Page:A Dictionary of Music and Musicians vol 4.djvu/361

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WAGENSEIL.

as Court composer in 1739, a post which he re- tained till his death. He was also organist to the Dowager Empress Elizabeth Christine from 1741 to her death in 1750, and music-master to the Empress Maria Theresa and the Imperial Princesses, with a life-salary of 1500 florins. Among his pupils were Steffan, then Court Capellmeister, and Leopold Hoffmann, after- wards Capellmeister of the Cathedral. When Mozart, a little boy of 6, was playing before the Court in 1 762, he enquired ' Is not Herr Wagen- sell here? he knows all about it,' and when the latter came forward, he said, I am playing a concerto of yours ; you must turn over for me.' In old age Wagenseil suffered from sciatica, which confined him to his room, and nearly lost the use of his left hand from gout. Nevertheless when Burney visited him he managed to play several of his compositions ' in a masterly manner, and with great fire.' 1 In his day he was a favourite composer for the clavier with both amateurs and artists. He modelled his church music after Hasse and Scarlatti, his dramatic music after Leo, and his instrumental after Eameau. Of the latter many pieces were engraved in Paris, Lon- don, Amsterdam, and Vienna. There are several MS. works of his in the Court Library, and in the Archives of the Gesellschaft der Musikfreunde in Vienna, both vocal (cantatas, Italian arias, etc,) and instrumental (trios, quartets, divertimenti, symphonies, etc.). Operas by him are also men- tioned. Of permanent value are ' Suavis artifi- ciose elaboratus, etc.' in 6 parts (Bamberg, 1 740) ; Tre Divertimenti per Cembalo ' (Vienna, 1 761) ; 'Divertissement musical,' 6 sonatas for clave- cin, op. i (Nuremberg, Haffner) ; and 4 nos., each containing ' VI Divertimenti da Cembalo,' dedicated to his pupils the Archduchesses Mari- ana, Marie Cristina, Elizabeth, and Amalia (all 1760), finely engraved on copper by Giorgio Nicolai for Agostino Bernard! the Viennese pub- lisher. The theme of Handel's ' Harmonious Blacksmith ' is often said to be taken from one of Wagenseil's pieces, but it has not yet been identified. [C.F.P.]

WAGNER, JOHANNA, niece of Richard Wag- ner, was born at Hanover, October 13, 1828, daughter of Albert Wagner, a dramatic tenor. He married Elise Gollmann, with a voice of the abnormal compass of three octaves and two notes, who in her very short career is said to have sung the parts of Tancredi and of the Queen of Night, with equal fulness of tone.

Richard Wagner and his brother Albert lived together in Wurzburg during the whole of 1833. Johanna, then only five, sang everything she heard ; and her uncle, in after years, would often quote her childish version of the words of operas. She appeared at six as Salome in the Donau- weibchen.' In 1843 her uncle heard her sing the part of Myrrha in Winter's * Unterbrochene Opferfest, 1 and in May 1844 obtained a temporary engagement for her at the Royal Opera at Dres- den, where he was preparing the first performance

i Present ' State of Music in Germany,* p. 230.

��WAGNER.

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��of his * Rienzi.' Though but sixteen she had such success as Irma in ' Maurer und Schlosser,' and Agathe in the ' Freischutz,' that she was not only engaged for three years, but the manage- ment paid the fine necessary to release her from her contract at the Ducal Theatre at Bernburg. She spent the summer with her uncle near Dresden, studying his Tannhauser, scene by scene, as he composed it, and had the honour of creating the part of Elizabeth when only seven- teen. Her uncle had intended the first perform- ance to take place on her seventeenth birthday, but the illness of a singer postponed it until Oct. 21, 1845. However, when his friends as- sembled at his house for supper that night, Johanna found, hidden under her napkin, a little gold bracelet engraved with her name and the date, a proof of his satisfaction with her per- formance which will always be her greatest treasure. Such hopes were founded upon the talents of the young singer that the King of Saxony sent her to Paris to study under Garcia. She left Dresden Feb. i, 1847, accompanied by her father, who until then had been her in- structor. Returning in six months she appeared as Norma, singing in Italian, heruncle conducting. She now added to her repertoire Fidelio, Valen- tine, Adriano, Susanna, Reiza, Favorita, Donna Anna, Recha, Euryanthe, Ernani, Sextus, Weisse Dame, etc. Her uncle's part in the revolutionary troubles of 1849, an( ^ consequent exile, making it unpleasant for her to remain in Dresden, she accepted an engagement at Hamburg ; there she created the first German Fides in the ' Pro- phete,' and sang it fifty times in succession. In 1850 she was permanently engaged at the Royal Opera House in Berlin, with an exceptional con- tract giving her six months leave each year. King Frederick William IV. and his Queen thoroughly appreciated her talent, and she frequently sang for them in private, accompanied by Meyerbeer, whose faithful friendship she enjoyed from the day he first heard her sing.

In 1852 she came to England, but owing to a lawsuit concerning her contract, she was pre- cluded from singing at either of the opera-houses. In 1856 she appeared at Her Majesty's Theatre, as Tancredi, Lucrezia Borgia, and Romeo. Of the latter, Mr. Lumley, in his * Reminiscences,' writes: ' Was it possible to listen and not feel every hostile feeling crushed ? Gifted with a voice com- bining the resources of soprano and contralto in one or rather with two voices (wrote one able critic) ; a well-accentuated style of declamation ; endowed with a grace which made every attitude a pictorial study, no wonder that Mile. Johanna Wagner took the house by storm.'

In 1859 B ^ e married Herr Landrath Jach- mann, and two years later had the misfortune to lose her voice suddenly and completely. She then bravely entered upon a second artistic career, as an actress, her very exceptional gifts en- abling her to do so with brilliant success. This lasted for eleven years, at the same Theatre at Berlin. Her new repertoire included Marie Stuart,Queen Elizabeth, Lady Macbeth, Antigone,

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