Goddard, Arabella


Noted English pianist; born at St. Servan, near St. Malo, Brittany; played in public in her native village in her fifth year, and at six was a pupil of Kalkbrenner, Paris. She studied with Mrs. Anderson and Thalberg, and made her debut at twelve in one of the Grand National concerts at Her Majesty's Theatre. She had previously played when eight years of age before Queen Victoria at Buckingham Palace. From 1850 she studied with J. W. Davison, a well-known musical critic in London, whom she married in 1860. At twenty, was recognized as a pianist of the first rank, playing at the Philharmonic concerts in 1856. In 1854 to 1855 she made a tour through Germany, where she played Mendelssohn's D minor concerto at the Gewandhaus concerts, Leipsic, and her reputation was further reinforced by her success in that country and in Italy. For several years she played at many prominent concerts in England, and from 1873 to 1876 made a tour of Australia, America and all around the world. Ernst Pauer places Mme. Goddard, together with Mme. Schumann and Mme. Clauss-Szavardy, in a list of twelve pianists possessing the most perfect technique known between 1830 and 1870, the list also including Liszt, Tausig and Rubinstein. Her last recorded appearance was in 1882, after which she retired to Tunbridge Wells. In the fifties she published some compositions for piano and a ballad.