This Day in History: 1838-04-24

Jules Levy, British cornetist–the most famous of his day, learned to play by hanging around musicians at a local theatre, played a mouthpiece for years (with no instrument), finally convinced his father to buy a used cornet when 17, joined the Grenadier Guards Band at age 18 (practicing 10-12 hours every day), played and soloed in the Princess Theater at 21, won job with the Royal Opera House Orchestra, toured with Pape Bateman’s music troupe to America, then toured with the Parepa Concert Company in Holland and America, then joined the Theodore Thomas Company for concerts at Central Park in NYC, then soloist with Fiske’s band, accepted invitation to be Chief Bandmaster and Imperial Cornetist of the Russian Army, performed at the London Promenade Concerts in the 1870s, then soloist with Patrick Gilmore, first recorded cornetist on Edison’s Gramophone, got into fistfight over publicity concert with Matthew Arbuckle, born in London, England.

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