G. Herbert Rodwell, A Letter to the Musicians of Great Britain, Containing a Prospectus of Proposed Plans for the Better Encouragement of Native Musical Talent, and for the Erection and Management of a Grand National Opera in London (London: James Fraser, 1833). G. Herbert Rodwell, Printed cover letter, the National Opera Prospectus, and handbill for the Music Festival (London: Printed by S. W. Johnson, 1837).

A Letter to the Musicians of Great Britain by G. Herbert Rodwell (1800–52), had been published by 18 November 1833, when the Morning Post noted its publication and remarked:
Mr RODWELL’S intentions are highly laudable, for he appears anxious to procure for native talent that encouragement which is always given to foreign in this country; and he very naturally is desirous of confining the latter to the King’s Theatre, and not allow it to usurp, as it has done for years, the musical throne of our national Theatres.1


George Biddlecombe notes sadly that ‘his plans were doomed by their projected costs’.2 By April that year, advertisements were placed for the share offering, for which the prospectus would be available both from Rodwell, and from the solicitors, R. Robins in Russell Place.3 By May, one of the Trustees, Sir H. Webbe, had proposed:
that a grand musical festival should be given in aid of the funds for the society. It was further proposed that the band and chorus upon that occasion should consist of one thousand performers. A very enthusiastic letter from Lord Charles Churchill was read, which he concluded by desiring that forty shares should be reserved for his Lordship.4

The subsequent National Opera Prospectus came in three parts; a covering letter from Rodwell as the secretary of the National Opera Society, a prospectus for a National Opera Company, and a flyer for the concert ‘of one thousand performers’ to raise funds for its establishment. There was also a form to return to Rodwell, if a recipient of the flyer was moved to offer their services for the

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event, a copy of which is not known to survive. The concert does not appear to have taken place, and the venture seems to have run into the ground, for nothing more was heard from them. Rodwell – christened George Herbert Bonaparte – came from theatrical stock; his father, Thomas, was the part proprietor of the Adelphi Theatre. Professionally, he was a music director and composer, and had been taught at the Royal Academy of Music by Vincent Novello (1781–1861) and Henry Bishop. He inherited the proprietorship of the theatre on the death of his brother, James, in 1825, and was appointed professor of harmony and composition at the Royal Academy in 1828, musical director of Covent Garden in 1836, and acted as musical instructor to Princess Victoria, for whose eighteenth birthday he composed three glees in 1837. His numerous theatre compositions include one of the Scott operas, the 1824 Waverley, and works premiered at the Adelphi, Covent Garden, and the English Opera House. What Rodwell’s background and career makes clear is that his proposals were coming from someone who was worked at the heart of theatrical music in London, not from a recently arrived opportunist or a well-intentioned, but impractical, amateur.

1. 2. 3. 4.


Morning Post, 18 November 1833. G. Biddlecombe, English Opera from 1834 to 1864 (New York: Garland, 1994), pp. 5–6. Standard, 18 April 1837. Morning Post, 11 May 1837.

G. Herbert Rodwell, A Letter to the Musicians of Great Britain, Containing a Prospectus of Proposed Plans for the Better Encouragement of Native Musical Talent, and for the Erection and Management of a Grand National Opera in London (London: James Fraser, 1833).

Gentlemen, Several misstatements concerning the proposed plans for the better encouragement of Native Musical Talent having gone forth, and feeling, as I do, that they are likely to prove injurious to the profession, and having been personally abused for the crime of having taken a part in the endeavour to assist my brother musicians, I think it a duty I owe both to the cause and to myself, without further delay, to place before you a correct statement of all that has yet been done, and to call upon every member of the musical profession in the United Kingdom to assist, as much as lies in his power, the endeavours of those who are now combined and determined at least to make a struggle for the emancipation of the degraded, and thereby spirit-broken, English musician. I am convinced you will agree with me, that it requires no sophisticated arguments to prove the present depressed state of the English composer – a / state, indeed, so depressed that, unless something be done for his relief, English music will, ere long, almost cease to exist. The greatest of our native composers at this moment cannot command an engagement at any salary whatever. What feelings of mortification must he endure, who, after years of toil and study, and having succeeded in gaining, to its fullest extent, the public approbation, finds himself thus lowered and degraded! And not he alone, but every English professor shares the same fate; and why? Because foreigners are allowed to push us



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from our homes, and fatten on our distress. But let me be clearly understood, that I reverence the talents of foreigners as much as any one in the world can; but in paying a tribute of admiration to their excellence, do not let us be unjust, and, while giving fortunes to foreigners, leave our own countrymen to penury and starvation. Let them keep to their own sphere, I mean the Italian Opera-house, and I am convinced that every English professor will not only wish for, but feel delight at, their success. No English composer can now get an engagement at either of our great theatres but as an adapter of foreign music – a most mortifying situation for any man with one spark of genius. It is true Mr. Bishop1 and one or two others have been informed that, if they would compose some operas, the managers of the great theatres would be most happy to bring them out; but what security / have they that, when presented, they will be brought out, and what encouragement is such an offer to any man to spend so many weeks, and even months, upon a work, which he must do if he would render it excellent? For after the composition is finished, where is he to look for his reward? To the management? No! – for English composers are now no longer paid but by the publishers; so that, should a composer (I mean an English composer) find it pleasant to eat as well as to write, he must study more particularly what will be acceptable at the boarding-school, than what will be admired by the scientific of the musical world. How different is the situation of the foreign composer! – for if he be engaged by the management of an English theatre, instead of the offer to bring out his opera for nothing, he is offered 800l. or 1000l. to compose one, and is to receive the money whether the piece succeed or fail!! and to have his own time allowed him to complete the work!!! Weber had 1000l. for Oberon, and took upwards of a year to compose it.2 Bishop was allowed three weeks to compose, in its original shape of three acts, the opera of Clari.3 Mr. Barnett, in putting music to A Bold Stroke for a Wife,4 was so pressed that he was compelled to work three days and nights without intermission, in order that he might complete the work in the given time, and was allowed one rehearsal, and did not receive one farthing for his work from the lessee!! Abroad it is no uncommon / thing for a grand opera to be rehearsed fifty or sixty times, by which a composer has opportunities of correcting and recorrecting his work until it almost reach perfection. With such disadvantages as his, is it surprising the English composer should not always equal his foreign competitor? I say always, because, in spite of all impediments, native talent has, in many instances, very far surpassed most of the foreign composers: as instances, look at the Finale to the First Act of Henri Quatre, and the Finale to the First Act of the Law of Java, compositions worthy of Mozart himself.5 Again; observe the vast advantages enjoyed by the foreign composer in his owner country. There genius may follow its natural bent without the fear of bringing its possessor to beggary, for, should a foreign composer dedicate him-

Rodwell, A Letter to the Musicians of Great Britain


self to the cultivation of the higher branches of his art (I mean the unsaleable part, such as grand choruses and finely-contrived concerted pieces), his reward is still secured to him, not by the publishers, but by the just laws of his country; for, abroad, the composer is entitled to a certain per centage upon the gross nightly receipts of the theatre, on every evening his work shall be represented. In England, the composer, by being rewarded by the publisher only, must study what will be most likely to sell; and, if he be more than commonly successful, what will be his income? If a composer make more than two or three what are called “hits,” during a year, he must be considered / as extra fortunate; and were we to judge by what has been done, only observe the miserable reward he would receive for his successful labours. For “Cherry Ripe,” one of the most popular melodies, not only in this country but on the Continent also, Mr. Horn,6 the composer, received ten pounds; and Mr. Barnett, for the “Light Guitar,”7 the prodigious sum of two guineas!!! With such rewards as these, is it possible for any man to be able to dedicate his whole time and mind to the cultivation of musical composition? No! He is therefore obliged, for his own support, to employ the greater part of his time in teaching; but if his love for music, and a leisure moment, tempt him to take up his pen, and, like the poet, his imagination ‘bodies forth the form of things unknown,’ at the moment of inspiration his eye ‘glancing from heaven to earth,’ in its passage most likely falls upon the dial of his watch, which but too quickly brings him from the clouds, by reminding him that, at that moment, he must throw down his pen and hurry off to give a lesson upon some Italian air to a little Miss Jones or a little Master Smith. Feeling that, with such a state of things as these, it were absurd to think that English music could ever rise, and reflecting upon the certainty that even an insignificant spark is sufficient at times to cause the destruction of a whole citadel, I thought that I, humble as I am, might perchance light a train that, in the end, should lead to the bursting of those bonds / which now fetter the struggling English composer, and hold him to the ground. With this idea I drew up the following plans, not in the vain expectation that they alone, without alterations or amendments, should be acted upon, but that they might form a groundwork, whereon greater minds might more easily construct a noble edifice, which, if accomplished, will prove an everlasting honour to our country. All the credit I ever wish to take to myself (if I might use such a figure), is having provided the canvass on which a great work may be ultimately achieved. On the 15th of September last, I had the honour of reading, before a large meeting of the Royal Society of Musicians, the following statement of our case, which I had drawn up in the shape of a Memorial* from the Musicians of Great
* Or rather arguments for a Memorial.



London Opera Observed, 1711–1844: Volume 5

Britain to his Most Gracious Majesty, in which it has been attempted to point out, not only the cause of our present depressed state, but perhaps the only remedy. The Memorial is as follows:– /

Sire, To whom does a child most naturally look for support and encouragement in the moment of distress? Is it not to that being whom God has set over him as a parent? As a nation, then, must we not regard your Majesty in that light; and not only look upon you as a father, but as a kind one, ever willing to foster and protect every member of your no less large than affectionate and devoted family? Feeling this to be the truth, we are convinced we shall be pardoned for our presumption in pointing out to your gracious notice one class of your Majesty’s affectionate subjects that at this moment, more particularly than at any hitherto known, stand in need of your all-powerful protection – that class, so please your Majesty, is the Musical Composers of Great Britain. Your Majesty may ask, what do they desire? This question can at once be answered by the single word – Encouragement! The oil of the lamp of genius, the heart of commerce, the soul of nations, is but encouragement: without it, the poet “wastes his sweetness on the desert air;” the merchant, strive as he may, becomes a bankrupt; the nation itself ceases to exist! Is it wonderful, then, / your Majesty, that English composers should not have risen to a prouder eminence than that which they now hold in the eyes of the civilized worked? No; for the English composer is totally destitute of encouragement; not only is he without a home, but even without a shed wherein his genius may be sheltered and warmed into life. Those theaters to which he might naturally look and hope for some little encouragement – namely, Drury Lane and Covent Garden, and the misnamed English Opera House – have for some years past closed their doors against native talent, being entirely devoted, as regards the operatic department, to foreign music; and, latterly, to foreign singers also. That this country can produce musical talent, the genius of a Purcell, an Arne, and a Bishop, will testify. What the two first-named composers might have achieved, and what the last-mentioned would have accomplished, with proper opportunities, can fairly be guessed at; what they have done, at least proves they could not have wanted genius, although not born in a German nor in an Italian land. It has been said that the English generally possess no real taste for music: were this the case, would so many eminent foreigners be enabled to bear away from this kingdom the immense sums they do? – not because they possess more natural talent than the natives of this country, but because they were


Rodwell, A Letter to the Musicians of Great Britain


born in a land that possesses institutions for the education and encouragement of whatever musical abilities / nature had bestowed upon them. “Talent is of no country:” Greece produced a Homer – England a Shakspeare. It were absurd to believe that a country that has given birth to such minds as those of a Newton, a Scott, a Byron, and our immortal bard, should be denied, by the equal Dispenser of all good, the power of creating the poetry of sweet sounds. Composers labour under difficulties that are attached to no other art or science existing. The poet commences his education almost from his cradle, – for the common education of a gentleman is that of a poet; no wealth is required; a very small sum expended in the press will, at his pleasure, set him at once before the world. The artist finds in every tree, or bush, or brier, or leaf, a subject for his study. Nature is the artist’s primer, wherein are lessons, although unpaid for, still unequalled. How different to these is the situation of a composer! Unaided, he must pine in obscurity; for, after years of toil and study, unless he have opportunities of gaining assistance (and those too of a gigantic nature), his work must still remain unknown. To place an opera as it should be placed before the public, he requires the combined talents of at least a hundred persons, – each individual having had an education peculiar to his art, and possessing a mind capable of embodying the conceptions of the composer. In England there is no institution where in such a combination of talents can be found; and without such an institution, English music must and / will for ever remain at the low ebb it now stands. It is, so please your Majesty, to attempt the rescue of our degraded name as a nation, in respect to music, from the insults of more fortunate foreigners, and at the same time to give us a fair chance of competition with them, that we now humbly, at the foot of your Majesty’s Throne, ask your gracious aid and protection. Give us, in England, similar laws, for the encouragement of music, to those enjoyed by foreigners in their own country, and we doubt not but ere long this nation will in music, as in all other branches of art or science that have met with encouragement, if not surpass, at least equal, any country of the globe. That such an exaltation of talent can be achieved, is manifested in France. Forty years ago music in that country was in a situation as degraded as it now is in our own. In the year 1791 laws of the most liberal description were passed for the protection and encouragement of dramatic performances. These laws have, since that period, been growing to perfection; and now their fruit may be seen, and must be admired, in the Royal Academy of Music at Paris, – an Opera not to be surpassed by any establishment in the world. If such laws have been instrumental in the production of such works as those of Boieldieu and Auber,8 may we not hope, with the same protection, to accomplish as much in England? We therefore hope and pray that your Majesty will, from the goodness and justness of your heart, feel inclined to / grant the humble prayer of your petitioners, which prayer is, that your Majesty will be pleased to exert your royal prerogative for the protection and encourage-



London Opera Observed, 1711–1844: Volume 5

ment of English Music, and grant – not to an individual, but to the Musicians of Great Britain, for their sole advantage – a patent, under which they might open a New Grand National Opera, whose aim should be science – whose end charity; for, if it should please your Majesty, it is intended that the whole of the profits accruing from the Grand National Opera should be fairly divided between the following charitable, and useful institutions, namely – the Royal Society of Musicians; the New Musical Fund; the Choral Fund; and the Royal Academy of Music. Your Majesty will, by granting this our prayer, shield the only vulnerable point that still lies open to Sterne’s satiric sting; for the world will then no longer be able to exclaim, – “They order these things better in France.” And your petitioners will ever pray. Having concluded the above document, I advanced the propriety of forming a Society of English Musicians to take the subject in to their serious consideration, and of drawing up a dutiful petition to the King, founded upon the foregoing Memorial; that, when the petition should be ready for signature, a / public meeting of musicians should be convened; that, after detailing to them the whole of the proposed plans, their signatures to the petition should be obtained; and that, indeed, as far as possible, every member of the musical profession in Great Britain should be invited to affix his name to it. A Society for the above purpose is now in progress of formation; and one of the principal ends of this letter is to call upon you to come forward, – to aid and assist, as far as lies in your power, the endeavours of those who are now trying to serve the musical profession; for it is by combined efforts alone that we can hope to obtain redress. The single voice of man is weak: therefore unite, and, joining voice to voice, call loudly for your rights; – for even the voice of RIGHT must be a loud one, or it will pass unheeded. In approaching the Throne, it will be necessary to show how practicable your wishes are, and to prove to His Majesty that you have deliberated as much upon the possibility of carrying his gracious kindness into effect, as upon the necessity of asking his all-powerful aid and protection. For this purpose, the following Prospectus of Plans for “The Erection and Management of a Grand National Opera in London,” is here submitted to your notice: but, as I observed before, not in the vain expectation that they alone should be acted upon, but that they may serve as a ground-work upon which something better may be framed. /


Rodwell, A Letter to the Musicians of Great Britain




The Grand National Opera to be raised by Donations.* Price, including stock, not to exceed forty thousand pounds. This sum to be raised by donations of any amount, down to a single penny.† The Committee of Management for raising this sum might aid the subscription in an eminent degree, by opening a communication with the principal authorities in every city and town in Great Britain; for there can be little doubt that, in a cause so truly national, there is / no place from which some donation might not naturally be looked for. The Grand National Opera should be conducted by a Committee of the following Directors:– There should be one Stage Director, who should be considered the Chief Director. There should be one Musical Director. There should be one Examining Literary Director. There should be one Examining Musical Director. There should be one Director of the Ballet. The above five Directors should form the administration of the Theatre; and on any question coming before them, on which there might be a difference of opinion, the Chief Director to give the casting vote.‡ Three Directors should form a quorum.


This method is proposed in order that those for whose benefit the Grand National Opera would be established may have no rent to pay, because it is found by experience that ruin must ensue, and has ensued, where 8000l. or 9000l. is paid annually, merely for a place to perform in. Donations, even in pence, should be received, because, as the establishment would be truly national, so should it be placed within the power of every one to show his national feeling. It needs very little argument to show, that the Directors of the respective departments should also form the collective administration of the whole concern. One of the chief advantages of this system would arise from the Directors being always upon the spot, so that at a minute’s notice a consultation might take place; for, in all theatres, circumstances frequently occur that produce great gain, or turn to great loss, corresponding entirely to the activity or neglect of the management. Besides, (as it will hereafter appear,) the private interest of each Director is so closely interwoven in the prosperity of the concern, that it will prove the most powerful stimulation to exertion and able management.


London Opera Observed, 1711–1844: Volume 5

All Directors should be elected every second year,* / with the exception of the first election. One portion should then be elected for one year only, which portion should be formed of the Examining Director, the Literary Director, and the Director of the Ballet.† All elections should be decided by ballot, which ballot should take place at an annual meeting of all who shall hereafter be deemed eligible to vote. The number of members to form a quorum to be decided upon hereafter.‡

Official appointments not having a voice in the administration.
There should be a Treasurer. There should be two Auditors, who should audit all accounts connected with the Grand National Opera, / on the first Thursday in every month during the regular season. One Secretary should be at the disposal of the Directors, and be by them appointed, at a salary fixed upon by members at the first election.§ All elections of Directors and others should take place within one fortnight after the closing of the regular season¶

Engagements of all description should be made by the Directors.**
* † ‡ § ¶ **


Because no men could enter, heart and soul, into any concern of this nature, were their field of action to be under their control for a shorter space of time than two years. This term will enable the electors to judge of their skill, and then either re-elect them or reject them by their votes. One portion of the Directors should remain in office one year only after the first election, because it would be desirable that the elections should take place annually; for, by this arrangement, if none should be re-elected, there would be but one portion of the Directors changed, which would avoid much confusion in the management. The Examining Director, the Literary Director, and the Director of the Ballet, would be the best to be re-ballotted for at the end of the first year, because their situations being of less responsibility, would require less time to prove the capabilities of the holders, than would be the case with regard to the other Directors. The elections should be annual, because, although the election would affect only one portion of the Directors, it would give the electors an opportunity every year of considering and discussing the conduct of the whole of the administrative body. As the Secretary would have to do with none but the Directors, it would be more agreeable to all parties that they should have the sole power over this appointment. Because it would be advisable that the newly-elected Directors should have as much time as possible for arranging their plans, before the re-opening of the Grand National Opera. Because, as the Directors are not only answerable to their constituents for their good management, but as their own reward for their labours will depend, in a great degree, upon such good management, it is proper no impediment should be put in their way, by shackling them with regard to who they should or should not engage.

Rodwell, A Letter to the Musicians of Great Britain


The Chief Director should be Chairman at all meetings of the Directors, when possible; but if, from any cause, he could not be present, the Directors might elect a Chairman from amongst themselves. No engagement should be made of longer duration / than five years, terminable by the Directors at the end of the first year, if it should be deemed, by a lawful majority, as necessary so to do.*

The performances should take place every evening (Sunday excepted),† commencing at seven o’clock, and might be thus arranged:– The Grand Opera should be preceded by either a two-act Operetta, not exceeding an hour and a quarter in length, or by two one-act Operettas,‡ to fill up the same length of / time, so that, allowing about a quarter of an hour between the pieces, the Grand Opera might begin as nearly as possible at half past eight.§



Because the Directors should be empowered to make engagements, where extraordinary promise of talent appeared, for a longer duration than the term of their own administration; and, by making the engagements terminable at the end of the first year, the newly-elected Directors would have it in their power, with the consent of those Directors whose term of management had not expired, to cancel all engagements that might appear disadvantageous to the establishment. Because, as the Grand National Opera would be mainly for the encouragement of English music, the more Operas produced in a season the greater the encouragement to composers, and not only to composers, but to authors, singers, and artisans of all descriptions. Because, as the Grand National Opera would be a school for English music, the Operettas would give an opportunity to composers, who, for want of practice, are not strong enough in their art to compose a Grand Opera, but who, after encouragement, and having heard their less-pretending efforts finely executed, might soon attain that strength. The one-act Operettas might be sent into the National Opera without Overtures; the reason will hereafter be explained. The Grand Opera, which must always be considered the main object, by commencing at half past eight o’clock, would be placed in the best part of the evening, and the interruption occasioned by the opening and shutting of doors, unavoidable at the beginning of the evening, would be greatly diminished. To many lovers of music, who can attend at an early hour, this arrangement would be no inconvenience; but to many, and there are a great many, who cannot attend at an early hour, it would prove a great accommodation and advantage.



London Opera Observed, 1711–1844: Volume 5

Operas and other Musical Pieces.
All Operas intended to be offered for representation at the Grand National Opera should be delivered, within one fortnight after the closing of the regular season,* at the Library of the Theatre, in sealed packets, accompanied by two letters, numbered 1 and 2. The letter No. 1 should be without the author’s and composer’s real names,† but containing / their wishes and ideas concerning the enclosed drama and music, and also an address, to which, should the Opera be rejected, the packet, again sealed up, might be forwarded. The letter No. 2 to be opened only when the Opera should have been definitively accepted by a quorum of Directors. This letter should contain the real names and addresses of the author and composer. When an Opera is returned to the authors, the reasons for its rejection should be stated to them in writing, in order that alterations and corrections might be made, should the author and composer think it advisable, and another trial given to the work.‡ All Operas should be read, and examined, and brought out, if approved, in the same rotation as that in which they were forwarded to the Grand National Opera, unless the work should be of a local and immediate interest to the public.§ Any Opera that might be rejected by the Examining Directors should be forwarded to the address / contained in letter No. 1, within one week after its rejection.¶ Any Opera, after it has been accepted by the Examining Directors, should then be read aloud by the Literary Director, in the presence of at least a quorum of Directors, when its ultimate approval or rejection should be decided by ballot.**
* Because Operas being works that require some time for preparation before they can even be put into study, the newly-elected Directors should, upon entering into office, find materials ready for their immediate inspection, and an early decision should be obtained with regard to their approval or rejection, so that they might be immediately placed in the hands of the copyist, or returned to their owners. Because by this plan even a great number of rejections of the same author’s works would not be able to act in a prejudicial manner upon the minds of the Examining Directors. As the Grand National Opera would not be for individual gain, but for the advantage of English music, every opportunity of encouraging native talent should be seized. This is a circumstance that occurs but seldom; for an Opera, not being a work to be finished in a day, there are few who would risk the loss of their time upon such subjects. But still, should there be such an Opera offered, it ought certainly to be in the power of the Directors to take advantage of it, if they imagined it would prove beneficial to the establishment. Because authors and composers, being men whose minds must naturally be sensitive, should not, by an establishment professing encouragement to genius, have their feelings wounded by being kept in unnecessary suspense. This method would save a great deal of time, and give the author much advantage, for he would have his conceptions impressed with more effect upon the minds of his judges than could possibly be done by their individually reading his work as a task; in which

† ‡ § ¶


Rodwell, A Letter to the Musicians of Great Britain


All Operas should be cast by the author and composer, in conjunction with the Chief Director.* The expense to be incurred in the production of any Opera should be decided upon by the administration of Directors before the work be commenced. All other pieces not being Grand Operas, and therefore requiring less time and attention, might be sent into the Grand National Opera at any period. All other rules and regulations, as regard Operas, / to be observed with respect to every other species of drama offered to the Grand National Opera.

The Library, Students, and Rewards.
A spacious room should be allotted to the purpose of a Library, and a sum annually applied to the purchase of the best music in score. Here also should be kept the original scores of music performed at the Grand National Opera; also the original MSS. of all dramas there represented. This Library should be fitted up, not only as a receptacle for music, but as a place of study, to which all Students in music should have admission, under proper restrictions, and being properly recommended to any one of the Directors, who should have the power to admit such Students, so recommended, by inserting their names in a book to be kept for that purpose, and signing the same with his own name.† / The Library should be under the control of the Examining and Literary Directors.‡ As the Grand National Opera would be instituted mainly for the advancement of English composition, it would be advisable that a Gratuitous Lecture



case the minds of the examiners would seldom be sufficiently intent upon the work to discover all its beauties or defects, which alone could enable them to give a just decision. Because, as the author or composer generally writes, keeping in mind the powers of some particular actors or singers, the Chief Director would be the most competent person to point out the resources of the Theatre. Because a Library founded upon these principles, and possessing the best works in score, must, to a young student, become of inestimable value. There he might study from and compare the best foreign with the best English works; and by thus comparing a variety of styles, be enabled to form an original one of his own, and not become an imitator, as is generally the case where, from want of pecuniary means, the student is unable to study from more than one or two works. This Library would become as useful to the young musician as the Sculpture Gallery of the British Museum is now to the rising generation of sculptors and painters. Because, as all manuscripts, both of dramas and music, would have to pass through the hands of the Examining Directors, who would be answerable for such dramas and music, these Directors would therefore be the most proper persons to have the control of the Library generally.


London Opera Observed, 1711–1844: Volume 5

on Music should be delivered in the Library, for the benefit of the admitted Students, once in every month during the regular season.* For further encouragement to Students, new Overtures might be sent into the Grand National Opera, upon the same conditions as those imposed upon authors and composers of pieces, not being Grand Operas. And if Overtures thus sent be approved, they should be performed in regular rotation, two on each evening when the performances consisted of two one-act Operettas and a Grand Opera.† /

Payments of salaries should be weekly. Every Saturday, during the regular season, should be the day for payment of salaries. Every Wednesday, for the payment of authors, composers, and also tradesmen’s bills.‡ Payments to authors and composers should be as follows:– Twelve per cent. from the gross nightly receipts, including private boxes and tickets, should be appropriated to the remuneration of authors and composers, thus to be divided:– Two-thirds of the said twelve per cent. to be equally divided between the author and composer of the Grand Opera. The remaining third to be equally divided between the author and composer of the two-act Operetta; or should there be two one-act Operettas performed during the evening, then the last-mentioned third to be divided into four equal parts. One of these parts to belong to each author, and one part to each composer of the one-act Operettas.§
* Because there are many students in music whose circumstances prevent them obtaining first-rate instruction, particularly as regards composition. It is thought that the Lectures would, in a great degree, remove this impediment to their studies; for not only would the student have the right and shortest road to eminence pointed out to him, but many of the brightest and most powerful examples placed before him to enlighten and aid him on his road. Because giving students an opportunity of hearing their Overtures finely performed will be one of the most encouraging modes of tempting them to renewed exertions; and by performing such Overtures in regular rotation, there will be no cause of jealousy created by any undue preference. Because paying the salaries on a different day to that on which other disbursements are made has been found, by experience, to prevent great confusion in the Treasurer’s department. Because the system of paying authors and composers a per centage would be decidedly the most equitable mode of remuneration; for it would be but fair that the authors, whose works were the great attraction to the Grand National Opera, should reap a corresponding benefit from their works; besides, this method would stimulate every writer to the utmost exertion, for upon the merits of his composition would depend his ultimate reward.

† ‡


Rodwell, A Letter to the Musicians of Great Britain


To make the foregoing more clear, a scale is / affixed, supposing the nightly receipts to be two hundred pounds.

Scale for Nightly Payments of Authors and Composers.
Twelve per cent. upon £200, is Author of Grand Opera Composer of Grand Opera} Author of two-act Operetta Composer of two-act Operetta} Two thirds – will be entitled to one-third £24 0 0 £8 0 0 £8 0 0 400 400 £24 0 0

Or, should there be two one-act Operettas performed instead of one Operetta in two acts – the Authors and Composers would receive nightly each 2l. The Directors should, in the first place, be paid a certain moderate fixed salary, and at the end of every season they should be entitled to a per centage upon the profits.*

The profits of the Grand National Opera should be divided between the following valuable societies, and be added to their funds:– / The Royal Society of Musicians; The New Musical Fund; The Choral Fund; and The Royal Academy of Music.† The proportion to be given to each of the above-named institutions to be thus ascertained:– Each of the three first-named societies should send into the Treasury of the Grand National Opera an annual list of all the claimants upon their respective funds. Three widows should count as two male claimants, and four children should count as one male claimant. The Royal Academy of Music, in like manner, should send in a list of all the scholars upon the establishment, both boarders and day pupils; six day pupils to count as one boarder, and three boarders to count as one male claimant upon either of the other societies herein named. A division should then be made of the profits, giving a just share to each of the before-named institutions, bearing a proportion to the greater or lesser number of claimants inserted upon the respective lists sent into the treasury.
* †


Because, by making the per centage upon the profits of the season, it will cause the Directors to exert themselves as much in keeping the expenses down as in keeping the receipts up. Because it would be but right that that which might incite many to the study of music, and to pass the best years of their youth in assisting in the welfare of the Grand National Opera should, in old age and infirmity, find it had not deserted them, and that they had not exerted themselves in vain.


London Opera Observed, 1711–1844: Volume 5

The treasurer of each institution should swear to the truth of his own list, before any share be paid over to him. /

There should be four Trustees, under whose control should be placed the whole of the funds for raising the Grand National Opera, and afterwards for carrying on the same. And, to avoid their becoming personally liable for debts incurred by the management of the Theatre, they, the Trustees, should be empowered to raise any sum sufficient to discharge such debts, by mortgage upon the Theatre.

Accumulating Fund.
An Accumulating Fund should be formed by giving two Concerts in each year. One of the Concerts should be of a strictly religious nature, the other should be miscellaneous; both being upon a scale unknown since the commemoration of Handel, and at which the members of the Four Societies before mentioned should personally, or by deputy, be expected (gratuitously) to perform. The proceeds of these Concerts, it is hoped, would, after a very few years, have created a fund sufficient to prevent the Grand National Opera being incumbered by mortgages. This fund should be under the sole control of the Trustees. And now, Gentlemen, that we must expect a great, a powerful opposition, I am sure no one I have the honour to address will for a moment doubt. And we may naturally expect that our chief opponents / will be the now monopolized monopoly, (I mean Covent Garden and Drury Lane Theatres,) and also the Lyceum, absurdly called the English Opera House! I say absurdly, because, ever since it has borne the name of English Opera House, not one bonâ fide English opera has been produced there. But to this opposition we can come with (to them) an unanswerable question, – “What have you done for English music?” Nothing! ‘Tis true the managers of Drury Lane and Covent Garden Theatres may say “Since the year 1824, when we first brought out Der Freischütz, have we not produced no less than forty grand operas?” L’Opéra Anglais (the foreign English Opera) may, with equal justice, say, “And since the year 1824, when we (literally) first brought out Der Freischütz, have we not produced no less than nineteen grand operas?” Now, nothing can sound better than this; – but it amounts to nothing more than sound; for when the breath of truth passes over this glittering statement, how does its brightness fade! Out of the whole list of fifty-nine grand operas, produced at our national theatres, one, and only one, “grand opera”* has been from the pen of an English composer.
* Aladdin.9


Rodwell, A Letter to the Musicians of Great Britain


If you would have the present forlorn state of the native musical writer ameliorated, unite and persevere; for, to the weak, next to the power of combination is that of perseverance. He who made / a slave of steam was a man no stronger than we ourselves, although, by perseverance, he brought into subjection a power that has seemed miraculous. Let us, then, by perseverance, endeavour to bring into subjection any opposition we may meet. But as, in his case, the steam could never have been brought into use had he not been able to obtain an engine wherein its mighty power could be applied, so, in the case of the English composer, unless he can get an “Institution” wherein his works will have their full force brought into play, his talents, be they what they may, are useless. The following list of operas, brought out within the ten years since 1824, when the flood-gates of foreign music were thrown open, will clearly show what encouragement has been bestowed upon the English composer:–

Theatre Royal Drury-Lane.*
Composers. Der Freischütz . . . . . . Weber. Fall of Algiers . . . . . . . Bishop. Malvina . . . . selected by Cooke, &c. Aladdin . . . . . . . . . . Bishop. Two Houses of Grenada . Wade. Englishmen in India . . . Bishop. Turkish Lovers . . . . . . Rossini. Casket . . . . . . . . . . Mozart. Masaniello . . . . . . . . Auber. National Guard . . . . . . Auber. Hofer . . . . . . . . . . . Rossini. Composers Devil’s Brother . . . . Auber. Emissary . . . . . . . Onslow. Love Charm . . . . . Auber. The Dæmon . . . . . Meyerbeer. Der Alchymist . . . . Spöhr. Maid of Cashmere . . Auber. Don Juan . . . . . . . Mozart. Somnambula . . . . . Bellini. Fidelio* . . . . . . . . Beethoven. Der Freischütz* . . . Weber. Sixteen foreign Operas produced at one of our national theatres in less than ten years.10 /



Performed by the German Company. /


London Opera Observed, 1711–1844: Volume 5

Theatre Royal, Covent Garden.*†
Der Freischütz . . . . . . Oberon . . . . . . . . . . Peveril of the Peak . . . . White Maid. . . . . . . . Seraglio . . . . . . . . . . Carron Side . . . . . . . . Nymph of the Grotto . . . Maid of Judah . . . . . . Cindrella . . . . . . . . . Night before my Wedding Composers. Weber. Weber. Horn. Boieldieu. Mozart. Liverati. Liverati and Lee. Rossini. Rossini. Boieldieu. Composers. Ninnetta . . . . . Rossini. Carnival . . . . . . Barnett. Romance of a Day Bishop. Azor and Zemira Spöhr. Fra Diavolo . . . . Auber. Fiend Father . . . Meyerbeer. Coiners . . . . . . Auber. Magic Flute* . . . Mozart. Bridal Promise . . F. Herold. Der Freischütz* . . Weber. Sixteen foreign Operas produced at our other national theatre in less than ten years.11

Theatre Royal, English Opera-House.

Reeve. Salieri. Horn. Winter. Paer. Mozart.

Der Freischütz . . Frozen Lake . . . . Broken Promises † Shepherd Boy . . . Tarrare . . . . . . Death Fetch. . . . Oracle . . . . . . . Freebooters . . . . Tit for Tat . . . .

. . . . . . . . .

Composers. Weber. Auber.

Composers Not for Me . . . . . . Maurer. Pirate of Genoa . . . . Weigl. Robber’s Bride . . . . Ries. Der Vampire . . . . . Marschner. Don Juan . . . . . . . Mozart. Sorceress . . . . . . . Ries. Convent Bell . . . . . Millar. Lo Zingaro . . . . . . Lee. Court Masque . . . . F. Herold. In less than ten years there have been no fewer than thirteen foreign Operas produced at the English Opera-House, whose license was granted solely for the intended benefit of native talent.12 /

Can any impartial person read the foregoing list of operas, and then say that no protection is necessary for the proper cultivation of native music? – Impossible! But where are we to look for that protection? To our King! He alone can, and, our cause being so national and just, will befriend us. His present Majesty has the welfare of every class of his subjects too much at heart not to look into their cause of complaint if respectfully placed before him. And can we for a moment
* † Performed by the German Company. This English Opera contained music by Weber, Auber, Meyer, Cherubini, Reichardt, Himmel, and Meyerbeer!

Rodwell, A Letter to the Musicians of Great Britain


believe, that he who be-friends so many will turn his countenance alone from the English musician, and, by refusing to grant his humble petition, leave him to scorn, contempt, and beggary? Again calling upon each of you to exert every nerve for the advancement of your profession, (for the cause is not only that of the English composer, but of the English musician generally,) allow me to subscribe myself, Gentlemen, Your most faithful, And most humble servant, G. Herbert Rodwell. Brompton, 1833.



G. Herbert Rodwell, Printed cover letter, the National Opera Prospectus, and handbill for the Music Festival (London: Printed by S. W. Johnson, 1837).

I am directed by the National Opera Society to transmit the enclosed Prospectus for your perusal, in the hope that the plan submitted for attaining the object proposed will deserve your approbation and receive your support. As the successful result of the undertaking contemplated involves the national independence, and professional reputation of all British Musicians, the Society confidently hope that they may obtain the active co-operation of every Member of the Profession, as, with such assistance, they will be enabled to consummate a project which, when achieved, must be the means of permanently emancipating the Professors of the Musical Dramatic Art in this kingdom from their present state of humiliating dependence on the speculating patronage of the Proprietors of existing theatrical establishments: a state as unworthy the honour of the Art as destructive of the best interests of its Professors. Any comment on the necessity of founding an Establishment such as this proposed must be deemed unnecessary, it being manifest that, without the aid and protection that such an Institution alone can afford, Native Composers and Performers may hope in vain to have an opportunity of submitting their pretensions to operatic celebrity for the judgement and approbation of the Public. Should the suggestion meet your approval, the Society feel assured that you will immediately avail yourself of the opportunity it presents for effecting the plan proposed, the successful result of which, while it would assist considerably the exertions of the Society, would also prove an honourable and imperishable record of the national and laudable zeal of all those Professors and Amateurs concerned in promoting the success of the project; the sole object of the projectors of which is to establish an Institution devoted to the performances of the British Dramatic Music in a manner worthy the musical genius of the kingdom, where the efforts of all Native Professors may be fairly judged and appreciated, and their exertions adequately remunerated.


– 149 –


London Opera Observed, 1711–1844: Volume 5

I beg to enclose copies of Prospectus for distribution, relying on your adopting such other means of promoting the object of the Society as you may deem expedient. I remain, Your obedient Servant, G. Herbert Rodwell, Secretary, 100, Long Acre. /

[Prospectus] NATIONAL OPERA.


Rodwell, National Opera Prospectus


Bankers. MESSRS. COUTTS & CO. Solicitor. J. R. ROBINS, ESQ. 6, Russell Place, Fitzroy Square. Secretary. G. HERBERT RODWELL, Esq. 100, Long Acre./



London Opera Observed, 1711–1844: Volume 5

THE NATIONAL OPERA SOCIETY, consisting of Fifty Musical Professors, having investigated the present state of the Dramatic Musical Art and its Professors in this Kingdom, now respectfully submit for the consideration of the Public the result of their inquiries in the confident hope that the reasons assigned for the necessity of undertaking contemplated, as well as the plan proposed for its consummation, will deserve their approbation and receive their support. As there is not, at present, an Theatre in London solely devoted to the production of Opera by British Composers, it is manifestly indispensible for the protection and advancement of the Dramatic Musical Art in this Kingdom, that a Grand National Opera should be instituted, for by such an establishment only can a fair and unfettered opportunity can be afforded to native Composers and Performers for the development of their genius. To effect this desirable object, the Society propose to erect a Theatre, and constitute its Management according to the following Plan and Regulations, founded on principles affording the greatest prospect of pecuniary remuneration to those who may be disposed to enter into the undertaking, as well as giving to the Friends of the Art an opportunity of securing to themselves a National Dramatic Musical Institution, calculated to reflect the highest credit on their Patronage.


The capital to be 50,000l., divided in 10,000 shares of 5l. A deposit of 5s. per share to be paid at the time of subscribing, at the Bankers of the Society, to the credit of the Trustees, for which a receipt will be given, to be exchanged for the number of shares subscribed for, on the subscribers executing the deed of settlement, which is to be prepared by Counsel. No call shall be made until at least two-thirds of the shares shall have been disposed of. The remainder of the subscription to be called for in instalments, as follows: 15s. per share for the first call, and afterwards by instalments of 1l. per share. Twenty-one days’ notice to be given of each call; and on the case of non-payment for the expiration of such notice, the shares and deposits previously paid thereon to be forfeited.

Rodwell, National Opera Prospectus


Every shareholder to be entitled to a nightly transferable admission into the public boxes and pit, at a reduction of one-fifth the full price of admission. Every holder of five shares to be entitled to a further bonus of a free admission one night in each week for a term of fifteen years from the opening of the Theatre, transferable each season, and to an additional night’s admission for every further five shares. Every holder of 30 shares will be entitled to a free admission every evening of performance during the said term, transferable each season. Every holder of 50 shares to be entitled to a Freehold Admission, transferable each season. These free admissions apply to the public boxes only. The Theatre to contain, in addition to the usual accommodations, one entire tier of private boxes, and two rows of orchestra stalls. The prices of admission to be,-Boxes Five Shillings; Pit Two Shillings and Sixpence; Gallery One Shilling and Sixpence; Stalls Seven Shillings. The cost of the building not to exceed 30,000l. Architects to be invited to send designs for the building, which designs shall be examined by a committee, to be chosen by the Society. The designer of the second best plan to receive a recompense of 200l, and the designer of the third best plan 100l. The establishment to be under the control of three Directors, to be chosen by ballot annually by the Society from their own body. The Directors may be removed from office by a majority of two-thirds of the Members of the Society present at a general meeting, to be convened for that purpose; such a meeting to consists of not fewer than thirty members. The Society proposes to admit Ten Amateur Associates, who will enjoy the same privileges as the Members, with the exception, that they shall not be eligible to become Directors. Each Associate must be the holder of no less than Fifty Shares. That the performances may be produced on the grandest scale, the Orchestra and Chorus will consist of One Hundred Performers, and offers of engagement will be made to the best native talent. Authors and Composers to be remunerated by a per centage on the nightly receipts. Three Auditors to be appointed by the Shareholders annually at a general meeting. A General Meeting of the Shareholders to be held in the Theatre once in every year, to receive from the Directors and Auditors an account of the state of the affairs of the Society. The responsibility of the Shareholders will be entirely limited to the amount of their respective Shares; for it will be expressly provided in the Deed of Settlement, that no contract whatever shall / be entered into without the contractor binding



London Opera Observed, 1711–1844: Volume 5

himself to the following clause, viz: “And it is hereby expressly agreed and declared, and the true intent and meaning of these presents is, that the capital, stock, and funds of the said National Opera Society shall alone be answerable to the demands thereupon under this contract, and that no Shareholder, or Member of the said Society, shall, upon any pretence or account whatsoever, be subject or liable to any such demands, beyond the actual amount of his share of the capital, stock, or funds of the said Society, any rule of law or equity or anything contained in this contract to the contrary notwithstanding.”

The purchase of a freehold site, and the building of the Theatre, not to exceed £40,000. The stock of the Theatre, including wardrobe, scenery, &c. - - - - £5,000.

The proper application of the subscriptions will be under the control of the Trustees. After defraying the cost of purchase and building, the Directors will commence their management, not only unencumbered with debt, but with nearly 5,000l in hand. The most efficacious mode of conveying sound being of the greatest importance in the construction of an Opera House, the latest scientific improvements will be employed for that purpose; at the same time, due will regard will be had to elegance of design and decoration, and to the general comfort of the audience. There will be no Saloon attached to this Theatre, and the Society pledge themselves that the interior discipline of the Establishment shall be conducted in such manner as to deserve the respect of the public. The Theatre is to be constructed with the view to hold upwards of £300 according to the prices fixed; and from the constant succession of novelty the Society expect that they shall be able to produce, they conceive themselves justified in calculating at least upon an average nightly receipt of 150l. Deduct per centage to authors an composers on 150l. at 8 per cent . . £ 12 The nightly expenses calculated at . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .105 £117 The number of nights of performances being about three hundred and ten, and the profit thereon nightly 33l., it would give an annual return of 10,230l. For sundries, repairs of the Theatre, taxes, &c., if 20l. per week be deducted, which is an extreme allowance, viz., 1,040l. per annum, it will leave in favour of the shareholders an annual balance of 9,190l., being above 18l. per cent.


Rodwell, National Opera Prospectus


The calculation of expenses had been made by parties of great experience, founded on a comparison with those of the two principal Theatres, and the greatest liberality has been exercised in considering the remuneration of all professors. The establishment of the National Opera will be unlike that of either of the two principal theatres, in this respect, viz. that the managers of those theatres have to provide distinct companies for the several departments of the drama, at an outlay which seldom or never repays them; the National Opera will necessarily be confined to its own department, and, consequently, be at a limited expense. It is apparent, therefore, that the receipts of such a season as would not defray the expenses of either of the two principal theatres will give a very large profit to the shareholders of the National Opera.

It is obvious that a Freehold theatre of these pretensions must always be an ample security to the Shareholders.
Should any unforeseen circumstance prevent the project being carried into full effect, the deposits will be returned, after deducting the unavoidable expenses, which, from a careful calculation, are expected not to exceed two shillings in the pound. Applications for shares to be made (if by letter), post-paid to the Secretary of the Society in the following form:-

SIR, This day of 1837. I request that you will reserve and secure for me shares in the National Opera, on which I will pay the required deposit of 5s. per share; and I engage to conform with the other regulations as prescribed in the printed prospectus of the said Society. I am your obedient Servant,



London Opera Observed, 1711–1844: Volume 5

Upon the Scale of the Continental National Opera Establishments. On the 30th of JUNE, 1837, a GRAND MORNING PERFORMANCE of VOCAL AND INSTRUMENTAL MUSIC, will take place. The Music to be selected from the most celebrated Works of HANDEL, HAYDN, MOZART, BEETHOVEN, &c.

P. S. An early answer will greatly oblige the Committee. 100, Long Acre.

THE ORCHESTRA AND CHORUS it is proposed, shall consist of one thousand performers. IN the hope that the above Plan will receive your approbation, the National Opera Society solicit your gratuitous assistance upon that occasion. Should you accede to their request you will be pleased to signify your intention by filling up the accompanying from and forwarding it to the Secretary on or before the 21st day of the present month. G. Herbert Rodwell, Secretary,

Notes to pages 132–47


Herbert Rodwell, A Letter to the Musicians of Great Britain
Mr. Bishop: Henry Rowley Bishop (1786–1855). Weber had 1000l. for Oberon: Oberon (1826) by Carl Maria von Weber (1786–1826). the opera of Clari: Clari, or The Maid of Milan (1823) by Bishop. Mr. Barnett … A Bold Stroke for a Wife: A Bold Stroke for a Wife (1831) by John Barnett (1802–90). 5. Henri Quatre … Law of Java: Henri Quatre, or Paris in the Olden Time (1820) and the Law of Java (1822) by Bishop. 6. “Cherry Ripe,”… Mr. Horn: the song ‘Cherry Ripe’ set in 1825 by Charles Edward Horn (1786–1849). 7. Mr. Barnett … “Light Guitar”: the serenade, ‘The Light Guitar’, by Barnett. 8. Boieldieu and Auber: François-Adrien Boieldieu (1775–1834) and Daniel Auber (1782–1871). 9. Aladdin: the romantic fairy opera, Aladdin (1826), by Bishop. 10. Der Freischütz … Weber (the dates given in these lists are the dates of the first performances of the original versions of the works in question): Der Freischütz (1823) by Weber, Fall of Algiers (1825) by Bishop, Malvina ‘a national balled opera’ (1826), arranged by Thomas Simpson Cooke (1782–1848), Two Houses of Grenada (1826) by Joseph Augustine Wade (1796–1845), Englishmen in India (1827) by Bishop, Turkish Lovers, Il turco in Italia (1827) by Gioachino Rossini (1792–1868), The Casket (1829), music from Mozart arranged by Michael Lacy (1795–1867), Masaniello, La muette de Portici (1828) and National Guard, founded on La FianceÌe (1830) by Auber, Hofer, Guillaume Tell (1829) by Rossini, The Devil’s Brother, Fra Diavolo, ou L’hôtellerie de Terracine (1830) by Auber, The Emissary (otherwise unidentified) by André George Onslow (1784–1853),The Love Charm; or, The Village Coquette, Le philtre (1831) by Auber, The Dæmon by Giacomo Meyerber (1791–1864), Der Alchymist (1829–30) by Louis Spöhr (1784–1859), The Maid of Cashmere, Le Dieu et la bayadère (1830) by Auber, Don Juan, Don Giovanni (1787) by Mozart, La Sonnambula (1831) by Vincenzo Bellini (1801–35), Fidelio (1805) by Ludwig van Beethoven (1770–1827), and Der Freischütz (1821) by Weber. 11. Der Freischütz … Weber (the dates given in these lists are the dates of the first performances of the original versions of the works in question): Der Freischütz (1821) by Weber, Oberon, or The Elf King’s Oath (1826) by Weber, Peveril of the Peak (1826) by Charles Edward Horn (1786–1849), The White Maid, La dame blanche (1825) by Boieldieu, Il Seraglio, Die Entführung aus dem Serail (1781) by Mozart, Carron Side (1828) by Giovanni Liverati (1772–1846), The Nymph of the Grotto, or, A Daughter’s Vow (1829) by Liverati and Alexander Lee (1802–51), The Maid of Judah, or, The Knights Templars (1830) by Rossini, La Cenerentola (1817) by Rossini, Night before my Wedding (1827) by Boieldieu, Ninnetta, La gazza ladra (1817) by Rossini, The Carnival at Naples (1830) by John Barnett (1802–90), Romance of a Day (1831) by Bishop, Zémire et Azor (1771) by Spöhr, Fra Diavolo, ou L’hôtellerie de Terracine (1830) by Auber, The Fiend-Father, Robert le diable (1831) by Meyerbeer, The Coiners; or, The Soldier’s Oath, Le serment, ou Les faux-monnayeurs (1832) by Auber, The Magic Flute, Die Zauberflöte (1791) by Mozart, The Bridal Promise, Zampa, ou La fiancée de marbre (1831) by Ferdinand Hérold (1791–1833), Der Freischütz (1821) by Weber. 12. Der Freischütz … F. Herold (the dates given in these lists are the dates of the first performances of the original versions of the works in question): Frozen Lake, Le neige (1824) 1. 2. 3. 4.



Notes to pages 147–51 by Auber, Broken Promises (1825), a ‘ballad opera’ arranged by Samuel Arnold (1774– 1852), Shepherd Boy by William Reeve (1757–1815), Tarrare (1787) by Antonio Salieri (1750–1825), The Death Fetch, or The Student of Göttingen (1828) by Horn, The Oracle, or The Interrupted Sacrifice, Das unterbrochene Opferfest (1796) by Peter von Winter (1754–1825), The Freebooters, I fuorusciti di Firenze (1802) by Ferdinando Paer (1771– 1839), Tit for Tat, Così fan tutte (1790) by Mozart, Not For Me!, or, The New Apple of Discord (1828) by Ludwig Wilhelm Maurer (1789–1878), The Pirate of Genoa, L’amor marinaro (1797) by Joseph Weigl (1766–1846), The Robber’s Bride, Die Rauberbraut (1829) by Ferdinand Ries (1784–1838), Der Vampire (1828) by Heinrich Marschner (1795–1861), Don Juan, Don Giovanni (1787) by Mozart, The Sorceress (1831) by Ries, The Convent Bell by Millar, not further identified, Lo Zingaro (1833) by Lee, and The Court Masque, or Richmond in the Olden Time, Le pré aux clercs (1841) by Herold.

Herbert Rodwell, Cover letter from the National Opera Prospectus and handbill from the Music Festival
1. 2. This section of text is on the outside of the particulars of the prospectus. The Right Hon. Lord Burhersh, Sir Henry Webb, Baronet, Charles Edward Jerningham, Esq: John Fane (1784–1859), eleventh Earl of Westmorland, styled Lord Burghersh until 1841, Sir Henry Webb, Baronet, not further identified; and Charles Edward Jerningham, Esq., not further identified. ADDISON … W. A. WORDSWORTH: the composers, John Addison (c. 1765–1844), Michael William Balfe (1808–70), John Barnett (1802–90), James Bennett (1804–70), W. Sterndale Bennett (1816–75) and Henry Rowley Bishop (1786–1855); the cellist and pianist, Henry William Bonner (1807–50); the composer and harpist, Neville Butler Challoner (1784–1851); the composer, Charles Coote (1808–80); the flautist, William Card (1788–1861); probably the cellist, William Jones Castell (1812–88); probably the tenor, John Collins (1804–74); Thomas Simpson Cooke (1782–1848); S. Daniels, not further identified; the critic, James William Davison (1813–85); the violinist, William Day (d. 1851); probably the singer, John Duruset (1796–1808); Edward Fitzwilliam (1785–1852); T. Giubilei, not further identified; the pianist and composer, John Henry Griesbach (1798–1875); George Adolphus Griesbach (1801–75); Mcdonald Harris, not further identified; probably the violinists, Thomas Haydon (1784–1860) and Charles Hodgson (1798–1873); the composer; Richard Hughes (1807–54); the composer and conductor, John Marks Jolly (1790–1864); the tenor, John Jones (1796–1861); probably Ernest Augustus Kellner (1792–1839); George Augustus Kollman (1789–1845); Edward Land (1805–1876); the singer, Adam Leffler (1805–57); the violinists, John David Loder (1788–1846) and Nicolas Mori (1796/7–1839); probably the singer, Thomas Phillips (1774–1841); William Lovell Phillips (1816–60); Charles Henry Purday (1799–1885), G. Herbert Rodwell (1800–52); F. Fromer, not further identified; the composer and violinist, William Michael Rooke (1794–1847); probably the singer Edward E. Seguin (1809–52); the tenor, John Sinclair (1790–1857); the singer, John Smith (1797–1861); probably the composer Ernesto D. E. Spagnoletti (b. c. 1807); the singer and writer, Edward Taylor (1784–1863); possibly the singer, James Templeton (1784–1868); the composer and violinist James Westrop (1812–79), C. Wrigley, not further identified; J. Wilson, not further identified; the violinist, Charles Wodarch (1793–1845); and the musician and teacher, William Adam Wordsworth (d. 1846).