The Hofkapellmeister in Thuringia around 1700. Symposium in memory of Philipp Heinrich Erlebach (1657-1714)

University of Music Franz Liszt, Weimar and Castle Heidecksburg, Rudolstadt, Germany

10-11 October 2014

In association with the Institute for Musicology Weimar-Jena and the Stiftung Thüringer Schlösser und Gärten

Call for Papers

In 2014 we will be commemorating the 300th anniversary of the death of Philipp Heinrich  Erlebach (1657-1714), former Hofkapellmeister to the court of Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt. To mark the occasion, the Academia Musicalis Thuringiae, in association with the Institute for Musicology Weimar-Jena and the Stiftung Thüringer Schlösser und Gärten, are organising a symposium dedicated to the works of Erlebach in the context of court culture around 1700. The focus will be on the function of the Hofkapellmeister in Thuringia (or the former courts within the geographical boundaries of today’s Federal State of Thuringia) at the time of Erlebach’s appointment to the court in Rudolstadt.

The surviving works of Erlebach demonstrate the problems of reconstructing the musical life at Thuringian or central German courts in the 17th and 18th centuries: more than 90% of Erlebach’s compositions were lost in a devastating fire at Heidecksburg Castle in 1735, and only about 70 works survive. Although such a fate has not befallen the works of all Kapellmeisters of the period, in many cases we can only estimate the scale of the musical riches presented on a daily basis in each of these courts. To give just two examples, only two of Georg Caspar Schürmann’s compositions for the court of Saxe-Meiningen dating from his appointment in 1702 and 1703 have survived. Also, the court of Saxe-Römhild, according to some sources, fostered a rich and lavish culture of music and theatre for 30 years between 1680 and 1710, but almost no details are known. Who was the Hofkapellmeister? What were his compositions? And whose operas were performed on stage?

The symposium aims to bring together academic and non-academic researchers from around the world in order to fill a significant gap in the musical history of Thuringia and central Germany. We kindly invite papers that deal with one or more of the following topics:

  • The Hofkapellmeister in Thuringia around 1700: persons, works and repertoire
  • Hofkapelle, court theatre, court chapel: forms of musical engagement within the social context of the court
  • Compositions: genres and styles, compositional spheres of influence
  • Wherefrom? Where to? Career paths of Hofkapellmeisters from and to Thuringia
  • Terms of employment: appointments, salaries, sponsorships
  • Civil appointments outside of court

Please send your abstract of no more than 250 words (as a Word document) as well as a short biographical note to symposium[at] no later than 30 June 2013.

Symposium languages are German and English.

Prof. Dr. Helen Geyer (Institute for Musicology Weimar-Jena)
Dr. Christian Storch (Academia Musicalis Thuringiae)

Academia Musicalis Thuringiae e.V.
Erfurter Str. 13
99423 Weimar

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