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Tomasevic, Nika. "Fabiani - Ballon - Favier: The Conquest of Pre-Republican Rome (1790-1797)."

Tomasevic, Nika. "Fabiani - Ballon - Favier: The Conquest of Pre-Republican Rome (1790-1797)." In Tanz in Italien, italienischer Tanz in Europa 1400-1900. Für Barbara Sparti (1932-2013). 4. Symposion für Historischen Tanz Burg Rothenfels am Main, 25.-29. Mai 2016. Tagungsband, edited by Uwe Schlottermüller, Howard Weiner and Maria Richter, 167-177. Freiburg: "fa-gisis" Musik- und Tanzedition, 2016.

In the years immediately preceding the Roman Republic and Napoleon's arrival in the Papal States, Rome was experiencing years of great turmoil and cultural vitality. Beyond the peculiar limits of the urban theatrical life (very present censorship, closure of theaters between 1793 and 1795, ban on female performances on stage) Argentina, Apollo and Alibert theatres proposed an interesting and heterogeneous artistic offer. In this context, three choreographers worked at Teatro Argentina during the period 1790-1797: Michele Fabiani, Domenico Ballon e Charles-August Favier (Jean Favier's son). The study is based on a comparative analysis of late eighteenth century dance booklets, related to the data obtained from chronologies and repertoires, and reconstructs and examines the activity of Fabiani, Ballon, and Favier, contextualizing it in transalpine dance trend. In Rome, the three dancing-masters consolidated performance practices and contributed, as part of Italian pantomime dance, to the "standardization" of artistic and literary lines formed in the eighteenth century. An example is the "colonial current" that left a mark in French and Italian opera and ballet (see Jean-Georges Noverre's Belton et Éliza, 1774, and Gasparo Angiolini's Alzira o gli Americani, 1781). The second part of the study focuses on the transformation of the "American colonial current" in a general exoticism (American, Middle Eastern, Australian). This introduced new dances and an almost invented local color in pantomime ballets, in very similar plots (stories about jealousy and thwarted love), La conquista del Perù o sia Telasco ed Amazili, La morte di Pizarro, Il capitano Cook nell'isola degli Ottaiti can be cited as examples. These pantomime ballets weren't very demanding in terms of content, because the main interest was focused on the spectacular nature of the scenes (religious ceremonies, military marches and battles) and a dynamic use of the scenography in the wake of traditional Italian dance in Rome.

Year of publication: 2016

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