Early Modern Exchanges


HYBRID Memory and Performance: Classical Reception in Early Modern Festivals (15th-18th Century)

23 February 2023–24 February 2023, 9:00 am–6:00 pm

Naumachia nel giardino ducale di Parma

REGISTRATION OPEN! Second part of a two-stage hybrid conference and demonstration-performance on 'Memory and Performance'.

Event Information

Open to





Giovanna Di Martino


St George's Church Bloomsbury (day one)
IAS Common Ground, UCL (day two)
United Kingdom

Organisers: Giovanna Di Martino (UCL), Francesca Bortoletti (UNIPR)

Scientific Committee: Mariella Bonvicini (UNIPR), Francesca Bortoletti (UNIPR), Nicola Catelli (UNIPR), Giovanna Di Martino (UCL), Giorgio Ieranò (UNITN), Fiona Macintosh (Oxford), Massimo Magnani (UNIPR), Eckart Marchand (Warburg), Lucy Jackson (Durham), Eugenio Refini (NYU); Paolo Russo (UNIPR), Margaret Shewring (Warwick, SEFR), Carlo Varotti (UNIPR), Erika Valdivieso (Yale), Federica Veratelli (UNIPR). 

Sponsors and Partners: Supported by the University of Parma, the W.I.D.E. Programme, UNIPR, the Centro per le Attività e le Professioni delle Arti e dello Spettacolo (CAPAS, UNIPR), UCL, the Centre for Early Modern Exchanges (UCL), the Archive of Performances of Greek and Roman Drama (Oxford), the Leventis Foundation (UCL), the Institute of Classical Studies, the Classical Association, UCL Institute of Advanced Studies and the Gilbert Murray Trust; in co-partnership with the Centro Interateneo sulla Memoria delle Arti Performative (MAP – Roma, Parma, Genova), the Centro Interuniversitario di ricerca di ‘Studi sulla Tradizione (Bari, San Marino, Padova, Trento), the Laboratorio Dionysos (Trento), The Society for European Festivals Research, and The Warburg Institute (London).


Thursday 23rd February

Time: 10.15am-7pm GMT
Place: IAS Common Ground, G11, ground floor, South Wing, UCL, Gower Street, London, WC1E 6BT, United Kingdom (see campus map for South Wing: https://www.ucl.ac.uk/maps/south-wing)

10.15-10.45 Registration and Coffee 

10.45-11.00 Welcome from Gesine Manuwald (UCL), and the conference organisers, Giovanna Di Martino (UCL) and Francesca Bortoletti (Parma)

11.00-12.20: Politics and Performance I - Chair: Lucy Jackson (Durham)

  • Kristen Vitale (Connecticut, ONLINE): Anne Boleyn as England’s Triumphator: The Transformation of Early Henrician Civic Triumph Pageantry 
  • ​​Francesco Dall’Olio (Verona): Orestes at Elizabeth's court: a possible court representation of John Pikeryng’s Horestes

12.20-1.30pm Lunch

1.30-3.00pm Politics and Performance II - Chair: Francesca Bortoletti (Parma) 

  • Jan Bažant (Centre for Classical Studies at the Institute of Philosophy, Prague - ONLINE): Pompa in honorem Ferdinandi, 1558
  • Lindsay Reid (University of Galway): Planting English Daughters in the Ovidian Landscape: The Entertainments at Bisham Abbey and Sudeley Castle (1592) 
  • Carlo Varotti (Parma): Tieste: The Words and Actions of a Degenerate Power

3.00-3.15pm Coffee/Tea Break

3.15-4.45pm Religion and Performance - Chair: Carlo Varotti (Parma)

  • Maria Czepiel (Oxford): Christian and Classical sources in Calderón’s El divino Orfeo (1634)
  • Maria Maciejewska (Innsbruck): 17th-Century Opening of the Jesuit Church in Lucerne from the Perspective of the Play Written for this Occasion
  • Beatriz Catão Cruz Santos (Federal University of Rio de Janeiro - ONLINE): The meanings of Awnings and Columns at the Lisbon Corpus Christi Procession (1717-1777)

4.45-5.15 Coffee/Tea Break

Demonstration-Performance: Performing Aristophanes' Wealth in Early Modern Translations

Place: St George's Church Bloomsbury, Bloomsbury Way, London WC1A 2SA

Introduction to the demonstration-performance: Fiona Macintosh (Oxford, APGRD), Francesca Bortoletti (UNIPR), Giovanna Di Martino (UCL), Marco Martinelli (Playwright/Theatre Director)

*The conference will be preceded by three days of theatre workshops, supported by the Widening International Didactics and Education Programme (w.i.d.e; 2022, Parma), the Classical Association, the Institute of Classical Studies, the Gilbert Trust Fund, UCL Institute of Advanced Studies, and the Leventis Foundation and organised by Francesca Bortoletti (Parma) and Giovanna Di Martino (UCL). These will be directed by playwright/director Marco Martinelli (Teatro delle Albe) and academic/dramaturg Giovanna Di Martino. Participants will be 10 university students from the University of Parma and UCL, and 14 school students from the following state schools: Jewish Community Secondary School, St Olave’s Grammar School, Cardinal Vaughan Memorial School, Highgate Wood Sixth Form, Mossbourne Community Academy Sixth Form, and Enfield County School for Girls. The group will work on the performance of a number of scenes from a selection of early modern performance scripts based on Aristophanes’ Wealth, and will investigate the performability and intricate web of citations embedded within early modern dramatic scripts*

Friday 24th February

Time: 10.30am-5.45pm GMT
Place: IAS Common Ground, G11, ground floor, South Wing, UCL, Gower Street, London, WC1E 6BT, United Kingdom

10.30-11.30pm: Performance in the Academies I - Chair: Lucy Nicholas (Warburg)

  • George Brocklehurst (Warburg): Humanist Symposia in a Cultural Historical Perspective
  • Angelica Vedelago (Padua): ‘Nature did wrong to give us memory / A nest wherein builds naught but misery’: ‘Tragic’ Memories in Pelopidarum Secunda (ca. 1590)

11.30-11.45 Coffee/Tea Break

11.45-12.45pm: Performance in the Academies II - Chair: Eckart Marchand (Warburg-Bilderfahrzeuge)

  • Anouska Lester (Roehampton): “Strange snow”: Representing and Remembering Weather in The Masque of Janus and Dido 
  • Martina Treu (IULM, presenting online): The Italian ‘Original sin’: The First Oedipus at the Teatro Olimpico in Vicenza (1585)

12.45-2.00pm Lunch

2.00-3.30pm Performance on the Popular Stage - Chair: Ottavia Mazzon (Padua)

  • Evgeniia Ganberg (Cambridge): ‘Cives Trojani in Suspicionem Aguntur & Prope Seditionem’: Being a Low-Born Trojan on the Early Modern Stage
  • Raf Van Rooy (KU Leuven): Greek as the Language of Performance in the Early Modern Low Countries 
  • Christopher Jotischky (Brown): Terence in Greek: The Transformation of Roman Comedy in Early Modern Greek Theatre

3.30-3.45pm Coffee/Tea Break

3.45-5.15pm Performance, Translation and Archives - Roundtable Discussion: Margaret Shewring (Warwick)

APGRD: Fiona Macintosh (Oxford, APGRD); FRIDAtlas: Francesca Bortoletti (Parma); MNEMOSYNE: Eckart Marchand (Warburg-Bilderfahrzeuge) ; Laboratorio Dionysos: Gaia Benamati (Bari); University of Warwick-British Library Festival Books Digitisation: Alexander Samson (UCL); The Renaissance Cultural Crossroads Catalogue: Brenda Hosington (Montreal, Warwick, UCL)

5.15-5.45pm Response by Eugenio Refini (NYU, speaking online) and Plenary

Register to attend

Image: Pier Ilario Mercanti, 'Spolverini' (Parma 1657-Piacenza 1734), Carlo Virginio Draghi (Piacenza, 1638-1694) Naumachy in the Ducal Garden Palace in Parma. Oil on canvas, cm 264 × 330. Parma, Casa della Musica.
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