The Veils of Salomé: October 8-11, 2014
"The Veils of Salomé" will bring together, at the University of Rochester, a distinguished group of scholars and performers to present and discuss images of Salomé as a focus for the study of intersections between religion, the arts, and gender over the centuries. The most famous and influential depictions of Salomé are those by Oscar Wilde in his play of the same name, illustrated by Aubrey Beardsley (1896), and its subsequent operatic adaptation by Richard Strauss (1905), which featured the "Dance of the Seven Veils." These works raised a number of aesthetic and social issues, particularly regarding views of women and gender; these issues were further addressed in subsequent theater and film adaptations, dance performances, and scores of drawings and paintings, from those by Munch, Picasso, and Klimt, to the book illustrations of John Vassos, and, more recently, the graphic novel of the opera by comic-book artist P. Craig Russell (1986, 2004), which will serve as the dramatic backdrop for two performances of the Straus opera by Table Top Opera.
Table Top Opera redefines the intimate connections between words, images, and sounds, and challenges the traditional distinctions between high and low art. By combining opera with comic books and classical players with jazz musicians, these performances will not only enable listeners to experience the music in a radically different way, but they will also encourage the audience to take another look at the opera Salomé and its characters in their original form as presented in the two day symposium.
Co-sponsored by the Humanities Project, University of Rochester School of Arts and Sciences, the Department of Religion and Classics, Susan B. Anthony Institute for Gender and Women's Studies, the Program for Jewish Studies, the Eastman School of Music, and George Eastman House.
Organizers: Th. Emil Homerin, Professor of Religion and Chair of Religion and Classics, University of Rochester, and Matthew Brown, Professor of Music Theory, Eastman School of Music.