Lithographed music in Italy during the first half of the XIX century: an artefactual study
The collection of lithographed music, created by Hermann Baron and actually housed at Reading University Library, consists mainly of editions from the first half of the XIX century. In the period under examination, Italy and Germany emerge as the two most prolific sources of lithographed music: in effect, almost two-fifths of the thousands of items collected are of German origin, while a further fifth comes from various Italian centres. Ninety percent of the Italian items in the collection come from Roma, Florence and Milan; the remainder from Bologna, Modena, Novara, Naples, Turin and Venice. They were printed by a relatively small group of publishers: Cipriani, Lorenzi and Lucherini in Florence; Ricordi in Milan; the Litografia delle Belle Arti, Litografia Tiberina (Società Litografica Tiberina and Ratti & Cencetti in Rome.
On the whole, the Italian publishers of lithographed music adopted one of the four principal methods used in the first hal of the XIX century: that is, writing directly on stone or plate with greasy ink. Compared to publishers in ogher countries, the Italians made greater use of caption-titles (rather than title-pages), especially for publications of landscape-format. Skilful lithographic writers of title-pages were not son common in Italy as (for example) in France or Germany and, consequentely, the greater part of the Italian title-pages were less orthodox; sometimes direct and bold solutions were archieved, at other times somewhat inaccurate realizations. The style of music writing in Italian publications is far more varied than those in other European countries. Among the characteristics of Italian lithographed music, there is the relative frequency with which music pages carry some acknowledgment of their writer (by the use of initial letters, either isolated at the foot of the page, or combined with a plate number); the irregularity of the use of plate numbers; the use of fold and trim marks end of signature (in a bibliographical sense) of each printed sheet. Examination of these characteristics enables the formulation of some hypotheses on the methods of producing lithographed musica and the identification of the motives inducing some publishers to adopt the lithographic process for printing music.
Ausilia Magaudda - Danilo Costantini
The «Gazzetta di Milano», a printed periodical of the Ancien Régime (XVII-XVIII centuries). Excerpts of music information for the period 1686-1699
Although rarely consulted till now by musicological researchers, the periodicals published during the XVII and XVIII centuries in fact supply an abundance of information on the musical activities of that time in Italian towns and cities. The first number of the «Gazzetta di Milano» came out sometime between 1637 and 1638 and the periodical soon became the official journal of the State of Milan. The excerpts presented are the result of a systematic screeening of the numbers published during the period 1689-1699 (only recently discovered in the collection of the Biblioteca della Società napoletana di storia patria) and give a detailed account of the solemn religious and secular celebrations in the State of Milan at the time of the Spanish domination: carnival festivities (processions, masquerades, musical performances, serenades tournaments); religious services in churches, convents, monasteries and colleges; performances of oratorio, etc. The «Gazzetta» also supplies information, so far unpublished, on the Congregazione dei musici in S. Fedele.
The appendixes to the work cover: (I) a list of news items dealing with music events in the State of Milan, classified by geographical location; (II) news of events in the city of Milan, transcribed in full; (III) a list of operas quoted in the «Gazzetta»; (IV) a list of the libraries where the numbers of the «Gazzetta di Milano» traced so far (from 1641 to 1782) are kept, with the relative classifications.
Music in Naples at the end of the XVIII century as described in the letters of Norbert Hadrava
The Musiksammlung of the Österreichische Nationalbibliothek of Vienna houses, under the reference S. M. 8979, the letters of Norbert Hadrava, secretary of the Austrian Ambassador to the court of Naples, to Johann Paul Schulthesius, theologian and pastor of the German and Dutch Protestant community of Leghorn. The letters were written from Naples, Caserta and Capri during the years 1783 and 1799 and, taken as whole, give a vivid picture of musical and theatrical life during the reign of the Bourbon king Ferdinand IV and his Austrian queen Maria Carolina, often providing detailed accounts of interesting musical events (opera performances, public and private concerts) as well as reporting the names of the protagonists, whether composers, performers or persons well-known in the musical and cultural world of that time.
Among the musical events described with a greater wealth of detail are the performance given at the Teatro dei Fiorentini on December 11, 1783 dedicated exclusively to works by German authors (a symphony by Carl Ditters von Dittersdorf; Der Schatz, a juvenile comedy by Lessing; Benda's melodrama Ariadne auf Naxos) and the performance of Gluck's Alceste at the Teatro del Fondo (1785). The letters reveal Hadrava's firm intention of encouraging the affirmation in Naples of German culture, music and musicians. Other interesting points in his letters are the frequent mentions and descriptions of ordinary and unusual musical instruments such as, for example, the lira organizzata which appealed so much to Ferdinand IV, the chalumeau, the vis-à-vis piano-harpsicord built by Stein.
Paologiovanni Maione - Francesca Seller
The Commercial Court of Naples: documents fro the study of early XIX century theatrical activities
During the first half of the XIX century, the Commercial Court of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies was competent also to hear cases involving the performing arts, since public performances were then considered commercial activities. The records of the Court dealing with theatrical claims include judgements which are often incomplete and sometimes even contradictory; the rules in such matters were, in fact, based on precedents established by contracts drawn up between impresario and government. In addition, the Court of Commerce was often called upon to settle claims for financial damages arising from breach of contract: controversies over artists' fees, over the definition of the relations between the impresario and representatives of the various trades, over management changes or sub-contracting.
A significant action was brought at the expiration of the contract for managing the Reali Teatri Napoletani (1819-1822). From the court records it is possible to reconstruct the terms and conditions of the partnership between Domenico Barbaja, Isabella Colbran, Antonio Niccolini and Gioachino Rossini and, in particular, the role of the Pesaro composer himself. The collection of records of the Neapolitan Courts also provides information on the frequent lawsuits brought by artists and theatre staff against impresarios, especially in the case of the Teatro San Carlo and of the Teatro del Fondo di Separazione. The artists apply to the courts in connection with all sorts of problems, from disputes on the correct interpretation of contractual conditions to complaints concerning periods of illness, unpaid fees, allotment of lodgings, etc.
The proliferations of music publishers in Naples, each intent on defending his own interests, led to violent disputes concerning protection of rights acquired through printing monopolies. Exemplary in this connection are the proceedings for establishing effective ownership of Donizetti's opera Roberto Devereux.
The monograph ends with an appendix containing the transcription of a number of documents concerning the most significant court cases.
Discography of Italian popular music - Central Italy
The second part of the classified reference list of Italian popular music is dedicated to Central Italy; here, too, as in the first part, the list covers 33 rpm LP and CD (multi-regional and single regions), 45 rpm LP and EP and 78 rpm records (up till 1960, Italian and USA releases).
Research on music scores: a national task under international coordination
The preservation of ancient music sources is today ensured, in more than 30 countries, by work groups associated to the local RISM, an organization with the object of compiling a comprehensive catalogue of the music sources of the country in question. The RISM head office is at Frankfurt and its particular task is to collect, and store in one central place, the information supplied by the national groups and to publish the results of this collaboration. The principal objective is the compilation of directories of printed music editions (Series A/I) and of music manuscripts (Series A/II). Nine volumes, with related supplements (A-F and G-L), have been produced to date of the A/I series, while it is hoped to publish the remaining supplements and indexes in the near future. In the case of the A/II series, it is planned to computerize the information (approx. 365,000 entries) and to release the acquired data progressively on CD-ROMs. A first step was taken in this direction at the end of 1995 with the issue of a CD-ROM containing approx. 160,000 titles of which more than 20,000 titles were in Italian sources. In order to accelerate and facilitate the editing and loading operations, the RISM headquarters decided to allow the national groups to use its Pikado software, so as to receive the information on floppy disks instead of on paper printouts; in the case of those national groups which have developed their own cataloguing programs, the exchange of information is via data conversion systems.
The publications of Series B (systematic series) are instead the responsibility of experts in the various research fields; in 1995 a new volume in Section B/XII will be added to the 25 already published. Since Series C, on the other hand, is published jointly by RISM and IAML, the revision of the volumes is entrusted to a chief editor who will act in collaboration with the two institutions. At the moment, Elizabeth Davis is editing the second volume (Austria, Belgium, Switzerland, Germany, Denmark, Irish Republic, Great Britain, Luxemburg, Norway, Holland, Sweden, Finland) and the third volume (Spain, France, Italy, Portugal).
Other fields of activity of RISM are the publication of individual library catalogues, the documentation of collections of letters of musical interest and the cataloguing of librettos: a subcommittee has recently been set up within the Commission Mixte for the purpose of creating a data bank for librettos.
Information of RISM activities is published in the newsletter Inforism, edited by the Frankfurt headquarters and circulated to the national groups. Information on RISM is also available on Internet on Home Page WWW compiled by United States RISM (http://hcl.harvard.edu/libraries/loebmusic/isham/rism.html). The facilities included in the WWW page do not concern solely the activity of the United States group, but cover various branches of RISM activity.
The paper ends with two appendixes: the first, a list of the publications edited by RISM and the second, a list of Italian libraries known to RISM headquarters.
The MUSICA database of the
SBN Sistema Indice.
MUSICA is one of the databases of the Servizio Bibliotecario Nazionale (SBN) and contains approximately 245,000 files of information on music documents dating from the XV to the XIX century (more than 83,000 manuscripts and almost 160,000 printed editions).
This material is distributed and housed in over 700 public and private libraries and archives in Italy. The kernel of the database consists of information acquired from the catalogues compiled by the Ufficio Ricerca Fondi Musicali (URFM) of Milan and by the Istituto di Bibliografia Musicale (IBIMUS) of Rome and will be expanded to include a further 200,000 items of information from the A.CO.M. project and data provided by the Santa Cecilia Library of Rome.
Access to the database is possible via the ITAPAC public network, the GARR network of Universities and Research Institutes, or a dedicated telephone line. As an experiment, the databases of the SBN Cataloguing System have been made accessible via Internet at the address: opac.sbn.it.
The user can also call up adn consult the System from terminals available at over 400 libraries of the SBN network located in the various regions of Italy. Before the end of 1996, a more user-friendly mode of access to the MUSICA database will be implemented under an ICCU project, designed for specialist research and having greater integration with the other SBN databases.
Input to MUSICA is controlled by a procedure for personal computer which ICCU supplies to libraries upon request. The procedure manages an Authority File giving access to 40,000 names, the schedules prescribed for SBN cataloguing and the lists for musical cataloguing (musical instruments, keys, RIMS library acronyms). A list is given of the libraries present in the MUSICA database, together with their RISM acronyms and with an indication of the manuscripts and printed editions connected with them.