The Nativity in Italian Art and Music with Kate Bolton-Porciatti

The Nativity in Italian Art and Music with Kate Bolton-Porciatti


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The musical soundscapes accompanying Nativity scenes in Italian art range from singing angels and soft-voiced lutes to earthy shepherds playing bagpipes and reedy shawms. This talk explores the connections between images and sounds - real or implied - and the ways in which artists and composers use music to suggest the immaterial divine or to evoke idealized pastoral settings, triggering forgotten memories of Eden or Arcadia. We explore Nativity tableaux by Bronzino, Domenichino, Giotto, Giovanni della Robbia, and Piero della Francesca, with musical illustrations of songs and lullabies, and the Italian folk traditions that inspired celebrated Christmas music by Bach, Berlioz, Corelli, and Handel.

Led by an expert on Italian culture and music, Kate Bolton-Porciatti, this interactive seminar will discuss how images and music were intended to illuminate the darkest month of the year. Designed to inform curiosity as well as future travels, participants will come away with an increased understanding of the connections between art, music, and devotion in the Renaissance.

Kate Bolton-Porciatti is a professor of Italian cultural history and music at the Istituto Lorenzo de’Medici in Florence, where she teaches BA and MA courses in the humanities. She also lectures at the British Institute, Florence, and at the Chigiana Music Academy in Siena. Kate has published extensively as an academic and a journalist; she is a music critic for BBC Music and a travel writer for The Daily Telegraph, UK. Before moving to Italy permanently in 2005, she was a senior producer and broadcaster for BBC Arts & Classical Music in London and has won prestigious Jerusalem and Sony Awards for her programs. She did her M.Phil. thesis in Italy, exploring the musical culture of early Renaissance Florence.

Not suitable for children under age 13 (sensitive content).

90 minutes, including a 30 minute Q&A.

Customer Reviews

Based on 12 reviews
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D
D.
Another fascinating talk by Kate

I cannot overstate how thoroughly I enjoy listening to Ms. Bolton-Porciatti's talks. Her delivery is elegant, nicely paced and soothing yet entirely engaging. She is like a tonic. The subjects she discusses are unique and highly interesting.

A
A.

Guest did not leave comment

M
M.M.

The Nativity in Italian Art and Music was fabulous! I am a lover of art and music and so enjoyed the historical and cultural side Kate gave to her lecture. It was especially wonderful to experience The Nativity this time of year.

A
A.

Guest did not leave comment

A
A.
A Christmas Miracle

Excellent display and analysis of the history of the art and music of the Nativity in Italy and Europe.

Customer Reviews

Based on 12 reviews
100%
(12)
0%
(0)
0%
(0)
0%
(0)
0%
(0)
D
D.
Another fascinating talk by Kate

I cannot overstate how thoroughly I enjoy listening to Ms. Bolton-Porciatti's talks. Her delivery is elegant, nicely paced and soothing yet entirely engaging. She is like a tonic. The subjects she discusses are unique and highly interesting.

A
A.

Guest did not leave comment

M
M.M.

The Nativity in Italian Art and Music was fabulous! I am a lover of art and music and so enjoyed the historical and cultural side Kate gave to her lecture. It was especially wonderful to experience The Nativity this time of year.

A
A.

Guest did not leave comment

A
A.
A Christmas Miracle

Excellent display and analysis of the history of the art and music of the Nativity in Italy and Europe.