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Berlioz on MusicSelected Criticism 1824-1837$
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Katherine Kolb

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780199391950

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199391950.001.0001

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Notice to Readers Idle Enough to Read My Articles

Notice to Readers Idle Enough to Read My Articles

(p.98) 16 Notice to Readers Idle Enough to Read My Articles
Berlioz on Music

Katherine Kolb

Oxford University Press

This is a humorous announcement of one of Berlioz’s concerts. For the third year in a row, he is giving a concert at the Conservatoire. This year’s program includes his new second symphony with solo viola, Harold in Italy, and a repeat performance of his first, the “Fantastico-Epileptic Symphony” much attacked by critics such as Fétis for its program and special effects. Berlioz’s satire forms an implicit defense of the music, while a closing jest about giving his concerts for the benefit of “copyists, printers, gendarmes, poster makers, the lamplighter, the wood merchant, the usherettes, and the poor poor-tax collector” carries undertones of real urgency: the obligatory poor tax, amounting to as much as a quarter of the gross receipts, radically drains profits. Though he revels in the thought of his magnificent orchestra of 130 players, Berlioz is well aware that all of them, too, need to be paid.

Keywords:   Symphonie fantastique, Harold in Italy, King Lear overture, Sara la baigneuse, La Belle Voyageuse, La Captive, Byron, concert costs, poor tax on music, concert publicity

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