Victorian burlesque

Victorian Burlesque

Victorian burlesque

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Victorian burlesque, sometimes known as travesty or extravaganza,According to the Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, "the various genre terms were always applied freely", and by the 1860s their use had become "arbitrary and capricious": see Grove Music Online. Oxford Music Online, accessed 3 February 2011 . In an 1896 article on Burlesque in The Theatre, the three terms are used interchangeably: see Adams, W. Davenport. "Burlesque: Old v. New", The Theatre, 1 March 1896, pp. 144–45 is a genre of theatrical entertainment that was popular in Victorian England and in the New York theatre of the mid 19th century. It is a form of parody in which a well-known opera or piece of classical theatre or ballet is adapted into a broad comic play, usually a musical play, usually risqué in style, mocking the theatrical and musical conventions and styles of the original work, and often quoting or pastiching text or music from the original work. Victorian burlesque is one of several forms of burlesque.

Like ballad opera, burlesques featured musical scores drawing on a wide range of music, from popular contemporary songs to operatic arias, although later burlesques, from the 1880s, sometimes featured original scores. Dance played an important part, and great attention was paid to the staging, costumes and other spectacular elements of stagecraft, as many of the pieces were staged as extravaganzas. Many of the male roles were...
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