesson for all pupils would be practically a chat on the
singer's aims and on the instrument at his disposal: he would explain in
clear language the different parts of the instrument, and show that the
lungs had to be properly filled; then in the first attempt at emission a
steady gentle stream was to be sent out, while one guarded against the
natural tendency to empty the lungs quickly. At the larynx the air in
passing through the little lips of the glottis received pitch, which
varied according to the rapidity with which these opened and allowed
puffs of air to pass through; then in passing through the passage from
the larynx to the front of the mouth they received timbre and
vowel-tone, which varied according to the shape of the pharynx and the
height of the soft palate.

The tone was then to be directed to the front of the mouth, and here the
consonants were made, but these latter were not to interfere with the
flow of sound or cause any jerkiness. When a phrase was commenced the
tone was to flow on evenly, smoothly, steadily, with greater or less
sustaining power as desired, until the end was reached. He would further
explain something of the theory of registers, and the causes of various
kinds of tones, good and bad. Finally, before telling the pupil to make
his first tones, he would impress on him this: "If you do not understand
anything perfectly, ask me at once, and I will endeavour to clear up the
point and show you how to get over the difficulty. And remember that we
must have the knowledge to guide the emission of the voice with our
brains. When the tone has once been emitted it is too late to correct a
fault. We must be aware beforehand exactly what we are going to do. We
must know what is right and how to do it. That is the secret."

After this preliminary explanation the first step invariably consisted
in the emission of a steady tone, deep breathing being insisted on for
the purpose. At the first sign of unsteadiness in the tone the pupil was
directed to stop and begin again. In the intervals of rest the
physiology of the voice was clearly and carefully explained, and the
proper position of the various parts of the body and throat, and the
management of the vocal cords necessary for the emission of resonant
tone, were the first laws laid down. When once the pupil could sing a
scale slowly and steadily, the way was open to the practice of
exercises; and very often in the case of a voice of promise these
exercises constituted the whole course of study for a considerable
period.

The famous _coup de la glotte_, or shock of the glottis, with which his
name is associated, has often been misapplied from ignorance of its real
object, which was to secure that the vocal cords were closed at the
commencement of the tone, and that there was consequently no preliminary
escape of the breath. How far his methods, which also included the
imparting of a remarkable grasp of every phase of vocal expression, were
successful, is to be gathered from the list of his direct or indirect
pupils, which, as we have seen, includes a great many of the most
prominent representatives in the world of song.

At the lessons the maestro did not, as a rule, offer either praise or
blame. He was, however, always encouraging, and treated pupils according
to their individual powers. He seemed to know instinctively what they
could manage and what was beyond them. His remarks might be made in
English, French, or Italian, so that the pupil had to keep his wits
about him. In them there was a directness and penetration which filled
one with implicit confidence in his keen mind and extraordinary
experience. Hardly a lesson passed in which he did not, during the
intervals for rest, tell some anecdotes of the most engrossing interest.
These would have as their subject the elder Garcia, Malibran, Jenny
Lind, Meyerbeer, Rossini, Mario, Pasta, or some other of the great
musicians of the past. Often, too, he would speak of his memories of
Spain, of the Peninsular War, the French Revolution, the first New York
season of Italian opera, his tour in Mexico, the discovery of the
laryngoscope, or other memories of his long career. But though related
with delightful readiness, these stories always displayed extreme
modesty in reference to the part played by himself in the various
episodes.

It was in the same spirit, too, that he would speak of his efforts as a
teacher. "I only tell you how to sing, what tone is good, what faults
are to be avoided, what is artistic, what inartistic. I try to awaken
your intelligence, so that you may be able to criticise your own singing
as severely as I do. I want you to listen to your voice, and use your
brain. If you find a difficulty, do not shirk it. Make up your mind to
master it. So many singers give up what they find hard. They think they
are better off by leaving it, and turning their attention to other
things which come more easily. Do not be like them.

"In Paris once a number of boys were set some problems whilst competing
for a prize at the Gymnase. One of them was seen to cry, and on being
asked why he did so, replied that the problems were too easy. He was
afraid that all the others would be able to do them as well as himself,
so that he would be prevented from carrying off the prize. The master
smiled, and told him to answer the questions by a more difficult method,
if he knew one. He did so, and gained the first place.

"Many singers do the opposite. They burst into tears because they find a
thing too hard. Do not be afraid to face a difficulty. Make up your mind
to conquer it. I only direct you. If you do a thing badly, it is your
fault, not mine. If you do it well, all praise to you, not to me. I show
pupils how to sing, and the proper way to study. Suppose some one meets
me out of doors and says, 'Can you tell me the way to Hampstead Heath?'
I answer, 'I will walk there with you.' We set out, and I keep by his
side, saying, 'This is the street we have to pass through. Do not turn
down there. That goes in the wrong direction. Follow my instruction, and
you will arrive at your destination. I know the road well.' If he takes
the wrong turning, that is his fault, not mine. I cannot prevent him
from going off into the slums. I can only say 'Do not go there--that is
wrong.' He must follow my advice or not, as he chooses. Again, if we
come to a very steep hill, and he says, 'I can't climb that. It is too
difficult. Let us not go up--I am tired'; I can only reply, 'If you wish
to reach the Heath, you _must_ climb it. There is no other way of
getting to your destination.' But if he is lazy, and will not mount it
by his own endeavour, I cannot lift him and carry him upon my
shoulders."

How characteristic it was of the master's innate modesty to speak of his
work in this simple way! How he ignored the times when he pulled the
pupils back by main force from that wrong path; when he cheered them on,
should they get discouraged; when he described in concise terms the
easiest way of climbing up that hill! If they failed to mount the ascent
on the first occasion, he explained the reason for their failure. Then
he bade them be of good courage and try again. If they failed ten times,
he would once more carefully repeat exactly what had to be done, and
seek for fresh illustrations which might perhaps put the matter in a
clearer light. Truly, if he did not actually carry them up the steep
path, he came very near doing so. He was like a friend offering
assistance rather than a teacher paid to instruct. Ah, dear maestro!
never shall I forget the infinite patience and gentleness which you
displayed in those hours of study.

When a difficulty had been overcome, he would smile and say, "That was
as I wish. Do it again. Good! Now try and impress upon your mind exactly
what you did. Sing it once again. C'est ça! Do not let the old mistake
occur again." If one _did_ allow it to reappear, he would shake his head
sorrowfully and say, "Jenny Lind would have cut her throat sooner than
have given me reason to say, 'We corrected that mistake last time.'" It
seemed at first strange, to say the least, to hear these comparisons
made between oneself and a pupil who had studied under the same master
fifty years previously. However, after studying for three years, I grew
used to hearing him speak of musicians who had been dead forty years or
more; of a sister who, after a brilliant career, had died in 1836; of a
father who had come into the world a hundred and twenty years
previously; and of his first singing-master, Ansani, who was born early
in the eighteenth century. At any rate, during the last year of study I
was able to hear such casual remarks as "Ah, yes, I remember teaching
this song to Stockhausen for his _début_" (the great German vocalist
being at the time somewhere about seventy years of age), without
evincing more than a momentary surprise.

Wagner's compositions never attracted Manuel Garcia. The heavy
orchestration of the German music did not appeal to him, though he
raised no objection to going through Wolfram's song, "O Star of Eve," in
the Italian version, "O tu bel astro incantator." "Tannhäuser" was
written in a lyrical style: one shudders to think what he would have
said to anything like Wotan's "Abschied."

He did not believe in "vocalises," such as are used by most teachers in
earlier lessons. Instead of these, he preferred to give simple Italian
arias. He pointed out that with them one began at once to learn the
value of articulation and expression. Exercises he looked on as the
foundations of all good singing. They would take the form of sustained
and swelled notes, scales, passages of combined intervals, arpeggios,
chromatics, and shakes. The acquirement of agility in execution, he used
to say, required _at least_ two years' study, the result being that the
voice became flexible, even mellow and strong. In the elucidation of
difficulties he used to make use of many similes and illustrations,
which threw a vivid and illuminating light upon the matter in hand.
These, together with the various maxims of artistic singing which he
would impart, I used to write down in a book after each lesson, and as a
teacher of singing I have found them of the most inestimable value and
assistance.

When one day I told the maestro that I had decided to devote my whole
attention in the future to teaching, he at once sat down and wrote a
letter of recommendation, though in his ninety-eighth year,--a typical
example of his kindness and thought for the benefit of others.

It was an inestimable advantage to hear him teach singers of various
capacities. During the period I was under him I had the privilege of
hearing him give many lessons; for though I was the last pupil to
receive the full four years' training, he was still teaching a few
specially favoured amateurs,--in most cases the children or
grand-children of former pupils.

His ear was most accurate and unerring, while he was exceedingly quick
of observation, and equally ready with a helpful remark, given in
precise terms, a simile, a little anecdote, or even a slight gesture or
a look.

In his lessons he was ever ready to give the most interesting
information on any scientific questions or theories, and would discuss a
point with the greatest animation. He was particularly annoyed at the
way the _coup de la glotte_ was misunderstood and exaggerated beyond all
recognition by many musicians. In his 'Hints on Singing' he defines the
_coup_ as the neat articulation of the glottis that gives a precise and
clear start to a sound. In reality, as taught by him, it simply meant
that he wished one to get straight on to a note, without any uncertainty
or feeling about for it, instead of slurring up to it (a very common
fault), or taking it too sharp and having to sink to the proper pitch.

His works mark an epoch in a branch of human knowledge which one day may
be called a science. They deserve to be most carefully studied by any
one who wishes to gain a clear insight into that interesting
subject--the human voice. They are the fruit of a great mind and of
wonderful experience, written in a very lucid style, simple and terse,
full of interest to the musician as well as to the voice trainer.

He expounds his views fearlessly but modestly, with logical cogency.
Nearly every page bears evidence how cautious, discerning, and
progressive a teacher he was.

As showing the importance which Manuel Garcia attached to poetic
interpretation of all vocal music, I give three quotations from his
'Hints on Singing,' the extracts being taken from the section headed
"Preparation of a piece."

     "The pupil must read the words of the piece again and again till
     each finest shadow of meaning has been mastered. He must next
     recite them with perfect simplicity and self-abandonment. The
     accent of truth apparent in the voice when speaking naturally is
     the basis of expression in singing. Light and shade, accent,
     sentiment, all become eloquent and persuasive. The imitation of
     instinctive impulse must, therefore, be the object of this special
     preparation."

     "A powerful means of exciting the mind to a vivid conception of the
     subject is to imagine the personage as standing before one, and let
     the phantom sing and act, criticising closely both efforts; then,
     when satisfied with the results, to imitate them exactly. By
     faithfully reproducing the impressions suggested by this creature
     of fancy, the artist will obtain more striking effects than at once
     rendering a piece."

     "Another way is to recall some analogous situation in a work of
     art: for example, if we have to study the scene of Desdemona in the
     second act of Rossini's 'Otello,' 'L'error d'un infelice,' one of
     the fine paintings of the Magdalene at the feet of Christ might
     occur to the mind. Grief and repentance could not assume a more
     pathetic form."

He was always careful to secure the proper use of the registers on the
part of the pupil, for, as he would point out, more female voices have
been ruined by carrying the chest register too high (that is to say,
beyond the E or F above middle C) than by anything else.

He had a wonderful insight into the capabilities of those whom he
taught. Indeed, I remember his saying once that throughout his career he
had very rarely failed in reading from the eyes of an intending pupil
the prophecy as to his or her future success in the profession of music.
He disliked, he said, to be associated with failures, and the moment he
found that he had made a mistake in his estimate of a pupil's
capacities, he at once disillusioned him and declined to continue his
training.

His mannerisms while playing accompaniments were quite characteristic of
the man. He would strike the chords with the greatest vivacity, and
almost leap into the air from his piano-stool in his excitement at any
wrong trick of vocalisation; or again, he would make a dash for the
metronome, snatch it up and set it to time, and for the space of perhaps
ten minutes compel one to go on counting mentally, or beating time with
the hand in unison with the rhythmic movements of the guiding
instrument, until the time difficulty had been mastered. When he had
succeeded in preparing the voice for use like a beautifully toned
instrument, his teaching spread over the whole extension of every style
of music,--opera, oratorio, and song.

To his charm of courtly manners was added a never-failing wit and love
of fun: of this he gave constant proof. For instance, an old pupil
recounts how one day Manuel Garcia was seized with a fit of coughing.
"Ah, maestro, I'm afraid it's the spring," he commiserated, and was met
with the half-laughing, half-pathetic retort, "No, no; it is too many
springs."

A further illustration of his keen sense of humour, even in extreme old
age, is found in a letter which, as a nonagenarian, he wrote to a friend
some seventy years his junior.

The young man was famous among his acquaintances for a rather eccentric
handwriting, and no one was fonder of twitting him about it than the
maestro. The chaff on one occasion took the form of a letter, which I am
enabled to reproduce in facsimile. Señor Garcia wished to convey the
following information:--

     "I will remain here sometime longer, and when in town I will write
     to you.

     "Hoping to find you in good health and voice,--I remain, yours
     truly, M. GARCIA."

Remembering, however, to whom he was writing, he took the trouble to
make his communication as bewildering as possible by dividing the words
thus:--

     "Iw ill remain he re so--m--eti--me long er an d wheni n tow nIw il
     lw rite t oyo u.

     "Ho ping to fin d you ing oo d hel than dv oic e, I rem ain y our
     strul y MGARCI A."

Often at the close of a lesson he used to ask me to stay to tea, and in
the summer we would adjourn to the garden, where the table would be
spread beneath the inviting shadow of the trees. Those would be
red-letter days indeed.

On these occasions the maestro would leave thoughts of singing behind
him, and show his wide interests and deep insight into all the questions
of the day. Once when conversation had turned upon violin-playing, there
came up the name of Kubelik, who had come out in London a few weeks
previously. After four years' pupilage, I was not surprised to learn
that he had already been to hear the new instrumentalist. I must,
however, confess to having been somewhat startled when, with the
greatest _sangfroid_, he began comparing the execution with that of
Paganini. At other times he would speak of Joseph Chamberlain and the
newest developments of Fiscalities, the building of sky-scrapers in New
York, the drama of the day, or the Spanish War. One day he even showed
himself quite ready to discuss the pros and cons of Christian science.

[Illustration: FACSIMILE OF A LETTER WRITTEN BY MANUEL GARCIA AT THE AGE
OF NINETY-NINE.]

My lessons came to a close in April of 1900, when the maestro was in his
ninety-sixth year.

When in due course the time came for making my first provincial tour, he
wrote several letters on the subject, of which I quote three, as being
typical of the trouble which he was ever ready to take, and the wisdom
of the advice which he would give.

     "MON ABRI," CRICKLEWOOD.

     I am a very bad maker of programmes. If I had to deal with that
     sort of work, I should have to take the advice of an expert who
     could tell what sort of music would meet the taste of every
     individual public. Your mother might be your best adviser.

     Wishing you every success. M. GARCIA.

Again he writes:--

     Before you commence your tour you ought to give a _complete_ rest
     to your voice. Prepare for work only a week before you begin.

     Do not sing or study the "Elijah" nor any other music written for a
     baritone. For your organ the use of low notes is resting, therefore
     necessary.

     Do not indulge in exaggerated display of power. Too much ambition
     in that respect is fatal.

A third runs as follows:--

     You will do well not to limit yourself to singing easy songs, but
     also to attempt upon occasion such pieces as require the full use
     of your means. This will be an excellent preparation for your
     appearance in London, and it will give you the confidence in your
     powers and the facilities in using them necessary to enable you to
     take a place among the best of the profession. It will always give
     me pleasure to hear of your successes. Give my kindest regards to
     your mother.

After this I continued to see the maestro fairly often, and was not
surprised to hear of his setting off in his ninety-seventh year to spend
the winter in Egypt, or of his staying with his sister in Paris for a
few days on his way home.

In the early winter of 1903 my mother was taken seriously ill, and
Manuel Garcia on hearing of this at once wrote a sympathetic letter.

On January 10, 1904, the end came, and with the announcement in the
papers, one of the first tokens of sympathy was a beautiful wreath from
the maestro, followed by a telegram expressing his desire to be present
at the closing scene in the career of his old pupil. Despite the
distance, for the service was held at Golder's Hill, the maestro drove
over, stayed for the entire service, and remained behind afterwards to
offer a few simple but never-to-be-forgotten words of sympathy.

Two months after this he entered his 100th year. To celebrate the
occasion, an address of congratulation was presented to him, signed by
127 professors of the Royal College and Royal Academy of Music.

[Illustration: FACSIMILE OF A LETTER WRITTEN BY MANUEL GARCIA AT THE AGE
OF NINETY-FOUR.]

At the end of the year it was suggested by the editor of 'The Strand
Magazine' that I should prepare an article on "Manuel Garcia and his
Friends" for publication in the month of his centenary. On my
communicating with the maestro, he wrote at once offering to render
assistance, and asked me to bring the MS. up when ready. Accordingly, in
the January, two months before his 100th birthday, I spent the afternoon
with him, and was requested to read aloud the proofs of the article.

It was astonishing how memory enabled him to correct immediately any
mistake. He would suddenly stop and say, "No, no; it was in 1827, not
1825." Again, in the case of a story in which some details were wrong,
he said, "No, that is not right. I will tell it you again"; with which
words he recounted in French the tale of how his sister, Malibran, came
to make her _début_ at Paris. And so the afternoon passed, until
finally, after signing a photo, he insisted on coming to the door to see
me out. This experience served to prepare me for the astonishing ease
and energy with which, a few weeks later, he went through the Centenary
festivities.



CHAPTER XX.

THE CENTENARY HONOURS.

(1905.)


Upon St Patrick's Day, 1905, Manuel Garcia entered on the "second
century of his immortality," as Professor Fränkel felicitously put it.

That 17th of March has become red-lettered in the annals of music by
reason of its international character, and the fact that the two
professions of music and medicine joined hands with the royalty of three
countries, England, Spain, and Germany, in paying honour to whom honour
was due.

Sir George Cornewall Lewis was a firm disbeliever in centenarians, but
his scepticism must have suffered a severe shock could he have been
present at the celebrations. He would then have seen not merely a man
whose years beyond all question numbered a century, but one who at that
great age showed no sign of senility, and could still take an active
part in a series of trying ceremonies, and bear with dignity, if not
altogether without fatigue, a load of honours and congratulations, a
flood of speeches like the rushing of great waters, and repeated
thunderstorms of applause that would have overwhelmed many men in the
full vigour of life. Manuel Garcia went through the trying ordeal
without apparently feeling any ill effect, and seemed thoroughly to
enjoy the whole thing. It was difficult indeed to believe that the
venerable figure on the right of the chairman at the banquet, whom one
saw light a cigarette and smoke it with relish in defiance of the
Anti-Tobacco League, was born seven months before the battle of
Trafalgar!

It was passing strange, as one saw him giving the lie in every point to
Shakespeare's picture of extreme age, to think that he might not only
have "seen Shelley plain," but have been one of the students who
modelled their collars and their scowls on those of Byron; that he had
finished his education before Pasteur was born, and had come to man's
estate before Lister saw the light; that he had made his name known on
two continents while Scott and Goethe were still alive, and Darwin was
at school; and that he had made the discovery that will make his name
immortal while many of those whose names are now illustrious were yet
unborn. How quick were his senses and how alert his intelligence was
shown in many ways, trifling, perhaps, but significant, in the course of
what must have been the most trying day of his long life. His
extraordinary vitality was put to a very severe test in the functions
held in honour of the occasion, but he passed through them with the most
wonderful fortitude and genial courtliness.

When the King heard of the approaching birthday, he made inquiries as to
whether the aged maestro could stand the strain of personal investiture
of the honour which his Majesty had already decided to bestow. The
answer came back that he was quite ready, and anxious to show his
gratitude for this royal compliment by going to the palace.

An interview was accordingly arranged, and Señor Garcia, having risen
between nine and ten o'clock on the morning of that day of days, was
driven to Buckingham Palace, where he was ushered without delay into the
King's presence. His Majesty entered into conversation with the old
musician, showing his acquaintance with his long record of fame, and,
ever interested in aged people, questioned him as to his health with the
most sympathetic solicitude, being absolutely amazed at the vitality
displayed. The King expressed to the maestro his congratulations and his
recognition of all that he had done for medicine and music, and finally
invested him with the insignia of a Commander of the Royal Victorian
Order, at the same time signifying a wish to be personally represented
at the banquet which was to take place in the evening. Needless to say
that this characteristic kind-heartedness of King Edward, shown towards
the hero of the day, acted as a splendid tonic to the Centenary
celebrations.

From the Palace Señor Garcia drove to the rooms of the Royal Medical and
Chirurgical Society in Hanover Square, where by noon the fine saloon was
thronged by his old pupils and various deputations, representative of
many departments of learning and research.

The reception-room had been decorated for the occasion with palms and
foliage plants. In the centre of a carpeted dais at one end of the
apartment had been placed a high-backed chair, upholstered in crimson,
and on the extreme left was the still veiled portrait of the
centenarian, which had been painted by Sargent. In front of the seat
there were some beautiful floral tributes. The largest bore on its
ribbons the inscription, "À leur cher et venéré Professeur, Manuel
Garcia--Salvatore et Mathilde Marchesi, Paris, Mars 17, 1905." Another
came from Blanche Marchesi, and was addressed "To the Christopher
Columbus of the Larynx"; while yet another had been sent by the Glasgow
Society of Physicians.

Punctually at twelve o'clock, amid volleys of applause, Manuel Garcia,
looking amazingly bright and hale, entered the room with short, quick
steps, wearing the insignia of the Royal Victorian Order, conferred an
hour before, and walked unaided to the dais. This he mounted with
agility, and took his seat upon the crimson throne, a magnificent basket
of flowers on either side. There he sat for an hour, upright and
smiling, in full view of the spectators, during the proceedings which
ensued.

It fell naturally to the lot of Sir Felix Semon, both as Physician
Extraordinary to the King and chairman of the Garcia Committee, to
convey the intelligence of the earlier ceremony which had taken place
that morning.

     "Ladies and Gentlemen," Sir Felix said, "the auspicious proceedings
     of to-day's memorable occasion could not have been more joyously
     opened than they have just been. His Majesty the King, with the
     kindness of heart which endears him to us all, has just been
     pleased to receive Señor Garcia at Buckingham Palace, in order to
     express to him his congratulations and his recognition of all that
     Señor Garcia has done for medicine and music. At the same time the
     King has conferred upon him the honorary Commandership of the Royal
     Victorian Order. His Majesty, at the conclusion of the interview,
     expressed a wish to be personally represented at the banquet
     to-night, and said that he would desire his Lord-in-Waiting, Lord
     Suffield, to attend as his representative. I feel quite sure that
     this whole assembly has already shown by its applause that it
     recognises in this act a new token of the King's invariable
     kindness and his appreciation of all that is good and high."

Next came the Spanish Chargé d'Affaires, the Marquis de Villalobar, who
delivered a special message of congratulation from King Alfonso.

     "I have been honoured by his Majesty the King, Don Alphonse XIII.,
     with his august representation to congratulate you on the day of
     your centenary, and in the presence of the learned men who have
     assembled in this great metropolis for its celebration. In obeying
     the King's command, in which his Government and the Spanish people
     join, I honour myself, investing you, in the name of his Majesty
     and your motherland, with the Royal Order of Alphonse XII., as a
     high reward to your merits and the services rendered to mankind
     through your science and your labour. I feel it is also my duty to
     avail myself of this opportunity in order to make public the
     sentiments of my beloved Sovereign and of his Government, conveying
     sincere thanks, first to his Majesty King Edward VII., who I have
     just learned has most graciously conferred upon our compatriot a
     high distinction of this noble and hospitable country, and also to
     all the representatives of England and those of the learned
     societies here assembled to commemorate this centenary. Hearty
     gratefulness on behalf of Spain to all who have come and are
     represented here to-day to honour Don Manuel Garcia as a glory to
     modern science."

The Marquis de Villalobar then invested Señor Garcia with the Order,
amid loud cheers. After this glowing tribute came Professor Fränkel, who
said that they were assembled to honour one who had devoted his best
days to the teaching of singing,--had not been content with attempting
to discover the secrets of voice-culture by sound alone, but had
proceeded in a thoroughly scientific way. Through his genius he had
thrown light on the hitherto dark places of the larynx and the source of
the living human voice. He had thereby laid the sure foundations of the
physiology of the voice.

In recognition of his merits the German Emperor had conferred on him the
Great Gold Medal for Science. The Minister for Public Instruction had
requested him (Dr Fränkel) to present that rarely awarded distinction to
Señor Garcia that day when he completed the first century of his
immortality. He did so with the greatest pleasure, as one who owed a
very great debt of gratitude to the method of laryngoscopy invented by
their honoured friend.

An address from the Royal Society was then presented by Sir Archibald
Geikie (principal secretary), Professor Francis Darwin (foreign
secretary), and Professor Halliburton, F.R.S. The address, which was
read by Professor Halliburton, was as follows:--

     The Royal Society of London join very cordially in congratulating
     Manuel Garcia on the celebration of his 100th birthday.

     The President and Council recall with much pleasure the
     circumstance that the Royal Society afforded in their 'Proceedings'
     the medium for publishing to the scientific world the memorable
     paper in which Señor Garcia laid the foundation of the experimental
     study of voice-production, and at the same time, through the
     laryngoscope, provided the starting-point for a new department of
     practical medical science.

     The Royal Society trust that Señor Garcia may still continue for
     years to come to enjoy in good health the esteem which his
     scientific achievement and his high personal character have brought
     him.

     Signed and sealed on behalf of the Royal Society for Promoting
     Natural Knowledge,

     WILLIAM HUGGINS, _President_.

Sir Archibald Geikie (as a corresponding member of the Prussian Academy
of Sciences) read the following telegram from that Academy:--

     To the first investigator of the human voice by a new method which
     for all time has bestowed a signal service on art, on science, and
     on suffering humanity, the Royal Prussian Academy of Sciences sends
     on his 100th birthday its most respectful congratulations.
     WALDEYER, _Secretary_.

An address was next read from the University of Königsberg, which in
1862 had conferred on Señor Garcia the honorary degree of Doctor of
Medicine. A hope was expressed that he would live to receive the fresh
diploma which it is the custom to confer on doctors of fifty years'
standing.

The next address was from the Victoria University of Manchester,
presented by Professor Stirling, F.R.S., Dr Milligan, and Dr S. Moritz,
followed by one from the Medical Faculty of Heidelberg.

The address from his old pupils was read by Mr Ballin. In offering their
sincere congratulations they said: "The services you have rendered to
the art of singing are very great, and the large number of your pupils
who have become famous is incontestable proof of your genius." Madame
Blanche Marchesi spoke in the name of her parents, who were unavoidably
absent, expressing their gratitude for everything he had done for them.
Their method and their success were due to Señor Garcia, who had laid
the basis of their artistic career.

Mr Otto Goldschmidt, the husband of Jenny Lind, said that his late wife,
to the end of her days, continued to have respect, regard, and
veneration for Señor Garcia, who helped her to take the position in the
musical world which she attained; and he was very happy indeed to be
able to make that statement, and to congratulate the old master on what
he had done for the great art of singing.

An address from the Royal Academy of Music was followed by one from the
Royal College of Music.

Addresses and messages from Laryngological societies and associations
were then read, the following being among the bodies represented: The
American Laryngological Association; the Belgian Society of
Oto-Rhino-Laryngology (Dr Delsaux, Dr Goris, Dr Broeckkaert); the Berlin
Laryngological Society (Dr Landgraf, Professor Kuttner, Professor
Gluck); the British Laryngo-Oto-Rhinological Association (Mr Chichele
Nourse, Dr Percy Jakins, Mr Stuart-Low, Mr Dennis Vinrace, Dr Andrew
Wyld); the Danish Laryngological Society; the French Laryngo-Rhino-Otological
Society (Dr Moure, Dr Lermoyez, Dr Toxier, Dr Molinié); the Italian
Laryngo-Rhino-Otological Society and Neapolitan School of Laryngology
(Sir Felix Semon, hon. member, Professor Poli); the London
Laryngological Society (Mr Charters Symonds, Mr de Santi, Dr Davis, and
Mr H. B. Robinson); the Netherlands Laryngo-Oto-Rhinological Society (Dr
Moll, Dr Burger, Dr Kan, Dr Zaalberg); the New York Academy of Medicine,
Section of Laryngology (Dr Harman Smith); the Paris Laryngological
Society (Dr C. J. Koenig, Dr Mahu); the Rhenish-Westphalian
Laryngological Society (Dr Hirschland); the St Petersburg Laryngological
Society; the South-German Laryngological Society (Dr Avelis); the
Spanish Laryngo-Oto-Rhinological Society and Academy of Medicine and
Surgery (Dr Botella, Dr Tapia); the Vienna Laryngological Society
(Professor Chiari); the Warsaw Laryngological Society; the West-German
Laryngological Society (Dr Fackeldey, Dr Lieven); and the Hungarian
Laryngological Society. Congratulatory telegrams were received from the
Laryngological Societies of Sweden, Moscow, and Cracow; from the
Amsterdam Medical Society; from the Medical Society of Japan; from
Professor Moritz Schmidt, as President of the New German Laryngological
Society; from Dr Birkett of Montreal, in the name of the students of
M'Gill University; from Dr French, of Brooklyn, and hundreds of others.

The next speech brought a touching note to the scene, for in it Dr
Botella, of Madrid, as the official delegate of the Spanish Government
and of the Spanish Laryngological Society, addressed the maestro in his
mother-tongue. A new light came into the centenarian's eyes, and he bent
forward in an attitude of the closest attention, as if he feared to lose
a single note of the beloved speech, whose sound on such an occasion
must have carried him back over that great gulf of years to the far-off
days of his childhood.

Dr Botella said that before the discovery of the laryngoscope the sense
of touch was the only means of knowing of the existence of tumorous
growths in the larynx. The invention of the laryngoscope had opened
immense horizons to science, had put within its range many diseases the
existence of which could never have been suspected, had made possible
their treatment, and had saved from suffering and death numberless
lives. The Spanish Government sent Señor Garcia its enthusiastic
congratulations, and the Spanish Laryngological Society begged his
acceptance of the diploma of "President of Honour." He brought a kind
greeting from Spain to England, from Señor Garcia's native land to his
adopted one. If the former gave him birth, the latter gave him shelter,
and on that occasion both felt equally proud to have him as a son.

The following was the address of the Laryngological Society of London:--

     DEAR AND REVERED MASTER,--Amongst the many friends assembled to-day
     to lay a tribute of gratitude and admiration at your feet, and a
     greater number far away who are celebrating to-day's unique event
     in spirit, there can be none whose congratulations are more sincere
     or more cordial than those of the members of the Laryngological
     Society of London. We yield to none in our gratitude for your
     precious invention, the Laryngoscope, which will keep your memory
     green through all ages. We, with the rest of mankind, admire in you
     the distinguished physiologist, the great musician, the teacher of
     so many celebrated singers: and we, amongst whom you have dwelt for
     so many years, have in addition had the great privilege of seeing
     you, our oldest honorary member, with us on many occasions, and
     have learned to appreciate in you the true friend, the courteous
     gentleman, the charming speaker. You have been permitted to retain
     all your brilliant faculties to patriarchal age, and to-day to
     celebrate your 100th birthday in undiminished vigour of mind and
     body. That this happy state may continue for many years to come,
     and that we may often have the pleasure and privilege of seeing the
     venerable father of laryngoscope amongst us, is the sincere wish of
     your devoted friends, the members of the Laryngological Society of
     London.

     CHARTERS J. SYMONDS (_President_).

     PHILIP R. W. DE SANTI (_Secretary_).

Sir F. Semon said there was a large number of telegrams of
congratulation, and that in the midst of the great strife which was
going on between two great nations, neither of them had forgotten a
great benefactor. In addition to the congratulations from St Petersburg
and Warsaw, already announced, telegrams had been received from the
Moscow Laryngological Society and from the Medical Society of Japan.

Several of the foreign societies, including the Netherlands and the
Vienna societies, announced that they had conferred their honorary
membership upon Señor Garcia.

The programme was brought to a conclusion by the presentation to Señor
Garcia of his portrait, painted by Mr Sargent, R.A., and subscribed for
by international contributions of the friends and admirers of the
centenarian. The members of the Garcia Centenary Celebration Committee
came forward to make the presentation. They were Sir F. Semon
(chairman); Mr E. Furniss Potter, M.D., and Mr P. de Santi, F.R.C.S.
(hon. secretaries); Mr E. Cresswell Baber, M.D., Mr J. Barry Ball, M.D.,
Mr J. S. Ballin, Mr A. Bowlby, F.R.C.S., Mr H. T. Butlin, F.R.C.S., Mr
H. J. Davis, M.B., Mr J. Donelan, M.B., Mr J. Walker Downie, M.B., Mr F.
de Havilland Hall, M.D., Mr W. Hill, M.D., Mr Percy Kidd, M.D., Mr L. A.
Lawrence, F.R.C.S., Mr P. M'Bride, M.D., Mr W. Milligan, M.D., Mr L. H.
Pegler, M.D., Mr W. Permewan, M.D., Mr H. B. Robinson, F.R.C.S., Mr C.
J. Symonds, F.R.C.S., Mr St Clair Thomson, M.D., and Mr F. Willcocks,
M.D. Mr W. R. H. Stewart, F.R.C.S. (Ed.), the hon. treasurer, was
prevented by illness from attending.

Sir F. Semon made the presentation, and announced that the album
containing the names of the subscribers would be handed to Señor Garcia
subsequently. About twenty laryngological societies and about 800
persons had united to offer that testimonial.

The portrait was then unveiled amid loud cheers, which were renewed when
the aged maestro rose to return thanks. His voice trembled with emotion,
for he had been deeply touched by all this loyal recognition and
affection. His opening words were addressed to the Spanish Chargé
d'Affaires.

     "Sir, will you tell my king for me how deeply grateful I am to him
     for thus remembering that in this country, which has sheltered me
     so long, he has a loyal and a loving subject? Will you express,
     what I am not able to say in fitting words, my overwhelming sense
     of this great honour, and convey to him my reverent--if a subject
     may be so bold--my loving thanks. You, sir [addressing Professor
     Fränkel], will undertake of your great courtesy to make known to
     his Majesty the German Emperor my deep sense of the honour he has
     conferred on a stranger, and you will ask him to accept my grateful
     thanks. You, sir [Sir A. Geikie], who represent the illustrious
     English society that first gave me a hearing [the Royal Society];
     you [Professor Stirling], by whom the learning of England's second
     capital [the Manchester University] sends me greeting." At this
     point Señor Garcia handed the MS. of his reply to Sir Felix Semon,
     requesting him to finish reading it. "You who have come from
     distant Königsberg to recall the grateful memory of those who gave
     the unknown man a place among them. You, who represent the
     world-renowned Academy of Sciences of Berlin, among the members of
     which are some I count dear friends. And you, dear sir, who bring
     me the greeting of a city of youth whose very name seems to set
     joy-bells ringing; you, sir, from Heidelberg, how shall I thank you
     all, if your goodwill should fail to interpret my poor faltering
     words? But that goodwill is my most trusty staff. You, doctors,
     laryngologists, dear friends, to whom the little instrument to
     which such kind allusion has been made owes all its power for good.
     You, representatives of the great music schools of London, in one
     of which I passed so many years, working happily beside brother
     musicians, and to the other of which I have so often come to mark
     with pride our own great art of music prospering beyond belief
     under the care of a beloved chief and genial staff. You, too, my
     pupils, among whom it rejoices me so keenly to welcome faces missed
     for many years and found again to-day, while others have been with
     me, near and dear. To you all, thanks, from an old heart that did
     not know what youth it still possessed till it expanded to embrace
     you all. This portrait, from the hand of this great master, which
     grew in happy hours too few for me since they passed so rapidly in
     his companionship, shall be my pride and joy in the days to come."

When Sir Felix hesitated at this point because he saw that he was coming
to a passage about himself, Señor Garcia at once cried, "Yes, yes! read
that!" Then, as the Chairman of the Committee looked somewhat
embarrassed, the centenarian said with great vivacity, "Well, give it to
me; I will read it." With these words he took over the paper once again
and read the concluding words of the speech.

     "If you will bear with me a moment longer, I should like to say one
     little inadequate word of thanks to him from whose initiative this
     wonderful demonstration has sprung,--my friend Sir Felix Semon,
     with whose name link that of an institution dear to me beyond all
     others,--the Laryngological Society of London, and its chosen
     representative, that social Atlas, the Garcia Committee."

This brought the first part of the programme to a close, and the
centenarian returned to his home, which was inundated with telegrams and
baskets of flowers. Here he gave himself up to rest and preparation for
that still more trying ordeal which was still to come.

That same evening Señor Garcia set out for the Hotel Cecil, where a
complimentary birthday banquet had been arranged by the committee.

When the carriage had driven into the courtyard of the hotel he alighted
without assistance, entered the outer hall, and walked nimbly down two
or three flights of stairs to the cloak-room.

There was a very large attendance, the Grand Hall being filled with
eminent musicians and scientists anxious to do honour to the
distinguished guest.

[Illustration: OPENING BARS OF AN ARIA WRITTEN OUT BY MANUEL GARCIA WHEN
IN HIS HUNDREDTH YEAR, GIVING HIS ELABORATIONS OF THE ORIGINAL
MELODY.]

Mr Charters J. Symonds was in the chair.

In proposing the first toast, "The King," he said that his Majesty was
always the foremost in every way in the recognition of merit, and that
day he had anticipated their function, and had received Señor Garcia
personally, conferring upon him a great honour--the Commandership of the
Royal Victorian Order. His Majesty, in honour of Señor Garcia, had also
sent Lord Suffield there as his representative.

The toast having been loyally honoured, the chairman said that two other
European sovereigns had combined with our own King to confer honour on
their guest. His Majesty the King of Spain had sent Señor Garcia the
Grand Cross of the Order of Alfonso XII., and also a message which he
would call on the Spanish Chargé d'Affaires to read.

The Marquis de Villalobar said it gave him great pleasure to convey to
his illustrious compatriot the message which his Majesty, the King of
Spain, had sent to him just now through his Minister of Foreign Affairs.
It was as follows: "By command of his Majesty the King, congratulate
personally Señor Garcia on the day of the celebration of his 100th
birthday. Convey his royal best wishes to the grand old Spaniard who, by
his invention and works, has glorified and exalted the name of Spain."

The chairman, resuming, said he had heard a whisper that the honour
conferred by the King of Spain carried with it the title of His
Excellency, so that in future they might regard their dear old friend
as His Excellency, Señor Garcia. Again, his Majesty the German Emperor,
mindful of the benefit which he himself not long since obtained from the
knowledge of the instrument invented by Señor Garcia, had conferred upon
him a great distinction. It had been brought to London by the most
distinguished laryngologist in Germany, Professor Fränkel. It was the
medal which was called the Great Gold Medal for Science. They would
appreciate its importance when he said that previously it had only been
conferred upon Professor Virchow, Professor Koch, Ehrlich, and Mommsen.
These three Sovereigns had that day combined to recognise in Señor
Garcia the ability which had influenced science and art in all
countries. He gave them the toast of the King of Spain, and then of the
German Emperor.

The toasts having been honoured, Sir Felix Semon proposed the health of
the hero of the evening in a long and eloquent speech.

The toast was drunk with enthusiasm, and the company sang, "For he's a
jolly good fellow."

Then, in an atmosphere of electrical excitement, Manuel Garcia stood up,
and amid a thrilling silence made his response.

It was almost the only occasion in the world's history that a man of
world-wide fame had ever attained his 100th anniversary. It was,
moreover, the first time that any centenarian, whether illustrious or
"born to blush unseen," had been in such full possession of his
faculties and bodily strength as to make his own reply to the hundreds
assembled to do honour to his birthday. He was almost overcome by
emotion in making his response in English.

     "Sir Felix Semon, Ladies and Gentlemen,--Words, it is said, are
     given us to conceal our thoughts. They will admirably fulfil that
     purpose if you take mine as a full and complete expression of my
     feelings on this extraordinary occasion. But words, whatever use we
     make of them, are not mere masks. They are living things, intensely
     living things to some--to those of us who hold the magic ring that
     makes them slaves. They are as mighty friends, friends such as you
     to me, who from the ocean depths of your indulgence fling back to
     me my own poor and trivial deeds, transfigured into something 'rich
     and strange.'"

At this point Señor Garcia, who had become almost inaudible, and who was
evidently somewhat exhausted by fatigue and excitement, handed the MS.
of his speech to the chairman, who read the remainder. It ran as
follows:--

     "There are so many of you to be greeted,--old friends out of the
     past, old pupils, comrades, children! Ah, children! Sixteen
     societies of laryngologists, and mostly come of age, calling me
     'Father'! They will have it so, and I am pretty proud of the title,
     I can tell you. Well, do you think one solitary man could find fit
     word to answer all these voices? But you can do it for me. There is
     an old story some of you may remember, which, when I read it,
     changed the aspect of things for me by its very name, for that was
     a stroke of genius: 'Put yourself in his place.' What a different
     world it would be if we all did that! Well, you try now. Try hard.
     Think yourself each one hundred years old to-day. Not the ladies. I
     will not ask them. Though they may come to that they will never
     look it, and they will never know it, and no one will ever believe
     it. But you men can try. Fancy you each lived one hundred years and
     woke to-day to find yourself surrounded by kindly clamorous voices,
     'troops of friends'! What would you say? I think you would say
     nought. Only the infinite nought which circles all things could
     give an adequate answer to you all. I shall say nought to this
     great master of the brush, Mr Sargent, who with his creative
     touches in a moment brought life from void. It is a strange
     experience to see one's very self spring out at one from nothing in
     a flash. I shall say nought to this rash friend of mine, Sir Felix
     Semon, who into the midst of a busy life crammed all the work and
     worry of the labour of love that has brought you here to-day.
     Nought, nought to the friends so very near my heart, the
     Laryngological Society of London, and the chosen band whose
     terrible labours fill me with remorse whenever I think of them, the
     Members of the Garcia Committee. I shall say nought, nought, nought
     to all of you, except just this, 'God bless you every one!'"

The chairman next proposed "Our Foreign Guests," for whom Herr Emanuel
Stockhausen (son of one of his most distinguished pupils), Dr Puttner,
Dr Harman Smith, Dr Goris, Dr Lermoyez, Dr Poli, Dr Botella, Dr Burger,
and Professor Chiari responded. During the dinner a number of
congratulatory telegrams were received. Among them was one from the
Prime Minister.

Between the speeches of foreign delegates, which were delivered in
various tongues, Mme. Blanche Marchesi, Mme. Ada Crossley, Mr Ben
Davies, and Mr Arthur Oswald sang, and then that wonderful evening came
to an end.



CHAPTER XXI.

LAST DAYS.

(1905-1906.)


On the Sunday evening after the Centenary Banquet, Señor Garcia was
present at a more private dinner, attended by the laryngologists, who
had come together to do homage to the founder of their art. He was
brighter than at the larger gathering, while he not only smoked a
cigarette, as he had done at the banquet, but drank a glass of lager
beer with relish. He told many interesting stories of his early days;
and once, in trying to fix the time of some reminiscence, he said, "Oh,
about twenty-three or thirty years ago: I do not like these little
dates"! With the greatest good nature he signed his name on some forty
menu cards. The following is the text of his speech in French:--

     "Vous ne vous attendez pas, sans doute, à ce que je fasse un
     discours. Si j'ose prendre la parole, c'est pour vous exposer, en
     quelques mots, une pensée qui m'obsède et que le grand éclat donne
     à la presentation qui a eu lieu a fait naître dans mon esprit.

     "Le rôle des personnages qui ont figuré dans cette célébration
     aurait du être interverti; les félicitations, les compliments vous
     appartiennent, et c'est à vous et à vos sociétés qu'ils auraient du
     être adressés.

     "Il est de tout évidence que le petit instrument doit les succès
     qu'il a obtenus absolument et uniquement à vous, Messieurs, et aux
     associations sur lesquelles vous présidez. Privé du puissant appui
     de votre science, il serait tombé dans un oubli complet (et ego
     quoque).

     "Par suite je me considère comme un usurpateur insigne qui accepte
     ce qui, en réalité, vous appartient, et c'est par acquit de
     conscience que je le confesse.

     "Ne pouvant pas changer ce qui est, je termine ces mots en
     exprimant ma très vive reconnaissance aux sociétés laryngologiques
     que vous représentez, et à vous, Messieurs, qui, sans souci des
     inconvénients des voyages, êtes venus de tous pays, même les plus
     lointains, pour féliciter le centenaire et, plus encore, pour
     l'honorer de leur approbation scientifique. Ainsi comblé,
     saura-t'il jamais manifester l'intensité de son appréciation, de sa
     reconnaissance?

     "Je ne pourrais conclure ces remarques sans exprimer mon admiration
     pour Sir Felix Semon, dont l'infatigable persévérance, unie à une
     rare puissance d'organization, a réussi, à travers de nombreux
     obstacles, à organizer cette grande démonstration, inspirée
     uniquement par le désir d'honorer un vieil ami. Merci! Encore,
     Merci!"

A few days later Señor Manuel Garcia went to dine with Hermann Klein,
who had come over from New York for a few weeks, and here the
centenarian renewed his acquaintance with his pupil's younger brother,
Charles. The meeting took him back over thirty years, to those days in
Bentinck Street when Charles Klein, then a sturdy, dark little fellow of
eight, used to go out regularly to fetch the maestro's lunch of
sponge-cake from a baker's round the corner in Welbeck Street. Much
water had passed under the bridge since these days, and he had now come
over from a sojourn of many years in America, a man of forty, and one of
New York's most successful playwrights.

In the following July I went up to spend a Sunday afternoon with the
centenarian. It was quite impossible to believe that he was indeed in
his 101st year. He actually displayed more vivacity than at the time
when I was commencing lessons with him, while even in those days my
mother had asserted that he seemed more hale and active than he had been
when she in her turn was studying under him twenty-five years before.
Truly as he grew older he appeared to become younger.

Charles Klein came to call on the maestro on this same afternoon, and
was put through many searching questions with regard to the latest
phases of American thought and character. When tea arrived our host
displayed the most extraordinary energy, jumping up and insisting upon
getting a small table upon which the playwright might rest his cup and
plate. The latter he watched with anxiety. When it was empty, he
promptly fetched a plate of scones, and with the most wonderful humour
and good spirits pressed the guest to take some more. As for his own
wants, it was perfectly futile for one to offer to take charge of his
cup. Nothing would satisfy him but that he should himself take it over
to be refilled. When I rose to go, the maestro insisted on coming to the
front door, as in the old days, and in shaking hands said, "I shall hope
to see you here soon again."

For the next nine months Manuel Garcia led a life almost incredible in
one of such age. He continued to rise early, go to bed late, and enjoy
walks, drives, theatres, concerts, and dinners as thoroughly as a man
forty years his junior.

His hale old age he would ascribe to his mental and physical activity,
his moderate living (he did not touch wine or spirits until he was
ninety), and his good digestion.

His piano continued to be a favourite friend, and frequently he would
play for an hour in the forenoon and again in the evening. The
selections would be mostly snatches from the old Italian
operas--especially Rossini, Meyerbeer, and Mozart,--played from memory.
His hearing was excellent, and his sight still comparatively good;
indeed, he spent a great deal of time in reading, for he took an
interest in everything that went on in the world. His evenings would be
passed in conversation, or a bout at chess--a game in which he had many
a time in the old days tried conclusions with Sir Charles Hallé.
Sometimes he would go out for a game of cards with his neighbours.

He went to visit many old friends, and one day actually walked up to the
fourth floor in a block of flats, disdaining the lift. He went to
register his vote at the general election. During his walks he used to
offer adverse criticisms of the motor-omnibuses which were beginning to
make their appearance. 'Bus conductors used to get their own back
without knowing it, for they would point to "Mon Abri" as they passed,
and remark to the passengers, "That's where the Centurion lives."

In the following autumn I was at work on the little book of
reminiscences of my mother and her circle of friends, and at the close
of November wrote to Señor Garcia telling him that I wished to devote a
portion to his own career, as her chief instructor in singing. This
letter at once brought a reply that he would like to see the MS. of that
part of the memoir.

Hence there came about what must have been unique in the experience of
book publishers, for when the manuscript was finally returned to them
after revision, marked for press, it contained some corrections in the
handwriting of one who was within three months of entering his 102nd
year.

The coming of the new year appeared to bring with it little visible
diminution in the maestro's mental and bodily activity. Indeed, during
the winter of 1905-06 he attended quite a number of public dinners,
including one at the Savage Club, another given by the "Vagabonds" to Mr
and Mrs H. B. Irving, and a third at the Mansion House in honour of the
King of Spain, by whose special request the Centenarian was invited to
be present.

[Illustration: FACSIMILE OF A LETTER WRITTEN BY MANUEL GARCIA IN HIS
HUNDRED-AND-SECOND YEAR.]

On March 17, 1906, he celebrated the entrance into his 102nd year by
taking up a guitar and singing a Spanish song, while a few days after
this he attended the Philharmonic Concert at the Queen's Hall and keenly
enjoyed the music. So active was he still, that he refused with
indignation an offer to be helped up or down stairs; but the candle was
burning with an unnatural brightness, which could not last.

In the middle of April a letter arrived from the maestro, the perusal of
which brought fresh wonder at his amazing vigour. It had been written on
the 16th April, and ran as follows:--

     CHER MR MACKINLAY.--J'ai lu avec beaucoup de plaisir l'interessant
     volume qu'avez (_sic_) dédié à la mémoire de votre chère mère.
     C'est aussi avec grande satisfaction que j'ai appris qu'il a été
     apprecié par la presse; c'est une garantie qu'il aura le succès
     qu'il mérite.

     Agréez mes compliments et mes félicitations.--Votre sincère M.
     GARCIA.

About the same time Hermann Klein received a letter from the old
teacher, and the handwriting, he tells me, was not quite so firm as
usual. Indeed it is evident that Señor Garcia was not feeling at all
himself at this time, for in the note he says--

     "As to my health, it is less brilliant than I should like, but it
     is passable;" while a postscript is added showing that he himself
     realised that his hand was rather shaky: "Can you read this
     scribble (ce barbouillage)?"

After this there appears to have been considerable improvement, for on
May 24 he wrote to congratulate Charles Klein on the success of his new
piece at the Duke of York's Theatre, and on this occasion the
handwriting was much clearer and steadier than it had been five weeks
earlier.

     (_Translation_.)

     "MON ABRI," CRICKLEWOOD,

     LONDON, _24th May 1906_.

     DEAR MR KLEIN,--My paper informs me that you have just obtained a
     great theatrical success. I congratulate you with all my heart.

     Would you have the kindness to send me your actual London address?
     I have a little parcel for your brother, which I beg you will
     convey to him. It is a portrait that he has asked of me, which he
     desires to present to Mme. Sembrich.

     One of these days, when I feel in the mood (en train), I shall go
     to see "The Lion and The Mouse."

     My respects to Mrs Klein, and to yourself a hearty and cordial
     handshake. M. GARCIA.

In June Charles Klein sent a box for the Duke of York's Theatre, and
Señor Garcia went to see the piece, which he thoroughly enjoyed. This
was the last dramatic performance which he attended, and indeed the
drama of his own life was drawing to a close.

       *       *       *       *       *

On Sunday, July 1, the end came: the beloved maestro passed away in his
sleep, calmly and peacefully, at the age of 101.



INDEX.


Abramoff, 269

Adam, Adolphe, 175

Adams, John, 78

Adams, Suzanne, 163

Agnesi, 235

Agrisani, 42

Albani, 236, 264, 266, 268, 269, 271

Albert, 48

Albert, Prince, 8, 226

Alboni, 111, 184, 191, 192, 228, 235

Alexander I., 73

Alfonso, King, 302, 313, 322

Alibaud, Louis, 172

Almarcha, Juan, 9

Alvary, 271

Ambrogetti, 42

Ancona, 272

d'Angri, 163

d'Angrisani, 59, 62, 66

Ansani, Giovanni, 25, 26, 27, 28, 100, 289

Arditi, 233, 234, 271

Arnold (composer), 57

Arnold (writer), 185

Arnoldson, 269

Artot, Désiré, 134, 135, 230

Ascherberg, Mr, 259, 260, 262

Astley, 188

Auber, 47, 115, 174, 175, 176, 187, 234

Aumale, Duke of, 172

Aumer, 48

Austria, Emperor of, 77

Avelis, Dr, 306

Avery, 203


Baber, Dr E. C., 309

Babington, B. G., 192

Bach, 26

Balfe, 192, 228, 234

Balfour, A. J., 317

Ball, Dr J. B., 309

Ballin, J. S., 305, 309

Balzac, 178

Bancrofts, The, 234

Banderali, 161

Barbieri, Mme., 58, 65, 66, 67

Barbot, 156, 159

Barnby, Sir Joseph, 258

Barretta, 236

Bartet, 236

Basbereau, 40

Battaille, 156, 159, 160, 208, 217

Bauermeister, Mdlle., 269, 271

Baumès, 203

Bayley, P., 185

Beaconsfield, Lord (_see_ Disraeli).

Beecher, Henry Ward, 221

Beethoven, 13, 53, 189, 238, 241

Begnis, Signor and Mme. di, 43, 46, 48, 49, 52, 53

Begrez, 52

Bellamy, 53

Belletti, 189

Bellini, 108, 112, 161, 174, 175

Benedict, Sir J., 189, 190, 194

Benetti, 48

Bennati, 202

Bennett, Sterndale, 263

Benton, Senator, 77

Béranger, 178

Beriot, Ch. de, 112, 116, 119, 120, 126, 133

Berlioz, 152, 173, 175, 189

Bernadotte, Maréchal (_see_ Karl XIV., Johann).

Bernhardt, Sarah, 236

Bernstoff, 77

Bettini, 235, 236

Billington, Mrs, 54

Birkett, Dr, 307

Bishop, Sir Henry, 54, 55, 194

Bismarck, 8

Bispham, David, 270

Bizet, 177, 264

Blücher, 77

Blumm, Herr, 157, 158

Boieldieu, 46, 47, 82

Boito, 268

Bonaparte, Joseph, 21, 22, 23, 24, 62

Bonheur, Rosa, 179

Bonjour, Casimir, 47

Bordogni, 161

Botella, Dr, 306, 307, 316

Botticelli, Signor, 32

Boucicault, Dion, 236

Bourmont, 98

Bowlby, A., 309

Bozzini, 202

Broeckkaert, Dr, 306

Braham, Henry, 53, 225

Brahms, Johannes, 13, 135, 136, 175, 195, 241

Brangaene, 134, 268

Brema, Marie, 271

Brewer, Dr, 98

Brewster, 184

Brizzi, 189

Brombara, 271

Brontë, Charlotte, 184

Brough, Lionel, 234, 236

Brown, Sir Thomas, 209

Brown, Miss (see Kate Crichton).

Browning, Robert, 185

Browning, Miss, 185

Buckstone, 227

Bunn, Alfred, 184

Burger, Dr, 306, 316

Burney, Dr Charles, 26

Bussine, 156, 159, 160

Butlin, H. T., 309

Butt, Clara, 271

Byron, Lord, 55, 299


Calecot, 13

Caletti, 189

Calvè, 4, 163, 271, 272

Camidge, Dr, 53

Campanini, 265

Campbell, Sir Archibald, 76

Camporese, Mme., 42, 45

Capoul, 235

Caradori, 45, 46, 50, 52, 53

Cardignac, 170

Carlyle, 184

Caroline, Queen of Great Britain, 77

Carroll, Lewis, 68

Carte, D'Oyly, 270

Carvallo, 230

Castellani, Mme., 189, 191, 192

Catalani, 40, 41, 42, 43, 49, 51, 52

Cazalet, 199

Celeste, Mme., 187, 234

Cerito, 225

Cervetto, Giacomo, 4

Chamberlain, Joseph, 295

Chappell, Thomas, 228

Charles V. of Germany and I. of Spain, 18

Charles IV. of Spain, 14, 16, 21

Charles X. of France, 7, 75, 99, 171, 178

Charrière, 204

Chateaubriand, 185

Chatterton, 194

Chatterton, F. B., 232

Cherubini, 13, 115

Chiari, Dr, 306, 316

Chippendale, Mrs, 234

Chopin, 13, 157, 174, 176, 189, 196

Chorley, 60, 214, 215, 217, 226

Ciabatta, 189

Cimarosa, 47, 49, 61

Cinti, 46

Clay, Henry, 77

Clive, Franklin, 270

Clough, 185

Coccia, 48

Cooke, T. P., 226

Cooper, Fenimore, 62, 79

Copland, Charles, 270

Coppée, François, 179

Coquelins, The, 236

Corot, 179

Costa, Sir M., 184, 189, 191, 226, 230, 233, 234, 268

Cotogni, 235, 236, 264

Coutiau, 113

Cox, Frank, 199

Cramer, J. B., 194

Crichton, Kate, 196, 197

Crivelli, 42, 52, 58, 59, 62, 66, 194, 199

Crivelli (the younger), 58

Croelius, Herr, 140

Crossley, Ada, 163, 317

Cruvelli, 189

Curioni, 45, 48, 52

Czermak, 207, 208, 210, 212, 218


Dalmatie, Duchesse de (see Madame Soult).

Damian, Grace, 271

Damoreau-Cinti, Mme., 106

Daponte, Signor, 59, 60

Darmès, 172

Darwin, 184, 299

Darwin, Prof. F., 304

Davenport, Mrs, 55

David, Félicien, 177

David, Ferdinand, 135

Davies, Ben, 270, 317

Davies, Ffrangçon, 270

Davies, Llewellyn, 242

Davis, Dr, 306, 309

Decamps, 179

Delacroix, 179

Delafield, 191

Delaroche, 179

Delauny, 236

Delavigne, 178

Deloffre, 190

Delsaux, Dr, 306

Demosthenes, 127

Denuri, 46

Dérivis, M., 176

Desideria, Queen of Norway and Sweden, 142

Devonshire, Duke of, 52

Diaz, 179

Dibdin, 13, 57

Dickens, Charles, 184

Diday, 131

Didiée, 226

Didier, 230

Disraeli, 184, 219

Dolby, Miss, 189

Donelan, Dr J., 309

Donizetti, 109, 161, 175, 176, 177, 183, 192

Doras-Gras, Mme., 176, 189

Downie, Dr J. W., 309

Duc, 160

Dudevant, Mme. (see Sand, George).

Dufriche, 272

Dulcken, Mme., 194

Dumas (the elder), 179

Dumas (the younger), 179

Duperré, 98

Dupre, 179

Duprez, 94

Dutrochet, 131

Dyck, van, 271


Eames, Emma, 41, 163, 271

Ebers, 50

Edward VII., H.M. King, 5, 183, 299, 300, 301, 302, 303, 313

Edwin, Mrs, 55

Ehrlich, Dr, 314

Elen, 44

Elliston, 55

Elson, 57

Emerson, Ralph Waldo, 185

Emmanuel, King Victor, 109

Etherington, Miss (_see_ Tempest, Marie).

Etienne, M., 70, 82

Etruria, King of, 14


Fackeldey, Dr, 306

Falcon, Mdlle., 176

Faraday, 184

Farrar, Miss, 53

Faure, 227, 228, 230, 233, 234,235, 236, 267

Favelli, 93

Febvre, 236

Ferdinand IV. of Naples, 36

Ferdinand VII., 14, 21, 24

Ferdinand, M., 48

Fétis, François, 44, 100

Fieschi, 171

Flécheux, Mdlle., 176

Florence, Evangeline, 163

Flotow, 176, 177, 226

Fodor, Mme., 42, 68

Foli, Signor, 231, 234, 235

Formes, Herr, 198, 226, 228, 235

Forsberg, Herr, 147

Forsyth, Neil, 272

Franceschi, 48

Fränkel, Prof., 298, 303, 310, 314

Frederick William IV., 164

French, Dr, 307

Fricci, 163


Gabriel, Virginia, 217

Galitzin, Princess, 44

Galletti, 184

Galli, 87, 105

Gallo, Giovanni, 115, 116, 117

Garcia (the elder), 8, 9, 10, 11, 13, 14, 15, 16, 25, 27, 28, 29, 30,
31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 38, 40, 42, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 50, 52, 58,
59, 60, 61, 62, 63, 65, 66, 67, 69, 73, 77, 79, 80, 82, 83, 84, 85, 91,
92, 93, 94, 95, 96, 111

Garcia, Manuel--
  Triple claim to distinction, 4
  First scientific teacher of singing, 4, 6
  Inventor of laryngoscope, 4, 6
  Centenarian, 4, 7
  Born at Zafra, 13
  Sees Joseph Bonaparte placed on throne of Spain, 21
  Sees Napoleon enter Madrid, 23
  Sees Wellington enter the capital, 23
  Joins parents in Naples, 24
  Lessons from Ansani, 25
  Lessons from father, 27
  Memory of Murat's execution, 37
  Arrives in Paris, 40
  Pays last visit to Spain, 44
  Studies harmony under Fétis, 44
  Sings at Manchester, 52
  Takes part in first New York season of Italian opera, 59
  Plays title-_rôle_ in the "Barber of Seville," 62, 64
  Plays Iago in "Otello," 66
  Plays Leporello in "Don Giovanni," 67
  Has benefit performance, 69
  Leaves for Mexico, 79
  Splendid memory, 83
  Sings the elder Garcia's operatic _rôles_, 85
  Injury to voice, through over-work, 85
  Joins Malibran in Paris, 86
  Helps her with her vocal studies, 86
  Friendship with Rossini, 86
  His advice to Malibran after _début_, 87
  Goes to Italy, 90
  Meets Lablache, 90
  Makes _début_ in Naples, 90
  Abandons operatic career, 91
  Returns to Paris, 91
  Prepares for seafaring career, 96
  Gives it up at entreaty of mother, 96
  Assists elder Gracia in his teaching, 96
  Takes part in expedition against Algiers, 98
  On his return finds Paris in uproar of the July Revolution, 98
  Attaches himself to military hospital, 99
  Specialises in study of throat, 99
  Summary of preparation for career as first scientific teacher, 100
  Receives first recognition as teacher, 114
  Appointed to Conservatoire of Music, 115
  Memories of Malibran, 122
  Submits his "Mémoire sur la voix humaine" to the Académie des Sciences,
    130
  Officially thanked for his services to vocal Art, 131
  Recollections of Jenny Lind, 139, 154
  Counsels her to delay _début_ in London, 152
  Made correspondent of Stockholm University, 155
  Created Chevalier de l'Ordre de Mérite, 155
  Teaches Henrietta Nissen, 157
  Catherine Hayes, 159
  Barbot, 159
  Battaille, 160
  Bussine, 160
  Mathilde Marchesi, 161
  Johanna Wagner, 163
  Invited by Richard Wagner to train singers for first Bayreuth
  Festival, 165
  Publishes his famous 'Traité complet,' 166
  Teaches Stockhausen, 167
  Member of National Guard, 170
  Arrival in London, 183
  Appointed to staff of R.A.M., 193
  Teaches Kate Crichton, 196
  Bessie Palmer, 198
  Invention of laryngoscope, 201-213
  Relates story of the invention, 203
  Presents paper to Royal Society, 205
  Teaches Santley, 214
  Presents memoir to Montyon Committee, 218
  Made M.D. of Königsberg, 219
  Teaches Antoinette Sterling, 219
  Election to Committee of R.A.M., 222
  Episode with Saint-Saëns, 222
  Memories of Mario, 234
  Takes rooms at Kleins', 237
  Intimacy with Joachim, 241
  Teaches Miss Orridge, 242
  Huxley testifies to importance of his invention, 243
  Elected to Board of Directors R.A.M., 244
  Teaches Miss Thudicum, 244
  Invited to read paper before Medical Congress, 245
  At a Royal Institution Lecture, 246
  Teaches Miss Macintyre, 246
  Marie Tempest, 247
  Agnes Larkcom, 249
  Arthur Oswald, 249
  Other pupils' memories of lessons with, 249-255
  Attacked by Maurel over the _coup de la glotte_, 256
  Receives presentation on entering 90th year, 257
  Publishes last text-book, 258-263
  Resigns professorship, 263
  Method of teaching, 283
  Compares Kubelik with Paganini, 295
  Winters in Egypt, 296
  Attends funeral of Antoinette Sterling, 296
  Enters 100th year, 296
  Receives address from R.A.M. and R.C.M., 297
  Audience with the King, 300
  Attends meeting at Royal Society, 300
  Decorated with Royal Order of Alphonse XII., 302
  Great Gold Medal for Science, 303
  Speech of thanks, 310
  Attends banquet, 312
  Replies to toast, 315
  Life at 100, 316
  Dines with Laryngologists, 318
  Attends various dinners, 322
  Celebrates 101st birthday, 322
  Passes away, 324

Garcia, Maria, 3, 4, 16, 25, 35, 36, 42, 45, 49, 50, 51, 52, 53, 58, 62,
63, 65, 66, 68, 69, 79, 80, 81, 82, 84, 86, 87, 88, 89, 90, 93, 95, 98,
105, 106, 107, 108, 109, 110, 111, 112, 113, 115, 116, 117, 118, 119,
120, 121, 122, 123, 124, 125, 127, 156, 193

Garcia, Pauline, 3, 4, 44, 64, 90, 91, 94, 95, 100, 113, 125, 126, 127,
128, 129, 132, 133, 134, 135, 136, 137, 138, 156, 160, 173, 190, 191,
192, 193, 197, 216, 217, 222, 226, 230, 244, 286, 297

Garcia, Joaquina, 11, 12, 16, 62, 66, 69, 219

Gardoni, 235

Garibaldi, 230

Gassier, 230, 234

Gautier, Théophile, 178

Gazaré, 264, 267

Geikie, Sir A., 304, 310

George III., 7

George IV., 44, 52, 55, 75, 77, 183

Georges, Mdlle., 46

Geraldy, Jean, 93

Gericault, 179

German, Edward, 247

Germany, Emperor of, 310, 314

Gerster, Fran, 163, 264

Gervasoni, 27

Giuglini, 228, 230, 231

Gluck, 226

Gluck, Prof., 306

Glyn, Miss, 226

Godoy, Manuel, 14, 21

Goethe, 174, 299

Goldschmidt, Otto, 305

Goodall, Miss, 53

Gordoni, 189, 228, 231

Goris, Dr, 306, 316

Goss, 194

Got, 236

Gounod, Ch., 13, 54, 69, 134, 160, 177, 230, 231, 272

Grassari, Mme., 46

Grassot, 187

Graumann, Mdlle. (_see_ Marchesi, Mme.)

Graziani, 43, 230, 231, 236

Graziani, Mme., 45

Greatorex, 53

Green, Richard, 270

Grener, 48

Gretry, 47

Greuze, 13

Grey, Earl de, 272

Grimaldi, 54

Grisi, 111, 128, 184, 191, 226, 227, 231, 234

Gros, 179

Grote, 184

Gruneisen, 198

Guerrabella, Ginevra (see Ward, Geneviève).

Guerrero, General, 91

Guglielmi, 29, 53

Guizot, 169

Gura, 268

Gye, Ernest, 191, 266

Gye, Frederick, 198, 225, 228, 230, 233, 236, 264


Haigh, 227

Halévy, 13, 94, 132, 174, 175, 198

Hall, Dr de Havilland, 245, 309

Hallé, Sir Charles, 190, 226, 227, 321

Hallé, Lady, 136, 222, 235

Halleck, Fitz-Greene, 59, 62, 79, 80

Halliburton, Prof., 304

Handel, 58, 133

Harley, 55

Harris, Sir Augustus, 228, 267, 268, 271, 272

Harrison, W., 226, 227

Hassein, Dey of Algiers, 98

Hauk, Minnie, 233

Haydn, 13, 58

Hayes, Catherine, 156, 159, 226, 227

Hemans, Mrs, 55

Henri, 171, 172

Henschel, George, 4, 195

Hermann, 190

Hérold, 36, 47, 174, 175

Herschel, Sir John, 184

Higgins, H. V., 272

Hill, 190, 267

Hill, Lucile, 270

Hill, Dr W., 309

Hilson, Mrs, 65

Hirschland, Dr, 306

Hogarth, Mr, 88

Holland, Canon Scott, 139, 140, 142, 157

Honey, George, 226, 227, 228

Hood, Tom, 177, 185

Horner, 185

Howe, Lord, 11

Huggins, Sir W., 304

Hugo, Victor, 179, 188

Hullah, John, 190, 217

Huxley, Prof., 4, 184, 243


"Ingoldsby, Tom," 122

Irving, Sir Henry, 227, 266

Irving, H. B., 322

Isnardon, M., 269


Jackmann, Herr, 164

Jakins, Dr, 306

James, G. P. R., 184

Jarret, 232

Jefferson, 78

Jerrold, Douglas, 184

Joachim, Joseph, 133, 135, 235, 241, 272

Johnson, Dr George, 245

Joran, Pauline, 272

Jordan, Mrs, 56

Joseph, 195

Jourdan, 166

Jullien, M., 190

Junot, General, 15


Kan, Dr, 306

Karl XIV., Johann, of Sweden and Norway, 142

Kean, Charles, 54, 55, 65, 66, 186

Kean, Mrs Charles, 186

Keeley, Mrs, 186

Kellogg, Clara, 231

Kemble, Adelaide, 217

Kemble, Charles, 54, 55

Kemble, Gertrude, 217

Kemble, John, 54, 56

Kidd, Dr Percy, 309

Killian, 212

Kingsley, Charles, 185

Kirstein, 212

Klein, Charles, 238, 320, 323, 324

Klein, Hermann, 237, 256, 258, 259, 260, 261, 262, 263, 265, 267, 319,
323, 324

Knight, 55

Kuttner, Dr, 306

Knyvett, 53

Koch, Prof., 314

Kock, Paul de, 179

Koenig, Dr, 306

Kraus, 163

Kubelik, 294


Labarre, 113

Lablache, Luigi, 90, 110, 123, 124, 128, 159, 189, 225, 226

Lablache, Mme., 189

Lago, Signor, 271

Lamartine, A. de, 178

Lamercier, 178

Lamoricière, 170

Landgraf, Dr, 306

Laporte, 105

Lara, Isidore de, 272

Larkcom, Agnes, 249

Lassalle, Jean, 266, 267, 269, 271

Latour, Cagniard de, 202

Lawrence, L. A., 309

Lawrence, Sir Thomas, 77

Lecompte, 172

Legras, 48

Lehmann, Lilli, 267

Lemmens-Sherrington, Mme., 227, 230

Leoncavallo, 272

Lermoyez, Dr, 306, 316

Leslie, Henry, 217

Leslie, Mrs, 217

Lesueur, 46, 47

Levasseur, 176

Lever, Charles, 185

Levret, 202

Lewis, Sir George Cornewall, 298

Lieven, Dr, 306

Lind, Jenny, 4, 29, 139, 155, 156, 157, 158, 165, 184, 190, 191, 193,
198, 214, 240, 286, 288

Lindblad, Herr, 152

Lindblad, Mme., 146

Lindley, 194

Lister, 299

Liston, 55

Liszt, Abbé, 49, 126, 128, 173, 176, 177, 246, 268, 269

Longfellow, 185

Louis XVI., 10

Louis XVIII., 7, 40, 41, 178

Low, Mr Stuart-, 306

Lucas, Charles, 263

Lucca, Pauline, 230, 234, 235, 236, 266, 268

Lucca, Duke of, 113

Luce, de, 70

Lucia, de, 272

Lucia, Mme., 230

Lumley, 184, 192, 198

Lundberg, Mdlle., 140

Lussan, Zélie de, 269, 271

Lynch, Dominick, 59

Lytton, Bulwer, 185


Maas, Joseph, 236, 268

Macaulay, Lord, 185

Maccherini, 27

Macfarren, Sir George, 194, 263

Macfarren, Walter, 194, 258

Macintyre, General, 246

Macintyre, Margaret, 244, 246, 269, 270

Mackenzie, Sir A. C., 258, 263, 268

Macready, 54, 55, 71, 72, 186, 187

Majendie, 131

Mahu, Dr, 306

Malibran, Maria (see Garcia, Maria).

Malibran, M., 79, 80, 112, 119

Mapleson, Colonel, 227, 228, 231, 232, 233, 265, 268

Marchesi, Blanche, 163, 301, 305, 317

Marchesi, Mathilde, 4, 156, 161, 162, 163, 195, 218, 219, 301

Marchesi, M., 230, 301

Maria I. of Portugal, 15

Marini, 191, 192

Mario, 184, 189, 191, 192, 226, 228, 230, 231, 233, 234, 235, 264, 286

Marimon, 235

Marras, 189

Mars, Mdlle., 46

Martin, M., 46

Martineau, 185

Mascagni, Pietro, 271, 272

Massenet, 177

Mathews, Charles, 54, 56, 75, 227, 234, 264

Mathews, Mrs, 234

Maurel, Victor, 236, 256, 257, 267, 271

M'Bride, Dr, 309

Meissonier, Jean, 179

Melba, 4, 163, 269, 271, 272

Mellon, Alfred, 190, 226

Mellon, Mrs, 226, 234

Mendelssohn, 13, 161, 168, 174, 176, 183, 189

Mendi, de, 189, 190

Meric-Lalande, 93

Merlin, Countess, 93, 106

Messent, Miss, 215

Meyerbeer, 13, 50, 94, 134, 151, 152, 160, 164, 174, 176, 177, 191,
192, 193, 226, 227, 230, 286, 321

Meyssenberg, 126

Mierzwinski, 267

Mill, John Stuart, 185

Miller, 184

Millet, Jean François, 179

Millico, 58

Milligan, Dr, 308, 309

Mimaut, 47

Molique, 190

Molinié, Dr, 306

Moll, Dr, 306

Mommsen, 314

Monbelli, 236

Mongini, 231, 234, 235

Montarid, 269, 271

Montyon, 218

Moritz, Dr, 305

Moscheles, 134, 194

Mounet-Sully, 236

Mount-Edgcumbe, Lord, 34, 35

Moure, Dr, 306

Mozart, 47, 53, 59, 61, 67, 68, 160, 321

Munden, 55

Murat, King of Naples, 7, 22, 23, 30, 36, 37

Mürger, Henry, 96, 97, 178

Murillo, 20

Murska, Ilma di, 163, 231, 234, 235

Musiani, Adelaide, 271

Musset, Alfred de, 117, 129, 175, 178

Musset, Paul de, 175


Napoleon, 7, 14, 16, 23, 29, 40, 44

Naudin, 231

Nava, 215

Neruda (see Hallé, Lady).

Neumann, Dr, 267

Nevada, Emma, 163

Nicholl, William, 249

Nicolai, 161, 177

Nicolini, 231, 236, 264, 267

Niemann, 267

Nillson, Christine, 231, 233, 234, 235, 243

Nissen, Henriette, 4, 156, 157

Noblet, 48

Nordica, 271

Noufflard, Mme., 136, 222, 223

Nourrit, Adolph, 93, 94, 176

Nourse, 306


Offenbach, 177

O'Mara, Joseph, 270

O'Neill, Miss, 55, 56

Onorati, Cardinal, 40

Orridge, Miss, 242, 243

Oscar I., King of Sweden, 166

Osler, Prof., 210

Oswald, Arthur, 249, 317

Oudin, Eugene, 270

Owen, 184


Pacchierotti, 34

Paderewski, 258, 269

Paër, Ferdinand, 15, 35, 44

Paganini, 13, 176, 295

Paget, Sir James, 245

Paisiello, 30, 32, 43, 47, 61

Palliser, Esther, 270

Palmer, Bessie, 197, 198

Palmerston, Lord, 8

Panseron, 36, 47

Parepa, 226, 227

Parry, John, 123, 189, 190

Pasta, 42, 46, 48, 49, 50, 51, 75, 88, 107, 108, 112, 286

Pasteur, 299

Patey, J. G., 227

Patti, Adelina, 227, 228, 230, 231, 233, 235, 236, 266, 268, 272

Patti, Carlotta, 231, 235

Paul, Mrs Howard, 236

Payne, Howard, 55

Pedraza, General, 91

Peel, Sir Robert, 198

Pegler, Dr L. H., 309

Pellegrini, 43

Pepusch, 53

Pergolesi, 42

Perkins, 74

Permewan, Dr, 309

Persiani, 128, 133, 183, 184, 191

Pétrequin, 131

Phelps, 226

Philip II. of Spain, 18

Philippe, Louis, 8, 99, 166, 169, 170, 171, 172

Phillips, 53

Piatti, 190, 235, 258, 272

Pierson, Blanche, 236

Pisaroni, 87

Pischek, 189

Planché, 236

Plançon, 271

Poli, Prof., 306, 316

Polignac, 99

Pollini, Herr, 267

Ponchielli, 268

Poniatowski, Prince, 113, 114

Porpora, 25, 26

Porto, 45, 48

Potter, Cipriani, 194, 263

Potter, Dr Furniss, 309

Pounds, Courtice, 247

Price, Stephen, 59, 60

Princess Royal, 226

Prud'hon, 179

Prussia, King of, 8, 77

Puccini, 272

Puente, del, 265

Puget, Mdlle. de, 158

Puke, Count, 141

Purcell, 190

Puttner, Dr, 316

Puzzi, 52, 194

Pyne, Louisa, 226, 227


Raff, 195

Rainforth, Miss, 186

Randegger, Chevalier Alberto, 249, 263

Randolph, John, 77

Ravell, 187, 271

Ravogli, Giulia, 271

Rees, Eleanor, 247

Reeves, Sims, 190, 196, 197, 226, 227, 230, 235, 243

Reicha, 40, 126

Reicher-Kindermann, 267

Reichemberg, 236

Reina, 45, 46

Reiter, Frau, 167

Remorini, 48, 51, 52

Reynolds, Miss, 186

Rezké, Edouard de, 266, 268, 269, 271

Rezké, Jean de, 264, 268, 269, 271, 272

Rhodes, John, 188

Richard, Mme., 271

Richelieu, 77

Richter, Hans, 266, 267

Righetti, Giorgi, 32

Righi, 45

Rimbault, 93

Ripa, Antonio, 9

Robespierre, 11

Robinson, H. B., 306, 309

Rochefort, Henri, 179

Rodriguez (see Garcia).

Rolla, 271

Roncaglia, 26

Ronconi, 191, 231

Ronzi, 50

Rooy, van, 4, 195

Rosa, Carl, 269

Rosebery, Countess of, 242

Rosich, 59, 62

Rossi, Signorina, 32

Rossi, 106, 226

Rossini, 13, 32, 43, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 61, 66, 67, 69, 86, 88, 93, 94,
111, 133, 161, 173, 186, 191, 233, 286, 292, 321

Rossini, Mme. Colbran, 46, 48

Rota, 235

Rothschild, Baroness Lionel de, 242

Rousseau, 179

Rubini, 128

Rubinstein, 177, 239, 258, 266, 268, 269, 270

Ruckman, Marie, 146

Ruiz-Garcia, Mme., 93

Ruskin, 185

Russell, Ella, 268, 269

Rye, Lieutenant, 76


Sabatier, 189

Sainton, Prof., 184, 190, 194

Saint-Saëns, 175, 222

Sainville, 187

Salieri, 53

Salmon, Mrs, 51

Salmond, Norman, 270

Salomon, Mme. Siegfried (see Nissen, Henriette).

Samary, 236

Sand, George, 128, 170, 175, 176, 177

Sanderson, Sybil, 163, 271

Santi, P. de, 306, 308, 309

Santley, Sir Charles, 4, 197, 214, 215, 216, 217, 226, 227, 228, 230,
231, 234, 235

Sapio, 51, 53

Sarasate, 264

Sargent, John S., 301, 309, 316

Savart, 131

Saville, Francis, 163

Saxon, Avon, 270

Saxony, King of, 164

Scalchi, Mme., 233, 234, 235, 236

Scheffer, 179

Scheidemantel, 4, 195

Schlosser, 267

Schmidt, Prof. M., 307

Schubert, 13, 94, 174, 241

Schumann, Robert, 13, 136, 225

Schumann, Mme., 133, 195, 235

Schwartz, 189

Scott, Sir Walter, 54, 75, 174, 299

Sedie, Delle, 227

Seidl, Anton, 267

Sembrich, Mme., 266, 324

Semon, Sir Felix, 245, 301, 306, 308, 309, 310, 311, 312, 314, 315, 316,
319

Senn, 202

Serda, 176

Shakespeare, 299

Sharpey, Prof., 205

Shelley, 55, 299

Siddons, Mrs Sarah, 54, 77

Sinico, 231, 234, 236

Sitchès, Joaquina (_see_ Garcia, Joaquina).

Sivori, 235

Smart, Sir George, 194, 231

Smith, Alexander, 185

Smith, Dr Harman, 306, 316

"Smith, Mr" (_see_ Philippe, Louis).

Sontag, Mme., 106, 111

Soulacroix, 267

Soult, Mme., 142, 144

Spagnoletti, 48

Spicer, H., 187

Spohr, 13

Spontini, 53, 174

Stanford, Sir C. V., 241, 272

Stephens, Miss, 53, 55

Sterling, Antoinette, 4, 134, 135, 163, 219, 220, 277, 296

Stern, 195

Stewart, W. R. H., 309

Stirling, Prof., 305, 310

Stockhausen, Julius, 4, 156, 166, 167, 168, 194, 197, 214, 289, 316

Storace, 57

Sucher, Rosa, 267, 271

Sue, Eugène, 179

Suffield, Lord, 302, 313

Sullivan, Sir Arthur, 230, 258, 266, 270

Sullivan, Barry, 234

Symonds, C. J., 306, 308, 309, 313

Szymanowska, 52


Tadolini, 189

Tagliafico, 192, 235

Taglioni, 225

Talma, 46, 118

Tamberlik, 226, 228, 230, 234, 235

Tamburini, 128, 184, 192

Tapia, Dr, 306

Taylor, Sir H., 185

Tempest, Marie, 246, 247, 248, 249

Tennyson, Lord, 185

Terrail, 53

Terry, Ellen, 266

Terry, 55

Thackeray, 185

Thalberg, 190

Thomas, Ambroise, 233, 234

Thomas, Goring, 268

Thomas, J., 194

Thompson, Alderman, 75

Thomson, Dr St Clair, 309

Thudicum, Miss, 244, 246, 247, 270

Tietjens, 228, 230, 231, 233, 235

Toole, J. L., 226

Toxier, Dr, 306

Travis, Miss, 53

Trebelli, 230, 235, 266, 269

Tremelli, 163, 268

Treviso, Duke of, 172

Trouseau, 203

Troyon, 179

Türck, 206, 207, 212, 218

Turner, 198

Tyndall, Prof., 184


Uhl, L., 129

Unger, 267


Valleria, Mdlle., 265, 266

Vasa, Gustavus, 155

Vaughan, 53

Vega, Marcus, 125

Velluti, 52

Vera, 189

Verdi, 13, 66, 67, 69, 234, 272

Vernet, Horace, 47, 179

Vestris, Charles, 48

Vestris, Mme., 45, 46, 48, 49, 50, 55, 186, 225

Vestris, Mme. Ronzi, 48

Vestris, Signor, 48

Vianesi, 233

Viardot-Garcia, Mme. (_see_ Garcia, Pauline).

Viardot, Louis, 128

Viardot, Mme. Pauline (_see_ Garcia, Pauline).

Victoire, 226

Victoria, H. M. Queen, 125, 183, 226

Vieuxtemps, 235

Vignas, Francesco, 271

Vigny, Alfred de, 178

Villalobar, Marquis de, 302, 303, 313

Vinrace, Dennis, 306

Virchow, Prof., 314

Visconti, Duke of, 117, 118

Vitarelli, 32

Vogls, The, 267


Wachtel, 231, 235

Wagner, Johanna, 4, 156, 163, 164, 165, 198

Wagner, Richard, 13, 129, 163, 165, 176, 177, 243, 264, 266, 267, 271,
289

Waldeyer, 304

Walker, Dr T. J., 245

Wallace, 226

Ward, Geneviève, 164, 227

Warden, 203

Warner, Mrs, 187

Warren, 188

Warton, Mme., 188

Weber, 13, 55, 90, 189

Webster, Ben, 186, 226, 234

Weiss, 226

Wellington, 23, 24, 74, 77

Wesley, Samuel, 54

Wieniawski, 235

Wilkinson, Miss, 53

Willcocks, Dr, 307

William I., 8

William IV., 164, 183

Williams, the Misses, 189

Wilson, General J. G., 59, 62

Winogradon, 269

Winter, 141

Wordsworth, 198

Worms, 236

Wotan, 289

Wrottesley, Lord, 205

Wyld, Dr, 246, 306


Young, 55


Zaalberg, Dr, 306

Zamboni, Luigi, 32

Zingarelli, 28, 29, 48, 58, 69, 100

Zola, 179


THE END


PRINTED BY WILLIAM BLACKWOOD AND SONS.





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