Francis Hueffer (1845-89) was born and studied music in Germany, but moved to London in 1869 to pursue a career as a critic and writer on music. He edited the series 'The Great Musicians' for Novello and Co., was music critic of The Times, and was an early advocate and interpreter to the British of Wagner. His Musical Studies of 1880 is a collection of essays on Beethoven, Chopin, French opera, Schopenhauer ('among the numerous German metaphysicians, the only one who has said anything worth listening to about music'), and of course Wagner: an article on the Ring written before the first performance of the complete cycle, and an account of that performance at Bayreuth. The collection finishes with the provocative essay 'The chances of English opera' (1879), which contrasts the lively opera scene in the rest of Europe with the lack of a tradition of English opera.
Table of Contents
Preface; 1. Thayer's Beethoven; 2. Chopin; 3. Foreign schools of music; 4. Arthur Schopenhauer; 5. Richard Wagner and his Ring of the Niblung; 6. The Wagner Festival at Bayreuth; 7. Three French operas; 8. The chances of English opera.