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18th volume of 'Musicology Today' came out!

POLMICAs the culinary pasticcio added appeal to seventeenth- and eighteenth-century aristocratic parties, working just as strongly on the sense of taste as on that of sight, so the operatic pasticcio and the pasticcio practice in general have enlivened contemporary musicological research. The 18th volume of the English-language journal ‘Musicology Today’, published by the Institute of Musicology of the University of Warsaw and the Polish Composers' Union, is entirely devoted to pasticcio.

The presented volume is part of the Pasticcio. Ways of Arranging Attractive Operas research project, funded from the Beethoven 2 Programme, which is co-financed by the National Science Centre of Poland and the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft. It includes 14 articles based on presentations from the conference that summed up the project, Operatic Pasticcio in Eighteenth-Century Opera: Work Concept, Performance Practice, Digital Humanities, which was held in May 2021 at Warsaw University.

The texts analyse pasticcios with reference to the concept of the operatic work from very different perspectives: those of theatrical practice (Giovanni Polin); the audiences (Ina Knoth), culinary analogies (Berthold Over), and pleasure (Aneta Markuszewska). Anne Desler discusses singers’ dramaturgical choices and their creative contributions to pasticcio production. Raffaele Mellace traces changes in Johann Adolf Hasse’s composition strategies over the period of thirty years that separate his Siroe (Bologna 1733) from his eponymous self-pasticcio (Dresden 1763). Hasse’s Siroe is also considered by Emilia Pelliccia and Sonia Rzepka, who, using Laodice’s recitativo accompagnato sung by Elisabeth Teyber as their starting point, analyse that singer’s impact on the musical form of the work and on Hasse’s creative process, as well as presenting the functions and elements of the database that the project group has been working on.

Reinhard Strohm uses the example of Handel’s Scipione (1730) to talk about eighteenth-century stage practice as well as problems involved in contemporary editions of pasticcios. Three other articles (by Gesa zur Nieden, Jana Spáčilová, and Paologiovanni Maione) deal with the specific qualities of pasticcios staged respectively in such European hubs as Hamburg, Prague, Brno and Naples. At the foundation of every opera or pasticcio lay the literary libretti, whose migrations and forms constitute a crucial, extremely difficult aspect of the pasticcio research, taken up in her article by Anna Ryszka-Komarnicka. Interest in the pasticcio is also evident in contemporary operatic life. The dilemmas, questions, and decisions faced by musicologists and music life organisers in our own times in the process of staging pasticcios are the subject of two papers, by Bruno Forment and Clemens Birnbaum.

The journal is available online at: https://sciendo.com/issue/MUSO/18/1 

Details of the project can be found at: https://www.pasticcio-project.eu/