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The Patronage Politics of Equestrian Ballet: Allegory, Allusion, and Satire in the Courts of Seventeenth-Century Italy and France

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  20 November 2018

Jessica Goethals*
Affiliation:
University of Alabama

Abstract

Equestrian ballet was a spectacular genre of musical theater popular in the Baroque court. A phenomenon with military roots, the ballet communicated both the might and grace of its organizers, who often played starring roles. This essay explores the ballet’s centrality by tracing the itinerant opera singer and writer Margherita Costa’s use of the genre as a means of securing elite patronage: from an elegant manuscript libretto presented to Grand Duke Ferdinando II de’ Medici and later revised in print for Cardinal Jules Mazarin in Paris, to occasional poetry written for the Barberini in Rome, and even burlesque caricatures.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © 2017 Renaissance Society of America

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References

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