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Beverly Wilcox

Parisian series of concerts founded in or after 1782 to replace the defunct Concert des Amateurs. The series was sponsored by the masonic Loge de l’Olympique de la Parfaite Estime; in 1786, the 364 members paid dues of 120 livres per year, which gave them admittance to twelve concerts. Some members played in the orchestra alongside professional musicians known as associés libres. The lodge commissioned, and later published, Haydn’s symphonies nos.82–7 and 90–2. The concerts ended in July 1789 when the Gardes Françaises closed the lodge headquarters in the Palais Royal. See Paris, §IV, 2.

BrenetC; BrookSF ‘Liste des membres qui composent la Société Olympique’, F-Pn H18751, 1786 ‘Tableau des membres qui composent la R. L. de la Parfaite-Estime et Société Olympique’, F-Pn Baylot FM2153, 1788 J.L. Quoy-Bodin: ‘L’Orchestre de la Société Olympique’, RdM, vol.70 (1984), 95–107 P. Chevallier: ‘Nouvelles lumières sur la Société Olympique’, XVIIIème Siècle, no.19 (1987), 135–47...

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Marco Kasel

Music has been a major part of entertainment at sea since the height of the “golden age” of ocean liners in the 1930s. Initially, cruise liners at the start of the 20th century were built to transport passengers from one port to another, mostly across the transatlantic from Europe to New York City, and more often than not, transported immigrants who weren’t expected for a return trip. On the other hand, 21st-century cruise ships are built for vacationing purposes, which means passengers expect to be entertained throughout their voyage.

Since cruise line companies of yesteryear were preoccupied with speed and safety, guests were expected to entertain themselves with reading, swimming, shuffle board games, or playing music on their own. Eventually, musical ensembles were hired to entertain higher-tier passengers on luxury liners. Bunny Rowe and his Orchestra performed for first and second class passengers only on the RMS Queen Mary, which first sailed in ...

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Josef Häusler

Town in Germany. It was noted in the 20th century for its festival of contemporary music. It was the home of the Fürstenbergs from 1488; they maintained a court chapel and opera which achieved particularly high standards during the late 18th and early 19th centuries, and employed musicians such as J.W. Kalliwoda, J.A. Sixt, Joseph Fiala and Conradin Kreutzer. The works of Mozart, Dittersdorf, Umlauf and J.A. Hiller were particularly popular there and Italian works by Cimarosa, Gazzaniga, Piccinni, Sarti, Salieri and Paisiello were frequently heard. It became an internationally known centre for contemporary music between 1921 and 1926, and since 1950 has re-established its reputation.

The Donaueschingen Festival was the first to devote itself exclusively to contemporary music; it is organized by the Gesellschaft der Musikfreunde Donaueschingen, in collaboration from 1950 with the Südwestfunk (SWF), Baden-Baden (which was renamed Südwestrundfunk in 1998 following its merger with the Süddeutsche Rundfunk in Stuttgart). The programmes between ...

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Austrian festival, held each September in Eisenstadt, capital of the Burgenland, where Haydn spent much of his working life in the employment of the Esterházy family. Founded officially in 1987, the festival has developed around the Austro-Hungarian Haydn Orchestra under the direction of Adam Fischer. Each festival includes symphony concerts, lieder and chamber recitals, often featuring rare Haydn repertory such as the baryton trios, and the production of a Haydn opera. In addition to the concerts and opera performances, held in the Esterházy palace, one or more Haydn masses are given each year in their liturgical setting in the Bergkirche....

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Malcolm Boyd

A competitive festival of Welsh origin, devoted mainly to music and literature. The word ‘eisteddfod’ (literally ‘a session’) did not come into common use until the 18th century, but the festival to which it refers originated in the medieval gatherings held from time to time to determine the professional requirements and duties of the bards. The earliest of these for which we have reliable documentary evidence was that summoned by Lord Rhys ap Gruffydd at Cardigan in 1176, but it is likely that similar convocations were held even before this date. Lord Rhys's festival is of particular interest because of certain features it had in common with the modern eisteddfod, namely the inclusion of competitions, the awarding of chairs to the victors, and the fact that it was proclaimed one year in advance throughout the British Isles. Similar meetings are recorded in other parts of Wales during the 14th and 15th centuries, the most important being that held by Lord Gruffydd ap Nicolas at Carmarthen in about ...

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Noël Goodwin

An annual series of concerts, opera productions and other events, which has regularly exceeded the implications of its title. It was founded in 1963 by Lina Lalandi, the Greek-born harpsichordist and singer. She originally based the festival in Oxford, making use of several notable university and other buildings. In 1968 six additional concerts were held in London, where a majority of the festival events has since taken place.

From the outset the joint artistic directors were Lina Lalandi and Jack Westrup; in 1971 Lalandi became sole artistic director. The duration of the festival, held in spring or summer, has varied from nine days (Oxford, 1963) to three weeks (Oxford and London, 1971). From the 1970s it comprised between 30 and 40 events. Funds have been provided by the Arts Council of Great Britain, some foreign government sources and a limited amount of private support. A rare combination of musical integrity, resourceful imagination and personal flair on the part of Lalandi enabled the festival to maintain an uncommonly high standard....

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Percy M. Young, Edmund A. Bowles, Charles Edward McGuire and Jennifer Wilson

A generic term, derived from the Latin festivitas, for a social gathering convened for the purpose of celebration or thanksgiving. Such occasions were originally of a ritual nature and were associated with mythological, religious, and ethnic traditions. From the earliest times festivals have been distinguished by their use of music, often in association with drama. In modern times the music festival, frequently embracing other forms of art, has flourished as an independent cultural enterprise, but it is still often possible to discover some vestige of ancient ritual in its celebration of town or nation, political or religious philosophy, or living or historical person. The competitive music festival has also retained combative features reminiscent of festival events of former times.

The present article is concerned with the evolution of the musical festival in Western Europe and North America, and with developments elsewhere in the world that have sprung from these traditions; discussions of individual festivals may also be found in the articles on the relevant towns and cities....

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Dee Baily and Nathan Platte

Music festivals, or musical events presented in the context of an arts festival, are held for many purposes: to mark anniversaries; to celebrate religious, ritual, or ethnic traditions; or simply to offer a concentrated program of music by a particular composer or group of composers, of a particular genre or period, or for particular instrumental or vocal forces. They range in scope from a single occasion to regular series. Festivals treated more fully elsewhere in this dictionary are indicated in §3; for further discussion of competitive music festivals, especially vocal and instrumental ones, see Awards.

The origins of the music festival in the United States can be traced back to the colonial Singing-schools active between 1720 and 1840; besides their religious and social functions, these served to improve the level of musical literacy in the churches. In the 1820s the schools began to offer short “conventions” where singing masters could receive instruction and discuss and practice choral singing. These generally culminated with a formal concert in which all the participants performed the music studied over the course of the convention. Between ...