Borgerlighetens teater : Om verksamhet, musiker och repertoar vid Mindre Teatern i Stockholm 1842-63
Sammanfattning: The years around the middle of the nineteenth century were a time of change in Swedish politics, commerce and industry. The press became very influential in the debate, including the issue of the theatre and its role in society.With the theories on public opinion and a public sphere, formulated by Jürgen Habermas, as a starting point, three different aspects of the operations of the Mindre Teatern (the Minor Theatre) are discussed in this thesis.The first part deals with the theater and its role in society. Liberal demands for freedom of trade, also in the case of the theatre, caused strong criticism against the prevailing royal theatre monopoly. After several years of struggle the monopoly was broken by the establishment of the Mindre Teatern in 1842.The second part focuses on the musicians who were active at the theatre, and on the audience. The role of the professional musician in the middle of the nineteenth-century is discussed, and it is pointed out that most of the musicians at this time had to have several jobs of different kinds to earn their living. The relation between the audiences at the Mindre Teatern and the Kungliga Teatern (the Royal Theatre/Royal Opera House) is discussed, and it is noted that there were great similarities between the two audiences.Part three deals with the repertoire. Most of the almost 500 performed plays were of foreign origin, above all French. The majority of plays were comedies. The serious plays often had historical plots, and were set in national surroundings. The foreign plays were adapted to suit a Swedish audience. The interest in recognizable settings is noticeable in connection with the productions. The repertoire can be said to have contributed to defining the new middle class identity, an identity which also contained an element of national feeling. Even the music could be used for this purpose. The main part of the music pieces were arrangements, but new compositions, especially instrumental ones, occured to a lesser degree. What kind of play music could be used, was decided according to the customs of different genres. Instrumental pieces, for example, were mostly used in serious plays, whereas songs were much more commonly used in comic ones. The music is analysed with respect to both structural function and its role in creating atmosphere and character.
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