Friday, 4 August 2017

Otto Victor Schiff

One of Leopold and Samson's brothers was Salomon, born in Mannheim in 1805, and who died there on 24th March 1839. He married Caroline Henriette Zimmern who was born on 1st May 1809. I believe that the Zimmern family were Jewish. Caroline Henriette was pregnant with their second child when her husband Salomon died; their son Friedrich Salomon was born posthumously on 16th July 1839. 
They already had a son Rudolph who had been born in Mannheim on 2nd April 1838, who married Maria Anna Josepha Kunkel from Lausheim in Baden-Wurtemburg, and on the border with Switzerland. This couple had three children. Rudolph's wife Maria was a Lutheran and they married in a Lutheran ceremony.
The three children of Rudolph Schiff were Mathilde Josepha Henriet who was born in 1867, Otto Victor who was born in 1869, and Elise Rosa Barbara Carol, born in 1871. Mathilde married in Paris on 5th June 1898 to Baptiste Faugeras. Otto Victor appears also to have made his home in Paris, and appears to have been a composer, yet another musical member of the Schiff family. He published at least thirty-two works in this name between 1893 and 1913. He died in 1948.
His father Rudolph Schiff died in Paris in 1918.
«Le Temps», 12th June 1918
He was decorated for his work in education, having received at some time the prestigious award of 'Officier de l'Instruction Publique'. His place of burial is curious, as Tessé-la-Madeleine is a very small village in the south of Normandy to the west of Alençon. One wonders if this was where his daughter had settled.

Catalogue of Copyright Entries, 1954
During the First World War he appears to have used the name Victor de Labarque. I suspect he gallicised his name to evade anti-German sentiment.

During the First World War he appears to have composed and published under the name Otto Schiff de Labarque, appearing under this name from 1916. "Schiff" in German means boat, as does the French "Barque". He appears in the press until the early 1930s.

This morning I received from America this original score, which contains some interesting additional information.
On the back page are the first lines of the scores of thirteen pieces by him, and the titles of six other pieces.

The score also gives his address as 12 rue Pergolèse, Paris 16e. This road lies between Avenue de Malakoff and Avenue de la Grande Armée, a little to the north west of the Arc de Triomphe. Much of the street has been rebuilt, but number 12 appears to have survived.

The score has a small manuscript addition which appears to be by Schiff de Labarque himself, in the form of the indication of the repeat of the second section.

Published in 1898

Here is a recording of this song: 

A list of some of his publications held in the Bibliothèque Nationale in Paris:

Otto Victor Schiff (1869-1948)
 - Compositeur

From the online catalogue of the Bibliothèque Nationale in Paris at:

Moment de grâce, 1916

Théâtre au Front. Abbaye de Longpont (Aisne). Dimanche 6 août 1916.
  • Date : 1916
  • Auteur : Agence photographique Rol, Paris
  • Support : négatif sur verre, 5 x 7 po (13 x 18 cm)
  • Collection : BNF, Paris

Jeunes filles faisant partie du spectacle le Rêve du soldat, joué devant des soldats du front à Longpont, le 6 août 1916.
BIENFAISANCE. Une matinée théâtrale a été organisée par les sapeurs de deux compagnies du génie, à Longpont, près de Soissons, dans les ruines de la vieille abbaye. En présence des invités du comte de Montesquiou-Fezensac, on joua le Rêve du soldat, poème de M. L.-G. Vasty, musique de M. Victor de Labarque, qui accompagnait lui-même au piano.
Cette représentation, qui était donnée au bénéfice d’hôpitaux de blessés militaires et du « Foyer du blessé » obtint le plus grand succès.
[Le Figaro, 8 août 1916.]

L' « Œuvre amicale des poètes-chansonniers» donnera lundi 10 octobre, à deux heures et demie, une matinée de gala à la salle Herz, 27, rue des Petits Hôtels. Le programme comporte notamment le Rêve du Soldat, fantaisie héroïque, en un acte, de L.-G. Vasty, musique de Victor de Labarque.
(Le Figaro, 1916)

Extracts from newspapers held in the Bibliothèque Nationale in Paris:

«Le Figaro», 3rd February 1897
«Le Figaro», 7th November 1897
«Le Figaro», 21st March 1898
«Le Figaro», 30th March 1898
«Le Figaro», 2nd May 1898
«Le Figaro», 22nd June 1899

«Le Figaro», 17th December 1899
«Le Figaro», 22nd December 1899
«Le Figaro», 24th May 1900
«Le Figaro», 27th March 1901
«Le Figaro», 4th May 1901
«Le Figaro», 16th December 1901
«Le Figaro», 5th May 1903
«Le Figaro», 21st March 1905
«Comœdia», 8th March 1908
«Comœdia», 10th March 1909
«Comœdia», 16th April 1909
«Comœdia», 20th April 1909
«Comoedia», 9th February 1910
«Comœdia», 1st June 1911

«Comœdia», 29th February 1912

«Le Figaro», 17th April 1912
«Le Figaro», 27th April 1912

«Le Figaro», 4th May 1912
«Le Figaro», 14th May 1916: the first use of the name 'de Labarque'.
«Le Figaro», 8th August 1916
«Le Figaro», 27th October 1916
«Le Figaro», 23rd February 1924
«Comœdia», 5th May 1924
«Le Figaro», 2nd September 1924
«Le Figaro», 18th June 1925

«Comœdia», 23rd June 1934

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