Now that a week of this summer’s research project has passed into the abyss of the past without too many casualties, I believe I can say that I am finding a rhythm for my work. There is certainly a great deal to be done, and I am realizing that the time we have is flying by. However, I am very excited by certain things that have come up in my research over the last few days – an elusive Czech reporter, several very unique personalities. Most of all, I was intrigued by the article we read by Pasler, “Composing the Citizen”. It reminded me that there is more, perhaps, to this project than merely the formal events which we have been so devotedly entering into the data form. Mapping the musical geography of Paris implies a comprehension of the musicality of the city itself; even the streets and buildings have their own musicality that influences the geography of Paris. It will be interesting to see how I can weave in the architectural music into the map, through photos and visual aspects.
Having the readings has been very helpful, as most of us needed a little more background in the Parisian 20’s. Furthermore, the names that we encountered in the first Nichols reading, which were so alarmingly foreign then, now have a beginning familiarity after researching the different individuals, venues, and organizations of the era. I would like to say that a clearer image of Paris 1924 society and life is forming, which will make the continuing research much easier. At the very least, it will seem more coherent.
Now I am simply gespannt to see what comes up next. Hopefully, now that I have an idea of who’s who and where things are in relation to each other within the city, I will be able to dig a little more deeply into the musical scene. I especially hope to discover more about specific critics, who add an interesting voice and a different bias from the impresarios and composers, and of course, to pursue my own interest in how the art dealers and artists of the decade fit into this colorful parade of figures.