Crescendo of the Virtuoso: Spectacle, Skill, and Self-Promotion in Paris During the Age of Revolution

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During the Age of Revolution, Paris came alive with wildly popular virtuoso performances. Whether the performers were musicians or chefs, chess players or detectives, these virtuosos tranformed their technical skills into dramatic spectacles, presenting the marvellous and the outre for spellbound audiences. Who these characters were, how they attained their fame, and why Paris became the focal point of their activities is the subject of this study. Covering the years 1775 to 1850, Metzner describes the careers of a handful ...

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