Music Composers

Johannes Brahms-Part 11

Georg Henschel, the singer, was much in contact with Brahms and did much in the way of introducing his works. On one occasion when he and Brahms arrived at a certain town they were given a double bedroom and Henschel anticipated the night with some alarm. As soon as the light was out Brahms was asleep and snoring loudly. Henschel, knowing that he would not sleep, went off to the porter and managed to secure another room. When the friends met in the morning Brahms said, "When I awoke and found your bed empty I thought, "The poor fellow has gone and hanged himself."

He was not a good speaker. A great banquet was given in Vienna after the performance of one of his symphonies and was attended by many notabilities, including Popper, the violoncellist. Brahms was asked to make a speech and began: "Gentlemen composing is very difficult, copying far easier; but on that point my friend Popper can give you more information." Popper got up smiling and said: "My friend, Brahms, has informed you that I know all about copying. I do not know if he is right in this; I only know that if I were to copy there is only one man I would consider worth copying and that man is Beethoven; but on that matter my friend Brahms can give you more information."

The Etude Magazine April 1921





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