Music and the French Revolution

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  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2008-09-18
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
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Rouget de Lisle's famous anthem, La marseillaise, admirably reflects the confidence and enthusiasm of the early years of the French Revolution. But the effects on music of the Revolution and the events that followed it in France were more far-reaching than that. Hymns, chansons and even articles of the Constitution set to music in the form of vaudevilles all played their part in disseminating Revolutionary ideas and principles; music education was reorganized to compensate for the loss of courtly institutions and the weakened maitrises of cathedrals and churches. Opera, in particular, was profoundly affected, in both its organization and its subject matter, by the events of 1789 and the succeeding decade. The essays in this book, written by specialists in the period, deal with all these aspects of music in Revolutionary France, highlighting the composers and writers who played a major role in the changes that took place there. They also identify some of the traditions and genres that survived the Revolution, and look at the effects on music of Napoleon's invasion of Italy.

Table of Contents

Editorial preface
Introduction: exploring the Revolution
Elements of Continuity 'Royal Agamemnon'
The two versions of Gluck's Iphigenie en
Opera buffa into opera comique, 1771-1790
Periodical editions of music at the time of the French Revolution
The French string quartet, 1770-1800
A Versailles musician of the revolutionary period
Revolutionary Opera
The new repertory at the Opera during the Reign of Terror
Revolutionary rhetoric and operatic consequences
Lenore, ou L'amour conjugal: a celebrated offspring of the Revolution
On redefinitions of rescue opera
Music and the New Politics
The Conservatoire de Musique and national music education in France, 1795-1800
French Revolutionary perspectives on Chabanon's De la musique of 1785
Two artists in the service of Revolutionary propaganda
The constitutions set to music during the Revolution
Napoleon and After
The French occupation of Lucca and its effects on music
Beethoven and the Revolution
The view of the French musical press Beate
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