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Faculty of Music

British Academy Rising Star Engagement Award: Francesca Vella

The Faculty of Music is pleased to announce that Francesca Vella has received a British Academy Rising Star Engagement Award for the project Sounding (Out) 19th-Century Italy, which will run from April 2019 to March 2020.

Despite the countless sounds and noises that have characterised the region and its people over the centuries, Italy is still largely associated, in both the popular and scholarly imagination, with the ‘soundtrack’ that supposedly accompanied its birth as a nation-state: opera. Sounding (Out) 19th-Century Italy will bring together an interdisciplinary group of scholars with an aim to challenge the pervasive cultural misconceptions—the myths of Italian distinctiveness and exoticism—that have thrived on this orthodox sonic marker of Italianness. The working group will reappraise the multifaceted phenomenon of sound during Italy’s long 19th century from cultural, historical-scientific and ethnographic perspectives. Two forums will facilitate dialogue across disciplines and with a non-scholarly audience: an academic workshop; and an outreach panel and live performance. Further events and virtual spaces for discussion will include a launch talk, a reading group and a website gathering blog posts and multimedia material.