[Blueboard] Invitation to "Cultural riches in Manila's performance culture, 1848-1898: The case of Professional Tagalog Theater and Professional Opera companies"

Department of Sociology and Anthropology [LS] socioanthro.soss at ateneo.edu
Wed Oct 15 16:42:14 PHT 2014


Department of Sociology and Anthropology
School of Social Sciences
Ateneo de Manila University

cordially invites you to a brownbag seminar:

*Cultural riches in Manila's performance culture, 1848-1898: The case of
Professional Tagalog Theater and Professional Opera companies*

17 October 2014
12:00 nn – 2:30 pm
Social Sciences Conference Rooms 1 and 2

*William John Summers, PhD*
Department of Music
Dartmouth College

Overview:

*O*n August 1, 1848, the Manila daily paper, *La Estrella, *published an
advertisement for the Tagalog Theater Company then resident in Teatro de
Tondo.  The work to be presented at seven PM on that Sunday was entitled, *La
Doncella de Misolonghi. *While this advertisement is the earliest
re-discovered so far, it inaugurates a practice used to promote Tagalog
Theater presentations for the next 50 years.


                This presentation focuses upon recently re-discovered
information on this vibrant theater tradition provided by the public press.
At least 300 individual performances have been documented. More that 100
titles of works performed in the capital’s theaters are now recorded.
Heretofore unknown information concerning Tagalog authors and translators,
theater impresarios, directors, actors, dancers, orchestral conductors, set
and costume makers, etc., will be discussed.  Also, exciting new evidence
has come to light concerning the work of central figures in this dramatic
tradition, such as Francisco Baltasar (Balagtas). This new data requires a
revised view of his creative work, his reputation, and his accomplishments.
This presentation concludes with selected questions remaining to be
explored in future research.


                On a hot humid Saturday, 15 July, 1865, Manila was poised
for the arrival of the Compañía Lírica Francesa, directed by the impresario
Alfred Maugard. For the next 15 weeks, this French opera company staged the
first forty-eight operatic performances in the Teatro Príncipe Alfonso.
European Opera had arrived in the Philippines.


                Over the next 32 years, sixteen additional opera companies
would appear in the capital; the one resident Filipino company headed by
Cipriano Gonzales and Ladislao B. Santos, two English and two French comic
operetta companies and 12 Italian troupes, the last one, in 1897, managed
by Adela Agresti (1897).  At least three impresarios returned to the city
multiple times, Rafael Stéffani (1875 and 1877), Ludovico Balzofiore (1888,
1890, 1893), and Ciro Cavalieri (1895 and 1897), composer and conductor,
who first introduced the operatic music of Richard Wagner to the capital in
the form of four brilliant performances of *Lohengrin* in 1895.


The work of the *Opera Pandaqueño *and these three Italian companies will
be examined through the interpretive lens of Manila’s foremost arts
critics; Gonzalo Zamorano, Fausto Manzaneque, Carlos Saco de Valle and
Oscar Camps y Soler.  In addition to providing detailed reviews, these same
individuals also provided critically important essays, in various weeklies
and dailies, in the form of extended plot summaries and musicological
studies detailing the biography and stylistic features of composers to be
staged.  A preliminary assessment of the impact of these authors on the
writing of the history of opera in the capital will be offered.


The diverse perspectives the city’s music critics provide today offer a
unique window on the reasons Manila, in just 33 years, was transformed into
the most active operatic capital of Southeast Asia.




-- 
*DEPARTMENT OF SOCIOLOGY AND ANTHROPOLOGY*
1/F Ricardo and Dr. Rosita Leong Hall
School of Social Sciences, Loyola Schools
Ateneo de Manila University
Email: socioanthro.soss at ateneo.edu
Phone/Fax: 426-5990 or 426-6001 locals 5270/71
Website: www.dsa-ateneo.net | www.admu.edu.ph/ls/soss/socio-anthro
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ateneosocioanthro
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