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"by the grace of God " 

^ </££^a /t&Uizec. 


Excerpts ta\en from a letter to Carreno in explanation of the 

sub-title of this boo\ 


cc by the grace of God " 





Copyright, 1940, by Yale University Press 
Printed in the United States of America 

First published, August, 1940 
Second printing, February, 1941 

All rights reserved. This book may not be reproduced, in 
whole or in part, in any form (except by reviewers for the pub- 
lic press), without written permission from the publishers. 










This boo\ is affectionately dedicated 
to my little friend 


true heir to her grandmother s musical gifts. 

By right of this inheritance 

she promises to \eep alive in her own way 

the tradition which is Teresa Carreno. 


List of Illustrations xi 

Prelude xiii 

I Prodigy 1853-1867 1 

The first concert. — Background. — Childhood in Ca- 
racas. — Uprooted. — 111 wind. — A decisive audition. 

— Test flight. — The ninth-birthday concert. — Boston 
beginnings. — Teresita and the Boston Philharmonic 
Orchestra. — Other appearances in Boston. — Lau- 
rels in Cuba. — New York interlude. — President and 
prodigy. — The tenth birthday. — Preparation and 
departure. — Shipwreck. — Introduction to Paris. — 
Under high patronage. — Paris concerts. — Preamble 
in London. — Calamity. — The Spanish tour. — New 
friends. — Teresita, the composer. — London revis- 
ited. — Rubinstein and Teresita. 

II Trial and Error 1868- 1889 89 

Marking time. — Teresa transplanted. — From Prom- 
enade Concerts to Monday "Pops." — Teresa in opera. 

— With the Patti-Mario Troupe in America. — Emile 
Sauret. — Marriage. — Death of Manuel Antonio. — 
Second American tour. — Rift and separation. — Sec- 
ond operatic episode. — Teresa and the MacDowells. 

— Second Marriage. — The Carreiio Concert Com- 
pany. — The Carreno-Donaldi Company. — Regina 
Watson. — Depression. — On tour with Leopold 
Damrosch. — The Clara Louise Kellogg Company. — 
Teresa plays MacDowell. — Deeper depression. — The 
call of Venezuela. — Homecoming. — Success and 
failure. — The operatic venture. — Impediments. — 
Teresa conducts in opera. — Fiasco. — The coming of 
Arturo. — The MacDowell Concerto in D minor. — 
Opportunity. — London and Paris interval. — Ger- 
many attained. — Facing the test. 


III Artist 1889-1902 187 

Berlin debut. — The Walkure comes into her own. — 
At Berck-sur-mer. — Wider horizons. — Carreno and 
d Albert. — Companionate holiday. — Coswig and 
the winter of 1891-1892. — DAlbert in America. — 
Unison, 1 892-1 893. — Consonance and dissonance, 
1893-1894. — Cross-purposes. — Two-piano ensemble. 

— The clash. — Readjustment. — Divorce. — Carreno, 
the performer, 1895-1896. — Carreno, the composer. 

— Carreno "arrives" in the United States. — Europe, 
1897-1898. — The American tour of 1899. — A Tyro- 
lean summer. — The European tour of 1 899-1900. — 
Pertisau. — Havana, Mexico, and the United States, 
1900-1901. — The coming of Arturo. — Fourth mar- 

IV Vista 1912-1902 1912-1917 295 

Golden Jubilee. — Retrospect. — Fair horizons. — Ar- 
turo. — Teresita. — Giovanni. — Hertha and Eugenia. 

— Emilita. — Low ceiling. — Carreno, the teacher. — 
Hazards of war. — Swan Song. — Finale. 

Afterglow 385 

Postlude. Article by Dr. Walter Niemann 391 

Chronology 395 

Sources 399 

Index 405 


Teresa Carreno Tagliapietra Frontispiece 

Photograph by Aime Dupont, New York 

Excerpts taken from a letter to Carreno in explanation of the 

sub-title of this book ii 

Irving Hall Debut Program 4 

Teresita's Parents 18 

Teresita the Prodigy 38 

Teresita in Paris and London 68 

Letter from Rossini introducing Teresita to Arditi, composer 

and conductor 73 

Hand of Carreno 86 

Photograph by Albert Meyer, Berlin 

Cast of Rubinstein's Hand 86 

Photograph by Albert Meyer, Berlin 

With the Patti-Mario Troupe 106 

By permission of Musical America 

Manuel Antonio Carreno with his Son and Daughter 106 

Teresa as Zerlina in Don Giovanni 120 

Giovanni Tagliapietra 124 

Teresa the Mother 144 

Teresa the Impresario 166 

Teresa before her departure for Germany 166 

Montmorency 1889 180 

Berlin Debut Program 190 

Teresa Carreno-d' Albert 218 

Photograph by Hanns Hanfstaengl, Dresden 

Carreno and d'Albert 226 


Letter from MacDowell to Carrefio 257 

Teresa Carrefio with her Children 262 

Photograph by J. C. Schaarwachter, Berlin 

Arturo Tagliapietra and Teresa Carrefio 292 

Photograph by J. C. Schaarwachter, Berlin 

Lilli Lehmann 296 

Photograph by Erwin Raupp, Berlin 

Walkiire 300 

Photograph by Aime Dupont, New York 

Teresa Carreno Tagliapietra 306 

Photograph by J. C. Schaarwachter, Berlin 

Giovanni and Teresita 326 

Photographs by J. C. Schaarwachter, Berlin and Atelier Perscheid, Leipzig 

Carreno in 1913 and 1916 348 

Photographs by Mishkin, New York and E. Sandau, Berlin 

Teresa Carrefio repatriated 388 


NONE is more vibrantly alive than the performing artist 
with the floodlight of fame full upon him; none more 
swiftly enters the labyrinth of hearsay whose only out- 
let is oblivion. That even a Teresa Carreno shares this common 
destiny was brought home to me recently by a young musician: 
"Carreno, who is he?" she asked. Thirty years ago she would 
have known. For the chance of a standing-room ticket to hear 
the "Walkiire of the Piano" she might have waited in line for 
hours with others of her kind who had hitched their wagons, 
often too lightly freighted, to the fata morgana of a concert 
career. It was then still the piano's golden age. That austere 
and sinister-looking tripod of shining black dominated the con- 
cert stage night upon night, sleek and quiet in suspense, like a 
fireside cat waiting for the touch of a hand to caress or chastise 
it into responsive sound. A concert could be as exciting as a 
conflagration. It became so when Carreno played. Students for- 
got their aching feet and listened to her message : "Music is the 
very essence of living. Making music is as easy as picking flow- 
ers and as rewarding. You can do it as well as I if you try hard 
enough." Each one of them fell asleep uplifted and dreamed 
herself a Carreno. To be hailed by critics as a coming Carreno 
was the culminating compliment for a young artist. Carreno 
herself could afford to make fun of these potential rivals. 
"These Carrenos," she was often heard to say. "They are always 
coming. Where do they hide themselves? Why don't they 

This book was brought into being out of the conviction that 
a figure so significant in musical America and Europe during 
more than half a century has meaning for this day and beyond. 
During her life, dramatic enough to be recorded for itself alone, 
important changes were taking place in the concert field, in 
musical taste, in musical criticism. Carreno reflected these 
changes. She was an example of that rare phenomenon so fas- 


cinating to the psychologist, a prodigy who came true as an 
artist. Gottschalk, Rossini, Liszt, and Gounod believed in her 
genius. Rubinstein took it upon himself to be her mentor. Von 
Biilow, Grieg, and Brahms learned to respect her as a colleague. 
In her turn she decisively furthered the career of Edward Mac- 
Dowell, the most famous of her pupils. 

Since Carreno's death in 1917 a number of persons have felt 
the call to write her biography. All were deterred by lack of 
material ready at hand. Carreno took little comfort in making 
order in the cluttered attic of her past. She kept no comprehen- 
sive or consecutive diary other than a meticulous record of daily 
expenses and concert dates. The demands of the moment were 
all-absorbing. Her concern was with her music, with her fam- 
ily. She treated herself as impersonally as she treated her public. 

Shortly before her death she began to dictate reminiscences 
to William Armstrong. Interesting if fragmentary sketches, 
they were published in The Musical Courier. Articles and inter- 
views treating of Carreno the artist, Carreno the teacher, Car- 
reno the woman, and Carreno the mother, exist in profusion 
and confusion. With few exceptions fancy has juggled with 
fact to the extent of painting a distorted picture framed in a 
gingerbread conglomerate of adulation and anecdote. Standard 
musical encyclopedias disagree upon such fundamentals as the 
dates of her marriages and the number of her children. They 
have falsely labeled her the composer of the national anthem 
of Venezuela. Most flagrant of all is the willful misrepresenta- 
tion of Carreno in Wilhelm Raupp's biography of Eugen d'Al- 
bert. A Carreno does not lose by authentic portrayal and de- 
serves no less. This belief, quite aside from the affection of the 
student for the teacher of her veneration, is the force behind 
these words. 

Carreno was no musical specialist. She was a comprehensive 
personality. Whether she played, or sang in opera, or took up 
the conductor's baton, she did so with authority. Failure was 
not a word in her vocabulary, not in any of the five languages 
she used with interchangeable ease. From the fullness of her 


treasure she had a gift for each and every one. That is why her 
life appears not as a series of happenings in the orderly se- 
quence of time, not as an intricately tangled skein of character 
development, but rather as a map in topographical relief under 
the chiaroscuro of sun and clouds. Three mountain peaks look 
down upon a varied landscape which bears the marks of tri- 
umph and disaster, shipwreck and revolution. Like a ribbon 
of clashing colors twin factors dominated Carreno's life from 
babyhood, as inseparable as they were antagonistic. As music 
and dolls made up the world of the child, art and family be- 
came the all-absorbing concern of the woman. This unresolved 
dissonance is the key to the door which gives upon the essential 

The writing of this book involved much travel. Sojourns in 
Germany and in Venezuela were particularly fruitful. Every- 
where enthusiastic and discerning cooperation gave zest to the 
considerable task of assembling chaotically scattered material. 
Without the wholehearted approval of the surviving members of 
Carreno's family who freely gave access to important documents, 
letters, criticisms, programs, articles, and photographs this un- 
dertaking would have met with insuperable obstacles. For their 
vote of confidence and especially for the helpful suggestions 
and timetaking collaboration of my friend Frau Louis Weber 
(the former Hertha Carreno d'Albert) I am deeply indebted. 

Most gratifying was the warm welcome that greeted me, a 
stranger, in Caracas. Wherever I turned, valuable information 
and counsel stood waiting. I regret that it is impossible to make 
public acknowledgment to all who gave thought to my work 
there. Among them it was Mr. Rudolf Dolge, president of the 
Pan-American Society, who most generously furthered my re- 
search by acquainting me with the resources of his unique li- 
brary, by hours of patient unearthing of references, by unselfish 
willingness to place his time and that of his secretary at my 
disposal during the weeks of my stay. More important still, his 
active initiative and perseverance are primarily responsible for 
the recent repatriation of Carreno's ashes by the Government of 


Venezuela. Sincere appreciation is due to Senor Jose Antonio 
Calcano and to Senor Juan Bautista Plaza, Venezuela's enthusi- 
astic musicologists, for their scholarly assistance, to Senor Mira- 
bal Ponce for the use of the Carreno genealogy compiled by 
him, and to the late Gertrudis Carreno, Teresa Carreno's double 
first cousin, for many hours of delightful and enlightening rem- 

Thanks are due also to Miss Kate S. Chittenden for the use 
of notes taken in Carreno's classes at the Institute of Applied 
Music in New York, to Mrs. Caroline Keating Reed for sharing 
with me her letters and her memories, and to Mr. James C. 
Corson, Assistant Librarian of the University of Edinburgh, for 
his help in establishing the date of Carreno's first appearance 
in opera. Highly illuminating was a conversation with Mrs. Ed- 
ward MacDowell, to whom I am indebted for permission to 
publish letters of her own as well as of her husband. 

To my mother, to Dr. Hannah Sasse, to Dr. Millicent Todd 
Bingham and to those friends who have read the manuscript 
and have helped in its preparation, allowing me to share the ben- 
efit of their literary experience, I give my affectionate gratitude. 

It is beyond the range of the possible to make individual 
mention of that devoted band of students, Carreno's "Berlin 
Sons and Daughters." Many of them now hold high rank in 
the musical profession. Carreno's influence is still a vital thing 
within them, as was that intangible something they brought 
her in exchange, a return too elusive for the black and white 
of words. Their helpful understanding is woven into these 

There is a saying: "Nothing improves with translation — un- 
less it be a bishop." For general convenience, nevertheless, quo- 
tations have been given in the original language only if mean- 
ing or flavor would otherwise suffer distortion. 

Carreno has at last come into her own as honorary citizen of 
her native land, a figure of lasting national import. If this 
book succeeds in establishing her true place in that larger in- 
ternational citizenship, the world of music, it will have accom- 
plished its purpose. 

Audi kleine Dinge \onnen wis entzuc\en; 
Auch kjeine Dinge \6nnen teuer sein. 

Paul Heyse 




EfLE Teresita stood with her nose flat against the win- 
dow glass, listening to the prickling of the rain, liking 
the cobblestones washed bright. Rows of usually drab 
stone steps shone in polished and diminishing repetition, finally 
to disappear in the mist of lower Second Avenue. The insistent 
rhythms of approaching hoofs called for tunes to fit them, and 
Teresita hummed to herself as she watched a man crisscrossing 
to light the street lamps one after the other. Her own home, far 
away in South America, lay bathed in sunshine, as if in the 
mountain nest of a great zamuro, who had carried off some giant 
child's toy village in his talons, and had arranged all the pink 
and blue and yellow and green houses in close, straight rows. 
How pretty were the red roofs of Caracas ! The cornices in front 
of them looked like decorations on a birthday cake, or even 
more like the lace on her best pantalettes. 

All at once a familiar tightening of the throat sent out its 
warning. "Teresita, you are not to cry," she scolded herself, "not 
today when you are going to play in a real concert." Quickly she 
turned away from the window. 

"Mamacita, will it soon be time?" All day long she had 
periodically interrupted whatever was going on to ask that ques- 
tion. At last the mother looked up from her sewing to answer: 
"Yes, Teresita, now it is time to be dressed." 

Teresita bounded to kiss her mother's hand, then stopped 
for a word with her doll. "Don't cry. As soon as the concert is 
over I shall come back to you. Poor thing, you can't go with 
me, because you don't yet know how to play the piano." With 
that she danced from the room. 

In the darkening living room Teresita's father, immaculate 
as always, was improvising, somewhat incoherently for him, on 
the Chickering. Both he and his wife were already attired in 
their evening best, which for her meant a gown of voluminous 
purple silk trimmed with precious Spanish lace. Plain gold ear- 
rings and a locket failed to lighten the impression of austerity 


suggested by smooth black hair, parted in the near middle and 
done in stiffly hanging ringlets. Crossing the room to sit beside 
her husband, she looked calm as an animated tea cozy. 

"Do you think Teresita is nervous, Antonio?" she asked. 

"No, Clorinda, she's too healthy," was the automatic re- 
joinder always ready for the one who asked that stupid question. 

Together they sat silent thinking of Caracas three months and 
so many endless miles away in perpetual, temperate summer. 
Antonio puffed smoke rings into the air. They reminded him 
of the clouds that floated lightly about the Avila, of the always 
green and shadowed mountain ranges that encircled the city, 
tiered in a sort of visual counterpoint, each a perfect linear 
phrase. He could sing the lines. They never made him feel shut 
in, but rather safely shut away. 

Clorinda's perspective was different. How simple was life in 
the land of one's own language; what precious privacy lay be- 
hind tightly shuttered, securely grilled windows, so unrevealing 
by day, so stinging to the imagination. At dusk the shutters 
might open revealing poverty or luxury in unsuspected neigh- 
borliness. At the courting hour beautiful young girls leaned 
upon window sills overhanging the narrow streets. Mothers laid 
their babies there to be admired. But most of all Clorinda missed 
her patio, the center of family seclusion. How could one describe 
these incredible gardens within houses to a New Yorker? She 
could sense them now, blossoming, fruitful, fragrant the year 
round with orchids in profusion developing miraculously over- 
night. She could hear the hypnotic splashing of the fountain 
before the old pumaga tree, which shed purple-red dust to make 
itself a regal carpet. Why did the premonition recur so often of 
late that never would she see her home again ? 

In 1862 L. F. Harrison was a well-known figure in New York. 
It was he who kept Irving Hall "constantly under gas with con- 
certs, lectures, and balls." This was not his first experience with 
an unpredictable wonder-child, and he had reason to feel anx- 
ious. However, there was comfort in the thought that seats had 

First appearance, in public of 


The Child Pianist 8 years of age. 

I Who on the occasion of her First Grand Concert will be 
| assisted by the following distinguished Artists, 







|j Will preside at the Pia-rao. 

2& The Gran ffi mo used by Miss Carreno is from the celebrated manufactory 

§4® of MESSRS. CHICKERING & SONS' Warerooms, corner of Broadway and 
Fourjh street. 
Boors open at f. Concert Will commence at 8 o'clock. 



tj. Hondo Brilliant .Hummel 
With aocompanyments of two Vwlius — Viola, Violincello aud double bais. 

&| 8. Romansa, " TJna furtiya larflima" (Eliair d'Amore) Donizetti 


|p| 0. Fantasia, " Luoia" e Vftuxtemps 


4. Caratina, " Somirasaide" Rossini 


6. Fantasia, " Moise" Thalberg 



6, Duettiooi, " n Trovatore" V«raT" 


|| T. Nocturne ' Poemer 

W*»S TKRESA VJA«»»i««- 

S 8. Fantassa, " Ernani" , . . . : Vieuxtemps 


m 9 Aria, " No no, no," (Huguenots) Meyerbeer 


§1 10 Jerusalem, " Grand Fantasia Triumphale" Gottsohslk 


r! ' 


Will give her 


On Saturday Evening-, Nov. 29tJi. 



Irving Hall Debut Program 


sold surprisingly well, and that he was not risking very much. 
Senor Carrefio was too gentlemanly and inexperienced to be a 
good businessman. Mr. Harrison had dictated a contract to his 
own liking, and he patted the pocket where it lay. 

People were gathering in spite of the weather. The critics 
stood grouped together, waiting for the ringing of the bell. 
Those who had not heard "this last sweet thing in prodigies," 
as the Home Journal put it, were frankly bored at the prospect. 
Mr. Harrison was everywhere in evidence, alert for remarks 
that would give the temper of the audience. 

A dowager was using her tortoise-shell lorgnette to best ad- 
vantage: "It is the first time that I have had occasion to come 
here since the hall was renovated. It is really delightful, my 
dear, to hear a concert in so chaste a setting." This to a young 
girl who was busily reading the program, long as a scroll. 

"Yes, it is indeed, Auntie. Did you know that this child has 
learned the Gottschalk piece she is playing tonight in Rvt days ? 
She was running around, a mere baby, among the seats at his 
last concert. He considers her a genius and means to give her 
lessons when he has time to breathe between concerts." 

"Does he really, my dear ? But if you ask my opinion," again 
the dowager's far-reaching voice, "I think it is preposterous to 
allow so young a child, if she is only eight years old as they 
say, to play at this hour of the night." 

The critics meanwhile were engaged in argument. 

A complaining one: "Another concert by one of those over- 
drilled, under-nourished infants! In two years, who will re- 
member her name?" 

An enthusiastic one: "But this one is really quite different. 
She has something to say, and her own compositions are in 
good form and very fresh and natural." 

The complaining one: "Hm! We'll soon know! I don't in- 
tend to sit this endless program through. Why can't pianists 
find something to play besides opera transcriptions? They call 
her the second Mozart. Why doesn't she play some of his things 


The enthusiastic one: "Perhaps that's the very reason. She 
prefers to be Teresita the first, not Mozart the second. You'll 
find that she interprets every phrase as if she meant it. I heard 
her one morning at her own home. She improvises delightfully, 
making up stories as she plays. I couldn't understand them. 
She talks only in Spanish." 

The complaining one: "Where in creation is Venezuela any- 
how ? One of those islands down there ? — Oh, now I remember ! 
That's the place where they are always having revolutions. The 
sound of the name Caracas suggests revolutions. I suppose it 
was too peaceful for her there, so she came up here, where 
something real is going on. Well, there's the call! Until later, 

Irving Hall, an architectural hodgepodge by day, was to 
Teresita on this night of her first concert a palace of jeweled 
light through the rain. The long row of carriages in front of 
theirs made progress slow, much too slow for the artist of the 
evening. She could not wait to begin. In a few moments she 
would be pleasing more people than she had pleased in all her 
life, and earning money to help her father and mother besides. 
It would not be very different from playing in the same hall 
three weeks ago, only so much more gay at night. Last time, 
when people refused to stop clapping, she ran to hide behind 
her father. After that she would play no more, pretending to 
be tired. Could anyone really get tired just playing the piano ? 
Tonight, no matter how much noise they made, she must not 
hide. "Children run away, artists never!" So her father had 

In the dressing room below stage the quintette of stringed 
instruments, that was to accompany Teresita in Hummel's 
"Rondo Brillante" under the leadership of young Theodore 
Thomas, was tuning. Clorinda smoothed out the points of 
Teresita's collar and gave an appraising look at the full skirt, 
which billowed becomingly to set off the lace of the pantalettes. 
The simple white dress, cut low and with short sleeves that 
puffed, was Clorinda's own contribution to the occasion, the 


product of her needlework. She was justly proud. From her 
daughter's silky black hair to the shiny black boots, which 
reached halfway to the pantalettes, she could find no flaw. 

Now was the moment. Teresita could hardly be held back 
while the gentlemen of the quintette arranged themselves in 
their places. Vaguely, as if from a great distance, she heard her 
father say, "Teresita, remember not to run across the stage." It 
seemed so far from the door to the piano that halfway there she 
forgot, covering the remaining distance in a purposeful ac- 
celerando. She did remember to give a shy, appealing nod to 
the audience before mounting the piano stool. For her that was 
the really difficult part of the concert. She literally had to climb 
it, then arranging her feet carefully on the wooden platform, 
especially designed with two steel rods running through it, so 
that she might move the pedals she could not yet reach. Once 
safely mounted, she gave her miniature orchestra the A with so 
professional a gesture that the audience was hers in a common 
smile of tender amusement, won over before she had played a 
single note. Of this Teresita was unaware. Here she was at last, 
to play in the same place, on the same Chickering even, that 
had vibrated a few days before under the fingers of Gottschalk, 
her idol. 

With the first note came a complete transformation. The 
child disappeared; in her place the artist, intently, maturely 
concentrated. As if by electric contact the listeners were drawn 
into common understanding of her music. She made it sound 
simple, clear — and unbelievable. To play a difficult composition 
fluently and correctly seemed to be as easy for Teresita as say- 
ing her prayers. There she sat at ease upon her pedestal, her 
round arms, her short, well-cushioned fingers, moving with the 
freedom and grace that is the result of unconscious economy of 
effort. And every phrase she played she lived. The audience was 
baffled. How was she able at eight years of age to do that which 
another could not hope to do in eight years of study? Where 
did she get her sense of color values, of architectural balance ? 
What gave her the power to evoke feelings she never could have 


had herself? Felipe Larrazabal, a musical compatriot, speaking 
of Teresita in Venezuela a year before, aptly quoted a Latin 
poet: "There is a God within me, who fills my spirit with 
celestial clarity. He dominates me, He moves my hands. He it 
is who inspires my songs of delight, my cries of pain, of pas- 
sion, and of mystery. Est Deus in Nobis." 

The rondo at an end, Teresita, child again, responded to the 
stormy applause, as her father had taught her. Wall Street 
gentlemen and children as small as she herself brought flowers 
and wreaths. The wreaths she hung upon her arm ; the flowers 
she gathered in her skirt, an improvised apron, while her par- 
ents, standing in the wings tensely aware of every gesture, won- 
dered at her self-possession. Suddenly in the middle of a series 
of choppy, childishly awkward bows in embryo, she stiffened. 
A courtly old gentleman was holding up an enormous doll for 
her to take. Forgetting everything else, Teresita dropped her 
flowers and ran to clutch it. When she squeezed it, it cried like 
any live baby. Ecstatically, leaving the lesser trophies for others 
to pick up, Teresita ran from the stage. 

A lady in the front row wiped her eyes and turned to her 
husband. "She reminds me of Adelina Patti. She has the same 
dark eyes and skin and hair, and the same bewitching expres- 
sion. I have never been so moved at a concert before." Her hus- 
band was of a more matter-of-fact turn of mind. "I have heard 
more than I expected. She does get over the keys in tough 
music. Did you see that elderly gentleman try to give her a 
bouquet while she was running off stage ? He couldn't keep up 
with her and was finally obliged to throw it after her." 

Even the complaining critic was converted. "There seems to 
be nothing lacking except strength, of course, and a certain 
maturity of style. How those hands can stretch an octave is a 
mystery, and yet her octave passages are remarkably clear and 
accurate. I don't understand it; I just don't understand it!" 

The concert continued in the approved manner of the Sixties, 
which called above all for variety. Teresita, absorbed in her 
treasure, did not bother to listen to the singing of Mr. Castle 


and Mme. Angri. Only once did she open the door, so that her 
doll might hear the violin solos of her friend Theodore 
Thomas, whose accompaniments she often played at home. 

Soon again it was her turn. She nearly cried because she was 
not allowed to take her doll out upon the stage to listen to the 
music. In Thalberg's Fantaisie sur Mo'ise en Egypte there was 
chance for grand climaxes, brilliant passages, and sweet, warm 
melodies familiar to many of the audience. Teresita made the 
most of them. Enthusiasm became hysteria. Even the complain- 
ing critic surprised himself by shouting "Bravo!" to an operatic 
transcription. Before the first round of applause had subsided, 
Teresita had arranged herself upon the piano stool again, this 
time to play for an encore the waltz she had composed for 
Gottschalk. That this master would play it in his concerts was 
her fervent hope, one never to be realized. A nocturne by 
Doehler followed the intermission. Her eyes half-closed, she 
became serious, remote. At the end there was a momentary 
tribute of stillness, then the barbarous interruption of clapping, 
an all-too-sudden call back to childhood. 

The time seemed endless until she sat before the Chickering 
again. Gottschalk's "Jerusalem" was worth waiting for. To 
surprise him she had learned it in less than a week. A single 
lesson taught her to interpret it as he did. Not without reason 
it was called a "grand triumphal fantasie." There were parts 
that whispered, parts that sobbed, and parts that soared to 
glittering pinnacles. Teresita's conviction that the music she was 
playing was the most beautiful in the world made it become 
greater than it was. The piano, the performer, and the music 
were completely fused. To those who listened, life for a mo- 
ment seemed whole and right. 

At last Teresita had said the last polite gracias to people, most 
of whom she could not understand. The hall lay in darkness. 
"How did you enjoy playing?" asked her father. The answer 
came without hesitation. "I felt I was in Heaven." The mother 
had a more practical question. "Suppose, Teresita, you had to 
choose between being a princess and an artist, which would it 


be?" Simply, with prophetic gravity, Teresita took her musical 
vows. "I shall be an artist all my life." 

Overnight the little prodigy of the Andes became the marvel 
of New York. Without possessing its language she had made 
herself understood, bringing a universal message, different for 
each according to his state of being. Mr. Harrison, open-eyed 
wherever his own interests were involved, had announced a 
second concert on the program of the first without consulting 
the father. Teresita, her doll in her arms, her flowers fragrant 
about her, stood eager. It was great fun and so very easy to 
please people. Always she would like to give more pleasure to 
more people. 

Manuel Antonio faced a crisis as important as the one that 
had deprived him of office in Venezuela the year before. Last 
night not only Teresita but he himself had succeeded. The 
thwarted dream of becoming an artist in his own right was 
now coming true in his pupil, his daughter, and the disappoint- 
ment of seeing his career as Minister of Finance ended by one 
of Venezuela's all-too-frequent revolutions had at last found 
potential compensation. By nature an unselfish idealist and a 
teacher, Manuel Antonio might at fifty still find fulfillment as 
a guide to unfolding genius. The far line of his ancestors would 
approve such a choice. 

In Spain, and later in Venezuela, the house of Carreno stood 
worthy of record. The family name drew its origin from a still- 
existing municipality of Carreno, a group of scattered farms be- 
longing to the diocese of Oviedo in the ancient kindom of the 
Asturias, and lying on the Bay of Biscay west of Santander. 
Teresita never tired of asking her father to tell her again and 
again how Don Alonso Carreno helped to take Carrion de los 
Condes from the Moors during the reign of King Alfonso el 
Casto. The Christians, Don Alonso among them, taking the 
horse of Troy for a model, had the temerity to enter the town 
in carts covered with fresh vegetables. Once in the square, they 
surprised the infidels and drove them out. The Carreno crest, 
showing wheels grasped in the talons of an eagle about to take 
flight, bears witness to this feat and also to the derivation of 
the family name. On the red border of the shield appear eight 
crosses of San Andres. 

Emerging from the forest of tradition to the clearing of his- 
tory there is mention of a certain Garci Fernandez Carreno to 
whom, in return for a service, King Sancho IV of Castile gave 
the privilege of receiving each year the robes worn by the king 
on Holy Thursday. Not until the time of Carlos I of Spain was 
the grant revoked. A payment of 11,200 maravedises relieved 
the treasury of this strange obligation. 

The Carrenos, hidalgos of old, are not listed in the Guia de 
la Grandeza, But a number served their king intimately in the 
post of chamberlain, treasurer, or more remotely as city gov- 

The artistic bent was characteristic of the Carrenos from the 
first. In the middle of the fifteenth century, Fernando de Car- 
reno built the fortress-palace, Castillo de la Mota, for the fa- 
mous Dukes of Benavente. And there is mention of many others, 
whose gift for poetry and painting gave them passing fame in 
their own time. This urge reached its climax in the celebrated 
painter of his day, Juan Carreno de Miranda, born in Aviles, 
Asturias, the twenty-fifth of March, 1614. He was the one who 


most ably assimilated and handed down the tradition and 
method of Velasquez. To his misfortune he became popular as 
court painter and found himself obliged to take royal Haps- 
burgs, unprepossessing as they were, as subjects. Charles II, as 
vain as he was pale and vacant in expression, was one of his 
frequent trials. Although Carreno de Miranda solved the prob- 
lem as neatly as might be by lavishing his talents on the robes, 
accessories, and backgrounds of his subjects, thinking it better to 
leave character unrevealed, and finding his devotional outlet 
in religious painting of uncommon beauty, it is probable that 
he missed true greatness in art by reason of obligatory deference 
to the great in lineage. 

A rural quarter to the municipality of Cienfuegos in Cuba 
records the names and the successes of the adventurous Car- 
renos who sailed the seas. Bartolome Carreno, a sea captain, 
helped to discover the Bermudas and other Caribbean islands. 
His son, Francisco, became governor of Havana, improved its 
fortifications, increased its garrison, fought against piracy, and 
put into practice important means for bettering public service 
in the colony. He died in Cuba (1759) poisoned by the wife of 
a certain official dismissed by him for bad conduct. 

Probably at the end of the seventeenth century the first Car- 
reno found his way to Venezuela, perhaps a younger son with 
slight prospects at home in Spain, going in search of the prom- 
ised Eldorado, that invention of the Indios meant to lead the 
invaders into the fastnesses of the Andes and of the Llanos 
where they could most easily be destroyed. These adventurous 
boys must have found life in this, the first and the poorest 
settlement on the mainland, strenuous beyond expectation. Un- 
til the late eighteenth century Spain took little interest in 
Venezuela, the least promising of its dependencies. Agriculture 
was the chief means of livelihood, gained with untold hard- 
ships in the face of uncompromising natural obstacles and other 
ingenious ones devised by the unfriendly natives. 

In Caracas a young hidalgo was sure to be confronted by a 
small group of the descendants of titled Spaniards banded to- 


gether in a closed circle. Excluded by birth from this, he was 
obliged to look for other fields in which to achieve dignified 
social standing. The early Venezuelan Carrenos found in the 
position of Maestro de Coro of the Cathedral of Caracas a 
vocation alike congenial to their religious leanings and their 
musical gifts. Eventually it became a professional hereditary 
hierarchy in the Carreno family for generations. In unbroken 
succession from father to son they were devoted churchmen, 
able composers and organists. Although the indigent diocese of 
Caracas was unable to provide them with a fit salary, the Car- 
renos did not apparently object to working tirelessly for the 
glory of God alone. The fact remains to their even greater 
credit that they played a major part in the musical development 
of their country. 

Revered above all other musicians in the Caracas of the 
1770's was Padre Pedro Palacios y Sojo. Belonging to the ma- 
ternal side of Bolivar's family, he possessed considerable in- 
herited wealth, which he used first of all to build a church, 
San Felipe Neri, and a monastery for the brothers of this 
order. His dream included an academy of music. To make it 
come true he brought back from Italy a library of good music, 
religious and secular, books of instruction, and instruments. 
Two visiting Austrian naturalists, Bredemeyer and Schultz by 
name, took an active interest in his plans. On their return to 
Austria, so infectious was their description that they were com- 
missioned by their monarch to send music, among which were 
the string quartettes of Haydn and Mozart, and instruments, 
both strings and wood winds, to further Padre Sojo's under- 
taking. The first Societa Filarmonica had already been formed 
under the leadership of Don Juan Manuel Olivares. Padre Sojo 
wisely decided to put him in charge of the new school. Under 
his direction Venezuela, elementally endowed with musical 
riches, developed with tropical fervor and speed. Taking the 
European classics for a mold, eager young musicians, among 
them Jose Cayetano Carreno the younger, gathered together to 
learn the technique of their calling. 


The Comte de Segur on his visit to Caracas in 1776 found 
the men somewhat "reserved and serious," but "the Senoritas 
outstanding for the beauty of their faces, the richness of their 
dress, the elegance of their manners, and for their love of 
dancing and music." Alexander von Humboldt twenty-five 
years later reported: "I encountered in the families of Caracas 
a decided desire for learning, knowledge of the works of 
French and Italian literature, and a notable fondness for music 
which they cultivate with success. Like every fine art, it forms 
the nucleus which brings different classes of society together." 

The musical life of Caracas found a center in the adjoining 
surburban estates of Padre Sojo, Don Bartolome Blandin, and 
Padre Mohedano. There from under the orange trees with the 
Avila, a majestic auditor, in the background, the quartettes of 
Haydn and of Mozart sounded for the first time in Venezuela. 
Aristides Rojas, Venezuela's great historian, rhapsodized: "For 
the fields of Chacao the memory of the art of music and of 
growing coffee is what to the old castles were the legends of 
the troubadours." 

He devoted a picturesque chapter to the celebration in honor 
of the first coffee harvest in that area on a scale of commercial 
significance. An earlier planting had failed to reach fruition, 
and only after two years of anxious waiting did the coffee 
bushes begin to blossom in their sweet-scented, breath-taking 
white under the shade of the higher trees planted to protect 
them from the sun, twice flowering themselves in blatant scar- 
let before the matching red of the coffee berries appeared in 
profusion that exceeded hope. 

Finally at the end of 1786 the three neighbors were able to 
send out invitations for a unique festival. On the morning of 
the appointed day the bumpy road leading to the Blandin 
estate was alive with every kind of conveyance. The guests in- 
cluded all that was distinguished and lovely in Caracas. En- 
tertainment began with a walk through the coffee plantation. 
From there the light music of an orchestra drew the young 
people into the huge hall for dancing, the more serious-minded 


preferring the orange grove where quartettes of the classic 
masters alternated with songs accompanied upon the clavecin, 
to which the birds, unaccustomed to music not of their own 
making, gave sweet antiphony. 

Tables were laid for luncheon where fruit trees made an im- 
provised dining room. Leisure amid beauty is a setting in 
which the Venezuelan feels himself at home. Laughter and 
easy conversation spiced the banquet from beginning to end. 
Come the time to serve the coffee, all the tables were removed 
but one in the center, whose decorations consisted of three 
flowering coffee bushes set in jars of porcelain. Silver platters 
filled with delicate pastry stood next to small cups of transpar- 
ent china. The aroma of coffee, freshly distilled, insinuated it- 
self gratefully into the consciousness of the guests standing to 
witness the pouring. The first cup was offered to Padre Mo- 
hedano, beloved priest of Chacao, amid great acclaim. Then 
spontaneously there was silence, the eloquent silence that some- 
times transmits a wish more clearly than words. Padre Mo- 
hedano understood. Lifting his hand he called down the bless- 
ing of God upon this harvest, "gift of wise nature and of men 
of good will." Padre Sojo asked that divine favor fall upon art, 
"rich gift of Providence." In his turn Padre Domingo Blandin 
then prayed that the grace of the Lord descend upon those 
brought together on this occasion. The ceremony of serving a 
cup of coffee to each guest officially closed the festival. 

A close friend of Padre Sojo was Jose Cayetano Carreno, 
Maestro de Capilla of the Cathedral of Caracas, and brother 
of that Juan de la Cruz Carreno, whose "filegie" is the earliest 
composition by a member of this family to be preserved in its 
archives. Cayetano's marriage to Dona Rosalia Rodriguez re- 
sulted several generations later in the appearance of Venezuela's 
greatest genius, always excepting Bolivar, Maria Teresa Car- 
reno y Toro, still affectionately known in the country of her 
birth as Teresita Carreno. 

Cayetano's son, also called Jose Cayetano, born in 1766, was 
a true son of his father in more than name. He inherited his 


musical gifts, his kindly nature, and his probity, succeeding 
him in due time as Maestro de Capilla. The great pride of the 
Sojo-Olivares School in which he was trained, his compositions 
are still heard, resurrected by the young enthusiasts of today, 
in the setting in which they were conceived, the most famous 
being "La Oracion en el Huerto," a master work "full of 
sweetness and truly celestial uplift," reminiscent of Haydn in 
its sincerity and purity of outline. He is remembered also for 
his musical high tenor, that greatly enhanced the appeal of the 
masses and oratorios in which he took part, for his playing of 
various instruments, and for his conducting of the orchestra in 
the Teatro Cordero. Like most of his contemporaries he was 
caught by the spirit of the Revolution to which a younger 
brother fell victim. Cayetano's contribution to the cause was the 
writing of patriotic songs. One, generally attributed to him, 
which begins: "Caraquenos, otra epoca empieza" became so 
popular that it was sung sotto voce in the streets during the 
time when any form of revolutionary propaganda was punish- 
able by death. It long remained a model for this type of com- 
position. Cayetano did not acquire riches — he was paid ninety 
pesetas for a number of his compositions together — so that he 
found it expedient to teach, supplementing his duties as organ- 
ist and choir director. His marriage with Maria Madre de Jesus 
Munoz brought him happiness and five children, only one of 
whom, Manuel Antonio, father of Teresita, inherited musical 
talent. Cayetano died on the third of March, 1836, beloved and 
revered by all. Taking leave of his family, he exhorted them to 
virtue and high thinking. His ashes lie in the crypt of the 
chapel erected in the Cathedral to the honor of Our Lady of 
Pilar, an honor usually accorded only to priests who had be- 
come Deans of the Cathedral. 

Two brothers could not be more different than Cayetano and 
Simon Carreno, eight years his junior, chiefly remembered for 
his decisive influence upon the young Bolivar as his tutor. He 
was an independent and erratic idealist, and a versatile one, 
with flashes of real vision that approached genius. The change- 


ling in a devout, well-ordered family group, restless and at 
odds with his father, he decided to take another name, that of 
his mother. To history thereafter he is known as Simon Ro- 
driguez, which is not, however, the last appellation of his choos- 
ing. Revolutionary ideas imported from France found ready 
echo in this intelligent young eccentric. He became involved in 
the uprising of Gual y Espana and in 1797 was forced to flee 
from Venezuela to the English Antilles. There his imagina- 
tion was profoundly stirred by his own isolation and by read- 
ing Robinson Crusoe whom he admired as the only true demo- 
crat. In homage he called himself, at least temporarily, Samuel 
Robinson. Later in Europe he learned various languages easily, 
visited France, Germany, and Austria, and made friends with 
men of learning and science, drawn to him by the magnetic 
warmth of his nature and his flaring intellect. In Vienna he 
again chanced upon Bolivar in despair over the death of his 
young wife of less than a year. One of Simon's darts of in- 
spiration made him recognize his pupil for the genius that he 
was and see in him the future liberator of Venezuela. Simon 
Rodriguez was a promoter, a philosopher ahead of his time, not 
a man of great courage or action. But without the force of his 
personality Bolivar might never have come alive to his mission. 
After months of indulgence in the most extreme pleasures, 
meant to dull the edge of grief, the two friends arrived in 
Rome. There in the dramatic scene on the Monte Sacro that 
has so often been the subject of painting and description, Boli- 
var swore before his mentor to devote his life to the freeing of 
Venezuela from Spanish domination. Bolivar's greater vision 
made his purposes reach even further. As for Simon Rodriguez, 
the oath of the sacred mountain was his great moment, his 
claim to glory. For a time he wandered, absorbing the ideas of 
Rousseau. Returning to South America in 1823 he felt tempted 
to apply them as a teacher. When he went so far as to appear 
in his classroom completely unclothed, he so shocked the par- 
ents of his pupils that he was obliged to withdraw. Improvident 
and impulsive as a hummingbird, he died poverty-stricken in 


a tiny Peruvian village, Ametape, in whose church he lies 
buried. Years after his death his last erratic wish served to 
identify his coffin. He had asked to be buried in sitting posture. 

In Manuel Antonio, Cayetano's son, artistic inheritance was 
very satisfactorily blended with more practical qualities. Well 
educated, well mannered, and well groomed, he was something 
of a perfectionist. That he escaped being a stickler for the 
unimportant was due to his wide intellectual interests, and to 
his sense of affectionate obligation to his fellow men. Every 
mention of him is qualified by the words "distinguished gen- 
tleman." But he was ambitious, too ambitious to content him- 
self with a profession in which he could hope for neither ad- 
vancement nor wealth. A political career seemed to promise 
both, and, moreover, that higher social rating which he coveted 
before all on his wife's account. 

In the days of Columbus records attest that the Toros were 
notable hidalgos and ancient Christians, that among them were 
knights who owned horses, founded towns, and inherited prop- 
erty, flaunting as their crest a golden bull upon a field of scar- 
let. A royal grant conferred upon the family the hereditary title 
of Marques in 1732. Rodriguez, third Marques del Toro, was 
known as Bolivar's fast friend and not-too-successful general. 
He was the ideal type of Spanish aristocrat with democratic 
leanings and readily identified himself with the ideas of the 
Criollo class, whom Bolivar called "stepchildren of our race" 
or "idle slaveholders, themselves slaves under the laws of 
Spain." He seemed a real menace in the royalist fold. Suspicion 
rested upon him. Yet he was one of the few who found it worth 
while to keep his title to the end. On his estate in the Aragua 
valley he held miniature court. Alexander von Humboldt tells 
of the unforgettable hours spent there "in a corner of the earth 
like Paradise: and such refinement of living! Such sensitive, 
hospitable people!" 

Clorinda Garcia de Sena y Toro, niece of Bolivar's unfortu- 
nate wife and niece also of Rodriguez del Toro, was the daugh- 
ter of two famous revolutionary strains. She had undoubtedly, 




in the estimation of her family and friends, taken a long step 
downward when she married the son of a professional man. 
Cold and formal by nature — her children might no more than 
kiss her hand — she laid weight upon external graces and ma- 
terial rewards. The former had drawn her to the less wealthy, 
less noble Manuel Antonio. For material rewards she could 
only hope. The insecurity of banking and politics in Venezuela 
had played havoc with the fortunes of the Toros as with others. 
Of course Clorinda readily approved the choice of a career for 
her husband that might in time restore her to the station and 
affluence in keeping with del Toro tradition. When Manuel An- 
tonio succeeded in obtaining the portfolio of Minister of Fi- 
nance, the choice seemed completely justified. 

The home of the Carrenos, now replaced by the offices of a 
shipping line, became a meeting place for artists, scientists, and 
diplomats. A letter to the Carrenos was the best of introduc- 
tions for a newcomer in Caracas. Music in one form or an- 
other might be counted upon during any evening. The foun- 
tain in the patio splashed its liquid obbligato to Spanish dances, 
operatic arias, and even to Manuel Antonio's "La Fleur du 
Desert" with its too sweet melody smothered in ornamental 
passages of considerable difficulty. Yes, Manuel Antonio and 
Clorinda had every reason to be satisfied in their well-ordered 
household, and their peaceful, if not entirely heart-warming, 
family life. However, Venezuela, the incalculable, whether 
through the natural upheaval of earthquakes or through the 
less natural one of revolutions, sooner or later was sure to up- 
set the apparently most secure state of being. 

Emilia, the first daughter, was about eight years of age when 
on the twenty-second of December, 1853, another little girl was 
born to Manuel Antonio and Clorinda. They called her Maria 
Teresa, a name not infrequent in the family genealogy. Per- 
haps, according to a popular superstition in Venezuela, it was 
a pianist who first cut her fingernails and then buried the par- 
ings in the earth. In any case, this baby, welcomed with glad- 
ness usual in a country where childhood to this day remains a 
cult, was the unconscious climax of generations of musicians, 
the predestined bearer of the stern obligation of genius. 

When the baby was less than a year old, friends noticed that 
she kept time to music with her head and her hands, that she 
loved toys that made pretty noises, that she listened in absorbed 
silence while music was being played. It so excited her that she 
would sit up in her crib next to the salon with her eyes wide 
open until it stopped. She began to sing before she could talk, 
and as soon as she could walk, she danced. At the age of two 
she was heard to give a fairly accurate idea of Bellini's famous 
aria from Lucia, "Bel Alma Innamorata," in a sweet, true voice. 
Teresita was a friendly, happy, and healthy child. She told 
stories to the dolls that she loved beyond everything and sang 
them to sleep at night as she did her baby brother Manuel, 
upon whom for a time family interest centered. 

There were two pianos in the salon. The grand, Teresita was 
not permitted to touch. The keys of the upright she could 
barely reach standing. That was her piano. When Manuel An- 
tonio showed her how to find thirds, she discovered other com- 
binations that pleased her for herself, playing them over and 
over. Soon she began to reproduce familiar melodies on the 
keyboard. One night there was music in the salon next to 
Teresita's bedroom. The nurse had drawn the filmy white cur- 
tains of the crib close, and had left the child, as she thought, 
asleep. She had forgotten that Teresita was almost a profes- 
sional in the art of pretending. On this particular evening she 
was enchanted by a "Varsovienne" that some friends were 


playing for Emilia. The next morning her first thought was to 
try it herself. The melody she managed easily, and, with a little 
effort, all the chords but one. Just as she had found the missing 
tone needed to complete a seventh chord, her father entered 
to help Emilia, so he expected, with her difficulty. Totally un- 
prepared to find four-year-old Teresita at the keyboard, he 
burst into tears. Teresita immediately made it a melancholy 
duet. "Don't cry, Papa, I'll never do it again," she sobbed, a 
promise that fortunately she did not keep. 

Manuel Antonio was a good psychologist and an equally 
good pedagogue. Very wisely he left Teresita to her own de- 
vices. At the age of five she had taught herself to play dances 
with easy left-hand accompaniment. For her dolls and her 
friends she enjoyed improvising what she called operas. Mean- 
while the father, methodical in everything, and urged on by 
his daughter's evident ambition, made a set of 500 exercises, 
covering all the technical and rhythmical difficulties that a 
pianist might be apt to encounter. Shortly after Teresita's sixth 
birthday lessons began in earnest. Gradually she learned how 
to play the exercises so that she could work through them all in 
rotation every three days, playing them in any key she chose. 
Czerny and Bertini "Etudes," Bach's "Inventions" and "Little 
Preludes" lent variety. To her practice she devoted two hours 
in the morning and two in the afternoon with the same spirit 
of playful concentration that she lavished on her dolls. Soon 
she found herself easily overcoming the obstacles in Thalberg's 
Norma fantasia. In five days she had made it her own. One of 
her daily duties consisted of ten minutes spent in reading music 
at sight, an accomplishment in which she acquired amazing 
facility. Manuel Antonio knew how to fire his daughter's am- 
bition. Pointing to a certain exercise he would say: "Teresita, I 
know that you can play this study in the key of C; that is easy. 
But I don't believe that you can play it in the key of B; that 
would be too much to expect of such a little girl." The hint was 
enough to make Teresita determine to achieve the impossible. 
The next day she not only played the exercise in B, but on 


through other keys. Transposing her pieces became a favorite 
game. Somtimes she improvised so interestingly that her fa- 
ther took down the melodies on paper as she played. He had 
been carefully taught by Cayetano and was by far the most 
accomplished amateur musician in the city. However, it did not 
take him long to discover that he was being outdistanced by his 
daughter. So a professional pianist, Julius Hohenus, was found 
to supplement his teaching. It was he who first made Teresita 
acquainted with works of Mendelssohn and Chopin. 

In everything but music Teresita was a normal child. The 
social distinctions upon which her father so punctiliously in- 
sisted did not exist for her. Her imagination was fertile for 
mischief. One night the parents were entertaining with cus- 
tomary formality at dinner. Teresita noticed the shiny row of 
top hats neatly placed, each on its own peg, in the hall. It oc- 
curred to her that they would be set off to much greater ad- 
vantage by the bushes in the patio. She took infinite pains to 
distribute them effectively, until they looked like sleek black 
crows perched there for solemn conference, and together with 
an old servant who was always delighted to second her plans, 
she hid in the background, laughing to see the distinguished 
gentlemen picking out their property from the branches. 

On another occasion Teresita confided to this same old re- 
tainer, whose duty it was to accompany Teresita to a class she 
attended in a private school, that she meant to give a party. The 
refreshments would be his problem, the entertainment hers. 
In the classroom she rose, and imitating in unconscious carica- 
ture the manner of her father, she asked in the name of her 
parents that her friends bring their fathers and mothers to her 
home on the next evening for some music. She did not con- 
sider it necessary to prepare her parents. On the appointed night 
Manuel and Clorinda were sipping after-dinner coffee in the 
patio. A few callers began to appear, then more and more, un- 
til there could be no question of mere coincidence. First the 
mother, then the father, retired to change into more suitable 
attire. Refreshments were ordered and miraculously appeared. 


Teresita darted about, playing hostess in miniature, not caring 
that there were gathered in her home that evening people who 
for political reasons should never have been asked together. 
Called upon for music, she proceeded to do her part with utter 
enjoyment, better than ever before. Both parents rose to the 
occasion to make the evening as successful as it was unexpected 
on their part. After the last guest had departed at a very late 
hour the dreaded question could no longer be avoided. "Who 
was responsible for this?" thundered Manuel Antonio. Teresita 
trembled. The tone of voice promised no good for the unhappy 
originator. "I did," admitted a whisper. Abruptly Manuel An- 
tonio turned his back, and with boundless relief his daughter 
saw that his shoulders were shaking. 

Manuel Antonio had a small income from a book he had 
been tempted to write in moments of leisure before Teresita 
claimed them all. He longed to make Venezuela a safe and 
happy place to live in, and realized that more than an honest, 
forward-looking political system was needed to achieve this 
purpose. With that meticulous thoroughness characteristic of 
him, and under the sign of Silvio Pellico's motto: "To rest 
from the honorable task of being good, refined, and courteous 
there is no more time than that devoted to sleep," he wrote a 
work of nearly four hundred pages, closely printed, on good 
behavior. This appeared under the title of 

Manual of Civility and Good Manners for the use of the youth 
of both sexes; in which are encountered the principal rules of 
politeness and etiquette which should be observed in manifold social 
situations, preceded by a short treatise on the moral obligations of 

This book found wide circulation in Spanish-American coun- 
tries at once. Generations of school children have memorized, 
if not in all cases assimilated, the rules of this Earl of Chester- 
field of Venezuela. Even today the book may be bought by 
simply asking for "El Carreno." Manuel Antonio read pro- 


fusely on his subject in the works of his predecessors in many 
countries, and found himself in full agreement with them, that 
true aristocracy is of the spirit, that there can be no question of 
fine manners without the basis of knowing and observing the 
laws of moral obligation whose source is the Bible. From this 
universal implication of duty toward the Deity, toward one's 
fellow man, and toward oneself the book narrows down to the 
rules of daily behavior in infinite and often amusing detail. 
Caracas with its mixture of race, caste, and color, needed a 
pioneer for the weekly bath, the moderate beard, the personal 
face towel, and the toothbrush. Carreno spared himself and 
his readers no sanitary detail, even warning those who share 
bedrooms with others against the impoliteness of smoking 
when "the windows are closed for the night." 

Expanding from the particular to the general, "El Carreno" 
reminds us that life is very short. So it is that only by using 
time with the utmost economy we find the means of educating 
and distinguishing ourselves, and of realizing all the plans that 
can be useful to us and to society. "But," he adds, perhaps as 
a special warning for himself, "let us keep in mind that excess 
in method, as in everything else, comes to be an evil as well." 

Disregarding details that to a freer generation in a freer land 
appear irrelevant and fussy, Carreno's book remains the sincere 
credo of a high-thinking man, concerned for the good of his 
country, which he sees threatened by the impulsiveness and 
instability of its people. Much as he demands that the indi- 
vidual sacrifice his own interests to those of others, of the state 
and of the church, he nonetheless insists upon respect for per- 
sonal dignity, and, believing in man's perfectibility as of de- 
termining importance in art and industry, and in the material 
and moral progress of his country, he urges him on to new and 
greater effort. 

In early 1862 solving the problem of the right musical train- 
ing for Teresita was more urgent to Manuel Antonio than even 
the welfare of Venezuela. Should he wait, perhaps for the rest 


of his life, to be reinstated in the Venezuelan Cabinet, while 
Clorinda, dreaming of the generous living on the hacienda of 
her childhood, chafed under the enforced economy so foreign 
to her taste ? He had no doubt that Teresita's talent was worthy 
of greater stimulus than either he or Julius Hohenus could 
provide. She should measure herself against a more exacting 
scale of standards, hear better music, better playing. For Caracas 
she, the spoiled darling of completely undiscriminating friends, 
had already arrived at a climax. Was not one of her composi- 
tions publicly performed by a band of professional musicians, 
and did not the daily papers erupt with long columns of ex- 
travagant praise, wherever this little girl was heard? 

One listener felt moved to give his impressions of such an 
affair in an article published by El Buen Senrido. On this eve- 
ning Teresita was operatically inclined. One after another she 
played arrangements of melodies from Lucia, I Puritani, and 
Norma. The effect was so electrifying that the writer spent a 
sleepless night in consequence. Just for the fun of it Teresita 
would turn phrases upside down, change a fortissimo to a 
whisper, correcting, improving, or just playing musical jokes 
on her audience. Then jumping down from her piano stool 
with a very definite "aqui no hay nada de eso" just then her 
pet phrase, she would turn to the really serious business of un- 
dressing her doll, ascending her pedestal again later of her 
own free will to improvise on a given theme or on some fan- 
tastic idea invented by herself. One of these arguments lasted 
for three quarters of an hour. The listener asked himself, "Who 
taught this child the silence of midnight with its sombre and 
religious majesty, the fury of the enraged sea, the sinister noise 
of battle, conjugal love, maternal tenderness, the feeling of cold 
terror? Where did she learn to understand the human heart?" 
Sometimes she talked on without understanding the meaning 
of the words. For instance she began to illustrate a story at the 
piano. It started: "A youth loved a maiden. . . ." For a mo- 
ment she hesitated, then asked her father: "What is it to be 
in love?" Not until the answer satisfied her would she go on 


with the intricacies of her "opera." In the words of the writer: 
"At times she held to mezzotints — a really vague twilight, a 
point between being and not being, truths that deceive, lies that 

After that someone gave Teresita a strangely sophisticated 
plot to interpret. Completely unfazed, she evoked the mezzo- 
tints remarked by the writer of the article. "It was the perfect 
expression of hope without trust, of happiness without under- 
standing, of wishing in which both confidence and doubt took 
part. Never before have I seen something become and be per- 
fect all at the same time." 

Meanwhile Fate, shaking her kaleidoscope, was on the point 
of transforming the regular pattern, by which the Carrenos 
ordered their living, into a new and frightening one. Long con- 
ferences were being held at the hacienda of pioneer-spirited 
Grandmother Gertrudis, a del Toro unmolested by the demon 
of ancestral pride. Without the wisdom of her counsel no de- 
cision of importance was reached within the family circle. More 
forward-looking than Clorinda, she felt in closer sympathy 
with her son-in-law than with this daughter, whose mouth was 
already set in drooping lines of disenchantment. As soon as 
Grandmother Gertrudis was convinced that for the sake of 
Teresita's future the family must be transplanted to another 
land, she volunteered to sell her property to make the journey 
possible. Moreover, suddenly possessed by a youthful urge for 
adventure, she had no intention of being left behind. Prepara- 
tions could not go ahead fast enough for her. To add to the 
confusion of packing and of farewell parties, as well as to 
Clorinda's reluctance to leave home, Emilia, not yet sixteen, in- 
sisted upon staying in Caracas to marry her first cousin. In par- 
tial compensation, Manuel Antonio's brother, Juan de la Cruz 
Carreno, doubly a member of the family through his marriage 
with Maria Teresa, Clorinda's sister, resolved to join the ex- 
pedition with his wife and baby, Gertrudis. This was further 
augmented by five faithful servants, former slaves freed by the 


grandmother on the day of Teresita's birth, one an old woman 
who had been her personal maid since the age of twelve. 

On the morning of July 23, 1862, a group of fourteen strangely 
assorted travelers, ranging in age from one to seventy-five, jogged 
over one of the most majestic and terrifying of roads, zigzagging 
down through solemn, naked, almost unpeopled country, on 
one side cliffs that shaded from terra cotta to rust, dotted with 
scraggly trees of unhealthy-looking green, and on the other 
abysmal precipices at once repellent and magnetic. After end- 
less meandering there opened before the little company, al- 
ready attacked by homesickness and dread of the unknown, a 
vista of reassuring blue, growing deeper as the road sank to 
the level of the calm Caribbean at the port of La Guaira. 

From there they embarked at once to visit relatives at Puerto 
Cabello, an overnight journey westward along the South Amer- 
ican coast. Teresita's fame had preceded her. Night after night 
friends were invited to hear her play. When her infallible mem- 
ory had exhausted its store, she drew upon her imagination 
with matching success. It was an impressive escort of new con- 
verts that gathered to watch the barca Joseph Maxwell fade 
slowly out of sight on the morning of August 1 bound for 
Philadelphia. Off the coast of Santo Domingo, on the name day 
of that Saint, a hurricane gave the adventurers anxious mo- 
ments. Twenty-three days later a much subdued band found 
harbor at last. Sheer exhaustion called for a week of recupera- 
tion before proceeding to New York, the real objective. 

Once there, the Carrenos were not entirely derelict. Acquaint- 
ances who had enjoyed their hospitality in Caracas retaliated 
in kind. That in North America, too, there was fighting among 
brothers, was not especially disturbing to Venezuelans. If any- 
thing it helped to make them feel at home. So in a furnished 
house on Second Avenue, a quarter approved by polite society, 
yet within their means, the travelers settled down without de- 
lay. The fading dignity of Knickerbocker days gave it a touch 
of formality, to which the Carrenos naturally responded. Even 


Teresita felt reassured. Her great worry had been that an 
English-speaking God might not understand the Spanish prayers 
of a little girl from South America. It was exciting to them 
all to be a part of the noisy current of life in the busiest city of 
the new world, hard as it was to adjust themselves to earlier 
rising and longer days of work. After the war, when he had 
become more familiar with the English language, Manuel An- 
tonio meant to give piano lessons. Meanwhile Teresita and her 
little brother were sent to a private school standing in the spot 
now occupied by Wanamaker's store. The burning problem 
was to find the right teacher for Teresita. 

The pianist of the hour was the great Louis Moreau Gott- 
schalk. War had not kept him from playing day after day to 
crowded houses from coast to coast, in solo recital at that, and 
on that most brittle of instruments, the piano. A child of Loui- 
siana, he reaped his first laurels in France. In New York that, 
even then, was a talking point in his favor. Berlioz heard him 
and wrote: "He is a consummate musician; he knows how far 
in expression imagination may go; he knows the limit beyond 
which liberties taken in rhythm only produce disorder and con- 
fusion ; and these limits he never transcends." Victor Hugo was 
equally eloquent in his praise. Other less discriminating critics 
endowed him with the power of Liszt, the correctness of Thal- 
berg, and the expression of Chopin himself. Fiorentino, the 
critic of he Corsaire, closed the subject with these words: 
"Apres Gottschal\ il jaut tirer Vechelle." Teresa Carreno many 
years later remembered that his playing was like zephyrs sigh- 
ing on a poet's harp, that none approached him in his trill. And 
that was the opinion of one whose own trilling left whole 
audiences gasping with unbelief. 

To New York Gottschalk became romance personified. His 
love affairs were pleasant scandal over the teacups, the envy of 
the most fastidious debutantes. New York delighted in his 
mannerisms, and applauded wildly when he seated himself at 
the piano, lazily drawing off his glove and running his fingers 


over the keyboard in prelude, as if dusting it. He had a melan- 
choly air a little at odds with a trimly pointed mustache and 
an impeccably tailored suit, and he was apt to play with his 
head thrown back — and often with a cigar in his mouth — non- 
chalantly pretending to be alone with himself, to the hysterical 
joy of the listeners he treated so highhandedly. 

To have Gottschalk hear Teresita became Manuel Antonio's 
dream. How could it be brought about? Among his friends 
were some who had known the master well in Cuba. But Gott- 
schalk was known to be wary of prodigies. There was faint 
hope. Meanwhile the musical evenings of Caracas were dupli- 
cated in a new setting. Friends brought critics and amateurs to 
hear the little genius of the tropics. Her name penetrated ar- 
tistic circles by the grapevine telegraph of hearsay. Invitations 
to the soirees on Second Avenue were seldom refused. They re- 
ceived more than casual mention in papers and journals. It was 
Teresita's extemporizing that drew forth the most comment. 

An editor of the New York Illustrated News tells of such an 

We have heard her at her father's residence play the most delicious 
concerted music which she composes as she goes along. On one 
occasion she offered to compose an opera for me which at once 
showed her great power and her childlike simplicity. She com- 
menced with an overture, and introduced a little girl as heroine of 
the play. After some fine music for the soprano, came a young man 
who made love to her, but he was not in favor with Papa. So an- 
other young man makes love to her, and he is rejected. The young 
men meet, and as neither can marry her, they resolve to kill her. 
They come upon the little girl who is dreadfully frightened, and 
seeing death before her, commences a prayer which we think one 
of the most feeling bits of music we have ever listened to, strong 
and original. The Papa comes just in time to prevent the murder. 
And then she was perplexed to know what disposition to make of 
her characters. Suddenly her face lit up with a happy thought. "Oh, 
I know, Father! I think the little girl had better go home to her 
Mamma." She sprang from the piano stool, and seizing a great 


doll that had been presented to her at one of her concerts, com- 
menced squeezing it to make it cry, screaming with delight at the 

Mr. J. G. Maeder, composer and professor of the pianoforte, 
also heard Teresita play at home. He reported that 

she is very lively and childlike and received her visitors with perfect 
ease and gracefulness. . . . First she played a nocturne of her own, 
then an elaborate composition, uniting at one time no less than 
three separate themes. She attacked Norma with great spirit and 
immense power, work enough for four hands, not to say two, and 
those a child's. 

Another writer, who calls himself "Amphion," noticed the 
slightly inclined curves in her forehead and her peculiar smile. 

Even when her mouth is full of it, she does not lavish it as stupid 
people do, but holds it back like a thread of reflection, recalls it at 
pleasure, and closes her lips again. This control over her smile is 
the indication of a superior spirit. [He notices] the certain conscious- 
ness of power, a dominating quality, and the mystery in her eyes. 
The space between her eyebrows opens when she is gay, but it 
closes up frequently, a rare thing at this age, as if thereby she tried 
to ignore a familiarity that hindered her thought. 

Wherever Teresita appeared someone was sure to voice the 
wish that she might be more generally heard. That was quite 
in line with Teresita's own desires. She was perpetually teasing 
to be allowed to play in a real concert, and Manuel Antonio 
was himself not averse to putting his daughter to the test of 
a private recital, admission being, of course, by invitation only. 

He was still undecided when the matter was taken out of 
his hands by what at the moment seemed the greatest possible 
personal catastrophe, nothing less than the sudden death of the 
trusted friend who was administering the Carreno property in 
Caracas. The agreement had been purely verbal. To have asked 
for a receipt would have been an unpardonable breach of con- 
fidence. While the whole family was still in desolation over 
this misadventure, it became evident that his son and heir was 


made of different stuff. He pretended to know nothing about 
the funds that had been placed in trust with his father, funds 
that also included the grandmother's small fortune, and he 
made it clear that he would assume no obligation whatsoever 
for future remittances. The Carreno household was in conster- 
nation. The money in the combined family treasury might last 
a month with the rigid economy so difficult to carry out effi- 
ciently in a foreign land. Intimate friends were willing to 
help. But against this the pride of Spanish and Venezuelan an- 
cestors revolted. Taking stock of their resources, it was found 
that there was not a single member of the group quickly able 
in this emergency to earn a living for a household of fourteen, 
always excepting a little girl of eight. And that, of course, was 
out of the question. Even supposing she were able, Clorinda 
never would consent to let the descendant of a Marques del 
Toro play in public for money. While friends were clamoring, 
and Teresita was begging for the private audition that had been 
discussed, Manuel Antonio still vacillated. Without an opinion 
other than his own he dreaded exposing Teresita to the cold 
criticism of New York. It was left to Fate again to shake her 

In the Carreno circle there moved a certain Simon Camacho, 
a writer who chose to publish under the pen name of "Naza- 
reno." Urged by his admiration for Teresita, he achieved the 
impossible. In a letter written in Spanish he managed to awaken 
the curiosity of Gottschalk, and the meeting, finally consum- 
mated, could be described in no more telling manner than by 
his own pen. 

In August I wrote the following letter which, scarcely dry, took 
wing over the mountains : 

My dear Luis: I have here a little girl of eight years who plays 
the piano like T. . . , I will not say like "Te." Would you like to 
hear her? Come soon! She is your affair, and I should be sorry if 
somebody else presented her to you. If Mohamet cannot go to the 
mountain, the mountain will come to Mohamet. One word from 
you and you will see us in your beautiful Tebaide. 


Two days later Gottschalk appeared in New York. Could he have 
believed me? 

"Here I am," said he. "Thank you," said I. 

"Who is T. . . ?" " 'Te' is the accusative of Til' " 

"But the child?" "Let us go to see her." 

"And to hear her?" "As you choose." 

Luis shook his head in sign of unbelief. I felt as I suppose John 
the Baptist did when he announced the coming of the Messiah. 
Prodigies had so often fooled Gottschalk, there had been so many 
Papas and Mammas who had promised to show him marvels in 
their primogenitos or primogenitas, geniuses that turned out to be 
nothing more than geniecitos or better pergenios, that the king of 
the piano had good reason for being sceptical. "And is she pretty?" 
he asked. 

"So lovable, so childlike!" 

We left and soon arrived. The piano was opened. That silence 
is like no other. 

The piano had sounded for some minutes, but only Gottschalk, 
in my opinion, had heard it. All the other spectators were concen- 
trated on one object, hanging on one thought, one verdict, one 
sentence of life or death. 

I did not even breathe, except perhaps to count. This scene had 
in it something very moving; you heard the beating of the heart 
of a mother; you saw the severe expression of a father change in 
the agony of uncertainty. 

The king had not spoken, but — 

I remembered the story of the bolero dancers accused in the court 
of Rome for the freedom of their motion. When least it might be 
expected the judges, in spite of their severity and the prejudices by 
which they were dominated, began to dance to the sound of the 

A few moments only, and Gottschalk, the king of the piano, was 
beating time with his head to a brilliant fantasia by Thalberg, 
played by Teresa Carreno. 

Kindred geniuses saluted each other. The sun of midday, the 
sun rising in the east. 

One second more and the word "bravo" escaped from the lips 
of Gottschalk. Concerted breathing, suddenly freed, echoed against 


the walls of the salon covered with the portraits of the Knicker- 

Teresita was baptized in the font reserved for those famous in art. 
Who ever had a greater godfather? 

Gottschalk kissed her upon the forehead, and this kiss was the 
seal of approval she had earned from the great maestro, and whidbu 
she still must win from the most commercial city of the Americas. 

Somebody may think perhaps that I am painting for my own 
pleasure an imaginary scene into which truth enters for very little. 
I do not care to do so, but if anyone does not believe me, I have 
the means of proving myself honest. 

A delicate hint had sufficed to persuade Gottschalk to second 
Teresita in an elaborate composition for four hands. Then at once, 
moved by an irresistible impulse, the king, with all his inspired 
enthusiasm, with all the feeling and fervor of which only passion 
that has been stirred is capable, began to play himself. It was the 
expression of gratitude which could not find outlet in words, and 
which was much better understood in tone by this little angel, in 
whom music was incarnate, and for whom harmonies had held 
meaning before reason. When Gottschalk left the piano the blood 
seemed to rush to Teresita's face, the beautiful black eyes grew 
veiled as by a cloud, and all at once she fainted [but not without 
first registering in her mind certain peculiarities of Gottschalk's 
fingering and pedaling, according to her great-aunt Gertrudis]. 
Teresita for the first time had actually heard a genius play as she 
had only imagined it should be done. Suddenly she experienced 
that which she had thought impossible. The blow was too strong 
for her childish constitution. Gottschalk's greatness had affected 
her as if she were a lily bent double by a hurricane. 

Her great friend, a Dr. B., warned the father: "Take care, great 
care of this little girl, for she is a vial filled with more spirit than 
it is naturally supposed to contain, and an explosion might result." 

The trial by fire had proved the brilliant butterfly of the 
Andes worthy. She had earned the right to try her wings in 
larger space. Gottschalk himself urged it. Preparations began at 
once for the private audition to which Manuel Antonio invited, 
besides his own friends, every New Yorker prominent in music. 


Irving Hall (now Irving Place theater) was the setting. It had 
boxes and two balconies, seating 1,250 persons in all. L. F. Har- 
rison lost no time. In making the contract he added a clause 
that gave him exclusive right to engage Teresita for any future 
performance in New York that season at $50 per concert. It 
was not Manuel Antonio's intention that his daughter should 
become a professional attraction at the age of eight. He was too 
far-sighted to overlook the fact that Teresita needed schooling, 
a far larger repertoire, and the teaching that Gottschalk had 
promised her, whenever he should happen to be in New York. 
He could afford to disregard that clause in the contract. To this 
his brother, the lawyer, agreed. If there were another concert, 
the $50 would be very welcome; if not, no harm was done. 
Accordingly the date was set for the afternoon of November 
7, 1862. 

Then came the assembling of the program. Custom required 
variety. In the case of a little child whose reaction to her first 
large audience was not to be foretold, common sense, too, 
advised it. The first choice as assisting artist was Theodore 
Thomas, already a notable violinist in solo as well as ensemble, 
and at the very outset of his career as conductor. The first time 
Teresita had played for him — it had been the Chopin "Noc- 
turne in E flat" — he had burst into tears. Teresita, uncompre- 
hending, had turned to her father: "What is that man crying 
for?" Years later, when she heard the young Josef Hofmann, 
her question was answered. She too was moved in the same 

On the appointed afternoon the hall was well filled. Tere- 
sita' s part of the program consisted of the "Souvenirs" from // 
Trovatore by Goria, "Grande Fantaisie" on Norma by Thalberg, 
and the "Capriccio" on Hernani by Prudent, composers whose 
flourishes have been outlived by the operas from which they 
borrowed the most popular tunes. The success of the audition 
was complete. Face to face with an unexplainable phenomenon, 
the audience was enraptured. Teresita was in her element, es- 


pecially when it came to Gottschalk's "Bananier," which she 
had just memorized in two days. The "Gottschalk Waltz" com- 
posed by her in his honor on the very day of their first meet- 
ing she also played at this matinee in four-hand arrangement 
with her father. It was at the end of this composition that the 
clapping had frightened her into taking shelter behind him. 

At home for the moment calamity was forgotten in the 
happy confusion of Teresita's triumph. Even Clorinda, the un- 
demonstrative, allowed the corners of her mouth to lift. She 
quite enjoyed holding court in reflected and silent glory among 
reporters, with whom she could converse only in the language 
of gesture and smile, and among friends who could give such 
effusive voice to their enthusiasm for the child she so quietly 
yet completely loved. It was the uncle who had to tell the gen- 
tlemen of the Press whatever they wanted to know, how much 
Teresita practiced a day, whether she were healthy, what she 
liked to eat, what her favorite playthings were. 

Excitement rose to such a breath-taking pitch that Manuel An- 
tonio was powerless to resist longer. He found himself falling 
in with L. F. Harrison's suggestion that Teresita give a public 
concert. The date was set for November 25. "I shall be an artist 
all my life," said Teresita. No more fervently did her great- 
uncle, Bolivar, take his oath on the Monte Sacro. 

Ancestors may frown their darkest. Their part is played. On 
her inheritance Teresa Carreno y Toro is founding a truer, rarer 

The momentum of the first concert produced a second and 
then a third, fourth, and fifth in close succession. 

Gottschalk in Cincinnati wrote to L. F. Harrison: 

I am really delighted that you are doing so well. Little Teresa seems 
according to what I see in the paper to be quite the furore now. 
I am very much pleased with it. She is not only a wonderful child, 
but a real genius. As soon as I am in New York, settled down and 
at leisure, I intend to devote myself to her musical instruction. She 
must be something great, and shall be. 


There was another Irving Hall concert in which Teresita 
added the "Prayer" from Mo'ise en Egypte to her repertoire. 
This she supplemented with Mendelssohn's "Spring Song." 
More important and just as crowded was the one in the Acad- 
emy of Music in Brooklyn, the Second Philharmonic Concert 
of that season. In it Theodore Thomas appeared as conductor 
of Beethoven's "First Symphony." Mme. Angri, soprano, and 
the Teutonic Choral Society assisted, Teresita of course being 
the prime attraction. It was nearly midnight when, obviously 
in need of sleep, she finally played Thalberg's "Variations on 
Home Sweet Home." 

Another concert was a morning affair "attended by a large 
assemblage, many of whom were the young daughters of the 
best families not yet entered into society, and presenting an 
appearance fresh as spring flowers." 

For a child and a novice, five concerts in three weeks were 
enough, decided the father. The insatiable Mr. Harrison thought 
otherwise. He conceived the master trick of his career. With 
his usual effrontery, he asked Manuel Antonio to give him a 
farewell concert on Teresita's ninth birthday, and to let him 
call it a benefit for her. Manuel Antonio, not realizing to what 
he was committing himself, politely consented. The elated 
manager outdid himself in propaganda, and so successfully that 
the Academy of Music, a hall seating more than 3,000 people, 
was filled to the last inch of standing room. Hundreds were 
turned away, everybody being very naturally under the im- 
pression that he was contributing his share to a handsome 
birthday present for the child who so lavishly squandered her 
gift of music. 

The night of December 22 was cold and windy, the audi- 
torium a bare and draughty place. To make it worse the heat- 
ing system was out of order. From the beginning the tempera- 
ture slowly began to sink to the freezing point. The first rows 
of chairs and the stage — the hall was designed for opera rather 
than for concert — were open to frigid air currents. A critic re- 


ports that two concerts were going on together, one consisting 
of the music on the stage, the other of coughs in the front 
rows. Teresita was the chief victim, and who but Teresita 
could have held for three hours the attention, enthusiasm, and 
applause of an audience martyred by cold? This child of the 
tropics dressed in gauze and tarlatan ignored the elements 
and actually raised the temperature by the fire of her playing, 
encouraging by her example Theodore Thomas and her other 
assistants to do the same. The only thing that mattered to her 
was that there were new pieces on the program that night. 
Gottschalk's "Last Hope" she had learned in a day, and a 
capriccio of her own was hurriedly dictated to her father that 
very morning. Again she played the "Gottschalk Waltz." The 
papers next morning declared that Teresita had never been in 
better form. But of the tremendous receipts of that evening's 
concert neither father nor daughter ever saw a penny. Even the 
birthday present that Mr. Harrison in a sheepish moment had 
promised Teresita was not forthcoming. Manuel Antonio's in- 
convenient pride kept him passive. At least artistically the suc- 
cess was unqualified. Teresita had won and kept her laurels. 
New York was hers. The way, in whichever direction she cared 
to travel, was paved. 

Among her listeners in a New York recital had been Robert P. 
Haines of Boston. To him the stamp of New York's approval 
was not the final one. Boston was the musical Athens. New 
York might have a flair for the musically sensational; Boston 
knew what was musically right. It was due to his prodding that 
the reluctant father, who would have greatly appreciated a few 
months of Southern contemplation, was caught once more in 
the whirl of the land whose motto was: "Make hay while the 
sun shines." So, before the beginning of the new year Teresita 
with her father and her uncle, Juan de la Cruz, found them- 
selves established in the comfortable Tremont Hotel of digni- 
fied tradition. 

Their first disastrous experience with managers had taught 
them to be circumspect. George Danskin was very different 
from L. F. Harrison. He had a real liking for music, to the 
point of writing piano pieces now and then for his own pleas- 
ure. He knew his Boston and how to approach it. Here at last 
was the opportunity to add to the all-but-exhausted funds of 
the family. No time was lost. On January 2, 1863, little Teresita 
was ready for her second "Bautismo de Gloria." 

At the first concert Boston had only a half-sized audience to 
offer her. Norma, Trovatore, "Home Sweet Home," the Doeh- 
ler "Nocturne," and two Gottschalk compositions were on the 
program. A singer, Matilda Phillips, and the Germania So- 
ciety's orchestra assisted. Most of the people who made up the 
audience were negatively prejudiced. Boston prided itself upon 
its appreciation of the classics, and therefore could well afford 
to look down with becoming superiority upon the virtuoso 
style rampant, which overflowed in obvious, florid cascades call- 
ing themselves Souvenirs de — , Variations sur — , and Caprices 
sur this and that. Here was a really formidable task for a prod- 
igy's little hands. 

The first surprise of the evening was to see running across the 
stage like any other child a real little girl, not a young lady 
dressed in memory of one. She looked scarcely taller than the 


HAVANA 1863 

BOSTON 1863 


T ere sit a the Prodigy 


chairs she passed with a purposeful stride, and she still was 
obliged to mount her piano stool carefully, but evidently no 
longer needing a special platform for her feet. New York had 
already taught her to arrange her dress more symmetrically, 
and to improvise a prelude in elaborate imitation of the Gott- 
schalk manner. That this child must be measured with the 
standards of grown artists Boston was quick to realize. In a 
hall, too large by far for a piano soloist, the noticeable flaw was 
lack of strength and security, mainly in octave passages. Play- 
ing without notes was then still something to exclaim about. 
Rafael Pombo of the Cronica, 2l journal published in Spanish, 
tellingly described the Teresita of this time: 

The most admirable in her execution is herself; the correctness of 
her taste; the inexplicable passion with which she plays; the use she 
makes of her physical means, of those tiny hands of a child of nine, 
without great visible effort and without disturbing, at least in ex- 
pression, the look of serious and profound concentration which 
before the piano seems to submerge her in the moral depths of the 
composition; her electrical instinct for effect, the almost infallible 
clairvoyance with which she divines the secret intentions and feel- 
ing of a Mendelssohn, a Chopin, or a Gottschalk. She has an evi- 
dent predilection for the simply touching and for the purely classic 
in form, and we have not heard her play badly, relatively, except 
a certain composition of mediocre value which did not enter into 
her choice. Genius has made her guess that violence is the force of 
weakness, and that there is nothing more poor than the merely 
spectacular music that seeks the strange and astonishing instead of 
the simple and the pure, and which sacrifices the idea to circum- 
locutory evasion of the point. 

Pombo is here moved to quote Lamartine: "Uhomme n'en- 
seigne pas ce qu'inspire le ciel!' And he goes on to describe 
her appearance more discriminatingly than anyone up to this 

Physically Teresa Carreno is entirely beautiful, much more ample 
and robust than is usual in a child of nine, a most curious example 
of parallel development of the physical with the moral and intel- 


lectual, balsamic and eternal spring of the soil where she was born. 
Her head is large, and as an Englishman said, well equilibrated; 
the forehead notably undulated, prominent in the upper part, and 
with the arc of inspiration above the eyebrows; a straight, fine, and 
electrically mobile nose. A mouth of the most vivid scarlet reveals 
energy and at the same time allows a certain sweet and mournful 
expression to play. Her ear peeps out from the mass of ebony of 
her hair, large and gently inclined, just as the physiognomists could 
imagine that of a musician of vocation. The eyes are small in con- 
tour but enclose two large and very tender pupils of jet, reflections 
of moist light, which give the effect of a double brilliant point in 
each pupil. She has a delicate and graceful chin, a full and trans- 
parent looking face with that peachlike glow that seems as if it 
were inwardly lighted, a flexible neck, and admirable hands and 
arms. Away from the piano her expression is frolicsome, but as 
soon as she begins to play, the outline of her eyes seems to fill 
itself with shadows and tears as if the world of art and sadness 
pressed upon them. 

A busy life began for the Carrenos. Visiting cards with the 
picture of the prodigy in the corner had to be printed in haste 
to satisfy those who besieged Teresita at the hotel for auto- 
graphs, or in her absence, just for a sight of the piano on which 
she practiced. Teresita was in her element. For once there were 
no school lessons. She could play as much as she liked, and in 
spite of the twenty concerts that followed each other in and 
near Boston, sometimes at the rate of two a day, she managed 
to add to her repertoire, and to compose a little besides. Her 
imagination was sometimes overstimulated. One night on en- 
tering a theater she was dreadfully frightened by a devil of 
her own invention. For the first time she and her father heard 
Fidelio together. During the intermission a group of friends 
were amused to hear her ask: "And tell me, Papa, those who 
are married in operas, do they stay married?" 

Back in her hotel she read over a Chopin composition she 
had never before heard. In the delight of discovery she spread 
out her arms, drawing herself up to full height, as if to include 
the world. "From here to heaven, Papa," she shouted. 


The second concert with an entire change of program had 
already taken place on January 8. Matilda Phillips again as- 
sisted, and Teresita played a nocturne by Ravinna, followed by 
one by Gottschalk for an encore; then Thalberg's Mdisc, Pru- 
dent's Hernani, and the Chopin "Nocturne in E flat," which 
the papers called "really the gem of the evening." 

It was Teresita's own idea to give a matinee for children. 
George Danskin too had imagination. He saw possibility in 
the interest children always take in their contemporaries. Such 
an event would be sensational, a good appetizer for the next 
big concert. He immediately addressed an open letter to the 
Chairman of the Public Schools. 

Sirs: The kind reception accorded to Teresa Carrefio in this city, 
and the unanimous approbation bestowed upon her performance at 
the Music Hall by the press and the public have been to her a 
source of much gratification. To mark her appreciation of so much 
kindness, and at the same time to demonstrate to children what a 
child may accomplish, I propose to give a matinee at the Music 
Hall on Saturday next, to which Teresa Carrefio would be glad to 
invite the children of the public schools; apart from her love of 
music she is never so happy as when in the society of children. On 
receipt of your reply, should this meet your approbation, the requi- 
site admissions will be provided for distribution as the teachers may 

The mayor of Boston, J. W. Lincoln, Jr., having given his 
sanction, Teresita presented the committee with 1,200 tickets 
for free distribution among the pupils selected from the Latin, 
English High, Girls High, Normal, and German Schools. 

The concert was given two days later. Children sat in the 
balcony and overflowed onto the platform. Parents, friends, 
and spectators filled the orchestra seats. Teresita was the sole 
performer. "Last Hope," Lucia, and "Home Sweet Home" 
were the compositions listed. After each Mr. Lincoln stepped 
forward. "Will all those who wish to hear little Teresita play 
again please raise their hands!" And up went hands, fluttering 
handkerchiefs, and a whole chorus of cheers. Just before the 


last number a mite of seven presented Teresita with a basket of 
flowers as big as herself, and Teresita opened her arms wide 
to thank her with a warm kiss. 

The next morning Mr. Danskin proudly flaunted a letter 
from Mayor Lincoln, which he took care to have published in 
all the papers of the city. 

My dear Sir, I feel that Teresa Carreno and her guardians ought not 
to leave this city without a more permanent testimonial of her re- 
markable powers than I was able to present during a brief personal 

The concert was one of the most delightful musical entertain- 
ments ever given in our city. Music has recently become an im- 
portant branch of education in our public schools, and the example 
that this young pianist set before our children of her proficiency 
in the art, will, no doubt, have an inspiring influence, and excite 
them to greater exertions in their studies. 

The winning simplicity of her manners, her apparent uncon- 
sciousness of her own merits — seeming only anxious to please oth- 
ers — adds a great charm to her musical performances; while the 
skill and artistic taste which she displays in execution, call forth 
the admiration of professional persons as well as every lover of art. 

On the following Tuesday evening Teresita gave another 
solo recital in the more suitable setting of Chickering Hall. 
Although the price had been raised to a whole dollar a ticket, 
the place was crowded. For two hours Teresita played with 
but slight intermission, although there was a footnote on the 
program urging that no encores be demanded. The father had 
not feared fatigue for his daughter as much as the effect of 
an entire piano program on the audience. Teresita herself had 
no qualms. Lost in her music she played a barcarolle by Thal- 
berg, Goria's Trovatore, Mendelssohn's "Rondo Capriccioso," 
and Boston's favorite, the "Nocturne in E flat" of Chopin. To 
these she added / Puritani by Herz, and Doehler's inevitable 
"Nocturne." Of her own accord she appended a waltz of her 
own. Boston "gave way to the most boisterous and fantastic 
demonstration." Immaculate ladies left with bonnets awry and 


gloves split open, forgetting umbrellas and purses. The Boston 
Herald went so far as to say: "This little child has created more 
excitement in musical circles, a more genuine furore than any 
artiste who has been in Boston since the visit of Jenny Lind." 
Other cities called for concerts by the pet of Boston — Provi- 
dence, Cambridge, New Haven, and Salem among them. But 
this did not prevent Teresita from incorporating Beethoven's 
"Sonate Pathetique" in her repertoire, completely assimilating it 
in less than a week. The Providence Daily Post grew romantic 
like the rest over 

the little sylph who comes upon the stage with wings of silk and in 
drapery of white. Her venerable father is a musician, and has been 
her tutor — Prospero and Miranda in the tempest of war and earth- 
quakes among which they have lived! He has brought to us from 
the mighty Orinoco and the shadows of the lofty Andes a spirit 
as fascinating and beautiful as Ariel. If Church has ravished our 
eyes by portraying their stupendous elevations, their boundless 
sweep, their affluence of color and shape and cloud scenery in his 
"The Heart of the Andes," la Carreno has taken captive our senses 
by reflecting the diapason of nature as it bore upon her ears from 
tornado and cataract . . . her notes are echoes of her native land. 
A tourist in a fine extravagance has said : See Naples and then die. 
But while dying he would now pray to hear Teresa Carreno. (Ra- 

Gilmore's Grand Band Concerts in Boston were the attrac- 
tion for the many. Mass effects, stupendous variety, incongru- 
ous mixtures, drew the crowds. This musical P. T. Barnum had 
an unfailing instinct for box-office talent. He at once saw the 
possibilities inherent in the combination of these monster per- 
formances and the most diminutive of pianists. Extremes were 
his province. He succeeded through the lure of financial profit 
too great to be refused in overcoming the scruples of Manuel 
Antonio, and obligated Teresita for three closely fitting con- 
certs. Two of them took place on Sundays, and were adver- 
tised in deference to Boston, the pious, as "sacred." At each 
concert Teresita played only twice, two major works and some 


encores. Mme. Anna Bishop sang, and several solo performers 
belonging to Mr. Gilmore's band took part. Teresita's "Polka- 
Caprice" appeared in these concerts for the first time. Band and 
orchestra combined their volume in potpourris and the "Julien 
Exhibition Quadrille." Teresita tactfully chose the most bibli- 
cal compositions on her slate, Thalberg's "Prayer" and Gott- 
schalk's "Jerusalem." In her encores she allowed herself to 
become more worldly. The Boston audience — these concerts 
were so popular that people had to be turned away — for once 
forgot its aversion to Sabbath applause and gave Teresita one 
of the heartiest of demonstrations, reaching a new height when 
she ended with her own arrangement of the "Star Spangled 

There was one warning voice. Mr. Dwight of Dwight's 
Musical Journal, the most influential one of its day, admitted 
her genius but gave counsel: "May it only have wise training 
and not be early wasted before the public! It is too precious for 
continual exposure. Such gifts are of God, and should not be 
prostituted for mere gain." 

Nobody was prepared for the great climax of Teresita's Bos- 
ton sojourn. One morning Mr. Danskin, purple and breathless, 
confronted Manuel Antonio with what he called the chance of 
a lifetime, the goal of ambition for the greatest virtuosi, the 
supreme of all coveted honors. It was not to be believed! Carl 
Zerrahn, Boston's beloved conductor, had offered Teresita an 
appearance in the Second Philharmonic Concert of the season. 
Manuel Antonio beamed. 

"But he demands that she play Mendelssohn's 'Capriccio 
Brillante' with the orchestra," added Mr. Danskin. 

Manuel Antonio's expression changed. "Impossible! She has 
never seen it, there are only ten days before the concert, and 
we have no copy of the music." 

"At least permit me to get the music," countered Mr. Dan- 
skin. "If she is unable to learn it, she still can play her solos." 
And to this Manuel Antonio agreed. George Danskin dashed 


from place to place, but nobody in Boston appeared to possess 
the composition. In desperation he sent to New York. On the 
afternoon of Wednesday the music came, Friday was the day 
of the first rehearsal, and for Saturday the concert was ir- 
revocably set. The only one who did not have a desperate case 
of nerves in the process was Teresita. Here was something 
fresh, something that fired her imagination. That nobody really 
thought she could do it put her on her mettle. And what fun 
to play with an orchestra of fifty musicians ! She found that the 
martial theme memorized itself, that the passages lay com- 
fortably for her fingers. The melodies she kept singing to her- 
self, when she was not practicing them. Gradually, as they 
worked together, Manuel Antonio's fright gave way to hope, 
and then to confidence. The rehearsals went surprisingly well. 
Teresita at the piano, with or without orchestra, was as sure- 
footed as an eagle on his summit. 

Again only Mr. Dwight voiced criticism. "Wonder chil- 
dren," he complained, "just now carry the day; and it is only 
those concerts in which little Miss Carreno plays that seem to 
pay; and for those there is a new name, to wit 'Musical Enter- 
prise.' ' Then he speaks of the "little magician who coins so 
many notes and dollars," and adds in complete desperation: 
"By the way another prodigy, Master Willie Barnsmore Pape, 
is coming." 

The Boston Transcript went on with its encomiums regard- 
less, backed by Carl Zerrahn himself: "The conductor begs 
leave to congratulate the Boston public upon the opportunity 
of witnessing this trial and triumph of the greatest prodigy 
which the world has known since the days of Mozart," it said. 
The advance notices of the program were headed: "Philhar- 
monic Concerts. Carl Zerrahn has the honor to announce to 
his subscribers and the public that he will give his second 
Grand Philharmonic Concert at the Boston Music Hall Satur- 
day evening, January 24th, 1863, assisted by Senorita Teresa 
Carreno and Mrs. Celia Houston Ford (pupil of Signor Bande- 
lari) who will then make her first appearance in public," 


The historic day was a busy one. For good measure Teresita 
had been allowed to send out cards for a reception to children 
in the Music Hall that very afternoon, the price of admission 
being twenty-five cents. The children of the Perkins Institute 
for the Blind came in a body, bringing her keepsakes of their 
own making. The program was short and not too taxing, Gode- 
froid's "A Night in Spain," the "Last Hope," and the varia- 
tions on "Home Sweet Home," followed by the "Star Spangled 
Banner" as amplified by Teresita. Far from tiring her, the fore- 
taste inspired her for the more important performance on that 

The Music Hall was overcrowded, buzzing with conjecture. 
How could a little girl barely nine years old have the presump- 
tion to match her complete inexperience with the mature artists 
assisting her in a totally unfamiliar sort of ensemble? How 
could she with any understanding play a composition that four 
days before she had neither heard nor seen? Mr. Dwight 
slumped in his accustomed seat on the left side and expected 
the worst. "Musical Enterprise" was the right word for it. 

Nobody paid much attention to the overture. When at last 
it was over, the orchestra had finished tuning, and Carl Zer- 
rahn stood ready, Teresita entered the hall. As she mounted 
the stool before the piano, her friend, she gave Mr. Zerrahn a 
happy smile. With the dash and assurance of one too young to 
admit real difficulties, or to create imaginary ones, she began to 
relive the dramatic story of Mendelssohn's conceiving. She 
listened, blending with the orchestra, holding her own against 
its massive background, playfully letting the piano answer the 
liquid phrases of the flute, the winning melody of the violin 
in meaningful conversation. The orchestra and the pianist 
urged each other on to the final apotheosis. Then it was the 
turn of the audience to break in with uproarious applause, that, 
as for any keyboard veteran, no longer held terror for her. 
First shaking hands with Carl Zerrahn, she stood very still, 
while he spoke to the audience and then to her. She wondered 
what it was he was saying. Then he gave her a long scroll, and 


at last hung about her neck a heavy gold medal on the prettiest 
blue ribbon she had ever seen. For this her father had prepared 
her. He had told her to wait after her playing, to listen to Mr. 
Zerrahn, and should he give her a present, to say "merci." This 
she remembered to do before running off stage so fast that she 
caught and lost her heel on the steps of the green room, falling 
into the arms of her father, happily ready to receive her. 

The strain of suddenly returning from the very stratosphere 
of music to the level of everyday excitement, the congratula- 
tions of overefrusive people, had been wearing after all. They 
would not leave her alone, even while Mrs. Ford was singing. 
Almost before she realized it, it was time for her solos, first a 
fantasia on / due Foscari, and then Lucia. The change from 
child to artist was too sudden. She had been playing for a 
time, when she awoke to the fact that she had lost her way. 
What should come next? There was a moment of hesitation. 
Manuel Antonio could feel the skin of his scalp contracting. 
"She is only a child of nine after all. Give her a present and 
she forgets her music," he thought. But Teresita was going on, 
not, to be sure, with the notes of the composition, but in a vein 
quite in keeping with it, until eventually she found her way 
back to the charted path. Manuel Antonio breathed again. He 
gave a quick glance at the redoubtable Mr. Dwight, who ap- 
peared not to have noticed the lapse. In a later intermission 
a prominent musician sought out Manuel Antonio, to ask 
whether Teresita had used a new edition. He had noticed an 
interesting variation not contained in others and, liking it es- 
pecially, wished to acquire it himself. 

Dwight again let his voice be heard. Although he goes on 
record to say that the child's face beams with intelligence and 
genius, and that those two qualities speak in a certain untaught 
life that there is in her playing, he once more gives advice: 
"The danger is lest her talent by such early exhibition and ex- 
posure should all run to waste in superficial, showy music. . . . 
Such a child needs a wise director, such as young Mozart found 
in his father." He suggests letting music lessons fade into the 


background for a year or two in order to give time for other 
training, physical as well as mental. It disturbs him that Ter- 
esita's arms seem to be unnaturally developed. 

Manuel Antonio must have taken these words to heart. How- 
ever for the moment there was no question of following their 
counsel. Boston was not yet willing to part with the prodigy. 
Her calendar was full. The Principal of the Elliott Grammar 
School invited Teresita to attend a gymnastic exhibition in her 
honor, for which she in turn gave thanks in music. She visited 
the Perkins Institute for the Blind. Invitations of a purely social 
kind poured in in unacceptable number. New cartes de visite 
had to be ordered, because for her farewell concert she wanted 
one for every lady in the audience. Teresita was not permitted to 
neglect her practice. Besides learning the "Sonate Pathetique" 
to please Boston, she meant to play some compositions in lighter 
vein by George Danskin in public as a surprise for him. 

To Teresita the blue ribbon had meant more than the scroll 
signed by every member of the orchestra, which made her an 
honorary member of the Philharmonic Society. It pleased her 
more than the medal itself. Three inches in diameter this was 
engraved on the reverse side with a wreath enclosing a likeness 
of Teresita seated at the piano. The front bore the inscription: 
"Presented to Teresita Carreno, the child pianist, by the Phil- 
harmonic Society of Boston as a tribute of homage to her 
genius. January 24th, 1863." 

Mr. Danskin at once acknowledged the tribute in a letter, 
also widely circulated by the Boston press. From Tremont 
House he wrote: 

My dear Sir: In the name of Teresa Carreno, I have to thank 
you and your associates for the magnificent testimonial presented 
her this evening. It is the first public tribute she has received, and 
whatever may be her future artistic success, she will always with 
pride and gratitude remember the Philharmonic Concert at Boston 
Music Hall on Saturday evening, January twenty-fourth, 1863. 

Inclosed you will be pleased to receive a note of thanks from 


the little girl. It is spontaneous on her part, the language in the 
simplicity of childhood; accept it in all its purity, it comes from the 

Teresita's letter was given in translation from the Spanish 
original : 

Carl Zerrahn, esquire: You will pardon me if I cannot rightly 
express myself by word. When you gave me that pretty medal on 
Saturday night I did not know what it meant, thinking only it 
was a mere present to me; but when Mr. Danskin, the manager of 
my concerts, told me shortly after that the kind gentlemen who 
played with me presented it "as a tribute to my genius" I did know 
that you all feel kindly towards me and love me; that is all I hope 
for, for I do like to be loved and to be thought well of, and I shall 
always do my best to please, for my dear Papa and Mamma have 
always taught me to be good. With high consideration I am, Sir, 
your obedient servant, Teresa Carreno. 

Everything Teresita did was of public interest, every detail 
of her life in Caracas. In imitation of her urbane father she had 
herself one day at the age of seven set up some maxims of her 
own. By chance they came to the attention of Mr. Danskin. He 
saw in them at once another angle of appeal. The next day they 
were published, reading: 

1. Learn that you may teach. 

2. Be not haughty, that you may be loved by others. 

3. Take pity on the wicked, and endeavor not to be such. 

4. Those children cannot be good, who do not respect their 
parents, and they are, moreover, considered as ill-bred. Chil- 
dren ought always to bear this in mind. 

5. God says that he does not love those who are stubborn or 
speak falsehood. Children should therefore be good, and live 
in God, who is our Divine Providence. 

6. Children should always be good and docile, and never allow 
themselves to be told things more than once. How much, 
then, they will be liked! 

7. Avoid envy. 

8. Children should always imitate a good example. 


9. God ordains that we should protect old age when in want. 

10. Never get angry, although you may have cause to be so. 

11. The fear of the Lord ought to be the rule of our life. 

From between the lines there emerges a little girl acknowl- 
edging the faults for which she had often been corrected, a lit- 
tle girl who would do anything for the sake of being loved by 
others, a little girl who dimly felt that hers was the respon- 
sibility of caring not only for her dolls but for her family. 

It was time to take reluctant leave of Boston, and a veritable 
paradise it had been to Manuel Antonio. Here were human be- 
ings of his own kind, cultivated, tactful, and with proper re- 
serve in their politeness ! In New York he had disliked himself 
for this new state of mind, always on the defensive, this shell in 
which he could feel himself petrifying. At the earliest opportu- 
nity they must return to Boston, he decided. Perhaps later, since 
its tempo was congenial to them, they might even make a 
home there. Not the least of its charms was that Boston enabled 
them to return to Clorinda with the twin offerings of an artis- 
tic triumph beyond hopes and a heavy purse. 

"One more concert," urged the impresario. It was set for 
January 27. To make a real climax of it, there had to be a 
special attraction. According to Teresita's wish, George Dan- 
skin promptly advertised that the cartes de visite were in process 
of printing, one for each lady in the audience as a gift, "and 
they will with such a subject produce gems of photographic 
art." He announced further that Teresita's selections were to be 
the choicest of her repertoire, and that not only would the 
"Sonate Pathetique" be among them, but also the "Capriccio 
Brillante" repeated with quintette accompaniment. It was Ter- 
esita's own idea to play a polka-mazurka, called "Rachel 
Adoree," in special tribute to its composer, Mr. Danskin, and 
her final encore was a waltz dedicated to the ladies of Boston 
by Teresita herself. Fittingly she called it "L'Addio." All 
agreed that the "Sonate" had been the high point of the eve- 

A farewell it was not yet to be. The gentlemen did not wish 


to be outdone by the ladies. A group of them asked to arrange 
a final testimonial concert by Teresita and for Teresita alone 
in Chickering Hall on the following evening. All the tickets 
were quickly sold at $1 each, the purse presented to Manuel 
Antonio containing $260. Again the "Capriccio Brillante," suit- 
ably accompanied by the Mendelssohn Quintette Club, ap- 
peared on the program, and this time a waltz by George Dan- 
skin. After the last encore a lady well known in musical circles 
hung another medal of gold around Teresita's neck. It was en- 
graved with a harp, a drum, and other musical instruments, 
and with a dedication from the musical amateurs of Boston. 
The uncle responded for Teresita in a few graceful words of 

Boston had adopted the Carrenos. They were people more at 
home in a drawing room than in a box office, a gratifying con- 
trast to ill-mannered prodigies, accompanied by vulgar parents 
with acquisitive eyes. Teresita's concerts, for a time the daily 
topic of conversation in Boston society, faded into memory 
more gradually than the smoke of the train that carried three 
happy people back to New York. Had Boston been given to 
more spontaneous expression, it might have echoed as a part- 
ing blessing the words of Felipe Larrazabal: "May Heaven 
grant that the sublime artist of Caracas shall always sing of 
pain not felt, torments and grief not suffered; and that like 
the bird that swings contentedly on the branch of the acacia, 
she may dissipate in magnificent chords the tempests of the 
heart that agitate and harm our miserable existence." And 
many there were who did not cease to wonder that one of those 
who brought comfort and forgetfulness in this time of conflict 
between brothers should be a little girl of nine from a country 
which stood for nothing if not for perpetual fratricidal war. 

Manuel Antonio would have been glad to follow Mr. Dwight's 
advice then and there. He had learned a great deal in Boston 
and was too wise not to realize that public taste was changing, 
that even now a program called for something more solid than 


empty arrangements of operatic airs. Before all Teresita needed 
a larger repertoire, assimilated in peaceful concentration. Again 
circumstances forced him to decide otherwise. One of his many 
Venezuelan friends in Cuba urged that Teresita be brought to 
Havana. He insisted upon immediate departure, lest the begin- 
ning of the heat wave make concerts unproductive. Gottschalk 
promised to throw the weight of his recommendation in the 
balance with letters to influential people. The managers made 
stupendous concessions, and altogether the knock of opportu- 
nity became too insistent to be disregarded. Secretly, also, Man- 
uel Antonio longed to be once again his own interpreter, to 
speak his own language in a country that already knew him as 
the author of the Urbanidad. He decided to risk the journey. 
Gottschalk himself announced his protegee to the journals of 
Havana : 

Teresa Carreno does not belong to the kind of little prodigy that 
we have been judging for the last twenty-five years; Teresa is a 
genius, let us say it at once; she is only nine years old; she is a 
veritable child full of that indolent yet happy grace of her age. One 
need not have any fear for her; she never inspires a feeling of pity. 
On hearing her one sees, one feels at once that Teresa plays the 
piano as the bird sings, as the flower opens its petals. She is born 
to music, she has the instinct of the beautiful — she divines it! Her 
compositions reveal a sensitivity, a grace and an artistry like those 
that seem to be the exclusive privilege of work and maturity of age. 
I have only given her six or eight lessons, and nevertheless they 
were enough to conquer obstacles that for others would have been 
insuperable barriers. She belongs to the class of those privileged 
by Providence, and I have not the slightest doubt that she will be 
one of the greatest artists of our age. L. M. Gottschalk. 

To his close friend, Espadero, he could write more fully and 

She is a genius — I have only been able to give her Rvc or six lessons, 
and although she never had a teacher who knew anything (this is 
between ourselves) she already achieves a thousand miracles. — I 
wish you to do all you can to help her. She is a lovable, enchanting 


little girl. She understands everything good. Her father is an ac- 
complished gentleman, distinguished, honored, and of good family. 
The child has tiny hands and nevertheless (you must take into ac- 
count that she never heard anything in Caracas) does outstanding 
things; she has good musical ideas, and composes well by instinct. 
I would like to have you sing her praises in the newspapers. Look 
out for her. 

Shortly before her departure from New York Teresita played 
once more at a private soiree in her own home. As always in 
the company of intimate friends she was happy and mischie- 
vously inclined. After she had played the "Prayer" from Mo'ise, 
she swung around upon her stool and said: "Now I will compose 
an opera for you." A journalist reported it thus: 

A young girl stood in her window, and the count who was in love 
with her passed by and began to ask her to marry him; the young 
girl did not care for him, and retired from the window, the count 
to the corner. Just then a king passed, and he also asked the young 
girl to marry him; but the young girl would not admit him either. 
So the two lovers, meeting each other, began to fight, and the count 
was killed. The second act she played and explained at the same 
time. The king and the young girl were alone in the living-room; 
the king made love to the young girl. She rejected the crown, be- 
cause she cared for one, who, in the form of a little mouse, by the 
power of a witch, had been able to introduce himself into the palace. 
With the avowal that she loved another, she cried that her re- 
sistance would be unconquerable. But a king does not resign him- 
self to be disdained, and he began to struggle with the young girl, 
a struggle in which passion and jealousy were let loose, and he 
threatened to use his power to obtain the love of the young girl; 
but just then the lover discarded his humble disguise, and avenged 
with the death of the king the insults to which his loved one was 
subjected. The principal thought came opportunely as in the works 
of the great masters, and at the end predominated in the final duo, 
sung while the marriage was being celebrated, and while we heard 
the bells toll for the burial of the king. The auditors looked at one 
another without saying a word, while Teresita called for a dish of 
ice-cream in reward for her accomplishment. 

With only few weeks at home for preparation, "Prospero and 
Miranda" set sail for their third adventure accompanied by 
Clorinda. Just as she was leaving, Teresita had the satisfaction 
of seeing her "Gottschalk Waltz" in print with her portrait in 
a favorite pose engraved upon the cover. Her chin rests on her 
hand, her elbow on the keyboard of the Chickering. She is 
wearing her medals in a row pinned to her concert dress. Three 
large editions were exhausted within a year. 

Arrived in Havana late in March, the Carrehos put up at the 
Hotel Inglaterra. It was found inadvisable to arrange a concert 
during Holy Week, so giving Teresita a welcome interim for 
rehearsal and practice. 

As in New York, it was thought well to have critics and 
musicians hear Teresita before her first formal concert. The 
hotel was the right place for such an event. On the chosen day 
two large connecting rooms were thrown open to the elite of 
musical Havana. When Teresita appeared, unconcerned as if 
she were alone with her family, it was not of music that she 
spoke but of her beautiful New York doll. At her mother's 
suggestion she produced it, leaving it for her to hold, while 
she played and improvised upon the piano. One of those pres- 
ent at this hearing was a prominent lady of Havana whom 
mourning prevented from attending a more public affair. It 
touched her so deeply to see little Teresita run from her piano 
directly back to her great baby doll that on the next Sunday 
there arrived a large mahogany cradle, perfect as if for a real 
child, furnished with every necessary thing: sheets of batiste, a 
little mattress and down pillows, a coverlet of muslin em- 
broidered in French roses, pillow cases trimmed with white 
lace and tied with pink satin ribbon, and finally curtains of 
finest cambric gathered together with three bows of pink satin. 
Teresita was in ecstasy. For this she would have given all her 
medals without a thought. 

This musical introduction, together with the pressing letters 
of friends, created an atmosphere of adulation. The Cubans 


could be as extreme in their worship as in their hatred. A group 
of journalists outdid themselves in eulogies and exaggerations. 
Chopin and Mozart were overshadowed by Teresita Carreno; 
her little hands were said to be a conductor between the piano 
and Heaven; she was called "a miracle of instinct possessing 
the gift of divine prophecy." To one enthusiast it seemed that 

when the prodigious Venezuelan child plays it is not the piano nor 
any other instrument that we hear; it is a supernatural voice, a 
voice that does not articulate, yet that holds all shades of articulation, 
the voice of intelligence that sings without the organism, the voice 
of the heart that weeps without the aid of the eye. Teresita Car- 
reno is the great mathematician of harmony. She is also the chemist, 
the metaphysician, the poet, and the orator of harmony, the univer- 
sal queen of sound. 

Within a group of the more independent critics Espadero 
was the most levelheaded. He had at once called upon the Car- 
renos in order to judge for himself of Teresita's talent. Al- 
though he frankly admitted and admired her natural musical 
organization and her mechanical gifts, when Mozart and 
Chopin and other great musicians were belittled in comparison, 
that was too much. He felt it his duty to counterbalance the 
blind encomiums of the romantic Cubans. Like Mr. Dwight he 
wished to warn Teresita's parents that, before she could hope 
to measure herself with Camilla Pleyel or with Clara Schu- 
mann, she must have more serious education. 

His remarks were met with derision, and even attributed to 
personal jealousy by Manuel Antonio, who was heard to re- 
mark to a friend that, when Espadero was about, he never 
dared to stir from Teresita's side for fear that she might be 
poisoned. But these were after all only minor flurries, and the 
day came for which everyone was waiting breathlessly, the 
Havana debut of Teresita Carreno on April 8, 1863 in the hall of 
the Liceo, where Gottschalk, Ole Bull, and Jenny Lind had pre- 
ceded her. 

Cubans liked music, not for its deeper meaning as much as 
for its value as entertainment. Programs were hastily made up, 


adding ensembles of local talent to the offerings of the im- 
ported one. Teresita's was no exception. It opened with the 
"Theme and Variations" for flute and piano composed by the 
father of a Havana pianist. Then Teresita appeared. She 
presented herself with "enchanting gaucherie." So brilliantly 
gowned were the ladies, that the men were hardly noticed. One 
critic describes her as a "plump, funny child," and speaks of 

her caressing glances, delicious arms roundly developed, and ending 
in model hands, chubby, perfectly shaped, the fingers neither short 
nor long, and of exquisite delicacy. . . . She wore white pantalettes 
trimmed with lace, a dress of knee length made of white gauze 
sprinkled with gold and scarlet dots that were almost unnoticeable. 
Around her waist she wore a very narrow ribbon of scarlet gros- 
grain fastened below the shoulder, and falling in long streamers 
over the skirt. The decollete was somewhat pronounced, the sleeves 
very short, the arms bare. Around her neck she wore an extremely 
simple and fine gold chain, and over her breast on the left side 
hung two medals, a large one and another smaller one of gold in 
the shape of a star. Her short hair was trimmed to look almost like 
that of a boy. A little higher than the forehead she wore a band of 
narrow scarlet velvet ribbon very tastefully arranged, which en- 
hanced even more the childlike beauty of the enchanting little girl. 
As an artist she resembles no one but herself. She touches the keys 
in a special manner with all the grace of a child, with all the sen- 
sitiveness of a woman, and at the same time with all the aplomb, all 
the energy and all the assurance of great professors. 

Her contributions were the Doehler "Nocturne," the "Capric- 
cio" of Mendelssohn accompanied by five musicians, and Gott- 
schalk's "Last Hope." To this she added her "Saludo a Cuba" 
and the fantasia on // Trovatore. Smothered under baskets and 
wreaths of flowers, with one of which she was crowned, this 
"colossal miniature of the garden of music" ended her first 
Havana triumph. Unanimously, even to Espadero himself, 
Havana agreed that "Teresita is the incredible become mani- 


The second concert warranted a larger hall. It took place in 
the Teatro Tacon, not quite filled, yet nevertheless holding an 
audience that was a compliment to the prodigy. After the over- 
ture to Semiramis , played by the Band of the Royal Engineers, 
Teresita entered on the arm of her father. She was immediately 
presented with a huge bouquet of pinks of all shades surround- 
ing a lovely doll, dressed and decorated in the most perfect 
taste, and holding with both hands a golden ring enameled on 
the outside in blue with the name of Teresita Carreno. From 
the bouquet hung two streamers of red satin ribbon, one em- 
broidered with her name and the other with that of the donor. 
In this larger place the Chickering lost much of its volume, but 
it pleased the audience that she played an impromptu of her 
own, dedicated to Espadero. After she had played her favorite 
nocturne of Chopin particularly well, a boy of her own age 
presented her with a wreath and bouquets of flowers. Half a 
century later it was this same little boy, become a famous 
oculist, who ministered to her again in Havana at the time of 
her final concert upon earth. With this little boy's father, Senor 
Desvernine, she played a fantasia by Pixis for four hands, then 
a "Jota de los Toreros" with her own father. After Prudent's 
Lucia, two assisting artists placed a wreath around Teresita's 
neck, and to honor her yet more the band finished with an ar- 
rangement of "Saludo a Cuba." 

Before she was permitted to leave, the Liceo de la Habana, 
the most representative musical and literary organization of the 
island, stepped in to demand her appearance on April 25, 1863. 
Teresita reserved her most serious works for this occasion, the 
"Ballade in A flat" of Chopin and the "Sonate Pathetique." 
From the beginning the occasion was conducted with great 
ceremony. Don Pablo Miarteni, president of the Musical Sec- 
tion of the Liceo, was in charge. At his side on the platform sat 
Cristobal Mendoza the poet, who read a long poem in Teresita's 
honor after the "Sonate." Then a wreath of roses with two 
streamers hanging from it was placed upon Teresita's head. 


There was further praise in prose and verse, and in final cul- 
mination the vice-president of the Division of Literature read 
and presented her with a scroll which read: 

The Department of Music of the Liceo of Havana bestows its 
membership upon Teresita Carreno, believing that there was not 
manifested sufficient proof of the enthusiasm she has inspired by 
her natural talents, and her extraordinary merit. Interpreting the 
wish of the Liceo, and of its numerous members, it extends this 
certificate, signed by the Board of Directors of the Society, in which 
is shown the favorable reception that this child artist has had on the 
different occasions when she has performed upon the piano. Her 
great youth, her undeniable genius, her spontaneous dexterity have 
been generally recognized and appreciated. Teresita Carreno by 
taking part in the exercises of the Liceo, April 25, has marked 
with the stamp of her Spanish-American genius the history of the 
artistic labors of this body, which prides itself that her name now 
appears in order among those of other members, and which, in 
honor of her genius, now takes this opportunity to place its certifi- 
cate in her hands in the presence of this audience. Subscribed by 
the President, Director, and Secretary of the Division of Music of 
the Liceo of Havana, April 25, 1863. 

A luncheon followed these exercises. On the way home Ter- 
esita, who had found it impossible to understand, or to attend 
to everything that was said, asked her father what it meant. He 
explained at length the significance of being made an honorary 
member in so exclusive a group. Teresita was not impressed. "I 
should have liked better to be named Secretary," she declared. 

Immediately after this event the Carrenos left for Matanzas. 
Time pressed. Rain, for a moment cooling the atmosphere, 
moistened the earth only to rise again as a steaming vapor. In 
Matanzas Teresita found time for play with little girls of her 
own age, while preparing, this time with orchestral back- 
ground, for her concert in the hall of the artistic and literary 
Liceo of this city. The Doehler "Nocturne" opened the pro- 
gram. Then came a Gottschalk dance, "Di que Si," in four- 
hand form, probably with her father. As a tribute, the orches- 


tra played a pretty little schottisch composed by Dona Pilar 
Ortiz and called "La Bienvenida a Teresita Carreno." When the 
concert proper was over, the entire Board of Directors of the 
Liceo de Matanzas, followed by Teresita on the arm of her 
father, gathered upon the platform, and as a tribute to real 
genius, two very delightful young ladies placed a wreath of 
gold upon her brow, a procedure to which Teresita was by this 
time well accustomed. 

So the most outwardly rewarding of the three adventures 
ended on a note of triumph. In New York it was Teresita, the 
novelty; in Boston, Teresita, the musician; in Cuba, Teresita, 
wonder child of a sister nation, who drew the crowds. The 
concert season was everywhere at a close, and at last the Car- 
renos could afford the luxury of returning to privacy at home. 
There was time to give thought to a much neglected little 
brother. Teresita had a maternal feeling about him, almost as 
if he were another doll of her responsibility. Meanwhile the 
family of Juan de la Cruz and Grandmother Gertrudis, the 
brave, were suffering from homesickness. A longer stay in 
New York could mean only futile expense and another prob- 
lem for Manuel Antonio and Clorinda. One summer day they 
sailed back to Venezuela, Gertrudis to spend the last years of 
her life with her favorite daughter, Maria Teresa, living sim- 
ply but happily in the surroundings to which she now was sure 
she belonged. 

A Venezuelan to this day prefers to visit France rather than 
the United States. His children are sent there to be educated, he 
learns at least something of its language, and his wife imports 
her clothes from Paris. Common racial background makes each 
feel at home in the land of the other. Purely personal reasons 
kept Manuel Antonio from choosing this more usual course. 
The first year in North America had shown him that momen- 
tary success was not difficult of achievement there. Permanent 
success, however, could not be counted upon without the seal 
of European commendation. His original plan to develop 
rather than exploit Teresita's genius and to take her to Paris 
for that purpose, thanks to the income from the Boston and 
Havana tours, could now be carried out. 

This time his own condition of health interfered. Manuel 
Antonio took life seriously. The conflicting problems of father- 
hood, business, and art, in combination with the unfriendly 
climate of New York, had been to such a degree taxing that a 
complete rest of some months was the physician's ultimatum. 
So the life of the household on Second Avenue settled down to 
a routine like that of any average family. Teresita learned Eng- 
lish quickly, but attended none too eagerly to her other lessons. 
She had tasted the power that being the breadwinner gave her, 
and after months of knowing herself the first person to be con- 
sidered, she naturally found it hard to subordinate herself again 
as the obedient daughter. She knew that she had genius. Her 
father had wisely taught her that it was a quality to be re- 
spected, until it seemed to her something detached from herself, 
something to be dutifully venerated, almost like Mary, the 
Virgin. Occasionally it even became a nuisance. She found it 
irritating when other little girls treated her with diffidence and 
awe, not as they did each other. For her it was no harder to 
divorce the child from the artist than it had been for the lover 
in her opera to change from mouse to man, and no witch was 
needed to show her how. 


In the fall of 1863 — Teresita had continued to play here and 
there as occasion presented itself — there came a breath-taking 
invitation. President Lincoln wished to hear Teresita in the 
White House. Manuel Antonio forgot his ill health, Clorinda's 
needle shuttled in and out more busily than ever. So significant 
an honor warranted a new dress. 

Although the letter from the White House stressed that Ter- 
esita would play quite informally for the family alone, it was 
of importance that every detail be perfect, especially the pro- 
gram, which Manuel Antonio planned and replanned until it 
suited him completely. He did not concur in Teresita's abject 
devotion to Gottschalk and his music. Secretly glad not to have 
his daughter exposed too often to the influence of this artist, 
his own taste leaned more and more strongly in the direction 
of the classics. Whatever suggestions he gave Teresita at this 
time rebounded from a mind negatively set. She refused to com- 
mit herself in advance to any particular compositions. Neither 
would she be moved to take the occasion seriously enough to 
practice for it. The more she felt her father's anxiety, the more 
nonchalant she appeared. On the way to the White House, 
even, she assumed complete indifference to his advice on proper 
deportment and procedure. He urged her to begin with a Bach 
"Invention," to which Teresita said nothing, having already 
made up her mind that nobody should dictate to her. 

The formality of presentation went off without incident. The 
Lincolns were friendly and natural. Time came for the music. 
Teresita tried the piano stool ; it squeaked and was unsteady. She 
ran her hands over the keys ; the action was hard, and she frankly 
registered complaint. At a look from her parent she decided to 
begin. Bach, indeed ! Striking a few introductory chords with a 
disagreeable clang that made her father jump, she plunged of all 
things into Gottschalk's "Marche de Nuit," then not giving her 
father even a second's chance to object, she modulated into the 
"Last Hope" and not inappropriately ended with his "Dying 
Poet." The President and his family found nothing amiss with 
her choice. Then abruptly she jumped from the stool, declar- 


ing that she would play no more on a piano so dreadfully out 
of tune. Her father but for his Urbanidad would have had a 
nervous breakdown on the spot. It was Mr. Lincoln who saved 
the situation. Very quietly and with his irresistible kindness 
he asked, "Teresita, do you know my favorite song, 'Listen to 
the Mocking Bird' ?" Teresita nodded. "Would you play it for 
me? It would give me great pleasure." She condescended to 
announce the tune, and with that for a portal, suddenly in- 
spired, she made her way through an endlessly winding path 
of improvised variations, stopping at last only from sheer ex- 
haustion. Her father wiped his forehead. "What a fiasco!" He 
did not see that there were tears in Mr. Lincoln's eyes. Mrs. 
Lincoln too had swayed sympathetically to the familiar rhythm. 
Only Tad, the Harvard Senior, looking out of the window, was 
obviously bored. Manuel Antonio, impatient that the audience 
be terminated, at last bowed himself out of hearing with pro- 
fuse apologies. 

On her tenth birthday Teresita again found herself playing 
upon the familiar stage of the Music Hall in Boston. This time 
there was a rival attraction in the city, the "Sanitary Fair." In 
spite of it she was not forgotten. The announcement of her 
concert read: "Teresita Carreno's first Grand Concert, Tuesday 
evening, December 22nd, 1863, on which occasion she will be 
assisted by the eminent organist B. J. Lang, who will display 
the powers of the great organ." It was a new one, and a part of 
the returns from the concert was to be used to help pay for it. 
An organ "Prelude and Fugue" by Bach opened the perform- 
ance. Teresita played the "Marche de Nuit" of miserable 
memory, and, after an organ version of the "Overture to Eg- 
mont," the paraphrase by Liszt of Verdi's Rigoletto. Another 
recent acquisition was played by Teresita, a grand caprice on 
"La Sonnambula" in transcription by Thalberg. After this she 
added several things of her own, a set of variations on Gott- 
schalk dances among them. Mr. Dwight again registered a com- 


The two things do not match in any way; the organ sounds pur- 
poseless, the piano feeble. [But he was compelled to concede:] She 
has gained much power, certainty in executing difficulties, intelligent 
conception, while her touch has a fine, vital, sympathetic quality. 
The most fresh and individual were the little compositions of her own 
which really show music to be the world she is most at home in. 

[Other critics were more voluble:] Her figure has gained in full- 
ness and strength, and there is no suggestion of overwork in her 
hearty laugh and hundred caprices. If her playing was before re- 
markable for a child, it would now be remarkable for a woman. 
She has acquired new command over the mechanism, and where 
there were formerly blurs and inconsistencies of reading, all is now 
clear and coherent. . . . The early maturity of her tropic blood 
manifests itself. 

Teresita's birthday present from her father was a large book 
bound in bright red Morocco leather, hand-tooled, and in- 
scribed in letters of gold, "Al Genio." The blank leaves were 
multicolored. In it Teresita's concerts from the beginning were 
to be recorded through criticisms and other clippings. It was 
carefully kept in Manuel Antonio's fine, neat handwriting un- 
til her years as a prodigy were over. 

A private soiree had taken place before the concert in the 
Music Hall. After a Spanish dance of her own she had added 
a polka completed that morning. In it the reviewer finds her 
"as classical as the most classic." The Grand Concert was to be 
immediately followed by another in which every seat in the 
hall was to sell for fifty cents. A felon on one of her fingers in- 
terfered with the plan and threatened to incapacitate her for 
some time, putting an abrupt end to this Boston visit. 

For three months Teresita had vanished completely from the 
professional horizon to appear again in the spring of 1864 at a 
private gathering of about a hundred people at the Carreno 
residence. A distinguished audience, including Major General 
Dix, was assembled to hear her. Teresita played a Beethoven 
sonata and Thalberg's "Les Huguenots." Following immedi- 
ately upon this soiree a New York concert in Dodworth Hall 


on Broadway at Eleventh Street was so successful that it had to 
be repeated on April 18. Now it was Philadelphia's turn. As- 
sisted by a company of brilliant vocalists, Teresita played on 
April 21 and 22 with Mason's "Silver Springs" as a now-popular 
newcomer on her repertoire. 

In Baltimore Teresita remained for more than a week. The 
experiment of engaging the monumental Assembly Hall and 
of selling tickets at fifty cents each did not at first hearing pro- 
duce the large audience expected, but Teresita appeared in her 
very prettiest dress and in her best form. As a new departure 
the program embodied an improvisation on modern airs. Ter- 
esita had suggested it herself and felt so much at home that she 
could be heard above the piano, singing along with it in her 
clear and shrill soprano. Wreaths and a first gold watch were 
her material souvenirs. Day after day she appeared in smaller 
public events, or in private entertainments, at last, most ex- 
clusive of all, within the silence of convent walls. 

The strain of late hours, irregular meals, and social duties 
was beginning to tell on both father and daughter. The tempo 
of living had again been forced beyond natural limits, and signs 
of its unwholesome effect were noticeable in Teresita. She was 
disobedient, demanding, and generally difficult, nervous, much 
thinner, and growing too fast. It was time to call a halt. Manuel 
Antonio's own health needed the repairing influence of home 
and time, little Manuel the authority and discipline of a father, 
and both children, having advanced beyond Clorinda's powers 
of instruction, systematic schooling. Money was no longer the 
chief worry. Manuel Antonio now knew enough English to 
give music lessons even to monolingual Americans. So for 
more than a year, Teresita flourished in the impenetrable silence 
so tantalizing to the biographer. Meanwhile in Manuel An- 
tonio the great objective of every Venezuelan, to see Paris, had 
time to crystallize. 

Teresita was in her twelfth year, but appeared older, giving 
promise of great beauty. She had lost the chubby appeal of 


childhood and its unself-conscious, demonstrative charm. Slen- 
der, with a nobility of carriage that made her look taller than 
her size, her curls tied back simply with a wide ribbon, she was 
the type of aristocratic Spanish girlhood. Liberal schooling in 
poverty and profession gave her the appearance of a person 
ready for emergency, with a will to conquer. 

On March 31, 1866, the four Carrenos braved the ocean, this 
time on the steamer City of Washington. Scarcely out of har- 
bor the ship hit a sandbank, shivering with the force of im- 
pact. Only a few hours of delay and she was afloat again. No- 
body was particularly apprehensive. Two days later a sudden 
report! The boiler had cracked. Caution should have dictated 
a return to the nearer port, but the captain preferred to trust 
to his invisible star. So on they went under sail. Passengers grew 
restless; the sky clouded; stormy weather blew up; high waves 
washed wildly over tipping decks. On the seventh day the rud- 
der, weakened by the collision, broke off and was swept away. 
The City of Washington tossed about from wave to wave, 
drifting farther and farther out of the usual sea lane. Rescue 
appeared more and more improbable, then hopeless; food was 
becoming scarce. Among the passengers there was stark terror. 
The women, those who were not too ill to care, prayed and 
whimpered. The men, expecting to be drowned in each suc- 
cessive assault of the storm, preferred not to meet death in their 
senses, and drowned themselves prematurely in drink. The only 
stabilizing element in this chaos seems to have been a little 
girl. Quite calmly she tried to reassure her despairing mother. 

"Don't cry, Mamacita, we shall arrive safely, I am sure." 

Clorinda was silenced and amazed by her confidence. 

"But how do you know, my child?" she asked. 

Teresita replied unshaken, "I don't know it; I feel it." 

This was an early instance of those rare flashes of intuition, 
almost clairvoyance, that accompanied Teresita throughout her 
life. Had she always followed their dictates later on, she would 
have made fewer mistakes. 

Days later, true to Teresita's prophecy, there appeared upon 


the horizon the hulk of a large steamer, the Propontis. It was 
actually answering the distress signal of the City of Washington 
and approaching to her rescue. The passengers were transferred 
at infinite risk by being swung out over the angry ocean on pul- 
leys in a barrel, one by one, and then lowered into the dancing 
lifeboats that served as go-between. Intermittent lightning and 
thunder added a lurid element of melodrama to the scene. A 
day and a half of heroic effort, and the 250 passengers were all 
safely carried over, taking with them only the clothes they 
wore. The City of Washington was left to dance until called for 
and was towed in weeks later. Quite in keeping with this hap- 
less voyage, the Propontis, too, developed engine trouble and 
proceeded under sail. It was in no way equipped to supply a 
double set of passengers with food. Careful rationing had al- 
most reached the bread-and-water level when Liverpool was 

The concert season in Paris was ending. The Carreno pocket- 
book desperately needed replenishing. A few recitals would be 
helpful. Manuel Antonio had counted upon them. Without a 
thought of rest the voyagers took the first opportunity to cross 
the Channel, arriving in France on May 3, 1866. After a month 
on the ocean, modest hotel rooms in Paris seemed Walhalla 
itself, and before the pavements felt quite solid under her feet 
Teresita was making new friends. Her French, with its amus- 
ing mixture of Yankee and Spanish-American tang, was pass- 
able, although on her tongue the gently curving line of French 
speech changed into brittle ups and downs, like the waves from 
which she had so recently escaped. 

Teresita's first conquest was Mme. £rard, at whose house she 
met many musicians of quality. The story of the shipwreck was 
a potent introduction in itself, and when Teresita was quite 
able to arouse enthusiasm by her playing without making ex- 
cuses for a pianoless month, Mme. firard at once resolved to do 
all she could for the child. First of all a piano was sent to Ter- 
esita's hotel that she might practice. Next she arranged for a 
hearing before two competent pianists, M. Delcourt and M. 
Kriiger, on May 5, just two days after Teresita's arrival. The 
success of this preliminary audition was such that Mme. Erard 
was moved to plan more important ones. On May 7 she pre- 
sented her protegee to M. Quidant, well known as a composer, 
and to M. Vivier, the popular virtuoso of the horn. M. Quidant 
was stirred by Teresita's sympathetic interpretation of Chopin, 
but it was the "Marche Solennelle" of Gottschalk that won over 
M. Vivier. By happy coincidence this favorite of Paris society 
was about to stage his annual concert in the Salle firard. It had 
not been his intention to number a piano soloist among the per- 
formers assisting him. After hearing the new prodigy he 
quickly changed his mind. A debut under more favorable aus- 
pices could hardly be imagined. Besides offering promise of a 
fee to help bolster up family finances, Vivier's concerts were 
always well attended and by the right people. 


Delighted with the playing of her first hand, and always 
mindful of the closing of the concert season, Mme. Erard 
promptly dealt another. It proved to be an even more lucky 
one for Teresita. On the evening of May 10 father and daughter 
were received by the aged Rossini himself in his ornate apart- 
ment, 2 rue de la Chaussee d'Antin. A spark of instant liking 
flared between the little foreigner and the maestro. To Teresita 
celebrities were just people like any others. Differences in years, 
she had also learned, were not necessarily a barrier to friend- 
ship and understanding. She for one was never more happy 
than in the company of those of another generation. At once com- 
pletely at home in a setting pervaded by Rossini's geniality, 
Teresita took her seat at the piano, while Rossini as was his 
custom prepared to listen from an adjoining room. In compli- 
ment to her host, the composer, she chose the "Prayer" from 
Mo'ise. As the last note faded, Rossini crossed the room, ap- 
plauding and shouting "Bravo, my child! You are a great 
artist!" Turning to Manuel Antonio who might well feel 
honored in his own right as a teacher, he analyzed his impres- 
sions more precisely: "I do not understand how this little girl 
plays as she does. The evenness and clearness of her arpeggios 
are as astonishing as the clarity with which she brings out the 
melody of the prayer." Spontaneously moved to be of practical 
use, he urged that Teresita be presented in London, volunteer- 
ing to pave the way. Then at his request Teresita played the 
"Ballade" of her composing. Rossini applauded enraptured, in- 
sisting that she find a place for it on her first program. But this 
Teresita was too modest to do. Although visitors were expected 
to depart before ten o'clock, Rossini would not let his new 
friends leave before he had heard Clorinda's favorite, the "Fan- 
taisie" on airs from Norma. In one evening the great artist had 
become the staunch ally of the prodigy. Through his influence 
many an obstacle was removed, many a door opened. As if he 
were her personal agent, he commandeered one after another 
of his acquaintances to the service of his "little colleague," as he 
liked to call her. " Allez au concert de Vivier. Vous y entendrez 






Teresita in Paris and London 


une veritable merveille." With such a formidable protagonist 
Teresita might well prepare for her Paris debut with all eager- 

Before this determining event another meeting, equally sig- 
nificant, was brought about, again by the consummate social 
strategy of Mme. firard. She had persuaded a somewhat reluc- 
tant Franz Liszt, in Paris visiting his daughter, Blandine Ol- 
livier, to come to the firard warerooms, rue du Mail, on the 
morning of Vivier's concert, May 14, to hear Teresita. 

With her father and mother she was the first to arrive. 
Shortly after, the door of the private room opened to admit 
the great master, on his arm, as usual, a beautiful young lady of 
high aristocracy. Following him was a group of three men. 
Teresita with her always ready eye for the ludicrous, noticed 
that they were amusingly alike in height and air, but for the 
fact that the one in the middle was as fat as the others were 
thin. They were presented as three young pianists, with signifi- 
cant careers before them, Saint-Saens, Jaell, and Plante. But the 
magnetism of the great Liszt completely overshadowed the 
others, and for Teresita he alone continued to exist. After the 
preliminary niceties were over, and Liszt had given strict order 
not to permit anybody to enter the room, he patted Teresita, 
whose timid look was misleading, on the shoulder. "Now, my 
child, in order to make you feel quite at home with me, I am 
going to play for you. Then you shall play for me." Beginning 
with a few soft measures of anticipation he drifted into the 
andante from one of Beethoven's "Sonates," playing as only he 
could. It reminded Teresita of Gottschalk, yet reluctantly she 
had to concede that her idol had more than met his match. 
With childlike loyalty she decided on the spot to play one of his 
compositions for Liszt. Her father had long ago learned that it 
was wiser not to make suggestions. When Liszt led Teresita to 
the piano, she began at once with the "Last Hope." Uninten- 
tionally it was a good choice. Liszt, knowing of Gottschalk by 
hearsay, had never heard anything he had written. Coming 
prepared to be politely bored for as short a time as possible, his 


interest was arrested instead by this quiet little girl, who had the 
charm that he admired in women, and the common sense to 
bring him something new. But Teresita had not only succeeded 
in capturing his interest; she knew how to hold and intensify 
it. As she played Liszt stood up, slowly taking his place behind 
her. He listened to the end. Then, placing both hands upon 
her head, he said : "Little girl, God has given you the greatest of 
his gifts, genius. Work, develop your talents. Above all remain 
true to yourself, and in time you will be one of us!" This bless- 
ing engraved itself on her memory. Years later she could still 
at will feel those hands upon her head. This experience was to 
her "the proudest of my souvenirs." 

Liszt spoke to Manuel Antonio: "If you will bring your 
gifted daughter to me in Rome, I shall gladly take charge of 
her further education." Then, turning away, he noticed that 
contrary to his express instructions the room was filling with 
curious people. Quickly taking up his hat, he bowed to each new- 
comer with elaborate, sardonic formality and left without an- 
other word. 

Teresita was not permitted to follow Liszt to Rome, where he 
was to write that strange final chapter of his career. Manuel 
Antonio was poor, perhaps he could not afford the journey; he 
was proud, perhaps he was unwilling to accept favors, know- 
ing that Liszt taught with no thought of remuneration. He, 
the father, was particular about the proprieties; perhaps Liszt's 
reputation made him hesitate to entrust his daughter to such an 
influence; or on the other hand perhaps he simply felt that 
Teresita needed more regular and methodical teaching than she 
would in all probability receive from Liszt. Whatever the rea- 
son, this first meeting was destined to be their last. 

The news that this engaging phenomenon of twelve had won 
the acclaim of a Rossini and a Liszt spread through musical 
Paris like a call to arms, with the result that the Salle firard 
was crowded, not so much in honor of Vivier, but rather that 
curiosity might find satisfaction. The massive form of Rossini, 


surrounded by the devotees he had enlisted, was the focal point 
within the audience. Friendly applause greeted Teresita as she 
appeared upon the platform in her only concert gown of black 
silk, its severity relieved by a yoke of sheer black net. Her single 
ornament was a cross of gold upon a fine chain. Soft curls were 
allowed to fall becomingly at will. 

Again the "Prayer" from Mo'ise, this time with Gottschalk's 
version of the "Miserere" from // Trovatore as companion, was 
her offering of the evening. It aroused comment that Teresita 
played entirely without notes. From beginning to end she was 
transcendently successful. The criticisms were as extravagant as 
was for Paris the enthusiasm of an unusually attentive audience. 
They reached heights of description and comparison, but it must 
be said that her graces of person shared the columns devoted 
to her in the journals on equal terms with her accomplishments. 
"She is beautiful as Galatea emerging anew from the chisel of 
Pygmalion," said one; and another: "Her success is dizzying; 
she plays like Liszt; she is a star; she is an angel; she is a 
genius; she is a fairy." And more merrily he of I'tLvenement: 
"There has just arrived in Paris a little girl — if she reads this 
she is going to be furious — I wish to say, a very young person, 
who is a pure wonder. She is a pianist with power that is really 
terrific, a Liszt in petticoats. I am told under oath that this lit- 
tle Spaniard is simply a star that is rising. Let me then record 
its first gleam." To an uninhibited enthusiast she has "the deli- 
cate feeling of Bellini, the dramatic energy of Verdi, the tender 
expression of Mendelssohn, and the facile improvisation of 

In spite of the critics who had complained about the number 
of musical events in this supersaturated season, over three hun- 
dred of them in all, there was no rest in sight for Teresita. Paris 
salons, weary of the empty sophisticated glitter of social life in 
the Second Empire, welcomed the freshness that a highbred 
young girl from strange lands brought into them, quite aside 
from the asset of her parentage and playing. On the very day 
after the Vivier concert Teresita played in the salon of Mme. la 


Baronne de Romand before an audience allegedly of le meilleur 
monde. On this evening the gathering was not true to form. 
During Teresita's playing of the "Rigoletto" fantasia it is re- 
ported that almost every note was interrupted by applause. 

Invitations to Rossini's famous "Saturdays" were more cov- 
eted than those to the salons of Napoleon III. In spite of the 
palatial dimensions of the apartment it was scarcely large 
enough for all the people that crowded the drawing room to 
the point of suffocation. Rossini was never more in his element. 
These soirees satisfied his craving for adulation and cost him 
very little. Friends saw to it that the larder and the wine cellar 
were always liberally stocked with all that was most delicate 
and rare, but nobody came for the refreshments. Only strangers 
failed to observe the unspoken rule that the food was to be 
seen, not eaten. Plates of fruit, silver, and porcelain retained 
their decorative integrity throughout the evening. On occasion 
a too inquisitive guest might discover that a certain especially 
luscious pear had never grown on a living tree. Madame Ros- 
sini, fittingly named Olympe, with her long Roman nose, and 
in a veritable armor of jewels, saw to it that decorum and 
thrift prevailed. Why did people beg for invitations to these 
evenings ? There was after all sure to be good music, good con- 
versation — and Rossini. 

It was at such a gathering that Teresita first met Blandine 
Ollivier, sister of the more famous Cosima, who became the 
wife of Richard Wagner. This young hostess, herself a sensitive 
pianist only six years older than Teresita, felt sympathetically 
drawn to the child, and to further the acquaintance decided to 
take lessons of one so highly praised by Liszt. Once a week she 
climbed the long flights that led to Teresita's apartment for an 
hour of music, and since at one time or another everybody of 
consequence in Paris was sure to be seen in the Ollivier salon, 
it was natural that Teresita too should be drawn into that circle. 

Manuel Antonio realized that to reap full benefit from this 
first appearance it should be followed up by a second, a con- 
cert in which Teresita must be the principal performer. Even 

Letter from Rossini introducing Teresita to Arditi, composer 

and conductor 


though the season was practically closed, a bona fide shipwreck 
was too heaven-sent a piece of propaganda to be deferred. Ter- 
esita accordingly announced a concert of her own in the Salle 
Erard for the evening of June 6, 1866. A singer, a violinist, and 
a dramatic reader were found willing to share in the program 
as minor satellites. This time Teresita had the courage to place 
her Norma "Fantaisie" on the program in company with Lucia 
and Trovatore. The "C sharp minor Sonate" of Beethoven, "the 
rock of mediocrities and child prodigies," represented the clas- 
sics. One critic found in it nothing out of taste. "Only the finale 
was taken a little too furiously." All mentioned her vigorous 
and clear playing, her unbelievably casual ease in the midst of 
high-pressure difficulties, and the very one who had inveighed 
most loudly against the surfeit of concerts unbent enough to 
say "Teresita is not the kind of prodigy that makes us hold her 
parents in horror," and called her concert le bouquet de la fin. 

On the following day father and daughter were on their way 
to London carrying with them the promised letters from Ros- 
sini, one to Arditi, the composer and conductor, another to 
Mme. Puzzi, a teacher of singing whose salon was a musical 
center. It read: 

Madame Puzzi: — 

I begin by telling you that I am not in the habit of recommending 
mediocrity! The person who will present this letter, Teresita Car- 
refio (who is endowed by nature with all her gifts) is a charming 
pianist, pupil of the celebrated Gottschalk. She is going to London, 
accompanied by her parents, very distinguished people, with the 
purpose of being heard, and, as she deserves, of being admired. 
Teresita has need of a powerful support in this city, and I ask for 
your all-powerful one in favor of this already celebrated artist, who, 
in spite of the deluge of pianists who pour in from all parts of the 
world, has excited great admiration in Paris. Be friendly to her, 
Madame Puzzi, and count upon the gratitude of your devoted 
servant. G. Rossini 

Paris, June 6th, 1866 
To Madame Puzzi, Artist 


Madame Puzzi's drawing room determined the rise or fall 
of many a young pretender to the throne of art. In appearance 
she was anything but attractive. Teresita found her positively 
depressing, an effect that ugliness in any form had upon her. 
Yet there was magnetism in the personality of one whose 
superior intelligence had made her the power she was. As Ros- 
sini had wished, she took Teresita under her wing, saw that 
she met those who might be helpful, and found patronesses for 
the concert which she advised her to give. 

Everywhere the "distinguished gentleman" and his radiant 
daughter met with cordial welcome, which seemed to justify 
the experiment of a matinee in St. James Minor Hall on July 
23. The first appearance of a Venezuelan artist in London 
proved to be an honor to the land of her birth. There to her 
delight Teresita was not to be considered as a child prodigy, 
but as a musician among musicians. She rose to the challenge 
with Norma and // Trovatore to which she added the "Ballade 
in A flat" by Chopin and the so-called "Moonlight Sonata." 
The artists who in plentiful number contributed to the pro- 
gram included two conductors. The reviewers credited Teresita 
with a proficiency "which would become an artist twice or 
thrice her age." Her execution was pronounced practically 
faultless. Many prominent musicians were included in the well- 
sized and fashionable audience. The only regret was that so 
fine a pianist should have introduced herself too late in the 
season to admit of closer acquaintance. Returning to Paris Man- 
uel Antonio could feel satisfied that at least the ground had 
been broken and made ready for the planting of a future year. 

Greater than for gathering laurels was the need for making a 
living. Manuel Antonio's reputation gradually brought him a 
fairly large class of pupils. But not for one instant did he lose 
sight of the main reason for coming to Paris, Teresita's musical 
education. The Conservatoire of Paris was then as now the 
most direct line of approach to excellence in the art and the 
craft of music. M. Marmontel, its head, had heard Teresita 


play in her concert on June 6 and had been one of those to 
greet her enthusiastically in the intermission. There was no 
trouble in gaining a hearing. Teresita was examined in this 
school of long tradition — and refused. The objections were two- 
fold. Not only was she a foreigner, but the judges were obliged 
to admit that Teresita had already advanced beyond their re- 
quirements for graduation. M. Marmontel did invite her to 
appear in rehearsal with the orchestra of the Conservatoire, al- 
though their concerts were over for the season. Georges Mat- 
thias, pupil of Chopin, was ready to initiate Teresita into this 
master's ways of playing, and from now on Chopin became 
and remained a favorite composer in her repertoire. Lessons in 
harmony and counterpoint were given her by M. Bazin. Crea- 
tively speaking Teresita's most fruitful years were beginning. 

While father and daughter were deep in their artistic pur- 
suits, Clorinda was quietly exploiting her talents as a home- 
maker. With musical Paris away on summer vacation the Car- 
renos lived frugally and busily, preparing for better things to 
come, happily unaware of the impending thunderbolt. 

One day Teresita was composing while Manuel Antonio sat 
at the desk close by. Clorinda answered a knock at the door 
and admitted a boy carrying a number of beaded funeral 
wreaths, ordered on approval at the request of the daughter of 
a Venezuelan relative recently deceased. As her mother held 
one up to examine it closely, Teresita jumped from her seat. 
"Don't touch it, please, Mamacita!" she entreated. "What non- 
sense," her mother rebuked her. Not until Teresita became 
hysterical would she pay the slightest attention. The father 
understood better. "May I touch the wreath?" he asked quietly. 
"Yes, you may, but not mother!" A prophetic warning! Six 
weeks later Clorinda, whom Teresita loved more than she had 
ever been allowed to show her, lay dead of cholera in that same 
room. The blow was devastating. Little Manuel was sent away 
to school. New responsibility was placed on young shoulders 
already too weightily burdened. They did not give way be- 
neath the load. The breaking of their common tie united father 


and daughter more closely than ever. Only where before it had 
been the daughter who depended upon the father, it was now 
the father who looked to his daughter for comfort. As for her 
great-uncle, Bolivar, adversity held within it for Teresita the 
concentrated essence of strength, and she learned to believe as 
he did that "happiness is the memory of sorrow that has been 
vanquished." In a heavy black silk dress, built higher at the 
neck, and nearer to the ground, Teresita, wearing her cross of 
gold and her cross of sorrow, reentered the salons and the con- 
cert halls of Paris, where sympathy with her misfortune made 
her doubly welcome. 

Manuel Antonio longed for a change of scene, for his own 
people, his own language. Spain, the home of his ancestors and 
of Clorinda's, was within reach. For the moment life in Paris 
was unbearable. So in the middle of November the inseparable 
pair set out upon a new journey of conquest. 

Arrived in Madrid the usual method of procedure was fol- 
lowed. The Spanish salons were hospitable, with the regrettable 
exception of the del Toros, Clorinda's proud relatives, who re- 
fused to forget that Clorinda's father had joined the Revolution 
in Venezuela, and that his daughter had married beneath her 
station. Their crested doors remained closed. 

Teresita's first appearance was in the salon of Don Eugenio 
de Ochoa, the second in that of a celebrated oculist Don Fran- 
cisco Delgado Jugo, who twice a month held musical gather- 
ings, chiefly to display the talents of his gifted wife. Reviewing 
one of these, La Epoca of Madrid compared Teresita to "Goe- 
the's Mignon, dreaming of the fragrant orange groves of her 

Early in December, 1866, the time was ripe for the experi- 
ment of a large concert with the collaboration of an orchestra. 
It began the evening by playing the "Overture" to the Blac\ 
Domino by Auber. Then came Teresita with Rigoletto para- 
phrased by Liszt. A polka by Lamotte served to introduce a 
violinist, whom Teresita accompanied in a fantasia on William 


Tell by de Beriot and Osborne. Again the orchestra played a 
short waltz, and this in turn was followed by a Chopin group 
played by the star of the occasion. Another slice of orchestra 
in "Les Fiances Tyroliens," and then for overflowing measure 
the Beethoven "C sharp minor Sonate," to which Teresita added 
one of her own waltzes as a fitting ending to a "musical mot- 
ley" not easy to duplicate. 

"She plays the piano as the fountain plays," wrote the critic 
of El Espanol, "as sings the nightingale, as sighs the zephyr. 
She lost her mother a few months ago, and the notes which 
she draws out of the piano in so masterly a way are tears that 
fall on the heart, sobs that move the soul. Some one will say 
that the mother inspired her from Heaven." 

This same gentleman heard Teresita privately. Her father ac- 
companied her in duets, and earned the comment: "Here too 
is a great artist." Before the beginning of the year 1867 she had 
played in the hall of the Conservatory, in the Teatro de Oriente. 
In every salon of importance, excepting always that of her rela- 
tives, people were battling with each other to present her. 

Thereupon the pair left for Zaragoza, where the second con- 
cert, given under the auspices of the Liceo in Teresita's honor, 
was the most brilliant of the entire tour. The regimental band 
of Estremadura set a festive note with the "Overture" to Wil- 
liam Tell. The Declamatory Department assisted with poems, 
the Department of Music with choruses, and sandwiched in be- 
tween opera arias someone added a popular note with the 
playing of a bandurria. The length of the program is left to 
the imagination. Teresita contributed her "Ballade," Liszt's 
Lucia, Mason's "Silver Springs," and dances of her own. On her 
part she asked a gentleman to read a few grateful words of 
farewell in conclusion. 

In January, 1867, showered with laurels, with eulogies in prose 
and poetry, with medals and with money beyond expectation, 
father and daughter returned to Paris, taking residence in an 
apartment at 2 avenue Friedland. All doors opened as of them- 


selves to welcome them back. Valuable indeed was the list of 
those for whose friendship she was indebted to one or the 
other of the salons of this city. To Mme. Ollivier she owed her 
conquest of Charles Gounod who, hearing her play her 
"Scherzo," affectionately exaggerated its worth by declaring 
publicly that Beethoven himself might have signed his name 
to it. It was Gounod also who sponsored an introduction to 
the salon of Princess Mathilde, cousin of Napoleon III. To be 
heard there was the ambition of every musical celebrity and 
aspirant. Musicians, painters, sculptors, and literary personal- 
ities crowded to listen within her doors and, says he Menestrel, 
"are the first to engage in conversation during the perform- 
ance." One Sunday early in May Gounod accompanied Tere- 
sita to the palace of the Princess. He himself escorted her to 
the piano and to his surprise she began with Liszt's "Fantaisie" 
on airs from Faust, having just learned it in compliment to the 
composer of the opera. Enthusiasm rose to the height of the 
sensational. The newspapers gave due publicity. Princess Ma- 
thilde was a lovely and lovable lady, appealing to a romantic 
young girl before all as the offspring of the thoroughly un- 
romantic "marriage of Jerome Bonaparte and Catherine of 
Wurttemberg, familiarly known as the weeping princess. Ma- 
thilde had a sad look very becoming to her. Like everyone else 
she delighted in spoiling Teresita. 

One of these evenings had been unusually gay. The princess 
had personally conducted Teresita through the palace, even 
into her own bedroom to show her the magnificent court robes 
she was accustomed to wear at the Tuileries. On the way down 
the broad stairway she was struck by the likeness between 
Teresita and the bust of Napoleon I upon the landing. The 
guests were called upon to compare the two profiles. There was 
a resemblance. The papers took up the suggestion and all but 
made Teresita out to be an illegitimate daughter of the great 
Bonaparte. "Perhaps," said Teresita after many years had 
passed, "it is because of my inborn hatred of politics that I was 
to be saddled with such an unwholesome connection." From 


this palace to the Tuileries would have been only a step. It was 
never taken. Very probably Manuel Antonio did not value the 
influence of court standards upon an adolescent daughter. 

At the salon of the Princess Mathilde Teresita met Auber. 
The next afternoon he climbed the five flights to the Carreno 
apartment. How long they must have seemed to a man of 
eighty! There he played parts from the last opera he had com- 
posed, and forgot time in animated conversation, holding Tere- 
sita captive under the spell of his youthf ulness of spirit. Princess 
Mathilde also introduced Teresita to Berlioz. His eyes, she re- 
membered, were arresting, as if he could pierce through matter 
and beyond, especially when he sat motionless and absorbed 
while music was going on. Scarcely had she finished when he 
surprised her by asking that inevitable, stupid question: "My 
child, do you never feel nervous when you play?" Teresita re- 
plied simply: "Non, monsieur." But the father broke in quickly, 
perhaps more abruptly than the Urbanidad would have con- 
doned: "My daughter is never nervous. She is too healthy to 
have nerves." 

The most important of her new acquaintances proved to be 
M. Heugel, the music publisher and owner of he Menestrel. He 
gave Teresita a great forward thrust by finding her composi- 
tions worthy of publication just when she most needed fresh 
encouragement. It almost seemed for a time as if the creative 
urge might prove stronger than her desire to play in public. 
Up to this time her only printed composition in America had 
been the "Gottschalk Waltz." Although to her disappointment 
this was never performed by him, she now had the compensa- 
tion of being able to advertise on the covers of her opus 2, the 
"Caprice-Polka," bristling with cadenzas, trills, and operatic 
difficulties, as well as on her waltz opus 9, "Corbeille de Fleurs," 
that these pieces had been publicly played by Gottschalk. Tere- 
sita's early compositions delighted in every conceivable intri- 
cacy. When she was interested in perfecting double-note pas- 
sages, octave runs, dangerous jumps, and — always her favorite 
— the trill, her compositions reflected this preoccupation. Very 


naturally they also had flavor reminiscent of the works she 
happened to be studying, of the composer of the hour, be it 
Gounod, Chopin, or Liszt. "Le Ruisseau" bears a remarkable 
family resemblance to Henselt's "If I were a bird," and a 
Chopin "Scherzo" stood godfather beyond a doubt to the 
"Scherzo-Caprice" that Gounod so generously appreciated be- 
yond its merits. Her "Reminiscences of Norma" were dedicated 
to the memory of her mother, and the "Ballade," a work of 
real merit, also a la Chopin, is full of the exuberance that often 
makes the works of youthful composers so refreshing. 

More mature and more affecting are those of her composi- 
tions that grew out of her first contact with death. One, a 
prayer improvised during the last moments of a family friend, 
was never to be published. A "Marche Funebre," true to the 
plan of its more famous pendant by Chopin, probably owed 
its origin to the death of this same person. There follow a num- 
ber of "filegies" and "Plaintes" touching in their simplicity. On 
the covers Teresita is unflatteringly portrayed, in a black dress 
of stiffly draped taffeta, holding a prayerbook. The tight bodice 
trimmed with black lace and beads has long and clumsy 
sleeves. A black velvet ribbon ties back curls grown longer. 

Very soon she turned to a more familiar field, the morceau 
de salon and the opera transcription. Her dedications were 
chosen from among the names on her visiting list, Matthias, 
Marmontel, Mme. Ollivier, Sir Julius Benedict, and Mr. L. H. 
Beddington. "Un Reve en Mer," "Le Printemps," and "Une 
Revue a Prague" made a brilliant trilogy. Whenever she be- 
came geographic, whether in her "Italian Sketches" or in 
"Highland, Souvenir d'ficosse," it is amusing to note a very 
winning, if unmotivated, harking back to the land of her origin, 
to the lilt of the Spanish serenade with its guitar accompani- 
ment, and to the habanera. Of the somewhat later compositions 
she dedicated a "Berceuse," most beautiful of all, to her father. 
It has a delicacy worthy of comparison with Schumann's "Al- 
bum for the Young" or with the "Songs without Words" of 
Mendelssohn. The last of her compositions to be bound to- 


gether by her father in a book with gilt edges and an elaborate 
green cover was an etude called "La Fausse Note," a reminder of 
a composition of that name by Rubinstein. 

At the home of the Heugels Teresita met the composer of 
"Mignon," Ambroise Thomas, a tall, gray-bearded man, as 
silent as Gounod was expansive. To him as to many of her 
special friends her only name was Bebe. However, by virtue 
of catastrophe rather than of years a bebe she no longer was. 

Of all the people in Teresita's circle, the one she admired 
most was Adelina Patti. A first meeting at one of Rossini's 
soirees ripened into sisterly, if proverbially undemonstrative af- 
fection on the part of the prima donna, and into undisguised 
worship on the part of Teresita. There could be no greater joy 
than to accompany her idol's singing, no more precious secret 
than that there was a photograph of Patti behind that of her 
mother in the locket she wore. "If only I too could sing," 
thought Teresita. And very soon Rossini, always on the lookout 
to find potential interpreters for his operas, discovered that she 
had a pleasing voice of mezzo quality. The beginning of her 
training in this branch of art was under his instruction. He 
even encouraged her to think seriously of a career as a singer, 
seconded by the energetic prodding of Patti. There germinated 
a longing which accompanied her for many years, cropping 
out at odd intervals, filling more than a passing need. 

Inwardly Teresita was restless. She wanted something as 
different as possible from daily routine. It lay near at hand 
that she might become an actress. The necessary qualifications, 
beauty, clear enunciation, vivacity, imagination, and a decided 
gift of mimicry were hers. Did she not use them daily for 
the delectation of one friend at the expense of another, yet 
always in wholesome good spirits for the fun of the thing ? But 
woe to the one who tried to turn the tables by ridiculing her! 
During one of the soirees of Princess Mathilde a gentleman 
approached Teresita, in his hand a caricature which he had 
made off-hand as she played. It was unmistakably she, though 


by no means flattering. He had drawn her face framed in a 
towsled mop of curls and had given her a very beak of a nose. 
In high indignation she tore up the drawing, not caring that 
it was Gustave Dore who had perpetrated the insult, that she 
had impulsively destroyed a valuable work of art. Soon from 
the pen of Dwight of Boston the news spreads that "Teresita 
Carrerio is studying singing and dramatic art with Delle Sedie 
of Les Italiens. . . . and with her face and figure we may ex- 
pect a prima donna who will be a credit to art," he prophesies. 
(The piano had found a rival if not a substitute.) Teresita con- 
tinued to give concerts, the more frequently because of the 
famous Exposition Universelle in Paris. The concert given in 
the Salle firard on May 7, 1867, is reviewed by Le Constitu- 
tionnel, which says: 

Large and maturely developed like the rapidly blooming flowers of 
her country, Teresa Carrerio makes one think of the beautiful 
American virgins who came before Christopher Columbus, black 
eyes holding all the fire of the sun, their father and their god — 
Enthusiasm became charged with frenzy after the playing of a 
Ballade of her composition and a Fantaisie of extra difficulty com- 
posed by Liszt for the despair of his colleagues. — To appreciate 
her completely one must hear her intimately, be it in a Beethoven 
Concerto or in a delicious Waltz of Chopin — or in a Lament com- 
posed by her after a terrible family calamity, the mournful expres- 
sion of which brings tears to all eyes. 

And so life continued very lean and plain and workful in 
the little apartment, 2 avenue Friedland. Teresita remembered 
always her fifteenth birthday as one of the happiest, because in 
celebration she had butter on her bread for breakfast. Particu- 
larly to the liking of Teresita were the long excursions into the 
Bois de Boulogne, lively parties lasting from morning until 
night, which never lacked for variety of entertainment. Fre- 
quently they called for the inventiveness of the participants. On 
one such jaunt everyone was expected to improvise something. 


In a melodramatic mood Teresita turned to poetry. Mounting 
a rock with exaggeration of the grand manner of the Theatre 
Francois, she chanted in measured imitation of French declama- 
tory tradition : 

En jranchissant les obstacles 
Que nous presente Vadversite 
Nous renversons les murailles 
Qui nous separent de la Divinite. 

She was to have ample chance to prove this true. 

Early in May, 1868, on the day following her last Paris ap- 
pearance of the season, Teresita and her father again crossed 
the Channel. There were promising signs that the protective 
ice of musical London was cracking under the heat of Vene- 
zuelan temperament. Paris was more unaccountable. It ac- 
cepted each new artist with easy effusiveness, according to his 
entertainment value, and more or less soon replaced him as a 
later sensation presented itself. Coming late to concerts and 
then using the music as a soothing obbligato for choice bits of 
gossip was the accepted thing, and there was cause for public 
comment when the size of an audience did not dwindle to- 
ward the end of the evening. London's musical manners were 
far more courteous. Titled ladies lent their printed names as 
sponsors to Teresita's programs, and as she was able to draw 
upon more and more popular artists to assist her, these im- 
portant beings began to appear at her concerts in person. 
Among her colleagues Teresita's friendliness and high spirits 
won quick understanding. It was one of them, the famous 
pianist Charles Halle, who took occasion to present her him- 
self to none other than the Princess of Wales. 

This was an honor so exciting that it warranted a new dress, 
a dress with a train. Teresita's Irving Hall debut had not been 
more thrilling than this, her official coming of age as a young 
lady appearing before royalty. It was not the music she was 
to play that concerned her. Far more necessary to practice an 
effective entrance, a deep curtsy before the long mirror in full, 
delicious consciousness of the swishing silk behind her. The 
evening arrived. Teresita managed very well during the intro- 
duction. But in spite of the quite obvious exaggeration of her 
motions, the Princess refused to pay proper attention to the 
train. This was annoying. The moment came to cross the pol- 
ished parquetry floor that led to the piano, a final chance to 
make an impression. She meant to make the most of it. Throw- 
ing back her head, she chose a winding way to reach her 
destination, twisting and turning to make her train curve in 


and out like the tail of a salamander. One last completing fling! 
(Teresita failed to notice that it had displaced the light gilt 
chair intended for her) and she found herself seated with theat- 
rical elegance — upon the floor! Not in her lifetime would she 
forget the mortification of that moment. 

Early in July, 1868, Teresita gave a matinee of her own in the 
Hanover Square rooms. It stood out from the others not only 
because it was sponsored by the Duchess of Cleveland, Lady 
Duff Gordon, and others, not only because she was ably sec- 
onded by fine artists, not only because the concert was at- 
tended by all that was fashionable in London circles, but be- 
cause one person, led by casual curiosity, happened to buy his 
ticket like any other mortal. Anton Rubinstein was in the audi- 
ence. This marked the beginning of a friendship between two 
kindred spirits. On this afternoon Teresita was more than us- 
ually dazzling. Beauty, talent, temperament, all scintillated to 
their fullest. One of her own compositions headed the program. 
She took part in the Schumann "Quintette," and continued in 
classical vein with the C sharp minor "Sonate" of Beethoven, 
the Chopin "Polonaise" in the same key, and Mendelssohn's 
"Rondo Capriccioso." During the intermission Rubinstein made 
his way from his favorite seat at the rear of the left side to the 
artists' room. He shook Manuel Antonio's hand until it hurt, 
thanking him for the new genius he had brought to London. 
When he congratulated Teresita upon some of the best piano 
playing he had ever heard, he noticed even more than during 
the performance how similar in shape her hands were to his 
own. From this day on he became her mentor, the outstanding 
influence of her girlhood. That which Gottschalk had been for 
the prodigy, Rubinstein became for the unfolding artist. These 
two, so different in age and outlook, were irresistibly drawn to 
each other by a likeness in temperament as well as in the hands. 
To Teresita, though Rubinstein was not officially giving lessons 
and taught her only spasmodically when they happened to be 

Cast of Rubinstein s Hand 

Hand of Carreno 


in the same city, he was the greatest of all masters. She learned 
from him more than he was conscious of teaching her. 

Rubinstein was anything but methodical. Running up and 
down as she played, fortified by a cigar that kept going out in 
his absorption, he did not hesitate to interrupt her abruptly in 
order to take her place at the piano. Teresita was used to 
Manuel Antonio's more tactful ways. There were stormy mo- 
ments. She was no longer the child ready to accept the dictates 
even of an artist whom she adored. At one of these lessons 
Rubinstein, a musical autocrat if ever there was one, was lay- 
ing down the law according to Rubinstein. Teresita presumed 
to question his reading of a certain passage, about which she 
too had conviction. "You must play this as I do," commanded 
the master. "Why must I?" countered Teresita. Rubinstein 
bristled. The moment had come to put her in her place. Angrily 
he drew himself up to his full height, made a widely curving 
gesture which ended by pointing at himself, and shouted in 
what was intended to be an annihilating tone: "I am Rubin- 

Teresita was not cowed. She jumped from the piano stool, 
repeated the gesture in perfect caricature to the last detail, in 
which only the fury was her own, and mimicking Rubinstein's 
tone of voice to the life, she retorted, "And I am Carreno." For 
an instant two forces confronted each other in silent indigna- 
tion, then exploded in a burst of merriment born of inner 
understanding. From now on Rubinstein might call her his 
adopted daughter, his sunshine, or even bebe. As an artist he 
must henceforth learn to regard her as an equal, concede to 
her the right of self-expression. The enfant prodige, as La 
France had so recently called her, was of the past. 

Es bildet ein Talent sich in der Stille, 
Sich ein Character in dent Strom der Welt, 



1AM Carrefio!" With this pronouncement she declared her- 
self musically responsible. Conscious of unlimited power 
within, she had the drive, the will to draw into her own 
living only that which was acceptable to her as an individual, 
to discard that which she no longer truly was. Would she be 
able to manage her life as rightly as she did her keyboard ? Or 
would she be satisfied with the triumphs already so generously 
hers by right of youth, beauty, and genius ? 

Genius is timeless. It exists ready-made, sound, and whole. 
It may reach out in one direction or another, momentarily 
changing its outline, yet keeping the weight of content intact, 
the periphery unbroken. The energy of genius, no matter how 
lavishly expended, how variously directed or misdirected, exists 
once and for all. The pattern changes, the balance shifts with 
the enrichment or erosion of time. Genius remains potentially 
the same, the inexhaustible spring of intuitive vision. It is 
taught only to find that it knows. It must because it can. Its 
essence is a quite unmoral passion for perfection, making a 
direct path from soul to soul, striking a spark instantaneous in 
its contact. It exists in fullness while demanding fulfillment. 
Events may encroach upon it, shape it, mold it into beauty or 
its opposite. Genius, uninhibited, remains elastic in expression, 
lightning-sure in its reactions. The faults of genius are never 
small, never mean; the fatality of genius is to be painted with 
an ample brush. Interference with its all-comprehensive stroke, 
even by intellect, the all-comprehending, is criminal subversion. 
The London Athenaeum faced Teresita's problem simply: 
"Mademoiselle Carreno may have a brilliant future if she be not 
spoilt at the beginning of her career." It disregarded a signifi- 
cant fact. The threshold of one career already marked the close 
of another. To one completed chapter life had set its seal. From 
every angle it stood approved. When little Teresita promised 
herself: "I shall be an artist all my life," she instinctively knew 
that the reward she wished for lay within the art she tended. 
Adulation, flowers, riches, delightful as they might be, were in 


themselves unessential. Creating a thrilling world of imagina- 
tion and revelation where others might not enter, yet which 
she knew how to share with all who would listen, that was 
what really mattered. Hers was a precious secret. All of it 
would never be revealed even to herself. She might give of it as 
lavishly as from the fullness of her affectionate nature she loved 
to give everything else she owned. The secret was hers alone, hers 
its lonely eminence, hers that inexhaustible spring from which 
she had the gift to draw at will that she might as freely give to 
others, according to their sensitivity, the hint of an existence 
where lesser things fall into just proportion. That was what 
Liszt meant when he charged her to be true to herself. 

Teresa — with her musical coming of age she dropped the 
affectionate diminutive — did not always see the way so clearly 
before her. Daily living is full of clutter, disillusioning, sordid 
beneath the surface, and dull. Outwardly Teresa was the envied 
darling of Paris and London. Within the protection of safely 
grounded homes young girls would gladly have given all they 
cherished most to change places with her for a day, to bow so 
regally in rustling gowns of bright silk, to acknowledge ap- 
plause with such proud courtesy. They guessed nothing of the 
careful planning on the part of both father and daughter to 
keep heads above water, to afford the dignity of a Paris apart- 
ment, to educate young Manuel fittingly in the hope that he 
would become a good soldier and later, perhaps, a good diplo- 

In time the annual trip across the Channel for the London 
season became for two people an unmanageable expense. For- 
tunately there was a Mrs. Bischoff, a friend with whom Teresa 
could safely live in London, while Manuel Antonio continued 
his teaching in Paris. He accepted this enforced separation with 
reluctance, foreseeing the change that it inevitably would mean 
in their relation to each other, the loosening of discipline and 
close companionship. Very naturally he mistrusted the influ- 
ence of a franker, freer, Protestant England upon his daughter. 
Tt distressed him that she actually seemed to revel in the society 


of the would-be opera singers in the class of Delle Sedie, her 
singing teacher. To his thinking her manners had already suf- 
fered. He deplored the increasing loudness of her voice, her 
boisterous laughter at jokes that bordered on the indelicate. He 
would have wished her more discriminating in every way. 
Without deliberately going counter to his strict and static rules 
of conduct, Teresa no longer accepted his criticisms as final. 
She could not help observing how out of tune they were with 
life as it was lived in London and in Paris of the late Sixties. 
Her own spirit craved freedom. She felt more religious in fra- 
grant forests than in churches, although in Paris she had ob- 
served the prescribed ecclesiastical routine meticulously. Stimu- 
lating though they were in many ways, she also began to resent 
the artificial atmosphere of the Paris salons. What labyrinths of 
convoluted being! Emerging from such a gathering, she felt 
like throwing her arms out wide and shouting aloud into the 
fresh, uncomplicated air. In England people were more them- 
selves, more forthright. The Germans in London were par- 
ticularly to her liking. Only few foreign virtuosos chose to set- 
tle in Paris, for then as now Paris preferred those of its own 
race and language. Teresa dreamed that some day she would 
go to Germany, learn its language, sing its songs, and as so 
often, she dreamed true. 

Teresa Carreno was fifteen years old. he Menestrel had hinted 
in its columns that she would soon enter the teaching profes- 
sion, predicting a large class of pupils. However, to entice them 
in sufficient number, it took a formal advertisment, which read : 

Enseignement elementaire et superieur 

Cours et lecons de piano 


M. Manuel Carreno et Mile. Teresa Carreno 

Les mardis, jeudis, et samedis 

Lecons speciales en anglais et en espagnol 

S'adresser chez M. et Mile. Carreno, Ave. Friedland, 2. 

Manuel Antonio was undoubtedly the more dependable 
member of this pedagogic ensemble. It is unthinkable that a 


young girl of fifteen, busy with household and music, in which 
her enthusiasm for the operatic stage was for the time para- 
mount, would regard teaching as anything but a chore. Ma- 
dame Ollivier was the outstanding exception. Teresa's formal 
education had been short-lived and sketchy. Hers was the not 
unliberal education of travel and trouble. She, to whom the 
gift of knowing without being taught had been given, could not 
be expected to show tact and patience with those who were 
slow and clumsy. So the brunt of this cooperative undertaking 
fell upon the shoulders of Manuel Antonio, who, moreover, 
was planning to publish a treatise on the "Theory and Prac- 
tice of Piano Technique." Using new and ingenious formulae 
based on strictly mathematical combinations, he had found the 
way of solving in principle the most arduous difficulties of 
rhythm and mechanics. This project was not to be realized, 
probably because Marmontel, who had been asked for his opin- 
ion, considered this work, carefully and cleverly conceived 
though he admitted it to be, merely another addition to the 
already overprolific literature on the subject. Or it may have 
been the Franco-Prussian War that entered an interfering 
wedge. To Manuel Antonio this must have been a major dis- 
appointment. He had counted upon this publication to give 
him distinction in his own right. Failing in this, his part in a 
world to whose outlook and standards he could no longer bend 
was played. 

Teresa continued to appear successfully and unremunera- 
tively in the most important and influential salons of Paris, 
those of Pierre Veron, the journalist, M. et Mme. Diemer, M. 
et Mme. Koechlin among them. The listeners were often as 
celebrated — sometimes as audible — as the performing artists. 
Her own concerts were still popular events. In the audience one 
might see "a quantity of superb toilettes generally not evident 
in concerts." Fashion attended and, wonder of wonders, stayed 
to the end. Coquelin himself, Sarasate, and Delle Sedie assisted 
at these functions. Blond, Nordic Christine Nilsson and dark, 
tropical Teresa Carreno offset each other effectively on more 


than one occasion. Decidedly Teresa had "arrived" in Paris. In 
that city there were no higher pinnacles for her scaling. She 
was no longer shy of putting her own compositions next to 
those of Gottschalk and Chopin on her programs, among them 
"Venice," dedicated to Mme. Ollivier, and "Le Ruisseau." But 
the accepted favorite was always the "Revue a Prague." 

From the time that she was allowed to travel alone Teresa 
was more and more in demand as a member of concert groups 
on tour. Under the management of the famous impresario, 
Maurice Strakosch, she left home for weeks at a time, once to 
play in the cities of Holland assisting Minnie Hauck, the so- 
prano. On another occasion, one of the pianists of a company 
formed to present the Mass of Rossini shortly after his death 
in November, 1868, Teresa visited the French provinces and 
later Belgium. A trip with the same artists in Germany was 
abandoned through fear of war, one through Switzerland being 
hastily substituted. For the time being Teresa was best known 
as the pianist of the Strakosch company. 

Close upon her return she was again on her way to London. 
The Princess of Wales had not forgotten the little artist with 
the long, wayward train. Upon her own initiative she took 
Teresa's concert on June 21, 1869, under her particular patron- 
age, an honor accorded only to two or three artists before her. 
But Teresa considered it a far greater one when she was asked 
to appear as piano soloist in one of Adelina Patti's "Grand Con- 
certs." She was heard as well on the always select, always in- 
terminable programs that the popular conductor, Julius Bene- 
dict, had the custom of staging annually for his own benefit. 
On one of these occasions Sir Julius publicly advertised that 
he had restricted the duration of the concert to four hours only. 
"We wonder who had physical strength to test the accuracy of 
this promise," asks the Athenaeum. 

Declaration of the Franco-Prussian War on July 19, 1870, 
found father and daughter on opposite sides of the Channel. 
Teresa remembered how thrilling it was to undo the notes 


brought to her by carrier-pigeon post, messages written on the 
thinnest of paper in her father's finely pointed handwriting 
and creased into accordionlike folds. Much as he disapproved 
of his daughter's prolonged stay in London, he was relieved to 
know her free from the deprivations he himself had to endure 
during the long siege of Paris. Lessons, salons, concerts dwin- 
dled, then stopped completely. One mouth less to feed in Paris! 
That was important, and Teresa by good fortune was able even 
from a distance to play the part most natural to her since the 
age of eight, that of breadwinner to her family. She rose to the 
occasion manfully. By force of pluck, perseverance, and per- 
sonality, her reputation widened and heightened until she 
achieved a coveted engagement and financial security on a 
modest scale as one of the regular artists of M. Riviere's Prom- 
enade Concerts. 

M. Riviere had for a time been known as conductor of the 
notorious Alhambra. When the license of this music hall was 
revoked, because Mile. Finette, the cancan dancer, shocked and 
tickled the sensibilities of London, M. Riviere changed his 
tactics. He established the Promenade Concerts with a stand- 
ing orchestra of one hundred pieces, supplemented by a large 
chorus, and on August 19, 1871, gave them the superb setting 
of Covent Garden Theater. In place of the white calico hang- 
ings relieved by red rosettes that his predecessors had thought 
suitable, he had devised ultramagnihxent stage decorations. 
Ornamental framework gave the effect of a mammoth con- 
servatory of flowers. What it lacked in restraint it achieved in 
brilliance. Against this setting a mixture of popular, semi- 
popular, and classical music — each carefully sorted and con- 
signed to its special evening — became so successful that an extra 
two weeks had to be added to the scheduled concerts of the 
first season. The purely classical ones took place on Wednes- 
days and were conducted by Arthur Sullivan. It was for these 
that Teresa was primarily engaged, although she did not con- 
sider it belittling to appear on those of lighter character, con- 
ducted by M. Riviere. For experience the training was excellent. 


It meant not only a regular income, it also obliged her to add to 
her repertoire. In a Liverpool Philharmonic Concert under the 
direction of Sir Julius Benedict Teresa played the "G minor 
Concerto" of Mendelssohn for the first time. The Athenaeum 
takes notice that "the playing of this lady at the Covent Garden 
Concerts has been of a nature to attract more than ordinary 

Once having held her own in the tours of Maurice Strakosch, 
Teresa was booked far ahead for the spring of 1872 by his great 
rival, Colonel Mapleson, as a member of an operatic concert 
group traveling through the provinces of Great Britain. Colonel 
Mapleson was accustomed to do things on a grand scale. His 
own annual benefit concert in London was usually an all-day 
affair. It began with a matinee concert, to which celebrities 
contributed their talents gratis. In the evening there was an 
opera, followed by a ballet, and complemented by the playing 
of fountains and fireworks. Through these influential men, 
Teresa became professionally associated with the most highly 
valued, and paid, artists of London. In the exuberance of her 
new freedom, with her overflowing friendliness, her versatile 
genius, she made quick way to the affections of her colleagues, 
always ready to laugh at their jokes, to be a leader in their 
fun, to play their accompaniments, and to sympathize in their 
troubles, helping where she could. But Adelina Patti, coaching 
and encouraging her as she was able, saw to it that her "little 
sister" did not give up the idea of becoming a singer. 

he Menestrel begins to complain that Teresa is making such 
a sensation in London that this city seems unwilling to return 
her to Paris — and Manuel Antonio, alone except for the visits 
of young Manuel on leave from military school, resigned him- 
self in absentia to proud partnership in the triumphs of his 
daughter, and to the most mournful of all diminuendos, that of 
old age. 

Tuesdays the Promenade Concerts were devoted to opera. 
In these Teresa was in her element, now playing the "Waltz" 
from Faust or another of her limitless fund of transcriptions, 


now taking part with a violinist in the duet on airs from Wil- 
liam Tell. On one classical Wednesday she played the "Capric- 
cio Brillante" in the concert devoted to Mendelssohn. When it 
was the turn of Beethoven, she took her part in the "Kreutzer 

Fresh from the Beethoven centenary at Bonn the critic of the 
Athenaeum writes: "If Mile. Carrerio had executed the An- 
dante and Variations from the "Kreutzer Sonate" at Bonn, she 
would have elicited from the Teutonic amateurs greater en- 
thusiasm than even she provoked at Covent Garden ; her touch 
is indescribably charming, and her execution neat and fin- 

At this time she was also heard for the first time in the great 
"E flat Concerto" by Beethoven which was later to become a 
highlight of her repertoire. According to the Musical World 
"the young lady's performance was heard with the greatest at- 
tention, and it is no small proof of her ability that, after being 
applauded at the close of each movement, she was finally re- 
called amid unanimous and hearty tokens of gratification." In 
this concert Mme. Rudersdorff, the singer who became even 
more famous as the mother of Richard Mansfield, also partici- 
pated. This marked the beginning of a friendship that ripened 
significantly for Teresa in another land. 

The Promenade Concerts proved to be a stepping stone to 
the really choice Monday Popular Concerts of Mr. Arthur 
Chappel. Playing on these programs meant association with 
artists such as Charles Halle, Joseph Joachim, and Clara Schu- 
mann. In such company it was necessary to measure up to the 
highest standards. For her first appearance she chose Beetho- 
ven's "Sonate" in E flat, op. 27, no. 1, last given years before 
in these concerts by M. Halle and Mme. Schumann. 

To this appearance the Athenaeum completely capitulated, 
considering it worth while to consign one of its "original 
papers" to a review of the playing of this "Spanish American 
pianiste" on January 20, 1872. 


Conventionalists and Puritans must have been terribly shocked at the 
laissez-aller style of playing Beethoven adopted by a young lady, 
Mile. Carreno, at the Monday Popular Concerts on the 15th inst.! 
Disregarding all precedents and tradition, selecting her own tempi, 
and giving a reading altogether novel and unprecedented to the 
Sonate in E flat Op. 27, No. 1 — the newcomer created a sensation as 
pronounced as has been excited by any exhibition of the more experi- 
enced style of Madame Schumann, and of the more exact and refined 
school of Madame Arabella Goddard. It is difficult to convey a notion 
of the abandon and charm of Mile. C's execution. She has a nimble 
finger and can master all difficulties, and has, moreover, prodigious 
power, considering that the hands are feminine and almost juvenile. 
The effect upon the auditory was much the same as that produced on 
the public of the Princess's Theatre when M. Fechter gave a version 
of Hamlet so different from the stiff and stilted reading of English 
actors who have appeared as the Danish Prince. The severe judges 
and critical connoisseurs astounded at first by the verve and vigour 
of the Venezuelan artiste, were at last carried away, and found them- 
selves endorsing the verdict of the masses in St. James Hall, that 
an original and exceptional artist had appeared who dared to take 
her own course defiant of pedantic ruling. The Sonata itself seemed 
peculiarly adapted to develop her specialties. It is full of breaks and 
surprises; it alternates in the expression of profound pathos and of 
the deepest despair — the former exemplified in accents of affliction 
and the latter evinced in paroxysms of forcible passages. The themes 
were well contrasted by Mile. Carreno and it is useless to challenge 
the interpretation because it was not traditional. We must accept 
artists with their peculiar idiosyncracies, and we are too glad to be 
emancipated from dryness, formality, and from the commonplace, 
to argue against conceptions which are so impulsive and energetic. 
The Sonata has been rarely attacked by pianists; it was some twelve 
years since it has been heard at the Monday Popular Concerts; and 
a vote of thanks is due Mile. Carreno for her introduction of what 
Beethoven called "Sonata quasi una fantasia" and for her poetic and 
spirited playing of it. 

By way of warning, it may be permitted to suggest that the vigour 
of the left hand might be forced down advantageously. After a rap- 
turous recall Mile. C. gave Herr Rubinstein's picturesque transcrip- 


tion of Beethoven's Turkish March from the "Ruins of Athens" which 
she executed with due observance of the gradations of sound ; now the 
march being heard fortissimo and then dying off in the distance to 
the softest pianissimo. Mile. C. also took the pianoforte part in Mo- 
zart's quartet in g-minor (1785) having as colleagues Mme. Norman 
Neruda, Herr Straus and Signor Piatti; but the composition, replete 
with melody, requires no executive skill out of the common order. 
The addition of Mile. C. to the classical chamber school of playing 
must be emphatically welcomed; her previous performances in Lon- 
don were at miscellaneous concerts, at which she indulged in the 
Fantasia; at the recent Covent Garden Promenade Concerts of 
M. Riviere, Mile. C. Performed Concertos; now she has taken a 
new ground, and the Director of the Monday Popular Concerts is 
to be congratulated on his valuable acquisition. 

The Musical Times concedes that she found great favor and 
commends her emphatic style, her strongly marked accent, and 
vigorous expression. But it criticizes her adversely because, "in- 
stead of repeating the finale of the Sonate, she added as encore 
Herr Rubinstein's transcription of Beethoven's March from the 
Ruins of Athens!' This was somewhat out of place, according 
to the Times, "in a concert devoted to classical music, and 
which it is moreover hardly wise for any other pianist than 
Herr Rubinstein to attempt in public." 

The Musical Times was not the only voice ready to jack up 
Teresa when her taste was in danger of sagging. There was 
always Rubinstein. At one of her concerts Teresa had chosen to 
play the first movement only of the Mendelssohn "Concerto in 
G minor." As she left the stage the master confronted her: 
"Teresita, you are now my adopted daughter; but if you ever 
again play a single movement of a Concerto without the others 
that belong to it, I shall disown you," he bellowed for all to 
hear. Teresa remembered and obeyed. 

While M. Heugel was publishing one of her compositions after 
another, the Scotch "Highland" with the Spanish twist, "La 
Fausse Note" reminiscent of Rubinstein's etude of the same 
name, and the delicate "Berceuse," the only piece dedicated to 


her father, the early spring of 1872 found Teresa traveling as 
piano soloist on the concert tour of the provinces for which she 
had been obligated long before by Colonel Mapleson. Among 
the operatic stars in the company Therese Tietjens was that of 
first magnitude. 

Teresa's engagement ended in Edinburgh. Dovetailing with 
it Mapleson had organized a series of operatic performances. 
The gala event, with Tietjens taking the part of Valentine in 
Les Huguenots, a recent revival in the repertoire of Her Maj- 
esty's Theatre, was scheduled for March 12. 

Meanwhile for the moment Teresa found herself foot-loose. 
Completely carefree days were rare dispensations, and she 
meant to make the most of them. What could be more soul- 
satisfying than to stay where she was in the company of light- 
hearted friends, to sit in elegant prominence in Colonel Maple- 
son's box, and to relive night after night tales of horror and 
romance, intensified by the aura added by music. She could 
take full advantage of her holiday in no better way and pre- 
pared to relish every instant. So she did, if not quite as she had 

On the morning after the last concert Teresa and Therese in 
the gayest of moods set out to see the sights of the city. In the 
sunshine of the moment Teresa could afford to brush aside the 
caustic comment of the Edinburgh C our ant's critic regarding 
her concerts. It had annoyed her slightly to read: 

There was also a lady pianiste, Mile. Carreno, who attempted Chopin's 
Grande Polonaise in A fiat; and though displaying a good memory, 
and giving some passages with the left hand very cleverly, the general 
idea of Chopin's fine composition was lost entirely in a series of wild 
crashes, indistinct runs, and chords which would have greatly sur- 
prised the nervous Pole. In a fantasia on airs from "Trovatore," the 
lady played occasionally with considerable success, and was applauded 
at the close of the piece; but her style of touching the instrument is 
contrary to that which we are accustomed to in Edinburgh. The lady 
also appeared as vocalist in the closing quartette, in which the two 
basses were too powerful for the soprano and tenor 


The critic was probably not far wrong. Neither the members 
of the concert company nor Colonel Mapleson himself took 
these provincial concerts seriously, the important thing being 
to have as hilarious a time as possible en route. Sir Frederic 
Cowen in his reminiscences recalls a typical incident of this 
tour of 1872. The troupe arrived in Newcastle one morning with 
a free day ahead. Spirits were at high pitch, imagination ready 
to run riot in almost any direction that held promise of fun. 
Someone suggested a three-piano ensemble as a novelty for 
the program of the evening. The three pianists of the concert 
company, Teresa Carreno, Tito Mattei, and young Frederic 
Cowen put their heads together, swallowed their breakfast 
whole, and hurried to the music store. Finding three instru- 
ments in tolerable tune they set to work. That there was no 
music at hand for such a combination lent zest to their deter- 
mination to give their fellow artists the surprise of their lives. 
Rigoletto was chosen as their victim. Around the most popular 
themes of that much abused opera they wove a fantasia of fire 
and fury in a three-cornered game of musical tennis, Teresa 
first serving a melody which her colleagues returned with vari- 
ants and elaborations of their own. After a few hours of this 
composite improvising, their plan of action was clearly defined. 
According to Sir Frederic the audience found nothing amiss 
with the noisy medley, while backstage a delighted band of 
colleagues with difficulty were persuaded to wait until the final 
note before exploding in mirth. The performance served its 
purpose, but it seems not to have called for repetition. 

As Teresa walked along on this morning with Tietjens by 
her side she hummed aloud for the joy of living. Turning a 
corner they came upon Colonel Mapleson, apparently in a 
frantic state. Without waiting for an answering "good morn- 
ing" to his perfunctory one, he stormed: 

What do you think? That woman, that Colombo, has left me high 
and dry. The cheek of her! She says she is ill and expects me to find 
someone to take her place. Does she think singers grow on trees like 
apples for the picking? I have tried everywhere. There is no one 


willing to sing the Queen in Les Huguenots. To blazes with these 
ungrateful creatures. I work myself sick to make them famous, and 
at the critical moment they fail me. I am a madman to order my 
life according to caprices of irresponsible females, to tiptoe over the 
quicksands of their shifting temper, to take measurements from stars 
that turn out to be meteors. What a life for a man! Why do I go 
on with it ? 

Suddenly his attention focused upon Teresa who, while look- 
ing appropriately sympathetic, was enjoying the fireworks and 
continuing her humming. A flash of inspiration cleared away 
his frown. "I have it," he whispered. "You shall sing the Queen, 

Teresa was in the right humor to respond to a good joke, and 
this was one of the best. She threw back her head, opened her 
mouth wide, and laughed until the tears came. The Colonel, 
keenly appraising, looked her up and down, then took her by 
the shoulders to make her listen. 

"I mean it. There is no other way. You must not fail me." 
Teresa was reduced from amazement to silence. Could it be 
that he was in earnest ? 

Up went her left eyebrow, a danger signal: "That is ridicu- 
lous," she answered. "I am not a singer. I have never acted 
upon a stage in my life, I don't know the part, and I do not in- 
tend to make a fool of myself." 

"Nonsense," growled the Colonel. "You have four days. 
What more do you want? You have a voice, you have studied 
singing, you are musical. There is not a moment during the day 
when you are not acting, whether you know it or not. You shall 
have plenty of rehearsals. You are made for the part. If worse 
comes to worst you can always fall back upon your looks." 

Teresa exploded with a square-cut: "Indeed not!" These two 
words were and remained one of the Leitmotifs of her vocabu- 
lary. There was no doubt that the subject was definitively 

Tietjens had been biding her time. She knew her Teresa and 
how best to handle her. Turning to Mapleson quite casually she 


said : "Teresa is absolutely right. It is much too difficult a thing 
to expect of her." 

A slight shrug of the shoulders was Teresa's response. It 
seemed to say: "Let her think so if she wants to. I could do it if 
I liked. But I don't wish to." 

Unmindful that she was playing "Monsieur le Corbeau" to 
Tietjens' "Monsieur le Renard," she began to reconsider. After 
all, the matter had something to be said in its favor. Looking 
Colonel Mapleson straight in the eye, her eyes narrowed, she 
assumed the air of a shrewd business woman about to drive a 
hard bargain. "I will sing the Queen, but under one condition. 
You must let me have all the artists I choose to assist me at my 
London concert." 
"Agreed," said the Colonel. "You have only to name them." 
Teresa had her weaknesses, but modesty was not numbered 
among them. Brazenly, beginning with Tietjens herself, she 
made a considerable list of other popular singers on the roster 
of Her Majesty's Theatre. Mapleson gasped, mainly with ad- 
miration for a quality he recognized as kindred to himself. This 
was not the time to count the cost. He prepared to make the in- 
evitable sacrifice. 

Having committed herself, Teresa was overcome with fright. 
What if she should make a complete fiasco? For safety's sake 
she stipulated also that the name of the artist she was displacing 
be left on the program. 

Once having undertaken the part, she went at it with all the 
heat of her dynamic energy. The operatic transcriptions, the 
improvised operas of her childhood had helped inadvertently to 
pave the way for this, her first appearance in a real opera. Sing- 
ing, acting, what fun it was ! And what might not come of it ! 
Overnight she imagined herself a great singer, perhaps to travel 
with the adored Patti in her private car of whose luxury she 
had heard so much. She too might lead a fabulous, merry life in 
a world as thrilling as it was unreal! She must not fail! Nor 
did she. Even under her own name she could have taken pride 
in her performance. The critics were mildly benevolent : 


The Margherita of Mile. Colombo showed cultivation in the finish 
of the runs and shakes, especially in "A questa voce sola"; but her in- 
tonation in the air in which she apostrophises Touraine, in the garden 
of France, was not quite perfect in intonation. Her duets with Raoul 
when he is brought in blindfolded went very well. 

She did not, however, become famous overnight, and her feat 
was soon forgotten. Nobody encouraged her, all too youthful for 
the career of a singer as she was, to change from a profession in 
which she already excelled to one of unpredictable future. Per- 
haps later! With this in reserve, she turned back to her piano, 
and when in the Monday Pops she and Joachim played the 
"Kreutzer Sonate" together, she was in no doubt that this was 
the instrument with which she felt most herself. 

In May of 1872 Teresa gave her own matinee in the Hanover 
Square rooms. Tietjens was prevented from singing by indisposi- 
tion so convenient to vocalists. Otherwise it was a gratifying suc- 
cess, and the Athenaeum notes that "Mile. Carreno has not only 
taken a place in the front ranks of lady pianists, but she is also 
an accomplished vocalist." With young Frederic Cowen she was 
heard in Schumann's "Andante and Variations" for two pianos, 
unconscious that life was about to write an even more startling 
variant for her. 

Maurice Strakosch's experience with Teresa on tour made him 
know that he could count upon her. More valuable still she had 
the gift of surrounding herself with an aura of cheerful, harmless 
camaraderie that was positively infectious. Jealousy and intrigue 
did not long survive in an atmosphere dominated by her whole- 
some outlook. With the keenness developed by years of familiar 
association with artists in their more difficult moments, Strakosch 
saw what a personal as well as box-office asset Teresa would be 
with the group he was selecting to travel in the United States 
during the coming winter. When he named the other artists, 
Teresa needed no persuasion to join them. Carlotta Patti, Ade- 
lina's less famous sister, offered herself as chaperon, the aging 
Mario, who had already given several farewell concerts in Eng- 
land, took the place of a father, and one at least was close to her 
in age, the young violinist £mile Sauret. Preliminary rehearsals 
soon made them friends. He was appealing to Teresa from the 
straight and long-cut hair that framed a thin and mournful face 
to his sensitive fingers. "He probably hasn't enough to eat," wor- 
ried Teresa, and all that was maternal within her awoke to take 
him under her wing. "Amongst the departures for New York 
last week," says the Athenaeum on September i, "were Madame 
Paulina Lucca, Mile. Kellogg, Mile. Carreno, Miss Clara Doria, 
Col. Liebhart, Signor Mario, and Herr Rubinstein, the pianist." 
It must have been a gay crossing. 

The company made its debut at Steinway Hall on October 4, 
1872. Says this same journal: 

It was fortunate for the once great tenor that he had as colleague 
Signora Carlotta Patti, who compensated for the decay of the voice 
of her comrade. S'enora Teresa Carreno, the pianist, who created such 
a sensation last season at the Monday Popular Concerts, has delighted 
the American amateurs who were also pleased with the execution of 
the young Sauret. 

The tour began in New York, where the Strakosch Company 
established itself in the Clarendon Hotel on Union Square. One 
evening Teresa sat eating her dinner at the long common table. 



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Absorbed in thought she failed to notice that the vacant chair at 
her right was empty no longer. All at once her eye was attracted 
by a hand beside hers, an unmistakable hand. It could belong 
only to Rubinstein! It did. He embarrassed her to confusion by 
throwing his arms around her without regard for the other 
guests, giving her a hearty kiss for good measure. In the course 
of conversation he inquired: "Have you a nice room for prac- 
ticing, Teresita?" 

"Yes, indeed I have," was the answer. 

"Then you are luckier than I. My room is on the court, small 
and dark, and the only view I have is of a pretty girl in the 
window opposite. Even that does me no good. Whenever she 
sees me looking in that direction, down goes the shade, and 
there is nothing left to stare at but the blank wall, which is not 
very inspiring. Do you suppose I might practice in your room 
when you are not there?" 

Nothing could have been more to Teresa's liking. Every day 
from two to four, the time, she pretended, when it was her 
habit to walk in the park, her room was his. Although she 
respected Rubinstein's desire to be undisturbed while working, 
yet here was a chance she could not neglect to learn something 
precious. Teresa laid her plans. Promptly at two she put on 
hat and coat, taking elaborate leave of the Master as he entered, 
only to slip quietly into a connecting room whose other door 
gave on the hall. There she listened intently, until Rubinstein 
had finished his practicing and began to improvise at random. 
That was the signal for her to return from her alleged walk 
more refreshed than she would have been had she actually 
taken the brisk exercise she so graphically described. And now 
it was her turn to play, while Rubinstein became the teacher, 
until both were too tired to go on. The tour could not have 
begun better for either one of them. 

Teresa was the first to leave New York. A reporter, come 
for an interview just after the farewell, was disturbed to find 
Rubinstein running his fingers through his hair and wailing: 
"I have lost her; I have lost my Sunshine!" 


Journeying through Canada Teresa became more and more 
aware that her "Sunshine" was fimile rather than Rubinstein. 
His constant coughing worried her. From Charlie, her official 
duenna, she learned that his clothes were not suited to the 
severe climate, that his underwear needed mending, his but- 
tons attaching. To take upon herself the rehabilitating of this 
young gentleman's wardrobe was not different from doing it 
for her dolls of long ago, only infinitely more rewarding, fimile 
Sauret accepted her solicitude with endearing helplessness. But 
better than that there was a spontaneous understanding in their 
musical give and take. Teresa felt in it a sign of more far- 
reaching oneness still. For the first time the mother and the 
musician within her felt fused. She was completely happy. 
Even her clothes showed it. In England she could never be as 
colorful as she liked. Now she gave her tropical soul free play, 
let her dressmaker run riot with ribbons and bright decoration. 
If Boston thought her "loud," and Tietjens called her some- 
what "schlampig," why should she care ? She was gay at heart. 
With fimile Sauret she felt translated, set apart together, doubly 
herself. These two could electrify audiences, each one in his 
own right. In ensemble a spark kindled between them that 
heightened their magnetic effect. Before all their playing of the 
variations in Beethoven's "Kreutzer Sonate" was moving, no 
more to their listeners than to themselves. 

There was something Teresa wanted to learn, how to curtsy 
as grandly as large-bosomed Carlotta knew how to do in spite 
of a slight lameness which had prevented her from engaging 
in an operatic career. She would give anything to sink so deeply 
to the floor, burying her head in semblance of modest gratitude 
in the folds of the gown billowing around her, then as gradu- 
ally rising to her full height, proud and commanding. Teresa 
spent hours practicing before the mirror, while Carlotta Patti 
patiently did her best to make her mistress of the art. At last 
came the evening on which Teresa was to try out her accom- 
plishment in public. In her excitement she made unpermissi- 
ble mistakes in her playing, which the audience applauded 


noisily regardless. As she made ready to sink slowly down, 
Teresa felt Carlotta watching from the wings. Attacked by 
unaccustomed stage fright Teresa miscalculated, lost her bal- 
ance, and sat heavily upon the floor to rise as best she could. 
People tittered, and worse than that, Carlotta was shaking with 
laughter, she knew. Tears came to Teresa's eyes. Never again 
did she attempt to impress an audience in that particular way. 

Not long after this she found herself once more upon the 
stage of the Music Hall in Boston, playing the "G minor Con- 
certo" of Mendelssohn, then Liszt's Faust "Fantasie," Mendels- 
sohn's "Rondo Capriccioso," and the "A flat Ballade" of 
Chopin. The very favorable criticism mentioned as one of the 
sensations of the evening the masterly playing of young Sauret. 
Mr. Dwight recalled that Teresa has not played in Boston since 
her tenth birthday, "and now comes back a tall and beautiful 
young lady and accomplished artist." He remarked upon "the 
Spanish fire and impatience of manner which somewhat dis- 
turbs the pure impression of her classical interpretation," but 
he was stirred by her brilliance in bravura passages. "Sauret 
played Spohr's Eighth Concerto like a master. There were soul- 
ful tenderness and purity in his rendering of poetic pieces." 

Then there came a trip southward. In Charleston's Music 
Hall Teresa and Sauret were heard in the fantasia on themes 
from William Tell. Soon after Mrs. O'Leary's cow had upset 
the fatal bucket the Patti-Mario troupe appeared in the stricken 
city of Chicago, playing in the only available place large enough 
that had been spared by the fire, a church. Then they turned 
back to the East. In March the Springfield Republican testifies 
that Carreno redeems in her opening womanhood the promise 
she gave as a prodigy. "She owns the celestial spark of genius. 
Miss Carreno's playing (the favorite pronunciation of her name 
was a nasal Treesa Creeno) is luxuriant, glowing, passionate 
to a degree not remotely approached since Gottschalk's death, 
and not equalled by that artist." 

On the whole for all but Teresa and fimile it had been a dull 
tour. In late spring the company returned to England at least 


pecuniarily content. As for Teresa, she lost no time in visiting 
her father, bubbling over with stories of America, in which the 
name of Emile Sauret loomed ominously. Manuel Antonio was 
quick to sense serious implications. '"If you feel sorry for this 
young man's neglected condition by all means sew on his but- 
tons, mend his clothes, buy his food even, but don't on that 
account marry him," he pleaded, throwing all the weight of 
influence in the balance against a union he feared. With fore- 
boding of a greater separation than that of space he saw her 
off for England, hoping against hope that his child would not 
take the irrevocable step with Sauret, spoiled, weak, and selfish 
as he felt him essentially to be. 

Teresa was conscious only of the deliciousness of a first love. 
At the beginning of June the journals hint that Mile. Carreno 
is about to become Mme. Sauret, and on July 13, 1873, he 
Menestrel announces the union as a fact. Her name is listed as 
Mme. Teresa Carreno-Sauret in the programs of the London 
Philharmonic Society. This was another step upward, although 
according to the Musical Times "Mendelssohn's Rondo in B 
Minor was dashed off with a brilliancy of touch and energy by 
Madame Carreno-Sauret which pleased the general audience 
more than the judicious few." 

The young Saurets took residence at 16, Clifton Villas, Maida 
Hill, West. Concerts, lessons, and happiness made the time 
pass quickly. Teresa played as before in the Monday Popular 
Concerts. On March 23, 1874, her first child, Emilita, was born. 

Three months later she and her husband for the first time 
staged a joint concert. It was announced as a "morning con- 
cert," taking place on Thursday afternoon, June n, in the 
Queen's Concert Rooms, Hanover Square. Sofa stalls sold for 
a half guinea and unreserved seats for five shillings and a half. 
They dispensed with patronesses, but the number of assisting 
colleagues, singers, and instrumentalists was large, including 
three conductors, Herr Ganz, Signor Campana, and Mr. F. H. 
Cowen to make it thoroughly cosmopolitan. Mendelssohn's 


"Piano Quartette" in G minor opened the concert. Teresa col- 
laborated with Sauret in playing the "Sonate in G," op. 30, of 
Beethoven. One of the women's voices in the trio from // 
Matrimonio Segreto by Cimarosa was Teresa's own. The life 
of a singer was still exerting the pressure of its appeal. The 
piano solos were children of her own imagination, "Highland" 
and "La Fausse Note." The concert closed, reminiscently for 
Teresa, with a "Grand Duo" on themes from the Huguenots 
played by the Saurets. 

For Manuel Antonio life held no further meaning. Teresa's 
marriage was his death warrant. To be estranged from her who 
was so peculiarly his, to be supplanted, no longer her sole con- 
fidant! Alone he felt himself unequal to the difficult task of 
guiding flighty Manuel into the ways of responsibility. Father 
and daughter still met as often as possible but never again on 
the same intimate footing. Shortly after Emilita's birth, the 
three Carreno's had their pictures taken together, at first glance 
a photograph of three unhappy people. Teresa was broken- 
hearted to find her father feeble and failing. For the first time 
she knew what it was to have to choose between two affections, 
two duties, each drawing her with equal pull. A new American 
tour was pending. When Teresa left her father that summer, 
both must have realized that they were facing a final separa- 

At the end of August, 1874, Manuel Antonio was buried in 
Paris with quiet ceremony. Le Menestrel writes: 

Last Sunday the funeral service of a one time minister of finance of 
Venezuela was celebrated, one who became through political misad- 
ventures one of our best professors of piano, notably of his daughter 
Teresa Carrefio. M. Antonio Carreno, who had studied music with 
passion in prosperous days, called his favorite art to his aid and 
comfort against misfortune. Moreover, a man of science and numbers, 
he transformed the mechanism of the piano into the art of mathe- 
matics, and according to his method he made of his young daughter 
one of the greatest virtuosos of modern times. He also taught her 


harmony as he had himself learned it, through reflective study of 
good music, and it is known that the compositions of Teresa Carreno 
are as highly esteemed in France as in England where for the last few 
years lives the beautiful young artist, married to the skillful violinist, 
Emile Sauret. 

Deeply affected by her father's death, the more so because she 
felt that it had been hastened by her own doing, Teresa wel- 
comed the distraction of another journey across the Atlantic. 
She felt herself adrift without anchor. Sauret, she soon had 
come to realize, would have to be considered a problem, not a 
support. The rivalry between home and art was becoming a 
harrowing reality. With a doubly heavy heart she was obliged 
to leave her baby in the safekeeping of Mrs. Bischoff, while she 
set sail, again under Strakosch's management, with a company 
of which lima di Murska was the prima donna, and Sauret the 

The tour was to begin in the East, reaching to the far West 
with plans for an extension as far as Australia. In Boston, where 
Teresa's friend, Mme. Rudersdorfl, had established herself as 
a singing teacher, Mr. Dwight still wrote trenchant reviews. In 
his journal of October 3 he had declared that M. Sauret never 
made so excellent an impression, that Mme. Sauret was left un- 
happily to play three solos at the end of a program that, like 
most, lasted much too long. He liked best the "Andante in F" 
of Beethoven, and mentioned the "Spring Song" and the 
"March" from the Ruins of Athens favorably. In these con- 
certs the composition most likely to be saved for the end, be- 
cause of its wide, if musically unwarranted popularity, was 
Braga's "Angel's Serenade" in trio form with Teresa presiding 
at the piano and the composer himself playing the cello, while 
di Murska sang the part of the heaven-hungry daughter. 

When artists were to be added or substituted, it was Teresa 
who was entrusted with their choice. One of these young as- 
pirants was a tenor, Nathaniel Cohen, who in his diary de- 
scribed life with this troupe. At their first meeting Teresa by 
her natural friendliness at once put him at ease. He forgot to 
be nervous when she quietly sat down at the piano to play the 
accompaniments for the songs he had brought for the audi- 
tion. Teresa praised the quality of his voice, as always unstint- 
ing in her enthusiasm. For six weeks he became a regular mem- 


ber of the company. After a week of rehearsal the first concert 
took place in Los Angeles. Since the railroad was not yet com- 
pleted, they traveled by boat to disembark at San Pedro where 
Teresa recovered from her seasickness in the Pico House. The 
Saurets had taken a great liking to their new colleague. He 
ate his supper with them over fine Bass ale, and found Teresa, 
especially, talkative and in high spirits. It was a relief to find 
in her a woman who did not always have to talk about music, 
and he had not yet become aware that Teresa's emotional ba- 
rometer could register extreme ups and downs. Personal un- 
happiness she had learned to hide under the protective cloak of 
merriment. It was not that she had ceased to mourn for her 
father, or to long for her child; but she had recuperative pow- 
ers so elastic that she could on the instant ignore a profound 
attack of melancholy to infect a whole gathering with joyous- 
ness she had only assumed. At the end she herself was capable 
of forgetting that it was not real. 

In Los Angeles the audience was responsive, being largely 
German and so, music-loving. Four performances in which 
Teresa and fimile were singly and together the favorites fol- 
lowed each other closely. Between concerts there was time for 
drives to the seashore — Teresa appreciated its grandeur best 
with her own feet on terra firma — and for a side trip to play 
in Anaheim, a German wine-growing settlement. In the pres- 
ence of raw nature in any form Teresa felt herself expanding. 
The ocean had her respect, but it was the mountain scenery she 
could love. On the way from San Luis Obispo to Santa Bar- 
bara she reveled in the magnificent, precarious precipices the 
stagecoach just managed to avoid, as it swung around curves 
that made the others cover their eyes. This was living! While 
Sauret cowered inside, Teresa and Nathaniel mounted to the 
driver's seat, one on each side of him, rivaling one another in 
telling minstrel jokes and singing Negro songs for his amuse- 
ment. They counted thousands of ground squirrels, and were 
not at all anxious to arrive in time for the concert that evening. 
It was followed, as was customary there, by a very informal re- 


ception for the performers. In the same jolly way as before they 
again entertained the driver on the way to San Bene Ventura, 
where the house was nearly sold out. It was a rare thing for 
known artists to come to so small a place. 

Backstage all was peaceful on this particular night; that is, 
until the Saurets were to play together. Emile was apparently 
out of patience, perhaps with his wife. That was becoming less 
and less uncommon. Inadvertently or not, with the first note 
of their duo his foot began an insistent tapping. Teresa, en- 
raged at this implied criticism of her tempo, answered with 
chords that should by their increasingly bitter tang have given 
warning. Tap, tap went the foot. Teresa boiled. She tried by 
playing fortissimo to drown out the sound of this unwelcome 
metronome. Sauret went on playing and tapping. Nathaniel 
Cohen in the dressing room next to theirs heard the music stop. 
Suddenly there was a crash! A tirade in angry French pitched 
higher and higher. Nathaniel rushed to see. There stood Te- 
resa, an avenging fury, eyes flashing, adjectives rolling ava- 
lanchelike down upon her husband. "I am enough of an artist 
to count without your assistance," she shrieked, flinging herself 
out of the room. Sauret's temper had exploded more destruc- 
tively. On the floor, where in his rage he had thrown it, lay 
his precious violin, broken beyond repair. At breakfast next 
morning this marital ensemble was by mutual agreement not 
on speaking terms. It was Nathaniel's part to play the em- 
barrassing role of placating go-between. 

There was one last stage ride to Soledad, the railway terminal 
— harmony was at last reestablished — and then to San Fran- 
cisco, where the artists were to be redistributed. Nathaniel was 
chosen to accompany the Saurets to Virginia City for a week 
of concerts. Valerga, the soprano, had just resigned. What 
would become of the duets? Teresa offered to sing them with 
Nathaniel, succeeding so charmingly that he wondered at her 
doing it so rarely. Later she confided to him that she meant 
to sing in opera upon her return to Europe. 

The troupe finally disbanded in Carson City, a mining town 


in which every other building was either a saloon or a gam- 
bling den and musical hall. The Opera House was sold out 
for both nights. It might not be a godly city, but it was music- 
minded. Teresa sang and was herself pleased with the sound, 
as with the warm response of her disreputable audience. She 
had never been in better form or in better humor. Prophetically 
with the strains of the "Last Hope" the tour ended. 

The two Saurets were at odds. That was no secret to anybody 
but perhaps themselves. Scenes were nothing unusual, and they 
themselves did not take them ultraseriously. But Teresa's exu- 
berant vitality was too much for the self-contained fimile. It 
overpowered him, and she too became irritable. Touring from 
town to town, where anything she played was acceptable, no 
matter how badly she did it, left her nothing to live up to. Her 
nature required difficulties to conquer. More than that she 
wanted and needed her home. 

There was to be another baby soon. Teresa decided to await 
its birth in New York. As for fimile, to be tied down as father 
of another child that he did not want was not to his mind. In 
his irritation he flaunted his temper at the least provocation. 
Everything upset him from the mustiness of the boardinghouse 
to the emptiness of his purse. Suddenly he was overwhelmed 
by homesickness for England, and one morning he entered 
Teresa's room to announce abruptly, "I am leaving." Teresa 
was dumbfounded. Cold-blooded though he was, she had not 
thought him capable of this. He should see that she was not 
one to be downed. Reaching under her pillow, she took what 
remained of their capital, seventy dollars in all, divided it into 
two equal parts, and taking a certain pride in making a last 
gesture, she gave him one half. Then pointing melodramati- 
cally to the door she said: "Go! But remember this, if you leave 
me now, I shall never receive you again as long as I live." The 
door closed behind him. 

Teresa was alone. The shock was too great. The baby did 
not survive. Disillusioned, ill, and penniless — even Manuel was 


far away in Africa with the foreign legion — she, the always 
self-sufficient, had to depend upon a few loyal friends and Mrs. 
Bischoff. Two things were certain. She could not in her humil- 
iation return to England to be pitied, and she and Sauret were 
separated forever. As soon as possible she must find occupa- 
tion, earn enough to bring Emilita to America. For the present 
there was no thought of such a thing. Teresa was slow in re- 
covering, the summer season musically nonexistent. 

A letter from Mrs. Bischoff, to whom alone she had written 
the details of her unhappiness, was usually a comfort. Thank 
God, her child was well, cared for, and cherished! One morn- 
ing there arrived a letter which contained more than the usual 
words of commiseration and reassurance. "Preposterous, revolt- 
ing; never so long as I live!" That was the first reaction. Again 
and again she read it through. Mrs. Bischoff wanted to adopt 
Emilita, her baby! She had come to love the child as her own, 
she said, and could offer her the security of home, provide her 
with every luxury, educate her well, eventually make her heir 
to the family fortune. There was one stipulation only. Teresa 
must give up all thought of seeing Emilita again, must promise 
to make no attempt to communicate with her ever. "Her little 
baby!" Instant angry refusal was at the tip of her pen. While 
putting her feelings on paper, maternal protectiveness had time 
to assert itself. What after all could she, a wandering musician, 
offer her child? Poverty, insecurity, fatherlessness. The love of 
a mother seemed to weigh light in the balance. She was still 
young to sound the spiritual depths of resignation, even though 
at the age of eight her music had expressed that quality. 
Against all her instincts Teresa made the decision. In favor of 
the rights of her daughter to lead a carefree, sheltered life, she 
signed her name to the abdication of the privilege she cherished 
most, that of motherhood. 

Teresa's world of the moment was a vacuum, the next step 
not worth the taking. Self-preservation supported by pride 
forced her to muster her resources. The thought of staying in 


New York sickened her. Instead she resolved to make a fresh 
start in Boston. 

Once there she turned to Mme. Rudersdorff. Here was one 
who would give practical advice without being too openly 
sympathetic. In this Teresa made no mistake. It happened that 
Mme. Rudersdorff needed an accompanist for her classes and 
for her concerts. In exchange she offered a modest salary. Te- 
resa found herself at once in a congenial atmosphere to whose 
lighthearted camaraderie she could not long remain unrespon- 
sive. Appreciating the therapeutic value of a new interest, Mme. 
Rudersdorff tactfully chose the right moment to suggest that 
Teresa join her class of singers. Once more encouraged to enter 
the realm of fictitious tragedy, this time to offset her own too 
real distress, she began to prepare for the opera stage in earnest. 
Occasionally she was reminded that she was a pianist, and ac- 
cepted an engagement to play here and there in the neighbor- 
hood. It helped in meeting expenses. Her repertoire lay dor- 
mant. She felt no urge to increase it. 

When Mme. Rudersdorff appeared in public, Teresa was in- 
variably at the piano and the other students in the audience. 
To invent some prank at the expense of their teacher was 
tempting because of a certain element of danger connected 
with it. On one particular evening Mme. Rudersdorff was sing- 
ing not far from Boston for a charitable purpose. The students 
attended en masse. Dressed in black touched with the scarlet 
she loved — her nature like Teresa's delighted in the colorful — 
she stood superbly still in the curve of the piano, waiting for 
Teresa's improvising before the beginning of the aria, while 
the audience was composing itself. Suddenly she stiffened. 
What was she hearing? Teresa, unconcerned except for a 
twinkling eye, was preludizing on a certain nose exercise 
known to every Rudersdorff pupil. Tittering and nudging in 
the front rows suggested that there were those who were thor- 
oughly enjoying themselves at the expense of their teacher. 
Mme. Rudersdorff turned slightly and as unnoticeably as possi- 


ble hissed through closed teeth: "Stop that, you little devil." 
Teresa took her own good time in finding a modulation suit- 
able to the key and the spirit of the aria. The concert continued 
without further obstruction, this episode indicating that Te- 
resa's emotional barometer was rising once more to fair. 

A frequent guest in the house of Mme. Rudersdorff during 
the season of 1876 was the great conductor and pianist, Hans 
von Biilow. It was there that Teresa's playing and her beauty 
first came to his notice. He was less impressed with Boston 
itself as a musical center, much preferring Philadelphia. 

The cosmopolitan setting of the Rudersdorff circle was unaf- 
fected by the frostbitten provincialism of Boston. In the summer 
Teresa accompanied the Rudersdorff colony to Berlin, Massa- 
chusetts, where Mme. Rudersdorff had rented a farm. There, 
in the quiet she loved, Teresa made preparations to appear, 
this time under her own name, in opera. The role decided upon 
for her debut was that of Zerlina in Don Giovanni. The uncom- 
plicated clarity of Mozart's music was grateful to her own con- 
fused state of mind. Mme. Rudersdorff had chosen wisely. 

Teresa's good friend, Maurice Strakosch, happened to be in 
America with his opera company, which included Tietjens and 
the two baritones Brignoli and Giovanni Tagliapietra. Brign- 
oli's huge size and manner invariably caused laughter. But 
Tag, as he was familiarly called, was, according to M. Riviere, 
"perhaps the handsomest and most dashing baritone that ever 
appeared in Grand Opera." Strakosch was found willing to 
engage Teresa for a performance of Don Giovanni in the Acad- 
emy of Music of New York, where years before she had suc- 
ceeded and frozen in her so-called benefit performance on her 
ninth birthday. Teresa was in the habit of making a success of 
everything she undertook artistically. Her fiascos were regis- 
tered in other fields. And so it was again. The papers acknowl- 
edged her gift and found her capable, without however giving 
vent to extreme enthusiasm. The New York Daily Tribune of 
February 26, 1876, wrote: 


Mile. Tietjens reappeared at the Academy of Music last evening, 
singing for the first time here the part of Donna Anna in Don 

Her success was as great as on former occasions and she was re- 
ceived with delight by an immense audience. Miss Beaumont, though 
new to the stage, rendered the difficult part of Elvira in a most ac- 
ceptable manner. The trio at the close of the first act by Mile. Tietjens, 
Miss Beaumont, and Brignoli was given admirably, and was en- 
thusiastically encored. The debutante of the evening, Mme. Carrerio- 
Sauret, in the part of Zerlina was warmly greeted by the audience 
and made a pleasant impression. Her singing shows careful study and 
excellent method. In the second act she seemed to gain confidence 
and sang the solo in a creditable manner. 

This review is complemented by one in D wight's Journal of 
March 18, 1876. The company was made up in Boston on short 
notice in order to give Tietjens, already attacked by her fatal 
illness, a hearing in the medium for which she was most fa- 
mous. This single performance of Don Giovanni took place in 
the first half of March. The critic wrote of Carreno: 

The debutante of the evening, the beautiful Mme. Carreno-Sauret, 
in the part of Zerlina acted with grace and spirit, and in spite of 
the indulgence asked for her on the ground of health, sang most of 
the music well, showing herself possessor of a clear, rich, telling 
voice which seems to promise a career. 

After these experimental excursions into a neighboring field 
Teresa took stock of her assets as a singer. In all honesty she 
was obliged to admit that her voice, powerful as it was, lacked 
a certain roundness and richness. Perfection would be hard to 
acquire and harder to maintain. Her piano playing was natural, 
effortless, relaxed. In singing self-consciousness entered in, and 
she could not help fearing and tightening. And even if she did 
succeed in achieving a relative degree of fame, how short the 
life of a voice! Besides, it would be difficult for her to follow 
unquestioningly the dictates of an opera director. She had ven- 
tured far enough in this direction. It had served its purpose in 

BOSTON 1876 

Teresa as Zerlina in Don Giovanni 


restoring her balance, in showing her once again clearly that, 
whatever the byways she might be tempted to explore, the 
piano was her instrument. 

Mr. Weber, owner of the Weber Piano Company, was of the 
same opinion. Teresa had played his pianos now and then, and 
under her fingers they sounded superbly their best. He de- 
cided to engage her to represent his interests in concert at a 
modest but fixed salary. For fourteen years she played under 
Weber contract. Her daily needs were provided for. It was no 
longer advisable to live in Boston. New York was the far more 
convenient point of departure for a pianist, and there again she 
took up residence in the fall of 1876. 

Young James Huneker heard Teresa in one of the first of her 
performances after she had freed herself from the operatic urge. 
Time after time he was impelled to propose to her. Together 
with Adelaide Nielson and Mme. Scott-Siddons he considered 
her one of the three most beautiful women then before the 
public, and he remembered her on one hot night wearing a 
scarlet dress as fiery as her playing. "I close my eyes," said Mr. 
Huneker, "and then, as if I were surrounded by a scarlet cloud, 
I see her and I hear her. . . . Even her manner of playing for 
me has always seemed scarlet, as Rubinstein's was golden, and 
Joseffy's silver." 

A person immediate in reaction is never long in making 
friends. A casual invitation from Juan Buitrago, a South Amer- 
ican violinist who had accompanied the Carrenos on their first 
voyage to Philadelphia in 1862, to hear his talented young piano 
pupil, Eddie MacDowell, play, was for Teresa the beginning 
of a lifelong and intimate friendship with the MacDowell fam- 
ily. Fanny MacDowell, Eddie's mother, was associated with a 
Conservatory of Music in an administrative capacity. Her ge- 
nial husband Thomas owned a not-too-prospering milk circuit. 
Although Fanny was not herself a musician, she liked to sur- 
round herself with young artists. One of these was Buitrago, 
adopted as a member of her household in return for the in- 
struction he gave to young Edward. Teresa recognized at first 


hearing the extraordinary talent of this boy of fourteen, and 
was immediately attracted to his parents, who encouraged her 
to confide to them the story of her unhappiness. Taken captive 
by Teresa's charm and beauty, their sympathies were enlisted 
in her behalf. In their simple home on East Nineteenth Street, 
Teresa could rely upon finding unwavering affection and prac- 
tical advice. There was the understanding family life she 
longed for, there was a friend with whom she could share a 
joke, for their sense of the ridiculous was fundamentally alike. 
Soon it was "my dearest girl" and "your devoted Fanny." In- 
terrupted by temporary misunderstandings their close intimacy 
lasted through life, largely because Fanny MacDowell, sixteen 
years her senior, had the common sense to respect Teresa's in- 
dependence, while exerting a decidedly leveling influence. On 
her part Teresa brought color and radiance to enliven the work- 
a-day world of the MacDowells. 

Teresa Carreno's importance in the musical development of 
Edward MacDowell in his formative years was determining 
and constructive. As she went freely in and out of his house, 
playing on his piano when the spirit moved her, he must have 
learned much merely by listening. More than that she occa- 
sionally practiced with him, taking his part against the majority 
opinion that music was no profession for a boy, that it was 
bound to make him a "sissy," the worst that then as now 
could befall any male. Edward's father was disturbed, his 
mother secretly delighted at the thought of having a musician 
in the family. It worried her that under the able instruction of 
Senor Desvernine as of Senor Buitrago, Eddie was not as at- 
tentive, as patient, or as skillful as she would have wished him. 
Teresa offered to try out her own methods. He did not, she dis- 
covered, have naturally good coordination. His fingers, if will- 
ing, were clumsy and stiff. When Teresa was at the end of her 
resources, she would sit down at the piano herself. "Look at 
me, Eddie! Do it the way I do." To which Eddie conclusively 
protested, "Yes, but that's you, not me." 

Musically imaginative as he was, there were times when he 


was, like most normal boys, actually lazy. One afternoon the 
composition in question was Chopin's "B flat minor Scherzo." 
Teresa herself had never added it to her repertoire, and Edward 
to her distraction was dawdling over it. The time had come to 
do something drastic. "I shall make a bet with you, Eddie," she 
suggested. "Tonight, I promise to play the whole Scherzo for 
you correctly from memory. It is easy enough. If I have not 
learned it, I will give you a nice present. If I do it without mis- 
takes — you shall give me a kiss." Eddie curious and unafraid — 
it could not be done in a few hours — easily agreed. After sup- 
per Teresa reappeared and without hesitation played the piece 
from beginning to end, then turned around for Eddie's ap- 
proval. But he had vanished. There he stood on the landing! 
Teresa followed him in a heated chase, which she at least thor- 
oughly enjoyed, upstairs and down, until she cornered her 
victim, breathless, in the cellar. She managed to kiss him 
soundly, and left him rubbing off the indignity with his hand- 
kerchief. "It did not, however, wipe away the lesson," said 

Teresa's operatic interlude had one far-reaching result. She 
had found a personable, amusing, and warmhearted colleague 
in Giovanni Tagliapietra. They appeared together in the Emma 
Abbott troupe at the Philadelphia Centennial in 1876 and in- 
creasingly often later on. He sang like an angel and was as 
fun-loving as a mischievous child. Teresa loved to hear him tell 
how he, a young student of naval architecture, one dark night 
in Italy had jumped from the window of his dormitory to 
join the forces of Garibaldi in 1866 and had followed his idol 
for three thrilling years. Teresa believed every tale, even the 
wildest, to the last word. Here was a real man, her equal in 
temperament, who could understand her better than that cold- 
blooded fish Sauret. He needed no protection — except perhaps 
from those silly girls that so blatantly adored him — and he was 
strong enough to care for her, to fight her battles. Home and 
such a husband! What more could she ask of life? 

For Tag falling in love was as undiscriminating and daily a 
pastime in life as on the stage. But that Teresa failed to notice. 
When he brought her flowers, sang to her accompaniments, 
made love to her, nothing else existed. 

Once, hidden behind a huge bouquet of roses, he met her 
train at the end of a tour, to the despair of young Walter Dam- 
rosch, for whose interests — it was his first concert experience as 
accompanist — Teresa had appointed herself protector-in-chief. 
She saw to it that the number of rehearsals granted the novice 
was adequate. She even on occasion took his place. In return she 
earned temporary adoration and lasting friendship. 

At this time paradise to Teresa seemed nothing more far 
away than a suburb of New York City. Forgetting her lack of 
judgment in the choice of a first husband, Teresa unthinkingly 
surrendered to her impulses for a second time. In short order 
Teresa and Tag were established together in a small house of 
their own renting in New Rochelle. The garden extended be- 
hind it in terraces down to the water where they were in the 
habit of rowing, and for Teresa living in this countrylike place 






came close to the ideal. How she had hated living alone! To 
plan, to cook for two, even to scrub floors, became a rite. It 
made home more dearly hers. Disguised in apron and turban 
she sang as she worked. Sitting proud and straight in her 
phaeton, Billy the horse prancing before, she had the pleasure 
of feeling herself noticed and envied, as she drove her handsome 
husband to the station mornings, or called for him at night. In 
the evenings people stopped before the open windows to listen 
to their blended music. How could anyone say that there was 
no such thing as perfect happiness ! Tag's good spirits matched 
her own, his devotion seemed to leave nothing to be desired. 
This was living! 

There had as yet been no official release from the marriage 
ties that bound Carreno to Sauret. Teresa was undisturbed by 
the equivocal situation in which she found herself. As a child 
she had often felt smothered by the social and religious conven- 
tions she was obliged to observe overpunctiliously. As soon as 
she had her independence, she asserted her right to do as she 
chose, to be accountable to herself alone, and she actively re- 
sented whatever interfered with this right. Not that she was 
irreligious, although for years she did not enter a church except 
to be uplifted by its architecture! But half fatalist, half pagan, 
she worshiped a God whom she acknowledged as an all- 
directing, inescapable father. She was not free from supersti- 
tions. It was a good precaution, for instance, to make the sign 
against the evil eye every time a priest approached. With better 
logic she disregarded the man-made decrees that set store rather 
upon the letter than upon the spirit of matrimony. Marriage to 
her was nonetheless sacred because it lacked the sanction of 
civil and religious ceremony. She knew that she meant to do 
her part to make the relation a lasting one. Of her husband she 
expected no less than of herself. A common-law marriage, 
which was at this time legal in New York State, seemed to 
Teresa as dignified as any other. She did not require that her 
conservative friends agree with her and took little notice if they 
did not. It might even serve a purpose in showing which friends 


she could depend upon to stand the test. Among these were the 
MacDowells. Their affection was not deflected by an interpre- 
tation of marriage that could not but shock them. As for Tag 
himself, he lived, like the improvident cricket, in the present. 
What was marriage to him, the gambler incarnate, but the 
greatest lottery of all. He gladly left it to Teresa, busy as any 
ant with homemaking, to plan for the future. 

A music correspondent remembers a concert given by the 
pair at the old Park Theater at Twenty-third Street and Broad- 
way. It was in the early days of their companionship. Teresa 
played solos and did not consider it beneath her then to ac- 
company Tag's songs. The eyes of all the men were for the 
beautiful Teresa, of all the girls for handsome Tag. His col- 
leagues of the opera began by being amused at his new in- 
fatuation, then became amazed that it apparently was going to 
last. Even a game of poker or his favorite bottle could not keep 
him from catching the train for New Rochelle on time. Teresa 
and Billy would not, he knew, fail to meet him. And later, over 
a steaming plate of spaghetti that Teresa learned to prepare ac- 
cording to perfect Italian tradition, she would dramatize for 
his benefit the most humdrum details of the day that was clos- 

Concerts took subordinate place for Teresa at this time. Re- 
luctantly she accepted an occasional engagement. The most im- 
portant one of the year 1877 was with the New York Philhar- 
monic Orchestra, her medium being Mendelssohn's "G minor 
Concerto." This was, she felt, where she belonged. Why could 
not she too be allowed to play only good music, to live always 
up to her best? If more were demanded of her, she felt the 
power within her of rising to unexplored heights. Her wings 
were strong to carry her to Andean altitudes of unimagined 
splendor. Was there in the world no audience that could fol- 
low her, urge her on? Did fate mean to condemn her to life 
at second best? She returned to the accustomed routine, dis- 
contented with the artist that she was, unresigned to audiences 
as she found them. 


Her great satisfaction was her home, before all when on 
March 1, 1878, she became the guardian of a new life, an- 
other daughter providentially sent to fill the emptiness left by 
the sacrifice she had made, but never ceased to feel. For a time 
the duties of motherhood and housekeeping completely ab- 
sorbed her. Not until the end of the year would she consider a 
longer tour. 

Then Mr. Weber offered Tag and Teresa together a journey 
with Wilhelmy the violinist, and di Murska the singer, a com- 
bination much superior to the usual ones. Early January, 1879, 
found the troupe in Boston. Together Carreno and Wilhelmy 
played the "Kreutzer Variations" says the surfeited Mr. Dwight, 

as if possessed by one spirit, both moved by a higher power invisible. 
It was one of those inspired moments which now and then occur to 
relieve the tedium of too many concerts. The beautiful pianist whose 
face and movements had until then worn an expression of impa- 
tience and almost disgust at being repeatedly recalled after flashy 
virtuoso pieces (Gottschalks) now evidently felt at home and happy 
in good music; her cooperation was perfect, and her face poetic and 
inspired. Why cannot artists always have artistic tasks to do? 

And then he mentions Signor Tagliapietra "one of the most 
artistic and refined of baritones." It was Carl Zerrahn who con- 
ducted the improvised orchestra in the Music Hall of happy 

The tour continued with the pull of home and profession 
always in opposite directions. Besides, a disturbing cloud 
threatened storm. Teresa was beginning to see in Tag qualities 
that she had not in her trustfulness investigated. Carefree and 
moneyfree she had from the first known him to be. On that 
account both agreed that she should be the one to administer the 
family purse. She had inherited from her father an interest in 
the practical side of life, from him also a sense of pride that 
admitted of being in debt to no one. Necessity had educated 
her to rigid economy. Tag's income and hers together should 
have sufficed for pleasant living on a modest scale. For a time 


Tag entered into this planning as into a new game. Then his 
extravagant instincts, his love of taking a chance, came to the 
front. Gradually Teresa realized that she must not count upon 
her husband's earnings. Over the poker table they might vanish 
in a night. More and more often Billy trotted disconsolately 
back from the station with one disappointed passenger. Subjects 
of disagreement became frequent, and led to scenes in which 
amiability changed to violence on the instant. The explosion of 
two high-pressure temperaments in conflict were audible out- 
side. It was spare, white-haired Hughsie, the real treasure of a 
factotum, who discreetly closed the windows. Tag jealous and 
bored by turns sought for more peaceable companionship 
among his all-too-willing friends of both sexes, then sheepishly 
returned to the uncertain weather of a fireside he still needed 
and periodically cherished. When the two appeared in public 
together the frank admiration accorded to his wife became irk- 
some to Tag, and Teresa purposely did nothing to calm his 
jealousy. It did not occur to her to leave him. He was still in his 
contrite, appeasing moments dear to her. Above all he was the 
father of little Lulu. For her sake this marriage must be made 
to last. But if Teresa had to pay the bills she meant to hold the 
reins of the household. There was no meekness in her makeup. 
She disliked this trait in others, as much as stupidity, with 
which in servants or in students she had no patience whatso- 

Of the latter she had a number whom she taught more or 
less as she felt inclined. They served in giving ear to her trou- 
bles, and when they were too unyielding to her erratic methods 
of instruction, she would, instead of correcting their mistakes, 
play for them herself by the hour. Her own practicing at this 
time was desultory. After a passage had misfired in public a 
number of times she might spend a tearful morning ironing 
out the difficulty. Her standing repertoire sufficed to fill the 
needs of a country at the very bottom level of musical taste. 

At the insistent prodding of Teresa young Edward Mac- 
Dowell in the interim had been taken by his mother to study 


music in Paris. His unabated confidence in Teresa's artistic judg- 
ment led him to send her a bundle of his early compositions in 
manuscript, among them his first "Suite," "Erzahlung," and 
"Barcarolle." In an accompanying letter he asked her to ex- 
amine them. If she approved, he promised to increase his ef- 
forts; otherwise, should she find them worthless, he begged 
her, with characteristic self-depreciation, to destroy them. He 
would then write no more. Teresa at once replied from the 
equally characteristic fullness of her enthusiasm, urging him to 
continue at full steam and above all to consign not a scrap to 
the wastebasket. She made up her mind then and there that 
her fingers and no others should be first to introduce Edward 
MacDowell to the public. America may well be grateful to 
Teresa Carreno for her enlightened encouragement of Edward 
MacDowell's gift, and for her propaganda in the face of ob- 
stacles presented by audiences that were as unreceptive as they 
were unprepared. It is to her unselfish efforts that MacDowell's 
early popularity was in great measure due. 

Touring the United States and Canada in the Seventies and 
Eighties must have been a doubtful pleasure for one who 
looked upon music as an art. The companies were carelessly 
thrown together and ill-assorted, often a fading stellar magni- 
tude giving its name to a group of lesser satellites. The pro- 
grams were a jumble of light music for the many, and more 
classical music for the few, making up in length for what they 
lacked in depth. They followed Goethe's dictum: "He who 
brings much, will bring something to each." Concerts were 
listed with circuses and prize fights under the heading of 
"amusements," and were criticized rather for the personal ap- 
peal of the performer, for mannerisms, for accidents in the per- 
formance, than for the quality inherent in the music. Fifty cents 
was considered a high price to pay for a ticket of admission. Ac- 
commodations in small towns were meager, trains unreliable and 
uncomfortable, meals irregular and poor, and audiences dis- 
heartening. People came and went, conversed or slept at pleas- 


ure during the concerts. At the opening of the Queen's Hall, 
Montreal, in January, 1880, says the Montreal Star: "Carrefio 
played at a disadvantage, coming direcdy from the train," and 
goes on to say: "It seems to us that a great deal of unnecessary 
fuss was shown in the frequent moving of the piano by three 
men." Later in the year, in the same city, the Gazette passes 
favorably upon the new departure of keeping doors closed dur- 
ing the performance. "The length of the programme and the 
demand for encores made the concert longer than usual, not 
more than half the audience being present at the conclusion." 

Chicago, where Teresa found genuine stimulus, had a fore- 
sighted critic, who remarked, "Carrefio had so much improved 
of late that one would scarcely recognize the passionate but 
somewhat reckless pianiste of days gone by. Certainly the fire 
of genuine ambition has touched her gift of genius, and she 
now adds to her talent a scholarly thought and method which 
will undoubtedly send her to the front of the first rank of 
pianists." That would not have been noticed in the small town 
of Ilion, New York, where Teresa's co-artist was Mr. Archi- 
bald Forbes of London, famous English correspondent, who 
lectured, framed by Carreno's solos, on "Royal people I have 
met." It must have been a genuine relief to return to more usual 
colleagues such as Remenyi the violinist, and Kate Thayer, the 
singer, with whom she toured in the South. 

January, 188 1, saw Teresa in Baltimore, contributing a group 
of Norwegian scenes of folk life by Grieg to a program devoted 
to Russian and Norse music. February took her from Montreal, 
where she shared the honors with her husband, to Chicago and 
southward to Knoxville. 

Here under the name of the Carrefio Concert Company a 
new procedure was followed. One half of the evening was de- 
voted to the usual concert program, the second to opera in con- 
cert form. All began well. "Madame was led to her seat, her 
pretty face wreathed in smiles." Next it was Tag's turn. He 
sang a few bars, then stopped. "I am ill, very ill," he explained 
and left the stage. Somewhat later he reappeared, apparently 


quite restored, to sing the part of the Count de Luna to Teresa's 
Leonore in // Trovatore. Her encore was "Home Sweet Home." 
She must have sung it with fervor. On the following Monday 
selections from La Favorita, Marta, and Faust divided honors 
with the piano in the "Waltz" from Faust, "La Campanella," and 
"The Last Rose of Summer." Speaking of Teresa as a singer the 
Knoxville paper effervesces: "Carreno rose to the height of a 
musical medium, and carried her audience into the spell of 
opera's profundity without the aid of English words." And 
Signor Tagliapietra's voice was pronounced "the finest in all re- 
spects on this side of the Atlantic." 

After a concert in Philadelphia on April 27, 188 1, in which 
Teresa accompanied the "Double Concerto" of Bach for the two 
Gartners, father and son, both violinists, there is suddenly a 
hiatus. No more mention of concerts. Lulu, the one who mat- 
tered most in her affections, fell ill. The best available doctors 
did what they could. On the sixteenth of May, 188 1, a little over 
three years old, she died. Teresa was crushed. Tag too loved his 
child, precociously intelligent for her years. Temporarily grief 
brought the two parents once more closely together. 

Fanny MacDowell was a very practical consolation, and 
Teresa also found relief in the friendship of one of her pupils, 
a Southern girl of eighteen, Caroline Keating by name. When 
Teresa found herself attacked by gloom, it was Carrie to whom 
she telephoned to make an appointment for theater or vaude- 
ville. Afterwards, her spirits restored, she would review the 
whole performance in caricature, leaving Carrie convulsed with 
laughter. Not only their likes were similar. According to Bri- 
gnoli they actually looked like sisters. 

In September, 188 1, after a summer engagement at Manhat- 
tan Beach a new group formed, which called itself the Carreno- 
Donaldi Operatic Gem Company. It included Mme. Teresa 
Carreno, the greatest living Lady Pianiste — Mr. Dwight would 
not have agreed. His list of the three greatest so-called "petti- 
coat pianists" comprised Sophie Menter, Clara Schumann, and 
Arabella Goddard — Mme. Emma Donaldi, grand Italian prima 


donna, Signor Ferranti, King of Buffos, also Signor Stantini, a 
tenor, for whom nobody seemed to have a kind word. By com- 
mon consent Mme. Carreno was declared to be "strong enough 
to carry the whole party." Signor Ferranti's time for being 
funny had evidently forever passed. Yet his sunny Italian good 
humor won him friends in spite of it. Mme. Donaldi had lost 
whatever public appeal she once possessed. When her criticisms 
became too painfully bad, she withdrew on the plea of illness 
which did not fool the reviewers. Buffalo was one of the places 
in which she defaulted, and on short notice a duet between 
Carreno and Stantini was substituted. At this time Teresa's 
singing earned so much commendation that it became a regular 
part of the programs. 

In Chicago Teresa was from the first a favorite. Nowhere was 
she more appreciated. This was due in no small part to the in- 
sight of the best and most discriminating of all her friends, Mrs. 
Regina Watson. First of all Mrs. Watson was a thorough musi- 
cian, a good pianist, to whom matrimonial happiness chanced 
to mean more than a concert career. At her home in East In- 
diana Street she had established a school for the "Higher Art 
of Piano Playing." Chicago society gave her its friendship and 
sent her its most gifted children. She became a strong influence 
in many single lives, and in the musical development of Chi- 
cago she was a driving force for good. 

Teresa and "Ginka," as her intimates called her, were drawn 
together by their likemindedness. They respected and admired 
each other. Teresa as a performer was the impersonation of 
Ginka's ideals. Her vitality, her power, her directness as an 
artist and as a human being alike found echo within her. So 
she would have dreamed of playing herself. To Teresa Ginka 
was the embodiment of frank friendship and of honest devo- 
tion to a calling. She was not blind to the faults of Teresa's im- 
pulsive nature, nor slow in confronting her with them, when 
she was in danger of making a major mistake. Besides, Ginka 
had achieved that in which she had herself failed, the combina- 


tion of a successful profession and equally successful home life. 
With Ginka and Lewis, her husband, Teresa found her intel- 
lectual and spiritual level — both Dr. and Mrs. Watson held 
dominating positions in their respective fields of medicine and 
music — found sane counsel, and the peace of well-being in a 
household that ran smoothly yet without ostentation. So Teresa 
would have dreamed her own home. As long as they lived 
there was never a serious misunderstanding between them. To 
Mrs. Watson's lasting credit be it said that she was the one who 
paved the way that finally was to release Teresa from the de- 
pressing routine of the concert player on tour in the United States 
of the Eighties. For the time being, however, it continued in its 
dull and devious ways. 

Electric light had been newly installed in the Chicago ware- 
rooms of Weber and Company. To celebrate the occasion Te- 
resa on February 2 played Schumann's "Symphonische Etuden," 
and the "Staccato fitude" by Rubinstein, also his "Waltz in A." 
"Where is Donaldi?" asks the critic. The week before she had 
claimed to be ill, and now suddenly she had departed for New 
York. Her absence was more mystifying than deplorable. The 
tour went on very well without her. Saint Paul gave the group 
only a small audience on February 13, 1882. A paper found it 
pertinent to compare Mme. Rive-King and Carreno, because 
in close succession they played the same piano and some of the 
same works there. "Carreno is the greater genius, Rive-King 
the better artist. Carreno enters with a quick, girlish step. The 
manager had to adjust Rive-King's chair. Carreno adjusted hers 
herself, even moving the immense Weber Grand into position 
as easily as if it were a chair." Teresa and Ferranti sang to- 
gether in a duet representing a night patrol. 

In Des Moines a hot local political fight and a competing lec- 
ture were enough to reduce the size of the audience to a mini- 
mum. The Burlington Haw\-eye admits that Burlington is not 
generally enthusiastic over piano playing, "and when it recalls 
a pianist twice in an evening there must be reason for this 
extraordinary behavior." It endows Carreiio's playing with 


Wieck's drei Kleinigkeiten: i. das Zarteste Gehor. 2. der feinste 
Geschmac\. 3. das tiefste GefiihL In Joliet a new music critic 
devotes his first effort to Carreno thus: 

"The celebration opened on time with a measly small audience" and 
"a very pert looking damsel with snappy black eyes, round features, 
chubby lips, a carefully chiseled nose, a No. 2 shoe, weighing 185 
pounds, was led out by the accompanist. She sat down at the piano, 
and immediately picked a quarrel with it. She kept it up until the 
umpire decided the battle a draw. . . . 

June, 1882, brought Tag and Teresa together again for a con- 
cert in Oil City, Pennsylvania. 

A series of appearances by the Carreno Concert Company at 
Narragansett Pier in the hall of the Mathewson House was 
something of a vacation. It was noted that "during the stay at 
the hotel the elegant manners and excellent English of Mme. 
Carreno and her husband Tagliapietra have won them many 
delightful friends." One of these was Colonel Sidam of New 
York. While Teresa was resting on the piazza one evening 
after a concert, he introduced himself as the one who had pre- 
sented the little Teresita with her famous crying doll at her 
Irving Hall debut. 

Teresa looked back upon the season just ended. Outwardly it 
had been successful enough, but inwardly discouraging. Was 
this the best of which she was capable? "In Germany," Mrs. 
Watson had said, "people comprehend music in all its dignity. 
There you must go to be understood. There you will learn what 
music can really mean to an audience, and it will inspire you 
to explore its depths." In America the appeal of the "greatest 
lady pianist" and the "greatest lady lion-tamer' , were not essen- 
tially different in kind. But how could she earn the money to 
go ? What would become of Tag ? 

In September, 1882, another tour with Lizzie Arbuckle and 
the Weber Male Quartette took her again to Chicago to play 
for the benefit of the Norfolk Light Artillery Blues Armory 


Fund. Here she saw her old friend Maurice Strakosch who 
graced the concert in the role of accompanist. Everywhere 
Teresa reaped the laurels. Miss Arbuckle failed to please, and 
the Weber quartette in its a capella singing would have been 
more effective with an accompanist to hold them to pitch. 

Breaking off her tour just a month before giving birth to an- 
other daughter, Teresa faced everything but the peace she 
needed at home. Tag was becoming more and more objection- 
able. If he came home at all at night it was sure to be in the 
worst of humors. Drink, he knew, was beginning to affect his 
singing. Of late he was meriting the reputation of being vocally 
unreliable, so that some of the choice engagements went to 
others. That his wife's popularity was on the upgrade helped to 
aggravate the situation. Tag was not one to tolerate shining by 
reflection or having his demands for money refused. The at- 
mosphere at home was electrically charged. Scenes multiplied 
in frequency and violence until Teresa grew to fear her hus- 
band's return more than she had before worried over his ab- 
sence. She could not shut her eyes to the fact that she was no 
longer first lady to Tag. His philanderings were open scandal. 
The climax came one night in December. After an unusually 
heated altercation Tag entered the living room, and drawing 
out a sharp knife in perfect Sparafucilean manner, slowly rolled 
up his sleeve. In a voice that would have given any opera audi- 
ence "zero at the bone" he hissed: "I am going to kill you." 
Ordinarily Teresa would have trusted to the cowardice always 
inherent in generous measure in all of Tag's accesses of brutal- 
ity. This time she had double reason to be afraid and stood 
petrified, unable to move or cry out, certain that today he 
meant to put an end to her and to the child soon to be born. 
Tag, accustomed to act murder without actually committing 
it, was satisfied with the effect he had produced. Was he not 
still a great artist to be able after all these years to fool his own 
wife ? He slammed the front door exhilarated by his triumph. 


As each chug of the train drew him closer and closer to his 
companions of the poker table, he felt sure that luck would be 
with him that night. 

Under such auspices a dark-eyed little girl was born to 
Teresa on Christmas Eve, 1882. Tag, in one of his rebounding 
moments of devotion and tenderness, insisted that she be called 
Teresita. A beautiful, delicate, oversensitive child she became, 
but as she outgrew babyhood there was one habit of which 
she could not be cured by ridicule or punishment. Invariably 
she insisted on rolling up her sleeves, a gesture which her 
mother could never see without a reminiscent shiver. 

The year 1883 was to bring Teresa somewhat greater satis- 
faction. Late in January she was again on tour playing concerts 
arranged and conducted by Mr. Heimendahl, a versatile and 
painstaking musician of Chicago, whose too meticulous earnest- 
ness kept him from reaching to the hearts of his less particular 
listeners, as well as to the heart of the excellent music he played. 
He did notwithstanding help to raise the standard of program 
building considerably. To be asked to play as visiting artist with 
his orchestra meant recognition as an artist of worth. The 
Inter-Ocean took pains to commend Teresa's "pretty preludes 
and interludes," and called her "the most finished interpreter of 
Chopin in the world." But the Times struck a jangling note, 
complaining: "One could only regret that her eye for harmony 
of colors in dress does not seem to equal her ear for harmony of 

Less flattering, but too remunerative to be refused, was the 
invitation of Rudolph Aronson that Teresa take part in the 
concerts of the Casino of New York City. Her reappearance on 
the concert platforms of this metropolis under such auspices 
after an absence of over a year was not likely to increase her 
prestige as an artist. She would have preferred being heard 
under the baton of Theodore Thomas, whose neglect to engage 
her was a puzzle and a worry. But she needed the money and, 
whatever the setting, never refused an opportunity to play with 
orchestra. Especially just now she was eager to test before the 


public a concerto she had added to her repertoire, one that 
suited her entirely, that of a modern Norwegian called Grieg. 
Her disappointment was great when this had to be abandoned 
on account of insufficient time for rehearsal. Had she dreamed 
that one day Grieg himself would hear her and approve his 
work under her fingers, she might have been less impatient 
with this mischance. Meanwhile there were signs of better 
things in store. 

Really challenging artistically was the offer of a long tour 
with Leopold Damrosch and his orchestra in the spring of 
1883. After all, it was good that the Grieg Concerto had been 
saved for this, and Teresa at once set about refurbishing all the 
other orchestral works in her experience. Next to Theodore 
Thomas there was no conductor more to be respected as man 
and musician than Leopold Damrosch. From the first he and 
Teresa understood each other well, meeting on the common 
ground of reverence for the best in music. The Damrosch con- 
certs remained among the happy memories of these shadowed 

A much-quoted incident occurred on this tour. It was no 
secret that Leopold Damrosch had not a kind thought for 
women composers. Teresa, too, was well aware of the fact, it 
being understood that nothing of her own might appear on his 
programs. One day in a city of the Middle West they were try- 
ing out pianos for a concert. In answer to a request that she 
play something Teresa began with a stern, marchlike melody 
accompanied by massive chords. "That's a good piece. Who 
wrote it?" inquired the maestro. Using the gesture she had 
once so effectively copied from Rubinstein, Teresa pointed at 
herself, eloquently saying nothing. This happened to be the 
"Hymn to Bolivar" that the Venezuelan Government had 
asked her to set to music for his centennial, the performance of 
which did not however, for an unknown reason, take place 
at the intended time. 

It was probably in New Haven on the platform of Carll's 


Opera House that Teresa actually first played the Grieg Con- 
certo, and, being new, it met with varying degrees of favor. 
All agreed that it was well performed. Concerts followed each 
other in close succession throughout the East, sometimes at the 
rate of two a day. In Springfield the stage was too small to al- 
low the instruments, uncomfortably huddled together, to play 
freely, so that the quick last movement suffered in consequence, 
but "the performance of Mme. Carreno showed the same mar- 
vellous memory and justified confidence that are her traits. It 
was a great task to play the Grieg 'Concerto' as she did with- 
out notes, and with such power, spirit, and proportion as to 
lead without disparting the piano from the orchestra." "She is 
a remarkable performer and ought to be a great artist," says a 
discerning voice that felt in Teresa's playing greater potentiality 
even than present achievement. Not so right-minded is the 
judgment of another critic of Providence, Rhode Island. Speak- 
ing again of the Grieg "Concerto" he grants that "Mme. Teresa 
Carreno exhibited an easy grace and massive strength as a 
pianist quite phenomenal, and a more attractive piece would 
have made them better appreciated by the audience." 

Sandwiched in between the concerts of the Damrosch tour, 
Teresa appeared with Brignoli, Scalchi, and others in a mixed 
operatic concert which took place under Arditi's leadership in 
the Academy of Music of New York. In retrospect Teresa be- 
came once more the little Teresita of those first years in Eng- 
land. On the part of the reporters there was dissatisfaction be- 
cause the printed program was not adhered to and the cornetist 
had defaulted at the last moment. In Montreal Teresa, already 
an old friend of musicians in that city, appeared as co-soloist 
with Mme. Albani, sharing honors with that diva. 

"She is," says a journalist, "the only pianist who comes to 
Montreal two or three times a year," and it concludes in words 
too pertinent and musical to bear translation: "Elle ne cherche 
son succes que dans son intelligence, son cceur et son travail, 
Elle aime et respecte son art par-dessus tout." 

The acclaim accorded Damrosch in other cities the conductor 


did not succeed in harvesting in Chicago. The Tribune re- 
marks, "lack of snap, superabundance of sentiment on the part 
of the leader, shown in dragging tempi," although he was 
obliged to admit that his readings were, if not always interest- 
ing, at least always accurate. Teresa in her own right received 
a royal welcome, but the Herald deplores "a tendency of the 
orchestra to keep one note behind" in the Grieg concerto. 

The Damrosch group halted in Denver for a number of con- 
certs, for which Teresa took time to prepare the Weber "Kon- 
zertstiick." To the irritation of the veteran Damrosch the Den- 
ver audience was out of tune with the strictly classical types of 
program offered it, and, except for a constantly decreasing 
minority, preferred to stay at home. This called forth an an- 
nouncement in one of the more capricious columns of a Den- 
ver paper. It was ironically conceived by a musician much dis- 
turbed by the artistically negative attitude of this city. It reads : 

It is not hard to guess why the Damrosch season in Denver has not 
been a financial success. Our public is fond of the higher style of 
music, and is ill-satisfied with everything short of it. Beethoven and 
Chopin and Wagner and Liszt are good enough in their way, but 
every school-girl in Denver plays Beethoven and Chopin and Wagner 
and Liszt, and our people did not care to hear all the familiar sym- 
phonies and Etudes and Sonates thumbed over again. If Mr. Dam- 
rosch had announced an opus from "Brittle Silver" the Denver public 
would have thronged to hear it — were it in C minor and H major. 
The truth is that, having been educated up to the "Brittle Silver" 
standard, our Denver folks are chary of descending to the level of 
Beethoven and the other seed-bread and Lager-beer fellows. 

The article continues : 

According to the general wish Damrosch gives a popular program: 
Golden Robin Polka Smith 
Overture "Brittle Silver" Wood 
Old Folks at Home Mile. Martinez 
Grand March "Mulligan Guards" Braham 
Overture Pirates of Pensance Sullivan 
Symphonic Poem "Shells of the Ocean" Jones 


II Baccio (with oboe obbligato) Anon. 

Potpourris of National Airs Gilmore 

Maiden's Prayer Anon. 

Mocking Bird with variations }. Brown 
Mme. Carreno 

Inasmuch as the music will be of a light and lively character ladies 
must not hesitate to bring their children, who will be admitted at 
the usual price. 

Damrosch left Denver with a light purse. What audience 
there was Mile. Martinez and Teresa took by storm. She was 
declared an artist for the people, before all in Liszt's "Hungar- 
ian Fantasia," also a recent addition. The Middle West had 
proved to be unfertile ground for music of this kind. In Kansas 
City, on the way back to more productive fields of effort, empty 
seats stared at empty seats, and the scattered applause awoke 
echoes. Indignantly the Journal cries out: "Thus we receive the 
great leader; thus we welcome Carreno, grand interpreter of 
symphonies and tender harmonies. Shall we ever wipe out 
from our escutcheon so heinous a stain?" It speaks of Teresa's 
power, coming from the very shoulder, of the slight backward 
inclination of the head, of the fervor in her eyes, and, like so 
many others, the critic compares her favorably with that other 
popular pianist, Rive-King, who in a recent concert had also 
played the "Hungarian Fantasia" in Kansas City. Teresa was 
glad to return again to familiar New York and, exhausted as 
she was, she rounded ofT the season with another Casino Con- 
cert, mediocre in every respect save in Teresa's solos. 

Rather earlier than customary in the fall of 1883, Carreno en- 
tered upon a round of concerts beginning in Toronto. The hall 
was not filled in spite of the fact that the vice-regal party 
honored the event with its presence in all formality, disregard- 
ing the weather which kept those of lesser degree away. As 
the Marquis of Lome and Princess Louise made their en- 
trance under guard of the Queen's Own Rifles, who took their 
seats around the royal box, the band of Royal Engineers broke 


stirringly into the national anthem. Brignoli sang his deepest, 
Josef Adamowski played the violin, very much unnerved be- 
cause the dampness caused two strings to break during his part 
of the performance, and Teresa carried off the honors. 

After this she joined Clara Louise Kellogg, the singer, and a 
numerous sustaining company on a westward-faring journey. 
From Rochester to Kansas City critics agreed that Miss Kellogg, 
no longer in her most effective years, had grown large, very 
large, that her toilettes were superb, her jewelry breath-taking 
to the ladies. But Chicago finds that "even if her voice is re- 
juvenated — which is a matter of doubt — her manners are pos- 
sibly a thought worse than they used to be. She howled roulades 
in the ante-room, and guyed the other performers so vigorously 
as to be heard in all parts of the auditorium. Her voice was 
never pure nor refined. It is less so than ever." Besides, she was 
accused of more often singing below or above than on pitch. 
Audiences in the Middle West received her warmly as a friend 
of many years' standing. They liked her, rough and good- 
natured as she was, wept over her touching ballads, and gaped 
with amazement at her famous trill, her scale so free of the 
Gerster slide. Not so most of the critics. One caustic gentleman 
of Kansas City remarks that "she had taken the Times' advice, 
and had this time brought her voice with her." With the 
equally even-tempered Ferranti critics dealt more harshly yet. 
The Detroit Evening News goes beyond the limit of decency 
and of its province by saying: "He is a gibbering monstrosity; 
but then what could be expected of a man who wears a gold 
ring on his thumb?" Mrs. Alta Pease was reported to have 
"enunciation of the hot potato order" and altogether failed to 
"catch on," at least in Detroit. Mr. Rhodes, the eighteen-year- 
old violinist of the company, was encouraged, as "promising." 
Carreno, the only one in artistic prime, was the lost star in this 
constellation. In Chicago, as always, "Carreno appeared to be 
in extraordinarily good spirits, and it did not require a very 
sensitive musical ear to understand that it was a pleasure for her 
to play, and that she gave vent to her happiness on the keys of 


the piano." On almost all of her programs at this time there 
appear the "Norwegian Folk-Scenes" of Grieg. 

In the Cleveland Tabernacle concert the immense audience 
came as a surprise. Chicago's Inter-Ocean pays her a great com- 
pliment: "Carrefio never fails or disappoints as an artist." But 
occasionally she loved to astonish her listeners, or to play a joke 
on them, as she safely could in Chicago. In one of her recitals 
at Weber Hall she had played the "Kreutzer Variations" with 
Mr. Heimendahl. The atmosphere was dull. It needed some- 
thing to enliven it. In answer to rather weak applause she re- 
turned to the stage, improvised a little, and then to the delight 
of an audience now thoroughly awake, threw back her head 
and sang Gounod's "Sing, Smile, Slumber" to her own accom- 
paniment. In February, 1884, after the Christmas interim Te- 
resa was once more on the road. A New York appearance with 
Emma Juch was followed in March by a more important week 
in Chicago. 

Teresa played under the auspices of the Beethoven Society 
and the patronage of the great Chicago magnates of industry, 
N. K. Fairbank, Cyrus McCormick, and J. V. Farwell among 
them. The Schumann "Concerto" and Weber's "Polacca Bril- 
lante" were her medium. "An audience of creditable dimen- 
sions, but of rather less than the average endurance" attended, 
although for the Tribune it was "the best playing of this kind 
of music ever given in Chicago." "Strictly speaking," says an- 
other critic, "there were no interpretations except those of 
Madame Carrefio." The Beethoven "Overture" and all the 
others were "decently and hopefully played." Mr. Heimendahl, 
it added, in one of the compositions had performed exactly like 
a returned missionary. 

Teresa's concert in Chicago on March 8, 1884, enhanced by the 
songs of Charles A. Knorr, is the one of all these years of ex- 
ploration most worthy of record. It marks the coming alive of 
the "Second Suite Moderne" of Edward MacDowell in the 
United States. The program states that it is played "for the first 


time in America." Holding the place of honor in the center of 
the program, interpreted by his friend and teacher in a city 
that, of all others, was ready to receive a newcomer open- 
mindedly, his work stood with the "Appassionata," Mendels- 
sohn's "E minor Prelude and Fugue," and other smaller classics 
in appropriate neighborliness. Edward MacDowell in Germany 
must have welcomed an introduction so representative. The 
papers were cordial, if not at once completely won over, and 
acknowledged the promise of this, the first American composer 
to be seriously considered on a par with his European col- 

Less altogether satisfying was a second recital on March 12. 
Mr. W. C. E. Seeboeck, playing the Chopin "Concerto in E 
minor," showed himself a most exasperating missing link at 
the second piano. "But," said W. S. B. Matthews in Music and 
Drama, it was perhaps "the most astonishing exhibition of 
musical genius I have heard in this city. Carreno's performance 
of the Concerto was masterly. Poetically and artistically con- 
sidered it was beautiful." While pronouncing her one of the 
greatest artists of the time, Mr. Matthews, one of Teresa's close 
personal friends, realized that she had not yet reached her 
climax, "for it is only in the last three years of her twenty years 
before the public that she has really begun to do hard study," 
but he added: "I would rather hear her play than any other 
pianist I know of." Evidently in high spirits, Teresa again 
sprang the surprise of singing her final encore. Mr. Matthews, 
who knew his music, could but admit that "it is fair to say 
that the artist is in reality a fine singer, who could easily be- 
come famous as a vocalist alone." Said the 'News, "The large 
audience almost unanimously sat out a recital that lasted three 
hours and a half." 

Encouraged by its cordial reception, Teresa placed the Mac- 
Dowell "Suite" upon her program again in a concert given at 
the Detroit Conservatory. It interested only mildly. Farther 
west and eastward again continued the journey, then south- 


ward. A layman's reaction to one of Teresa's concerts was 
rhapsodically given by an old man of Titusville, Louisiana. It 
welled from the depth of his untutored feeling. 

I did not see much in it when it first began. There was a good deal 
of noise and running up and down the piano, but all at once it 
seemed to me a morning on the farm years and years ago. The dew 
was sparkling on the grass; the perfume of a thousand flowers was 
in the air, and over the hill the first beams of the sun were streaming 
in all their golden splendor. Suddenly it faded into eventide. The 
wind rose soft and low, and whispered in the pines; the clouds came 
up and the rain pattered on the roof; the storm grew louder, the 
thunder rolled, the lightning flashed, and the music of the storm 
in all its glory was upon me. But as I listened the storm cleared away, 
and there came before me once again the stirring sound of mothers 
and wives weeping for very joy. And this passed too, and in its place 
came the cradle song of long years ago, and as I listened there came a 
grand crash of sweet melodies, and I looked only to see the piano 
quivering still, but the musician gone. 

And gone she is for a time from the biographer's horizon. 
It is plausible to assume that Teresa spent as much time as 
possible with little Teresita, growing to look more like her 
mother every day, and with that awesome look of babyhood 
not yet acclimated to earth. Would this baby too be only lent 
to her for temporary comfort? Tenderly the mother watched 
over her, played with her, and dressed her as if, rejuvenating, 
another doll had been brought to her to tend. 

It is not hard to imagine that Teresa had come back with 
fresh purpose and energy to the preparing of new programs, in 
the shaping of which Mrs. Watson's exacting German stand- 
ards must have counted for a great deal. She was not among 
those that applauded Teresa for singing her encores. Neither 
would she tolerate anything that savored of salon music. About 
this Teresa and Ginka were not entirely in accord. Teresa knew 
what the average audience wanted, and was willing to com- 
promise in order to give pleasure, while Ginka insisted upon 
offering only that which was artistically superior. Like any 


good German autocrat she believed that what people should 
like, they could be made to like. Discussions on this subject 
were known to last the night through. But admittedly or not 
Teresa was influenced to choose her new repertoire more 
thoughtfully than before. Perhaps also to compensate for the 
vacillating devotion of Tag, she began to concentrate earnestly 
upon the refining of her playing technically, reviewing her 
readings in the light of her changing ideals, adding to her list 
the "Hexentanz" of MacDowell as well as his "Erzahlung." 

One day as she watched Teresita, scarcely able to walk, im- 
provising a little dance to amuse herself, the composer within 
her awakened, and she wrote down the melody of the "Teresita 
Waltz," the encore without which none of her later concerts 
was allowed to end. She herself referred to it disparagingly as 
a "mere bagatelle." But the ingratiating habanera lilt, and the 
wistful charm with which she invested it, remain a treasure if 
a modest one, like a spider web of early morning outlined in 
drops of dew. " Auch fyeine Dinge \onnen uns entzuc\en! > 

On January 7, 1885, Tag and Teresa welcomed a son. It 
seemed only fair to call him Giovanni. Wishing to take ad- 
vantage of their momentarily improved relationship, Teresa 
decided to arrange for a joint tour. Printed circulars were dis- 
tributed, announcing that Mme. Carreno and Signor Tag- 
liapietra might be engaged for the season 1885-86 either for a 
fixed sum or on percentage basis. A sample program was ap- 
pended. Neither one suspected that far more romantic adven- 
ture lay ahead. 

While a new pattern was in the weaving, the mother once 
more entered upon her nomadic life. Early in March she had 
the pleasure of again sharing honors with Camilla Urso in 
Philadelphia. Again the Sunday Casino Concerts claimed her. 
The "Suite Moderne" had its first hearing for New York on 
March 21, 1885, at Chickering Hall in one of Mr. Frederick 
Archer's Monday organ matinees, Teresa giving it the central 
place on the program. In Toronto, the "Hexentanz" by Mac- 
Dowell, called "one of her pupils," appeared prominently. For 


Seiior Buitrago, Teresa on this occasion was not too proud to play 
the orchestral part of the Mendelssohn violin concerto in ac- 

The Teresa of this time is more matronly in appearance and 
much heavier. Her favorite concert dress of stiff black moire 
antique en train is trimmed elaborately with lace, the sleeves 
also of lace, and the corsage half decollete. 

Sometimes there was rough sledding. In a chamber-music 
concert shortly following upon her Chicago recital a cellist had 
to be substituted at the last moment. There was no time to 
rehearse the Schumann Quintette. "That cellist can thank his 
stars that the lady was able to render her own part and read 
his also," said a critic. 

Teresa had not been entirely out of touch with her relatives in 
Venezuela, chiefly because Manuel was now holding his own 
in a subordinate post in Caracas. As captivating as he was un- 
stable, Manuel had been responsible for many of her moments 
of depression since the death of Manuel Antonio. To know 
him safe within the circle of his native mountains, of family 
friends — what true Venezuelan would ever disown an intimate 
one? — was a distinct relief. 

Young Manuel Antonio with his dapper beard, square- 
tailored and not too long, never walked unnoticed in the 
streets. Young girls, framed becomingly in their parental win- 
dows, tried their best to attract the attention of this straight, 
handsome young man, whose six feet of height stood out 
among his shorter compatriots. With all his dignity Manuel 
had a provocative smile. It held promise of fun and romance. 
Wisely the parents of eligible daughters held themselves aloof. 
It was no secret that the little money he earned flowed stream- 
like through his hands, that he contracted debts and took his 
time to repay them. Manuel's place, they rightly thought, was 
not as head of a family but as head of a procession. No parade 
was quite complete without him. Although well educated and 
an excellent linguist, Manuel was not intelligent enough to dis- 
count the doubtful currency of vanity, gambling, and general 
irresponsible living at its depreciating value. Why should he 
worry as long as he had a sister to get him out of debt, or 
scrapes of any kind ? It surprised nobody but her, when, while 
visiting Teresa in search of employment, he followed one of 
his inconsequential impulses and on the spur of the moment 
married the daughter of a small merchant in New York's lower 
East Side. There was no doubt that she was a very pretty, happy- 
spirited young person, nor that her background and his were 
as different as a glass prism and the Kohinoor. And yet this 
helter-skelter marriage proved to be the one lucky move in 
Manuel's game of life. In Rosie he found a gaiety which 
matched his own, and far transcending it, staunch character 


and devotion, pluckily facing the strain of moving in an un- 
accustomed stratum of society. Rugged independence and te- 
nacity were as much a part of her as the unquenchable good 
humor and optimism that steeled her against social disparage- 
ment. Fortunately she was not oversensitive. That the coarse 
and the fine were incongruously interwoven within her was her 
salvation. The New York butcher's daughter and the diplo- 
mat's wife were alike ready to find life an exciting adventure. 

Teresa greeted the news of the marriage with disapproval. 
Altogether she and Rosie agreed as well as it might be expected 
that a del Toro, grandniece of Bolivar, the perfect cavalier, could 
agree with Madame Sans-Gene resurrected. 

"Du bist Orplied, mein Land." Not more fervently did the 
poet and the composer sing their worship of the land of their 
imagination than Teresa felt it alive within her for the land 
of her remembrance, of that childhood which had lasted only 
for eight years in all. Caracas appeared to her a golden city of 
fairy-tale splendor, not to be entered until the trail had been 
blazed with many deeds of valor, a sun-dusted city, seen elu- 
sively through the gossamer tissue time had let down between 
it and her. Was she ever to see it again? Instead, here she was 
in New Rochelle, preparing without particular anticipation for 
the concerts she and Tag were planning together for the com- 
ing winter, resting from a too strenuous season, and thoroughly 
delighting in one thing only, the care of her babies. 

One morning out of the blinding blue of midsummer, there 
came that which threw the Tagliapietra household into a tor- 
nado of excitement and activity. An official-looking document 
from Venezuela was in itself enough to arouse some curiosity. 
It came from the President's office. Only after several readings 
did Teresa grasp the full import of the communication. In the 
name of the Government of Venezuela, its President formally 
invited her, Teresita Carrefio, to visit Caracas, there to give a 
series of concerts in the coming fall. The offer was not only 
flattering, but generous, promising assured and triumphant suc- 
cess. She might again see the scenes of other years, redefine the 


blurred outlines of memory. Neither Tag nor Teresa was apt 
to receive negatively any suggestion that added variety and ad- 
venture to the flattening panorama of their lives. Tag saw the 
possibility of greater personal success than he was finding in 
the United States, and Teresa thought it salutary that her hus- 
band learn to appreciate his wife as one who counted in the 
life of a whole nation. Might it not improve their loosening re- 
lationship, establish it upon a surer foundation? From every 
angle the invitation was not to be ignored. Besides, foreign 
horizons meant greater future prestige at home. To overcome 
any possible reluctance there came word from Manuel, urging 
acceptance, promising to do his part in paving the way for their 
coming, and also from her aunt, Maria Teresa Carreno, asking 
them with all Venezuelan cordiality to be her house guests dur- 
ing their stay. A favorable reply was on its way to Caracas by 
return mail. Preparations were set in motion at once. 

Teresa did not know or care that Venezuela had just been 
passing through a period of depression so severe that it had 
earned the title of "fatal biennial." Politics in any form, because 
they had never affected her personally, she did not even try to 
understand. Neither the Civil- nor the Franco-Prussian War had 
kept her from playing successfully in spite of them. She would 
have been the first to ridicule the suspicion that reasons of state 
might play a part in the invitation extended to her now. Yet 
many believed that, because the Crespo administration was tot- 
tering, any measure that would substitute a common enthusi- 
asm for virulent antagonism should be encouraged, such as the 
coming of Venezuela's greatest living genius, Teresa Carreno. 
When they at last set sail, it did not worry them in the least 
that coincident with their proposed arrival in Venezuela hotly 
contested elections were to take place. In Puerto Cabello high- 
powered dispute had ended in rioting and violence. Seven per- 
sons were wounded; one was killed. The opposition used the 
incident to its own advantage by putting the blame on the gov- 
ernment incumbent. All over Venezuela feeling on both sides 
rose to the seething point. 


Such were the internal storms amid which on a cloudless after- 
noon of mid-October, 1885, the steamer Caracas docked at the 
port of La Guaira, its houses looking as if made of pastel-tinted 
cardboard plastered in tiers against the rocks. With inexpres- 
sible happiness Teresa set foot upon native soil. A special car 
stood waiting at the station of the railroad which had been in- 
augurated two years before as a part of the celebration in honor 
of Bolivars centenary. As the train climbed from one lonely 
eminence to the next, drawing her into cooler heights of moun- 
tain and forest, as she watched the turquoise ocean disappearing 
behind her, and felt the transcendent grandeur of virgin nature 
once more familiarly about her, she saw herself again as that 
eager-eyed little girl who more slowly and primitively had 
driven down the rocky roads to meet her unknown destiny. 
How different the Teresita of today, hardened at thirty-two by 
trouble and by many bitter mistakes. How would she be re- 
ceived, and what would she have to say to her countrymen ? "It 
is in me to do more than I have yet accomplished. I must go 
upwards relentlessly, like this train. I feel that I must," she 
thought. On wheezed the locomotive. Tag, the unheroic, was 
distinctly relieved when the last precipice had been skirted. He 
was the first to hear a band playing in the distance, rousing Te- 
resa from her absorption to listen. To the strains of "Gloria al 
bravo pueblo" the train came to rest at the platform, thronged 
with a dizzying mass that resolved itself into unfamiliar faces, 
young and old, shading from black to white. All were waving 
handkerchiefs, throwing flowers, and shouting. Could all this 
be for her? 

The answer came from a group of gentlemen, young gentle- 
men in their most formal dress, waiting stiffly at attention to 
receive her. One of them, Senor Gonzales Picon Febres, after 
a few words of welcome, presented her with a bouquet tied 
with streamers of bright blue silk inscribed in gold letters: "A 
Teresa Carreno Sus Compatriotas." Teresita — in Venezuela she 
is to this day known by no other name than that — was unpre- 
pared for any such demonstration. Everything, from the sound 


of her mother tongue to the unbridled enthusiasm that now 
welcomed her home, touched her. To the remarks of Senor 
Febres she just managed to reply in an uncertain voice : "These 
tears which come from the heart speak for me. I do not de- 
serve so much." Once seated in the waiting carriage drawn by 
the most beautiful pair of horses in all Caracas she quickly re- 
gained her composure. Meanwhile the dedicatory verses of a 
rising young poet, Alirio Diaz Guerra, printed as leaflets, were 
being scattered among the people. At last, escorted by twenty 
equipages filled with all that was most distinguished in society, 
Teresa was permitted to proceed at snail's pace down the Ave- 
nida Central toward the home of her aunt, who with her one- 
year-old baby had in 1862 braved a foreign land for the sake of 
Teresita, the prodigy. 

Caracas was thoroughly enjoying itself. The narrow side- 
walks were jammed. From every window handkerchiefs were 
waving and loud were the shouts of "Viva Teresita!' Her car- 
riage, the target for flowers that finally covered her like a 
blanket, moved on in stately measure. As she bowed and waved 
acknowledgment every man became her potential slave at 
sight; every woman measured her as a possible rival. This was 
indeed a homecoming. The matron of New Rochelle, proud 
mother of two delectable babies, so reluctantly left behind, for 
the moment did not exist. Instead here was a queen, returned 
from exile of many years to the country where she again might 
reign over devoted subjects. She played the part with gusto, un- 
conscious that Tag found the role of Prince Consort less to his 
liking. Nobody seemed to take notice of him, and he was the 
only one glad to have the triumphal corso end at 45 Avenida 
Norte. His frankly rude impatience made an unbecoming back- 
ground for Teresita as she took long and effusive leave of her 
followers, and feeling himself at further disadvantage with rel- 
atives he had trouble in understanding, a clairvoyant thought 
came to him. It would have been better far had he stayed at 

As usual, when things went wrong with him, Tag made 


Teresa suffer for it. Once in the privacy of the house he became 
sulky, abusive, and ceased to care what might be the impression 
he made upon his hosts. For Teresita Tag's tantrums were daily 
diet in New Rochelle. There she could ignore them. In Vene- 
zuela they offended her pride deeply because her standing as 
something above the mortal was at stake. Husbands in Caracas 
treated their wives with punctilious respect, above all in pub- 
lic. Tag's explosions, likely to occur anywhere at any time, 
would not only belittle him but her in the eyes of her country- 
men. She felt the danger and began to regret as he did that 
she had urged him to accompany her. 

The day was not to end without another demonstration in 
Teresita's honor. After dinner quiet had descended upon the 
house that was her shelter. The patio, fragrant widi odors that 
poignantly reawakened memory, lay in grateful silence. Sud- 
denly came the tramp of many feet and the confusion of laugh- 
ing voices ! The entire Club Bolivar, most exclusive of its kind, 
had come to serenade their famous compatriot. C. V. Landaeta, 
its spokesman, congratulated Teresita in poetic words upon her 
safe arrival in the land of her birth, presenting her with a 
sumptuous bouquet of flowers. A country where orchids grow 
wild could afford to be lavish. There was singing by the tenor, 
Senor Molina, accompanied by young Tomas Michelena, the 
festivity lasting far into the night. 

Teresita, rejuvenated, took the deepest satisfaction in all these 
tributes, and lost no time in making public a letter of apprecia- 
tion in the Opinion National, the organ of the Government. It 

On touching the shores of the land of my birth, I have been hon- 
ored in receiving from my compatriots splendid proof of their cor- 
diality towards my humble self; I do not deserve so much. 

I am grateful, very grateful for the kind expressions of friendship 
and consideration with which I have been welcomed in this city, after 
long absence in foreign countries; and I take this occasion to declare 
with all my heart the thankfulness I feel for so much kindness, which 
I shall know how to return. 


My greetings to the illustrious Press of Caracas, to the Reception 
Committee, to the members of the Club Bolivar, and other persons 
from whom I have received unmistakable signs of esteem, and, very 
particularly, to the worthy President of the Republic, the highly 
honorable General Joaquin Crespo. 

Daily distinctions were conferred upon Teresita. The free- 
dom of Caracas and the keys to the city were hers, and a depu- 
tation formally sent by the Government one morning presented 
her with the Busto de Bolivar, a medal given only to outstand- 
ing citizens or to an occasional foreigner for distinguished serv- 
ice rendered to Venezuela. In return, piloted by Manuel, Ter- 
esita and Tag one morning called upon the President to ask, 
as was polite procedure, that he accept the dedication of her 
first concert scheduled to take place on October 29, 1885. 

Preparations began in earnest. The Teatro Guzman Blanco 
was placed at her disposal as the only fitting hall for so sensa- 
tional an event. The first complications arose with the assem- 
bling of the program in which national and social politics made 
demands. First of all, since the concert was to take place on the 
eve of the name day of the Libertador, it was deemed suitable 
that his grandniece dedicate this, her first appearance, to his 
memory, as well as to him who now occupied the presidential 
chair. That Senor Molina, in return for taking part in the sere- 
nade of the Club Bolivar, should be asked to contribute some 
tenor solos, was a natural courtesy. Then, as background for 
the Chopin "Concerto in E minor," which Teresita had chosen 
because it could most easily dispense with full orchestral ac- 
companiment, Teresita had to gather and blend together a 
string quintette and a pianist. This called for frequent rehears- 
ing, and time passed busily for all but Tag. Left to his own 
vagabonding he soon found congenial company, and his bel- 
lowing voice and laugh became familiar sounds reechoing from 
wall to wall in the streets by day. At night he had soon tapped 
most of the gambling resources of Caracas, finding them inex- 
haustible wells of diversion. Venezuela, he found, had its points 
after all, and Tag was almost glad that he had come. A more 


amiable mood made him quite ready to appear in the first 

In its final form it was framed at each end by orchestral sin- 
fonias. Each of the assisting soloists appeared twice upon the 
program which fell into two parts. In the first Teresita played 
the "Concerto." The second began with her "Himno a Bolivar" 
for chorus and orchestra, now to be heard for the first time 
publicly in Caracas. Henselt's "If I Were a Bird," Gottschalk's 
"Tremolo," and her own "Saludo a Caracas" made up a group 
of piano solos. Liszt's "Sixth Rhapsodie" in brilliant conclusion 
called for the "Teresita Waltz" as encore. 

The freshly redecorated Teatro Guzman Blanco was com- 
pletely filled. Fashionable society attended in toto. Conjecture 
and gossip ran high. The atmosphere which Teresita would 
need to penetrate was surcharged with an unblending mixture 
of admiration, envy, disapproval, and curiosity. Many would 
have welcomed a good fiasco rather than a good concert. The 
minority were drawn by the music itself. To most it meant the 
best show of the season, one that would refreshingly break con- 
versational drought. 

Notably excepting the field of opera, musical taste in Vene- 
zuela had been at a standstill for years. Caracas, taught by an 
annual season of French and Italian opera finally considered 
indispensable, was a better judge of good and bad singing and 
acting than of piano playing. Beyond that it was content with 
sentimental songs and dance music. The Chopin "Concerto," 
heard for the first time in Caracas, at least with anything but 
second piano accompaniment, must have lured many of the 
audience beyond their musical depth, without, however, im- 
peding their enjoyment of this ovation to Venezuela's glorious 
daughter. It began uproariously as soon as Teresita, elegantly 
clad in unrelieved black, the arms bare, the decollete severe and 
low, crossed the stage with her famous stride, so purposeful 
and elastic that it made the boards vibrate beneath her feet. Un- 
embarrassed as one equally at home in the salons of the world 


and in its cottages she sat immovable a moment before begin- 

One of the really absorbed listeners, just recovered from a 
serious illness, closed his eyes so as not to be diverted from the 
music of the artist by the beauty of the woman, now in the 
perfection of maturity more appealing to him than the fresh- 
ness of youth. His annoying neighbor insisted upon telling him 
what it was she was playing, while all he wished was to listen 
uninformed and undisturbed. At the beginning the music had 
seemed to him a perfect imitation of the frantic applause which 
had greeted her entrance. Then it became vague and melan- 
choly like the dream of an unhappy poet. The doctor had for- 
bidden his staying for the whole concert. But that night he 
could not sleep for thinking of "esa bella Americana." The 
critics were unanimously taken captive. She not only honored 
herself but Venezuela, they said. Chopin himself would have 
thanked her for making his composition greater even than he 
had conceived it. "She not only interprets, she exalts." Diffi- 
culties they declared nonexistent, and her legato, her shading, 
her phrasing, and her delicacy, all were alike found admirable, 
beyond praise. 

Teresa stood among the bouquets, wreaths, and garlands 
heaped about her, bowing regally, only with more personal gra- 
ciousness than usual. If there was a flaw, it was the absence of 
Crespo, probably prevented by duties of state, and of her cousin, 
Guzman Blanco, still in exile. It was an open secret that Guz- 
man Blanco was slated to be Crespo's successor, that he was in 
fact already the power behind the throne, and that it was Guz- 
man Blanco who had used the pressure of his influence to 
assure Teresa's homecoming. 

The papers, flaming with eulogies, asked for more concerts. 
One even hoped for a plan to repatriate Teresita in her own 
land, and gladly the Opinion Nacional spread the good news: 
"Our great pianist is preparing another concert. Everything in 
this concert will be surprising and new." This time Teresita 


chose to dedicate it "To the refined and illustrious Society of 

Teresita dared to entrust the "Capriccio Brillante" of Mendels- 
sohn and the "Polonaise" of Weber-Liszt to Senor Pineda and 
the orchestra for accompaniment. Senor Pedro J. Izquierdo 
sang a number of arias, after which Senor Guillermo Smith 
sounded a jubilant note upon his cornet. Teresa's personal part 
closed with Beethoven's "Andante in F" and Kullak's famous 
"Octave Study." The orchestra again framed the whole. Tag 
did not appear. 

Artistically and financially Teresa had cause to be gratified. 
Such playing Caracas was not likely to hear again. But what 
of the "refined and illustrious Society of Caracas" ? As day after 
day passed, and not a single lady from among those to whom 
Teresa had dedicated her second concert came to call upon her, 
much less to invite her, she became aware that something was 
amiss. Whatever attention she received was from gentlemen — 
attention often too glowing for comfort — or from an occasional 
family closely connected with the existing government. It was 
a source of acute embarrassment, especially to Teresa's aunt, 
that her own friends completely withdrew at this time, the 
more because she guessed the reason. Teresa found herself with 
more than enough time on her hands to practice undisturbed. 
Effusive public ovation had not prepared her in any way for 
this private fiasco. She felt profoundly wounded. As so often 
she called pride to the rescue. A letter written to Caroline 
Keating Reed in a rosy moment gives no inkling of cloudy 

February ist, 1886 
We have been here since the 15th of October, and upon my ar- 
rival in this city the whole city went to meet me, with a band of 
music, speeches etc., etc., and all the demonstrations of affection 
from my countrymen. I will not enter into details for it will be all 
you want to know, the result of it all. To you and quite in confidence 
(for anyone else not knowing me might think me vain and ridic- 
ulous) I will tell you that I have been treated as a queen. My en- 


trance to the city was such a general rejoicing that the streets through 
which my carriage was to pass from the station to the house, were 
crowded with people who cheered me as I passed and waved hats 
and handkerchiefs and treated me really as if I had been the queen 
entering her city. Since the ovations, flowers, speeches, serenades, 
decorations, medals, in fact all sorts of sweet and honorific demon- 
strations have been poured upon my head, and I have felt all the 
time as if I did not deserve anything and were worth very little in 
comparison to the honor I was receiving. The government presented 
me with the Busto of Bolivar, which is the highest honor they can 
bestow on anyone, and Tag also was presented with it after the first 
concert at which he sang, which was on January 10th. The most 
touching of all to my heart has been a beautiful golden medal which 
the press of Caracas presented me with, and a Diploma containing 
so many highly flattering things that I hardly know myself after read- 
ing it. We stayed here in Caracas one month after the 15th of October, 
and then we travelled to Puerto Cabello, Valencia and Ciudad de 
Cura and then returned here on December 28th, and since then have 
given two more concerts here. Now we are en route to Ciudad Bolivar 
and Trinidad and from there to Maracaibo. After Maracaibo we re- 
turn here and probably we will after a short season here return home! 
The very word home thrills me all over! Just think what a long sep- 
aparation from my two darlings, from all that my heart longs for 
day and night! You who so well know how my heart is wrapped up 
in those children can imagine how cruel this separation is to me, 
how great the sacrifice, but as it is for their sake that I am doing 
all this, I must pick up my courage and try to bear it. Tag is al- 
most entirely like himself again, and the climate has restored him 
to health again, which if nothing else had been obtained from our 
trip out here, this would be quite sufficient. You will be surprised 
to see how much longer we have stayed here than we first intended, 
but as business turned out so well, we determined to remain about 
these parts for the rest of the season. . . . 

Outwardly Teresa continued to appear unmoved, serene, all- 
conquering. She only regretted that in those first, overjoyous 
days she had, chameleonlike, shed the protective skin of aloof- 
ness to show the warmth of her sincere affection to those one- 
time family friends whose endearing demonstrations were only 


half meant. She had forgotten how colonial, how more than 
puritanical Caracas still was, with its tightly corseted standards 
in which her freedom-hungry spirit could no longer be con- 
fined. Bad enough, thought Caracas, that a del Toro had be- 
come a public performer, even publicly singing in opera. Since 
she had real genius, that might have been overlooked. But it 
was unforgivable that she had gone counter to her religion, no 
longer even attended mass, that she had been divorced and 
had married again, moreover, according to so-called common 
law unrecognized in orthodox Caracas, and that she had now 
brought with her this unmannerly, objectionable person, her 
quasi-husband. Had Teresa left him at home, instead of flaunt- 
ing him publicly in Caracas, her own wholesomeness and charm 
might have lifted the barriers. More and more Tag's behavior 
was becoming scandalous. First it was only hinted, but soon es- 
tablished as a fact, that Giovanni Tagliapietra had treated his 
wife with such violence that she was obliged for a time to 
change her residence, that Manuel had to keep him away from 
Teresa at the point of a pistol. Scenes of disagreement and rec- 
onciliation were clearly audible upon the listening street. Their 
quarrels became teacup gossip. Women declared themselves un- 
willing to trust their children to such a siren. Rumor with her 
distorting and magnifying glasses made matters worse. She 
had, so it said, found more than normal favor in the eyes of 
Guzman Blanco, her second cousin on the maternal side. 

Teresa was ready to leave Caracas to its scandal-savoring par- 
ties, and to take Tag away to more healthful cities of Vene- 
zuela, where together they might gather new laurels in spots 
less hampered by tradition. She realized that he would not have 
resorted to making such an exhibition of himself if he had had 
something else to do. After an extended tour through the prov- 
inces she decided upon giving a farewell concert in Caracas, 
which, on account of its success, had to be repeated. The first was 
called a gala function and was listed as being under the aus- 
pices of the youth of Caracas. It took place on January 10, 1886. 
At the head of a long program in which the two artists were 


supported by the orchestra, Teresa expressed her gratitude in 
print — was there a sarcasm in the words ? 

As the greatest proof of my devotion to my compatriots of beloved 
Venezuela, I have returned to its arms to offer it my farewells in 
a last concert. It is with that alone that I am able to return so many 
evidences of affection; and my husband, also delighted, has agreed 
to take part in it, showing in this way his love for those who have 
showered me so often with delicate attention. Wherever fate may 
take me, there will always gratefully beat my heart for this piece of 
earth which I so dearly cherish. 

This concert, which the youth of Caracas commemorated with 
a medal of gold presented to Teresita, offered the novelty of a 
duet from // Trovatore sung at the close by Teresita and Tag 
together. Finally, by general request, another farewell concert 
took place on February 24. It was given in honor of the Min- 
isters of the Cabinet for the benefit of the Caracas Hospitals, 
and again terminated with a joint duet, this time from Lucia. 
The Chopin "Concerto," on this occasion accompanied by full 
orchestra, was repeated, and a "Tarantella" by Gottschalk, also 
with the orchestra assisting, evidently had its first hearing and 
probably its last. Definitely and finally to leave Caracas on this 
charitable note was Teresita's firm intention. On neither side 
was there unbearable sorrow at parting. Caracas was offended 
that Teresita would not tailor her life to its fixed measure- 
ments; Teresita found it intolerable to be drawn into close and 
narrow perspective by the myopically guided pencil of provin- 
cial prejudice. Had not someone been reported as having said 
that many young girls of Caracas played as well as she ? Ridicu- 
lous as such a criticism was, it rankled. 

Once more the pair started upon a trip that led them as far 
as Trinidad. Everywhere they shared the program together, 
everywhere a triumphant reception, if not always a full house, 
awaited them. The unprejudiced cordiality of the provinces did 
much to reestablish a happy state of mind within and between 
themselves. Teresita could again enjoy to the full the parties 


given for her. Because it helped to keep domestic peace it 
pleased her that Tag was well received. To sit through endless 
literary festivities staged in her honor, to hear poem after poem 
of which she was invariably the subject, all this did not seem 
to tire her. If only she had left Caracas on the same note of 
triumph on which she had entered it ! Flowers and presents did 
not allow her to forget that minor ending. 

Meanwhile Guzman Blanco was again in office. One of his 
first acts was to urge Teresita to revisit Caracas. Beside the fact 
that it would have been rudeness to refuse the new President, 
here was the chance to strike that compensating major chord. 

During her absence public opinion had not changed in Tere- 
sita's favor. The very fact that Guzman Blanco stood as her 
sponsor did not increase her popularity. The new Government 
was holding its own with characteristic difficulty. Guzman 
Blanco was known to be vain and personally ambitious. Noth- 
ing was more important to him than a statue in his honor. 
Even the genius of his cousin he considered just another feather 
with which to adorn his already well-trimmed cap. Her fire, 
her wit, her charm were enough to turn the head of the most 
resistant man, and Blanco was not one of these. 

A literary festival was prepared to celebrate his return to 
power in formal fashion. Prize-winning sonnets were read in 
his honor. Jose Antonio Calcano read one of his poems, com- 
memorating the last hours of Bolivar's life. An intimate inter- 
lude warmed the atmosphere. Seated in the presidential box, 
Guzman Blanco noticed his predecessor close by. With gentle- 
manly tact he invited General Crespo to join him, while Senora 
Blanco took her seat with Senora Crespo. Enthusiasm needed 
only this to flare up wildly. Applause came from the heart, 
now for the President, now for the artists, the lion's share always 
being reserved for Teresita Carreno. Politics, literature, and mu- 
sic melted into inseparable homage. 

After this it seemed only natural for Teresa to give a "grand 
gala concert herself in honor of the illustrious American, Guz- 
man Blanco, and of his most respected Senora," to congratulate 


them upon their happy return. It took place early in Septem- 
ber, 1886. Knowing that nothing could please him more Tere- 
sita quickly composed a "Hymn to Guzman Blanco." The solo 
part against a background of chorus and full orchestra fell to 
the lot of Tag. Under the baton of Senor Pineda Teresita played 
the "Hungarian Fantasia" of Liszt and the Weber-Liszt "Polo- 
naise." Tag chose some of his old favorites from his rather 
limited concert repertoire. Teresa the composer, the pianist, 
and the wife had reason to look with pride upon the success 
of the evening. The stage was festive with the gaily colored 
flag of Venezuela draped around an oil painting of the new 
President. Former disappointments faded into insignificance. 
This was the major ending. To add another farewell concert 
after this seemed like tempting Providence. There is record 
that such a one was planned. The reason for its sudden recall 
is not given, the responsibility resting upon "unforeseen cir- 
cumstance." It is highly probable that a new project made 
hasty departure imperative. 

The enthusiasm Teresita had aroused in Guzman Blanco sur- 
passed the reasonable. Her return to Venezuela must at any 
price be assured and that speedily. Congress had just voted the 
annual appropriation of 100,000 bolivars to finance the season of 
opera which was to begin early in the new year. Could any- 
thing be more timely than to entrust Teresita, who had herself 
sung in opera, with this enterprise? The idea was a brilliant 
one, thought Guzman Blanco, not stopping to consider that 
the qualities that make a great artist and a good manager are 
in their essence of different kind. Tag needed no persuasion to 
second the plan, and if Teresita had any qualms, they were 
soon overcome by the confidence of the other two. Without de- 
lay it was decided ; Tag must go to Italy, Teresa to New York, 
to assemble the company, both to meet in Caracas in early Jan- 
uary. Tag, in his element as future manager of the Teresa Car- 
reno Grand Opera Company, immediately set off. Teresita, 
scarcely stopping for the most necessary farewells, embarked 


for New York, where with every fiber of her being she longed 
to be. Not the opera company, but her two children were the 
magnet that drew her home. Never would she set sail again 
without them. 

Fall was at its loveliest when she once more greeted the New 
York skyline. This was the country of her habit, more really 
hers than the country where she was born. But once more with 
those friends whose trustworthiness she had missed, she gave 
no hint that the glittering brilliance of that glorious tour had 
had its obscuring shadows. In every sense her success and Tag's 
had been phenomenal, unprecedented. Teresa talked even her- 
self into believing that it must have been so. 

If Teresa missed Tag at all, it was with relief that she could 
have her children to herself. On entering her home she felt 
peaceful and contented, as so rarely when Tag was near. Hear- 
ing and engaging singers for her opera company was a divert- 
ing by-product among her other activities, one that she found 
herself unable to take very seriously. That time was short and 
few good singers left unemployed at the height of the season, 
would have caused Teresa more worry had she rated the musi- 
cal taste of Caracas more highly. In this she miscalculated. 

Time and distance did not make it possible to keep in close 
touch with Tag's procedure. In the way of the genius, expect- 
ing nothing less of others than their very best, Teresa trusted 
that smooth emulsion would result from this miscellany of 
talent assembled without the binder of common experience and 
common drill. In January there was still time for a few con- 
certs reaching from Boston, where Teresa shone in "the fifth 
grand concert of the Ideal Music Course of the Boston Sym- 
phony Orchestral Club," to Cincinnati, where three recitals fol- 
lowed each other closely. 

Finally on Friday, February 25, 1886, Teresa with her French 
maid, Josephine de Paul, two children, and thirty-two people 
of the operatic ensemble left the ship Valencia at La Guaira. 
The inevitable intimacy of life on shipboard had given Teresa 


more than a hint of what might be in store for her with a 
group so unevenly tempered, and often she had occasion to 
wish that the ship might be turned back to safer harbor. It 
took all her cheerfulness, tact, and personality to adjust differ- 
ences, and to reassure the none-too-brave company whom a 
rousing storm had reduced to unaccustomed prayer. Fortu- 
nately there remained five days after landing before Tag's ar- 
rival presented a further problem. Teresita was already estab- 
lished in an apartment she had rented near the Panteon when 
he appeared in all his importance as "Director and Adminis- 
trator" of the company, for which Teresa was officially respon- 
sible, and to which she lent her more famous name. "Let us 
prepare to enjoy the ineffable pleasures which the present sea- 
son of Italian opera will offer us," welcomingly and hopefully 
writes the Opinion NacionaL 

The published list of artists included singers by their own 
admission famous in all the principal theaters of Europe and 
the United States, a complete corps de ballet with a prima bal- 
lerina, and an orchestra of thirty professors of whom five came 
from Europe. The conductor was Fernando Rachelle. The roster 
promised three operas new to Caracas, The Huguenots, Mi- 
gnon, and Carmen, also Ruy Bias, Lucia, Rigoletto, Un Ballo 
in Maschera, Faust, Norma, Lucrezia, Aida, Roberto il Diavolo, 
L'Africana, La Sonnambula, II Barbiere de Sevilla, etc., etc. 
Each subscription series gave admission to ten different per- 
formances, the prices ranging from $10 to $13, boxes for six 
persons selling at $120. Un Ballo in Maschera was chosen to 
introduce the company. Seats sold quickly. The city buzzed. 
A representative of the press who was invited to hear the dress 
rehearsal reported that all who had the privilege of being 
guests at this performance were delighted with its quality. He 
then devoted equal space and eulogy to the freshly redecorated 
walls and the woodwork, and left it to the public to judge of the 
merits of the individual artists, merely taking the opportunity 
to felicitate Senora Carreno for her cleverness in choosing so 


admirable a troupe, and Caracas for having in its walls a com- 
pany "that will make it forget its natural troubles and enjoy 
countless delights." 

Dr. Manuel Revenga, to whose courteous pen fell the diffi- 
cult duty of writing the criticism of the first public perform- 
ance, expressed himself with kindly appreciation, but, for a 
Venezuelan, with marked reserve. He stressed disproportion- 
ately the difficulties Carreno must have encountered in bring- 
ing together a group of artists at such a short notice just when 
the most and the best were already under contract elsewhere. 
Considering this handicap the management, according to Senor 
Revenga, could only be said to have done well. The two ele- 
ments that spoke most loudly for the success of the enterprise 
he found in the quality of the voices, almost all conceded to be 
admirable, and in the fact that it was sponsored by Teresita 
Carreno. Quite incredible he found the ridiculous rumor that 
there existed in Caracas a spirit of hostility toward this great 
artist, and consequently to the undertaking to which she lent 
her name. Carreno, he asserted, in no way deserved such an 
attitude, nor was it in keeping with Venezuelan courtesy. It 
would be unthinkable for people as deferential and just as his 
countrymen were known to be to harbor a grudge against a 
Venezuelan, all the more so because she happened to be one 
of her daughters. Wishing to waste no more words upon such 
bagatelles, he turned to the description of the glittering audi- 
ence, distinguished by the presence of the President and his 
illustrious family. With the exception of the tenor who ob- 
viously was suffering from acute stage fright, and so left his 
audience cold, Senor Revenga had nothing unfavorable to say 
of the entire company. 

The second series opened with Lucia, more genuinely suc- 
cessful for the appearance in the title role of Senora Linda Bram- 
billa, who fired the critic to extravagant words of praise. This, 
however, did not suffice to keep the attendance from falling off 
noticeably from then on night after night. In spite of reviews 
that gave hint of the ominous undercurrent of general dissatis- 


faction, in spite of the apparently good impression made by 
Tag as Valentine in Faust, there could soon be no hiding of 
the fact that animosity was gaining momentum, fanned to heat 
by the opposition party on the alert to make the most of any 
governmental faux pas. La Campana, 2. short-lived journal, 
whose reason for being was to run counter to whatever hap- 
pened to be in favor with the Government, however praise- 
worthy, jumped at the chance to make this operatic venture a 
point of political contention, the opera house its battleground. 
i( Don Fiasco continua in alza" cries ha Campana. 

No wonder that similar unrest was felt behind the scenes. 
Strange were the things that happened there. During rehearsal 
one morning a bottle containing a nasty liquid suddenly broke 
at the feet of Teresita. Nor could a stone that grazed her head 
have been a mere accident. Added to the customary interludes 
of intrigue and rivalry within the company, fear of danger from 
without spread its disorganizing influence. Abusive articles ap- 
peared ; threatening letters fed the already overstimulated imag- 
ination with dread and terror. Even from the audience came 
audible hisses and whistles of disapproval, while an egg splash- 
ing upon the stage not infrequently added its spurt to the 
legitimate sound of song and orchestra, an occurrence which 
the performers learned to take philosophically. It did not, how- 
ever, help to improve the ensemble, which was undeniably 
bad. Teresa was too busy to take in the full meaning of the 
controversy of which the opera company was the unhappy 
focus, and which the politicians and their agents so thoroughly 
exploited. The opposition needed a target for its venom, for 
which it chose the deplorable Tag. Generally disliked, he was 
the logical one to attack. One morning an anonymous letter 
threatened him with a volley of ripe tomatoes, should he re- 
appear upon the stage as Rigoletto. Rather than brave the in- 
sult Tag chose the safer course, and published a letter in which 
he took reluctant leave of his audience, also making public the 
one which caused him to take the step. The amusement with 
which this abdication must have been greeted may well be 


imagined. At his expense the city rang with ridicule and anec- 
dote. Only one brave voice was heard to urge his return to the 

Even this new humiliation did not down Teresa. She was 
made of tough, resilient fiber. If failure were once again to 
turn to success some drastic measure alone could do it. Mean- 
while Holy Week gave breathing space. Teresa, ever inventive 
in a crisis, had time to map out new tactics. There was still her 
popularity as a pianist left to turn to account. When it was 
announced that at the next performance of Rigoletto she would 
play the "Polonaise" of Weber-Liszt between the second and 
third acts the public was forced to admire her resourcefulness. 
There was at once a marked increase in the size and the cordial- 
ity of the audience. 

Signor Rachelle, his nerves on edge from the strain of over- 
work and the miscarriage of all his best intentions, came to the 
limit of endurance caused by rumors of a plot to blow up the 
opera house during the next performance. That he could not 
face. So, feigning illness he left the company to the mercy of 
bombs that never exploded. Another conductor lasted only for 
a night. Teresa on this occasion again tried to save the day by 
playing the "Sixth Rhapsodie" of Liszt during the intermission, 
proudly ignoring danger. Two of her young admirers were 
clapping to the point of paralysis. One of them, too exhausted 
to continue, jokingly suggested to the other: "And now that 
we have applauded the artist, let us recall her again, and as 
cordially hiss the impresario." 

The opera must continue. That was all that mattered to 
Teresa now. But, try as she might, nobody was found willing to 
step into the vacancy. This put Teresa on her mettle. One of 
her beliefs was that the impossible exists only to be proved pos- 
sible by the strong-hearted. The papers announced one morn- 
ing: "Teresa Carreno herself will conduct the orchestra in La 
Favorita and ha Sonnambula." Admiration once more flamed 
for the intrepid amazon, worthy indeed to be named with the 
great Bolivar. And she who had never before conducted was able 














as well as any man to hold orchestra, soloists, and chorus to- 
gether. Moreover, she rather enjoyed the experience. The ex- 
hilaration of feeling within her unplumbed depths of power 
rising to the surface at her call uplifted her spiritually, al- 
though, overfatigued by this unaccustomed exercise, her arms 
ached through the night in spite of the efforts of a devoted 
masseuse by day. But what did that matter if the season could 
be brought to its close without further mischance ? Indications 
were hopeful. The journals praised Teresa's conducting; when- 
ever La Brambilla sang the house was well filled. 

The greatest lack of all was in the quality of the tenor. Cara- 
cas knew its arias, and refused to be satisfied with a voice 
whose long, high notes were barren of all sweetness, growing 
thinner and duller onlv to break off at the end for lack of 
control. Even La Brambilla could not make up for that. Again, 
in addition to the conducting, Teresa appeared between acts as 
pianist. Her pluck might have saved the day had it not been 
for the sudden real or assumed indisposition of La Brambilla 
herself. This was the coup-de- grace. II Trovatore and Lucia had 
a hearing each under Teresa's baton. Then even she had to 
concede that "Don Fiasco" had won the day, and that the opera 
season must end a week before its time. 

As for La Brambilla, miraculously restored to health, she 
found herself able to give a recital on May 1, the very day that 
was to have marked the triumphant farewell of the Carreno 
Opera Company. Other concerts by the prima donna followed, 
whose success was the more flamboyant for the background of 
failure against which they were silhouetted. Teresa made hasty 
preparation for leaving. As a last act of generosity the Govern- 
ment bought the properties of the disbanded opera company 
for 20,000 bolivars, finally also the concert grand piano espe- 
cially designed for Teresa by the Weber Company. That same 
piano may still be standing as it did in 1935, turned upon its 
side, in a dark corner of the Teatro Municipal, ruined by damp- 
ness and the all-penetrating comajen. The old janitor still re- 
members that ill-fated opera season in which there was nothing 


luminous but Teresa herself in all her beauty, her genius, and 
her courage. 

For a person like Teresa Carreno, who had achieved the un- 
achievable since childhood, to whom intuition had pointed the 
way, it was natural to believe that, Teresa being Teresa, ob- 
stacles would overcome themselves, that no matter how un- 
charted the jungle paths upon which she chose to enter, they 
would inevitably lead to the chosen destination. In coming to 
Venezuela she made two fatal mistakes. She chose both the 
wrong time and the wrong method. Far from binding her to 
the country of her origin, it estranged her from it. This mutual 
misunderstanding, for which both sides may be held responsi- 
ble, was not to be entirely dispelled during her lifetime. As 
advancing years brought perspective and more lucid under- 
standing, a longing to revisit her country was born. She had 
made plans to revisit it in 1917, plans which were foiled by 
her death. Had this visit become a fact she would have found 
an understanding welcome by a musical generation more ready 
to receive her message and by a society less overcritical of the 
external and trivial, more open to sincerity and greatness of 
heart. Teresa would have felt at home in the Venezuela of 

Many instances in her later life gave evidence of this perhaps 
unconscious nostalgia. There was one glittering day in the 
Swiss Alps. Carreno and a number of others were together in 
the little funicular train that puffs its way from the Scheidegg 
to Grindelwald, the seat of Carreno's summer colony of 1912. 
Suddenly Carreno's attention was caught by two people in 
front of her. They had not spoken a word. Turning to her hus- 
band, she said : "Those people, I am sure, are from my country. 
I am going to speak to them." She was right. For the rest of 
the trip she talked only with them. Rarely had she been so 
elated, so absorbed. 

Not alone were the roots of her being embedded in the fruit- 
ful tropical soil that clung to them. There it was also that the 
tender shoots sprouted that foreordained the line and tempo of 


her growing as person, as artist. The tree developed into mag- 
nificent prime of stature and of flowering. Then, blessed by the 
glow of sunset, its leaves carpeted adopted earth with scarlet 
and gold. But whether the sap coursed violently or quietly, 
whether it became thinned or enriched by frequent transplant- 
ing, there remained that which in its essence was of Venezuela. 

Teresa returned to New York under the disappointment of 
thwarted affection. It had flowed strongly, ready to expend 
itself upon anyone who approached her with simple friendli- 
ness. There had been few of those. Instead she had felt herself 
shut out, set apart, ostracized. As she reviewed the season in 
the perspective she realized that she had been shortsighted, that 
she herself was largely to blame for the outcome. "I have been 
stupid, unforgivably stupid," she admitted to herself. Pride 
again did not permit her to share this secret with her friends 
at home. For them she jotted down only the happy hours, until 
they firmly believed that the brilliant success of the first visit 
was only surpassed by that of the second. Covering the original 
canvas of drab misadventures with the gayest colors on the 
palette of her imagination, Teresa herself soon felt better. Only 
in Venezuela some still remember the underlying painting, 
without caring to expose it. 

And soon came the cheerful distraction of moving into a new 
home. Teresa, suddenly feeling the need of being closer to her 
friends, the MacDowells, chose 207 East Eighteenth Street. The 
mentally relaxing activity of making the house livable suited 
her mood. The furniture she bought was to be paid for little 
by little. In time her home should be entirely hers. Tag was 
consulted only in second intention. 

The routine of concert life soon caught her in its automati- 
cally spinning wheel, as if there had been no interlude. Hughsie 
and Josephine were there to take care of the children. Teresita 
began to show signs of uncommon gift for the piano. For the 
entertainment of friends she played the Bach "Prelude" to the 
applique of Gounod's "Ave Maria," sung by her father. Piano 
her mother taught her according to Manuel Antonio's method. 
When practicing was finished, Teresita was eager to go on 
with inventions of her own. "And now may I do my non- 
sense?" she would ask. It consisted in transposing whatever 
struck her fancy from one key to another. 

Often little Giovanni sat quietly by her side. If someone in- 


terrupted, he reprimanded them curtly; "Sh! Dada is playing 
Bach!" Next to that the greatest thrill of his babyhood was the 
room that displayed his father's operatic wardrobe. Each sepa- 
rate costume was a living person with whom, hardly able to 
speak intelligibly, he held long conversation. 

In Teresa's eyes nothing remained of the perfect lover she 
had once seen in Tag. Strangely enough, just at this time the 
announcement sent out more than a year ago had borne fruit, 
the two were more often heard in concert together than before. 

Meanwhile Ginka Watson, whose nature could not bear to 
see things going wrong without doing her part to right them, 
kept on urging a separation. "It is in Germany you should take 
refuge from that creature, your husband," she tirelessly re- 
peated. And Teresa just as regularly countered: "Where shall I 
get the money?" There the matter rested. She would never 
again leave the United States without her children. The idea, 
however, germinated, and Ginka, the practical, was cogitating. 

In March, 1888, Teresa opened the door of her house one morn- 
ing to a dapper, blond Italian, fresh from the stormy Atlantic, 
which had behaved more uproariously than usual that winter 
of the famous blizzard. He radiated sunshine and kindness, to 
which Teresa instantly responded, and announced himself as 
Arturo, her brother-in-law. He had come, so he said, in search 
of the good fortune he had failed to find as a soldier in Italy. 
There was nothing remarkable about him except that he was 
entirely uncomplicated and still at sea as to his plans and ex- 
pectations. His gifts were the modest but dependable ones of 
honesty, industry, and pride, leavened by a detached and hu- 
morous slant he threw even upon his misfortunes. Helplessness 
was always provocative for Teresa. She at once made it her 
duty to see that he was properly clothed and introduced. 

It did not take Arturo long to feel the disharmony existing 
in his brother's household, nor to become aware of its cause. 
That anyone could wish to maltreat a person as ravishing as his 
sister-in-law was beyond his comprehension. He in his turn ap- 


pointed himself Teresa's protector-in-chief, and wedged him- 
self in, a willing buffer, to lessen the shock of domestic con- 
troversy from whichever side it might originate. 

In nearly every crisis he found himself on Teresa's side, and 
at last he came to agree with Mrs. Watson that the only hope 
for peace lay in separation once and for all, preferably with an 
ocean between. He played with the children, who adored him, 
and he was daily in and out of the house, for Teresa took com- 
fort in his presence, sympathizing with his predicaments. No 
matter how earnestly he tried, Arturo, hampered by a strange 
language, by different habits of life, and by the fact that he had 
never been trained for anything in particular, was not able to 
find work that was either interesting or remunerative. He went 
along his slow, laborious way patiently and uncomplainingly, 
earning little beyond a living wage, keeping his simple room 
with artistic economy as neat as a convent. To live frugally was 
no special deprivation to Arturo. He was as vain as any other 
young Italian soldier of fortune, but he did not indulge his 
vanity at any expense but his own. He was more inclined, when 
he had saved a little, to buy a toy for the children or a bunch of 
flowers for the mother just returned from a concert journey. 

After the Venezuelan interlude Teresa seemed possessed by 
the drive to practice hours upon end. To her friends her play- 
ing had never sounded better. MacDowell appeared more and 
more often upon her programs — he had been introduced even 
to Venezuela by way of the "Hexentanz" — and the D minor 
concerto still in manuscript was taking shape under her fingers. 

Shortly after their marriage in 1884 the young MacDowells 
visited London, primarily to attend every possible performance 
in which Henry Irving and Ellen Terry took part. On account 
of Marian MacDowell's poor eyesight they were obliged to sit 
in the most expensive seats, their one great extravagance. Out 
of this experience there evolved a composition written in hom- 
age to Henry Irving, meant as a musical character sketch of 
Ellen Terry, an airy scherzo for piano duet. Lacking courage to 


approach Henry Irving, MacDovvell let this work lie dormant 
until, later on in Germany, it became the Scherzo of the "Con- 
certo in D minor," dedicated to Carreno. It was eminently right 
that she should be the first to play it publicly. A double joy was 
in store. 

Theodore Thomas, who rarely admitted soloists to his Sum- 
mer Night Concerts in Chicago, made an exception in favor of 
Teresa, inviting her to play the MacDowell "Concerto" under 
his baton on July 5, 1888. That her friend of long ago had not 
thought her worthy of taking part in any of his concerts since 
her return to America had given Teresa many unhappy hours. 
This at last was ample compensation. Not only was she to be 
his assisting artist, but she was to collaborate with him in bring- 
ing out, for the first time anywhere, the "Concerto" which 
was already peculiarly her own. How much this appearance 
meant to her is clearly shown in her letter of thanks, published 
in the biography of Rose Fay Thomas. She wrote timidly, hum- 

Chicago, July 6, 1888 
Dear Mr. Thomas : 

It would have given me the greatest pleasure to come to see you 
this morning instead of writing, but knowing how pressed for time 
you are, I deprived myself of this pleasure, thinking that you would 
feel thankful that I did not come to take away your valuable time 
from your numerous occupations. 

I only wish to thank you from all my heart once more for the 
kindness and consideration with which you treated me yesterday, 
and to tell you how proud and happy I feel that once again I have 
been allowed the pleasure and privilege of playing under your mas- 
terly baton. 

Let me also thank you in Edward MacDowell's name, who feels 
highly honored that his composition should have come under your 
notice, and that it should have been brought before the public under 
your leadership. 

I sincerely hope that I may have the pleasure of seeing you again, 
and if I may I will come and knock at your door when you are in 


New York, and hope that you will always look upon me as the 
same little girl whose tottering footsteps in her profession you, with 
your powerful hand, were the first to guide and support. 

Yours very sincerely, 

Teresa Carreno 

Besides making Teresa newly conscious of her powers, this 
occasion crystallized the determination in Ginka Watson's 
mind that something must be done at once to free her friend 
from an impossible situation at home, and to send her to Ger- 
many, where under Tapsig she herself had studied. 

In the winter season of 1888 Teresa for the first time joined 
the Redpath Lyceum Circuit, the oldest of its kind in the 
United States, and toured through the Middle West together 
with her old associates, Emma Juch, Hope Glenn, and Lich- 
tenberg, the violinist, using her usual repertoire and meeting 
with her usual success. The announcements stated that "the 
extent of her popularity makes her a public educator, and that 
she computes to have averaged more than 150 concerts a year, 
making about 1650 concerts in eleven years." Though this may 
safely be considered a manager's gross exaggeration, it is true 
that Teresa's record was unbroken by a single year of relaxation 
from concert routine, and in spite of the birth of many children, 
it exceeded in all probability that of any pianist, male or female, 
of that decade in the United States. 

Among Ginka's students was Helen, daughter of N. K. Fair- 
bank. Both father and daughter were fervent admirers of Te- 
resa's playing, and so it was to Helen that Mrs. Watson decided 
to confide her hopes for Teresa's future. She agreed that Teresa 
could not find true appreciation as an artist in the United States 
as long as she was a member of Lyceum Circuits and other such 
combinations, that her home life was intolerable, that the 
emergency called for immediate action. Helen made up her 
mind to ask her genial father for help. It was not the first time 
that he had been approached in the interest of a musician in 
distress. When his daughter told him that it was imperative for 


Teresa to have $5,000 at once, and that he must be the one to 
lend it to her, he laughed aloud. 

"It is against my principles to lend money to an artist. As far 
as I am concerned I might as well throw it outright into Lake 
Michigan. Never yet has any one of them returned a cent of 
any loan I made him." His daughter's hopes crumbled at this 
abrupt dismissal. "But I happen to like this woman, and I want 
her to succeed. She shall have the money," he concluded. To- 
gether the two friends drew up the message that spelled free- 
dom for Teresa. 

In New York Arturo happened to be with Teresa when the 
telegram came. It was he who was immediately aflame with 
enthusiasm. "Teresita, you must go. Never will such an op- 
portunity come a second time. Make up your mind at once 
while Giovanni is away." Teresa was unconvinced. Her last ad- 
venture had turned out badly. What reason had she to expect 
a better outcome for this. She heard herself saying, "How could 
I ever hope to repay such a sum?" "No need to worry about 
that," urged Arturo. "There will be no difficulty once you are 
known in Germany. Think of your children! For them alone 
you must accept, whatever the risk. I shall not leave this room 
until you do." Before he had finished Teresa knew what her 
decision would be. "May the dear Father in Heaven help me," 
she said, as she signed her name, less boldly than usual, to the 
ending of another chapter. Arturo triumphantly departed with 
the telegram. His step was elated and light. The sense that her 
departure would spell inevitable personal loss was not yet upon 
him. Teresa, left alone, was overcome with dread. Her respect 
for everything that Germany meant in music reached the point 
of veneration. Could she hope to measure up to its standards as 
an artist? German criticism was often devastating, she knew. 
Could she consider herself ready to face it confidently? She 
must have time for preparation. And yet on Tag's account, if 
on no other, there must be no delay. Arturo agreed that a few 
months in Paris with Manuel, now risen to the dignity of 
Secretary of the Venezuelan legation, would be advisable. Tag 


returned to a fait accompli, and, not suspecting that the separa- 
tion was meant to be final, was persuaded to consent without 
difficulty. He begged to be taken. But that was a mistake Teresa 
would never make again. 

Friends did their utmost to hasten the departure for fear that 
something might happen to prevent it. When one day in early 
July of 1889 Teresa found herself standing on the deck of the 
steamer Gallia, bound for England, Mrs. MacDowell and her 
husband comfortingly by her side as fellow passengers, it was 
as if she had been catapulted there by a force outside herself. 
Tag, hidden behind a huge bouquet of flowers, seemed as un- 
real as the country of her destination. Until the last moment 
little Giovanni, in tears, had to be kept from running back to 
his father. Arturo held his breath until connection with land 
was completely severed. Not until then did he take time to 
think of himself. As the ship took its measured way and disap- 
peared, he became poignantly aware that the day had darkened. 
Tag returned to his house, to the emptiness that Teresa had so 
overflowingly filled, quickly shook off his lonesomeness, and 
set off in his usual manner to make the most of his unshackled 

Then more than now an ocean journey was the chance of all 
others to take spiritual inventory. The long, placid days in the 
steamer chair made Teresa for the first time conscious of her- 
self as an entity. No longer was she Teresita to be adopted or 
discarded at will, nor Teresa to be bullied or protected. "I am 
Carreno," came the echo of a happier, younger voice, and she 
said it again with firmer assurance, with better understanding. 
She would shape her own destiny, live her own life, however 
buffeted, undisturbed and unafraid. In her mirror she took the 
lines of her face under scrutiny. Disenchantment had straight- 
ened them, pointed them, deepened them, hardened them. De- 
termination should keep them so. That she was still lavishly 
beautiful she scarcely noticed. It had never added to her hap- 

Arrived in London on July 13, 1889, she deposited her money 


and in bold strokes signed her name simply "Teresa Car- 
reno," in official abdication of marital ties. Life in an Eng- 
lish hotel of the most conservative type soon made it apparent 
that her children's manners left much to be desired. Giovanni, 
when left unattended, took delight in investigating all the mech- 
anisms new to him, even to pulling the chains of the toilets. 
It was quite as embarrassing to have the young tornadoes burst 
upon the quiet of the dining room, shrieking with wild excite- 
ment. The disapproving eyes of all England seemed focused 
upon her as they were sent from the room in disgrace. 

Once in Paris bitter memories reawakened. Teresa was little 
tempted to renew old ties. She meant to build a new life, but 
not on the ashes of another. Only one simple duty was kept 
uppermost in all her planning, that of preparing with all con- 
centration for her Berlin debut in the fall. Her six long hours 
of daily practice were of a more thorough searching kind than 
any she had known before. She meant to discover what her best 
really was. For she must knock at the gate of the w r orld's strong- 
est musical citadel, armed with no less a weapon. Only by this 
arduous road could she earn her way to that new independence 
through which she would be able to bring up her children in 
peace. And how delicious to be for the first time in her life 
really free, free to use the ample sums lying in London to her 
credit, accountable to no other person. Best of all, with the 
country of her destination she would have not a single con- 
nection, not even that of language. She saw herself a diver 
standing on a cliff, giving a last glance far down at the still 
surface that in a moment would be shaken into flowing motion. 
Who could foretell the shape or the direction of those wave 
patterns ? How far might they not reach ! 

On July 22 Carreno rented an apartment in the Avenue Mac- 
Mahon. Manuel lived in the same house. For the furnished 
entresol and first Stage she payed 750 francs a month. While 
she practiced and Josephine did the cooking, the children were 
most often to be found with Rosie. Carreno felt the sting of 
jealousy. On one occasion, when the children had returned late 
from a thrilling visit above, Carreno could be heard from 
Manuel's apartment scolding in her penetrating mezzo: "If you 
like it better with your aunt, you might just as well pack your 
bags, and move up there altogether." 

There were drives through the Bois de Boulogne. Once, poor 
as she was, she had walked as a celebrity along the very 
ways where now she rode forgotten. There were fascinating 
mornings of shopping for hats and dresses and corsets. Mme. 


Mulot-Larcheveque, 23 Boulevard des Capucines, designed two 
concert gowns, one of mother-of-pearl velvet, the other of em- 
broidered creamy yellow silk. Each made her the poorer by 
850 francs, but the new Carreno must be suitably gowned. This 
was as justifiable as the expense of having photographs taken 
of Teresita and Giovanni, separately and together. 

Of these months of adjustment Teresa's letter to her friend, 
Carrie Keating, gives the most valid resume. It is dated October 
4, 1889. 

As I presume you would like to know what I have done since the 
3rd of July, I will tell you. We had a beautiful trip across, and 
(wonderful to relate!) I was hardly seasick at all. It is true that 
Mrs. MacDowell was so courageous and did so well, that I could not 
very well do less than follow her example. We arrived in London on 
the 13th of July, and remained there nine days. We did London 
pretty thoroughly and it gave me the greatest pleasure to see all 
the old familiar places of my childhood and girlhood again after so 
many years. Mrs. MacDowell and I went to visit the different places 
at which I lived and my heart ached again for the old times when my 
poor father was by my side. 

We reached here on the 22nd of July, found Emanuel and his wife 
waiting most impatiently for us with arms opened. You have no idea 
what a surprise I gave them, for they had no idea of my coming here 
until they received a telegram which I sent from London the day 
after we reached there. Emanuel looks better than ever; he has grown 
very much stouter and looks all the better for it, and is the same 
dear good boy, now with all the qualities of a good man and all 
the boyishness left behind. His wife is a most lovely girl, and when 
I think of the outrageous things that were told me about her I feel 
like going home and cutting the tongues of the \naves who said 
them. She is one of the best and dearest girls you ever heard of, and 
I am anxious for you to know her. They are as happy together as the 
day is long, and it does my heart good to see them so. Manuel's posi- 
tion here is very nice, and they enjoy themselves immensely as of 
course, Emanuel being Secretary of the Legation, this gives them 
many an opportunity of enjoying themselves. 

I have been here ever since. First I had an apartment in the same 
house with Emanuel, 3 Avenue MacMahon, close to this one, and 


now have taken this one until Nov. ist when I go to Berlin. Of music 
I have heard little. In London I heard Verdi's Otello given exactly 
as it was given when first produced in Milan, all with the exception 
of the prima donna who was very fair. Tamagno's voice is magnificent, 
specially in the upper notes, and Maurel's Iago histrionically is worthy 
of Salvini. His voice is no longer what it was, but he is such a great 
artist that he makes you forget that. As to the Orchestra and Chorus 
I never heard the like. The Orchestra specially fairly took me off my 

Here there is nothing but the "Exposition," and specially the "Eiffel 
Tower." People dream of it, eat on it, speak of nothing else and wear 
it in every way conceivable, until at last you seem to be surrounded 
by a lot of maniacs. In all justice we must say that all this fun is well 
deserved, for it is a most marvelous piece of engineering, but you get 
a little tired of hearing so much about it. 

Mr. and Mrs. MacDowell, my sister-in-law and I went one day to 
the very top, and the sight was grand. The Exhibition itself is 
very interesting, but I have not been able to see as much of it as 
I should have liked. I shall go again before it closes and see some 

My first appearance will take place in Berlin at my own Concert, 
assisted by the Philharmonic Orchestra, on the 18th of November. 
The friends of the family are requested to pray for the occasion! 
How I wish you were here with me then, and now and ever! Do you 
think you'll come over next summer ? If I stay, I hope you will come, 
but to tell you the truth, Carrie dearest, I am so dreadfully awfully 
homesick that I hope next summer, if I live, will see me in America, 
for there is no land to me like the United States, no people like the 
Americans. God bless them! They have no idea how much I love 
them. I paid a visit to my dear old friend Gounod, and you have no 
idea how cordially, how affectionately he received me. He played for 
me his last composition "mon dernier enfant" as he called it, a most 
beautiful orchestral composition, and made me play for him on his 
Steinway grand of which he is awfully proud, and told me I was 
the first person he had ever allowed to play on his piano besides 
himself. Wasn't that flattering, and wasn't it good of him? He is 
not only a great man but he is a great good man! I can't tell you 
how much true pleasure I derived from this visit which lasted two 
hours for he would not let me go sooner. . . . 



































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Another letter, a copy of which Teresa kept in her business 
files, was addressed to her friend of Boston days, Hans von 
Biilow. It read: 

Cher Maitre: — Je ne me doutais guere que la prochaine fois que 
j'aurais le plaisir de vous ecrire ce serait de Paris, c'est a dire que je 
me trouverais en Europe si pres de vous. Comme vous voyez je me 
trouve a Paris et je ne veux que vous le sachiez par personne d'autre 
que par moi-meme, et je viens par ces lignes vous envoyer mes bons 
souhaits. Je suis venue en Europe pour me faire entendre et, si je 
peux, faire quelques engagements de concert. Le 18 du mois prochain 
je donne mon premier concert a Berlin, et j'ose esperer que j'aurais le 
plaisir de vous voir a Berlin pendant mon sejour. Je vous prie de 
continuer cette bonte et amitie que vous m'avez toujours temoignees 
et qui m'honorent tant, et je me mets sous votre aile protectrice! 

Veuillez presenter a Madame von Biilow mes meilleurs souvenirs 
et, agreez, je vous prie, l'assurance de mes meilleurs sentiments 
d'amitie et d'admiration. 

Teresa decided to confront Berlin unattended, which meant 
finding a place where the children could safely board with 
Josephine and be given their first schooling besides. In Mont- 
morency at the highly respectable Institution de Demoiselles, 
directed by two maiden ladies, Miles. Penache and Degrouel, 
the ideal place was found. Carreno was already in touch with 
Berlin's foremost impresario, Hermann Wolff, whom she 
found to her relief as much at home in French as in German, 
and quite able to advise her about anything from concert halls 
and programs to a suitable pied-a-terre. 

One evening in late October Teresa Carreno descended from 
her train into the jumble of sounds and odors that was Ger- 
many. Somehow she managed to reach the Askanischer Hof 
safely, if in a daze. Herr Wolff had chosen well. It was a place 
frequented mainly by those of artistic profession, adequate and 
moderate in price. On the top floor, the one where she could 
best practice without disturbing others, there was a room large 
enough to accommodate an upright piano on the side of the 


house facing the court. From Paris she had brought an an- 
noying cold which increased her loneliness. There was no use 
in trying to make an impression upon her German impresario 
in that state. She would use the time of her isolation in learning 
German. Mornings while her room was being put in order she 
made a habit of reciting German phrases aloud, interspersed 
with penetrating sneezes, as she paced up and down in the un- 
heated corridor. Her neighbors were mystified to hear a voice 
repeating with insistent determination: "Ich bezahle meine 
Rechnung nicht. Ich bezahle meine Rechnung nichtl — Hap- 
chi, Hap-chi, Hap-chi!!!" 

In the front room across the hall lived Frau Koch and her 
daughter Emma. The mother was a typical German Hausfrau, 
whose outlook accommodated itself easily to the limits of her 
four walls. Her daughter Emma had a wider horizon. She had 
studied under the Master Liszt, and had made occasional ex- 
cursions into the concert field, in which she acquitted herself 
creditably, even accompanying Joachim on one memorable 
tour. Now she had settled down to the more sedate and profit- 
able life of a music teacher a la Liszt, chaperoned by her ultra- 
conservative mother, whose views on most subjects she shared. 

"Hap-chi! Ich bezahle meine Rechnung nicht," insisted the 
decidedly foreign and forceful voice. There was no doubt that 
she meant it, whoever it was. Frau Koch's curiosity was aroused. 
She opened her door. Carreno, believing that she had un- 
wittingly made herself objectionable, apologized, bad German 
mixed with bad cold. At least she could offer this peculiar per- 
son temporary warmth in a room cozily heated by the efficient 
tile stove. Undoubtedly she would then discover why it was 
that the lady so loudly refused to pay her bill. Frau Koch had 
not expected to find her guest so sympathetic. Both laughed 
heartily over the misunderstanding, and Carreno was delighted 
to be able to drop into accustomed French. As the days passed, 
the cold vanished under the care of her neighbors, and the 
concert loomed closer, this acquaintance ripened into intimacy. 
Carreno took pains to consult the Kochs about the thousands 


of details connected with her concert. But in the end she meant 
to do as she herself pleased. 

Hermann Wolff and Louise, his wife, whose caustic wit 
made many within the musical fraternity uncomfortable, were 
not slow in falling under the spell of a personality so refresh- 
ingly different from the ones that usually met in their drawing 
room. Wolff, in spite of his easy-going joviality, was an astute 
manager. Teresa was impressed. The two together played the 
intricate game of artist versus impresario with friendly and 
skillful rivalry. They crossed verbal swords in sharp thrust and 
parry, thoroughly enjoying their differences and readjustments, 
and remained close friends for life in spite or because of them. 
Hermann Wolff was a businessman with the soul of an artist, 
Carreno an artist trained by hard experience to count the cost. 
Now more than ever, in order to meet her obligation to Mr. 
Fairbank, she must hold her own financially. She must not let 
herself be flattered or fooled. The two close antagonists re- 
spected the qualities that each represented, and avoided danger- 
ous misunderstanding on the common ground of humorous 
give and take. Their letters are full of witty badinage. 

Nobody knew better than Hermann Wolff how to promote 
interest in a new artist and how to direct gossip in spinning her 
magic web. From Louise's day-at-home there emanated rumors 
of a full-blooded South American Creole, whose romantic epi- 
sodes were the talk of the United States. Hints of this kind in- 
sinuated themselves even into the apartment of the Kochs. 
Could it be true that there was an unlovely, sordid background 
in the life of this beautiful woman whose manners were so 
naturally distinguished? They decided to withhold judgment 
until after the concert. This did not keep Emma from feeling 
acutely embarrassed when in a public place Teresa, with the 
familiarity to which close association under the roof of the 
Askanischer Hof entitled her, took Emma's arm to walk up 
and down during the intermission. 

Carreno chose the Singakademie for its intimate atmosphere, 
and for its great tradition. There Rubinstein and Clara Schu- 


mann had appeared before her. It was with such as these that 
she wished to be compared. The custom of having only one 
soloist in a concert was strange but to her liking. Wolff recom- 
mended a debut with full orchestral background as the most 
effective introduction, and together they decided upon the 
Grieg "Concerto" with the accompaniment of the Philharmonic 
Orchestra under the baton of its standing conductor, Herr 
Kogel. Nobody as yet had heard Carreno. Wolff had insisted 
upon that and wondered. Could a person who had never had 
training or experience in Germany succeed with a German 
audience ? He doubted it. But after all the risk was hers alone, 
and personally he liked her enough to do all he could to create 
a proper setting. From the United States came letters in her be- 
half, the Venezuelan colony reserved seats in a block, and to 
the surprise of Herr Wolff tickets were actually selling in fair 

Among the few letters of introduction Teresa had found 
time to present was one to Emil Breslauer, editor of Der 
Klavierlehrer. He chose the night before her concert to call 
upon her, and Carreno, increasingly nervous as time shortened, 
felt that she needed the encouragement of a neutral colleague. 
She offered to play for him, and he listened intently, silently. 
There was no doubt that he was stirred, he himself did not 
know whether with pleasure or pain. Very different, very ab- 
sorbing he admitted it to be. Then the pedantic pedagogue 
raised his voice. "But your technique is so unusual. We in Ger- 
many have a more controlled style, do not let ourselves go so 
extremely!" And he proceeded to show Carreno how the con- 
servative German virtuoso was accustomed to play upon the 
stage. When the little man had gone Carreno was in a worse 
state than before. She had never given much thought to 
method and technique, had just played as was most convenient, 
as it brought out most easily what she meant to say. In America 
nobody had complained. But perhaps there was something to be 
said for Breslauer's point of view. Once more she sat down at 
the piano, trying her best to work out a passage according to 


his suggestions. The effect failed to satisfy her. "There's no 
use," she thought, as she gave it up after several hours of effort. 
How could she change her way of doing overnight, even if she 
knew exactly what she wanted! Her dreams, when she finally 
fell asleep, were disquieted by a procession of gnomes who 
hooted her off the stage because she had the wrong method. 

It had never been Carreno's habit to practice to any extent 
on the day of an important concert. A walk in the Tiergarten 
and good news of the children from Josephine lifted her sag- 
ging spirits. It was a spiritless day. The one rehearsal accorded 
her had gone satisfactorily. Herr Kogel had seconded her well, 
and the orchestra at the end had made noises of approval. The 
last movement of the "Concerto" she must remember to take at 
a more moderate pace. The orchestra had been left breathlessly 
behind. There was no further faltering. The grandniece of 
Bolivar would cross her Andes too. As eagerly, though not so 
happily, as on the day of her debut in Irving Hall she watched 
the sinking of the day that would pass upon her worth as an 
artist. No candidate ever visualized the implications of success 
or failure more clearly. The thought of her yellow Paris gown 
of crepe de Chine cheered her. Would she look more beautiful 
in it than in the simple dress of white her mother had once 
made? Was this the same little girl of long ago? Then her 
world had been filled by her piano and her dolls. Life with her 
piano and her children still was all she asked for. Then she had 
felt within her that she would play her best; now she knew 
that she must play her best, for the sake of the children that 
needed her, for the sake of the friends who believed in her, for 
the sake of her own inner peace. As she turned from the win- 
dow against which her imagination heard the rain prickling as 
in that far-off twilight of November, 1862, she seemed again to 
hear a voice: "It is time to be dressed now, Teresita." 

In der Massigung zeigt sich der Meister. 



1AM Carreno!" The Philharmonic Orchestra gave the con- 
cert its official and perfunctory opening with Mendels- 
sohn's "Overture" to Die Schone Melusine, while in her 
cell backstage Carreno strode up and down, clearly aware that 
she was facing the ultimate test. In a moment she must be able 
to bring Latin and Teuton into common understanding, or re- 
turn to the untenable life of yesterday. Three short weeks had 
convinced her that musically this was her country, that per- 
sonally she wanted to know these Germans and their intricate 
language. She felt that here idealism, mental thoroughness, and 
orderly economy lived together in helpful harmony. There was 
much for her to learn. She must not fail tonight. How long 
since she had felt ill at ease and humble before a concert as 
she did now! The Bechstein seemed a foreign instrument, un- 
approachable and menacing. The cigarette in her hand trem- 

Hermann Wolff looked in to assure his new protegee that 
there was a fair audience, and himself that all was well. Too 
sensitive to the reactions of artists to do the wrong thing at a 
crucial moment, he said a few meaningless words that suc- 
ceeded in drawing forth an unexpectedly robust and healthy 
laugh and as tactfully disappeared. This exotic beauty had 
aroused his liking. He wished her well, not for his own sake 
alone; but he was too experienced to count upon anything ante 
jestum. What he had heard at Carreno's hands had impressed 
him, but what of her nerves, what of the critics? "Das ver- 
dammte Temperament" he growled taking his seat next to his 
wife. Although he was fond of music and of people, first of all 
he was a businessman. In passing he took in his audience. The 
members of foreign diplomatic circles stood festively out from 
the underfed and carelessly assembled music students, who, 
taking their passes as a right, felt themselves privileged to criti- 
cize with double severity and to leave at the first tingle of 

The overture was finished. Carreno stood with nerves quiver- 


Montag, den 18. November 1889, 

Abends 7 l / 2 Uhr pracise: 

Im Saal der Singakademie 



Teresa Carrefio 

mit clem 

Berliner Philharmonischen Orchester 

iinter Leitung des 

Herrn Kapellmeister Gustav F. Kogel. 


1. Ouverture zum ,,Marchen von der schonen 

Melusine", op. 32 . . . F. Mendelssohn. 

2. Concert fur Klavier mit Begleitung des Or- 

chesters A-moll, op. 16 Ed. Grieg. 

Allegro molto moderate — Adagio. — 
Allegro moderate molto e marcato quasi Presto. 

3. Zwolf symphonische Etuden, op. 13. . R.Schumann. 

4. Andante fur Streichquartett P. Tschaikowsky. 

5. Polonaise brillante f Klavier mitBegleitung 

des Orchesters Weber-Liszt. 

— — — c-ooggo-O-o- 

Concertfiugel: Bechstein. 

W&hrend der Musik bleiben die Saalthiiren geschlossen. 

Billets a 5, 3 und 2 Mark sind in dei Hof-Musikhandlung der Herren 
Ed. Bote & G. Book, Leiptiger Str. 37, sowie Abends an der Kasse zu haben. 

_ . san 

« C7jfc3 — =» 

ttuchdi'ucktrei der ,,Volki.Z»itui>g u . Ut.-Ges. in Htrlin, L'utzoiritr. lOi. 

Berlin Debut Program 


ing for the touch of the keys. Barely giving Herr Kogel time 
to take his stand before the orchestra, head thrown back, tight- 
lipped, she crossed the stage of the Singakademie, upon which 
Mendelssohn had so often made the great Bach live again. 
From the middle of the platform she measured her adversaries 
with a glance that radiated force, warmth, and magnetism. 
With one of her famous bows, all-inclusive like a searchlight, 
traveling down, across, and up again in slow and regal ac- 
knowledgment of the applause that welcomed her, tamely at 
first, then with rising intensity, Carreno won over many an 
unbeliever before playing a single note. 

Silence! An angry rumble of the kettledrums and Carreno 
was off to the attack. Mightily the opening cadenza of the 
Grieg "Concerto" thundered and reverberated in this hall of 
classic aura, like cannon roaring out of quiet. Backs stiffened, 
eyes sought each other for information, for confirmation. Could 
this be a woman ? Some goddess might have played an Olym- 
pian piano like this. Geographically the music unfolded itself 
in jagged Nordic vistas. Fir-dotted cliffs disappeared palisade- 
like in dark waters. Caves that made a perfect setting for the 
frolic of elves and trolls undermined stark mountains. Wher- 
ever Venezuelan imagination led, this composite person, the 
audience, helplessly followed. Whatever the eye saw, that the 
ear heard; in such perfect harmony meaning and motion 
blended. One deaf to sound might have caught the flavor of the 
music by watching the changing play of expression that edited 
each mood and idea as Carreno dreamed, danced, and drove 
her way to the climax. Attention was held taut until the final 
smashing chord, which was still vibrating when the audience 
let go in frantic applause of hand and foot, punctuated by 
bravos. In spite of themselves the critics were hypnotized to 
join in. Under their very noses a new Lorelei was luring Berlin 
to fearful depths. By some illegitimate magic — what Bechstein 
had ever been subjected to such treatment — she was upsetting 
some of the most cherished tenets of German musical faith, 
transcending standards of accepted good taste. In the last 


maestoso, leaving the few who were already familiar with 
Grieg's score openmouthed, did she not have the audacity to 
change the master's own arpeggios to saber-rattling octaves ? A 
dangerous person, the more so for her incontestable beauty! 

Again in her cell, now become her sanctuary, Carreno flung 
a shawl about her shoulders. Why did every room in Germany 
have to have a different temperature from its neighbor ? Amer- 
ica could teach this country much about the comforts of life. 
Shivering, partly from cold, partly from excitement, Carreno 
began to take inventory. She had played very nearly her best; 
that she knew. Her audience had been affected strongly; that 
she sensed. Could it be that they were making fun of her ? 

She was still thinking this over when the door opened slightly 
to admit the head of a very subdued Herr Breslauer. "Liebe 
Gnadige Frau Carreno," he wailed. "Ich war ein Esel, ein 
E-s-e-l! Es war groszartig, noch nie d age we sen groszartig!" 
The ever-watchful Herr Wolff cut short the flow of compli- 
ment with a curt: "A plus tard, Monsieur, Madame doit se re- 
poser" escorting him firmly into the buzzing hall. Hardly had 
they taken their places when Carreno, not stopping for even 
a glance at the mirror, stepped out before her judges once 
again to face her hardest task unseconded, the "Symphonische 
Etuden" of Germany's own Schumann. Still ringing in their 
ears must be the authentic interpretation that the divine Clara 
had given them, or the more robust reading of Sophie Menter. 
Berlin knew beyond a doubt how these variations, exploding 
with difficulties, should sound. It was temerity indeed to at- 
tempt to brave the enemy in the heart of his own fortress ! The 
drawbridge was at an angle, the moat wide and deep. 

Carreno began. She announced the theme slowly, drily. Im- 
peccably correct it was, like an exercise. Some who secretly re- 
garded this as one of Schumann's least grateful works began to 
dread the lengths that stretched before. Was this superwoman 
going to commit the unforgivable sin of boring her listeners? 
Not so! Still holding temperament in check, she kept her 
hearers alert with biting, sarcastic accentuation and relentless 


rhythm, little by little abandoning her reserve, building up her 
effects with the assurance only he can have who recognizes 
space and time as servants of that which exists timeless, space- 
less, a unit. She tossed off, laughed off, prodigious difficulties. 
At times her hands moved so swiftly from her stocky wrists 
that they appeared as a blur. Impulsive change of tempo there 
was in plenty and notes that jangled as they oversprang the 
power of the Bechstein, but no mind was allowed to wander in 
the process. Let the sensitive jump, let the pedant be shocked 
from his ruts. Follow he must through the pungent pages to the 
very end. With the sharpness of steel Carreno stabbed the most 
stolid listener alive. Soothing gentleness, eerie loveliness, that 
she did not find or bring this night. It was Carreno fighting for 
freedom. The ending march piled climax upon climax until 
with a last accelerando victory was hers, leaving exhausted upon 
the scene all but the pianist herself. The critics, usually so 
voluble, sat speechless. 

Excitement during the intermission reached the decibels of a 
stock exchange in session, which would not be suppressed even 
after the orchestral interlude until Carreno was again seated 
before the piano. No more concessions, no more restraint! The 
Weber "Polonaise," doubled in hazards by Liszt, was her war 
horse. She rode it with all the fire and fury of her tempestuous 
being. The sparkle of her runs was so dazzling that some in- 
stinctively closed their eyes. Before the end all were her slaves. 
She held them breathless, as she made an incredibly even, swift, 
and surging trill shiver down to the vanishing point at her own 
excess of leisure. Then one rocketlike, multicolored flame of 
sound, and it was finished. 

Aloofly she accepted the homage of flowers, bowing in a com- 
prehensive sweep, as if condescending to acknowledge herself 
the unchallenged superior of her captives. Returning time after 
time in response to demonstrations that grew more and more 
hysterical, she wondered again, "Are they making fun of me?" 
Seeing people crowded around the stage, waving their handker- 
chiefs, standing on the seats, stamping on the floor, they re- 


minded her of a mob of Venezuelans in revolution. It took all 
the vocabulary of Herr Wolff to convince her that she was, in- 
deed, a success. In the Garderobe after the janitor had dimmed 
the hall lights, and later on in the streets, that miraculous trill 
was still the universal topic. 

In the cool of night the critics found time for more dispas- 
sionate reflection. They were one and all obliged to grant that 
here was a pianist to be reckoned with, at least potentially one 
of the first water. They marveled, if not without reservation, at 
her endurance, her daring individuality. What of it, if her tone 
lacked richness and delicacy, if her tempi were too erratic, if 
she dealt in extremes beyond the measure called for by tradi- 
tion! They called her the "lioness of the keyboard," "Briinn- 
hilde, the Walkiire," a name that accompanied her through 
life. Typical was the review of the Allgemeine Musi\zeitung. 

... It is long since I have heard a pianiste who has attracted me as 
completely as Frau Carreno. Here at last comes an independent 
personality, standing out from among so much mediocre talent, 
which, neatly combed and brushed, pervades the wide avenues of 
prevailing pianism. With complete and blinding technical virtuosity, 
with strength sufficient for two pianists, and with an uncommonly 
and strongly sculptured sense of rhythm, Frau Carreno combines 
spiritual freedom and independence of interpretation, which lifts her 
far above mere pianism into the realm of true art. Everything about 
this woman, speaking from an artistic point of view, is tailored to 
extraordinary measure, and therefore I understand that many of her 
listeners are repelled by the power of this presence, which has nothing 
feminine, and yet again nothing unbeautiful, or unnatural in its 
artistic expression. Comparing Frau Carreno with the average pi- 
aniste, she stands out as a Briinnhilde against one of the "flappers" 
of our time, and if this Apollonic Wishmaiden upsets our comfortable 
Philistinism somewhat with the crackling flame of her passionate 
nature, a call for help may be in order on the part of endangered con- 
ventionality, but it will not affect the victorious and compelling art 
of this tower of strength. I do not doubt that the guild of critics may 
dwell upon certain unevennesses, but I confess openly that it is re- 
pugnant to me, still under the impression of the brilliant achievement 


attained by Frau Carreno in the Grieg "Concerto in A minor," the 
"Symphonic Studies" of Schumann, and the Polacca of Weber in E, 
arranged by Liszt, to weigh with academic coolness the pros and cons 
of some individual tempi, or of a possible excess of force. Instead I 
am delighted once again at last to have chanced upon a pianiste in 
whose soul something unusual is happening, which materialized 
musically in its own special way. The Philharmonic Orchestra under 
the direction of Herr Kogel accompanied the Grieg "Concerto" very 
well. In the "Polonaise," it did not follow the rhythmic nuances with 
which the soloist enhanced it, sympathetically enough. I hope that 
after the stormy and endearing applause tendered her, Frau Carreno 
will allow herself to be heard more frequently before the Berlin public. 

Hans von Biilow, who had done her the honor of attending 
the debut, was heard to say: "She is undoubtedly the most in- 
teresting pianiste of the present," and that in spite of the fact 
that he had little use for women as musicians. A letter to Wolff 
expresses his feelings on this subject: "Do I need more of the 
'Eternal feminine' for my concerts? Ask yourself about the 
drawing power (to the box office). I for my own part miss 
rustling garments on the platform with delight." 

On the morning after the concert Hermann Wolff inter- 
rupted Carreno' s breakfast in order to translate for her the 
mountain of criticisms into French. On the strength of these he 
insisted that she follow up her success immediately with a solo 
recital unassisted. Carreno, still dazed and somewhat skeptical, 

On the evening of November 30 she found herself once more 
at the same Bechstein in the same hall, this time completely 
sold out, due, some said, to the miracle of a single trill. 

A stately figure in softly trailing velvet, Carreno crossed the 
stage accompanied by acclaim as spontaneously from the heart 
as her own playing. This was not an audience to be conquered, 
but a crowd of followers eager to be led wherever she chose. 
Berlin had adopted "Die Carreno" after a single hearing. Be- 
fore the first note of the "Appassionata" sounded she felt that 
she belonged. 


As in the "Symphonische Etuden" the week before she began 
with extreme deliberation, reticently, severely. Those >who 
looked for tenderness and charm in the "Andante" were disap- 
pointed. It stood in naked simplicity, classic in architecture. 
Had they been mistaken after all, wondered the critics? Sud- 
denly she hammered them to acute tension with disagreeable 
reiteration of those arid diminished sevenths that usher in the 
"Finale." Something momentous was about to happen. Visibly, 
as a body, the audience was drawn forward. What a tempo, 
what fierceness of rhythm ! Could she possibly hold it through ? 
She could, and she did. Rejoicing tirelessly and disdainfully in 
every difficulty, Carreno made vivid and vocal the terrific pas- 
sion inherent in Beethoven's music, and led it with inexorable 
inner logic to its wild, intoxicating close. The Titan of Bonn 
stood revealed, as Klinger has revealed him in marble, un- 
tamed, unpolished, unresigned. Even those who disagreed with 
Carreno's convictions most loudly during the intermission, had 
to admit that they were held in complete subjection. They felt 
that here was beauty of soul both simple and great, seeking 
not its own. That she saw her truths in superlatives did not in 
essence detract. Is not genius itself an exaggeration? What if 
she played the left hand before the right, dragged out her 
melodies, or pounded the all-too-responsive Bechstein at times 
without mercy! That which she said had the rightness and 
persuasiveness of truth itself. "She plays like Rubinstein on one 
of his good days," whispered the critic of the Norddeutsche 
Allgemeine Zeitung. Conversation buzzed excitedly, yet in un- 
dertones as if under the impression of an aurora borealis. The 
gentle Herr Breslauer complained in his journal: "It is impos- 
sible to evaluate her. Even the most coolheaded are caught in 
the rapids. But" — here the piano pedant raises his head — "from 
the German point of view much should be different." The 
Chopin group, although more temperate, drew forth decided 
pros and cons. Again it was in the music that approached the 
virtually impossible that Carreno was most completely at home 
on this night. 


The Paganini-Liszt "Campanella" was one of her affinities of 
long standing. Nearing the famous trill, Carreno became con- 
scious of two in the front row busily conversing, evidently with 
minds far removed from music. Lifting her left eyebrow, which 
should have warned them, she began the trill. It rose lightly as 
Ariel, growing in speed and force until there was not enough 
strength in the fingers of one hand alone to admit of further 
power. (The two in the front row, she noticed, were still deep 
in their own affairs.) Carreno trilled on, using both hands to 
hammer out a vibrating quiver, breath-taking in its crescendo. 
(Could it be that they were still unaffected?) The trill from its 
incredible height dwindled into nothing. (Aha! They talked 
no more.) Again it soared to peaks where human beings no 
longer may breathe. Not until she had the satisfaction of seeing 
two faces upturned to her own in speechless amazement did 
she let it sink into silence. Decidedly, in the sacred name of 
good taste this was too much. Marvelous as it was, such things 
should not happen in Germany. "Probably," said a critic, "the 
words of the German poet: 'In moderation the master shows 
himself,' have not yet been translated into Spanish." 

The octaves of Liszt's "Sixth Rhapsodie" closed the con- 
cert proper with their blaring fanfare. A music-hungry mob 
crowded forward for its quota of encores. Carreno, to whom 
the concert had seemed one of the shortest, played on until by 
order of the management the hall was darkened. The temper of 
the press in general was typified by the V ol\szeitung. 

Grandiose as the effect of her playing are also its faults, but I would 
be a Philistine indeed for this reason to indict our guest before the 
forum of the academicians. The style of her offerings still needs 
schooling; yet with all her exaggerations we welcome her as a sound- 
ing protest against that affected lifelessness, of which today even 
virtuosos of the first rank make themselves guilty. 

Back in her hotel Carreno poured out her joys and her hopes 
to her friends across the hall. Now she could soon have her 
children with her, pay her obligations, and find the permanent 


home for which she had longed. She was still at her liveliest 
when she noticed that Emma was yawning and that Frau Koch 
had fallen asleep. Another day was at the dawn. 

She awoke, her determination fixed to go to the children for 
the holidays. To this a reluctant manager was obliged to con- 
sent, but not until he had exacted a promise that she return by 
the middle of January as his prize exclusively on the same terms 
customary with artists like Eugen d' Albert. In the interim 
he would lose no time in making her name known wherever 
his influence counted. Engagements began to trickle, then to 
pour in. Hans von Billow himself asked for a repetition of the 
Grieg "Concerto" under his baton in the Berlin Philharmonic 
Concert of January 31, an honor accorded few newcomers. In 
her 3-by-4 diary of Russia leather adorned with a four-leaf 
clover Carreno enters on the day of the public rehearsal, "great 
success," on the day of the concert, "great success." This ap- 
pearance was to cement a lifelong friendship, occasionally 
spiced with misunderstandings, between two whose tempera- 
tures registered at the thermometric antipodes, the cold, meticu- 
lous scholar and the hot-blooded, impulsive Amazon. 

Three days after this concert, Hans von Bulow wrote: "Car- 
reno is a phenomenon, an exotic one, a young Kundry. I call 
her benedicta in nomine Apollonis, for she sweeps the floor 
clean of all piano paraders, who after her coming, must take 
themselves elsewhere. Wherever she is heard she is engaged for 
a second, yes, even a third time — I recommend to you this en- 
richment in new sensations." More practical witness to her tri- 
umph, Carreno could enter an income for January of 3,450 

On February 13 Carreno gave her third concert, this time 
again with orchestral accompaniment, playing three concerti, 
one of which was that of MacDowell. 

In the midst of ovations such as Germany usually reserved for 
its own acknowledged great, one wish, suppressed during 
many years, rose to the surface with such frequent recurrence 


that it would no longer be denied. Carreno had never forgotten 
her first child, the one she had been forced to abandon to the 
care of another. For fourteen years there had been no word of 
her. Not to be able to imagine one's own daughter! See her 
she must! For one whole morning Carreno composed draft 
after draft of a letter that, she hoped, would speak to the heart 
of her old-time friend. She wrote laboriously in German: 

Dear Mrs. BischofT: — On the 21st instant I go to Wiesbaden to 
fulfill a concert engagement, and I come most earnestly to beg of 
you to allow me to see my daughter for a few minutes. 

I think that in all these years of a silence so painful, to me, in which 
I have longed oh! with such a heavy heart to hear something of 
my child without in any way causing her or you any pain, I have 
sufficiently proved to you how thoroughly I wished you to keep all 
my rights over her, (for this was the promise I made to myself) that 
she should grow loving you with all her heart and undisturbed by 
the thought of her unfortunate and unhappy mother. I still intend to 
keep this promise, for more than ever I am convinced that for the 
child's own sake I acted right, and if she does not know who I am, 
and what my relation to her is, I will never tell her, for her own sake; 
but I cannot come so near, longing as I do for one look at her and 
not see her. In the name of the love you bear that child who after all 
is my child — and I gave her to your keeping that she might in a 
measure with her child-love compensate you for the love and kindness 
which I owed you, and though lawfully having the right to claim her, 
I have never attempted to do so, nor will I as long as you live — in 
the remembrance of the love you once bore me I appeal to your heart 
to let me have the comfort of seeing her when I come to Wiesbaden. 
What I ask you is very little for you, and it will be so much for me. 

The next day after the concert I shall call at your house and hope 
that you will grant my request. 

With the deepest feelings of gratitude for all you have been to 
my daughter, and for all you were to me in days gone by, I remain, 

Yours faithfully, Teresa Carreno. 

Mrs. Bischoff chose not to receive Carreno. Emilita knew of 
her real parentage, but in a way calculated to make her feel 
ashamed of it. Carreno was, so Emilita had been told, a light- 


minded woman of the prevalently objectionable artist type, 
more addicted to luxury and jewels, of which she owned trunk- 
fuls, than of taking responsibility. That this wall of fiction 
might some day be dynamited was her ever-present dread. It 
was a menace in itself that Teresa had come to Germany and 
had taken it by storm. With all the intensity of a jealous 
woman's nature, she meant to stay alone in the affections of 
this young girl upon whom she had lavished the care and 
comforts due an only daughter. She replied through her lawyer 
two days after the meeting was to have taken place. 

February 24, 1890 

Mrs. Bischoff asks me to answer your letter written to her from Berlin 
and to say that she in no wise can acknowledge the legal rights to 
the little daughter of Mr. Sauret which you stress in it. As matters 
stand, it is incontestable that the child stands under the control of 
her father, and that the father alone has the right to decide about 
her care, upbringing and education. You will admit yourself that 
by Frau Bischoff she is being treated in such an outstandingly af- 
fectionate, sensible and actually motherly manner, that interference 
with these conditions could not but be harmful for the mental and 
moral development of the child. 

Under these circumstances my honored client is obliged to deny 
herself in her own interest as well as that of the child any kind of 
intercourse with you, personal or otherwise, and asks you to give up 
any further attempts to intrude upon her, to which under existing 
law you have no rights. This will be all the less painful to you, be- 
cause since your divorce from your husband you have never in the 
slightest degree concerned yourself about the child, and have even 
expressed the wish at one time that henceforth you desired not to 
exist for her. 

Carreno turned from the inhospitable door to her work for 
comfort. A full schedule of concerts stretched ahead. 

To the army of music students who hopefully flocked to Ger- 
many in the Nineties Carreno became the embodiment of their 
ultimate ideal for themselves. She was the superlative pianist, 


the incomparable, the most complete, the most splendid, and 
as a natural corollary she must be of course the happiest mortal 
on earth. Inhabiting her own private Utopia, at whose glamor- 
ous perfection they could only guess, they gave Carreno a place 
aloof, too high for belittling envy. They saw her embowered 
among flowers of perennial freshness, surrounded by a rainbow 
aura of their own youthful, extravagant imaginings. She grew 
to be their musical gold standard. Secretly each one thought 
herself a potential Carreno. Perhaps some day they too, through 
the magic effect emanating, so people had said, from the Berlin 
musical atmosphere, would hold court against a fragrant floral 
background, while silks and satins beyond dreams and count- 
ing hung idly in wardrobes, like those of Carreno. Jewels like 
hers, too many of them, defying choice, filled chest upon chest 
of their imagination. They endowed her with a geyser of a bank 
account, that miraculously took care of itself, with friends of 
high degree who would never fail or disappoint her, always 
appear when needed, yet never outstay their welcome, devoted 
servants who would not so much as allow her to pin on a hat 
or button a shoe. And like Carreno they would play, and play, 
and play for hours upon end, living perpetually on that high 
level of ecstasy to which she lifted her hearers. So her life must 
always have been, must ever be ! How thrilling just to pick up the 
handkerchief she carelessly dropped on the stage, to see her set 
her ample, generously rounded signature to one of her pro- 
grams for an album of memories, to feel the glance of piercing 
velvet that seemed to read and comprehend them at once and 
wholly! Oh! to be a Carreno! 

Carreno sat in the twilight, wearing a plain woolen wrapper 
that had warmed her for many years. Cigarettes had punctured 
it in places. But Carreno, watching the soothing smoke rings 
thinning into nothing, liked it all the better for the holes. She 
was not one to cast old friends, even inanimate ones, lightly 
aside. Her mood today was one of extreme melancholy. What 
curse had been laid upon her that she, like the Flying Dutch- 
man, must travel eternally from place to place without a 


home, far from her country, her children ! Why had life denied 
her the rights, the security given ordinary mothers, safely pro- 
tected by their husbands ? She should have shown more sense in 
choosing hers. How could she hope to sift out a few true friends 
from the flatterers that surrounded her to the exclusion of any 
real privacy? How could she answer all these unimportant let- 
ters, thank people for their flowers, sign her name endlessly for 
silly young things, while her dresses needed mending, and she 
should be going over her accounts. No manager must be al- 
lowed to take advantage of her. Indeed not! What would Tag 
say to the letter that told him definitely that between him and 
her all was ended ? How long would it take her at the rate of 
her present prospects to repay the loan of Mr. Fairbank ? Could 
she afford to have Teresita and Giovanni with her now? No! 
They were better off in Montmorency. The daily news of them 
which she required indicated that they were well and happy. 
Teresita was already speaking French very nicely and Giovanni, 
the darling, had written her an undecipherable scrawl that she 
carried in her bag wherever she went. She would see them on 
her way to England, God willing! That alone was worth living 
and working for. Tomorrow she must be off again for another 
city she would learn to know only through its hotels and its 
concert halls. In Dresden she had not even had time to see the 
"Sistine Madonna." Instead she was obliged to receive the bor- 
ing, perfunctory calls of official dignitaries. Thank fortune, her 
trunk at least was packed. 

Far below sounded the even tramp of soldiers, a military 
band suddenly breaking into one of those marches that give 
spring to tired feet. It reminded her that the piano was awaiting 
her pleasure. Although she did not feel well — her nerves, she 
supposed — and not at all like practicing, from the very first 
note she responded to the healing power of the art to which 
she had committed herself. Troubles receded. She became as 
young Germany dreamed her, the empress of the piano. Slowly, 
painstakingly as any student, she sought for new and deeper 
meaning in the compositions already so intimately hers, de- 


manded more than she had yet given. She studied self-forget- 
fully, time-forgetfully, until a knocking upon the wall re- 
minded her that to her neighbors sleep was more necessary 
than music. Suddenly she felt tired and hungry. She put more 
briquettes into the friendly tile stove — that institution which for 
warmth and economy still seeks its equal — and quickly brewed 
a cup of tea on her spirit burner to make more palatable the 
open sandwich of blackbread, butter, and cold meat of which 
her daily supper consisted. Oh ! to be with her children ! 

The first tour extended from Holland to Prague and back to 
include Belgium. Everywhere Carreno appeared as a revela- 
tion. She was delared to be the only one who could boast of a 
"full house in this overcrowded season." No pianist since Tausig 
and Rubinstein had been so royally welcomed. None could 
compete with her unless it were the formidable d' Albert, now 
on tour in America. Carreno made mental note that here was 
one rival who must be heard. A critic from Antwerp's he Pre- 
curseur called her a Venezuelan capable of thawing the North 
Pole; the Prague Politi\ invented the term "Keyboard-million- 
airess" in her honor. 

Carreno had been called upon to play the Grieg "Concerto" 
in Leipzig on March 29, 1890. The Centralhalle was its setting. 
In one of the front rows of the Gewandhaus Saal sat two men, 
one a Leipzig music publisher, Herr Fritzsch, the other a man 
of undersized figure capped by an enormous head, from which 
two points of light flashed searchingly. He was seen to listen in 
rapt attention, punctuating a passage here and there with a 
whispered "enorm, groszartig, gewaltig!' He was first to ap- 
plaud at the end, first to greet Carreno in the artists' room after 
the "Concerto" was finished. Doubling in a precise bow he in- 
troduced himself: "Mein Name ist Grieg." Carreno's heart 
missed a beat. There jumped to her mind all the liberties she 
had taken with the last pages of the master's work, the octaves 
she had substituted for the arpeggios in the score. For once 
she found no words, stood like a schoolgirl waiting for a just 
reprimand. "Madame," said Grieg, "I did not know that my 
concerto was so beautiful." The photograph he gave her on 
this day is inscribed, not too grammatically, in his hand: "Die 
ausgezeichnete Meisterin mit Dan\ und Verehrung Edvard 
Grieg." From that day on they were fast friends, he one of her 
frankest critics. 

That he was not always in agreement with her a letter from 
Grieg to Andreas Winding clearly shows: 


Frau Carreno played Chopin's "E minor Concerto" and Liszt's 
"Hungarian Fantasia" with orchestra excellently. But the devil is 
in these virtuosos who always want to improve on everything. In the 
first measures she pleased to play more slowly in the passages, so that 
the tempo went Heidi! And in the Finale she suddenly took the 
second theme much more slowly. There should be a penalty for 
such things. And on top of it she acted so proud; that was the worst 
of it. But thereupon I gave her a piece of my mind and added : "Well, 
Chopin is dead, he doesn't hear it! What Weingartner says of the 
tempo rubato conductor is true also for the performing artist. They 
all suffer from virtuoso or importance mania. 

In Paris on a passing visit with her children Carreno was laid 
low by a violent attack of quinsy, or angine as the French doc- 
tor more poetically called it, not making it less painful on that 
account. She suffered acutely, a high fever which lasted for days 
leaving her so weak that she did not care to start for England 
without Manuel in attendance. 

On the opposite side of their compartment, as the train sped 
toward London, there happened to sit a stolid-looking German 
reading his paper. Carreno, in reckless spirits matched by a 
brother in a holiday mood, was up and down, packing and re- 
packing her bags, commenting in strident soprano upon every- 
thing that passed through her mind or before her eyes. Soon the 
farther window was the object of her attraction. She crossed 
over, jostling the phlegmatic stranger without apology, then 
trumpeted back to Manuel in Spanish : "Our portly friend will 
think that I wish to make love to him, but I only wish to ad- 
mire the scenery." So boisterously they enjoyed themselves at 
his expense, like two thoughtless children. Arrived at the sta- 
tion, hardly had the train whistled itself to a standstill when 
another whistle caught her ear. Did she imagine that she was 
hearing the Siegfried motif ? No, there upon the platform stood 
a group of jovial young men evidently expecting someone. Sud- 
denly the "portly friend" pushed forward, his lips framing the 
same motif in reply. The group rushed to greet him. Who 
could this man be, so musically awaited, on such intimate terms 


with Wagner? It came to her like a stunning blow. The great 
Hans Richter himself! Carreno, like every pianist worth the 
name, had hoped one day to play under his baton. She moaned 
in self-abasement. "How could I be so rude, so mad." How 
ironically the maestro had bowed himself out of the compart- 
ment. "What a fool I was" — and there was nothing she despised 
more — "what a damn fool," she repeated. No great harm was 
done, however. On November 9 and often thereafter she was 
to play a concerto conducted by Richter. The incident was 
never mentioned between them. 

Musical London which had once meant home to Carreno, 
and which she came to capture anew in the late May of 1890, 
had changed in twenty years. It received her cautiously, finding 
her too spectacular, her programs too unconservative. The Lon- 
don Times disliked "the trick of appending little final flourishes 
to almost every work played," and talked condescendingly of the 
"beauty in pink cashmere and silk brocade." Carreno was not 
disheartened. "If London refuses to be taken in a concert or 
two, I shall simply have to convert it," she decided. It was im- 
portant to be accepted in England, a country loyal beyond all 
others to the artists of her adoption, and she meant to return 
until she too was numbered among them. Socially at least she 
was a success. 

Back again in Paris Carreno faced problems other than 
musical ones. She was too much a Venezuelan to leave her earn- 
ings lying stagnant in a vault. She had an urge to join the jug- 
glers of the stock market, tempered by the experience of one 
acquainted with poverty. Fortunately there was among her 
friends a man who taught her how to handle investments 
wisely. When her gambler's instincts threatened to prevail 
against the calculations of the business woman, she reminded 
herself of the $5,000 owing her benefactor in Chicago. Yet in 
her purse — a slight harking back to atavistic longings — there 
was almost always sure to be found a lottery ticket. That was 
one of her few harmless indulgences, returning to her in pleas- 
ure what the fates denied in coin. 


Waiting for her in Paris Carreno found the much dreaded 
letter from Tag postmarked Toronto, May 22, 1890. He wrote 
in placating, operatic Italian, trying to touch her in the spot he 
knew to be most vulnerable, the welfare of their children: 

Dear Teresita: 

I received your letter which gave me pleasure and displeasure. I 
spent two wakeful nights asking God for the grace of giving me 
the idea of an answer, and finally He dictated this one, and I thank 
Him a thousand times for the decisions which He Himself placed in 
my heart. 

Hear therefore what I shall tell you, and I call God to witness 
that what I say will be rigidly carried out. God told me this : "Teresita, 
you are a good and honest woman, and furthermore an even better 
mother, and that is why I love you more (if that is possible) than I 
loved you in the days when I first met you. I do not know whether 
you have the same affection for me, but you cannot deny that after 
twelve years of life together you must have some feeling for the 
father of your children. And now it is precisely on account of the 
love that we both bear them that I speak. We have these two little 
angels, so good and so lovely, and we must be proud of them and 
make their life as little unhappy as possible, strewing roses, not 
thorns upon the path they must tread. . . . Let us leave the past 
behind us — let us think of the future — my errors towards you were 
provoked by my love. . . . 

Teresita, I wish to make you happy, and I swear that you will be- 
come so. Only love me a little and you will be happy with your chil- 
dren and your old Nanno. We are at an age when illusions no longer 
exist. Give me your hand and you will see what Nanno is able to do 
after so many years of unfortunate experience. . . . 

I want to make you my queen, love you, respect you and do all 
within my power to make you forget the unfortunate past. 

Think well before answering, for upon your reply depends your 
future and mine and that of our children. In any case I have to tell 
you that I can no longer live without seeing them, and should you 
decide not to see me, I still would come to embrace them without 
embracing their mother. Write me soon. Kiss the children for me. 
And as for you, who' sent no kiss to me, receive one from your Nanno, 
who always loves you and will still make you happy. 


I have insured my life for $10,000, so that if I should die tomorrow, 
you can have the money for the children. I did this yesterday, Mutual 
Life* Insurance, N.Y. Therefore, I still have $2000 which I saved, after 
having settled everything. Now I am on the way to earn much money. 

Dr. Anderson in Detroit gave me a wonderful pin with six lovely 
diamonds for Teresita, and I had bought two very beautiful earrings 
with diamonds for you, which I have here. I also bought for you 
two Japanese kimonos as a surprise, one for summer and the other 
for winter, immense shawls and lots of small things that would have 
given you pleasure. — Another kiss from Nanno. 

P.S. After my firm decision, all now depends upon you, to make 
a good person, a good father, and a good husband of me. 

Your Nanno 

All debts are paid, I have about $2000 left, but I am giving up the 
house. Write me to Steinway Hall, since I do not yet know where 
I shall live. 

Carreno was not tempted, neither for herself nor for Teresita 
and Giovanni. She laid aside the letter with distaste. Not even 
a ripple of longing was left to see again this man she had 
known too well, too long. That subject was closed. It was easy 
to brush aside the past, the more because she had already out- 
lived it, and because summer, a long summer of happiness, was 
close at hand. 

With Manuel, Rosie, the children, and Josephine she took a 
cottage at Berck-sur-Mer on the Normandy coast to "rest and 
pick up." There were woods on one side, the sea on the other, 
and the place was as healthful as it was cheap. Proudly she 
writes of Teresita and Giovanni: "They have grown so much, 
and, forgive the vanity, so pretty too." It pleases her that Ter- 
esita reads music well. From villa Pauline, chalet Number 8, 
she writes to Carrie Keating urging her to come. "You are over- 
worked and (as I have done) have borrowed too much on your 
capital of vitality ! But, never mind, darling, you and I are made 
of the stuff that never says die, and we wouldn't." She apolo- 
gizes for not being able to ask her to live in her house. The 
two teachers of the children were to be there: "They were so 
good to my babies that I want to do what I can to show them 


my appreciation of their behaviour, and they are two very 
charming girls." Even here the responsibilities of her profes- 
sion are ever present: "The only thing which will interfere with 
our visit together will be my work, for I have to work very 
hard this summer on account of having so many engagements 
to fulfill next winter, and having to get new things ready for 
my concerts." 

Carrie arrived, was met at the station and nearly smothered 
under the great black cape, as Carreno threw her arms about 
her. Berck-sur-Mer was the meeting place of the Venezuelan 
colony of Paris. Carreno joined in with them, even playing an 
occasional game of tennis or watching the shooting matches in 
which Rosie excelled. She found that this, indeed, was the ideal 
place for relaxing tired nerves, regaining strength — and losing 
weight. Autumn too soon crept in upon her happiness, and the 
day of parting from the children approached. She had counted 
upon making a new home for them in Berlin. Wolff had sternly 
objected. Engagements, really important ones, were coming in. 
She must not be distracted. This season, he said, would set the 
pace for all future ones, solidify her position. He predicted for 
her more engagements in Germany "than all the pianists to- 
gether," trusting that she would be well disposed toward "a 
very fatiguing season which promises good returns in marks, 
florins, rubels, francs, and crowns," and himself, incidentally, 
equally good ones in ten-per cent commissions. 

Wolff's snappy letters were meant, and seldom failed, to 
make Carreno smile even in her gloomiest moments. He had a 
genius for understanding artists. To brave their stormy tem- 
perament was refreshing as the driving wind after listless sum- 
mer heat. He could hardly wait to have it lash his face again. 
At the end of September he wrote: 

Chere amie: J'ignore s'il vous interesse, mais je dois vous le dire: 
je suis de retour. Berlin commence done a etre complet et n'attend que 
votre arrivee pour etre completement complet. Tres bien dit, n'est-ce 
pas? Ma femme est encore a Grossgmein avec ses enfants (et les 
miens). . . . Quant aux affairs, je trouve Scheveningen, comme 


M. Fernow vous le propose, parfaitement acceptable. Vous vivrez 
pendant une huitaine comme une "deesse en Hollande," vous aurez 
succes, tres beaucoup bon, nous en ferons une jolie petite reclame 
pour les autres pays et villes qui auront plus tard Fhonneur de vous 
entendre et payer, et tout finira aussi bien qu'il commence. 

He might have noted, as she did in her diary, that this would 
give her the opportunity of trying out the Saint-Saens "Con- 
certo in C minor" on a European audience with the promise of 
1,000 francs to add to her bank account. 

On October 9 the strenuous season began. With few inter- 
missions Carreno played daily, traveled almost daily, grateful 
only that Herr Wolff knew how to plan the routes with a view 
to proximity, economy, and the least possible discomfort. In one 
of her first concerts on October 13 she was to play the Saint- 
Saens "Concerto" under von Biilow in Berlin. In a letter to 
Wolff he writes : 

Saint-Saens ist doch ein famoser Musiker! Sein viertes Klavier-konzert 
kann einen von dem Ekel an Musik curiren, den man sich in Ihrem 
(daran unschuldigen) Bureau zuzieht durch Einblick in die aller- 
hand Parti (tor) turen, denen Sie — Gottlob — eine nur fTQchtige 
Gastfreundschaft gewahren. Welche Sardousche Technik und Ele- 
ganz! Wie hat Alles Hand und Fusz, wie gehen feinsinnige Origi- 
nalitat, Logik, und Anmuth harmonisch mit einander! Hoffentlich 
spielt Teresa (Carreno) das Werk correkt! 

If ever a man knew the meaning of that last word it was 
Hans von Biilow. He himself was its living embodiment. Car- 
reno respected him for it and learned. There was no need to 
worry on this occasion. Again he wrote to Wolff after her 
Leipzig concert — "Die Senora (Carreno) war pyramidal — Sie 
leistete wahrhaft Staunenswiirdiges, nach meinem Dafiirhalten 
in jeder Hinsicht noch Vollendeteres als in Berlin — Publikum 
war ganz aus dem Hauschen, raste formlich." 

Speaking of this second concert the Allgemeine Musi\zei- 
tung hears a new note in her playing: "Frau Carreno," it says, 
"enchanted her audience through her apparently more ethereal 


and yet fiery and brilliant piano playing completely. The artist 
seems to have become more and more accustomed to her Bech- 
stein, which used to sound harsh now and then under her 
powerful touch, but now has developed the greatest beauty of 
tone in spite of all the fullness of volume which the fingers of 
no German pianist have ever surpassed." 

In Dortmund she played the "G minor Fantasia and Fugue" 
of Bach-Liszt. This collaboration suited her perfectly at the 
time, Bach as a tribute to German taste, Liszt for her own 
gratification. To be a true interpreter of Bach unadulterated, 
Carreno at this time lacked objectivity and perspective. On the 
other hand the Grieg "Concerto" and its fidus Achates, the 
Weber-Liszt "Polacca," were heard in the majority of her or- 
chestral concerts, giving way occasionally to the Saint-Saens "C 
minor Concerto" and the "Hungarian Fantasia" of Liszt, an old 
friend resurrected. 

The "Second Concerto" of MacDowell also had another 
hearing in Dresden on October 28, 1890. As Wolff had feared, 
the press with few exceptions called it a superficial work empty 
of thought. The public received it in a more friendly spirit. 
Encouraged by this she dared to propose it for a first hearing 
before the ultraconservative Gewandhaus audience of Leipzig. 
Von Biilow at first rebelled. A laconic telegram caused him to 
change his mind. It read: "No MacDowell, no Carreno." 

Until the end of November Germany claimed her, a con- 
gested tour of the large cities of Switzerland followed, often 
two concerts in the same city, and more concerts in Germany 
nearly up to Christmas. Important musicians found that she 
was somebody to cultivate. Max Reger enthused: "Last Friday 
I heard Teresa Carreno, the newest star, decidedly the best 
among the pianists of today." And, not least of her satisfactions, 
the income for 1890 totaled the sum of 34,134 marks. 

The entrance of 1891 deserved a new diary, again of red 
leather gilt-edged, embossed with four-leaf clovers. The first 
entry as usual is a prayer: Que le bon Dieu soit avec nous et 


garde nos enfants en bonne sante. On that same day Carreno, 
who had spent Christmas in Montmorency with the "babies," 
left for Austria. 

Hermann Wolff meanwhile is relentlessly training his new 
star to be as reliable in business as in profession. When she side- 
steps her obligations or procrastinates in their fulfillment he 
severely calls her to task: "Chere amie, pensez un peu a l'avenir. 
Vous n'avez pas l'intention de delaisser la musique. Mes so- 
cietes sont habituees a vos promptes reponses — nous ferons bien 
de n'y rien changer. Je vous prie done de me repondre le plus 
vite possible a toutes mes questions." 

It was to be a memorable year in that it marked her first 
visit to Russia. On January 28 in St. Petersburg Carrefio's diary, 
in general kept for her itinerary and her expenses exclusively, 
records: "Saw Rubinstein for the first time after twenty years." 
During her brief stay she dined at his house on every free night. 

The Russian tour, lasting well into February, was not either 
critically or financially successful. Carreno was as always popu- 
lar with her audiences, less so with the critics. The St. Peters- 
burg Herald finds that she too often goes beyond the measure 
of the beautiful and the noble, that a Chopin Nocturne can't 
stand a forte like the Schubert-Tausig, March, and states that 
the "Romance" of Tschaikowsky could scarcely be recognized, 
so changed and exaggerated was its interpretation. "Great ex- 
citement was created by a trill which lasted about half an hour, 
more beautiful pianistically than musically." Among Carrefio's 
complaints not the least was that in default of a Bechstein she 
was obliged to play a piano of second grade. 

Came a short and in comparison heavenly interlude of con- 
certs in Germany. March again called her away, this time to 
Scandinavia where in April the King of Sweden conferred 
upon her in person the gold medal "Litteris et Artibus." Then 
at last she might return to the place that such as it was meant 
home to her, the Askanischer Hof. 

It was foreordained that the most talked-of pianists of the day, 
both under the same management, in the course of time must 
meet. On April 10, 1891, a date she would never forget, Car- 
reno sat gossiping over the teacups, taking unofficial lessons in 
the ways of the musical world from Louise Wolff, the one best 
qualified to give them. A caller was announced and greeted 
with the enthusiasm Frau Wolff reserved for old friends. Be- 
fore the formula of introduction had blurred first impressions, 
intuition had registered a warning which was to haunt Carrefio 
in retrospect. Such might have been the effect upon her if a 
snake had suddenly crossed her path. Eyes seconded the shock 
of repulsion. She thoroughly disliked this gnomelike person 
who, careless in dress with stringy hair cut long and a straggly 
mustache, reminded her of nothing so much as of a tree that 
badly needed pruning. She resented his high voice minor in 
inflection, the sinister look of his eyes peering through narrow 
slits, eyes that saw too much and revealed nothing. His hand 
felt flabby in her own hearty grasp. So this was he with whom 
she had so often been compared! So this was the great Eugen 
d' Albert! 

Carreno mentally added this encounter to the list of her dis- 
enchantments. She listened distantly as he complimented her 
with effusion upon a recent performance of the Grieg "Con- 
certo." Unflattered she used her usual stencil in reply: "You are 
very kind," and then fell silent. Not his new Gronberger dog, 
not his recent visit to the United States, not the villa he had just 
bought in the suburb Lichterfelde, not even the fact that it was 
his birthday roused her interest. She soon invented an excuse 
to leave. Thus on a deceptive cadence, this first meeting ended. 
D'Albert on his part was both musically and personally im- 
pressed. Carreno's indifference nettled him. Women generally 
capitulated at sight. 

Louise Wolff knew that nothing would give him greater 
pleasure than to see Carreno in one of his concerts. Diplomat 
that she was, she succeeded in bringing her to the managerial 


box on the occasion of a public rehearsal of the Sternsche Gesang 
Verein. D'Albert was to be heard in Beethoven s "G major 

On that day the Philharmonie was sold out as for her own 
concerts. But the box in which she sat was to her satisfaction 
the focus of every opera glass. At last the lights were lowered. 
D'Albert looking more gnomelike than ever came pattering 
across the stage escorted by wild applause. He made a jerky 
bow that ludicrously threw a lock of hair into his eye. Carreno 
settled down to the prospect of a half hour with a concerto she 
did not care for and an artist she positively disliked. 

Then serenely as if from the upper air there unveiled itself 
that most touching of introductions with all the simplicity of 
childhood, all the philosophy of ageless wisdom. Carreno felt a 
catch in her throat. She had not realized how lovely it was. 
Leaning forward she waited for the next entrance of the piano 
as for a revelation, and a revelation it was. What did it matter, 
how he looked, how he talked. That man could play with a 
purity beyond imagination. Not since Rubinstein had a pianist 
given her such affecting happiness. Never had she found such 
depths of beauty in that all-too-short slow movement, such 
impertinence in the rondo. A thousand beguiling little devils 
seemed to be dancing with harmlessly pointed pitchforks. She 
laughed aloud. When the "Concerto" was finished, Carreno in- 
sisted upon being taken backstage, shining with the thrill of 
hearing herself outplayed, much to the amusement of Louise 
Wolff, who did not hesitate to throw in her "I-told-you-so." Here 
indeed was true greatness. It scarcely bothered her that d'Albert 
was basking in the idolatry of his adorers, that they knelt on 
the stage and kissed his hands, for now she could understand. 
Before her very eyes, through the magic of Beethoven, the 
dwarf had been transformed into a giant. She could not resist 
the temptation to dine that evening at the house of a mere ac- 
quaintance, because the invitation was baited with the promise 
that d'Albert would be there. 

On his part the approval of Carreno affected d'Albert 


strangely. Her innate generosity of spirit enfolded him com- 
pletely. Her compelling power was full of a magnetism to 
which he strongly responded. In her warming presence what 
might he not become! D'Albert felt it important to see her 
again. The season now ending had been a crowded one for 
both. Hermann Wolff had seen to that. Now their paths inten- 
tionally or not crossed more often. Occasional absence added its 
spicy tang to their meetings. They were seen together at con- 
certs. Each played at the meeting of the Tonkiinstler-Verein at 
the end of May and in turn applauded the other. D'Albert had 
chosen the Martucci "Concerto," Carreno, as usual under protest, 
the MacDowell "Concerto." The audience received her well to 
the extent of demanding a repetition of its prickling Scherzo. 
MacDowell had a harder stand against the ultraconservative 
body of critics. One reviewer used his imagination: "It was as 
if little figurines on a what-not began to dance, the only humor- 
ous touch being that a whole orchestra had to play for them, 
much ado about nothing the final outcome." He admitted that it 
merited the encore given it, adding however that the rest of the 
"Concerto" was not worth mentioning, and that "after the pas- 
sionate pianist had left the stage, a large part of the audience also 
fled from the hall before the Bruckner 'Te Deum! " The Bbrsen 
Courier noted a momentary loss of memory on Carreno's part in 
the Presto, one for which d'Albert might easily be held responsi- 
ble. The Vossische Zeitung on the other hand found the "Con- 
certo" full of imagination, grateful for the pianist though lack- 
ing in clarity of form in the last movement, and the applause and 
profusion of flowers with which the pianist was overwhelmed 

The outcome of the season surpassed expectation, and Wolff, 
the secondary beneficiary, had every right to gloat over it and to 
count upon an even-more-glowing future. In the highest of 
spirits he writes: "Ne vous fachez pas de la difference de vos 
cachets de l'ancienne epoque '89-91 et de ceux de l'avenir, pro- 
curez-vous une poche de cuire plus grande que celle que je con- 
nais et qui ne suffira plus pour ces cachets." 


On June 2, but added in retrospect later, stands a startling entry 
in Carreno's diary: "Went with my Liebchen to hear his Quar- 
tette played by Joachim's Quartette at the Singakademie." The 
day following holds another revealing sentence : "Told my whole 
history to my Liebchen." For privacy they took the train to Lud- 
wigsfelde one day in June, walking for hours through the coun- 
try they both loved and picnicking in a grove where only the 
sunbeams found entrance and thrushes sang their obbligato. On 
this particular day there was so much to be said, so much to be 
confided, that the last train for Berlin had left before they 
thought about so practical a detail. Both d'Albert and Carreno 
perpetuated this day in her diary, she simply with the words: 
"Went to Ludwigsfelde with Liebchen." He more specifically in 
German: "Alone together in Ludwigsfelde. Rode to Berlin on 
a freight train. Arrived at two in the morning. It was very nice, 
as always when we are together." 

Musical Berlin wagged its tongue and looked tolerantly on. 
For d'Albert, eleven years Carreno's junior, new vistas of delight 
were opening. The more experienced Carreno, who had so reso- 
lutely cut herself off from the past she had outgrown, found life 
again worth living, not for the sake of her children alone, but 
for its own radiant self. Then for the moment happiness was 
clouded by separation. After dinner together at WolfTs one eve- 
ning Carreno left for Paris, d'Albert for Switzerland. 

As if from another world, another century, Tag wrote once 
more, not believing in a final break. Carreno gave answer with 
categorical, conclusive brevity. 

She was intent upon making the most of her unscheduled sum- 
mer. One week in Berlin had proved that their happiness, d' Al- 
bert's as well as hers, depended upon being together. More and 
more he needed the lift her abounding vitality gave him, and 
she in turn a deeper insight into a nature that revealed itself so 
divinely to her in sound. Music and pity had drawn her to mis- 
adventure with fimile Sauret, music and loneliness had led her 
to seek refuge with Giovanni Tagliapietra. Music and true love 


now at last pointed with compelling finger to Eugen d'Albert. 

An intuitive person easily becomes a fatalist. Carreno was no 
exception. This was their destiny. Two weeks in Montmorency 
were enough to assure her that the children were in perfect 
health. The longing to be with d'Albert became irresistible. On 
June 21 her diary tells the tale: "Left for Wiesbaden to go and 
meet Liebchen." Five enthralling days together in Neuchatel did 
not suffice. Neither could she be separated from her "babies." To- 
gether she and d'Albert made a vital decision. The entire sum- 
mer should be theirs. While Carreno returned to Montmorency 
to prepare her children for the journey, d'Albert found the ideal 
place for their companionate holiday in Chaumont. There Car- 
reno joined him on July 9. D'Albert's piano arrived before him 
at the Grand Hotel. Carreno took a chalet for herself, the chil- 
dren/and Josephine. 

Overworked and overtired as she was, life in this remote para- 
dise, secluded with those she loved about her, brought the re- 
freshment born of untouchable happiness. On long mountain 
walks she discovered that both she and d'Albert liked to live 
without pretension, preferably in the country, that they longed 
equally for peaceful home surroundings, that they both loved 
children. Seeing Carreno with hers d'Albert wished that his son, 
Wolfgang, might have had such a mother instead of the flighty, 
if charmingj actress he had married at the age of twenty and 
was in the process of divorcing on grounds of extravagance and 
weak-minded flirtations. "With the constant inspiration of Te- 
resa's presence, what might I not compose," thought d'Albert. 
"With him beside me, how might I not play," sang Carreno in 
her heart. To him she was the guardian of that sacred fire which 
he needed to enflame his own creative urge; to her he meant 
the renewal of youth. That this perfect vacation was an inviolate 
secret even from Wolff himself — so they believed — made it all 
the more enchanting, and it was understandable that they wished 
it to endure as long as possible. 

In order to put off that inevitable first concert of autumn, 
Carreno invented excuses, feigned illness. At first Wolff in a 


letter full of his old banter is unsuspecting and hopes that she 
is feeling better. He writes : 

Mme. Louise Wolf? epouse du sousigne, mere personelle de tous ses 
enfants (connus) est encore a Kufstein. Elle reviendra lundi prochain 
poussee par une impatience tres naturelle, quand on a un epoux tel 
que votre ami Wolff. . . . Mon baiser directoral et amical vole vers 
vous, chere amie, je vous benis en vous serrant la main de tremolo. 
Votre ravissant Wolff. 

In September Wolff is still in equable mood. "Vous renoncez 
a Braunschweig; Riedel [the conductor] en pleurera," he writes 
and hopes that she is well disposed after so long a vacation. 
Toward the end of the month he becomes restive, demands to 
know what her plans are, whether he can still reach her at Chau- 
mont. He takes her to task for being slow in sending programs, 
for refusing engagements in October, and begs her urgently to 
begin her tour with Hanover in early November. 

Meanwhile Carreno had left Chaumont on September 26 to 
settle her affairs in Paris alone. Her diary speaks tersely and elo- 

1 Oct. Had telegram from Liebchen saying he had bought house. 

4 Oct. Left for Dresden. 

5 Oct. Arrived Dresden at midnight. Liebchen met me on the way. 
Babies will thank God. 

6 Oct. Dresden Hotel Kaiserhof [where she had registered under 
the name of Josephine de Paul]. 

7 Oct. Went to see our house for the first time. Found it beautiful. 

12 Oct. Went into our lovely home at Cos wig. Slept there for the 
first time. 

13 Oct. Home with all my darlings. Thank God! 

Villa Palstring, in Coswig on the Elbe between Dresden and 
Meissen, was rechristened "Villa Teresa" and became the setting 
for their idyll. Its walls of gray stone offered the space and se- 
clusion they craved. Feverishly working against time Teresa or- 
dered furniture, china, curtains, and at last food supplies. She 




directed painters, plumbers, and carpenters, thoroughly reveling 
in the confusion, while two Bechstein grands lay mutely, accus- 
ingly on their sides in the Coswig station, where upon some pre- 
text Carreno and d'Albert had separately required them to be 
delivered. What did concerts matter when she was preparing a 
home for her children, for her husband, the first home she had 
really ever owned ! 

Wolff grows more and more impatient. Carreno's erratic 
changing of her programs makes him nervous. It is more than 
probable that he knows her secret, yet does not feel free to speak 
of it except in innuendos. On November 3 he grumbles : 

J'ai ete deux fois a la gare croyant que vous arriveriez pour repartir 
pour Eberswalde. Probablement vous etes arrivee avant hier soir deja. 
Enfin je vois que vous evitez de me voir. Je ne connais pas vos motifs 
— mais je ne peux pas m'empecher d'etre tres etonne. Jusqu'ici vous 
aviez toujours cru bon, avant le commencement de vos voyages, de 
venir causer de tout I Enfin je me courbe! 

A few days after he finds more cause for dissatisfaction. Carreno 
must either have failed to arrive in time for the rehearsal in 
Hanover or have forgotten to bring the score of the concerto. For 
what other reason could it have been that she played only solos. 

Carreno did not take these admonitions too much to heart. She 
was thoroughly absorbed, happy and busy. Besides, there was no 
time to lose. D'Albert was committed to a tour in the United 
States, beginning in March. Every day counted. November saw 
them practically installed, the pianos set up in opposite wings. 
Laughingly they thumbed their noses at the public they had, so 
they believed, successfully fooled. A concert journey for either 
one or the other was a disagreeable interruption, a return to earth 
from a heaven all their own. 

Carreno's diary reads : 

4 Nov. Greifswald. Liebchen in Parchim. 

5 Nov. Home! Liebchen zu Hause so Gott will! 

7 Nov. Start for Hanover. 

8 Nov. Hanover. 

ii Dec. Liebchen 
12 Dec. Liebchen 


13 Nov. Elberfeld 450m. Liebchen came to stay over Sunday with 

19 Nov. Wiesbaden at 6 p.m. Liebchen came to meet me. Stayed 

at Biebrich. 
22 Nov. Berlin Askanischer Hof. 
24 Nov. Returned home by the 8 a.m. train. Found babies well, 

thank God. 
7 Dec. Liebchen in Wien. 
9 Dec. Liebchen in Budapest. 
10 Dec. Liebchen in Wien. 
in Graz. 
in Wien. 

13 Dec. So Gott will Liebchen zu Haus. 
15 Dec. [Carreno once more enters her own concert laconically] 

Konigsberg 700 M. 
22 Dec. Erster Tag [in d Albert's hand. It was Carrefio's birthday]. 

Carreno as well as d'Albert had forgotten that the two most 
photographed pianists could not hope to live long incognito. One 
morning the Signale brought the paragraph: "A strange bit of 
news from the realm of art comes to us by way of Dresden. Eugen 
d'Albert and Frau Teresa Carreno are said to be married. The 
pair has bought itself a house in Coswig." Paradise was invaded. 
D'Albert, true to his conventional background, had long urged 
official marriage. Carreno, equally true to her philosophy, 
thought it simpler to evade that issue, but from now on signs 
herself Teresa Carreno-d' Albert. The upheaval in musical circles 
that had for a long time gossiped about something of this kind 
can be left to the imagination. Since it was sure to influence the 
box office favorably on the principle that any kind of publicity 
is better than none, Wolff could afford to resign himself to the 
inevitable. On the eighth of December he writes : "II est possible 
que dimanche matin je serai a Coswig pour vous voir et votre 
mari." And so with the unalterable fact brought to light excite- 
ment gradually quieted down. "Artists are that way" was as 
good a conclusion as any, and following upon it the unanimous 
prophecy: "It cannot last." 

In the sanctuary outlined by the high walls of their garden the 


two artists were attempting to prove the contrary, turning with 
new zest to their profession. D'Albert resented every concert that 
took him away from the opera he was composing. Carreno went 
back to her piano, and learned from the husband of her admira- 
tion to bring a new sense of measure to her interpretations. The 
Tschaikowsky "Concerto in B flat minor" was added to her list. 
Humbly Carreno one day asked Billow, under whose direction 
she was to play this work, to give her a lesson in its reading. "I 
don't give lessons," growled the master. Carreno smoothly re- 
plied: "Indeed you do. Every time you conduct, whenever you 
play, you give a lesson to me." So tactful a compliment unruffled 
even a Hans von Bulow. 

A quarrelsome friendship was theirs, but one elastic enough 
to stand the strain, kept so by common admiration. Bulow always 
stood up for the masculine in music. So he writes in true form: 
"Stupendous, flabbergasting, but for the most time inartistically, 
Teresa played like an acrobat." Then he voices the hope that 
musically d'Albert's better nature will triumph over Teresa's. 
From its beginning the Tschaikowsky "Concerto" was particu- 
larly Carreno's own. Who could forget the excitement of those 
smashing introductory chords, thrown with effortless freedom 
into the keys, turning into sound so rich and powerful that many 
an orchestra had difficulty in holding its own against them ? 

D'Albert and Carreno had many friends in common. One of 
those most treasured was Johannes Brahms. At a dinner party he 
was inveighing against the women pianists who insisted upon 
cluttering the concert season with their weak-minded music. 
Carreno accepted the challenge. "You forget, Meister, that I am 
here, and I am a woman," she good-naturedly reminded him. 
"You are not a pianiste, you are a pianist," answered Brahms, 
who was not noted for making pretty speeches. 

One day in Vienna he and d'Albert were conversing together 
over beer glasses, the subject being matrimony. "Why have you 
never married, Meister?" asked d'Albert. 

"That is quite simple; because I have never found a wife like 
yours," he answered. 


Love is the great lubricant ; it reaches the most strangely assem- 
bled parts, and keeps the machine running with no apparent fric- 
tion. It is the great stabilizer which can hold two personalities as 
divergent as London is from Caracas in harmonious balance. 
Carreno and d'Albert had much to learn from each other. Of the 
two Carreno in spite of her maturity was the more teachable. 
Under his influence her taste developed. She gradually discarded 
the flashy works with which her programs had once bristled. 
Vogrich, Gottschalk, and even Rubinstein disappeared. That 
MacDowell suffered the same fate was due to d'Albert's prejudice 
against him both personally and as a musician — he had once been 
obliged to officiate at the second piano, when MacDowell had 
played his "First Concerto" for Liszt in Weimar — a prejudice in 
which jealousy was probably not an inconsiderable factor. 

Constructively d'Albert was without doubt responsible for a 
new control, a new inner unity in her readings. Carreno more 
seldom let herself go to wild extremes of length and height for 
the mere joy of being able to do so. Her tone took on subtle 
shades. As never before she studied to find deeper values in 
music and appreciably enlarged her repertoire. 

Being the wife of d'Albert involved more than musical give 
and take. For a young man of twenty-six he was already set in 
his ways. At sixteen he had clearly realized that he was too easily 
influenced, and had tried his best to steel himself against this 
failing. Once in the land of his idolatry, the Germany he loved 
with the same passion he brought to his hatred of England, he 
became intoxicated by too sudden and phenomenal success, al- 
lowing himself to succumb to the pampering and flattery of 
women. This was his besetting curse, until one or another became 
indispensable to his happiness and — so he thought — to his crea- 
tive unfolding. Until his death women were made to play a con- 
tributing but a subordinate part. Inasmuch as they gave his musi- 
cal imagination wing he valued them. When it sagged, as sooner 
or later it must, their usefulness automatically ceased. The one 
who was willing, as selflessly as a Senta, to drown herself in the 
task of creating the conditions under which d'Albert's music 


could flourish uninhibited, was die one apt to hold him longest. 

His first wife, Louise Salingre, suited the boy of twenty very 
well at the beginning. She laughed at his peculiarities, made light 
conversation when he felt taciturn, protected him even from his 
mother-in-law. Patiently she had followed him through the 
labyrinth of his eccentricities, even to the point of taking part in 
spiritualistic seances that bored her as much as they fascinated 
him. The crisis in their marital relations came because of a basic 
conflict in their natures. Louise refused to conform to d' Albert's 
standards of penurious carefulness verging on the stingy. That, 
rather than the love affairs which d' Albert used as a pretext for 
divorce, brought about the crisis. He insisted upon the custody of 
their son Wolfgang, for whom as for all children he felt real 

Considering her past Carreno entered upon her third marriage 
with surprising optimism. Nomadic life had accentuated domes- 
tic leanings. There could be no more thrilling adventure than 
that of building a home, organizing it on the ample scale con- 
sistent with her income — d' Albert had bought the house; she 
would keep it in running order and pay the bills — and in general 
playing the part of the perfect German Hausfrau a la d'Albert 
whenever she did not have to be the Meisterin of the platform. 
This meant not only submitting herself and her children to the 
wearing of the Jaeger woolens prescribed by Dr. Lahmann of 
Dresden's famous Weisser Hirsch, but even taking part in the 
daily exercises upon which d'Albert insisted. Feet bare, hair fly- 
ing, clad in flapping wrappers they followed their leader. These 
early morning rites in the garden must have provided amuse- 
ment for many a passer-by. It meant cold-water treatments and 
the supplanting of the conventional doctor by exponents of Na- 
turheil\unde. For milk they grew to depend largely upon the 
two goats in their stable. Wholeheartedly Carreno adopted his 
theories for her own, even to the education of children, although 
in this field his experience was much more limited than hers. 

This might easily have become the source of many a misunder- 
standing, but it was sidetracked as an issue by the departure of 


d' Albert for America. Carreiio had resisted the impulse to ac- 
company him on the tour in which her husband was to appear 
in thirty concerts with Nikisch and his orchestra. Before sailing 
he writes in nostalgic German : "And yet this, if God will, only 
short separation is dreadful too!" — and farther on, the first cloud 
in the blue, he accuses himself: "Why do I ever make you sad?" 
On February 22, 1892, Carreno tells her diary: "My darling left 
for America via London at 7:22 p. m. May God take him safely 
across and bring him safely back and help me to bear this awful 
separation." And on March 4: "Liebchen arrived safely in New 
York. The Lord be millions of times thanked for the great 

Barely in New York he takes up his pen again in homesick 
vein : " — I am so happy you are still in Coswig, in our house, our 
home — I feel so much quieter knowing you there." And he goes 
on: "All about us and me was in the paper today. The people 
here are much more inquisitive than in Europe." 

In the middle of March he expresses himself more fully in his 
finely pinched writing: 

— And how loving, how sweet you write, my beloved. — Your letters 
are a great, great consolation to me, and I live on them, and they give 
me strength to bear this dreadful separation. My love, I was so sad 
that in addition to everything you had that anxiety about Mrs. Mac- 
Do well [Edward's mother]; she is pretty well now, and it is no 
wonder that she was ill, the way she and all the people here live. 
Think of this drinking ice-water, coffee, and eating two meat courses 
at eight o'clock in the evening with the children — in a room that has 
certainly 18 Reaumur. That the people live at all is a wonder. That 
we live as we do and that I am as pedantic as I am often makes you 
laugh, my darling, but it is a great safe-guard to us, and knowing 
that you live so too always makes me a little quieter. All the people 
in America live like lunatics, as it is impossible by this method of 
living not to be sick sooner or later. My beloved, I don't drink much 
water, and never out of faucets — And how these artists live! Zum 
Beispiel — I told you I arrived with Nikisch Sunday evening eleven 
o'clock; instead of going to bed as I did, I hear he sat up with others 
playing poker until six o'clock in the morning! And then Paderewski 


— he seems never to have gone to bed before eight or nine o'clock 
in the morning. And then when they are ill or nervous they blame 

Altogether in a bad humor he complains that Mrs. MacDowell 
constantly reminds him of the fact that he is number three, that 
she keeps wanting him to do something for Giovanni and Ar- 
turo, and continues : "Never have two human beings needed each 
other more than we." He sees "the whole world in black," but 
"as a light in all this darkness is my really great success." 

The following day sees him in Baltimore. He speaks of a long 
walk through the streets of Washington : 

"My picture sitting at the Knabe piano is in every shop window," 
he finds worth reporting, also that he stopped for a shave, and he 
apologizes : "My beloved, I can't do it myself. I tried, and wanted to 
do it, as you bought the razor for me, and I know it pleases you, — 
but I scratched myself awfully, and my face hurt long afterwards 
in spite of my taking a new knife; I am not up to it!" — Then he goes 
on in German: "I played the Berceuse as encore and played exqui- 
sitely. ... If only Terry had heard it . . ." — and then adds : "It is my 
sole, my only joy to write to you, to pour out my heart to you, my 
only good, adored wife." Later a postscript : "A propos of Fr. S. : I 
believe if I had not told her that I must practice, she would still sit 
here. I find all the people so lacking in sensitivity. Why does she speak 
with me about Sauret and Tagliapietra ? Does she think she is giving 
me great pleasure thereby?" 

The next day, back again in the Hotel Normandie, New York, 
he continues at length: 

"Of all places I like best to be here, because it is a little — only a few 
hours nearer to you. They would not cease recalling me after the 
Concerto (Chopin) which I really played very, very well, my be- 
loved Darling; I wish you had heard me! You never heard me play 
the Chopin Concerto, and it is the piece I certainly play best. I wished 
and longed that you had been there! I imagined how nice, how sweet 
it would be, if you were sitting in the gallery, and how you would 
appreciate and love every point, everything I did well!" [he never 
sees himself in the audience listening to Carreno however] "I played 


(as I always do) as if You heard me! The solo pieces I did not play 
so well. — I can't play the Impromptu of Schubert any more. I have 
already played it so much. It is a piece that requires inspiration and 
then — it is the piece Terry loved to hear me play, and I can't play it 
any more without her being there, and it seems to me to be sacrilege! 
In the Valse Impromptu of Liszt I thought so much of you my darling 
— I was quite away in my thoughts and didn't think about the piece 
at all — then all of a sudden I didn't know where I was and fumbled 
about a little — that I know how to do very well! — I don't think that 
anyone noticed it." 

Again he is amazed that someone wanted to talk about New 
Rochelle to him "with the usual delicacy of the world." In Ger- 
many nobody bothers Carreno about his number one, he com- 
ments : 

My love, my darling [he continues] now I am going to tell you some- 
thing that seems nearly supernatural! The same night (I have reck- 
oned back) that you dreamt that I had come back because of those 
Italians [meaning Giovanni and Arturo], I passed a sleepless one 
in which I took the resolution to leave everything in the lurch and 
go back to you because of the excitement I had through those beasts. 
Isn't that funny ? 

[Once more he complains of one of her friends] Her artistic judg- 
ment doesn't go very far and her ideal is Huneker of whom she 
speaks every minute. That does not upset me at all, but I don't think 
she understands me, — otherwise she would never have told me that 
it was stupid of you to marry an artist again and cited a paper which 
said you were at least true to art in your choice of husbands. I felt 
it like an insult and would have given anything not to be an artist, 
as the comparison with those pigs is too much for my pride. 

[And growing more cheerful he concludes] My own sweet pet, 
how you are an angel to do everything just as I like it! How you tell 
me everything! How you knew that I should like you to stay in 
Coswig! My darling, you are too good to me! I don't deserve it. I 
should tell you what I wear ? — darling, do you do that ? Do you ever 
tell me what stockings you wore in Dresden or anything ? Don't you 
know that I love to hear it ? 

COS WIG 1893 

Carreno and d' Albert 


For Carreno as well as cT Albert the three months of separation 
crawled slowly, busily away. Outside of her close-knit concert 
trips she gave her attention to her household and her garden. 
D'Albert must find it in full bloom for his homecoming. She 
planted pinks, mignonettes, begonias, petunias, daisies, and 
marigolds. When her husband finally returned he found her 
literally ill with joy. 

D'Albert had long wanted a legal marriage. Now, for his sake 
and for that of their child-to-be, Carreno consented. The servants 
were sent off for a vacation, and, taking the children with them, 
they left for a week in Folkstone, England. The marriage took 
place on July 27, 1892, so the diary reveals: "The Good Lord has 
granted our prayer!! . . . London at 1 p.m." 

D'Albert was impatient to be at his composing. On August 1 
Carreno writes : "Home thank God." The trip must have been a 
wearing one, for on September 27 there is the next entry: "My 
precious baby girl Eugenia born at 1/4 before 3 p. m. May the 
Lord bless and keep her!" 

There began a period of tireless work. D'Albert's opera, Der 
Rubin, a string quartette, and his second "Piano Concerto in E 
major," a gift for Teresa, were the result. He had never worked 
with more ease, with more success, with more privacy. Only an 
occasional pupil, or an invited friend invaded the sanctuary. 

Carreno had served her marital apprenticeship. It was unthink- 
able that one of her individuality should for any length of time 
be submerged by a husband however great he might be. Their 
ideas about the education of children differed. Carreno was not 
as willing as at first to defer to her husband in this. The rights 
of motherhood were at issue. This was a subject of controversy, 
at first smoothed over with tact by one or the other, but showing 
symptoms of trouble ahead. Carreno was free of debt. Mr. Fair- 
bank had been fully repaid. She was sure of as many well-paid 
engagements as she cared to accept, could feel at liberty to spend 
lavishly, to patronize Bertha Pechstein, the most expensive of de- 
signers in Berlin, for her concert dresses, to buy luxuries for the 
children, for her house. The staff of servants matched the family 


in size. This worried the thrifty d'Albert as much as the noise 
the high-strung children could not help making. Differences of 
opinion grew into quarrels out of proportion to their importance. 
Carreno's strident volleys of temper were countered more subtly 
by d'Albert's sarcastic digs. They hurt each other only to be the 
more charmingly reconciled. Absence of greater or less duration 
did its part to keep the rift from spreading. 

The first year of matrimony was nearing its end. The public 
and the always gossip-hungry musicians had to admit defeat and 
turned to other subjects for more nourishing food. Apparently 
these two unblendable instruments were still managing to intone 
a melody in consonance. Carreno worked with fervor to make 
the most of her husband's "Concerto." Was it not her very own, 
written with her and their baby in mind? The Neue Musi\- 
Zeitung concedes that the first hearing with d'Albert as soloist in 
Bremen and Braunschweig earned "great success." Hanslick 
adds his comment. "D'Albert is a lucky man. He can either play 
his own Concerto, or let it be played for him by his wife." 

Carreno's first appearance under the baton of her husband in 
Berlin on the eighth and ninth of January, 1893, was for her an- 
other great personal triumph. Modestly the diary says: "Great 
success for my Toto's composition." But the "Concerto" fared less 
well at the hands of the critics. "She did," they admitted, "do the 
utmost with a dull, colorless composition," playing it with "com- 
plete masterliness." It would have taken a less selfish, less jealous 
nature than d'Albert's to overlook the fact that it was the per- 
former, not the composition, that was drawing the applause. Al- 
though his name — as usual in man-worshiping Germany — stood 
first on the program, there was a sting in a combined triumph 
which gave Carreno precedence, and d'Albert could not bring 
himself to laugh at the bon mot which traced its source to this 
concert. "Frau Carreno," it was said, "yesterday played for the 
first time the second concerto of her third husband in the fourth 
Philharmonic Concert." 

The Tagliche Rundschau was unduly sarcastic: "The little 
Swabian town of Weinsberg, famous for the fidelity of its 


women, will now be able to help giving honorary citizenship to 
Carreno for saving the work of her husband, at least for that 
evening. The hot-blooded Mexican," it continues, "shows pecul- 
iar and pleasing changes in her playing; it is softer, the whole 
interpretation more feminine, so that one looks forward to her 
playing of some real music very soon." The critic becomes posi- 
tively venomous when he dismisses d'Albert with what seems to 
be personal animosity: "He remains that which he is in fact, a 
cosmopolitan nomad, who has no home, no nationality, no pedi- 
gree." If d'Albert read this paragraph — and there is little hope 
that it escaped his eye — he cannot be blamed for beginning the 
year in a bad temper. Although Carreno writes on January 19, 
"My Toto concert 1500 m. The public fanatic with his wonderful 
playing. God bless him. Played his sonata for the first time!" he 
would have been more generous than he was to delight that his 
Majesty, King of Saxony, had honored his wife with the title 
of Konigliche Kammermusi\erin in March, 1893, and had an- 
nounced his intention of attending Carreno's Dresden recital in 
person. Loyally Carreno — she after all was the one who really ap- 
preciated it, though she could not call it either great or grateful 
— took the d'Albert "Concerto" from city to city, introduced it 
to conductor after conductor. For that year it was the mainstay 
of her appearances with orchestra. Better accepted was the first 
"Suite" of d'Albert, often found on her recital programs, wholly 
or in part, where the MacDowell "Suite" had formerly held its 

The year 1893 marked a p er i oc j f depression for the concert 
world. Carreno would like to have given up playing entirely for 
the spring season, but Hermann Wolff held her to her contracts. 
In his usual vein he wrote on February 10: 

Chere Amie: J'ai encore a vous repondre a votre aimable invitation 
d'assister a votre concert de Dresde. Nous serions venus, ma femme 
et moi, mais le meme jour nous avons le VHP Concert Philhar- 
monique. Done nous ne pouvons pas, ce que nous regrettons d'autant 
plus, que dans des concerts qui ne sont pas pleins, nous le sommes — 
de "Galgenhumor" [Gibbethumor]. Certes avec mes nombreux 


mains (j'y compte mes pieds aussi) j'aurais fait un tapage inoui, 
enfin un tapage digne de votre succes. Que voulez-vous rien ne marche 
cette annee. Cependant votre concert a Berlin ne sera pas mauvais. 
C'est toujours ce cher petit Maurice [Rosenthal] qui attire les "sa- 
vants" et "savantes." Le reste ne vaut rien. J'appartiens au reste! 

That something infinitely precious had been acquired through 
d' Albert's influence is attested by the Signale following this 
same Dresden recital : "To her hot temperament, her orchestral 
touch there has been added a third companion, a wonderful clari- 
fication." A new sense of musical values had come to her, in no 
wise interfering with her sparkling spontaneity. Her music was 
herself. It was bound to change as she changed. No static art was 
hers eventually to be outmoded. Very truly she wrote years later 
in answer to a questionnaire, asking for a resume of her musical 
schooling: "I learned from everything, from everybody — and I 
am still learning." 

On February 21 d' Albert had returned from a tour of three 
weeks in Russia with 16,000 marks in his pocket. From then their 
journeys took them in rarely interlocking directions, but on April 
12 Carreno came to Berlin to hear Joachim's group play her 
husband's second "Quartette" for the first time in that city. 

Since d'Albert was frequently called upon to conduct his own 
"Concerto," it seemed natural and pleasant for Carreno to go 
with him to cities where he was giving solo recitals in between, 
and a major mistake it proved to be. Carreno did not know how 
to play the part of a concert artist's wife with proper abnegation 
and tact. She was very apt to steal his thunder even in the 
green room. Jealousy raised green fingers. D'Albert, quite openly 
preferring to go off with groups of friends without her, became 
embarrassingly disagreeable when she objected to sharing him 
with others. 

Finally the season with its higher ups and lower downs ended 
brilliantly enough. The Beethoven festival in Bonn, upon the 
roster of whose performing artists the names of d'Albert and 
Carreno both appeared, was a fitting climax, because it proved 


that she was no longer a star apart, but a musician among musi- 
cians, definitely one of Germany's own. 

A workful summer lay ahead for both. Carreno was absorbed 
in making additions to her repertoire, for example, the "E flat 
Concerto" of Beethoven, and the "Chromatic Fantasia and 
Fugue" as von Blilow had edited it. D'Albert, deep in his opera, 
Der Rubin, took time off to teach little Teresita, or "Dada," as 
she was called, piano, taking a fatherly interest in her unfolding 
gifts. Pupils in considerable number were clamoring for lessons 
at Coswig gates, and were often taught interchangeably by one 
or the other of the artists. D'Albert's sarcasm reduced many a 
young aspirant to tears that his wife was called to dry. 

The holiday was not to end without its rubs. Pupils brought 
restlessness to the quiet town and to Villa Teresa. The growing 
confusion and complication of life were irritating to edgy nerves 
that needed soothing not stimulus. From the servants' quarters 
came rumbles of disagreement. D'Albert would have preferred 
to live more economically, to see the helpers reduced by two, 
including Fraulein Knauth with whom he was on cordial terms 
of mutual dislike. Although d'Albert's son, Wolfgang, was re- 
ceived by Carreno with genuine affection, discipline and right 
education were more than ever a subject of heated controversy. 
His coming gave rise to the most quoted of all the Carreno- 
d'Albert anecdotes. One morning d'Albert abruptly interrupted 
Carreno's practice : "Come quickly ! Your children and my chil- 
dren are quarreling with our children." To be possible it should 
have been diminished to read: "Your child and my child are 
quarreling with our child." But true or false it makes an 
amusing story, stranger to the ears of 1893 than to those of 
this day. 

Fortunately the fall season opened with a strenuous list of 
concerts for both, whose climax was the first performance in 
Karlsruhe of d'Albert's opera, Der Rubin. "Great success. Thank 
God ! !" says Carreno who had gone with her husband. Then she 


was called to Holland and Denmark, leaving Germany to d' Al- 
bert, where they met again three weeks later in Berlin. One of his 
letters gives a picture of his state of mind during their separa- 
tion and of their more and more precarious relation to each 

Oh my love, what will become of us? Your dear letter of yesterday 
was so sweet, but you suffer as I do, and that is dreadful to me. Yes, 
let us think of the money, but we can earn money, and still we do 
not have to be separated for so long. I have written it to Wolff: Russia 
with you, or not at all! He was completely flabbergasted that I wished 
to give concerts there with you — why? My darling, this longing is 
dreadful. I need you as I need the air (even more). Oh darling, we 
must plan to be happy, and not to quarrel any more, mustn't we? 
I know it is always my fault, but I will be different, I promise you. 
Oh Totty, it is not true that I like to be with people, or else how is 
it that when we are separated I see nobody, and avoid all parties? 

— Oh love, our differences always grow out of the house. Think 
of the time until we came home in the spring. Was it not glorious ? 
But at home you have many cares, and that makes you touchy. . . . 
Angel, Beloved, to travel with you is the greatest joy of my life. When 
people ask me where you are I always say Kopenhagen. The other 
cities are too far away. I understand that you don't care to go to the 
theatre without me — neither can I — without you I could not play 
in Leipzig. Only you give me peace. 

... I am sorry that you have to play those stupid charity concerts 
on the twenty-third and twenty-fourth. Wolff wrote: "Charity con- 
certs bring returns," and it is true. 

He complains that Joachim changes his program every min- 
ute. "I am angry that I play with him." If all goes well he thinks 
it would be nice to take a trip to Italy together and do nothing 
at all, and again speaks of the household expenses as the source of 
all their troubles, ending with the promise: "It shall be the work 
of my life to show you my gratitude." Again Carreno comes to 
Berlin on November 30 to hear d'Albert play with Joachim. 
Clearly the two could not be happy apart ; neither could they be 
completely happy together at home. 

At the end of summer they had come upon an idea that prom- 


ised to solve some of the difficulties. Why not give concerts to- 
gether on two pianos? They would be quasi-pioneers in this 
field. Their cooperation should give further proof of their con- 
jugal oneness, and provide welcome refreshment for the press 
surfeited with the unchanging repertoire of the artists they were 
paid to hear. D'Albert discovered that Friedemann Bach was at 
his best in the "Sonate in F," and by the end of October he had 
memorized the Sinding "Variation." The Christmas interlude 
gave time for practice together. For a closing number on these 
programs they decided upon Liszt's "Concerto Pathetique," add- 
ing a group of solos each to fill out the concert. The plan had 
the sanction of Wolff. This marital give and take temporarily 
brought new zest into their relations and, best of all, there was 
no longer time to quarrel about matters of less moment. 

In Amsterdam on December 28, 1893, they had occasion to try 
out the Sinding "Variations" at the same time with the d' Albert 
"Concerto" played by Carreno under the composer's direction. 
That it brought a fee of 1,500 marks augured well for the future 
of the ensemble. Carreno now professionally called herself Te- 
resa d'Albert-Carreno instead of Teresa Carreno-d'Albert as in 
previous seasons. It better accented her individuality. Their debut 
was received with the enthusiasm worthy of it. It must have been 
amusing to see Carreno striding majestically before — acknowl- 
edging as important the presence of her audience, while little 
d'Albert tripped behind, taking his seat with a perfunctory bow 
for the crowd he regarded less highly. Musically the effect of 
their playing was so electrifying, its inner unity so compelling, 
that even today there are those who speak of these Doppelkpn- 
zerte as a unique experience. For once the critics could join in 
the unfeigned admiration of the public. They called it an amaz- 
ing feat, "an ideally perfect ensemble," and throughout the 
spring these concerts were in great demand. Financially the re- 
sult was less favorable. The receipts were not much more than 
each might have harvested alone, generally 1,000 marks per con- 
cert. For Carreno the season came to an early close. There was 
to be another child. 


Tired after a strenuous winter the pair returned to Coswig under 
tension, which took every occasion to discharge itself. D'Albert, 
with or without provocation, was irritable, mean-spirited; Car- 
reno joyful, melancholy, or hysterical by turns. Explosions of 
anger grew more frequent, more violent, and more public, the 
interludes of silence longer and foreboding. D'Albert began to 
seek solace in flirtations that he knew would enrage Carreno. To 
make things easier the children were sent to the seashore in Au- 
gust where after a series of scenes at home d'Albert joined them. 
This for the moment brought the pair to their senses, and on 
September 16, 1894, Carreno on the rebound is able to write to 
her friend Carrie Keating Reed, only recently married, with 
her habitual exuberance, perhaps to reassure herself in a rare 

I can only tell you that the word happiness, which seemed to me 
to exist only in the dictionary, the good Lord has shown me that it 
exists also on earth, and that it exists in fact, and not only in words 
or dreams. My husband combines all that is great in genius and 
heart, and I spend my life wondering how it is possible that so much 
greatness and goodness should be combined in only one human be- 
ing . . . Teresita and Hans — we call him so now, as I could not bear 
his name otherwise; it brought too many horrible recollections with 
it! — have at last found a Father who is all love, tenderness, and 
goodness to them. Our house is a sort of mutual worshipping ad- 
miration society. 

Carreno was not aware that the chasm between her and her 
husband had widened to irreparable dimension. The birth of a 
daughter Hertha on September 26 gave a final month of peace. 
Then the concert season once more took the artists their separate 
ways. On the plea that there was insufficient time for practice 
together the two-piano concerts were by common consent aban- 
doned. D'Albert was often at home when Carreno was not. Rest- 
less in her absence, he sought other distraction. Carreno's appear- 
ance was the signal for explosions of temper, threats only half 
intended, for illness born of unhappiness. On October 17 the 
diary becomes Carreno's confidant: "The most unhappy day of 


my life. Had I not lived to see it and hear what my husband said 
to me!!! May God help me to bear my suffering! Only God 
knows what I suffer!!!" 

Just then with deeper understanding of a weakness she de- 
tested she writes to Teresita. 

How can you tell me that you are jealous of Herr K — [the tutor] ? 
My own Dadachen! Have I not talked with you a long time about 
this ugly feeling some time ago when you told me that you were 
jealous of Alice? My precious own girl! You must do all you can 
to overcome this horrid feeling, or you will be a very unhappy girl 
in your life. As I told you before, the person who is jealous acknowl- 
edges his (or her own) inferiority, and our pride must teach us 
not to be jealous. Now, think well over what I say, and give me the 
joy to overcome your nasty, ugly jealousy. ... 

Your sweet letter gave me so much joy, my darling! Write me 
very often and tell Fraulein to pay for the stamps, and I will return 
her the money when I return home. Tell me all that happens in the 
house, every little detail is dear to me, as I want to go on in my 
thoughts living with you all from one minute to another. Has Frau- 
lein P. had a lesson from Papa yet ? How did she play, if she did have 
a lesson? How are you practising? Good and very regularly? Tell 
me all! 

And Teresita does, even in poetry. She pictures her mother 
sitting proudly on horseback, "hoch zu Ross" with sword in 
hand, and, knowing it would please her mother, or only im- 
agining the splendors of a concert career, she writes: "Oh, if I 
could only play in public!! This wish is so great!" 

All this was the lull before the cyclone. Upon release from duty 
Carreno found her husband at home. The unbelievable hap- 
pened. D'Albert's philanderings had reached proportions too 
serious to be ignored. He found it beyond bearing that he was 
treated with contempt for what he considered unimportant in- 
cidents. He expected his wife to minister to his wants, to cater to 
his self-respect, and to shut her eyes to his shortcomings. Carreno, 
who now openly belittled him, no longer fulfilled these require- 
ments. In a fit of temper he left home, with his way mapped 


clearly before him. This time there would be no coming back. 
D'Albert and Carreno would never spend another Christmas 

His attitude can best be clarified by his own explanation, mak- 
ing the break final. Carreno was less analytical, but her silence 
is quite as revealing as his words. On December 17 he writes 
from Amsterdam in German : 

My dear good Teresita: 

It is infinitely hard to be frank, and not to wound. But how does 
one give proof of confidence and respect, through courage to tell 
the truth or by pasting over conditions with deceitful lies? 

I must pour out my heart to you, tell you how I feel, how I am 
affected, what I wish for the future in the interest of all of us and 
for the good of my art. Fraulein Knauth told you that I only wished 
for your happiness. That is very true, for you always said that my 
happiness was yours, and that is why I write about my happiness, or 
rather unhappiness, and about what must happen to reconstruct a 
quiet, bearable happiness. On that account your happiness is the chief 
thing. Before all I must once and for all deny that H. G. and M. V. 
are responsible for my change of heart. I value myself after all too 
highly to allow either the one or the other to have any influence 
over my life. Those were only outward circumstances : The real reason 
for my change of soul, and so for all of this uproar, lies much deeper. 
Its development has gone on unnoticeably but inevitably for two 
years in a psychologically perfectly defensible way. You noticed it 
less than I, because this kind of sensitivity, the expression of a con- 
stantly pondering state of mind, is entirely German, and therefore 
must be entirely foreign to the understanding of one who comes from 
Southern lands. Forgive that I say this to you! — You said the other 
day that we had always lived so happily. — You perhaps, but not I. 
There were scarcely four days without some disturbance, differences 
of opinion, or scenes, and every disturbance left a wound in my heart, 
and brought sadness to the inner tenderness of affection that I offered 
you in such abundance. I am not equal to these disturbances, to you 
they are element of life, necessity. How often did I not tell you that 
you would go too far, that sometime I might become an entirely 
different person! You did not think it possible. The disturbances did 
not excite you half as much as me. You say many things that you 


do not mean at all — and I always believed everything. This continu- 
ous irritation almost made an end of us. This inner revolution of my 
soul is understandable, natural, and I can justify it before God. You 
must not forget that I am still young enough to reconstruct my inner 
man, to change and recreate myself completely, and you no longer 
can, and so do no longer understand me. The chief part of your life 
is behind you — I, so God wills, have only reached half of it. Added 
to that is your amazingly vivacious temperament as against my more 
quiet and simple nature. — No wonder that we could not get along 
together. For the foundation of marriage more is necessary than 
merely love. We were only happy when we were constantly being 
considerate of each other. You always said so, but I was the one 
who was the most considerate, and so you often thought we were 
happy when I, at least, was not. For two years I have never been 
completely happy within. That is the reason why I composed so 
well — I concentrated upon my work with iron perseverance, and 
found redemption in it. 

Of your perpetual contempt of all that is German I will not speak — 
that was only a bagatelle. ... I often tried to reveal my inner self 
to you. You never understood it. How often I told you, nobody else 
would have stood it with you. You answered, you would have sent 
him to the Devil, — now you can send me there. 

What do I wish? You would long ago have asked. I wish that 
we both shall agree that we can no longer live together as before, 
and shall have to arrange our life accordingly. I wish for no divorce! 
You wanted that, but I want peace and quiet and that is not possible 
with females. I have lost my belief in everything, want to be alone, 
live alone. In this opinion Brahms — with whom I contracted intimate 
friendship in Vienna — reinforced me. It is much better it happens 
now than later, before we spend more money, before we become 
more unhappy still, before the children grow older. Dada has con- 
sidered a life apart as the only right course for me for a long time. 
Children and fools speak the truth. — 

I send you many kisses, and ask you again to receive my words 
with composure. Eugen. 

He follows this tirade up with a laconic note, congratulating 
Carreno upon her birthday, accompanied by two vases for ap- 


D'Albert's letter, although it contained some fundamental 
truths, was hardly one to bring the happiness that he so ardently 
seemed to wish for her. No wife likes to be reminded that she is 
only important as a background for his more weighty concerns, 
that his philanderings are outward circumstances, that, after 
three years of adaptation to the life he liked, she, the Venezuelan, 
is incapable of understanding him, the German. (Carreno was 
not the only one who found d'Albert's Germanophile fanaticism 
puzzling. Hanslick ironically commented upon it when he 
wrote: "D'Albert emphasizes his unadulterated Germanism, 
which one is occasionally inclined to doubt in view of his 
French name and English birth.") Most cutting of all was the 
reminder that Brahms and her own little daughter had been en- 
listed on his side and that the sooner they separate — the cheaper 
it would be. 

It was fortunate for Carreno that she had the capacity of los- 
ing herself in Christmas preparations for the children, and also 
that she was not one to grieve in silence. It did her good to un- 
burden herself to the only too sympathetic Fraulein Knauth. As 
usual in moments of crisis her reaction was instantaneous. No 
half measures, no compromise for her ! She would insist upon di- 
vorce upon her own terms. The way to strike d' Albert the most 
telling blow would always be by way of his pocket-book, and 
she did not mind at all dealing it. 

"Dios sea conmigo y mis hijos y per dona a Eugenio," says the 
first page of the diary of 1895. She prepared to steel herself to go 
on as if nothing had happened. Like Bolivar she would build 
happiness upon the pedestal of sorrow vanquished. Carreno 
threw her head back, and as she had advised Dada, called pride 
to her aid. By one of the thousand channels that make the private 
lives of artists public property the unhappy secret began to filter 
out. "I told you so," smugly said some; "here endeth the third 
lesson," commented others. Sympathy was in general with Car- 
reno. Whether for this or more objective reasons the critics had 
never praised her more glowingly. It took courage to put herself 
again at the service of the d'Albert "Concerto" under the direc- 


tion of Felix Mottl, and it could not have hurt her feelings very 
much that the critics called it "a washed-out piano story in four 
unprepossessing movements," while lauding her to the skies for 
accomplishing "wonders unthinkable since Rubinstein." 

The most trying ordeal, one they both would have given much 
to avoid, faced them when they found themselves obliged to 
play in another concert together. D'Albert conducted his "Con- 
certo." "In the hands of the excellent pianist the work achieved 
signal success." And fittingly, sadly, their ensemble faded out 
in the strains of the "Concerto Pathetique." 

Carreno waited for word from d' Albert's lawyer, one that 
would clarify their future. Finally on February 27 she addresses 
d'Albert himself in desperation. 

My present situation must end. I must at last know how I have to 
arrange my life. 

You said to our friends : that you could not breathe the same 
air with me, which, after the way you behaved towards me, I can 
well comprehend. I have written you before: you have a conscience. 

So I ask you to write me quite in detail what your wishes are, and 
what way of life you wish that we shall follow, so that I may know 
what is to happen to me, and what I have to do with the servants, etc. 

Farewell! Teresita. 

D'Albert evades the issue. On March 5 Carreno writes again, 
wisely leaving the decision to him. 

Since I go to Spain next month, and, as you know, my tour lasts five 
or six weeks, our two children Eugenia and Hertha cannot possibly 
stay alone in the house with Emma and just one other servant. 

I hear that you are going to Italy and these poor children would 
remain unprotected without father or mother. That I cannot allow, 
and I would rather give up my trip at once. If you agree I shall take 
them with Emma to Dr. Lahmann until my return, and so the 
house can remain closed until I come back, unless you decide that 
we are to live somewhere else. Farewell! Teresita. 

The trip to Spain was abandoned, probably due to the illness 
of Hans. There was no lack of engagements waiting for her in 


Germany. While Carreno was reaching pinnacles undared be- 
fore d' Albert was pianistically in partial eclipse. A new star had 
already begun to kindle a responsive flame before the other had 
paled. Although the peace and quiet he needed "was not possible 
with females" he never as long as he lived was without one 
or the other of them for any length of time. Hermine Fink, the 
ascendant star, was the one who held him longest, for a span of 
ten years. She had sung the principal soprano part in d'Albert's 
opera Der Rubin in one of its early performances and so had 
consciously come into his life for the first time in February, 1895. 
This had been Carreno's own opera, the one composed under her 
inspiration. She had attended the Premiere in Karlsruhe the pre- 
ceding October, and afterwards, thrilled by the success of the 
husband she adored, she had felt moved to play until late into 
the night for the group of people celebrating the event in the 
house of the "Generalintendant," unaware happily that she and 
the next Frau d' Albert were in the same room. 

In order to avoid a meeting d'Albert asked that Carreno stay 
away from Coswig until he had seen to his packing, had paid off 
the servants. He himself put the little girls in care of the mother 
of Fraulein Knauth in Liebstadt. The convalescent Hans was 
sent to a sanitarium for children, Teresita to a private school in 
Dresden. When Carreno returned to all there was left of the 
home she had loved, she found it bare, everything in boxes, 
with only two servants in attendance. 

Even Fraulein Knauth had gone. In an affectionate letter 
to Carreno she told of her engagement, adding that what she 
had seen of married life in Coswig had so prejudiced her 
against it that she had almost decided not to try it for herself, 
especially since Carreno had warned her in a moment of bit- 
terness that "one can never marry too late or be divorced too 


At the end of the month d'Albert finally made up his mind. 
He accepted a call as Kapellmeister to the Court of Weimar 
where Carreno had played for the Grand Duchess only a 
month before, taking Wolfgang with him. Carreno, completely 


unnerved, sought the seclusion of Tyrol for a needed vacation. 
Good businesswoman that she was, Carreno insisted upon a 
divorce on her own terms. D'Albert, duly informed, was hor- 
rified. This must not happen. He must be the first to file suit. 
His "always pondering German mind" hit upon several plau- 
sible grounds that he might magnify and use for his own ends. 
First he did his worst to have his wife declared insane, have 
her safely buried in an asylum. That plea had been helpful in 
ending his first marriage. Her nervous tension, her hysterics, 
her extravagance, were these not clear signs of a disordered 
mind ? This first assault failed completely. 

Resolutely turning away from her troubles Carreno decided 
to make a new home for herself and her four children in Ber- 
lin. She found one that suited her and, more difficult a problem, 
one in which she might practice day or night without restric- 
tion, on the top floor of Kurfiirstendamm 28. She entered it on 
May 19. A broad staircase carpeted in deep-piled red led up 
story upon story. On each landing windows of colored glass 
shed a religious light, the one uppermost representing a bird 
of Paradise with a malevolent glint in his eye. 

The apartment itself was dignified, airy and spacious, its L 
shape typical of Berlin. To the right of the dark hall was a 
small reception room or study, to the left the formal salon, its 
furniture decorated elaborately in rose brocade upon ornate 
gilt frames. At one end behind the inevitable table stood the 
even more inevitable sofa, the seat reserved for the most distin- 
guished visitor. Opening out of the salon was Carreno's studio. 
Even when empty it was full of her personality and became the 
real living room of the apartment. Two concert Bechstein 
grands, standing end to end on layers of carpet to deaden the 
sound and generally covered for the same reason, held the 
center of the room as they should. The music rack, placed on 
top of the closed piano to further spare the ears of those beneath, 
was never without its attendant ash tray. Carreno was so in- 
veterate a smoker that she taught herself not to let her cigarettes 


interfere with her playing. She could dispose of the ashes at 
any tempo without break of continuity even in the most florid 
cadenza. Near the balcony which gave on the Kurfurstendamm 
stood the writing desk with its many cubbyholes bulging. The 
ebony music case made to Carreno's order practically filled one 
side of the room. Near the glass-paneled dining-room door 
stood a couch, a table, more chairs, and the tile stove. The walls 
were closely hung with pictures, photographs of Carreno's par- 
ents, of the children, of musicians, Brahms, Beethoven, Liszt, 
and of dear friends. The dining room, high ceilinged as the 
others, was the typical Berliner Zimmer, one corner pierced by a 
court window usually intended to give light for the sewing table 
of the Hausfrau. Only through this room as a passage could the 
bedrooms be reached. The kitchen lay far behind in incon- 
venient distance. 

It was a different woman who took up life in her new apart- 
ment. For d'Albert the last three years had meant an exciting 
episode. Whether Carreno admitted it to herself or not, he 
was the love of her life. That he still had the power to make 
her miserable and often used it with satisfaction was one of 
the stings of her later days. Carreno never fully recovered from 
this divorce. She had been Teresa d'Albert, Teresa Carreno- 
d'Albert, Teresa d'Albert-Carreno, to become again Teresa Car- 
reno. She faced it frankly: "I am growing old." 

Meanwhile, not downed by a first reverse, d'Albert hit upon 
an idea that he thought approached genius. There had never 
been a legal divorce ending Carreno's common-law marriage 
to Giovanni Tagliapietra. Therefore they must still be con- 
sidered married, and accordingly what was there to prevent a 
suit for bigamy from being filed against her ? (This is the man 
who claims through his biographer that he had, though per- 
fectly innocent, shouldered all the blame and all the costs of 
divorce in order not to cause annoyance to Carreno.) It did not 
appear to matter that, were he upheld, his own children would 
no longer be considered legitimate. This attack too rebounded 
against the assailant. Giovanni Tagliapietra's letters were 


brought in as proof, and a good friend in New York gave his 
affidavit that there had been no formal marriage. The suit was 
reluctantly withdrawn, leaving Carreno victor on a sorry bat- 

One of the attending casualties, which also had its element of 
tragedy, was that it meant a definite break for life with Manuel, 
her brother. At this critical time he had refused to side with 
his sister, preferring to disown her instead. Had he forgotten 
the many times she had saved him from the consequences of 
his unworthy escapades, selling the few jewels she owned 
to pay his debts ? The poorer for yet another illusion lost, Car- 
reno filed the application for divorce. She no longer had a hus- 
band, no longer a brother. There remained the children. But 
for this there were times when she would have ended it all. As 
she took her lonely walks by the Canal its water exerted tempta- 
tion. It would have been easy to yield herself to its smooth 

On October 2, 1895, a divorce was granted Carreno on the 
grounds of willful desertion. D'Albert was instructed to take 
out a life-insurance policy in favor of his children, to provide 
them until the age of independence with a liberal allowance 
for maintenance and education. D'Albert heard the decree with 
indifference (less than a month later he married Hermine 
Fink). Carreno burst into tears. 

From the courtroom she drove to her friends, the Kochs. Still 
red-eyed but smiling she burst in upon them. Again her nat- 
ural resilience was her ally. "Well, it's all over," she announced. 
"Have you anything to eat? J'ai une faim canine." Then once 
more she broke down and unburdened her soul at length, man- 
aging however to eat a good luncheon between sobs — while 
the Droschke waited below forgotten. 

Work, the universal comforter, proved to be the best counter- 
weight to trouble. She lost herself in it, and even turned once 
more to composition, abandoned since childhood. At home she 
led two full and often conflicting lives, that of the artist, and 
that of the mother. Either one could have absorbed her com- 
pletely. After an early breakfast there were the usual household 
details to be adjusted. The rest of the morning belonged to 
music, practicing, teaching, or reading over manuscripts sent 
by hopeful young composers who banked upon her to make 
them known. After lunch — Carreno always prepared the salad 
dressing of oil and lemon at the table — she found a game of 
solitaire restful before the siesta. Then perhaps another lesson, 
an hour with the masseur, or more work at the desk before tea. 
There were bills to be paid, dates to be accepted or refused, 
notes to be written, programs to be sent. Wolff must be re- 
minded not to be neglectful, to keep her fees high, her con- 
certs in close and logical sequence, to find engagements that 
were increasingly important. In this year, particularly, Carreno 
was not easy to satisfy. From now on she would be nobody's 

Very elastic was the number of those who used to gather 
around Carreno's long dining-room table over the teacups and 
the cookie jar. Carreno presided at the head of the table and 
brewed the tea which she herself liked very strong and black. 
Conversation was gay or serious according to her predominat- 
ing mood. If the day had been a peaceful one this was the time 
for the children to ask favors. Later the twilight hour was most 
suitable for the daily walk. Dinner was generally an intimate 
affair, occasionally shared by a few guests. Family conferences, 
letters to the children away at school, and another game of 
solitaire brought the day to a close. The to and fro of concert 
trips often interrupted this schedule, bringing attendant con- 
fusion to the household. The children were made to understand 
from early childhood that it was by their mother's coming and 
going, her happiness or depression, that their own lives must be 
regulated. Meeting the train that brought the artist back from 


glories they could only imagine to become their mother once 
more was the high spot of childish memory. 

Even before the divorce had become final Carreno decided 
that for reasons of health the summers must not be spent in 
Berlin. By happy chance she found in Pertisau on the Achensee 
in the Bavarian highlands a peaceful spot in which to plan her 
new life. During many years it became her Sommerfrische. 
The mountain air had an invigorating lift, woods and lake 
quieted her nerves. There she could live the simple life that 
pleased her, take long walks in heavy boots and comfortable 
old clothes. Housekeeping was confined to the essentials. As a 
buffer between Carreno and intrusion there was always "die 
gute Krahl," a lady by virtue of character and education, who 
could take Carreno's place in many ways, and with whom she 
could safely leave her children. No less important, she had a 
talent for keeping down expenses and for making herself tact- 
fully invisible. Never had they lived so well and so cheaply as 
under her management. There was time for practice, for rest, 
and for the children, even with a dozen students about hovering 
for their turn to have a lesson. Primarily undertaken for finan- 
cial reasons — lessons at 40 marks each did help to meet expenses 
— Carreno found that, tiring as it was, she liked to be sur- 
rounded by young people, finding real satisfaction in being 
helpful to them at the outset of their careers. Some were to be 
teachers, others had visions of a more dramatic future behind 
the footlights. She received them all with the same outgoing 
friendliness and anticipation. Those that proved to be un- 
worthy of her interest soon disappeared, and a very few were 
admitted to the inner sanctum of her affection to become her 
adopted "Berlin sons and daughters," she their "Berlin mother." 

Turning the current of misdirected affection back into the 
channel of motherhood, since childhood art's only lasting com- 
petitor, Carreno determined that henceforth she would live for 
her children alone, redouble her efforts only for their sakes. 
She faced the fact sorrowfully. Inheritance and the unfortu- 


nate circumstances of their birth had handicapped her two 
elder children. Giovanni had the handsome presence of a Span- 
ish hidalgo offset by a willful nature and lack of ambition. 
Teresita with all her promise of great beauty was nervous and 
seldom completely well. How to guide these children to suc- 
cessful maturity was an ever-present worry. While the divorce 
was pending Giovanni managed to get along fairly well in a 
school in Dresden. Teresita, also in a private school of that city, 
was far more of a problem. Many of Carreno's headaches were 
caused by these two undeniably gifted Tagliapietras. 

The one of all others to whom Carreno could turn for ad- 
vice in a domestic quandary was her friend of old, Fanny Mac- 
Dowell. She would not have believed in progressive education 
had she known of such a thing. Her rules of conduct for chil- 
dren were contained in three simple words: "Love, honor, and 
obey," the latter to be enforced with stern discipline. For most 
of Carreno's difficulties with her children Fanny conveniently 
blamed d'Albert. 

Do you not think [she wrote] that you may have been a little unwise, 
a little too extreme in newfangled notions imbibed from that scala- 
wag d'Albert in the feeding and the general management of your 
little flock? See how strong and well you are! How sturdy as a child! 
You were not brought up as you are bringing up your own darlings. 
I know you do it because you believe it is for their good, but why 
try experiments with your children ? Do you think Jaegers and vege- 
tables and peculiar bathing are all to combine to make a healthy 
family? Even you, strong as you were before you met that little 
monster, fell ill with the kind of diet you conformed to at his wish. 
Oh, Teresita dear, cast off all the chains that gnome bound you with, 
be your own beautiful self, and let common sense drive out all the 
fads that you have adopted. 

Occasionally she took up the cudgel in defense of her son. 
When Edward failed to receive even a word of congratulation 
from Carreno upon the Chair established for him at Columbia 
University, she complained: "I hope the day will come when 
you will think differently of him and his work — you who were 


one of the very first to appreciate and make known his tal- 
ent. I don't know what he thinks of your silence — you cannot 
deny that you started it by your own enthusiastic rendering of 
his works." Again she attributes Carreno's change of heart to 
d'Albert. It was he who had revolutionized her attitude toward 
Edward's music, who had even succeeded in turning her against 
America. It would have been better, she thought, not without 
prejudice, if Carreno had remained in the United States, even 
at the expense of living with Giovanni Tagliapietra. Would she 
not by this time have owned her house, which had risen in 
value enormously since then ? She asked for the assurance that 
"you will hereafter not have any pity, or love, or whatever you 
may choose to call it, for men." In contrast there was invariably 
kind mention of Tag's brother, Arturo. "He colored, when I 
gave him your message. He lives separately from Tag, is in- 
dustrious, and tries to get along. He speaks excellent English 
and through thick and thin he has stood up for you." 

Carreno was a slave to her concert schedule. Outside of that 
she did as she pleased. Before any member of the household 
made plans for the day himself, it was well to consider how 
Carreno was feeling that morning. It was for her to dictate, for 
them to conform. 

To her children Carreno was a dual being. She was a goddess 
living apart in a splendid world, one which they could imagine 
but which she did not share with them. From this she now and 
then returned laden with flowers, her bag full of presents for 
those who deserved them. She spoiled and scolded almost in 
the same breath as impulse moved. They must be careful in ad- 
dressing her. Any contradiction was stopped with a curt: "How 
dare you speak to your mother in that way." That was the god- 
dess, not their mother. But every stormy reprimand had its 
reaction in demonstrative forgiveness. Then she became the 
real mother who loved them and hugged them, who worried 
over their clothes, their health, and their manners. 

It was in times of illness that she was most truly theirs. Often 
she sat at the bedside of a sick child the night through, in- 


stinctively doing the right thing, radiating curative magnetism. 
She used to say herself that if art had failed her she would have 
become a nurse. "And I would have been a good one," she 

The first Christmas in the Berlin home, in spite of sad mem- 
ories, was gratefully peaceful. What freedom to be alone with 
the children, not to be obliged to consider anybody's tempera- 
ment but her own! The tree in the corner was decorated by 
Carreno with the help of Krahl. Standing in the corner of the 
studio, the presents in profusion arranged on separate tables 
around it for family and servants alike, it made the apartment 
take on the essence of home. 

There had been no dearth of concerts ahead that fall. Carreno 
needed them as an outlet and attacked her crowded, neatly 
welded schedule with all energy. Fees too were becoming gen- 
erous once more. The majority of engagements was in the up- 
per brackets from 600 to 1,000 marks. More than any other 
pianist of her sex Carreno was in demand for concerts with 
orchestra. At twilight one day after rehearsal she happened to 
be watching the fading sunset from one of the bridges that 
span the Elbe in Dresden. A young man, finding her profile 
alluring, stopped beside her, inquiring if he might accompany 
her. "Mein Herr," she replied with that sharpening of the 
voice which commanded instant respect, "I have just been ac- 
companied by seventy gentlemen. One is not enough for me," 
and strode away unmolested. 

The musical critics, not unlike the critics of today, were apt 
to see their artists from widely differing angles. Die Neue 
Zeitschrijt fiir Musi\ does not find that the Carreno of early 
1896 has basically changed since her first appearance in Ger- 
many. To him 

Frau Carreno belongs to those volcanoes that are still in full eruption. 
She feels constrained in pedantic fetters like a bird in cage. She loves 
freedom, loves to jump and tear around without rein like the horse 
of the prairies. Instead of exhausting itself in the course of the eve- 
ning her power progressively increases. She grows constantly wilder, 
more passionate. Above all at the end, when the real program is 


finished, when others in her place would let themselves sink into a 
comfortable chair, she just finds her stride; then she rages with un- 
tamable fire. Her eyes sparkle with a weird light. It is then that this 
beautiful woman is surpassingly beautiful. It is then that her playing 
reaches its climax. 

His colleague on the same journal comes to an opposite con- 
clusion a little later on. A propos of the Seventh Philharmonic 
Concert in which for the first time in Berlin Carreno was heard 
in the "Emperor Concerto" of Beethoven under the conductor 
Artur Nikisch, he feels that she must be warned not to go to 
the other extreme. 

She gave the "E flat Concerto" of Beethoven and the "Hungarian 
Fantasia" of Liszt with impeccable technique and understanding, 
but we missed her usually overflowing temperament. This highly 
imaginative artist must not let herself be frightened by pedantic 
school teachers. Her fire, her passionateness are the very traits that 
differentiate her from the numberless hordes of pianists of both sexes 
who are technically capable but who do not stand out with any partic- 
ular artistic individuality. She should not take the trouble to repress 
these qualities, or else she will be robbed of her most beautiful jewel, 
her own personality. 

It is easy to comprehend why Carreno preferred to file away 
her criticisms without reading them. 

If d'Albert had not found her a worthy wife, she was deter- 
mined that he should learn to esteem her from now on a 
formidable rival. It must have displeased her to read in refer- 
ence to this same concert a review of Otto Lessmann in the 
Allgemeine Musikzeitung. He would have her be on the one 
hand more true to the tradition that was so truly d'Albert's in 
the reading of the "Concerto," on the other hand more true to 
herself and her gifts. 

Another gentleman of Leipzig steers a middle course. 

On seeing her [he rhapsodizes] many a person must have silently 
sighed with me: "Einst ging sie zu zwein, Jetzt geht sie allein" in 
free modification of one of the most meaningful songs of Robert 
Franz. But before the all conquering power of her art, the sympathy 
that one would so gladly offer her in this hard test of life recedes. 


In the "E minor Concerto" of Chopin and the "Hungarian Fantasia" 
of Liszt, after having been received with cries of joy at the outset, 
she scored a resounding triumph. Through constant purification she 
has abandoned the amazonlike fury with which she used to pounce 
upon the greatest tasks of virtuosity as if upon an ironfast cohort 
of enemies, and that without loss of glowing fullness of expression 
and freshness of temperament. 

From now on the critics were more and more divided into 
two camps, those that wished her to keep forever the fire of 
youth, and those who welcomed the note of contemplation that 
with advancing years more truly expressed her changing self. 
As regards the E flat concerto, as soon as it had become more 
thoroughly her own through time, the great assimilator, all 
were agreed that it was one of her masterpieces. 

In the season 1895-96 Carreno gave no less than seventy con- 
certs. They took her from Germany to Great Britain and back 
again before the coming of the new year; February, 1896, saw 
her on a tour through Scandinavia where great success was a 
foregone conclusion; — it is curious that in Italy and France, 
countries racially allied to her own, the public was less respon- 
sive, the critics less cordial, than in Nordic lands — March was 
spent mainly in Switzerland, April again in Norway and 
Sweden. When it came time to join the children in Pertisau, 
Carreno was exhausted. The pupils who had assembled from 
far and near held their breath for fear that a lesson might be 
canceled. But even this so-called vacation was interrupted by a 
concert engagement in Lucerne, too lucrative to be refused. 
Carreno made a holiday of it, used it to show Teresita the won- 
ders of Switzerland. 

Aside from this trip Carreno found diversion in polishing the 
string quartette she had composed during the past year, the 
child of her unhappiness. In the sensitive hands of the Kling- 
ler Quartet it came to life under ideal conditions in the Leipzig 
Gewandhaus on September 29, 1896. Among the quantities of 
flowers presented to her lay a silver wreath from her pupils. 
The critics were friendly if, as habitually where a woman was 


creatively concerned, somewhat condescending, and the "Quar- 
tette" was in due time accepted for publication by Fritzsch in 
Leipzig. Carreno had made the acquaintance of Herr and Frau 
Fritzsch during her first days in Germany and had become so 
grateful for friendship in difficult hours that she presented the 
publisher with all the German rights to her "Teresita Waltz," 
not realizing at the time what a costly gift it was she was mak- 
ing. Another composition, a serenade for string orchestra, re- 
mained in manuscript and was probably never performed. 

After this preliminary introduction to the fall season it was 
time to organize the household for the coming winter. Gio- 
vanni, in spite of lack of application which kept his school 
grades chronically in the danger zone, got on fairly well in 
Schnepfenthal, one of the best and most expensive of German 
schools. Teresita was the real problem. Fraulein Kretzschmar 
in Dresden, whose school Teresita had entered the year before, 
understood her charge well, and analyzed her difficulties with 

Life in a Pension does not agree with Teresita, and yet there is nothing 
definite to be cured. Against threatening anaemia exercise would be a 
remedy, but her foot will not allow that. Wine and iron liqueur are 
forbidden by her former way of living at home. The last cold was 
without doubt due to the open window. — She is desperate because 
she may not do what she considers salutary and open windows do 
not belong to this category. . . . She needs a special governess for 
herself alone, because she is in many ways unreasonable. When she 
is supposed to do needlework her eyes hurt her, and yet she reads as 
much as possible. If she is supposed to go for a walk her foot hurts 
her, and still she writes on the same day to Krahl that she will call 
for her to go to a concert. And so she practically lives in constant 
contradiction. She said at first that she must eat fruit, but she won't 
touch it. She should eat vegetables, but she refuses them. Since she 
eats only little meat she really does not get enough nourishment. You 
can't achieve anything with her by force. She has a certain passive — 
shall we say suffering — resistance. The only thing to be done is to 
give her a tutor who will look after her entirely. Only in this way 
can she hope to finish the year tolerably well. 


A subsequent experiment of keeping Teresita at home under 
private instruction was also unsatisfactory. Carreno felt that 
after all a school would be more capable of coping with her 
daughter's difficulties. The Breymannsches Institut was situ- 
ated, as it is today, in the unspoiled country near Wolfenbuttel. 
The setting was as congenial to Carreno's taste as the simple, 
homelike atmosphere of the place. Founded by the niece of 
Friedrich Frobel, it breathed his spirit and clung to his ideals 
for the education of children. The accepted academic subjects, 
the household arts, music — and the weekly bath found their 
place upon the schedule in close fraternity. Plain living was en- 
livened by teas, parties, plays, and excursions into the near Harz 
mountains. The standards of instruction and conduct were high 
and enforced with gentle firmness. Good manners were en- 
couraged, not for outward adornment, but as the expression of 
character and kind thoughts. Carreno had good cause to be glad 
of her choice. 

Teresita was not so easily pleased. She finds the girls uncon- 
genial and stupid. She complains of her eyes, of headaches, of 
the food, then upon remonstrance she writes that she has 
"learned to suffer without complaining," an accomplishment 
which in the course of a few weeks is again forgotten. She 
accuses herself of making her mother constantly unhappy, 
blames herself for never satisfying her, and admits that she 
suffers greatly. She worries about Carreno's projected trip to 
the United States, and fears that her life will be endangered by 
"that awful man I am obliged to call father." But it does please 
Teresita that the English teacher asked her to play for the 
school, and when she did so they all acted as if she had pre- 
sented a valuable present. "I never had so grateful an audience," 
she concludes. A special grand piano had been sent for her use 
during the school year. No dog ever guarded a bone more jeal- 
ously. Even on the day of formal student recitals hers was 
the only hand allowed to touch its keys. The other performers 
were obliged to content themselves with an upright instru- 

To return to America had often been a temptation to Car- 


reno. She had not been justly valued there. Now with the back- 
ground of great European success her reception should be very 
different. Of a number of offers that were tentatively made her 
she finally accepted the most profitable. A foolproof contract, 
drawn up with the help of the canny Wolff, finally lay signed 
in her desk. Rudolph Aronson, her former impresario of the 
Casino Concerts, backed by the Knabe Piano Company, was to 
manage the tour. The agreement called for forty concerts at 
$400 each, transportation and living expenses for two people 
to be paid by the manager. As her traveling companion Car- 
reno chose Henriette Orbaan, a pupil sent to her under the 
patronage of the Dutch Government. 

In the interim there was a heavily booked tour awaiting her 
through Russia and the Scandinavian peninsula. Everywhere 
Carreno's success continued to be sensational. In Helsingfors 
she was obliged to give four concerts, two recitals, one concert 
with orchestra, and one concert at popular prices. After the 
third a large laurel wreath was presented to her with great 
ceremony, and the students could hardly be restrained from un- 
harnessing the horses of the carriage to draw her home them- 
selves. At her final appearance the audience became positively 
unmanageable. There were some who kept calling for "the 
hand, the hand," insisting upon kissing it, upon touching her 
dress. Carreno to quiet them at last stepped to the edge of the 
platform, pausing for silence: "Jag kommer tillbaka" (I shall 
come back) she promised in her best Swedish. Enthusiasm be- 
came fanatical. The critics broke their record for superlatives. 
Hardly ever had there been such a triumph. It followed her 
even to the train, where several hundred people were gathered 
to bid her farewell. Women and children nearly suffocated her 
with flowers, while a chorus roared loudly in competition with 
the cheers of the mob. Tired and well content Carreno at last 
sank back into the seat of her compartment and spread out her 
cards for a game of solitaire. As her nerves ceased to tingle she 
began to feel low in her mind. This year Christmas could not 
be spent with her children. Instead she would be on the ocean, 
probably seasick in a storm. 

It was on the eve of the new year, 1897, that the Aller docked 
in New York. Rudolph Aronson greeted Carreno at the pier 
and escorted her to her apartment in the Hotel Netherland on 
upper Fifth Avenue at Fifty-ninth Street, her American pied- 
a-terre for many years to come. That her first appearance was 
to be with the New York Philharmonic Orchestra promised 
well for the tour and challenged Carreno to do her best. She 
chose the "D minor Concerto" of Rubinstein for this ordeal. 
As she crossed the platform, her friends noticed the now- 
predominating shades of gray in her hair, simply arranged on 
top of her head, falling becomingly in natural waves that sof- 
tened the etching of her profile. Her black velvet dress was 
richly decorated but simple in line. Frau Pechstein was an artist 
who knew how to create the illusion of height. Before the pre- 
liminaries were over, before a note had been played, Carreno 
could feel that her audience was ready to play follow-the-leader 
over whatever hurdles she would take them. She was free to 
forget them, to relive once more, in memory of her great men- 
tor who had died in 1894, the romantic themes that she loved. 
In this thrilling setting the "Concerto" became new and fresh. 
The audience listened in excitement that, as one reviewer com- 
mented, would have interrupted her opening cadenza with ap- 
plause "had it been a less refined audience." Not since Rubin- 
stein had played this concerto in New York himself had it 
been so beautifully interpreted. W. J. Henderson, a critic to be 
respected, notes that her technique has become more sure, more 
smooth, that her style has broadened, and James Huneker adds : 
"Carreno is more than able to pilot her vessel with all the ease 
of a trusty and experienced piano-mariner." 

To the critic of the New York Advertiser she appeals from a 
different side. He probably had not heard her in her wilder 
days. "She is a strong woman, playing her instrument strongly. 
— She either stands revealed in the glare of midday, or you 
hear her clear cry in the tropical jungle at midnight, while 


near-by two burning points tell of something lurking and fe- 
line." Under the caption, "The Lioness of the Piano," one which 
aroused Carreno's anger more than any other, the critic of the 
New York World hears in her playing the bitterness of disillu- 
sionment with life. 

She has lost the feminine tenderness, the poetic feeling, the suavity, 
which were once elements in her playing. She has become purely a 
bravura player — almost brutal. She seems to have been completely 
influenced by the methods of her late husband. She was once mag- 
netic, but she has lost that quality in spite of the still potent charms 
of beauty and grace. 

Pooling the various conflicting verdicts the consensus neverthe- 
less is that the prodigy's return entitles her in her artistic matu- 
rity to a place among the first of her contemporaries, that in 
whatever way she may assert herself she does so with the legiti- 
mate authority of genius polished in the school of hard work, 
and harder experience. 

Carreno came back to the United States prepared to make 
amends for her neglect of the composer she once had so ac- 
tively championed. A telegram sent to her in Louisville on 
April 21, 1897, sounds as if the slight of former days were 
not yet forgotten. It ran: "Have just seen Saturday program 
of course appreciate compliment but dislike Hexentanz and 
Concert-Study would consider personal favor if you left me out 
this being only occasion you play MacDowell this season would 
prefer not having my weakest piano work beside Brahms best 
[Variations on a theme of Handel] no need reprinting program 
why not simply omit number. E. S. MacDowell." 

Whether Carreno complied with the request is not known. 
But as soon as the "MacDowell Concerto" reappeared in her 
repertoire the temporary estrangement was entirely put to 
rights. A grateful, whimsical, if slightly formal letter, dated 
December 18, 1897, helped to reestablish the friendship in all 
its former heartiness. 


My dear Teresita: You must have thought me very indifferent — 
to say the least — to your tremendous successes with our Concerto. 
I have meant to write every day — and if today had not been my birth- 
day; consequently a holiday — I might have put it off again until 
tomorrow. The day I heard of your first playing it I myself was 
playing in Boston with Paur. I tried to imagine how you played it 
and did my best with my rough hands, and I really think it helped, 
for they gave me a laurel wreath. Truly I have been driven nearly 
crazy with work these last weeks so I beg you to pardon my delay 
in expressing thanks which are none the less sincere for being tardy. 
I go for a month's Western recitals in two weeks and have only just 
begun to practice for them — have not had time before. Added to all 
this poor Marian is have a wretched time, as one of our Boston 
friends, a lady — whose family all live in Kentucky, has just arrived 
in New York all alone and hopelessly insane. I telegraphed to her 
family and two doctors and nurses have full charge, still the shock 
to Marian was not the best thing in the world — So you see we have 
been in a state of confusion to say the least, and this late acknowledge- 
ment of your choosing my concerto for one of your many triumphs 
has some excuse. And the Concert Study! — Well, I can't help it — I 
detest the thing, though I have now to "ochs" on it myself. The 
concert tuner agrees with me. He says it is the only thing in my 
recitals that gives him work.( !) It's like beating carpets. Again pardon 
the delay — and levity of 

Truly your 

Edward MacDowell 

Wolff immediately prepared to draw profit for coming Euro- 
pean tours by publishing abroad news of Carreno's success in 
the United States. Jubilantly he wrote: 

Avant tout laissez-moi vous dire, combien nous avons ete heureux 
que la mer etait une assez bonne mere pour vous de sorte que vous 
pouviez me telegrafier "right." Puis j'ai appris avec un profond con- 
tentement votre premier succes. II parait qu'il a ete le plus "tres 
beaucoup," que Ton puisse avoir, et comme un tel premier succes 
decide tout, il est certain que votre tournee sera une suite de triomphes. 
. . . Je suis curieux d'apprendre comment la vie en Amerique vous 
plait maintenant. J'espere que pas trop bien — car nous vous conside- 



"fe . sf. /f&r 

*£*&e&t^ - t/ <0t<^s&2. -^E^-r <e^e^ ^^^ 

"•***■ "^ ***<^J~*. *£**<, s^~, *s*%c~ 


Letter from Edward MacDowell to Carre ho 


rons comme citoyenne europeenne maintenant, qui a seulement le 
droit de ramasser de temps en temps beaucoup de dollars en Ame- 

And he was right. Carreno could now look at America from 
a different perspective. Standing on the foundation built of 
her established success across the Atlantic she now towered in 
honored relief. No more traveling in uncomfortable, dirty day 
coaches in the company of pseudo-artists that seconded her only 
feebly, no more second-rate hotels and low fees, no more sitting 
up late after a concert to wash underwear and mend concert 
dresses that had been worn too often. Was she much happier 
now, she wondered, as she looked out upon the Avenue? She 
used to be so strong, so well. Now there were headaches and 
twinges of rheumatism to plague her. The doctors were not 
helpful, their unanimous advice a season of complete rest. Rest 
indeed ! She thought of her children in their expensive schools, 
of her apartment at 2,500 m. a year, of Bertha Pechstein's last 
bill of 7,000 m., of Fraulein Krahl, Josephine, and the two 
other servants. Carreno laughed. It struck her ears disagreeably, 
and she cut it abruptly short, reaching instead for the Russian 
cigarette, which helped to make life tolerable. 

Then, quickly she turned from her own troubles to those of 
others. How might she help poor, pathetic, patient Arturo! — 
her eyes glowed with a gentler light. And dear Mrs. Watson 
who, gifted as she was, really should be playing in public in- 
stead of teaching day after day. She must find her a good man- 
ager. When Henriette knocked at the door, Carreno's spirits 
were so far restored that she volunteered to give her a lesson 
next morning and suggested a shopping expedition. 

Almost immediately after its promising beginning Carreno 
sensed that all was not well with the tour. Aronson had written 
her that he had contracts for more than thirty engagements. 
When she arrived there were only twenty-three. Moreover, he 
had scheduled her first recital in the hall of the Waldorf Hotel 
where major concerts, such as she was contracted to give, did 
not habitually take place. That in itself was contrary to the bar- 


gain. When after a concert the fee was not forthcoming, dis- 
satisfaction reached the breaking point. Evidently Aronson, 
if overflowing with good intention, had insufficient capital. 
Knowing that the Knabe Piano Company had guaranteed the 
contract, she did not hesitate to make this firm responsible. An- 
other impresario must be appointed. 

Acting for R. E. Johnston, J. W. Cochran now became the 
personal representative of Carreno's tour. He was a young man 
not without experience in the managerial field. His genial na- 
ture and sense of humor appealed to Carreno as much as the 
fact that he idolized her. So without too much apparent con- 
fusion the concerts went on as planned. 

In Boston, still the arbiter of all things musical, the Herald 
writes: "She returns to us more stately of presence, more im- 
posing of manner, than when she was here last, and at the 
same time a more deep, serious, and matured artist, ranking 
with the best in her art." To the Boston Gazette "Madame Car- 
reno has reached a position where criticism is superfluity. In 
the matter of technique, in the largeness of style, adaptation of 
means to end, fine taste, and self reserve, she is the finished 
artist." The Boston Times gives the final vote of confidence: 
"Among the few virtuosal triumphs which this generation is 
likely to remember might be cited the first concerts given here 
by Rubinstein, Billow, d'Albert, and Paderewski. To this short 
list it is now our pleasure to add Teresa Carreno." The Phila- 
delphia North American agrees: 

Every promise of her earlier years has been more than fulfilled. No 
such piano playing has been heard in Philadelphia for years, without 
forgetting the wonderful performance of Adele aus der Ohe upon 
the occasion of Tschaikowsky's visit to this city, when she played that 
composer's first Concerto from manuscript, and broke her health 
in the effort which it cost her. As for that gentle genius, I. Pade- 
rewski, he is in quite another class. 

Chicago had every right to claim a major part in making 
Carreno famous, and it was there that the greatest ovation of 


the entire tour awaited her. The criticism of the Chronicle 
sounds like one of 1863: 

The audience shouted like politicians at a political convention. The 
women's shrill sopranos sounded above the hoarse roars of their 
escorts' approval, and they split their gloves and blistered their hands 
in the wildness of their enthusiasm. When from sheer exhaustion 
they could applaud no more, the tumult even increased by the 
stamping of feet, and hundreds of white handkerchiefs fluttered from 
balcony and parquet. The Campanella trill was the event of the eve- 
ning. At the close the people mounted the stage, hugged and kissed 
her, and someone proposed three cheers for Carrefio which were given 
with a will. Then two hundred people started in procession for 
the green-room to obtain souvenirs. 

Aside from the exigencies of a performing artist's daily life, 
aside even from the longing for her two little girls ill at home 
with the measles, there was another ever-stalking dread. It had 
lurked in hiding during the days of happiness with d' Albert, 
and finally came to light in print before the final break in 1895 : 

One of the husbands of the pianistic bird of brilliant plumage, Teresa 
Carreno-Sauret-Tagliapietra-d'Albert, is on the war-path after his 
fickle spouse. The enraged baritone declares he will go to Europe 
and, if need be, take by force his two children from the custody of 
their beautiful mother, who, rumor asserts, is fonder of her present 
husband, Eugen d'Albert, than of any predecessors. Tagliapietra, 
called Tag popularly, is not an amiable person when aroused, and 
it looks as if there were a storm brewing for the Carrefio household 
when the opera baritone's operatic season is ended. 

The storm had been temporarily sidetracked, but during Car- 
reno's visit to the United States it again gathered force. Tag's 
special grievance was that Carrefio had left him with several 
months of rent and of installments on their furniture unpaid. 
Hardly landed in America she was subjected to the annoyance 
of letter after letter asking for the $1,000 which he believed to 
be his due, although it was Carrefio who had always paid all 


their common expenses. He refused to take part in an interview 
in the presence of a lawyer, but gradually the letters strike a 
threatening note, and his demands increase to $2,000 for found- 
ing a "Singing Conservatory." Again he appeals to her sym- 
pathy: "With you rests the balance of my old age, just as you 
had the youth of my life," he declares theatrically. "I would 
come personally to see you, but I am so poorly clothed that I 
would feel humiliated." When he proposed serving her with a 
summons, it was time to take precautionary measures. A de- 
tective was engaged as a protection from possible attack, and 
the time of Carreiio's sailing for Europe was kept secret. Even 
the elder MacDowells and Juan Buitrago, who were to spend 
the summer in Berlin and Pertisau, took passage with her on 
the Saale under assumed names, sailing May 18, 1897. In Sep- 
tember comes the final echo of a long-surmounted past. Ta- 
gliapietra's demands have diminished: 

In my life with you, you were always ready to help strange people. 
I don't understand why you should not help a man who has lived 
fifteen years with you, a man from whom you had three children, a 
man who only claims what he has spent for you, at last, a man who, 
outside of family quarrels, has treated you with respect and considera- 
tion. I only ask you for $1500 to be able to open a Conservatory, and 
make my living. 

It is no longer affection he allegedly seeks, but money to pre- 
vent suicide. This constant persecution might have gone on for 
years had he not found another solution for his difficulties. 

Half a year later he married Margaret Townsend, daughter 
of a once wealthy lawyer, and passes out of the picture as far 
as Carreno is concerned. Such artists as Joseffy and Edwin 
Booth frequented the Sunday evening salons of the Townsends 
which, in the eyes of conservative New York society, were a 
shocking desecration of the Sabbath. The house at 343 West 
Thirty-fourth Street gradually lost caste as business crept up, 
and as the Townsend fortune dwindled took on a shabby, for- 


lorn look. After the death of Mr. Townsend it was sold as a 
boarding house in which Tag and his wife continued to share 
a back bedroom downstairs. It was their little dog "Frolic" who 
on April 12, 1921, announced in low moaning howls that the 
once-so-colorful career of his master had ended. 

BERLIN 1897 

Teresa Carreno with her Children Giovanni and Teresita 
Tagliapietra, Eugenia and Hertha d' Albert 

In every way this highly important season had fulfilled its pur- 
pose for Carreno, who might well feel gratified that she had 
won in the United States the right to be compared only with 
the greatest of her field, irrespective of sex. Nevertheless, she 
was not reluctant to abandon it for the atmosphere of Germany 
more congenial to the artist. Still something of a Yankee at 
heart, she loved America, but no longer wished to live there. 
This trip had settled that question definitely. 

On the way back Carreno had time to reread the weekly let- 
ters that Teresita wrote from school. One brought the tears to 
her eyes: 

Do you remember how lovely Coswig looked in summer ? Once, the 
time d'Albert was in America, you sent me out of the tyeine Salon 
in the evening in the garden to pick a few leaves to put in your letter 
to him. . . . Do you remember how we made la ronde in every room 
in the house in the evening, when the painters had gone ? 

When Puppi was born we used to lay her in the cradle on the 
porch stoop, and I sat by her, and kept the humming bees and flies 
away with a Jaeger handkerchief. And how we used to get up early 
and Spargelstechen [dig asparagus]. And later we used to pick 
strawberries and eat them with sugar and cream for dinner. 

She recalls that they had their meals outdoors either on the 
wide lawn, or on the little platform over the ice cellar, or un- 
der a beautiful pear tree, and sometimes in the little summer- 
house, or on the porch in front of the h}eine Salon, and when 
d'Albert was in America they went to the circus or the zoo 
every single Saturday. "And then how we used to water the 
vegetables and the flowers and all that, all together barefoot, 
running around with our hair loose, and with a long hose in 
our hands. That must have been a sight for other people, too 
funny for anything." 

She herself brought up a problem, suggested a new line of 
development, which might have resulted in a happier future 
for a child of her temperament. Teresita had become absorbed 
in the study of science. Quite rightly she feared the surplus of 


pianists, as much as her own nervousness in playing before 
others, dreading comparison with her great mother. She did 
not wish to become "an old piano teacher." Instead music 
might better be her avocation. She would like to go to Karls- 
ruhe to study science there, were it not too much of a sacrifice 
for her mother. Not minding a mixture of languages she writes 
in April: "I love Wissenschaft so much as you have no idea. 
Everything is so logicle. Think of Mathematics, what grand 
logic it contends. Oh! [and this is reminiscent of the melodra- 
matic tone of her father's letters] ... if I could only serve the 
greatest of all Gods, Wissenschaftl" Teresita's solicitude for her 
mother is unaffected. She is puzzled that Carreno comes home 
sooner than planned. "Has it anything to do with that man I 
am obliged to call Father ? Is it because the agents have cheated 
you like so many times before? I have cried so much and for 
the first time I have truly felt the real seriousness of your Beruf. 
Seldom tears were spilt so free from Egoismus." 

Teresita was allowed to leave school to welcome her mother 
in Berlin. Science was forgotten. This may have been a major 
mistake. Carreno considered Teresita's progress in piano play- 
ing so remarkable that, instead, she sent her back to school to 
work doubly hard at the piano. 

R. E. Johnston meanwhile was doing some calculating. He 
barely gave Carreno time to reach home before suggesting plans 
for another tour in America. He explains: "You see, I am tak- 
ing no pianist, as I prefer to wait for the great pianist, not be- 
cause she is such a great pianist, but because she is the best 
fellow, and the best lady to do business with that I ever en- 
countered in the happy experience of a business association." 
Carreno loses no time in replying. Hers are no uncertain terms. 
She is willing to consider a tour of not less than eighty con- 
certs at $500 each, clear of all expenses for two people. She will 
play either Knabe, Chickering, or Steinway, preferably Stein- 
way. The contract, made with R. E. Johnston and J. W. Coch- 
ran, is to be guaranteed by the piano house. 

In a long letter to Carrie Reed Carreno takes time to explain 


her sudden sailing back to Germany. She attributes it to her 
homesickness for the children, to the fact that Aachen was ex- 
pecting her to take part in the music festival of the lower Rhine, 
and lastly to the menace of Tag. After her concert in North- 
ampton the day before leaving she barely had time to reach 
the boat. On she rambles of her summer, her ill health, her 
hard work. Then she gives a forecast of the coming season, 
beginning on October 10 with a Philharmonic Concert in Ber- 
lin. From then on she is to travel through Germany, Austria, 
Hungary, Holland, and perhaps England before Christmas, 
then to Russia 

with the Good Lord's help. And I begin to feel very weary of it all. 
I just long for a good rest, and yet, I presume, that if I got it, I 
would not know what to do with my life, after having worked all 
my life as I have. It is because I can't get it that I want it. Human all 
over! [And she begs Carrie to write often] Don't forget what an 
unhappy woman I am in reality, and in spite of all the glory, and all 
I may have, that my true and only happiness, besides my children and 
my art, is the love of those I love. . . . 

From Mrs. Watson Carreno hears that the "Teresita Waltz" 
"has become almost as much of a universal favorite as Pa- 
derewski's Minuet at one time." 

Carreno expected the same integrity from her managers that 
she offered them in all her own dealings. Her stand on any 
matter was always definite, and her rules for keeping her pres- 
tige up were simple. Never would she play in any town for a 
smaller fee than the one she received there before for a similar 
engagement, neither would she accept a call to play in a con- 
cert to replace another artist, even though it had cost her on 
that account a last opportunity to play the "D minor Concerto" 
of Rubinstein under his own leadership in Cologne the year 
before his death. Nor would she tolerate that untruths be 
printed about her. She did not hesitate, disagreeable as it was, 
to sue a New York journal for libelous remarks made against 
her, a suit later settled for cash out of court and followed by 


public retraction and a laudatory biographical article. On the 
other hand she valued the favorable repercussion in Germany 
of her successful season in the United States. "To disappear en- 
hances" was as true for one side of the Atlantic as for the other. 
But although she could show the world to others through 
her music vividly tinted as if through polaroid glass, her own 
sky was long drained of color. Life through much tasting had 
lost its flavor. Even a king or two in the audience was only a 
tame incident. The music itself mattered, and would have mat- 
tered more, if there were more leisure for practice. Even visit- 
ing new countries was scarcely thrilling with no more time at 
her disposal than to drive around the city. She submitted to of- 
ficial calls and receptions just as she allowed herself to be 
richly dressed in a manner befitting a person of her prominence. 
Happy from the heart she could only be with her children, and 
a very few intimate friends, preferably old friends whose loy- 
alty had stood the test. There were men that would have liked 
to marry her, who could have freed her from financial cares. 
Carreno was not tempted. 

Once again after an insufficient period of relaxation in Pertisau 
the winter season took its course. The "Concert fitude" of Mac- 
Dowell and his "Concerto" found a place upon her programs 
again. In one of her own concerts with orchestra Carreno chose 
to play three concerti, the "Emperor Concerto" of Beethoven, 
the "Capriccio Brillante" of Mendelssohn, her friend of long 
ago, and the "Second MacDowell Concerto" toward which 
there seemed to be a definite change of heart. Otto Taubmann 
felt that she reached 

the full height of her accomplishment in the interesting and valuable 
MacDowell Concerto. The very piquant Scherzo had to be repeated. 
That this Concerto, although treated symphonically throughout, 
yet furnishing the artist with so remarkably grateful if difficult and 
taxing a problem, has been so little noticed by pianists is striking, the 
more so because a superabundance of such musically worthwhile and 
pianistically challenging works of this kind does not exist. 


The field of chamber music which Carreno had entered with 
her own composition proved to be an outlet that was to delight 
her increasingly. With d'Albert as with Sauret she had ex- 
plored the intimacies of musical give and take. When Julius 
Klengel, noted cellist of Leipzig, asked her to play the "Sinding 
Quintette" with the men of his group, she accepted joyfully. 
In compliment her "Quartette" also had place on the program. 
At a later concert of the Halir Quartette Carreno again ap- 
peared, taking part in the "Sonata" of Mrs. H. H. A. Beach for 
violin and piano. Another pleasure awaited her. For the sixtieth- 
anniversary celebration in honor of Max Bruch she appeared to- 
gether with Josef Hofmann in Bruch's "Fantasie," op. 11, for 
two pianos. 

To Russia, to England, and home again the season unreeled 
itself. The days succeeded each other like variations on a more 
and more hackneyed theme. Wherever travels might take her 
the routine was similar. Arriving at her destination with the 
faithful shadow, her maid, and not forgetting to count the 
manifold pieces of Handgepac\, she at once made for the 
usually handsome but unhomelike suite reserved by Wolff in 
the best hotel of whatever the city might be. If the hour were 
early, a continental breakfast was served in her room. There, 
enveloped in her long-treasured red wrapper, she could read her 
letters. The blue-gray aura of the first cigarette of the morning 
made her feel less strange. Soon it was time to notify the local 
manager of her arrival, to thank the piano house for setting up 
a practice instrument in her parlor. There might be a rehearsal 
before luncheon or a walk to the hall to make the acquaintance 
of an unfamiliar concert grand. Nothing was permitted to in- 
terfere with the game of solitaire that ushered in the siesta. 
Later official guests, perhaps the mayor of the city or the heads 
of musical organizations, were received with the gracious re- 
moteness that helped to shorten their visit. Only a few friends 
and business associates were invited to stay for tea if Carreno 
happened to be in the mood. 

Then came the ceremony of the day, a rite which she would 


concede to no other person, that of arranging her hair for the 
concert. In preparation the triptych mirror was flanked by twin 
candles. Hair pins in graduated sizes lay in military rows be- 
fore it. Gradually her hair, piled high in a simple knot, took 
on the look of a finely grained surface, shading from onyx 
black to the white of marble, each strand seeming to come to 
rest in unintended rightness, even to the willful wisp that had 
escaped to curl itself tight at the nape of the neck. 

The long-trained dress, be it of brocade and lace, of silk- 
velvet trimmed with heavy gold braid, or of elaborately em- 
broidered chiffon, had the complicated machinery worthy of a 
modern motor. To put it together was the maid's affair, a task 
over which she perspired more than Carreno in a whole week 
of concerts. Putting on matching slippers that seemed too small 
to carry her considerable weight, Cinderella was ready for the 

She stepped into the carriage with the precision of a business 
magnate going to his office. During the concert nobody was al- 
lowed to approach her. She was alone with her music in a 
world that had no room even for the thought of her children or 
of herself. Many a time she played, and played her best, when 
an attack of influenza had sent her temperature up to 101 de- 
grees. Nothing but the serious illness of a child could make her 
cancel a recital. At all costs she would keep faith with her 
audience. Then after the last encore, most often the "Teresita 
Waltz," the maid quickly threw a heavy embroidered shawl 
about her shoulders, while Carreno made ready to shake hands 
with those who felt impelled to express their gratitude in words, 
but often became tongue-tied in her presence. With ready 
understanding of the young students who hopefully held out 
programs and pencils for her autograph, she smiled winningly, 
asking kindly, "Where shall I put it, my dear?" Then she 
scrawled her name with a flourish, while her eye already wel- 
comed the next in line, a man who put his admiration into 
words consistent with his gold watch chain and carefully 
pressed swallow-tail. Carreno seemed to grow taller as she 


passed him on with a formal: "You are very kind indeed, very 
kind." Then, recognizing a familiar face, she opened her arms 
wide. "My dear, my dear, how are you, and how are your 
precious children? You must come and see me tomorrow be- 
fore I leave, and tell me all about everything. Did you really 
think I played well?" Then to her manager: "Your hall has 
admirable acoustics. I am always so glad to play here for you. 
Every detail is so carefully planned, and such a large audience! 
You are kind to take so much trouble, very kind." 

A little girl attracted her attention in the background : "And 
who are you, my dear?" Shyly she came nearer. "I just wanted 
to look at you, please. I play the piano too." "Well, my dear, 
then we are colleagues! Marie, please take this young artist's 
name and address. I want to send her my photograph for her 
studio. You must let me know when you play in Berlin, my 
dear, and remember that nobody becomes an artist without 
hard work. It is not an easy life. Good-night, my dear. I see in 
your eyes that you are earnest. You have good piano hands. 
With courage and perseverance you will succeed. Good-night, 
my dear and Auf Wiedersehen!" A radiant child flew away, 
taking with her something more uplifting than lessons to urge 
her on. Finally for the last time Carreno had said a patient, 
"You are very kind." People were still standing about in 
groups : "Marie, my coat, if you please ! You will excuse me if I 
leave you now. It is late and tomorrow I must play again. 
Thank you very much. You are very kind. I will come again." 
Preceded by ushers bearing flowers, a large bunch in her own 
arms, and followed by Marie, also heavily laden, Carreno made 
her way to the waiting carriage. 

Back in the hotel Marie unhooked the gown. Madame liked 
to have it done quickly, for now came the culmination of the 
day. Another concert was wiped off the slate. At last she could 
relax in the comfort of her negligee for a midnight dinner. No 
other meal aroused such an appetite. To be invited to share it 
was to know Carreno in her most captivating moments. From 
oysters to ices with a bottle of champagne to raise her spirits she 


scintillated with humorous anecdotes, and unburdened her 
heart in reminiscence now sad, now gay. A last cigarette over 
a last game of solitaire and one more concert day had passed. 
The next might be different in setting, different in detail, 
But from now on her concerts were in general but the neutral 
background for the weaving of the patterns of her children's 
lives, of the lives of a few close friends. What happened to her 
personally ceased to be of first importance, except as it affected 
them. Skies were gay or gray, as she was well or ill to work for 
them, as they lived up to her desires for them, or failed to do so, 
as she was able or impotent to help. There was within her un- 
defined a loneliness for a companion with whom she could 
enjoy, could advise, could forget. 

For the summer of 1898 Carreno chose a new setting in 
Schwaz near Innsbruck. A modest and rather inconvenient 
castle, Schlosschen Friedheim, was her home. But there too was 
a deep blue lake encircled by mountains. There she could walk 
alone or accompanied by adoring followers. With much of her 
old gusto she joined in their nonsense, even played for their danc- 
ing. She allowed herself to be photographed in their midst. 
But into the privacy of her studio nobody, not even the chil- 
dren, intruded. There for hours at a time she practiced, taught, 
suffered, wrote, and puffed in peace. The happiness of the 
household depended upon the mood in which she emerged from 
her refuge. Eyes looked up anxiously. Would she suggest an ex- 
cursion into the mountains, or as they dreaded, would she com- 
plain: "I am not feeling at all well," and disappear to have tea 
in miserable solitude. 

Carreno's desk was as always piled high. A conservatory in 
Berlin made her a flattering offer to join its staff. This she de- 
clined. In one way or another she was constantly being re- 
minded of d'Albert. He insisted upon biweekly reports concern- 
ing the health of their children. Meetings were arranged and 
much to Carreno's relief, postponed again. There were annoy- 
ing conferences between his lawyers and hers. Carreno was hu- 
man enough to be elated at the rumor that he was not playing 


as well as before. Some critics even went so far as to suggest 
that he marry less often and give the piano too a temporary 

Then there was always a manager to scold for real or fancied 
omissions. When she angrily complained that the time of an 
important rehearsal in Dresden had not been imparted to her, 
Hermann Wolff shook off the drops of her displeasure with one 
of his tactful and merry letters. 

Oh, mignonne, Reine Veuve, Imperatrice-Pianiste, si vous ne saviez 
nieux par coeur vos concertos que vos lettres, vous ne vous appelleriez 
ni Teresa ni Carreno. Fixez vos yeux miraculeux sur la lettre du 24 
mars. Vous y trouverez le passage classique et immortel: Repetition 
generale — 7 h. Ni Schiller, ni Goethe se sont exprimes — je connais 
leurs ceuvres — d'une facon plus nette et plus poetique. Repetition 
generale! Comme c'est tres bien dit et plein de charme. Aucun doute 
de quoi il s'agit, tandis que en Faust (surtout dans la seconde partie) 
vous trouvez des endroits nebuleux et beaucoup moins clairs. 

7 h., naturellement du soir. Kant, le philosophe de Konigsberg, 
l'aurait probablement ajoute. Mais l'agent poete, s'adressant a l'artiste, 
supprime ce mot, laissant a la fantaisie de la pianisticule de paraitre a 
7 h. du matin. 

Et puis comme un petit Capriccio, comme un Intermezzo charmant 
Fernow vous a chante dans une autre lettre une admirable melodie. 
L'on desire une petite repetition a 1 h., ce qui confirmait de nouveau 
l'inestimable repetition generale du soir. Conclusion: Pardonnez- 
moi d'etre le sacrifice d'un petit oubli de votre cote. Comme je Fadore, 
ce cote! 

Time always passed on eager feet in Germany and spun itself 
out with nostalgic drag in America. On the day after Christmas, 
1898, Carreno tore herself away once again to cross the ocean 
on the Trave. Almost everything but the sea ran smoothly. The 
Chickering piano house became her official manager with }. W. 
Cochran as personal agent. In its final form the contract, if it 
did not fulfill her demands, assured her of a larger income 
than before, and of a third again as many concerts. Accom- 
panied by her maid and Chickering's most reliable tuner, Mr. 
Ruhenbeck, Carreno traveled to the Far West. She did not easily 
let circumstances upset her, not even when a snowslide held her 
train stalled in the mountains of Colorado for two whole days, 
preventing her from giving her first concert in San Francisco. 

Instead of considering her own plight she went to see if all 
were well in the day coach ahead. As always the children at- 
tracted her, and she at once picked out the dirtiest and hun- 
griest little girl. The mother had other children, and was glad 
to be relieved of one of them, so Carreno carried her prize off 
triumphantly to her stateroom, undressed and bathed her, 
washed her clothes and put her to bed on the sofa. What did it 
matter if the huge reception planned in her honor would have 
to be given up! For the moment nothing could be done about 
that; she might as well make the best of it. Of all the interludes 
of the trip this was the happiest. Not so for the tuner. Carreno, 
unmindful of the blizzard, sent him off into the town of Salida 
to buy the supplies she needed for her little protegee. 

This arduous season had one great compensation. It reestab- 
lished her friendship with Edward MacDowell on its old foot- 
ing. The "D minor Concerto" was everywhere so well received 
that she thought of resurrecting the earlier one in "A minor" 
as well. Before making a change, which in her opinion would 
improve the first movement, she wrote asking the composer's 
permission, to which he replied in a droll letter dated March 
2, 1899: 


Respected Valkyrie and Grandmother: Why did you consult me 
about that streak of "light" you let in on that bit of dramatic depravity 
in the first part of my Concerto ? Now that you ask me, I must admit 
I intended that passage to have a kind of "Atlas with a sore back" 
effect. I have just played it over in major and it was like dosing 
Atlas with vin Mariani. So there you are! — Seriously — I had planned 
the whole passage on the broad line of steady development from dolce 
to feroce — I think the triumph of the few measures in major dis- 
turbs the steadiness of the progression. Of course I can see how 
effective the new bit of color would be — and — you shouldn't have 
asked me! There are lots of things in the concerto I myself would 
not do as they are written (I mean of course technically and in regard 
to expression marks) and would give anything to hear you play it. 
As you know, there is nothing more despairing than trying to put 
certain things in black and white and this old concerto has never 
been revised by me since it first came out. You certainly must do 
wonders with it and whatever you do will be right, because it will 
come from the heart. — If you ask me a plain question about notes 
however — I've got to tell the truth, and I must admit the passage in 
question has a minor pug nose instead of a major straight one. — I 
have been studying your dates and am wondering if you will be in 
N. Y. between Pittsburgh and Boston (March 14-17), or between 
Buffalo and Pittsburgh (10-14). If so, do let me know so that I can 
make confessions about the concerto. — They shan't hamper you in 
the smallest particular — No need to say thank you!! Your faithful 
Grandson — 

Mutual respect and modest independence speak from this very 
characteristic letter of Carreno's one-time pupil. 

On May 16, 1899, Carreno left for home on the S.S. Lahn. Lon- 
don claimed her for concerts in June. July was spent in Kolberg 
that the children might have sea bathing. Then again the 
homelike gates of Villa Heigl in Pertisau opened to receive her, 
closing to shut out the world. Carreno was free to face her per- 
sonal problems. It was appalling to find them more compli- 
cated than ever. Where should she begin ? To whom should she 
turn for advice ? Chief among her obligations was always Ter- 
esita, at home since Easter. Musically she was developing as- 
tonishingly under the guidance of Josef Hofmann. Carreno 
was proud to admit that even she herself could not make a com- 
position as quickly her own as Teresita. There were no diffi- 
culties that with perseverance could not easily be conquered by 
her gifted child. 

Released from the restrictions of school, which she detested, 
Teresita expected to be allowed to enter unhampered upon her 
rights as an adult. It irked her to find that home life too de- 
manded concessions. Learning how to manage a household was 
an unthinkable bore to her who had not a practical thought in 
her mind, quite aside from the chaos it created within that 
household. This tangent was quickly abandoned. Fraulein 
Krahl took over the tangled reins and jangling nerves were 
soon quieted, but, as long as Teresita was at home, never for 
long. When mother and daughter were together there was 
thunder in the air. After open clashes between them the situa- 
tion always returned to the status quo ante. Carreno felt in- 
adequate to deal with this child, well as she understood her, 
and she saw that preparing Teresita for a productive career 
would continue to be as difficult as compressing quicksilver into 
permanent shape, as teaching a darting hummingbird to plane 
like a sea gull. In spite of school, in spite of the remonstrance of 
a too anxious mother, Teresita remained undisciplined, unac- 
countable, more often disagreeable than friendly. She blamed 
everybody from God, in whom she had no real belief, to fate 
and her mother, the most convenient target. Money in a de- 


pression was not less stable than her own sense of values. A new 
dress, the gratification of a wish, could make Teresita angel- 
ically charming, when to contradict her might easily cause a 
family tornado. Trying to appeal to her reason was as useless as 
attempting to make a fingerprint on water. Carreno was in 
despair. She knew herself to be too temperamental to deal 
rightly with a daughter in whom she saw so much of herself. 
If only Teresita had had a wise father like her own! Finally it 
seemed inadvisable for both to live in the same apartment. Ter- 
esita was sent to a friend, for the moment a good solution. The 
thought flashed into her mother's mind more than once. "I 
wonder what Arturo would say." When she had failed, he had 
always been able to manage Teresita and Giovanni. His ideas 
were so sane, so practical. If only she could ask Arturo's ad- 

Carreno carefully examined the receipts of her recent Amer- 
ican tour. For a moment she dreamed of a villa of her own — it 
might be wise to buy this very one — where she could eventually 
live the unpretentious life of a private citizen. She looked for- 
ward more and more eagerly to the time when her children 
would be self-supporting. With a wrench she called herself 
back to reality. The landlord had raised the rent but she could 
not bear the thought of moving. She would write to Cochran 
that the next American tour must last eight months at the 
shortest, remembering also to remind him never again to allow 
those obnoxious three-sheet posters to advertise her as "the 
lioness of the piano." A lioness indeed. She a trained circus 
animal ! It reminded her of lyceum circuits, of stuffy back bed- 
rooms, of dirty, airless halls that smelled of beer and cowboys. 
Last year, whenever she saw these posters — and who could miss 
them — she had paid a man to tear them down. 

This done and sealed with an emphatic thump, she turned 
to write a letter reprimanding Giovanni for playing his mouth 
organ in study hall. "The little Devil!" And he nearly old 
enough to leave school! What next? Her head ached. She 
would have tea in the music room alone; she would give no 


more lessons today. Those baths in Italy might help her rheu- 
matism. But then what would all the students do who had 
spent their precious money to come to her here ? She turned to 
the piano, her best medicine, and soon was lost in the Schu- 
mann "Fantasia," searching for new tone effects, for deeper 

The fall of 1899 came almost before she was aware of it, and 
long before she was ready duty like an eagle was carrying her 
in clutching talons through Germany and Russia and back 
again before Christmas. She felt inwardly repaid to play in 
Europe again, even though financially she earned one third as 
much as in America. 

Among the unpaid bills lay a communication from the Court 
of Wiirttemberg. In return for two complimentary concerts His 
Majesty, the King, would be pleased to honor her with the 
Title: "Pianist of the Royal Chamber." Carreno smiled wanly; 
but this burdensome honor could not well be refused, and must 
be correctly answered. Not until she had made three drafts of 
her acceptance was she satisfied that all the endings were right 
and the word order could not be misinterpreted or improved. 
She, by the authority of genius Royal Chamber Musician to the 
Court of God and Beethoven, could not help finding all this a 
little silly. The comment in her diary on December 4 is an elo- 
quent "Ouf !" 

Christmas with the children was over. The new year 1900 
with its new demands was upon her. Life moved too swiftly for 
recording. It was as if the cities passed her by while she re- 
mained standing. Each concert was brushed away with the 
same satisfaction that a schoolgirl takes in snipping off the 
heads of rows of paper dolls to mark the days before vacation. 
Automatically she followed her approved routine, playing for 
better, for worse, in sickness or in health, always insisting upon 
her best though caring little what the critics wrote. In spite of 
the pleasurable memories that almost every concert brought, she 
continued to find deepest comfort in the inscription a king of 


old had caused to be engraved upon his ring: "This too shall 

Carreno's friends saw the danger of strain without letup. They 
warned against a summer in its way as taxing as the winter, 
and advised against the load of teaching, rewarding as she 
found it. It promised a certain kind of immortality in a too 
transient world. 

This particular summer there were other serious burdens to 
carry. Teresita, whose Latin temperament felt itself constricted 
in the stays of Berlin decorum, had taken it upon herself to go 
to Paris, asking posthumous permission to stay there after she 
was safely installed in a pension. Carreno was obliged to ap- 
prove, and she at once made arrangements to have Teresita 
continue her studies with her good friend Maurice Moszkow- 
ski. Meeting her upon the street one day this witty gentleman 
doffed his hat and sang his "good-morning Madame Carreno," 
even to the turn over the n, according to musical tradition, 
much to their joint amusement. 

Worry over Teresita weighed lightly balanced against the 
sudden illness of Hertha, her baby. Local doctors failed to check 
the fever constantly at a peak of high danger; authorities con- 
sulted by telegram were not more helpful. In desperation Car- 
reno turned to a Berlin specialist in the nature-cure methods 
advocated by d'Albert. For a fabulous sum she persuaded him 
to visit her child for the single hour of time at his disposal. Ac- 
cording to Fraulein Krahl the simple remedy of a clay pack 
hardening through the internal heat, drew out the fever and 
saved the life of the child. Night after night the mother 
watched and helped. For the period of convalescence Eugenia 
and Hertha were sent to the higher altitude of Merano, while 
Carreno, completely exhausted, recovered as she might among 
her duties. It was not the best of ways to prepare for a lengthy 
tour of the United States. 

Teresita, meanwhile, found freedom to do as she liked in 
Paris very congenial. On the whole she made good use of her 
time and even gave a successful concert in Paris at the Exposi- 


tion under a committee headed by Camille Saint-Saens. In 
order to avoid all comparison with her mother, she appeared 
simply under the name T. C. Tagliapietra. 

Before leaving for America Carreno made a special journey 
to Paris, thinking in a sudden burst of pride to take Teresita to 
New York, where she herself could give her lessons and for 
experience send her pupils. But Teresita preferred to stay where 
she was in the semi-Bohemian atmosphere that suited her so 
much better. 

Mr. Cochran had made his arrangements with the care born 
of real devotion to a cause in which he fervently believed. His 
was the full responsibility, which was materially lessened by 
the backing of Steinway & Sons. The tour began to unwind it- 
self at first without incident. It took her to the Middle West, 
Canada, and back, then southward to New Orleans and Savan- 
nah, from where she sailed for Havana on the S.S. Olivette. 

One of her best ideas — at least so she was convinced — had 
been thwarted by a too practical manager. It had pained her to 
see Arturo Tagliapietra patiently trudging through the streets 
of New York in the interest of a typewriter company, always 
uncomplaining, earning a sum upon which another would have 
found it impossible to exist. His loyalty was touching, and she 
felt herself in gratitude bound to him who had insisted that 
she take the decisive step of her life. What a good advance agent 
to send to Cuba and Mexico, thought Carreno! Mr. Cochran 
thought otherwise, going himself instead. 

In Havana, the scene of a great childhood triumph, the re- 
ception to "La Duse del Piano" was as effusive but not so uni- 
versal as it should have been. A ball given by the Governor as 
well as the great heat was brought forward in excuse. One jour- 
nal stated the case frankly: "Music in Cuba is an industry not 
an art," and rather overstrained his imagination in comparing 
Carreno "in her dress of black gauze ornamented with gold 
sequins" to Wagner's Briinnhilde. Another critic thought that 
the augmented prices might have been to blame for the empty 
boxes and adds : "But who could buy a bottle of champagne for 
so little?" 

Carreno herself in a letter to Carrie Reed preferred to disre- 
gard this feature of the trip. As usual every concert must appear 
to be a success, every event a happy one. She wrote : 

The heat was so intense that I was quite overcome by it, and all 
I could do when people gave me an hour or two of respite was to 
lie down and gasp for air and breath. It was simply awful! I gave 


three concerts, and to this moment I do not know where I found 
sufficient energy to play. Well, I did, and I had a good time while 
I was there. All the old friends of my childhood, those still there, 
came to greet me in the most kind and loving manner. . . . 

Her best send-off was the comment of the Havana Post: 

Although her own magnetic personality is ever present to her lis- 
teners, she herself forgets it, and loses herself in the spirit of her 
author, bringing out his national characteristics, his temperament, his 
school, and her artistic conscience is so keen that she takes no liberties 
whatsoever with text or time. I was amazed to see that such effects 
could be accomplished by such legitimate means, but what an artist 
it takes to do it! 

The trip to Vera Cruz on the once-good ship Seneca — her en- 
gines had been condemned, she no longer carried freight, nor 
did she carry insurance — began well enough, although she rose 
so high in the water that six feet of the copper bottom showed 
above the surface. The first hours were spent by Carreno and 
her manager counting boxes full of coin, the receipts of the 
Havana concerts, and trying to translate them into dollars and 
cents. It was a difficult game. After the Spanish- American War 
Cuban currency was in a state of chaos. In the boxes were coins 
of many lands, among them an oxidized Spanish doubloon, 
which Carreno bought to keep as a forte bonheur. The estimate 
had finally been reached and punctuated with much laughter, 
when a stiff Norther blew up, sending the Seneca pitching and 
rolling about in crazy gyrations. At the climax of the storm 
Carreno sent for Mr. Cochran. The maid lay in one berth, an 
hysterical Carreno in the other. She was no longer the little girl 
of the Washington whose faith comforted others. "I shall never 
see my children again," she moaned. Mr. Cochran himself was 
not sure that she would, but he managed to appear confident, 
and soon, danger forgotten, they were again joking with each 
other. The letter to Carrie Reed continues : 

It took us a whole week to make a voyage that should have lasted 
two days, and all owing to the mismanagement of the steamship 


company. To begin with the steamer was an old, rickety, incapable 
concern, and so we had to stop at two Mexican ports, El Progreso 
and Campeche. It happened to be Ash Wednesday when we arrived 
at the first, so the natives felt that their religious conscience absolutely 
forbade their working on that or the following day. . . . After Cam- 
peche we had one of the worst storms that it has been my bad luck 
to experience at sea. How seasick I was, my darling! No name can 
be given to that torture, . . . and on the 31st of the month I hope to 
be in Chicago where I play on the first of April. (I wonder who will 
be fooled on that day, the public or I!) 

In Mexico City, where Carreno had never been before, she 
found at her disposal a bungalow nestling in a sweet-smelling 
garden. Her coming was considered not only a musical but a 
social event. The Minister of Finance under the Diaz adminis- 
tration wished to entertain her at dinner, thus honoring the 
daughter of a former colleague of Venezuela. The function be- 
gan at eleven at night and, interrupted by speeches and toasts, 
lasted interminably. Carreno had ample time to examine the 
elaborately embroidered tablecloth, die rows of heavy silver 
epergnes filled with flowers and tropical fruits. While they were 
still at table the clock struck half past four. 

One of her concerts was given for the Jockey Club, after which 
a deputation presented her with a silver wreath resting upon a 
white satin pillow. Carreno accepted it with a polite speech in 
Spanish. Then turning to Mr. Cochran, she wailed sotto voce: 
"What am I going to do with it ? I could sleep on the pillow, but 
no matter how famous I become, my head will never be large 
enough for that wreath." Until she had brought it safely to her 
own fireside, it seemed as if she were doing nothing but paying 
duty on that particular white elephant. 

On the morning of her first concert in Mexico City Carreno 
accompanied her manager to the Teatro del Renacimiento to 
become familiar with the piano. It was apparent that the stage 
had not been cleaned for many days, and Carreno gave strict 
orders that the platform be thoroughly scrubbed before the per- 
formance. True to Mexican form the work was done at the 


last moment, and the stage was still wet when Carreno swished 
out upon it. As she bowed acknowledgment after the first 
group of solos her foot slipped. She narrowly saved herself from 
falling, but at the expense of an ankle that began to swell even 
before she reached the wings, making her faint with pain. Mr. 
Cochran suggested giving up the concert. Carreno refused. Out 
she walked upon the stage as if nothing had happened. Nobody 
in the audience was aware that every step was agony. The 
concert took place to the last encore. The story of the mishap 
and of her stoicism, which Mr. Cochran shared in confidence 
with the press, did its part to increase her popularity — and her 
audiences. So captivated were the Mexicans that they suggested 
an additional benefit performance which would undoubtedly 
have brought huge returns. It meant, however, the cancellation 
of a date in a small California town, where the fee was cor- 
respondingly low. Rather than break faith with her commit- 
ments, Carreno gave up an opportunity she greatly coveted. 
Money was never allowed to be a primary consideration, but 
she turned her back with regret upon people that spoke her 
language and had made her feel at home. 

In Nashville she proved again that with her the audience al- 
ways came first. She was about to begin her concert — the hall 
was filled to the last seat — when the local manager burst into 
the room. His box-office receipts had been attached for failure 
to pay a printing bill of long standing. There was no money 
for the artist, there could be no concert. Carreno patted him re- 
assuringly on the back. "These people have come in good faith 
to hear me, I will on no account disappoint them." 

In Cincinnati, a tribute that thrilled her profoundly, the en- 
tire audience rose to its feet at the end of the concerto. Crit- 
ics, having no other ground for fault-finding, called attention to 
Carreno's size which had visibly increased since her last appear- 
ance in America. Many seconded the wish of one who said 
aloud: "May her shadow grow less." 

In every respect the journey went from one stormy ovation to 
another, reaching its climax in the New York farewell concert. 


Flowers in profusion, encore after encore, and at last a reception 
half an hour in length made her feel certain that she had not 
yet worn her welcome out. 

The tour was well over with a fair profit for both the mana- 
ger and the artist. As the carriage bumped along through the 
desolate streets of Hoboken toward the pier, Carreno was 
hardly conscious of the German band on a corner playing its 
homesick folk songs. She and her manager leaned back in deep 
content. On the uncomfortable bench opposite Arturo sat 
drooping. Just to make conversation Mr. Cochran turned to his 
artist: "There is only one thing you still need, Madame! That 
is a secretary. Arturo should make a capital one. Why don't you 
smuggle him along in your trunk?" Carreno took up the sug- 
gestion. "That's an idea, Arturo! If you take the next boat I 
will pay your expenses, and [this with a grand theatrical ges- 
ture] you may name your own salary." Arturo's blue eyes 
gleamed. "Do you really mean it, Teresita?" Still in the mood 
of the game Carreno answered: "Of course I do," and tapping 
him lightly on the shoulder with her umbrella she declaimed in 
approved Valkyrie style: "I hereby knight you my secretary." 
Then, as the carriage drew up at the pier she pointed to the 
door: "Arise, Sir Secretary!" Surrounded by a swarm of friends 
she promptly forgot all about Arturo standing modestly on the 
fringe of the circle. As the S.S. Maria Theresia, her namesake, 
pulled out, there he was jumping up and down like a puppet 
on a string, until he reached the vanishing point. Carreno turned 
away from the rail. Did he really think she meant it? Would 
he come ? She left it to fate and quickly lost herself in the happy 
thought that soon she would be seeing her children. No matter 
how seasick she might be, every chug of the engine was bring- 
ing her closer to them. Laden with the good returns of her 
concerts — each one had brought from $300 to $ 600 to add to her 
reserves — she could indeed look forward into a brighter future. 

At home again her first problem was as always Teresita. On 
her own initiative she had once more settled in Paris, ostensibly 
studying and teaching, but according to all reports leading the 


disorganized life that suited her so well. It was not unusual for 
Teresita, returning from some pleasurable jaunt, to find the pas- 
sage blocked by a student whose lesson she had conveniently 
forgotten. Carreno knew something must be done, and done 
quickly. But what ? "If Arturo were here, he would know," she 
thought, and then her attention centered upon Giovanni idly 
at home since Easter. 

Herr Ansfeld, the director of Schnepfenthal, advised ad- 
vanced schooling and suggested Eisenach. That Giovanni's ca- 
reer would not be an intellectual one was obvious. His gifts 
were above the average, his ambition far below. The violin, for 
which he showed talent, seemed to present the best solution. 
Carreno took it upon herself to investigate the possibilities of 
Eisenach. On her way there she was attracted by Friedrichroda. 
High in the Thuringerwald, it combined a variety of the walks 
she loved with the pure air necessary for Hertha's well-being. 
There too was ample accommodation for students. She rented 
one of its larger villas on the Schlossweg and returned to Berlin 
well satisfied. Much still remained to be done before leaving. 

One morning very early — nobody was stirring — the sound of 
the doorbell awakened Josephine. Looking more than ever like 
a frightened rabbit, she tripped to answer it, hands folded, 
shoulders bent as if in constant prayer, and on the way she 
shook her head. "Poor Madame, these awful Germans have no 
respect for the hours of sleep. And she sleeps so lightly. What 
can they be wanting now?" 

As she unchained, unlocked, and unbolted the door there 
stood a little man, his blond mustache and goatee disheveled, 
his trousers unpressed, but his eyes twinkling, as he held a 
warning finger to his lips. "If it isn't Mr. Arturo," beamed 
Josephine. Arturo whispered: "It is to be a surprise so big, you 
have no idea. You must help to hide me." Josephine in the 
spirit of the game scurried away for hot water and towels, 
while Arturo did the best he could to repair the ravages of a 
night in a German third-class compartment. His coat was 
frayed at the collar, his trousers worn at the knee. In spite of 
too evident poverty, there was a certain dapper neatness about 
him, and as he straightened his waistcoat, the mirror answered 
back: "Arturo, you might look worse!" Stowed away in the 
room that gave directly onto the dining room he waited with 
what patience his pounding heart could muster for the gather- 
ing of the family at breakfast time. Carrefio in her voluminous 
wrapper finally took her seat at the coffee urn. She replied to 
her children's anxious glances : "No, I am not feeling at all well 
today. Perhaps it would be better to give up Friedrichroda. 
Those Italian baths, they say, are so good for rheumatism." The 
children looked aghast. Carrefio suddenly became aware of 
Josephine by her side, wringing her hands nervously, standing 
with an air of perpetual apology, as if asking plenary indul- 
gence for having been born. "What is it, Josephine?" Carrefio 
sounded impatient, and Josephine's voice rose higher and 
higher: "Please, Madame, there is a very large package in the 
next room. The man said it is important. Will Madame be so 
kind as to look at it now, if you please?" Carrefio frowned. 


What fool of a person could have thought of putting it in there! 
She could not remember having ordered anything large and 
heavy. All at once the door opened, and framed within it stood 
Arturo, his eyes shining points of sky blue. Forgotten was the 
rheumatism as Carreno enveloped her ^^-brother-in-law in a 
hug of welcome. Strange that she hadn't noticed before how 
fine a day it was ! The family barometer took a miraculous turn 
upward. Yes, they would go to Friedrichroda. 

In a thousand little ways Arturo knew how to make himself 
useful. Only a week and it seemed as if he had always been a 
member of the household. The little room at the right of the 
entrance became his office. There tirelessly he made order in 
the business files and worked at his German so that one day 
he might be able to answer the telephone. Carreno sent him on 
the delicate mission of bringing Teresita home from Paris, 
where she had gone, again on her own venture, after a passably 
successful concert tour in Sweden. Tactfully suggesting a trip 
to Italy to visit her father's family, Arturo succeeded in entic- 
ing her by that roundabout way back to Berlin. 

To Giovanni he appealed through their common love for 
taking long bicycle rides, and their friendship was cemented 
over the chessboard. Arturo was adept at the game. That he 
was careful to the point of fussiness, that nobody could pack 
as neatly as he, that no task was too difficult or too insignificant 
for him if it was she who wanted it done, Carreno soon dis- 
covered. Fraulein Krahl was the only one displeased by his 
coming. Meanwhile the atmosphere of the summer colony in 
Friedrichroda was saturated with gaiety. Even Teresita, pre- 
paring for her first long concert tour, was amenable to her 
mother's teaching. 

Before it was time to leave Friedrichroda Carreno had come to 
a momentous decision. Arturo must be invested with higher 
authority than that of uncle or secretary. His influence over the 
children depended upon it. As for her, she found his presence 
completely congenial, yes, indispensable. He knew how to 


soothe her nerves when they were out of tune. His companion- 
ship was diverting. Above all else here was a man whose de- 
votion to her was established beyond fear of turning, who 
would even play solitaire with her. And practically and affec- 
tionately he needed her as she needed him. How often she had 
said to Mr. Cochran: "If I only had someone whom I could 
ask with the assurance of a frank answer 'How did I play last 
night?' " She made her decision. Arturo must travel with her, 
not as her secretary but as her husband. Hertha and Eugenia 
some months before had seriously discussed this all-important 
subject. Hertha opened it by saying: "It would be good if 
Mammie married another Papa." But Eugenia warned her: 
"Don't tell her that. She would feel offended. She might think 
we didn't have enough just with her." 

In her usual direct way it was Carreno who made the ad- 
vances. No aurora borealis had ever yet appeared with such ter- 
rifying beauty to mortal man as this cataclysmic proposal to the 
ultramodest Arturo. How could he be a fitting husband for the 
great Carreno! His heart said a jubilant "yes," but not without 
misgivings. What about the children later on? Would it be 
for their best? What would the world have to say? Carreno 
brushed aside his fears. If there were difficult moments, at least 
they would face them together. 

At the end of September the announcement exploded with 
the repercussion of a major tremor throughout the world of 
music. To the international press it gave food for frivolous and 
insulting comment. In artistic circles it became the joke of the 
season. Carreno's friends were divided into two camps, those 
who abruptly chose to cancel their intimacy with a person sud- 
denly gone mad, and those who, incredible as they found this 
step, decided to capitulate to a decision they could not alter. 
Emma Koch and her mother joined the first, while Mrs. Mac- 
Dowell and Mrs. Watson, after doing their best to influence 
Carreno not to take the irrevocable step, lined up with Mr. 
Cochran on the other side. Carreno looked with a heavy heart 
upon the havoc her coming marriage was creating in her circle. 


Gathering her real friends more closely within its shrinking cir- 
cumference she turned her thoughts to her children. At last 
they should have the father they needed. 

For the sake of the children Carreno, although she still be- 
lieved that ties of affection were the only binding ones, agreed 
that the marriage should take place according to the involved 
machinery of the German law. These complications combined 
to defer the marriage until the summer of 1902. 

There was no fear in Carreno's heart that she might be mak- 
ing a mistake. She opened her heart as well as that of Arturo 
in a letter to a good friend and pupil: 

You have seen enough of my life to know for yourself how lonesome 
I, in reality, was, and how empty my poor heart, and can fully un- 
derstand me. That I am happier than I ever dreamed of being is but 
a short and poor description of my feelings, and even if I wrote you 
the longest letter and tried to convey to you what I feel, I could not tell 
you all I would like to tell you! As you know what I suffered and you 
really are my friend, I know that you will rejoice in my happiness, 
which is the happiness I have longed for all my life, that of possessing a 
true, loyal, and noble heart — who will help me through the few years 
that I may have to live (they cannot be many, for I am an old woman 
now) and who will share with me my troubles as well as my joys. 
This Arturo will do as my husband, just as he used to do when, in 
silence, he loved me during all these years and when I only thought 
that I inspired in him the greatest sympathy on account of the mis- 
ery which I underwent with his brother. I never dreamed that he had 
for me any more than the affection of a brother, and not the slight- 
est suspicion did I have that the affection which I yearned for was 
mine. Had I only known it! Isn't it a strange thing that all these 
years should have passed — he loving me devotedly all these fourteen 
years — I absolutely ignorant of it, and only now my eyes should 
have been opened? He was too proud to allow himself to show his 
true feelings to me, and only through the force of circumstances did 
I become aware of what he felt for me. How strange life is after all! 
All I had before, only flattered my vanity. — My heart took no part in 
it all, excepting the love I bear my children and my true and deep 
affection for my friends. Otherwise I was most unhappy, for I missed 


the true and loving heart which I wanted for my own, the com- 
panion of my lonely, sad hours. Now I have him, and I cannot tell 
you how grateful I feel for this happiness ! 

Arturo's world too was colored by his own unbelievable good 
fortune. To show his gratitude, as well as to get used to himself 
in this glorified role, he was glad to accompany Teresita on a 
tour taking her to Finland and Russia. That was no inconsid- 
erable test. In addition to the customary details that fall to the 
duty of a personal manager he had to be ready to soothe, to 
encourage, and to see that hooks matched eyes on the intricacies 
of the concert dress. His own nervousness was only exceeded by 
Teresita's. In her first concert she began the "Toccata and 
Fugue in D minor" by Bach (as Tausig fitted it to a protesting 
piano) as if she meant to break the piano to pieces, "like a 
horse, who, frightened at something, suddenly runs away, not 
caring where he is going, or knowing." From then on she 
played better and better until the last encore, her own "Ber- 
ceuse," brought her a real triumph. Teresita by her beauty won 
the hearts of all the students in her audience. They wanted to 
carry her through the hall on a chair; they covered her with 
flowers. After such an ovation it took all of Arturo's ingenuity 
to keep Teresita to her routine of practice and sleep. Never for 
all the gold in the world, said Arturo, would he accompany 
Teresita on tour again. He longed for Carreno and was filled 
with a wild jealousy of all who were privileged to be near her. 
She for her part complains that his letters are cold, that he does 
not share his thoughts with her, to which Arturo replies help- 
lessly: "Povero me! I am not a Petrarch nor a Tasso." And he 
wonders that she can love a man who has such bad qualities. 

Teresita returned and found her mother ecstatic over her 
success beyond all hopes. Had she not captivated her critics as 
well as her audiences? Did she not come back, wonder upon 
wonder, with an actual profit in her pocket ? Carreno allowed 
happiness to cloud judgment. It seemed to her that her daugh- 
ter must at once conquer Germany in her own right. She saw 
that notices to that efTect were published in the papers. Wolff 


put in a deterrent word, and a friendly musician who heard 
Teresita in Helsingfors gave voice to his opinion in a letter he 
chose to send anonymously. 

Your daughter has celebrated triumphs here — everybody allowed him- 
self to be caught in the applause by her extraordinary gift, her tempera- 
ment, and her lovable appearance, but everybody had to deplore that 
these good qualities were not blended with greater technical profi- 
ciency so that she could stand out as a fully ripened heiress of a cele- 
brated name; this is, in short, the opinion of public criticism in every 
city also. Gnadige Frau, believe me, if your daughter now appears be- 
fore the more satiated public and the less considerate critics in Ger- 
many there will be no end of verdicts which will be painful to you no 
less than to your daughter. They will not be able to refrain from 
showing their surprise that a mother-artist of your quality, who more 
than any other ever has brought technique to artistic fruition, has 
failed to notice lacks in this direction in her daughter, has let her 
remain a mediocre dilettante. You would have to bear this responsi- 
bility before the whole world, and shadow would fall upon your 
own name, so well known, so highly valued everywhere, which could 
have been so easily avoided. I ask you to examine the situation your- 
self. You will certainly not say that I am wrong. I would do every- 
thing to spare you and your young, inexperienced daughter any 
sorrow, and I wish that you might understand my fear, might listen 
to me, that you might do as I ask : Do not let any further tours take 
place at present, but let Fraulein Teresita be content until later with 
her success in these places, and from now on concentrate upon her 
complete education in every direction. If you, Gnadige Frau, do not 
find the time to take her artistic development under your own guid- 
ance, assign your daughter to a teacher of whom you know that 
he will take charge of your daughter with affectionate interest, care- 
fully and without jealousy, without brutality, and who will in this 
way lead her to the artistic heights and maturity that has and shall 
set the name Carreno apart. Then you will have full joy in your 
lovable, highly talented child — Only a few words more! I must 
draw your attention especially to good and careful physical educa- 
tion of your growing daughter, for now she sits in such a bent over 
position at the piano, that, if care is not taken, she may do harm to 
her health for the rest of her life. Now I have poured out my heart to 


you. — May you take heed of my words. An admirer and a man of 
experience has spoken them, who will always count among his most 
enjoyable hours the very beautiful ones for which he has to thank 
you, and who will always follow with interest the continuation as 
well as the future blooming of the Carrefios, and who hopes that 
this may become ever more brilliant and glorious. 

For the moment Carreno did not allow this sane counsel to 
guide her. Feverishly she wrote to everyone who might have 
influence to launch her daughter in a serious career. To her 
letter asking for a higher financial rating for her own concerts 
the imperturbable Wolff answered, bowing to the inevitable : 

Non, chere Amie, j'ai envie de vous — pour nos concerts— et mes 
abonnes partagent cette envie! Que faire? Ce que j'aurais fait tout 
de suite, si j'avais su que vous pouviez etre si dure. Done entendu, 
tres chere amie! 800 — Mais jurez sur ma tete depourvue exterieure- 
ment de cheveux, interieurement de cervelle, que vous ne trahirez 
pas a vos collegues, que vous etes montee tant dans — mon estime. 
Qu'est-ce que vous jouerez? Je vous serre votre main si habile et 
suis votre petit jouet. 

The winter's concert tour unfolded in even rhythm, to Arturo 
who combined the callings of secretary, companion, and maid, 
like a happy dream. Carreno enjoyed as much as he the hours 
spent in a tailor's establishment in London, from which Arturo 
emerged equipped with everything necessary to play the part 
of the intended husband of a Carreno in perfect form. Each 
city was a new adventure, and who could blame him for strut- 
ting a little, as he began to learn to take charge of the endless 
details involved in the business of giving concerts. From school 
Eugenia writes with childish directness: "Wie geht es dem On- 
\el? 1st der On\el schon Papa?" Of music he knew little, al- 
though he had the instinct of every good Italian for it. And by 
dint of repetition — Arturo was a good listener — he even devel- 
oped a critical sense of a sort. At last Carreno felt that there 
was someone at her side to whom, with the confidence that it 
would be frankly answered, she could put that question : "How 


did I play last night?" She had never traveled so smoothly, so 
gaily. Troubles and problems, aired before an understanding 
person, seemed to be already half solved. Most valuable of all 
Arturo knew by intuition when to be silent, when to disappear. 
So for the usual fifty concerts or so through Germany, through 
Holland, through Germany again, through England, Scotland, 
and back again to Germany with a touch of Poland, Carreno 
played her way in a radiant haze that gave a delicious aura to 
her concerts. 

The climax of the tour was one devoted to compositions by 
Grieg with the master himself presiding over the "Grieg Con- 
certo" in Warsaw. For him too it was a state occasion. He wrote 
on the first of April: 

Highly esteemed Madame Carreno: — The news that you will once 
again do me the honor to play my A minor Concerto under my di- 
rection gave me colossal joy. But on the program stands besides the 
piano concerto my Ballade in G minor {op. 24). Should you, however, 
which is very probable, neither know nor play this long and com- 
plicated piece, I will of course gladly do without it, but in that case 
I hope that you will be so kind as to suggest instead some of my 
piano pieces which you may already have embodied in your reper- 
toire. I shall be grateful for a speedy and decisive reply. My wife is 
heartily anticipating seeing and hearing you again, as does your old 

Edvard Grieg. 

On the tenth he acknowledged her reply: 

My hearty thanks! With the three pieces "Aus dem Volksleben" 
I am entirely in accord. 

You call this concert a festival. Yes, when you take part in it 
and especially if you play the Concerto as superbly as you did in 
Kopenhagen — (do you see how infamous I am!) — then at any rate 
it becomes a festival! 

Meanwhile the formidable array of documents required for 
marriage in Germany was collecting upon Carreno's desk, and 
the wedding day could finally be set for June 30, 1902. Teresita 


Arturo Tagliapietra and Teresa Carreno 


and Giovanni attended the simple ceremony. An elaborate din- 
ner at which champagne flowed generously was shared by a 
small circle of friends in the dining room of Kurfurstendamm 
28. It was natural that Italy should be the destination for their 
wedding journey. In Tavernola by the cool waters of the lake 
of Iseo they took a house, where later the family joined them. 
Teresa Carreno was once more Teresa Carreno Tagliapietra. 



(/ j 012) 

Ju. a£&>i (ityfcdeA fte>44<u«kj u^(/k/t j /iu a/ZT 

TEN years passed. It was the evening of November 21, 
1912, half a century since a tiny prodigy had promised, 
not knowing what it meant, "I shall be an artist all my 
life"; twenty three years since a Venezuelan amazon had first 
flooded a Germany grown cold and conventional with the sun- 
shine of a new spontaneity in music. Today she stood unrivaled, 
the empress of pianists. 

In the foyer of the grand banquet hall of the Kaiserhof in 
Berlin more than two hundred associates and friends were as- 
sembled to do Teresa Carreno honor. They had answered the 
call of Artur Nikisch and his committee to celebrate her golden 
anniversary as an artist. The atmosphere was vibrant. The oc- 
casion was one to evoke high enthusiasm and most gay attire, 
most precious jewels. 

Impatiently attention wandered from neighbor to neighbor, 
finally centering in the empty arch through which Carreno 
must enter. At last by common instinct came a hush, then a 
wild welcoming wave of applause. Teresa Carreno, more 
straight, more regal than ever was making her way along the 
improvised aisle on the arm of Arturo Tagliapietra who, 
flushed and uncomfortable, passed stiffly by her side. Ten years 
had made little outward difference in Carreno's appearance. 
Her hair, still shading from coal to snow, followed its former 
impulsive curves, framing as becomingly as ever a profile as 
finely sculptured as before. Her eyes held the wisdom that time 
and suffering bring and glowed with the light of old, generated 
within. In her dress of silvery blue silk she moved slowly to the 

At the center of the long table, raised to dominate the hall, 
Carreno and her suffering husband sat enthroned with Hertha 
and Eugenia their unwilling neighbors. Had they been con- 
sulted the daughters would have chosen to sit more humbly 
among their contemporaries. Eugenia nervously wondered what 
she could find to say to the pale young man at her right, what 
language she should use. It did not help matters when she dis- 


covered that he was the Ambassador from Venezuela, and that 
the speech he was to give made him momentarily an unrespon- 
sive companion. Hertha was equally at a loss. At her left pre- 
sided the Wagnerian soprano, Lilli Lehmann, so like her 
mother in style and appearance. Yet glacier and geyser were 
not more opposite than they. All at once Eugenia and Hertha 
pricked up their ears. Somewhere out of sight an orchestra was 
tuning. Dinner music would make the evening pass less tedi- 
ously. Up went their spirits only to fall with sickening speed at 
the loud, unanimous "sch" that after the first phrase reduced 
the discouraged players to silence. They were not impressed by 
the fact that gathered here was a representative cross section of 
musical Germany, including famous artists, delegates from ex- 
clusive organizations, and those who, be it artistically or com- 
mercially, were responsible for the smooth running of the con- 
cert mechanism. At Carreno's table sat Christian Sinding, some 
of whose compositions were a part of Carreno's standing reper- 
toire and next to Sinding's wife Emil Paur, under whose baton 
Carreno had often played concertos, among them his own. 

And there near the end of the important table was "dear 
Louise." Before her eyes too there must be passing, headed by 
the genial Hermann, a procession of those of another day, who 
should have graced this occasion by privilege of friendship and 
distinction: Edvard Grieg, Johannes Brahms, Hans von Biilow, 
Anton Rubinstein! How she missed them, all those who had 
helped to crystallize her standards. As she caught the eye of 
Louise Wolff Carreno raised her glass in a message they both 

All at once Lilli Lehmann was the focus of attention as she 
rose from her chair. With a gesture worthy of an Isolde she 
drank a toast to her sister Walkiire and to their future "Bruder- 
schaft" (brotherhood), a rite by virtue of which the brilliant 
butterfly of the Andes and the great silver moth of Nordic 
moonlight authorized each other to use the intimate "Du," 
which to a German is the open sesame to his most sacred loy- 


The endless reading of telegrams from fellow musicians, 
from friends of many lands, from royalty as from former 
servants filled the intermission between courses. There were 
speeches yet to follow, a poem by the brother of Maurice Mosz- 
kowski, the more literary if not more witty Alexander, in 
which he welcomed Teresa as tenth to the company of the nine 
Muses. The hour grew late. As the master of ceremonies pre- 
sented Dr. Santos Dominici, Carreno's compatriot, the audience 
seemed little inclined to give him ear. Only diplomatic tact and 
a vital interest in his subject saved the day. Lyrically, intimately 
he carried his listeners back to the Venezuela of Carreno's child- 
hood, tried to make it vivid to them as it meant home to him. 
Carreno leaned forward captivated. His touching picture of the 
background against which her genius had flowered so pre- 
maturely was holding enthralled a company surfeited and fa- 
tigued by a banquet that had lasted too long. No one was more 
profoundly stirred than Carreno herself. Forgetting that it was 
of her the Envoy was speaking she joined in the applause as 
enthusiastically as the rest. 

In climax Carreno rose among her flowers to thank her com- 
posite host. Spanish-American German never rang out more 
clearly. "You know that I do not speak good German, but one 
language we all speak, that is the language of the heart," she 
began. Movingly she paid her debt of gratitude in words that 
caused her more nervousness in the speaking than a whole win- 
ter full of concerts. 

Eugenia and Hertha sighed with relief. Even Arturo unbent. 
That patient look of proud embarrassment had not once left 
his face. Did anyone realize how difficult it was to be the hus- 
band of a Carreno, he wondered. After an endless reception in 
the foyer Carreno could at last return from her golden jubilee 
to the place that Arturo had made home, and to the game of 
solitaire which alone could induce a restful night. 

Carreno awoke in a mood of depression to a world steeped in 
gloom. Buffeted by winds sometimes too strong for her steady 
feet she stood alone on the heights. Looking far down into the 
misty distance from which she had ascended she examined once 
more the ledges which had nearly spelled disaster in the climb- 
ing. What more was there left to live for, what greater summits 
for her to scale? Looking ahead she saw a level road, curving 
gradually downward in the distance. The prospect was dull, 
tame, uninviting. Yet she had ample cause to go on, for Arturo's 
sake, for her children who, one and all, still leaned upon her 
for support. Until Hertha and Eugenia were safely married or 
established in productive careers she must keep on "with the 
dear Father's help.'' 

Ten years of matrimony stretched behind Carreno like many- 
colored streamers from a maypole, each ribbon representing a 
life close to hers. Woven together in haphazard pattern they 
made up her own much more truly than the events that shaped 
it. Negligible in comparison was the round of concert giving that 
each year for fifty years had turned like a phonograph record, 
stopping only when the season ran down. That everlasting 
sameness of enforced variety which others might stupidly envy 
was becoming more and more irksome. Her own inner tempo 
was slowing down, she felt, to a congenial andante. Yet out- 
wardly she must not fail, as she never had failed, until the last 
note. What if she did draw upon her reserve capital of strength, 
there would yet be enough in her store to last as long as needed. 

From 1902 to 1912 the graph of Carreno' s concerts still shows, 
with pockets here and there, a gentle trend upward. The death 
of Hermann Wolff in 1901, a heavy personal blow, created new 
problems. Of the managers who were tried and found wanting 
in one vital respect or another, there was none she could so 
entirely respect, none with whom she could laugh so merrily 
in the midst of a quarrel both enjoyed as a sport because they 
were so evenly matched. The season of 1902-3 had been the 
leanest of all in the German period. It added up to twenty-seven 
engagements only, the customary average being twice that. Car- 



reno lost no time in advising Hcrr Fernow, now in charge of 
the "Konzertdirektion Wolff" in a letter that was politely to 
the point, that, unless he found more time to devote to her 
interests, she would be obliged to relieve him of his duties as her 
agent. Herr Fernow heeded the warning, for the year follow- 
ing was a banner one. 

In the spring of 1903 Carreno yielded to an urge of long 
standing to visit her Mother Country Spain, where piano re- 
citals were the exception. Her local manager was somewhat 
worried about the outcome of his enterprise, and as a concession 
to Spanish taste proposed programs of lighter character than 
those usually chosen by Carreno for her concerts in Germany. 
With categorical directness Carreno replied: 

The artist who presents himself for the first time in a country 
ought, before everything, to show what he can do with the repertoire 
that makes him best understood by his public, and so should try 
to gain its approval not for what he plays, but for how he plays. 
That is my case, and thus I shall be obliged to proceed with Bar- 
celona and the other places in Spain where I shall have the honor 
of presenting myself just as in London, Paris, etc., and if the audience 
is not content, it will be my fault and not that of my programs. One 
can never hear too much of the good and great works of art, and 
however much one hears an A flat Polonaise of Chopin, one cannot 
cease admiring it. So my good friend, Barcelona will have to bear 
with my programs as they are! 

And that city as well as others did so without a murmur of 
complaint. Lisbon, for instance, was moved to a frenzy of ex- 
citement. Ladies threw upon the stage the flowers they wore. 
Carreno played enough encores to fill another entire program, 
among them her own "Danza Venezolana." She returned with 
another triumph and 12,000 francs to her credit, quite ready 
for a summer on the island of Wyk, where she once again 
proved to herself that it was the mountains she really pre- 
ferred. Here she prepared the "D minor Concerto" of Brahms 
for public performance, perhaps in answer to the demand made 
public by certain critics that she enrich her programs with 


new works. For some unexplained reason it soon disappeared 
from the list. It may be that Carreno shared von Biilow's point 
of view. Approached by a reporter, who wished to know what 
changes he would make in the repertoire of an orchestra he 
had been appointed to conduct, he answered: "Gentlemen, we 
shall play the same music, but we shall try to play it better." Or, 
more probably, time and health forbade that she spend all of 
each summer increasing her repertoire. Carreno did make a 
point of bringing something new on the programs of the first 
of her yearly Berlin recitals, and on occasion a work of small or 
large dimension by a minor prophet gave encouragement and 
prestige to the author she sponsored, Poldini, Cowen, Mrs. 
Beach, and even Max Reger in his "salad days" among them. 
Her own words are applicable here. Audiences continued to 
swarm to hear her, not for what she did as much as for how 
she did it. She drew them more magnetically than ever. There 
were more fees in the 1,000 m. class, less in the 400 m. brackets 
to be entered in the book of accounts kept by Arturo with such 
painstaking accuracy and neatness that it became one of the 
family jokes. 

Carreno's relations with her managers had always been based 
upon the best mutual interest. It was not in her to accept an 
engagement at so high a figure that in her judgment it pre- 
cluded the making of expenses on the part of the impresario. 
On one occasion she refused an engagement in Leipzig at an 
enormous figure giving as her reason: "Since I have never pre- 
viously been able to earn the sum that Mr. Eulenburg offers me 
for three recitals in Leipzig, that would be a loss for him which 
I cannot permit. That feeling would be intolerable to me." 

Neither would she be railroaded into making compromises 
of which she disapproved, although they might possibly be of 
practical advantage. So in a letter to Mr. Adams, who advised 
a placating attitude toward a gentleman believing himself en- 
titled to a commission on one of her concert tours, she wrote : 

As to the matter of Mr. C, I am sorry to say I cannot accept an 
amicable settlement of it, as Mr. C.'s letters are absolutely of such 
an offensive character that it is impossible for me to accept any visit 


from him. He has no more and no less than called me a liar in his 
last letter, and I do not allow any living being to tax me of untruth 
unpunished. Kind as your advice is in regard to the matter between 
Mr. C. and myself, and much as I agree with what you write that 
"it is much easier to make an enemy than a friend," I am of the 
opinion (and always have been) that a friendship which one has to 
pay for is not worth keeping. 

For five consecutive years after her marriage Carreno made Eu- 
ropean countries her territory, as much for the sake of her chil- 
dren as to let the notoriety of which she was the object because 
of her fourth marriage quiet down. Not until the spring of 1907 
did she leave this well-combed area. However, rumors had per- 
sistently reached her of untold riches waiting to fall into the 
lap of musicians adventurous enough to gather them in Aus- 
tralia and New Zealand. To prove this Paderewski's bewilder- 
ing success was cited. Benno Scherek, as good a pianist as he 
was an impresario, offered himself as representative for the 
tour. Arturo was more than ready to be an even more personal 
one. For him the joys of travel could never reach the saturation 
point. There were other angles in favor of such a voyage. It 
would be of benefit to Teresita, and Carreno herself would be 
relieved to have her younger daughters safely out of reach of 
their father. 

Definite plans were accordingly made. Carreno found a gov- 
erness trustworthy and young enough to be a companion for 
the two adolescents. Eugenia and Hertha welcomed the change 
from the discipline of school to the leisurely pleasures of a first 
sea voyage. Fearing that d' Albert might take steps to prevent 
the departure of his children preparations were made with all 
secrecy. It seemed safer for that reason to embark at Naples. 
Hardly had they arrived at this port, when they heard to their 
dismay that d' Albert had taken rooms in a neighboring hotel. 
Carreno was in a panic. Instead of being allowed to see the 
sights of the city, the children were kept indoors. Meals were 
served in private. Then hastily one dark night Carreno with 
her retinue of family and of trunks and bags boarded the wait- 
ing Oruba. Not until the ship was safely out of harbor could 


she bring herself to laugh at the danger they had circumvented. 
It did not occur to her that, as it actually turned out to be, d' Al- 
bert might have been totally unaware of their plans as of their 

Arrived in Melbourne after a voyage that was restful even for 
as poor a sailor as Carreno, the tour unwound itself in general 
much like any other, except that the coming of a great artist 
was much more of an event in Australia than in Europe. Five 
concerts in each of the larger cities became the rule. Carreno 
strained her memory to resurrect from the long ago composi- 
tions she had outgrown. Gottschalk, Vogrich, even her own 
"Revue a Prague" once more showed their heads sheepishly 
above the surface. 

There was another difficulty. The islands could boast of but 
few orchestras worthy of accompanying a Carreno. A whole 
repertoire of concerti would have been lying useless had it not 
been for Carreno's resourcefulness. She decided to incorporate 
one in each of her recital programs, enlisting the versatile 
Scherek to substitute for the orchestra at a second piano. It was 
a happy solution. A concerto in any form was a novelty in most 
of the smaller places, and in spite of tropical downpours and 
intense heat the concert halls were always well filled. 

There was only one mishap to record. During the second 
Melbourne concert a slight injury to the little finger of the 
right hand became increasingly painful to Carreno during the 
course of the evening. An infection set in, and only the utmost 
stoicism enabled her to finish a program whose every chord 
spelled torture. Her doctor advised that the finger be lanced. 
"Go ahead," said the Spartan, proceeding to entertain the sur- 
geon with her most witty stories, and while he operated upon 
the precious member, she wiped of? the beads of perspiration 
rolling down his face. 

Australian society took Carreno to its bosom. It had not 
known that a great artist could be so unaffected, so approach- 
able. A little mixed in geography, it found "no frill, no fuss 
about this Sicilian lady." If she chose to wear an elaborate robe 


en train of black velvet embroidered in gold for a matinee con- 
cert, that, all agreed, was her affair. It was hard to make time 
for all the interviews and auditions that Carreno granted and 
Arturo knew how to cut short at the right moment by entering 
the room on one pretext or another. The necessary hours of 
practice with Scherek were frequently interrupted by aristo- 
cratic callers, by the autograph seekers whom Carreno seldom 
denied, and by reporters who wanted to know whether she was 
to wear her frock of gray satin with slashed elbow sleeves of 
chiffon, or her favorite one of black tulle covered with blue- 
green paillettes, among which seed pearls meandered in deli- 
cate tracery, the whole over mermaid-green silk veiled by white 

No detail of this artist's life was too insignificant to appear in 
print. Carreno was bombarded with invitations, only a few of 
which she accepted, and never without consulting her manager 
who knew his Australia. One morning she found herself receiv- 
ing in the alien setting of the Ladies' Patriotic Club of Sydney. 
Holding a bouquet of orchids tied with the red and yellow of 
Spain which her hostesses deemed appropriate, she stood for 
hours before the huge bare fireplace, into which the throng 
threatened to push her. They made a wall through which only 
the most aggressive could make their way. Local talent lent its 
indifferent gifts to compositions by Chopin and Moszkowski that 
fortunately could only faintly penetrate the incessant buzz of 
conversation, of which anything from politics to corsets was the 
topic. At last this function too was over, a tribute to the cause 
if only another chore to the guest of honor, and Carreno could 
enjoy in more congenial and cool company a launch luncheon 
along the coast line of the harbor. 

Quite different was an entertainment offered Carreno and 
Arturo by Maggie and Bella Papakura in Rotorua, New Zea- 
land. The two sisters could be counted upon to provide a good 
show. Beginning with the poi dancers and ending with cho- 
ruses by the children of the native school there was not a dull 
moment. In the bare and dusky hall of Whakarewarewa the 


natives had gathered on one side, the foreigners or pahe\a dis- 
tinguished by an invitation at the other. Meta Tawpopoki, a 
chief of the Arawas, gave the address of welcome in flowery 
Maori language. The translation of the Rev. F. A. Bennett 
made the musical words intelligible to the guests. In conclusion 
the chief asked Carreno to show her pahe\a accomplishments 
as his people had shown theirs. A second chief voiced the same 
wish on the part of his numerous progeny huddled in a wrig- 
gling group upon the floor, "that they might also sometime be- 
come learned in the pahe\a art." He then called upon the 
young men standing along the wall to join with him in a dance 
in celebration of this their noted guest. Discarding first his 
coat and then even his shirt he urged them on, while the na- 
tives clapped and cheered in rhythm, and Carreno joined in as 
if she were one of them. Then, not to be outdone by her hosts, 
she walked to the piano so strangely out of place in this setting 
and began to play, while the exhausted old chief still lay pant- 
ing in the middle of the floor. She played on and on, not with 
perfunctory politeness, but with the thrilling realization that 
she and her native friends after all spoke and understood a 
common language in music and the dance. It was late in the 
night when Carreno and Arturo, laden with native treasures and 
blessings, took their departure. 

Carreno chose to consider this trip to a new land a kind of 
vacation before the really serious business of the eighty con- 
certs booked for her in the United States by R. E. Johnston and 
the John Church Company. This strenuous holiday was com- 
plicated on the return trip by the fact that Eugenia fell ill on 
the steamer with a case of intermittent fever about which the 
ship's doctor seemed able to do nothing. Tired from nights of 
sleeplessness and in fear of losing her child she interrupted the 
journey in the Fiji Islands. As soon as it was known that a 
renowned pianist had reached Suva, petitions begging for a 
concert came in such number that it seemed expedient to ar- 
range for one. There was only one piano worthy of the name 
and that was woefully off pitch. No tuner was in sight, but 

Teresa Carreno Tagliapietra 


what did that matter! Carreno quite enjoyed the morning that 
she spent putting the instrument into passable shape with a pair 
of pliers. The concert was a triumph, and in a surprisingly 
short time, thanks to good medical attention and the doglike 
devotion of a native who camped on the mat before her door, 
Eugenia recovered in time for the next boat, the last possible 
one which would bring them to America for Carreno's first 
engagement. Three days after her arrival in Chicago Carreno, 
who had not really practiced for months, and had contracted 
to play the Everett, a piano unfamiliar to her, celebrated an- 
other signal triumph in Orchestra Hall. 

One cloud hung low in Carreno's sky, as in 1907 it darkened 
the horizon of all musical America. It was the tragedy of the 
slow, irrevocable fading of Edward MacDowell, the lovable 
friend and pupil of Carreno's youth, the respected colleague of 
her wiser years, the first American to be admitted to German 
programs on equal terms with its own composers, the one be- 
fore all others who had given dignity to the profession of music 
in the United States by earning for it full academic recognition 
as a subject worthy of higher study like any other on the 
University curriculum! Carreno saw Edward for a last time 
during the Christmas holidays in New York. He was apa- 
thetically playing with his toys. Once she caught his eye, shin- 
ing with the momentary gladness of recognition, then return- 
ing almost instantaneously to the dullness of inner withdrawal. 
Shortly after this visit she was playing the MacDowell "Con- 
certo" with the Boston Symphony Orchestra. Still with the 
pathos of this meeting in mind she suddenly forgot what she 
was supposed to be playing and floundered noticeably before 
finding her way, a rare happening indeed. 

That Edward, too, fitfully remembered is shown in a letter 
penned by Marian MacDowell, Edward's wife, who wrote to 
Carreno in December: 

I am sitting beside Edward, and I said to him a minute ago, "I am 
writing to Teresita, shall I send her your love?" His face brightened 
as it had not all day, and he said "Yes." A few memories remain 


with him, and you are one of them — It is all misty but I know you 
will be touched when I tell you the only name he ever calls me by 
save my own is Teresita! In the summer half the time he used that 
name for me — he said so little in the old days — but quite aside from 
his affection, he never forgot how loyally you helped him and how 
much he owed you. 

After the final catastrophe, less sad than the living death 
preceding it, Carreno more ardently than ever put herself at 
the service of MacDowell's compositions. No longer, as Marian 
MacDowell wrote in an earlier year, was she "the only great 
artist who has had the courage and the will to actually play 
his music" but it was she who was fittingly chosen to play his 
"Second Concerto," so particularly hers as well, in the great 
Memorial Concert in New York on March 31, 1908. From now 
on the "Keltic Sonata" and later the "Tragica," too, were fre- 
quently heard in her concerts. 

Carreno was traveling in the West at the time of the funeral. 
She felt driven by her so readily overflowing sympathy to do 
something for the comfort of Edward MacDowell's parents 
and hit upon what she thought was a perfect plan. Arturo took 
a strong stand against it, eventually converting her to his way 
of thinking. He reminded her that what she needed rather than 
a summer of sight-seeing in Italy with the Thomas MacDowells 
as her guests — after a long series of concerts at $400 each she 
could afford such a luxury — was a period of complete rest in 
preparation for a season that promised to be doubly strenuous 
after long absence from Germany. It was vital that she come 
back to her adopted country with her powers unimpaired. 
Arturo was perfectly right. The question was closed. 

When later in March Carreno returned to New York, the 
first one to greet her as she stepped from her carriage at the 
door of the Netherland was Mrs. MacDowell. With a fresh 
surge of pity, Carreno impulsively poured out her plan for the 
very trip she had so definitely given up, not only asking the 
MacDowells but their grandson, and Juan Buitrago, to accom- 


pany them, all as her guests. The dazed Arturo stood help- 
lessly by. 

Two people ill with sorrow were not calculated to affect heal- 
ingly nerves that were raw after seventeen months of almost 
continuous concertizing. The trip was not the success it was 
meant to be. The MacDowells found that the comforts of 
Italian hotels compared unfavorably with those to be had in 
their own four walls. Carreno, disappointed that drives and her 
favorite museums could not cure her friends of homesickness, 
at last left them under the care of Arturo, while she withdrew 
to the simple Hotel Panorama high above the little town of 
Oberstdorf in Upper Bavaria. 

Here she found in the proprietor, the jovial Herr Theater- 
direktor Grassl, a man who could make her laugh without half 
trying. Her room had an exquisite view of snow-covered moun- 
tains in a chain. Every night as she mounted the stairs, bran- 
dishing her long gaslighter and singing Brunnhilde's Ho-jo- 
to-ho, she knew that she might count upon a restful night. In 
a tiny house near-by stood her piano. She spent all of every 
morning in undisturbed practice. 

Carrefio and Mrs. Watson conceived the idea in almost tele- 
pathic coincidence not uncommon between them, that the elder 
MacDowells, the Watsons, and the Tagliapietras should spend 
the following summer together in the Catskills. This was not 
to be. The death of Mrs. MacDowell cut the knot life could not 
loosen. Carreno wrote to their common friend Adelaide Okell : 

In my heart, in my mind she lives and will live as long as I live. As 
she believed so thoroughly in an after life, I feel as if she really were 
around me and her beloved spirit near me, and that she knows now, 
better than when she was living, how deeply and tenderly I have 
loved her in the twenty-six years of our friendship. 

Overwork, worry, and sorrow undermined Carreno's vigor, 
like termites gnawing at the beams that support a well-built 
house. She was obliged to seek the health-giving waters of Bad 


Gastein, where she became a noticeable figure. Even those who 
failed to recognize her knew that only a celebrity would walk 
so proudly, so indifferently in stout boots, a high-necked white 
shirtwaist, and the same old skirt she loved the better for every 
added cigarette hole which punctured it. The broad brim of a 
finely woven Panama encircled by a plain black band shaded 
her face as she strode down the street among more worldly 
minded mortals, rhythmically swinging her cane. People re- 
marked to each other as she passed: Could this stocky, serious 
woman be the beloved Walkiire who looked so majestically 
happy and tall upon the concert stage ? 

As Oberstdorf the year before had helped to guide to a suc- 
cessful close a European tour that broke all records with 
seventy-six concerts, so Gastein fulfilled its mission by putting 
Carreno into shape for the most stupendous effort of all. Be- 
ginning in Finland she went by way of a crowded winter sea- 
son in the United States to Australia, New Zealand, and South 
Africa, then back by way of Egypt and Italy to Germany again. 
From home to home the journey lasted eighteen months. A 
total of one hundred and thirty-two concerts surpassed that of 
the first Australian tour. Financially Carreno, who besides Ar- 
turo and Mr. Scherek had again taken the two younger children 
and their governess along, barely broke even. Yet the journey 
had its compensations. Carreno's old wish raised its head to 
have a piece of land that she might call her own, as an invest- 
ment first of all, and perhaps as the place where she might 
build herself the home to which she would ultimately retire. 
It was an important moment for her when she gave bold signa- 
ture to the deed that made her owner of a thirty-acre tract of 
land at Grossmont near San Diego next to that belonging to 
her good friend, Ernestine Schumann-Heink. 

In this second visit to the antipodes the element of novelty 
which packed the houses before was lacking, and in South 
Africa, unused to solo recitals, five concerts at a stretch were a 
heavy diet. It was nevertheless an interesting new experience, 
even if occasionally the call of a fire sprinkler drifted into the 


quiet of a Beethoven Andante in an alien key, and the curfew 
call for the Kafirs blended weirdly with the strains of the "Kel- 
tic Sonata." The obligatory round of parties varied the routine 
of concert playing. For the first time in her life Carreno was 
called upon to dedicate a golf course in Johannesburg. With 
the club especially inscribed and presented to her she was ex- 
pected to send the first ball out upon the green. This she did 
to such good effect that a whole army of caddies was unable 
to find it. 

More than once an insistent sore throat and attendant rheu- 
matism threatened to put an end to the tour. On the way home, 
when a last concert had been given in Cairo under acute discom- 
fort, Carreno sought remedy by taking a trip on camel back 
into the desert sands. But not until the baths of Italy had ex- 
erted their curative power did Carreno lose the last trace of 
lameness. It was an exhausted artist who returned to Kurfiir- 
stendamm 28 for the summer. 

Before it ended the doctor prescribed a month of solitude in 
Oberstdorf . No member of her family and only one pupil was 
allowed to accompany her. Every morning the strains of the 
piano part of the Taneieff or the Cesar Franck "Quintette," 
of Liszt's "Feux follets" or the "B minor Sonate" of Chopin 
floated across the meadows behind the practice cabin into the 
woods beyond, and often Carreno smiled to see her pupil in a 
light-blue dress, set in relief against the dark of the fir trees, 
listening and learning by the hour. She too was studying the 
Chopin "Sonate." In the middle of the next lesson Carreno sud- 
denly burst out laughing. "Very good, very good, my dear ! You 
have caught my tricks." Then, more seriously, she reminded 
her: "Copying another easily turns into caricature. What is 
right for me is not necessarily right for you. Interpretation must 
spring from the heart. Nevertheless you have done very well, 
my dear. Now go and find yourself in the 'Sonate,' and bring it 

to me again next time." 

For four weeks Carreno enjoyed the walks along the narrow 
wooded paths she knew so well, and watched from her high 


window the evening mists drifting over Oberstdorf as the lights 
were being turned on, the deeply etched mountains turning to 
rose in the afterglow. This was solitude in its most exquisite 
essence. By chance, however, one acquaintance or another had 
wind of Carreno's whereabouts. She was never free from dan- 
ger of intrusion. Herr Grassl was a good buffer. He loved noth- 
ing better than to make excuses for her according to the best 
tradition of the German theater. While Carreno quickly dressed 
in her walking clothes to make truth out of fiction, Herr Grassl 
with a flourishing bow and elaborate apology convincingly de- 
plored : 

Madame will be desolate. Not long ago she left for a walk, a long 
walk. No, Madame did not tell me where she meant to go. Probably 
she will not return for dinner, and it is such a good dinner too! She 
would so have delighted to have you share it with her. I shall most 
certainly give her your messages. No, she is not at all well. She suffers 
from acute headache. Auf Wiedersehen, meine Herrschaftenl Griiss 
Gottl Madame will be inconsolable. 

Meanwhile Carreno, setting out for the walk she was supposed 
to be taking, stopped at the door to listen, then, thoroughly 
relishing the comedy, slipped away by the back door. 

And soon the leaves were falling. It was time to prepare for 
another European winter, opened by a joint tour with Mischa 
Elman through the British Isles. Eugenia had begged to be 
taken along instead of Arturo. She looked forward to it as a 
delightful vacation, not realizing the duties it involved. Count- 
ing baggage — Carreno traveled with no less than ten trunks 
and as many packages — laying out the proper clothes, making 
calls, attending parties that lasted late at night after the con- 
cert she could only hear from the green room, all this was 
preliminary to the routine of almost daily packing while the 
town slept. Carreno, still on top of the wave, was at last obliged 
to send her daughter to bed, while she played her favorite part, 
that of nurse to one of her children. 


One mishap nearly ruined the trip. Carreno had allowed her- 
self a great luxury. A small suitcase of alligator skin had been 
made for her according to her own specifications. It was designed 
to hold all die fittings given her in the course of time by pupils 
and friends. There was a special corner reserved for the pin- 
cushion Teresita had made for her mother at the age of six. 
Everything about this bag was perfect even to the protective 
covering of light-brown fabric with corners and initials of 
darker leather. It was intended to last a lifetime and would 
have added prestige to any traveler. 

One night on the point of leaving London, Carreno had ar- 
ranged her things in the compartment of the train and, as was 
her habit, went outside to walk up and down the platform for 
a last moment of exercise. When she returned to her seat her 
bag, her precious bag, was nowhere to be found. All the pro- 
verbial efficiency of the English police system failed to unearth 
any trace of the suitcase or of the articles within it. The most 
valuable one was a pin made of the brightly scintillating blue 
wings of a South American butterfly with jeweled antennae, 
covered with glass and set in gold. It had become practically 
the only ornament she liked to wear. But the loss which touched 
her to the heart was the tiny pincushion with its large uneven 

After disaster and near-disaster Carreno was glad to return to 
her own apartment. There also things sometimes disappeared, 
but one always knew where they were and how to get them 
back. It was only necessary to call poor old Josephine: "Jose- 
phine, I have lost my silver paper-cutter. You are clever at find- 
ing things. Please see that it is put back in its place. I need it 
before tomorrow." Invariably the lost was found. Josephine had 
one single obsession, the fear of being left penniless to starve. 
Against this evil day she stowed away anything that happened 
to attract her, from ash trays to coffee grounds. The family 
good-naturedly bore with this idiosyncrasy. After all who could 
tell fortunes from molten lead on a New Year's eve more 
vividly than she, and who at heart could be more devoted! 


Although Carreno's concerts overreached the fifty mark in 
the season of 191 1 she seemed to have more time at home than 
usual. Friends who dropped in at the tea hour often found her 
at the head of the long table. One afternoon Frau Leonard, 
whose husband was entrusted with the partial management of 
Carreno's concert business, was the principal guest. Bruno Gor- 
tatowsky, Carreno's assistant, an almost daily visitor, and the 
pupil who had just finished her lesson were the only ones out- 
side of the family circle on this day. Frau Leonard was a rela- 
tively new friend. Carreno wished to show her special courtesy. 
She was never at a loss for vocabulary, but occasionally the con- 
volutions of German word order were too much for her. As 
Frau Leonard was leaving Carreno accompanied her to the 
door. Hertha, always the first to enjoy a ludicrous situation, 
laughed aloud to hear her mother say: "Then I shall have the 
pleasure of not seeing you until April?" As she reentered the 
room, Carreno found the others in gales of merriment. Not 
one to permit a joke at her expense, unless it were initiated by 
herself, she abruptly left the room. 

But Giovanni's vagaries always amused her. His gift of 
mimicry was nearly as good as her own. Curiosity prompting 
him to find out just what went on in the salon when his mother 
gave interviews, he disguised himself one day as a reporter, 
made an appointment by telephone, and rang his own front 
doorbell. Carreno received him formally, and it was ten min- 
utes before the light in his eyes, so like hers, made her aware 
that she was speaking to her own son. 

Another year flew by — on swifter wings than ever, it seemed 
to Carreno — and soon Hertha and Eugenia were again im- 
patiently waiting for the all-important decision. Where would 
their mother decide to spend the summer of 1912 ? Young girls 
of eighteen and twenty did not look for a quiet retreat with an 
inspiring view. Their requirements were simple: lots of com- 
pany and lots of tennis ! A friend had scoured Switzerland for 
the ideal spot and finally found it, she thought, in Grindelwald. 
The Chalet Burgner stood high at the end of a long street. 


From the veranda the eye was led over the valley to the gleam- 
ing Grindelwald glacier field nestling in the bare arms of the 
mountain. The house was much like the Villa Waltenberger on 
the Salzberg, or the Hotel Panorama in Oberstdorf . It was spa- 
cious and homelike and simple. Along the main street which it 
dominated there was accommodation for the pupils and their 
instruments in peasant houses and pensions. The conditions 
were equally auspicious for those seeking solitude and for the 
socially inclined. The prospect enchanted Eugenia and Hertha, 
and Carreno with her thirty-odd pieces of baggage, her hus- 
band, and one pupil too impatient to wait for the rest, set out to 
pave the way for the coming of the family and the musical 

Immediately there was something distasteful to her in the 
atmosphere of the place. The air was invigorating, and yet she 
felt ill, depressed. At last she found the explanation. It was the 
glacier. It held her with its spell. Look at it she must, even 
against her will, and every day it appeared to be coming closer. 
The students worked feverishly, on pins and needles for fear 
that their maestra would abandon this queerly assorted group. 
They did not breathe freely until one morning Hertha and 
Eugenia zigzagged down the street to spread the glad news 
that their mother was feeling better and had decided to stay. 
She had even joked about that archhypnotist, the glacier. It 
would not surprise her, so she said, to see that clammy thing 
confront her eye, slowly making its way up the aisle, as she 
stepped upon the platform at her Berlin concert. Might it be 
well to send it an invitation as Don Giovanni had summoned 
the cold statue of the Commendatore to his party? All was well. 
Carreno once more was pouring tea for the chosen, giving les- 
sons, taking her morning walks. Arturo again trundled his 
bicycle up the hill, reading his Corriere. The colony celebrated 
and joined together in early morning tramps that began in 
drizzling rain and ended on crisp, crackling fields of snow. 

A high moment came when Wilhelm Backhaus arrived to 
practice with Carreno for their coming tour of Great Britain 


in two-piano ensemble. However much they liked each other 
as people, there was not enough time to make a pretense of 
blending two individuals, artistically as far apart as they were 
in age. Musically speaking, Carreno was relieved when this 
tournament came to an outwardly passable end. 

Mentally Carreno's barometric pressure registered an all- 
time low. Truly appalling was the prospect of her golden jubi- 
lee as an artist. It also brought its complications. To her horror 
she discovered that her naive and faithful assistant Bruno Gor- 
tatowsky was taking up a collection of money to be presented 
to her on that occasion. Although by tactful persuasion he was 
brought to abandon the project, she could not keep him from 
using the savings he had accumulated bit by bit to buy himself 
the Bechstein he coveted and needed, in order to present her 
instead with a costly tea service of solid silver. 

One morning Carreno was walking with one of her pupils 
along a Grindelwald path. She stopped to look at the moun- 
tains, at their peaks of blinding white against unbroken blue, 
as if to measure her own stature against their immensity. She 
spoke as if to herself: "What have I still to live for? After this 
anniversary celebration I shall have had all that an artist can 
desire. No matter how long I may live, I cannot expect to reap 
higher honor, greater glory, or more wealth than are mine to- 
day. And they call it a jubilee!" For a time there was silence. 
The only sound the dull thud of the cane in its even rhythm. 
And once more she halted to let her eye travel across to an 
almost invisible trail, a light, jagged line engraved upon gray 
stone. "There still is one thing I can do. I can teach. If a moun- 
tain climber who has scaled dangerous heights meets another 
looking for the way up, is it not his duty to show him the 
shortest, easiest, safest path?" She went on with a firmer, faster 
step, a clearer tapping of her cane. She still had a mission to per- 

Her mind turned to the past. Shocking was the havoc that a 
fourth marriage had created in Carreno's inner circle those long 
ten years ago. She was not one to tolerate disrespect of the hus- 
band she had chosen, and even her lawyer, Justizrath Michaelis, 
and the genial Mr. Cochran had been under suspicion of dis- 
loyalty, and were nearly cut from her list like many others. Mrs. 
Watson and Mrs. MacDowell, who had been frank in opposing 
this union while there were still time, resigned themselves to 
the inevitable, and received Arturo as a fourth in their respec- 
tive quartettes. Mrs. MacDowell wrote wistfully: "I never 
thought it would fall to my lot to defend your fourth husband." 
That he grew in her affection to the end a letter, probably her 
last, written to Carreno on February i, 1909, shows very defi- 

I am so happy that you have such a dear, devoted husband who makes 
your busy life more restful, contented, and happy. God bless him 
for it too. We all love him. Who could help it who knows him as 
we do, the loveliness o£ his daily life — so unspoiled by prosperity, so 
faithful, so delicate in his feelings — and we are all so happy that you 
have him in your long journey to smooth all the rough places for you 
that he can. 

Carreno was without doubt. In marrying blond, blue-eyed 
Arturo she had made no mistake. What if he had added an- 
other name to the long list depending upon her for support! 
What did it matter that she had lost the 7,500 m. she had in- 
vested in the business which Arturo had founded with such 
high hopes ! It was the fault of his Italian associate that the en- 
terprise had failed. For the two short years that it lasted they 
had sold good Italian wines and the best salted almonds to be 
had in Berlin at their store, Uhlandstrasse 48. But how could 
Arturo, careful though he was as a keeper of books, be expected 
to have the necessary business acumen to hold his own against 
an ill-chosen partner! Carreno entered her loss and quickly for- 
got about it. Secretly she was glad that Arturo was again free 
to devote himself to her interests alone. When the bustle of an 


apartment full of children unnerved her, it was a refreshing 
change to go off to an Italian restaurant close at hand with 
Arturo. There they refurbished old jokes, renewed memories 
of the days they had shared years ago, over a delicious dinner 
made festive with a bottle of the best dry champagne. 

For Arturo it was enough just to sit or to walk by her side. 
His place in her heart had made him feel that he was of im- 
portance in the scheme of things, and this he prized more than 
the worldly comforts he now was permitted to enjoy, his hand- 
some clothes, his good cigars. There was no doubt that he ex- 
erted a beneficent influence over the two older children. He 
was of their own blood. Arturo had been the friend of their 
childhood. They understood each other. 

It was different with the little d'Alberts. As their own father 
became a known factor in their lives, they quite naturally re- 
sented the control that Arturo — called Papa to distinguish him 
from d'Albert, always referred to as "our father" — had over 
their own actions. It seemed sometimes as if they could not 
reach their mother except through him. The older they grew 
the more complicated was this relationship to become. The tact 
that never failed Arturo in dealing with Teresita and Giovanni 
forsook him hopelessly where these two little girls were con- 
cerned. They stood against him, strong in union, a formidable 
pair. Violent scoldings so congenial to the Southern tempera- 
ment faced in repercussion the telling weapon of silence. There 
were weeks when the opposing camps were not on speaking 

And still Carreno knew that she had made no mistake. She 
loved Arturo, trusted his judgment, and occasionally he even 
caused her unwitting flurries of jealousy. On one of their ocean 
voyages Arturo's chair happened to stand next to that of a very 
personable young woman. They talked and laughed together 
in the way of steamer acquaintances. Carreno came upon them 
just as Arturo was picking up a book for his neighbor. It needed 
no more than that to make his wife stalk off to her cabin in 
anger, followed by a puzzled husband — how was he to know 


that Eugenia had been joking about "Papa's love affair?" — who 
reached the door only to have it slammed in his face. "Don't 
you dare to come in here," shouted an irate voice, and poor 
Arturo went out upon the deck to meditate upon the ways of 
an artist and to await the return of a more conciliatory state of 

Whenever Carreno went on tour with her personal maid, 
Marie, instead of Arturo by her side, she took comfort in writ- 
ing letters to her husband at every breathing point. Thus from 
Amsterdam in one of those rare moments when she considered 
her reactions to her own concerts worth mentioning: 

Since yesterday evening I am here playing the part of a great lady 
without taking in even a penny. — I have the same rooms we had 
together — do you remember? — and it makes me sick at heart that 
you are not here, Turo mio ! ! This morning I stayed in bed, and after 
my breakfast I did my accounts with the result that I lacked one 
gulden and 83 cents. — I am more relieved than I can tell you not to 
have to play either today or tomorrow. I feel like another person when 
I haven't another program before me. Yesterday for instance, when 
I had played really well, I had a great joy. When I don't play as I 
wish, I could hit myself and send the piano and all concerts to the 

Carreno was not an artist given to stage fright. She had her 
superstitions, but these she generally left outside at the door of 
the concert hall. There was only one recital that she regularly 
dreaded every year, the first Berlin Klavierabend of the season. 
"Turo mio," she might be heard to say almost in tears: "I know 
I shall play badly, I feel that it will be a complete fiasco." Ar- 
turo knew how to strike the right note, how to bring a smile 
to those tightly set lips: "Teresita, have you ever made a failure 
in Berlin? — No? — Well, then it is about time you did. Every- 
body has to play badly sometimes." His methods worked. He 
well knew that not even the glacier of Grindelwald making its 
dripping way to the front row could affect the composure of the 
Walkiire once seated before her Bechstein. With every year 
of companionship Carreno became more certain that Arturo's 


protecting nearness was her great necessity, of which nothing 
could deprive her save death. 

Carreno turned in thought to the child of her worries, Teresita. 
However indefatigably the mother tried to iron out her jumble 
of difficulties, there was no use. Teresita remained an undis- 
ciplined child of genius, a veritable Peter Pan living a whim- 
sical life in which adult reasoning played no part and awakened 
no response. The family could not feel at peace in the apart- 
ment unless Teresita were out of it or shut up in her room with 
a headache that was real or improvised as it happened. 

Following the advice of her anonymous counselor in Finland 
Carreno had come to see that it was not for the best to push 
Teresita into a premature concert career. She was willing to let 
her filter into public consciousness, giving a concert here or 
there as occasion presented itself. Meanwhile she gave her 
daughter invaluable but irregular lessons. They convinced her 
that here was the dust that stars are made of. The family 
learned to dread these lessons. When Carreno announced at the 
luncheon table: "Teresita, I want to see you at three o'clock to- 
day," they shivered. These torrid temperaments were bound to 
clash in disagreement, the lessons sure to end in a double head- 

It was the mother's plan that they appear in two-piano con- 
certs together. The idea had public appeal. Nevertheless, this 
combination did not last. Carreno for once was the more nerv- 
ous of the two, and the quality of her own solo groups suffered 
in consequence. Besides, she could never be sure that Teresita 
would play until she was actually on the platform. Speaking 
of such a concert the Neueste Nachrichten of Chemnitz noted 

Fr. Carreno was not at her best this time; the palm went incontestably 
to her daughter, Teresita Carreno Tagliapietra, who since the last 
time she played in Chemnitz has come into gorgeous bloom both 
bodily and musically, and who gave proof yesterday in the "E minor 
Concerto" of Chopin of well-ripened artistry. I cannot remember ever 


having heard this concerto — or Chopin in any form at that — played 
so beautifully and with such comprehension of his own inner mean- 

Finally, in 1906, Carreiio found her daughter ready for a 
concert with orchestra. The Singakademie, she hoped, would 
prove a setting of as good omen for her daughter as it had been 
for herself in 1889. Teresita presented herself in three concerti, 
each one an old favorite on the slate of the great Briinnhilde. 
On the evening of the ordeal Carreno, who faced thousands at 
a time without a tremor, was too nervously upset to attend the 
performance. Teresita felt more at ease for her absence. This 
examination earned her a good cum laude. The Berliner ho\al 
Anzeiger admitted that "she had success, but she would perhaps 
have had a greater one if she did not carry the name which on 
the other hand again wakened an interest in her appearance at 
the very outset. For Teresita has an intensively musical nature 
together with individuality and wild temperament. 

Her managers were to find out to their cost that this tem- 
perament was apt to trickle into her business relations. They 
learned not to count her concerts before they were given. If 
she appeared for rehearsal at all, she came half an hour late 
without apology. Or she would telephone to her agent in 
Frankfurt, postponing a concert she was to give that evening, 
simply because she had found something more interesting to 
do in Cologne. Concert agents, who had at first taken her seri- 
ously for the sake of her mother and her promise, after Teresita 
had defaulted once too often, began to withdraw from the 
scene. When she did play the result was not to be foretold. She 
might choose to thrill her audience with delicate, insinuating 
melodies, or it might be her night for deafening their ears with 
the noise of the mob storming the Bastille. But no matter how 
much she annoyed them, conductors, critics, agents, and the 
public conceded that she could play the piano — if and when she 
felt inclined. That was not often, for there was little ambition 
in her. She preferred to lie indolently upon her uncomfortable 
laurels rather than let them prick her into activity uncongenial 


to her nature. And with teaching the situation was much the 
same. She was a good teacher when it pleased her to be. If she 
preferred to go shopping instead of giving her lesson, she did 
not think it necessary to notify her students first. Let them wait 
by twos and threes if they cared to. 

Teresita's will-o'-the-wispish charm was attractive to the 
young men of her acquaintance, among them a would-be 
singer, conductor, composer, or whatever the fates would lead 
him to become, from England. A broad, tall, and likable young 
man, Teresita found him amusing, tolerable, or irritating ac- 
cording to her mood. He fell irreparably in love with this 
tousle-curled, trouble-making beauty who could on occasion 
turn into a sleek bobbed-haired demon with bangs overnight. 
Teresita considered him a plaything, not caring particularly 
whether he came or went. It was not Teresita's lovers but her 
health that bothered Carreno at this moment. Since she could 
not be left alone in the apartment while her mother traveled in 
Australia, Carreno decided to take her along. Teresita fell in 
with the idea. There was just a chance that this adventuring 
might brighten the dull life that she found so desolate. Be- 
sides, she liked being with Arturo. 

Melbourne was the first objective. One morning there came 
a knock at the door: "A gentleman to see you, Miss, from Ber- 
lin." Teresita clapped her hands: "Mammie, what do you 
think ? That crazy boy has followed me all the way here, but I 
didn't believe he would do it." And to the boy: "I shall be down 
directly," which meant a good half hour in Teresita language. 
This time when he asked her to marry him she saw no reason 
for refusing. Was he not her Lohengrin come to fight her bat- 
tles, to free her from the intolerable monotony of being her 
mother's shadow? Why had she never thought of it before? 
She could lead her own life, be her own free self like any other 
girl of twenty-five. Carreno agreed. What a relief to delegate 
the responsibility of Teresita to this strong, solid Englishman. 
They might even be happy together. The wedding took place 
simply in church on the fifth of June, 1907, and Teresita for 


the first time was to know the joy of living in her own house, 
of being her own mistress to ride and swim or just dream at 
will with the smoke rings wreathing above her. The pair even- 
tually followed Carreno's route home by way of the Fiji Is- 
lands. Suva was the place which in all their adventuring suited 
them best. 

When Carreno returned to Berlin after the disenchanting 
summer of 1908 in Italy and Oberstdorf, she found Teresita es- 
tablished in an apartment of the Kaiserin Augustastrasse 74. It 
was not Teresita who notified her mother that there would be a 
baby in the fall, but the mother of her husband, who casually 
mentioned it in a letter written to ask Carreno to settle a cer- 
tain sum upon Teresita until her son should have finished his 
musical studies. Carreno saw with a sinking heart that the bur- 
den of Teresita's support was still to rest mainly upon her shoul- 
ders, and answered in a typical letter: 

I wish it were in my power to do as you ask me. Alas! I cannot, for 
my only resources are my work, which unfortunately I cannot so 
safely rely on (no artist ever can) as to enable me to settle any fixed 
sum on Teresita for one year or any part of it. That I am ready to 
do what I can, and as much as it is in my power, I hardly need to 
mention, for to help our children is not only the mother's privilege but 
her greatest pleasure. 

Meanwhile Teresita had turned from her piano to composi- 
tion, samples of which she sent to her mother in Oberstdorf. 
Carreno took time to criticize them in detail in a letter which 
shows how ready she always was to ignore previous disappoint- 
ments in the dawning of the slightest hope. 

... It was impossible for me to answer your first letter, because 
I was stupid enough to try to cut out a sliver which had become 
imbedded in the flesh of the little finger of my right hand, and the 
same thing happened as in Melbourne. Now, God be thanked, I am 
better, and in a few days I shall not even remember what I endured. 
Your Sonata has many very good things, and I took much pleasure 
in playing it. As I told you when I read it over superficially on the 
day you showed it to me, it is not good that the first part should be in 


E, and the second in D major. The Scherzo, too, ought to stay in the 
principal key just like the last movement, or at least in some related 
one. The development of the first part is not well-made, and the 
Scherzo is too short. All these defects however are just the result of 
your inexperience. With the next Sonata everything will be much 
better. Your last composition (that which you do not know how to 
name) I was unable to play. When I shall do so I will tell you more 
about it. Your idea of modernizing that Bach Fugue pleases me 
very much. It will be a good study for you, and will be a good thing 
for the piano if you adapt it better to our instrument of today. I am 
very glad that the things for the "Killiwillie" had already come and 
amuse you. I believe I have not forgotten anything; but ask your 
nurse, and tell me if anything is lacking and I will send it to you. 

In October the baby was born. Teresita, the mother, was al- 
most as helpless as her daughter Suva. When the baby cried 
so did the mother. Teresita, the housekeeper, fared no better. 
Seventeen-year-old Eugenia was shocked by the size of Teresita's 
meat bill, and would have liked to show her how to manage as 
thriftily as she did for her mother, a duty she only recently as- 
sumed. Both Teresita and her husband were unhappy. Was this 
the freedom for which they had forsaken their homes ? Was it 
for this they had abandoned their music studies? When Ter- 
esita's mother-in-law stepped in, offering to take the baby while 
her parents went on with their professions, both jumped at the 

Teresita left for Paris accompanied by Josephine, this time 
to study singing and acting. She bid for her mother's sympathy 
by describing her lonely Christmas in one little room "like 
Mimi in La Boheme. ... If you had let me study the ballet 
when I was nine or ten years old, things would be much easier 
for me. . . . People expect so much of an artist, a wonderful 
voice, good diction, and the facility of a ballet dancer, to be 
Sarah Bernhardts, Duses, Strausses, and Debussys all in one," 
she laments. In a peculiar manner she loved her mother. "I wish 
I could do something to help in some way, as it seems you were 
born to work for other people," she affectionately wrote more 


than once, yet without energy enough to put her thought into 
action. She shared with her mother the new discovery of a 
miraculous toothpaste called Kolynos, and asked her to try it 
on the "kids," and then in the same breath she suggested that 
her mother open a piano school in Paris, London, and New 
York all at once, because people are becoming interested in 
"la nouvelle methode allemande par laquelle on arrive a bien 
jouer sans beaucoup etudier." Even Breithaupt's revolutionary 
book, Die Natiirliche Klaviertechni\, dedicated to Carreno, was 
being translated into French. 

And on she went at random, adding violin and wind instru- 
ments to her studies in order to write a fairy opera, buying ex- 
pensive clothes while her mother footed the bills. Then, tiring 
of Paris, Teresita left for Levanto to study singing with Brag- 
giotti, and finding him much like Lilli Lehmann in his style 
of voice production, she changed to Grazziani in Florence, 
who taught in the good old Italian way more to her liking. 

Teresita is a hard person to keep track of. She lives now un- 
der Josephine's name, now under her own. Sometimes she 
turns up in Paris where the floods bring the smells of disin- 
fectants into her window and works spasmodically at score 
reading with the thought of becoming a conductor. Again, the 
fact that she is able to crescendo from a pianissimo to a good 
forte on high C makes her decide that singing is her calling 
after all. Money drifts through her fingers like the white sand 
of the Riviera. When there is no more, she pawns the clothes she 
dislikes and writes for a new supply of funds. Now and then 
she sees her husband only to quarrel at the slightest provocation 
or none at all. Amicably enough they decide to separate, not yet 
a year after the child's birth. Again she moves on from place to 
place. Her husband seeks her out in Jersey only to find that 
she is back in Paris. Eager to marry a young girl of recent ac- 
quaintance who will make him a better wife, he now desires 
a divorce, which on her mother's advice Teresita refuses to 
grant. Josephine once more comes to live with her favorite 
among Carreno's children, this time in a Milan apartment, 


where Teresita continues to disown her name. She is afraid of 
something, of anything, even of people on the street. But when 
Josephine falls ill with a third attack of double pneumonia, she 
nurses her day and night, substituting the medicines she be- 
lieves in for those the doctor prescribes. Worse comes to worst 
when the landlord suddenly sells the building, and orders them 
to leave at the end of the week. Teresita fights for a reprieve. 
Moving Josephine just then would be fatal. Several weeks of 
grace are granted, during which a chimney fire nearly smothers 
them both. Yet Josephine miraculously recovers, thanks to the 
devoted care of one who, like Scarlett O'Hara, only in a rare mo- 
ment thinks first of anyone but herself. 

Tired of Milan Teresita accepts an invitation to visit a friend 
in Norway. It is a happy vacation, the nicest part of which 
is the time spent alone as Miss de Paul in Aasgaard: "I feel so 
much happier and quieter when people know nothing about 
me, and I can pass unobserved through the crowds," she writes. 

A new city now lures her. She returns to Berlin to ask that 
Arturo accompany her to Rome where Maestro Villa will do 
wonders for her voice. She sees it with clarity. The piano will 
always wait for her. For singing it will soon be too late. Ar- 
turo is not free to join her as she begged, and Teresita leaves 
for Rome, only to abandon it again for Naples against her 
mother's wishes. 

With Teresita, Carreno would always be beyond her depth. 
Her resources were exhausted. How could she be shielded, kept 
safe among the dreadful people she chose to cultivate as her 
friends! Yet Teresita proved more than once that she could 
handle an emergency. Not many days before, Teresita had 
pushed away only just in time the point of a dagger meant for 
the heart of the medical student at her side. It fell from the 
hand of a jealous rival. Carreno read the letter telling of this 
episode with horror and sent up a silent prayer to the Dear 
Father for the one who, with all her vagaries, was most like her- 


Carreno never admitted to herself that her children could be 
grown men and women. Giovanni, even at thirty, was still her 
"beloved baby boy." His mother liked to think of him so, liked 
to manage his life. In great part this attitude helped to keep 
him dependent, kept him from making the most of his gifts. 
He had inherited something of the laissez aller nature of his 
father, the baritone, his love of a game of chance, as well as a 
paler reflection of his talent, but he looked like his mother, with 
the same cameo-cut-in-onyx profile, the same proud bearing of 
hidalgo ancestors. He was witty, he was clever, he could be 
the life of the party. Yet, unlike his mother, his joyousness 
seldom rang true. It displayed itself against a backdrop of pes- 
simism at first assumed — the sophisticated veneer of the very 
young — then gradually becoming ingrained. 

Far from intending to stand in his way, it was important to 
Carreno that her only son should find himself. His talent for 
the violin was already somewhat developed. To use it as a 
means to this end seemed worth the trial, and Carreno un- 
hesitatingly spent 2,000 m. for a good violin and much more 
for the best of teaching. However, long hours of intensive 
practice were not for Giovanni. He would have reveled in that 
short-cut method "by which one arrives at superlative results 
without much study." Thoroughly annoyed by an instrument 
which would not at once respond to his thought and fingers, 
he turned to shorthand and typing, learning the bare essentials 
necessary for the position offered him in a business office in 
Paris. The sine qua non of alertness and care for detail had not 
been acquired in his course, and this opening, too, soon closed 
against him. 

There was one field in which he might succeed with a mini- 
mum of effort, given the prerequisite which Giovanni felt he 
had. He could sing in his beguiling high baritone to the tinkle 
of the guitar so as to enrapture his friends. With practically no 
study at all he joined a light opera company in London for a 
season, then toured all over Great Britain taking a minor part 


in that popular success, "The Merry Widow." He found but 
slight reward in this dull routine, in this music distasteful to 
one who had been fed on richer fare, but he did like to sing. 
That he knew. 

Carreno believed in the possibilities of his voice and was will- 
ing to meet the expense of study with the best masters Italy af- 
forded. Giovanni accordingly settled in Rome with friends. 
From there he wrote to his mother: "The Signora is more like 
Teresita than anybody else. She lets her husband do the work. 
She stays in bed and complains, when it is she who is late, that 
the dinner is cold." The expense of daily lessons and comfort- 
able living were a great drain on Carreno's purse. Leaving for 
her second Australian tour she carefully set aside the allowance 
she felt she could afford, to be sent to Giovanni in monthly in- 
stallments. To his letter of thanks Carreno answered encour- 
agingly, understanding! y, revealingly: 

My own beloved baby boy: Your dear letters have come and have 
rejoiced our hearts. . . . You must have been very much "down in 
the dumps" when you wrote, as Arturo received a letter by the same 
mail as yours to me from Signor Villa in which he speaks most en- 
couragingly about your progress and the development of your voice. 
I was very much surprised at what you write. 

Do not get down-hearted, darling, as even though your voice might 
not develop to be a very wonderful voice, the quality of it is beautiful, 
and if you become a true, great artist you will carry everything through 
with your great art; but it must be truly great art! It is not the 
large quantity of voice which makes the success: it is the great art. I 
could name to you a whole row of great singers whose voices were 
not large. In fact some of them had small voices as for instance my 
old teacher Delle Sedie. . . . Take Maurel as another example. His 
voice was not large and not so very sympathetic and yet what a great 
artist he is even as an old man now ! He must be nearly seventy years 
old, yet he is great as an artist, though his voice is a thing of the 
past. Take Wiillner; did he ever have a voice? I don't think he ever 
had as much as he has now. What he possesses is mighty little but 
more than he ever had, and what a career he has made with his great 
art, his temperament, his wonderful diction and interpretation. Did 


you ever hear him ? He has made a sensation in the United States and 
his houses have been crowded to overflowing for his Liederabende 
in every city in which he has appeared in America, and that also 
singing in German. 

So, darling baby boy mine, do not worry and do not get discouraged. 
Work hard and aim at the highest in our art and you will come out 
with flying colors. It needs a lot of work, of thought; in fact more 
mind-work than technical work, a great deal of self-abnegation in 
every respect. But the results, when you have attained that height in 
art which every true artist must aim for, are most satisfactory, and 
one feels entirely compensated by the happiness which achieving 
something of what we hoped for in our art brings to us. No one knows 
that better than your mother, my darling blessed baby boy! So then, 
courage, and work for the highest! 

Your sarcastic remarks about the money matters and your being 
afraid of being left to suffer for want of money in case you are ill 
I do not think I deserve. Will you look back into all your life and tell 
me whether my help has ever failed you. As you must acknowledge 
to yourself that I have always been there to see to your wants and 
to get you out of things which were far from being "wants," you need 
not fear that you may now come to grief for want of my help. As 
long as I can work and earn, and you are not yet ready to take up the 
burden of your self-support as an artist (which I know how anxious 
you are to do!) I will be there, sweetheart. If through illness or acci- 
dent I am taken away, then will be the time when you will not have 
your mother to look after you. 

Arturo was delighted with your Italian letter, and we both were 
very happy to see how much you have learned. Keep on studying and 
improving, my darling. Languages are of great importance and utility 
in life, especially to an artist who must travel all over the world to 
earn his living. 

I get letters pretty regularly from Teresita who is still in Paris and 
seems satisfied with her progress. Let us hope that she will succeed 
with her purpose. Josephine is with her, as you know, and is well, I 
am happy to say. Whether she also is studying singing and acting 
or not, that I don't know. Teresita does not mention anything about 
it, and as I have not received the bills for Josephine's tuition, I suppose 
that she — Josephine — has withstood the temptation. 

Things with us are going less well in a business way than they did 


three years ago, and Heaven knows they were weak enough. Of course 
this is quite entre nous, as it will not do for people to think that I 
am doing anything else but brilliant business. Should anyone ask you, 
say that you presume that business is good. In almost every city I have 
had half the houses which I had the last time I was here, and as the 
enthusiasm is if anything greater than before and the press is still 
more enthusiastic than ever, I can't explain it in any other way but 
that the people are not musical enough to wish to hear me play again, 
and only those who are really interested in music and true lovers of 
it come to my recitals, and they are a very small number. So far I 
am not losing money — es fehlte noch — but I am not making any 
more than just expenses. It is rather discouraging, isn't it? If the 
enthusiasm were not as it is I would give it up and take a rest before 
going to South Africa. My health is also not as I should like it, as I 
have all sorts of ailings which make life not sweet; but as long as it 
remains within these limits I suffer and go on doing my different 

Back again a year later on Italian soil, Carreno visited both 
Giovanni in Rome and Teresita in Milan. From there she wrote 
in a letter that gives much of her simple philosophy: 

It is just one week today since we parted with you at the station in 
Rome and with what a heavy and sad heart did I leave you, my own 
darling! I felt as though I wanted either to stay with my boy or take 
him along! What a sad fate it is, after all, a mother's! She brings her 
babies up and they grow nearer and dearer to her heart as the years 
come and go, and then she must part with them at the time of life 
when age weighs upon her and she needs them and their love more 
than ever. But if her babies are happy and contented, and she sees 
that they are making a way towards a position which may bring them 
all they themselves wish to possess, she cheerfully submits, thanks 
God that her darlings are doing well, and builds her happiness on her 
own unhappiness. Queer, is it not ? 

Well, never mind ! Such is life, such is nature and above all, such is 
God's own will and we must submit and be resigned. 

Once having bought real estate in California Carreno 
thought seriously of investing in property in Italy. But her 
sound business instincts once more held her back from doing 


the imprudent thing with hard-earned money. She writes to 
Giovanni soon after her arrival in Berlin, 

Thank you a thousand times for your dear letter, the last one received 
only yesterday owing to the fact that Arturo and I took a trip to 
Oneglia (on the Italian Riviera) to look at a property which — as 
far as the description and the photographs which were sent to us by 
the agent in Venice went — seemed the very thing which I have 
wanted to buy as a speculation for many years. ... In order not 
to keep you in suspense about it, I will tell you right now that it was 
not what we expected and of course we did not buy it. It is beautifully 
situated on a high mountain and the view (all around are olive tree 
mountains) is most beautiful. If I had money I would buy it at 
once as a place where we could go every summer for pleasure and 
enjoy the gorgeous scenery and the pure mountain air! I haven't 
the shekels and so I will enjoy the high altitude of 28 Kurfiirstendamm 
if I can't afford to hire some place for the summer. 

Another matter which we have settled is about our apartment. We 
will stay right here where we are although I found one apartment 
which I would love to have had, the price of it being 1300 m. more 
than this one per year, and taking that into consideration, the large 
expense of moving and a very large sum which would have to be 
spent to get the other apartment in order, we have weighed our poverty 
against all other probabilities and possibilities and decided that the 
most reasonable all around was to remain where we are. I know that 
you will not be sorry to hear that we remain in the old home. 

We are very sorry to hear about your tooth, my darling baby boy. 
How on earth did you break it? You have such splendid teeth that 
you ought to be very careful of them. Did you try to bite anyone's 
head off, and was it a head of iron ? . . . 

Enclosed you will find a bill for one hundred marks which I want 
you to use for a trip to the sea-side. You must not stay in Rome during 
these hot weeks. The sea air will do your voice and your general 
health a lot of good. So please, darling baby boy mine, take the next 
train after you get this letter and go anywhere near the sea where it 
is cool and where the air is invigorating. If you need more money, 
let me know. 

In August of 191 1 Giovanni was obliged to confess that he 
had gambled away most of his allowance. "My cursed, my 


damned bad luck has proven itself once more, and was mock- 
ing me," he pleads, and adds as an afterthought, "I know I am 
an awful burden to you." Carreno had a temperament that 
could flare, but in forgiveness too she was never halfhearted. 

The reason I did not answer you sooner after receiving your former 
letter was that I felt really grieved and awfully disappointed in you. 
I have such confidence in your sound common sense and in your 
power of will that to learn that you had again succumbed to the 
temptation of gambling was a great blow to me and to my trust 
in your strength of will. Had I written you under the impression 
which your letter made upon me I would have added to your feel- 
ings of unhappiness, and I preferred to wait until the first impression 
had somewhat subsided and I felt less unhappy. As I see how well 
you recognize your own folly, I am not going to say any more about 
it. Let it be a life-lesson to you, darling baby boy! 

Who is that idiot Fano? Has he the long ears which befit his 
brain condition? If he hasn't it is certainly a mistake of nature. He 
should have four legs, long ears and be called by the befitting name 

I had to smile at what you write was his opinion of your voice. 
If you had offered him a thousand Lire to get you an engagement in 
grand opera you would have seen how much better he found your 
voice immediately. Italy is simply a debauche country in art, and I shall 
be glad when you are ready to get out of it. — Don't you let anyone 
interfere with your tone production which is most excellent. You 
really sing, not bellow as is the fashion now in Italy. That jackass 
called Fano didn't think your voice large enough to sing in grand 
opera! The ignorant fool! At any rate you are not the first instance 
of being told by a manager that the voice was not large enough : Your 
father was told the same thing: de Reszke (the tenor) was told to 
give up singing as he had no voice: Pauline Lucca was sent away 
from a conservatory in Vienna because she had no voice, and hundred 
other examples I could cite you if I only remembered them now. 
As you see, Asini are a common animal and not specially Italian. 

I enclose here two hundred marks, all I have with me, and please 
let me know at once how much money you need to accomplish your 
object, so that I can tell Schickler to send it to you. 


And so she stands as fiercely maternal as any mother bear, 
ready to growl at anyone who dares to attack her offspring. 
Giovanni went on singing from one impresario to another, not 
knowing which criticism to take to heart. According to one his 
placement was wrong, while another advised musical comedy 
in America because of its less exacting standards, and a third 
declared that "Baritono Tagliapietra ha una voce bellissima ma 
e nervoso come un diavolo." 

At last the longed-for chance was his. He had a real en- 
gagement to sing in // Barbiere de Sevilla in Vignola near 
Modena on Christmas Day. "You will understand that your 
baby boy is in awful agonies," he wrote. "Think of me at nine 
o'clock on Sunday." At Kurfurstendamm 28 nobody thought 
of going to bed before the coming of the telegram for better or 
worse. The bell rang; Carreno unfolded the piece of buff 
paper hardly daring to read its message. The others held their 
breath. "A great success! It was a great success," shouted the 

Long after the others had gone to bed a happy mother sat 
writing to her son from the fullness of her pride: 

My own beloved baby boy: Just now your telegram has come and 
our joy over the good news it has brought to us I cannot tell you in 
words. We all have jumped for joy and oh! how thankful your old 
mother feels that this, your first trial in your career has brought you 
satisfaction and joy and also the encouragement which the good re- 
sults of this your first appearance, the first step in your career, must 
be to you! I am awfully happy over it, my own darling. My prayers 
were with you as also my heart and my thoughts. I kept watching 
the clock in our dining room as we sat there for supper, calculating the 
time at which you made your entrance and followed you with my 
imagination from one scene to the other, praying that success might 
be yours. My prayers were heard, and how grateful am I for this! 
Keep on working, my beloved boy! Do not lose a moment of study 
and improvement and aim at the highest pinnacle of your art. Be a 
true, honest, real artist, and this can only be achieved by hard and 


continued work. Nobody knows this better than your mother. Art 
is such infinite joy to the artist and such a generous repayer for all 
the work we have to perform and all the sacrifices we bring to it! 
The satisfaction and the happiness that it brings us in return no one 
but an artist can know. Those who serve their art honestly and not 
for their own glory, those are the chosen ones, the truly great, and 
to those only does art give back thousandfold the compensation 
for all their hours days, months, and years of striving for the highest 
ideal. With true greatness in art also comes the remuneration of mak- 
ing yourself an independent position in life. I have written down now, 
my beloved darling, in these lines my creed and my experience. Fol- 
lowing these firm convictions even though it may not be as great 
as I had dreamed it in my youth, has yet enabled me to make my 
way, establish for myself a position in art, and also has brought me 
the material remuneration which has helped me to help my babies. 
Above all this has stood my firm belief in God and in his help without 
which I could have done nothing. Without God there can be no 
true, great art. 

We have missed you awfully, my own precious darling, and your 
mother has longed and longed for her beloved baby boy. Twenty 
times a day at least I wanted to write and send you the money to 
come and spend the Christmas days with us, and the only thing which 
kept me back from doing it has been the thought that perhaps in 
coming away just now you might miss a chance of presenting your- 
self and giving yourself a chance of making a start in your career and 
judging for yourself on the stage what you can do. I am glad now that 
I withstood the temptation and sacrificed my own pleasure. 

The Christmas has been the same as of old to us. The tree is in 
my study here, the presents on the table, pianos, sofas just as you so 
well know it. I — well, darling, my heart was heavy, for you and 
Teresita were not here. My mind went back to the years when I had 
you all around me. I saw you in my heart's memory, first with your 
knickerbockers, then your first long trousers, your getting taller and 
taller, your voice changing, your hands becoming those of a man, 
the boy disappearing, and then I saw you as you are, a tall, splendid, 
manly man. Teresita, the darling child, wayward but sweet with all 
her great charm and her beauty developing, her great, great talent 
also developing and being neglected by her and making me so un- 
happy because of this neglect of a great gift which God had given 


her — then all my worry about her — well, darling, this all made my 
heart feel heavy. 

Well, there is so much that I have which makes me feel so deeply 
grateful to Him who has granted it to me, that I made myself no end 
of reproaches for allowing any other thoughts but those of gratitude 
to occupy my thoughts and my heart, and when your telegram came 
it lifted all that was a weight from my heart and dispelled all that 
might have been a regret of the times gone by. I am now happy and 
only gratitude fills my poor old heart, for though I know well enough 
what you still have to do, this good beginning is a good omen and 
makes me see better than ever that I made no mistake in advising you 
as I did when you sang for me in London for the first time some four 
years ago now. 

Arturo and I returned yesterday afternoon from Budapest and 
Vienna where I had been playing. Thank Heaven that I have ten 
days of rest before me! I have worked awfully hard in England and 
here, but I am glad that I did it, as it has brought me good results. . . . 

Giovanni did not have the push to follow up his success at 
once. He contented himself with singing in small towns to 
good effect in Don Pasquale and Faust. The ability to keep 
his temper was not one of his qualities, and it did not ingratiate 
him with an impresario to have him slam the door in his face. 
It was Carreno who kept his courage up through her unbreak- 
able faith. She offered him the chance to sing in her concerts, to 
study for opera in Germany, anything he really wanted, and un- 
flaggingly she wrote giving him advice from the deep well of 
her own experience, as in the letter from Lissa: 

Here is your mother in a little bit of a place where she plays this 
evening (Heaven knows why!) — and where she feels just as lone- 
some and as hungry for a sight of her beloved son as she does no 
matter where she is and where she goes! 

From your letter to Arturo I see that you did not get my telegram 
on your birthday and that makes me feel very badly. I sent it on the 
seventh in the morning from Gottingen (where I was playing that 
evening) and I cannot understand why it did not reach you. I feel 
awfully over it, for I did so want that you should get a loving greeting 
from me on that day! My thoughts and my blessings were with you 


as they ever are, but I wanted to remind you that your mother had 
been there at your birth and was so happy when she held her baby 
boy in her arms! God bless you, my own darling, and keep healthy 
and happy for many and many years to come! — 

I am continually playing and travelling. Since years I have not had 
so much work on hand, I mean so many concerts following each other 
here in Europe, and though I am glad to earn the money, it keeps 
me a slave to the work and does not allow me to do any writing or 
anything else which I would like to do excepting of course solitaire 
and reading in the trains. . . . 

The notices about your performance are on the whole, though 
short, very good — I am sorry that you did not send the names of the 
paper and the date. You must collect all these notices with the titles 
of the paper and the dates, and keep them to send to the agents, as 
they always need them and want them to send to managers. You 
must get yourself several copies and keep one for your own private 
collection, one for me, and the other for the "Reklame." 

In talking to Leonard (one of my agents) about you and your 
success, he asked me whether you did not care to sing in German. 
When I told him that you could do so as you spoke the language 
perfectly, he asked me why you did not come to Germany. He 
thinks that you could do well and find an engagement in a theatre 
here. I told him that you wished to make first your career in Italian 
Opera before you tried anything else. If you came to Germany you 
would have to study first with a Kapellmeister the German operas. 
Would you care to do this ? I must now come to the end of this scrawl 
as I am afraid of straining my hand and must look out for my recital 
this evening. Night before last I played in Posen; tomorrow I play 
in Breslau and on Wednesday the 14th in Prag. From Prag I return 
home to Berlin where I shall be until the eighteenth, starting on that 
day for Vienna where I play on the 19th and then come home again to 
stay until the twenty-seventh. I play with Nikisch at the Philharmonic 
Concerts on the 25th (public rehearsal) and on the 26th (Concert). 
Then comes Gewandhaus, Leipzig, and then I continue my wander- 
ings to Miinchen, Halle, Koln, Bonn, Frankfurt a/M., Wiesbaden, 
Neustadt, Karlsruhe, Stuttgart, Saarbriicken, Greiz, Leipzig, Berlin 
(Elite Concert), Riga, Konigsberg, and on the fourth of April Paris. 
On the 27th of April I play again in London and on the 7th of May 
I give my first summer recital in London. Would you like to sing 


in my recital in London? How jolly that would be! Let me know, 
darling, if you feel at all inclined to do so. 

She was not to have the pleasure of presenting her son in 
one of her own concerts. Discouraged that Giovanni leaned 
upon her more exactingly than ever and that for three months 
he had not troubled to write, she finally reminds him that she 
is no longer young, that she does not feel well enough to carry 
the burden after the current year, much to her sorrow, "sor- 
row because I feel my physical health disappearing, and sorrow 
because I cannot help you and Teresita until you are on top 
of the hill. You will have, both of you, to do the climbing on 
your own feet." Teresita had incurred her displeasure by leav- 
ing Rome, her teacher Villa, and the singing career, to go to 
Naples for purpose of her own without caring to notify her 
mother, whose patience had reached the snapping point. How- 
ever, it was not in her to abandon the children to their fate. Her 
threat had frightened them into good behavior, and she went 
on as before. 

So Carreno with all the hope of her believing affection lived 
on for the day when Giovanni's best would be recognized by 
the public and the press. Since he preferred to remain in Italy, 
good fortune attend him there ! 

For Carreno motherhood had found its fullest reward in the 
two daughters of d'Albert. They were the ones to draw profit 
from the haphazard upbringing to which Teresita and Gio- 
vanni had been subjected. Carreno had learned much at their 
expense. Eugenia and Hertha were not burdened with the 
handicap of poor inheritance. Their mother resolved that they 
should develop normally and wholesomely, much like any 
other young girls of their age. 

When Carreno left Coswig for Berlin, she entrusted the full 
care for her little girls to Fraulein Krahl, "die gute Krahl." She 
was devotion itself, beside being a thrifty housekeeper and a 
person who knew her own mind. The domestic mechanism 


ran smoothly under her supervision. But soon after Arturo's 
first surprise appearance it became evident that he disliked 
Krahl as cordially as she looked upon his coming as an intolera- 
ble intrusion. His marriage brought the strain of their relation 
to early explosion. A slight error of judgment was magnified 
in importance until Carreno was brought to the point of dis- 
missing her faithful helper in anger. It was not easy for Carreno 
to sever her connection with one who had stood by while she 
was steering her way through the rapids of despair to happier 
waters. This shows through in her parting letter: 

I should like to do everything, everything for you to show you how 
I feel with you with my whole heart and how full I am with gratitude 
for the love you bear me and my children. Only one thing I cannot 
do, much as I should like to, that is to keep you with me. That is 
quite impossible after all that has happened between us. During the 
seven years that we have been together we have both grown older, 
I have even grown old and the consideration which I took for your 
very marked touchiness and independence until the last moment of 
your being here I can take no longer, because I must have peace and 
freedom in my home. 

You say that you have stood a great deal from me. You will never 
know, for I cannot express it, how much I have suffered through 
your lack of respect and consideration for me. From no one on earth, 
excepting those three horrible men to whom I was married before 
I married my present husband, have I stood what I have stood from 
you. Only by thinking of your great qualities have I managed to be 
patient with you, to find excuses for you myself in my heart, and so 
to get along with you without daily friction! You don't realize it, 
because that is the way you are and you can't help it; but I can no 
longer live that way and have grown too old for that. Even if it had 
been my fault — and I admit that I may be to blame — I must stay as 
I am and have the right like any person on earth to do what I like in 
my home and to have my freedom. 

Believe me, my good Krahl, when I resign myself to the sad neces- 
sity of giving you up, I am the loser, not you! But, alas! there is no 
other way. Perhaps in time we shall come together again, when the 
past has been forgotten. I cannot tell you enough how grateful I am 


for your feelings towards me and my children. And my friendship, as 
well as the love of the children, I am certain you will have for life, 
no matter what the circumstances. 

Ever since the separation d'Albert had periodically threat- 
ened to take advantage of the clause in the divorce agreement 
which gave him the right to visit their children. Each time the 
meeting was postponed for one reason or another. When Ar- 
turo had taken his place at Carreno's side, d'Albert again en- 
tered an intruding wedge through his lawyer, who wrote ask- 
ing that Carreno dispose the minds of Eugenia and Hertha 
favorably for the coming of their father. To this she replied: 

It is unfortunately not possible to comply with Herr dAlbert's wish 
and that for educational as well as health reasons. Herr dAlbert 
seems to forget that his children know nothing of him, and that he is 
a perfect stranger to the little ones. If I may remind him that he left 
his children when the elder was two years old and the younger only 
five months, he can explain to himself why the children know nothing. 
I have thought it right to keep them as long as possible in ignorance 
of the fact that their father left them without any reason which 
could justify him in their eyes. The children are so sensitive that I 
let them go nowhere for fear of their becoming ill in air that is not 
quite pure. Therefore I must insist that the children meet their father 
either at your house as you so kindly suggest or at that of Frau 
Direktor Wolff, and that whosoever accompanies them stays with 
the children during the whole of the time. But for the moment 
Eugenia has a bad attack of bronchitis and Hertha too is ill with a cold, 
so that the doctor has strictly forbidden their going outdoors. 

This visit was put off again, and in reply to another letter 
repeating d' Albert's wish that the children be notified of his 
existence, Carreno wrote once more. She does not know how to 
prepare the children for seeing the father who until now has 
treated them with disregard. "Lies are unfortunately much too 
hard for me, and are neither to my taste nor in my character. 
He must find a way to their hearts himself and obtain their 
pardon." To Carreno's extreme relief this visit also did not 


Not until both little girls were away at school in Neu Wat- 
zum in 1904 were they to make the acquaintance of their father. 
At least nothing had been done to prejudice them against 
d' Albert, and at first they were thrilled to go to this intimate 
stranger who had known them well before they knew them- 
selves. In their imagination he was a kind of Siegfried as stately 
as their mother. They knocked at his door in a hotel of Braun- 
schweig with eager knuckles. 

The high-pitched, weak "Herein" was not the rich, deep- 
voiced welcome they expected, nor did this narrow-chested, 
dwarflike person, who looked at them peeringly through com- 
pressed slits, come up in any way to the ideal of their imagina- 
tion. Worst of all he wore his hair long and an unfashionably 
broad-brimmed hat on top of it. Eugenia especially dreaded the 
moment when she would have to present him to her school- 
mates. Disappointment kept them unresponsive, and d' Albert on 
his part was at a loss to find words to reach these hostile little 
girls whose only wish from the moment of their entrance was 
to be gone again. Nevertheless, from then on the father made a 
point of keeping in closer touch with his daughters, partly be- 
cause he took pleasure in annoying Carreno whenever he could. 
Eugenia little by little cultivated a certain liking for him. Her- 
tha with instinctive loyalty to her mother held herself strictly 

Although they dressed alike in their blue Peter Thompsons, 
aprons and hair ribbons helped to accentuate the difference be- 
tween the two sisters. Eugenia's hair was dark with a coppery 
sheen as the sun fell upon it. There was a glint of copper, too, 
in her brown eyes. In temperament and looks she vaguely sug- 
gested a much improved d'Albert. Blue-eyed Hertha's hair was 
golden. Her profile and her fearless, straight thinking were her 
mother's. Eugenia was the more reserved, Hertha sunnily out- 
going. Every gesture was ample. The motion of her walk took 
in all of the surrounding territory as she threw her body from 
side to side, not to make faster progress as much as just for joy 
in action. When something amused her she threw back her 


head, opened her mouth wide, and shouted aloud. There were 
no mezzotints in Hertha's makeup. 

Of the two Eugenia was the more practical, the more con- 
ventional. It bothered her that she was almost the smallest one 
in the whole school, that her pet name was "Liliputchen." No 
exercise was too hard provided it might help to make her 
taller, while Hertha in a halfhearted way did what she could 
to grow thin. For her it added to the zest of life to shock others 
by her antics, although Eugenia, the conformist, called her to 
task for it with a reproving "Aber Hertha!" Eugenia would have 
had her mother be like the ordinary mothers of her friends. 
Once she called her to task for addressing the letters she wrote 
to them jointly to "Frauleinen" instead of "Fraulein." She went 
further, admonishing her: "But when you come to the station 
to meet us, please don't call our names out loud, for everyone 
will repeat them then, and say them so very wrongly because 
they can't pronounce them. But please above all don't wear that 
jacket, you know which one I mean, the one I can't bear. Even 
if it is fashionable, it is unfashionable for me." At another time, 
upon hearing of a rumor that d'Albert will marry again, she 
exclaims in despair : "I feel so ashamed of my father. Why can't 
he ever think of his children who carry his name? It is a dis- 
grace to us, especially in Berlin, where people are so particular 
about the names." Being the children of artists had its shadows. 

All that was less vital to Hertha. She was at the age when 
everything was either "tragisch" or "pompos." When she heard 
her father's opera Flauto Solo in Braunschweig that was pom- 
pbs, when she had a poor report it was tragisch, but it did not 
keep her unhappy for long. What really upset her was apt to be 
something quite different. "When other people write 'Berlin 
mother,' then it is absolutely necessary that I write something 
also in that style," and she begins a letter: "My own darling 
Australian, American, European mother." From the depths of 
her affection she complains: "It's already bad when you can't 
be there Christmas, Easter or New Year, but when it comes to 
birthdays, my own private days, it is bad luck!" Hertha's letters 


are generally playful. She is fond of teasing her mother: "I 
nearly play as well as you do. I thought you might get jealous, 
so I never practice more than two hours. I might play better if 
I did, so I won't. I play your waltz now, the one you composed 
in Sidney [the "Valse Gayo," last of Carreno's published com- 
positions] only it sounds a little different." 

Whether they were at school in Wolfenbiittel, in Chicago, 
with their governess in Melbourne and in Durban, or on vaca- 
tion in Oberstdorf, Ober-Salzberg, and Friedrichroda, the lives 
of Hertha and Eugenia ran parallel. They quarreled as sisters 
do. "You know that contradicting each other is the family 
crest," confesses Hertha. But let anybody dare to attack one, 
the other was sure to take a formidable stand in her defense. 

Eugenia was a versatile person. Her talents were many but 
not driving. She played nicely — her hands were curiously like 
her father's — could cook a good dinner, and sew a neat seam, 
and play a game of tennis of which any young girl might be 
proud. In fact she became expert in sports of many kinds, of 
which horseback-riding was her favorite. In 191 1 d' Albert made 
her a present of a horse, as much for the pleasure of adding its 
upkeep to Carreno's already heavy burdens as for that of de- 
lighting his namesake. Eugenia was the persona grata of the 
moment. All the good things of life appealed to her strongly, 
but she had days of reflective melancholy in which she took her 
future under microscopic consideration, threatening by turns 
to become a nurse, a suffragette, or a nun. After her confirma- 
tion in the Protestant Kaiser Wilhelm Gedachtniskirche she 
fell naturally into the groove waiting for her coming, one 
which suited her well and eased Carreno's shoulders. Eugenia 
who had a tendency toward order and thrift soon made herself 
at home in the intricacies of the art of keeping house. She also 
became her mother's right hand in initiating new pupils into 
the technical fundamentals of Carreno's way of teaching. 

Hertha's leanings and gifts were artistic along two possible 
lines not incompatible with each other. She could cultivate 
painting, drawing, or singing with promising result, and she 


studied earnestly but with that exuberance which makes work 
seem play. 

Carreno could look with just pride upon these two daughters. 
She had brought them to this point by giving them the ad- 
vantages of discipline, education, and travel. Her hopes for 
them were of the highest. "I must go on working until Hertha 
is married," she reminded herself. 

In her eldest daughter Carreno was never to take much com- 
fort. As soon as she heard of the death of Mrs. Bischoff in 1902, 
she sent word to Emilita through Mrs. MacDowell that, if she 
needed it, a mother's love still existed for her. It was not until 
three years later that Emilita asked her mother for a meeting 
in Frankfurt, where Carreno happened to have a concert en- 
gagement. Clear-sighted Arturo put in his word of warning. 
He was sure it would prove to be another trouble escaped from 
her Pandora's box already overfilled. Carreno refused to listen. 
All at once she felt she could not wait until the appointed time 
to see this child, now a married woman thirty-one years old. 
Her incorrigibly maternal nature prevailed, and with a singing 
of the heart she made ready for the meeting. 

It did not measure up to expectation. Arturo was right. The 
motives which brought Emilita to the point of seeking out her 
mother were not alone the promptings of affection. Before an 
hour had passed it was obvious that "Lita" looked upon her 
mother as the plentiful source of wealth from which she too 
might draw her share. Instead of the 5,000 marks for which 
she frankly asked on this afternoon she left with 500, and in 
parting begged Carreno to keep the meeting secret for fear of 
its reaction upon Sauret, her father. The mother in Carreno 
could survive even this disappointment. She recognized under- 
standing^ that Lita had been spoiled by an overindulgent fos- 
ter mother, whose fortune she had inherited and brought to her 
husband, a young captain of the German army. This money 
had depreciated, leaving barely enough for living in the style 
demanded by army etiquette. Feeling herself not without re- 


sponsibility toward her daughter Carreno decided to take on 
Lita and her many wants. Every letter kept her duly informed 
of them, even reminding the grandmother of the birthdays of 
her three grandchildren, of the most acceptable presents for 
every occasion. Naively she asked for jewelry and a fur coat 
for herself, for money that would spell a vacation for her son 
Walter. Or Lisbeth needed a change; it would be ideal if she 
could visit at Kurfurstendamm 28. Even as Carreno tried to 
gratify Lita's inexhaustible wishes to the limit of her powers, 
a voice cried within her — "this child is none of mine." 

Taking all in all Carreno, surveying the past decade from the 
perspective of the jubilee year could find them good, could still 
write : "I am so grateful to our good Father in Heaven that He 
has granted me so much joy in life which has helped me so 
much to stand the deep sufferings which I have also had in it." 

As Carreno turned from the clear vista of her past to the future 
which Providence in its kindliness and wisdom shrouded in 
mist, she knew that for years her chief suffering had come from 
being inadequate to the task of helping Teresita realize her great 
potentialities. After the strain and excitement of her anniversary 
year came the inevitable reaction. 

Angered by Teresita's active opposition to her wishes and by 
her neglect in writing — "she only remembers my existence when 
she is in trouble and needs my help and the only address she 
gives me, her mother, is c/o Cooks" — , Carreno informs Gio- 
vanni that Teresita is not to be allowed to spend the summer in 
Salzberg. "My health has to be considered, as it is necessary for 
you all that I can keep on working and Teresita would make 
me so ill that I would be totally unfit for my next winter's work 
or to give the many lessons which I shall have to give in Salzberg 
in order to be able to pay the expenses of our living there. If I 
did not take the pupils we could not allow ourselves the summer 
in Salzberg or anywhere else but at home." 

A month later she writes again : 

You will find here if they all come, twenty pupils of mine. How 
is this for a rest? It is not much of a rest, you will say, and I know 
it; but we could not have been able to afford the trip here and the 
hiring of the Villa, and in one way we have a rest, for we all can 
enjoy this beautiful air, and I know that we need not worry about 
the expenses connected with our being here. — Eugenia and Herta 
will be as happy as can be to see you and are both looking forward to 
your visit. They both love you dearly, and if you teased them less 
their happiness would be untroubled. Please, darling baby boy, do not 
tease them so much and for my sake leave the question of fathers at 
rest. I wish you all, my beloved darlings, would only remember me 
in the parent question, and as I have been both mother and father 
to you all, it ought to be easy for you all to forget that there ever was 
a father in question. 

Carreno went ahead for a few days of solitude on the Salzberg 
before the influx of family and pupils. Their sixteen pianos were 


distributed in every available peasant house on the mountain side. 
All was blissfully peaceful. The clouds that shrouded the sum- 
mits overlooking Berchtesgaden nestling below were not yet 
clouds of war. No passport was needed to climb the road leading 
up the mountain, and Carreno enjoyed her walks in the rain 
which the salty mountain was miraculously able to soak in, as 
hour upon hour it descended in drenching sheets. The Villa 
Waltenberger cuddled against the woods halfway up the steep 
incline. This was the third return to its harboring walls, almost 
as congenial to Carreno's soul as Oberstdorf and the Pertisau of 
other years. From the toy village at the foot of the mountain 
through wooded paths, across flower-dotted fields to the breath- 
taking view of higher mountains still, dusted with snow, every- 
thing awakened a health-giving response in Carreno. But this 
year the twinges of rheumatism were particularly stubborn. The 
pupils arrived before Carreno was in shape for teaching. 

One evening the family was finishing a late supper. From far 
away, then closer and circling around the house, came the sound 
of a guitar. It was "poor old Josephine" who knew even before a 
tenor voice broke into an Italian folk song, who it was that so ro- 
mantically announced himself in a serenade: "It's Giovanni," she 
called out and hurried as fast as her shuffling feet would allow to 
open the door. And with the coming of Giovanni, the romantic 
reincarnation of the troubadour, life had new zest for the Car- 
reno colony. Whether he was staging a mock auction of one of 
Hertha's latest paintings or singing "Vorrei bacciarti" in his 
melting baritone from the balcony railing to the accompaniment 
of his beribboned guitar, everybody stopped to listen. His jovial- 
ity was contagious, but though it could raise his mother's spirits, 
it was not effective against rheumatism and gout. Carreno de- 
cided one morning that she must go at once to Italy for the good 
of her health, and it was a dejected group of pupils who watched 
the vanishing train carrying their teacher away, the one for 
whose instructions some had come from Finland, some from 
Australia, some from Turkey. Would she come back in two 
weeks as she had promised? Those who chose to stay on the 


chance of a return bombarded the Villa Waltenberger daily for 
news of Carreno's health, of her plans, and drowned their disap- 
pointment in dogged hard work in the morning, in rainy walks 
to Berchtesgaden at tea time, and in games of charades or cards at 
night. They had their reward. Carreno rejoined her family at 
the end of the third week almost her old, energetic self; but the 
relief was only temporary. 

News came by cable one morning of the death of Mrs. Wat- 
son, in which her husband had preceded her the year before. A 
few days later, like a message from another world, came her 
parting letter, adding a second shock to the impact of the first. 
In spite of a trip alone to Oberstdorf before the beginning of the 
season Carreno was in no condition to face the exigencies of an 
American tour, always so much more arduous than a European 

There was always Teresita to add to her depression. Teresita 
had been ill. As soon as she was able to leave the nuns in the 
nursing home in Florence, Carreno sent her to Lucerne to regain 
her strength. There too she could not find rest. Penniless as usual 
Teresita borrowed from a casual acquaintance, played the races, 
and won enough for third-class transportation to Brussels. From 
there she called to her mother for help, and once more not in 

Carreno on tour in England visited her daughter in London 
before embarking for the United States in the fall of 1913. She 
listened once again to Teresita's distorted views of life, heard 
herself blamed for not ever having tried to understand her, for 
being thirty thousand years behind the times in her outlook. Af- 
ter Teresita had left the hotel that evening, Carreno let herself 
go in one of her most severe attacks of hysterics; then, pulling 
herself together, she went for a long walk, not knowing or car- 
ing where it took her. Teresita, too, spent the next day in tears, 
then tried her best to placate her mother in a lovable, contrite 
letter. She deplores the trouble she is always causing, vows to do 
better, and advises her mother to take bromides instead of Fel- 
low's Syrup. Unable to see herself as the cause of her mother's 


ill health, Teresita preferred to attribute it to lack of oil in the 
air of Europe. She should, prescribed Teresita, wrap up in wool 
soaked in oil to grease her joints "still tuned to the oily air of 
Caracas." Might it be that a potential doctor or nurse was lost 
in her as in her mother ? 

With a large sum of money at her disposal once more Teresita 
felt better. She would, she decided, return to the piano, give con- 
certs, and teach, but not in London. And so before the new year 
made its entrance Teresita was once more discussing her future 
with her brother, this time in Milan. Before tea was served she 
was sure she wished to try her luck as an artist in Greece, and as 
she buttered her toast she changed to the idea of teaching the 
secrets of Carreno technique from a South American angle in 
Paris, then before the cups were removed she dreamed herself in 
Algiers. When they parted, neither knew what she really meant 
to do. 

For Carreno herself the winter of 1913 could not have begun 
worse. The sea voyage was not long enough to soothe nerves 
jangled askew. Soon after landing Carreno fell easy prey to one 
of her chronic colds which developed into influenza and then 
into bronchitis. Physicians called in for advice in nearly every city 
en route tried one and all to persuade her to abandon the tour. 
They made graphic pictures of the dangers of a complete nervous 
breakdown, and did their best to frighten her into taking a year 
at least of concertless, studentless rest. It sounded appealing. But 
what of her manager Mr. Adams of the Wolfsohn bureau, who 
had worked hard and successfully to fill her calendar of dates! 
What of the John Church Company who were counting upon 
her to lend the weight of her approval and prestige to the Everett 
piano which she was playing in her concerts ! No, she would see 
it through to the end. By a sheer miracle she survived and that 
with canceling only one single concert in all of the more than 
fifty on her roster. 

Neither public nor critics knew that she was feeling unfit, 
dragging her way by force of will from town to town. On the 





platform she still appeared the Walkiire whom mortal ills could 
not touch. There was in her playing a new aura of detached, 
visionary unworldliness that, if it no longer drove her hearers 
to excess with excitement as of old, did bring whole audiences 
to their feet in spontaneous expression of the veneration which 
awed and united them for this rare moment. They unconsciously 
felt in her music as they listened the wisdom and measure of 
long, rich living. It pointed the way with the clarity of deep 
insight to purer heights of serene enjoyment beyond the knowl- 
edge of man, but not beyond his capacity of feeling. Her appeal 
was perhaps less for the young than before. Those whose lives 
had passed the middle distance, or those who had through suffer- 
ing lived much in a short span of time understood her meaning 
best. There were some who, openly disappointed, missed the fire 
of the old Carreno, and did not know how to find the new in 
her more softly voiced world-mindedness. Even the shopworn 
"Liebestraum" in her hands became a thing of elusive loveliness. 
People stopped breathing in order not to lose the point where 
sound merged into silence, whose very emptiness was charged 
with significance. Many who came to hear Carreno with the sole 
idea of being entertained left with the feeling of having shared 
in a religious experience. Carreno and the music she played were 
still indivisibly one and the same. She had never tried to look or to 
be younger than she was. So in simple honesty she disdained to as- 
sume the dash and passion natural to her in the days of her prime. 
Instead she rose on lighter wings into the rarer atmosphere of 
clairvoyance where now she felt at home. No less honestly could 
she say now as before: "I am Carreno!" So Dr. Walter Niemann 
comparing the Carreno of the Eighties with the Carreno in 1913 
understandingly drew her musical likeness in an article pub- 
lished in Refyam's Universum, in honor of her sixtieth birthday. 
(See Postlude.) 

In high spirits and proud of the crowning of her efforts with 
good returns and better health, Carreno looked forward eagerly 
to her home and her children. Hertha and Eugenia had been 
leading busy and normal lives at Kurfurstendamm 28, Hertha 


dividing her interests between painting and singing. The latter 
she seriously considered adopting as her profession until a cable 
from Carreno demanded that she stop her lessons at once. A 
casual remark, quite unintentionally made, had frightened her. 
Hertha's voice, Eugenia had written, sounded husky. Just that 
was enough to make the mother fear that the teaching might be 
at fault. It never occurred to either of the younger daughters to 
disobey. There was nothing for it but to concentrate with double 
energy on painting in which Hertha had been making note- 
worthy progress. Eugenia meanwhile kept house, studied, and 
taught in preparation for her mother's homecoming. 

The season was at last safely over, and Carreno as a concession 
to her physicians gave up teaching for the summer. Trouble 
loomed on the horizon with new and dramatic variations on the 
Teresita theme. From Milan she had set out in search of her 
Eldorado and found it in the warmer, freer air of Kram near 
Tunis. She wrote, filled with new peace, of the happiness she 
had found in her little apartment of the Arab quarter near the 
sea. Carreno's hair rose as she read. The European colony might 
be shocked, the police might look upon her with suspicion, al- 
though a perfectly respectable Neapolitan had come with her 
as her companion; Teresita for once was in her element. "I am 
really happy in the bottom of my heart," her letter fairly shouted. 
And not the least of her reasons for this was Mohammed, a 
romantic young Arab ten years her junior in front of whose 
cabin she went swimming every day. "There is youth for you," 
she exulted and described to her horrified mother how Moham- 
med, angry at not being able to open the door of his cabin, 
smashed the window and lifted her through it in his arms. Then 
she capped all with the climax of a Liszt "Polonaise": "He is 
just the sort of one I should like to bring to you as a son-in-law." 
Carreno turned cold at heart while Teresita's letter warbled on. 
Little does it matter to her that they meet only on the grounds 
of very limited French on his part, nor does she care especially 
that he already has four wives, since he makes no secret of it. 


The dread with which her mother awaited the next letter can 
well be imagined. Could there be worse news still ? There could 
and there was. 

Teresita had fallen critically ill with an eruption and a fever 
which made her turn entirely black. Her Neapolitan companion 
took the first possible conveyance for home. It was Mohammed 
who cared for her and brought a nurse from Tunis. To make 
matters worse yet, the police were asking for her birth certificate 
and Teresita frantically wrote to her mother for it. Meanwhile a 
young German doctor, the same whose life Teresita had saved 
from the point of a hostile dagger, recommended her to the good 
offices of the German Consul. She begged to return home, to 
which her mother cabled an emphatic "no." From Malta, which 
she managed to reach without her birth certificate, she wrote one 
of her most pitiful, childish letters in her almost illegible hand : 

... I really do not understand you. I expect somebody has been 
telling lies about me to you, and of course as usual you believe them 
— just as you used to believe Fraulein Krahl. ... I have quite out- 
grown the influence Naples had on me. Please be kind and change 
your mind. I want so much to come to you. I want to work and study 
with you and give lessons. I give you my word of honor that if you 
take me back I will behave beautifully and you will not regret it. 

Carreno replied with an ample cheque. For the sake of her 
own health she could not afford another set-to with Teresita. 

Meanwhile the threatening rumble of war was becoming more 
and more insistent until one day it exploded with catastrophic 
detonation. It caught Carreno, returned home from her Amer- 
ican tour, alone in Oberstdorf . In the heat of mobilization it took 
Arturo Rvt days to reach his wife from Berlin, and not until the 
end of September was Carreno in possession of the passport 
without which henceforth one could not live or leave anywhere 
in Europe. 

Once more at home, Arturo told her of a new disaster which 
had overwhelmed Teresita. She had left Malta on the Trieste, 
an Austrian vessel, on July 31, 1914, which, upon declaration of 


war, put in at Bone harbor, Algeria. In Batna near-by that very 
evening Teresita was arrested as a spy, not being in possession of 
any papers of identification, not knowing whether she should 
consider herself an American or an English citizen, whether she 
were divorced or not. Things looked hopeless for her in the dirty 
dungeon she shared with two German wild-beast tamers and 
two Arab women, one who had killed her husband, the other 
her child. The fact that she was in command of the German 
language, that she had known the German consul in Tunis, and 
worse, that she had landed just before the Germans shelled Bone 
harbor, militated against her. Her picture appeared in the papers 
as that of the one who had given the signal which launched the 
attack. From hour to hour Teresita expected to be shot. Happily 
she managed to get a message through to her old singing teacher, 
Signor Villa, who sent it on to Berlin, and soon the American 
Embassy, later joined by the English, was enlisted in her defense. 
However the Algerian authorities refused to free her, and three 
months and a half passed before Teresita had permission to leave 
for the island of Mallorca. There at the Hotel Catala seven kilo- 
meters from Palma she reassembled her shattered nerves as best 
she could after an experience which might have driven the most 
level-headed person to insanity. Pine-covered mountains made a 
protecting screen against the north winds, and open country 
stretched before her to the sea beyond, as she spent day upon 
day lounging on the wide terrace, waiting for permission to 
leave the island of her refuge and detention. 

At the outbreak of the war Carreno, like everyone else in Ger- 
many, felt sure that victory would be on the German side. She 
refused to take Arturo's advice and remove her money out of 
the hands of Schickler's private bank for deposit in Switzerland. 
Unlike d'Albert who, good German that he was, had found it 
expedient to become a Swiss citizen at the first moment of con- 
flagration, she preferred to stand or fall with the country of her 
adoption. In September she wrote to Giovanni, studying in 
Milan, from whom she had not heard for three months: 


I have to give you very unpleasant news, I am sorry to say. Through 
this terrible war we find ourselves in most serious financial trouble. 
The little money I have been able to set aside is all tied up, and all 
I can get is a loan on it to enable us to live, and that depriving us of 
every comfort. We have to do without servants and must content 
ourselves with barely enough so as not to starve. I can only send 
150 marks, and you will have to see what you can do to earn your 
bread and butter for alas! I cannot help you any more. All engage- 
ments for the winter are being cancelled, and I fear there will be 
nothing for me to earn either with concerts or with pupils. Who 
wants lessons under these terrible circumstances? 

If Carreno painted conditions in what proved to be colors of 
somewhat exaggerated gloom, telegrams which canceled one 
after another of the fifty-five engagements already on her list 
seemed to justify her in so doing. Life at home ran along in 
much the same orderly groove with only one servant at 25 marks 
a month to do heavy cleaning, and Josephine to help where she 
could. Eugenia and Hertha manfully did their part and man- 
aged to find time for a course in nursing, working for war relief 
wherever they were allowed. The problem of their status of na- 
tionality worried the authorities. For a time they were obliged 
to present themselves at police headquarters daily until some 
official had the clever idea of having them declared not alien but 
homeless. These girls without a country were allowed to travel in 
Germany on English passports, suffering outside of red tape no 
other particular inconvenience on that account. 

Later in October Germany once more began to insist upon the 
solace of music without which there is no living for a Teuton, 
although making it as difficult as possible for the artist who was 
expected to provide it. On every provocation in every city pass- 
ports had to be presented and studied at length, questions had to 
be answered that pried into one's very reason for being born. 
Hours that should have been spent preparing in quiet for the 
evening were used up standing in line at the Consulate or at the 
police station until there was barely time for dressing. Letters 
from those high in authority availed nothing against the intrusive 


stupidity of some of the inquisitors, one of whom wished to know 
why Carreno could not give her concerts by letter. Crossing 
frontiers was worse. Now and then she found an inspector who 
could be counted among her admirers and was only too glad to 
smooth the way. More often she was obliged to let herself be 
herded, pushed, and insulted like everyone else in this orgy of 
hatred and suspicion. She made the best of it because she felt 
now, as she was too young to realize in 1863, that she could bring 
a measure of comfort more real than material help to thousands 
whom hope had forsaken. For this it was worth while to cross 
the sealed borders of Holland, Denmark, and Sweden with all 
the hardships it entailed. 

In one way it was a relief to be on tour rather than at home. 
Italy's entrance into the conflict on the side of the allies brought 
disharmony into this cosmopolitan household. That Arturo's 
sympathies were ranged on the side of the country of his birth 
was natural. Yet he was obliged to live among those who thrilled 
to every German victory. Loud disagreement often ended in the 
deadlock of silence charged with tension. Mealtimes became the 
dreaded parts of the day. With actual relief Carreno left for 
Madrid alone to give three concerts under the auspices of the 
Philharmonic Society there, and to pilot Teresita back from Bar- 
celona. In one of the luxurious apartments of the Palace Hotel 
she prepared for these all-important functions. The Society was 
the most exclusive of all Spain, only members having entrance 
to the concerts from which even the usual critics were debarred. 
One of Carreno's most absorbed listeners was the Infanta Isabel, 
aunt of the King, by far the most musical member of the royal 

By ill luck Carreno contracted a cold on the night of her first 
concert. She played between spells of coughing. Bronchitis de- 
veloped, and for more than a week she was forced to stay in bed. 
Her second concert, played before she had recovered strength 
sapped by high fever, was nevertheless received with universal 
enthusiasm which outlived even the third to such an extent that 
an extra concert was called for by petition and unanimously 


voted by the directorate. All this was tremendously gratifying. 
But Carreno longed for home, no news of which had reached 
her during the two months of her stay. She was packing, im- 
patient to be on her way, when the Major Domo of the Court 
called upon her with great ceremony, bringing an invitation 
from Queen Victoria to play a week later at the Palace. The re- 
quest honored her too much to be denied. 

On the evening of May 31, 1915, a festal equipage pranced up 
to the door of the hotel to take her to the Queen. As she entered 
the hall where the ladies of the royal family and of the Court 
were standing about in groups, the Queen stepped forward to 
greet the guest who was her match in bearing. Diamonds glit- 
tered under crystal chandeliers like fireflies under the stars. After 
Carreno had been presented to the Queen Mother Maria Chris- 
tina and to a bevy of Princesses, King Alfonso himself entered 
the hall attended by Gentlemen of the Court. He welcomed Car- 
reno with genial cordiality to which he added: "Senora Carreno, 
I have known you very well since my boyhood. Your picture 
hangs in my mother's boudoir." Then while the others were tak- 
ing their seats, Carreno was escorted to the piano. Her sweeping 
bow was the gracious salutation of one queen to another. Car- 
reno smiled. She was suddenly reminded of the little Teresita 
of long ago whose curtsy had been her downfall. For more than 
an hour she played whatever one or another of the group called 
for. Last of all the Queen Mother asked for the "Marche Mili- 
taire." This the King really appreciated. "Oh, Senora," he said, 
"if you only knew what suffering this composition has caused 
me! My mother insisted that I learn to play the piano. I have 
no ear for music and nothing on earth could give me an under- 
standing of it. I remember with agony that she would make me 
play this march with her for four hands. She was dreadfully 
strict about time, and made me count aloud one, two ; one, two, 
until I was hoarse." 

As Carreno shook hands with the Queen in leaving she was 
honored by another invitation to play, this time in the rooms of 
the Queen Mother, on the following Thursday afternoon. Flat- 


tering as it was, Carrefio accepted with reluctance. There had still 
been no word from home. The days dragged on. 

This second appearance at Court had a more intimate setting. 
The Queen Mother received her guest very simply, inquired for 
her family, her children, and apologized for asking Carreno to 
defer her playing until the coming of King Alfonso. He had re- 
fused to be left out. "It is the greatest compliment he could pay 
you, my dear Senora," said the Queen Mother. Again it was a 
request program. At its end tea was served at two tables, one for 
the royal family, one for the artist and members of the Court 
circle. A chair opposite Carreno was vacant. Seeing this the King 
himself took his seat there and began to talk vivaciously with 
this artist, whom he liked in spite of her playing rather than be- 
cause of it. Carreno was as much touched by this courtesy as by 
the gifts of jeweled brooches presented to her by the Queen, the 
Queen Mother, and the Infanta Isabel. 

After this Carreno left at once for Barcelona, settled Teresita's 
affairs, secured her English passport, and managed to cross the 
borders in safety. She rejoiced to Arturo, 

At last I am on the way home, and I can't tell you how happy I am! 
It seemed to me that I should never return to you or the children, and 
the unbearable thing was not to have any word of you. The despatch 
from Eugenia in answer to mine came as if from Heaven. Thank 
God that you are well, and that I can again hear from you! 

Near Lausanne Teresita found a place where she could try to 
regain control of herself under the care of an eminent nerve 
specialist, who advised temporary rest and no idea of a musical 
career for a long time to come. The influence of North Africa 
and the mental torture of imprisonment had left Teresita passive, 
devoid of the little initiative she once had. She waited for fate 
to do its worst, relegated every decision to her mother, and 
yearned for the happy days in Africa with Mohammed. If only 
she could earn enough money to go to Tangiers and live in a 
little cottage by the sea, married to somebody, anybody who 
would protect her, own a little low Arab horse, and ride and 


walk and live ! She blames her mother for her unhappy state and 
hits the point in self-analysis: 

You see, I can't rely upon myself or upon my capacities. The latter 
come and go according to the emotions of my soul. I would not care 
if I did not have your name. If I had a name of my own to play with 
in my musical eccentricities I should not mind in the least, and would 
go concertizing around the whole world. But as it is I am afraid of 
putting a stain on that, your beautifully polished name. 

She recognizes that "to make a name in Europe you do not need 
to be young, you only need to be great" — yet, too tired to take up 
the challenge, she lapses into lethargy and leaves all to Allah and 
to her mother. 

But Carreno had not yet reached home. In Bern she drove to 
the American Embassy for the necessary formalities and was re- 
ceived by an uncouth man who did not think it worth while 
to rise from the chair in which he was comfortably sprawling. 
"If I had been the laundress bringing his collars back badly 
ironed, he could not have been less courteous," commented Car- 
reno. Between yawns he informed her that she would have to 
have a birth certificate in addition to her passport to prove that 
she was really an American citizen. Those were the latest orders. 
Then he withdrew his attention in favor of a newspaper. A day 
and a half passed in negotiation before she was able to leave for 
Basle and there she was held up for three more days, this time by 
German officials, until she could prove herself a bona fide resi- 
dent of Berlin. A letter to Mr. Cochran summed up the experi- 
ence of this trip from the haven of home, concluding: 

Well, now I have taken you to Spain and to the Royal Family there, 
and have made you travel through France and Switzerland (whether 
you were willing or not) and brought you into Germany and into 
our home. I will allow you to rest a while — I think you need it badly 
— to remain at your own dear home, and as you are there, I will now 
bring you back to business and in doing so will end my letter as I 
began it. This is according to all musical rules. And yet they say 
we women are not logical! 


You are quite right about the advisability of my placing myself in 
America at the earliest opportunity and (as often it has happened) 
your thoughts and mine were running in the same channel. From 
what you write the United States will be overrun next season by 
musical attractions and specially by pianists of more or less popularity. 
In view of this I have asked myself and am now putting the question 
before you whether it would not be advisable to postpone my tour, 
"our tour," until the season 1916/17, provided I am still an inhabitant 
of this planet. My prospects here even with this terrible war and in 
spite of it are very good. Already I have many offers for next season, 
not only from the different musical societies in Germany but also 
from those of Scandinavia, Holland, Switzerland, and Spain, which 
again wishes to have me. Even admitting that circumstances would 
be such that some of those offers might not take effect, I would still 
have enough engagements to make my season a profitable one. Also 
with pupils I would be able to make a good income. All this would 
happen without my having to incur any extra expense and I would 
remain at home or within easy reach of my family. 

And so it was decided. The summer passed busily. Carreno added 
Beethoven's "G major Concerto," which had tempted her since 
she first heard it under d' Albert's fingers, to her repertoire, and 
began to make plans for her treatise on "Possibilities of Tone 
Color by the Artistic Use of the Pedal." Her style was by no 
means literary, but she had something authoritative to contrib- 
ute on this subject. 

It looked as if the season could begin with tranquillity when 
one morning the newspapers brought word that Giovanni, too, 
had been arrested as a German spy in Milan, where his voice was 
undergoing the changes from baritone to tenor. Letters from 
Germany in German had attracted the curiosity of the Govern- 
ment, especially a postcard in which Carreno harmlessly asked 
how his "work" was progressing. The quotation marks looked 
suspicious. It was his interest in guns, however, that led to his 
undoing. Lunching one day in a public restaurant with a friend, 
Giovanni's attention was arrested by a passing column of sol- 
diers. He casually inquired whether the guns they carried were 


Vetterli guns. The remark was overheard by a zealous patriot, 
and that evening soldiers came to the pension with a warrant 
for his arrest. They gave him the alternative of taking a cab to 
the police station at his own expense or of submitting to the in- 
dignity of walking handcuffed between them. There his money 
and other property were taken from him, then every article of 
clothing, in place of which he was required to put on prison gar- 
ments stained with blood and unwashed since the last user had 
been released to freedom or death. He shared his cell, six paces 
long by four in width, with an ordinary thief. Two filthy mat- 
tresses directly on the floor masqueraded as beds. Food consisted 
of bread and a dish of thin soup served in containers so dirty that 
for three days Giovanni was unable to bring himself to eat. But 
for a friend whose anxiety led her to arouse the American consul 
from his apathy by continuous prodding, Giovanni might have 
remained in prison for the rest of the war. She was permitted to 
supply him with books, food cooked in the pension, and money 
with which he bribed an official to move him to a slightly cleaner 
cell of his own. There nights continued to be more unbearable 
than the days. Every two hours a guard unlocked the cell door, 
turned the light of a lantern full upon him, and locked him in 
again with a bang and a jangle of keys. Even within these in- 
tervals of solitude there was no peace. The Sentinella alerta of 
the guards, repeated every fifteen minutes by these potential 
opera singers in fortissimo, made the fitful sleeper jump to wake- 
fulness. It was easier to rest by day. After eighteen days Giovanni 
was given his liberty and his property on condition that he would 
leave the country at once. He had no greater wish. From Lugano, 
his first stop, he made his way to Frankfurt, there to adjust his 
rising voice to tenor level, quality, and repertoire under the guid- 
ance of Herr Bellwidt. Carreno as well as her son could breathe 
freely once more. 

This shock at the beginning of a taxing season helped to under- 
mine her shaky health, but it was not her own condition that 
upset her most. From Stockholm she wrote to Arturo : 


Only a few lines to tell you everything goes well although as usual 
I have a cold. But after Dr. Rystedt gave me those old cough powders 
it has improved. I hope that you received my telegrams. Both concerts 
here and in Upsala were sold out. Was that not nice? All our dear 
friends here are grieved that you did not come with me and send 
you their hearty greetings. Frau Hofmann who declared that you are 
her special favorite (the dear old friend!) asked particularly about 
your health. When I told her about your sciatica she said to tell you 
that there is a famous doctor here whose specialty is sciatica. He says 
the only way to cure it is to stay in bed two weeks, but not less, and 
then take massage. Not before! He says no other cure is useful. The 
sciatic nerve must have complete rest and then you get well. That 
sounds very sensible and I urge you to do this. 

Again and again Carreno complains that Arturo writes noth- 
ing about his own condition. "That after all is the most important 
thing," she reiterates. From Stavanger she finds time for a really 
long letter that gives insight into the uncertainties of the life of a 
concert artist during the war. 

. . . You will be surprised to have a letter from this place, I know. 
An engagement for 400 crowns was offered me here by Hals, and 
I accepted it, very especially because it could take place between the 
two concerts in Bergen. I played here night before last and was 
supposed to leave for my second concert in Bergen this evening. 
Last night when I was ready and packed to take the night boat to 
Bergen, I had a telegram from Harloff in which he told me that 
the prospects for today's concert were so bad that he advised me 
not to give the concert. After the enthusiasm of the audience and, 
as I am told, the splendid criticisms in the papers, this news was a 
great surprise and certainly not a pleasant one. Of course I cancelled 
the concert, and go on to Bergen to night to take the night train to 
Kristiania tomorrow, then on to Goteborg on the eighteenth. As one 
says: "Everything has its bright side." I felt so badly — I caught cold 
again on the way here — and just before Harloff's telegram came I 
had decided not to leave for Bergen until this morning. We had 
such a storm all day yesterday and way into the night that I was 
afraid I might become seriously ill if I went out in such awful weather. 


And then came Harloff's telegram and I could stay right here, which 
was best for my health. 

Business in Kristiania was not good either. The first concert brought 
me 700 crowns and in the second I lost nearly 200 crowns. So the 
first paid for the last and I had 427 crowns left. The reason is said 
to be that the critic of the most-read paper wrote so dreadfully about 
me that people after reading it did not come to hear me. The mu- 
sicians in Kristiania, so I am told, were outraged and wrote letters 
to the editor of the paper demanding that he be dismissed. In any 
case the audience made a real demonstration in the second concert, 
and as I stepped out upon the platform I found upon my chair in 
front of the piano a huge laurel wreath tied with Norwegian colors 
with an inscription which read: "In greatest esteem from the pianists 
and pianistes of Kristiania." The applause did not wish to end, and 
I had to stand there in order to respond gratefully for five minutes 
before I was allowed to sit down to play. Since I knew nothing of the 
criticism this reception was somewhat surprising to me. The next 
day Hals told me about the criticism, and then I understood the 
reason for the ovation. It was a nice way for the musicians and the 
audience to punish the critic, and I was very much touched and 
grateful, but I lost money through this Herr Kriti\er, in spite of 

Frau Sinding (not Frau Christian but our old friend in Kristiania) 
told me just on the day of my departure that a letter had been made 
public which read : The admirers of Frau Carreno ask her to give one 
more Popular Concert in Kristiania. That was nice and flattering too, 
was it not ? Harloflf in Bergen was the one who told me that this 
bad criticism was responsible for the small attendance. Could one 
think of anything more stupid? All the other critics wrote beautiful 
notices, I was told in Kristiania, and just this one had more influence 
than all the others together. It doesn't flatter the intelligence and the 
musical taste of the Norwegian Public. 

The concert in Tonsberg was delightful and the people were charm- 
ing. It was sold out. So the great? critic of Kristiania must have had 
no influence there. . . . 

Now, my beloved, I have told you everything that has happened 
so far. All our friends regret very much that you did not come along, 
and send you their greetings. In Kristiania with the Sindings — do you 


remember when we were there together and the chauffeur could not 
find the house ? — I was asked for dinner, and Herr Sinding drank to 
your health and everyone followed suit. That gave me particularly 
great pleasure. Neither were our children forgotten. They are really 
dear good people and true friends. I also had the pleasure of seeing 
Christian Sinding and his beautiful lovable wife. They send you, 
Eugenia, and Hertha their greetings. . . . 

And so I hope with God's help to be with you and my "Babies" 
on the fifth. Your old wife, Teresa. 

As Carrefio wove her way from Scandinavia to Rumania in 
more than forty concerts she could look back upon 1915 artisti- 
cally with satisfaction. More and more she was drawn to Beetho- 
ven. His "G major Concerto" found a place on a Berlin program 
which she devoted to three of his concerti. With Rose she ap- 
peared in three Beethoven sonatas for violin and piano. An out- 
standing event of the early part of the year was a concert shared 
with Lilli Lehmann. It was one of the memorable events of the 
musical season. For a night they appeared with rejuvenated fresh- 
ness, exuberantly temperamental as in the old days. No, her 
powers were not waning. "Do you never grow tired?" someone 
asked the timeworn question. And her answer was an exultant 
fanfare: "When I do I shall stop playing." In Bucharest bron- 
chitis threatened and was subdued without causing the loss of a 
single concert. She remembered the doctor's warning: "A year 
of complete rest or else a nervous collapse," only to put it con- 
temptuously aside. 

Again and again Carrefio had reason to be glad that she was 
still in Europe where concerts were surprisingly plentiful. She 
was relieved to assure herself in person that Giovanni was im- 
proving in health and voice, that he was in good hands, and 
above all that he was working, "trying to enter into the spirit of 
the great Beethoven." Here and there an engagement to sing in 
opera in small cities brought him returns in experience rather 
than in money. It was gratifying, too, that she could pass approv- 
ingly upon the engagement of Eugenia to a young German lieu- 
tenant, and upon the teachers Hertha had chosen to help her 


with her singing and painting in Munich. For the time being 
Teresita also was not in active eruption. The anxious mother sent 
Arturo, whose sciatica was still the great anxiety of the moment, 
to Switzerland armed with a letter of credit which would make 
if possible for Teresita to go to South America for a concert tour, 
as she had begged to do long before. When it came to the point 
of making definite arrangements for sailing, courage forsook 
her. She refused to go without Arturo for a manager as once in 
Finland. How could she, she argued rightly, take charge of her 
own business when she had never been able to do mathematics in 
any form. Arturo categorically refused, and Carreno was as glad 
to see Teresita come to the sensible conclusion of abandoning the 
tour as she was to see the letter of credit returned intact. Instead 
Teresita changed her quarters to Berne, while at Carreno' s sug- 
gestion Arturo remained in Chexbres for treatment. 

The cure seemed to have been effective. Together Arturo and 
Teresa once more faced the hardships of a journey to Spain for 
three highly remunerative concerts under the auspices of the 
Philharmonic Society as before. The French Government again 
created difficulties which hampered the return to Berlin so seri- 
ously that they were obliged to retrace their steps from the 
French border to Madrid to ask for the intercession of the Infanta 
Isabel in their behalf. Upon her insistent demand permission was 
granted them to pass through French territory only after precious 
weeks had been spent in besieging one office after another. Safely 
at home once more, dangers and annoyances of the past were 
quickly crowded out by the exigencies of each day. 

One morning came news of the death of Manuel after pro- 
longed illness. Devotedly Rosie had cared for him and supported 
them both by turning to the breeding of dogs. Handsome Man- 
uel gone, his life a wasted promise ! Carreno could not let herself 
go in the luxurious indulgence of grief. There were concerts to 
be played. She must spare herself for what lay before her. Never- 
theless each shock took its toll of strength! 

Of all the concerts during this season the ones to which she 
contributed her participation for the benefit of war relief gave 


her the deepest satisfaction. When the Crown Princess of Ger- 
many called her to the royal box to thank her in person for aid- 
ing a cause under her patronage, Carreno esteemed it an honor. 
But she was just as mindful of her own dignity as an artist. On 
one occasion she had given her services for the benefit of the 
widows and orphans of fallen soldiers in a concert at Kroll's 
under the auspices of Excellenz von Blilow. After the per- 
formance an Adjutant appeared to ask that Carreno accompany 
him to the box of His Excellency who desired to express his 
gratitude. Carreno drew herself up to her full stature, unhesi- 
tatingly rejecting the distinction. "Please tell His Excellency that 
no thanks are necessary. I did it for the soldiers." And she could 
not refrain from adding: "Besides, if Excellenz von Billow 
wishes to express his appreciation he should come to me. I am a 

Art admits of no compromise. It was Carreno's sense of the 
dignity of her calling which would not allow her to accept a 
financially breath-taking offer to play every evening for a week 
in this same setting of Kroll's Theater for 2,500 marks a night, 
she to play for one hour only. Then, after an intermission the 
rest of the evening was to be given over to vaudeville. In order 
not to be tempted, in order to keep faith with herself as a 
musician, she, a little ruefully to be sure, sent in a prompt refusal. 

Word from Mr. Cochran seemed to point the way to a successful 
season in the United States, still unscathed by war and its reper- 
cussions. That the Steinway Company was willing to cooperate 
was an additional inducement, and Carrefio in spite of the re- 
monstrance of Eugenia and Hertha, in spite of the advice of Ar- 
turo, provisionally agreed to brave the new terrors of the ocean, 
reserving however the right to cancel the trip should there be too 
few concerts to warrant it. 

With Eugenia soon to be married, Hertha in Munich, Gio- 
vanni in Frankfurt, Teresita in Switzerland, and Arturo with 
her in America, keeping the apartment at Kurfurstendamm 28 
would have been an inexcusable extravagance. Poor old Jose- 
phine could go with Eugenia. There began the sad business of 
dismantling the home, of storing furniture. As she waited while 
the movers carried out the last boxes, Carreno was assailed by 
a premonition: "I feel that I shall not come back again," she 
confided to Hertha. It would not have been a great disappoint- 
ment had Mr. Cochran sent word that the tour should be aban- 
doned, but when instead a cable came announcing thirty fixed 
engagements, common sense dictated immediate departure. 

Carreno and Arturo took passage for September 7 on the 
steamer Os\ar 11, sailing from Denmark. Crossing the border 
at Warnemunde with eight trunks and more pieces of hand 
luggage was no laughing matter. There was no detail of equip- 
ment which customs officials did not find worthy of suspicious 
scrutiny. The dresses, carefully packed by Arturo with tissue 
paper between the folds, were deprived of this protection. Labels 
were removed from all bottles, and a whole supply of calling 
cards was confiscated. Only after page-by-page examination was 
Carreno permitted to take her music and her books out of the 
country under seal. Arrived in Kopenhagen completely ex- 
hausted, it was found necessary to repack every trunk anew. No 
danger of mines at sea could match the terrors of travel on land 
at this time, Carreno decided. There was no fear in her as she 
embarked, and in fact the journey proved to be unexpectedly 


eventless and pleasurable, potential peril merely adding a stim- 
ulating tang. 

Of her arrival in New York Carrefio tells in a letter to one of 
her students. 

Your dear letter welcoming us to America was such a dear welcome 
and gave both your Berlin Daddy and your Berlin Mother such a 
great pleasure! Thank you a thousand times for the dear kind mes- 
sage, my darling child! We arrived on the nineteenth instant after 
having a most pleasant journey. We met no mines, no U-boats, no 
submarines, and altogether had as quiet a trip (sea and all other 
elements!) as could have been wished. As soon as we could we started 
looking for an apartment, as we intend making a home for ourselves 
here in New York for some time to come. I find that I will have time 
to teach whilst I am here (for which I am awfully glad) and there- 
fore, we want more privacy and independence than we have in a 
hotel. Until now, though we have seen a great number of apartments 
more or less suitable, we have not found just what we wish to have. 
There are so many sides to this important question! First of all the 
price, then the location, the size, the freedom of playing the piano 
when and as I feel like it, which means of course at reasonable hours. 
And in order to find all these conditions we are yet hunting. Let us 
hope we will have the good luck to find just the treasure for which 
we are looking. . . . 

I will tell you just a little of the happenings which may be of a little 
interest to you as my child. First of all Eugenia married on the ninth 
of last month Lieutenant Jorn Duske. He is a very charming and 
energetic young man twenty-five years old. They are devoted to each 
other, and though neither one of them has much of the "worldly 
goods," I think they will be very happy in their married life. The 
wedding was a 'Kriegsheirath' and consequently very simple and 
quiet. . . . 

Before leaving Berlin we gave up our apartment in Kurf urstendamm 
28. This has been a sorrow to me as you can imagine. Twenty-two 
years of my life were spent there. My babies came as babies and small 
children to this home, grew up in it, became grown-ups. ... So much 
joy and sorrow did I go through at 28 Kurfiistendamm! I felt as 
though I were parting with a large share of my heart by leaving our 
old home! I will not say any more about it, darling, for my heart 


grows sadder and sadder when I speak of it all, and I have made 
up my mind to use all that I possess of will-power to fight my feelings. 

This letter is growing to such dimensions that in kindness to you, 
my sweet child, I will come to an end. . . . Auf baldiges und gesundes 
Wiedersehen, darling child, and with a heart full of love I remain 
your affectionate "Berlin Mother." 

P.S. Sept. 29th. I just found an apartment, thank Heaven!! From 
tomorrow on our address will be the "Delia Robbia," 740 West End 
Ave. This will be your New York home. 

One of the chief compensations of the American tour of 1916 
was to be the renewed opportunity for teaching. In Germany 
that part of Carreno's profession had lately been at a standstill, 
and she had missed it, the more because it was the only corner 
of her art still unexplored in fullness. 

Carreno taught according to three simple rules: "1. Master the 
fundamentals. 2. Know what to do. 3. Do it." Like other creative 
teachers she disliked the word method. It suggested constrain- 
ing walls, not opening ways. As she required freedom for her- 
self, freedom in self-expression, freedom on occasion to change 
her mind, so she insisted that her students take advantage of 
their right to blaze their own trails. She was always open-eared 
to follow an interpretation widely divergent from her own to 
the end, if she found in it something significant, something sin- 
cerely personal, and her praise was apt to be as extravagant as 
her blame. At no time was a student in doubt as to his rating, 
but neither was there a guarantee that the performance which 
found favor today might not meet with disapproval tomorrow. 
A pupil who expected systematic step-by-step training, a Jacob's 
ladder leading to the paradise of art according to a black-and- 
white right and wrong, clear as the Commandments, soon left 
in utter confusion to seek another master. Those independent 
enough, imaginative enough to penetrate the brambles of con- 
tradiction to the clearing, discovered that the principles upon 
which their musical beliefs were grounded finally tallied with 
Carreno's own. In their essence they were definite as the Con- 


Until German standards had caused Carreno to reevaluate her 
playing she had continued to teach as her father instructed her, 
using the material she had inherited from him in the somewhat 
stereotyped way which had imitation and repetition as its peda- 
gogical basis. She encouraged her disciples to copy her, and in 
turn presented them with a caricature of their own performance 
to the life. She was an active listener, and if the modus operandi 
failed in result there was always the experimental approach: 
"Try it this way. Perhaps this will work better." Until Carreno 
had come into her own in Germany, the quality of her pupils 
had been uninspiring, a strain to the patience of one to whom 
difficulties presented no problem. The door often closed with a 
"thank goodness that's over." 

Germany revolutionized this attitude. When young boys and 
girls came to Carreno for help that seemed to mean life or death, 
she began to give closer thought to her responsibilities as a 
teacher. What did she have to give in return for their investment 
in money and in faith? Detailed analysis was not for her. She 
gladly left it to people like Rudolf Maria Breithaupt who had 
found the tenets of his book, Die Natiirliche Klaviertechni\, con- 
firmed by her playing. Weight and relaxation were the recent 
bywords of pianistic vocabulary. That they were more often mis- 
applied than comprehended was an unfortunate by-product. 
Good-by to the superannuated Breslauer, to Kullak, and those 
of his kind! Good-by to the finger methods by whose limited 
lights, like the ghostly ones of the marshes, countless potential 
virtuosos had sought technical perfection and found instead the 
end of a promising career in the quicksands of neuritis. Newly 
aware of reserves of power, of stronger muscles ready to take 
the burden from the weaker, Germany splashed, rolled, and 
pounded to its heart's content. The Liszt pupil had paved the 
way, and the weight-technicians followed suit with uncon- 
trolled abandon, in joyous confidence that they had found the 
combinations to the safe where the secret of genius lay hidden, 
the simple solution to the riddle: "How can the extraordinary 


be accomplished without hard work"? In their intoxication at 
finding piano playing suddenly made easier they forgot that it 
is not a system but the person who succeeds, that Carreno had 
found the opening key by virtue of three small words: "I am 
Carreno" long before she was eight years old. Naively they ac- 
claimed her: "Here is the one who adopts and proves our the- 
ories." Whether she liked it or not Carreno saw herself saddled 
with a method. 

Together with a feeling of responsibility the years brought 
another revelation. Teaching had its moments even as playing. 
There were facets in the musical profession that sparkled 
freshly by reflected illumination. The development of a student 
could be as important, as exciting as her own, might even arm 
her against the stagnation of unrelieved routine. Passing on 
convictions, putting beliefs into words, striking responsive 
chords, that too was necessary, never forgetting that music it- 
self, not talking about it is the thing. How many times she was 
heard to insist: "To understand music you must hear it, to love 
music you must hear it, to believe in music you must hear it." 
Her disciples were taught to listen well. 

Beyond duty, beyond pleasure Carreno saw in music a way 
of life, demanding full dedication. She made her pupils aware 
that the most beautiful piece of craftsmanship is not necessarily 
art, that art means selfless surrender to the cause of the com- 
poser by a soul that is stirred. "It is a serious thing to me to 
play Beethoven," Carreno once said. "When I play one of his 
Sonates, I say a prayer with every phrase, that I may be guided 
to interpret it as he meant it to be." She had no patience with 
those who looked for other than inner rewards in music, who 
entered upon this calling in a spirit of self-seeking. To such 
she gave warning: "Art and commercialism are born enemies, 
far more than England and Germany. They never shake 

Art as a way of life led to a more universal conception still. 
It was a religion to which in all faith she was consecrated. 


"Without God there can be no true great art," Carreno once 
quoted in a letter to her son, and it was not in ritual but in art 
that she found her God. 

Guiding principles of so inclusive dimensions were hard in- 
deed to compress into outline form for a student. It was not in 
Carreno to try to do it. Nothing could be less congenial to her 
than the academic way. According to the inspiration of the 
moment she permitted visions of her inner world to sift 
through, radiant, treasurable particles among more practical, 
less colorful grains. It was left to the student to choose and sort 
and carry away what he found useful. The supply was un- 

High moments are likely to bring balancing pits of depres- 
sion. There was, alas, no regular weekly lesson hour for the 
Carreno student. It was not unusual for him to wait anxiously 
for a month before being summoned for a hearing, or to be 
called at too short notice only to be met at the door by Jose- 
phine with a contrite: "I'm so sorry, but Madame is unable to 
teach this afternoon. She is suffering from a very severe head- 
ache." On one occasion Carreno and one of her students were 
on the train homeward bound after a hard-working summer. 
"My dear," said Carreno, "it just occurs to me that we have 
never studied a Beethoven sonate together. Bring me the opus no 
next Thursday." Rather than lose the opportunity the pupil 
rushed from the station to the apartment, worked day and 
night, even allowing herself to be fed at the piano, and finally 
appeared with her sonate for a lesson that lasted through the 
morning and proved to be the most profitable of them all. 

As there was no fixed weekly lesson hour, so there was no 
timing of the lesson itself. Carreno taught as long or as briefly 
as she pleased, sometimes even by correspondence. If absorbed, 
two hours might pass without a break, while the teakettle sang 
in the dining room, and the family awaited the opening of the 
door patiently. They found amusement in the interim by ridi- 
culing the remarks and mistakes that filtered through. On the 
other hand a lesson not fully prepared, or one to which Car- 


refio was unsympathetically inclined, might terminate in less 
than half of the usual hour. One young aspirant, coming for a 
first audition, failed completely to measure up to standard. Af- 
ter twenty minutes the door closed behind her. The customary 
bill for a regular lesson was sent and promptly contested by the 
young girl: "Kindly state what Madame Carreno charges for 
a twenty minute talk?" The reply, sent by Arturo, was equally 
brief. "Your mother asked Madame Carreno to give you a les- 
son which she did. Madame Carreno's time in music is not 
measured by minutes but by the lesson." The bill was paid 
under further protest. 

What would happen in the lesson was quite as unpredictable. 
Carreno felt no obligation to cover assigned ground. Some- 
times the hour passed in the minute consideration of a page or 
two of a composition which an ambitious student had prepared 
in full. Sometimes a technical detail that needed righting 
showed her in relentless vein, hammering at the problem with 
patience that outlasted her pupil's, unmindful of tears shed in 
the process, until it had been mastered once and for all. Les- 
sons like these were not the least valuable ones. Then again 
there were times when, sitting at the far end of the room, Car- 
reno listened without a word while a whole movement un- 
folded itself. Then might come the moment which meant 
compensation for long hours of floundering. "You played that 
like an angel, my darling child, like a real artist." 

More often than not Carreno allowed herself to react spon- 
taneously without continuity of plan, throwing in a suggestion 
here, illustrating a point there, indicating the orchestral part 
for the Concerto on the second piano (while the cigarette 
glowed on between her small, white teeth), leaving it to the 
student to draw the inferences, make the connections later on 
at home. By instinct she felt her way into the recesses of a 
student's personality. Pedagogically she was a democrat and re- 
frained from imposing her established individuality upon one 
still in process of formation. She was sincere in saying: "It is 
no compliment to the teacher to be told that her pupil plays as 


he does." Rather should he be the clarifying mirror in which 
the student sees himself as he is. 

So recognizing the relation between teacher and student as 
a very personal one, Carreno frankly admitted that her way of 
teaching might not be right for every student. She grew to be 
more and more careful in her choice. A student lacking in ad- 
vancement but otherwise well taught was advised to continue 
with his former teacher; to another she recommended study 
with Leschetitzky, although his ideas were different from her 
own, because she felt that this person would be more easily at 
home in his method. For drill in the fundamentals of her 
technical principles she sent pupils to her understudy, Bruno 
Gortatowsky, and later on to Eugenia. A person for whom she 
felt an intuitive dislike was refused admittance to her class no 
matter how well he played. 

Once the pupil was accepted, Carreno expected complete re- 
sponsiveness. A young American girl came for a first lesson. 
Technically maladjusted, she was initiated into Carreno's way 
of doing, very unlike her own. "But Madame," she pleaded, 
"you are not going to change my technique, are you?" "Don't 
worry, my dear," Carreno reassured her. "I am not going to 
change your technique. I am going to give you some." 

Disregarding the laws of professional etiquette always ended 
in abrupt dismissal. As she would not receive as her student one 
who was still officially under the direction of another, so she re- 
fused to see again a girl who, she discovered, in order to double 
results, was studying with two teachers at the same time. On 
one point especially she was adamant. No one had the right to 
advertise herself a Carreno pupil without her sanction. It en- 
raged her to hear that a certain Fraulein was giving lectures on 
the "Carreno Method" before one of the outstanding musical 
organizations in Berlin when, in Carreno's opinion, she could 
not have had enough lessons to master her ideas. A letter to 
the president of this Verein put a sudden end to the series. On 
another occasion, Carreno was giving a concert in a small mid- 
Western town. In passing the local manager happened to men- 


tion: "Madame, one of your most enthusiastic pupils is teach- 
ing your method here." Carreno could not remember the name, 
though she had an almost infallible memory for names. So she 
asked that the young lady be brought to the green room. 
Neither was it a face she remembered, and Carreno had an 
equally infallible memory for faces. "When did you study with 
me, Miss B?" asked Carreno. "My memory is so poor." "Ma- 
dame, I really must confess that I never had a formal lesson. But 
when you were in Italy one summer I used to sit beneath the 
window when you were practicing. I learned more from you 
then than from any other teacher I ever had." "It takes an artist 
to learn from hearing an artist," was Carreno's comment as she 
turned away disgusted. Again in San Francisco she was to play 
the Tschaikowsky "Concerto." The rehearsal went badly. The 
conductor took strange liberties. When Carreno frankly ex- 
pressed her displeasure, he explained to her hearty amusement: 
"You see it was this way, Madame. I wanted particularly to be 
ready for your coming. A young pianist, your devoted pupil, 
told me that he knew exactly how you wished the Concerto to 
be interpreted. So I asked him to rehearse it with the orchestra 
several times last week." "And who may this young man be?" 
asked Carreno. "Mr. C ? Yes, I remember him perfectly. I can- 
not have given him more than three lessons in all. Do ask him 
to call upon me at my hotel." Needless to say, Mr. C. thought 
it the better part of valor to stay away. 

Once adopted as a "Berlin son or daughter" the student had 
Carreno's full backing. Her propaganda was forceful and un- 
reserved, couched in superlatives in keeping with her enthu- 
siasm. That her satellites adored her was common knowledge 
in musical circles. They arranged concerts for her, often created 
the background for a successful appearance through the atmos- 
phere of eagerness they radiated within their communities. 
This give and take with her musical children was no small 
compensation in Carreno's life of trouble, especially during the 
later years. 

In Carreno's teaching there were points that she considered 


worthy of plentiful repetition. The most important one was 
physical fitness. Steady nerves, strength and quiet, fresh air and 
exercise in it were to her the sine qua non of success. She was 
radical enough to say: "It is better to work too little than too 
much." In the summer she might knock at the door of an over- 
conscientious plodder. "I am going for a walk, my dear. Will 
you come with me ? It will do you good. You can do twice as 
much in half the time later on." Nobody would have thought 
of refusing such an invitation, even if the heavens were behav- 
ing in the approved Upper Bavarian manner, disgorging water- 
falls upon the great and the ungreat, obscuring vision until one 
might as well have been in Illinois for all the sense there was 
of mountains capped with snow. Enshrouded like monks in 
water-shedding capes of Loden cloth, heavy shoes thoroughly 
oiled, they went on and on for hours. Is there anything more 
restful to tired nerves than the rain? It is the nearest we shall 
come to wearing the Tarn\appe which made Siegfried invis- 
ible. To walk silently by her side on days like these was to 
know Carreno well. 

True to her reputation as the most universal of pianists Car- 
reno insisted again and again that every composition be treated 
as a whole. Music and gesture should be at one. As strongly as 
Wagner she dwelt upon this. Interpretation meant revealing 
the essential no more than subordinating the unessential. Free- 
dom therefore was artistic economy in its truest sense, "he trop 
est ennemi du bien" said Rubinstein. Could there be anything 
more ridiculous than an exaggerated flourish of the arm at the 
end of a Beethoven Andante? Could the ideal of every serious 
pianist, that the performer be forgotten in the music he plays, 
be attained without self -abnegating oneness of music and mo- 
tion ? As a case in point Carreno insisted that the holding of a 
chord must not be left to the pedal alone, while the hands lie 
idle in the lap, as if the piano were a mechanical one playing 
on alone. To achieve unity inwardly and outwardly in architec- 
tural proportion, this should be the aim of the coming artist. 

Simplicity was another keynote of her teaching. A great com- 


position does not become greater by distortion. Lack of man- 
nerism, accurate adherence to the spirit of a composition, with- 
out pedantic enslavement to the letter of a particular edition — 
although she had her favorites — she considered fundamental. 
If a student after sufficient study developed a conviction con- 
trary to the indications of the composer or to her own Carreno 
made no objection. She remembered that as a child of fourteen 
she had played a certain passage forte where piano was noted. 
Matthias, her teacher at that time, drew attention to the mis- 
take. At the next repetition the same thing occurred. Manuel 
Antonio, always a silent observer at these lessons, scolded her for 
her supposed inattention. Teresita answered: "But I can't play 
it that way. I don't feel it that way." Matthias wisely put in his 
word. "Let her play it as she likes. Later she may change and 
do it in my way of her own accord." And she admitted long 
after, "So I did." 

Neither was Carreno fussy about fingerings. She urged each 
student to study her own band, to find for herself the fingering 
that suited it best, and then to stick to it. In case of difficulty 
she recommended practicing passages with different finger- 
ings to iron out the trouble, as well as transposing them into 
other keys, keeping the fingering the same. 

"El todo para el pianista es el colorido" Carreno is reported 
to have said. This may be an editorial overstatement. It is true, 
however, that above everything she valued variety in interpreta- 
tion, this rather to be achieved by changes of tone effect than by 
rhythmic shiftings. Cultivating differences of touch in staccato 
and legato, increasing the dynamic range at both ends, was as 
much her ambition for the student as keeping tone always 
within the margin of the beautiful, never allowing it to over- 
reach the limitations of the piano mechanism. As she believed in 
making the most of a roaring climax, so she did in the effective 
value of exploring the softest depths to the last whisper. That she 
considered the pedal a most important aid in achieving shading is 
proved by the fact that the only work ever written by her was 
on that subject. In it she made clear not only its great possi- 


bilities, but also cautioned against its abuse. Like fire and water 
she esteemed it a good servant but a bad master, and as strongly 
as Clara Schumann herself she stood out against the pseudo- 
artists who wallow in " Pedal gerassel una 1 V erschiebungsgefuhl" 
(pedal rattling and soft-pedal feeling). 

Carreno was by intuition an excellent psychologist. Diffi- 
culties, she counseled, become easy by thinking them so. The 
student found it true. She urged on the timid, pinned down the 
inaccurate, and made the overconfident aware of his weak- 
nesses. When confronted by that common phenomenon, the 
nervous pupil, she quieted him by making light of his obsession. 
"Do you prefer that I go into the garden, my dear, while you 
play?" Or she quoted Gottschalk, who advised his own dis- 
ciples: "Never be afraid to play before an artist. The artist 
listens for that which is well done, the person who knows noth- 
ing listens for the faults." She made him transcend the mecha- 
nism of the instrument, and even his less reliable self, by bringing 
him to experience the joy she felt in playing to others. She 
brought him for the time to forget that he was a learner, to 
shake off the chains that forged him to the teacher, to play 
simply, directly; she taught him to respect his inner man as his 
only dictator. When in a lesson repetition had called for more 
repetition, punctuated with an inexorable: "No, my child, that 
is not it at all ! Relax, my dear, do not articulate. You are play- 
ing the piano, not shoveling snow"; the hour was not allowed 
to end with minor inflection but on an ascending note of encour- 
agement: "That was not bad at all, my child, not bad at all. 
And now you shall have a cup of tea to make up for the trouble 
your severe old teacher gives you." Supposing that in spite of 
her prodding the difficulty under consideration had not been 
mastered beyond possibility of future error, instead of attack- 
ing it again the next time in the same passage, another similar 
one was substituted to clinch the matter. For example a student 
was assigned the "Concert Study in D flat" by Liszt. She reacted 
to it negatively, consequently playing it badly, perfunctorily. 
"Why, my darling child, it sounds as if you had just come out 


of a convent. Let's try the one in F minor for next time. I think 
you practice too long at a time. I must send Hertha to you to- 
morrow for a game of tennis." That did not seem to help. Re- 
lentlessly Liszt followed upon Liszt until Grindelwald and 
Liszt could never again exist apart in the mind of the student. 
One day confronted by yet another composition of this com- 
poser she exploded, "I can't bear another thing of his. I hate 
every note he wrote. It's sugar and water." "Splendid, my child, 
you are showing signs of just the temperament it takes to play 
Liszt well. If, detesting Liszt as you do, you play him beauti- 
fully notwithstanding, how much more of an artist you will be! 
Bring me "Mazeppa" next time, if you please." The student sur- 
vived the heroic treatment, learned to understand the greater 
Liszt, and lived to earn the seal of approval for her reading of 
the "Liszt Sonate." Not until then was she permitted to turn 
to other more congenial tasks. 

Ten Carreno pupils meeting together would agree only upon 
this — that they had been taught in ten different ways. But not 
one would have exchanged that experience, unorganized as it 
was, for another. What after all is great teaching but bringing 
the student alive to the beautiful in music and making him 
conscious of his mission to keep it so with everything within his 
power. In that sense Carreno was a great teacher. 

The first business talk with Mr. Cochran had revealed a star- 
tling state of things. It came to light that instead of thirty con- 
certs there were only three that could be counted upon at the 
moment. The cable had been garbled in the sending. Carreno 
was deeply indignant. She might then have stayed near her 
children in her own apartment. With the utmost difficulty she 
brought herself to consider the other side of the medal. Even- 
tually she might be glad she had come away. There would be 
plenty of leisure for teaching. Only a short declaration of inten- 
tion in the musical journals, and students would come swarm- 
ing as they always had without resorting even to such means. 
Now that she was really in the United States there would also 


be other calls for her participation. Yet the blow was a vital one. 
She would not be able to afford the comfort of Arturo's protect- 
ing presence on her journeys, or the services of a personal maid. 
In their apartment they must now content themselves with only 
one helper. On the maid's free afternoons Carrefio herself did 
the cooking, washed the dishes, and thought nothing of wel- 
coming guests at the door enveloped in a kitchen apron. Some 
of her happiest moments were spent in this domestic way. But 
she could not dust away her anxiety about the children from 
whom there was no word for two long months. At the sight of 
a photograph of Hertha placed upon her dressing table by a 
friend who thought it would please her, she burst into a fit of 
uncontrolled weeping. 

This worry was consigned to the background to make way 
for a more tangible one. Just as she was about to step out upon 
die platform to begin her Boston recital on October 22, Car- 
reno received word of the illness of Arturo, laid low by an at- 
tack of acute appendicitis. Only force of will made her go 
through with the performance, kept her from infecting her 
audience with her own restlessness. A few days of surpassing 
length and the danger was past, the operation avoided. Carreno, 
again at home for a breathing space, hovered over her husband, 
showered him with delicacies she ought not to have afforded, 
and touched his heart with the gift of a very comfortable and 
expensive armchair in which to spend the tedious hours of con- 
valescence. When finally she tore herself away to fulfill her en- 
gagements in the Middle West, she wrote from every possible 
stopping place in words that were full of affectionate concern. 
From Duluth came a solicitous letter, as usual in Italian : 

Most beloved and most dear Turo mio: I cannot tell you the joy 
which your dear, dear letter gave me. A thousand times thousand 
thanks, Turo mio. I understand that you are not yet capable of writ- 
ing long letters, and I do not wish that you should tire yourself giving 
me more than the news of how you are feeling. For the time being I 
shall content myself with this, and I can't tell you how grateful I 
am to the good God who had helped you to regain your health and 


your strength! What a fright you gave me, Turo mio! Don't do it 
again, I beg of you! Be very careful and do nothing that might cause 
you the slightest disturbance, for the love of God! — That for today, 
my well-beloved! Take good care of yourself and remember that 
your health is my necessity and my joy and comfort. A million tender 
kisses from your old wife Teresa. 

Ten days later she wrote from Chicago : 

My most dear and most beloved husband : Thousands and thousands 
of thanks for your two dear letters with which you gave me most 
great pleasure, Turo mio! My thoughts are always with you, and my 
prayers for your health fly to God with every thought, and you can 
imagine how happy I am to feel that you are improving and recov- 
ering completely. God be thanked thousands and thousands of times! 
You can imagine too the joy I had in receiving the letter of our 
Eugenia ! ! It was a real feast to have the good news of you and our 
children! How I thank the good God for having also granted me 
this boon. Don't be worried about my cold, "ma guarda e passa." I 
feel better, thank God. You should be accustomed to these colds of 
mine by now, which, as you know, keep company with me all winter. 
Aside from that everything goes well. 

So she characteristically made light of her own troubles. 

On December 11, 1916, Carreno returned to Arturo for the 
Christmas hiatus, spent gaily enough among friends who did 
their best to distract her from thought of the double distance 
war had created between her and her children, from the omi- 
nous vastness of empty silence. It made little impression that she 
played to Woodrow Wilson in the White House where once she 
had thought as little of playing to Lincoln. Neither did it reach 
beneath the surface, although for the moment she was touched 
by it, that the orchestra in Kansas City greeted her entrance 
upon the stage with a rousing fanfare, and that the whole audi- 
ence rose to its feet by automatic impulse. These things had 
ceased to matter. She had drunk to the full from the chalice of 
ovations. Her real happiness lay in her playing and in solitude 
shared with Arturo, her hope in reunion with her children. 

One afternoon in Carreno's music room, where a photograph 


of Liszt presided on the open Steinway, twilight was inviting 
reminiscence. A circle of friends from Caracas sat listening as 
she described her visit to the Court of Spain, while they cozily 
stirred their tea and looked far down upon the dreamy Hudson. 
J. Perez Lee, a journalist, eager to know what her feelings 
were about the land of her birth, turned conversation back to 
her Venezuelan past. Carreno lowered her voice and spoke 
with slow emphasis. "Sometimes I cherished her for her mis- 
fortunes, sometimes for the generosity of her nature, always as 
an irreplaceable mother. Upon her bosom I wish to sleep the 
dream of earth. It is there that I wish my ashes to rest." Then 
simply and naturally without trace of dread she talked on about 
death as fulfillment, death as a friend, and so they sat together 
for a long time in deepening darkness. 

As the season began, concerts popped up like puffballs where 
they were least expected. There would be in all as many as Mr. 
Cochran had cabled in the first place, even if at fees somewhat 
lower than those anticipated. Besides, there was abundance of 
private teaching in odd moments and flourishing classes at the 
American Institute of Applied Music. During the past years in 
Germany, Carreno had pioneered in the making of rolls for 
the Duo-Art, the Welte, the Ampico. Reproducing mechanisms 
had brought her little satisfaction. In the first place the ordeal 
of playing for the making of the master roll was nerve-racking. 
She was overcome by stage fright unknown in a whole lifetime 
of concerts. Hertha once had accompanied her for moral sup- 
port on such an occasion. The lights which went on and off, the 
three men who sat busily taking notes, the mystifying machin- 
ery, all combined to upset her, so that the initial roll was a 
complete failure. When finally with perspiration standing out 
in beads from every pore she had completed her work, her re- 
lief was such that she suggested a pleasure trip on the Rhine 
for recuperation. The results of her recordings all disappointed 
her. In spite of hours spent in revision she found them far from 
true to her style. She tried to have a number recalled from pub- 
lication, unwilling to allow experimentation at such a price. 


Strangely enough she made no phonograph records. At the re- 
quest of an English publisher, she did undertake the drudgery 
of editing some of the pieces in her repertoire according to her 
own interpretation. The book on the use of the pedal was in its 
final stages. Carrefio worked without wasting a minute, as if 
against time. And yet, all told, the year brought the leanest of 

Since the entrance of the United States into the war in the 
spring of 19 17, news from Germany could come by way of 
neutral countries only. Frau Sinding volunteered to act as trans- 
mitter for the Carrenos. From the sketchy words which passed 
the censor the anxious mother could gather little that was per- 
sonal or heartening. In reply to a cable in which Hertha asked 
permission to marry Louis Weber, a young engineer from 
Reutlingen, then in the army, Carreno sent her blessing. Did 
she remember that this, according to her own setting, was to 
give the signal for her retirement? If so she repudiated it. 

The far-off horizon glowed with promise of activity. The 
Chicago Musical College was engaging her for a lucrative 
summer session of teaching. After that a South American tour 
was in prospect beginning with Brazil. On the way back she 
planned to show Venezuela to Arturo and Arturo to Venezuela. 
This time it should be a different homecoming. The winter con- 
certs in North America were to be in the hands of Winston & 
Livingston and were already being widely advertised. This was 
no time to rest upon her laurels. "Indeed not!" 

In good spirits Carreno set out for Havana, where her con- 
tract called for three concerts, by way of St. Petersburg, Florida. 
There the Carreno Club, still flourishing today, did her honor; 
there she played a final recital in the United States before sail- 
ing on the Olivette from Tampa. Arturo accompanied her 
mainly for the sake of his health. Her own seemed neither bet- 
ter nor worse than usual. Shortly before landing she was sitting 
on the forward deck of the steamer. Arturo noticed his wife 
rubbing her eyes as if to get rid of an irritation. "What on 
earth do you suppose is the matter with my eyes, Arturo?" she 
asked without special concern. "I see two of you, two of the 
chair, two of everything." Arturo tried to reassure her, but the 
condition persisted. At the pier a host of old friends and new 
received her with bouquets of Havana's most precious roses. 
They too were doubled in her sight. 

As soon as she was safely established in the Hotel Trotcha she 


decided to consult the best available oculist, Senor Desvernine. 
He proved to be one who as a little boy had been chosen to 
crown Teresita the prodigy with a wreath of gold in this same 
city. Carreno refused as ridiculous his advice that she leave at 
once for New York. She must not fail her audience. If neces- 
sary she could play, as she often did, with eyes closed. Mean- 
while the glasses prescribed for her needed changing after a 
few hours of use. The evening came. Carreno played in mas- 
terly manner as usual, wearing a dress of light-blue satin em- 
broidered in a beaded pattern. It seemed to make no difference 
that she saw two keyboards instead of one, that the hall was 
half empty; she had the satisfaction of having done her duty. 
But for the command of her doctors that she return to New 
York, she might have attempted a second concert. On the fol- 
lowing morning before her departure she called upon an old 
lady whose visit she had missed the day before. There was no 
indication that she realized the seriousness of her condition un- 
til her first words to Mr. Cochran who met her at the train. 
Quite simply she warned him: "You have seen your old friend 
for the last time." 

Meanwhile in Havana there were those who attributed Car- 
refio's departure to unmotivated wilfullness due to the disap- 
pointment at having so small an audience to welcome her. 
La Noche indulged in sarcasm. "Singular coincidence! Like 
Paderewski Teresa Carreno is prevented from giving the con- 
certs she announced. Both artists became ill in our healthful 
pure climate. We hope that Mme. Carreno grows better shortly 
and can still give in spite of her great age many concerts . . . 
in New York." 

Three eminent New York physicians, including a nerve and 
a heart specialist, did everything that could be done. They 
agreed that the trouble was a grave one, diplopia, a partial 
paralysis of the optic nerve which threatened to go farther. 
Complete quiet and a strict diet were prescribed. Arturo, de- 
spair in his heart, watched by her side and kept hope alive. 
Medicines which might have helped, Carreno was unable to 


assimilate. General nervous prostration, developing unrecog- 
nized through years of overstrain without adequate relief, had 
finally found this local outlet. The capital of strength upon 
which Carreno had too recklessly drawn was drained. Once 
more she sat down at her Steinway to play the "Harmonious 
Blacksmith" variations, the last encore of her Havana recital, 
holding out with difficulty to the end. It was to be the last tryst 
with music. 

News of her illness, spreading through the United States, 
reached as far as Teresita in London, but not to her children 
in Germany. With satisfaction Carreno read the short letter 
that told of Hertha's wedding in Munich on April 2. It had 
after all been the signal from a higher source for her retire- 
ment and not alone from the concert platform. She understood 
and was not afraid, only tired, too tired even to send messages to 
her children. At seven o'clock in the evening on June 12, 1917, the 
Walkure entered Walhalla. 

It came to pass that after a time the artist 
was forgotten, but the wor\ lived!' 
Olive Schreiner 


NOTHING could be less of Carrefio than the conventional 
funeral services. Flowers that once became more alive in her 
vital hands drooped beneath the suffocating weight of her 
absence. She who once spoke to her "dear Father" in music, 
and to whom he gave answer quite as directly in the voice of nature, 
would have looked pityingly from the place of her liberation upon 
a group of mortals, celebrated mortals to be sure, huddled too closely 
together in too small a space, to do honor in the presence of that 
material shell from which the pearl of great price had escaped to 
fuse its iridescence with that of the sunset. How useless the tears of 
this sad company come to bid farewell after the hostess had gone. 
A giant fanfare in the open, a moment of universal silence, each one 
alone with his thoughts! That would have been the perfect tribute. 

But even death, the bridge that each must cross alone, has its social 
obligations. On the morning of Thursday, June 14, 1917, as the hour 
neared eleven, Carreno's colleagues, friends, and students filled her 
living room. None of the many artists who had had close association 
with her felt equal to making music for this occasion. Strangers in- 
toned "Nearer, my God, to Thee" and "Oh, rest in the Lord." Dr. 
Louis K. Anspacher of Columbia gave the commemorative address. 

The honorary pallbearers were Ignace Jan Paderewski, Ernest 
Hutcheson, Walter Damrosch, Walter Rothwell, Josef Stransky, 
Mischa Elman, Franz Kneisel, Albert Spalding, and Charles Stein- 

After the services a few friends accompanied Arturo to Union 
Hill, N.J., where, according to the wish of the Walkiire, and most 
fittingly, her body was consigned to the encircling flames, an act 
which in welcoming salute Heaven itself punctuated by a crash of 

In the summer of 1935 this biographer took a trip to Venezuela in the 
interest of her book. Except for a painting of Carrefio in the early 
years hanging in the Teatro Municipal, and an unrecognizable bust 
standing neglected and in need of dusting on the floor of a room of 
the Academia de Musica, she found little external evidence that this 
great artist was appreciated by her own people. Among the musicians 
and scholars of Caracas the eager response whenever her name was 
mentioned was all the more surprising. That her ashes had not yet 


found a definitive place of rest after so many years aroused consterna- 
tion. Carreno's own wish that she be buried in her mother country, 
although several times published, had failed to draw attention. Now 
a few words only, and the proper authorities wakened to action. 
Mr. Rudolf Dolge became the moving spirit of the undertaking to 
bring about the repatriation of the ashes of Venezuela's great daugh- 
ter. In this he was seconded by Senor Don Salvador Llamozas, the 
Dean of pianists in Caracas, and one who had been among those 
chosen to welcome Carreno home in 1885. 

Arturo Tagliapietra was readily convinced that no more fitting 
honor could be offered the memory of his wife. The death of Presi- 
dent Gomez delayed the execution of the plan, and not until February, 
1938, were the ashes, housed in a dignified urn of greenish bronze 
which the Venezuelan sculptor, Nicholas Veloz, had fashioned, 
brought home on the S.S. Santa Paula. That the event might not 
take place without the presence of at least one member of Carreno's 
immediate family, Teresita was invited to come to Caracas from 
London as guest of the Government. Together with a deputation of 
distinguished citizens she waited at La Guaira to receive the urn 
which was immediately taken to the chapel of the Cementerio del Sur 
in Caracas. After a brief religious service in this place it was set upon 
the marble pedestal erected for it in the poets' corner. There, just as 
the sun was setting, while the Military Band of Caracas played Beet- 
hoven's "Funeral March," President Contreras, in the presence of 
Carreno's relatives, of members of the diplomatic corps, and of rep- 
resentatives of societies who laid their wreaths around the pedestal, 
unveiled the urn draped in the colors of Venezuela and of the United 
States. In brief but moving words Jose Antonio Calcano made the 
address of dedication with which the ceremony closed. 

That evening in the Teatro Municipal, once the Teatro Guzman 
Blanco where Carreno was so often heard, a great concert took place 
in her memory. It lasted over two hours. There sounded once again 
Cayetano Carreno's Mass, "La Oracion en el Huerto," Carreno's 
"String Quartette," and her "Hymn to Bolivar." Fittingly Juan 
Bautista Plaza, who now fills the post of Maestro de Capilla once held 
by Carreno's ancestors, was chosen to give the comprehensive and 
eminently appropriate address of the evening. At this time a stamp 
was also issued in her honor. This indeed was a worthy homecoming. 
Carreno would not have been indifferent to it. 


Teresa Carreno repatriated 


So it is best to leave her. Since her last flight it has not been per- 
mitted that any other reach her universal height, that any take her 
place. She is a memory, an influence, a belief, a legend. Such are the 
steep steps to oblivion. In essence she exists wherever great music 
sounds, wherever her artistic credo strikes a responsive chord. 

To the young musicians of Venezuela her life will remain a guid- 
ing torch. Whether her ashes stand beneath the stars or are moved in 
due time to a shadowy recess of the Panteon to keep august company 
with Bolivar, so many of whose traits she shared, wherever music is 
loved, a voice will still be heard by those attuned to listen, saying, 
"I am Carreno." 


Teresa Carreno 

An article in honor of Carreno's Sixtieth Birthday 


Dr. Walter Niemann 

from Reclam's Universum, December i, 1913 

I PAINT two pictures of Carreno's playing. It has never seen its 
equal in fascinating virility and hypnotic power among the mae- 
stros of piano virtuosity. The first is the Carreno of the i88o's and 
i89o's, the second the Carreno of today. 
A Carreno evening in the wonderful Empire styled hall of the 
Kurtheater in Wiesbaden, tuned to white, gold, sparkling crystal 
chandeliers and heavy pillars of marble! A brilliant, cosmopolitan 
gathering, the hall completely sold out, high and stormy waves of 
enthusiasm, encore after encore — that was its setting. The enthusiasm 
was the spontaneous honoring by the artistically imaginative people 
of Germany for a very great personality, for her conquering force, 
glowing with temperament, for her regally proud and thoroughbred 

The playing of Carreno combines extreme exploitation of force, 
masculine sense of sculpture in the modeling of the tone, with the 
utmost lightness and elasticity in the working of the entire play 
mechanism. Hence her unbelievable endurance and joy in playing, 
her enormous strength which knows no exhaustion. Her genuine, 
thundering octaves, which she shakes out of her sleeve, her staccato 
filed to the sharpest, the sheen, the intensity, and the evenness of her 
passages, the iron heaviness of her chord and mass effects (introduc- 
tion of the B flat minor Concerto of Tschaikowsky) incomparable, 
and of its kind, inspired by fieriest temperament most hot-blooded 
feeling, quite inimitable. 

Whoever is acquainted with the hard, stinging, and pointed fortes 
of so many of our younger and young pianists — the concert tone of 
Liszt misunderstood — breathes afresh when he hears a fortissimo of 
iron power, yet of absolute beauty and fullness. Royal dignity, aristo- 


cratic pride, that is the realm in which this queen of pianists reigns 
most freely. The great heroic Concerti (Beethoven E flat, Liszt E, 
Rubenstein D minor, Tschaikowsky B flat minor), the Polonaises of 
Chopin and Liszt, the great heroic Sonatas from Beethoven to Chopin, 
Liszt, and MacDowell, the Erlking of Schubert-Liszt, Schubert- 
Tausig's Marche Militaire, Chopin's great Concert Etudes are there- 
fore the most blazing highlights of a Carreno evening. The stern 
defiance which burrows its way through the rarely heard Polonaises 
in E flat minor and F sharp minor Carreno brings out in stirring 
verity; the firm tread of the Polonaise rhythm transforms the Chopin 
salon under her hands into a lofty marble hall of kings, and of Polish 
petty aristocrats she makes a festal military procession of rulers, great 
and small. 

Outside of the standard works of piano literature from Beethoven 
to Schumann and Liszt, these latter conceived with authentically 
romantic feeling — before all in Schumann's Fantasia in C major — 
there was generally little or no place left in her repertoire for the 
new or the contemporary. This was characteristic of the Carreno 
evenings of the Eighties or Nineties. In them the name of Carreno 
shone over the whole world. 

During the years of her marriage to d'Albert something new and 
unique was added to this; the playing of two magnitudes upon two 
grand pianos. And again an unforgettable impression takes memory 
back to that same hall in Wiesbaden. There they played together the 
virile Variations in E flat minor by Sinding. Could it be that their 
human harmony was perhaps no longer completely tuned to that 
soft E flat major? Or what could it have been? In short, never was 
a Nordically heroic dramatist of the piano recreated more heroically 
and dramatically, never was he more explosive with Promethean 
defiance, each wishing to outdo, to vanquish the other. Here any- 
thing technical and mechanical was forced into the background, 
here the head was bowed before that divine something which, through 
the volcanic eruptions of two temperaments of equal stature, over- 
flowed and poured down upon lowly humanity gathered in the con- 
cert hall. 

The Carreno of today has become a different but not a lesser per- 
son. D'Albert appears to have signed himself over to pianistic pugi- 
lism, since, after having exhausted success in opera with Tiefland, 
he again exchanged the desk for the piano, probably after too long 


an intermission. How differently, how much more wholly and ex- 
istentially the playing of Carreno has ripened up to the time of 
golden autumn! Clarified maturity, human as well as artistic, sub- 
limates her playing in a wonderfully appealing and personal way. 
Today she delights in quiet breadth, still, thoughtful contemplation, 
loving care for detail, fine technical polish, measure and harmony in 
everything. Expert drawing overrules glowing color and shows itself, 
particularly in the interweaving polyphony of Bach, the later Beet- 
hoven and Schumann, in utmost refinement of musical pastel. Her 
incomparable and unexcelled sense of architecture and proportion 
asks for and gives only the extreme of the plastic and well-defined. 
The melodic line has perhaps noticeably suffered the loss of former 
sensuous warmth and soulfulness, its poetic fragrance, her tempera- 
ment now perhaps appreciably lacks the old hot fire, but substituted 
for it is a dusky chiaroscuro in piano and pianissimo that ravishes in 
equal measure. 

The Carreno program gradually follows the modern trend to the 
new. MacDowell from now appears with his four great Sonatas, his 
Witches' Dance, the Barcarolle, the Orientales, the Concert Studies. 
And in conjunction piquant gew-gaws of the witty Hungarian satirist, 
the charming conversationalist of Lake Geneva, Eduard Poldini, and 
of others who are "made" if Carreno but mentions their name. 

This heavy, golden harvest of autumn shows its fruits in manifold 
lights. Pieces of grand style like Chopin's Ballade in G minor, like 
the second movement of Schumann's Fantasia in C major show, 
even in respect to temperament, the Carreno of old. Chopin remains 
the master in the playing of whose music natural lessening of tem- 
perament and fire is yet compensated for by inner intensity of feel- 
ing. It is Beethoven who shows the most decided clarification in the 
playing of the artiste to the limit of the strictest objectivation, border- 
ing upon the classical. Lyric melodiousness stays under cover, reti- 
cent, subdued. Even a predominantly brilliant and exuberant Sonata 
like the one in E flat from Op. 31 by Beethoven is perceived in intimate 
twilight. One cannot help noting a hint of the didactic in her playing. 
The blooming, warm sensuousness of the piano tone gives way to 
almost bitter reticence, interpretation to peaceful, superior serenity. 

Between the mysterious delicacy of tone coloring and the heavy 
pathos of the fortissimo there lies a middle kingdom whose somewhat 
arid ground falls off to both sides perhaps a little abruptly. The large 


all-comprehensive drive has given place to most clear, impersonal 
analysis, to the sublimation of a life filled with profound inner ex- 

That is the Carreno of today. The Carreno of once upon a time, 
mistress of the musical alfresco, was the darling of the masses. The 
Carreno of today, mistress of the landscape, of intimate story telling, 
is the darling of connoisseurs and gourmets of the piano. And that 
is no step backward but forward, which may have been bought with 
much resignation and sacrifice of concert mob applause, for whom 
strength is all, refinement nothing. And so Carreno of today remains 
equally to be honored as the Carreno of old, whose volcanic tem- 
perament forced the old and new world into the spell of her enchant- 
ment. We greet you the Maestra and Queen of all pianistes, from the 

Dr. Walter Niemann 



Birthday of Teresita Carreno 


New York 

Debut of the Prodigy 

Soloist with orchestra of the 
Philharmonic Society 

Concert of the Liceo de la 
New York 
Departure for Europe 


At home in Paris 

Debut in Vivier Concert 

London preliminaries 

Death of Clorinda Carreno 

Spanish tour 

Paris with London interludes 
In London 

Pianist of Riviere Promenade 

Pianist with Monday Popu- 
lar Concerts 

Mapleson Operatic Concert 
Teresita sings in opera in 

With the Patti-Mario troupe 
in the United States 


December 22, 1853 
July 23, 1862 


Marriage with Emile Sauret June, 1873 

August, 1 862- January, 1863 
November 25, 1862 
January, 1863 

January 24, 1863 

March-June, 1863 

April 25, 1863 
April 7, 1866 


May 14, 1866 
June and July, 1866 
September, 1866 
November, 1866- January, 1867 
1 867-1 870 

1 870-1 874 


January-March, 1872 
March 12, 1872 
September, 1872-May, 1873 



Birth of Emilita Sauret 

March 23, 1874 

Death of Manuel Antonio 


Late August, 1874 



Tour with lima di Murska 

1 874-1 875 

Separation from Sauret 

Spring, 1875 

In Boston studying to be a 


1 875-1 876 

Operatic debuts in New York 

and Boston 

Spring, 1876 

New Rochelle 


Marriage with Giovanni 



Lulu Tagliapietra 

born 1878-died 1881 

Birth of Teresita Taglia- 


December 24, 1882 

Birth of Giovanni Taglia- 


January 7, 1885 

Venezuelan Concert Tour 

October, 1885-September, 1886 

Venezuelan Operatic Ven- 


February-May, 1887 

Departure for Europe 

July 3, 1889 


October, 1889-October, 1916 

Berlin debut 

November 18, 1889 

Carreno and dAlbert 


Birth of Eugenia d'Albert 

September 27, 1892 

Two-piano ensemble 


Birth of Hertha d'Albert 

September 26, 1894 


October, 1895 

Berlin, Kurfurstendamm 28 

May, 1895-October, 1 91 6 

Summer in Pertisau, Ach- 



European Concerts 

1 895- 1 896 

Summer teaching in Per- 



European Concerts 

Autumn, 1896 

Tour of the United States 

December 22, 1896-May 28, 1897 


Summer teaching in Per- 



European Concerts 


Summer in Schwaz, Ty- 



Tour of the United States 

December 27, 1898-May 16, 1899 

Summer in Kolberg and 



European Concerts 

1 899-1 900 

Summer in Pertisau and 



Tour of the United States, 

Havana, and Mexico 

October 30, 1900-May 15, 1901 

Summer in Friedrichroda 


Concerts in Europe 


Marriage with Arturo Ta- 

gliapietra June 30, 1902 

June 30, 1902 

Summer in Tavernola, It- 



Concerts in Europe 

1 902-1 903 

Summer in Wyk a / Fohr 


Concerts in Europe 


Summer in Obersalzberg 


Concerts in Europe 

1 904-1 905 

Summer in Friedrichroda 


Concerts in Europe 

1 905-1 906 

Summer in Wyk a / Fohr 


Concerts in Europe 


Tour of Australia, New Zea- 

land, and the United 


April, 1907-April, 1908 

Summer in Italy and Ober- 



Concerts in Europe 

1 908-1 909 

Summer in Bad Gastein 

and Obersalzberg 


Tour of the United States, 

Australia, New Zealand, 

and South Africa 

November, iooo-April, iqii 



Fall in Oberstdorf 
Concerts in Europe 

Summer in Grindelwald, 
Concerts in Europe 

Golden Jubilee 

Summer in Obersalzberg 
Tour of the United States 

Summer in Oberstdorf 
Concerts in Europe 

Summer in Berlin 
Concerts in Europe 

Summer in Berlin 


On tour 

Last Concert in Havana 


Repatriation of the ashes of 
Teresa Carreno in Cara- 
cas by the Government 
of Venezuela 




December 21, 1912 


October, 1913-May, 1914 






October, 1916-June, igiy 

October, 1916-March, 1917 
March 21, 1917 
June 12, 1917 

February 15, 1938 


The most vital of all records are the intangible, vanishing ones of 
personal intercourse. Hours spent with Carreno, with members of her 
family, and with friends of long standing have been fertile for insight 
as for information. By courtesy of the Executors of the Estate of 
Teresa Carreno, Arturo Tagliapietra, and Clarence M. Woolley, ac- 
cess has been given to letters, concert records, articles, criticisms, 
programs, and compositions in their custody. 

It is neither feasible nor necessary to list all the books and articles 
consulted. Newspapers and musical journals of many countries, only 
the most important of which are listed, have furnished a liberal share 
of material. 


Calcano, Jose Antonio. Palabras pronunciadas por f. A. Calcano 
en el Cementerio General del Sur, al Ser Repatriados las Cenizas 
de Teresa Carreno el 75 de Febrero de 1938. 

Carreno, Teresa. "War Time Experiences of a Concert Artist Tour- 
ing Europe." 

Cochran, J. W. "Teresa Carreno as I knew her." Told to Ray C. B. 

Cohen, Nathaniel H. "Excerpts from the Memoirs of Nathaniel H. 

Francia, Felipe. "Bautismos, Matrimonios y Entierros en Caracas." 
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Lozano y Lozano, Fabio. El Maestro del Libertador. Paris, 1913. 
Mapleson, James Henry. Memoirs. 2 vols. London, 1888. 
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.DAMOWSKI, Josef, 141 

d'Albert, Eugen, 198; Carreno and, 213- 
241; in Chaumont, 217-218; in Cos- 
wig, 218-240, 263; playing of, 214, 
270-271, 394; in two-piano ensemble, 
233, 267, 394; 277, 303-304; relation 
to his children, 339-342; citizenship 
of, 352; 358; marriages of, see Teresa 
Carreno, Hermine Fink, Louise Sal- 

d'Albert, Eugenia (daughter of Carreno 
and d'Albert), 227, 239, 240, 263, 
291, 297, 298, 299, 300, 303, 306, 307, 
312, 318, 319, 324, 337-343, 349-350, 
353, 362, 365, 366, 372, 379 

d'Albert, Hertha (daughter of Carreno 
and d'Albert), 234, 239, 240, 277, 284, 
297, 298, 299, 300, 304, 314, 315, 318, 
337-343, 346, 349, 350, 353, 362, 365, 
366, 378, 380, 382, 384 

d'Albert, Wolfgang (son of d'Albert), 
223, 240 

Alfonso, King of Spain, 355, 356 

Arditi, Luigi, 73, 138 

Aronson, Rudolph, 136, 253, 254, 258- 

Athenaeum (London), 91, 95, 97, 105, 
106; long article in, 98-100 

Auber, Daniel F. E., 80 

Aus der Ohe, Adele, 259 


>ACKHAUS, Wilhelm, 315-316 
Beach, Mrs. H. H. A., 267, 302 
Benedict, Sir Julius, 95, 97 
Berlioz, Hector, 80 

BischofT, Mrs., 92, 113, 117, 199-200, 343 
Blanco, Guzman, 155, 158, 160, 161 
Blandin, Bartolome, 14 
Blandin, Padre Domingo, 15 
Bolivar, Busto de, 153, 157 
Bolivar, Club, 152, 153 
Bolivar, Hymn to, 137, 154, 388 
Bolivar, Simon, 13, 16, 17, 18, 150, 166, 

185, 238, 389 
Brahms, Johannes, 221, 237, 238, 255, 


Brambilla, Linda, 164, 167 
Breithaupt, Rudolf Maria, 325, 368 
Breslauer, Emil, 184, 192, 197 
Breymannsches Institut, 252 
Buitrago, Juan, 121, 122, 146, 308 
Biilow, Excellenz v., 364 
Biilow, Hans v., 119, 181, 195, 198, 210, 
211, 221, 259, 302 


iALCANO, Jose Antonio, 388 
Camacho, Simon (pseud. Nazareno), 31- 


Caracas, 3, 4, 6, 12-14; celebration of 
first coffee harvest, 14-15, 153, 154, 
158, 159 

Carreno, Alonso, 11 

Carreno, Bartolome, 12 

Carreno, Clorinda (mother of Carreno), 
3-4, 6-7; ancestry of, 18-19; 31, 35, 61, 
65, 68, 78, 81; death of, 76-77 

Carreno, Emilia (sister of Carreno), 20, 
21, 26 

Carreno, Fernando de, 11 

Carreno, Garci Fernandez, 11 

Carreno, Gertrudis (cousin of Carreno), 

Carreno, Jose Cajetano the elder, 15 

Carreno, Jose Cajetano the younger, 13, 
15-16, 388 

Carreno, Juan de la Cruz (uncle of Car- 
reno), 26, 38, 59 

Carreno, Manuel (brother of Carreno), 
64, 76, 92, 111-112, 117, 147, 153, 
158, 175, 178, 205, 208, 243, 363 

Carreno, Manuel Antonio (father of Car- 
reno), 3-5, 10, 16, 19, 500; exercises 
of, 21; as musician, 22; Manual de 
Urbanidad, 23-24; loss of fortune, 30- 
3i; 35, 36, 38, 39, 43, 44, 45, 47, 
48, 50, 51, 52, 55, 60, 61, 62, 63, 64, 
68, 70, 72, 75, 76, 77, 78, 80, 87, 92; 
the teaching of, 93-94; 96, 97, no, 
in, 127, 170, 179 

Carreno, Maria Teresa (aunt of Carreno), 
26, 59, 149, 151 

Carreno de Miranda, Juan, n-12 



Carreno, Rosie (wife of Manuel), 147- 

148, 178, 179, 208, 363 
Carrefio, Simon, 16-18 
Carreno, Teresa 

— anecdotes: Varsovienne, 20-21; the 
hats, 22; the party, 22-23; Liszt, 
70-71; funeral wreath, 76; the first 
train, 85-86; Rubinstein, 106-107; 
MacDowell, 122-123; Damrosch, L., 
137; the trill, 197; Grieg, 204; 
Richter, 205-206; Brahms, 221; d" Al- 
bert, 231; the bridge, 248; the 
blizzard, 272; the ankle, 281-282; 
Frau Leonard, 314; Excellenz v. 
Bulow, 364 

— compositions: 22, 44, 46, 50, 68, 80- 
82, 95, 101, 112, 250, 251, 267, 342. 
See also "Teresita Waltz" 

— conductor: 166-167 

— description: 30, 37, 38, 39-40, 42, 
43, 50, 56, 63, 77, 83, 92, 109, 
121, 134, 136, 140, 154, 155, 176, 
191, 201-202, 247-248, 254, 259, 
267-270, 275, 282, 305, 310 

— honors: 48, 51, 58, 153, 157, 212, 
229, 276, 297-299, 388 

— impresario: 161, 162-169 

— improvisation: 21, 22, 25-26, 27, 29- 
30, 47, 53, 62, 64 

— letters: 49, 152, 156-157, 159, 173, 
179-180, 181, 199, 208, 234, 235, 
239, 265, 279, 280, 288, 309, 319, 
323, 324, 328-330, 331, 332, 333- 

335, 335-337, 338-339, 339, 345, 
353, 356, 357-358, 360, 360-362, 
366-367, 378-379 
— life: ancestry, 11 -19; parents, see 
Manuel Antonio Carreno and Clo- 
rinda Carreno; infancy, 20; first steps 
in music, 20-22; the child, 22; de- 
parture from Venezuela, 27; meet- 
ing with Gottschalk, 31-33; prelim- 
inary audition, 34-35; debut, 3-10; 
ninth-birthday concert, 36-37; Bos- 
ton concerts, 38-51; matinee for 
children, 41-42; with Boston Phil- 
harmonic Orchestra, 46-47; Gil- 
more's Band Concerts, 43-44; in 
Cuba, 54-59; playing for Lincoln, 
61-62; tenth-birthday concert, 62; 
departure and shipwreck, 65-66; in- 
troduction to Paris; meeting with 

Rossini, 68; meeting with Liszt, 69- 
70; Vivier concert, 71; first solo con- 
cert in Paris, 74; in England, 75; 
death of mother, 76; Spanish tour, 
77-79; meeting with Rubinstein, 86- 
87; with Strakosch concert groups, 
95; Mapleson provincial tour, 10 1; 
Queen in The Huguenots, 102-105; 
with Patti-Mario troupe, 106-109; 
first marriage, no; birth of Emilita, 
no; second American tour, 113- 
116; separation from Sauret, 116; 
adoption of Emilita, 117; operatic 
interlude, n 8-1 21; meeting with the 
MacDowells, 1 21-123; second mar- 
riage, 124-176; birth of Lulu, 127; 
death of Lulu, 131; Carreno Con- 
cert Company, 1 30-131; Carreno- 
Donaldi Company, 1 31-134; birth 
of Teresita, 136; the Damrosch tour, 
137-140; Clara Louise Kellogg Com- 
pany, 1 41-142; first performance of 
MacDowell's "Second Suite Mo- 
derne," 142; birth of Giovanni, 145; 
in Venezuela, 147-162; the coming 
of Arturo, 171; debut of the Mac- 
Dowell "Concerto in D minor," 173- 
174; end of second marriage and 
departure for Europe, 174-177; prep- 
aration in Paris and Berlin, 178-185; 
Berlin debut, 189-195; second con- 
cert, 195-197; meeting with Grieg, 
204-205; at Berck-sur-Mer, 208-209; 
reunion with Rubinstein, 212; with 
d'Albert, 213-241; in Chaumont, 
216-218; in Cos wig, 218-241; third 
marriage, 227; birth of Eugenia, 
227; birth of Hertha, 243; divorce, 
243; Pertisau, 245, 250, 266, 274- 
276, 277, 346; European tours, 245- 
250, 253, 267-270, 276-277, 301- 
303, 312-313, 359-364; Carreno 
"Quartette in B minor," 250-251; 
American tours, 254-262, 272-274, 
275, 279-285, 307-309, 3io, 348- 
349, 365-367, 377-38i; Schwaz, Ty- 
rol, 270; the coming of Arturo, 285; 
Friedrichroda, 286-287; engagement 
and fourth marriage, 286-293; Wyk 
a. Fohr, 301; Australian tour, 303- 
307; passing of Edward MacDowell, 
307-308; in Italy and Oberstdorf, 

309; Gastein, 310; tour of South 
Africa, 311; Oberstdorf, 31 1-3 12, 
346, 351; tour in England, 312; 
Grindelwald, 313-316; Golden Jubi- 
lee, 297-300; reunion with Emilita, 
343; Obersalzberg, 345~347; death 
of Regina Watson, 347; arrest of 
Teresita, 351-352; war experiences, 
351-358; at the court of Spain, 354- 
356; arrest of Giovanni, 358-359; 
death of Manuel, 363; in Havana, 
381-383; illness and death, 382-384; 
funeral, 387; repatriation in Vene- 
zuela, 387-388 

— managers. See Aronson, Cochran, 
Danskin, Johnston, Weber, Wolff, 
Wolfsohn; relations with, 302 

— performance: 7-9, 23, 39, 42, 46, 
47, 55, 61-62, 63, 67-68, 68-69, 74, 
78, 98, 99-100, 101, 102, no, 120, 
121, 134, 140, 141, 142, 144, 146, 
159, 166, 184, 191-193, 194-195, 
196-197, 211, 212, 222, 228, 233, 
234, 239, 249, 250, 254-255, 259, 
260, 267, 280, 306, 349, 360-362, 

393> 396 

— singer: 82, 83, 101, 102-105, in, 
115, 116, 118-121, 131, 132, 133, 
142, 143, 159 

— standards: 10, 49, 87, 91, 93, 109, 
125, 126, 144-145, 176, 222, 265- 
266, 275, 288, 301, 302-303, 319, 
329, 333-334, 339, 364, 366-376 

— study and practice: 21, 22, 25, 34, 
43, 52, 76, 86-87, 107, 143, 179, 
185, 202, 219, 230, 231, 244, 245, 
276, 277 

— teacher: 72, 93, 122-123, 128, 231, 
245, 250, 270, 286, 311, 315, 316, 
320, 324, 325, 346, 348, 350, 367- 

Chickering Piano Company, 7, 9, 54, 145, 

264, 272 
Cochran, J. W., 259, 264, 272, 275, 279, 

280, 281, 282, 283, 317; letter of 

Carreno to, 357-358, 365, 377, 380, 

Cohen, Nathaniel, 113, 114, 115 
Cowen, Sir Frederic H., 102, 105, no, 

Crespo, J., President of Venezuela, 149, 

155, 160 




AMROSCH, Leopold, 137, 138-140 
Damrosch, Walter, 124, 387 
Danskin, George, 38, 42, 44, 48-49, 50, 

Delle Sedie, 83, 93, 94, 328 
Desvernine, Dr. C, 57, 383 
Dolge, Rudolf, 388 
Dominici, Dr. Santos, 299 
Dore, Gustave, 82-83 
Donaldi, Mme. E., 131, 132, 133 
Dwight, John Sullivan, 44, 46, 47-48, 

62-63, 83, 109, 113, 127 

L^LMAN, Mischa, 312, 387 
Erard, Madame, 67, 69 
Everett Piano, 307 

lAIRBANK, Helen, 174 

Fairbank, N. K., 142, 174-175, 183, 202, 

Febres, G. P., 150, 151 
Fernow, Hermann, 210, 301 
Fink, Hermine, 240, 243 
Friedrichroda, 284, 285, 286 
Fritzsch, Herr, 204, 251 


■ ASTEIN, Bad, 310 
Genius, 60; analysis of, 91, 126, 149 
Goddard, Arabella, 30, 31, 132 
Gortatowsky, Bruno, 314, 316, 372 
Gottschalk, Louis Moreau, 5, 7, 9; de- 
scription of, 28-29; meeting with Ter- 
esita, 31-33; letters of, 35, 52-53; 58, 
61, 69, 80, 86, 89, 222, 304, 376 
"Gottschalk Waltz," 9, 35, 37, 54, 80 
Gounod, Charles, 79, 81, 82, 180 
Grandmother Gertrudis, 26, 59 
Grieg, Edvard, 130, 137, 138, 142, 184, 
191-192, 195, 198; meeting with Car- 
reno, 204-205, 211, 213, 292, 298 
Grindelwald, 168, 314-315, 316, 319, 377 

llAINES, Robert P., 38 
Halir Quartette, 267 
Halle, Charles, 85, 98 
Hanslick, Eduard, 228, 238 
Harrison, L. F., 4-5, 10, 35, 36, 37 


Hauck, Minnie, 95 
Haydn, Josef, 13, 14 
Henderson, W. J., 254 
Heugel, M., 80, 82, 100 
Hofmann, Josef, 34, 267, 274 
Hohenus, Julius, 22, 25 
Humboldt, Alexander v., 14, 18 
Huneker, James, 121, 226, 254 

Irving hall, 6, 34, 185 

Isabel, Infanta, 354, 356, 363 



OACHIM, Josef, 105, 182, 216, 230, 232 
John Church Company, 348 
Johnston, R. E., 259, 264, 306 
Josephine (de Paul), 162, 178, 181, 208, 

217, 258, 285, 313, 324, 325, 326, 

329, 346, 365, 370 


.ELLOGG, Clara Louise, 141 
Klengel, Julius, 267 
Klingler Quartette, 250 
Knabe Piano Company, 253, 259, 264 
Knauth, Gertrud, 231, 238, 240 
Koch, Emma, 182-183, 198, 243, 287 
Koch, Frau, 182-183, 198 
Krahl, "die gute," 245, 248, 251, 258, 

277, 286, 337-339, 35i 
Kurfurstendamm 28 111 , 241-242, 

3ii, 331, 333, 344, 349, 366 



rARRAZABAL, Felipe, 8, 51 
Lehmann, Lilli, 298, 325, 362 
Lincoln, Abraham, 61-62, 379 
Lincoln, J. W., Jr., 41, 42 
Lind, Jenny, 43, 55 
Liszt, Franz, meeting with Teresita, 69- 

70; 92, 368, 376-377, 393-394 
Llamozas, Salvador, 388 
London Philharmonic Concerts, no 


APLESON, Colonel, 97, 101, 102- 

Marmontel, A., 75, 76, 81, 94 
Maria Christina (Queen Mother 

Spain), 355-356 

Matthews, W. S. B., 143 

Matthias, Georges, 76, 81, 375 

Mohedano, Padre, 15 

Monday Popular Concerts (London), 98, 
99, 100, 165, 106, no 

Moszkowski, Alexander, 299 

Moszkowski, Maurice, 277, 299 

Mozart, W. A., 5, 13, 14, 47, 55, 119 

Murska, lima di, 113, 127 

Musical taste: in Cuba, 55, 56, 59, 279; in 
England, 85, 206; in France, 85; in 
Germany, 134, 144-145, 175, 189, 205, 
211, 222, 230; in the United States, 
128, 129-130, 133, 174, 253, 258, 275, 
307; in Venezuela, 25, 53, 154, 162. 

MacDowell, Edward, 1 21-122; early com- 
positions of, 128-129; "Second Suite 
Moderne," 142-143; 145, 172-174, 198, 
215, 222, 229, 246-247, 255-257, 266, 
272-273, 307-308, 395 

MacDowell, Fanny (Mrs. Thomas), 121, 
122, 131, 170, 176, 179, 180, 225, 
246-247, 261, 287, 308, 309, 317 

MacDowell, Marian (Mrs. Edward), 172- 
173, 256, 307, 308 

MacDowell "Second Concerto"; origin of 
Scherzo, 172-174; 198, 211, 215, 252, 
255, 257, 266, 272, 277, 308 

MacDowell, Thomas, 121, 179, 180, 308, 



IEMANN, Dr. Walter, 349 
Nikisch, Artur, 224, 249, 297 

V^yBERSTDORF, 309, 310, 31 1-3 12, 

315, 323, 346, 347, 35i 
Obersalzberg, 315, 345~346 
Okell, Adelaide, 309 
Ollivier, Blandine, 69, 72, 79, 94 

1 ADEREWSKI, I. J., 224, 259, 303, 383 
Patti, Adelina, 8, 82, 95, 97, 104 
Patti, Carlotta, 106, 108-109 
Paur, Emil, 298 

Pertisau, 245, 250, 266, 274-276, 346 
Pineda, Senor, 156, 161 



Plaza, Juan Bautista, 388 
Princess Mathilde, 79-80 
Princess of Wales, 85-86, 95 
Puzzi, Madame, 74-75 


.ACHELLE, Fernando, 163, 166 

Reed, Caroline Keating, 131, 156-157, 
179, 208, 209, 234, 264-265, 279-281 

Reger, Max, 211, 302 

Revenga, Dr. Manuel, 164 

Richter, Hans, 205-206 

Rive-King, Madame, 133, 140 

Riviere Promenade Concerts, 96, 97, 98, 

Rodriguez, Simon. See Simon Carreno 

Rojas, Aristides, 14 

Rossini, Giacomo, 68-69, 70, 71, 72; let- 
ters of, 73, 74; Mass of, 95 

Rubinstein, Anton, 82, 86, 87, 99-100, 
106, 107, 121, 196, 204, 212, 214, 222, 
239, 254, 259, 265, 374 

Rudersdorff, Mme. H., 98, 113, 11 8-1 19 

OAINT-SAENS, Camille, 69, 210, 278 

Salingre, Louise, 223, 241 

Sauret, Emile, 106, 108, 109, no, in, 
113, 114, 115; departure of, 116; 117, 
123, 125, 200, 216, 225, 267, 343 

Sauret, Emilita (daughter of Carreno), 
110, in, 117, 199-200, 343-344 

Scherek, Benno, 303, 304, 305, 310 

Schumann, Clara, 55, 98, 131, 184, 192, 

Schumann-Heink, E., 310 
Schwaz, Tyrol, 270 
Segur, Comte de, 14 
Sinding, Christian, 298, 362 
Sojo, Padre Pedro, 13, 14, 15 
Steinway & Sons, 180, 264, 279, 365 
Strakosch, Maurice, 95, 97, 106, 113, 119, 

Sullivan, Arthur, 96 


AGLIAPIETRA, Arturo (husband of 
Carreno), 171-172, 175* 176, 225, 
247, 258, 275, 279, 283, 284, 285-293, 
297, 2 99, 302, 305, 306, 309, 310, 
312, 315, 317-320, 322, 329, 33i, 335, 

338, 343, 35i, 352, 354, 356, 350-362, 
363, 365, 366, 378-379, 387, 388 

Tagliapietra, Giovanni (husband of Car- 
reno), 119, 124, 127, 128, 130, 131, 
134, 135-136", 145, 148, 149, 150-152, 
153, 156, 157, 158, 159, 160, 161, 162, 
165-166, 175, 176, 207-208, 216, 225, 
242-243, 247, 260-262, 264 

Tagliapietra, Giovanni Carreno (son of 
Carreno), 145, 170-171, 202, 208, 234, 
239, 240, 275, 284, 286, 293, 314, 318, 

327-337, 345, 346, 352, 353, 358-359, 

Tagliapietra, Lulu (daughter of Carreno), 
127, 128, 131 

Tagliapietra, Teresita (daughter of Car- 
reno), 135, 136, 144, 145, 170-171, 
202, 208, 231, 234, 235, 237, 240, 246, 
250, 251-252, 263-264, 274-275, 277, 
278, 283-284, 286, 289-291, 292, 303, 
313, 318, 320-326, 328, 330, 334, 337, 
345, 346", 347-348, 350-352, 354, 356- 
357, 363, 365, 384, 388 

Tavernola, 293 

"Teresita Waltz," 145, 154, 251, 265, 268 

Tietjens, Therese, 101, 108, 119, 120 

Thomas, Ambroise, 82 

Thomas, Theodore, 6, 9, 34, 36, 37, 136, 

Toro, del, 18, 19, 31, 77, 148, 158 


RSO, Camilla, 145 

V E 

ELOZ, Nicholas, 388 
Venezuela, 6, 10, 12, 17, 19, 60, 75, 147, 

149, 159, 160, 164, 168-169, 172, 206, 

281, 299, 380, 389 
Victoria, Queen of Spain, 355, 356 
Villa, Maestro, 326, 328, 337, 352 
Vivier, M., 67, 69; concert of, 70-71 

W A 

ATSON, Dr. Lewis, 133 
Watson, Regina (Ginka), 132-133, 134, 
144-145, 171, 172, 174, 258, 265, 287, 

309, 317, 347 
Weber Piano Company, 121, 127, 133, 
142, 167 

410 INDEX 

Wolff, Hermann, 181, 183, 189, 192, Wullner, Ludwig, 328 

194, 209-210, 212, 215, 217-218, 219, Wyk a. Fohr, 301 

220, 229-230, 232-233, 253, 256-257, 

267, 271, 291, 300 

Wolff, Louise, 183, 213, 214, 298, 339 7 

Wolfsohn Bureau, 348 Z-<ERRAHN, Carl, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48-49 






3 5002 03086 9817 

Music ML 417 . C4 MS 

Milinowekl, Marta, 1S85- 

Teresa Carre'no