Detlev Rindom, Post Doctoral Fellow and contributor to the British Academy at King’s College London Mundoclasico.comPublished an article in reputed journal 19th century music with title: Gramophone Voices: Puccini and Madama Butterfly in New York, ca. 1907,
Prepared in his research on opera, migration, sound and technology between the 19th and 20th centuries, the article relates the success of the work’s New York premiere (which failed at its premiere in 1904) in the context of the sonic revolution. and the spread that represented the gramophone in the United States. New York, not in vain, was the location of the premiere of the play madam butterfly By David Belasco on which the libretto of Puccini’s opera is based.
Detlev Rindom (Copenhagen, 1984) has a degree in English philology from the University of Oxford and has completed his doctoral thesis. Bygone Modernity: Re-imagining Italian Opera in Milan, New York and Buenos Aires, 1887–1914 at the University of Cambridge. In addition to his academic publications in cambridge opera journal You Journal of the Royal Musical Associationhas been an ally of opera magazine You Mundoclasico.com
the essence of Gramophone Voices: Puccini and madam butterfly In New York, ca. 1907
Puccini’s madam butterfly (1904) was a notorious failure at its world premiere: it was condemned by Italian critics for its “ornamental” surfaces and a clear repetition of earlier Puccinian tropes. The first of two operas by the composer, based on works by American playwright David Belasco, the opera was soon revised and received the New York Metropolitan Opera premiere in 1907 as part of a celebration of the composer’s works held in his presence. The decision to tour New York was timely: not only was Belasco’s source play premiered there in 1900, but New York was emerging as a global center of the operatic gramophone industry by then, including in Camden, New Jersey. There were recordings of Puccini’s works done. Often featuring the cast of the Metropolitan Opera. This development echoed the widespread operative power shift between Italy and the United States at this time, which informed the evolving attitude towards new sound reproduction technology on both sides of the Atlantic.
This article re-examines madam butterfly From the perspective of Puccini’s 1907 tour. In particular, it focuses on the composer’s interactions with the American gramophone industry during and before his visit to New York, examining them in relation to broader questions of the Italian operatic future and the ideas of Italian vocals. whereas madam butterfly Long addressed in relation to its Orientalist depiction of Japan, reimagining Puccini’s Belasco-inspired opera in this transatlantic context could highlight the sinister cultural politics of the gramophone industry, as well as the reworking of Puccini’s opera. They may also intersect with wider musical drama. In the end, I argue, madam butterfly Emerges as an important document of the changing listening culture. 1900, as well as a bisexual colonial fantasy.