Social Victorians/1894-03-22 Grafton Galleries Concert

Concert Honoring Joachim and Piatti at the Grafton GalleriesEdit


  • 1894 March 22, Thursday
  • Grafton Galleries

Who Was PresentEdit

Guests of HonorEdit

  • Joseph Joachim
  • Piatti

Reception CommitteeEdit

  1. L. Alma Tadema, Esq., R.A.
  2. Sir Joseph Barnby
  3. Francesco Berger, Esq.
  4. Henry Bird, Esq.
  5. Alfred Borwick, Esq.
  6. Leonard Borwick, Esq.
  7. Professor J. F. Bridge
  8. Jacob Bright, Esq., M.P.
  9. the Right Hon. the Lord Chancellor
  10. T. P. Chappell, Esq.
  11. S. Arthur Chappell, Esq.
  12. Miss Chappell
  13. Lieut. Colonel Arthur Collins
  14. F. H. Cowen, Esq.
  15. W. H. Cummings, Esq.
  16. Miss Fanny Davies
  17. Alfred Gibson, Esq.
  18. Mrs. Goetz
  19. R. Gompertz, Esq.
  20. Lady Grant
  21. Sir Charles Hallé
  22. Lady Hallé
  23. C. E. Hallé, Esq.
  24. Basil Hardcastle, Esq.
  25. A. J. Hipkins, Esq., F.S.A.
  26. J. C. Horsley, Esq., R.A.
  27. Mr. Hermann Klein, Hon. Secretary
  28. Sir Frederick Leighton, P.R.A.
  29. Lady Constance Leslie
  30. Mrs. Arthur Lewis
  31. Sir George Lewis
  32. C. Harford Lloyd, Esq., Mus. Doc.
  33. Edward Lloyd, Esq.
  34. J. A. Fuller Maitland, Esq.
  35. August Manns, Esq.
  36. Charles Morley, Esq.
  37. C. Hubert H. Parry, Esq.. Mus. Doc.
  38. J. C. Pawle, Esq.
  39. Louis Ries, Esq.
  40. Lady Sandhurst
  41. Charles Santley, Esq.
  42. W. Shakespeare, Esq.
  43. Sir John Stainer
  44. Leo Stern, Esq.
  45. Ludwig Straus, Esq.
  46. Sir Arthur Sullivan
  47. Franklin Taylor, Esq.
  48. Thomas Threlfall, Esq.
  49. Albert Visetti, Esq.
  50. W. E. Whitehouse, Esq.
  51. Miss Agnes Zimmermann

Also PresentEdit

  1. Sir George Grove
  2. Dr. A. C. Mackenzie
  3. Mr. Victor Benecke
  4. Mr. Paul Benecke, M.A.


<quote>The Band of the Royal Artillery played an excellent selection of music in tbe course of the evening, and the proceedings were in every way successful, thanks in great measure to the zeal and assiduity of Mr. Hermann Klein, who acted as hon. secretary.</quote> (RtHJaSP)


The Morning Post also has an extensive description of what people said and also lists mostly only the people on the reception committee as present, with the addition of these two names: <quote>Amongst the guests present were Mr. Victor Benecke, Mendelssohn's son-in-law, Mr. Paul Benecke, M.A., Mendelssohn's grandson</quote> (RtDJaSP)

From the London StandardEdit

<quote>Not only the musical world but the fine arts and literature were strongly represented in the gathering at the Grafton Galleries last night, the occasion being one of exceptional, and it might almost be said unique, interest. It was in 1844 that the two great instrumental performers named above first appeared in London. At the strong recommendation of Mendelssohn, Joseph Joachim, then a boy of thirteen years of age, was permitted to appear at a Philharmonic Concert on May 27, when he played Beethoven's Violin Concerto, though he had previously afforded some proof of his extraordinary ability at a performance given by Mr. Bunn at Drury Lane on March 28. Of the services since rendered to musical art in England by this truly noble violinist it would be superfluous to speak. They received special recognition only a few years ago, when a presentation was made to Herr Joachim of a magnificent red Stradiuarius violin, this fact accounting for the somewhat humble though none the less heartfelt homage accorded yesterday evening. Signor Piatti, born nine years earlier than his illustrious fellow artist, first appeared in London at a Philharmonic concert on June 24th, 1844, when he was heard in a Concertino by Kummer, a prominent daily paper remarking, in its notice of the performance — in the course of which, by the way, Mendelssohn played Beethoven's Pianoforte Concerto in G, No. 4 — that "Piatti is a masterly player on the violoncello. In tone, which foreign artists generally want, he is equal to Lindley in his best days; his execution is rapid, diversified, and certain, and a false note never by any chance is to be heard." For the past 35 years he has been even a more familiar figure than Herr Joachim, as, until very recently, he occupied the post of violoncellist at the Popular Concerts from the beginning until the conclusion of each season. It was to these two distinguished musical artists that the tribute of last night was offered, and we feel assured that they will esteem it none the less because, for the reason stated above, its monetary value was not very great. Among those who attended, and who were members of the hastily-organised Reception Committee were the following ladies and gentlemen: — ....

Dr. A. C. Mackenzie was deputed to present the address to Signor Piatti, which was in the following terms: — "The present year witnesses the fiftieth anniversary of your first appearance in this country, and it is with sincere pleasure that we have met together for the purpose of doing you honour on an occasion so remarkable in our musical history. Whilst offering you our warmest congratulations on this auspicious event, we desire to assure you of our sentiments of deep regard, and to acknowledge with infinite gratitude the delight which, season after season, you have afforded us by means of your consummate art. Your constant cooperation in the quartet at the Popular Concerts, from the first, has been not only a fundamental source of strength to the Institution itself, but an important factor in that growing love for chamber music which has been so conspicuous a feature in our recent musical progress. The example of your faultlessly pure style and your rare artistic discretion has been of incalculable value, and we have good reason to feel proud that so illustrious a master of his instrument as yourself should have made London his home during a considerable portion of every year. We earnestly trust that your visits may be renewed for many seasons to come, and we shall gladly proffer you the same hearty and cordial welcome which you have hitherto received among us" (loud applause).

In response, the veteran artist expressed himself duly grateful for the favour with which he had always been received in this country, and referred in humorous terms to his early vicissitudes as a performer. His genial remarks were received with hearty cheers and laughter.

Sir George Grove then rose and presented the address to Herr Joachim in these words: — "It is with the deepest pleasure that we have assembled to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of your first appearance in England, and we beg that you will accept our heartfelt felicitations upon an event so exceptional in its nature, and fraught with such profound interest to lovers of music in this country. We gladly avail ourselves of this opportunity to renew the expressions of our unbounded admiration for your gifts, both as an executant and a composer, as well as for those noble personal qualities which have distinguished you throughout your brilliant career. We desire, moreover, to place on record our great appreciation of the inestimable benefits that have accrued to the cause of music in England through your yearly presence among us, through the influence of your exalted talents, and through the unswerving loftiness of your artistic purpose. You have commanded and you possess our sincerest gratitude in alliance with those feelings of true affection and esteem which a pure and long existing bond of friendship can alone create. In conclusion, we express a fervent hope that you may be spared for many years to shed the lustre of your genius upon the whole musical world."

Visibly affected, the greatest violinist of the age referred in his reply to the great advance in the appreciation of instrumental music in this country since his first visit, fifty years ago, and his gratitude to Mendelssohn for having secured him an introduction to a nation which for centuries had been deeply devoted to vocal music, a feeling which he attributed in great measure to the religious convictions of the English people.</quote> (RtHJaSP)

Questions and NotesEdit