Lecture online by Dr Karin Martensen: “Sound recording: a very short introduction”

Dr Karin Martensen (TU Berlin), international partner of the AHRC-funded network “Rethinking early recordings”, will offer an online lecture under the title “Sound recording: a very short introduction” on 22nd November. An abstract and details of how to join are below.

22 November 2022 10:15-11:00 am 

Institut für Musikwissenschaft Mittelstrasse 43 – 3012 Bern Room 120 

or via Zoom: 

https://unibe-ch.zoom.us/j/ 67296551790? pwd=VVJEYjZnTFNaOFBKWi9waV liQjlRZz09 

Meeting-ID: 672 9655 1790 Password: 872318

Before 1900, anyone who wanted to listen to music either had to be able to play an instrument or sing themselves, or invite an artist into their home, or make their way to a concert or the opera. In short, there was nothing other than live performance at a fixed place at a fixed time. The sound recording, i.e. the playing of a record, provided the interested listener for the first time with the opportunity to hear music in his or her own home without it being a performance by people actually present. One can easily imagine that this must have been a revolution for the music enthusiasts of the time, similar perhaps to the revolution for us today who can play music anywhere in the world. This development of the record industry, which began around 1877, will be outlined in my lecture. And furthermore, I would like to ask: What did this new technology do to the singers who stood in front of the recording device? To what extent could technicians have a direct influence on the tonal result? 

Karin Martensen has studied musicology at the University of Hamburg. In spring 2012, she received her PhD from the School of Music in Hannover with a dissertation on Anna Bahr- Mildenburg’s prompt books about Richard Wagner’s Der Ring des Nibelungen. From 2016 to 2019, she was research associate in the DFG-project “Technologies of Singing: Research into the Dispositif Singing – Body – Media in the Early Years of Recording”, which was conducted in Detmold. 2019 ‒ 2022: Research Associate in the DFG-funded project “Sound recording as a discoursive space” at TU Berlin/Audiocommunication. Since 2022: Research Associate in the DFG-funded project “Cultural Data Analysis of Production Cultures in Classical Music” at TU Berlin/Audiocommunication. Karin Martensen has published several articles on Anna Bahr-Mildenburg, on sound recording and on the construction of body and voice. Furthermore, she gave lectures on these topics in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, the UK, and the USA. 

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