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—— MR. HARRISS' CONCERT. Mr. Edwin Ilan-iss commenced his twelfth season with a very excellent concert in the Public Hall on Friday evening last. There was a preponderance of instrumental pieces, solos being given by Miss Bessie Waugh on one of Collard and Collard's grands, by Mr. Harriss on an harmonium, by Mr. John Thomas (harpist to Her Majesty the Queen), and by Mr. C. A. Stephenson on the violin. The vocalists were Madame Edith Wynne, Mr. W. H. Cummings, and Mr. Lewis Thomas (bass). The audience, which was large, repre- sented most of the county families. The orchestra looked very pretty with its adornment of beautiful plants. The programme was an unusually long one, containing one and twenty pieces, twenty of which were performed with a number of other pieces in response to cncoras. However, though long, the programme was interesting and enjoyable through its diversity and the excellency of the selected pieces. Part I. opened with a duet for piano and harp, the author of which was Mr. John Thomas. It was entitled u Lucia," and a veiy pretty, light piece it was, and at its conclusion elicited a hearty round of applause. There was a second duet for harp and piano, the piece selected being Weber's "Invitation a la Valse." The music produced by the two instru- ments was most chaste and beautiful, and attention and a. trained ear were necessary to a proper appreciation of both performances, but, unfortunately, late arrivals, both after the opening of the concert and also after the interval, caused interruptions which were far from pleasing. In about the middle of the first part Mr. John Thomas ;[1ve a solo. He again played a piece of his own composition entitled "Joyous and pensive." A very pretty fantasia it was, and as may be supposed, it received perfect interpretation in the hands of its author, who is a master of his instrument. The pen- sive part was beautifully illustrated by the low under rippling which just reached the ear amidst the play of sweet chords. Towards the end of the second part Mr. Thomas gave a couple of Welsh melodies, The plains of Rhuddlan," and the immortal piece The March of the Men of Harlcch." This solo was also well per- formed, and, of course, loudly applauded. Mr. Thomas is a consummate player, and we believe he would be most warmly received by another Wrexham audience. Miss Waugh is as clever a pianist as we have met for a long time. We have had the pleasure of hearing Mr. Charles Halle and his great competitor Mr. Charles Fowler, and a number of their pupils," and although Miss Waugh does not attach to her name "pupil of Mr. Charles Halle," or anybody else, she would be a credit and honour to any such. She has a crisp touch and manipulates in a masterly manner. She gave a couple of selos in addition to two duets with Mr. Thomas, and a part in a grand duo with Mr. Harriss. Miss Waugh has undoubtedly been before the public a considerable time, and has learnt a lesson which many professional pianists will not learn—that is to play pieces which can be appreciated for their music as well as for their difficulty of execution, by an audience such as is met with in a provincial town. She gave as her first solo Cotsford Dick's Seconde Bouree and Jules de Sivrai's "Souvenir de Versailles," and as her second a Caprice de concert," by Joachim liaff. These pieces, whilst difficult to perform, possess music which an ordinary ear can appreciate, and the consequence was that Miss Waugh was not only applauded but encored, notwithstanding that she presided at the piano nearly the whole of the evening. Miss Waugh played without music, such undoubtedly being superfluous to a iady who has practised her solos so much as Miss evidently had hers, passing as she did from minor to major very frequently, and with a facility and correctness remarkable. W hilst speaking of the instru- mentalists we had betiar include Mr. Harniss and Mr. Stephenson. Mr. Harriss was down for a solo on the har- monium, which included a piece from Verdi's "II Tro- vatore," and Planquette's Les Cloches de Corneville," also taking part in a grand duo on the pianoforte (" Andante et allegro Mariznele," by Thalberg). We have had reason to speak of Mr. Harriss's ability on various occasions, and as it is well known it will he sufficient perhaps to say that Mr. Harriss did his parts most successfully, and was rewarded with much ap- plause. Mr. Stephenson has a. local reputation as a bandmaster, and is not unknown as a viol.,nist-tli,t difficult but perfect instrument, which a great musician of old said it would take a lifetime to learn how to play. He gave but one solo; I Lombardi" (Singelee), and his execution of it brought forth an encore, in response to which he gave "The Last Rose of Summer" and Home, Sweet Home." Mr. Stephenson has obtained an enviable mastery over the violin, and in all pro- bability has not an equal in this district, but, as has been said, it takes a lifetime to master the violin. In speak- ( ing of the vocalists we will first mention Madame Edith Wynne. Her first appearance was in Guonod's air, "Far greater in his lowly state." She sang without I music, and with professional skill ar.d finish, but her j articulation was poor and her marxnei far from pleasing. I With all deference we must say there was a touch of affectation in her style, which marred to some extent her rendering of the beautiful air from Let Bcinc de Saba. Later on she sang "Clychau Aberdovey." She j again had no music. Mr. Thomas accompanied with ] the harp, the song being one of his collection. Madame j Wynne sang again with great ability and much success, receiving a loud encore, as might have been expected. I The passage in which the un, dav, tri, pcdicar, &c., I occurred was very effectively rendered, the crisp notes of the harp adding materially to the effect. As an I encore she sang a song very much like The IdJe Days of Summer Time," and in this also she was very much applauded. Her other songs were, "The Country Lsse" (words 1(;20) and "Gydar Wawr," another of Mr. John Thomas's collection. The latter was a very pretty song, and had it not been so late in the evening there certainly would have been an irresistable cncorc. Mr. Lewis Thomas gave a coaple of songs, one of Debdin's "The lass that loves a sailor," and the well- known "Non piu Andrai." Mr. Lewis Thomas's voics is rather rough, and not of very large compass, but he sang with finish. However, we have heard the aria from Le Nozzidi Figaro" done in a much better manner. Notwithstanding, Mr. Lewds Thomas received his share of applause. We have left the favourite of the evening until the last. Mr. W. H. Cummings has the independence of few professionals in the selection of his songs, and certainly his sweet voice and perfect articulation enables him to give a beauty to all he attempts. The gem of the evening was his first song, or rather hyinn. All remember either hearing, and most likely singing "The Better Land," very beautiful words found in most Sunday School hymn books. Mr. Cummings sang to the old tune these old and touching words as they have been rarely sung before, and as he proceeded with the question of ti-.P- child as to Where is the better land" there was a stillness and attention amongst the audience rarely witnessed. Every word was distinctly- heard, and the sentiment of the song was very beautifully interpreted. The mother's reply was equally good, and was sang with a tenderness and true pathos not often heard. As a second solo Mr. Cummings sang The Death of Nelson" in fine style. A louci cncorc was responded to with the old song Sally in our Alley," in wiiich Mr. Cummings accompanied himself. The whole of the pieces were sung with Mr. Cummings' usual ability and success. The trio, "Merry Elves," was omitted. The others avid the duet went well, and was much appreciated. The whole concert was a success, we should think, in everv respect. Without doubt it was musically, and Mr. Harriss must be con- gratulated on opening his twelfth season with such a. good miscellaneous concert. Madame Patey has been engaged for Mr. next concert in November, and those who intend accepting the treat which is promised in one of the greatest of singers would facilitate arrange- ments by communicating with Mr. Harriss. It is need- less to say that there is a great expense attached to such concerts as are provided by Mr. Harriss, in addition to much trouble and anxiety, and all should do their utmost to support him ia his yearly efforts to bring into our little town the highest vocal and instrumental talent in the musical world.


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