Book Presentation: The Shadow of the Empress. Fairy-Tale Opera and the End of the Habsburg Monarchy

Lecture format: on site
Room: SR 1, Department of Slavonic Studies
Street address: Spitalgasse 2,  Campus of the University of Vienna, Hof 3, on the map.

The Research Center for the History of Transformations (RECET, University of Vienna), the Institute for Eastern European Studies (IOG, UV), the Faculty of Historical and Cultural Studies (UV), the Research Platform Transformations and Eastern Europe (UV) and the Department of Slavonic Studies (UV) are excited to welcome renowned cultural historian Larry Wolff to Vienna on the occasion of the publication of his new book The Shadow of the Empress: Fairy-Tale Opera and the End of the Habsburg Monarchy. His lecture will consider Richard Strauss and Hugo von Hofmannsthal's fairy-tale opera Die Frau ohne Schatten (soon to be performed at the Vienna Staatsoper) in relation to the period of its creation before, during, and after World War I, with its premiere in 1919, at the time of the Paris Peace Conference and the end of the Habsburg monarchy. In particular, the lecture will address the leading roles in the opera— a fairy-tale emperor and empress— in relation to the last Habsburg emperor and empress, Karl and Zita, who departed from Austria in 1919, the same year that their fairy-tale counterparts took the stage in Vienna. The lecture further considers the afterlives— after 1919— of the real and operatic empresses across the post-imperial European twentieth century. 

The lecture will take place in English. Participation free of charge, no registration required.

Larry Wolff is the Julius Silver Professor of History at New York University and a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. His former books include Woodrow Wilson and the Reimagining of Eastern Europe (2020), The Singing Turk: Ottoman Power and Operatic Emotions on the European Stage from the Siege of Vienna to the Age of Napoleon (2016), and Paolina's Innocence: Child Abuse in Casanova's Venice (2012). He writes frequently about opera for numerous publications.

More information on the book: see here.

Co-organized and sponsered by: