Musicologica Austriaca - Journal for Austrian Music Studies

Marketing Orchestral Music in the Domestic Sphere in Early Nineteenth-Century Vienna: The Beethoven Arrangements Published by Sigmund Anton Steiner

In 1816, Beethoven and Steiner agreed on a publishing contract that was at the time unique in the history of music publication. They decided to issue three of Beethoven’s newest orchestral works—Wellington’s Victory, and the Seventh and Eighth Symphonies, opp. 91–93—in arrangements for various combinations of chamber group, simultaneously, and concurrent...
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From Historical Concerts to Monumental Editions: The Early Music Revivals at the Viennese International Exhibition of Music and Theater (1892)

This article investigates the genesis, programming patterns, and transnational impact of the series of early music concerts (Historische Concerte) performed on the occasion of the Viennese International Exhibition of Music and Theater of 1892. Guido Adler was the co-organizer of those concerts, and this article will focus on the impact...
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Celebrating the Habsburgs in the Hungarian National Theater, 1837–67

The musical theater had a central intermediary role in the propagation of national consciousness throughout East-Central Europe in the nineteenth century, and so too in Hungary. The Pesti Magyar Színház (Pest Hungarian Theater), which was renamed after 1840 to Magyar Nemzeti Színház (Hungarian National Theater), had an identical repertoire to...
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Demythologizing the Genesis of the Hungarian National Anthem

Hungary’s state anthem is the musical setting of Ferenc Kölcsey’s 1823 poem Hymnus …, composed by Ferenc Erkel for a competition announced by the National Theater of Pest in 1844. With Erkel’s award-winning melody, the already well-known poem soon became a national prayer, sung throughout the country. Based on recently...
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The Hrvatski glazbeni zavod (Croatian Music Institute) in the 1920s: Jutarnji koncerti (Morning Concerts) and Intimne muzičke večeri (Intimate Musical Evenings)

Jutarnji koncerti (Morning Concerts) and Intimne muzičke večeri (Intimate Musical Evenings) were concert series of the Hrvatski glazbeni zavod (Croatian Music Institute) in Zagreb, organized by the institute's secretary, art historian, and music amateur Artur Schneider in the 1920s. From 1921 to 1928 there were 148 concerts, with works by...
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The Institutionalization of the Choral Movement in Nineteenth-Century Hungary

Male choirs established in a number of European countries following the German model transcended the framework of simple, self-organized singing in a relatively short period of time and grew into serious musical institutions. In the middle of the nineteenth century, the choral movement began to develop in Hungary as well,...
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The Construction of Jewish Identity in Nineteenth-Century Serbia: The Case of the Musician Josif Schlesinger

This article explores the status of Josif Schlesinger (1794–1870), the first Serbian composer and professional musician in the court of Prince Miloš Obrenović (1780–1860), in the complex process of constructing Jewish identity in the web of Jewish legislation at the crossroads of the Ottoman and Habsburg Empires. Schlesinger was singled...
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Inventing the Italian Violin Making “Tradition”: Franjo / Franz / Francesco Kresnik, a Physician and Violin Maker, as Its Key Figure in a Fascist Environment

This article investigates the role played by the physician and violin maker Franz / Franjo / Francesco Kresnik in the discourse on violin making in the first half of the twentieth century. It also considers the effect of his presence at the Bicentenario stradivariano, the 200th anniversary of the death...
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Espérance, or: New Insights into the Origins of the Chansonnier de Bayeux

This essay tries to shed new light on the origins and the early cultural milieu of the Manuscrit de Bayeux (ParisBNF 9346), one of two monophonic chansonniers compiled around 1500. It begins with a careful assessment of new or newly appraised documentary and codicological evidence and a discussion of critical biographical...
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Listening to Noise and Listening to Oneself: An Analysis of Peter Ablinger’s Orgel und Rauschen

Peter Ablinger’s innovative use of noise has provided a unique contribution to new music. In his composition, static noise (Rauschen) is not explored for the sake of expanding the sound palette but for its provocative potential as a “screen” onto which listeners project their imaginations. In order to show how...
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“The Foremost and Unrivalled Music Engraving Business in Austro-Hungary”: Josef Eberle (1845–1921), Printer, Publisher, and Manufacturer of Manuscript Paper

By the 1870s music printing and publishing in Austro-Hungary was under considerable competitive pressure from major firms based in Leipzig and elsewhere in Germany. Using more recent printing techniques (most notably printing from engraved plates by transfer lithography) and often a more integrated system of production, firms such as Breitkopf...
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Borrowing, Reworking, and Composing: The Making of the Viennese Pasticci of 1750

The dramma per musica Andromeda liberata, the favola pastorale Euridice, and the azione teatrale Armida placata, all performed for the first time in Vienna at the Theater nächst der Burg in 1750, are, as pasticci, quite exceptional for the Viennese opera repertory of the Theresian Age. Their singularity resides not...
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“The Hand that Writes”: The Scriptorial Unfinishedness of the First Movement of Mahler’s Tenth

Since Theodor W. Adorno’s essay “Roman” (“Novel”), in his book Mahler: Eine Musikalische Physiognomik (Mahler: A Musical Physiognomy), it has become commonplace for scholars to study the narrativity of Gustav Mahler’s music. However, insufficient attention has been given to the analysis of narrativity within the compositional process, in light of the trend in...
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Italian Opera in Vienna in the 1770s: Repertoire and Reception – Data and Facts

Up to now in the research on Vienna’s theater and opera life in the 1770s the subject of the Italian repertoire and its reception remained rather underexposed, among other reasons for lack of outstanding artistic events, but also for the particular attention devoted to the institution-historical developments of this decade,...
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From the People to the People: The Reception of Hanns Eisler’s Critical Theory of Music in Spain through the Writings of Otto Mayer-Serra

Although virtually ignored by music historiography so far, the Berlin-born musicologist Otto Mayer-Serra (1904–68) holds a unique position in the intellectual landscape of twentieth-century Spain. He was the first musicologist to develop a critical theory of music in Spain based on Marxist philosophy and greatly influenced by the positions on...
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“A soul, rubbing the sleep from its eyes in the next world”: Dramaturgical Aspects of Metaphysical Temporality in the Libretti of Alban Berg’s Operas

Temporality, as a narrative device, was a central element in Alban Berg’s operas both textually and musically. The systematic form of creating circular structures with palindromes via large-scale retrogrades was meant to turn narrative time back onto itself as an expression of fatalistic negation. This conceptualization held metaphysical implications for...
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Heinrich Schenker’s Identities as a German and a Jew

During his lifetime the music theorist Heinrich Schenker (1868–1935) was confronted with a variety of different cultures. After attending a Polish school in the eastern province of Galicia, he moved to Vienna, where he faced a cultural environment dominated by Catholicism, opening up for him, as a Jew, different options...
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Eduard Hanslick’s Vom Musikalisch-Schönen: Text, Contexts, and their Developmental Dimensions; towards a Dynamic View of Hanslick’s Aesthetics

This article deals with Eduard Hanslick’s aesthetic classic Vom Musikalisch-Schönen (“On the Musically Beautiful”), or VMS, regarding both the text itself and its most important contexts. We first give an overview of the history of relevant scholarship and relevant research perspectives and then sketch what we believe are the main...
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Hanslick, Kant, and the Origins of Vom Musikalisch-Schönen

Recent scholarship on musical aesthetics, notably in analytical philosophy of music, commonly identifies the main ideas of Eduard Hanslick’s Vom Musikalisch-Schönen (“On the Musically Beautiful”, 1854) with Kant’s Kritik der Urteilskraft (“Critique of the Power of Judgment”, 1790), due to an ostensibly equivalent concept of ‘strict’ aesthetic formalism. Hanslick’s aesthetics...
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Multivalent Form in Gustav Mahlerʼs Lied von der Erde from the Perspective of Its Performance History

The challenge of reconstructing Gustav Mahlerʼs aesthetics and style of performance, which incorporated expressive and structuralist principles, as well as problematic implications of a post-Mahlerian structuralist performance style (most prominently developed by the Schoenberg School) are taken in this article as the background for a discussion of the performance history...
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“A Nomad of Sound”: The Austrian-born Composer, Interpreter, and Performer Pia Palme

This paper is an introductory study of the works by the Viennese-born composer Pia Palme, who characterised the community of Austrian female artists as a productive and particularly innovative one. Palme herself is part of this productive and lively scene, but her role in it is twofold, for she is...
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“Frisch, Fromm, Fröhlich, Frei.” 
The Deutscher Turnerbund and the Berg Violin Concerto

Although Berg himself made public the nature of the extra-musical stimulus behind the composition of the Violin Concerto, through both his dedication “Dem Andenken eines Engels” and the article published by his biographer Willi Reich, the sketches for the work show that he originally planned to base the work on...
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Paisiello’s La frascatana. Dramaturgical transformations on its journey through Central Europe

During the second half of the eighteenth century, the Italian opera buffa successfully spread all over Europe. The works were often adapted to suit not only the new performers but also the respective cultural context. This is also true of one of the most popular comic operas of the period,...
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The Other Marxism: Georg Knepler and the Anthropology of Music

The Viennese-born musicologist Georg Knepler (1906-2003) was one of the most important music scholars of the twentieth-century. Being both Jewish and a Communist, he emigrated to London in 1934 and returned to continental Europe after World War II. He was active for many years as a pianist and conductor, and,...
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Otto M. Zykan’s Peculiar Speech: Music and the Question of its Reenactment

The article treats phenomena involved in the vocal interpretation of a composer’s own works, taking the example of the Vienna artist Otto M. Zykan (1935–2006) and making reference to the performance artist Marina Abramović, who is several generations younger. What I am interested in is (a) aesthetic implications, (b) challenges...
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A. W. Ambros and F. P. G. Laurencin: Two Antiformalistic Views on the Viennese Musical Life of the 1870s?

In the 1870s, both August Wilhelm Ambros and Ferdinand Peter Graf Laurencin worked as reviewers of music in Vienna: Ambros had regularly been writing for the Wiener Zeitung since 1872, and Laurencin was, among other things, a Viennese correspondent for the newly established music journal Dalibor in Prague. The reviews...
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Music of Minorities—“The Others from Within”? On terminology and the history of research in Austria

This article looks into the history of the disciplines folk music research and ethnomusicology (comparative musicology) using the Viennese case as a rather representative example for both disciplines. It includes a personal account as the author has been an eye witness of the developments during the last 40 years. It...
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Folk Music Research in Austria and Germany. Notes on Terminology, Interdisciplinarity and the Early History of Volksmusikforschung and Vergleichende Musikwissenschaft

Discussing controversial issues of Volksmusikforschung in Austria and Germany, the article focuses on European folk music research, with its theory, method, and terminology, in a historical and interdisciplinary perspective. Drawing basically on scholarly traditions of the German-speaking countries and Russia, it shows that key issues of comparative musicology and ethnomusicology...
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Courtly Representation Play, Singspiel, Opéra Comique. On the Reception of Antonio Sacchini’s L´isola d´amore

Up to now, scholars have treated ”opera as a form of courtly representation,” a topic of great significance for cultural history, primarily with regard to opera seria as well as festa teatrale. By contrast, opera buffa has been neglected, often being given the label ”bourgeois,” although the works of this...
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Call for Papers

We invite scholars from all music-related disciplines to contribute papers to Musicologica Austriaca. 
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Peeking into Mahler’s Compositional Workshop


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Exhibiting Beethoven in 2020


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Music Archive and Music Practice at Salzburg Cathedral


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William Kinderman: Utopische Visionen und visionäre Kunst


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Markéta Štědronská: August Wilhelm Ambros


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Manfred Stoy: Die Wiener Staatsoper


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Der junge Webern


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Sonja Huber: Das zeitgenössische Klavierkonzert


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