Cover

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Title Page, Frontispiece, Copyright, Dedication

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pp. i-vi

Contents

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pp. vii-viii

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Preface

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pp. ix-xii

For almost forty years music lovers, students, connoisseurs, and fellow musicians were enthralled by the unique artistry of Marcel Tabuteau. They listened to his phrasing, his elegance of style, and to his silvery tone as it would spiral and float seemingly without effort to the top...

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Acknowledgements

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pp. xiii-xvi

I would like to express my appreciation to the archivists and librarians who have provided much valuable information: Robert Tuggle and John Pennino, Metropolitan Opera; JoAnne E. Barry, Philadelphia Orchestra; Elizabeth Walker, Curtis Institute of Music; Mlle Andrée...

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Introduction

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pp. xvii-xxiv

February 20, 1915, saw the opening in San Francisco of the Panama-Pacific International Exposition, the celebrated world fair that heralded the completion of the Panama Canal and the city’s reconstruction from the devastating earthquake and fire of 1906. It attracted visitors and...

Accessing the Audio Files

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pp. xxv-xxx

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1. Compiègne and the Tabuteau Family

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pp. 1-20

It was in mid-September of 1951 that I saw the French city of Compiègne for the first time. The Tabuteaus had invited me to accompany them on their drive to visit his relatives, the Létoffés. To reach Compiègne from Paris one travels slightly northeast for about an hour. The...

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2. Paris Conservatoire: Tabuteau’s Studies with Georges Gillet, 1902–1904

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pp. 21-38

It is impossible to write about Marcel Tabuteau without considering the degree to which he was influenced by his own teacher, Georges Gillet (1854–1920). Until the end of his life Tabuteau spoke of what a great man Gillet was and gave him credit for everything he himself...

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3. Arrival in America:Walter Damrosch and the New York Symphony Orchestra, 1905–1908

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pp. 39-58

At the beginning of the twentieth century, the number of full-fledged symphony orchestras in the United States could easily be counted on the fingers of one hand. There was the orchestra in Chicago that had been created by musical trailblazer Theodore Thomas. An orchestra...

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4. The Metropolitan Opera: Singers and Conductors of the “Golden Age,” 1908–1914

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pp. 59-74

Marcel Tabuteau entered the orchestra of the Metropolitan Opera House at the beginning of one of its most brilliant and artistically productive periods. The fall season of 1908–9 marked the first year of the reign of the new general director, Giulio Gatti-Casazza, and the conductor...

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5. San Francisco Interlude: The Panama-Pacific International Exposition Orchestra, 1915

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pp. 75-87

John de Lancie, who grew up in the Bay Region of California, remembered that the first time he heard the name Marcel Tabuteau was in connection with the 1915 Panama-Pacific International Exposition: “It was during the early 1930s. I was only nine or ten years old and was just...

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6. The Philadelphia Orchestra: The Stokowski Years, 1915–1940

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pp. 88-135

There are at least three versions of how Marcel Tabuteau came to be engaged as principal oboe of the Philadelphia Orchestra. One story is that in the spring of 1915, while Tabuteau was in San Francisco, he heard of the oboe opening from some of the Philadelphia Orchestra...

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7. Tabuteau as Soloist with the Philadelphia Orchestra: 1915–1954

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pp. 136-176

Shortly into his first season with the Philadelphia Orchestra, Tabuteau made his debut appearance as a soloist, albeit in an “out of town” popular concert. On November 15, 1915, at the Playhouse in Wilmington, Delaware, he played the Handel G Minor Concerto, a work familiar to...

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8. Tabuteau at the Curtis Institute of Music: 1924–1946

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pp. 177-216

From the time of its opening in the fall of 1924, one of the major aims of the Curtis Institute of Music was to train first-class orchestral musicians in all instruments. Although some effort was already being made in this direction—for example, at the Institute of Musical Art in New...

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9. Lessons with Tabuteau: My Arrival in Philadelphia, January 1943

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pp. 217-253

After several futile years of trying to enter the Curtis Institute of Music, I finally arrived by bus in Philadelphia during the cold winter of January 1943, hoping to have a few private lessons with the great master. My San Francisco teacher, Julien Shanis, had talked so much about...

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10. My First Year with Tabuteau at the Curtis Institute: October 1943–May 1944

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pp. 254-305

In the fall of 1943 as the beginning of the school year approached, I had to find a new place to live. Some friends suggested the Hannah Penn House, which was run by the Republican Women of Pennsylvania as their club. The traditional dark red brick colonial building at 250 South...

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11. Tabuteau Conducts the Curtis Orchestra: Fall 1944–Spring 1945

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pp. 306-344

The major event of the 1944–45 season at the Curtis Institute, at least for wind and string students, was the creation of a small orchestra to be conducted by Marcel Tabuteau. We were to play a series of Sunday radio concerts sponsored by the Philadelphia Savings Fund Society. My...

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12. Tabuteau’s Summers in Canada: Salmon Fishing in Nova Scotia

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pp. 345-354

The outbreak of the war in Europe in 1939 brought about a complete change in the way the Tabuteaus spent their cherished vacation months. Gone were the visits with family and the long summer lunches on the terrace of their little house near Toulon, the Pingouinette. It is not...

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13. Another Year of Study with Tabuteau: 1945–1946

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pp. 355-368

In the spring of 1945 Hans Kindler had held auditions at the Curtis Institute, and I was offered the job of second oboe in the National Symphony Orchestra. Tabuteau suggested I accept the position and use it as an opportunity to learn repertoire. At the same time he cautioned me to...

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14. Summers in France: The Pingouinette; Back to Philadelphia, 1948

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pp. 369-392

Although the Tabuteaus were now seriously considering their permanent retirement and return to France, postwar conditions made life there far from attractive. As late as 1948 there was no white bread—(a catastrophe for the French); baguettes were made from heavy, dark gray...

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15. Tabuteau’s Last Years at the Curtis Institute: 1946–1954

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pp. 393-415

With the end of World War II, a type of renaissance took place in Tabuteau’s classes at the Curtis Institute of Music. Two major aspects of this “renewal of life” in Tabuteau’s last eight years of teaching there were the return of the young men whose studies and careers had been...

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16. The Casals Festivals in Prades and Perpignan: 1950, 1951, and 1953

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pp. 416-437

Toward the end of Tabuteau’s playing career in 1950, 1951, and 1953, he took part in the Casals Festivals in Prades and Perpignan. If for no other reason than the fact that these festivals gave us a few outstanding recorded examples of his solo work, they are of significance in any account...

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17. Tabuteau as Seen by His Philadelphia Orchestra Colleagues

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pp. 438-454

As the twentieth century drew to a close, I was able to talk with a number of Philadelphia Orchestra musicians who had played on the same stage with Marcel Tabuteau. I had never really known how he was regarded by rank-and-file members of the string section, and I wanted to...

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18. Retirement in France: La Coustiéro, 1954–1959

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pp. 455-473

While staying at the Pingouinette in the summer of 1948 I had wandered through the fields toward the Mediterranean and stumbled upon several lovely, but derelict, villas in the pinewoods. Some were inhabited, but others were little more than empty shells. I learned that interesting...

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19. Tabuteau’s Final Years in Nice: 1959–1966

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pp. 474-506

The Tabuteaus had barely settled in at the Négresco when in the middle of December they made their first return visit to the Coustiéro. They wanted to see the “new proprietor, the successor, while he was there on his way to Dakar,” and Tabuteau was anxious to check on his...

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20. Philadelphia Postlude: Tabuteau’s Playing; His Musical Ideas and Influence

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pp. 507-520

In November 1967, almost two years after Tabuteau’s death, Mme Tabuteau returned to Philadelphia accompanied by Denise Budin. Her main goal was to take part in the creation of the Marcel Tabuteau Memorial Scholarship Fund and to make sure that the tapes Tabuteau...

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Appendix 1. Introduction and Text Transcription for the Tabuteau-Wolsing CD Audio Files

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pp. 521-530

On March 3, 1964, Marcel Tabuteau wrote from Nice to his “Cher ami Wolsing” in Copenhagen: “I am glad you could arrange to come from March 21st to March 29th so we can celebrate pre Easter together; also with pleasure will entertain you with latest reeds problem and...

Appendix 2. The Students of Marcel Tabuteau at the Curtis Institute of Music

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pp. 531-532

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Appendix 3. The Tabuteau System: Essay and Outline

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pp. 533-544

At various times throughout the years Marcel Tabuteau spoke of his desire to put his thoughts on performance and teaching into written form. He often appeared to be searching for someone to help him organize and codify his ideas. Both Waldemar Wolsing in 1964 and Wayne...

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Glossary of Terms Used

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pp. 545-546

Cane: Arundo donax, plant from which oboists make their own reeds. It grows in all Mediterranean-type climates, but the cane most favored for the past two hundred years has been that from the region of Var, France, particularly near Fréjus. It is cut, dried, and prepared according...

Notes

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pp. 547-576

Selected Bibliography

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pp. 577-578

Index

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pp. 579-595