The Schmooze

Curly Locks and Pocket Watches of Henri Herz

As CD releases celebrate 19th century Jewish romantic composers such as Ignaz Moscheles, Jakob Rosenhain and Edouard Wolff, the time to rediscover the composer/pianist/piano manufacturer Henri Herz may finally be here.

Born Heinrich Herz in Vienna to a Jewish family, he composed gracious high-society music which has been recorded by recent keyboard notables such as Earl Wild on Philips and Vanguard CDs; Phillip Martin on Hyperion Records; and Howard Shelley, also on Hyperion.

In the spring, Les Éditions de l’EHESS published “Henri Herz, Piano Magnate.” Written by musicologist Laure Schnapper, it is a lively, sympathetic account of the challenges a traveling Jewish virtuoso faced in Europe of the day. Schnapper quotes an 1845 Paris newspaper article announcing one of Herz’s concerts, which claimed mockingly that Herz “swears by the staff of Moses and King Solomon’s Ring that his concert will indisputably be the finest of all possible concerts.”

Recommend this article

Curly Locks and Pocket Watches of Henri Herz

Thank you!

This article has been sent!

Close
Close