The 'Parisienne' was first heard in public at the Theatre of the Porte St. Martin on Monday, Aug. 2, 1830. Two days later the Opera was reopened, and the playbill announced the 'Muette de Portici' reduced to four acts, and 'La Marche Parisienne,' a cantata by Casimir Delavigne, sung by Adolphe Nourrit. On this occasion Auber had the last phrase repeated in chorus, and produced the symphony already mentioned.
The defect of the 'Parisienne,' from a musical point of view, is the constant recurrence of the three notes, C, E, and A, especially C: this harping on the third of the key has a monotonous effect, which not even Nourrit's singing could disguise. The jovial turn of the refrain too is quite inconsistent with the words. It is also a pity that the last line ends with a feminine rhyme; the final 'e' of the word 'victoire' being tame and unwarlike to a degree.
But, though wanting in martial spirit, the air had a great success at the time; and some years later the usual controversy as to its origin arose. On this subject Georges Kastner published an interesting article in the 'Revue et Gazette musicale' (April 9, 1849) to which the reader is referred. The writer of the present article is indebted to Germain Delavigne (Casimir's brother) for the curious and little-known fact, that Scribe and he had previously introduced the air into 'Le Baron de Trenck,' a two-act comédie-vaudeville, produced in Paris, Oct. 14, 1828.
[ G. C. ]
PARISINA. 1. An opera in 3 acts; libretto (founded on Byron's poem) by Romani, music by Donizetti. Produced at the Pergola theatre, Florence, March 18, 1833. At the Théâtre des Italians, Paris, Feb. 24, 1838. In London, at Her Majesty's theatre, June 1, 1838.
2. 'Overture to Lord Byron's Poem of Parisina,' for full orchestra, by W. Sterndale Bennett (op. 3), in F♯ minor; composed in 1835, while Bennett was a student; performed at the Philharmonic on June 8, 1840.
[ G. ]
PARKE, John, born in 1745, studied the oboe under Simpson, and the theory of music under Baumgarten. In 1768 he was engaged as principal oboist at the Opera, and in 1771 succeeded the celebrated Fischer as concerto player at Vauxhall, and became principal oboist at Drury Lane. In 1776 he appeared in the same capacity in the Lenten oratorios conducted by J. C. Smith and John Stanley, and soon afterwards at Ranelagh and Marylebone Gardens. He was appointed one of the King's band of music, and in 1783 chamber musician to the Prince of Wales. He was engaged at the Concert of Ancient Music, and other principal concerts, and at all the provincial festivals, until his retirement in 1815. He died Aug. 2, 1829. He composed many oboe concertos for his own performance, but never published them.
Maria Hester, his daughter (born 1775), was instructed by him in singing and pianoforte playing, and made her first appearance as a singer at Gloucester Festival in 1790, being then very young, and for about seven years afterwards sang at the principal London concerts and oratorios and the provincial festivals. She afterwards became Mrs. Beardmore and retired from the musical profession, but distinguished herself by her attainments in science, languages, and literature. She died in 1822, her husband surviving her only four months. She composed several sets of pianoforte sonatas, some songs, and a set of glees.
William Thomas Parke, his younger brother, born in London in 1762, commenced the study of music under his brother in 1770. He subsequently studied under Dance, Burney (nephew of Dr. Burney), and Baumgarten. In 1775 he was a soprano chorister at Drury Lane, and in 1776 was engaged as viola-player at Vauxhall. In 1779 he appeared at Vauxhall as an oboist, and in 1783 was employed as principal oboist at Covent Garden. He was afterwards engaged at the Ladies' and the Professional Concerts, and in 1800 appointed principal oboist and concerto player at Vauxhall, where he continued until 1821. He extended the compass of the oboe upwards to G in alt, a third higher than former performers had reached. He composed several concertos for his instrument, the overtures to 'Netley Abbey' (1794), and 'Lock and Key' (1796), and numerous songs, glees, etc., for the theatre and Vauxhall. He retired in 1825, and in 1830 published 'Musical Memoirs; comprising an Account of the General State of Music in England from 1784 to 1830,' 2 vols. 8vo, an amusing work, but of very little authority. He died Aug. 26, 1847.
[ W. H. H. ]
PARLANDO, PARLANTE, 'speaking.' A direction allowing greater freedom in rendering than cantando or cantabile, and yet referring to the same kind of expression. It is generally used in the case of a few notes or bars only, and is often expressed by the signs ∸ ⨪ placed over single notes, and by a slur together with staccato dots over a group of notes. Sometimes, however, it is used of an entire movement, as in the 6th Bagatelle from Beethoven's Op. 33, which is headed 'Allegretto quasi Andante. Con una certa espressione parlante,' and in the 2nd of Schumann's variations on the name 'Abegg,' Op. 1, where the direction 'Basso parlando' stands at the beginning and refers to the whole variation.
[ J. A. F. M. ]
PARRY, Charles Hubert Hastings, born Feb. 27, 1848, was educated at Eton and Christ Church, Oxford, where he graduated Mus. Bac. in 1867 and B.A. in 1870. He passed the examination for the Mus. Bac. while still at Eton. The exercise for the degree (a Cantata entitled