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IU Jacobs School students and faculty travel for musicological research in Italy

MAY 6, 2013

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Four students and an alumna from the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music travel to Italy this month for the second annual four-week summer research project on manuscripts from the 18th and 19th centuries at the Greggiati Library in the city of Ostiglia.

Zanovello and students

Left to right: Ryan Young, Katie Chapman, Giovanni Zanovello, Elin Williams, Daniel Rogers and Devon Nelson.

Print-Quality Photo

Implemented at the invitation of and in collaboration with Ostiglia, the musicology research program allows students to work with an impressive collection of over 10,000 musical manuscripts and prints.

After the success of last year's activity led by Professor Massimo Ossi, this year's project is coordinated by Assistant Professor Giovanni Zanovello.

The students involved are musicology Ph.D. students Katie Chapman, Devon Nelson, Daniel Rogers and Ryan Young, and alumna Elin Williams, who is enrolled at IU's School of Library and Information Sciences.

The teaching component of the project involves the training of graduate students in codicology and manuscript description.

The group will also have the opportunity to travel to Bologna, Venice, Mantua and Verona.

In addition to surveying monuments and musical collections, the group will meet Italian scholars and performers.

Daily updates of activities will be posted on a dedicated blog.

"This is a unique opportunity for our students," said Zanovello. "It is rare to have free access to a collection of thousands of manuscripts only marginally studied. I cannot think of a better place to teach young scholars how to work with manuscripts not only as sources of music and theory, but also as material objects. The work they do will help sharpen their attention to the manuscript detail and open their eyes to the clues through which one can glimpse the big picture of 19th-century music collectorship."

The program, "Musical Collectorship in Italy in the 18th and 19th Centuries: A Survey of the Greggiati Collection in Ostiglia," incorporates academic research and the development of a website that gives the public access to data on musical collectorship.

In its final form, the digital tool, hosted and co-developed by the Jacobs School's Center for the History of Music Theory and Literature, will connect data from different collections and help reconstruct the dynamics and networks of musical collectorship.

The project is a collaboration that includes the City of Ostiglia (and its Greggiati Library), the Jacobs School of Music (the Department of Musicology, the Center for the History of Music Theory and Literature, the Music Library and Music Information Technology Services), the IU Office of the Vice President for Research and the IU Office of the Vice President for International Affairs.

"This year," said Zanovello, "we are especially indebted to the Jacobs School of Music, whose support has proven especially crucial in making this dream come true again."