At the Matinées

R. Allen Lott

in From Paris to Peoria

Published in print February 2003 | ISBN: 9780195148831
Published online May 2008 | e-ISBN: 9780199869695 | DOI:
At the Matinées

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Sigismund Thalberg's most satisfying appearances artistically comprised a series of more than fifteen solo matinees in New York and Boston, where he performed a wider repertoire, including works by Beethoven, Chopin, and Mendelssohn, before intimate audiences. Most of the audience members were women, since the daylight scheduling allowed them to attend without an escort, as was required at night. Thalberg also gave at least twenty concerts in ten cities for as many as forty or fifty thousand schoolchildren. Thalberg's first inland tour in 1857 was managed efficiently by Maurice Strakosch, who had begun his career as a piano virtuoso; at least fifty-nine concerts in thirty cities in the Midwest and Canada were given. The fashionable concertgoer, who attended more to be seen than to hear the music, was frequently attracted to the concerts of visiting celebrities. The new feature of providing reserved seats for an additional fee allowed the fashionable to arrive late and make a grand entrance while claiming their prize seats.

Keywords: Sigismund Thalberg; Maurice Strakosch; fashionable concertgoer; reserved seats

Chapter.  5851 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Musicology and Music History

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