The thesis examines the impact of the early dissemination of Russian operas in the cultural life and the musical thought of Italy and France between the second half of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century. During this period, both in Italy and France, debates about musical theatre were deeply shaped by the influence of Russian music, especially its opera. After the first performance of A Life for the Tsar in Prague (1866), which is the first opera by a Russian composer to have been performed abroad, Italy and France were the first countries to show a lively interest for Russian music. The decision to limit the field of research to Italy and France is due to the special connections, both from the political and cultural point of view, between the two. Considered, in the second half of the 19th century, as the leading lights of opera culture, Italy and France were the first countries to stage works such as A Life for the Tsar, Boris Godunov and Yevgeny Onegin. Moreover, from a theoretical point of view, many Italian and French critics saw Russia and the Russian opera as a source of renewal for Western musical theatre, as well as an “alternative” canon to that of Wagner’s Musikdrama. Musical debates on the future of the opera in this period are indeed more orientated towards a revaluation of the Russian opera, which was no longer considered “barbarian”, “wild” or “exotic” but rather the starting point for new cultural attitudes. One of the key points of the thesis is also the very close relationship between musical thought and political interest in the relationships of Italy and France with Russia. After the Alliance franco-russe in 1893 and the Racconigi Agreement between Italy and Russia in 1909, Russian opera’s dissemination becomes the cultural path “par excellence” by which to cement political alliances and strategies before World War I. This thesis will be the first detailed treatment of the reception of the Russian Opera in Italy and France, and will offer some vital new information about the impact of Russian music on Western culture.

La ricezione dell’opera russa tra Ottocento e Novecento in Francia e Italia

Vincenzina caterina ottomano
2020

Abstract

The thesis examines the impact of the early dissemination of Russian operas in the cultural life and the musical thought of Italy and France between the second half of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century. During this period, both in Italy and France, debates about musical theatre were deeply shaped by the influence of Russian music, especially its opera. After the first performance of A Life for the Tsar in Prague (1866), which is the first opera by a Russian composer to have been performed abroad, Italy and France were the first countries to show a lively interest for Russian music. The decision to limit the field of research to Italy and France is due to the special connections, both from the political and cultural point of view, between the two. Considered, in the second half of the 19th century, as the leading lights of opera culture, Italy and France were the first countries to stage works such as A Life for the Tsar, Boris Godunov and Yevgeny Onegin. Moreover, from a theoretical point of view, many Italian and French critics saw Russia and the Russian opera as a source of renewal for Western musical theatre, as well as an “alternative” canon to that of Wagner’s Musikdrama. Musical debates on the future of the opera in this period are indeed more orientated towards a revaluation of the Russian opera, which was no longer considered “barbarian”, “wild” or “exotic” but rather the starting point for new cultural attitudes. One of the key points of the thesis is also the very close relationship between musical thought and political interest in the relationships of Italy and France with Russia. After the Alliance franco-russe in 1893 and the Racconigi Agreement between Italy and Russia in 1909, Russian opera’s dissemination becomes the cultural path “par excellence” by which to cement political alliances and strategies before World War I. This thesis will be the first detailed treatment of the reception of the Russian Opera in Italy and France, and will offer some vital new information about the impact of Russian music on Western culture.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/10278/3752737
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