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Hernani/Ernani: Four Centuries of Italian Opera inspired by French Literature
International Conference

Université François-Rabelais, Tours, France, 14-18 February 2007

Conference Committee
Scott L. Balthazar - West Chester University of Pennsylvania
Damien Colas  - CNRS, IRPMF, PariS
Fabrizio Della Seta - Università degli Studi di Pavia
Alessandro di Profio - Université François-Rabelais, Tours
Anselm Gerhard - Universität Bern
Reinhard Strohm - Oxford University


From its early beginnings to the present time, Italian opera has continued
to be enriched by its contact with literature from the different countries
of Europe. Among these sources, French literature, in particular the
literature of the theatre, has always held a privileged position. Italian
composers, librettists and theoreticians have consistently looked to the
other side of the Alps in search of models and subjects for inspiration.
The genre of Italian opera had its own poetics, however, linked with the
conditions of production, the mobility of the musicians, and the way in
which the theatres of Italy functioned. To adapt a French source to the
Italian stage, therefore, it was necessary to extract its subject matter
and re-transcribe it in accordance with the typical conventions of
representation on the Italian stage. As a result, exchanges between the
French theatre and the Italian opera are characterised by two-way
interaction between the closeness and at the same time the distance that
exists between the two genres.

In the light of recent developments in research in musical dramaturgy, and
in intercultural and intermedial studies, the conference proposes to
examine the many questions encountered by translators, adaptors,
librettists and composers in their rewriting of French plays, novels and
poems for the Italian lyric stage.

Half-days will be organised according to thematic sessions devoted to the
principal questions in musical dramaturgy.
	- theoretical aspects and studies of individual cases of
	  intermediality and interculturality
	- the geography of channels of distribution of the French sources
	- the influence of French theoretical ideas, outside of the
	  context of the Querelles
	- the element of scenography - for or against Aristotle
	- the temporal element, the closed form and the open form,
	  tableaux and quadri
	- the characters: modalities of the portraits and the
	- Mozart, his contemporaries, and the French theatre
	- around Strauss's Capriccio, manifestos in music on the opera and
	  the theatre

This list is not exclusive: the Conference Committee also wishes to favour
new approaches, as well as the participation of young researchers.

Proposals for contributions should be sent to the following address:
Alessandro Di Profio (
before 18 August 2006.

They should include an abstract (maximum 350 words) and provide the
coordinates of the researcher (postal and electronic address, telephone
number,institution. Papers may be presented in English, French or Italian.
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