ICTM STUDY GROUP ON ICONOGRAPHY OF THE PERFORMING ARTS UNIVERSITÀ ROMA TRE —FONDAZIONE TEATRO PALLADIUM
The 19 th Symposium of the ICTM Study Group on Iconography of the Performing Arts
IMAGES OF MUSIC IN ROME: PAST AND PRESENT
Rome, 18–20 May 2023
Rome has been through the centuries the town with an intensive and varied musical life. In antiquity, it was a Caput Mundi reaching with its influences all the distant corners of three continents and attracting to its orbit a variety of travelers and immigrants. Later on, it became the center of the Papal State witnessing elaborate ceremonies in its churches, aristocratic palaces, and public spaces. Its spirituality and history were for centuries attracting curious travelers, pious pilgrims, and powerful aristocrats. Rome’s wealth and power were bringing to the city the most famous artists and musicians, turning the town into the prolific and lively center of extravagant performances of operas, oratorios, and other music spectacles. Young intellectuals were stopping there on Grand Tours to learn about history, advanced sciences, and to enjoy the arts. As the capital of unified Italy, Rome was a center of musical life, always in a position to showcases aesthetics promoted by the country’s political power. The Rome symposium of the ICTM Study Group on Iconography of the Performing Arts will examine the town’s rich musical life reflected in the visual arts, as well as art objects created for musical and theatrical performances. We welcome all participants to Roma Tre Teatro Palladium and wishing an inspiring conference.
Opera & Dance, chair Nicoletta GUIDOBALDI
Olga JESURUM, The Roman Stay of Alessandro Prampolini (1823–1865):
Painting and Set Design for Verdi’s Il Trovatore
Michael BURDEN, “Making Pictures”: Giovanni Gallini’s Treatise on the Art of Dancing
Noelle BARR, A Harem of One’s Own: Turquerie and Feminine Performance
in Eighteenth-Century French Opera, Painting, and Costume
Feng-Shu LEE, Redeeming the Other Woman: Glass and Die Frau ohne
Antoni PIZÀ, Staging a Musical Self though Paper, Canvas, and the Screen:
Musicians’ Self-portraits from the Renaissance to the Digital Age
Instruments of Asia, chair Nico STAITI
Gabriela CURRIE, Imaging Arched Harps in the Ancient Lands between the Rivers
Xidan WANG, The Circular-Body Pipa Images from the Northern Wei’s
Luca AVERSANO & Zdravko BLAŽEKOVIĆ
Mantua / Composers, chair Stefania MACIOCE
Licia MARI, “Ogni secolo ha carattere suo proprio”: Each Century Has Its
Own Character. The Coronation of the Virgin Mary in Mantua from 1640 to 1940
Maria Teresa ARFINI (Università Roma Tre)
Visual Canon in Seventeenth-Century Rome. The tradition of visually representing musical canons was flowering during the sixteenth and the seventeenth centuries, and we can find many canon-emblems particularly in Bologna and Rome. Most of the Italian composers wrote canons particularly for dedicatory purposes, to display their craftsmanship by means of complex musical structures. Such canons could be engraved in single large sheets or presented as manuscripts with text, music and drawings. Most of them display an image in central or higher position, framed by music notation. Among the prominent Roman composers, canon-
emblems were written by Francesco Soriano (Viterbo, 1548–Rome, 1621), Pier Francesco Valentini (Rome, 1570–1654) and Romano Micheli (Rome, 1575–1659). Soriano produced many engraved single sheets with riddle-canons; from Valentini we have the manuscript collection with fifty-five riddle canons written on large folia, with images, canons, and solutions in score (Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana, Barb. lat. 4428); and among engraved single sheets with riddle-canons by Micheli, we have the Dialogus Annuntiationis Beatae Mariae Virginis vocibus viginti concinendus (1625), a curious example of polyphonic dialogue with several characters singing the text in canon with more and more parts (Biblioteca del Conservatorio Santa Cecilia in Rome, G. CS. 2. C. 11). The paper will present the strategies of self-promotion that placed this type of canon at the center of the Roman musical life in the early seventeenth century.
Noelle Y. BARR (The Institute of Fine Arts, New York)
A Harem of One’s Own: Turquerie and Feminine Performance in Eighteenth-Century French Opera, Painting, and Costume. In eighteenth-century France, the exclusive harem permeated the imaginations of European creatives and their audiences. Visual culture and literary narratives about the obscured quarters of Ottoman women generated themes based on a sultan’s erotic desires and attempts by enslaved women to escape the confines of his captivity. This framework positioned women as the sexualized other and as powerless captives. But is there another story to tell, in which one of these concubines profits from her intellectual and emotional independence or otherwise embodies a triumphal narrative of power and leadership? In viewing operas as international purveyors of visual culture and transmitters of sociopolitical discourse, I will analyze Charles-Simon Favart’s opéra-comique, Soliman II, ou Les trois sultanes (1761) as an exponent of eighteenth-century turquerie and an arena in which sociopolitical, gendered, and racial praxis could be exercised. The opera’s content has been identified as a thinly veiled analogue of the relationship between Madame de Pompadour and Louis XV. Carle van Loo’s reimagining of Madame de Pompadour as a sultana is a critical image for scholars investigating turquerie and the ways that European women fashioned themselves in the guise of the other, thus elucidating the notion of the “other within.” While paintings offer visual content for analyzing the deployment of turquerie by elite European women, their composition operates within a broader artistic and colonial context that has garnered comparatively little scholarly attention. Thus, I will argue that women like Madame de Pompadour and Madame Favart were not simply playing “dress up,” rather they were strategically performing the role of the sultana in art and on stage to engage contemporary social, transnational, and gendered debates.
Paola BESUTTI (Università degli Studi di Teramo)
“Musae quoque canora personabant”: Musical Presences in the Pictorial Transposition of the Fable of Cupid and Psyche, in Rome and in Other Places of the Renaissance. The rediscovery and literary fortune of Apuleius’s Psyche fable favored performative transpositions and its pictorial representation in residences and places destined for humanistic otium during the Renaissance. The cycle of frescoes in the Loggia di Psiche by Raffaello (and collaborators) for Villa Farnesina in Rome (1516–17), very close in dating to Matteo Maria Boiardo’s successful vulgarization of the Apuleio vulgare, becomes a watershed. In dialogue with literary sources, and in comparison, with other pictorial cycles on the same theme, first of all those in Ferrara and Mantua, the figurative rewriting of the fable in the Roman villa shows particular attention to the musical and performative presence, apparently abstract, albeit contemporary to the musical fragments of the representation of the text by Galeotto del Carretto, which were printed in Rome in those years. Reconnecting, between absences and presences, the musical signs of Raffaello’s project to the dense philosophical, literary and performative baggage allows us to reflect with new elements not only on the figurative project itself, but also on the practices of living that it has accompanied and evoked.
Diana BLICHMANN (Rome)
Carolingian Rome and Symbols of French Power: Carlo Magno and the Celebration of the Birth of the Dauphin (1729). It is one of the first priorities of the European monarchies to ensure the continuity of their power: In France in September 1729, exactly four years after the marriage of King Louis XV and Marie
Leszczyńska, Louis Ferdinand, their elder and only surviving son, was born. The birth of an heir apparent was celebrated in Rome with grandeur in the squares of the city and in the private palaces of the Roman nobility. One of the most outstanding festivities was the performance of Carlo Magno, written by Cardinal Pietro Ottoboni, set to music by Giovanni Costanzi and privately performed in the theater of the Palazzo delle Cancelleria. The festa teatrale—which treats Charlemagne’s victory in Italy—was an encomiastic tribute to the newborn prince and to the whole line of his lineage. It highlights that the French monarchs had passed “from generations to generations” the “admirable gifts and privileges” inherited from king of the Franks, Charlemagne. Thus, the heirs of the French crown are compared with the “almost inconceivable complex of all the great and virtuous” of the performance’s protagonist that was also the first Emperor of Rome, crowned by Pope Leo III in 800. Fourteen engravings designed by the scenographer Nicolò Michetti were published with the libretto and bear witness to the splendor of the representation. This contribution will be, first, a journey through Michetti’s reconstruction and the ideal vision of Carolingian Rome represented in the plates. Several scenic details will be, second, decrypted as allusions to the birth of the dauphin and to his ancestry. Finally, it will be explained, why the set of poetic-iconographic elements, including the two machines that conclude the festa teatrale, can be understood as a symbolic program that wishes the new heir the loyalty and courage of Charlemagne.
Michael BURDEN (Faculty of Music, University of Oxford), “Making Pictures”: Giovanni Gallini’s Treatise on the Art of Dancing. The Florence-born dancer Giovanni Gallini (1728–1805) is mainly remembered for his two treatises. The earlier one, A Treatise on the Art of Dancing was published on 3 March 1762 by Robert Dodsley and others, new editions appeared in 1765 and 1772, printed for the author, and with imprints also involving Dodsley. The treatise, which appeals to the ancients, to the theorist and dance historian, Louis de Cahusac (1706–1759) and to the dancer and choreographer, John Weaver (1673–1760), is in fact a document of reform, and considers not only aspects of the dances, but also of the staging. His thinking is centered on the idea of “picture-making”, citing artists and artworks as models to follow for the performance of dance.
Daniela CASTALDO (Università del Salento)
Visualizing Ancient Roman Music in the Works of the Renaissance Antiquarian Jean-Jacques Boissard
(1528–1602). During his several travels to Italy, especially to Rome, the French poet and antiquarian J.J. Boissard
(1528–1602) joined the entourage of some of the most important Roman collectors and connoisseurs of antiquities of that time, such as the cardinals Carlo Carafa, Federico Cesi and Rodolfo Pio da Carpi. Like many other artists, he studied and copied the archaeological objects included in their collections and reproduced them in his works (Emblematum liber, 1593; Romanae vrbis topographiae & antiquitatum, 1597–1602; Parnassus cum imaginibus Musarum, 1601). Among them there are several representations of ancient musical themes and instruments. The goal of this contribution will be to identify the archaeological objects copied by Boissard and analyze how these iconographical models were reproduced in the work of some of the most important antiquarians of the eighteenth century, such as Bernard de Montfaucon, Francesco Bianchini and Jean Benjamin de La Borde.
Gabriela CURRIE (University of Minnesota)
Imaging Arched Harps in the Ancient Lands between the Rivers. Ancient Sumer is consistently put forth as the place of origin for the arched harp, on primarily iconographical bases. A series of artifacts that stem from the Early Dynastic Periods I & II (ca. 2800– 2500 BCE) are indeed the earliest extant attestation in the visual domain of this instrument. It is from here—or so the story goes—that the instrument disseminated into the South-Asian subcontinent (as well as to Egypt), dissemination attested to, once again, by the presence of visual representations. This “passage to India” narrative builds upon: (1) the unique presence of one character in the shape of an arched harp which appears on a seal from the Indus Valley (Harappan) archeological complex—roughly contemporary to the Sumerian instances—and (2) the “re-appearance” of an object of similar morphology—this time in the hand of actual musicians—almost a couple of millennia later, in art of the Shunga dynasty (ca. 185–173 BCE). The goal of my paper is three-fold. First, it will introduce the insufficiently known depictions of arched harps found in the post-Harappan rock art in central Indian sites. I contend that these representations not only help fill out the enormous chronological gap, but are also linked to contemporaneous cultural, social, technological, and ethnic shifts that took place on the Indian subcontinent. Second, I would argue that a comparative iconographical analysis of Sumerian and post-Harappan instances reveals different dynamics established between objects, images, and contexts, as well as different actual sonic spaces that came to be translated into the visual.
Paola DESSÌ (Università degli Studi di Padova)
Musical Rome in the Libri amicorum of Johann Altus (Lucerne ? – Rome 1652). The presence of the Oltremontani in the cities of northern Italy, often the seat of historical universities, is well attested in the libri amicorum, travel notebooks that young men on peregrinatio academica and during the Grand Tour took with them to collect dedications from friends, teachers and prominent figures they met. The attestation of the presence of the Oltremontani in the city of Rome is different: although the foundation of the Studium Urbis dates back to 1303, the libri amicorum censored in the repertories (CAAC and RAA) do not show any subscriptions recorded in Rome. An exception is the four libri amicorum of Johann Altus, a native of Lucerne, a Swiss guard, as well as a tourist guide for foreigners in the Eternal City and author of volumes such as the collection of views of Rome entitled Splendore dell Antica e Moderna Roma (Rome, 1641). The libri amicorum of Johann Altus, “the true guide of the Oltremontani”, contains around eight hundred subscriptions (1618–1656), usually accompanied by the emblems of the subscribers and several drawings. The four volumes give an insight into the lives of the young knights has Johann met: the relationship with women (courtesans and ladies, sometimes idealized as characters from myth), women’s dress, war and battle as the knight’s noble field of action, and music, particularly in the piazza. Of this, Johann’s libri amicorum restores a city horizon in which the political dimension of music seems to prevail, especially its capacity to transmit order and to establish consensus, as it was in the past and as the Roman ruins still knew how to teach.
Florence GÉTREAU (Centre national de la recherche scientifique (CNRS); Institut de recherche en musicologie),
Ingres, Rome and His Friends Musicians. “In evoking the person and life of Ingres, one should not forget his passion for music and for lyrical theatre, nor his talentas a violinist. He had a marked preference for the music he called ‘virtuous’ […] of Haydn, Mozart […], Gluck and […] Beethoven. He expresses this in remarks reported by Amaury-Duval and in his letters to friends […]. Among his contemporaries, he had an affectionate regard for the resident musicians, Ambroise Thomas and Charles Gounod, who played the music he loved at the intimate evenings of the Villa Medici. He admired […] the classicist composer Henri Reber. Intolerant in music as well as in painting, Ingres abhorred romantic music and was indignated when discovering in Paris that Paganini, that ‘apostate’, whom he had applauded in Rome, had strayed from pure music to fall into virtuosity” (Daniel Ternois, 1993). Ingres stayed at the Villa Medici in Paris two times. First time, it was as a student between 1806 and 1820, after his First Grand Prix de Rome in 1801. Admirable portraits of musicians mark this period, those of Victor Dourlen, Auguste Panseron, Niccolò Paganini and Gioacchino Rossini, but also portraits showing the elite society that surrounded him (the family of Lucien Bonaparte, the Stamaty family, Prince Wenzel von Jaunitz-Rietberg). During his second stay in Rome, between 1835 and 1841, when Ingres was Director of the Villa Medicis, he drew portraits of his students and friends: Ambroise Thomas, Luigi Cherubini, Franz Liszt, Charles Gounod. We should not forget his own self-portraits, and the sketches where he is surprised by his pupils practicing music (Jean Alaux and Paul Flandrin). The analysis of these works will be supported with the biographies notes about him left behind by his contemporaries, and the private and institutional correspondences of Ingres, as well as of his pupils and friends. This will be an opportunity to highlight Ingres’s “classicism” in both painting and music and to take a renewed “critical” look at the famous metaphor of “Ingres’ violin” coined by Émile Bergerat, Théophile Gautier’s son-in-law, at the beginning of the twentieth century.
Matteo GIUGGIOLI (Università Roma Tre)
The Sound of Rome in Paolo Sorrentino’s La grande bellezza and Il divo. La grande bellezza (The Great Beauty, 2013), film directed by Paolo Sorrentino, was immediately recognized as a contemporary milestone for the cinematic representation of Italy and Italians. This representation is based on a lavish and majestic but also elusive and ambiguous portrait of Rome. On the one hand, La grande bellezza follows the line of other important Italian films, first La dolce vita (1960) by Federico Fellini, which focus on national characters and habits and assign a central role the image of Rome. On the other hand, this is not the only film by Sorrentino in which a portrait of Rome is an essential topic. This occurs, for example, in a darker and more claustrophobic tone, connected with the political nature of the film, of Il divo (2008), centered on the figure of Giulio Andreotti. The narrative and visual style of Sorrentino’s films have been extensively analyzed and debated. It has been explored in detail especially in La grande bellezza, a film which firstly thanks to the strength of its visual dimension and the seductive power of its images has achieved great success even outside Italy, culminating in the victory of the Academy award for best international feature film. Rome is at the same time the primary source of the sumptuous and outstanding representation proposed by this film and the cornerstone of the existential and aesthetic reflection that takes place in it. My paper will show how sound and music contribute in a crucial way, in La grande bellezza as in Il divo, to create this portrait of the city. In both films, Sorrentino makes use of a personal and sophisticated compilation soundtrack that includes both pre-existing and original music (composed by Lele Marchitelli in La grande bellezza, by Teho Teardo in Il divo). Intertwining with the narrative and visual dimensions, the soundtrack gives expressive and hermeneutical depth to the insolvable contrasts—between high and low (from sublime to kitsch), between past and present, between action and stasis—which characterize this peculiar and epochal cinematic representation of Rome, which reflects the author’s vision of life and the world.
Olga JESURUM (Rome)
The Roman Stay of Alessandro Prampolini (1823–1865): Painting and Set Design for Verdi’s Il Trovatore. The painter and set designer Alessandro Prampolini, active in the theaters of Reggio Emilia, Modena and Ravenna, and finally Venice, owes his fame for having designed I giardini nel Palazzo dell’Aliaferia, the second scene of the first act of Il Trovatore, for the opera’s first performance in 1853 at the Apollo Theater in Rome. Prampolini arrived in Rome in 1849 on a scholarship, which allowed him to complete the so-called Roman alunnato, i.e. the period of study during which artists from various art schools in Italy and beyond could observe true Roman architectural monuments and their reproductions from the various eras and styles, to create images they will later use in their paintings and sets. During his stay in Rome, Prampolini was able to visit not only the city’s emblematic places, but also Tivoli, Villa d’Este, Ariccia, which he captured in his sketches and drawings, now kept in a private archive. The collection includes life drawings of the places visited, sketches of scenes and figurines, reproductions of local nineteenth-century Lazio costumes and a series of notebooks. The paper will demonstrate Prampolini’s images that he made during his stay in Rome and which he later used as a set designer, with a particular analysis of the sketch for Il Trovatore.
Jelena KNEŠAUREK CARIĆ (Filozofski fakultet Sveučilišta u Zagrebu)
Possible Musical Life in Pharos, Roman City on the Island of Hvar. Two thousand four hundred years ago, the Greeks from the island of Paros in the Aegean Sea founded a city which they named Pharos (Φάρος). Although the people from Paros found a strong Illyrian community on the island when they arrived, they asserted their authority after a short, intensive battle. Pharos became an independent state (polis) that forged its own money, had its own pottery workshops and produced food on the fertile plain, the Hora of Pharos (Xορα Φαρου), today the best-preserved Greek parcellation in the Mediterranean. After the Roman conquest in the third century BC, Pharos became Pharia, the plain was renamed Ager Pharensis, and a long period of Roman Peace (Pax Romana) followed. According to the recently completed and presented long-lasting archeological investigations of Jasna Jeličić Radonić (Faros: The Roman City, 2021), which depicts the life in Pharia during the Roman rule, we can imagine a possible musical life of its inhabitants. Numerous archeological findings confirm the tradition of several important religious cults that included music. These are, above all, the cults of Demeter, Persephone and Dionysus, as well as the Roman forest deity Silvanus and nymphes. The island of Paros (Greece) whose inhabitants colonized Pharos (Croatia) was Demeter’s island and Demetrian cult was the most important one. The cult was transferred to the island of Hvar and its practice confirmed issues of Pharos’s coins. They purport the strong tradition of chthonic cults in Pharos. However, we also find Silvanus on several reliefs found in Pharos’s chora. He is always depicted with pedum and syrinx followed by dancing nymphes.
Nicoletta GUIDOBALDI (Università di Bologna, Dipartimento di Beni Culturali, Ravenna)
The Reception of the Ancient “Roman” Models in Early Renaissance Music Imagery: First Considerations and Research Perspectives. Within the impressive phenomenon of recovery and humanistic reinterpretation of the cultural heritage of antiquity, the discovery of archaeological finds and iconographic evidence of ancient Rome that aroused the passionate interest of artists, antiquarians and scholars, and exerted an extraordinary impact, still needs to be in-depth investigated. This also includes the examination of Renaissance musical imagery. On the ground of the first results of a broad research (currently in progress), which develops in the musical direction the Warburg Institute’s studies on the ancient models employed by Renaissance artists, the paper will retrace the histories of some “musical images” and their transformations, from the models offered by the ancient Roman reliefs and pictorial decorations, which along articulated and not always linear paths, through copies, reworkings, misunderstandings and additions, gave rise to unprecedented musical icons and in some cases also to the construction of sophisticated musical devices destined for the Wunderkammers of aristocrats and collectors. By way of examples, some case studies will illustrate the variety of the elaborations and transformations of ancient images, such as the well-known Muses of the Mattei sarcophagus, or the Bacchic processions carved on sarcophagi visible, at the time, in the main Roman basilicas. The paper will also show how these images gave rise not only to various iconographic revivals of the models, but also to transpositions from the figurative register to the verbal and performative ones, thus reactivating the images of the images of the rediscovered antiquity, not only in the forms but also in the sounds and in the dance movements.
Feng-Shu LEE (National Yang Ming Chiao Tung University)
Redeeming the Other Woman: Glass and Die Frau ohne Schatten. Throughout Die Frau ohne Schatten, their “last Romantic opera”, Strauss and Hofmannsthal
consistently reference glass to depict the empress, the title character. Introducing a human dimension to glass, they reversed its conventional symbolism, “overcoming” its previous meanings in European culture. I start with Hauff’s fairy tale The Cold Heart and Hoffmann’s novella The Sandman, in which conventional readings of glass’s symbolism prevailed, to illustrate this reversal. On one hand, both artists dramatized glass’s fluid and artificial nature and its association with magic, major traits that constituted glass’s symbolism from the Renaissance. On the other hand, they reversed its artificial nature to portray the empress’s transformation into a human in act III, scene 3. Interestingly, Hofmannsthal and Strauss used opposing methods in their revision of glass’s symbolic relationship to humanity. Hofmannsthal models the empress’s Otherness and supernatural power on glass’s visual attributes and its ability to misguide the senses, attributes that she renounces eventually to become a mortal. Strauss uses the glass harmonica, whose eerie and “celestial” timbre was traditionally associated with mind control, to portray her transformation into a human, thereby turning glass’s uncanny sound into a sonic symbol of humanity. This re-writing of glass adds a new perspective to the discussion of music and visual culture in recent scholarly discourse. Current scholarship focuses primarily on the technological aspects of optical illusion, and glass’s contribution is confined to the inclusion of the glass harmonica in limited repertories. My approach enriches a discussion of Strauss’s and Hofmannsthal’s reading of material culture, including its evolution, to which their awareness of and revision of that culture contributed. Furthermore, both artists’ re-writing of glass may be viewed as an active response to changing readings of material culture and fairy tale tradition at the threshold of Modernism.
Stefania MACIOCE (Sapienza Università di Roma)
Pietro Paolini’s Concerto a cinque. Pietro Paolini (Lucca, 3 June 1603 – Lucca, 12 April 1681) arrived in Rome towards the end of the 1610s, on the initiative of his father who sent him to study with Angelo Caroselli, a well-known copyist and forger. In Rome, Paolioni assimilated many elements of Caravaggio’s style, which influenced many of his later works. In 1628 Paolini went to Venice to deepen his knowledge, but soon he returned to Lucca where he remained until his death. In 1652, in Lucca he founded an Accademia dal Naturale, which had a task to introduce the most important aesthetic themes of the new naturalistic school into the Lucca environment. Among his compositions representing musicians and concerts, stands out the beautiful Concerto a cinque (ca. 1625), known in two versions, one in the Louvre and the other in a private collection in Milan. The painting is a sort of “manifesto” of the new music, like some Caravaggio’s paintings. Paolini is interested in profane themes influenced by the Venetian tradition, but at the same time he demonstrates his contrast with the style of the strictly conservative culture of Lucca.
Licia MARI (Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore)
“Ogni secolo ha carattere suo proprio”: Each Century Has Its Own Character. The Coronation of the Virgin Mary in Mantua from 1640 to 1940. The first half of the seventeenth century, especially after the great plague of 1630, was marked by a renewed devotion to the Virgin Mary. The celebrations of the coronation of her image were magnificent, involving religious and civil spaces. The first coronation with the pope’s approval was organized for the Madonna della Febbre in the Vatican Basilica (1631). In Mantua this ceremony took deity Silvanus and nymphes. The island of Paros (Greece) whose inhabitants colonized Pharos (Croatia) was Demeter’s island and Demetrian cult was the most important one. The cult was transferred to the island of Hvar and its practice confirmed issues of Pharos’s coins. They purport the strong tradition of chthonic cults in Pharos. However, we also find Silvanus on several reliefs found in Pharos’s chora. He is always depicted with pedum and syrinx followed by dancing nymphes.
Donatella MELINI (Univeristà di Pavia)
Roman Musical Life at the End of the Nineteenth Century in Humorous Drawing: Giovanni Battista Maldura and the Activities of the “Circolo dei Musicisti” Through the Press. Giovanni Battista Maldura (1859–1905) has only very recently emerged from the oblivion (Lippi–Melini, 2022). Internationally renowned musician and accomplished mandolin player and “inventor” of the Roman mandolin, he was a tireless animator of the Roman musical life in the second half of the nineteenth century. The unusual musical evenings organized at the Circolo dei Musicisti, the “Sminfi” concerts, and the renowned “carciofolate” aroused the interest of the press, which preserved reports of these events enriched with humorous illustrations. The paper will retrace and reconstruct through this journalistic (and often satirical) iconography the incredible musical season which Maldura organized together with Mascagni, Cotogni, Spinelli and Terziani.
Sara NAVARRO LALANDA (Universidad internacional de La Rioja / Università Europea di Roma), Historical-Musical Memory in the Commemorative Plaques of the Eternal City. The streets of Rome bear witness to the musical atmosphere that the eternal city has breathed through the centuries both in the religious scene (including the music of the Basilica of San Giovanni in Laterano, Roman basilicas and churches, and the Vatican State and the Papal Chapel), and public
stages (the Teatro Argentina, the Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia or the former Teatro Valle), as well as through traditional events, without forgetting institutions such as the local Folkstudio, an international singing and popular music laboratory. On the one hand the street names of various districts of Rome—in particular Municipio II—bring to mind the names of well-known Italian composers; on the other hand, we highlight the inscriptions of authors, performers and institutions, which from the first half of the Ottocento are posted by the Municipality of Rome, through the Commemorative Plaque Coordination Office, which takes care of the research, feasibility studies, construction, placement and cataloguing. In the historic center of the eternal city, we find about 25 commemorative plaques of musicians and musical institutions that recall the musical history of the city. Among these inscriptions there are Roman authors (Eugenio Terziani, Giovanni Sgambati or Claudio Villa), composers and performers from other Italian regions remembered in the vicinity of the theaters and the auditorium for the works composed in the eternal city or for their first performances (Gioacchino Rossini, Gaetano Donizetti, or recently Ennio Moricone), as well as international authors who have had a close relationship with the city (Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart or Richard Wagner). This study will analyze the inscriptions typology from a chronological, functional, location, origin, and publication date point of view, also analyzing the possibilities offered for cultural tourism which could bring visitors closer to the intangible musical heritage through its memory as material heritage.
Gianfranco SALVATORE (Università del Salento)
Different Bacchanals. Shaking the Drum to Enthrall You: The Mystic and Erotic Tympanon on South Italian vases (4th Century BC). Occulebat vim quod prae ululatibus tympanorumque et cymbalorum strepitu nulla vox quiritantium inter stupra et caedes exaudiri poterat. (Livy, Ab Urbe Condita, XXXIX, 8, 8).
Titus Livius described the Roman bacchanalia as a heap of corruption, sexual promiscuity, drunkenness, crimes, and murders, emphasizing the uproar covering up all those sordid actives. Such a din was mainly provided by the thunderous sound of Dionysian frame drums, together with shrill cymbals and dreadful howling. Those rites were perceived as a degeneration of the preexisting cult of Liber, the Roman Dionysus, and his mother Stimula (the local name for Semele) on the Aventine hill. Agents of the decay were “infamous” people from the Italic regions outside Rome: a wandering soothsayer from Magna Graecia, probably a Tarentine that moved to Etruria, from where his innovations spread to Rome; and a priestess from Campania (Ab Urbe Condita, XXXIX, 8-9). The repression of Roman bacchanals is a landmark in the political and religious historiography of Rome, but it has seldom been studied regarding the history of music in rituals, and of musical instruments in cultic activities originating in ancient South Italy. Nevertheless, we have broad iconographic evidence of the capital role played by frame drums in the iconography of initiatory and mystic rites, on a multitude of painted vases from Magna Graecia, especially in the Apulian style, from the very last years of the fifth century to the whole fourth century BCE. Differently form Livy’s narrative, this rich and multi-faceted iconography shows a ritual use of frame drums, where these instruments are displayed and shaken more than played, entrusting them for ritual purifications and other steps in the initiating process. Probably referring to the happy afterlife that attended the pious initiates (predominantly female ones) to Orphic-Dionysian religion, those drums (tympana in Greek), with the mandala-like concentric decorations painted on their skin’s surface, were displayed, and shaken in an irresistible game of seduction, where elegant and sexy matrons and youthful and gracious erotes or satyrs chase each other. Being an extension of the hallucinatory power of frenzy motion in Dionysian myths and rituals, those dumb and mystic frame drums, ritually used for enthralling the initiates and inducing a trance- like Bacchic possession, overturn their originally noisy function. Moreover, they offer a cue for interpreting the sexual connotation of the degraded Roman bacchanals, that in Livy’s political
Antoni PIZÀ (Foundation for Iberian Music, The Graduate Center, The City University of New York), Staging a Musical Self though Paper, Canvas, and The Screen: Musicians’ Self-Portraits from the Renaissance to the Digital Age. Musicians have engaged in visual self-representation at least since the Renaissance and they have continued the tradition all the way to modern times with contemporary practices including selfies and generative technology and AI art. The practitioners include so called classical composers (Schoenberg is a well-known case) and performers (Caruso, for instance), but also pop singers and musicians (Joni Mitchell and Patti Smith, among others). The media used varies from oil on canvas to drawings on paper, from traditional photography to digital media. In some instances, there are grave, pompous self-representations, but caricatures also abound (e.g., Donizetti). There are also many miscategorized self- portraits (i.e., portraits misattributed to their subject), and many more purposely fake or mocking self-portraits including contemporary Roman musician and comic Federico Maria Sardelli, which would indicate that the category of “self-portrait” adds value and prestige to any visual artifact. Furthermore, many visual artists, especially during the Renaissance, present themselves as faux musicians, possibly as a sign of nobility or education. Women, slowly but surely, have also claimed a space in the realm of musicians’ self-portraits since many of them, belonging to the higher echelons of society, were both visual artists and active musicians (Ducreaux and Schröter, among others). In some instances, the musician is truly obsessed with his or her own image to the point that, in addition to visual self-representation, he or she also provides written autobiographies and even musical self-portraits in sound (Spohr, for instance). In the end, any attempt to create a taxonomy of “musicians self-portraits”
amounts to a serious interrogation of the usual categories of “self-portrait,” “musician,” and “artist” and to the staging of a vulnerable, doubtful self and that wants to be reasserted.
Cristina SANTARELLI (Istituto per i beni musical in Piemonte, Turin)
Cardinals Del Monte and Montalto, and a Rediscovered Painting. It has always been believed that the famous Theorbo Player (ca. 1610) in the Galleria Sabauda, once
attributed to Caravaggio and later to Antiveduto Gramatica (a painter of Sienese origin who grew up in Rome), was part of a larger composition in which the player was accompanied by other instrumentalists. This hypothesis is supported by an ancient copy in which the lutenist is portrayed along with a woman playing the harpsichord and a young flautist. The recent discovery, in a private Greek collection, of the presumed missing part of the painting by the Turinese antiquaries Massimiliano Caretto and Francesco Occhinegro has reopened questions already raised by critics in previous decades: it could be the missing fragment of a “concert” listed in the 1627 inventory of Cardinal Francesco Maria Del Monte (1549–1626); both paintings are cut on one side and partially modified to create two independent pieces that would have been more easily sold. As for the portrayed musicians, it has long been proposed to identify the faces of the singer Ippolita Recupita (on the harpsichord) and her husband Cesare Marotta (on the theorbo), both belonging to the circle of Cardinal Alessandro Peretti Damasceni Montalto (1571–1623), although the identification is still very controversial.
Benedetta SAGLIETTI (Conservatorio “A. Steffani”, Castelfranco Veneto)
A Child Star at the Teatro delle Arti in Rome: Fulvia between Alfredo Casella and Felice Casorati. The fortunate artistic partnership that bounded the painter Felice Casorati (Novara, 4 December 1883 – Turin, 1 March 1963) to the composer Alfredo Casella (Torino, 25 July 1883 – Roma, 5 March 1947) is at the core of two masterpieces that have as protagonist Fulvia Casella, daughter of the composer. Casella, a refined collector of visual and plastic arts, always nurtured a deep interest in the painting of Casorati: over time this interest bonded them with a true friendship, which can be reconstructed from their correspondence and in documents of that time. When Casella belatedly became a father, he wanted to dedicate to his much-loved daughter the ballet La camera dei disegni (The room of drawings, based on the Eleven children’s pieces for piano, 1920), with the choreography by Aurel Milloss, which debuted on the Roman stage of the Teatro delle Arti in November 1940. At the same time, since 1938, Felice Casorati had been working on a commission from Casella: the portrait of Fulvia, which will see the light in 1945. Remained substantially unpublished and unknown until 2023, this portrait—still owned by the Casella heirs—is now exhibited in the ongoing exhibition on Casorati at the Magnani Rocca Foundation in Mamiano di Traversetolo (Parma), is compared in my paper to La camera dei disegni, that is a musical portrait of the girl. The paper will present the sources related to the two works, the painting and the ballet, studied as a pictorial/musical diptych, with the young inspirer Fulvia Casella at the center.
Gretel SCHWOERER-KOHL (Martin-Luther-University Halle-Wittenberg)
Private Luxurious Aulos Performance in Rome in Front of the Temple Dedicated to Julius Caesar. The German painter Otto Rudolf Hessler (born 1858 in Leipzig, last mentioned in 1930) was one of the many artists attracted by Italy and especially by the city of Rome. He must have been impressed by the terrace and the ruins in front of the temple of Divo Iulo (the deified Roman emperor Julius Caesar), as he changed the place into a lively terrace for an extravagant private aristocratic performance: A young lady in a colorful dark blue and red dress is dancing and playing the double aulos. Another young woman in a bright light-blue silk dress is sitting on the stairs to the terrace holding a tambourine, ready to start playing. In this small private performance four women and a man are watching the lady blowing the conic double aulos. The painter must have been familiar with ancient Roman musical instruments, as he even depicted the phorbeia that was important for breathing while blowing the wind instrument. In this genre scene of the signed oil painting on canvas with the title Römischer Nachmittag (Afternoon interpretation “perverted” the dignity of Roman customs, but originally suggested a promise of sensual joy and happiness in the Underworld, in a peculiar South Italian variant of Greek religion.
Nico STAITI (Università di Bologna)
Images of Storytellers in Rome and the Roman Countryside. The origin and spread of the placards used by storytellers during their street performances are uncertain and difficult to date. My ongoing research allows me to formulate the hypothesis that it is a tradition that developed on the trade routes between Flanders and Italy, which became particularly popular from the seventeenth century onwards. Several painters, mostly of Flemish origin, depicted storytellers with placards in the Roman countryside, or in city squares. Their presence is then attested in Rome until the first decades of the nineteenth century, especially in the engravings of Bartolomeo Pinelli (1781–1835). The elements of concordance with similar Dutch, German, Austrian, Swiss and French images will be assessed here, in order to identify the unifying features—both of the pictorial tradition and of the staging—and to highlight instead the elements belonging to the local traditions of central Italy.
Gretel SCHWOERER-KOHL (Martin-Luther-University Halle-Wittenberg)
Private Luxurious Aulos Performance in Rome in Front of the Temple Dedicated to Julius Caesar. The German painter Otto Rudolf Hessler (born 1858 in Leipzig, last mentioned in 1930) was one of the many artists attracted by Italy and especially by the city of Rome. He must have been impressed by the terrace and the ruins in front of the temple of Divo Iulo (the deified Roman emperor Julius Caesar), as he changed the place into a lively terrace for an extravagant private aristocratic performance: A young lady in a colorful dark blue and red dress is dancing and playing the double aulos. Another young woman in a bright light-blue silk dress is sitting on the stairs to the terrace holding a tambourine, ready to start playing. In this small private performance four women and a man are watching the lady blowing the conic double aulos. The painter must have been familiar with ancient Roman musical instruments, as he even depicted the phorbeia that was important for breathing while blowing the wind instrument. In this genre scene of the signed oil painting on canvas with the title Römischer Nachmittag (Afternoon in Rome), dated 1893, the painter shows us his idea about musical performance in the springtime, during the time of Julius Caesar (BC 100–44). Otto Rudolf Hessler studied at the art academies of Leipzig and Karlsruhe, with Ferdinand Keller, and later lived in Munich, Paris, and Italy. Most of his paintings are in private American and English collections. The questions concerning this painting that is currently in a private German collection are: What does this terrace in Rome look like today? How accurately are the ancient Roman musical instruments depicted in the painting? What can we tell about the quality of this nineteenth-century painting? Which influences can be found? What is the background of this musical performance held in the luxurious Roman surroundings?
Nika TOMASEVIC (Università degli Studi di Teramo)
Music and Dance through the Eyes of Jean Baptiste Thomas: A Year in Rome at the Beginning of the Nineteenth Century. In the first decades of the nineteenth century, through the consolidation of Romantic aesthetics, artists began to look at the capital and its features with a different and more intimate gaze than in the previous century, no longer aimed at the ruins or vestiges of the city, but oriented toward everyday situations. This new perspective, combined with Romanticism’s typical interest in indigenous traditions, also included convivial moments, with the inherent performative activities, musical and choreic. Among those who documented this type of scenes of early nineteenth-century Rome was the French painter Jean-Baptiste Thomas (1791–1833). Winner of the Prix de Rome in 1816, following his stay in the capital city Thomas produced the work Un an à Rome et dans ses environs: Recueil de dessins lithographiés, représentant les costumes, les usages et les cérémonies civiles et religieuses des États romains (1823). It is a collection that documents, in addition to the civic and religious customs of city life, some rural scenes with dances and musical instruments. Divided into two parts—one descriptive, the other iconographic—Thomas’s work has so far been the subject of few studies. Starting from the analysis of the French artist’s work, with reference to the performative aspects contained in it, the study will then move on to a comparison between this and other iconographic sources of the period with musical and choreographic references, to frame these documents in the wider panorama of uses, costumes and traditions of the city offered by foreign travelers. This research would allow to identify the strategies that contributed to the formation of the collective imagination of nineteenth-century Rome, and the more general one pertaining to Southern Italy.
Xidan WANG (Zhengzhou University, Music Archaeological Institute)
The Circular-Body Pipa Images from the Northern Wei’s Secular Relics. The Northern Wei Dynasty (AD 38–534) was a regime established by Tuoba Xianbei people in the ancient middle period of China. From the beginning, the regime showed multi-ethnic and multicultural characteristics. The capitals of the Northern Wei Dynasty were Shengle (near today’s Helinger County, Inner Mongolia), Pingcheng (near Datong City, Shanxi Province), and Luoyang (near Luoyang City, Henan Province). The capitals of Pingcheng and Luoyang existed for a long time, leaving relatively rich cultural relics of music. As far as we know, no musical instrument remains have been found in Northern Wei Dynasty, but iconographic musical relics, including grottoes, tomb murals, stone coffins, stone pillar foundations, musical figurines, demonstrates their shapes and modes of use, as well as musical life, instrumental performances, and dances. The paper will discuss the images of circular-body pipa insecular sources of the Northern Wei Dynasty. These images are mainly found in Henan, Shanxi, and other places, and sometimes ensemble with vertical flute, zheng and drum.
Alessia ZANGRANDO (Università di Bologna, Dipartimento di Beni Culturali, Ravenna)
Visual Representation and Reception of Ancient Roman Music in the Collection of the Palazzo Coronini Cronberg Foundation. The Palazzo Coronini Cronberg Foundation in Gorizia preserves several dozen paintings, prints, drawings and miniatures dating from the sixteenth to the nineteenth century, as well as numerous objects of a very varied nature and size (from statues to jewellery), which correspond to rich visual sources for the study of ancient music, musical instruments and traditions, as well as their reception in modern times. Among these objects are figures of musicians or musical instruments that refer to subjects and myths from Graeco-Roman world. In addition to some sixteenth-century engravings by Battista Franco (1510–1561) and Bernardo Daddi (ca. 1512–1570), clear examples of the inspiration from the Roman antiquity are the tempera paintings by Michelangelo Maestri (ca. 1779–1812)—a well- known copyist of Raphael and connoisseur of the ancient frescoes found in Pompeii and Herculaneum, whose artworks became popular among the Grand Tourists—as well as drawings and sketches by the Gorizian painter Francesco Caugic, also known as Franc Kavčič (1755–1828), who was inspired by the contemporary Roman artists, as well as ancient ruins, statues and reliefs. In fact, both worked and lived in Rome in the second half of the eighteenth century and acquired a profound knowledge of the Graeco-Roman culture and the Roman antiquities of the Urbe. The Coronini Cronberg collection of paintings and drawings will be analyzed to highlight the sources that inspired the abovementioned artists, their archaeological and musical expertise, and the usefulness and significance of their artworks for the rediscovery and reception of the ancient Roman musical instruments and traditions in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.
Luca Aversano and Zdravko Blažeković
Luca Aversano, Università Roma Tre, Rome
Antonio Baldassarre, Hochschule Luzern – Musik
Zdravko Blažeković, City University of New York, The Graduate Center
Daniela Castaldo, Università del Salento, Lecce
Cristina Santarelli, Istituto per i Beni Musicali in Piemonte, Turin
18 May 2023
Dipartimento di Filosofia, Comunicazione e Spettacolo – Università Roma Tre,
Via Ostiense 139, Aula 6
19 & 20 May 2023
Teatro Palladium – Università Roma Tre
Piazza Bartolomeo Romano, 8