BGSU music history professor Arne Spohr has been invited to lecture at the symposium celebrating the 450th birthday of the Berlin Staatskapelle, one of the oldest orchestras in the world. The symposium takes place in the Staatsoper im Schillertheater and in Charlottenburg Castle in Berlin, Germany, October 18-20, 2015. Professor Spohr gives a lecture outlining the importance of English instrumentalists for the history of this orchestra during the early 17th century. Daniel Barenboim, chief conductor of the Staatskapelle, will give the welcoming speech to open this event.
Eftychia Papanikolaou, Associate Professor of Musicology, has been invited to present two pre-performance lectures at Toledo Opera’s production of Giacomo Puccini’s Madama Butterfly, Friday, October 2 at 6:30 p.m. and Sunday, October 4 at 1 p.m.
The allure of the East had captivated opera audiences for the better part of the nineteenth century—tales of the Other constructed through European lens offered boundless opportunities for visual splendor and aural opulence. Written at the dawn of the new century, Madama Butterfly (1904) constitutes Giacomo Puccini’s answer to japonisme, the overwhelming fascination with everything Japanese that thrilled Europeans and Americans alike after 1860.
The opera transports us to the exotic world of nineteenth-century Japan and the ill-fated love between a 15-year-old geisha and an American naval officer. The innocent but passionate Cio-Cio-San (Butterfly) marries the conceited Lieutenant Pinkerton, only to be abandoned when he returns to the US. The stereotypical portrayal of the two protagonists gives us a glimpse into the uneasy historical context that surrounded the encounter between East and West. Puccini’s score, peppered with traditional Japanese music he studied while composing the opera, leaves no doubt about the irresistible power of the music to move, surprise and seduce us. It invites us to leave behind our present-day post-colonial anxieties and rather indulge in the emotional cornucopia and dramatic finesse of one of the composer’s finest creations.
Toledo Opera’s Madama Butterfly is a production of the so-called “Brescia version” of May 1904, the revision that Puccini fashioned three months after the disastrous premiere at La Scala. The opera would undergo several more revisions, until its standard version was established in the Paris production of 1906.
Eftychia Papanikolaou, Ph.D.
Bowling Green State University
For more information please visit ToledoOpera.org.
Eftychia Papanikolaou, Associate Professor of Musicology, is one of five scholars invited to participate at an afternoon symposium titled “Beethoven’s Sacred Music in Context,” organized by Professor Markus Rathey of the Institute of Sacred Music at Yale University.
The symposium is presented in conjunction with the Yale Schola Cantorum and Juilliard School of Music’s performances of Beethoven’s Mass in C in New Haven (April 30) and New York (May 2).
Eftychia Papanikolaou, Associate Professor of Musicology, has been invited to participate as special guest in the 4th annual “Evmelia” International Music Festival in Greece. She will lead pre-concert discussions on select festival events, including a performance of Messiaen’s Quartet for the End of Time. The Festival’s concluding concert, a Liederabend that will include Schumann’s Dichterliebe and Brahms’s Deutsche Volkslieder, is dedicated to the memory of two exceptional music figures with ties to Greece: Brazilian pianist Roberto Szidon (1941-2011), and American musicologist John Daverio (1954-2003), former Chair of Musicology at Boston University.
Fourth-year DMA pianist Jeff Manchur has been invited to present a paper at the Institute of Musical Research in London, England on November 19th. The event, titled “Re-thinking Music Analysis and Performance”, is jointly hosted by the music research centers at the University of Oxford and University of London. His paper, titled “Ervin Nyiregyhazi and Romantic Piano Performance Traditions: Challenging Objectivity in Contemporary Performance”, is one of only eight chosen to be delivered at the event, with other presenters from the United Kingdom, Sweden, Finland and Israel. Jeff studies with Associate Professor of Piano, Thomas Rosenkranz.