Friday, November 18, 2005

Musicically Inclined

Music was one of the greatest pleasures with thousands of people playing musical instruments at home for pleasure. Accomplished young women wishing to land a husband were taught to play the piano. Of course the Americans began to influence Victorian music and girls could also be taught to play the banjo. Most cities, towns and villages had a Glee club, village band, music society or choir. The Church orchestra came in useful for more than just hymn playing and in Thomas Hardy's 'Under The Greenwood Tree' you can read about how music was the common connection to bring courting couples together.

Music groups sprang up everywhere and by 1857 'The Halle Orchestra' of Manchester was compared to 'The London Philharmonic Society'.

Music helped to pass winter evenings and all governesses were supposed to teach this refinement to young ladies. Dancing was closely associated with musical ability.

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