Military Music And Its Story - online book

The Rise & Development Of Military Music

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REORGANISATION.
119
necessity of improving the positions of bandmasters and bandsmen in the service, if we desired to reach the standard of continental bands. They further im­pressed upon the authorities that a bandsman was something more than a private soldier, that greater facilities should be given to further his musical educa­tion, and that he was capable of being trained as a bandmaster.
Schallehn had the good fortune to have the patron­age of the new commander-in-chief, the Duke of Cam­bridge, under whom he had served in the Seventeenth Lancers. But the duke needed very little prompting concerning the state of our military bands. H.R.H. had campaigned in the Crimea, and marking the differ­ence between our bands and those of the French, had already determined to remedy matters at the earliest opportunity.
The representations of Smyth and Schallehn had, however, some value as practical advice, especially on the points of training and education, and the need for a school for military bandsmen similar to the French, and the Duke at once took the matter in hand person­ally, by issuing a circular letter (dated September 26, 1856) which was sent to the commanding officers of regiments. It began: "H.R.H. The Commander-in-Chief, with a view to relieve regiments from the great expense now consequent upon the necessity of employ­ing professional musicians, civilians, as masters of bands, has it in contemplation to recommend the estab­lishment of a large musical class as part of the educa-
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