Page:A Dictionary of Music and Musicians vol 3.djvu/112

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��REICHARDT.

��admired. In both places he met with great success as composer and conductor, and was popular for his social qualities ; but neither of his two Trench operas ' Tamerlan ' and ' Panthee,' composed for the Academie, were performed. On the death of Frederic the Great (1786) his successor confirmed Reichardt in his office, and he produced several new operas, but his position became more and more disagreeable. His vanity was of a peculiarly offensive kind, and his enemies found a weapon ready to their hand in his avowed sympathy with the doctrines of the French Revolution. The attraction of these views for a buoyant, liberal mind like Reichardt's, always in pursuit of high ideals, and eager for novelty, is obvious enough ; but such ideas are dangerous at court, and after further absence, which he spent in Italy, Ham- burg, Paris, and elsewhere, he received his dis- missal from the Capellmeistership in 1794.* He retired to his estate, Giebichenstein, near Halle, and occupied himself with literature and com- position, and occasional tours. In 1 796 he became inspector of the salt works at Halle. After the death of Frederic William II. he produced a few more operas in Berlin, but made a greater mark with his Singspielen, which are of real importance in the history of German opera. In 1808 he accepted the post of Capellmeister at Cassel to Jerome Bonaparte, refused by Beethoven, but did not occupy it long, as in the same year we find him making a long visit to Vienna. On his return to Giebichenstein he gathered round him a pleasant and cultivated society, and there, in the midst of his friends, he died, June 17, 1814. Reichardt has been, as a rule, harshly judged ; he was not a mere musician, but rather a com- bination of musician, litterateur, and man of the world. His overweening personality led him into many difficulties, but as a compensation he was endued with great intelligence, and with an ardent and genuine desire for progress in everything music, literature, and politics. As a composer his works show cultivation, thought, and honesty ; but have not lived, because they want the ne- cessary originality. This is specially true of his instrumental music, which is entirely forgotten. His vocal music, however, is more important, and a good deal of it might well be revived, especially his Singspielen and his Lieder. The former ex- ercised considerable influence in the development of German opera, and the latter are valuable, both as early specimens of what is now written by every composer, and for their own individual merit. The Goethe-Lieder in particular show a rare feeling for musical form. Mendelssohn was no indulgent critic, but on more than one occasion he speaks of Reichardt with a warmth which he seldom manifests even towards the greatest mas- ters. He never rested until he had arranged for the performance of Reichardt's Morning Hymn, after Milton, at the Cologne Festival of 1835;

i There was apparently some dissatisfaction with Belchardfs efficiency as a musician as well as with his political opinions, for Mozart's remark that the King's band contains great virtuosi, but the effect would be better If the gentlemen played together,' certainly implied a reflection on the conductor. Neither does Reichardt seem to have appreciated Mozart tJ aim's ' Mozart,' ii. 110).

��REID.

and his enthusiasm for the composer, and his wrath at those who criticised him, are delightful to read.* Years afterwards, when his mind had lost the ardour of youth, and much experience had sobered him, he still retained his fondness for this com- poser, and few things are more charming than the genial appreciation with which he tells Reichardt's daughter of the effect which her father's songs had had, even when placed in such a dangerous position as between works of Haydn and Mozart, at the Historical Concert at the Gewandhaus in Feb. 1847. It is the simplicity, the naivete", the national feeling of this true German music that he praises, and the applause with which it was received shows that he was not alone in his appreciation. Amongst Reichardt's numerous works are 8 operas ; 8 Singspielen, including 4 to Goethe's poems, Mery und Bately,' ' Erwin und Elmire,' ' Claudine von Villabella' and 'Lilla'; 5 large vocal works, including Milton's 'Morning Hymn,' translated by Herder, his most important work, in 1835 ; a large number of songs, many of which have passed through several editions, and been pub- lished in various collections.

Reichardt's writings show critical acumen, observation, and judgment. Besides the letters previously mentioned, he published ' Das Kunst- magazin,' 8 numbers in 2 vols. (Berlin, 1782 and 91) ; ' Studien fiir Tonkiinstler und Musik- freunde,' a critical and historical periodical with 39 examples (i 792) ; ' Vertraute Briefe aus Paris,' 3 parts (1802-3); 'Vertraute Briefe auf einer Reise nach Wien, etc.* (1810); fragments of autobiography in various newspapers ; and in- numerable articles, critiques, etc. The ' Briefe * are specially interesting from the copious details they give, not only on the music, but on the politics, literature, and society of the various places he visited. A biography, 'J. F. Reichardt, sein Leben und seine musikalische Thatigkeit,' by Herr Schletterer, Capellmeister of the cathe- dral of Augsburg, is in progress, the 1st vol. having been published at Augsburg in 1865. [A.M.]

REID, GENERAL JOHN, born towards the middle of last century, formerly Colonel of the 88th Regiment, a great lover of music. By his will made in 1803 he directed his trustees, in the event of his daughter dying without issue, to found a Professorship of Music in the Univer- sity of Edinburgh, 'for the purpose also, after completing such endowment as hereinafter is mentioned, of making additions to the library of the said University, or otherwise promoting the general interest and advantage of the University in such . . . manner as the Principal and Profes- sors . . . shall . . . think most fit and proper.' In a codicil, dated 1806, he adds 'After the de- cease of my daughter ... I have left all my property ... to the College of Edinburgh where I had my education . . . and as I leave all my music books to the Professor of Music in that College, it is my wish that in every year after his, appointment he will cause a concert of music to be performed on the 1 3th of February, being my

a Letters, Dec. 28. 1883; April 3, 1835.

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