1st Edition

London Opera Observed 1711–1844, Volume IV 1799-1821

Edited By Michael Burden Copyright 2013
    417 Pages
    by Routledge

    The thrust of these five volumes is contained in their title, London Opera Observ’d. It takes its cue from the numerous texts and volumes which — during the seventeenth, eighteenth and nineteenth centuries — used the concept of ‘spying’ or ‘observing’ by a narrator, or rambler, as a means of establishing a discourse on aspects of London life. The material in this five-volume reset edition examines opera not simply as a genre of performance, but as a wider topic of comment and debate. The stories that surrounded the Italian opera singers illuminate contemporary British attitudes towards performance, sexuality and national identity.

    The collection includes only complete, published material organised chronologically so as to accurately retain the contexts in which the original readers encountered them — placing an emphasis on rare texts that have not been reproduced in modern editions. The aim of this collection is not to provide a history of opera in England but to facilitate the writing of them or to assist those wishing to study topics within the field. Headnotes and footnotes establish the publication information and provide an introduction to the piece, its author, and the events surrounding it or which caused its publication. The notes concentrate on attempting to identify those figures mentioned within the texts. The approach is one of presentation, not interpretation, ensuring that the collection occupies a position that is neutral rather than polemical.

    [William Taylor], Memorandum, August, 1799 King’s Theatre (1799)

    John Thomas Mathias, Pandolpho Attonito!; or, Lord Galloway’s Political Lamentation (1800)

    Robert Houlton, A Review of the Musical Drama (1801)

    Philofiddle (pseud.), A Letter from Philofiddle to the Public (1805)

    Edmund Waters at the Opera House I

    Edmund Waters, King’s Theatre, Haymarket, January 11, 1808. To the Nobility and the Gentry (1808)

    Edmund Waters, The Opera Glass (1808)

    Madame Catalani (and Others) Causes a Stir at Covent Garden

    Theatricus (pseud.), Theatrical Taxation (1808)

    [Anon.], A Few Strictures on the Engagement of Mad. Catalani (1809)

    A Renter, A Short Address to the Public, Respecting Raising the Prices at Covent-Garden Theatre, and Engaging Madame Catalani (1809)

    Arthur Simpson, Some Memoirs of Madame Catalani (1811)

    C.O., A Letter on Cosi fan tutte (1811)

    The Opera House in 1811

    Henry Francis Greville, A Letter to the Subscribers to the Opera (1811)

    [Anon.], ‘Mr. William Taylor of the Opera House’, (1811)

    Beazley, A Description of the English Opera-House (1816)

    Edmund Waters at the Opera House II

    Edmund Waters, ‘Statement to the Nobility and the Gentry’ (1816)

    Edmund Waters, Regulations to be Henceforth Observed at the King’s Theatre (1816)

    Richard Mackenzie Bacon, ‘The Operas of H.R. Bishop’ (1818)

    Edmund Waters at the Opera House III

    Edmund Waters, A Statement of Matters, relative to the King’s Theatre (1818)

    Veritas (pseud.), Opera House, a Review of this Theatre (1818)

    Richard Mackenzie Bacon, An Analysis of ‘A Statement of Matters’ (1818)

    [Anon.], Particulars relative to the King’s Theatre, or Opera House (1820)

    J.W.S., Dedication and Apology to The Innocent Usurper (1821)

    Editorial Notes