Listening in Paris: A Cultural History

Listening in Paris A Cultural History Beginning with the simple question Why did audiences grow silent Listening in Paris gives a spectator s eye view of opera and concert life from the Old Regime to the Romantic era describing the tran

  • Title: Listening in Paris: A Cultural History
  • Author: James H. Johnson
  • ISBN: 9780520206489
  • Page: 378
  • Format: Paperback
  • Beginning with the simple question, Why did audiences grow silent Listening in Paris gives a spectator s eye view of opera and concert life from the Old Regime to the Romantic era, describing the transformation in musical experience from social event to profound aesthetic encounter James H Johnson recreates the experience of audiences during these rich decades with brBeginning with the simple question, Why did audiences grow silent Listening in Paris gives a spectator s eye view of opera and concert life from the Old Regime to the Romantic era, describing the transformation in musical experience from social event to profound aesthetic encounter James H Johnson recreates the experience of audiences during these rich decades with brio and wit Woven into the narrative is an analysis of the political, musical, and aesthetic factors that produced engaged listening Johnson shows the gradual pacification of audiences from loud and unruly listeners to the attentive public we know today.Drawing from a wide range of sources novels, memoirs, police files, personal correspondence, newspaper reviews, architectural plans, and the like Johnson brings the performances to life the hubbub of eighteenth century opera, the exuberance of Revolutionary audiences, Napoleon s musical authoritarianism, the bourgeoisie s polite consideration He singles out the music of Gluck, Haydn, Rossini, and Beethoven as especially important in forging new ways of hearing This book s theoretical edge will appeal to cultural and intellectual historians in many fields and periods.

    One thought on “Listening in Paris: A Cultural History”

    1. Listening in Paris is a cultural “history of perception” examining the era 1750-1850 during which time French spectators transformed from a chatty, distracted audience to a quiet and engaged listening public. His analytical framework, which Johnson attributes to idealist philosophy, places the listener at the center of the historical narrative and takes the stance that musical meaning does not reside in the score (or authorial intention) but in the specific moment of reception—a discursive [...]

    2. Excellent and above all entertainingly written account of Parisian opera & concert life in the 18th and 19th centuries.

    3. This is very much not my field, but Johnson makes the history both interesting and a fluid read. I highly recommend

    4. It was a good read. I really liked like how the author tried to explain how the behaviors of audiences changed in Parisian opera houses.

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