Lot 10: Signed Budapest Concert Program by Bela Bartok and the Manhattan Quartet
Presidential Letters, Free Franks & Speeches: Washington to Bush + Important Autographs in History, Science & the Arts
October 26, 2016
New York, NY, USALive Auction
Description: Signed Budapest Concert Program by Bela Bartók and the Manhattan Quartet********** BARTOK, BELA. (1881-1945). Hungarian composer, pianist and ethnomusicologist; creator of Music for Strings, Percussion and Celeste, the Concerto for Orchestra, and other 20th-century masterpieces. Signed program. (“Bartók Béla”). 11pp. 8vo. Budapest, March 13, 1937. In Hungarian. Our booklet is for a concert at the Zeneművészeti Fóiskola featuring Bartók and members of the Manhattan Quartet who have also signed the program. They include founder and violinist RACHMAEL WEINSTOCK (1910-1996; “Rachmael Weinstock”), violinist JULIUS SHAIER (?-?; “Julius Shaier”), violinist and conductor HARRIS DANZIGER (1906-1980; “Harris Danziger”), and cellist and influential teacher OLIVER EDEL (1906-2005; “Oliver Edel”). ********** The mid-18th century reorganization of the Hapsburg Empire into separate Austrian and Hungarian states fomented a Hungarian nationalism that deeply influenced Bartók and his music. Beginning in the early 1900s he started to employ Hungarian folk music in his compositions, and the 1904 Budapest performance of his symphonic poem Kossuth, which memorialized the father of Hungarian democracy, brought him much acclaim. It was not unusual for composers to model their work on popular folk tunes but Bartók strove towards something more authentically Hungarian. ********** Despite his great attachment to Hungarian culture, Bartók, as early as 1931, was protesting the Hungarian government’s fascist leanings. In 1939, he sent his archive to London for safe-keeping and, following the death of his mother, and his ethno-musicological research notwithstanding, he seriously began to consider emigration. After completing his second American tour in April and May of 1940, Bartók returned to Hungary for a final concert in Budapest, then left his homeland forever and settled in New York, where he spent the remainder of his life. ********** A native of Newark, New Jersey, Weinstock formed the Manhattan String Quartet after enrolling at the Manhattan School of Music, where he later became an influential teacher. “The group, which, unlike most quartets, performed its programs from memory, made its formal debut at Town Hall in 1932 and toured Europe in 1935. During the tour, the ensemble performed the Brahms and Franck Piano Quintets in Budapest with Bela Bartok at the piano. In 1936, the quartet toured the Soviet Union during an easing of restrictions on foreign artists. The group disbanded in 1937,” the year of our program, (“Rachmael Weinstock, 86, Violinist and Teacher,” New York Times, Kozinn). ********** All five musicians have signed the front cover in blue ink above their printed names. Light mounting traces on the inside and outside of the last page; otherwise in fine condition.