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history, and on the title pages of his compositions — was of an
inventive nature, and what works he has left are really the
produce of his own brain. Full of patriotism and courage, he
took part in the war and fell at Saalfield, October 13th, 1806.



104 LIFE OF CHOPIN.

travelled back by the last Post, and had great
trouble to get away. As for myself I could
have stayed there till I was driven away, but my
occupations, and, above all, my concerto, which
still impatiently awaits its Finale^ forced me to quit
Paradise.

My dear Titus, there were three daughters of Eve
there ; the young princesses, extremely amiable,
musical, and kind-hearted ; and the Princess, their
mother, who knows quite well that the. value of a
man does not depend on his descent, is so lady-like
and amiable towards everyone that it is impossible
not to honour her.

You know what a lover of music the Prince is..
He showed me his " Faust," and I found much that
is really beautiful in it ; some parts, indeed, show
considerable intellectual power. Between ourselves,
I certainly should not have accredited a Stadtholder
with such music. I was struck, among other things,
by the scene where Mephistopheles allures Margaret
to the window, by playing the guitar and singing
outside her house, while a Chorale is heard at the
same time in the neighbouring church. This is sure
to produce a great sensation. I only mention this to
give you an idea of his style. He is also a great
admirer of Gluck. In the drama, he only gives
importance to music in so far as it depicts the
situation or the feelings, therefore the Overture has
no conclusion, but leads directly to the introduction.
The orchestra is always invisible, placed behind the



TEACHING A PRINCESS. IO5

stage,* so as not to distract the attention by such
externals as the conducting, the movements of the
musicians, &c.

I wrote an "Alia Polacca," with 'cello accompani-
ment during my visit to Prince Radziwill. It is
nothing more than a brilliant drawing-room piece —
suitable for the ladies. I should like Princess Wanda
to practice it. I am, supposed to have given her
lessons. She is a beautiful girl of seventeen, and it
\yas charming to direct her delicate fingers. But,
joking apart, she has real musical feeling, and does
not need to be told when to play crescendo, piano, or
pianissimo. Princess Elise was so much interested
in my Polonaise (F minor) that I could not refuse to
send for it. Please let me have it by return of post..
I did not wish to be thought impolite, but I should
not like to write it out of my head again, my dearest,
for I should, perhaps, make it very different from
the original. You can picture to yourself the
character of the Princess from her having me play
the Polonaise to her every day. The Trio in A flat
major always pleases her particularly. t She wishes
me much to go to Berlin in May, so nothing stands
in the way of my going to Vienna in the Winter.



* One thinks involuntarily of the Orchestra at the Bayreuth
Festival, in 1876. Yes, yes, " Original fahr' him in deiner
Vvs^cht:'— Goethe.

\ This polonaise appears as op. 71 in the collection of
posthumous works.



I06 LIFE OF CHOPIN.

It does not seem likely that I shall get off before
December. Papa's birthday is on the sixth, which
I shall, in any case, keep with him. I do not think
of starting till the middle of December. I hope also
to see you again.

You would not believe what a blank I feel in
Warsaw just now. I have no one to whom I can
speak a couple of really confidential words. You
want one of my portraits. I certainly would have
sent it you if I could have stolen one from Princess
Elise, who has two in her album, which, I am
assured are very faithful likenesses ; but you, my
dearest, need no picture of me. Believe me, I am
always with you and will never forget you to the
end of my life.

I remind you once more of the Polonaise ; please
send it by return. I have written some studies ; I
should play them well in your presence. Last Satur-
day, Kessler played Hummel's E major Concerto, at
the Ressource. Next Saturday, perhaps, I shall
play ; I shall choose the Variations dedicated to

you.

Your faithful

FREDERIC.



Warsaw, March 2yth, 1830.

I never missed you so much as now. I have no
one to whom I can pour out my heart. A single
look from you, after the concert, would be more



THE FIRST CONCERT IN VIENNA. I07

to me than the praise of all the critics here.
Immediately on the receipt of your letter, I wanted
to describe my first concert to you ; but I was so
distracted and busy with preparations for the
second, which took place on Monday, that I was
not capable of collecting my thoughts. I am not,
indeed, in a much better mood to-day, but I cannot
delay the sending of this letter any longer, for the
post goes, and who knows when my mind will be
at rest again ?

The first concert, for which three days before
there was neither box nor stall to be had, did not,
on the whole, make the impression I had expected.
The first Allegro of the F. minor concerto (not
intelligible to everyone) was indeed rewarded with
a bravo, but this was, I think, because the public
v^ished to show that it knew how to understand
and appreciate earnest music. In every country
there are plenty of people who readily assume the
airs of connoisseurs. The Adagio and Rondo made
a great effect and were followed by the heartiest
applause and shouts of bravo. But the Potpurri
on Polish songs * completely missed its mark.
They applauded indeed, but, evidently, only to show
the player they were not wearied with him.

Kurpinskit thought he discovered fresh beauties



-'' Grand Fantasia on Polish airs, op. 13.
■{- Charles Kurpinski, bandmaster, and composer of several
national operas, was born in 1785, and died in 1857, ^^ Warsaw.



I08 LIFE OF CHOPIN.

in my concerto that evening. Ernemann was
entirely satisfied. Eisner regretted that my piano
was not stronger, the bass being, as he thought,
not heard clearly enough.

Those sitting in the gallery or standing in the
orchestra appear to have been most satisfied ; there
were complaints in the pit of the playing being
too soft. I should very much like to know the
gossip about me at " Kopciuszek." * In con-
sequence of the remarks in the pit, Mochnacki,
after highly praising me — especially for the Adagio
in the Polish Courier — advised me, for the future,
to use more power and energy. I knew quite well
where this power lay, so at the second concert I
did not play on my own but on a Vienna instrument.
This time the audience, again very large, were
perfectly content. The applause knew no bounds,
and I was assured that every note rang out like a
a bell, and that I played much more finely than
before. When I appeared, in reply to a recall, they
called out " give another concert." The Cracovienne
produced a tremendous sensation ; there were four
rounds of applause. Kurpinski regretted that I had
not played the Polish Fantasia on the Vienna piano,
a remark which Grzymala repeated the other day in
the Polish Courier,. Eisner says I could not be
properly judged of until after the second concert.



* A coffee-house frequented by most of the literati; called
in German " Aschenbrodel."



PROGRAMME OF THE FIRST CONCERT. IO9

I confess, candidly, that I would rather have played
on my own instrument. The Vienna piano was
generally regarded as more appropriate to the size of
the building.

You know what the programme of the first
concert was.* The second began with a Symphony
by Nowakowski t (par complaisance) followed by a
repetition of the first Allegro of my Concerto. Then
the Theatre Concert-master, Bulawski, played an Air
Varie, by Beriot, and I, my Allegro and Rondo again.
The second part commenced with the Rondo Cra-
covienne. Meier sang an air from Soliva's opera,
*' Helene and Malvina," and, in conclusion, I im-
provised on the Volkslied " W — miescie dziwne
obyczaje," (there are strange customs in the town)



* The following programme was performed in the Warsaw
Theatre, March 17th, 1830.

First Part.
I. — Overture to the Opera " Leszek Bialy," by Eisner.
2. — Allegro from the F minor Concerto, composed and

played by Herr F. Chopin.
3. — Divertissement for Horn, composed and played by

Herr Gorner.
4. — Adagio and Rondo, from F minor Concerto, com-
posed and played by Herr Chopin. ,
Second Part.
I. — Overture to the Opera, "Cecilia Piaseczynska," by

Kurpinski.
2. — Variations by Paer, sung by Madame Meier.
3. — Pot-pourri on national songs, by Chopin.

f A fellow student of Chopin's, born 1800, died in Warsaw
1865.



no LIFE OF CHOPIN.

which very much pleased the people in the first
rows. To be candid I must say that I did not
improvise as I had intended, but, perhaps, that
would not have been so well suited to the audience.
I wonder that the Adagio pleased so generally ; from
all I hear, it is with reference to this that the most
flattering observations have been made. You must
have read the newspapers, and you will see that the
public were very pleased with me.

A poem, addressed to me, and a large bouquet
were sent to my house. Mazurkas and Waltzes
are being arranged on the principal themes from
my Concerto. Brzezina asked for my likeness, but
I declined giving it. This would be too much all at
once, besides I do not like the prospect of butter
being wrapped up in the paper on which I am
pourtrayed, as was the case with LelewePs portrait.

Wishes are expressed on all sides that I should
give a third concert, but I have no desire to do so.
You would not believe the excitement one has to go
through for some days before the performance. I
hope to finish the first Allegro of the second Concerto
before the vacation, so I shall wait, at any rate, till
after Easter, although I am convinced that I should
have a larger audience than ever this time ; for the
" haute volee " have hardly heard me at all yet. At
the last concert a stentorian voice called out from
the pit, " Play at the Town Hall," but I doubt
whether I shall follow this advice ; if I play again,
it will be in the theatre. It is not a question of



PROCEEDS OF THE CONCERTS. Ill

receipts with me, for the Theatre did not bring me
in much. (The cashier, to whom everything was
left, did as he hked.) From both concerts, after all
expenses had been deducted, I did not receive quite
5,000 gulden,* although Dmuszewski, editor of the
Warsaw Courier, stated that no concert had been so
crowded as mine. Besides, the Town Hall, where
the anxieties and arrangements would be many,
would not please everyone. Dobrzynski t is vexed
with me for not performing his symphony. Frau
W. took it amiss that I did not reserve a box for
her, &c., &c.

I close this letter unwillingly, because I feel as if
I had not told you anything interesting yet. I have
reserved all for the desert which is nothing more
than a warm embrace.

Your FREDERIC.



Warsaw, May i^th, 1830.

You will certainly have wondered that Fritz did
not answer your letter by return of post ; but as I
could not immediately give the information you asked
for I delayed writing till to-day.

Now listen, my dearest, Henrietta Sonntag is



* About 850 Thalers.
f Felix Ignaz Dobrzynski, pianist and composer, born 1807,
died in Warsaw, 1865.



112 LIFE OF CHOPIN.

coming to Warsaw in June, or, perhaps, at the
end of May. I am sure you will not neglect the
opportunity of hearing her. Oh, how thankful I
am for it. She must be in Danzig now, and from
there she comes to us. We have several concerts in
prospect. Little Worlitzer, pianist to the King of
Prussia, has already been here a fortnight. He
plays very finely, and being of Jewish descent, has
many natural gifts. He has been with me; he is
just sixteen ; some of the things he played at our
house went famously. His best performance is
Moscheles's Variations on the Alexander March. He
really plays those excellently. You would like his
style and manner of playing, although — this to you
only — he still lacks much to deserve his title of
Chamber Virtuoso. There is also a French pianist
here, Monsieur Standt. He intended giving a
concert, but seems lately to have relinquished the
idea.

It is an agreeable piece of musical news that Herr
Blahetka, father of the pianiste in Vienna, will, if
I advise him, come here, when the Diet meets, and
give some concerts. But my position is a difficult
one ; the man wants to make money, and if it
happens that his hopes are not fulfilled, he will be
angry with me. I answered immediately that I had
often been asked whether he would not come, and
that many musicians and lovers of music would be
glad to hear his daughter ; but I did not conceal
from him that Sonntag would be here, that Lipinski



THE NEW CONCERTO. II3

was coming, that we have only one theatre, and that
the expenses of a concert amount to at least 100
thalers. He cannot say now that I did not properly
inform him of the state of things. It is very possible
that he will come. I should be very glad, and would
do all in my power to get a full house for his
daughter. I would willingly also play with her on
two pianos ; for you would not believe how kindly
her father interested himself for me in Vienna.

I do riot know yet when I shall commence my
journey. I shall probably be here during the hot
months. The Italian Opera does not begin in
Vienna till September, so I have no occasion to
hurry. The Rondo for the new Concerto is not ready-
yet. I have not been in the right mood to finish
it. When the Allegro and Adagio are quite done
with, I shall not be in any anxiety about the Finale,

The Adagio in E major is conceived in a romantic,
quiet, half melancholy spirit. It is to give the
impression of the eye resting on some much loved
landscape which awakens pleasant recollections,
such as a lovely spring moon-light night. I have
written for the violins to accompany con sordini.
Will that have a good effect ? Time will show.

Write and tell me when you are coming back to
Warsaw, for it would be worse than it was the first
time if I had to give my concert without you. You
do not know how I love you. Oh, if I could only
prove it ! What would I not give to be able to
embrace you heartily once again.

H



114 LIFE OF CHOPIN.

Warsaw, August 21st, 1830.

This is my second letter- to you. You will scarcely
think it possible, but so it is.

I wrote to you directly after my prosperous return
to Warsaw, but as my parents stopped at Count
Skarbek's, at Zelazowa Wola, I, of course stopped
too, and in the hurry forgot to post my letter. But
there is nothing bad in the world that has not some
good in it.

Perhaps I shall not weary you so much with this
as with the last letter, when I had the image of
your quiet country life, which I had just quitted,
constantly before my eyes. I may say, truly, that I
recall it with delight ; I always feel a certain longing
after your beautiful country seat. I do not forget
the weeping willow, that Arbaleta ! Oh, with what
pleasure do I remember it ! You have teased me
enough about it to punish me for all my sins. Let
me tell you what I have done since you left, and
what is settled about my departure.

I was especially interested with Paer's opera,
" Agnese," because Fraulein Gladkowska made her
debut in it. She looks better on the stage than in a
drawing-room. Her first-rate tragic acting leaves
nothing to be desired, and her vocalization, even to
the high F sharp or G, is excellent. Her nuances are
wonderful, and if her voice was rather tremulous
at first, through nervousness, she sang afterwards
wdth certainty and smoothness. The opera was



CONSTANTIA GLADKOWSKA. II5

curtailed which, perhaps, did not make it seem so
tedious to me. The harp romance which Fraulein
Gladkowska sang in the second act was very fine.
I was quite enraptured. She was recalled at the
conclusion of the opera, and greeted with unbounded
ovations.*

In a week's time Fraulein Watkow t is to play the
role of Fiorilla, in the opera of " II Turco in Italia,"
which will be sure to please the public better. A
great many people blame the opera of " Agnese,"
without knowing why.

I do not contend that Soliva J might have chosen
something better for Gladkowska ; " Vestalin "
would, perhaps, have been more suitable, but
*'Agnese " is beautiful also ; the music has many



* Fraulein Gladkowska was the realization of Chopin's ideal.
His thoughts of her are interwoven into all the compositions
which he wrote at that time. Dreaming of her, he wrote the
Adagio of the E minor Concerto ; his desire of leaving Warsaw
vanished ; she entirely filled the soul of the passionate youth
of twenty. Constantia Gladkowska, a pupil of Soliva, was
married in 1832, and left the stage, to the great regret of all
connoisseurs.

f Fraulein Wotkow, a fellow pupil with Gladkowska, also
left the stage on her marriage, in 1836.

I Signore Soliva, an Italian by birth, went to the Warsaw
Conservatoire in 1821 as singing master. When the institu-
tion was closed by the Russian Government, he migrated first
to St. Petersburg, then to Paris, where he died, in 1851.
Soliva composed the operas, " La Testa di bronzo," " Elena e
Mauvina," and several smaller works.



Il6 LIFE OF CHOPIN.

good points, which the young debutante brought out
capitally.

And now what am I to do ?

I start next month, but I must first try my
Concerto, for the Rondo is ready now.



Warsaw, August 315^, 1830.

It was high time for your letter to arrive, for as
soon as I received it, I lost my catarrh. Would
that my letters might be endowed with the same
miraculous power.

I still stay here, and nothing, indeed, attracts me
abroad. But I am certain to go next month, in
obedience to my calling, and my reason, which must
be weak, if it were not strong enough to conquer all
other inclinations.

This week I must try the whole of the E minor
Concerto, with quartet accompaniment, to give me
confidence, as Eisner says the first orchestral trial
will not go well. Last Saturday, I tried the Trio,
and, perhaps, because I had not heard it for so long,
was satisfied with myself. " Happy man," you will
say, won't you ? It then struck me that it would be
better to use the Viola instead of the Violin, as the
first string predominates in the Violin, and in my
Trio is hardly used at all. The viola would, I think,
accord better with the 'cello. The Trio will then be
ready to print. So much about myself. Now some-
thing as to the other musicians.



FRAULEIN WOTKOW. II7

Last Saturday, Soliva brought forward his second
pupil, Fraulein Wotkow, who dehghted the whole
house with her natural grace and good acting, also
with her beautiful eyes and pearly teeth. She was
more charming on the stage than any of our actresses.
I scarcely recognized her voice at first, she was so
agitated. But she acted so excellently, no one would
have supposed her to be a debutante. Notwithstand-
ing the encores and the enormous applause she
received, she did not overcome her embarassment till
the second act, when the capabilities of her voice
revealed themselves, though not quite so fully as at
the rehearsal, and at the performance the day before
yesterday.

In vocal ability Fraulein Wotkow is far surpassed
by Fraulein Gladkowska. If I had not myself heard
the former I should not have believed there could be
such a difference between two singers. Ernemann
shares our opinion, that it is not easy to find a singer
equal to Gladkowska, especially in the bell-like
purity of her intonation, and true warmth of feeling,
which are only properly displayed on the stage.
She entrances her hearers. Wotkow made several
slight mistakes, whilst with Gladkowska one did not
hear a single note that was in the least doubtful,
although she has only performed twice in " Agnese."

When I saw the two vocalists the day before
yesterday and presented your compliments to them,
they were evidently gratified and commissioned me
to thank you.



Il8 LIFE OF CHOPIN.

Wotkow's reception was warmer than Gladko-
wska's, which Soliva did not seem to like. He said
to me, yesterday, that he did not wdsh Wotkow
to win more applause than her fellow pupil. I think
a considerable share of the approbation is to be
ascribed to the character which pleases the public
better (captivated also by the young girl's beauty)
than the tragic misery of the unhappy daughter in
Paer's opera. Gladkowska is to appear shortly in
the " Diebischen Elster," but this '' shortly " will
last till I am over the mountains. Perhaps you will
then be in Warsaw, and will give me your opinion of
the performance. Her third role is to be " Vestalin."



WarsaWy October ^th, 1830.

I was longing very much for your letter, which
has somewhat soothed me. You cannot conceive
how impatient and wearied (a feeling I cannot
struggle against) I am of everything here. After
the orchestral trial of my second Concerto, it was
decided that I should appear with it at the
Theatre on Monday, nth instant. Although this
does not quite suit me, I am curious to know
what effect the composition will have on the
public. I hope the Rondo will produce a good
impression generally. Soliva said, " il vous fait
beaucoup d'honneur ; " Kurpinski thought it con-
tained originality, and Eisner an especially piquant
rhythm. To arrange a good concert, in the true



THE CONCERT '' A PERFECT SUCCESS." IIQ

sense of the word, and to avoid the unfortunate
clarionet and flageolet solos, Mdlles. Gladkowska and
Wotkow will give some solo numbers. As to over-
tures I will not have the one either to " Leszek," or
to " Lodoiska," but that to " William Tell."

You would hardly imagine the difficulty I had to
obtain permission for the ladies to sing. The Italian
granted it readily, but I had to go to a higher
authority still: to the Minister Mostowski, who
finally agreed, for it makes no difference to him. I
do not know yet what they will sing, but Soliva tells
me that a chorus will be necessary for one of the
arias.

I am certain not to be in Warsaw a week after the
concert. My trunk is bought, the outfit ready, the
score corrected, the pocket handkerchiefs hemmed,
the new stockings and the new coat tried on, &c.
Only the leave-taking remains, and that is the
hardest of all.



Warsaw, October 12th, 1830.
My Dearest,

The concert, yesterday, was a perfect success ;
I hasten to inform you of it. I was not in the least
anxious, and played as if I had been at home. The
hall was crammed. Gorner's symphony opened the
ball ; then I played the first Allegro from the E
minor Concerto ; the notes seemed to roll along of
themselves on the Streicher piano. A roar of applause



120 LIFE OF CHOPIN.

followed. Soliva was very satisfied ; he conducted
his Aria, with chorus, which was very well sung by
Fraulein Wotkow. She looked Hke a fairy in her
light blue dress. After this Aria came my Adagio
and Rondo, and then the usual interval. Con-
noisseurs and lovers of music came on to the stage
and complimented me on my playing, in the most
flattering manner.

The second part began with the Tell Overture.
Soliva conducted capitally, and the impression it
produced was deep and abiding. The Italian was
really so good to me that I owe him my everlasting
gratitude. He afterwards conducted the Cavatina
from " La Donna del Lago," which Fraulein Glad-
kowska sung. She wore a white dress, had roses in
her hair, and looked charmingly beautiful. She has
never sung as she did last evening, except in the air
in " Agnese." " O, quanto lagrime per te versai,"
and the '' tutto detesto " were heard splendidly, even
'to the low B. Zielinski declared that this B alone
was worth a thousand ducats.

When I had led the ladies from the stage I played
my Fantasia on National Airs. This time I under-
stood myself, the orchestra understood me, and the
public understood us both. The Mazovian air, at
the end, made a great sensation. I was so raptur-
ously applauded that I had to appear four times to
bow my thanks. And, be assured, I did it quite
gracefully, for Brandt had fully instructed me. If
Soliva had not taken my score home and corrected



CHOPIN LEAVES WARSAW. 121

it, and, as conductor, restrained me when I wanted
to run away, I do not know what would have
happened. He kept us all so splendidly in check
that I never played so comfortably with an orchestra
before. The Streicher piano was very much liked,
but Fraulein Wotkow still more.

I am thinking of nothing but my packing up. On
Saturday or Wednesday I go out into the wide


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