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Berlioz on MusicSelected Criticism 1824-1837$
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Katherine Kolb

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780199391950

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199391950.001.0001

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Music Review

Music Review

Chapter:
(p.183) 31 Music Review
Source:
Berlioz on Music
Author(s):

Katherine Kolb

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199391950.003.0032

This review satirizes the production of reviews, or feuilletons. Berlioz practices here what he later dubs the feuilleton de silence, a mode of spinning his literary wheels while ignoring the Parisian events he is to review, but finds trivial by comparison, for example, with choral festivals in Germany. In a playful quest for a topic to write on, he does in fact review briefly several current musical events, such as the posthumous premiere of Bellini’s I Puritani at the Théâtre-Italien. A compliment on his writing by the poet Vigny leads him to playful questions on his literary identity: does he qualify as a man of letters? Even if he does, we are reminded at the end that, as a reviewer, he is expected to confine himself to his assigned domain rather than follow his whim of reviewing a volume by a young compatriot from the Dauphiné province, the poet Chaudesaigues.

Keywords:   Berlioz as writer, production of reviews, Méhul preface to Ariodant, Eler, literary fame, music festivals, Vigny, Chaudesaigues, Bellini I Puritani, Cherubini Traité du contrepoint

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