Page:A Dictionary of Music and Musicians vol 4.djvu/341

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VOGLER.

The next twenty years of Vogler's life present great difficulties to his biographer. Although nominally settled at Stockholm from 1786 or 87 to 1 799, he was really constantly travelling, and the records of his journeys are so fragmentary and contradictory, that it is impossible to con- struct a complete narrative. Thus, though he undoubtedly extended his travels to Spain, Por- tugal, Greece, and Africa, nay even to Armenia and Greenland, 1 the authorities are by no means agreed as to when he went. One writer 8 gives it in 1783-1786, another 3 in 1792, while the dates at which he appears in other distant spots make it difficult to understand how such an extensive tour could have been managed at all. We shall therefore only give some idea of his wanderings and proceedings by noting detached occurrences.

About 1780 Vogler followed the Electoral Court to Munich. He there employed himself in perfecting the education of the celebrated singer Madame Lange, in teaching composition to B. A. Weber, and in composing an opera in five acts entitled 'Albert III. von Baiern,' which was represented at the Court Theatre in 1781. It did not prove successful, and disgust at the want of appreciation that he found in Germany seems to have induced him to appeal to foreign musicians. With this view he sub- mitted an exposition of his system to the Aca- de*mie Roy ale des Sciences, probably in 1781, and to the Royal Society in 1783.* In 1782 he was in Paris 5 and the next year perhaps crossed the Channel to England. 6 Returning from England, if indeed he really visited it at this time, he again attempted to obtain success as an opera composer. But his comic opera 'La Kermesse,' produced at the Theatre de la Come'die Italienne on Nov. 15, 1783, proved a dead failure, and could not even be finished. An- other effort in Germany was crowned with suc- cess. ' Castor and Pollux,' produced at Munich in 1784, was not only received with applause but continued a favourite for years. 7 The close of 1784 and commencement of 1785 appear to have been occupied with the journey to Africa, Greece, and the East. At all events the next definite trace of him is on Nov. 22, 1785, at a great organ recital in Amsterdam, for which no fewer than 7000 tickets were sold. 8 In the next year he entered the service of the King of Sweden as Kapellmeister, resigning his posts at Munich, where he had become chief Kapellmeister on the death of Holzbauer in 1783* At Stockholm

1 A. M. Z. vol. IU. p. 268 ; Tol. Ix. p. 886.

2 Fetls. > A. M. Z. Tol. xxill. p. 257.

< Choral System pp. 18. The records of the Koyal Society afford no trace of a communication from Vogler or anything else bearing on the question. The Journal des Scavans for 1782 has an anonymous article comparing the Tonometers of Pythagoras, the Greeks, and the Abbe" Vogler. which states that his Instrument had been presented to the Acade"mie Royale des Sciences together with the inventor's new musical system, which he proposed to publish shortly.

s So at least we may infer from the date of his ' Essal de dirlger la gout,' etc. published in I aris.

Choral System, p, 5.

7 Fetis assumes that ' Castor and Pollux' was produced at Mannheim in 1791, but contradicts himself elsewhere (see his account of Mile. Kreiner). For the date here given see A. M. Z. vol. viii. p. 818.

A. M. Z. vol. i. p. 675.

Fetls speaks as if Vogler resigned bis Bavarian appointments la

��VOGLER.

��325

��! he established his second Tonschule, but neither that nor his official duties put much check on his roving propensities. He signalised his arrival with a French opera, 'Egle,' produced in 1787, but the next year he is at St. Petersburg, 10 and in November 1789 at Amsterdam. He ar- rived in London at the beginning of 1790, and was very successful. His performances were applauded and he was entrusted with the

i reconstruction of the organ in the Pantheon.

1 According to Gerber u he introduced organ pedals into this country, and their introduction by the organ-builder England certainly belongs to the year of his visit." His last performance at the Pantheon took place on May 31, and the pro- ceeds of his visit amounted to 1000 or 1200. One of his most admired performances was 'The pastoral festival interrupted by a storm,' which seems to be the piece by Knecht which was the precursor of Beethoven's Pastoral Symphony. [See KNECHT, vol. ii. p. 66 a ; and PROGRAMME Music, vol. iii. p. 39 a.] He went to the Handel Festival in Westminster Abbey, 13 but was not much impressed. He complains that the chorus was too loud, that the performers were too numerous for any music but Handel's, and that no light and shade could be obtained. But he admits that the effect was sometimes great, and he did homage to the memory of Handel in a characteristic manner, by composing a fugal piece for the organ on the themes of the Hallelujah chorus. The Festival ended on June 3, and he next appears at Warsaw, writing to invite the organ-builder Rackwitz of St. Petersburg to join him. Rackwitz complied, and the two proceeded to Rotterdam to place some free-reeds in an organ there. In the early part of September he was giving concerts at Coblenz, Mayence, and Frank- fort. From thence he journeyed on, through Worms, Carlsruhe, Durlach, and Pforzheim, to Esslingen, where the enthusiastic inhabitants presented him with the 'wine of honour,' usually reserved for sovereigns. 1 * Rackwitz remained at Frankfort, making a free-reed stop for the Carmelite church, 15 but Vogler probably rejoined

i him in time for the coronation of Leopold II. on Oct. 9. The Abbe now began to be held in honour in his own country. At Frankfort his 'Halle-

, lujah' fugue fairly astonished both friends and enemies. 16 It was at this time he projected a return to London with the view of establishing a manufactory of free-reeds. 17 This intention was not carried out : he returned to Stockholm, and was followed by B. A. Weber, who gave up his position as conductor at Hanover to obtain further

j instruction from his old master. The early part of 1791 was employed in the composition of

1782. This is at variance with the title-page of Knecht's 'Portrait

Musical [for which see PROGRAMME-MUSIC, vol. ill. p. 39 a], published i In 1784 [see KNECHT, vol. il. p. 66 a]. Moreover Winter, who succeeded

Vogler as Kapellmeister, obtained the post in 1788. (A. M. Z. vol.

wviii. p. 858). 10 A. M. Z. vol. v. p. 152.

i 11 Lexicon der Tonkttnstler. 12 See ORGAN, vol. it. p. 698 b.

13 On Vogler's performances in London see ' The Gazetteer and New I Daily Advertiser ' for May 8, 22, and 29, 1790. 1 H Christmann and Schubart in Musik. Correspondent for 1790, Nos.

! is Compare with the authorities Just quoted A. M. Z. vol. xxv. p. 153. I w Christmann and Schubart. 1. c,, give several instances.

n Christmann.

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