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Pianos and Pianists - Consultant Editor Ates Orga
Souls Naked Souls Aureoled  



Part 2

Symons and Shaw


'a beauty well known to generations, highly talented, but somewhat wild'*

Venezuelan pupil of
Gottschalk and Anton Rubinstein
wife of d'Albert
teacher of MacDowell and Egon Petri



'serving the art before all personal considerations'**

English pupil of Reinecke and Clara Schumann
apostle of Brahms
teacher of Kathleen Dale




Fanny Davies

Miss Fanny Davies was full of speed, lilt, life, and energy. She scampered through a fugue of Bach's with a cleverness and jollity that forced us to condone her utter irreverence.

-The Star, London February 21st 1890, reporting a Crystal Palace appearance

Miss Fanny Davies, who accompanied Joachim in some of his arrangements of Brahms's Hungarian Dances, was full of those curious tricks and manners of hers which so often suggest wicket-keeping rather than pianoforte-playing.

- The World, London April 20th 1892, reporting a Monday Popular Concert, St James's Hall

Beethoven's Choral Fantasia, the slenderest measure of justice to which always enchants me, was played by Miss Fanny Davies. To those who cannot understand how anybody could touch a note of that melody without emotion, her willing, affable, slap-dash treatment of it was a wonder.

- The World, London May 4th 1892, reporting an August Manns benefit, Crystal Palace

[...] a triumph for Miss Fanny Davies in Chopin's F minor Concerto - the most successful feat of interpretation and execution I have ever heard her achieve.

- The World, London April 19th 1893, reporting a Crystal Palace appearance

Now Hindhead Hall is of a moderate size, but very resonant; and Miss Fanny Davies, being of Celtic stock [born in Guernsey, the Channel Islands], is a fiery player; indeed she is nothing if not fiery, for that quietly noble mood which was so attractive in such great players of her school as Clara Schumann and Agathe Backer-Gröndahl, is not in her temperament. Consequently, she is not at her best when any sort of reticence is imposed on her. May I venture upon a guess, that at the end of the Tchaikovsky Trio some of the unfortunate occupants of the front row, stunned by the thunders of the overstrung Broadwood, made an appeal for mercy, which was injudiciously communicated to the pianist? However that may be, it is certain that during the rest of the concert Miss Davies only half used her instrument, with the result that the Mendelssohn Trio [unidentified], in which a brilliant display of execution and leadership might have been expected from her, fell positively flat in the first and last allegros. The remedy, in fact, was a mistaken one. The piano should have been taken into the next field, and there handled with unrestricted impulsiveness by Miss Davies. We should then have enjoyed all her unrivaled verve and maëstria, whilst distance would have tamed the piano.

- The Farnham, Haslemere and Hindhead Herald, [Surrey, England] December 17th 1898


Madame Teresa Carreño is a second Arabella Goddard: she can play anything for you; but she has nothing of her own to tell you about it. Playing is her superb accomplishment, not her mission.

- The World, London June 11th 1890

Madame Teresa Carreño gave a third recital on Tuesday, treating us impartially to her Beethoven-Chopin repertory and to such arrant schoolgirl trash as I though never to have heard again save in dreams of my sisters' infancy. It would not be strictly true to say that she went back to Prudent's Fantasia on Lucia; but it is a positive fact that she substituted for Mendelssohn's Prelude and Fugue in E minor [Op 35 No 1] nothing less than a thumping scamper through Gottschalk's Tremolo [and Pasquinade]. Certainly she is a superb executant, and her bow is Junonian; but Gottschalk! - good gracious!

- The World, London June 25th 1890, reporting a St James's Hall appearance


*Louise Wolff, quoted in E Stargardt-Wolff, Wegbereiter grosser Musiker (Berlin 1954)
** HC Colles, Grove's Dictionary of Music and Musicians (various editions)


Continued next week





Beethoven Sonata in C sharp minor, Op 27 No 2 (Moonlight)
      Duo Art 5602-03
Beethoven Sonata in C, Op 53 (Waldstein) [omitting first movement]
      Welte Mignon 372-73
Brahms Sonata in F minor Op 5 [first & third movements only]
      Welte Mignon 1148-49
Carreño Little Waltz
      Welte Mignon 371
Carreño Mi Teresita
      Duo Art 5707
Carreño Petite berceuse in B flat
      Welte Mignon 1153 [as Carreño-Tagliapietra, Tagliapietra identifying her fourth husband]
Carreño Spanish Dance
      Ampico 50832H
Chopin Ballade No 1
      Welte Mignon 367
Chopin Ballade No 3
      Welte Mignon 369
Chopin Berceuse in D flat
      Ampico 53045H (1917)
Chopin Nocturne in A flat Op 32 No 2
      Welte Mignon 364
Chopin Nocturne in C minor Op 48 No 1
      Welte Mignon 366 (? 1905)
Chopin Polonaise in A flat Op 53
      Duo Art 5601
Handel Suite No 5 - 'Harmonious Blacksmith' Variations
      Duo Art 6020
Liszt Hungarian Rhapsody No 6 in D flat
      Welte Mignon 365
Liszt Petrarch Sonnet 104
      Welte Mignon 368
MacDowell Étude de concert in F sharp minor Op 36
      Duo Art 5615
MacDowell Hexentanz Op 17 No 2
      Duo Art 5609
Rubinstein Barcarolle No 4 in G
      Duo Art 5645
Schubert Impromptu in G D 899 No 3 [transposed version]
      Ampico 50015H (1917)
Schubert-Liszt Soirées de Vienne No 6
      Welte Mignon 360
Schumann Fantasy in C Op 17
      Welte Mignon 361-63
Smetana On the Seashore Op 17
      Welte Mignon 370
Tchaikovsky Nocturne in F Op 10 No 1
      Ampico 54754H

Modern CD transfer
Chopin Nocturne in C minor Teldec 8.43930
(stereo release 1988)

The completeness of this © Carreño Rollography has yet to be finalised accurately. Likewise the dating of individual releases. Fact-gathering remains on-going. The 1925 Ampico Catalogue anecdote that Carreño's versions of the Chopin Berceuse and Schubert Impromptu were cut - 'only a few days before she was seized by the illness which resulted in her death' (ie spring 1917) - volunteers information otherwise rarely encountered. Readers are invited to contribute information, additional listings and recording/release dates wherever possible, contacting Ates Orga at

Rollography & Notes: © 10 March 2000 Ates Orga, Suffolk, UK


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