Our last CRECS event for the 2014/15 session turns to the issue of entertainment. Without the benefit of Netflix and Spotify, what did our 18th-century predecessors do in their leisure time? In an age before cinema and pre-recorded music, how could you get your fix of sound and vision? Well, tonight, you can find out a little more about this, with two talks that focus on the spectacular and the elegant. There’ll also be a chance to discuss possible future activities for next year’s session.
On Tuesday evening, two of the CRECS team will look at different ways you might be entertained in the 18th century:
- Our first speaker, Sophie Coulombeau will discuss the Magic Lantern shows that were popular in the later 18th century. In some ways the precursors to cinema, these entertainments brought the immanent magic we associate with the dawn of the moving picture to an early audience. Quite literally using smoke and mirrors, the Magic Lantern or Phantasmagoria shows projected ghostly images onto the stage alongside living actors.
- The second talk, by Melanie Bigold, will complement this examination of the sensationalist and technological with a presentation on the elegant and classical, considering the ways in which ballet provided new opportunities for the consumption of music and spectacle. The session will comprise some clips of ballet performances, followed by discussion of the pieces and the broader issue of cultural entertainment.
So, join us for a lively evening of conversation and consideration in Cardiff University’s Special Collections and Archives (SCOLAR), in the basement of the Arts and Social Studies Library. The event starts at 5.15pm on 28 April 2015. As usual, refreshments will follow after the presentations and discussion.