Edward MacDowell eBook

Lawrence Gilman
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 87 pages of information about Edward MacDowell.

Gramophone records of Thy Beaming Eyes have been made for “Columbia” by Charles W. Clarke, baritone, and for “His Master’s Voice” by Sophie Breslau, contralto.

For Sweet Love’s Sake. (Simply, with feeling.) This song is not a very successful alliance of words and music.  The former are of tender content, while the latter is after the style of a pleasant lullaby.  The music does not in the least reflect the spirit of the words.

O Lovely Rose. (Slowly, with great simplicity.) This is the pure lyric gem of the Six Love Songs by MacDowell.  It is very short, but has a rare charm and fragrance.

I Ask But This. (Moderately fast, almost banteringly.) There is an attractive piquancy and lightness about this song that makes it distinct from its companions.  It suggests light-hearted love, and its demure ending, as the lovers part, was a happy thought on the part of the composer.

OPUS 41.  TWO PART-SONGS, FOR MALE CHORUS.

Composed, 1890. First Published, 1890 (Arthur P. Schmidt).

  1. Cradle Song.

  2. Dance of the Gnomes.

These two part-songs are effectively written and sharply contrasted.  Their contrast furnishes good reason why both should be sung in the order given, and not robbed of their natural companionship.

OPUS 42.  FIRST SUITE, IN A MINOR, FOR FULL ORCHESTRA.

Composed, about 1890-91. First Performed, September, 1891, at the Worcester, U.S.A., Musical Festival.  First, Second, Fourth and Fifth Movements First Published, 1891. Third Movement First Published, 1893 (Complete—­Arthur P. Schmidt).

  1. In a Haunted Forest.

  2. Summer Idyl.

  3. In October.

  4. The Song of the Shepherdess.

  5. Forest Spirits.

This suite, although reminiscent of the nineteenth century German romanticism amongst which MacDowell was educated, has an atmosphere of its own that at once distinguishes it as an example of the highly sensitive and suggestive tone poetry peculiar to its composer.  The work is very skilfully written and is remarkable for its freshness and buoyancy of spirit.  The scoring is exquisite and always illustrative of the poetical subjects of the suite.  Each of the pieces has in its title a suggestion of a scene of Nature, the first and last having also the fanciful and imaginative atmosphere of folk-lore; this provided MacDowell with a task in tone painting such as he loved.  In In a Haunted Forest and Forest Spirits we have examples of the romantic and fanciful sort of tone poetry characteristic of the composer.  In the Summer Idyl, in the fine, mellow beauty of In October and in the lovely Song of

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Edward MacDowell from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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