Weissman Professor Ora Frishberg Saloman Authors Listening Well

Listening Well Synopsis

The twelve essays in Listening Well illuminate aesthetic, educative, and evaluative strategies utilized by writers in Paris, Boston, and New York to guide listeners in confronting the challenges of musical modernity between 1764 and 1890. They interpret criticism from treatises, journals, and newspapers for its importance in cultural history and consider the reception of major works by Beethoven and by Berlioz. The essays explore contrasting responses to new operas and symphonies by composers, librettists, authors, critics, and conductors as well as by writers including Chabanon, Lacépède, Berlioz, Urhan, D'Ortigue, Dwight, Fuller, Watson, and Hassard. Readers interested in perceptions of Classicism and Romanticism in music as they relate to French, German, and American literature and criticism will discover how audiences on both sides of the Atlantic were encouraged to listen attentively to the new and controversial in music of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.


«'Listening Well' is a rich collection of linked essays on the challenges and rewards of such great musical works as Beethoven's 'Ninth Symphony'. Ora Frishberg Saloman's book brings up a host of crucial issues including how instrumental music differs from verbal expression and how music functions in opera. 'Listening Well' reminds us of a time - two times, actually: France, 1760-1850, and America, 1840-1890 - when public intellectuals took music seriously.» (Ralph P. Locke, Professor of Musicology, Eastman School of Music, University of Rochester, and Author of 'Music, Musicians, and the Saint-Simonians' and 'Musical Exoticism: Images and Reflections')
«'Listening Well' brings together a lifetime body of scholarly insight on topics that deal with musical aesthetics and reception history ranging from Paris to Boston and New York, and from Beethoven to Berlioz. Ora Frishberg Saloman's essays are an important contribution to our understanding of musical life in the nineteenth century in France and America, and, even more, teach us how our musical culture was formed on both continents.» (David B. Levy, Professor of Music, Wake Forest University, Winston-Salem, North Carolina, and Author of 'Beethoven: The Ninth Symphony')

About the author

The Author: Ora Frishberg Saloman received her Ph.D. in historical musicology from Columbia University. She is currently Professor of Music at Baruch College and Graduate Center of the City University of New York. She is the author of Beethoven's Symphonies and J. S. Dwight: The Birth of American Music Criticism written with the support of a National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship. Dr. Saloman has also contributed essays to European Music and Musicians in New York City, 1840-1900, Festschrift Walter Wiora, and Music and the French Revolution; her articles have been widely published in national and international journals of music.

The City University of New York