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Cambridge University Press
Online publication date:
July 2023
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Book description

As both an in-depth study of Mozart criticism and performance practice in Prague, and a history of how eighteenth-century opera was appropriated by later political movements and social groups, this book explores the reception of Mozart's operas in Prague between 1791 and the present and reveals the profound influence of politics on the construction of the Western musical canon. Tracing the links between performances of Mozart's operas and strategies that Bohemian musicians, critics, directors, musicologists, and politicians used to construct modern Czech and German identities, Nedbal explores the history of the canonization process from the perspective of a city that has often been regarded as peripheral to mainstream Western music history. Individual chapters focus on Czech and German adaptations of Mozart's operas for Prague's theaters, operatic criticism published in Prague's Czech and German journals, the work of Bohemian historians interpreting Mozart, and endeavours of cultural activists to construct monuments in recognition of the composer.


‘An original, seminal, inherently fascinating, and scholastically meticulous study … enhanced for the reader with the inclusion of lists for figures, tables, and musical examples.'

James A. Cox Source: Midwest Book Review

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