A public lecture and performance by Julianne Baird.
By the early eighteenth century Venice’s once considerable economic power had ebbed to a point where culture, rather than trade or manufacture, was her most characteristic field of activity. She drew visitors in huge numbers from all over Europe. In particular, foreign visitors were fascinated by a phenomenon that existed only in Venice - that of public performances by an all-female orchestra and chorus. This unique tradition emerged from the four ospedali grandi of Venice, charitable state-run institutions which provided a music-centred education for orphans or female wards of the state, who in turn performed religious and secular music in the ospedali. The reputation for musical excellence of the ospedali and financial necessity eventually opened up opportunities for other musically gifted daughters of the nobility or middle classes or foreigners to study as fee-paying or scholarship pupils at what had become, in essence, music conservatoria
Informed by historical documents, eye-witness accounts and performance practices of the period, this presentation will bring to life in words, pictures and music the musical culture of the ospedali and experiences of the musicians whom it produced.
In addition to Professor Baird, participating musicians will include Winthrop Professor Paul Wright, Associate Professor Suzanne Wijsman, Stewart Smith (WAAPA/Edith Cowan University) and students from the School of Music at UWA.
Cost: Free, however seating is limited. RSVP is essential to Donna Greenwood [email protected]
or phone 6488 3977.