"With true esteem and friendship": The correspondence of Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy and Louis Spohr


Journal Article (Review)

Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy and Louis Spohr, two of the most influential musical figures of Restoration musical culture in the German lands, exchanged detailed letters about some of the most important issues of their day. Most of this correspondence has remained unpublished. Thirty-nine letters exchanged by these two composers are presented in English translation and the original German. The letters contain pithy discussions of individual works of both composers - Mendelssohn's St. Paul and Elijah, the symphony-cantata Lobgesang, his "Scottish" and "Italian" Symphonies, and the Melusine Overture; as well as Spohr's oratorio Des Heilands letzte Stunden, his "Historical" Symphony, and the Tochter der Luft Overture, among others. The letters also collectively offer insight into general aspects of mid-nineteenth-century musical life, such as recommending and hiring singers and instrumentalists, arranging for the performance of new music and concert programming generally, the politics of libretto creation for nineteenth-century oratorios and operas, and the state of current musical affairs, especially where the revival of earlier music and the issues facing the historicist movement are concerned. Copyright © Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Cooper, JM; Todd, RL

Published Date

  • April 1, 2010

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 29 / 2-3

Start / End Page

  • 171 - 259

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0141-1896

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1080/01411896.2010.482512

Citation Source

  • Scopus