Page:A Dictionary of Music and Musicians vol 2.djvu/134

From Wikisource
Jump to: navigation, search
This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.

the oratorio of 'Santa Elena al Calvario' is a good instance of a pleasing idea absolutely inseparable from contrapuntal form; shapely and coherent as a whole, it must be unravelled before the closeness and complexity of its texture can be appreciated. His fugues are compact and massive, and full of contrivance which is always subordinated to unity of effect. It is only necessary to compare the contrapuntal movement which forms a Coda to the double-fugued 'Amen' chorus in Leo's 'Sicut erat,' from the 'Dixit' in D (see 'Fitzwilliam Music'), with the fugue on the 'Osanna' in Jommelli's Requiem, the subjects in which are very similar—to see how the science which to one man was an implement or a weapon, in the hand of the other was no more than a crutch.

Besides his larger works, Leo left a great number of instrumental compositions; concertos, fugues, toccatas; several isolated vocal airs with orchestral accompaniment; vocal duets and trios; finally, six books of solfeggi and two of partimenti or figured basses, for the use of the students of San Onofrio.

In person he was of middle height, with a bronzed complexion, keen eye and ardent temperament. His activity and industry were indefatigable; he was wont to pass great part of the night in work, and his energies never seemed to flag. Although uniformly genial and urbane, the prevailing tone of his mind was serious. He appreciated his own music, and loved it, but he was ever ready to perceive merit in others, and to do full justice to the compositions of his rivals. An enthusiast in every branch of his art, he was not only a great composer and a great teacher, but an excellent organist and a virtuoso on the violoncello, being indeed one of the first musicians to introduce this instrument into Italy. His powers of mind remained undiminished to the end, and he died in harness, universally regretted and long remembered.

The following compositions of Leo are published, and accessible.

110th Psalm (Dixit Dominus), for SS. A T. B., with solos. Halle (Kümmel).

Do. for S., T., B., with Orchestra. Berlin (Trautwein & Co.).

50th Psalm (Miserere), SS., AA., TT., BB. Berlin (B. Bock). The same, edited by Choron (Paris, Leduc).

Others, and portions of others, are included in 'Cecilia,' a monthly periodical of church music, ancient and modern, by E. and R. van Maldeghem (Brussels, Heusner), in Latrobe's Sacred Music, and Rochlitz's 'Collection.' A Dixit Dominus for 8 voices and orchestra has been edited (1879) bv Mr C. V. Stanford from the autograph in the Fitzwilliam Library (Novello). Copious extracts from this and others are printed in Novello's 'Fitzwilliam Music' [see vol. i. pp. 530, 531 ].

[ F. A. M. ]

LEOLINE. The English name of 'L'Ame en Peine,' a ballet fantastique in 2 acts; words by Saint Georges, music by Flotow. Produced at the Grand Opera May 29, 1846. The English version was by Maddox and G. Linley, and the piece was produced at the Princess's theatre, Oxford Street, Oct. 16, 1848.

[ G. ]

LÉONORE, OU L' AMOUR CONJUGAL, an opéra-comique in 2 acts; words by Bouilly, music by Gaveaux. Produced at the Opéra Comique Feb. 19, 1798. The book was translated into Italian, composed by Paer, and produced at Dresden Oct. 3, 1804. It was also translated into German by Jos. Sonnleithner (late in 1804), and composed by Beethoven. The story of the transformations and performances of the opera in its three shapes is given under Fidelio (vol. i. p. 519a); and it only remains to add that it was proposed to bring it out at Prague in May 1807, and that Beethoven, with that view, wrote the overture known as 'Leonore No. 1' (op. 138). The proposal however was not carried out, and the overture remained, probably unperformed, till after his death.[1] It was Beethoven's wish from first to last that the opera should be called 'Leonore'; and his edition of the pianoforte score, published by Breitkopfs in Oct. 1810,is entitled 'Leonore, oper in zwey Aufzugen von L. van Beethoven.' On all other occasions he was overruled by the Management of the theatre, and the opera has always been announced as Fidelio, probably to avoid confusion with Paer's opera. For the whole evidence see 'Leonore oder Fidelio?' in Otto Jahn's Gesamm. Schriften, p. 236, and Thayer's Chron. Verzeichniss, p. 61.

It may be well here to give a list of the overtures to the opera in the order of their composition.

Title. Date and Occasion. Date of publication of Score.
Leonore No. 2, in C. For production of opera, Nov. 20, 1805. Breitkopf 1842 and 1854.
Leonore No. 3, in C. For production of modified opera, Mar. 29, 1806. Breitkopf 1823.
Leonore No. 1, in C (op. 138). For a performance of the opera at Prague in May 1807, which never came off. Haslinger 1832.
Fidelio, in E. For the second and final revision of the opera; first played May 26, 1814. Breitkopf 1864.

[App. p.700 "Mr. Nottebohm's researches in the sketch-books have made it clear that for the revival of the opera in 1814, Beethoven's first intention was to recast the Prague Overture No. 3 (op. 138), changing the key to E. Of this various drafts exist, and some are given in 'Beethoveniana,' p. 74. Had this intention been carried out the overture would have borne the same relation to op. 138 that 'Leonora No. 3' does to 'Leonora No. 2,' and we might then have possessed five overtures to the opera!"]

[ G. ]

LEONORE[2] PROHASKA, a romantic tragedy by Friedrich Duncker, for which Beethoven in the autumn of 1814 composed a soldiers' chorus for men's voices unaccompanied; a romance with harp accompaniment; and a melodram with harmonica, besides scoring the march in his Sonata op. 26. The melodram has been already printed in this Dictionary. [ Vol. i. p. 663.] The opening bars of the two others are given by Thayer, Chron. Verzeichniss, No. 187. The march is transposed into B minor,[3] and scored for 2 flutes, 2 clarinets, 4 horns, and either strings or brass instruments—it seems uncertain which. (See the account in Thayer, iii. 317.) The autograph

  1. Nottebohm, 'Beethoveniana.'
  2. Mr. Nottebohm gives it 'Eleonore.'
  3. A 'black key' according to Beethoven. [See vol. i. p. 643a.]