Telephony, July 10, 1920, page 19:
Melba Entertains Europe by Wireless Telephone.
As a further test of the efficiency of wireless telephony Dame Nellie Melba was invited to entertain Europe by wireless. The concert was staged at the Marconi station at Chelmsford in Essex, a 2,800 meter wave length being used. Dame Melba arranged to sing in three languages--English French and Italian. Amateur wireless telephone operators throughout Europe were advised to "listen-in" and the trans-Atlantic liners fitted with the Marconi receiving sets were specially advised of the concert time. These included the Olympic, the Bardic, the Megantic, Caronia, Bosworth and other popular boats.
A reporter for the London Daily Mail furnished his newspaper with an account of the wireless concert from Chelmsford by wireless telephone. The Air Ministry notified visitors to the Imperial War Museum, Crystal Palaces that a wireless telephone set had been fixed up inside the building and that those wishing to hear Dame Melba singing through space should attend between 7 and 8 p. m.
The singer directed her voice into a special microphone accompanied on a small grand piano by the French composer, M. Bemberg. The microphone by which the series of electrical vibrations are set up, is not unlike a gramaphone horn. The singer's voice was wonderfully clear. Listeners-in within a radius of 1,000 miles heard "Home, Sweet Home" and "Nymphes et Silvains," followed by "Addie," from La Boheme. The songs came mellow and perfect, without scratch or jar.
In Paris the French Radio Electric Co. had attached an aluminum trumpet to a resonant amplifying apparatus. The receiving apparatus was composed of an aerial of the sort used on ships. Not only was Dame Melba's voice audible through telephone receivers but across an open courtyard. Films were taken by the Pathe Film Co.
At the Hague, Holland's News Bureau Wireless station received the songs with great clarity. Members of the staff of the German Telephone Co. at Gelgow, near Potsdam, also were surprised at the tone and quality of the voice waves. Some listeners-in reported that it was hardly necessary to put the telephone receivers to their ears, so perfect was the enunciation. There was a very animated scene at Chelmsford where Dame Melba sang into the microphone, police having to be requisitioned to keep the crowds in order. The carpet near which the singer stood was rolled up lest the sound of her voice should be interfered with.