Henschel, George,1850-1934

Sir George Henschel (full name, Isador Georg Henschel); b. Breslau, 1850;  d. Aviemore, Scotland 1934; settled in London prior to 1886; received an honorary degree, Mus. D., from the University of Edinburgh in 1910 and was knighted in 1914.

Studied at Leipzig Conservatory, from 1877 resident in Britain and naturalised 1890.
Distinguished basso profundo.
Performed regularly with the Hallé Orchestra at their Thursday concerts in Manchester between October 1877 and January 1894 (22 occasions)

Conductor of the Boston Symphony Orchestra1881-84

Appreciation by Professor Donald Francis Tovey written shortly after Henschel's death in 1934
Sir George Henschel was the friend of every musician who came into contact with him.  He seemed to extemporise his art in all its form; yet his constant aim was perfection, and he always achieved it for he never transgressed his limitations, and never gave less than his best.  Every musician who played or sang to him, or shewed compositions to him, was sure to receive the kindest and most stimulating advice.  Henschel was no flatterer, but he had immediate insight into the musical capacity of anyone who consulted him and his habit was to bring out the best of everyone.  To the end of his life he preserved the beauty of his voice and the perfection of his technique.  He was one of the very few singers who could afford to play his own accompaniment, for his playing was not less exquisite than his singing.  To any musician who can distinguish reality from window-dressing Henschel's record as an orchestral conductor deserves as much fame as his singing.  On both sides of the Atlantic our older orchestral players know that he was one of the greatest orchestral educators that ever lived.  It is to be hoped that opportunity will be taken to begin the rediscovery of his compositions by producing his Requiem; a work so beautiful and perfect in form that you may know it by heart before you discover that its forms are not on a large scale.  A recent work is a Mass for unaccompanied chorus of which Henschel wrote two versions, the original being in English and the other being an adaptation to the Latin text.  Choral societies ought to educate themselves on Henschel's glorious euphony; his choral works, far more than his songs and instrumental music, are capable of keeping his voice vibrating in our memories and in the musical experiences of generations yet unborn.  D.F.T.

Instrument(s)/responsibility:
conductor, voice - basso

Concerts by Performer

Title Date Venue Professor
Edinburgh Orchestral Festival 1878 Tuesday, February 12, 1878 The Music Hall Oakeley, Herbert Stanley, Sir, 1830-1903
Edinburgh Orchestral Festival: Reid Concert 1878 Wednesday, February 13, 1878 The Music Hall Oakeley, Herbert Stanley, Sir, 1830-1903
Edinburgh Orchestral Festival: Reid Concert 1880 Friday, February 13, 1880 The Music Hall Oakeley, Herbert Stanley, Sir, 1830-1903
Edinburgh Orchestral Festival 1880 Saturday, February 14, 1880 The Music Hall Oakeley, Herbert Stanley, Sir, 1830-1903
Edinburgh Orchestral Festival 1880 Monday, February 16, 1880 The Music Hall Oakeley, Herbert Stanley, Sir, 1830-1903
Historical Concert Wednesday, January 25, 1911 University Music Class Room Niecks, Frederick Maternus, 1845-1924