Festschrift für Ernst Lichtenhahn zum 80. Geburtstag – Festschrift for Ernst Lichtenhahn’s 80th Birthday
Without any exaggeration one can call Ernst Lichtenhahn a doyen of Swiss music research. As one of the few musicologists in the German-speaking sphere he has succeeded in merging different linguistic-cultural and disciplinary research traditions. In his manner of scientific understanding, historical and systematic musicology, ethnomusicology and music practice are methodologically and topically related closely to each other, entirely consistent with the holistic concept of music research as developed by Guido Adler. With the title «Communicating Music», this Festschrift for Ernst Lichtenhahn’s 80 birthday attempts to take up and to further develop the diversity of scientific issues as emerged through such an understanding. It collects papers that come from a variety of methodological and theoretical perspectives to deal with issues about the discursive nature of music, about mediation and transformation processes of music as well as about the discourse on music itself.
Wagner-Orchester und Proszenium: Herausforderung für den Theaterarchitekten Gottfried Semper
Summary: The theatre projects developed by Gottfried Semper for, and together with, Richard Wagner, raise the question of whether initiatives for improving acoustic conditions and creating enough space for the larger orchestras came from the architect or from the composer and conductor. We have several written documents by Wagner, but, unfortunately, very few from Semper. Based on Semper’s designs we see that he had followed the idea of a theatre without boxes much longer than Wagner (at least since his visit to Pompeii in 1831 and the discussion on theatre reform with Friedrich Schinkel during the 1830s). In the 1860s he was ready to take the challenge of developing a new theatre type for Munich that would provide a good view of the stage and hopefully good acoustics for all listeners. Alongside these ideas a comparison of the plans for Munich, the old court theatre in Dresden (1841, 1869 destroyed by fire) and the new court opera (1878, 1945 destroyed, reconstructed 1976-1985) shows that for traditional theatres he maintained several elements which, according to his own experience, were important for good acoustics, such as the auditorium ceiling that reflects sound coming from the stage and the orchestra to the rear part of the auditorium, richly structured decoration in the auditorium and the clam-shell reflectors above the boxes deflecting and diffusing sound. In spite of the enlarged orchestra, which was only slightly lowered, in 1878 he preserved a part of the proscenium as...
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