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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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Music Review

Music Review

Concert by the Pupils of Choron at the Hôtel de Ville

(p.140) 25 Music Review
Berlioz on Music

Katherine Kolb

Oxford University Press

When Choron died, the fate of his school remained uncertain. Hopes of its survival are rekindled, then dashed, by a concert that disappoints in all respects: the Palestrina madrigal that had enthralled the audience at Choron’s funeral has no effect; the same is true of a chorus by Handel. We learn that the great pedagogue and historian Choron was also an admirable composer: Berlioz, expressing surprise, compares his hymn with tenor solo to the finest pages of Gluck. Apropos of a “madrigalesque duo” by Clari, an early eighteenth-century composer, Berlioz formulates in extreme fashion his Gluck-derived creed: “The composer is master; the performers are but slaves.” After praising a work by Monpou, Berlioz turns to the Beethoven sonata for piano and violin performed by Hiller and Baillot: it is not the final work on the program, but it is unsurpassable, and Berlioz leaves the hall.

Keywords:   Choron’s school, Choron as composer, Palestrina, Handel, Clari, Monpou, Hiller and Baillot, Beethoven Kreutzer Sonata

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