Aktuelles | Tagungen

28. - 30. November 2019

AIRDanza (Associazione Italiana per la Ricerca sulla Danza)
aCD (association des Chercheurs en Danse)
and the
Department of Musicology and Dance Studies (Abteilung Musik- und Tanzwissenschaft) at the University of Salzburg

are pleased to announce the International Research Conference
Times for Change: Transnational Migrations and Cultural Crossings in Nineteenth-Century Dance

Salzburg, 28-30 November 2019

Selection Committee: Roberta Albano (Independent Scholar), Irene Brandenburg (Universität Salzburg), Francesca Falcone (formerly at the Accademia Nazionale di Danza, Roma and currently President of AIRDanza), Nicole Haitzinger (Universität Salzburg), Bénédicte Jarrasse (aCD, Labex Obvil Université Paris-Sorbonne), Paologiovanni Maione (Conservatorio San Pietro a Majella, Naples), Bruno Ligore (École Doctorale LASH, Université Côte d’Azur, Nice), and Maria Venuso (Istituto Suor Orsola Benincasa, Naples).
Organizing Committee: Irene Brandenburg, Francesca Falcone, Bruno Ligore, and Anna-Lena Mützel.

In recent decades the study of the phenomena of the mobility and migration of dance artists has witnessed a burgeoning interest within various humanistic disciplines, leading to a revaluation of some historical developments and of the interconnection among former societies. In particular, nineteenth-century dance was characterized by a dense network of transcultural and intercultural relationships among European centers. Such human, artistic, political, social and economic connections were constructed thanks to an extensive network of professionals in the theatrical world (musicians, choreographers, impresarios, scenographers, etc.) who were in continual movement and were involved in performance productions, helping to create a real “ballet industry.” A decisive role, in this sense, was played by individual theaters, thanks to their specific production and staging policies, by ballet conservatories and by private schools connected to theaters. Historically the stages served as starting points and sometimes even the crystallization of the European careers of artists themselves. The techniques developed in such influential poles and the consolidation of the aesthetics of dance led to the construction, according to canonical historiography, of so-called “national schools” with significant economic, not to mention artistic, consequences for the impresarial aspect and the policy management strategies of the main theatrical institutions of European countries. If the complexity of such working dynamics appeared evident then, the term “nation”, at least as we understand it today, does not seem to grasp the differences and the particular inclination towards permeability that was reflected in the extremely lively practice of the past era.
In Italy, over the course of the nineteenth century, terms such as “city” and “kingdom” were used indifferently to express the same origin (in the same way that Parisian theaters were identified abroad, in a translated sense, as those of all of France). Expressions such as “population” and “territory” ended up characterizing, in the case of the exclusively “Italian” personage, artists formed in different theaters of the Italian peninsula. Striking, even, was the reduction to a single “idiom” of German-speaking residents living in diverse “places,” such as Vienna, Berlin and Stuttgart.
If such nuances were already challenging to describe in the sources of the time, consider the difficulty that current dance historiography has in the face of the persistent intrusion of the same paradigms and reductionisms. The conventional history of dance, often commissioned by the operators of their own theaters and intended to bestow a historical identity to their institutional past, has led scholars, starting from the nineteenth century, to organize sources and to build historical discourse from that point of observation, without adopting the multifocal perspective that on the contrary constituted precisely the lifeblood of past dance practices, which instead were constructed according to a “multidirectional” logic.
From this situation we see the importance of the study and analysis of the artistic networks and the choreographics practices of the nineteenth century against the backdrop of diverse political systems and different socio-cultural contexts. For this reason it is crucial for dance studies to adopt a transcultural approach that focuses its attention on the dialogue and on the reciprocal influences that different cultures exerted on past artists (famous and not) and on the different groups of workers who acted in the the dance and music fields.
Following this line of research, in addition to other recent and significant contributions that have shed new light on the study of dance of the nineteenth century, the International Research Conference Danza e Ballo a Napoli : un dialogo con l’Europa (1806-1861)was proposed and organized in 2017 by the Associazione Italiana per la Ricerca sulla Danza (AIRDanza) and by the Centro di Musica antica Fondazione Pietà de’ Turchini of Naplesin collaboration with various other Neapolitan institutions. That conference created the stage for a first approach to the revaluation of European dance history from 1806 to 1861, including a renewed focus on prominent names, such as the ballerina Fanny Cerrito, choreographers Salvatore Viganò, Armand (Armando) Vestris and Louis Henry, as well as other protagonists of dance in the nineteenth century. In addition, the interest in constructing a transnational dialogue, albeit aimed at different eras, was recently the subject of the last dance workshop organized at the Cannes Dance Festival (2017), Traversées: carrières, genre, circulations.
Following this transdisciplinary approach, the International Research Conference, entitled Times for Change: Transnational Migrations and Cultural Crossings in Nineteenth-Century Dance, will take place in Salzburg from 28 to 30 November 2019. This project is the coordinated effort between AIRDanza (Associazione Italiana per la Ricerca sulla Danza), aCD (association des Chercheurs en Danse) and the Department of Musicology and Dance Studies (Abteilung Musik-und Tanzwissenschaft) of the University of Salzburg.
The Conference aims to focus, through a meticulous analytical and transdisciplinary approach, on the phenomenon of the mobility of artists of the European music and dance theater in the nineteenth century. In this regard, social and political aspects will also be taken into consideration (such as the Italian and German unification movements and those relating to French imperialism) and the ways in which they influenced artistic and cultural developments. One of the many tracks to trace could be the focus of dance cultures of Italy, France and Austria in the triangulation of lively exchanges, which were of particular importance for the culture of nineteenth-century dance, between Vienna, Paris and the Italian theatrical centers of Milan, Florence, Venice and Naples. In this case, the geographical position of Vienna played a central role: it was a city near the center of Europe and one equipped with a network of theaters that offered attractive opportunities for European dancers and choreographers. It also favored the short- and medium-term engagements of transient artists. Transnational relations with other countries, also investigated through a methodological approach to case studies, would be particularly desirable.
The conference will initiate a transdisciplinary and international exchange project among scholars, allowing the creation of synergies aimed at promoting dialogue on new research results and perspectives. Recently discovered sources have revealed neglected and sometimes mystified historical realities from a historiography that did not do justice to the paths and developments of dance practices in diverse contexts. From this point of view, the Salzburg International Conference, on the basis of questioning sources, aims to challenge recurring ideas of dance historiography.


These are the possible thematic areas of the contributions:

(1) Transnational Biographies of Dance Artists

In addition to new research on the activities of well-known dance personalities, such as, for example, the choreographer Paolo Taglioni in Germany and the members of his family, who distinguished themselves in the major European theaters, contributions that relate to artists not belonging to the historiography of dance, perhaps hitherto neglected by research, would be particularly welcome. Other possible topics might emerge from research on the artistic and social status of dancers—perhaps compared to that of musicians, singers or actors—in order to identify artistic profiles, career mechanisms and strategies as well as reception models.

(2) Artistic Networks and Circulation

The mobility of nineteenth-century artists took place within professional networks, established, overseen and expanded among artists in the theater world. A key figure in this sense was Domenico Barbaja who, as a manager of theaters in Naples, Milan and Vienna, established, as is well known, an extensive European network (from St. Petersburg to Lisbon) capable of directing the careers of the most important artists of the first half of the nineteenth century (dancers as well as famous composers, such as Rossini, Bellini and Donizetti).

(3) Techniques and Dance Styles

Technical and stylistic elements that historiography has so far recognized as a “brand” belonging to individual schools or to theatrical institutions could be questioned. Particularly appreciated will be papers able to compare different stylistic and technical elements adopted in the practice of theatrical dance in Europe, including elements useful in recalibrating any “artisanal” aspect adaptable to choreographic art.
This technical-interpretative mobility can also be considered in relation to political and social changes and gender issues that have influenced the relationship with the body and with movement in a more general sense. Institutional, pedagogical, organizational and stage practice conditions may constitute another prism for reading the dance transmission phenomena and the crystallization of norms and teachings (public and private) that led to the establishment of distinct, rival or complementary identities.

(4) Case Studies

In addition to the thematic areas outlined so far, research can be proposed on aspects of the dance practice of individual theaters; on the relationship between dance, music and scenography; on the creation of repertoire; on the circulation of productions and on institutional aspects of the production conditions of musical and dance theater in the European panorama of the nineteenth century; finally, artists and repertoire reception in different European stages.


How to Join and Participate

Scholars belonging to different disciplines are invited to share their research.
Communications length: 20 minutes
Conference Language: English. Communication in another language is foreseen only in exceptional and justified cases.

Please send proposals (2000/2800 keystrokes) and a short Curriculum vitaeof the author (1000 keystrokes) in English to: Diese E-Mail-Adresse ist vor Spambots geschützt! Zur Anzeige muss JavaScript eingeschaltet sein! and to aCD (Diese E-Mail-Adresse ist vor Spambots geschützt! Zur Anzeige muss JavaScript eingeschaltet sein!) by 30 April 2019.

The acceptance of proposals will be communicated by 10 June 2019. Conference Proceedings will be published following peer review.