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Musical and theatrical circulations in Europe, circa 1750-circa 1815

Les circulations musicales et théâtrales en Europe, vers 1750-1815

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Published on Tuesday, May 06, 2014


Dans l’Europe du dix-huitième siècle, la mobilité des artistes est un fait établi, et les milieux musicaux et théâtraux sont fortement cosmopolites. À l’époque où le classicisme musical, la comédie de mœurs, l’opéra bouffe et l’opéra-comique façonnent le goût, commence à se constituer un répertoire dramatique et musical commun aux diverses parties de l’Europe urbaine. Du point de vue de l’artiste ou de l’amateur-collectionneur, la pratique musicale, tout comme le voyage, la correspondance ou la sociabilité littéraire, a une dimension formatrice et transfrontalière. Mieux encore, la musique elle-même semble offrir un de ces idiomes universels dont rêvent certains philosophes de l’époque. L’objectif de cette rencontre est d’étudier, dans une perspective d’histoire culturelle, la circulation des matières musicales et théâtrales dans Europe de la seconde moitié du dix-huitième siècle, y compris la période révolutionnaire.


Background and scope

Artistic mobility was an established fact in eighteenth-century Europe, where musical and theatrical milieus were strongly cosmopolitan. In a period when musical classicism, comedy of manners, buffa and opéra comique contributed to shaping taste, a dramatic and musical repertoire common to the diverse parts of Europe was emerging. From the artist’s or the connoisseur’s point of view, musical practice, like travelling, letter writing or literary sociability, had an educating and border-crossing dimension. Moreover, music itself seemed to appear as one of the universal idioms imagined by the philosophers. Music and drama were far from being pastimes only; they were also expressions of identity as well as objects of trade and investments.

The aim of this gathering is to study the circulation of musical and theatrical matters in the Europe of the second half of the eighteenth century, including the revolutionary period, from a perspective of cultural history. As the colloquium is interdisciplinary, possible topic may include, for instance:

  • the channels of musical and dramatic circulations, from the diffusion of scores to the mobility of the artists, as well as the networks and structures of mobility;
  • the types of works largely diffused (operas, opéras-comiques, comedies and vaudevilles) and having shaped the taste of European audiences;
  • the agents of transmission (diplomats, amateurs, impresarios, artists, translators) and the mechanisms of reception and appropriation;
  • adaptations and transformation of dramatic and musical themes, works and taste;
  • cosmopolitan and border-crossing aspects of musical and theatrical milieus and practices more generally.

The languages of the colloquium are French and English.

Organising committee

Pierre-Yves Beaurepaire (Université Nice Sophia Antipolis-CMMC and Institut Universitaire de France), Rahul Markovits (École Normale Supérieure), Mélanie Traversier (Université Charles de Gaulle Lille 3, Institut de Recherches sur l’Histoire du Septentrion), Charlotta Wolff (University of Helsinki)

Material organisation

The organising committee will provide for accommodation for two nights as well as for the meals. Travels are at the participants’ expense. If a participant is unable to have her or his travel expenses covered by her or his institution of affiliation, the organisers can exceptionally consider refunding them on presentation of the tickets and receipts.


Please send your paper proposal of max. 2 000 signs, accompanied by a short curriculum vitae, to Pierre-Yves Beaurepaire ( pybeaurepaire@gmail.com ), Rahul Markovits ( rahul.markovits@ens.fr ), Mélanie Traversier ( melanie.traversier@wanadoo.fr ) and Charlotta Wolff ( charlotta.wolff@helsinki.fiby 10 May 2014. 


  • Université de Nice Sophia Antipolis
    Nice, France (06)


  • Saturday, May 10, 2014


  • circulation, musique, théâtre, diplomatie, carrière, identité, transfert culturel, cosmopolitisme, intermédiaire culturel, artiste


  • Mélanie Traversier
    courriel : melanie [dot] traversier [at] univ-lille3 [dot] fr

Information source

  • Mélanie Traversier
    courriel : melanie [dot] traversier [at] univ-lille3 [dot] fr


CC0-1.0 This announcement is licensed under the terms of Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal.

To cite this announcement

« Musical and theatrical circulations in Europe, circa 1750-circa 1815 », Call for papers, Calenda, Published on Tuesday, May 06, 2014, https://doi.org/10.58079/q1r

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