French Pianos, Italian Opera, and California Gold

R. Allen Lott

in From Paris to Peoria

Published in print February 2003 | ISBN: 9780195148831
Published online May 2008 | e-ISBN: 9780199869695 | DOI:
French Pianos, Italian Opera, and California Gold

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While in the United States, Henri Herz actively established agents to sell his own pianos and explored the possibilities of building a factory, concert hall, and conservatory, none of which came to fruition. Herz's claim that Americans covered the legs of their pianos because of their prudishness is not true; it was a means to protect them. During the 1848-9 season, Herz toured with the Dutch violinist Frans Coenen (1826-1904) and an Italian opera troupe. After appearances in Mexico, Herz gave concerts in San Francisco and Sacramento, California, in 1850 during the height of the gold rush. Herz's American tour reflected a more businesslike approach to musical management under Bernard Ullman, and included almost two hundred concerts in at least fifty-eight cities. His simple but elegant stage manners and his graceful music charmed the American public.

Keywords: Henri Herz; Frans Coenen; Italian opera; San Francisco; gold rush; Bernard Ullman; musical management

Chapter.  6229 words. 

Subjects: Musicology and Music History

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