Page:A Dictionary of Music and Musicians vol 4.djvu/476

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460

��WILLIAMS.

��elder sister retired from public life on her mar riage with Mr. Alfred Price of Gloucester May 1 6, 1850, and is thus mentioned in th Athenaeum of May 18, 'A more modestl valuable or more steadily improving artist wa not among the company of native soprani.'

MARTHA, the contralto, married Mr. Lockey May 24, 1853, and continued her career unti 1865. She now resides with her husband a Hastings. [See LOCKEY.] [A.C.

WILLING. CHRISTOPHER EDWIN, son o Christopher Willing, alto singer and assistan Gentleman of the Chapel Royal (born 1 804, diec May 12, 1840), was born Feb. 28, 1830. He was admitted a chorister of Westminster Abbey under James Turle in 1839, and continued such until 1845, during which time he also sang in the chorus at the Concert of Antient Music, the Sacred Harmonic Society, etc. Upon leaving the choir he was appointed organist of Black' heath Park Church, and assistant organist o: Westminster Abbey. In 1847 he was engagec as organist at Her Majesty's Theatre, and helc the post until the close of Lumley's management in 1858. In 1848 he was appointed organist to the Foundling Hospital, and shortly afterwards also director of the music. In 1857 he was in- vited to take the place of organist of St. Paul's. Covent Garden, which he held in conjunction with his appointment at the Foundling, but re- signed it in 1 860 to accept the post of organist a,nd director of the music at All Saints, Mar- garet Street, which he held until 1868. In 1872 he was appointed organist, and afterwards also chorus master, to the Sacred Harmonic Society. In the same year he was re-engaged as organist in the company of Her Majesty's Theatre (then performing at Drury Lane), and in 1868 was made, in addition, maestro al piano. In 1879 he resigned his appointments at the Foundling Hospital. For several years past he has been conductor of the St. Alban's Choral Union, which holds a triennial festival in St. Alban's Abbey now Cathedral. Mr. Willing is an able and highly esteemed professor. [W.H.H.]

WILLIS, HENRY, one of the leading English organ-builders; born April 27, 1821 ; was ar- ticled in 1835 to JOHN GRAY ; and in 1847 took the first step in his career by re-building the organ at Gloucester Cathedral, with the then unusual compass of 29 notes in the pedals. In the Great Exhibition of 1851 he exhibited a large organ, which was much noticed, and which led to his being selected to build that for St. George's Hall, Liverpool, which under the hands of Mr. Best has become so widely known. The organ which he exhibited in the Exhibi- tion of 1862 also procured him much fame, and became the nucleus of that at the Alexandra Palace, destroyed by fire on June 9, 1873, shortly after its completion. His next feat was the organ for the Koyal Albert Hall (opened 1871), which in size, and for the efficiency of its pneumatic, mechanical and acoustic qualities, shares its high reputation with the second Alex-

��WILLMANN.

andra Palace organ, which was constructed for the restoration of that building, and was opened in May 1875.

Mr. Willis has supplied or renewed organs to nearly half the Cathedrals of England, viz. St. Paul's (1872), Canterbury (86), Carlisle (56), Durham (77), Hereford (79), Oxford (84), Salisbury (77), Wells (57), Winchester (53), Truro, St. David's, (81), Edinburgh (79), Glas- gow (79), as well as many colleges, churches, halls, etc. The award of the Council Medal to Mr. Willis in 1851 specifies his application of an improved exhausting valve to the Pneumatic lever, the application of pneumatic levers in a compound form, and the invention of a move- ment for facilitating the drawing of stops singly or in combination. In 1862 the Prize Medal was awarded to him for further improvements. In 1885 tne Gold Medal was given him for excel- lence of tone, ingenuity of design, and perfection of execution.' His only patent is dated March 9, 1868.

Mr. Willis has always been a scientific organ- builder, and his organs are distinguished for their excellent engineering, clever contrivances, and first-rate workmanship, as much as for their bril- liancy, force of tone, and orchestral character. [G.]

WILLMAN, 1 THOMAS LINDSAY, the most celebrated of English clarinettists, was the son of a German who, in the latter half of the 1 8th century, came to England and became master of a military band. The time and place of the younger Willman's birth are unknown. After being a member of a military band and of va- rious orchestras he became, about 1816, principal clarinet in the Opera and other chief orchestras, and also master of the Grenadier Guards' band. His tone and execution were remarkably beauti- ful, and his concerto-playing admirable. He died Nov. 28, 1840. His age was recorded in the register of deaths as 56, but, by comparison with his own statement made more than 8 years be- fore, when he joined the Royal Society of Musi- cians, should have been 57. He is believed however to have been much older. [W.H.H.]

WILLMANN. 3 A musical family, interest- ing partly in themselves, but chiefly from their connection with Bonn and Beethoven. MAXI- MILIAN, of Forchtenberg, near Wiirzburg, one of the distinguished violoncellists of his time, re- moved with his family to Vienna about 1780. There they became known to Max Franz, son of

he Empress Maria Theresa, who in 1 784 became

Elector of Cologne, with Bonn as his capital.

hen he, in 1788, reorganised the court music, le called Willmann and his family thither, the

1 His name was always spelt in English with one ' n,' but doubt - iss it had two originally.

2 The notices ol the various Wlllmanns in the old musical perl dicals and calendars are so confused and contradictory, as to ender it exceedingly difficult, perhaps impossible, to fully diseu- angle them. Baptismal names, dates of birth and death, and direct

cans ef identification are largely wanting; and the German usical lexicons, copying each other, only add to the confusion, ust of the latter make of Max Willmann and his daughters, a rother, and sisters'. Neefe, their mus.c director In Bonn, writes In 7'J-/, ' Herr Willmann with his two demoiselle daughters.' This it conclusive.

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