Victor Herbert

composer Victor Herbert
   Victor Herbert (1859-1924) was an American composer and conductor, is often called "the prince of operetta." One of his most famous operettas is Babes in Toyland (1903), which was based on Mother Goose and fairyland characters. "March of the Toys" and "Toy­land" are well-loved numbers in this operetta. He also wrote Mlle. Modiste (1905), which includes the popular song "Kiss Me Again." Naughty Marietta (1910), one of the most tuneful of his operettas, in­cludes such songs as "Ah! Sweet Mystery of Life," "I'm Falling in Love with Someone," "Italian Street Song," and " 'Neath the Southern Moon."
   Herbert was born on Feb. 1, 1859, in Dublin, Ireland, of a musical family. He studied the cello in Ger­many, and played in leading European orchestras. In 1886, he settled in New York City, where he played cello in the Metropolitan Opera Company Orchestra. In 1893, Herbert followed Patrick S. Gilmore as bandmaster of the Twenty-second Regiment Band. He wrote his first operetta, Prince Ananias, in 1894. It was not a great success, but The Wizard of the Nile, a year later, proved a major success.
   Herbert was appointed conductor of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra in 1898, but resigned in 1904 to devote his time to composition. Herbert was the first American composer to write an original score for a movie.
Many of Herbert's operettas were later made into films. The story of his life was told in the motion picture, The Great Victor Herbert.
   Victor Herbert's other works include the popular operettas The Fortune Teller (with the famous song "Gypsy Love Song"), The Red MillSweetheartsPrincess PatThe Dream Girl, and Eileen (with the song "Thine Alone"). He produced two grand operas, Natoma (1911) and Madeleine (1914).