2020 Salzburg Easter School – PhD- and MA-Forum In the context of the 2020 Salzburg Easter Festival 30 March – 3 April 2020, Salzburg University Versions & Revisions
University of Salzburg, Erzabt-Klotz-Straße 1, 5020 Salzburg
Organization: PLUS Kultur / Atelier Gespräche® // Department of English and American Studies
Under the theme of “Versions and Revisions,” the 2020 Salzburg Easter School (SEAS) will be dedicated to Verdi’s Don Carlos. The grand opera will form the centerpiece of the 2020 Salzburg Easter Festival, where it will be presented in a special four-act version with Manfred Trojahn’s new instrumental prologue, which has been specifically commissioned by the Festival. Yet, in its own genesis, Don Carlos has always been characterised by diverse versions and revisions. Based on Friedrich Schiller’s historical tragedy Don Karlos, Infant von Spanien, Verdi’s opera was translated into Italian after the French premiere (1867), then radically shortened by Verdi and revised several times, so that it comes down to us in seven different versions (the “Milan version,” “Modena version,” and so on). These multiple iterations bring into question the idea of a single ‘official’, authentic or authoritative version – indeed, they problematise the very concept of ‘the work’ itself in so far as they reveal Don Carlos not to be a static product but rather an unfinished, dynamic, ongoing process of creative reception, adaptation and revision.
The four-act version of Don Carlos to be staged at the Salzburg Easter Festival 2020, which is supplemented by the newly composed prologue, prompts reflections on the broader theme of artistic versions and revisions:
? What questions do revisions and adaptations raise about the finality of artworks? When does a work count as completed? Are publications and performances the ultimate proof of ‘completion’? Are there different degrees and gradations of ‘finality’?
? To what extent do different versions and refractions destabilise the concept of a ‘work’, emphasising instead transformation and dis/continuity over a longer period of time?
What role does creativity play in the genetic process of revising and refining artistic works and theatrical productions? Are revisions a matter of individual technique or an indispensable part of the creative process? Is the compositional and creative process one that is guided by revisions? How do productions intervene by appearing to delimit and ‘finalise’ such fluid processes? Can productions themselves be called revisions of an ‘original’ work?
? How does a postmodern shift from ‘work’ to an open ‘text’ change the status, function and role of creators, recipients and the constitution of texts as intertexts and events? What roles do material and semiophoric elements play in the ‘translation’ of dramatic texts onto the stage? How do bodies and objects on the stage become semiophores?
? What roles do editors, publishers and economic conditions play in the revision of works? How are revisions of artistic works influenced by paratheatrical elements?
? How do transmedia processes and the tense relationships between media convergence and media permeability position themselves in genre-spanning revisions of the same material or in adaptations of literary material into other genres (drama, opera) or media (comics, radio drama, film, computer games, digital media)? How do adaptation theories assess the relationship between original and adaptation in artistic and theatrical productions? What are common practices to develop and ‘revise’ (literary or epic) material for the theatre?
? How does the relationship between theatre and metatheatrical practices comment on creative processes of revision and adaptation?
Special attendance at the dress rehearsal of Verdi’s Don Carlos, unique artist encounters, and workshops in festival management and leadership guarantee all SEAS participants a unique opportunity to explore and apply the connections between theory and artistic practice to their research.
Possible approaches to oral presentations and poster contributions include the epistemic, cognitive and creative potential of artistic revisions and revisions in speech and music theatre, art and literature, as well as reflections on the role of the arts and culture as mediators and ‘auditors’ of artistic heritage.
The participation fee of 250 EUR includes coffee and lunch breaks and cultural fringe.
If you would like to contribute an oral presentation or a poster to the SEAS 2020, please send us your abstract (500 words) by 15 November 2019, as well as your motivation and short biography (together 500 words) to Univ.-Prof. Dr. S. Coelsch-Foisner at ATELIER_GESPRAECH@sbg.ac.at. Successful candidates will be notified by December 2019.
Professor Sabine Coelsch-Foisner