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A forgotten transcultural entertainment industry - Leeds, UK

15 Mar 2017

Early last century, popular music was promoted internationally by two large entertainment industries. One was based in New York and focused on dance-band music. The other was based in Berlin and concentrated on music for the stage—most of it categorized under the umbrella term “operetta.” Lehár’s The Merry Widow (1905) had been heard around the globe by 1910, and is still familiar. Most of the others are forgotten. The ERC Advanced Grant project GOLNY (German Operetta in London and New York) investigates the massive enthusiasm for English versions of operettas from the German stage between 1907–38, when over 60 productions were given in the West End and over 70 on Broadway. The project is helping to develop a clearer understanding of the history of how the music business went global, and deepening our awareness of cosmopolitan culture.

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