Introduction: why ‘new music theatre’ now?

Adlington, R. (2019) Introduction: why ‘new music theatre’ now? In: New Music Theatre in Europe: Transformations between 1955-1975. Musical Cultures of the Twentieth Century . Routledge. ISBN 9781138323018 (hardback) 9780367730949 (paperback) 9780429451669 (e-book)


An advisory committee comprising Gianmario Borio, Giordano Ferrari, Dorte Schmidt, Daniela Tortora and the editor of this volume assembled a list of speakers from across Europe, to address several crucial themes for the topic of experimentation in European music theatre between 1955 and 1975. European new music theatre of the period 1955–1975 connected to larger continuities and conventions in human musicking. For many composers of new music theatre in the 1950s and 1960s, the domain of everyday interpersonal experience remained problematic as subject matter, the ‘everyday’ tending to serve as a dichotomous pole to progressive art-making. Even closer to Jennifer Walshe’s focus on the physical attributes of musicians are the creative approaches taken by leading stage performers of new music theatre in the 1960s and 1970s, who sought to assert the body on stage as a textual figure in its own right. New music theatre increasingly incorporated visual and light projections, electronics, sound diffusion, and video and sound recordings.

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