Henry Cowell a Brno : příspěvek k brněnským meziválečným kontaktům s představiteli světové avantgardy

Zdrojový dokument: Musicologica Brunensia. 2009, roč. 44, č. 1-2, s. [217]-223
  • ISSN
    1212-0391 (print)
    2336-436X (online)
Type: Článek
Licence: Neurčená licence
Henry Cowell went on tour in the Europe five times - in 1923, 1926, 1929, 1931 and 1932 - and on this occasion he visited twice the Czechoslovakia. During these visits he presented himself as a composer and interpreter and he made several important contacts. Cowell visited the Czechoslovakia for the first time within his second Europe tour in 1926. He had some lectures and concerts in two places - Brno and Prague. Cowell's visit of Brno was probably arranged by prof. Vladimír Úlehla. Cowell's lecture on his music was organised by the Club of the Moravian Composers and it was held in the hall of Brno conservatory on 8 April 1926. Organizer of Cowell's concert in Beseda house next day was Moravian Urania, educational and culture society in Brno. The piano, string-piano and thunder-stick was played by Cowell himself, while Leo Lindner played violin. Reviews of both Prague and Brno concerts were rather negative - Cowell's performance was regarded as a sort of sensation rather than a serious music production. Leoš Janáček went to the Brno lecture and concert as well and he met Cowell several times. No source proves what Janáček thought of Cowell's work but we know that Cowell regarded highly Janáček as a composer. Cowell with prof. Úlehla also visited Strážnice and Velká where he heard a folk band playing and he met there also singer Máša Fleischerová. -- The second and last journey of Henry Cowell in Brno was made after his return from the Soviet Union in June 1929. Concert on 6 June 1929 with compositions by Cowell, Janáček, Petrželka and Kaprál played by the Moravian quartet was broadcasted on radio. The concert was organised by the Ethical movement of the Czechoslovac students in the music auditorium of the Faculty of Arts, Masaryk University. Reviews of the concerts were morethanless the same as in 1926. -- Cowell wanted to keep contact with Brno and sent a letter to prof. Helfert on 1 November 1931 with a request for organising the concert next year. According to the fact that no other letter from Cowell to Helfert was sent and no concert was held we conclude there was no interest in such a performance. It indicates also the entry in Pazdírek music dictionary from 1937 edited just by Helfert and Černušák. It is stated in the entry that Cowell's compositions performed in Brno in 1926 and 1929 are not convincing. Henry Cowell during his Europe tours won several friends in Brno and met Janáček personally but got hardly any credit for his compositions.