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Title: Music and dance : Paris, 1900-1914
Author: Caddy, D. L.
Awarding Body: University of Cambridge
Current Institution: University of Cambridge
Date of Award: 2005
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This thesis offers three case studies of theatrical and recreational dance in early twentieth-century Paris: operatic, balletic and music-hall variations on Salome’s Dance of the Seven Veils; the reception of the cake walk as concert music, circus entertainment and on film; and the conception and realisation of La Fête chez Thérèse, a ballet staged at the Opéra during the years of the Ballets Russes. My critique, which draws on theories of post-colonialism, feminism and subjectivity (to name a few), offers a ‘thick description’ of these dance spectacles, tracing a peculiar line through the cultural and aesthetic determinants of early twentieth-century art and entertainment whilst exploring an encounter between French modernism, elite and popular culture. More important, though, is the fact that my thesis considers the role or function of music in dance performance. Such an approach inevitably invokes audio-visual theory, as well as recent musicological concerns with the moving body and its complex if ephemeral signification:  how music helps dance to move beyond gymnastics and begin to ‘speak’ is becoming well-covered terrain. In my case studies the question extends in new and unfamiliar directions. As well as considering the relation between music, narrative and balletic ‘voice’ (an interpretative reading), I engage in a more acutely historical study, exploring the reception of dance in the Parisian press: what this might reveal about ways of watching, listening, thinking and writing about dance and its accompanying music. The different works and genres offered up for consideration by my case studies, as well as the variety of aesthetic levels that they mark out, enable me to expose new perspectives on the contemporary dance scene and its cultural motivations.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available