City to City: Urban Crossroads in the Music of Africa, Brazil and Portugal
DATE: Wednesday 29 June – Friday 1 July 2016
VENUES: Anatomy Museum, King’s College London & Brazilian Embassy
City to City: Urban Crossroads in the Music of Africa, Brazil and Portugal built on the research concentration in Brazilian Music Studies at King’s College London where, since the 2014-15 academic year, the Research Group in Brazilian Music has brought together permanent King’s staff, postgraduate research students and visiting Brazilian scholars in the Department of Spanish, Portuguese & Latin American Studies, the Department of Music and the King’s Brazil Institute.
Our first international symposium proposed to develop the work of this already thriving research community by bringing together established and younger UK and overseas scholars, in order to share and debate their research around one of the most vibrant themes in the field, that is, the transnational character of Brazilian music, in both its historical and contemporary forms, and in particular its relations with Portuguese and African traditions and practices. The symposium explored these issues with a focus on the significance of cities in mediating the history of musical relations across the Portuguese-speaking world. This included the role of key metropolitan and colonial urban centres such as Lisbon and Rio de Janeiro in the history of transatlantic musical exchanges; the contemporary profile of those and other major cities such as São Paulo, London, Paris, New York and Madrid, as sites of migratory encounters, new identity formations, and new (post-digital) types of music production and circulation.
A special feature of the symposium was the emphasis on the dialogue between musical practice, performance and academic work. This was addressed within the panel sessions themselves, and the programme presented some special events, such as a staging of Noel Rosa’s 1930s radio operetta A Noiva do Condutor, by the King’s Brazil Ensemble and soloists.
It is envisaged that the proceedings of the symposium will lead to a landmark publication, either in the form of an edited volume of essays with a commercial publisher, a co-publication with our Brazilian partners, or as a special thematic issue of one of the leading specialist journals in the field.
City to City presented six panels, with themes including:
Relocating Rio de Janeiro
Colonial and post-colonial transnationalism
Migrations and diasporas
Brazilian music abroad
De-metropolitanizing Brazil: Other cities
Music Industries, scenes and technologies
In addition, the following events took place:
Bate papo with veteran samba composer and performer Martinho da Vila
A Noiva do Condutor (The Tram Conductor’s Sweetheart) - an Operetta for Radio by Noel Rosa and Arnold Gluckmann
Round-table discussion on Brazilian music in London with leading London-based practitioners, teachers and activists
A closing performance by participant musicians/dancers and London-based musicians
A symposium convened by the King’s Research Group in Brazilian Music with the support of:
King’s Brazil Institute
Department of Spanish, Portuguese & Latin American Studies
Department of Music
Camões Centre for Portuguese Language & Culture
CAPES (Brazilian Federal Agency for the Support and Evaluation of Graduate Education)
Brazilian Embassy in London