Author Topic: Joseph Street  (Read 2685 times)

giles.enders

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Joseph Street
« on: Wednesday 16 February 2011, 11:59 »
Does anyone have any biographical information about Joseph Street.  He wrote two piano concertos 1865/70 and a piano quintet, date unknown.

thalbergmad

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Re: Joseph Street
« Reply #1 on: Wednesday 16 February 2011, 12:54 »
You do come up with some unheard of composers Giles.

I know nothing of this man, but I have played through the first concerto which I remember as being uneventful. It would pass as a work written 40 years earlier and I would not imagine that it would be recorded. If it did, it perhaps would be Hyperion Volume 610 when all other avenues have been exhausted. I recall the last movement as being a little more exciting, but Bache is superior.

It would be nice for some further info though.

Thal

eschiss1

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Re: Joseph Street
« Reply #2 on: Wednesday 16 February 2011, 13:19 »
and all I know about him is his cello sonata up at IMSLP, so you've already magnified my knowledge by a factor of... 3?... Thanks.
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Gareth Vaughan

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Re: Joseph Street
« Reply #3 on: Wednesday 16 February 2011, 17:51 »
He was a friend of Liszt (indeed, it has been suggested that he was an illegitimate child of Liszt's!) and Liszt may have arranged for his PCs and other works - none of which is particularly distinguished - to be published (the implication being that otherwise they would not have been). I am sure he is mentioned somewhere in Alan Walker's 3-volume study of the great man (Liszt, that is - not Street!!!). I will try to find the reference.
The cello sonata on IMSLP is quite nice in a naive sort of way.

eschiss1

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Re: Joseph Street
« Reply #4 on: Wednesday 16 February 2011, 20:25 »
He was a friend of Liszt (indeed, it has been suggested that he was an illegitimate child of Liszt's!)

Wait, was he the son of Agnes Street née Klindworth? There's a whole chapter on his mother in the 2nd volume (The Weimar Years) with some brief mention of her son, yes, including refutation of the claim that he could possibly have been a son of Liszt's - the dates just don't work out. But his mother was a very interesting person indeed, spy, confidante, ... that chapter makes for very interesting reading :) And if memory serves- I think I've misplaced my copy too - he (her son, Joseph) helped Bizet's Carmen reach the stage, or something like... His father's name, if I remember, was Denis.
Eric

Except according to the Google-able copy of the Weimar years, Agnes' sons were Charles and George, not Joseph - so the answer to my question is no, we're not talking about George Street here. (I would add that the dates for Joseph Street are supposedly 1800-1880 - preceding Agnes' birthdate of 1825 by some time - but I have no clue where those dates on IMSLP come from - will try to find out. He is not, I think, listed in our 'usual sources' - musicsack and viaf.org being the two most often consulted by me now anyway... and when those come up empty, as they do eg for Percy Hilder Miles, it often seems wise to at least put in where one's obtained one's information (as I tried to do when starting a Wikipedia stub for the latter) - anyway.)
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giles.enders

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Re: Joseph Street
« Reply #5 on: Friday 18 February 2011, 13:35 »
I am in the process of updating my website- after five years of prevarication.  I cannot find my initial references to Street, and I clearly never knew when he was born or died or even where he lived.

Gareth Vaughan

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Re: Joseph Street
« Reply #6 on: Friday 18 February 2011, 22:17 »
I too have now checked Alan Walker's biography of Liszt and I must own to having been mistake. There is no reference to Joseph Street. He seems to have been published by Breitkopf & Hartel (might there be some information in their archive?). In addition to the 2 PCs (scores & parts available from Fleisher), there are 2 Symphonies, a piano quintet, a string quartet, a number of sonatas for solo piano and piano & viiolin, as well as the Cello Sonata on IMSLP - also an Overture on Shakespeare's "Two Gentlemen of Verona". Copies of most of these can be found in BL. Additionally, The University of London library has a set of parts for the quintet.
But I can't find any reference to him in Slonimsky (usually pretty comprehensive); modern Grove is hopeless, of course, but earlier editions of Grove also seem to omit any mention of Joseph Street. German dictionaries might be more forthcoming of course. Altogether, the man is a bit of a mystery.

eschiss1

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Re: Joseph Street
« Reply #7 on: Saturday 19 February 2011, 05:47 »
there is a mention in an early Grove, in the article on Clavichords, of "the late Joseph Street, of Lloyds" but nothing to fill out - anything about who that person might have been; may have been no relation, not even a composer, aught I know... but anyway.
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Martin Eastick

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Re: Joseph Street
« Reply #8 on: Sunday 20 February 2011, 11:55 »
Many years ago I possessed copies of the piano concertos, but have to say that at the time I thought how dull the music was, both melodically and harmonically (in fact, I eventually got rid of these scores, which is something I virtually NEVER do with unsung material!) Later, I gave him a second chance and still have a full score of the Symphony No1 as well as score and parts for the Piano Quintet - the reason I kept hold of this was because it is written for the quintet combination including the doublebass!

However, I again revisited the music in response to this current thread and have to admit that I can still summon up little enthusiasm with Mr Street, and can only assume that he must have funded his publications with Breitkopf himself!

There is a brief mention in Cobbett that he was living in London 1860-1875, and the same article also refers to a Breitkopf circular which in turn mentions the Violin Sonata Op21 to be "elegantly written recalling the style of Hauptmann, and easy to play".
 
Nevertheless. In spite of the above and others' comments, I would be pleased to have any further information that anyone has!

giles.enders

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Re: Joseph Street
« Reply #9 on: Wednesday 23 February 2011, 11:16 »
Does anyone know where he was born, where he lived, who taught him, did he teach, or when he died.  He has been a mystery to me for a long while.  Usually I can make a sort of spiders web of links with composers and musicians but to me Street appeared from nowhere, wrote some music which still survives and then vanished !.

There is an old Chinese proverb which is " It is better to travel hopefully, that to arrive". That is part of the fascination for me with Joseph Street, Bluebell Klean and many others.

albion

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Re: Joseph Street
« Reply #10 on: Wednesday 23 February 2011, 11:53 »
Does anyone know where he was born, where he lived, who taught him, did he teach, or when he died.  He has been a mystery to me for a long while.  Usually I can make a sort of spiders web of links with composers and musicians but to me Street appeared from nowhere, wrote some music which still survives and then vanished !
Joseph Edward Street was Secretary to the prestigious Madrigal Society (founded in 1741 and based in London) from July 1871, being appointed President of the Society in November 1905 following recent incumbents Sir Arthur Sullivan (1899), Lord Alverstone (1901) and Sir Frederick Bridge (1904).


eschiss1

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Re: Joseph Street
« Reply #11 on: Wednesday 23 February 2011, 14:33 »
Thank you very much! Do we have an approximate death year (since the '1880' on IMSLP is out the window)? - Eric
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albion

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Re: Joseph Street
« Reply #12 on: Wednesday 23 February 2011, 14:38 »
Thank you very much! Do we have an approximate death year (since the '1880' on IMSLP is out the window)? - Eric
Unfortunately there is no further information about this obituary portrait (date or publication), but from the print and style I would hazard a guess at around 1910. From his appearance in the photograph I would age him 65-70, giving an approximate lifespan between 1840 and 1910.

eschiss1

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Re: Joseph Street
« Reply #13 on: Thursday 24 February 2011, 03:52 »
He died on March 31 1908 at the age of ... erm, something-seven...- a quick books.google.com search reveals this (" +"madrigal society" of london "edward street" "). Thank you. (Musical Times of May 1 1908, page 321 - obituary of Joseph Edward Street. Problem almost solved. Lived in Caterham, Surrey, England :)  )

The next year, a mural tablet was lifted in his memory.
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albion

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Re: Joseph Street
« Reply #14 on: Thursday 24 February 2011, 10:05 »
Here are some further snippets of information about Joseph Edward Street which may prove useful in fleshing-out his biography:

he was a prominent member of the marine underwriting syndicate founded by his uncle Joseph Street at Lloyd's of London;
he was a Fellow of the Philharmonic Society;
he was admitted on livery to the Worshipful Company of Musicians on 30th April 1880 and was a member of the Committee which organised the celebrated 1904 Music Loan Exhibition at Fishmonger's Hall;
he was a member of the Bach Choir under Otto Goldschmidt in the 1880s and also King Edward VII's Coronation Choir (1902) and apparently had a "fine counter-tenor voice".  :)