Page:A Dictionary of Music and Musicians vol 4.djvu/148

From Wikisource
Jump to: navigation, search
This page needs to be proofread.



��This unfortunate singer, the first English- j woman distinguished in Italian Opera, lost her reason early in 1709. In a most ungenerous vein Steele alludes to her affliction, 1 and attributes it to the habit she had acquired of j regarding herself as really a queen, as she appeared on the stage, a habit from which she could not free herself. Burney supposes that this was an exaggeration, by means of which the writer intended only to ' throw a ridicule on opera quarrels in general, and on her particular disputes at that tune with the Margarita or other female singers.' Hawkins says that she was cured, temporarily at least, and 'in the meridian of her beauty, and possessed of a large sum of money, which she had acquired by singing, quitted the stage (1709), and was married to Mr. Joseph Smith, afterwards Eng- lish consul at Venice. Here she lived in great state and magnificence, with her husband, for a time ; but her disorder returning' (which, if true, upsets Burney's theory), 'she dwelt sequestered from the world in a remote part of the house, and had a large garden to range in, in which she would frequently walk, singing and giving way to that innocent frenzy which had seized her in the earlier part of her life.' She was still living about the year 1735.*

Her voice did not exceed in compass 3 that of an ordinary soprano, and her execution, as shown by the printed airs which she sang, 'chiefly consisted in such passages as are comprised in the shake, as indeed did that of most other singers at this time.' It may be observed, however, that all singers ' at this time ' added a good deal to that which was ' set down for them' to execute ; and probably she did so too.

It is somewhat strange that, of a singer so much admired as Mrs. Tofts undoubtedly was, no portrait should be known to exist, either painted or engraved. [J.M.]

TOLBECQDE, a family of Belgian musicians, who settled in France after the Restoration. The original members were four brothers : the eldest, ISIDORE JOSEPH (born at Hanzinne Ap. 17, 1 794, died at Vichy May 10, 1871), was a good con- ductor of dance-music. JEAN BAPTISTE JOSEPH (born at Hanzinne in 1797, died in Paris, Oct. 23, 1869), violinist, composer, and excellent conductor, directed the music of the court balls during Louis Philippe's reign, and also those at Tivoli when those public gardens were the height of the fashion. He composed a quantity of dance- music quadrilles, valses, and galops above the average in merit; an ope*ra-comique in one act Charles V. et Duguesclin' (Odeon, 1827), with Gilbert and Guiraud ; and with Deldevez, ' Vert- Vert' (Opera, 1851), a 3-act ballet, his most important work. He was a member of the Socie'te' des Concerts du Conservatoire from its foundation in 1859. The third brother, AUGUSTE JOSEPH, also born at Hanzinne, Feb. 28, 1801, died in Paris, May 2 7, 1 869. A pupil of Kudolph

1 Tatler, No. 20, May 26. 1709.

2 Hawkins. Buruey says (probably a misprint) in 1786. Buruey.


Kreutzer, he took the first violin prize at the Conservatoire in 1821, made some mark as a virtuoso, was an original member of the Socie'te' des Concerts, and one of the best violinists at the Ope"ra, and for several seasons was well known in London, where he played first violin at Her Majesty's Theatre. The youngest, CHARLES JOSEPH, born May 27, 1806, in Paris, where he died Dec. 39, 1835, was also a pupil of R. Kreut- zer, and an original member of the Societe" des Concerts. He took a prize at the Conservatoire in 1824, and became conductor at the Varie'te's in 1 830. In this capacity he composed pretty songs and pieces for interpolation in the plays, several of which attained some amount of popularity.

The Tolbecque family is at this moment re- presented by AUGDSTE, son of Auguste Joseph, a distinguished cellist, born in Paris, March 30, 1830. He took the first cello prize at the Con- servatoire in 1849, and has published some 15 works of various kinds for his instrument, in- cluding 'La Gymnastique du Violoncello* (op. 14), an excellent collection of exercises and mechanical studies. He is also a clever restorer of old instruments, and formed a collection, which he sold to the Brussels Conservatoire in 1879. His son, JEAN, born at Niort, Oct. 7, 1857, took the first cello prize at the Paris Con- servatoire in 1873, and has studied the organ with Cdsar Franck. [G.C.]

TOLLET, THOMAS, composed and published about 1694, in conjunction with John Lenton, ' A Consort of Musick in three parts,' and was author of 'Directions to play on the French flageolet.' He was also a composer of act tunes for the theatre, but is best known as composer of ' Toilet's Ground,' printed in the Appendix to Hawkins's History. [W. H.H.]

TOMASCHEK, WENZEL, composer, born April 17, 1774, at Skutsch in Bohemia. He was the youngest of a large family, and his father, a well-to-do linen-weaver, having been suddenly reduced to poverty, two of his brothers, a priest and a public official, had him educated. He early showed talent for music, and was placed at Chrudim with Wolf, a well-known teacher, who taught him singing and the violin. He next wished to learn the piano and organ, and his brother the priest sent him a spinet, on which he practised day and night. The Minorite fathers of Iglan offered him a choristership, with instruction in theory. On the breaking of his voice in 1 790, he went to Prague to study philo- sophy and law, supporting himself the while by giving lessons. All his spare time, even the hours of rest, was spent in studying the works of Marpurg, Kirnberger, Matheson, Turk, and Vogler, and he thus laid a solid foundation of scientific knowledge. Neither did he neglect practical music, but made himself familiar with the works of Mozart and Pleyel, and became ac- quainted with Winter, Kozeluch, and above all, Beethoven, who exercised a life-long influence over him. In his autobiography, published in a volume called 'Libussa' (1845, etc.), Tomaschek writes, 'It was in 1798, when I was studying

�� �