The Transformation of Musical Practices in Lisbon at the End of the "ancien régime"

New Commercial Dynamics, Cosmopolitan Models and Keyboard Repertoires

Vanda De Sá

During the Reign of Queen María I (1777-1816) new musical practices developed in Portugal and the business of music began to flourish. Musicians who had established themselves in Lisbon in the previous decades, hired by the Royal Chamber and other important musical institutions of the Crown, were then allocated royal privileges for trading: their warehouses imported music, instruments and other sophisticated products such as nautical instruments and luxury accessories. Newspapers began advertising for these traders on musical matters, promoting novelty and cosmopolitanism. Advertisements recommended the music or the instruments of the "best piano professors in Europe", making some special note of the Luso-Brazilian market. The article addresses music as part of the new commercial dynamics that developed in Lisbon at the end of the ancien régime, promoting keyboard repertoires that respond to (a) the interest in a new sentimental opera for domestic consumption in keyboard arrangements ("La Molinara" and "Nina" from Paisiello are the most interesting cases); (b) the composition of Variations longing commercial viability based on local popular successes within theatrical dance ("Lundum from Monroi") and popular urban songs ("Moda do Tiro liro"), or cosmopolitan ones, like "Marlborough". In fact these are already the principles that Carl Czerny was to confirm as good thematic options for keyboard variations in "School of Practical Compositional" (c. 1848) and in his own piano works.

Journal Ad Parnassum
Year 2015
Volume 13
Pages np

De Sá, Vanda (2015) The Transformation of Musical Practices in Lisbon at the End of the "ancien régime": New Commercial Dynamics, Cosmopolitan Models and Keyboard Repertoires. In: Ad Parnassum: A Journal of Eighteenth- and Nineteenth-Century Instrumental Music, Vol. 13, pp. np. Available at


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