A Century Of Ballads 1810-1910, Their Composers & Singers

With Some Introductory Chapters On Old Ballads And Ballad Makers - online book.

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In Vienna, Munich, and Buda-Pesth the song was greeted with surprising enthusiasm, and found equal favour in such widely divergent corners of the globe as Australia, Vancouver, New York, South Africa, and India.
Albani relates how she met Lord Kitchener at a dinner at Government House, Calcutta. After dinner he asked her to sing. "What would you like me to sing?' she asked. Lord Kitchener considered a moment, and then said simply, '"Home, Sweet Home,' please." At the end of the song he said "Thank you" in his quiet way, and relapsed into silence.
But perhaps the most interesting of all Albani's experiences in connection with this song was the occasion when she visited the compound at the Kimberley diamond mines. The Zulu miners gave her a cordial reception, and after they had indulged in some native dances for her entertain­ment, one of them came up to her and said, "Lady, please sing!' A chair was brought, and there in the middle of the compound, with the Zulus squatting all round her, she sang a verse of the old familiar song. The Zulus ap­plauded her in a dignified manner, and then walked solemnly away. A souvenir, in the shape of an uncut diamond, given her by the manager of the mines, serves the singer as a pleasant reminder of this somewhat unique experience.
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